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Preparing for Summer: 5 Do's and Don'ts from our CEO

Preparing for Memorial Day and Summer Should be Fun!

It's finally starting to feel like spring here on the East Coast, and in a blink, it will be Memorial Day with summer right around the corner.

Summer is about fun and sunshine. But for those of us who are mothers, it also has to be about protecting our family and making sure everyone stays safe.

At Soleil Toujours, we believe in responsible fun and being grateful for all we have. Here is a list from our founder Valerie McMurray on how to prepare for a fun, safe summer season in 2014:

1) Remember our Troops. In the excitement of summer, it is easy for some to forget.

Don't: Lose sight of what Memorial Day is all about.

Do: Take a moment with the family to remember, honor and celebrate those who make the ultimate sacrifice in serving our country. This Memorial Day, we are working with Operation Gratitude again to donate much needed non-toxic sunscreen for U.S. Military care packages sent overseas.

fish2) Cook and eat healthy.  I happen to love salmon and grilling is one of the healthiest ways to enjoy it. Kids love it too which is a bonus. Cedar planked salmon is one of my favorites and I always associate it with summer.

Don't: Feed your family fish without first doing proper due diligence. Contamination with pesticides, mercury and persistent organic pollutants (POPS) have become a widespread problem in salmon habitats.

Do: Buy wild-caught Alaskan salmon.  Southeast Alaskan chum, sockeye, coho, pink, and chinook salmon, and Kodiak coho, pink and chum salmon have been evaluated for contaminant consumption risk involving many POPs (including dioxins, dioxin-like compounds, or DLCs, and polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs). These are the varieties found to be in the lowest risk category of wild-caught salmon.

 Here's our go to recipe.

3) Drink Responsiblyfarm

Don't: Drink bad wine.

Do: Drink a delicious glass (or several) of the right rose. big basin rose  Nothing speaks to the start of summer more than a light flavorful (not overly sweet) glass of rose. Martinelli Vineyards and Big Basin Vineyards are two of my go tos.

dress 4) Shop! shoes

Don't: Deny yourself a few new pieces to spruce up your summer wardrobe. Do: Choose a chic summer espadrille. We're going to live in Celine's espadrille wedge.  This may need to be a purchase in multiple colors. Also, anything Joseph Altuzarra, the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winner. His Spring 2014 collection is gorgeous and there are great and more affordable pieces is his capsule collection for J.Crew.       Tan5) Protect your Skin. There is nothing new about our commitment to “ban the tan” in 2014.  Don't: Look like this (particularly with regards sunburn, but also on any level)!! Do: Protect your skin always and now that the sun is out longer and the weather is nicer, you'll probably be out and about. Soleil Toujours is your answer. Overall, avoid oxybenzone and retinal palmitate. Oxybenzone has been linked to hormone disruption and potentially to cell damage that may lead to skin cancer.  Several studies suggest that when exposed to UV radiation, retinyl palmitate generates free radicals and chemically reactive substances whose interactions with DNA may cause mutations leading to cancer.

--Use a sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 15 and a maximum of SPF 50;

--Make sure labels list UVA and UVB (or broad spectrum protection);

--Remember to apply at least 2 ounces of lotion (about a shot glass full) and reapply often. The sun breaks down the ingredients in sunscreen that protect your skin. Reapplying every two hours, or after swimming or heavy sweating.

Let the Season Begin!!!


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