On a recent Sunday morning while my son and husband were still sleeping, my 2-year-old daughter, Emily, and I ventured into some unknown territory – we decided to make waffles, just the two of us.

I pulled the Learning Tower, our kid-friendly cooking stool, up to the counter and let Emily climb up without her big brother. We then pulled out our book of family recipes and proceeded to look for where Daddy had written down his special waffle recipe.

Until then, Aaron had been the waffle maker. It’s been something special that he does with the kids – often on a day that he is home from work and when it’s my turn to “sleep-in.” Nothing beats that wonderful feeling of waking up after an extra hour or two of sleep to the smell of homemade waffles. On this particular day, Emily and I were looking to recreate that wonderful aroma.

As we started to measure the ingredients, I was aware of Emily watching my every move. In a blink of an eye, she was no longer my little baby. She was giddy with excitement over the opportunity to be the only child standing in the Learning Tower. I realized, that unlike her brother, she had always had to share Mommy and Daddy.

She watched as I cracked the eggs and divided the yolks and the whites. With each egg, she asked if she could do it. Since I didn’t want to dig shells out of our eggs, I let her know she could do the next step. I measured the first cup of whole wheat flour and she was ready. As her cute little hands grasped the heavy cup, she concentrated and successfully dumped the flour into the mixing bowl. I gave her a big smile and encouraged her efforts – and then I heard some rustling upstairs.

Our plan to cook as a two-some was foiled. Matthew came running down the stairs and immediately stepped into the tower. Before I knew it, our peaceful waffle-making process had become a competitive sport, and I was refereeing the squabbles as they jockeyed for a position in front of the mixing bowl. Both were now eager to “help.”

I looked at my husband and hoped that he could help us to the finish line. Somehow the steamy waffles were made and everyone was happy to fill up, knowing he or she had played a part in making them.

Dad’s waffles

Ingredients:

4 eggs (separate yolks from whites)

2 cups skim milk

2½ tablespoons oil

3 tablespoons applesauce

2 cups whole wheat flour

¼ cup ground flax meal (can be purchased at natural food stores or in the natural/organic section of grocery store)

2 teaspoons baking powder

Method:

Beat all ingredients, except the egg whites, until well mixed. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into other mixture. Pour batter onto waffle iron and cook according to the directions for your particular waffle maker.


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