April 9, 2004

RunnerDuck Home

WELCOME BACK:   Happy Good Friday and especially Happy Easter. It's hard to believe that Easter is here already but with all the spring flowers and flowering trees it's nice that it's here. Us folks here in Western Washington are getting an extra special treat for Easter this year. The weatherman is forecasting sunshine and temperatures in the mid 70's. That is very unusual in this part of the country. Most every year we get spoiled with a few nice days leading up to Easter only to have our hopes of a beautiful day splashed at the last minute. I don't know how many years I went to sunrise service on Easter morning bundled up in winter clothes and sitting under an umbrella. This year is definitely an exception and we'll take it!

Last weekend we went up to Port Susan to get our fifth wheel trailer ready to take to the service shop. We are having it raised up about 6" so that it will quit hitting the sides of the pickup bed when we go over a small rise in the road. One of the things we needed to do was remove the cover we put on last fall. It's a great cover that goes over the entire trailer. When I climbed up the back ladder I was greeted by a large lake on the roof. There is a small rail that goes around the back top edged of the roof. The cover used that to help build a dam and we had about 4" to 6" of water up there. After we got the water off we pulled the cover off and took it home to dry.

After a couple of days drying it was ready to roll up. Have you ever bought something that fit snuggly into a package and once you opened it up you never could get it back in again. Well imagine this 27' long 8' wide cover with 8' of material hanging down all four sides and you can begin to really appreciate our project. We took it out into the street in front of our house and laid it out flat. We folded the sides onto the top and then the top onto its self three times. Finally we folded it length wise on top, end to end, and began rolling it up. After about a half hour we actually had it packed into a size that would fit into the bag that came with it. We couldn't believe it but it fit. Of course it was about half again as big as the original box but who cares, it is bagged for the summer, yeah!

We put the trailer in the shop today to have the axels moved to the other side of the springs to raise it up. They are also going to raise the hitch and get everything leveled out. When we pick it up this afternoon we might just do a little camping with it since the weather is going to be so nice and we are long over do for some trailer time.

Our Wood'N Wares store is where you can get wonderful hand crafted hard maple kitchen utensils. These beautiful tools not only look great but last a long time. To maintain these wooden utensils and any others you may have, including your butcher block, try our fantastic spoon oil. It is specially formulated for kitchen use and gives a special luster and life to all your wooden cooking and serving tools. Check them out at
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Thank you,
Ken and Marilyn

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What's New This Week?   Teeth, that's what's new this week! Ken went to lunch with his daughter and grandkids this week and Hudson was actually flashing a new pair of teeth. Many of us forget what a blessing and what a mess new teeth are. He was slobber from mouth to belly by the time we were done with lunch. Teething is not an easy time but it sure does open up the door for things to come. He's such a good baby that he wasn't fussing much just chewing on everything with drool running everywhere.


      Have you been getting emails from your friends and family that sell all sorts of products that you are not interested in? Did you know that those emails really didn't come from your family and friends? I'll bet you did. That's right the spammers are using emails that look like they are from people you really know. How disappointing when you open them up and find that they want to sell you some discount prescription drugs.

Unfortunately there is nothing you can do about it because they will keep coming but here is a little tip that might make getting real mail from your friends and family more enjoyable. Set up a code with them that everyone uses in the subject line of their email. Don't make it "Hi" or "Hey it's me" or something like that because the bad guys are already using all those sorts of lines to get you to open their email. Use something like a pet's name or a flower or something silly that only makes sense to you and your circle of friends. If you used your pet Ginger your email subject line would look something like "Subject: Ginger I got a new car" or "Subject: Ginger check out my web site". Because the subject started with Ginger you would know that it's really me wanting you to check out my web site and not some sleaze ball trying to get you to open their pornography site.

Just as a side note, when you email us at RunnerDuck please put something descriptive in the subject line. Don't leave it blank because we delete most blank subject emails. 98% of them are spam and we don't bother with them. Also, please don't use Hi, How Are You, or other greetings like that because again all most all of them are spam and we dump them.

Oh yeah, one last thing. If you are going to send us an attachment don't be surprised if we send you an email to verify that it was really you that sent it. As a courtesy it's good to send an email to the person you are sending an attachment to saying that there is an email from me with an attachment on the way.


