The Organized Family Car
By Jhoneé Fillmore
Our family car is one of the main vessels in which we seek fun, errands, work, school and many adventures. Within our spontaneous adventures my sons’ often get soaked and muddy. Bless this vehicle’s heart as it endures countless crumbs, spilled drinks, sticky handprints, wrappers, dirt and mud galore, sticks, rocks, seashells and random toys that have found their way here.
Our family car is one of the main vessels in which we seek fun, errands, work, school and many adventures. Within our spontaneous adventures my sons’ often get soaked and muddy. Bless this vehicle’s heart as it endures countless crumbs, spilled drinks, sticky handprints, wrappers, dirt and mud galore, sticks, rocks, seashells and random toys that have found their way here. Whew… and those aren’t even the necessities that “I” put in the car. Trying to balance family life and a car that is prepared for anything, yet minimal, is work but here are some simple ideas.
When keeping to these basics and having designated homes for all of these items it allows me some peace when we need to pack specifically for biking, hiking, fishing, camping, swimming, school and sporting events. It also allows me to have more spontaneous moments with my family because we really have what we need at any given moment. I try to eliminate any other items floating around and do so by bringing items back to the house after each use. Here is my car…
I make sure that the kids have a somewhat large trash can placed between them. Somehow I still find wrappers and empty drink containers scattered about but the majority of the sticky unidentified rubbish (parents….you know what I mean) is contained.
Also between the kids I have an art caddy that is useful for holding water bottles, snacks, drawing supplies, sunglasses, books and flashlights for dark drives… and some room to spare. Clipboards with plain drawing paper are placed in the backs of the seat in front of them for an easy grab.
On the floor tucked under the seat are rain boots and a second pair of tennis shoes always. My boys never miss an opportunity to get into puddles, streams, ponds or lakes.
We all know that our sweetest of peas like to ask for many items while out and about. I keep a small bin on the floor of the passenger side. In this you will find a few children’s audiobooks, a bag of individual sized snack bags, gum, scissors, spoons, two kid size bowls and cups, wipes, sanitizer and bandaids. This oddly tackles most jobs.
In the glovebox I always keep a small medicine bag with thermometer so that if we have an ill person and we are far from home we have what we need. I also have emergency information stored in a ziplock bag.
BACK OF THE CAR:
I have a medium sized crate that keeps for each of us: a sweatshirt, beanie, gloves, ball cap, socks, sunscreen, trash bags (mostly for our wet and muddy attire), toilet paper, wipes, umbrella, flashlight, extra water and shopping bags.
Tucked under the back row I keep a picnic blanket and two small blankets. Also, a backpack with a full set of warm and cool weather clothes for each of my kids. I cannot tell you how often I use this.
We have a game bag that consists of some cards games, small travel games, very basic board games and some books to read. These are great to play with my younger son as my older son gets picked up from school 50 minutes later leaving us not enough time to go home but a great amount of time in the car. We also will pull these out during other long waits, at the park or when we stay the night somewhere other than home.
Of course we have the basic car emergency kit with jumper cables, etc…
Families vary depending on the number of children, the ages of the children, and the varying ideas of adventure. Design your vehicle around your lifestyle and make simple every day routes, road trips and spontaneous adventures enjoyable and dependable. Happy travels!
Need a more specific suggestion? Email me at [email protected]
Jhoneé Fillmore Owner, Missplaced Organizing / The Davenport Company thedavenportcompany.com/missplaced