In case the headline has already put you off…let me get this out of the way. I am not anti-gun. In fact, it’s a source of personal sorrow that my husband no longer hunts. However, we enter the height of holiday gatherings…please, if you don’t already, lock up your guns and gummies.
Parents of young people: this is not all on the hosts! As you’re visiting loved ones, ask, “Do you have unlocked guns or gummies in your home?” as you enter. I’ve been surprised the number of times that someone has responded, “Nope! So glad you’re here. No wait…I do. I just never think of it. Stay here while I secure them.” Be proactive. It’s not rude. I’ve never once, in dozens of times I have asked, had anyone do anything but thank me for reminding them to pause and consider.
I’ll share a couple of personal examples of how quick and easy it is to forget about these items if you don’t have little people with curious hands constantly in your home.
Not all kids know how to safely handle firearms
Let’s say you keep a gun at home. If you have kids or grandkids, I imagine you have been diligent about teaching them gun safety. However, what about when the neighbors or extended family stop by in the next couple of weeks? Their snoopy little kids might not have benefitted from what you taught your kids.
A few years ago when my daughter had just turned four, we joined a holiday gathering and entered through the host’s garage so we didn’t bring snow into their home. In the 10 seconds it took to unlace my boots, my daughter walked up to a loaded (air) rifle on a workbench and tried to pick it up. Yes, she knew guns were dangerous and she was never to touch one. However, in the moment curiosity overcame her. Most kids would do the same.
You know how I know this? I was a complete snoop as a kid! When I was maybe 6 or 7, I found a loaded pistol in (a really good hiding spot at) a relative’s home. I liked to sneak off to explore hosts’ homes, including rooms I was not supposed to enter. I put the pistol back where I found it and bounded into the next room, excited to tell everyone what I had found. To my great surprise, the adults were not proud of my discovery.
If you’re a gun owner: consider those two scenarios, how badly they could have ended, and how easily they could have been prevented. You never know who might stop by and stumble upon it.
Please lock up your guns before holiday visitors arrive.
And parents of little people: ask, ask, ask. According to the 2015 National Firearm Survey, nearly 30% of household guns are loaded and unlocked. Most gun owners will appreciate a directed question reminding them to consider the safety of little (snoopy) humans.
Lock up those Gummies, too
Gummies are delicious. Kids love them.
Unfortunately, kids are unlikely to be able to distinguish between a gummies that merely give a sugar rush, and ones that can kill them.
Yes: THC can send children to the ER and in rare cases can be fatal.
It’s not uncommon for adults to enjoy drinking with friends and loved ones over the holidays. When parents are drinking, they can be less likely to keep a watchful eye on little ones. A college friend nearly died as a toddler from ingesting street drugs she found on the floor while over at a friend’s house for dinner. Kids put all sorts of silly things in their mouths. Colorful sugary items are especially enticing.
Please take a moment to lock up all THC gummies before your visitors arrive.
Again, parents of littles…ask as you enter. I’ve personally found that older adults who normally don’t have visiting children are most likely to realize, upon being asked, that their gummies are accessible to curious wee humans. Yep, even those whom you would never have guessed are using THC for their glaucoma ; )
Set an alarm
If you’re hosting, please lock up your guns and gummies. Set two alarms right now. One for two days before guests arrive to remind you to get all those items secured and put away, and a second for the next day to make sure you did it!
Are alarms not your thing? Contact me and I will call you before your gathering : )
I'm Libby Earthman. I specialize in helping first-time buyers and sellers pursue financial security on the Northern Front Range.
825 Delaware Ave, Suite 208
Longmont, CO 80501