Thursday, July 23, 2009

We Never Dreamed It Would Be This Hard....

picking out a car for Morgan!!!

She will be turning sixteen next month. She has already taken Driver's Ed and is impatiently waiting to get her license.

I must be honest here.... I am REALLY not doing well here with just the thought of her driving to begin with. She seems to be a good driver when we're in the car with her, but there are so many distractions for these young teenagers. For one thing, her phone is CONSTANTLY going off. We have pretty much threatened her that if she ever texts while driving, there will be HUGE consequences to pay. And how are we going to watch that??? Well, the mobile phone providers have finally gotten it right....we monitor most of the calls that come in and go out and the time of the day/night it is happening. I know that this sounds a bit controlling, but sorry....these days, they (teenagers) just flat out have more things easily accessible to them than we did years ago. I guess we try to justify our control streak by also reminding ourselves that she's still a kid who is still working her way to maturity. I know....pretty lame excuse, huh?

Anyhow, the most recent issue that we're facing is picking out a car for Morgan. Our priorities and her priorities are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT!!! We want a car that will be safe, the right price (cash only), and a car that she will be proud of. She wants a car that is sporty, red, convertible, shiny and let's not forget.....her words exactly...." that I will look good in." She even said at one time when we were first looking...."the car has got to match my outfits!" PLEEEEEEASE!!! So, as you can see....this has not been an easy task.

We've set a budget that we will not go over and we really don't mind her having a car that she will truly love, BUT....there are way too many disagreements on what her car will be. Oh, and on the rare occassions that we have found a car that we ALL like, it's already sold by the time we call on it.

We actually read an article on the best cars for teenagers. Honda Civic(s) were rated at the top of the list. And if you wanted to spend a little more money, BMW 325 series were rated at the top for luxury cars. We actually considered looking at BMW (1995-1998), but were convinced by friends to stay away from them because when they finally do break down, we could possibly pay more for repairs than what we actually paid for it to start with. And YES, believe it or not, we found a lot of them in the budget and the insurance for Morgan was very, very reasonable. Anyhow, it doesn't matter...because it won't be a BMW for sure.

My first car was a 1978 baby blue Buick Regal. lol! I just loved that car! I was SO proud of it!!! I guess I didn't know any better. To me, that Regal suited me just fine! I was just happy to even have a car even though I had to pay for myself! lol!

So friends, I need some advice...
First, what was your first car? And if you have teenager that is already driving, what was their first car? Was this a hard decision to make in your family? Morgan will be required to pay her own insurance and her own gas. Do you pay for your teenager's gas and insurance? It's okay to be honest with me; Morgan has already made it very clear that no other parents require this from their teenagers. lol! Heck, if we're paying for her car in full, the least she will do is pay for her insurance and gas. Okay, for all of you that are really tripping out on us for making her do this...her insurance and gas should cost her roughly $100 a month. She is making almost $600 a month now and will still make almost $300 when school starts back. Uh......we're thinking for someone who has free rent, free food, and other necessities provided to her can definitely fit these two needs into her budget. lol!

Sorry! I have really talked a spell here. But, all kidding aside....let me know your thoughts, opinions, and suggestions on the above questions. I would love to hear what you all have to say on the subject.

Whew!!! I already feel so much better getting some of this out in writing! WOW! This blogging really is good therapy that way, huh?

Okay....I'm DONE!


Stacey said...

Hi Daphine. You are in the spot right now that is most uncomfortable. Once she starts driving and you get to trust her more you'll be fine. She absolutely must understand about that cell phone though. It's so dangerous!

I will be embarassed and honest to say that we pay for insurance. We have full coverage on their cars and it's a lot for boys. They have payed part of it some and Spencer buys his own gas. I look forward to turning more and more of this over to them.

Keep us posted!

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Oh, Daphine... this reminds me SO much of what I went through with my parents. I desperately wanted a hot sports car, and we looked at some. But they were so small, Daddy was afraid I'd wrap myself around a telephone poll. He was probably right back then. I learned, though, to be careful.

I drove their cars till I got mine, and it was a plymouth duster, two-door, vinyl top, and racing stripes. LOL! Daddy thought it was a sports car because of the way it looked. I was okay with it. They bought it and brought it home to see if I liked it. It was new, it was wheels, and the boys all liked it because it looked that a Duster 340 which was fast as all get out! LOL! So I wasn't embarassed, and I didn't get the car of my dreams... but that car lasted me for YEARS. Go safe. Think of that first. You can sleep better doing it, and pray that the Lord leads you to the car He would have Morgan drive.


