It’s already May, which means that in my book, summer is here. While some may measure this by the temperature outside or by the last day of school, I measure summer by what time the sun rises in the morning.
It wasn’t long into having my first child that I realized just how very painful it us to have the sun break at near 4:45am. I don’t know who decided that the sun should come up at 4:45am but I can be thankful to the person who decided that we should NOT participate in daylight savings. Because that would me the sun coming up at 3:45am. And no matter who you are, 3:45am is definitely still the middle of the night.
All of that is to say, the sun still rises super early and I don’t know about you, but I’m not a fan of 5am wake-up calls. When I learned that kids rise with the sun, I quickly came up with several quick methods for blacking out a child’s windows in their room. For me, blackout is pitch black – that means I don’t want to see any change in lighting in the room once the sun comes up which also means that my kids don’t either thus encouraging later morning sleep. Oh, and awesome afternoon naps.
- Aluminum Foil. So, this is pretty ghetto. But when I was first introduced to it, I thought it was genius. I will fully admit that we have one window still foiled in our house. It’s in the backyard so no one can see it. I love many things about using aluminum foil – it’s easy to tape up, its cheap, it’s quick, and it reflects the sun keeping the room cooler.
- Blackout Curtains. With a twist. Most store-bought curtains won’t do the trick. They aren’t thick enough. It wasn’t until I made my first set of “blackout curtains” that I realized that the blackout material comes in different thicknesses. Which means those ones I got at Target weren’t going to cut it when it comes to total darkness. I quickly (ok, not so quickly) picked up some ultra thick (I’m pretty sure there’s even a term for the thickness) blackout material and heat sewed it to something pretty. I tacked (not hung) it to the top of the window, which keeps that little bit of light from peeking in the top. Making them extra long solved the problem of light on the bottom. Plus, add some pretty curtain holders on the sides and you can let in beautiful light post 7:30am.
- Vinyl Fabric. This one was an ah-ha moment for me. We have those windows above windows in a couple of the bedrooms in the front and master bedroom of our house. When our HOA was not-so-thrilled about the aluminum foil I tacked up into my son’s rooms upper window when we first moved in, I needed a new solution quick. Having just recovered my dining room chairs in black vinyl – inspiration struck. I tacked some of the remainder vinyl over the window and got complete blackout. The best part is that because it’s black, you can’t even see it from the outside. Total win.