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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

It's A Sienna, Baby!!



Let me tell you how much I *HATE* shopping for new vehicles. I hate the whole process. Seriously. All the internet searching ahead of time, so we know what prices are within the range of our budget, how much above cost they are asking, speculating on how low they will go, did I offer too much?

The one thing I really hate is feeling like I had a fast one pulled over me, that the guy next to me got a better deal than I did because he had better negotiating skills.

But I do have to say it was a pleasure to deal with Modern Toyota of Winston Salem! No pressure, fun test drive, great salesman ((I suppose that’s why he’s been there for 30 years!)) and it was not nearly as painful as I was dreading.

We were going from place to place, and all the while my friend Randy was texting me with facts from Consumer Reports on which vehicles were rated best! And before I knew it we were down between two vehicles, the Honda Odyssey, and the Toyota Sienna.

We drove both….and I just have to say I liked the features of the Sienna better. It was a quieter ride, much smoother, and we got more for our money. The rear seats WERE easier to put down on the Honda.....but my seats are likely to stay down all the time, so that was just a small trade off for the other things I did like better about the Sienna.


I have never thought a minivan could be so fun to drive….and this thing? It has MEGA space! Just the fact that it is this low to the ground is going to make loading the quilt bags and cases of books, sewing machine, project bins, sew-ezi table ((Yes, that goes too!)) so much EASIER!

The back seats are stowed down…look at this space! I don’t even think I’m going to need to remove the two second row seats….There is already enough room in the back! As Lisa pointed out on my facebook post ----“ROADTRIP!!” Says it all!

I have NEVER had a sun roof in my life! NEVER NEVER NEVER! Okay. How do I work this thing?!

There are so many bells, buttons and whistles, It’s going to take me a while to get this sorted out. Back Up Camera?!? I hate backing up! Do you think I can do it now? :cD


THIS is going to take some getting used to. No key? Just leave the fob in my purse? You mean I don’t have to dig through all the junk in the bottom of “the black hole” bag to find keys? I think I’m going to LIKE this!

I've thought about this for a long time. I practically LIVE in my car. I haul a lot of stuff from guild to guild to guild, and when my car is loaded, there isn't room for another person in it...how can I take anyone with me in a car that is that full? You can't. So...I have reached the realization that I "NEED" a van. My kids are laughing hysterically at me. But...I need a van!

So where are we going to go first? Sam’s club, of course! Mama needs some more mailing envelopes.

And Friday --- We take the first Sienna Road Trip up to Fredericksburg and Woodbridge, VA!

61 comments:

Nancy said...

wow...Mini-Vans sure don't look like they used to!

Cathy said...

Congrats on the Mini-Van. Now you will have room when you stop at an Antique Mall to get that Sewing maching cabinet that wouldn't fit last time....lol Enjoy. Hugs.

karenfae said...

have fun with your new car. I have a sun roof in my car too and it stays shut most of the time - I'm just not a sun person - the car we wanted came with the sun roof though it just doesn't get used much.
Karen
http://karensquilting.com/blog/

Freda said...

Love the new Sienna, Bonnie. Now you can buy more things!

suzan almond said...

It's looking good !
Why does anyone, ever, buy a saloon ? Here in UK that kind of vehicle used to be called an estate car - my Dad always drove one for reasons similar to yours, and since then DH and I have always preferred them - they can be racy if you pick carefully !So much more versatile too.

Betty said...

Looks like a good fit for you, Bonnie. Look out antique malls!
Still working on my Pineapple Blossom, have 21 blocks complete. Was planning to do 42 blocks, but now I am aiming for 48. I have all the pieces cut (if I counted correctly) except for a few more lights for the six extra blocks.

Saska said...

When you said you were going to buy a van, I thought about that two-seater that you rode in going thru Dallas/Ft. Worth. It took two of our vehicles to haul all of your stuff. You will definitely enjoy the space in the van.

Anya said...

I had an Odyssey for 7 years (loved it) and now have had a Sienna for the last 4 (love it, too)...Once you have a van, you'll never want to go back to a "normal" car. Have fun!

Anonymous said...

After my soccer mom years in a minivan I just couldn't go back to a car! I love my quiltmobile. Enjoy your new vehicle.
Ardis

Emilia said...

My friends that have a Sienna love it! It's going to be a great car for you and for many years to come. Enjoy it.

paulette said...

