About Apron Strings

We are Donna and Anne (the D & A), a reunited birth mother & daughter food blogging team – formerly known as Fab Frugal Food. On our new Apron Strings blog, we share recipes, memories, and stories of our reconnecting through our shared love of food and cooking.

We reunited in 1999 and started cooking together, making up for lost time. We eventually found we liked working together so much that we co-authored a cookbook, “101 Things To Do With Tofu”, published by Gibbs Smith. Then, in 2009, anxious to work together again, we created the blog Fab Frugal Food.

We’ve loved this blogging experience, and have learned so much along the way, but have decided to take the leap to grow beyond our original frugal cooking concept, and start to share more of ourselves.

Join us as we start to tell our stories, one recipe at a time. And bring a fork.


Donna Kelly is a dedicated food enthusiast and has spent 35 years developing her cooking skills, combining practical everyday cooking experience with some professional training at a Culinary Institute of America Boot Camp, the Santa Fe School of Cooking, and at other cooking schools. She considers every recipe a challenge- and she remakes it with gourmet flair while still being affordable and accessible to the average home cook.

Donna is the author of several published cookbooks: 101 Things to do with a Tortilla; 101 Things to do with Chicken; 101 Things to do with a Toaster Oven; French Toast: Sweet and Savory Dishes for Every Meal; and Quesadillas, all published by Gibbs Smith Publisher.

Donna has been a repeat guest on Martha Stewart’s Sirius Satellite Radio Show Everyday Food. She is a regular guest on morning television shows Good Things Utah and Studio 5 in Salt Lake City. Donna won a national recipe contest in Cooking Light Magazine’s Ultimate Reader Recipe Contest. Her recipe was “Lemon Raspberry Dessert Nachos,” which was published in Cooking Light Magazine in the January/February 2009 issue. Donna’s “Sesame Shrimp Scampi” recipe was featured in the August 2009 issue of Cooking Light magazine.

Donna’s day job is as a prosecutor, primarily handling Special Victim’s cases since 1990. She and her very patient husband Jim began their eternal honeymoon in 1977 and are the parents of four fabulous children.



Anne Tegtmeier has spent most of her life as a modern dancer. After growing up in Colorado, she graduated magna cum laude from the Boston Conservatory, where she received her BFA in dance. Since 2001 she has also worked as a licensed massage therapist. Anne has spent many years as a vegetarian and is a passionate amateur cook. Her vegetarian chili recipe from “101 Things To Do With Tofu” was a finalist on the first season of Food Network’s Ultimate Recipe Showdown (she came in second in her category). She gave birth to her first child, Lily, in April 2008. Inspired by this, she became a doula  and is now attending Birthingway College of Midwifery’s lactation consultant program. She also writes the advocacy blog Dou-la-la.

You can contact Donna or Anne at ourapronstrings[at]gmail[dot]com.