So we have lived in the Pacific Northwest for over three years now. The summers are usually gorgeous and comparable to Arizona winters which means a lot of outdoor time, windows open, soft breezes, and beautiful. Due to the nature of the normal summers up here most homes do not have central air conditioning. Over the past two summers we have purchased oscillating fans to stay cool and last summer we bought a window fan to help bring cool air in at night and pull the hot air out during the day.
Well welcome to the summer of 2015! We have had almost a month long heat wave with two weekend long ones since. And I am sitting typing this as we head into that second weekend long heat wave. Heat waves in the Pacific Northwest include temperatures above 90 degrees and heat advisories.
My first summer here we had a couple days of heat advisories but that only meant 85 degree weather. I remember going out for the first time in shorts thinking it is finally summer weather but being greeted with comments from the natives like isn’t it too hot. It was hard adjusting my mind set from Arizona that first summer. But this summer I am actually missing my Arizona home because every house has central air conditioning. If we just had central air conditioning I would say the Pacific Northwest summers were perfect.
Our heat waves have meant doing everything possible to keep our house at a reasonable temperature which has been impossible. On the hottest day of the year so far our living room (which has four skylights) hit 99 degrees according to our baby monitor and the other side of the house was 93. We have no shade from trees on our house so it is a hot box. That day my husband, son, and dogs holed up in our room where we had our portable air conditioning unit running and it still felt warm. My husband made a quick decision back in mid June to buy the portable air conditioning unit when we saw the way our house heated up and the rising temperatures.
The hardest part I believe of the heat waves this summer has been having a five month old baby boy. Trying to keep him sleeping well and comfortable has been hard. You can’t really tell a baby to deal with the heat when sleeping like you do an adult. We had a rough night on Tuesday evening because I didn’t realize how warm it was in David’s nursery and dressed him in light footed pajamas. After two hours of him waking up 3-4 times I switched him to a long sleeved onesie and he slept wonderfully the rest of the night.
Also, have you tried nursing a baby while it is almost 90 degrees in your home. It is a sticky mess between the two bodies. I am very glad that David is a 5 month old baby who is very proficient at eating and gets the job down in 10 minutes. And that he isn’t his 4 week old self that took 45 minute to an hour to eat. But even with quick feeds it gets sweaty.
The heat waves also means bringing David into our room, or more accurately our closet. We have learned the art of making our closet into a mini nursery. We put his pack and play in the closet and then pull his rocking chair in so I can nurse in the middle of the night with ease. Last thing we add to the closet is his ipad with the ocean playing and his diffuser. Even with the mini closet David still wakes up more often due to the closer proximity to us and the dogs. I have a feeling we will be doing this again tonight for the rest of the weekend as last I checked today his nursery is already up to 83 degrees and will mostly continue to increase.
So we keep coming up with ways to beat our heat wave here since installing central air conditioning isn’t possible. Starting to wish we had a pool in our backyard too but that is a tad too expensive. So we hole up in our room, we deal with sweaty bodies, and we eat out a lot at nights since at least restaurants have central air conditioning.
What are some creative ways you use to beat a heat wave??