     It seems like we are always looking for a good calendar for our computer monitor desktop. I've installed several and have found them to not be very versatile or they don't look good. We've found a new one that we installed and really like. You can set it up in three different sizes, change all the colors and put it anywhere on your desktop. Important dates can be entered or downloaded from .CSV (Coma Separated) files like a lot of date programs have or Excel. It will notify you when that date arrives.

Once you install it you can use their wall papers which will change daily or continue using your regular wall paper. They have several different wallpaper sets that you can download and they look great.

The program is called Desktop Calendar and you can download it at www.desktopcalendar.tk/. Their wallpaper packs are listed on that same page. We hope you try this nifty calendar and enjoy it.


Easter Baskets

     You still have time to get one more little Easter project done before the big day. These cute little baskets are really fun projects for the kids and adults can have fun with them too.

Here's what you'll need:

Wooden strawberry or berry baskets
Acrylic paints

Decorate the sides of your basket with cute bunnies, Easter eggs or other spring theme.
Use stencils and color in the open spaces using a sponge and acrylic paint.
Draw pictures using a paint brush and paint.
You could even cut out a design on a potato and use that for a stamp.
Tie a ribbon on a corner to dress it up even more.
When you are all done decorating put plastic or paper grass in the bottom and fill it with Easter Candy.

They make a great gift or look nice just sitting around to greet your Holiday guests.

     We hope you enjoy Marilyn's Corner and look forward to all the fun things she brings you each week. If you have a fun project that would be suitable for our newsletter we'd love to share it with our readers. Just contact marilyn@runnerduck.com and we'll do the rest.

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

Kids Stuff

Do you like playing games? Here is an opportunity to increase your game library at great savings. Now, when you buy any game from Hasbro, Milton Bradley, or Parker Brothers, you can get another one free, plus free shipping. There's never been a better time to save on bestselling games like Battleship, Monopoly, Trivial Pursuit, and more.

Check out the 2Fer Sale Plus FREE shipping, cool!

The Tempos
News and CD of the Week

The Tempos just added the Hiram Chittenden Locks summer concert series to our list of summer gigs. If you are in the Seattle area on July 24th be sure and stop by the Locks for a great time. The Locks are always fun to see since there are no others like them in the United States and you get to hear our great music. Believe it or not there are no others like The Tempos in the Unites States either. Maybe even in the whole world, he says modestly :-) We'll be performing from 2:00 to 4:00 for your listening pleasure. Bring a picnic lunch and sit a spell.

     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 thetempos@runnerduck.com. We perform all over the Seattle area for all sorts of events.

Album Pick of the Week

"She's the Woman"
by Mimi Fox

When you think of jazz guitarists you don't typically think of women. It's an art form that has been dominated by men for years. When you put "female jazz guitar" in search engines you don't find much, at least not until now. Mimi Fox has a new CD that is knocking the sox off of the jazz guitar world. If you are a fan of jazz guitar this is a must have CD for your collection.


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These were sent to us by Jean U.

Some "Senior" personal ads seen in a Florida newspapers:
  (Who says seniors don't have a sense of humor?)

FOXY LADY: Sexy, fashion-conscious blue-haired beauty, 80's, slim, 5'4" (used to be 5'6"), searching for sharp-looking, sharp-dressing companion. Matching white shoes and belt a plus.

LONG-TERM COMMITMENT: Recent widow who has just buried fourth husband, and am looking for someone to round out a six-unit plot. Dizziness, fainting, shortness of breath not a problem.

SERENITY NOW: I am into solitude, long walks, sunrises, the ocean, yoga and meditation. If you are the silent type, let's get together, take our hearing aids out and enjoy quiet times.

WINNING SMILE: Active grandmother with original teeth seeking a dedicated flosser to share rare steaks, corn on the cob and caramel candy.

BEATLES OR STONES? I still like to rock, still like to cruise in my Camaro on Saturday nights and still like to play the guitar. If you were a groovy chick, or are now a groovy hen, let's get together and listen to my eight-track tapes.

MEMORIES: I can usually remember Monday through Thursday. If you can remember Friday, Saturday and Sunday, let's put our two heads together.

MINT CONDITION: Male, 1932, high mileage, good condition, some hair, many new parts including hip, knee, cornea, valves. Isn't in running condition, but walks well.


Eggs Ala Goldenrod

After you are done with your Easter Egg Hunt make this delicious breakfast. This recipe uses one dozen hard boiled (decorated) eggs.

