Monday, December 10, 2007

DCMM: Dumpster or Minivan? You Decide.

This weekend I went out to dinner and shopping with a friend of mine. I drove my minivan, and all was well. All was well right up until I slid open the side door so we could put some bags inside and I was confronted with my trash-filled car. I mumbled an apology about the state of my ride.

"I'm not going to lie to you," my friend said, "it's not clean."

In my defense, it wasn't all trash. Sure, there were the requisite crumbs and bits of food that living with three kids will leave in your car. There was an apple core in one of the little compartments next to one of the kids' carseats. There were some discarded toy wrappers. Oh yeah, and there was a giant bag of trash.

Okay. So there was a fair amount of garbage.

It's kind of shocking how dirty my car can get. I mean, I sit in one spot. My kids are literally strapped down so it's not like they're tracking crap all over. And it's a relatively small space.

I blame this weekend's car condition partly on the car being left unsupervised in my husband and children's hands. They were responsible for not bringing in their coats. They were responsible for not bringing in my son's karate bag. They were responsible for the discarded toy wrappers. (Sidenote: Don't send your gullible husband to Target all alone with only the kids to guide him. Especially right before Christmas.)

But I can't blame him for the jumper cables that I left uncoiled and stretched out across the interior of the car. Although it sure was handy that I didn't have to dig them back out after the battery died for the second time in a week. Can I blame my mess on that? Maybe I'm not tragically unkempt, just incredibly prepared.

I can't blame my husband for the multiple half-empty pretzel bags that I throw at my kids whenever they get hungry in the car. I can't blame him for the hand-me-down shoes a friend gave me that now have a semi-permanent home in the van and have never actually seen the inside of my house. I can't blame him for the folder full of MapQuest directions, crossword puzzles, and notepads.

Why is it so hard to keep my car clean? It's a small space. It's not that hard to carry things the ten feet from the driveway to the house. I have multiple grocery bags tucked in an easy to reach spot in the car to consolidate my trash and other belongings. Why can't I keep a space larger than one foot by one foot clean and tidy?

I would like to point out, however, that my purse? It's immaculate.

You can read more about Jean's housekeeping failures at Stimeyland.

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