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11 Hilarious Ways to Prank Your Kids on April Fools’ Day

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Those darn kids. They’ve kept you up all night. Destroyed your house. And turned you from a cool chick into a sweatpants-wearing chauffeur/sherpa/referee/maid/short order cook/nag. 

Clearly, your kids have it coming. And this April Fools’ Day, here’s how you can get ’em good:

1. Fake a snow day. Decorate their windows with canned spray snow so they think they’ve woken up to a blizzard and school is canceled. Then make them go to school faster than they can complain, “Aw, Mom, that’s cold!” 

2. Serve an impossible-to-eat breakfast. Freeze their breakfast cereal in milk overnight and watch them try to excavate it with a spoon. Mmm, crunchy! Bonus points: Fill a juice glass with orange Jello for an impossible-to-drink beverage. 

3. Mess with their clothes. Lay out too-small clothing, undies, and shoes for your kid to wear to school, then sit back and laugh as the struggle to get dressed ensues. “Wow, you must have had a huge growth spurt,” you can exclaim…before returning the diminutive duds to your younger child’s room or the donation bin. 

4. Pack a fake lunchFill their lunch boxes with pretend food from the play kitchen instead of the real thing. If you’re feeling kind (and want to see the just-pranked look on your kid’s face), sneak a fresh lunch into school right after the big reveal.

5. Give them a sticky surpriseFill the liquid soap dispensers with maple syrup.

6. Short-sheet their beds. This classic camp trick never goes out of style!

7. Do a cookie fake out.  Whip up a batch of homemade chocolate chip “cookie” dough using mashed potatoes studded with black beans. This is one time you can say yes to your kids tasting the batter and licking the bowl — no raw eggs here! But no actual chocolate or sugar, either. 

8. Give them a mini makeover (while they’re sleeping). The night before April Fools’ Day, sneak into you kids’ rooms and use washable markers to draw designs on their faces, like this dastardly mustache. Won’t they be surprised when they see themselves in the mirror?!

9. Put a helium balloon in the toilet. When the kids go to use the bathroom and raise the toilet lid, they will totally freak out when a balloon comes flying out of the toilet! Write April Fools Day on the balloon for bonus points.

10. Make a surprise grilled cheese sandwich. Give your kids a sweet surprise on April Fools Day with a grilled cheese sandwich made from two slices of toasted poundcake with a dollop of gooey orange frosting in the middle. Dessert for lunch? Sounds good!

11. Make them think they’re being watched. Add googly-eyes to everything in the fridge, from the milk and eggs to all the condiments. Won’t the kids be surprised when they open the door for some juice and find it staring right back at them!? 

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Photo: Getty