It’s Officially The Season of Summer
Felt like it stayed very light this week until very late? Well, you wouldn’t be wrong because on the 21st of June, it was the official start date of summer. This day is known as the summer solstice. This is when one of the Earth’s poles has its biggest tilt towards the Sun. The phenomenon happens twice a year – once in the Northern Hemisphere and once in the Southern Hemisphere. The Sun reaches its highest position in the sky, giving each of the hemispheres their ‘longest day of the year.’
The summer solstice is quite a big event around the world with many countries and cultures marking it with celebrations. Festivals and rituals linking to this time of ‘Mid-Summer’ have occurred for thousands of years. In Latvia, the 24th of June is a public holiday – a day to honour ancient traditions relating to fertility, renewal and re-birth. They call this day ‘Jani’ and people with Latvian descent observe the festival all around the world. The Iranian summer solstice is called ‘Tirgan’ and takes place on the 2nd, 3rd or 4th of July. It is a day of celebration which usually includes eating traditional foods, dancing, reciting poetry and splashing in water. In more modern times, yoga-loving New Yorkers flock to Times Square to practise their yoga skills on summer solstice day.
Some more cool facts:
- 'Solstice' comes from the Latin for 'the Sun stands still'.
- In the UK, thousands of people gather at Stonehenge to observe the summer solstice.
- In Alaska, a midnight baseball game is part of the summer solstice celebrations.
- One of the world’s largest and greatest bonfires occurred as part of celebration for the summer solstice.
- Whilst, it is the longest day overall, the earliest morning happens prior to the summer solstice and the latest sunset occurs afterwards.
Now, with the summer solstice usually comes a lot of heat and temperatures are set to soar again this weekend. We have put together a short summary on the latest guidance for sun safety and heat awareness. Although the sun provides us with the wonderful vitamin D, it also emits ultraviolet rays (UV rays) which can cause damage to the skin and eyes. Over-exposure to the sun can in some cases lead to skin cancer. Children should be taught about sun-safety from a very young age – so educating your toddler is a good thing to do. Did you know that UV rays can actually penetrate clouds? So, even if it seems cloudy, sun-safety advice should still be followed.
When children are outside on a warm day, they should:
- Stay in the shade during the middle of the day when they are most at risk to sun exposure and harmful UV rays (11am to 3pm).
- Wear sun cream with at least SPF 50 – this should be applied 15 minutes before going outside if possible.
- Make sure to check the sun cream is not past its expiry date. If it is, it will have lost its potency and therefore protection.
- Reapply sun cream every two hours – or after getting wet.
- Reapply sun cream even after excess sweating as it will have rubbed off.
- Wear a sun hat or cap.
- Wear sunglasses for eye protection.
- Never look directly at the sun.
- Cover bare skin with suitable clothing if not too hot.
- Keep children under the age of six months old out of direct sunlight.
- Drink lots of water to keep hydrated.
- With babies and toddlers, keep track of how many wet nappies to ensure they are not dehydrating.
- Wear light-coloured and loose-fitting clothing to avoid over-heating.
- Avoid wearing black clothes when extremely hot as this colour absorbs heat.
One of the reasons that we love sheepskin is the fact it has natural temperature-regulating properties. It is a well-known fact that the wool fibres in sheepskin help to increase heat when it is too cold, thus keeping you warm. Additionally, though, sheepskin helps to reduce heat when it is too hot. This is particularly beneficial for new-born babies, especially those born prematurely or with a low birth weight. Babies are unable to regulate their own temperature – particularly in warm environments. The natural woollen fibres of sheepskin promote air circulation, insulate against heat and wick away moisture from the skin. The long and short of it is, sheepskin helps to keep babies cool in the summer from head to toe.
Check out our sheepskin baby products which are just perfect for hot, summer days:
Baby Sheepskin Pram Liner 'The Original'
The 'Original' Sheepskin Pram Liner – Grey
The Sheepskin Snuggler – Natural
The Sheepskin Snuggler - Taupe
The Deluxe Sheepskin Pramliner - Grey
The Deluxe Sheepskin Pramliner – Taupe
Baby Sheepskin Comforter