As you know, Greg and I love to cook. We love it so much that we like to share our recipes and tricks, especially with our grandkids. While they won’t be visiting over the holidays, they do come out from Virginia a couple times a year and we make it a point to include fun in the kitchen as part of their visit.
It all starts with a multi-page questionnaire. I email the document to my daughter who prints it up and gives a copy to each one of them – she fills one out, too. Kids can be finicky, so I decided it’s important to know what they like and what they simply refuse to eat. And, of course, as a grandma it’s important to know what they think of as a treat … because I want to spoil them a bit.
Stacy emails the completed documents back to me and I create a shopping list to end all shopping lists. One of the most important things on the list is each kid’s cooking night menu. That’s right, one night during the visit, each of them plans and executes an entire meal with Greg and me as sous chefs (and instructors)
The kids learn age-appropriate cooking skills, how to make cooking fun, and how to plan a menu. We get the joy of one-on-one time with each of them and delight in letting them tackle something they’d never do at home. We even had a balsamic vinegar tasting to see if they could tell the difference between our local store brand and the imported ones we brought home from Italy.
This summer, we added in a special cooking lesson we’d also brought home with us from our trip. We’d learned the recipe and technique for making a single serving of pasta. That way every student got to make their own fettuccine and we got the perfect-portion recipe. As soon as we took the class, we knew we’d share it with the kids. We even brought home a rolling pin for each of them.
One of the great joys in life is grandkids, but most of us don’t see them enough. Video chat options make it easier to see their faces more, but there’s nothing like in-person visits, hugs, chats and laughs … and passing on wisdom and advice in a way they enjoy (hopefully it sticks). For us, lighting the fire of having fun in the kitchen is a part of that. I am grateful my daughter’s kids embrace the challenge and are filled with joy as they smile at their success.
There’s a whole world out there just waiting to be explored. Pass on what you know in a fun way.
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