March 4, 2006

RunnerDuck Home

WELCOME BACK:  First off I want to say hi and welcome to all the new subscribers we've added this month. Thanks to a lot of referrals from our existing readers we've grown considerably. Word of mouth is the best advertising we get and we want to let you know that we really appreciate it!

Last month we were waving the big Seattle Seahawks flag for them to win the Super Bowl. Unfortunately they lost but we are still very proud of them making it to the bowl for the first time in 30 years. Next time we'll bring OUR officials and see how it all turns out. OK, that's not sour grapes but a joke :-) While there were some questionable calls the game was still pretty darn good and we are big enough to say congratulations to the Steelers

The groundhog saw his shadow and forced six more weeks of "mild winter" on use. Well it was not what we would call mild here in Western Washington. We had a cold snap during February that dropped the temperatures down into the teens and in some cases the single digits. While many of you will poo poo that because of where you live, that's pretty darn cold for us. Our waterwheel froze up nicely making for a great picture.

The good news is March came in like a lion so should go out like a lamb. In the first couple of days we had winds in excess of 50 miles per hours in some parts of the area. It's time to settle down and head full force toward spring.

Woodn' Kitchen Utensils

Our friends Bob and Jean in Belgrade, Montana make some of the nicest hard maple kitchen utensils you'll ever use. Each piece is totally hand make in Bob's little work shop. While it's hard to believe that someone here is the States still makes wood products by hand, it's true. Check out all the different spoons and kitchen tools that Bob makes at

Send This Newsletter To a Friend

Thank you,
Ken and Marilyn

Check out our time saving QuickLinks.
Quick Links


Check Out Archived Newsletters Here
Please visit our affiliate
sites listed below. Your
purchases help us keep
this newsletter going.
Thank you!

Click here for thousands of old-time goods!
Search Now:
In Association with


Preorder now for the March 7th release!

Check out these woodworking specials
Launch your
web site from
Fastwire Network.
Ask for the special
Duck Discount at

What's New?   We haven't talked much lately about our cat, Miss Kitty Kitty. Four you new comers a common gray cat adopted us about a year ago and we've been trying to figure her out ever since. We've always had dogs so a cat is a very strange critter to us. We talk to friends that have cats and she doesn't sound all that different than the others. There's just some getting use to her if that's possible.

We've been keeping score of her hunting efforts since she adopted us and it's really quite impressive. At first she would drop dead mice and shrews on the porch. Next she started bringing them in through her cat door and leaving them on the floor. Her next trick was to bring them in alive and drop them in front of us and then sit back and watch us scurry around. We figured that she was trying to teach us to hunt. With the weather starting to warm up a little the mice are getting more active and so is she. Now she brings them in and drops them in a back room away from us. We think that she's doing this so that she has something to play with when we are not around. We can tell by the way she's acting that she's brought something in but it's up to use to try and find it.
We can't wait to see what her next trick will be. In the mean time she's killed, captured and brought in 45 mice, 1 rat, 14 shrews, 14 birds, 10 moths and 6 flies. I know that's a little disgusting but that's the way outdoor cats are. And she looks like such a sweet kitty.


Have you Bloged lately? What's a blog you say? A blog is a web page where people post all sorts of information. There is a blog for every subject on the planet and then some. People generally post to their blogs on a regular basis keeping you up to date on their latest information. Many news organizations and reporters have started blogs that generally have a different view of things than you find in the mainstream news. There are right wing blogs, medical blogs, religious blogs, pet blogs, and a bazillion others. A good place to go to find blogs is

The beauty of a blog is anyone can create a blog and it's a great way to communicate with your friends and family. Create a family blog and let everyone in your family post to it. Who knows it might just get people talking again.

Blogs are so simple that my brother Ron created one and so did we. You can check out Ron's blog at and ours is

If you want to start your own blog an easy way to do it is with It's free, they walk you through it and in just a few minutes you'll have your own blog, how cool is that?


We have two web pages for you to check out this month. First of all Ken's brother Ron has been traveling again. He took his Volkswagen Vanagon down to Tombstone, Arizona for a Vanagon rally. As usual there is a lot more to his trip then just going down there, camping out and returning home. He took some of his model airplanes and met up with other radio control flyers, he stopped by a rocket meet where they had a 1/5th scale Saturn rocket and traveled a road that he probably shouldn't have been on. Check it out at It's a fun read and lots of great photos.

The second web page is ours! Ken's created a web page dedicated to the customization of his PT Cruiser. He will keep adding to the web page as he adds to the car. The next addition will be dual exhaust pipes which should arrive in a week or so. Keep checking it as it progresses along.



We just remodeled our bedroom and it needed something special to dress it up. These Topiaries were just the ticket. They are pretty simple to make and a lot of fun. We sort of show you the basics here but you can let your imagination go wild.

