Fact: Grandparents have all the fun. While moms and dads have to deal with all the stressful stuff like pediatrician appointments, report cards, and getting everybody out the door on time in the morning, grandparents get to focus on frivolity (mostly by letting your kids do stuff you don't and buying them things you won't). Take April Fools' Day, for example: While you're too busy and tired to think up any tricks, grandmas and grandpas live for this stuff. So what are some April Fools' Day pranks grandparents should play on grandkids this year?
Assuming your little one's grandparents are fans of gag humor and general tomfoolery, there are plenty of ways for them to take advantage of this annual opportunity that don't require a ton of effort or planning. Plus, since grandparents are stereotypically more likely to spoil a kid than try to be sneaky, it's safe to say your kid probably won't see these coming.
And here's a way that parents can get their sneak on as part of this whole tradition: Why not convince your parents (or in-laws) that the easiest way to play their jokes would be by taking the kids for the day (or evening)? That way, you get a little time to yourself out of the deal. April Fools!
1. 'Milk' & Cookies
No trip to grandma's house would be complete without a plate of cookies and a glass of milk, right? That's what makes this trick from Martha Stewart so brilliant: With the help of a packet of powdered gelatin, that milk can be transformed into a solid goo that won't pour at all. (Find the instructions here.)
2. Cheetos Swap
For lots of kids, going to Grandma's house means way more lenient rules on the junk food front. Dump out a snack bag of Cheetos and fill it up with baby carrots, then glue it back together and offer it as a fun snack. Oh, the horror! (Check out how one dad pulled this off here.) Grandkid not a fan of Cheetos? Try swapping out potato chips for the kale variety.
3. Minty Oreos
There have been lots of new Oreo flavors on the market in recent years, but none quite like this: Before serving, scrape out the creamy filling and replace with toothpaste for a shockingly minty surprise. (See a tutorial here.)
4. Rigged Remote Control
This trick from Pen + Paper Flowers couldn't be easier — or more guaranteed to get a rise out of screen-addicted tykes. Just put a piece of clear tape over the remote control sensor and watch as kids freak out!
5. An Amazing Maze
This one's perfect for kids who are into activities like word searches and crossword puzzles: The evil geniuses over at Disney Family designed a Donald Duck-themed maze that has no end, and the PDF can be downloaded for free here! They'll be stumped for hours (or at least a whole bunch of minutes).
6. 'Ice Cream' Sundaes
Time for an extra special dessert: Sundaes with mashed potatoes instead of ice cream and gravy instead of hot fudge. Check out the tutorial on Bake at 350, and maybe have some back-up ice cream handy so kids aren't too disappointed.
7. Balloon Pillow
Having a sleepover? Make bedtime a bit more interesting by stuffing kids' pillowcases with balloons and watch as their faces turn from sleepy to confused (and, hopefully, back to sleep again at some point). Check out a tutorial at The Maven.
8. Caramel 'Apples'
Caramel apples are a fun treat — except when the apples are onions, in which case they're the exact opposite. Honestly, this trick might be a tiny bit evil (but the looks on their faces will be priceless). See how to make them here.
9. Bugged Out Lampshade
This is particularly easy to do if you happen to have any toy plastic bugs lying around (the bigger and creepier looking, the better): Just tape one to the inside of a lampshade, turn it on, and wait until somebody starts screaming. No plastic bugs? See how to get the same effect with a paper cutout at Katie's Crochet Goodies & Crafts.
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.