Image description: The Capitol Christmas tree was lit last night and holds more than 5,000 ornaments and LED lights.
This year’s tree is an Engelmann spruce that was harvested on November 1 from Colville National Forest in Washington. The ornaments were handcrafted by Washingtonians and celebrate the state’s history and culture.
The Christmas tree will be lit every day from night fall until 11 p.m. from now until January 1.
Photo from the National Forest Service.
If you’re sending holiday packages abroad this year, the U.S. Postal Service shipping deadlines are approaching in the next several days. In order to have your packages arrive by Christmas
- Dec. 3 is the last day to ship by Priority Mail International.
- Dec. 11 is the last day to ship by Priority Mail Express International.
- Dec. 18 is the last day for most international shipping.
If you’re shipping packages to military members, they must be mailed by Dec. 17.
If you’re shipping packages within the United States that you want to arrive by Christmas
- Dec. 14 is the last day to ship using Standard Post.
- Dec. 20 is the last day to send First Class Mail.
- Dec. 21 is the last day to send Priority Mail.
- Dec. 23 is the last day to send Priority Mail Express.
Find all the deadlines and compare shipping options online with the U.S. Postal Service.
If you’re looking for a Cyber Monday deal, these tips will help you spot a good one.
The holiday season is here, and many people will be buying toys for children. It’s a nice idea to get children something they like, but it’s more important to buy gifts that are safe, and age-appropriate.
Before you go shopping, check a list of recalled toys. These are toys that don’t meet the safety standards published by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Check this online list of recalled toys (see the section marked “toys”) or you can call 1-800- 638- 2772 to get the list.
Consider the child’s age
When buying toys for children, remember to consider their age and abilities.
- Make sure to buy a toy that’s age appropriate. Generally, the recommended age range is printed on the package or in the instruction manual like this: 5-6 years or +5 years.
- If the child you’re shopping for is under 8 years old, avoid buying toys with sharp points or toys that shoot. These types of toys can cause serious injuries.
- Separate toys that belong to older children and store them where small children can’t reach them.
Take additional safety measures
- Read product labels to make sure toys or items around the house do not contain lead. This harmful substance can affect a child’s health, even if only a small amount is inhaled or swallowed.
- Don’t buy toys with parts that can be removed, like a doll’s eyes, buttons, coins, etc. A child can choke if they swallow these small toy parts.
- When buying a battery-operated toy, make sure the battery compartment can’t be opened by a child. Avoid toys that have to be plugged in or that use electrical wires.
- When a child opens a toy, immediately throw away packaging, including plastic wrappers, boxes, string or other packaging. Children can accidentally choke or harm themselves if they play with them.
Up early to score some Black Friday deals? These tips can help you stick to a budget and avoid holiday debt.