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The kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where families break bread, bond and learn from each other. It is so important for children to be involved here so that they can learn healthy habits and manners.
However, for the littlest of the family, there are quite a few hazards that need to be considered. There is so much hustle and bustle in the kitchen—sharp knives, boiling water, moving feet, hot ovens, trashcans, plastic bags, choking hazards etc. Mom and Dad are distracted and hurried with the cooking. The kitchen is not a place for little ones to be under foot.
I always suggest that clients secure all the cabinets & drawers (yes, forgo even leaving that one Tupperware drawer or cabinet open…). A couple of unsecured drawers for little one to explore just invites them to come in and spend time in an area that is most assuredly unsafe. Having all cabinets and drawers counter level and down latched adds a layer of security.
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I always advise clients to avoid using the outlets on the side of islands and counters. Using those outlets leaves a long cord within reach and anything plugged in can easily be pulled down.
I’ve even helped families gate off their kitchen (yes, even open concept kitchens!). Consider that as an option for your home.
Please don’t ever hold your child while cooking. They can move so fast and unexpectedly, it’s just not worth the risk.
Don’t climb up on the counter to reach items up high with little ones watching. Place your little one on the floor instead of on the counter to write a check, tie shoes, etc. That just teaches little one an unsafe habit that counters are for climbing.