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Stay-cool tips from desert-savvy Phoenix

Chocolate cookies are seen dashboard car parked street downtwPhoenix June 22 2012.  Phoenicians have learned thing or two about

Chocolate cookies are seen on the dashboard of a car parked on a street in downtwon Phoenix on June 22, 2012. Phoenicians have learned a thing or two about surviving scorching summer days including, apparently, possibly baking cookies in their cars as temperatures rise in the Valley of the Sun. (AP Photo/Terry Tang)

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PHOENIX — Phoenicians have learned a thing or two about surviving scorching summer days. For people in other parts of the country who aren’t used to hearing the weather man say, “It’ll be cooling down to 105 tomorrow,” here are a few unique tips from the Valley of the Sun:

1. Keep your ride cool. Those cumbersome windshield reflectors are your new best friend. And if you have young children, buy an extra one to strap over a car seat to keep metal clasps from heating up in the sun as your car sits in the parking lot. You might even throw an ice pack or frozen water bottle in the seat to keep it cool for little ones while you shop.

2. Get creative about sleeping arrangements. Set up beds on a porch or back yard. Or just sleep in the shade, during the heat of the day.

3. Avoid the sun. Sure, sunscreen helps. But you can avoid it altogether by waking up and doing yard work before sunrise or going for your daily run at midnight.

4. Think before you touch. Any surface that sits in the sun could be hot enough to burn. There’s no shame in using pot holders to open doors. Also, carry a towel to put on hot seats, and keep curtains pulled tight to block out the rays.

5. Water is your friend. Drink it. Swim in it. Spray it on your face. In Phoenix, shopping centers and cafes greet visitors by showering them with a fine, cool mist. You can get the same effect by filling a spray bottle with water.

And if all this talk about smoldering temperatures is getting you down, look on the bright side. You can always bake cookies on the dashboard of your car. We really do that.



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