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Quick and Easy Safety Tips to Keep Toddlers Safe Around Christmas Decorations
The other night Bob and I remarked that this year will be one of the first Christmas seasons in recent memory when we don’t have a baby or toddler-aged kiddo at home and how we won’t have to go as crazy with baby proofing our decorations. Of course, Landon is still quite capable knocking ornaments off the tree, and of course the dog might decide to help himself to the fresh tree water, but all in all, some of the general safety hazards that used to worry us are fading into the past.
Before they fade too far in the past, I wanted to put together a quick post as many of you out there are getting ready to put up your own decorations. If you have a toddler (I’m talking about kids roughly aged 1-3 years), you know how quick they move and how easily they can get into things. Before you put up the tree or string your lights, check out these suggestions for some Quick and Easy Safety Tips to Keep Toddlers Safe Around Christmas Decorations.
1. Make sure your tree is anchored to the wall – Just like any piece of large furniture, you want to make sure to tether your tree to the wall to ensure that it won’t come crashing down. One good yank on a branch and your whole tree (and all of those ornaments and lights) could fall onto a small child. Take a few minutes before you start decorating the tree to tie it to the wall behind.
2. Use shatterproof ornaments on the tree – I’m not saying you can’t put up Great Grandma’s angel ornament or your other fragile ornaments, but make sure they are up high and out of reach. Consider picking up the shatterproof ornaments and using them to decorate the tree, especially the bottom half where a small child can reach. We have replaced almost all of the ball ornaments on our trees with shatterproof versions over the years. Now I don’t have to hold my breath when I see one falling to the ground!
3. Switch out your incandescent light strands to LED lights – Traditional incandescent lights get very hot while LED lights stay cooler to the touch. The LED lights are safer as they are less likely to burn when touched. Of course, when you switch to LED lights you will also be saving a LOT of money on your electric bill!
4. Use a baby gate around Christmas trees and wood stoves/fireplaces – Even after you anchor your tree to the wall, you can go one step further and put a baby gate around the tree. This will keep the tree completely out of reach from the toddler crowd, limiting their ability to pull ON the tree or pull OFF any ornaments! If you have a wood stove or fireplace in your home, the baby gates work wonderfully around them as well, creating a barrier between children and the risk of being burned.
5. Be extra aware of decorations containing choking hazards, open flames, etc – When you pull out the same decorations every year, it can be so easy to overlook the potential dangers that lurk in decor that has decorated your home for a decade! Think about decorations that have tiny choking hazards – manger scene props, model train accessories, etc. Maybe you like to burn seasonal potpourri or candles that you don’t light other times of the year. Make sure you keep these up and away from small curious hands, or maybe just tuck them away until the kids are a little older.
What are some things you do differently with holiday decor when you have a toddler-aged kiddo? You’ll be off to a good start with these Easy Safety Tips to Keep Toddlers Safe Around Christmas Decorations!
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