Illustration: Maya E Shakur for FREDERICK & SOPHIE
Location: Sophie's Kitchen
“Morning kiddos, morning pup,” George said, as he walked onto the roof terrace. It was a sunny day, and Frederick, Sophie, and Wally had been playing outside all morning. As best friends and neighbors, Frederick and Sophie shared the connecting roof terrace of their building. They thought it was the best place in the city because it made you feel as if you could touch the sky. Also, when they looked through their binoculars, they could see a squirrel or two waving at them from the park across.
“Good morning, George,” Sophie said to her Fairy-Manny. “Guess, what? Frederick and I figured out the best-best Father’s Day present!”
Frederick nodded his head. His dad died when he was a baby, and he only knew him from photos and videos. But George had told him that the magic that lives in parents never really dies. It simply continues to float around their children, like a shield made of fairy dust. Frederick liked to think that his dad’s magic was a superpower, and he always made a Father’s Day present for his dad too. He maybe wasn’t able to see him, but he knew Dad’s magic was there.
“Oh, do let me have a couple of guesses, George replied. “I just watched a fascinating Jadoo-Tube video about psychic abilities, and I can use some mind-reading practice.
“What’s Jadoo-Tube?” Frederick asked.
George showed him the screen of his i-Wand 350 and pressed a golden button with the letters JT on it. The screen lit up. “Look,” George said, pointing at a hologram video jumping out of the screen, “Jadoo-Tube is an endless amount of Fairy video classes about spells, elf-tiquette, potions, unicorn languages, recipes by French troll-chefs, rescue missions, worst-case scenario-solutions, making mountains out of molehills, you get the gist. I try to watch at least 3 videos a day because a good Fairy-Manny never stops learning.”
That made sense to Frederick.
“What’s Jadoo?” Sophie asked.
“Jadoo from the Hindu word Jadu, meaning magic,” George answered. “It was either that or Jigaldee-Pigaldee-Piggaldee-Deeeee-Iggalee-Pigaleee-Alakazee-Tube. Last one would have been a bit of a hassle to say quickly. Especially when you’re a bit nervicled.”
“Well, can Jadoo make you guess our best-best Father’s Day present?” Sophie said excitedly. She loved guessing games.
George closed his eyes, placed his left index finger in between his eyebrows, and started shouting guesses.
“A giant red robot bear?”
“A secret book?”
“Not even close.”
“Sword? No wait…Dagger?”
“Mom would never allow it.”
“An adventure of a lifetime across a magical realm filled with strange creatures and no Wi-Fi?”
“No, but terribly interesting.”
“A small fat bird with stumpy little wings carefully picked out in watercolor crayons?”
“No, but can I have one?”
“Talking dumplings? A nerdy serpent named Joel? Never-ending, ever-tasting-more-or-less-the-same-noodle-soup? A parallel universe?”
Sophie rolled her eyes and said, “We’re going to make a huge heart-shaped pizza and throw a Papa’s Pizza-Party!”
“That’s exactly what I was about to say next!” George said, clapping his hands. “There’s nothing that says, ‘I a-dough you,’ like freshly baked deliciousness.”
“Actually, we were just on our way to the kitchen to find a pizza dough recipe and bake the day away,” Sophie said.
Frederick, Sophie, Wally, and George walked into Sophie’s apartment. The kitchen looked neat and tidy.
Very neat and very tidy.
“Hmmmm, we wouldn’t want to make too much of a mess,” George said, wiping his thumb across the kitchen island’s shiny counter top. “It’s a good thing, I can help you speed up the pizza-process!”
Before Fredrick and Sophie could say anything in return, George touched several buttons on his i-Wand 350 and said, “Pizzazz-a-roo!”
There was a big bang, a whizzle, and a swoosh and pizzas started raining all over the kitchen. There were all sorts of pizzas: Pepperoni, Cheesy, BBQ Chicken, Veggie. There were pizzas with pineapple and pizzas with anchovies, with mozzarella and tomatoes. There were New York style pizzas, deep-dish Chicago pizzas, Neopolitan pizzas, and even French and Spanish ones.
