I wonder if every thirty-something year old daughter says or thinks this, “I have become my mother!” I’m sure every daughter vows at the wise age of 13 to be nothing like their mother when they are a mom.

One of the things I remember thinking as a child, “I will never be the owner of a van like my mom!”

I tried hard not to eat those words.  When I had my first child, I had no desire to trade my two-door sports car in for a bigger vehicle.   It was perfect for me.  When Joe and I found out we would be a family of four much early than ‘planned,’ I was determined to find a way to make the car work.

The light bulb came on early in my pregnancy with little sister, and I found myself trading in my sports car life to become a minivan mom.  Though I would have preferred to have gotten to be in the cool SUV-owner club, our finances would not allow it.  I can remember driving off the car lot that day.  I looked in the rearview mirror of my new (well new to me!) minivan and said goodbye to the beautiful white Monte Carlo.

I turned and looked at the enormous amount of space in that van, and memories of my own  childhood flooded into my head.  Vacations.  School field trips.  High School football games.  Church youth group trips.  I could picture faces of my friends and hear the crazy songs we would sing together on trips in that old van my mom drove.

One of the many school trips my mom went on as a sponsor and hauled kids around in her van

This beautiful van took our family on many adventures...still not sure what the ladder on the back was for...

There are many things I learned from my mom growing up.  One of those is…no matter what the ‘cool people’ of the world say…the coolest moms in the world haul kids around in vans!

Here we are leaving the hospital with little sister in tow... if we only knew the adventures we would have in that minivan...

I have many sweet memories of strapping numerous car seats into my van so that friends could go with us somewhere to play

One of the many 'in route' photo memories captured in our van.

Who knew I would actually cry when our minivan gave out on us.  This time I was not just trading in a vehicle, I was leaving behind something that had helped our family create precious memories.

Today I am back to driving a car…though I really wanted to try to go back to two doors…my head  convinced my heart otherwise, and I settled for a four door car.  As I look back at old photos of my mom’s old van…I honestly think I may make another trade when the kids get a little bigger…nothing more fun that a van load of teenagers!