If you are like me, there are days you feel like you live in your car. Shuttling kids here and there and back again. I refer to this often as my after-school hustle, but truthfully it’s not just during the school year– it’s ALLLLL year– winter, spring, summer, fall– each season brings new flavor to the hustle.
In those small pockets of time when all the kids are dropped off and I am left alone with my thoughts in a quiet car, glancing around at the debris my mini-tornados have left behind, I often fantasize about starting a no-eating or drinking rule, or limiting my 4 year old to just ONE “carry on item” (It’s true. Mom fantasies can get pretty wild and crazy- ha!)– but the truth is that it’s just not my reality. Not at this stage in life anyway.
With kids ranging in age from 13- 4, we are constantly toting a variety of things we need to get us through the day: Snacks, drinks, toys, coloring books, reading books, chargers, napkins… and don’t. even. get. me. started. on. the 1/2 full bottles of water.
But while I’ve accepted that I cannot ban all the things (not if I want to stay sane(ish) anyway), I’ve found that taking steps to find systems and products that help keep the car organized, helps!
So today, I’ve put together a busy girls guide to organizing your car, chock filled with tips and awesome car accessories that will help get your car-life together and make you the envy of your carpool tribe.
Yes, hotmess-express no more. That super organized Mom who lives in her car– that my friend, is going to be y-o-u!
Tips To Keep Your Car Clean And Organized
- Place silicone cupcake liners in cup holders to avoid dirt, crumbs and other yucky (potentially, sticky)-ness from getting caked into your cup holders.
- Clean air vents with a small foam paint brush
- Label water bottles caps with a sharpie before handing them out in the car. When you return home, take them inside and put them in the fridge to be finished!
- iPhone users, use SIRI on your kid’s devices to remind them to bring in their garbage when they get home. Make sure your home location is set on maps. Then using their phone say, “Siri, remind me to bring in my garbage when we get home”. It will automatically ping your kids devices when you pull up to your home. No Mom-nagging needed!
- Keep travel size baby wipes in the glove compartment to clean sticky hands, faces and surfaces
Best Car Accessories to Organize Your Carpool Life
This is great for maximizing trunk space by getting things out of the main trunk area and turning the back of the seats into additional storage!
Possibly one of the best finds ever! I featured it on a segment I did last September but love it so much, I had to feature it again because my kids use ours all the time! It is a God-send when shuttling kids around and homework has to be done, but also great for storing coloring books, crayons, etc. for long road trips. I love that it folds up and doesn’t take up a lot of trunk space too!
Change, change, everywhere, amirite? Not only does it add to the overall mess, but there’s nothing worst than going through a drive through and holding up the line while you fumble around for a nickel–ultimately breaking a dollar. This coin holder is small and compact it can be stored in a variety of places in your car.
Little kids love to travel with all the things, no matter if your taking a quick run to the store 5 minutes away or are going on a 50 mile adventure. This backseat organizer has a place for everything, including a place to mount an iPad to watch videos!
My kids are terrible at remembering to take their garbage out of the car, but I’ve found that when I started to designated a trash can in the car, the kids actually use it (98.97% of the time). I love that this trashcan has not only a lid, but additional storage nets on the side. I recommend using one of those to store plastic bags for when it’s time to change out the garbage.
This wireless phone charger station is great because it is wireless– and even charges your phone with a case on!
Mounting your phone is helpful when you’re using your cell phone navigation (which I personally heavily rely on). This one is magnetic too so you don’t have to worry about your phone not fitting with a case on it.
This is great for when you want to pack drinks and things like yogurt for a snack because it is not just an organizer, it is a cooler– life changing for long drives and road trips!
No matter how much trunk space you have the key is to keep it organized and cube organizers are essential for maximizing your space. I love that this one folds up and has side pocket storage.
From hand cream to Chapstick there are always little items we like to have close at hand and this console side pocket is perfect for organizing those little items.
Things like pens, and car documents (registration, insurance, AAA cards) are very necessary for life on the road. I like the idea of organizing them in the sun visor because it frees up your glove compartment, which you can then use for storing more bulky items like sunglasses, first aid kits, baby wipes, etc.
It never fails that while you are out and about someone needs a tissue or had a small spill. Much like the visor organizer this frees up space in your glove compartment and makes it easier to grab when needed.
Am I the only one who always puts her handbag in the back of the car? I’m not sure when I started doing this, but I cannot tell you how many times my kids step on my bag or once again… SPILL something on it. Purse hooks keep your bag clean and are also great for bringing home shopping bags!
This anti-slip grip is perfect for giving you a place to store your key fobs, phone or other accessories.
Ok. Just keeping it real? Sporty tweens/teens coming off a 2 hour practice and crushed up goldfish crackers your preschooler dropped a week ago… smell. And given my kids ages, I can easily have the combination of both unique odors wafting through the air vents (gross!)
This charcoal air purifier may not be an organizer exactly, but amazing nonetheless. Unlike other air fresheners that mask odors, this one absorbs them– which makes all the difference! The sachet come with little S-hooks so you can hang them from vents, door hooks or headrests.