How to Survive Thanksgiving Dinner with a Toddler

The most important thing parents must not forget at Thanksgiving is safety. The holiday may be full of joy, but it has potential dangers all of it’s own.

Family gatherings are a traditional part of the holiday season and Thanksgiving is usually just the start of them. As diligent as parents may be about their own homes, they have no control over the many other houses they may visit during the holidays. When young children visit a relative’s house for the very first time they are dazzled by decorations and are often tempted by the desire to explore new places. Do not be embarrassed to ask ahead of time if your relative’s house is “child-proof.” Ask if fragile knick-knacks are placed high on shelves, if electrical outlets are plugged shut, and if the cupboards and cabinet doors have locks on them, etc.

Most party hosts are usually happy to accommodate by making their home safe for their youngest relatives. If they’re not, or they simply don’t have the time (who does?), then you will need to be aware of your toddler’s location at all times. For example, it only takes a tiny tug to bring a priceless antique crashing to the floor. It is also helpful for parents to plan ahead, and take turns watching their child, or ask an older child-a teenaged niece or nephew, for instance-to help keep an eye on their toddler.

Have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!

Michelle L. Spitzer

Pacifier B Gone

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