Yesterday was Jenna’s birthday. I absolutely canNOT believe that she’s 3 already. Where does time go?? Since we’re smack in the middle of cold and flu season, we decided to have a quiet gathering of family for her “birthday party.” I have lots of pictures I need to sort and share with you, but first I have to tell you the story of the picture above and explain the title of this post.
From day 1, Jenna hasn’t slept well when she’s not in darkness. She has a tendancy to be up with the sun and to refuse to sleep until the sun is down, as long as it’s shining in her room. Her sleep-loving parents decided to put an end to that nonsense. We cleverly hung dark blankets and towels from her windows and tucked them in behind her blinds to keep almost all the natural light out. We did this 2 years ago when we moved into our newly renovated home, and they’ve been up, undisturbed since then.
Yesterday morning, Jenna was playing in her room and knocked one of the blankets loose. As I was hanging it back up and tucking it in, I felt wetness on the blanket and behind the blind. I lifted both up to discover the unexpected fuzziness of a complete overgrowth of mold. Apparently, the blankets were trapping heat that led to condensation, and the trapped moisture led to the perfect environment for disgusting mold. On top of the revulsion of this discovery, I was also immediately panicked. Mold is a big no-no for Jenna’s lungs, and a huge problem for her allergy and asthma issues. Her room is the absolute worst place to make such a discovery. My next thought was that it would be super-gross to clean up – maybe we could just move instead. Ha!
My wonderful dad pitched in beside me and we tackled both windows in her room. I donned my blue, rubber gloves and, armed with a spray bottle of bleach water, Clorox wipes and paper towels, we eliminated the fuzz. Now, I just need to keep an eye out for any regrowth. And the blankets have to come down. I either need to figure out another method for darkening the room, or we’ll only hang the blankets when she’s sleeping and make sure we dry off and air out the windows when she’s up, which will be slightly time consuming and a pain in the patooty. Any ideas out there? PsychDaddy suggested just letting her get used to sleeping with the sun shining in, but since he gets up at 4:30 to leave for work, he doesn’t see a problem with her getting up early too. Of course HE wouldn’t be the one dealing with her crankiness (or mine) all day.
My main reason for sharing this is that I never even CONSIDERED the possibility of this happening as a result of our cheap room darkening method. I know lots of other parents use this same method, and thought maybe I could save someone else from the moldy nightmare. Of course, it may be that we’re the only ones with enough humidity plus old enough (poorly insulated) windows to have this problem. In that case, I suppose you just endured a disgusting post about mold for no apparent reason. Sorry.