I’m a mother of three young boys (and the wife of a grown up one as well) so my car is like a traveling road show. It takes us to school, work, soccer games on Saturday, church on Sunday, the grocery store, grandma’s house and any other place we need to be. Because we’re in it so much I try really hard to make sure it’s organized. I do this because it’s so easy for the car to get junky and cluttered and filled with trash and then I feel like my life is out of control… messy spaces have this affect on me.
I’ve established some pretty good tricks for keeping my car stocked with so I’m ready for any and all small emergencies. So here it is… how I organize my car and what’s going on in my glove compartment.
1. Sunglasses – This is obvious, I know, because most of us travel with our sunnies, right? Well I also store at least one extra pair in my car just in case I forget mine. This is usually that pair that’s slightly scratched and old so I don’t care if it’s tossed around in my center console as long as it’s there when I need it.
2. Headphones – I think I’ve explained before how much I love listening to music while I go about my day. Because of that I always pack an extra set of headphones in my car. If I have an impromptu trip to the grocery store or I’m going to a doctor’s appointment I’ll slip in my headphones so I’ve got music playing while I wait.
3 – 5. Snacks – I Always, Always, Always carry healthy snacks in my car. It’s usually when I’m driving that I decide I’m ravenous and if I don’t have something healthy on hand I’m going to make really cruddy choices. My go-to snacks are typically granola bars, and individual snack packs of almonds and jerky. The important thing is that my kids will also eat these so if they get hungry I’ve got options for them too.
6. Pens – Seems obvious but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been at the drive thru ATM or about to sign a birthday card and I needed a pen and didn’t have one. Now my car is stocked with a few just in case.
7-8. Gum and Mints – Gum will always be my first choice but sometimes I’m headed into a situation (like a meeting) where gum chewing would be inappropriate. Just stock both options and you’ll never have to worry.
9. Ibuprofen – Or Advil or Tylenol, etc. I always have a bottle of pain medication in the car in case I get a headache while I’m on the road. I once got a really bad migraine on a plane when I had no access to any pain medicine and it was horrible. Now I always have some handy. I’m like a boy scout, I’m always prepared!
10. Vitamins – I have a hard time remembering to take my vitamins but since I put them in my car I remember because I see them all the time.
11. Cough Drops – I have a weird affliction (thanks genetics!) where I suddenly get a dry throat and I start coughing like crazy for no apparent reason. It happened once in a really important meeting and I was traumatized. Now I keep cough drops in my car (and my purse for that matter) for just in case.
12. Dramamine – My six year old gets really car sick and I can’t tell you how many times we had to pull over on a trip down the freeway before we realized we needed to counteract his nausea. We don’t even remove the Kid’s Dramamine from the car we just keep there and anytime we’re headed on a longer trip we give him a little to settle his stomach. It’s a lifesaver!
13. Hand Sanitzer – Because, germs are everywhere and we can’t always get to a sink.
14. Lip Stuff – I always have chapstick or lip balm on hand for both me and the boys.
15 – 16. Hair Ties and Bobbies – You never know when you’re hair is going to go crazy on you… mine does whenever I get near water (remember that episode of Friends where Monica’s hair went super frizz? Yeah, mine is just like that) I stock a supply of these and I’m so thankful when I’m able to salvage my mane before other people see what’s going on up top.
17. Napkins – Whenever I leave a Starbucks or a restaurant with paper napkins I put the extras in the glove compartment. You’ll be so happy you have them when your two year old spills his milk all over the back seat.
18. Handy Wipes – Every mother’s partner in crime! This does everything from clean a messy face, to remove the sticky layer from a carseat to wipe off the coffee that dripped all over you cup holder. Stock two packs just in case!