Social Media for New Car Shopping?

looking for a new wheelchair friendly carIn the next month I plan to buy a car. Whether or not it is new will depend on pricing and other details but the main gist of my car hunt is to find something for Carter and I. Let me repeat that—for the first time I am looking for a car that fits just Carter and I. That feels so good to say! Finally! Bob will take the older SUV and pass that to Con next year when he starts driving.  So, this car is really about making life easier for the two of us to get around-wheelchair and all.

I’m wondering how I can bring social media and blogging into this hunt??? Cause the deal is, I AM buying the car. I have no illusions that by being a blogger I should get any sort of deal, let’s face it, I am not that popular of a blogger~LOL! What I am hoping is that the social media departments of some car companies may help to make sure I find the RIGHT car for us. I am going to be blogging my way through this both here and on Spina Bifida Connection because in the disability world, the right car makes all the difference in your level of independence-whether you are the driver or not. AND for a mom with a wheelchair using kid, it makes all the difference in how much work is involved getting the kiddo out and about. Ideally, as part of this hunt, I would be able to try out several different cars in more than a 20 min test drive.

I would like to really examine some of the options out there. Right now I am pretty open but I have narrowed a few things down.

What I want:

  • Super easy access for Carter to transfer into the front, passenger seat. It should have as little of a difference in height from his wheelchair seat as possible. Our current car is too low and the SUV is too high.
  • Probably looking for a ‘cross over’-a mix of a car and an SUV. I rented a cross over Kia Sorrento this past summer and liked the overall feel of this style of car.
  • Decent leg room all around. While Bob and Connor won’t be the main riders of this car, they are 6’2 and 6’8. They should be comfortable if we need to use it as a family.
  • Something with an easy lift up SUV type trunk that I can throw the wheelchair in without having to do any breakdown.
  • All wheel drive for those CO roads.
  • High crash and safety ratings
  • Easy, fold down seats

Somethings that will weigh into the decision if I find a few models with the above criteria:

  • Gas mileage. Would love to explore alternative fuel options-not big on the corn fed alternatives though
  • Socio-economic and ecological impact of the manufacture
  • Cup holders-big ones, in the middle of the passenger and driver–yeah, silly I know but it’s the little things :)
  • navigation system
  • ipod jack and satellite radio (we are passed the days of needing dvd entertainment systems for the kids)
  • LOVE the safety of ONSTAR in the SUV I have now….would like a system like that again
  • High reviews from current owners and places like Consumer Reports
  • Thinking I want a silver color-seems like it would blend road sludge the best
  • Would like to look at ramp/lift systems but we are not ready to go there yet. Carter can still transfer safely given the right environment.
  • Heated seats

SO, who has suggestions on what I need to add to my list or a car they love I should check out? He is having surgery in 2 weeks and I would like to spend this last bit of time we have before the major recoup visiting lots and having him try them out.

Forever Memories

Bob’s parents are here this week and while our schedule is hectic, we have had some time to talk, laugh and stroll down memory lane. Tonight over a quick and early dinner they told stories of the times they would ski with their young kids and how those were some of the happiest family times they had. They had some great stories to tell of kids skiing off into tree areas, lift ‘incidents’ and a hysterical one about someone (who shall remain nameless) tried to stop someone else from losing control by sticking a poll between their skis. Think on that one for a minute…

That conversation left me thinking about our family trips and how I have always held them as sacred. We have had some real ups and downs on family trips, from panic attacks on the plane (me! Stupid stewardess burned the pilots dinner and I was SURE the plane was on fire) to memories that will, hopefully, last a life time (Carter taking his first steps right down the middle of Main Street, USA). Family trips have bonded us all with common experiences that we have all learned from.

Will my kids someday sit around the dinner table and laugh about when Dad fell off the ski lift, or commiserate over the day I drug them through NASA instead of taking them to Disneyworld????

I hope so….

*Sony’s Open Season 3 will be released on DVD Jan. 25. I able to review the movie early for this post. We’ll be talking about sweet family travel memories and giving away prizes during our Jan. 24 TravelingMom Monday Twitter party. If you’d like a chance to win, please click here to get the details on how to enter. And, if you’ve still got little ones, they can get a taste of the Open Season characters Boog and his friends with online games Cannonball and Jamboree.

I Think I Might Be a Diva

Oh, help me…..

It’s coming to my attention that they way I like things might be a little weird.Maybe a little diva-y?

I guess I have a weird quirk. When traveling I like having my own hotel room. Not when we are traveling with family, but I will get to that in a minute, but traveling on what I would term ‘business’. I really won’t ever explore sharing, even if it means me paying more.

I’m planning on attending a conference in a few weeks with lots of work and personal friends and everyone sort of wants to have a big sleepover during the conference. Sharing rooms and even beds. This is how people typically afford and enjoy blogger conferences. It’s kind of the sleep over type of fun that most girls enjoy.

So, this is where I think I may be a diva.  I LOVE the parties, will stay up late, have a ball but when it comes to sleeping I just NEED my personal space. Even if it is only to catch 3 hours of sleep a night.

This really has bugged me the last few days. It seems like absolutely no one I talk to feels the same way. Everyone seems to be perfectly comfortable finding another blogger, even if they have never met in real life, and sharing a room. So, what the hell is wrong with me???

In my pondering I started thinking about this. In my whole life I can count the number of sleep overs I attended on my hand. Would love to go and hangout but would rather go home and sleep in my own bed. Even as a little kid.

In college I lasted about a week with 4 roommates. I moved out so fast it wasn’t funny to my own dorm. I did move my cat in though. Oh, God, does that mean I am going to become a creepy old lady who dies alone with 80 cats?

Loved being in a sorority and visiting the house rooms. Never in a million years could I have lived there.

So, I guess it isn’t a money thing cause lord knows I am still paying my college loans and living on my own was sure a part of that.

Is it then sort of a spoiled only child thing (all brothers and sisters moved out by the time I was born)???? I don’t know because my oldest is the exact same way. I remember the night we were all on vacation and he was maybe 8 and we were ‘camping’ in a really nice hotel but staying all in the same room. He woke me up with a psychotic look in his eyes and said “I am going to kill someone if I ever have to sleep in the same room with you all again”. From that day on, we have never booked a family vacation where he had to share a room. He just can’t deal without having a little place to escape to and I totally get that. Yeah, we have never really CAMPED as a family either. That idea sends me into little panic attacks.

So, yes. People will tell you that have known me for years that I have these little odd quirks. I do other things when traveling that are weird…I travel and/or stop for two things….my favorite coffee cream and diet coke with lime. I’m just cranky with out it.

Most people would describe me as pretty social I think. So, what is it about the sleeping that makes me so uncomfortable?

Does being un-adaptable make me a diva? I hope not. Does it make me weird? I don’t know….what do you think?