May 9

welcome back to my week-long car organization series! if you missed day 1 and 2, no worries – you can get caught up right here and here.
today we are talking about the mid-section of your car. for me, and maybe you, this is otherwise known as the kid’s section. when it comes to kids, they generally have something they *must have* for car rides. for each of our 3 kiddos, it’s something different. whether it’s toys or snacks or books, this section is one of the quickest to fill up with trash/junk…and the section that needs to be cleaned most frequently.
if you haven’t figured me out yet…i’m a self-proclaimed neat freak. so, i can confess in here that i’m fairly meticulous when it comes to this section of the car. if you’re not, it can be overrun by toys, sippy cups, backpacks, papers, and crumbs. but alas, i’m not immune to a messy car once in a while. in order to keep my OCD issues in check, and keep the kids happy, i found an easy compromise to keep this area neat and tidy – for the most part. 🙂
each child has 1 small re-useable shopping bag where they keep their toys and snacks…
i didn’t make each of them a special bag for the car because their idea of a “cool bag” changes almost weekly. sometimes they use a re-useable shopping bag like the one above. sometimes they prefer a plastic basket. either way, as long as their items fit into the small bag – it is approved to bring in the car.
not only is having the bag a great way to contain their toys, it also houses any (dry) snacks they like. and most importantly (for mommy) it makes a great bag for loading in trash they might create while sitting back there. each child keeps their bag close by or on the floor beneath their feet.
easy enough!
we have 4 seats in the mid-section of our family car. for ease of the kids getting in and out during carpool, we leave this front seat folded up…
and secretly, this also prevents any fighting between the boys over who exactly will sit up front :-).
yes, i’m sneaky!
each of the boys has a booster seat…

each rear seat has 3 built-in cup holders and a larger compartment for holding items. in addition to the car’s built-in features, their booster seats have 2 cup holders that pop in/out…

i love products that have a hidden storage element! between the cup holders, large compartments and their own little toy/snack bags – there is no reason this back seat should ever look cluttered.

our daughter’s car seat up front also has 2 cup holders along with 2 hidden inner cubbies for storing away toys and snacks…

i don’t have a photo of this because it was hard to snap one, but under her car seat we have a seat protector
this keeps the actual seat protected in the event of any food or drink spills and we can’t quickly get under her seat. we have had spills before and nothing gets through this seat protector. it’s a lifesaver!

since we are talking about car seats and this is a car organization series, i think it’s important to make note of car seat laws. the laws recently changed so we made sure to check the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website for info about car seat requirements/laws. on the site you will find a child safety section. or you can click here to directly connect to the page that lists your specific state car seat laws.

our 7 year old thinks he doesn’t need a car/booster seat anymore. but when i shared the law with him, he changed his mind. thankfully he is still tuned in to the idea “mommy and daddy might get a ticket from a police man if we get stopped”. i also have heard from friends that they print out the law for their state and leave it in the car or share it with other caregivers and grandparents. it’s important information to have on hand.

you’ll notice we have light colored carpeting. no matter what precautions you take, it’s hard to avoid marks on your car’s interior, especially when children are in tow. it’s going to happen. to keep our carpet looking nice, i vacuum the interior once a week and spot clean with carpet cleaner. (stay tuned for friday’s post when i share all about car products we use to keep our car clean – including the carpets!). then 1-2 times a year we have the entire car detailed, including professional carpet cleaning.

personally, i look at car detailing as an investment toward re-sale. our family won’t own this car forever. if it looks nice on the inside = more money in my pocket from re-sale! believe it or not, this coming august we will have owned this car for 5 years. i’d say those carpets aren’t looking so bad for 5 years + 3 small children. and we owe that to keeping up with any stains and having the car detailed a few times a year.

we also have light colored seats. since the boys sit in back, and they both play sports, i purchased these inexpensive seat protectors…

most times we have the boys remove their cleats before hopping in the car, but again, you can’t prevent everything from happening. even their school shoes have dirt on the bottom. these seat protectors add an extra layer of protection to the soft back side of the seats in front of them…

that’s it for the mid-section of the car! tomorrow we will talk all about the trunk and i’ll share a checklist of items you may like to have stored away back there. along with a few other organization ideas!
hope to see you again tomorrow!

comments +

  1. Hi,
    I was wondering what type of car you have?

    Thanks,
    Rachel

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