Enjoy the new van....she is a beauty!!
Paulette

Anonymous said...

I love my Sienna and I think you will too! It has so much room and drives like a car. Enjoy!

Not Lucy said...

I've had a couple of minivans but once I was no longer hauling kids to soccer, etc. I wanted something smaller. We kept the minivan and it was great when I needed to haul more. We gave our last one to our daughter and replaced it with a Suburban that can haul our utility and travel trailer and has 4-wheel drive. My car is a Prius and my favorite feature is not having to have my keys out to open the doors or drive!

My sister has a Sienna and it seems pretty nice, especially the doors sliding open and closed on their own!

Barb H said...

I'm glad you found a van for yourself. I'm a Toyota driver and I hope you enjoy driving in a Toyota. I would have a hard time switching to any other brand of car. Enjoy your road trip--I can smell the "new car" as I type. :)

Anonymous said...

Congrats Pal!! I got a Santa Fe a couple of weeks ago and it's a blast, but I agree with you about the dreaded negotiations. I usually feel like I should carry some diplomas with me to prove that although I am now 63, I am not senile nor out on a day pass from one of our fine state institutions! Why do they do that? I ask myself, but I know the simple answer is money. Anyway, if you see my navy blue baby (Noah) on the road, beep and wave as you fly by! But this time the trip to Lee's Summit will be by plane and Noah will get a few days off. Quilt on!!!! Sally

Granny Stitch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Granny Stitch said...

Bonnie, you are going to love that minivan. I had one for many years and now that they have the easy to stow seats they are even better. Just think of all the "stuff" you can carry and all the "stuff" you can purchase from all those antique malls you pass! You are going to have soooooo much fun!

Anonymous said...

Lookin' Good! A new car is the greatest, isn't it?? Have fun loading up your quiltmobile.
Peggy

Cindy said...

It looks great, and you look GOOOOD leaning on it! Enjoy it!

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

woo-hoo! Congratulations Bonnie! You will LOVE you new MINI. Can't wait to hear your reports from the next trip.

Mary C in Wa said...

I thought you were just teasing about wanting a Minivan. These I believe are called Crossovers. They are more streamlined than the boxy ones I drove way back in the 80's and 90's. Enjoy your new ride!

Threeundertwo said...

There's no key hole? Clearly I haven't bought a car in a long time! That's a little weird. We took one of the center seats out of our Sienna and it really yields a lot more room. I'm so glad you're happy with your choice. Enjoy that new car smell!

Janet O. said...

When I told you we had test driven the Honda and Toyota vans, and chose the Toyota, I was going to tell you why. But I decided that if you were testing them both you could decide for yourself. You pegged it! The Sienna had a much quieter, smoother ride. My 87-year-old Dad, who has the constant post-shingles pain many seniors suffer with (and feels every bump in the road), had even told us that riding with us was much less painful than riding in my sister's Odyssey.
Can't wait to hear how much you love it on the road trips!

Karen said...

Congrats! It's a great van. We've had one for a few years now and love it, especially on the 4 hour trips to the cottage with two little kids. It really does drive like a car.

41bcfa3a-4a5f-11e0-9c57-000bcdcb5194 said...

I am with you on the negotiation thing. I am not very good at it. My daughter did a great job on the first car she ever bought without her dad beside her. The car she wanted was really too expensive for her unless they came way down on the price, and eventually they did. She is smart enough not to over extend herself so they had to meet her price or she was not going to buy it. I think I will take her, instead of her dad, next time I buy a car!

marcella said...

That is so exciting! Hope you have fun with it on your trip.

Maybe it will bring you all the way to CA soon :-)

mblittle5 said...

Congragts!! I recently purchase a Toyota Venza (a little/lot smaller) and it has the push button key. LOVE IT!!!! I just leave my key in my purse and no problem, but I keep trying to open my hubby's Honda Pilot without his key and it just doesn't work, LOL>

Deb said...

I am jealous! My best friend has one (Sienna), and I LOVE IT. We used to have one (a 2000), but needed a new truck too, but used to use it to haul our Scamp (camper). We sold it (100K+) and it is still on the road and looking good.I miss my minivan, and still want a new one also. My hub was using it as a truck, so we knew we needed to change, they are not built for what HE was using it for! I would go back in a heartbeat. You are going to LOVE it. Does it have heated seats too? I will never buy a vehicle without them again, but then we are in northern MN....Have FUN.

vtquilter said...

