Monday, February 16, 2009

Children Live By What They Learn...

"Always cook with love, and plant the seeds of love
around your kitchen table, liberally water with love daily..."

In the next few days I will be running some serial postings that I hope you will all enjoy. I am heading to Las Vegas, so just in case you don't hear from me, I may have some connectivity issues like I have had in the past.

The serial post involves some friends, some pierogies, and some good conversation. I was telling my friend Maria that it seems like many of the people who are viewing the blog are young women who are just learning how to cook now what they are out on their own. They seem to like the step by step photos and the simplicity of the recipes, as opposed to some food blogs that are pretty high tech. It seems that this has become my niche so to speak.

She asked my why I thought that was... I replied, "I really don't know." Her answer was, "Well, I do." She went on to make some interesting observations. She said the reason they are coming to my blog is that there is a fundamental failure in our generation of communication between grandmothers, mothers, and daughters in the kitchen. Years ago, you learned how to cook from your mother, her mother, your aunts, and other relatives. Today, with women in the work force, or fractured families, or sad to say, women just not caring, this generation has lost out. There is no one there to teach them by example.

Maria and I both grew up in homes where our mothers were fabulous cooks and we learned from them. We have both tried (as so many of my friends have done) to instill this in our children as well. My kids are always calling with cooking questions, and now, with the blog, their friends are asking questions as well. I am getting requests for cooking lessons from young people who have no one else to turn too, and while I am flattered and thrilled to help, I am saddened that I am one of their few resources.

Take some time with your children in the kitchen, so what if they make a mess, you can clean up a mess, but letting them learn and make mistakes, is the best learning skill there is. Don't give them a cooking demonstration, any cooking TV show can do that. Let them actually cook with you, and do whatever is age appropriate for them. Remember, boys need to learn to cook to, fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, fathers and daughters, mothers and sons, however you do it, it's okay as long as you do it with your kids. Make cooking an is FUNdamental!

Let them roll the dough - nothing will teach you the texture of a dough that kneading it and rolling it will...

Let them make the cookies - they will learn how to measure and follow directions...

Make a pizza with them - it will be so much more rewarding than ordering from the pizzeria...

Let them grate the cheese - they will learn how mass can change shape...

Let them make the sauce - they'll learn to stir so it won't burn...

These are the things that aroma therapy memories are made of!

So today, on my birthday, I'd like to say thanks
my paternal grandmother and
to my maternal grandmother for leading by examples

and my mother

My niece Melissa and my mother

for giving all those things to me, for letting me learn, and for glossing over my early mistakes, for having the patience of a saint, and most of all for always encouraging me in the kitchen. She was a hell of a teacher, both in and out of the classroom, and the most wonderful mother anyone could have been blessed with. I am only sorry I wasn't always smart enough to see it at the time, and thank her when I had the chance!

I am heading to Las Vegas to see my baby,

my daughter Lauren

We are on a mission to get her a KitchenAid because
low and behold, she is starting to take after me after all!

I have received the birthday present of all, I have some of the most incredible women in my life - so thanks goes to all of you for accompanying me on this wonderful journey of life, whether you are family, or old friends, new friends, internet friends, nursing school friends, cookbook friends...

My mother, my grandmothers, my mother-in-law, my aunts, my sisters-in-law Barb, Thirza, my incredible nieces, Melissa, Sharon, Nicole, Jennifer, Daniele, Karen, Abby, Jody, my dear cousins, MaryAnn, Michele, Toni, Joanne, Phyllis, Ann, "The Girls in Ozone Park" , Nanny Jeanne, Fran, Camille, Rae, Eileen, Maria, Johann, Diane L, Diane H, Sue, Pat, Patty, Angela, Linda, Debbie, Tina, Kathy S, Diane, Carmen, Kathy, Jasminka, Wendy, Anne, Suzanne, Nancy, Mary, Larraine, Joyce, Lorraine, Melissa, Leslie, Terry, Brenda, Laura, JoAnna, Mindy, Lindsey, Aviva, Sam, my other daughter Sachi, the list goes on and on and on...

I couldn't have done it without all of you...I am so blessed!

PS: I also have some pretty fabulous men in my life, my brother Joe,

my brother-in-laws Ivan and Kevin

and without my true partner on this journey,
my husband Marc,

and my three boys, Jeff, Steve, and, David,

life would be oh so dull!


  1. And, thanks to you for your friendship. Now, I know why you wanted that picture! lol

    Happy Birthday friend,