It has come. The Rubicon crossing. There will be no turning back: I need to buy a minivan.

As many of you know, I had twins in February. I also have a nine-year-old. We need to move across country this summer, with a cat. We have to drive, and we can only ship one car. So, I must face facts: my husband's Nissan Versa Note and my Honda Civic sedan are not going to work.

Has anyone else had to give in to this ultimate "mom" symbol? My husband is despairing, but even he admits we must give in and get one. What do I look for in a minivan? What do I need to avoid? How do I purchase one and not despair about the inevitable passage of time and the fact that I am turning into my mother, over a full decade younger from when she bought her first minivan?