Congrats! And the best part..... it IS a business expense! Enjoy the van... you can haul lots of things in there.

Teresa in Music City said...

Oh boy! Love your new wheels Bonnie!!! Let the kids laugh - let's face it, today's minivans are definitely not our Mom's vans.... they're like floating homes away from home :) You're going to SEW love it! I went from a car to a Honda CRV last year, and I'm enjoying it a lot - my first sunroof too!! - but I have noticed a lot of road noise and it does not have the smoothest ride. I've been a Honda girl for 20 years, but I'll spend a lot more time looking at other options when I get my next new ride.

Anonymous said...

The new Quiltmobile looks like a fun machine. Bet it smells fantabulous too.
Cheers,
Marie from Rockingham W.Aust.

Jean C. said...

Congrats on the "new wheels"... I had a van when our family was younger, and then as they got older... that was the car they got to learn to drive on. But I still went to a Jeep (with fold down seats) cause I basically use my vechicles like a truck (cause hubby isn't always around when I need a truck!) I told him this once and he just laughed! I still have a Jeep but have a Commander now! No kids at home any more... but I seem to be the designated driver for a bunch of the LOL's around here (little old ladies... ha, I'm in my 50's and the rest are 75 or older!) So, I guess I still need something to be able to drive them around that isn't too terrible to get into! Nice to know that I can haul about anything I want to without a big hassle either!
Yeah for you! Enjoy the road trip! Oh... and the sun roof.... I have one too... nice to be able to have it open and not have to have your hair blowing all over the place!

Tricia said...

I am sure you will love it! I love my toyota...and it gets lots of use. I love love love my "moonroof" that is what my two year old grandson calls it, as that is the only time I let him have it open here in good old AZ where it is so hot! Have fun! and Congratulations!

Patchwork Penguin said...

OOO Fredericksburg is only two hours away from here LOL.... have fun!

Anonymous said...

Going to try the anonymous thing for commenting Bonnie. Have read your blog for years but have been unable to comment. Who knows why??

Your photo looks great with your new car. Never mind the pokes about the van. Your work requires it. Good luck. Stephani in TX Tomazec@aol.com

regan said...

Love your new quiltmobile....and you look great with it!

Anonymous said...

I love my 2011 Sienna. The middle seat of the second row pops out, and stores in a cubbyhole in the back. I have had to haul long things before that have gone from console to back.

Debbie Lou said...

Love your new mini-van and I'm sure you will, too. All that space to fill. It should make your life a lot easier. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

I drove a Toyota minivan (the same one) for 15 years. It was still going strong, but I traded it in on a Prius.....better gas mileage, and no key necessary! Love it!

Anonymous said...

Five years ago I had twins and my DH decided we needed a Sienna. I kicked and screamed and swore I would sell it while he was at work. But, five years later, I secretly love it and look forward to driving it for several more years!

Quiltin' LibraryLady said...

Your new wheels look kinda sporty....not like a mini-van at all. Not going to be able to any off-roadin' though with that low profile.

Jittina said...

Bonnie, congratulations on your new car.
When we were on vacation in Florida last April we rented a Toyota Sienna. I really, really liked it! Lots of space for both the passengers as well as the luggage and very easy to drive.
Home again, I had to go back into my Nissan Almera hatchback (don't know if you have this model in the USA, but it is small!). Happy driving!

Jittina, the Netherlands

Kate said...

Oh Bonnie - I am in LOVE!!! That is one neato vehicle. I remember driving a minivan when the kids were younger - what a great excuse to have a wonderful car. The visibility was amazing and I never had to think twice about picking up things or taking that extra person. Your car is just awesome with all those extra thingys and doodads and whats its to make life easier - ENJOY!!!

Marianne said...

Love your new van! Now you can stop at all those places, and fill 'er up! Have fun, Marianne.
wackyworldofquilting.blogspot.com

Bev said...

I know you're going to love your new minivan. Personally, I will never have a vehicle without a sunroof - I love mine. I find if I leave the back windows opened just a little, the noise from the sunroof is less. And do you like your cup holders? DH thought I was nuts when I considered that as one of the final tie breakers when I bought the last car. If I'm going to drink stuff in my car, the cup holders should be convenient, right? Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

But it's a TOYOTA!!!! You couldn't find ANYTHING made in America to fit your bill and budget??? Color me disappointed...

