With more time on my hands, I’m spending much of it reading. One of the things I read recently was the value that humor plays in combating our anxieties, and no matter what we do right now, at some level we are all experiencing anxiety.
I began reflecting on ways I was encountering humor, how helpful it was for me in my daily life, and began working to identify ways to help our families build humor and happiness into their days. I found even the simplest things you come across can add a little laughter and brighten your day. Mine was running on Easter Sunday with a bunny ear headband. My girlfriend and I got lots of honks, and one person even stopped their car to take a picture of us.
I also captured a silly moment when I was looking for spices to put on the corn we were roasting and came across not 1 bottle but 8 bottles of brisket rub! I couldn’t figure out why my husband needed 8 bottles of brisket rub. In fact, I still don’t know why he thought to make sure we had 8 bottles, but if you need one, I’m sure we can spare it. I took a picture and shared it on Facebook; I’m pretty sure his friends and I found it more entertaining than he did.
I began realizing the value of taking delight in the little things. How something so typically uneventful and possibly annoying can be turned into something funny! Alongside finding humor in the little things throughout the day, try building in activities that will bring joy to each other. For younger kids, expand the animals and things when singing “Old McDonald’s Farm” to include wild animals and act them out! This activity is great for building vocabulary, and it can also be fun as everyone is moving around like a gorilla or lion.
For mid-April in Texas, we’re blessed to have great weather. So, take advantage of this and have a scavenger hunt outside! Build your list around things that can be found in nature whether they put something in their bags to bring home or they’re taking a picture of it. Another idea is to make meal-time special. Mom and the girls can get dressed up as if they are going to a nice restaurant—princess costumes acceptable—light the candles and get the good dishes and cloth napkins out, then let dad and the boys serve dinner. On the flip side, dress up and fix dad’s favorite meal and serve it as the maître d’ at a fine-dining restaurant would. What better way to spend an evening at home absent of all the technology we have to use for work and education now.
You can also take a simple activity or game like charades and have fun with it! Younger kids can act out animals or characters from nursery rhymes, and older children can write down idioms that can be acted out.
Whatever it is you do to find humor, take the time to enjoy and share your laughter – it can be contagious in the best of ways!