Imagine you could ask Dr. Seuss’s infamous, Christmas-stealing character, the Grinch, for Christmas decorating tips. He would certainly tell you to overload your circuits with Christmas lights and use an old, rickety ladder to put them on the house. He’d tell you to buy a dry, dead Christmas tree, put out lots of candles wrapped in ribbon and crepe paper, and populate your house with deadly, poisonous plants.
Unless you want the Grinch to steal your Christmas (or at least send you to the hospital), read these Christmas decorating tips to safely show your Christmas spirit and get into the holiday mood. Christmas decorations can be as safe as they are beautiful. Because, you see, even the Grinch learned to see the beauty in Christmas.
1) The Christmas Tree
Choosing and caring for a Christmas tree may mean the difference between a safe holiday home and a dangerous one. It’s important to understand the danger of an improperly cared-for tree. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, there are 6 times more fires caused by Christmas trees in late December as there are in early December. A dry tree can catch fire with the flame from a candle or match and is capable of completely engulfing a typical family room in less than 40 seconds.
More: Christmas Tree Safety
2) Christmas Candles
Candles cause twice as many fires in December as they do in the average month. Proper safety should be practiced around candles all year, and everyone should pay special attention around the holidays. Most of the time, fires are started by candles burning unattended, either by some one leaving the room or falling asleep. If you plan to use candles as Christmas decorations, follow these tips.
More: Candle Safety
3) Using Ladders to Hang the Decorations
Many Christmas decorations require a ladder to put them on the roof or ceilings. Of course, you should take care when using ladders any time of year. Nobody wants to spend Christmas in a hospital bed, recovering from a broken leg.
More: Ladder Safety
4) Christmas Lights
Twinkle, traditional, bubble — there are several types of Christmas lights on the market. They’re all pretty, but they all have the ability to burn down the house or give you a jolt. They also have the ability to make you go broke from the massive electricity bill, but that’s a different story.
More: Christmas Light Safety
5) Pretty Holiday Plants
Holly and mistletoe long have held a place in Christmas tradition. They have one other thing in common: they’re both poisonous. Many other holiday plants are also poisonous, though poinsettias are not. It’s a maze of toxic holiday plants out there — make sure you know what’s safe and what’s not.
More: Poisonous Holiday Plants