Spring is here and with it comes Easter – a great reason to fill homes with fresh colors and whimsical accents in anticipation of a visit from everyone’s favorite bunny. Colorful eggs, chocolate rabbits, marshmallow chicks and bright centerpieces are tempting to all and irresistible to kids – though not always safe for the tots! These these Easter safety tips will help make your family Easter activities fun and worry-free.
Be sure to check out our DIY Confetti Eggs project – a fun outdoor Easter treat for older kids!
Be a Good Egg
Decorating and hunting brightly colored eggs tops every kid’s Easter “to-do” list. To create the perfect Easter egg, the American Egg Board recommends preparing eggs by placing them in a single layer in a saucepan and covering with tap water to at least one inch above the eggs. Add a tablespoon of vinegar to the water to help the coloring dye adhere to the shell. Cover pan and bring to just boiling then remove from heat. Let eggs stand covered for 15 minutes, then immediately place in ice water or under cold running water to cool.
It’s best to buy eggs for boiling about one week prior to use since fresh eggs can be difficult to peel. Select eggs with clean, uncracked shells, and refrigerate until ready to cook. Boiled eggs should not be left at room temperature more than two hours, so instead of dyed eggs, use plastic or wooden eggs for long-term centerpieces and decorations. And remember, both cooked and uncooked eggs have porous shells that bacteria can penetrate, so always wash hands before and after handling.
Because of their porous shells, Easter eggs can absorb germs and lawn chemicals. If an outdoor hunt is planned, consider preparing a second batch of eggs for hunting and later discard, or simply hide plastic eggs filled with goodies. Another egg hunt danger to young kids and pets is shredded plastic “grass” basket fill. Instead, stuff safer, less-messy Easter baskets with colorful tissue paper.
Remember to bring plenty of insect repellent and sunscreen for outdoor Easter activities. The sun can be very strong even on slightly warm spring days, and in warmer climates many insects are already out in force.
Kid-Smart Easter Treats
Many Easter goodies present choking hazards to children under age three, including jellybeans, small wrapped chocolate eggs and marshmallow shapes. Instead, treat little ones to iced animal crackers, shaped sugar cookies with colorful sprinkles, and large chocolate figures – though many chocolate products contain trace amounts of peanuts, so it’s best to avoid these around children with food allergies.
Welcome the Bunny in Style
Decorate a kid-tough Easter home using charming stuffed toys and durable wooden accents in areas accessible by young children. Fragile items and springtime floral arrangements can be displayed safely out of reach on mantles, high shelves or decorative wall sconces. Let toddlers help with Easter decorating by sponge painting wooden eggs for display in baskets or glue these onto wreath or topiary forms for a durable Easter centerpiece.
Setting a fancy, kid-friendly holiday table this year? Check out our Plastic Tableware Faves for great dishwasher-safe