My daughters are eighteen months apart, and after my second was born, I struggled quite a bit with post-partum depression and anxiety. One of my greatest fears was that I would not be able to handle two children under two. I essentially had two babies that needed me constantly, and I was completely overwhelmed. I was terrified to run errands with both of them because of all the things that could possibly go wrong.
However, after hiding out in our house with a toddler and a newborn for a couple of weeks, the four walls of our home got to be quite stifling, and I needed to get out. The only thing I could think to do was load the kids up and drive. I ended up at a drive-thru car wash. It didn’t even matter that it was raining. All that mattered was that I regained a little piece of my sanity that day.
When we moved back to Lafayette a year and a half ago, I started to struggle again. We purchased an old home that required (and still requires) quite a bit of work, and my youngest daughter started having some health issues. There were days when I just needed to get out of the house, but I couldn’t risk my daughter’s exposure to potential viruses. Therefore, my quest to find drive-thru errands in Lafayette began.
I don’t need to tell anyone that Chick-Fil-A is a sanity-saver, but I thought I’d share some of our other favorite drive-thru errands.
I know this one is obvious, but I run on Jesus and coffee, so I can’t skip it. Most of our “drive-thru days” start with a coffee shop. Johnston Street Java is right outside of my neighborhood, and their sugar-free caramel iced coffees are life-giving. Another favorite is CC’s Coffeehouse. They offer a kids menu with mini smoothies, so if I forget to bring snacks and water for the kids, we stop there.
Our favorite dry cleaner is Dry Clean Super Center on Ambassador Caffery. Just pull up under the awning, and an employee meets you at your car, takes your clothes, and collects your payment. When your clothes are cleaned, you pull back up, give them your ticket, and they bring it out to you and hang it up in your car. I don’t even know why anyone would walk inside.
Also somewhat obvious, but this was the original sanity-saver, and it’s still a favorite. My girls love the car wash. The soap, the water, the giant brushes that roll all over the windows – it’s quite a visually stimulating experience. And now that my girls are older, I give each of them a baby wipe and ask them to “clean” the backseat while I vacuum the interior. Our favorite car washes are Gulf Breeze Car Wash on Pinhook and Classic Auto Spa on the corner of Johnston Street and Camellia Boulevard. Gulf Breeze has $2 off Tuesdays, and Wednesday is Ladies Day at Classic Auto Spa.
This is my latest find, and I’m loving it. Simply go to the Lafayette Public Library’s website and place a hold on your book(s) of choice. When you pull up to the window, ring the bell and hand over your card. They will grab your book, and you can be on your way! You can also return items in the drive-thru. We frequent the downtown branch, but visit their website to find out which of their other locations offer drive-thru services.
Last summer, my husband emailed me a coupon for Take 5 Oil Change with a note saying I didn’t have to get out of the car. I was sold. I visited the location on Pinhook, but there are other locations on Ambassador Caffery near Walmart and on Admiral Doyle in New Iberia. The technicians were so kind, and they even provided bottled water for me, and juice pouches and fruit snacks for the girls. Any place that gives my kids snacks will get my business.
I live in a constant state of purging. I’m not a fan of clutter and mess, so I usually have a box in my dining room that I fill with things I no longer want or need. When it’s full, I stick it in my trunk and drop it off at whichever charity is on my errand route that day. Our usual drop-offs are Salvation Army on East 3rd Street near downtown and Arc of Acadiana, which has drop-off locations in Lafayette, Grand Coteau, and New Iberia. However, there are many other great organizations that will be happy to take your donations out of your vehicle when you drive up to their door.
Walmart Grocery Pickup is my jam. Just place your order online, select a pick-up time, and show up when they text you that it’s ready. They bring everything out to your car and load it for you. If you get your order in early enough, you can usually pick up your groceries within the same day.
While not on our list of regulars, the following drive-thrus have gotten me out of a pickle on more than one occasion:
- Cajun Market Donut Co. on Pinhook Road :: This saved breakfast a time or two when I didn’t have the chance to make it to the grocery store.
- Hebert’s Specialty Meats on Ambassador Caffery Parkway :: Dinner. Is. Served.
- Shop Rite/Tobacco Plus on Ambassador Caffery Parkway near Eraste Landry :: You can buy anything they sell in the store through their drive-thru window, with the exception of alcohol by the case, lottery tickets, and fountain drinks.
- La Hacienda Mexican Restaurant & Cantina on Ambassador Caffery in front of Walmart :: Just call ahead to place your order, and pick it up in the drive-thru!