Birth of a Wildcat (Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop)

Here’s the Motherhood-themed prompt I selected this week. Visit Mama Kat’s site, pick your own, and join in! “Tell us the story of your birth.”

Let me first say that I was born in Lexington, Kentucky, home of the University of Kentucky Wildcats (cue fight song) and that my mother is a HUGE UK fan. She has an entire wardrobe of clothes in Wildcat Blue, plans her life around the games during basketball season, and hangs UK ornaments on her Christmas tree. I was born on December 3rd . . . during a game. No, Mom wasn’t at the game, but her OB was. I don’t know how they did it in the days before cell phones and pagers, but somehow the hospital tracked him down and he left the game to come deliver me. By the time he got there I was pretty much ready to arrive since Mom had been delayed in the ER trying to convince everyone that yes, she really was pregnant and yes, in labor! She’s always been very thin, and smoking like a stack helped keep her that way throughout her pregnancy (EEEK!). Anyway, little five-pound me arrived (thanks, Mom), the Wildcat-fan doctor caught me, handed me off, and made it back to the game by halftime. Was I a thoughtful baby, or what?

Not Your Granny’s Clothesline ~ Penny Pinching Party

OK, I know “hang your clothes to dry” is amongst the first five tips on EVERY frugal website, and investing in a piece of equipment to save money in the long run is not on most people’s list of favorite things to do. That said, I am SO GLAD I bought this clothesline. I use it at every opportunity and I noticed a significant dip in my electric bill the first month I used it. I have a family of four and I average three loads of laundry every other day – more when it’s time to wash sheets or if it’s cold and we’re layering up. I work full-time, so I can’t use it every day I do laundry, there just isn’t enough sunlight left in the day when I get home. I use it when I can and don’t beat myself up over it – so there! Now, the first thing you will notice about this clothesline is that it is shaped like an inverted umbrella and is stuck in the umbrella hole in my patio table. WHAT?! Yes, this nifty invention has enough clothesline space for THREE loads of laundry and only takes up the space above the patio table. And when I’m done I just pull it out (it’s not that heavy), collapse it like an umbrella, and replace it with the umbrella that normally lives there. No unsightly clothesline the neighbors might be offended by. ┬áIt does come with a plastic piece that lets you set it in concrete in the ground with the same “remove and collapse” option – way cool. I like the “over the table” option because I can set my laundry basket on the table and hang everything from that one spot by rotating the clothesline. My Granny would have LOVED this! Got a good tip? Stop by the Penny Pinching Party at The Thrifty Home and share!


Broccoli Tortellini Salad ~ Lunchbag Week 10

One of Aaron’s favorites this week . . . he’s celebrating a big birthday in just a few days and I can’t help pampering him a bit. This time next year I won’t be making his lunches – he’ll be eating them in a dining commons or a dorm room. (Short feeling sorry for myself break here) OK, get a big package of frozen, dehydrated, or refrigerated tortellini stuffed with cheese, chicken, or some combination of the two (I think they all turn out just as well, so I buy whichever’s on sale). Prepare according to package directions, adding two heads of chopped fresh broccoli during the last couple of minutes of cooking time. Drain and return to pot. Toss with your favorite Italian dressing (I used Caesar), coarse ground pepper, kosher salt, and a few leaves of chopped fresh basil. I bought several pots of herbs on clearance a couple of weeks ago just as the garden shops were closing out the perennials and am hoping to keep them alive in a window box in my kitchen over the winter. This is good hot or cold, as a main dish salad or a side dish with a sandwich or soup. With this weather, I think soup’s going to be on the lunch menu for next week. I’d better go hunt up the thermoses.

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Anything worth doing can be done in jammies!