| Welcome Back
Happy New Year!!
My guess would be that we are all hoping for a better New Year after a rather
bad 2008. The only real economic effect it had on us was when we sold our house
early in the year. We took a bath but at least we sold it before the market got
even worse. Other than that it was what we'd call a good year! Island life is
grand and we are loving the small town atmosphere.
We had a very nice
Christmas that was brightened with SNOW! In our last newsletter we mentioned
that the town puts up plywood snowmen because we rarely ever get snow. Well
this year was the exception. All totaled we had around 9" over a several day
We believe that
this is only the third White Christmas we've seen in all the years we've lived in
Washington. The only bad news is that it makes
getting around really difficult. Due to the lack of annual snow there is not
much snow removal and sanding equipment on the island.
Christmas eve we went to Ken's daughter Jenni's house for our annual gift exchange and white elephant party. The snow was so bad that we could not make it all the way to their house. Her husband Matt had to come get us at a gas station about a mile away in his big four wheel drive pick-up. The adventure just added to the overall fun time we all had.
Here's hoping that
your New Year will be the best ever!
Ken and Marilyn
How about starting off your New Year with some beautiful hand made, hard maple, kitchen utensils? Bob and Jean's wonderful wooden kitchen utensils are hand made in their little wood shop in Montana.
Order a gift set for yourself. By grouping several utensils together we're able to give you a good price. Also Wood'n Wares Spoon Oil will keep those wooden utensils looking great for years to come. It also works wonderfully on butcher blocks or other wooden kitchen products.
Just go to our web site for gift sets and Spoon Oil, www.runnerduck.com/woodnwares.htm.
Rockler always has great specials, here's the latest!
Ken got some
really crazy news the other day. He found out that the band he played with in the late 60's, The
Serfs, is going to be inducted into the Kansas Music Hall of
Fame! Who knew that Kansas even had a music hall of fame?
There were seven
members in the band that recorded Capitol records "Early Bird Cafe". Two of the
members are dead we're not sure where two others are and three of us might
attend. I know we'll be there for sure.
The induction will be
March 7 at Liberty Hall (the old Red Dog Inn) in Lawrence, Kansas. Check it out at www.ksmusichalloffame.org
|Site Of The Month|
Tourbus. This is an interesting, fun and informative site which also has a
newsletter that they have been sending out since 1995. They discuss a lot of
things that have to do with different technologies such as Blue Ray DVD's and
nanny cams. They bring the topics down to a level that most people can
They also have
some fun stuff like their "Very Strange Things" section and for the kids a
picture of a dog and the two "bus drivers" that you can warp by clicking on the
dragging your mouse.
Enjoy and learn by
going to www.internettourbus.com
Yule Log Candle Holder|
This craft project came in the form of a gift from my niece Tammy. She made this yule log candle holder and I decided to share it with you.
Start by cutting a small log, about 4 1/2" in diameter, to the length you want your candle holder. This one is 18" long and holds three candles.
Split the log down the center. Since logs don't split perfectly straight you will have to clean up the bottom to make it sit flat.
Evenly space the holes for the candles and use a 2" forstner drill bit or paddle bit to drill the holes.
Glue rope around the edge of each end.
Cut a piece of felt to fit the bottom and glue it in place.
Place the votive cups with candles in the holes and there you have a very nice yule log candle holder.
Remember we have all of our past projects archived on our web site at www.runnerduck.com. Just click on the Craft Egg.
quite a bit about getting plastic bags out of the environment. We actually
received some of our Christmas presents in reusable shopping bags, cool!|
One of our
readers, Shelly P., sent us a wonderful plan for making reusable shopping bags
from old plastic shopping bags, what a great way to recycle.
We've posted the
plans on our website at www.runnerduck.com/recycled_bag.htm.
Shelly's husband Terry writes: "The directions are based on her more than 40
years of experience knitting and crocheting and have been used by her coworkers
Thanks Shelly, we
hope that many more people will take up this great recycling project.
We also heard from
Mike S. regarding the use of plastic water bottles. Mike writes: "I have been
using the same bottle for 3 months. My wife has used hers for a bit longer. Hope
we can keep it up. If not we will use them for watering house plants, and the
dog. We also use them in the summer. Put in water, freeze and take them outside
while working in the yard.
Thanks Mike we hope this inspires others to do the right thing. Remember,
plastic bottles don't decompose, the just deteriorate into ever smaller pieces
that eventually may end up in your food chain.
drop us a line with your stories and experiences, be them good or bad, at email@example.com.
|The Tempos Big Swing Band|
|If you are in the Seattle area and interested in hiring a great band The Tempos are ready to perform for you. Just drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org
News and CD of the Week
The Tempos CD, "Big Swing", features fourteen great swing songs from the 40's and 50's. If you love the old big band swing music we think you'll enjoy this CD. It's the kind of music that makes you just want to get up and dance, you do remember how to swing don't you?
The only place you can get this CD is from our web site. Go to www.thetempos.com and click on the "Click Here" at the top of the web page or click the album cover.
If you'd like to get a taste of this CD just go to The Tempos web site. When you are at the Tempos web site click on the horn valve button that says "Hear our CD". Then click on the song titles to hear a little bit of each song.
