It’s a tradition for my family to decorate the tree together just after Thanksgiving. I normally bring out a bin of ornaments we’ve used over the years as well as a few sentimental ones we’ve picked up since being married and having kids. But this year is a little different — we have a super inquisitive crawling baby — so we’re using a few new tips for a safe family Christmas tree.
1. Try a Different Christmas Tree
We opted for an artificial tree this year to save from the fallen pine mess and possible hazard. I’m a huge fan of real trees and miss the smell, but this 9-foot pre-lit tree of ours has made baby’s first Christmas so much safer by making it easier to keep the area clean. There are even Upside Down Christmas Trees, that could work. Have you seen these? SO cool. This trendy tree style dates back to medieval Europe and is perfect for homes with curious tots and pets.
2. Keep the Tree Simple
Since we have a pre-lit tree there wasn’t really much we needed to add to it when decorating so we kept our usual breakable ornaments in the Christmas decoration bin and just added a few new ones. Look for shatter-resistant ornaments or skip ornaments altogether the first year. If you do add them, be sure to leave the area within baby’s reach free of ornaments. Pictures of babies holding ornaments are cute (see below), but it’s a real danger if one drops near baby, or they find one and start chomping on it. Another way to keep it simple? Don’t worry about covering the tree with ornaments! Ours is near a wall this year so I was able to put a minimal amount around the front and sides then leave the back bare.
3. Include Your Little One
Be sure to include your little one in the decorating process so that they understand the ornaments go on the tree and talk to them a little bit about why they go there. Depending on their age it might not all sink in, but they’re listening. S helped me decorate and I held the baby while putting up ornaments this year.