I finally managed to do it. I cleaned out my Wally Wagon.
It’s been a long time coming. The van, or “purse on wheels” as my father likes to call it, was long overdue for a good purge. But with no time or ambition left at the end of each day, I didn’t make it a priority. Surely I wasn’t the only mom driving around with a van full of toys, bouncy balls, strollers (yes, two), long-since-emptied juice boxes, lone baby socks and moldy apple pitas.
To be honest though, I was perfectly content to go about my daily business with my van being the way it was. I had gotten used to it, and it wasn’t so bad. My son certainly didn’t seem to care. In fact, he was thrilled yesterday to discover a half eaten sucker that was stuck to the carpet beside his seat.
You’d think that would have been my epiphany, but it wasn’t.
What really got me motivated was reading the Canada Safety Council’s article, The Perils of Messy Cars. It seems like common sense, yet I had never considered how all those extra things in my van could be projectiles in an accident. Reading that article changed my outlook and I quickly put the mess at the top of my to-do list. If your vehicle is like mine was, I hope you will, too.
Cleaning the van was work, but faster and easier than I thought- I was done in 10 minutes. In the interest of making your vehicle a much safer place in the event of an accident or even just an unexpected sudden stop, I recommend the following for your own 10 minute clean up:
- 4 bags– One for garbage, one for recyclables (empty juice bottles, etc), one for miscellaneous items to go back in the house, and one for important papers.
- dust cloths
- cleaning wipes (or a wet cloth)
- a wet/dry vacuum
- a bag or container for loose coins, if needed
Get the biggest job out of the way first- disposal. Fill your 4 bags, emptying your vehicle as you go. My van was strewn with stuff, but this part took just 5 minutes. Two of the bags (garbage and recycle) can be discarded right away, so you really only have two left to deal with later.
With the vehicle now rid of its contents, spend the next 5 minutes on a quick tidy- swipe the dashboard with a mop cloth, clean spills from the consoles with the wet cloth and quickly vacuum up any leftover mess.
And that’s it, two birds with one stone- your vehicle is both cleaner and safer. Three birds for me- my family can’t snicker anymore.