When you’re a kid, being an adult seems like the luckiest thing ever. You can eat as much ice cream as you want, stay up until forever and leave the house without a coat — never minding that these perks come with costs, financial or otherwise.About a year ago, my daughter Jasmine announced that when she is a grown-up she plans to mix up cookie dough and, instead of baking it, eat it raw while curled up with a book in bed. It sounded ridiculous, because you can’t eat a whole batch of cookie dough (I’ve tried).
It also sounded like a good idea. Kids live with plenty of rules and get told “no” more than they’d like — it’s no wonder they can’t wait to grow up. So why not give them a day and a $5 budget to live the dream?
And if you’re going to do it, April Fools’ Day is ideal for two reasons. The first is practical, as in, you can expect a barrage of practical jokes otherwise.
Everyone knows real grown-ups do not play jokes on people. The second reason is historical. Though the history on the jokester holiday is hazy, we do know that springtime festivals were common in ancient times and that many celebrations included some type of role reversal where the powerful traded places with their subordinates for a time.
And that’s how we turned April Fools’ Day into the best day ever. My kids got to do whatever they wanted provided it was safe, legal and not beyond their maturity to handle.
It took some planning because even grownups can’t be in three different places at once, but it was a day of (mostly) wild abandon. The best part was that it wasn’t just fun for the kids. As the usual grown-up, it was nice to have a day off of enforcing responsible behavior.
And watching their thrill at getting to do whatever they wanted? It was 10 times better than Christmas.
Plus, if your kids are breaking the rules, well you get to do it right along with them. And it kind of makes you feel like a kid again.
Cool things grown-ups do (according to kids)
- Eat sugar cereal – anytime.
- Make a batch of cookie dough and eat it all.
- Go to Starbucks with friends.
- Skip the chores – and pay someone to do them for you.
- Drink pop at lunch.
- Eat whatever you want, whenever you want it.
- And eat it on the sofa.
- Watch movies you rented yourself.
- Make art with grown-up art supplies.
- Play video games ALL DAY LONG.
- Go fishing (and catch something).
- Stay up until midnight.