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Tips To Keep Your Holiday Safe

 

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With the holiday season upon us it is crucial to help keep the wreaths green to prevent fires.

“We hope everyone will do their part to keep the wreaths green.”

Use  these tips to keep your home safe this holiday season:

• Never leave food that is cooking unattended.

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  • If you get a live tree, be sure to saw off the bottom of the truck  to enable the tree to drink the water. This is crucial if the tree has been shipped days after being cut.
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• Select only the freshest natural trees and keep the tree watered and away from heat sources, including televisions and radios.

• Make sure artificial trees have safety tags.

• Ensure that trees and other decorations don’t block exits.

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• Check all light strings for damage; throw away light strings if they have frayed cords or sockets and replace with UL-approved devices.

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• Never use “indoor” lights outside.

• Don’t put cords under carpets or throw rugs.

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• Be careful not to overload circuits or extension cords; check instructions on light strings to determine the maximum number you may place in one outlet.

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• Before bed or leaving the house, turn off all holiday lights and extinguish all candles. When it is time to turn off the tree just flick the switch on the extension cord,

• Keep candles a safe distance from children and decorations, especially trees; never leave a candle unattended or burning through the night.

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• Be sure to keep space heaters at least three feet from surrounding items.

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• Never use heaters around water — water increases the chance of electric shock.

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• Never use “indoor” lights outside.

• Don’t put cords under carpets or throw rugs.

 

• Be careful not to overload circuits or extension cords; check instructions on light strings to determine the maximum number you may place in one outlet.

• Before bed or leaving the house, turn off all holiday lights and extinguish all candles. Use an extension cord with a switch on it to simply click the switch before bed and it is taken care of. They come with a red on the strip so you can easily see it is off.

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• Keep candles a safe distance from children and decorations, especially trees; never leave a candle unattended or burning through the night.

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• Be sure to keep space heaters at least three feet from surrounding items.

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• Never use heaters around water — water increases the chance of electric shock.

• Unplug heaters when not in use.

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• Don’t leave space heaters unattended.

• Make sure your fireplace is in good working order.

Use  Anti creasote  logs often

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• Christmas wrapping and tree branches should not be burned in the fireplace; their intense and rapid burning can cause chimney fires and flames to extend out of the firebox into your home.

• Double-check smoke alarms and make sure they are in good working order.

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“We hope everyone will do their part to keep the wreaths green.”

Once you receive your wreath,.

If you chose extra decorations with our Themed Arrangements, place the decorations on the wreaths by pushing the base tip through to the back of the wreath. Bend the tip and push it back into the back of the wreath. This will secure the decoration in place.

Unwind the wire attached to the back of the hand-tied ribbon. Wrap each end of the wire around the base of the wreath and twist in back to secure the bow.

Once the decorations and ribbon are in place, your wreath is ready to hang. Choose a cool area away from the heat of furnaces, wood stoves, fireplaces, and also out of direct sunlight. This will provide the best conditions to allow your wreath to remain fresh the longest. As temperature rises so does transpiration rate which will cause drying but will also increase the natural fragrance of the fresh greens. In warm climates, or indoors, you can mist the wreath periodically to help retain freshness, by putting  water in a spray bottle  and spray the greens frequently.  Feel the greens to check for dryness.

 

• Select only the freshest natural trees and keep the tree watered and away from heat sources, including televisions and radios.

• Make sure artificial trees have safety tags.search

 • Christmas wrapping and tree branches should not be burned in the fireplace; their intense and rapid burning can cause chimney fires and flames to extend out of the firebox into your home.

Have a Great, Safe Holiday

 

Think Green For A Jolly Christmas

It’s easy to get “wrapped up” in our traditional ways of decking the halls. But some decorating traditions, however sentimental, may not be so environmental.

Obviously it’s eco-smart to reuse any holiday decorations that’ve survived their latest hibernation in the basement. Yet inevitably your “halls” end up looking a little bare — or your husband brings home a hulking tree that looks naked even after ALL your ornaments are hung. Then you find yourself writing “more tree ornaments” and “new wreath” and “garland for stairs” on your holiday decorating shopping list.

This year as you’re making a list, be sure you’re also checking it twice for any opportunity to green your holiday decorating.

Interior designers say you’re in good company if you’re opting out of a new petroleum-based fake Christmas tree, mass-produced or plastic ornaments, or energy-draining string of standard holiday lights.

