Dad used to drive around town gathering black walnuts. They grow seemingly everywhere back in Minnesota. Have you ever tried to crack black walnuts? They bear a serious resemblance to rocks. You can’t pop them open with your everyday nutcracker that you get in the grocery store. My Dad and Grandad transformed a wine press into a nutcracker for black walnuts. When Mom and Dad’s things were disposed of, one of my nieces took the nutcracker rather than have it sold off. She came down for Christmas and brought the nutcracker for Dad.
We put it on the porch for him on Christmas day and surprised him with it. He took one look at it and said, “Well, I thought I’d seen the last of that.” He then spent a happy afternoon cracking some black walnuts. I’ll have to find more for him to play with. They aren’t near as easy to find here as they are up north.