10 Ways to Laugh as a Family

Yesterday, the Italian Mamas reminded me of the importance of humor in a family.    Later, I compile a list for myself of ways I can immediately lighten the mood in my home.  You know me:  I think too much, I take everything too seriously, and I like to think about the deep things of the heart.  I could use some lightening up.

Thankfully, I married a hilarious man.  He’s the one who sings us ridiculous tunes to get us all out of bed.  He’s the one who will create a diversion to help us cope with anything from fevers to bad moods.  One time, he took a duck puppet, popped it out of the sun roof, and performed a show for all the drivers (and their children) who were stuck in a major traffic jam. 

So I asked him, my children, and the Italian Mamas all the ways to immediately bring laughter to a home.  Here are our ideas, and I’d love to hear some of yours.  

1.  Watching YouTube videos involving cats, babies, or (according to the Italian Mamas), misheard song lyrics, or the family friendly comedian, Brian Regan
2.  Playing any improvisational game like charades
3.  Showing your children what it was like to dance in the 80’s
4.  Random tickle fights.  Even the adults.  And then try to have a conversation nose-to-nose.  You won’t be able to keep a straight face!
5.  Making up a Broadway song and routine to announce what kind of mood you are in when you wake up in the morning
6.  Assigning nick-names for each family member
7.  Making fun of yourself
8.  Using a puppet to talk about anything–no matter what age you are.  
9.  Owning a pet, preferably a one-eyed cat.
10.  Speaking in an accent of your choice for an entire meal.

Living with flair means laughter.

Journal:  How do you bring humor to your home?


The Interrupting Chicken

I’m told I need to pick my children up in the sanctuary after their first day of Vacation Bible School.  It’s a ranch theme, and I’m already smiling at the teenage helpers dressed in overalls, bandanas, and cowboy boots.  I’m a little early, so I sneak in to see the skit that one group performs on the stage.

I can hardly hear them speaking because of the chickens. 

Yes, chickens.

On the corner of the stage–as decoration in a nice cage–three chickens squawk as loud as they can.  Somebody thought that chickens would be a nice touch, I’m sure.  Somebody had to pull some serious strings to get live chickens in the sanctuary.

The chickens sit on that stage and squawk so loudly at the exact moment anybody tries to speak.

I start laughing.  The other parents coming in behind me start laughing.  Then, all the children are laughing.  They call the chickens the “interrupting chickens,” and it’s obvious who steals the spotlight.  

It’s never a good idea to use creatures as decoration, and apparently, you can cage their bodies but not their voices.  Those chickens took down a room full of humans.  I imagine some disgruntled volunteer went and released them.

Meanwhile, I’m asking my children about God, what they learned about the Bible, and what sort of ways they might have developed good character this morning.  They stare at me, wide-eyed, and announce that they actually witnessed interrupting chickens.

Chicken in a cage flair.   If only I could be so confident in the power of my own voice.