Sheila... (I'm having a giveaway on my blog, I just wanted you to know about it... you are also in the other drawing I have which I have yet to draw... but both will be drawn in August. I announced the winner of a third drawing tonight, and it was Debbie, Mrs. Plate Addict and Baby Kitty (her co-star). If you want to read something adorable, click over to her blog from mine and read her birthday post on Baby Kitty. LOL!)

Denise said...

Praying for you as you make this important decision my friend.

Lindsay-ann said...

Hi Daphine
I am so sorry I can't help you with this at all. In England the age for driving is 17 so I have 4 more years before I am in this position. I will be coming to you for advice then! I hope you find something that you are all happy with. My first car was a Austin Mini Metro and I was 19 when I got it. All I remember was that once I got it I never had any money anymore!
By this evening we will have all finished for the summher here. Yippee!!

April said...

Oh, boy, do I ever feel for you! If Morgan is anything like Brittany, once she gets a set of wheels, you'll never see her, again! It's go, go, go all the time!

When I was a teenager, my dad bought me a brand new Chevy Monza for around $5000, but I wanted a Toyota Celica...they were much cooler! However, I soon learned to be thankful to have a car in the first place!

Now, with Brittany, she drives Chris' Acura TL (2004). The reason being is because when he got his new job, they gave him a company vehicle, so allowing her to drive the Acura saved us a huge chunk of change because it's paid for and we didn't have to buy another car. We do pay for her gas and insurance...she has no job. Sad to say, but with her running schedule as it is, she doesn't have much time to just be a kid, so we opted for her not to work this summer. Now, next summer, that's a whole other story!

Our rule is absolutely NO cell phone usage while she's driving! If she's ever caught using it, she'll lose her driving priveleges and her phone for a very long time!

Hang in there, girl...I know you'll make the right decision!

He & Me + 3 said...

My first car was a Pontiac Grand le mans...I hated it because I felt like it was a tank...but when I got into my first and only crash, I was very happy I was driving in a bigger car.
I had to pay for gas, but my parents paid the insurance. They also bought the car.
As long as I had great grades and was working a part time job they kept paying for the insurance.
Helped me to be more responsible.
I love hondas though...that was like my 4th car they bought for me. LOved it kept it for years and years!

Sandy Toes said...

When I read this first made me laugh..hang in there!

I remember my first dad pulled it up to where I lifeguarded with a big bow on the steering wheel...I will never forget that day!
sandy toe

Darlene said...

This is horrible but I can't even remember what my first car was. I think it was a Toyota Corolla and I drove it for a few months and it started having problems and stranded me a couple of times. Well, that was out because it is too dangerous to get stranded anywhere in Houston....even that long ago!!!! Sooooo, I guess I was one of those spoiled ones because I got a brand new Camaro the summer before my Senior year of high school. I LOVED it and was very careful in it (because I loved it so much). I think that car was around 16 years old when hubby and I finally got rid of it. My parents had traded in a car they had on it and I had to make the payments on it. I think they were about $96.00 a month. I also had to pay for my own gas. My parents paid the insurance. I don't know what it was back then but I would guess kind of high since it was a sports car.

What a scary time. I definitely don't look forward to when Lexi drives. We too already monitor her phone/texting use (she got a cell phone this past Christmas) but when she gets a car we will constantly try to make sure she is not using it and trying to drive.

Ginger said...

Hi Friend~ Our daughter has been driving now for almost a year. The first thing we had her do was to sit down and talk with our insurance agent about accidents, the safest cars for teens, texting and driving, etc. That was helpful hearing it from someone else in addition to us.

We ended up buying a used Ford Explorer..'97 model, and got a car fax report to make sure it was in good shape. She had to put part of the money down and she pays for her gas. We do pay for the insurance. That is a killer!!!

Knock on wood, the only accident she's had, has been in our driveway! She hit her daddy's truck! She was all to pieces. He had parked in a different spot than normal and she backed right into it...this happened less than a month after she got her license!

Actually I do love her being able to drive. It's helpful. Plus with her school and working, she needed transportation. I pray alot...everytime she gets behind the wheel! You daughter is going to do just great! Everything will work out just fine.

4 Lettre Words said...

Oh, Daphine! I can't even imagine, and soooo dread that time with my boys. I'm praying for all of you!

Everyday Mom Designs said...

