the great car trunk organization of 2014

My car has always been a mess. Always. It's always been my weird comfort zone, my place to let my Starbucks cups fill up the floorboards without anyone telling me to pick them up or throw them away. (No, you have hoarder tendencies!) On a recent car clean I found some appointment cards for my college adviser and on the most recent car clean (last night) I found some boxes of film in one of the trunk pockets leftover from my high school photography classes. True story.

While remembering to take in the wet swim suits and empty lunchboxes will take work -- and I'm trying! -- I knew the biggest problem area was the trunk (the film boxes sort of reiterated that). It was too easy to throw things in the trunk and forget about them. Heck, there were sweaters there from our trip to Central Florida over Thanksgiving. This is problematic because I never have any place to put groceries (I've had to keep the bags in the front passenger seat before, embarrassingly enough) and because I can never find anything ("No, Ethan, you can't play in the splash pad at the zoo because I can't find your swimsuit because they're all soaking wet on the bottom of my trunk!"). I had seen a pin on Pinterest featuring a trunk overhaul and have been waiting to do it for a while. Last night Ethan was having trouble getting to sleep so while my husband read stories, sang songs and pleaded (unsuccessfully) with Ethan to go to sleep, I stood outside in the muggy, unbearably hot Florida heat and organized the night away.


The first thing I did was text a photo to one of our good friends who remarked that it couldn't be my car and I must have bought a new one. The original pin on Pinterest that I had seen (here for reference) had way more space than I have in my tiny Mitsubishi Outlander and also had the promise that this was a dollar store project. It wasn't, at least for me. I had spent a week making my way to every nearby dollar store in search for the mesh shower caddies while striking out at each one and then expanding my search to Wal-Mart and Target where I also struck out. I ended up ordering the mesh caddies from Amazon where they were a little more money but well worth it for the sake of my sanity. I found the clear tote bag at the dollar store, however, so it wasn't a total bust.

To attach the mesh caddies, I took the headrests off of my seat, put the headrest poles into the shower ring holes on the caddy and then stuck the headrests back on.

The clear plastic tote bag contains all of our beach toys. We go to the beach a lot and the toys always wind up floating loose around my trunk or the backseat of my car. Usually I keep them in plastic grocery bags that tear over time which is the culprit of them being loose and I knew I needed a better organizational system for them. I like to keep them in my car so I don't forget them when we go to the beach (or the splash pad) or if we go on a whim, and this was the perfect way to keep them all in one place.

On the right side, I have our sunscreen, a spare pair of swim trunks, Benadryl, mosquito spray, cortisone lotion (Ethan has a mosquito and ant bite allergy so this will prevent me from having to run to the nearest CVS whenever he gets bit and adding yet another tube of Cortisone cream to the collection in my kitchen cabinets), a spare swim diaper, a spare regular diaper, baby wipes and a spare outfit (shorts and t-shirt). Already I've alleviated the "hey mom, can you drop off a spare pair of shorts? We're sitting outside of My Gym and Ethan had a little accident" problem we experienced a couple of weeks ago! Score.

The left side has spare pairs of socks (because I can never remember to bring any to My Gym after all of these years), band-aids, Polysporin, bottles of bubbles (a park playdate must!), markers and a coloring book (car ride boredom buster).

Not going to lie, I'm pretty excited about this project. Excluding the time it took me to clean out, organize and vacuum (the fifteen layers of sand out of) my car trunk, the whole thing took about five minutes. Can't beat that, or the sheer glory of having a trunk once again.


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