Peel the hard boiled eggs. (so much for the decoration)
Divide the Egg Whites into one bowl and the Yolks into another.
In the Yolk bowl add Salt and Pepper to taste and fluff with a fork. This is the Goldenrod!
In the Egg Whites bowl cut up the Egg Whites into bite size pieces.

In a saucepan make a medium white sauce as follows.

  • 4 Cups Milk
  • 8 Tablespoons Butter
  • 8 Tablespoons Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper

Melt the Butter in a pan, add Flour, Milk, Salt and Pepper.
Bring to a low boil to thicken, reduce heat and add Egg Whites. You may have to thin with a little Milk.
Pour the Cream Sauce over toast or biscuits and top with a sprinkling of the Egg Yolks.
Tasty additions include Bacon or Ham on the side or on the toast or cheddar cheese.

If you have any leftovers, (I can't imagine), add Peas, cooked Potatoes, Pearl Onions and the Yolks to the cream sauce. Serve it with your Holiday Ham.

This is a very old recipe that has been in Marilyn's family for generations. We hope you enjoy it for your Easter.

Remember, if you have a recipe you'd like to share please send it to marilyn@runnerduck.com.

     Every month we post a new recipe on our web page. Be sure and check out the NEW April recipe at the RunnerDuck Kitchen Store.
We'd be happy to post your favorite recipe there or in our newsletter and give you credit. Just drop a line to marilyn@runnerduck.com.


"Potato Salad: Fifty Great Recipes"
by Barbara Lauterbach

Do you still have some Easter eggs left over? How about some potato salad? I love potato salad and this wonderful cookbook has more potato recipes than you can shake a fork at. A reader from Richmond, Virginia wrote; Even if you are an "occasional" cook, this book is fantastic! Most potato salads could be a meal. The information in the chapter called "The Basics" is invaluable for creating superb potato salad. After trying eight recipes, Barbara Lauterbach's "Potato Salad" will be a mainstay in my kitchen.

Be sure and visit the RunnerDuck Cookbook Store for other great savings on cookbooks and cooking supplies.


Taper Jig

Have you ever tried to cut a long taper using the miter on your table saw? Not only dose it not work very good it's pretty unsafe. This taper jig makes the job a lot simpler and safer.

Here's what you'll need:

  • 2" X 4" X 48" Knot free wood, I used cedar.
  • 1" X 1" X 8" Knot free wood.
  • 1/4" X 1 1/2" X 4" poplar, oak or plywood.
  • Glue
  • #6 X 1 5/8" deck screws
  • #8 X 1 3/8" deck screws
  • Left hand friction lid support
  • 1 1/2" hinge w/screws
Cut (2) 2" X 4"s 24" long.
Cut the handle 1" X 1" X 8".
Cut the stop 1/4" X 1 1/2" X 4".
Using a 1/2" round over bit in your router, radius the four sides of the handle from the top down to 3 1/2".
Using the same router bit, round the end of the handle.

Glue and screw the handle onto the end of one 2" X 4". Make sure that the bottom of the handle is flush with the bottom and centered. Use three #6 X 1 5/8" deck screws. Pre drill and countersink the holes.
Glue and screw the stop plate onto the end of the other 2" X 4". Make sure the bottom is flush with the bottom and right side of the 2" X 4". Use three #8 X 1 3/8" deck screws. Pre drill and countersink the holes to prevent the wood from splitting.

Mount a 1 1/2" hinge to the end of the 2" X 4"s. The 2" X 4" with the handle will be vertical and the other will be horizontal.
Mount the lid support to both pieces.

That's it! It's a little tricky getting the exact taper you want so you should cut some scrap wood before you make your final cuts.
You could change the screw on the lid support to a wing screw to make adjusting a little easier.

We hope you liked this project. If you build it and your friends ask where you got such a clever idea, please tell them that you got it at RunnerDuck.com.

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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 projects@runnerduck.com .


      Easter is a pretty big travel weekend with people going to grandma's house and beyond. With gas prices going through the ceiling it makes even more sense to have your vehicle in tip top shape. Some of the biggest contributors to bad gas mileage are low air in the tires, driving too fast, jack rabbit starts and carrier's on the roof. If you are not going to be carrying anything in your roof top carrier take it off. Store it for when you really need it.

If you have a conservation tip please send it to conservation@runnerduck.com and we'll post it in our newsletter.

     If you want to talk about something just drop us a line at duckmaster@runnerduck.com 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!
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