Extending our home space

Yesterday was a lovely day to have gone for a short trip.  The weather was warm, yet  extremely windy, some of the  trees are starting to bloom giving me  a colorful view while driving.    The computer, well that’s another story and a lesson I should have learned  a  while  ago.

I’ll share more about the computer story a  bit later. For now I have two computers, neither are working properly and a new phone  I am told I can write my posts on if need be.  I am borrowing a lap top today to write this and will spend tonight seeing if I can  upgrade the one  computer  with parts from the original  one.  I really should  have had my son teach me how to do this before  he moved  out to start his adult  life,  now I need to learn this on  my own.


The drive was interesting.  I have only been in  a car  twice since November until yesterday.  It  was just  long enough to be able to see that our cars aren’t just a  means to get from on place to the next.


I had noticed the little  ones claiming their own spot  in  the car but hadn’t thought much about it.  Then I climbed into my borrowed  vehicle from my eldest son and began  to make the vehicle my own. Out  came  the stainless steel water  bottle to set in  the cup holder closest to my seat. My purse was set conveniently between the two front seats, with the flap open to easily access  my cell  phone  if needed. I adjusted the seat to fit me just right, with lumbar  support  the seat fit me like a glove.

I  then checked the radio for the stations I would  want to listen to during the drive.  Just as I would lose reception of the channels in my hometown area, I would be able  to pick up the channels I enjoy from  my destination.  There is a storage compartment for glasses, where I stored my sunglasses  when  they weren’t needed.


Sitting enveloped in a seat made for my specifications, having remote access to the stereo system from  buttons  on the steering  wheel, I realized our  cars aren’t just a means of getting somewhere, they are extensions of  our homes.I looked around the car and noticed the hat my son leaves in the  car he  has to wear for work, extra napkins for cleaning up  spills, the children’s car seats  with cup holders  and favorite activities set near by,  There are plugs for electronic  games, and even climate controls for each seat.  No longer does a passenger need  to add a sweater if they tend to get  chilled .  One person can  have air conditioning while another has none.


There were extra hair ties for long  hair, sun screen for visits to the beach, towels for drying off  the dog, etc.


I still remember cars having simply an AM radio, nothing power, no plugs for charging things, and no movies available to watch while driving.   Today, we live  out of our cars,  and equip them to  allow  us to feel right at  home while driving, even just around town.

Is your car  an extension of your  home too?

19 thoughts on “Extending our home space

  1. I do not have my own car or a license yet, but it seems 8 times out of 10 people apologize or even warn me about their car before opening the door. They often say, “Sorry about the mess; it was a busy weekend; or, “We went to the beach, so you’ll see sand, and towels all over,” or even, “If anything is in your way just pick it up and move it to the side.”

    One car in particular, I will never forget. The driver worked at a convenience store, and I imagine that she would drink a beverage on her 50 minute drive to and from work and throw it behind her seat. Sometimes, I would literally climb over piles of trash to get on a seat, and then have to move more trash to have space to sit. On three occasions, I helped clean out the car and to her relief we found receipts, tax documents, and even school paperwork for her daughter under the wrappers and cups and wadded napkins.

    My mom used to always say, our personal environments are an outer symptom of the state of our minds. I suppose the way we think while we’re in a car spills out into our car environments too.

    • Your story reminded me of one of my son’s friends. He did live out of his car. He kept all his spits equipment in it. His sports were fishing, canoeing, and hunting. He ate convenience foods frequently and would simply toss the wrappers into the back seat. One day he couldn’t take the smell any longer and decided to clean out his car. He found a container of fishing bait he forgot. You can’t imagine how bad rotting worms can smell.

  2. What a fun post. I realize I can’t take off without cigarette lighter phone charger. (of course I don’t smoke) phone on console “hamburger speaker plugged into phone so I can listen to my audio book and of course my latest knitting project in case “something happens” and I have to wait. I am a very portable person. LOL!

    • You sound just like I was during my patenting years. The car carried an extra book and I usually had a to-go bag with my latest project to work on while waiting for football practice, or whatever it was that day, to end. I couldn’t justify wasting the gas to go home so I would stick around and wanted something productive to do during that time.

  3. My car is really just a “tool” … a very minimalist tool. Come to think of it, though … so is my home. I love clean lines and no clutter so maybe my car is an extension. I’ve often thought about motor homes and wonder why people want a getaway which is so much like their home. Maybe they want an extension … just one which is bigger than a car.

  4. My car is an older model, has reusable grocery bins and bags in the back, usually some kids and a dog and me. That’s about it. I do listen to CBC when I drive, to catch up on news and happenings in Canada and the world.

  5. Welcome back! My car is much more minimalist than my house; I only have a few things in it and no trash. I like getting into an uncluttered car! But I do have a bunch of radio pre-sets and an iPod hookup.

  6. I had to chuckle a bit also. Thinking of my 94′ mini van. It has nothing extra in it except a box of Kleenex. It’s clean and efficient. I don’t listen to anything while I drive, never have. I like to be aware of my surroundings at all times. My van is something that gets me from point A to point B. I have no power anything, except steering. No GPS, no movies, no nothing! It’s a vehicle to drive. Nothing at all like my house. :-)

    • Jackie, as I hit publish I wondered how many people who read my blog would be the type to live our of their car, or even understand what I was trying to express. It seems everyone here is of the same mindset…our cars, when used are simply a means to get where we need, not an extended living space.

  7. OK… this post made me chuckle. I fear my little 1990 Honda Civic is quickly becoming a dinosaur. No TV, DVD, CD, GPS, climate control, or any of those other fancy schmancy things. It doesn’t have power windows, or locks, or even cup holders! I think it fits pretty squarely into the transportation only category.

    To tell the truth, the less I drive, the more uncomfortable I feel behind the wheel. Since I rarely drive more than about once a week, it just starts to feel like a very foreign experience. I seldom listen to the radio anymore because I really feel like it takes all of my concentration just to do the driving part. I dunno… I think that people get so used to living in their cars that we forget that it’s a several ton machine we’re maneuvering… one capable of killing us at the drop of a hat!

  8. Yikes! I had to reply, because your thoughts were so lovely but not at all reminiscent of our own car. Here’s why, Lois: I think my car is less an extension of my home and more an extension of our passions or the issues we feel passionate about. We have bags of plastics picked up at the beach in the back, boxes of books that are being shipped to libraries in Nepal, bee and garden equipment I might need on hand. Oh, and if you’re lucky you’ll find a napkin in the glove box to pick up a spill but you’ll more likely need to use a jacket stashed in the back for that. Spare coffee mug and water bottle (that everyone needs to share), yes. Our car is the workhorse that gets us and the stuff we collect or donate to their destinations. It’s a stopping off point for all the stuff in our lives, as it’s headed to the various places that will recycle or reuse it. And we’re the incidental passengers accompanying that mountain of materials as they’re being moved from A to B and hopefully not C. I wish our car were more of a pleasant place to sit and enjoy the modern conveniences, but sadly it’s become more utilitarian in our struggle to prevent our collective material culture from ending up in the landfill.
    — Liesl

    • Liesl, I just knew your vehicle would be a workhorse! I think how you use your car is a perfect example of making our machines work for us and not as a status symbol

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