Daddy/Daughter Day Revisited- The Cooking With Kids Edition

You might recall the post in which I admitted to having made a small mistake regarding dates for Daddy/Daughter day. Well, the dark haired beauty told me in no uncertain terms that dads who are superheroes aren’t allowed to make that mistake and then when punished me by doing my hair.

Ok, it wasn’t really punishment for either one of us but she pretended it was and I went along with it. As I told her brother when you deal with angry people nod and smile, and do it twice as much with girls. Hee hee, yes I know that women don’t really appreciate that but the lessons I learned growing up with a million sisters never quite left me and I still tease them, but I digress.

Hey, stop trying to figure out what those last few lines mean and catch up.

A few weeks ago daddy/daughter happened for real and the two of us had a great time cooking with Chef LaLa. We learned about how to make all sorts of nutritious dishes using peanut butter and participated in a cooking contest.

The dark haired beauty is quite competitive (wonder where she gets that from) and wanted very much to win. I did as well, but I knew that in order for us to beat the other contestants I would have to make her the assistant and serve as the primary chef.

I didn’t want do that. It is not because I can’t cook because I can and I do. Rather it was because I knew she would have more fun taking the lead and I would have more fun watching her.

So dad served as the chief assistant. She told me what items to get, where to put them and what to do with them. I think I did I pretty good job and of course am thrilled with what she came up with. That picture above shows one plate filled with her creations, but it wasn’t the only one.

I often kid around about her being 7.5 going on 30, but some of that is my making the usual parental comment about her growing up quickly. She’ll be 8 in July and I remember her as this baby with a lot of hair and dark eyes like it was yesterday.

Now she is no longer a baby. She is a little girl with a ton of dark hair and curls that she pushes away from those same dark eyes. She looks up at me and asks me a million questions. This little girl of mine plays with the boy who lives next door and tells me that he is a friend who is a boy and not a boy friend.

I ask her why she says that and she says that sometimes she sees me giving a look. I tell her that she is seeing things and she says that she isn’t. I am giving him the look I give when I am angry. I laugh and tell her that she is mistaken but she is probably right. There are moments when I see flashes of preteen and teenage girl. Moments where she says or does something that I know is a precursor of days to come.

One day she’ll find boys more interesting than me and then she’ll find some boy much more interesting. Some of them won’t treat her as well as they should and some will treat her well but still break her heart. And then I’ll have to kill them because I’ll still see the little girl who took me to Sur La Table to cook with Chef LaLa.

And for those of you who don’t understand internet sarcasm, I am not really going to kill those boys. Not literally. But I will work on that steely eyed glare and make sure that in the years to come I still have a handshake that can crush steel.

For now those days are still a long way off and the two of us can continue to have these little moments in time where we can cook together or play board games. But I am still not giving in on that American Girl doll. I don’t care how many times she hugs me and tells me how handsome I am.

I may be a sucker, but I am not that big a sucker. It is because I love her that I won’t spend a bazillion dollars on a doll.

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  1. LaRae Quy February 26, 2012 at 9:20 am

    Hi Jack

    I adore your relationship with your daughter! It’s so touching the way you cherish it . . . my own dad was not able to articulate as gracefully as you his feelings . . . or perhaps allow himself to feel this tenderly. He was from an older generation where guys were tough and didn’t show emotion. Thank God that has changed. Thanks for leading the way!

    • Jack February 26, 2012 at 11:49 am

      Hi LaRae,

      Thank you. I think my daughter might tell you that in some ways I am not so different from your father.

      She complains that I don’t cry in front of her and doesn’t believe that I don’t cry in front of anyone.

      But I try very hard to make sure that I tell my kids that I love them with my words and through my actions.

  2. Jens P. Berget February 25, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Hi Jack,

    I should get your stare and handshake. My daughter is turning 9, and I’m kind stop to think about how I was like when I was that age 🙂

  3. Harleena Singh February 25, 2012 at 7:34 am

    Nice post Jack!

    Daughters are always dear to Dads, and this is something I have experienced being my dads little girls always 🙂

    I loved the way you cooked things up, guess anything you share and do together is embedded in both, the child and the parent for years to come. I still remember things I had done with my dad 🙂

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Jack February 25, 2012 at 8:25 pm

      Hello Harleena,

      I think you are right about the power of doing something together. I cherish the time I get with my kids and am always grateful for time alone with them as well as together.

      It is nice for them to know that for a moment my focus is solely upon them and not a million other things.

  4. Hajra February 24, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Awww…. this is the best of your posts! Because it just is! 🙂 I ain’t a person to judge, but this is!

    Anything in the world more wonderful than daddies and daughters? I don’t think so… 🙂 And yes, work on the stare; because dads throw it around all the time. Even when the burger guys say hello to her while giving out her order. That is his job, but daddies will have the cold glare…

    • Jack February 24, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Hi Hajra,

      Thank you. Believe me the stare never goes away. It is part of the blessing and curse of being the father of a daughter.

      I know how men think. 😉

  5. Irish American Mom February 24, 2012 at 10:49 am

    I hear you about that American Girl doll. I am under severe pressure from my little girl to purchase one, but I will not succumb. I just don\’t understand what makes them so different and worth a gazillion dollars. Loved this post. Little girls grow up so fast!

    • Jack February 24, 2012 at 2:42 pm

      I don’t know where they came up with this thing but the marketing efforts are apparently working.

      Those suckers are being sold to someone and if I ever meet them I might have to punch them in the nose. 😉

      These girls of ours grow up too fast. I am not ready. 🙂

  6. Gina February 24, 2012 at 6:11 am

    Sweet post! She will grow up fast but she’ll always love her daddy.

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