Getty Images North America 1 / 23
Getty Images North America 1 / 23

Is it a Thanksgiving miracle or simply a tasty tale whipped up by a tabloid? The London Mirror claims Michael Douglas has been making frequent morning treks to the New York apartment he once shared with estranged wife Catherine Zeta-Jones to cook pancakes for their two kids, Dylan, 13, and Carys, 10.

"When he's in New York, he makes the kids breakfast and comes back in the evening to watch TV with them before bedtime," maintains a spy. "Then he gets his marching orders from his wife and returns to sleep at his own place in Manhattan. … It's very sweet when he turns up at the apartment to cook for them because he so desperately wants to be back as part of the family's life."

Oversells the pal, "Catherine thinks it's really touching he's being so hands-on with the kids -- and he's praying it's the key back into her heart."

The pair, who took the kids trick-or-treating together on Halloween, purportedly spent Turkey Day together.

"Michael would give his right arm for a reconciliation," alleges the confidant, "but Catherine's warned she is not ready to commit, and she's still not ruled out divorce."

The reason, contends the insider, is that she's supposedly still "furious" over comments he made that seemed to imply his 2010 battle with what turned out to be tongue cancer was caused by oral sex.

"Catherine is making him suffer," explains the source. "She nursed him through those dark days when cancer almost took his life, and she feels the comment about oral sex was like a kick in the teeth."

If that's true, perhaps instead of pancakes, they could indulge in a nice fresh batch of counseling sessions, especially since Douglas, 69, helped Zeta-Jones, 44, through her own health crisis: a bipolar diagnosis.

Either way, since the couple announced their separation in August after 13 years of marriage, the actor has been nothing but positive about their chances of working things out.

"Sometimes people take a little bit of a break, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's the end," he told Jay Leno in October. "So, I'm very hopeful."

Still, this is the Mirror, which illustrated the story with a photo of a towering, syrupy stack of flapjacks and the caption: "Delicious: How the pancakes may look," so swallow what they're selling with a big grain of salt.

"Michael would give Catherine anything, but what she really wants is love and support," adds a source. "It's the little things, like cooking pancakes for the kids, she'll really love him for. Christmas will be a crucial time if they're to get back together for good -- and Michael will be there on bended knee."

Which might make it awfully tough to flip the pancakes.


The biggest celebrity hookups and breakups of 2013

Kim K. defends parenting skills

Who's awaiting a stork visit?