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Happy Holidays

First of all, let me start by wishing you a very happy holiday.  This year has been an adventure for us, including the decision to start a new blog.  We appreciate all of you who are reading, commenting, and sharing your journey with us, and allowing us to share with you.  You inspire us to do more and to be better.  Life on the green path is not always easy, it sure is worth it, though!!

We may be posting sporadically over the next two weeks.  Our husbands are going to be off of work, so we will be spending most of our time with them and our kiddos, instead of on the computer.  We will be posting pics over on Instagram, please feel free to follow @sweetpeafamilies and see how we are spending our holidays.  You can also follow us on twitter (I tweet early in the am before the Sweet Peas are awake) if you want to see green living – family related info we share.  Our twitter handle is @SweetPeaFams

I want to close out this year’s “official” posts with these tips to stay safe over the holiday season.  Here is an excerpt from an article entitled, “Be aware of latest product safety measures, recalls when shopping for toys, AG advises”:

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s, there were an estimated 265,000 toy-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms in 2012. Of those injured, more than 70 percent were children younger than 15 years of age. [emphasis mine]

You can read the whole article at KyForward.com http://bit.ly/1c7DEmV.  The article lists several recently recalled children’s items, including a lamp that was sold at IKEA from 1999-2013.

And here is a safety list from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital:

Doctors at the Comprehensive Children’s Injury Center at Cincinnati Children’s and theAmerican Academy of Pediatrics give the following tips on toy safety this holiday season:

  • Parents are encouraged to read all warning labels carefully before purchasing any item.
  • Consider a child’s age, interests, and skill levels when purchasing toys.
  • Look for toys with sturdy construction and avoid items with sharp edges and points.
  • Choking is one of the leading causes of toy-related death. Most of these deaths are attributed to toy balls, latex balloons and small magnets.
  • Small items can be risky for young children. For children under age three, choose toys that are at least 1 inch in diameter and 2 inches long, so they will not lodge in a child’s mouth or throat.
  • Beware of toy jewelry that may contain lead or cadmium. Both substances can be harmful to children who put items containing these chemicals into their mouths.
  • To prevent both burns and electrical shocks, don’t give young children (under age 10) a toy that must be plugged into an electrical outlet. Instead, buy toys that are battery-operated.
  • Watch for pull toys with strings that are more than 12 inches in length. They could be a strangulation hazard for babies.
  • Parents should store toys in a designated location, such as on a shelf or in a toy chest, and keep older kids’ toys away from young children.
  • Be extra cautious about toys that are handed down from friends and relatives that may not have warning labels. Inspect these toys carefully and use your best judgment.
  • Be careful with button batteries found in toys. If ingested they can become lodged in the esophagus causing serious injury and even death.
  • High power magnets can be found in some toys and if a child ingests more than one they can attract to one another and result in serious injury or even death. Seek medical attention if your child ingests one or more magnets.
  • Once the gifts are opened, it’s important to quickly discard plastic wrapping.

Read the whole article, Toy Safety Advice for Children During the Holidays at The Global Dispatch http://bit.ly/1jq8jBu

Remember the little tip that anything that fits through an empty toilet paper tube is a choking hazard.  Also be aware of staples, plastic fasteners, and stiff paper – all can scratch, puncture or cut your child.  We run the vacuum early and often when we are all together!

One last reminder that they don’t mention in either article: be sure to watch your children in the kitchen.  We have a “no play” expectation in our home.  They know that the kitchen is “HOT”, and that they need to walk and move slowly when they are in there.  We encourage you to designate someone in the group as the “kiddo wrangler”, and make sure that the Sweet Peas are clear while the stove is on, and the oven is opening and closing.  Make sure all knife handles are out of reach, and that there is nothing dangling on the edges that they will be curious about, or try to use to pull themselves up.

That being said, enjoy the holiday season with your Sweet Peas!  We will definitely be kicking off the New Year with a Holiday Wordless Wednesday – take your fun pics, and send your shares to sweetpeafamilies{at}gmail{dot}com.

Do you have any holiday safety tips to share?