May Extreme Challenge

>> Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It was 88 degrees in my house on Sunday. We had all windows and doors open, shades closed on the sunny side, fans whirling. It didn't help. Our house is not well designed for no air-conditioning. The windows aren't well positioned, and there's no way to get a good breeze going. The one thing I can say for it is that it has porches on both the east and west sides, and the east porch has a fan, making it a good spot to sit and read on warm afternoons.

An 88 degree house in humid North Carolina is not fun. An 88 degree house with three whiny boys is miserable. Trying to sleep in an 88 degree house in a bed with a very sweaty husband is torture.

And 88 degrees isn't even close to how hot it can get around here in the peak of summer.

I had originally planned for May's extreme challenge to be the "no car" month, but after Sunday I decided to be realistic. I might be able to make it through May without turning on the A/C, but I'd suffer through June, and I'm not going to make it through the whole summer. I'm sorry, people, but I live in the freakin' South.

So your extreme challenge for May is...

Go Without Air Conditioning

As usual, you can modify the challenge to fit your family's needs, but try to push yourself. See how long you can go without turning on your A/C this year. For many of you up north, the month of May should be no problem, and you might even be able to go longer. You might be able to go the whole summer. I remember one summer I spent with my grandparents in Utah where it would get so cool in the evenings, I would have to wear a jacket.

For those of us in the humid parts of the country, one month might be enough. My family is committing to May, and we'll see how it goes from there.

Will you accept the May Extreme Challenge to go without A/C for a month?


You have hereby been challenged to go green in a year without going broke! Check out the last challenge, or view the whole list of Challengicious Mondays. Sign up for my RSS feed, follow me on Twitter, and join my "Go Green without Going Broke" group on Facebook!


Carrie May 4, 2010 at 11:25 AM  

i don't have an air conditioner so i have no choice but to complete this challenge

Julia (Color Me Green) May 4, 2010 at 12:12 PM  

i'm in ny and could personally spend all summer without ac, but my boyfriend can not. unfortunately this is just one of those challenges where i would incur his fiery wrath if i tried to put off installing the AC till june. we will be waiting until mid may however...

Marie,  May 4, 2010 at 4:59 PM  

I usually like to wait, but Sunday was miserable. (I'm in Raleigh,too.) At 1 a.m. I turned the AC on to 81. When it cooled down, I could finally sleep. I guess won't be joining this challenge. Thursday and Friday are forecast to be 91. The AC will be on if I need it.

Erin aka Conscious Shopper May 4, 2010 at 8:37 PM  

@Carrie - You go, girl!

@Julia - For some reason, my husband is very supportive if I say, "I'm doing it for my blog..." It's kind of strange, but I'll go with it.

@Marie - The point of these extreme challenges is to find out how far is too far. Sounds like you already know that you can't sleep without the air conditioning on in the summer, and that's okay. To be honest, if this challenge interrupts my boys' sleep too much, I'll be right there with you.

Shona~ LALA dex press May 4, 2010 at 8:58 PM  

I thought it would be torture- mid-80's in the Nashville area after all the rain, not to mention lots of standing water, but it's actually been beautiful (thank you Mother Nature after a horrible weekend!). Windows open, ceiling fan on, I think it's a go!

Erin aka Conscious Shopper May 4, 2010 at 9:15 PM  

@Shona - I didn't realize you're from Nashville. That's my home sweet home. I grew up in Franklin, KY, a very small town on the Kentucky/TN border just north of Nashville. Then my husband and I lived for two years in Murfreesboro right after we got married, and I worked in downtown Nashville. Hope you're staying dry and safe!

abbie May 5, 2010 at 7:58 AM  

Yup, just mentioned this post to my husband and he said, well, I am not doing that. You can, and I'll borrow a tent from my parent's for you. *sigh*.
I grew up in a solar heated house, with wonderful cross ventilation. It did get hot in NH, but not humid, and we didn't have the 100+ degree weather just settle in for August. Needless to say, AC is probably a necessity here in northern Va.
But, I prefer to be without AC. If the day can withstand, I open the windows, have a fan blowing (so much electricity) and the kids running around in their diapers only. I'll sweat a little in my kitchen. I just like the outdoors in. I like the fresh air, even when it is close to code-orange...instead of stuffy, stale A/C. But my husband comes home in a suit and tie, and wants to relax in an icebox. So, the AC goes on. He doesn't like sleeping with no sheets, in just shorts. So, the A/C goes on. What is it about men who need the AC thermostat lower when the temp outside is higher? :) This is a great challenge, and maybe we'll make it through M-F from 7:30 am - 6:30 pm. You know, business hours. ;)

leighj May 5, 2010 at 5:03 PM  

Benefit of the high desert Southwest. We have a swamp cooler, which we haven't needed yet, even though it's been hot a few days. We had snow on Sunday the 2nd though. Who would have thought it? Maybe I'll try no AC in the car.

Anonymous,  May 6, 2010 at 10:34 AM  

We've been without A/C or a swamp cooler here in Albuquerque and are surviving. In July and August we have a window unit we'll use at night so we can sleep but it's too expensive to use too much. I finally did one of your challenges :)

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