Black Walnuts

January 9, 2012

richard cracking black walnuts, janurary 2012                                                           


long time, no post.

slowly but surely i’m updating the blog.

to briefly mention what i’ve been doing for the last (almost) year, here’s a summary:

in may 2011, i resigned my position(s) at blue river valley school corp. and then moved 300 miles (a little bit north but mostly west with alejandro in tow) to illinois. now i’m living with richard in his giant farm house. i like to call it the hulking mansion. more about that later.

it’s really been a fresh start for me in that i purged most of my belongings. what i ended up bring with me was what we could fit in the back of richard’s full size pick-up truck and we also made a couple of trips with our compact cars. even for someone who has been working for a while on simplifying and downsizing, it’s quite challenging.  even so,  i’ve managed to get rid of even more stuff.  it’s important to know how to responsibly  discard your things. it’s a lofty goal, but i would one day like to not have to put anything into the landfill.

i’ve made some advances in vegan cooking and baking.

i’ve been struggling to maintain a daily practice of yoga and meditation. in one of our adventurous outings richard and i joined a meditation group. i have learned that this area is a magnet for spiritual practice from the world over.

i have moved to a very scenic area complete with wintering bald eagles. this has been helpful with keeping a camera in my hands. wonderful hiking trails.

a couple of things i would like to write about in future posts:

living in self-imposed poverty.

what it’s like when you drop out of the practice of consumerism.



film (mostly foreign).


making things.

simple lifestyle.

it’s a frequent sight around here to see richard cracking black walnuts. he also cracks them on his lunch break at work. richard is so industrious! it was a good year for walnuts; we processed a ton of them. i remember many  pleasant late summer and fall evenings spent husking the walnuts on the patio. it’s a very labor intensive process from harvest to walnut butter. one of the best things i’ve ever eaten is our homemade walnut butter and  (also homemade) blackberry jam on a piece of toast.

i’ve updated my blogroll. take a look if you like that kind of thing.

comments please!

thanks for reading. best wishes to you in 2012.




4 Responses to “Black Walnuts”

  1. jomegat Says:

    It’s nice to have you back. Good luck on your new adventures.

  2. Dan Gleeborls Says:

    No matter how hard you throw a walnut at a window, the walnut will always break and never the window. I expect to see this confirmed in a later blog post.

    • julayne Says:

      thanks for the unusual and interesting comment. i’m wondering how familiar you are with black walnuts? they are quite different from english walnuts and they are very,very tough to crack. richard has to use a heavy duty vise to crack them and if he manages to shell 20 a day, he feels as if he’s accomplished quite a lot. i think it would be impossible to crack a black walnut by throwing it at a window. i also think that if you were throwing them at a single pane window you would end up with lots of broken glass.

  3. poietes Says:

    Welcome back.
    My, you’ve had a very busy year. I envy your move to simplicity, but don’t know that I could ever do it completely. I could live without my cell phone as I hate it, but need my computer, my blog, and my mysteries.
    The walnut butter and jam both sound heavenly.
    Good luck in your new adventure.

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