Maybe I just live in a different world (I'm still young - 22, so I was a teenager not too long ago)... My parents had a set amount of money that they would spend.. if we wanted to go over that amount, then I would have to pay them back for it... And yes, I paid for my gas and insurance.. I paid for everything.. My parents paid $4000 and I bought a Ford Focus for 6400... I paid off what I could and then a few months later a girl totaled my car and ended up paying for the rest of it with a new car! haha... But yeah, i replaced my first car with another focus (when I was 16) and I still have it now.

I don't think it's a bad thing to make children pay for things... obviously be her parent and provide for her, but she needs to learn to be responsible.. which she has been doing well at by working...

Shanda said...

Oh to be a teenager and oh to be a mom. I have been through it too only with a boy and a divorce seperating us and tring to deal with his dad also. Couldn't seem to please everybody and had to have a truck big enough to haul a 4 wheeler, couldn't drive the little paid for clunker sitting in the drive way. It is tuff, stay tough, she's worth it and will understand someday when she has children herself.

Edie said...

Hi Daphine! First you shouldn't apologize or feel guilty for monitoring your daughter's calls. That is not control that is being a responsible parent.

I feel for you having to make some tough decisions now. My first car was an old (1968 I think) VW that I bought myself. It ran great and I was thrilled to have a car to drive. None of my friends were given the kind of cars kids drive these days when they turn 16.

My daughter's first car was my 18 y/o Toyota Celica.

I think it's good that you are requiring Morgan to pay her own insurance and gas. You are teaching her responsibility in doing so.

Best wishes finding a car!!

Beth E. said...

I drove a Volkswagen beetle! LOL I think my dad bought that car on purpose. It would NOT go over 60 mph!

Our oldest son drives a '98 Volvo S70. Our youngest drives a '98 Honda Accord. Both are great, safe cars. No way would we buy them new ones!

While our boys were in high school, Bill and I bought their gas and paid their long as they focused on studies and made good grades. In the summer, though, they paid for those themselves. Once they graduated high school, though, they became responsible for their own gas all the time. They are expected to save the money they earn during the summer, so they can pay their own way during the school year. Shoot, we're paying for their college education. Their spending money is up to them!

Cell phones have definitely gotten out of hand. We got to the point where our boys leave their phones on a table in the den at night. We found out they were talking/texting friends all night long, not getting their sleep. It's illegal to text while driving in our state. However, even the police can't constantly monitor them. I hate cell phones. I have one, but only family members have the number. I do NOT want to be accessible 24 hrs./day!

Driving is a big adjustment for teens AND parents...especially the parents!

Good luck! I'll be praying.

Jill said...

My first car was a Cavalier (obviously back in the day) and I sure did love it! I think the Civic would be a great first car. It gets great gas mileage and the insurance shouldn't be too high.

Belle (from Life of a...) said...

My first car was a 1980 Buick Regal. Eight track tape player and all. I feel your pain with a new driver in the house. We've been through the whole process twice now. Legare was pretty easy going about the first car purchase but Lorelai...she had the sport convertable idea in her head too. Legare ended up with a Jeep Cherokee and Lorelai with a Honda Accord. Thank goodness neither of them has ever had an accident, although Legare has had his share of speeding tickets!

Laura said...

I just wanted to say that I don't think you are being too strict or anything like that! You are teaching your daughter responsibilities that will help her after she has moved out and is on her own. Praying you guys find a great deal on a car that you and Morgan both like!

Kristin said...

Oh my goodness.....I can't imagine the day when we are trying to buy cars for our 3 girls. I think they will just have to share or something. Ha! I know....I'll get them a mini-van. LOL!!!!!

My first car wasn't at all what I had planned. I was like Morgan. I wanted a red sports car, something I'd look super fabulous in. Instead, I got a Hyundai! But, my parents were buying it and I wasn't. When I got my first job after college, the first thing I did was go by myself a red GT mustang, 5-speed. LOL!!

I do remember fighting with my parents when we would go looking for cars. That's the only time I ever remember being a brat and letting them know I wasn't happy. Looking back on it, they did the best they could with what they could afford and the car they got was a nice, safe car.

All I can say is I wish you the best of luck! And make sure to write down some tips for me, because before we know it, my 9 year old will be learning to drive.

Lee said...

Try to stick with Honda. Honda is a great brand, and my mom has had hers for a while and it's never had any problems.
My mom drives a CRV. They're nice because they're still small, but since they're kind of like an SUV, they'll do well in a crash.

Now as for me, I wish my mom was like you. I'm already 17, and I'm not allowed to get a driving permit or even think about getting a car. Doesn't really seem fair.

