Friday, 25 May 2012

We all Scream for Sun Cream

You will have noticed the total lack of topicality so far in these posts.  All of the stories I have told so far took place before or at the birth of our daughter, who is currently galloping up on 18 months with the speed of someone who really has no right to be riding a horse and is struggling to stay in the saddle.  Seriously though, where have 17 months gone?  My old philosophy teacher had a theory about time and the way it sped up when you got older, if it is true I think having a child has aged me by about 50 years.  All the stories so far have taken place well over a year ago anyway, but all that changes today.  Today, to coincide with the 5 days of sun which will make up the summer, I am going to talk about sun cream.

Specifically, I want to talk about trying to apply it to your child.  This was not a problem we encountered for a while after our daughter was born.  Having been born in November there wasn’t really much call for sun cream.  And even last summer there wasn’t a lot of need for it, we didn’t even get the usual week of blazing sunshine, and at 6 months she wasn’t really moving around so she could always be shaded.  Now, however, that is not the case.  Ever since she has been able to, she has loved running around in the garden and now, with the sun streaming down, she is in her element.  Which means sun cream.

I have never really liked putting sun cream on.  I recognise the health benefits and the reasons why it is essential, but it always seems like such a chore.  And that’s just putting it on me, suddenly, now, between me and the outside is a giant, eel shaped obstacle which I, somehow, have to wrestle to a stand-still, slather in cream, and then navigate to the garden without her touching anything or smearing sun cream all over the carpet.   This, then, sounds like a job for someone else, and so it was, whilst I was at work at the beginning of the week. My wife decided it was time to try it, the sun was out, the garden was beckoning, and the sun cream was primed. 

At this point it can go one of two ways.  Either your child can take to the sun cream and plaster it over themselves, the wallpaper, the cuddly toys, anything they can reach really.  On the other hand, they could see an advancing parent with a menacing tube in their hand and decide that whatever it is it isn’t going anywhere near them.  This can result in the child running through the house and around the garden with the parent hurtling after them dripping sun cream from the tube all over the wallpaper, the cuddly toys, anything they run by really.  Thus you can see there is only one crucial difference, your house, the coveted heirlooms, the sweater from granny will be protected from the sun indefinitely either way, there seems to be no way that this can be prevented, but in the first scenario the child is covered as well and so you can claim victory.

Happily, our daughter is one of the first sort.  She loves it, although what she loves most is rubbing it into us as well as herself.  I am writing this in a pair of shorts which make me look like I am dressed as a pantomime zebra due to my daughter’s enthusiasm with the sun cream tube.  This delight for sun cream means that she is at least protected, but ends up looking a little like Casper the Friendly Ghost in shorts.  Which are, like mine, also covered in sun cream, along with her top, shoes and hair.  She really does like the stuff!

I hope you all enjoy the sun, and remember, Everyone needs to wear sun cream.


  1. After reading this post the other day, I decided to avoid the house covered in suncream and apply when we reached the beach....not such a wise idea it turns out, sand and suncream make a fantastic mess, it does leave you wondering if the kids are red due to the sun, or the fact you exfoliated them rather well while applying sun protection...!

    Fantastic blog, enjoying reading very much, so funny and yet so true! :-)

  2. Oh dear! Although there's probably money to be made in an exfoliating sun cream!

  3. How grateful I am that the little man isn't fully mobile yet; he wriggles like mad when we change his nappy as it is! Sounds like it'll be a two person job or I need to learn some wrestling moves for next summer :)

  4. How grateful I am that the little man isn't fully mobile yet; he wriggles like mad when we change his nappy as it is! Sounds like it'll be a two person job or I need to learn some wrestling moves for next summer :)

    1. Wrestling moves might be a good idea. My daughter was always a wriggler and I think wrestling expertise would definitely have come in useful when she started being able to get away from me!