My new used car

If there's one thing I hate, it's making an important decision and/or acquiring new debt. Boo!  However, when one has vowed to "drive my car into the ground," these things will happen. Recently I realized that my beloved diesel VW Jetta was indeed almost driven into the ground. Being a diesel, it had over 280,000 miles on it. The emergency brake snapped, some kind of belt fell off, the turbo stopped working, and it produced impressive black smoke by burning oil whenever I drove up hills. Things were getting embarrassing, and worse... I was feeling unsafe driving my own beloved car.

My wheels since June 2003. YEAH fahrvergn├╝gen!

Apparently my method of doing anything, from choosing a car to getting a new job to checking out a library book, is a first-strike shock-and-awe technique. I like to see something good, get in, and get out. In the case of the car, I spent a week complaining, a week rather lazily investigating local prospects along with random insurance quotes and vague bank investigations, and then a week swinging into super-effective action (for me).

Here's how the latter super-effective week worked out:

Monday: Grab car for a test drive and insert entire family, drive to favorite local mechanic and beg for an assessment. Done in under an hour, present list of minor issues to dealer who promises to fix them. By end of day I have bill of sale in hand and completed loan application, drop them off at bank.

Tuesday: Make sure the bank has the paperwork they need, wait for it to process.

Wednesday: Check in again on paperwork, have insurance binder emailed to bank and to myself for good measure, make sure an insurance ID card is also included so I can drive the new car once acquired. The bank guy tells me he's out Thursday but the loan can close on Friday.

Thursday: Send my wonderful husband over to the dealer during my work hours to ensure that the fixes from Monday were done, particularly the AC fix. Everything seems to be set. (Thanks, dear!) He also moves the kid seats out of my Jetta into the new car. I clean out my old car as a sign of respect before it's traded in. Right before I let it go, I photograph and then remove the stickers.

 I also had this T-shirt in high school! (Save the Humans w. cute whale)

Friday: My car loan closes at 10am, I am there and ready and out with a check in about 15 minutes. I take last photos of my Jetta and drive it over to the dealer (who, by the way, is mainly a mechanic). He transfers my plates, does a lot of paperwork, trades keys with me, and I'm in my new car by 11am... About 100 hours after my first test drive.

I'm perfectly happy with my new-to-me Subaru Forester. Yes it has tons of miles on it and a few scratches and dents. But I think it will last the length of my car loan at least, it will be safe in winter with all wheel drive, and it will be comfy and fresh for my family to ride in. I have selected the following stickers to help it stand out from the other bazillion Subarus driving around Vermont. (Thanks KG for the perfect dim sim props!)

Wordless Wednesday: DIY Roasted Red Peppers

Notes: Leave the thoroughly charred pepper in the paper bag for about 5 minutes. When removing skin use fingers or a knife. Resist the temptation to rinse off black flecks—it washes away flavor.

I stop running and pick up a Margarita

Today, July 5, is the first day since Memorial Day that I haven't gone for a run. I successfully completed a 40-day "streak" from May 26th to July 4th, as suggested by Runner's World magazine. The main rule of the streak is that you run at least 1 mile every single day. 

Rather than keeping track of my runs online I wrote them on a paper calendar on my fridge.

128 miles total. Probably more since I always round down.

My last run of the streak was the annual 4-miler race that goes right down the Main Street of our town. It was a rainy Fourth for once, though that didn't help my time much!

In other news, I've decided it's time for me to have a go-to cocktail. Something I can make for myself now and then, or order if I'm out and in a cocktail mood. I have selected the margarita. I do not make mine from scratch, but use a mix that is quite yummy: Dr. Swami & Bone Daddy's. "Fresh Gourmet Taste!"

I know, wrong kind of glass. Tastes good though.

I would also like to submit these photos of professional margaritas as evidence of... something.


What is your go-to cocktail? Is that even a thing?