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It’s that time of year again – students are heading off to college across the country. This can be a stressful time for both parents and students. With two kids in college, I have done a total of six move-ins, and each time, the transition gets a bit easier.
With the exception of my daughter’s first college move-in, we have always used my Prius to transport all their necessary belongings. You are probably thinking how the heck do you fit everything into such a small car? Surprisingly, you can squeeze a ton of stuff into a Prius. And over the years, we have learned how to pack the car efficiently. This is what the Prius looks like before we pack.Here’s the after photo. I recently moved my oldest daughter to Chicago where she is attending law school. Let me tell you, the girl had a lot of stuff but we were able to fit in every single item, including furniture (and glow sticks, of course) for her apartment, which she is sharing with two other girls. Her sister, a college sophomore, also had a smooth move-in into her first college apartment at Knoxville, TN.
I am not going to lie, college move in day will be stressful, no matter what. But here are some tips I have learned along the way which will make move in a lot easier:
There is a lot of useable space in your car and if you use it wisely you might be surprised how much you can fit in the nooks and crannies of a vehicle.In addition to packing the car efficiently, I check my oil levels and tire pressure; I fill up the gas tank and clean the Prius before each college move in. These steps ensure that my vehicle will be there for us for many more move-ins and that my daughters won’t be embarrassed when we pull up to the main dorm/apartment entrance. After all, first impressions count.Besides, being in a clean car makes the long drive to college so much more enjoyable. When we drove from Nashville to Chicago we emptied out random trash every time we stopped for gas.
It doesn’t take long to wipe down the dash, windows, etc. and makes it look that much better. The devil truly is in the details.To me, a car is another room I use. It just happens to roll. I don’t like a messy and cluttered house. So, if I clean my house regularly, why not my car?
Here’s how you can get your car looking nice and clean for college move in day:
Remove everything from the car that doesn’t belong in there.
Shake out your floor mats.
Protect your vehicle’s dash, seats, door panels and plastic trim.Before I took my youngest daughter to college, I used Armor All® Outlast Protectant. This product provides protection against sunlight and heat while also helping to restore and maintain the natural look and feel of your vehicle’s interior trim and plastic. My car really needed this. Nashville’s summer and winter have been brutal on cars.Armor All® Outlast Protectant really made a difference, as you can see.
Wash your car. It’s best to remove bird poop and tree sap immediately before it dries.
Restore your car’s plastic. Because my car is parked outside, my plastic and rubber surfaces become dull and discolored from weather and the sun’s UV rays. I tried Armor All® Outlast Trim & Plastic Restorer which helps prevent fading, discoloration and oxidation.Move in days were crazy busy and my daughters were glad we showed up in a clean and shiny car. Although the Prius is a 2005 model and I’ve transported three kids, two dogs, a ton of furniture, etc. for years, I think it’s still looking pretty darn good. Taking good care of your car really pays off.
If you want your car to look clean and shiny for college move in day ( so you don’t embarrass your teens), try these and other Armor All products for yourself. I found the Armor All products in the Auto Care aisle at Walmart.
I hope I covered most of it, but if you have any additional tips for packing the car and keeping it clean, I’d love to hear it. And while you’re here, enter the Armor All #1stImpressionsCount Sweepstakes! Thanks for reading! xo Sabine