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 email@example.com. We perform all over the Seattle area for all sorts of events.
|Joke of the Month|
This story was
sent to us by Dee B. We don't actually know KC Williams but it's still a funny
The following is a
funny and true story shared with me by KC Williams who teaches AP Government at
Santa Fe High School. In one of KC's
classes, they were discussing the qualifications to be president of the United
States. It was pretty
The candidate must be
a natural born citizen of at least 35 years of age.
However, one girl in
the class immediately started in on how unfair was the requirement to be a
natural born citizen. In short, her opinion was this
many capable individuals from becoming president.
KC and the class were
just taking it in and letting her rant, but everyone's jaw hit the floor when
she wrapped up her argument by stating ....
"What makes a
natural born citizen any more qualified to lead this country than one born by
And someday she'll
Scary isn't it?
If you've got a funny family friendly joke send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
|This Month's Free Recipe|
Icing for German Chocolate Cake
Here's a wonderful frosting for German chocolate cake. It's a very old recipe from Ken's mom and we have no idea where she got it but it sure is good! Don't worry about your New Years resolution, just go for it :-)
Bake a German chocolate cake from a mix or your favorite recipe.
In a saucepan combine Milk, Sugar, Egg Yolks and Butter.
- 1 Cup Evaporated Milk or 1/2 and 1/2
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 3 Egg Yolks
- 1/4 pound Butter
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1 Can or 1 2/3 Cups Coconut
- 1 Cup Pecans, chopped
Cook over medium heat 12 minutes stirring constantly until thickened.
Remove from heat, add Vanilla, coconut and Pecans.
Beat until cool and spreading consistency.
Frost the top of the cake and between layers.
|Cookbook of the Month|
| "Williams-Sonoma Mastering: Cakes, Frostings & Fillings" |
By Elinor Klivans
If you thought our German chocolate cake icing recipe was good you're going to love this cookbook. It has many wonderful recipes for not only icings and frosting but cakes and fillings too.
Joseph Boone of Irvine, California reviewed this book and wrote: "Williams-Sonoma Mastering: Cakes, Frosting's & Fillings takes
readers through the steps require to bake a cake successfully beginning
with the most simple steps through to completing fairly complex
recipes. The author, begins with a general description of the most
common ingredients and what to look for when you buy them. She then
explains how the various types of ingredients in a cake affect its
structure, texture, moistness, etc. While somewhat technical in nature,
the language is very simple and easy to understand.
The book includes picture-by-picture steps to help you learn basic
baking techniques if you are unfamiliar with them (examples include
separating eggs, zesting citrus, whipping egg whites, folding, and many
more). For a beginner without an experienced person to show them the
ropes, this is ideal."
WOOD PROJECT PLANSDOWNLOADABLE & MAIL-DIRECT
WOODWORKING PLANSDownload WOOD Store® woodworking plans directly to your computer and start building in just minutes! OR, we'll mail them to you, your choice!
This Months Woodworking Project
For Christmas this year we made some presents for our grandkids and we'd like to share them with you. This month we'll show you the stilts we made and next month the parking garage.
Stilts are very easy to make but make for many years of fun.
Here's what you'll need:
Cut the 5" X 2" X 4"s at 45 degrees from the tip to make the pads.
- (2) 2" X 2" X 60" hemlock
- (2) 2" X 4" X 5" hemlock
- (4) 1/4" - 20 X 3" carriage bolts
- (4) 1/4" - 20 X 4 1/2" carriage bolts
- (4) Large 1/4" flat washers
- (4) 1/4" - 20 wing nuts
- (2) 1 1/2" rubber tips, like those used on canes
Using a forstner bit the size of the carriage bolt head, drill down about 1/2", 1" from the top of the pad and another 3 1/4" from the top.
16-Pc. Forstner Bit Set
It's best to use a drill press if you have one so the holes are straight. It's difficult to get the hole started on the slope but if you hold tight and drill slow it will work.
Drill a 1/4" hole through in the center of each hole.
Clamp the pads to the 2" X 2", with the top of the pad 8 1/2" from the bottom of the stilt.
Use the previously drilled holes as a guide and drill through the 2" X 2"s. Repeat on the other stilt. You may have to remove the pads to drill all the way through the 2" X 2"s.
Move the pad up so the top is 13 1/2" from the bottom and repeat the drilling.
Move the pad up so the top is 18 1/4" from the bottom and repeat the drilling.
Mark all four sides of the 2" X 2", 20" from the bottom.
Use a 1/2" roundover router bit and round over all four sides of the handles from the top down to the 20" mark.
Rockler 3-Pc. Roundover/Beading Bit Set
Mark all four sides of the 2" X 2", 3" from the bottom.
Use a 1/2" roundover router bit and round over all four sides of the handles from the bottom up to the 3" mark.
Sand and finish with polyurethane.
Press on the rubber tips.
Mount the pads at the lowest level using the 4 1/2" carriage blot on top and the 3" carriage bolt on the bottom.
It's best to have the kids start out at the lowest level and then over time work their way up. Since a child can fall off of these and hurt themselves I guess we need to include a disclaimer. Be sure to help your kids learn how to use these stilts and always supervise their use. We cannot be responsible for any accidents occurring from the use of these stilts. Use common sense and everyone should have fun.
That's about it. 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.
If any of you have wood projects to share I would be happy to put it into a format for our newsletter. Just send me an email at email@example.com and lets see what we can come up with. Thank you!
|Free Rockler Catalog|
Get a Free Rockler Woodworking Catalog by clicking on the link below
| If you want to talk about something just drop us a line to firstname.lastname@example.org 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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