I grew up with the extraordinary priveledge of knowing my maternal and paternal grandparents (as well as 2 great-grandmothers, a great-grandfather, and even have some early memories of great-great grandparents too). Like my parents before me, at different times during my life, we have lived within walking distance of at least one set of grandparents. As a young child we lived with my maternal grandparents for a year, Grandma and Grandpa Jones, who owned restaurants (as did Grandma Jones' parents) and because of this I have grown up around people who love food, love to cook, and love to teach others to cook.
Our children are lucky to have one set of grandparents 2 blocks away, grandparents who love to have them over for some fun in the kitchen. And on the day these photos were taken my mom, aka Grandma, bought some locally made pizza dough, some sauce and cheese, tied aprons on Ben and Emma, and let them make their own pizzas. There was a little gentle instruction but for the most part she just stood back and let them go for it. Yes, it was a bit messy, and yes, some ingredients were eaten and not used on the pizzas, but what was best about this day was how their laughter filled the kitchen.
Not only did making their own pizzas give them each special appreciation for the food that was on their plates (they both said it was the best pizza they had ever eaten) but it reminded me that by adding a few extra minutes to the dinner routine, and being a little more patient when having them join me in meal preparation, will go a long way in giving both Ben and Emma that same love of being in the kitchen that I learned from my family.