Some pizzas fell on the floor, others fell on the kitchen counter. Some got stuck in a chandelier, others dropped on chairs. Wally jumped underneath the kitchen table. Sophie looked up and grabbed a slice from a sweet-strawberry pizza. “Hmmm, Nutella and Peanut Butter, my favorite!” she said.
One pizza fell on Frederick’s head. “Make it stop, George!” he shouted from underneath an extra fluffy pizza Bolognese.
“Oops,” said George. “I guess this was a mis-SPELL.” He started bashing the buttons on his i-Wand 350 again.
“A mis-SPELL? This looks more like an Elf-con 5!” Frederick shouted.
“No, no, for an Elf-Con 5, it needs to rain pizzas for at least 2 weeks,” George said happily.
“Oh, good we cleared that up,” Frederick mumbled, wiping tomato sauce from his forehead.
George stamped his feet three times, wiggled his nose, clapped his hands, and shouted, “Stoppity-Boo!”
It stopped raining pizzas. Wally carefully peeked from underneath the kitchen table.
George pointed his i-Wand 350 at the big fat pizza mess, and said, “AwayaZAMM!” All the pizzas disappeared. Even the one on Frederick’s head.
“Maybe, we should just use a recipe,” Sophie said thoughtfully. I think we have all the ingredients because Dad and I went to the grocery store yesterday. We got bread and rice and chocolate milk and tomatoes and cheese and mushrooms.
“Fresh ingredients, use of hands and brains… It sounds like a plan,” George said.
And so, Frederick, Sophie, and George spent all afternoon in the kitchen, kneading dough, stirring tomato sauce, and melting different cheeses to create the tastiest pizza for papa. George cut toppings, Frederick carefully placed them onto the dough, and Sophie added salt and pepper.
George placed the pizza in the oven. While they waited for the oven bell to ring, they wondered out loud about who actually invented pizza. And was it difficult or (dad joke alert) was it a pizza cake? Do you know?
When their pizza was ready, George carefully placed it on an extra-extra-large plate. “It’s perfect,” Frederick said.
“It’s more than perfect,” George said, “it’s POPparoni-licious! The Fairy-Manny smiled at Frederick and Sophie. “Maybe we can add some sweets? I know a great spell for cupcakes!”
Frederick and Sophie looked at each other and shouted, “No!”
George raised one eyebrow and put his i-Wand 350 back in his pocket. “Fine, then we’ll save cupcakes for another day!”
That might have been for the best.
The pizza chefs did agree on making one extra pizza for dessert, topped with scoops of vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry ice-cream, and sprinkled with caramel popcorn.
Who knew, maybe one day, they’d start their own restaurant and name it Papa’s Pizza Place!
They’d just have to make sure to give each guest an umbrella. Just in case the kitchen’s forecast would be cloudy with a chance of pepperoni and cheese.
Love Dad to pizzas this Father’s Day! (Because he can’t be topped!)
Make it Pizza Perfect
In need of some Papa’s Pizza Party ideas? We’ve scoured the interwebs for some extra inspiration!
Throw a Papa’s Pizza Party: https://www.michellepaigeblogs.com/2014/06/fathers-day-pizza-party.html
Quick Pizza Dough: https://www.raddishkids.com/blogs/bonus-bites/quick-pizza-dough
Make an “I love you with every pizza’ my heart!” card: https://thiscraftyfamily.com/02/15/heart-shaped-pizza-cards/
Easy-Peasy-Mushroom-Squeezy: You can of course also order Dad’s favorite pizza and decorate the box! https://camillestyles.com/design/8-easy-ways-make-fathers-day-special/
Dad’s pizza box and card printables: https://www.craftidly.com/free-printable-fathers-day-cards-and-pizza-box-template/
Decorate some pizza-pop-tarts for dessert: https://www.semisweetdesigns.com/blog/how-to-make-pizza-dad-cookies
Or bake a pizza cake!: https://studiodiy.com/diy-pizza-slice-cake/
Pizza Pondering Sources
Wonder of the Day #1314: Who Invented Pizza? https://wonderopolis.org/wonder/who-invented-pizza
Did you know that Americans eat about 350 slices of pizza per second? Or that the Hawaiian pizza was actually created in Canada? Or have you always wanted to know how pizza made its way from Italy to the USA? Read pizza-fun-facts from around the world, together with Dad: https://gestalten.com/products/we-love-pizza