Someone Should Make a “Guilty” App


Really, guilty or not guilty. We spend way too much energy on unnecessary guilt. What if we had an app that were designed to tell us whether we should feel guilty or not? We could get up in the morning, plug our thoughts into the app and then let go – or not. And before going to bed at night we could tap, tap, tap our worries into the app and it would clear our conscience – or not. And with the evolution of guilty or not technology would come Civil Court usage and eventually Superior Court guilty or not apps. Think of all the admin costs it would save, leaving taxpayers guilt free! Or not.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Gold River. Available here:

Gold River:

eBooks and computer downloads available through Smashwords:

Small towns make big romances.

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Teaching Kids How to Gather and Eat Acorns

I’ve got some cute young relatives coming for Thanksgiving and I’ve been thinking about how to text them instructions for gathering acorns in their neck of the woods. They have tanoak in their front yard and they are my favorite kind. I’d love a small paper bag full. Here’s what I’ll text:

Take a small paper bag (not plastic because the acorns sweat) and get me some acorns (please). You can’t just pick up any old acorn because there are probably plenty of them laying there from last year. I want fresh ones. The good ones should feel heavy in your hand, like there’s a little ball in there. If it feels heavy then take a look at it. Does it look faded like it’s been through the summer? If so, ditch it. It should look new. Also check for worm holes. If there are worm holes ditch it.

Tanoak trees are a cross between a chestnut and an oak. Perhaps that is why they are so delicious. They grow profusely in the coastal mountain ranges of Northern California, especially Mendocino, Humboldt and Santa Cruz.  If you’re in those areas, get a little paper bag and follow the instructions above. You won’t be disappointed.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here:–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973


The Trail of Tears President

We have all heard about the “Trail of Tears.” What many of us don’t know is that there were many trails of tears for Native People. As European newcomers ventured further west the United States government found more and more excuses to “remove” the Indians from their homelands. In 1827 the US government made plans to remove all the Native People from Illinois by 1830. In his new presidency, Andrew Jackson oversaw this “Removal Act” which meant that Native people of all ages were “removed” to new Indian Territory west of the Mississippi River. Imagine the sadness and hardship the Indians had to endure, thousands died from sickness and the harsh weather. The Indians gave Andrew Jackson the name Sharp Knife. Perhaps you have a suspicion that one of your ancestors was Indian. Knowing the dates of removals can help you piece together a timeline to try to figure it all out. Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy IV – Native Americans Hidden in Our Family Trees. Available here:

Secret Genealogy IV Cover

Eating Acorns: Get the Worms Early

Sometimes there is a problem with acorns being infested with worms. They can ruin your whole basket of acorns if you leave them to it. There are a couple of ways I solve this problem. First off, I usually recognize that I’ve gathered some worms along with my acorns. You can tell because the acorn will have a little dot or little hole in it. If you’re lucky the worm didn’t get too far into the acorn. Once they do though, they will chew through the whole thing and a basket of acorns can turn to dust in no time. If you have a wood stove, place the acorns near the stove where the heat will kill the worms. If you have sunny weather, place them in the hot sun, open in a basket. You can also go ahead and shell them and dispose of the worms but if you won’t be getting around to them for awhile, try the wood stove or the bright sunshine (I live in sunny California).

Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here:–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973


Are Some Acorns Sweet Enough Without Leaching?

I often get asked the question, “Are some acorns sweet enough without leaching?” The answer in my head is, “good luck with that one,” because acorns are loaded with tannins which is why they aren’t more popular. But truthfully, on occasion you may run across a variety of white oak that I’ve heard needs no leaching. That said, in my thirty-six years of eating acorns, I’ve never once found acorns that needed no leaching. Luckily the tannic acid leaches out in water leaving behind a nice sort ofnutmeal that’s very easy to cook with and adds both texture and flavor to a wide variety of dishes.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here:–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973


How To Prepare Pumpkin Seeds From Raw Pumpkin


Ever wish you could make your own pumpkin seeds? Usually there are a lot of pumpkins around at Halloween. If you have horses, they love the raw pumpkin and parings left over after pie is made and the seeds are said to be good for fighting parasites. These seeds are prepared without the use of oil.

Boil pumpkin seeds in salt water for five minutes. (Add 1 tsp salt for up to a quart of water). Cool, drain then bake at 350 degrees until golden brown. It only takes a few minutes – watch ‘em, they’ll burn.

Suellen Ocean is the author of the vegetarian cookbook, Poor Jonny’s Cookbook.Available here:

eBook or computer download through Smashwords:

eBook through Barnes & Noble:

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Acorns? Yes! You Can Eat Acorns!

Years ago I wanted to know how to eat acorns. I went to the library to find books on eating acorns but was unable to understand how Native Americans prepared them. With a lot of trial and error, and many stomach aches, I figured it out. That was back in the late 1970’s. In 1993 I published the book, “Acorns and Eat’em”, a vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. About ten years later, due to the cost of printing, I was unable to continue publishing it. The California Oak Foundation has since been offering it as a free download on their website, But now with technology changing, it is once again in my reach to print books. “Acorns and Eat’em” is back in print through Amazon’s Createspace.  In the book, you’ll find the information you need to begin gathering and cooking with acorns, including recipes. If you haven’t tried acorns yet, you’re in for a treat. They are a magical food used for thousands of years by ancestors everywhere! The book is small enough to fit into a briefcase, backpack or large purse. I hope you enjoy eating acorns as much as I do! I’m including the link to my Amazon author page but I just added Acorns and Eat’em.  People are selling the book as a “collectible”. I’ve seen it as high as $210. 00, no kidding. I just added it to my Amazon page and they told me the new edition may take a few days to show up.  Because the paperback edition is new, you’ll have to search for it. It’s the one that is $12.98, perhaps discounted to $11.54. You’ll find it!

Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here:–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973



Sex… It Was My Husband’s Idea


Writing a how-to book about sex was not my idea. It was my husband’s. We had just finished college and I was feverishly writing away on my novels. “We should write a book about sex,” he said to me one day, to which I literally laughed in his face, “Yeah, riiiiight.” “No really,” he continued, “sex sells.” After much campaigning, I finally agreed. He would come up with a lot of the ideas and I would do the research. I went to the library and came home with all kinds of books and he continued cracking jokes and adding fun stuff to the mix. He would talk his ideas into a tape recorder and I would listen and transcribe them, typing them into a book. I spent a lot of time drawing pictures for the book but when he saw them, he shook his head and said, “No, no, no…

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Acorn Chocolate Cake, a Rare Treat


Acorn Chocolate Cake

Mix together well with a fork:

2 cups flour

2/3 cup baking cocoa

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

In a second bowl mix:

1 & ¾ cup sugar

¾ cup ground, leached, cooked, pre-frozen, thawed and drained acorns. Complete directions for leaching acorns are available in the book “Acorns and Eat’em,” available here:–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

½ cup rice milk (dairy milk O.K.)

2 tsp vanilla extract

Slowly add to sugar and acorn mixture:

2 beaten eggs

¾ cup water

Carefully add sugar mixture to the first bowl. Mix well.

Oil and flour two 9″ cake pans (or one 13X9). Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes. Cool.

Chocolate Frosting

1 & 1/2 cups powdered sugar

2/3 cup baking cocoa

½ cup butter (one stick) or substitute

5-6 Tbs rice milk (dairy milk O.K.)

1 tsp vanilla extract

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