Ode to My Minivan: A Guest Post by Heather Klaus

By the time Friday hits - even on a shortened work week like this one - we're all ready for a good dose of commonsense and humor. Preferably together. Amiright?

That's what you'll get in today's guest blog post by my dear friend Heather Klaus, pictured here with her handsome men:

Heather and I meet up monthly for Write Club, weekly for grill-and-chill, and almost daily for park outings that shave minutes off the brutal 4-to-5 p.m. timeframe before dad gets home.

Heather has a STRONG side hustle (arguably a full-time hustle) as a dance instructor. Even at 7 months pregnant with Child #3, she still rocks the studio three days a week. Plus many weekends. And still smiles. And laughs that amazing Heather laugh. 

The Schulte family adores the Klaus Haus. We share many commonalities (MIZ-ZOU... A love of the Happels...), and now we can add Chrysler Town & Country ownership to the list. 

Enjoy my fab friend's take on taking the minivan plunge:

In Heather's words:

Tim and I just purchased our very first minivan, and although I have received a little flak from a few friends, I have decided that I am not even one iota ashamed of how much I love it. Yes, I fought the stigma just like many suburban moms—those of us who hide in SUVs, choosing to believe that the gaggle of children following us into Trader Joe's doesn't already give away our secret soccer-mom life.

But seeing as we are adding another little person to our family of four in August, I finally felt like I could hold my head up high and purchase this sliding-door little slice of heaven.

What is it that holds so many back from the dreaded minivan? Wouldn't you like to prevent your 3-year-old brute frat-boy-in-training from cranking his door open and into the Mercedes parked next to you? Am I really going to fold down the seat 14 times a day when my daughter needs to crawl into the “back-back?” How many times have you tried to shimmy the infant pumpkin seat into your car when some blockhead parks on top of you at Target? Do I even mention gas consumption? Why do we fight the minivan stigma so?


I blame marketing. Somehow, somewhere, we have been brainwashed to believe that if we sell out and purchase this vehicle (that actually totally fits our needs and potty training/carpooling stage of life) that we are throwing in the towel on all things fashionable and sexy and telling the world loud and clear that we want to live forever in grey sweat pants and messy buns. That we have, in fact, given up.

I vehemently disagree. I think buying this car (that I might mention is pimped out with heated seats, heated steering wheel, back-up camera, DVD screen and remote start) makes me pretty fly. My kids have never been happier to have the freedom of opening and closing their door with a simple push of a button. I am already dreaming of all the supplies/accoutrement we can stuff in the van on vacations and trips to see family.

Big wheel, bike trailer, tent, sand toys, entire bag of black sandals because you can't make a decision? No problem! Just let me stow this seat. Extra kid need a ride to dance? Yep lovie, I've got a spot for you AND your tutu. Leather seats for whomever spills their juice (or other bodily function). Check. Captains chairs to keep children from playing “I'm not touching you” or “Mom, she's on my side!” for seven hours on your way to find warm weather? Got 'em.

I have even gone so far as to say “my van is pretty dope.” And I stand by that, dang it. (I may have already have shown my “age” by using the word “dope.”) I AM A SUBURBAN MOTHER, for heavens sakes, and I am kissing 40! The happiness this car brings me from clicking a button when it's raining and having my little people jump in without getting totally soaked is dope. While I may not be super sexy and fashionable in my maternity jeans, I have not given up, and feel like maybe, just maybe, I might even be hitting my stride.

Minivans, to me, you are the new little black dress—which I might add looks mighty fine on us 30-something suburban moms.