The Secret Way I Hacked My Daughter’s Nursery So I Could See at Night

published Mar 18, 2023
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Mom watching baby sleeping in crib at night
Credit: Rebecca Schortinghuis/Getty Images

I understand the need for a dark nursery for optimal sleep, but when I am trying to quietly sneak in at 3 a.m. to help with a pacifier or offer a soothing snuggle, the pitch black is definitely a challenge. How do I find my way to the rocking chair in the dark without the use of a night-light or flashlight (which could wake the baby) or just shuffling my feet until my ankle inevitably whacks into one of the feet?

After one too many stubbed toes, I realized I needed a better way to navigate our nursery in the middle of the night. That’s when the answer came from one of the most unexpected places.

Credit: Kristina Vanni

The Magic of Glow Tape for Dark Nurseries

I started doing plays in junior high and high school, and then eventually studied theater in college. Glow tape is a secret trick that happens on just about every stage, from local community shows all the way to Broadway. Have you ever wondered how the stage crew knows exactly where to put a set piece in the dark between scenes? Or how an actor knows right where to stand when the spotlight opens on their face? It’s glow tape

Glow tape is simply a roll of thick tape that is sticky on one side and has a glow-in-the-dark surface on the other. You can cut it to any length you like and stick it just about anywhere. In a theater the actors and crew can see this tape on the floor of the stage, but it’s not visible to the audience. 

I applied the glow tape to the feet of the rocking chair, and on the very first night it was clear I had a game-changer on my hands. Even without my glasses on I could easily navigate the room. I can see the strips of glow tape so I can find the rocking chair, but the tape isn’t so bright that it interferes with my daughter’s sleep!

Glow tape can help you navigate any place that’s hard to see at night, which is when I started thinking of all the other ways I could use a roll of glow tape around the house. It could be useful to stick to the side of a nightstand or bookshelf, or maybe even near a door handle. I’m definitely offering a standing ovation to my high school drama teacher for helping me create this unique parenting hack all these years later! 

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