Here's what you'll need:

  • 4" Terra Cotta Pot
  • Acrylic Paints
  • Paint Sponge
  • Florist Foam
  • Hot Glue Gun and Hot Glue
  • Rocks
  • 1/4" diameter X 16" Branch
  • Spanish Moss
  • 3" Diameter Foam Ball
  • Silk Ivy
  • White Glue
Paint the Terra cotta pots to make them look old a moldy. Do this with acrylic paint and a paint sponge.
Fill the pots half full of small rocks to help stabilize them.
Hot glue in a piece of florist foam into the pot from the top of the rocks to about 1/2" from the top of the pot.
Stick the branch in the middle of the foam and glue in place using hot glue.
Hot glue the foam ball on top of the branch.
Hot glue Spanish moss on top of the pot and all over the ball.
Cut chunks of silk ivy and using white glue stick the ends into the ball until it's covered.
You can add berries, flowers or anything else you like to dress it up.

See I told you it was simple and don't they look great?

Remember we have all of our past projects archived on our web site at Just click on the Projects or Kids Only Eggs.

Kids Stuff


Can't wait for the long and warm days of spring to get here? Visit our Sports and Outdoor Play Store to get a jump on the season.

The Tempos
News and CD of the Week

The band walked into a real surprise this past week at rehearsal. They rehearse in the band room at Northshore Junior High School. During winter break a steam pipe broke in the band room and filled several wooden basses and other instruments with water. It was a real mess but the leak and walls were fixed by the time we got there. Of course the Tempos are bunch of fun loving guys and immediately joked that they could have dried it out quicker if they had burned a few cello's and clarinets :-)

Check out The Tempos music from our "Swing Set" CD on line! That's right, you can listen to The Tempos anytime just by going to their web site. The music files are MP3's and some are as large as 9 MEG but we think they are well worth the download. If you like traditional old swing music then you will probably enjoy our CD. Just go to and click on any song title.

The Tempos big swing band is available for hire. If you have a special event that could use the wonderful music of a classic sixteen piece big band be sure to contact We perform all over the Seattle area for all sorts of events.

Album Pick of the Week

"Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"

Oh boy here it comes! I know this is not a music album but it sure is a fun movie. We went to the opening of it and have been waiting a long time for it to come out on DVD. You can preorder it now and you'll have it on the release date of March 7th. If you are a Harry Potter fan then you've going to love owning The Goblet of Fire!


Be sure and visit the RunnerDuck Music Store for great savings on just about anything.


We just saw a neat thing on the evening news that we thought was worth sharing. A 7th grade girl has started a campaign to get the correct air pressure into every tire in America. Apparently if all tires were inflated properly we'd save about four million gallons of gasoline a day. Yes we said "a day"! I think we'll check the tire pressure in our cars this weekend and make sure that they are where they should be.

Here's their list of environmental impacts:

  1. Americans could save 4 million gallons of gas each day.
  2. Americans could save hundreds of dollars each year on gas and extend the life of their tires by 25%.
  3. Americans could all breathe cleaner air because we'd be burning less gas.
  4. Americans would be able to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge forever!
It also reduces green house gas accumulations.

If you're interested in her campaign you can check out her web site at It's a pretty simple thing to do and might just make a difference.

If you have a conservation tip please send it to kennyb at and we'll post it in our newsletter.

RSS News Feeder

One of the best ways to get our newsletter is to have it delivered to your door step. Actually it would be delivered to your desktop!

Highlight the XML link (right click and drag over it), select Copy and paste it into your newsreader.

Or just paste into your newsreader.

A good free news reader is Awasu and you can download it at

Don't know what this is all about? Check out our little tutorial HERE!


Here's another good one from The Tempos trumpet player Gordy

An 80 year old woman was arrested for shop lifting. When she went before the judge he asked her, "What did you steal?"

She replied: a can of peaches.

The judge asked her why she had stolen them and she replied that she was hungry.

The judge then asked her how many peaches were in the can. She replied 6.

The judge then said, "I will give you 6 days in jail."

Before the judge could actually pronounce the punishment the woman's husband spoke up and asked the judge if he could say something.

He said, "What is it?"

The husband said "She also stole a can of peas!


Dairy and Broccoli Bake

Here's a great side dish that goes great with just about anything. Try it instead of plane broccoli and your family will go nuts.

  • 1 Package Elbow Macaroni, 8 ounce
  • 1 Container Cottage Cheese
  • 2 Cups Cheddar Cheese, shredded
  • 3/4 Cups Sour Cream
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons Onion
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon Pepper
  • 1 Package Frozen Broccoli
Cook the Macaroni and drain.
Combine the Cottage Cheese, Cheddar Cheese, Sour Cream, Egg, Onion, Salt and Pepper in a large bowl.
Fold in the Noodles.
Spoon into a greased dish.
Place the Broccoli around the edges.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes.

