Valerie Bertinelli Opens Up About Her Extremely Close Relationship With Her Son Wolfie

Zee Krstic

From Good Housekeeping

  • Valerie Bertinelli is doing more cooking than ever as she social distances at home in Los Angeles. Her 10th season of Valerie's Home Cooking debuts on Mother's Day.

  • Valerie tells Good Housekeeping that food and time in the kitchen played a huge role in raising her son, Wolfie, 29.

  • The two are staying close during this tough time, and Valerie says she's learning how to "not to dig too much" as their relationship evolves.

While this Mother's Day is unlike any other she's experienced, Valerie Bertinelli has a lot to celebrate this year. The former One Day at a Time and Hot in Cleveland actress just turned 60 and is spending more time exploring her passion for cooking than ever before; the 10th season of Valerie's Home Cooking debuts on Food Network today, at a time where everyone is spending quite a bit of time at home in their kitchens. Even though she's currently sheltering in place at home in Los Angeles during the pandemic, she's been able to connect with fans and fellow home cooks on Instagram while streaming cooking tips and tricks. More importantly, however, she's staying perfectly in touch with her son, Wolfgang "Wolfie" Van Halen.



"The older he gets, the more I know how to stay out of his business. I try not to dig too much and trust that he's got a good head on his shoulders — I'm lucky that he does," Valerie tells Good Housekeeping. "And so I've learned now to call him or just say hi… or just to say nothing, just to hear his voice. And of course, we FaceTime now more than ever, which I absolutely love."

Valerie shares that she fell in love with cooking at a very young age, and spending time together in the kitchen also played an integral role for her and Wolfie when she became a mother. "Children love exploring and they love doing things on their own, love being autonomous," says Valerie, who has also hosted Food Network's Kids Baking Championship and Family Restaurant Rivals. "With Wolfie, I was able to get him to start eating broccoli at a very young age because he would just sit in the kitchen with me and watch me do everything… He would get really interested and I would sneak him a bit of tofu or whatever it may be that we were cooking with that day."

Valerie jokes that she isn't certain if Wolfie remembers it all, as he ended up really taking after his father Eddie Van Halen with his passion for music as a recording artist. "He likes to kid me. He's said this more than once to me, he says, 'Mom, I don't know how you got your own cooking shows — you burn popcorn.' And it's true!" she admits with a chuckle.

The pair have remained very close as the years have passed, and as Valerie enters the next chapter of her own life, she's also realizing how far they've come. "I'm finding the fine line of staying out of his business and still staying connected… Because when he was little, it was just like, I would hate to put him down — my whole world was him. And I loved it that way. And that's the way it should have been," she says. "But now, he's got his own life. So I try to stay out, but I can't help but lightly ask, 'Sooo, when's the album coming out?!' Just a few questions so he won't get too annoyed."



While she's doing her best to keep her family safe by staying home, Valerie shares that the pandemic has left her feeling isolated at times — and believes that it's okay if you're feeling that, too. "Even as blessed, as grateful as I am... I want to see my son, I want to have my son," she admits.

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