Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The smell from the backseat was terrible...I know that smell.

There is something about the end of the school year that prompts a well meaning mother and housewife to get out to the driveway and clean out her fabulous mini-van.  Since last summer's clean out, the contents of my family truckster have reached proportions that aren't just embarrassing but plain disturbing.  We got to a van cleaning today.  Everything should be shoveled out in the sweet temperatures of June before something you ate half of and stuffed between the seats back in January gets stinky in July.

This always inspires the rhetorical question, "What the hell did I just put my hand in?"

It's best not to think too much about the answer because it could be anything from a wad of sucked on Starburst candies to a rubbery mass that used to be someone's sneaker and sweatsock.

There was this one time, when one of my kids was still in a car seat, that they unscrewed and upended an entire bottle of milk onto the floor of the backseat.  Though we tried our best to clean it up, there were those mighty warm August days in which I cursed the lives of  Holstein cows when I had to make a quick run to the grocery store.

Since then, milk in the car has been banned.

Those kinds of odors are also why I made sure there are enough bags and containers for each passenger of the vehicle to vomit into, if the need arises.

If you ignore the van mess, you can see that I've learned a lot about the art of transporting offspring.  There might be a day where we become stranded and I know we could make it in our van for at least a week if we had to.  My home may not be fully prepared for a zombie Armageddon but my van is preparedness pimped, yo.

Here is what you need in your family truckster:

Plastic shoebox style container, or bucket, something with a lid. like mine in my photo, pre-vacuuming.  Fill this box with:

A roll of toilet paper
A stick of deodorant
Toothpaste and toothbrush
A small sewing kit with scissors
Maxi pads
Several plastic shopping bags
Packing tape
A small grooming kit with nail clippers, tweezers, comb and brush
A pencil and a pen and a pad of paper
Twenty four dollars (that's how much change was in mine...)
Bug spray
Wet wipes and hand sanitizer
Granola bars
A lighter

When you are 60 miles from any public restroom that bucket or shoebox can be vomited into easily when you dump your emergency items on the floor.  Do NOT pull over and empty your vomit shoebox into the wind.

I also have two felt blankets in that van, one under the seats, and another in the trunk area which I use to cover things I wish to hide from my children.  I also have bottles of water which get replaced fairly often because one of my kids thinks that water from faucets is not nearly as special as sneaking water from the van and drinking that.

Then there is also a makeup bag in the door in which I keep over the counter medications.  You want to stop any diarrhea with chemicals before you're forced to poop in your shoebox, because you might need that shoebox to vomit into, and then you want to remember not to empty any of that into the wind.

In case you do though, you've got wet naps and TP to clean yourself with.


  1. Oh, man, the sour milk smell. It took us six months to get rid of that one once. So. Gross.

    Love the kit idea; totally stealing it.


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