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My parents live a 10-minute drive from my house, which makes frequent visits easy.  But last winter, my parents refused to visit my home. Why? Because, they said, it was too chilly. I keep my heat set at 66 during the cold months.

 

Now that it’s summer, I would like to register the same complaint about their home. Last time we were there, the AC was set at 70 degrees and I felt like I needed a sweater, odd in Virginia, where the blazing heat and soaring humidity keep everyone dressed in tank tops and t-shirts. Except, of course, my parents, who like to dress the same year-round.

 

In my house, I keep the air conditioner set at 77 degrees. Yes, it gets warm, but when it’s 95 degrees outside, I don’t feel like I should turn my home into a refrigerator. I do briefly turn it down a few degrees when I’m doing heavy cleaning or when my husband arrives home from a long day at work.  But I don’t like the idea of creating winter-like conditions inside in the middle of July.  We dress appropriately, drink lots of cold water and are content to sleep under a light sheet at night.

 

I believe in comfort, but I have my limits. It doesn’t make sense to use all that energy when there are simple measures you can take, like dressing properly for the season.  (For more tips on staying cool in the summer, see our piece here.) I love my parents, but we’re going to have to raise the boiling point on this temperature issue.

 

Where do you keep your thermostat during the summer?

 

photo: Jan Tik