Barnacle Boy is extraordinarily competent in the kitchen, certainly for his age. Today he tried to make beef stew and yeast rolls for dinner while I was at a faculty meeting, and Beloved Babysitter was not here. As Math Man educationally put it, "he was beyond his zone of proximal development, without sufficient scaffolding."
The Boy understands that good stew begins with well browned meat, and this requires high heat. And flames. And oil. And...a small grease fire. Well, it doesn't need that last, but it happened. Twice.
I came home, with deli sandwich makings in hand, to a somewhat subdued Barnacle Boy. "I cried after each fire, Mom," he confessed. Reassured that he was still loved in spite of the incendiary experience, we undertook a post-mortem. The stew flambe, in fact, looked terrific, we put the dough in the 'fridge for a second rising and voila - dinner for tomorrow!
Prayer is a good thing. It may have kept my house from burning down.