Monday, September 29, 2008

What a weekend! Whew! I didn't think we'd make it through, but it turned out to be a beautiful one and everything just sort of fell into place.

Thursday night, we took my husband's car to the dealer for a few things. He called me in a panic earlier in the week because the check engine light had come on and the brakes were really becoming an issue. We knew we'd have to have them replaced, but were biding our time because of money issues. In addition to all of this, it was oil change time and inspection time, so we just figured we'd get it all done in one shot. UGH! We dropped it off at 10:00 on Thursday night and talked to the tech about what we wanted done. They're open until 11:00 as they're a major dealership, so that was the bonus. The problem? They didn't call us until 11:00 Friday night! I was sound asleep, but quickly awoken because the news was not good. When inspecting it for the Virginia inspection, they found a fuel line leak, an exhaust leak, and the headlights (?!?!?) were not mapping correctly. So, they suggested we pick it up on Saturday and take it to the Dodge dealership. Saturday was supposed to be reserved for a barbecue with all of the neighbors, but we had to bail on that. When we picked the car up, we talked to the tech and he told us we were looking at spending just over $1000 for the repairs. UGH! The car is only worth about $2000 and we don't have $500 laying around, let alone $1000. To top it all off? We had a big, red rejection sticker on the front glass. So, there went my plan to take it to some hole-in-the-wall gas station to do a quick inspection to tide us over. After some serious panicking, I figured we'd leave it up to chance and run over to Carmax to see what they might be able to do with us. What a pleasant surprise! We talked to them about selling it to them and decided to check out what our Chevy was worth to see if we could get into a 2006 minivan. They offered us much less than I thought they would, but we were able to qualify for a decent loan with decent monthly payments. The offer on the other car was above and beyond what I thought they'd offer and we decided to hold off on getting a new van and just took the check for my husband's car. This was the deal:
  • His car is 8, almost 9 years old.
  • 92,000 miles.
  • Sunroof doesn't work ($600 repair)
  • Trunk leaks water and fills up the backseat floors when it rains ($1200 repair)
  • Exhaust leak
  • Fuel line leak
  • White smoke emits from the exhaust
  • Brakes need replacing
  • Failed state inspection
We received WAY more than we originally thought and pretty darn near blue book value for the car in mint condition. We nearly ran out of there with the check! We're going to be able to finally pay my mom back some of the money we've borrowed from her over the last few months, pay OFF a credit card and pay down a line-of-credit. It doesn't make us nearly debt free ($150k, anyone?), but it does help us some. And, we'll be able to go to a nice dinner for our wedding anniversary next week. :)

So, with the day blown on Saturday, we woke up Sunday with the best of intentions. We were going to meet dear friends in Maryland and check out RennFest on Sunday. Wouldn't you know it? There were storms planned for the entire day. So, we hemmed and hawed and couldn't figure out what to do. Finally, we figured we'd head out to Leesburg and walk around the outlet mall to look for a new comforter for our bed (cats have torn the heck out of the faux down so there are feathers everywhere!). On our way out there, the weather seemed to be clearing up in the distance so we kept driving and ended up in Harpers Ferry! It really is one of our most favorite places in the area and only about an hour/hour and a half or so from where we live in Northern Virginia. The weather was beautiful up there and we had a nice lunch at a little outdoor cafe. The kids were amazing! We walked down to the river and along the train tracks (the kids saw four trains yesterday), then let them out of their stroller to run along the river bank. On our way home, we stopped at the local ice cream shop and the kids had some strawberry ice cream before jumping into the car for a nap on the way home.

We talked about how much the kids seem to be growing and changing by leaps and bounds. There really is no sign of the baby in either of them. They have lost their chubby cheeks and pudgy legs, the bottles are long gone, and the snuggles are slowly beginning to disappear. (Though, I still try and steal them whenever I can!) They are attempting speech at a record pace, pointing out so many little things that we so often take for granted, and growing increasingly independent of one another (though they are still very co-dependent of one another).

This weekend was a grand success!

Oh, and, my husband is officially one of those men on the road that makes you angry. He refuses to do anything over 50 miles per hour and insists on driving in the right, passing lane. He will not put the car in reverse to back it up and will drive around for hours (even pay for parking!) to avoid parallel parking the car. So, our trip home yesterday took us almost 2 hours instead of 1 and I had to finally holler at him on the Greenway because he was driving 50 in a 65 and even slammed on his breaks to slow down even more when he saw a cop. He doesn't grasp the fact that he can get a ticket for NOT doing the speed limit. He doesn't have any problem doing 50 in a residential area, though. *groan*

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