Katie said...

Congratulations! I can't wait to see what you come home with now! ;-)

NeverBored said...

I have a Sienna and I hope it lasts forever because I love it! (and I hate to car shop). I can't imagine driving anything else. I know you're going to love yours the more you use it and experience the comfort and convenience.

To Anonymous who is disappointed you didn't buy something made in America. Toyota has 5 major assembly plants in the USA: Huntsville, Alabama; Georgetown, Kentucky; Princeton, Indiana; San Antonio, Texas; Buffalo West Virginia and a new plant being finished in Blue Springs, Mississippi as well as a joint venture with Subaru in Lafayette, Indiana; They've been building cars in the US since the 80's and employ a lot of US auto workers. You can be less diappointed with Bonnie for buying a Sienna now.

Bonnie K Hunter said...

Thank you to Neverbored for stating my own feelings above! Out of all of the people working at that dealership, in the service department ((Hubby got a oil change on his Toyota Tacoma while we were shopping)) to the finance people, to the sales people...as far as I know, all of these are American employees who have jobs because I bought a Toyota from that dealership.

Tracey in CT said...

Plenty of room in there to bring home lots more machines in cabinets!! :-) I could get used to that no-key thing! I never can find my keys.

cityquilter said...

hey bonnie, now you have room to bring home all those antiques you find too....just like a new box of crayons i'll bet...

Me and My Stitches said...

Think of all the fun things you can buy on your trips!!!!

Quilts And Pieces said...

Oh it is wonderful! I miss my van. I still want one - you are going to love it!

Lee D said...

You will love your Sienna. I have had mine for 8 yrs and it has served me well. Camping trips with the five of us. Road trip from calgary to San Diego!! And many trips to soccer games, and dance competions. I love the automatic sliding doors. Enjoy and safe travels

Beth said...

Congrats Bonnie! The new van is a beauty. Think of how much fabric you can fit in there. Enjoy getting used to it. :)

ritainalaska said...

way to go! that's a good choice for you and your needs. i just got a jimmy envoy that has a running board so i can get in and OUT of it easily; the sun roof [i need all the light i can get] and a great door on the back end that i can cart and unload garden stuff by myself. this will positively by my last car [i said that about my last one, ten years ago]

Lisa said...

Great looking van! I predict before long the two "back" seats are removed so you can haul home one of those gorgeous antique sewing cabinets you show photos of! Enjoy the new vehicle!

Anonymous said...

"all of these are American employees who have jobs because I bought a Toyota from that dealership"
They wouldn't all have jobs if it was a dealership selling American cars? It seems we are losing our country, one purchase at a time. Makes me sad is all though I love your quilts.

Bonnie K Hunter said...

Dear Anonymous. I appreciate your thoughts, but this is the 21st century. NO country survives only by purchasing from their own country. Do you sew on an american made sewing machine? Are you aware that many of the books you purchase are printed in CHINA? AQS, That Patchwork Place, C&T ALL print in China. I publish with Kansas City Star which prints ALL of their books in the USA. So please don't make me feel like I am not supporting america. I looked at american models. My last several cars were american. I've had fords, chryslers, pontiacs, and saturns. But in the minivan department, they were an inferior product. That's my bottom line.

Is your sewing machine an american product? your TV? your Stereo? Your computer?!

Most of the fabric we sew with today is manufactured and/or printed in China.

Look around you. And before you get down on me for buying a car with a foreign name that was ASSEMBLED in the USA by USA workers....think again about everything that comes in to your home.

TheStylishHome said...

Now, I'm totally envious! (Look back a couple days....I said Sienna!!!) We did the same research and that came out on top...just not able to do it right now. Have fun with it! I was also Anti-Minivan until I sat in that.

Angie said...

Congratulations on your new MiniVan Bonnie. I had a Sienna for years. But, we had to sell it when my husband had knee replacements. He if very tall and the leg space is a bit cramped for him. We had the extra towing package on ours which made it have a more stable ride or feeling to it out on the hwys. Especially driving in the wind. I love the air conditioner and heater in the Sienna too. I know you are going to really enjoy driving this vehicle. Gets good gas milage too!