Saturday, May 26, 2012

Buy a Prius, Drive Like a Granny

When S commissioned in 2010, I was driving the 2005 Corolla S my parents bought me in college (I lived on campus my first year, and was not a fan. I think I came home every weekend but one my first semester, and after Spring Break of my second, I essentially moved home entirely. My parents told me that if they didn't have to pay for room and board, they would get me a car, pay for my gas and the insurance for my remaining 3 years--S and I picked up the tab after I graduated and landed my position at the university) and he was driving my dad's 1989 Ford Ranger pick-up... It was sexy. Before he deployed to Iraq, we made the brilliantly uneducated--and stupid--decision to buy a 1967 Ford Falcon... It was great the first 10 minutes he owned it, but was just a pain in the rear end the remaining 5 years. We ended up donating it--I think?--and cutting our losses. We shared the Corolla for awhile, but my parents were gracious enough to offer up the truck for us to use until we got something new.

Enter the Prius.

We did some homework and decided the hybrid was the way we wanted to go. We keep our cars long enough that getting a hybrid was a money-saver, and S was excited about "voting with his money." So, after his commissioning, we scrounged up a hefty down payment, went to the dealership, got suckered into opting for way more gadgets than we had originally planned for, and left with a car.

Because it's our "family" car, I drive it the most. When we had E in the infant car seat, I drove the Corolla a lot because we could easily move the seat from one base to the other. Unfortunately, spending $300 on a second convertible car seat just didn't fit into the budget, so now I drive the Prius almost exclusively, and when we go somewhere as a family, that's the car we take.

Anyway, back to my point.

While those of you in the rest of the country are experiencing gas price lows, those of us on the Pacific coast are having extreme highs. We buy our gas at Costco and it was $4.15/gallon yesterday.... And that's at least $.10 cheaper than everywhere else, including on-post. Because of this, I have been much more mindful of the mpg gauge on the Prius, and thus, my driving style has drastically changed.

Before I started watching the gauge, I was getting about 44 mpg on average. Right now, it's sitting at 54 mpg, all because I started driving differently.... Yes, I now drive like a granny. The 35 mph zone is my new best friend--I've been avoiding the interstate and taking back roads because I get such better gas milage. I can get up to speed without breaking the "eco" line, and coast in a range that gets me anywhere from 75-100 mpg. This probably makes me unpopular with other drivers, because I tend to go the speed limit, if not under it... Not that I didn't become infinitely slower when I started carting around a kiddo.

This may actually be the first car I have driven that encourages me to drive at a pace that can only be described as the opposite of reckless (lol). The Corolla is like driving a go cart, so it's easy to get out of hand (my one and only speeding ticket can attest to that). My goal is to make it to a tank that averages 65 mpg... Cause how awesome would that be?

[End incredibly boring post]

In other news:

  • I think E has hit the Terrible Twos. If she isn't blatantly disobeying me, she is throwing a temper tantrum (or so it seems). She's really not that bad, but it's such a drastic change in such a short amount of time (like... a week???) that it's notable.
  • Her new favorite thing to do while riding in the car is lick the bottom of her feet... Um. Eww?
  • She has probably eaten her weight in berries the last couple weeks--I'm not complaining. I would much prefer her be on a fruit kick than a processed food kick.
  • I have lost a few pounds since my omg-my-body-hates-me post a few weeks back. Bad news? Now I can't get any more to fall off. Argh!
  • I met with a new endocrinologist--the jury is still out.
  • I made cookie cake and it was a rousing success.
  • I still hate Washington.
And, while you're barbecuing this weekend--please remember to remember those who served and sacrificed it all.

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