Holiday decorating is a great family activity that brings everyone together in the holiday spirit. Invite your friends and family over to trim the Christmas tree, decorate your apartment and play holiday music. If you like to bake, holiday cookies fresh from the oven will be appreciated by all and add a nice touch to the festivities! However, if your family includes small children, it’s important to also think through the types of decorations you choose more thoroughly for safety reasons. Your child’s curiosity can easily get the better of them and your holiday decor. Here are some ideas to get your little ones involved in holiday decorating and keep them safe at the same time.

Holiday Safety Tips for Decorating with Small Children:

  • Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree: Many times, old-fashioned ornaments and even newer ones are made from thin, fragile glass and are prone to breaking, which can leave dangerous shards of glass around the Christmas tree. Consider the materials your ornaments are made from before hanging them on the tree. Today, you can find a variety of brightly colored plastic decorations even at your local drugstore. These are much more kid-friendly as they won’t break if they fall off the tree or are coaxed off by the hand of a small child. Alternatively, there are plenty of ornaments made from wood, metal and other materials which are safe for decorating. Lastly, if you do have fragile family keepsake ornaments you can’t live without, make sure to fasten them tightly somewhere up high on your tree where the kids can’t reach.
  • Creating Your Winter Wonderland: Holiday garland, stockings and candles are popular holiday decorations that are easy to put up and around your apartment. Kids love to discover how things work by touching, smelling and tasting so don’t put your kids in harm’s way. Anything left within reach of a small child is just an opportunity for them to give a good tug and see what happens so be careful not to leave decorations hanging off of tables or the mantel unless they are securely fastened and out of reach. Mistletoe is poisonous, so if you do decide to bring it into your home, consider wrapping it inside a piece of sheer organza ribbon or tulle before hanging to keep berries and dried leaves from falling to the ground. Poinsettias on the other hand, are not toxic. They can really upset your stomach if eaten, but they won’t inflict any permanent damage. Lastly, candles are wonderful and they can fill the house with the warm glow and smell of Christmas, but place them on higher tables and make sure they are well secured on a flat surface. The last thing you want is to start a fire because the kids are rough-housing around the table and the candle topples over.
  • It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year:  Why not spend more of this time with your kids? Consider getting some quality time in with your little ones and set out to make your very own holiday decorations. Craft stores make projects like these so easy with a variety of low cost options to create safe and festive ornaments from materials such as felt, yarn, wood, plastic and more. Whether you make Christmas tree ornaments, holiday banners or stockings to hang by the chimney, your kids will thoroughly enjoy the creativity of the project as well as spending focused time with you.

If you haven’t already, make sure to also read our post Safety Tips for Holiday Decorating to avoid fire hazards that occur more commonly during the holidays than any other time of year. Happy Holiday Decorating!