I saw this on Pinterest this week and it made me laugh out loud. Truer words have never been spoken. How can you take this crazy trip called parenting, or LIFE for that matter, without humor? Paul and I love to laugh together. . .one of the reasons I fell in love with Paul is that he can always make me laugh. Maybe one of the reasons he fell in love with me is that I hysterically laughed at his jokes all the time. (I mean, It's not very hard to make me laugh, but he didn't know that when we met. ;) Early in our relationship, Paul and I bonded over funny movies. Little did we know that one day we would give birth to a tiny David Spade and Chris Farley, and later on a small Adam Sandler. I mean, we should have seen the warning signs. I don't know how we thought two people like us would turn out perfect, angelic, and SERIOUS children?
Because of this, mealtime is a little insan-o at our house. I told Paul that we need to get some acoustic tile for our dining room. Or at the very least, some very heavy curtains. Anything to absorb the sound of three little boys who just love to be together and will do ANNNYYYTHIINNNGGG to get each other's attention or make someone laugh. All attempts at discipline fail as they get exponentially sillier and the decibel level goes up higher and higher. They take on a life of their own. They get so excited at breakfast, sometimes I just pretend like I need to clean the kitchen and eat my cereal in there alone where the Sound of Silliness is slightly more muffled. Since hiding in the kitchen with my food doesn't seem like the most maternally appropriate option, I decided to go with the philosophy of, "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em." If they want to be comedians, I am just going to start teaching them jokes.
So, I busted out my laptop at breakfast this week and pulled some of my favorites from Ellen's Classic Joke Monday.
What did the tie say to the hat? I'll hang around, You go on ahead.
What kind of underwear do clouds wear? Thunderpants!
What do you call an alligator wearing a vest? An Investigator!
Why did the cookie go to the doctor? Because he was feeling crumb-y!
What does a nosy pepper do? He gets jalapeno business.
Aw, yeah. The kids ate this up. They love to make people laugh. They had them memorized before I knew it and when Daddy came home, they filled the dinner table with their jokes. Win.
However, like all of parenting's ups and downs, you find something that works, but it doesn't work forever. I am sure that the kids will outgrow jokes at the table and start trying to outsilly each other in different and newly challenging ways. I mean, they haven't even scratched the surface of bodily function humor yet. But, it keeps my sanity for this week and for that I am deeply grateful! Plus, it brings more laughter into our lives.
Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.- Mark Twain
Nothing can stand. Not annoyance, not exhaustion, or anger, or tension or fear. Laughter vanquishes them all. As silly as Paul and I can be, there have been many times as parents when we have just taken ourselves way to seriously. We were the accountants who lost our spreadsheets. We have approached our children many times with furrowed brows and heavy hearts, overwhelmed with the burden of molding our young sons into men. We have often forgotten that God has given us the gift of laughter to erase all of our stress and perceived suffering, to lighten our burden and drive the dark clouds away. Once again, I am pretty sure this is why God gave us Daniel.
Lord, help us to remember why you gave us laughter. Help us to find the funny when things seem to go wrong. Help us to look at our children with hearts open to the joy that they bring. Remind us that it was laughter that brought our hearts together and got us into this beautiful mess in the first place!
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
***As a side note, a few days in to our comedic training they have started making up their own jokes. To be honest, some of them don't make any sense at all. But we're working on their comedic skills and timing.
Here's the ones that made me laugh out loud.
Daniel's: What did one cookie say to the other cookie? (I don't know, what.) Hey, do you smell cookies?
Phil's: What did one blueberry say to the other blueberry? (I don't know, what) How are you feeling? Blue.
Josh's: Knock Knock (Who's There?) Swiper. (Swiper Who?) AWWWW MAAANNNN!!!
(We watch enough Dora the Explorer for that to be hilarious to his brothers)
And I haven't told my kids my favorite joke yet, the one I learned from incredibly gracious and wise, (but never too serious) mentor teacher, Gary. . .
What do you get when you cross an elephant and a rhinoceros?
Ten years later, that one still gets me every time.
Leave a comment and add to my joke arsenal, OK?