Heather said...

well my parents said i had to pay for my first car (they gave no money towards it), i had to have my own insurance policy-not linked to theirs in anyway, and i had to pay for the insurance, gas and any expenses i might run into (repairs). oh and pay for drivers ed myself too. so i bought my first car in 1993 when I was 18 years old for $1,100 and it was a 1974 2 door Volvo. Talk about a tank on wheels! i loved that car though. I drove it for a few years before i upgraded to a 85 cavalier, lol! - also used! i think by the time we have to deal with this, i will have told ella well in advance (a few years) that she needs to save her money to buy her first car, pay for insurance and gas & repairs. we'll probably let her on our policy but she has to pay her share, and we might help her pay for her car, depending on how good her grades are, how much she's saved ( is she good with money or does she save as little as possible, etc). not sure if she'll be allowed to drive at 16 though, we may wait until 17 or 18. depends on her maturity at that time. good luck! oh and i was never allowed to drive my parents vehicles. NEVER! i think i was in my mid 20's before they ever let me drive one of their vehicles somewhere, lol!

Alicia said...

Hi friend! I think that is great about her paying for her own insurance and gas. This way, it will teach her to be more responsible w/ her money and her whereabouts!

My kids aren't driving age yet, but they've already expressed what kind of car they want. Oh sure, no problem. We can get you the new mustang and a VW Bug!! Suuuuuuuure!!!!!!!!!

mimi said...

My first car was a hatchback hand me down from my brother ;) I didn't care, I was just so happy to have my own car(and it was payed for!) I say go for safe and a good value all the way!!

Jennifer said...

Ha...made me remember that first Light Blue IZUZU!! Do that even still make those?? Had a stick shift that I had no idea how to drive but I could afford. Seriously, I didn't know how to drive it home! But it was brand new and MINE!! It was pure love :)

Absolutely LOVE that it needs to match her outfits!! Better go with basic black...a girl's best friend - just like the little black dress! :)

Anonymous said...

My first car was an UGLY 1981 Ford Thunderbird. It was the most horrid burnt orange. Well, since I don't have children, you know I can't help you on this. I can tell you though that my Dad bought the car, gave me gas money (Texaco card), and bought my insurance. But I helped out on other things. Once I got a job, I bought my own clothes, school supplies, etc. Good luck with this decision! I know it can't be easy for you.

Christian @ Modobject at Home said...

My first car... a 1986 Volvo 240GL and I was just thrilled, THRILLED to have a car!

Here's wishing you the very, very best as you shop.

Lindsay-ann said...

Hi Daphine
Thanks for your comments. It was lovely to hear from you. We will try to avoid the swine flu this summer but everyone we speak to knows someone who has it. It is spreading very quickly here.
Miss you too.

Nicolle said...

Hi Daphine, try not to worry! I think you are raising wonderful girls who are very smart and responsible. I am sure she will be safe. We had used cars for our first ones. My dad did not believe in spoiling us. I had a Honda Accord that was about 8 years old. So it was old, but reliable. We had to pay our gas, our parents paid our insurance.

I know it will work out. I am sure it's tough, but you are such great parents!

licia31 said...

My first car was a Toyota Tercel! 4-door, light blue. Toyota's are good cars. I know a few people who have had them as their first cars & still are driving other models of Toyota's now. Depending on what kind of Honda you get, they are at the top of the most stolen list. My friend had an older Honda Accord that was stolen like 4 times. Amazingly, the police were able to find it. She eventually sold it though; it was becoming a hassle.

I agree with you about the cell phone & driving though; the younger generation & the texts, etc. That's dangerous while driving. Well, let's just not say that it's the younger generation because some of us "adults" shouldn't be doing that while driving either.

"Just Me - NC Beth" said...

Hey, I feel your pain...I can remember when my 2 girls reached that age to drive.....and all the anxiousness that comes along with it! Now my granddaughter is 14 which means she will be of driving age before you know it....oh, dear!!!


Life with Kaishon said...

I am scared to think about how soon this will happen to us. If you are going mostly for safety I would go with a volvo. My friend in college was in a horrible accident in college and she walked out without a scratch.

I think that is good to teach her about paying for insurance and gas. I mean, after all, the free ride doesn't last forever, right? : )

michele said...

I think monitoring the calls is smart and I agree that the phone calls and texting is a big distraction! My first car was a Dodge Ram Charger -- big, safe... it worked. I paid for my own gas and pitched in for insurance, but my parents handled most of the insurance. I totally encourage you to have Morgan pay for the gas. If mom and dad buy, she is possibly more likely to be the "driver" among her group of friends.
I think it is really smart that you are researching all of this so well. Morgan is going to love having her own "wheels!"

Toia said...