Serve hot along with the rest of your meal but be warned that this vegetable dish might be the quickest to go.

Remember, if you have a recipe you'd like to share please send it to marilyn at We'd be happy to post your favorite recipe on our Kitchen site or in our newsletter and give you credit.

     Every month we post a new recipe on our web page. Be sure and check out the New recipe at the RunnerDuck Kitchen Store.


"The Garden-Fresh Vegetable Cookbook (Hardcover)"
by Andrea Chesman


This month's recipe uses only one vegetable but this book is loaded with them. It's one of the best vegetable cookbooks you'll ever find.
Author of more than a dozen cookbooks, Chesman describes herself as "a cook who gardens" rather than "a gardener who cooks," but her latest title will interest anyone who likes vegetables, whether from the backyard, the farmers market, or the supermarket. She organizes her recipes by season, from spring's first asparagus through tomatoes, "the star of summer," to winter squash and pumpkins; each chapter opens with information on growing, cooking, nutrition, and other useful facts. She also includes "Master Formulas," recipes that can be varied according to the vegetables in season.

The RunnerDuck web site is hosted by

If you are looking for a great web hosting service with fantastic support check out If you mention that you heard about them from RunnerDuck you will get a "Duck Deal". Just ask about your Duck Deal when you sign up.



Download WOOD Store® woodworking plans directly to your computer and start building in just minutes! OR, we'll mail them to you, your choice!



Portable Potting Table

I made a really nice potting table a few years ago and it's worked great but because I gapped the top boards dirt would fall through onto the containers stored below. To prevent this from happening I decided to build a portable potting table to help contain the dirt. I figured that covering it with sheet metal would make it easier to clean and prevent water from soaking into the wood.

I'm not use to working with sheet metal and found it to be a fun challenge. A good sharp pair of shears really helps and exact measurements insures that the metal will fit correctly. Unfortunately my measurements were not that exact so I ended up with some sloppy areas in the sheet metal.

While it doesn't show in my pictures you should wear gloves when working with the sheet metal because it can cut you very easily!

It still turned out OK and Marilyn likes it a lot. I guess that's the most important thing :-)

You can make your portable potting table any size you like, mine ended up being 20" X 36". These directions will apply to any size you decide to make.

Here's what you'll need.

  • 3/4" Plywood for the base
  • 1/2" Plywood for the sides and back
  • 3' X 4' Zinc plated sheet metal
  • Finish nails
  • Glue
  • Large head zinc nails
Cut the base to the size of your table less 1" wide and 1/2" depth. This allows for the 1/2" sides and back.

Place the base on your sheet metal centered side to side and 1 1/4" up from the bottom edge.

Trace around the wood with a sharp scribe.

Cut straight in from the sides even with the far edge of the bottom.

Allow for the thickness of the sheet metal and fold up the sides and back using the plywood as a straight edge. Use a hammer and block of wood to get a nice sharp edge.

Set the sheet metal aside and finish the box.

Cut the back 6 3/4" high and the full width of the bottom plus the two sides. That turned out to be 35 7/8" on my table.

Cut the sides 6 3/4" high and the same depth as the bottom.

Along the top edge mark 4" in from the back and in the front 4 3/4" up from the bottom.

Draw a line between these two points.

Cut the taper using the taper jig that we build in our newsletter back in April of 2004,

A neat little trick for aligning the taper jig it to match the line on your piece with the miter "T" channel in the table saw.

To see the rest of the instructions for this project go to

Free Catalog From Rockler Woodworking and Hardware!
AddressLine 1:
AddressLine 2:
Other countries..."

I'd like to receive the free
"Log-On" e-mail newsletter.

If you have a project that you would like to share please send us an email and we'll help get it published in the RunnerDuck review. We are looking for woodworking, gardening, crafts and kids projects so send us your thoughts at

Tell A Friend About The "Duck"

One of the best ways we build our reader base is by good people like you telling your friends about "The "Duck". If you know someone that you think would like our newsletter just
Send This Newsletter To a Friend

Privacy Statement: This information does not go to anyone but the person you entered above. We do not collect any information from this form.

     If you want to talk about something just drop us a line to any time, we like to talk about most anything. We are always looking for content for our newsletter so if you have something to add we'd love to publish it. Assuming it meets our strict family oriented requirements!

All rights reserved, RunnerDuck Productions,
2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006
RunnerDuck and its logos are property of
RunnerDuck Productions.
All other logos are property of the individual companies.
We can be contacted at

Past RunnerDuck Review Newsletters