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Santa Baby: Child-Proofing Your Holiday Trimmings

This year, when it came to Holiday decorations, I had three things in mind. One, with our new baby girl, I only wanted to decorate a little bit. Two, I wanted it to take less than a day to get it all up and have the containers stowed neatly away again. And three, I wanted there to be as much time as possible between putting the decorations up and having to yank them all back down again. All this meant that this past Sunday was dubbed, D-Day (decoration day, of course).

But this year, everything is different. It's our daughter's first Christmas and our first Christmas as a new little family, well, yes, of course. But the important thing that is different on this particular D-Day is that all my trimmings have to be child proof -- something I only used to think about occasionally when my nephew was visiting, and even then, my child proofing consisted of running around and grabbing everything off the floors and low tables when he arrived and piling it on a counter somewhere. This year, that wasn't really the look I was going for.

So, in the end, I did manage to implement my three-part plan. Our house was very simply decorated, in under a day, and I'll be enjoying those trimmings for the whole month, if not longer. Below are five of the things I kept in mind throughout the process, and I hope that all of you out there with young ones around this holiday (and that includes Grandmas and Grandpas too) will do the same. Have a happy and safe season!Child-Proof Decorating

1. The sky's the limit!  Literally. So try decorating up instead of down. The floor doesn't really need to be decorated and when babies are around, definitely skip it. I have a wooden tower of snowmen with orange carrot "daggers" for noses that I used to place in the corner. I thought it was best left on a counter this year.

2. Avoid dangling cords. Avoid extension cords and overloaded outlets to attract little ones exploring your home. Plus they are a fire hazard!

3. Skip the tinsel. We recently visited grandma's house on D-day and we ended up gathering in the hallway because it was the only strip of carpet that wasn't littered with fallen tinsel or other bits of decorations. Remember that all of these things are choking hazards and the fact that they sparkle and shine, only makes them more attractive--to eat!

4. Avoid dangerous plants. You know, I always thought poinsettias were poisonous for babies, and just learned that this is a myth. However, mistletoe can be deadly! Read up on holiday plant safety here.

5. Make sure O Tannenbaum won't O Topple Down! Make sure decorations, especially large standing ones, are safely secured so they won't teeter, totter or topple down when little hands get curious.

Here are some more holiday decoration safety tips from