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Surely, this isn't as insane as my family is trying to make me think it is..... - Page 2

post #21 of 91
I did it when my kids were smaller and redirecting was not practical. It's a simple, easy solution that doesn't lead to tears (on part of parent or child!) over-parenting, or broken treasures.

Ignore them and do what's simplest for your family
post #22 of 91
I've heard of lots of people doing this, my Mom even suggested to me that we do it this year because our little guy. Sorry your family is being obnoxious!
post #23 of 91
I will add we tie our tree to a nail placed in the corner. It cant fall on Jack. All the bottom ornaments are the kids ornaments. Soft , non breakable, homemade etc ( have some awesome snowflakes made with elmers clue sparkles and q-tips). There are things that get carried off its not a big deal. We do have a short kneedled tree ( live) Yesterday Jack was trying to put the ornaments back ON he had just taken off.
post #24 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketgirl96 View Post
Unfortunately, my family lives close by and can stop by anytime. My sister lives down the street! Also, it's a tradition to trim the tree together so the ornaments have to go on the tree.
Tell them that by having them on the tree, they are risking them breaking and they will be permanently off the tree. My family growing up was very big on the heirloom ornaments and special ornaments we got each year being the first ones up. But we also do Christmas at our house and I have a 5 year old and an almost 3 year old. Everyone is very understanding that we don't put up any glass ornaments because little hands really like to explore them and that leads to them breaking. Heck, as it is, ds has broken 7 wood ornaments since we put the tree up the day after Thanksgiving.

And my MIL is always telling me things that she didn't have to do with her children, that I have to do with mine. I've pretty much decided she's forgotten most of her kids childhood
post #25 of 91
My opinion on this is pretty much my opinion on just about every bit of unsolicited parenting advice I hear:

Unless your family wishes to camp out at your house 24/7 and be 'in charge' of gently redirecting your LO every.single.time he decides to touch one of the tree ornaments then they have zero say in the matter. Whatever the needs and wants of YOUR family is more important that what the extended family thinks.

My own mother is just horrified that we don't put our tree up the Sunday right after Thanksgiving... as we did every year growing up. (And as DH's family did too.) Well, my older DD's birthday is Dec. 4th so we made it OUR family tradition to put it up the weekend following her birthday. Which ends up being today actually. And nope, haven't done it yet. Still need to rearrange the living room a bit and sweep. Oh, well. Anyways, it's OUR family and we'll do what we feel is best.

Beth
post #26 of 91
I don't think it's crazy. We have our tree up on a table. It's just easier that way, when there's so much other insanity.
post #27 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by bscal View Post
My opinion on this is pretty much my opinion on just about every bit of unsolicited parenting advice I hear:

Unless your family wishes to camp out at your house 24/7 and be 'in charge' of gently redirecting your LO every.single.time he decides to touch one of the tree ornaments then they have zero say in the matter. Whatever the needs and wants of YOUR family is more important that what the extended family thinks.
Yep. You do what you need to do to save your sanity (and your heirlooms). If the gate works for you then keep it. You shouldn't have to answer to anyone about it.

We've taken a bit of heat in the past from my family about putting the tree up late (2 weeks before Christmas). And I've told them that if they have a problem with it they are certainly welcome to come keep an eye on my kids around the tree! They've relented.

Personally we just go with the no breakable ornaments on the tree thing. Last year my daughter and I also made a whole bunch of clay ornaments that she spent two days painting. We put those on the tree. It really made the Christmas tree very special for her, seeing all of the things that she made. We're definitely doing that this year, too.
post #28 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketgirl96 View Post
And here's my favorite from my childless sister - "none of my friends who have kids have done this"....
"Only because they never thought of it. "
post #29 of 91
i think it's a good idea.

we made our tree. it hangs from the ceiling so if it gets knocked, it just swings. we also don't have any good ornaments on it (because we just don't have any)
post #30 of 91
After fighting for a few days, DH moved all of the ornaments to the top of the tree. It looks ridiculous. We'll move them back to normal for Christmas morning.
post #31 of 91
when dd1 was small the tree was in a playpen! Did look funny but totally worked. The gifts went inside. (At least the playpen was red & white!
post #32 of 91
No, I don't think it's ridiculous. Having a relaxed and safe holiday season is way more important than having a magazine perfect vignette. I say hang some child friendly garland on the gates and enjoy.

