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15 April Fools' Day Pranks

  • iStockphoto

    Got (Blue) Milk?
    Put a few drops of food coloring in a pitcher of milk (choose your kid's fave shade). Make sure she's watching when you nonchalantly fix her morning bowl of cereal!

  • iStockphoto

    Breakfast Bait and Switch
    Swap out sugar for salt and watch Dad put it in his morning cup of coffee. (Have a second, non-salted cup ready to go though).

    For more morning fun, take out cereal bags and put them in mismatching boxes. See how long it takes for everyone to find their favorite cereal.

  • Frank Heckers

    Bedtime Switcheroo
    Moms, wait until your kids are asleep, and then switch them in their beds. Or, quietly swap around their dresser drawers. Make sure you're there when they wake up in the morning to take in their surprised expressions.

  • Getty

    Really, Really Cold Cereal
    Put water in a cereal bowl, and freeze overnight. The next morning, offer to fix Dad or your kids a bowl of cereal. Pour the cereal on top of the ice, completely covering it, and watch them try to dig in.

  • iStockphoto

    Mouse Malfunction
    This one's good for the kid who checks his e-mail first thing every morning: Put part of a post-it note over the tracking ball on a computer mouse—it won't work! (Make sure to write "April Fools!" on the note).

  • Kenneth Chen

    Backwards Dinner
    Serve up a topsy-turvy dinner to throw your kids for a loop: bake meatloaf in a 12-cup muffin tin and frost with mashed potatoes for a "cupcakes" dinner—bonus if you add food coloring to the spuds. Then toast strips of pound cake for a dessert of "French fries." Don't forget red-tinted frosting for ketchup!

    Or try our yummy tricky tacos recipe!

  • Brian Hagiwara

    If the Shoe Fits
    Bunch up TP and stuff it in the toe of the victim's shoes. They'll wonder why their shoes suddenly don't fit.

  • Shutterstock

    Drink Up Mix-Up
    Add a squirt of lemon juice to a glass of water when your kid's not looking, then wait for his sour face. Or, color water to mimic fruit punch or juice, and switch out the real drink for the dyed H2O.

  • Getty

    Disciplinary Action
    For an older kid who can handle it: When your kid comes home from school, tell her a teacher or the principal called to discuss your kid's bad behavior. Let them know the gag's up when you see them start sweating.

  • iStockphoto

    Drip, Drip, Drip
    Use a pin to make a few small holes in a plastic disposable cup, and make sure to put it back on the top of the stack. Watch as Dad gets a drink and it ends up all over his shirt.

    P.S.: Make sure it's a drink that doesn't stain, or the joke's really on whoever has to do the laundry!

  • Picture This
    Take a screenshot of the desktop of Dad's computer, and leave the image open. Sit back and let him freak out for a few minutes, believing the computer is frozen.

  • iStockphoto

    Hands On
    Tell the kids you are banning all utensils—hide them the night before, too. Then watch as everyone has fun eating with their hands. Little kids especially will love a break from being told they must use their fork.

  • iStockphoto

    Chain Reaction
    Sneak into Daddy's underwear drawer and safety pin all of his undies together side by side. When he pulls out one pair, they all come out!

  • Backwards Day
    Your kids know: tags go in back—but not today! For April Fools', let them have a backwards day, with tops, pants and dresses all worn reverse-style.

  • DIY Daylight Saving Time
    Set all the clocks in the house an hour or two early—then ease the blow of an early wake-up by taking the kiddos out for breakfast.