Creating Good Habits: Maintaining Our Vehicles

November 7, 2010

Since blogging about things helps keep me held accountable, I’m trying to add a new task each week that I’d like to work on. This week, I am going to work on a creating a good habit of maintaining our vehicles. Now by maintaining them, I’m not only referring to the regular required “under the hood” things but also just keeping the interior of the vehicle clean and organized.

I always did a pretty good job of keeping all of my vehicles clean. Then came the kids. :) Typically after we get back home, it’s quite a feat to get both kids inside and then carry in anything we may have bought, along with all the kids little things they bring with them like blankets and stuffies. Sometimes, the toys they play with don’t get put back away or some drinks get left in there, etc.

So this week, I’m going to get a few things organized and clean and do what I can to keep it that way. I need to find a safe toy/book bucket that will fit between the two car seats so we can have a place to store travel items. And I think I’m going to get a bag that will hold some small garbage bags. This way I can do a quick pick-up before getting the kids out, saving me an extra trip.

When it comes to the “under the hood” stuff. My hubby is usually in charge of that. But I can do my share by keeping our oil changes logged on the calendar to make appointments for them.

I do need to make a checklist to make sure I have everything to “winterize” them. I already know that mine needs a new ice scraper and an “emergency kit.” This is something I try to keep on hand every winter. It holds little things like crackers, a blanket, etc. I also usually have a 12V Electric Blanket (sold at JC Whitney) for those long colder trips. I love these—and they make great gifts, too!

So this week, I’m going to get our vehicles cleaned up, organized and ready for winter. Taking care of your vehicles is a great way to extend the life of them–and maintain a great trade-in value later. I hope you’ll join me in creating this good habit, too. Love to hear your progress!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kate November 8, 2010 at 10:00 am

What worked for me was getting each family member a mesh bag with their name embroidered on it. Pricey, probably, but it has paid for itself. We also keep bags with common supplies like a beach bag (with towels, etc.) and a bag for the amusement park we frequent with our passes, the refillable drink cups, etc.

Everyone’s stuff goes into their bag, in the car. I keep a small roll of paper towels and some all purpose cleaner in the car too. Trash bags are under the seat and an empty bucket of laundry detergent lined with a grocery store bag behind one of the seats makes a cheap trash can.

I empty the trash on Sundays when I gas up the car. Everyone takes their belongings in after every trip in their bags. If it’s left in the car, it’s mine for a week. The bags are emptied on a weekly basis as it is easy to toss them in an empty closet and forget about stuff.

I keep a small rubber-maid tote in the trunk with emergency supplies (i.e., oil, antifreeze, blanket, flares, fix-a-flat, etc.)

Seems overwhelming sometimes, especially with school papers, church notes, etc., but it really has worked at keeping it all under control.

2 coupongeek November 8, 2010 at 10:58 am

Sounds like a really good plan to me, Kate!!

Do you remember where you ordered the mesh bags from? I think my kids would love their own personalized bag.

Jaycie

3 Kate November 8, 2010 at 12:24 pm

I got mine from Exclusively Weddings. They are considered Bridesmaids gift totes, but they aren’t horribly expensive and they do come with free personalization. Sometimes they run sales on them and you can usually scrounge up a promotional code (or two) to make it an even nicer deal.

Best thing, in my opinion, about them is that the mesh is super easy to keep clean and because you can see through them, it is easier to find things in them. At the beach, they don’t accumulate sand and debris, plus if you need to go somewhere where there is a bag check, you’ll usually get in and out faster.

4 coupongeek November 9, 2010 at 8:02 am

Thanks so much, Kate! I’ll check them out!

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