The Christmas DD was a toddler we only decorated the top half of the tree, now that looked ridiculous! We tried to have lights on the bottom but DD just kept getting into them and I stopped having the patience to gently redirect so we took them off. Plus the possibility of lead exposure really freaked me out.

This year DS is a toddler and we have a 4 foot tree on top of a table. It looks fabulous and I don't worry about anyone getting hurt.

We also switched to mostly plastic ornaments with strings rather than wire hooks a few years back. They look great (can't tell haey are not glass by looking) and I don't have to deal with cleaning up messes when one gets dropped. Even before kids a few glass ornaments aways got dropped and shattered all over the place.

We still have special glass ornaments. We still use them. They just don't dominate the holiday and the decorating scheme.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketgirl96 View Post
Unfortunately, my family lives close by and can stop by anytime. My sister lives down the street! Also, it's a tradition to trim the tree together so the ornaments have to go on the tree.
So you have to keep your house and the decorations up to your family's standards in case they stop by? This seems ridiculous.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketgirl96 View Post
I wish! Unfortunately, this is not an option. My house is where my whole family does Christmas and unfortunately, there are a whole lot of ornaments that are "special" and that HAVE to go on the tree. Actually, almost all of the ornaments are that way. It would have caused more of a riot to not have those ornaments on the tree than the play yard around the tree caused. There are just too many traditions tied to the tree, unfortunately.
I say let someone else host this year if everyone is so rigid that a tree at someone else's house is going to get their bloomers all bunched.

Sorry if I am coming off a little harsh. I've got my own rigid family holiday tradition drama to deal with and I'm just so sick of it. (Our drama involves extended family not wanting to accommodate the needs of little ones too.)
post #33 of 91
I don't think you're insane, but you're making the opposite choice to what I chose.

I would much rather teach my child from the beginning what she can and cannot do than adjust all parts of my child's environment.

I would tell my family that this year we weren't doing the breakable ornaments and then parent my child to keep the tree intact.
post #34 of 91
I had a gate up around the tree when ds was little. He was easily redirected, and was decent at following directions to not touch. But still, we had an OLD fake tree (worried about lead) and breakable ornaments. It seemed like a simple way to keep him safe, and keep me from worrying or (potentially) constantly redirecting.
We removed it for pictures and for opening gifts, etc.
post #35 of 91
our tree is on the lower level of our house where the little ones can't get to unless I take them down there. Otherwise the baby gate thing is a great idea
post #36 of 91
If my house were just 10 square feet bigger I would totally put baby gates up around our tree. But since we don't have the room or the $$ to spend on buying gates we put ours up on the train table. Come to think of it before the train table the tree went on another table. I've had table trees as long as I've had kids. Breakables are all way out of reach. We also have the beefiest mac daddy tree stand you can imagine. i don't think *I* could pull the tree over.
post #37 of 91
Great idea.


There is so much lead and even mercury in Christmas ornaments, light strings, etc., that a decorated tree can be quite toxic to an inquisitive toddler or baby. Much better to let them look at the beautiful tree from a safe distance, than to always be redirecting and saying "no".

I'm guessing your family has never paid attention to the warning labels on all the Xmas stuff that says to wash your hands after handling due to the high levels of lead. Once you mention it, they might think differently.
post #38 of 91
I've thought about it but never done it.

My kids for the most part have always learned to stay away, though. When they are very little and harder to redirect, I don't use lights or ornaments on the bottom 1/3 of the tree so there's nothing there of real interest anyway.

And we use plastic ornaments. Nothing breakable except cinnamon and glue stars.
post #39 of 91
Having just read "your 1 to 2 year old" I can say you are 100% right for keeping your 21 month old and the breakables apart.

Because you could work at keeping him away from them and teaching him not to touch, and have him be fairly good at not touching with 4-6 months of constant diligence. Or you could put them up and protect them and then in 4-6 months (or y'know, 12 months) have him be fairly good at not touching with 4-6 days of work.

If you had the sort of easy going kid who only has to be told stuff once, you'd already know it and you wouldn't have thought up your awesome idea.

If a kid isn't ready to learn, it doesn't matter how consistent you are with teaching. They won't learn until they are ready. And you can spend the time between now and when they are ready pulling your hair out in frustration or you can spend it with a play yard around the tree and peace.
post #40 of 91
PERFECT idea.. not insane at all! You go mama!
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