By SAVANNAH CUNNICK
Well, it all started with our little grey squirrel that visits us on our screened- in deck every morning. If he could talk, I would swear he was saying: Did you happen to notice the bird feeder is empty ? This fella along with his little buddies are in Nut Haven around here.
We live in the midst of every nut tree you can imagine. Having a metal roof just adds more chaos to our lives....as these nuts both big and small slam down on our roof
like a bomb is going off....especially at three o'clock in the morning. (Talk about a heart attack !!) For even MORE noise...these pesky little squirrels eat the nuts and drop their garbage shells....click, click, tap, tap....thump all over the roof. The half-eaten walnuts are a hazzard when you happen to step on one tossed on the driveway and loose your balance or turn your ankle. The cars that drive pass the house hit those big nuts one right after the other and it sounds like gun fire. Some folks slow down thinking they got a flat tire somewhere along the way. So, as you see....AWWWW.....NUTS...!!
Oh, it's not all THAT bad...because the good qualities of the nutritious nut family certainly over ride it's rough edges!!
NUTS are nature's way of showing us that good things come in small packages. Of course, you can get too much of these GOOD things.
Nuts are high in fats and calories. A s long as you practice proper portion control and not downing handfuls at a time...nuts will give you a good dose of healthy fats and nutrients. Just because something has nuts in it...doesn't make it good for you. Don't justify eating a snickers because it has nuts in it. In trail mix, look for RAW or ROASTED nuts rather than OIL ROASTED. Also be aware of sugar content.
Nuts are Good for your Eyes...You never see a squirrel wearing glasses do you ? Nuts are great as energy boosting snacks and flavorful additions to cooked dishes.These little nutritional powerhouses are rich in protein, fiber, calcium and more nutrients...plus a healthy dose of mono and polyunsaturated oils.
Almonds have more fiber and protein than any other nuts. They are good for your heart and fights colon cancer.
Cashews (aside from sounding like a nut Sneezing) sprout from the bottom of a cashew apple, the fruit of a tropical evergreen tree. They have less fat than most other nuts.
Hazel nuts are grown in Turkey and have a sweet taste and are commonly used in coffee and chocolate. The Nutella sandwich spread deems more healthy than the ordinary peanut butter. Vitamin E and Biotin in the hazelnut promotes healthy skin and hair. Also a high concentration of copper.
Peanuts are the most popular nut! They are part of the legume family and look a lot like pea plants while growing. They are high in protein that protects the heart and blood vessels.
Pecans have high fat content...even though they are good for men's health. Along with it's sweet buttery taste is provides Vitamin E for healthy hearts.
Pine nuts are small teardrop-shaped nuts harvested from pine cones. With it's high content of potassium, iron, copper and zinc...it regulates blood pressure more than any other nut.
Pistachios are pale green nuts from the Middle east. They are high in calcium. Their green color is from chlorophyll that develops as the seeds grow. Aside from being a popular snack, they protect us from dangerous liver enzymes and helps our body detox.
Walnuts are high in healthy omega-3 and rich in anti-oxidants that help block cancer cells from multiplying. It has high levels of serotonin that fights migraines and has pain-relieving compounds. It is best to keep them refrigerated.
Brazil nuts are the most caloric. Just two of them provide 90 calories! They are a rich source of selenium which lowers risk of heart disease and cancer and can help reduce allergies. With a great source of magnesium it helps with healthy nerves and muscles.
Chest nuts are the only low-fat nut with little or no calories. It is the only nut that contains Vitamin C. Coconuts contain a good amount of fat, but in the form of saturated fats...different from fats in animal products. This nut promotes weight loss and lowers cholesterol. It's milk is only second to human breast milk. It's antiviral properties can destroy a wide variety of disease-causing organisms...so potent that they are now being investigated for Aids patients. Cooking with coconut oil, even though it has been given a bad rap as an unhealthy saturated fat...it's worth a shot toward healthy!
Macadamia nuts are the fattiest nut...that's why they taste so wonderful!! Like olive oil, it is high in natural antioxidants, vitamin E and manganese.
Remember that some folks are allergic to nuts. Unfortunately, they must always be on the alert to exactly WHAT is in their food...especially NUTS !!
Well, aside from the categorizing and nutritional facts of the nut family....we certainly can't let this article end without further mention of OUR NUTTY FAMILY MEMBERS...people being off their nut....and the common comments of nuts in general.
Uncle Festus told me that the difference between beer nuts and deer nuts is: beer nuts are 50 cents a bag but deer nuts are under a buck.
Uncle Pete said he shook his FAMILY TREE the other day....and all the nuts fell out. (Well, Uncle Pete, to ME families are like fudge..mostly sweet with a FEW nuts! Cousin Clarence says his favorite movie is: Saturday NUT fever. (Talk about being off your nut, Clarence.....!)
One squirrel said to the other: Which way to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.?....I heard they are having a NUT problem there. (I'm with the squirrel on that one !!)
Then there is the NUT HOUSE .....what's the difference between psychiatrists and the patients at the mental hospital? The patients are the ones who eventually get better and go home!
Aunt Martha says that she never has to go to the nut house, she's already there....Festus and Clarence drive her nuts! She gets so upset with those two that the other day while bringing her newly purchased groceries out to her car, she popped the trunk only to find LAST week's groceries still in there. (yuck...)
Aunt Polly told me that after all her years in therapy they finally found out what was wrong with her.....SHE'S JUST NUTS!! (Sounds about right !)
Cousin Clarence asked me the other day if I knew how to catch a squirrel....Climb a tree and ACT LIKE A NUT !! (That would not be hard for you to do, Clarence !) What a NUT job !!
Cousin Sally just designed a new family sticker for the back of her van....instead of family member stick figures...she has squirrels. It reads: THIS Family is NUTS !!
One more thing on the subject of squirrels and nuts....ever hear of SQUIRREL AWAY? How many of you do that? Never knowing for sure just what is in our future....a wise thing to do is put a little aside each week on a special pantry shelf for emergencies. Things you can eat without cooking...such as canned soups, baked beans, canned fruits and vegetables...crackers, NUTS, raisins,...you name it...anything that will last and not spoil over a longer duration of time. Squirrel away....candles, matches, lighters, battery-operated radio, flash lights and extra batteries, deck of cards, few gallons of water, can opener, -- Remember those tornado days....ice storm days...power outages...? Think ahead...why be miserable...SQUIRREL AWAY....Don't be left like some NUT sitting in the dark with nothing to eat or drink. Firewood is good to stock up on for cooking and heat.(especially if you do not have gas, only electric.)
Well, Savannah has spoken and I am back up on my porch watching all the squirrels and chipmunks blow up like a tick from all the nuts they are eating. I took it easy on you guys this week...but get prepared for my next article coming up that will Rock Your World!! Take care of yourself and family, help your friends, say howdy to a stranger, smile, laugh and do that little dance........ HUGS, Savannah