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Natural Awakenings Space & Treasure Coast Florida

Twelve Tips for a Safe Holiday Home

Apr 14, 2011 07:08PM

1. Place candles away from curtains, draperies or any other fabrics. Also, be extremely careful about burning candles around greenery, such as Advent wreaths. Extinguish candles before leaving them unattended.

2. To avoid overburdening electrical outlets, invest in a power strip when plugging in multiple items.

3. Check your lights carefully. Be sure that all the bulbs light up, and that there are no frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections. If the lights are very old, it is better to buy new ones, rather than take the risk of a fire caused by a short.

4. Only use lights and extension cords rated for outdoor use outside the home.

5. Plug all outdoor electric decorations into circuits with ground fault circuit interrupters to avoid potential shocks.

6. When a Christmas tree is unattended be sure the lights are turned off. Cut trees dry out quickly, despite almost every recipe for keeping the trees fresh longer. It won’t take much of a spark for the dry needles to catch fire.

7. When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “Flame Resistant.”

8. Place trees away from fireplaces, radiators or portable heaters.

9. In homes with small children, avoid decorations that are sharp or breakable, keep trimmings with small removable parts out of the reach of children to avoid the child swallowing or inhaling small pieces, and avoid trimmings that resemble candy or food that may tempt a young child to eat them.

10. If you must use tinsel, be sure to keep it out of reach of pets and young children. It does not digest well!

11. Some of our favorite winter plants can be toxic to humans and pets as well. These include poinsettias, mistletoe and holly berries.

12. Remember when entertaining, foods that require refrigeration should not be left out for more than two hours.

Bree Fary is a licensed Realtor® with Keller Williams Realty of Brevard. Please call 321-698-2658 or visit for real estate information.

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