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The perfect blanket for an afternoon nap

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It comes in limited colors and has a silly name, but that doesn’t matter if the sleep is good

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Most people, even those who don’t spend much time at home, would probably agree that one’s living space should be a pleasant place in which to sleep. But I may have gone too far in allowing my dedication to sleep—to the Saturday afternoon nap, in particular—to dictate my design choices.

There’s the roll-arm sofa I purchased because the saleswoman suggested it would be better for napping on than the straight-arm model. (She was right.) The “reading” chair that is actually more of a “settle in and drift off into a snooze” chair. The throw blankets that have permanent positions on any piece of furniture that could be, however briefly or uncomfortably, a nap spot. And then there’s the woobie.

The woobie, a Vietnam War-era military invention, is a blanket that looks more like a sleeping bag, made of a slippery, water-resistant material. (The official name is “liner, wet weather, poncho”; the version I own isn’t the official one.) I was predisposed to like the woobie even before I used one, because hearing a grown adult say the word “woobie” is always funny. But I was also skeptical: I had no shortage of blankets already, and could this one be so much better than the rest?

I judge my blankets on two criteria. The first is whether they go with my decor, and the second is how well I can sleep under them, especially in those fall weeks when the temperature outside has dropped but my landlord has yet to turn on the heat. The woobie, which is only available in shades of camouflage, brown, and green, fails the first standard. But it more than meets the second.

The first time I crawled under the woobie for a nap, I awoke two hours later, without an alarm or any of my usual post-nap grogginess. The woobie created the perfect sleeping temperature, and I fell asleep more quickly (I swear) than I do under my usual array of blankets. The already-perfect feeling of finding a rare pocket of time for a nap on a weekend afternoon quickly became even more perfect.

Working for a design site where I see images of beautiful homes daily, I sometimes feel embarrassed by my own off-trend tastes: the aforementioned roll-arm sofa, my dislike of minimalism and midcentury furniture, the not-so-aesthetically appealing brown and green of the woobie. But that embarrassment disappears when I’m actually in my home, surrounded by things that make me comfortable, whether I’m asleep or awake.