Monthly Archives: December 2014

Have Kids, Will…Marvel at the Treasures Within a Dirty Car

Minivans are cool.  No, really, I mean it.  Ever since “having” to purchase one because our family could no longer fit in a normal size vehicle, I have offered mighty praise for this under appreciated set of wheels.  I like that all six of us can travel comfortably in it, along with all the gear, entertainment devices, and bags of snacks that usually travel with us.  We even have room for a couple of friends.  But, it’s all that “stuff” that tends to get left behind.

Anytime we’ve gotten a new (used, but new to us) car, I always consider it a fresh start: a chance to have a nice, clean car, and to keep it that way.  No food or drinks.  Muddy shoes in a plastic bag.  Wipe your nose on your sleeve.  That lasts about a month if I’m extra mean.  Otherwise, it’s about two weeks.

Now that we’ve had our current minivan for several years, it’s looking just as shabby as the last one did when we traded it in with a peppermint still stuck in one of the cup holders.  That thing just would not budge.  Recently, though, out of complete disgust, I cleaned that baby out, ready to take it to the car wash where they would vacuum it, clean the windows on the inside, and wipe away the inch of dust that was forming peaks on my dashboard.  Hopefully the funky smell would go away, too.

As I was sorting through the items that needed to be taken inside from the trash that needed to be tossed, I came across all sorts of treasures.  (You know it’s been awhile since you’ve cleaned out your car if you’re dividing things into piles!)  There was last week’s homework that was never turned in, a field trip permission slip that was also overdue, a library book that I had to pay for because it was thought to be forever lost, candy wrappers, cracker crumbs, juice bags: all the normal kid trash.  Then, lots of pens, pencils, and markers that are never around when we need them, rogue socks (but not a pair, naturally), a jacket, tiny rubber bands from one kid’s braces, and most surprising of all, a tooth.  A DNA crime lab could have a field day with all the hair and bitten off finger nails that were left behind, but a tooth?  Who lost a tooth and just left it in the car?

At least the tooth fairy has some money to leave whichever kid has a fresh gap in his smile with all the loose change I just found.

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