Buying a Christmas tree, heading to the tree farm to pick your own tree, or decorating the Christmas tree at home are all fun family traditions. But it’s important to keep safety in mind, especially with toddlers, babies, and small children underfoot.
Here are some important safety tips for Christmas tree harvesting and for putting up and decorating the tree at home from parents who’ve been there and with input Shirley Brennan, the executive director of the Christmas Tree Farmers of Ontario.
Tips for Visits to the Christmas Tree Farm
- Dress warm to go out to the tree farm.
- Choose a fir tree with softer needles.
- Always have an adult cut the tree down.
- Ask permission to pet dogs which may be out at the farm.
- Always sit while enjoying a wagon ride.
- Stick together: tree farms can be large and it can be easy to lose one’s bearings among the trees!
- Leave technology devices at home—the snow and weather can damage them.
- Have fun and enjoy the fresh air!
- For little people it is probably better to choose a fir tree with softer needles.
- Invest in a sturdy tree stand.
- Place breakable, sharp, or sentimental ornaments higher on the tree, out of reach of small hands.
- Make sure ornaments with sharp hooks are out of reach, too (or replace with string loops).
- Never put anything with an open flame around the tree.
- Never let a little person plug in the lights.
- Make sure all lights are in top working condition and do not let small children handle any breakable ornaments.
- Never let a child climb on a chair or ladder to decorate the tree.
- Just say no to tinsel! (For your pets’ sake, too!)
- Teach your child(ren) what’s allowed and what’s not around the tree. You may be surprised at how much even the littest ones understand.
IMAGE: TLWILSONII/FLICKR CC
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