Decorate Safely, Then Send Us Pictures!

November 28, 2011

This morning, as I drove through the city admiring all the Chicago real estate already decked out for the upcoming holiday season, big snowflakes began to fall, completing the scene.

It perked my holiday spirit, and we want to know if yours is alive as well.

Despite the tough economy, homeowners all over Illinois are setting the holiday mood inside and out of their homes with colorful lights and festive symbols of hope and fun.

We want to see yours.

If you are one to get into the holiday spirit by decorating your home, send us a picture and we’ll post it on Chicagoland Real Estate Forum!

E-mail your picture(s) to

Please include the name of the city in which you reside.

We will not publish your name or address — unless you want us to. Some homeowners pride themselves on the amount of cars that slow down in front of their homes around this time of year.

Meanwhile, here are some holiday decorating safety tips that will protect your kids, pets and home:

*Inspect holiday string lights each year and get rid of any cracked bulbs, loose connections and frayed or bare cords, which can act as chew toys. Make sure your cords are fully insulated to avoid electrical and fire hazards.

cat chewing on a tinsel snowflake*Hang breakable or ingestible items out of the reach of kids and pets, including fragile ornaments, tinsel, chocolate and electric decorations.

*Mistletoe, poinsettias and holly are poisonous to pets; consider using imitation plants.

*Anchor or tether the Christmas tree to stop it from tipping over. Some people even hang it from the ceiling! Consider placing a barricade around it: The needles from the tree can be toxic.

*If you have an artificial tree, be sure it is fire resistant. If you have a real tree, be sure it’s fresh, and then ensure that no one can drink the water in the tree stand. A tree skirt can protect your furry friends.

*I’m sure you already did this when we “fell back,” but if you haven’t, check all the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they working, and replace batteries as needed.

Decorate the safe way, and then send us your pictures of your work!

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