It's About Time
Get on road to organization by cleaning car
Do you live by the motto "Have clutter, will travel?" I recently walked by a van and couldn't help noticing that the dashboard was littered with papers and clutter. I imagined that the seats and floor were piled high as well.
I could identify with that van's owner, for I know how easy it is to bring things into our cars and take out too few.
Things that migrate into a vehicle often take up permanent residence. The result is that our cars can become cluttered homes on wheels!
I can usually keep my car's contents under control by clearing it out daily, but lately I'd been so busy that I hadn't done that, and the clutter was collecting.
What to do if your car has become a clutter catcher?
1. Clear off the seats -- front and back.
2. Pick things up off the floor. I collected empty water bottles and take-out food bags.
3. Empty each area -- glove compartment, console, door pockets and trunk -- one by one. From my storage compartments came unneeded items such as candy wrappers, old shopping lists, notes with phone numbers, to-do lists, expired coupons, unused chopsticks, lots of napkins, rubber bands, paper clips, coins, cassette tapes, hand lotions and three umbrellas.
4. Put back only what is really needed, and only what fits into the storage compartments.
Some necessities include car registration and manual, maps, sunglasses and a small flashlight; also music or teaching tapes or CDs; notepad and pen; umbrella and small container with coins for parking meters. Also handy are snack food, napkins, restaurant take-out menus, coupons and a phone book to look up addresses and numbers while on the road.
In the trunk: a small cooler with bottled water and disposable camera (for use in the event of an accident), collapsible carrying crates and insulated bag for groceries, first aid kit, jumper cables and flares.
Loose items in the trunk should be contained in a bin. That will keep them from rolling around, and it will be easier to empty the trunk if you need to access the spare tire.
Of course, if you have children, you'll need their paraphernalia too.
It's amazing how little we really need to carry in our cars. If yours is cluttered, don't be surprised if 80 percent of the items can be removed, leaving just 20 percent that needs to stay.
If your car has become a clutter catcher, I encourage you to sort and keep only what you really need. Then maintain the order by removing unneeded items daily, or at least weekly.
Taking time to tidy a littered car is time well spent. You'll enjoy the benefit with every drive.
See you in two weeks!
"It's About Time," by Ruth Wong
, owner of Organization Plus, runs the fourth Friday of each month. Contact her at "It's About Time," care of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, Honolulu 96813; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org