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Time is short. The Caregiver is worn out. Often there are allergies, chronic illnesses in the home, sometimes it is the caregiver with a chronic illness. Decorating can lift our spirits, and keeping a tradition going, or starting a new one is a necessary break for everyone. What are some safe ways to decorate, or techniques like wearing a mask and gloves, decorating ideas so cats and dogs won't topple that christmas tree?

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GardenArtist,
Got the little candy boxes. We had no tree this year, but thanks for the idea.
I am going to hide some money in there!
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GA, The point of the thread was to get some decorating ideas, and like Luckylu mentioned, safe for cats so they won't break everything, or eat some mistletoe berries and die.
Your contributions were, as always, great!

I love the tiny boxes ideas, under a tree. Hoping that I will get well enough to get to a store before christmas.
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We always had our own village on the mantle we made up ourselves,with little houses and stores and a church and lots of pinecone elves and Santa's everywhere.They didn't have Dept.#56 houses back then I guess.The mantle is jam packed and takes about 3 hours to decorate but I always put on some Christmas music or a tv show and enjoyed doing it.Mother and I always did it together until she got sick,then she just watched and directed.I didn't know what to do last Christmas without her ,so I didn't put up anything and now this year,I have all these kittens and cats,so I probably won't put it up again.I'm still trying to figure out what to do,but I'll put up something happy and try to do a lot better this year than last ad even with the kittens,I'm still gonnaput up a real tree.
I just won't put on any of my glass ornaments or any with small parts my babies could swallow.
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I really missed the point of Send's thread as to safe decorating for elders. I just thought of "DECORATING!" and away I went.

But the issue of trees is a major one. They could be fall hazards if they extend out into pathways. And they do take up space. Presents could create the same hazards.

I'm going to have to think about this more; it's an interesting as well as challenging topic.
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I love decorating but rarely get to go all out anymore.

An acceptable alternative is Philips Hue led lights and strips! Easy to change color and light level with a phone or iPad or like device - because there's an app for that. So much ambience, so little time. I even have a "movie blue" that adds a soft glow behind the screen when we have time to watch movies.

I don't decorate anymore. I change the lights via the app and put out one well-placed decoration. (No storing decorations and I have all-year lights!) I haven't had a Christmas tree since 1999 as my husky would "de-decorate" the bottom three feet (but she never broke an ornament.) Now I have cats, so I have a 12" Christmas tree made from metal jalapeño peppers. It's whackable, attackable, and (so far) unbreakable.

I do miss the child hood days of creating my own "snow scene" complete with a two foot tree and special elves. I need to rescue Snap, Crackle, and Pop (yes, my elves had names!) from the attic. 'Tho now it would be my knees going snap, crackle, and pop : )
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Linda22, sounds like you have a Snow Village, Dept 56 :) They are so great and decorative.

I have a large set of those, with accessories, in my basement, and as time marches on that is where they will stay. Just don't have the energy to clear off the fireplace mantel and the box windows to set up all the houses, fences, trees, little people, little cars, ice skating rink, etc. My OCD would kick in big time :P
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When I started hating the work of putting it all away, I went to the one hour rule. I only put out what I can get done in one hour. A must for me is lights....candles, some led candles on timers, garland with prewired white lights. The dining table centerpiece starts with a grapevine wreath with burgundy colored ribbon and such at Thanksgiving, adding and removing things to change it to Christmas. Not included in that time limit is the village of tiny houses with tiny lights because that's my gift to me- watching a good movie and creating the village. The other must do is baking with DD because that's about precious time together.
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Sendhelp, one of my Dad's caregivers use to decorate for my Dad, out of her own pocket. Each holiday we never knew what we would find on his front door, on the coffee table, in the kitchen, etc. :) Everything was simple, items one would find at the Dollar Store or Party City.

No Christmas tree, too time consuming. I had bought a "tree" made from large round Christmas balls that was pleasant and decorative.

I've cut back on decorating when I realized I was the only one in the household doing all the work. Forgetaboutit. I do make sure I have those Christmas light candles in all the windows and a wreath on the door.
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That is so true, Hugsmom....what makes a house festive and beautiful are the love and family within!
In the meantime, I am going to put up more twinkle lights.


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Movie reference from Shopgirl Meg Ryan: "You've got Mail".
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Years ago, when everyone was healthy and in their right mind (including me ;0), I used to decorate my little heart out, especially for fall, inside and out, even the bathroom. It lasted until my older grandson started school, 5 years ago. Now my decorations, thanks mostly to 2 relocations and a large dog who loves to do her own decorating, I don’t decorate at all. Last year,when the Beast was a puppy, I didn’t dare put up a tree. This year, maybe but probably not.

Safe decorations are pretty much what you’d do to keep a child safe. I even avoid decorated ornaments with glitter and glue. They make me break out. No candy or nuts (the Beast again) in dishes. No live plants...dangerous for both the dog and the cats.

Remember what makes a house festive and beautiful are the love and family within!
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Send, no, I eat the Junior mints! But I'll give you a few!

I think the issue CWillie raises about holiday celebrations actually extends across the purpose of the specific holiday. It's a time to decorate, perhaps to get out special ornaments and decorations, to think creatively about our homes, yards, meals and everyday tasks. It's a time perhaps to TRY to set aside not only our personal and family challenges and dilemmas, but to celebrate....whatever the holiday is.

And for me, that applies whatever the holiday; I like Valentine's Day just as much as the major holidays. And at least so far I haven't seen any giant inflatable hearts, but I'm sure that's coming, as well as giant Easter bunnies and giant eggs and baskets.
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Just keep it to a minimum. I've accumulated a small box of little ornaments that can be set here and there on an end table, shelf, window ledge (who has those anymore?) or where ever. A garland with battery twinkle lights for the banister. A poinsettia is always cheery. Some greenery - real or artificial - with a few lights and a big red bow at the door, or a wreath.
I know there is a temptation to say f%#@ it all and do nothing but I found that in the end that I only hurt myself with that attitude, the holiday celebrations are in your face everywhere and it was much more depressing to pretend to be above it all.
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Hot chocolate break....

GA, what I want to do, what I am going to do, and what I will be able to accomplish, some of that is just dreaming.

Your ideas sound good....do I eat the junior mints before wrapping them?
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I never had the time to decorate for Fall, for Halloween, and probably won't for Thanksgiving unless I can find the seagrass turkeys I bought years ago and decorated with fall sprays.

I don't really have any ideas developed for Christmas except one I posted about more than a few weeks ago, to make memory trees with photos from family. I'm still waiting for the photos; I think it's time for another plan.

Perhaps I'll just use painted pine cones with matching ribbons. I've done that before and like the effect. Wreaths from all the grapevines still displaying lovely Fall colors will probably be another project. They're quick and easy to make.

One thing I've had fun with is using Junior Mints and other small boxes wrapped in holiday paper and placed on a sleigh which I used to put out, but have no idea where it is now. The little decorated boxes were just the right size for the miniature faux trees.

Send, sorting and cleaning - you're more ambitious and have more energy than I am. I think I just might be content to read of your efforts while I'm languishing with a hot chocolate and daydreams of what I could do.
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At the suggestion of a friend, I am going to put everything in clear plastic tubs while I sort, clean, and then decorate. Everything not being used, paperwork, messy clutters will go in there until I can make some time. We have limited space, small decorations only.
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