The floor of your car is a crumb-dirt-McDonald's straw paradise, and oh! What's that! The flip flop that disappeared last Fourth of July! Before you start feeling affectionate for the dust bunnies living under your passenger seat, take one woman's advice–vacuum.
Stephanie TeSlaa has a strong dislike for messes and the way they make her feel claustrophobic and disorganized, especially inside her car. With four kids, she has enough on her plate without having to carry in armfuls of stuff from her Suburban each day. So she's enforcing new rules for her family in hopes that the thorough cleaning she just gave her vehicle sticks longer than old gum in a soccer cleat.
"I feel like the teenager on the roller coaster speaker, 'Before you step out of your seat, please look around you and make sure anything that does not belong in the Suburban goes out of the car with you. This includes backpacks, shoes, socks, candy wrappers, McDonald's cups, straws, french fries,'" she says.
So far so good, although it is enticing to leave the mess in the car instead of having to deal with it in the house. But visions of living in a close-quarters dorm room are not far from the setting of a disorganized vehicle.
"All of a sudden, making my bed was essential to my mental health," Stephanie says of her college days. "In the same way, I live in my Suburban and my mental health needs a clean slate."
To start fresh again, Stephanie is all about the carwash vacuum. Instead of lugging an extension cord and the household Hoover out into her garage, she pulls up next to a powerful, and convenient, carwash vacuum, particularly because the "trashcan is literally an arms length from my doors," she says.
The next time you're getting into your car, take a good look around. Are the four doors closing in on you? Are you knee-deep in take out trash? Are the floor mats starting to talk back? De-clutter, and make a springtime resolution to give car-cleanliness more attention.
Written by: Erika Fifelski was born and raised in West Michigan, and after a brief stint on the sunrise side, she's home and loving it. Erika enjoys cooking, sewing, vacuuming, and discovering new ways to live sustainably and support local businesses.