May 11

happy friday, friends! hope you have something wonderful planned for the weekend! i’d also like to wish all of the mother’s reading along a very happy mother’s day. hope you are totally spoiled by your family. 🙂
today i am wrapping up the car organization series. it’s been 5 fun days of sharing how i keep an organized car. during this series we discussed the front seat, the center console & glove compartment, the mid-section, and the trunk. today i’m sharing products i use inside our car and how i stow my purse/cell phone.
before i go on, i have something funny to share. i received a sweet e-mail this week from Laura, a blog reader. she made a comment in her e-mail that made me laugh and thought it was appropriate to share…
“…i got a good chuckle out of the car tips this week. i can so remember having 3 little girls in the van and thinking i could clothe, feed and house someone for weeks with what i have in here!!!”
so, so true! her comment totally made me laugh/smile. thank you, Laura!
back to the car, here are 2 of the most useful/effective products i have found…

most of us love the scent of febreze at home, but their home air-freshening products can be a bit overwhelming inside a small, confined area – like a vehicle. a few years ago i found febreze auto (at target) and was sold after one use. it has a nice, light scent for your car’s interior. i only use this once a month or every other month and that is plenty enough to do the trick.

the other product i love, is woolite oxy deep carpet stain remover. it’s not only great inside your home, but it works wonders on the carpeting in your car.

here is one example (among hundreds – ha!)….a few weeks ago i was in a rush getting out the door to bring the boys to school. instead of transferring my coffee into a travel mug, i rushed out and brought with me the mug i had been drinking from. it does fit in the center console cup holders, but doesn’t have a lid. when i initially got into the car, i sat the mug on top of the center console until the kids hopped in.

you know what happens next – it tipped over accidentally. i was able to catch it mid-tip….but about 1/4 of the coffee went down the back console and onto the light carpeting. i immediately blotted up what i could. then later when i arrived home from carpool, i used the woolite. carpet looks awesome! you can’t even tell there was a coffee spill.

this carpet cleaner has worked on all sorts of stains in the car; ground in crackers, drops of red fruit punch (don’t ask!), gatorade (of various colors), chocolate, milk spills, and even a brown apple stain.

those are 2 of my favorite products for the car.

another item i use frequently is our oreck handheld vacuum…

this portable vacuum has a lot of uses, but one of my favorite spots to use it is in the car. we do own a dustbuster-type oreck, but i find it doesn’t have the power/suction of this handheld version. and i love all of the attachments for getting into the odd, narrow or thin spaces/cracks.
once a week i bring the vacuum out to the car and completely clean the interior…
and i love that it has a long cord.
you could have tons of stuff in your car, but when it’s freshly vacuumed and there are no crumbs/remnants floating around – don’t you feel good?

the other must have car item for me? this s-hook…

i found this hook at the container store for $1.99. it’s real purpose is not for use in a car, but i knew exactly where it would come in handy….holding my purse (or other bags with straps) in the car…

for years i left my bags sitting on the front passenger seat…

but like most things that are sitting in this seat, and sitting on leather, they slide right off if you turn or stop. i was getting tired of my purse and its contents getting tossed onto the passenger floorboard. this hook has been the answer. occasionally, i will hook it onto the car organizer itself…

or i can turn it around toward the back of the seat and hang it from the headrest poles…

i like that the s-hook has a large side and a small side. sometimes i only hang my purse, but other times i will also hang a backpack or a bag of snacks along with it. the hook is versatile and keeps everything where i want it – NOT on the floorboard.
a big car safety issue these days is cell phone use while driving. personally, i think there is NO good reason to be talking on your phone while driving. and definitely NO good, or smart, reason to text while driving. i’ve seen my fair share of people trying to text/talk while driving and they swerve around like they are intoxicated. i also don’t like to set that example for my children. soon enough (sniff sniff) they will be drivers and i would like them to remember mom being engaged on the road. not driving while talking or texting.
i’m not here to preach on the issue, but i felt it would be remiss if while talking about car organization i didn’t mention anything about cell phone use or storage.
as far as where i stow away my cell phone, i don’t have a storage product to share. instead, at any given time, you can either find my phone in my purse hanging behind the seat or sitting inside my purse in the trunk. i’m not perfect – there have been times when i think someone important will call and i can’t miss it (mainly a teacher or doctor returning a message) so i have put my phone on the front passenger seat. i can’t tell you what a big distraction that phone is sitting there. even with me not using it. each time i have that cell phone up front, it’s trouble. so i keep it out of the front seat and when i reach my destination and am parked, then i can pull it out.
i’m sure many of you have great tips to share in regards to cell phone car storage. we would love to hear them – so please leave a comment below!
i am sure there a lot of other car organization ideas out there to inspire you. but i hope my week of tips and tricks helped you or inspired you in a small way. thank you so much for reading along this week!

comments +

  1. Shelia says:

    Ok first off I have been following your blog for some time now and never commented. I have found so many helpful tips and tricks on your blog. Love it. Now I have to admit, Monday morning when I visited your blog and saw that this week would be about our vehicles, I actually thought, "Really?, What's there to know? I mean, how organized can you keep a car?" But I have to say I am inspired. SO much so, that I spent TWO hours last night after work cleaning out my van and reorganizing things. Let's just say this single mama to 3 (ages 8-12) definitely lives out of her van. My kids might have had to fend for themselves for supper but they survived. I have thoroughly enjoyed your series this week and gleaned a lot of useful information that I am actually applying. My van looks so much cleaner and I have even cleaned the carpets yet – I was waiting on today's post to know what cleaners you recommend. Thanks again. Truly love your blog.

    • hi shelia!

      wow – you have no idea how much your warmed my heart this afternoon with this sweet comment! thank you thank you thank YOU!!! you just made my day! the entire idea behind my blog is to help others. i'm just an OCD mom with a mission to stay organized and save our family a little money. so anytime i can hear that i am really helping others, that is all i need to know.

      i really am so honored and grateful to be able to help you out! you comment also reminded me something i forgot to mention in today's post – i use dish soap to wipe up stains on our car interior and inside the doors. better got back and fix that!

      thank you again so very much for sharing your kind comment today!

      have a wonderful weekend & mother's day!

  2. I have really enjoyed this series, Thank you so much I really need to organize our truck because right now it is just a mess. I really liked the idea on how to keep the kids things organize behind the seat. That is something that I really, really need to do.

    Thank you

    • hi shirley!

      thank you so much! i am so glad you enjoyed the series! it was fun putting it together….and sadly, too easy to put together as well. i spent all of my free time in the car while sitting in carpool to write up the series. lol! it was a great way to pass the time. 🙂

      thanks again!!!!

  3. Thanks for this series Samantha! I really need to organize both our car & our van & these tips will definitely help. I especially like the front seat organizer & the S-hook. I've used a basket or bin from time to time to keep all my little things from floating around but then sometimes the whole basket falls so attaching something to the seat is a great idea.

    One question about cleaning: what do you use to wipe down all the plastic parts (dashboard, console, cupholders, etc. to keep them clean?

    Thanks again! I saw your link on Simply Sensational Tuesday.


  4. momof3 says:

    I only recently found your blog and am trying to catch up on everything! I've been an organizing fanatic since I was young and my 17 year old daughter and I love nothing more than shopping for new ways to organize. One little thing I do to keep the dashboard and console clean is to wipe everything down with a baby wipe while I'm waiting in a car line. Even my super picky about his car husband does the same thing. Hope you're enjoying your new house!

  5. Patty V says:

    Great idea, going out right now to buy a S hook.

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