As I suspected, it was pretty slippery while driving to work this morning, and in spite of our major roadways having dried off once the sun was high, the shaded sidewalks and driveways were quite treacherous the entire day. I was holding my breath this morning while walking up an un-sanded driveway of a vacant home, and even more concerned about my buyer slipping and falling. Hopefully it’ll all get freeze-dried off before tomorrow arrives.
Since it was still very early when I arrived at office, I immediately changed my clothes and went back to my walnut cracking, and after having cracked so many of them, I pretty much knew that last little bucket remaining was going to get finished up before I had to be at my mid-morning appointment, and that’s exactly what happened. Oh what a relief it was to finally be able to call it a big job done.
Because I started keeping track of the ounces I was cracking on a near-daily basis, I tallied them up and to my surprise, I’d harvested almost exactly eight pounds of black walnut meats from those 1,200+ nuts. Having already made five big batches of black walnut fudge, and a full recipe of banana bread with them in it, I still have about four and a half pounds left. I’d like to make another batch of banana bread and a batch of black walnut divinity out of it before I vacuum seal smaller packages of those nuts and send them to my freezer for future use.
I spent about a half hour sweeping and picking up all the nut shells that had gone flying in the back of my office, and then proceeded to put my nut-cracking equipment away for another year. Now that I know what it takes to get that many cracked during whatever free time was available these past fourteen days, I’d say I’m going to be up for it again next year.
I received two calls today from past clients I’d given some of that fudge to, just to thank me for it and tell me how delicious it was. There’ve been six people who’ve already called, along with those members of St. Paul Lutheran who’d raved about it while I was having coffee with them several weeks ago. I’m sure if someone wanted to open a confection shop in our Downtown and sell such homemade delights on a daily basis, they would have a thriving business. I personally like eating black walnut fudge as a sort of dessert with either tea or coffee. I do know of a confection shop up in Wisconsin which has a great business making and selling their specialty fudge along with other local favorites.
I’m hoping more young families have been reading my posts in regards to the picking, shelling and drying of black walnuts because that could be a great family affair which could become an annual event. I was in near shock when hearing from a number of people how long it’s been since they’ve eaten them, and believe me, our City is riddled with black walnut trees, so why leave them go to waste? Most people rake them up and send them to the landfill, or leave them for the squirrels to fight over. It’s no wonder we have so many squirrels in our area, and likely because they’ve got an abundance of food sources they can carry off to their larders or bury. The only downside I had from cracking that many, was the fact the ends of my thumbs were getting worn from handling those sharp shells after they were cracked. Other than that, it was all good.
I’m still anxiously waiting for the green light from a bank on my “problem child” loan file. First thing this morning, I sent an email to the loan originator and the selling Realtor asking for a timeline, as well as reminding them it’s weeks over our contractual closing date. The email I got back from the banker didn’t set well with me, and only because of the way in which she attempted to turn the tables on me while lifting herself up. Not a good business practice in my book, and my only response was something on the order of stating the fact that their appraiser was unavailable for nearly three days to do a final inspection of the work that had been rushed to get done. I know she’s relatively new in that position, so hopefully there’s some business communication skills yet to be learned.
Just when I was about to call one of my sellers who’s wintering in Texas, he called asking if I’d received the express envelope he’d sent exactly a week ago. Oh if I didn’t get stressed out, and especially when knowing I personally paid for that return packet to be sent express. Unfortunately the clerk at his Post Office didn’t give him a receipt containing the routing number, so there I was today, stressing over where that package had gone. Thankfully it arrived in my afternoon mail, and after opening it, I could see it had been wet and some of the documents ended up a little smudged. After giving them a good looking-over, I figured they’d pass the attorney’s review. I was also waiting for something from another who said she’d mailed it from our local Post Office over a week ago. I know it was Christmas, but over a week?
One of my dear friends called today to thank me again for the fudge, and while on the phone, we had a nice visit about the power of prayer, and how important it is for us to pray for those in need. It’s even more important in these times when finding all the more people falling completely away from all forms of spirituality which in my mind, is very dangerous for humanity’s sake. I’m coming into more of the belief that if our society continues to turn farther away from the understanding that there is a higher power, that’s when we’ll no longer have the ability to remain cohesive. We’re already seeing money and power being the substitute for the Divine we once all held dear, and don’t even get me started on this rising band of believers who subscribe to “The Gospel of Wealth”, as I personally know there are some living right here in River City.
Tonight’s One-liner is: I’ve never worried about life’s big questions.