The Three Wheeled Van

I’m  going to do something that my gut says do. In fact it is something I will problably be mocked for. But I feel like it’s just really in line with who I am and what I need to be doing to help you at this time. That’s right, you. The person reading this right now.

 

I’m going to be 100% authentic about what it’s like to own your own business.

I’m going to be 100% authentic about what it’s like to work with your children

I’m going to share with you how overwhelming it can be to know that every job you get has more than just your immediate family’s needs riding on it’s success.

I’m going to share with you how empowering it can be when you win the job.

I’m going to share with you what it’s like to work in industry that is dominated by men.

I’m going to share with you what it’s like to have real relationships with other workers and to support each other. 

I’m going to share with you what it’s like to not just be a blue-collar wife but what it’s like to be a blue collar worker.

 

Here’s our story. 

 

The Three Legged Van

 

Unfortunately, February has turned out to be an especially trying month for C&C maintenance. Every. Freaking. Year. You ask any trade and they will tell you February is the month that everything seems to just stop. You’ll get lookie loos who want bids but no one is really into home renovation at this time. Which at this time the industry standard is free. We are talking like hours of work for free. Or you have a ton of work but the weather won’t cooperate. It’s too cold, too wet, too rainy, too icy, you name it. February in Tennessee is a challenging month for the trades.

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This February work slowed down, as usual. But on top of that our 1995 a Dodge Caravan that our sons drive to and from work and to do work  Lost a wheel. We bought this van from a one owner vet for $1500 last spring. It was a great little van. Until our oldest son Jacob rear ended a lady during rush hour in Nashville one evening. Everyone was ok thankfully. But that little van hasn’t been the same. 

 

After hours and hours of work fixing the strut and a ton of other things Chris, the hubs, got her back on the road. Unfortunately, we kept running into more problems. This or that would break. Chris would put in 10-12 hour days then come home and work on this van. But that’s what you do when you can’t afford to buy a new car and you workers are your kids and they need to get to work. You buckle down and use the resources you have. Luckily for us Chris is a super talented guy. He literally can figure anything out. And has the work ethic of a farmer in a drought. One of the reasons I love that man. 

 

One day on a job the van’s wheel just fell off. Looking back it’s kind of funny. They were building a cedar walk way and next thing you know we have a 3 wheeled van. We joked and asked the boys if they could Fred Flinstone it. They didn’t get it. Millennials. 

3wheeled van

 

The challenge with being down a vehicle is that neither one of my sons for various reasons currently have a their own vehicle. 

 

So there we are not enough wheels and we actually had work. We took a minute and assessed what we could do. 

 

After finding out that our debt to income ratio was too high we came to the conclusion we had 3 options. 

1.    Use our savings to buy another beater in cash

2.    Look at our sons and say figure it out. Your grown get to work on your own.

3.    Go to a tote the note lot and finance a van. 

Let’s be honest 2 was never going to happen. And after all the time my husband spent on the first van I wasn’t feeling 1. 

 

So we went with number 3. 

 

(Gut Note) Let me share with you a hard lesson. Back in January I had a strong feeling we needed to get another mini van. During mediation one day I had a this feeling we NEEDED to do it. That was it. No other reason just a feeling. I even told the hubs. Did I listen? Hell no! Will I in the future. Hopefully. That’s the problem with guides and guts sometimes. They give you a piece of info but no further information.

 

After weeks of research the hubs found a 2013 Dodge Caravan that was set up like a work van. It’s in a pay by the week lot in Nashville. We test drove it once. Ran a Carfax report, thought about it. Tried financing with a bank and a credit union and finally realized the lot was our only way. 

Do you want to know why the lot was our only way? We made our financial health.  It’s just where we are at this time. And since we got ourselves in this place financially we can get ourselves out as well. 

 

So now we have Rumpelstiltskin the Ram Mini Van.

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We’ve had it for a full week and so far so good. We didn’t buy it during a Mercury Retrograde so that’s good. But we sure cut it close. More work is coming in and more bids are being done. We have a plan to address our financial health this summer during the busy season and are not only on the same page as spouses but as business partners. 

Well for this week anyway. LOL

Bri Signature

 

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