Our first priority during the holidays is family safety. Here are some things to remember during this time:
- Keep your travel plans among trusted family and friends. Keep your travel plans and information off social media. It is best not to tell the world when you are traveling and where you are going. An exception would be a trusted neighbor or family member who can keep an eye on your home or apartment and get your mail while you are gone.
- Make sure your family is prepared for winter weather. When traveling, make sure you have appropriate winter outerwear for all family members in the car. Temperatures can drop suddenly and in case you get stuck somewhere you need to be prepared. Blankets, hand warmers, snacks and water, a small shovel, snow socks for tires, windshield de-icer, and a spare phone charger,
- Keep large or heavy gifts in the trunk so that they may not become a projectile in the car if you have to stop abruptly.
- If you are headed to a party and plan to drink alcohol, designate a driver or use a car service to make sure you get home safely.
- If you are giving a bike, scooter, skateboard or snowboard for Christmas, make sure to include the helmet as part of the gift to keep your loved one safe.
- Make sure to examine toys and games for sharp edges or small parts (including button batteries) that may come off and be harmful for children. Keep an eye on recalls for unsafe toys. Visit safekids.org that keeps a current list of recalls for families.
- For holiday cooking, try to use the back burners of your stove to prevent curious kids from grabbing a handle or hot pan. Teach older kids how to cook and bake safely in the kitchen. Tell them never to leave the kitchen while using the stove or oven. Using pot holders correctly and removing things from the oven will take a lot of supervised practice. There is so much to learn in the kitchen and it can be a fun project to do together. Just remember to emphasize the safety first.