“There’s a huge movement toward respecting the planet during the holidays,” says Terrace, founder of eco-friendly design firm Vital Design. “The focus is shifting from mass consumerism to creating a holiday that’s about gratitude, especially for the environment.”

That think-green buzz is making it easier than ever to find affordable eco-friendly and socially responsible holiday decorations. Here are a few tips to help you look at holiday decorating in a new green light this holiday.

1. Gotta get a tree? Keep it green …

Love that fresh pine scent making your house feel all wintry? Go ahead — a live tree is actually a relatively eco-friendly choice, so long as you’re conscious about where it goes once the holidays are over.

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According to the National Christmas Tree Association, nearly all cut holiday trees are grown on tree farms — meaning their stock is replenished yearly and forests aren’t hurt by choosing a cut tree. And spent trees can be ground into woodchips and used to mulch your garden or prevent erosion at a local watershed. Check with your city government or go to earth911.org and enter your ZIP code to find out where to have your tree recycled.

 

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Fake trees are a different story, requiring a significant amount of energy and petroleum-based materials to manufacture. Plus, artificial trees are often manufactured overseas and shipped thousands of miles before they reach our living rooms.

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“Living trees are another option,” Terrace points out. “They can be kept in a pot during the holidays and planted in the garden afterward.” Local nurseries stock numerous varieties of evergreens. In the Northwest, the Original Living Christmas Tree Company rents live Christmas trees that are returned and replanted after the holidays.

 

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As for those presents under whatever tree you choose, wrap them in recycled paper or other choises

2. String a smarter light string

Instead of buying more standard holiday lights to replace bad strings (or to try and keep outdoing your neighbor’s massive display), opt for energy-efficient light strings. When they’re made using light-emitting diode bulbs,     search

or LEDs, stock-photo--holiday-led-lights-22475029

they’re 90 percent more efficient than traditional holiday lights. LEDs also last longer — up to 10,000 hours compared with 5,000 hours for standard incandescent bulbs.

3. Practice the 3 Rs 

You’ve heard it a million times, but Terrace says, “Those three little words ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ can have a huge impact during the holidays.”

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Choose eco-friendly and socially responsible holiday decorations like tree ornaments handmade from natural materials. Many handmade decorations also come with little or no packaging, reducing that aforementioned holiday trash total.

 

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Tired of that same old garland? Throw a holiday-décor-swapping party with neighbors, family and friends or check secondhand shops like Goodwill and the Salvation Army, where you’ll find aisles of gently used holiday décor. Buying secondhand saves cast-offs from the landfill, and you can use the savings to make a donation to a good cause.

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Fair trade decorations offer another way to give back to the world around you. From handmade tree ornaments to hand-knit stockings and tree skirts to artful and useful gifts, products you buy through fair trade programs help ensure that artisans receive a fair wage in their local context as well as training and assistance to help them build sustainable livelihoods. Gaiam’s One World Fair Trade Marketplace collections are sourced through fair trade cooperatives that pay livable wages and improve quality of life for artisans in developing regions in Cambodia, Thailand, India and other countries around the world.

“Every dollar you spend has power,” Terrace says. “You get to decide how to use that power. Choosing green and fair trade products speaks volumes.”

4. Go green in the guest room & bath

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What holiday guests wouldn’t love knowing that your festive flannel sheets are made from organic cotton or some other eco-friendly textile? It’s another way to add to the good feelings that the giving traditions of the holidays bring out in all of us.

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Eco-friendly bedding and bath towels made from organic cotton come in a wonderful range of holiday colors and festive patterns. Check out sheets, quilts, duvets and comforters made from natural fibers like silk and bamboo. And don’t be shy about it — come right out and tell your guests that their room and bathroom are decked in linens that are planet-friendly.

5. Borrow from nature

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Think of how your great-grandma (or great-great grandma) decorated during the holidays — with natural evergreen boughs cut from the tree, handmade ornaments, and bowls of fruit, nuts or pine cones. With a backdrop of seasonal plants like poinsettias and cyclamen, they create a warm, welcoming feel — and they aren’t made of petroleum and chemicals.

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Check your holiday decorations list twice this year, and put the planet first whenever you can.

I save Potpourri  items like cones and nuts to use as decorations or in arrangements in a large antique crock in the front hall. In the fall I cut branches of bitter sweet, Dry grasses, rose hips etc. Buy eucalyptus , (it comes in many colors) for different holidays. Dry flowers can add to the arrangements. You can cut Queen Ann’s Lace and dry it  and spray it different  colors. You can make a wreath of hydrangea.