Ella’s Essentials

Ella’s Essentials #3: Car Edition


Gina Princivalle '21

Ella’s Essentials: Car Edition Logo made by Gina Princivalle designed with Adobe Illustrator.

Ella Valencia, Features Section Editor

Welcome to Ella’s Essentials: Car Edition! For my third piece, I decided to discuss my car essentials because I love being in my car and driving around.


I am still open to collaborating with many different members of our community. So, if you have an idea for an essentials list, feel free to email me at [email protected].


Car Essentials for Everyone 

  • Masks: Masks are another covid essential. I always keep extra in my car in case someone needs one. I have disposable masks for others, so that people know that they have not been used before. Check out Olivia Forti’s article for more mask suggestions! 
  • Gum: I always have gum in my car to refresh my breath and just simply chew while I am driving. I live on Extra gum! I always keep a pack of polar ice and spearmint in my glove compartment. 
  • Sunglasses: Sunglasses are necessary, especially during sunset. 
  • Pen and Notebook: A pen and notebook are always necessary in case you need to write down directions or any other important information. 
  • Dark Towel: I always keep a dark towel in my car to cover anything valuable or expensive that I may have when parked in an unknown place.

Car Essentials for those who live far from Mount

Cassie Koestler ‘21 lives about 40 minutes away from school. Before COVID, it could even take an hour or more with traffic on the turnpike. She gave me her car essentials.

  • Snacks (granola bars and candy): “The snacks are usually for the way home from school and practice in case I’m super hungry and don’t want to wait.”
  • Extra pieces of uniform: “I keep pieces of the uniform like my quarter zip and sometimes my skirt in there to save time getting ready, so I can wake up as late as possible.”
  • A change of clothes: “I usually end up using the change of clothes (like sweatpants and a sweatshirt) on rainy days, so I don’t have to go home in wet clothes or just if I forget something for practice or whatever I’m doing after school.”
  • Blankets: “The blankets are for super cold days and for times when I nap in my car like before school or waiting for something after since I never have time to go home between things (which I’ve actually done many times).”
  • Emergency cash: “I keep it for some reason I don’t have my wallet with me and I have dues to pay in school, if my friends want to go out to eat or something after school or practice, or in case of emergencies with my car.”

Mrs. McGovern’s Car Essentials

Mrs. McGovern, the school nurse, said, “Pretty sure I would be able to jump into action for a medical emergency. I also have jumper cables which we recently helped someone whose battery was dead but had to YouTube how to use them!!!”

Major Turner’s Car Essentials

Major Turner is Mount’s Pandemic COVID-19 Coordinator. Before working at the Mount, he served 20 years active duty as an officer of Marines. He has conducted training and military exercises/deployments in littoral, desert, jungle, and extreme cold weather environments. Major has essentials that he keeps in his car year-round.

  • Road maps (backup to/augment GPS)
  • Flashlight
  • Jumper cables
  • “fix-a-flat” can
  • Tools to change a flat tire
  • Small first aid kit
  • Hand sanitizer: During covid, I have found hand sanitizer to especially be an essential. Everytime I get in my car, after getting gas or going to a store, I make sure to put on hand sanitizer. Currently, I have a Bath & Body Works hand sanitizer spray in my car.
  • Can of oil
  • Blanket

In the winter, Major carries additional items. 

  • Can of de-icer
  • Ice scraper
  • Snow brush
  • “When a bad snow storm is imminent, I may put a short handled shovel and bag of sand/rock salt in the trunk.”

“If I travel out of the local area depending on the length of the trip and weather, I pack water and/or some food and sometimes will pack duct tape and paracord.”

Drive safe!