By Alison Cupp Relyea
As a new parent, I remember struggling to keep our apartment set to the right temperature, both in winter and in summer. My first two children are both summer babies and needed summer baby clothes. They spent those first few precious weeks in the hot humidity that defines a New York City summer. Following the advice from the nurses to always dress a baby a bit warmer than we would dress ourselves, I set out to create a comfortable crib environment and wardrobe for my babies that would work in those hot summer months.
During the night and at naps, it is important to find a temperature that is cool enough to encourage good air flow but not so cool that your baby gets cold. New parents need as much sleep as possible, and waking from being too cool or too warm is a common problem with young children! With infants, use receiving blankets or swaddling blankets and then move on to sleep sacks to give children an extra layer that stays on all night. Many parents experiment with these in those early months to see what works best for their child.
Nighttime temperatures in the summer continue to be tricky as children become toddlers. They no longer tolerate sleep sacks but they cannot keep sheets and blankets on in the night. We find the best solution is to dress them in very breathable full-length cotton pajamas rather than shorts and t-shirts. Socks can help, too. This means that you can keep the air cool but your baby stays warm.
Lastly, exploring the city with a newborn in August taught me quickly the value of a sweater and a baby blanket! In your diaper bag, always keep an extra lightweight blanket, sweater and socks. Restaurants, stores and other people’s homes may be very cold in summer, and you will want to be able to quickly throw an extra layer on your baby, particularly a sleeping newborn! Our precious blankets and travel laundry bags can help you keep track of your extra layers when you are on the go!