This is my beloved Jeep Cherokee. It was the first car I bought for myself - I bought it when I was 19 years old and my husband was in Iraq. We had an atrocious interest rate of course, but I didn't care - it was mine! And we were able to refinance it a year later, and few years after that pay it off all together. As you can tell, for at least the first few years this was a mainly a toy for me. This poor car has been through a lot - lots of outdoor adventures, lots of crazy driving, and lots of big trips. As we grew up the Jeep stayed with us. We took it when we moved to Florida, and we brought Beth home from the hospital in it. Later we loaded it up the ceiling with luggage, people, and cats and made the 25 hour drive to our new station in Connecticut. Shortly after we moved here Matt Warren was born, and I made the big jump to a minivan. The Jeep now belongs to big Matt and has for years. I rarely drive it anymore, but I did take it out yesterday. And wow, it is a mess! The side mirrors are cracked, the review mirror just isn't there, only the driver side's window button works, the lining is falling down from the ceiling, there is no air conditioning, there are holes in the muffler. But still it is ours and we love it...I think we take for granted that it will always run. It's a tight fit in the back seat these days, but our kids looks happy nestled up all together. Next summer we'll make the big trip to our next duty station (which has yet to be determined) and we are crossing our fingers that the Jeep will make it!
Consequently our Kia Sedona is now payed off as well, and we have every intention of keeping it until it no longer runs as well. I guess neither Matt or I have understood the point of "upgrading" every few years. If ain't broke, don't fit it.... Our poor kids are going to be so embarrassed when we are still driving these cars to drop them off at middle school!