So this is what I have to look forward to when my children turn 16. I get scare just thinking about it. :)

Happy Monday!!

Lorrie said...

Hi Daphine--I totally sympathize with the struggle in picking out a car but admire you for having boundaries on price and safety and sticking to them. That's just being good parents. I would never budge on texting and using the cell phone while driving--waaay too dangerous as we all know. Our kids inherited older family cars what we passed down--a station wagon--horrors--and then a ford Taurus when they first started driving.

We made an agreement that we would pay insurance unless they ever got a ticket, then it would be all theirs ( at a higher rate!) from then on. They did pay for gas. We know many families who have the kids pay insurance and gas, and some families the parents pay it for it. I think you've made very reasonable choices for Morgan, so don't feel bad sticking to your guns!

Divamom said...

Hey girl! I thought I'd respond just to make you laugh! lol My first car was a 1989 Nissan Sentra, that I bought brand new. Yes, I bought it because I had a government job and learned to drive at the young age of 22!!! Are you laughing yet? I was an only child of two older parents, so I was spoiled rotten (and proud of it too!). I didn't have the desire to learn to drive when everybody else did (teenage years), so I was driven around or I rode the bus. Of course that was back then when riding the city bus was fun! I quickly got the desire to drive when a family friend, who was the same age as me, but mentally challenged, learned to drive! I felt outdone and went out and bought me a car and learned to drive! Yes, in that order! I know you are laughing now! Ha Ha!

Anyway, my daughter is about to start lessons and I am not looking forward to this at all. There are so many crazies out there on the road and I just don't want her among them. I know I'm being overly protective, but that's what moms are for!!!

I know you both will make the right decision (whether she's happy or not). The main thing is for her to be safe!

Be Blessed!

Look Beyond The Picket Fence said...

It is a very difficult time, I have been through it. Both my girls started with Honda Civics. Great cars for new drivers.
Try to stay calm and stick by your rules!

Robin @ My Blessed Nest said...

Wish I had some advice, but I am about a year behind oldest is turning 15 next I'm hoping to learn from you!! Mine is already talking about cars and she doesn't even have a permit yet!!

We plan to require her to pay for her car insurance, too...we think that will instill a sense of responsibility in her!

Good luck as you walk through this difficult process! Blessings!

Alluring Interiors said...

I'm praying for you, doLL! I have 2 more years until I must consider the car thing...But, my princess as already asked if her dad and I have been saving for her automobile!

Tess Jones said...

Oh wow, this is hard, thank goodness I have a long way to go with Madison. But I had to pay for my insurance, gas and car note sense I wanted a certain kind of car. That was a choice I made and my parents made me deal with it the hard way. If Madison does have a job, I will pay for the car but she will have to keep the insurance up and gas to keep it running, just to teach her a little bit of responsiblity. But I must admit the insurance was kind of high, so my parents added me on to theirs to get a discount. So good luck on finding what works best for you guys, teenagers can be hard.

Susan said...

Hey Dahpine,

I'm finally getting over here! I love your blog.

OK, number one, you are one AWESOME mom! I sure hope Morgan appreciates you.

Next...I watch EVERYTHING in my teenagers life. Trust me on this one. You are soooooooooo right, too much access to things we would of never dreamed of.

And then driving. This was one of the HARDEST things I've dealt with, and remember, I have 5 SONS...

They are not afraid of anything, and to drive fast is COOL!!!!!

You don't even want to know how much time I've spent praying for them.

Anyhow, we were always blessed by getting older cars, by first time owners in great shape. For cash. And yes, they paid insurance and gas.

Now boys, well mine anyhow would drove ANYTHING, they just wanted those WHEELS.

One of our sons did get that BMW you mentioned. It was from his uncle and in perfect condition. A very old one.

It actually held up great. When we start having problems, we had to let it go!!

Anyhow, let us know what you decide.

Love you girlfriend♥

LisaShaw said...

Hi Sis,

I smiled all the way through this. Our daughter who just turned 16 this yr June just took her test and obtained her permit and is driving with her Dad. I have to say I was worried at the start but her command of the road and the respect of the vehicles is awesome to see. Your daughter will be fine I'm sure.

I'm praying...

Love you.

Mama Hen said...

My first car was a 1983 maroon Buick Regal. I loved it!!!!!

Stacey said...

Just thinking about ya Daphine!! It's been awhile. Are y'all getting ready for back to school? Hope things are going well.


MOMSWEB said...

Oh Lord. I have a 13 year old boy who is ALREADY looking at cars. We told him to get a job and start saving (lol).