Photo: I was feeling fanciful because the sunrise was coming through the dining room window in a spectacular way last week. I was like, “this is gonna make the quilt look awesome.” So I set the fabric down on the table and started taking pictures. I am so behind on this thing! I’ve gotta get it down this week!


“Don’t be nervous,” the lovely and kind nurse said to me as she stepped out of the exam room. “It’s good news.”

My surgeon officially confirmed what the radiologist unofficially told me last Wednesday: my lump is a lipoma. A fatty piece of tissue under my skin. Totally benign. I don’t have breast cancer. Everything is going to be ok.

“You can get it checked out again in 6 months and then continue your normal follow-ups or we can choose to remove it if you really want to.”

I do really want to. I just don’t want to think about it anymore.

So, next Wednesday, I’ll have surgery and have my lump removed. I don’t want to do a self-exam, get to that part of my chest and think, hmm… is it bigger? Has it changed? Is is lumpier? I just want to get off the ride, you know? So we’re having it taken out.

It’s going to be a logistical nightmare, actually. This doesn’t happen on my time with my day in mind. So I’m scheduled for next Wednesday at 1:30, but I’m getting the impression that there will likely be a delay or a bump. I have to be there at 11am and I’m not allowed to eat or drink at all after midnight before the surgery.

“No coffee?” I whimpered.

“No nothing.” The lady giving me the rundown said without a hint of sympathy.

That means I’m gonna be having caffeine withdrawal and a hangry headache. Not a good look.

Mom is coming up from Maryland to help out. She’s been looking for the opportunity to get on a plane and get up here and now she’s got it. We need her, actually, to make this work, so I’m grateful to have her instead of bothering someone around here. We know plenty of people who would say yes if we asked, but the boys are a handful and it would be a thing. Mom being up here means that we can roll with whatever comes and we’ll know the boys will be in good hands and not a burden. It works out perfectly.

So now that that’s settled… what else is there?

Oh yes, the car.

So we had 2 hours after we were done with the appointment. I was like, this is the perfect opportunity to take a test drive! We have appointments at  Ford and Chevy dealerships this weekend (I prefer American-made cars) but we also have two Toyotas on our short list: the Sienna and the Highlander.

I’m resentful about the Sienna, frankly. It’s the only minivan that has all-wheel drive, which is one of our big requirements this go-round. I’m really not trying to be a minivan mom. I’m really, really not. But my husband actually likes them and thinks they’re practical for the family so… off we went.

So we get this salesman, and we tell him we want to look at Highlanders and Siennas, and the first thing he asks is, “how many kids are we talking about?”

“Two,” I answer.

But my husband and I exchanged looks.

“But maybe three in the future. Maybe.”

“Well,” says Salesman, “if we’re talking three, you gotta go with the Sienna.”

I mean, gotta? Like, gotta?  “Can we look at the Highlander anyway?”

“Oh, sure!” He says, in that salesman way that salesmen say such things, cavalier and boisterous. “We can look at anything you want!”

So we go over there and he tells us all of the reasons why we shouldn’t buy one. Seriously. The third row, he explained, is just not that great. It wasn’t, I must say. It looked like an afterthought and extremely uncomfortable.

“And it isn’t about just the kids, you know. It’s about the stuff they have, too!” He lifted the tailgate to prove his point: no trunk space. Just the minimal amount. Not even enough for a regular run to Wegmans. Basically, there is a third row where a trunk should go. It was unforgivable, especially because the rest of it was so unimpressive. I didn’t even want to test drive it.

So he showed us the pretty red Sienna in the showroom. Look at this! Look at that! This stows like this! Kids put their stuff here! You can get even more things there!

“And you know, the kids, they gotta be separated because they are constantly poking and hitting each other!” The salesman says. So he goes to the front seat, hits a button on the panel in the ceiling, and a little mirror comes down, angled in a way so that you can see every seat in the cabin. “This lets you see what’s going on back there! Now you know who is hitting who! In the 2016 model, there is a microphone and speaker so you can talk to them without turning around, too!”

He was so pleased with himself.

“So you’ve made me a school bus driver, basically,” I said, half laughing to mask my dismay and keep the mood light. Seriously, though, I wanted to kick the dude in the shin.

“It’s just one minor feature…” My diplomatic husband interjected. He knows when things are about to get real.

But Mister Salesman was having a great time. “Listen! You got these kids, you are cartin’ them around, and all of their friends! This has everything you need to keep yourself sane!”

Except for the style. Or the dignity. Whatever. Who needs those things when you have “I see you! Stop poking your brother! Don’t throw that! No, we’re not getting pizza today! Why isn’t your seatbelt on? You’re playing your movie too loud!

Oh wait, I do that anyway, don’t I?

So here we go. Test drive. This dude finds a 2015 Periwinkle Sienna. “This is one of the nice ones. Two sunroofs! Best sound! Wide-screen HD TV in the back! I’m serious! I’ve got the seat warmers all ready for you. Just hop in and give her a spin.”

