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April Fools’ Day Payback Time for Parents

Though rewarding at a deep level, having children really sucks sometimes, making April Fools’ Day a great opportunity. What parent doesn’t dread the toddler tantrum in front of a public audience or a series of diarrhea diapers at exactly the worst possible time? Spit up, crying through the night and the day, and being relentless balls of energy are all reasons to find some solace in getting into some mischief on April Fools’ Day as children get older. Keep in mind that the true spirit of the day rules out cruelty, which means tricks on little ones should be simple enough for them to grasp the fun in what’s happening.

April Fools’ Day Pranks to Play on Kids

You may have to wait until kids are at least in preschool before April Fools’ Day pranks make any sense, but it can really be worth the wait. If everyone shares in the spirit of fun, the pranks can become favorite memories. If mishandled, they can become a reminder of sincere disappointment. So be nice, even if your child has been a real toot. Here are some appropriate April Fools’ Day pranks to play on children:

  • Tell your kids you just bought them a new “iPad.” They will automatically think it’s electronics, of course. What you actually give them is a pad for the eye—an eye pad.
  • While the kids are at school, hang a “For Sale” sign in the yard and add some packing boxes around the house, for full effect. At the right moment, yell “April Fools!”
  • Pour Jello the color of juice in a clear glass with a straw and let it set. On April Fools’ Day, serve the glass of “juice.”
  • Announce that you made “brownies!” Then open a foil cover to reveal large letter E’s cut in brown construction paper.
  • Serve each child a “fried egg” that is actually a half peach encircled by vanilla yogurt.
  • Pretend you get a call from your child’s principal, who tells you all kinds of naughty behavior. Use your best acting skills, as you respond in shock.

Joke’s on You!

Just about any occasion that reminds us to keep laughing is a good thing. Share in the mischief of April Fools’ Day with your kids. But look out! Once they catch on, could be you who gets fooled next time.

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