Summer Weddings & The Sun

This post was featured in ChronicBabe Blog Carnival #31: Summer Plans

Last weekend I flew out to Tennessee to the wedding of a very close friend. The only thing more beautiful than the service was the bride. I was honored to be invited to a wedding that ran (as far as I could tell) without any major glitches. The only problem? The wedding was outside. Don’t get me wrong, it was a beautiful location and it suited the couple perfectly …… but it was outside without shade. One hour in the sun without shade, as it turned out.

I can’t be the only one with plans that involve the sun. Summer is prime wedding season, plus there are barbeques, picnics, and various other parties. Everything seems to be planned outdoors in the summer. (Especially if you live in the Midwest where summer is short-lived and must be taken advantage of.)

Whatever the event, those of us with lupus need to take special precautions to stay out of the sun. I was very bad this weekend (as far as my lupus and rheumatologist are concerned), but I did my best.

  1. SUNSCREEN. I can’t stress this one enough. Sunscreen is very, very, very, very, very important.
  2. HATS. I’m hoping that they’re going to make a come back following the royal wedding, but even if they don’t … hats are important for sun protection. I have 3 or 4 of them that I wear. I found one with a lace band and flower for the wedding, but you can easily interchange your ribbons. Check out a clothing store for ribbons and lace to help make your hats part of your summer wardrobe!
  3. SHADE. This was not a possibility for me, but if at all possible you should find some shade if you can.
  4. PARASOLS. Some elderly ladies at the wedding had these, and I was j-e-a-l-o-u-s!!!! These need to make a major fashion come back. Even if they don’t, I’d get one if I could find one at a reasonable price.
  5. COVER YOUR SKIN. I packed a cardigan to wear over my dress. I fully intended to wear it – I had it with me at the wedding. Unfortunately, I suspected heat stroke might be an issue if I added any clothing if I wore it. All the same, try to keep your skin covered. Long sleeved, thin, cotton tunics are a great option as you won’t boil in them!

Does anyone have any other great suggestions as far as protecting yourself from the sun?

EDIT:

Things I forgot or were suggested by my wonderful readers:

6. SUNGLASSES. I don’t go anywhere at all without these. Score forgetting to put this on the list up to brain fog.

7. SUNGUARD. Apparently you can wash your clothes with this and it imparts some sunscreen protection. I haven’t tried it yet, but I will go out and look for it soon.

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3 Comments

Filed under advice/suggestions, blog carnivals/grand rounds, coping

3 responses to “Summer Weddings & The Sun

  1. all excellent suggestions!! i have nothing to add because i’m in the pacific nw and have been able to tolerate — and feed my vitamin D needs with — short sunshine exposures. but i’m about to move to southern california this summer … so will be regularly referring to your recommendations 🙂

  2. I have several parasols that I collected in Chinatown when I was in NYC. The fabric ones are more expensive, but offer better shade. The paper ones are cheap, like under $5. I wonder if you could get some sort of UV reflective coating to put on them?

    I recently bought some SunGuard, which you can add to a load of laundry and make your clothes equal to UPF 30. The only downside is that it only works on clothing that can be washed in warm water, and then, of course, you actually have to *wear* the clothes. Not exactly a good option for the kinds of clothing I’d wear to a wedding, but easy enough to wash my summer t-shirts with.

    • Thanks for the tips!! I’ve heard I should look for fabric parasols, but I haven’t had any luck where I live. Good excuse for a trip to NYC? I’m not sure about the UV reflective coating, but I suspect there’s probably a spray somewhere on the internet..

      i will need to track down some SunGuard. Sounds like a good idea for the basics I wear all summer, at least.

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