Thanks for all the suggestions. I know I may sound like I'm over-reacting to some. This has happened many times before, even when we were together.
My ex objected to the swim shirts I used to use. I know the lotions are risky too, but he will be taking them to the pool a lot this summer and he's always been forgetful about sunscreen/shirts/etc.. It's actually evident that he used sunscreen partially this particular time - there's a white adult handprint on my son's arm. He just failed to put it on his shoulders or back or face. My daughter is only burned on her lower back.
Regardless of your opinion on sunscreen, sunburns are not acceptable. I do not take them lightly.
One in five Americans will develop skin cancer. My ex's mother has skin cancer. A person's risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns at any age.
I'm all for live and let live. I do not share any opinions about any lifestyle issues that I disagree with in his care. He does actually tell me what to do with the kids and it's all delusional crazy stuff he's imagining is happening or else it's something he's just wrong about (he's P.O.'d that I let my 3 year old son go without underwear if he doesn't want to wear it - he's barely potty trained and it's easier w/o).
I have also talked to my daughter endlessly on being sure she buckles up and that her brother is buckled up because it was a VERY frequent problem with their dad for years. Yes I am maybe putting pressure on her and in an ideal world communicating with her dad (I've gone through lawyers for that issue as well) - does not work. The only thing that has changed that is both my kids start doing a sing-song thing when they get in their seats "I'm not buckled yet!" whether they are buckled or not. That has pretty much solved it. It makes the grown up look every time, no matter how far their head is up their @#$!.
My 6 year old loves medicine and learning about diseases so I talked a lot about what skin cancer is this weekend. She'll probably take care of telling every grown up all about sunburns, etc.
Bottom line, I don't want dead kids (car seats) and I don't want my kids to have skin cancer. I believe teaching them what is appropriate for those situations may be my best bet. It puts power into their own hands. If they feel a bit of pressure from mommy, I'm sorry. I want them alive and as healthy as possible and if the grown ups that care from them when they are away from me are slackers, I'd rather they just learn to be responsible for their own safety & health.
I am pretty sure I addressed the sunscreen issue through the lawyers a year ago but there were other far more severe concerns (drunk driving with the kids).
Maybe I just need to make up a song they sing about sun screen before they get in the pool. Maybe modify "Head, Shoulders Knees & Toes"?
Anybody have any ideas for that?
(Should I teach them to sing 99 bottles of beer when their daddy drinks? JUST KIDDING!)