I’m not going to tell you it’s the most horrible thing I’ve ever driven, Dear Reader. She was peppy and responsive, though big. It was nice to be high up so I could see around me. The sunroof was nice (I miss the sunroof from my old car). We didn’t play with the sound system, but the front panel and was pretty nice. There is room for every single little item of crap that I seem to be carrying around… fine. It’s a The Ultimate Mom Machine. It was made just for me and my suburban lifestyle. But that doesn’t mean that I want it! Besides, they are ridiculously expensive. That mini-van was priced, used, at $32,000! I’m kinda like, why? You know why? The all-wheel drive! They’re the only game in town if you want all-wheel drive! Ridiculous!

So we return and give him back the keys. He was like, “wasn’t that a great car? Such a great car. I love the color, too.”

“We’d need a darker color.” I said immediately. If I must do this, it will be in the right color.

“She prefers another palette. Black. Maybe red if it is dark enough.”

“Oh,” the man says in a mocking sort of way. “But you looked so good in it! That’s such a great color for you!”

I scowled. I didn’t mean to scowl. Ok, I meant to scowl. And I didn’t stop myself from letting out an audible “auck.” Are you for serious, dude?

So. That was fun.

Onward. There is so much to do. At least it’s going to be a rainy, cold week so I’ll be able to get a lot done.

How are you, Dear Reader? How was your weekend? Hope you are well and that we’ll share a productive week! What do you drive? I need suggestions!


10 thoughts on “Time to Pivot

  1. Yay!!!!!
    (Super duper double high five yay!)
    One day of no-caffeine headache… You can do this. Maybe could look forward to some coffee ice cream when you are ready to eat…?
    O goodness, though. A minivan? I could never do it.
    They didn’t even exist when I was a kid.
    I’m trying to remember what cars showed up when I was a kid…
    (They mostly were all hand-me-downs from relatives…)
    There was a Buick boat, a 5-speed Audi diesel sedan, and a Toyota Cressida (I was the fourth recipient of that car when I started to drive. It was overheating on a regular basis by then… Must’ve been 1987.)

    But hey, a minivan could make road trips super comfy.
    Think of all the quilts you could fit into it.

    • Thank you, thank you! And thank you so much for all of your kindness and wonderful words! You know I’m always so grateful to you! You’re just wonderful!

      This minivan is killing me. My mom drove a Pontiac Bonneville when we were kids. Did us just fine. Got us everywhere we ever wanted to go. But then again, it was just the three of us… BUT STILL, we were FINE! This is all my husband’s fault!

      And we’ve done that road trip to and from Maryland for damn near 10 years and have never been uncomfortable.
      I mean… only partially uncomfortable…
      you know… like… regularly only slightly uncomfortable…

      Do I HAVE to drive a school bus all year ’round just because we drive to Maryland from time to time? It feels very unfair!

      There is going to be a lot of whining about this… I’m sorry in advance!

      • I would whine too 😉
        Why not just paint the thing bright yellow? May as well go with the school bus thing.
        Minor would LOVE that.
        I dunno. Maybe it’s different now? We were four in the family and it was just fine.
        But hey, it really could come in handy.
        And if nerdy can be sexy, maybe in time minivans can too?

  2. I’m glad your physical health is good! I had one of those scares too. The waiting is the pain and the six month check up is as well!
    I never caved into the min-van and I had three BUT my mom has a Sienna and I LOVE it. The outside does suck on all min-vans but the comfort inside is heaven especially for road trips which I love. Last summer my mother, daughter, and my grandson drove to Sesame Street Place in PA. Much better traveling with bags, and coolers and dvd player. I feel I don’t get that comfort in my SUV. I think you will grow to love it.

    • Hey, Lady! It’s been a while! I missed you! And thank you, yes… I’m so relieved! This was entirely too scary… I wonder how necessary some of it was. But I’m grateful for the positive outcome… that’s what matters.

      Don’t go tellin’ me that van is better than the SUV! No no nooooo… I really… they are so terrible… and they are SO expensive! What SUV do you have? You really prefer the Sienna?

      • I prefer my SUV(highlander) BUT for small kids, road trips NOTHING comes close to the comfort of my mom’s Sienna lol. I hate the way they look outside but the inside is like stepping into Narnia COMPLETELY DIFFERENT than expectation 😂😂😂 if i could afford two I would get one for road trips and I would do more of them! I think you will love it…just blindfold yourself till you get inside 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

    • God had me the whole time. The whole time. I’ve been praying and praying and He has been doing nothing but answering. I can’t say thank you enough. I just can’t pray enough and say thank you enough.

      I like the Maxima. My Aunt used to drive one! Subarus are expensive and don’t have 3rd rows… We thought about it, though!

    • Thank you so much! How is everything going for you? I’m sorry I haven’t visited your blog lately. But please know that I’m thinking of you. I hope that you get positive news, too!

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