Another Beautiful Day in Paradise . . .

Yesterday was an especially beautiful day — except for having to say goodbye to Rachel and Paul, our friends who had come for Thanksgiving.  We waved (and waved and waved) as they stood as small specks atop the big white boat, the first leg of their trip back over the pond, home to England and real life.  We drove home, with this playing from our speakers . . . musica . . . the windows open, realizing how quiet it’s going to be without them . . . facing our own version of real life.

The weather was beautiful all weekend, unseasonably warm.  I’ve never been able to hang my Thanksgiving napkins out to dry; they would normally freeze stiff in the late November air. But it was balmy and breezy yesterday; I filled my laundry basket with napkins and dishtowels and took them outside.  A very tricky form of procrastination, masquerading as house work, because I love to do this, it’s not work at all .

Even Girl Kitty, that little black and white speck over there next to the house, was outside; enjoying a good roll in the dirt driveway.

Not Jack though, he still has to stay inside, he would love our yard waaaaaay too much!  The way Jack watches the bird feeders through the window, with yearning, his tail twitching like a whip, makes me fear for all living creatures in our vicinity.  Let a mouse try and enter our house this winter, it will be mincemeat.

He is under my chair this minute, with a chocolate candy wrapper, making mincemeat of it right now!

While we were doing this, Joe was up on the ladder, fixing the gutters on the house.  Each of us with reasons to be outside rather than indoors.

The leaves are off the maples and linden trees . . . no noise on the streets, all the Thanksgiving revelers have gone home, leaving the island to us again, quiet and drowsy, a little paradise; just the long wail of the boat whistle as the ferry pulls out of the harbor, and a few lonely crows cawing in the trees.  And wet-napkin flapping noises.  And my voice piping up, “Honey, do you feel like going for a walk?”

So “off to the woods did the merry men go” . . . we grabbed our jackets and went out to our favorite place, our walk out a long dirt road through the woods, the walk we’ve taken almost every day for the last twenty years . . . kicking up the piles of leaves as we go . . .

. . .  to the end, where the woods stop.  Past the pond, the road becomes more sand than dirt, to the sound . . .  then along the beach, the long way, to search for colored glass and heart-shaped rocks, listening to the waves lapping on the shore, the seagulls calling, breathing in fresh salt air, bathing our faces in cool sunshine.  And then, back again, through the woods . . .

XXXXX

Someday a very long time from now, maybe fifty years or so, if you are walking out here and you see those shadows, which I am sure you will, it’s going to be me and Joe, because we have already made up our minds, we’re going to haunt this place for ever and ever . . . We belong to it and it belongs to us.

We got our tree this weekend, it sits out in this beautiful weather, in a bucket of water, waiting for transport into the house, into the jaws and claws of Jack.  I’ll let you know how it goes.  Have a wonderful day girlfriends!!  I hope you enjoyed our walk in the woods. xoxo

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271 Responses to Another Beautiful Day in Paradise . . .

  1. K. F. Ross says:

    Cute clothes pins on our laundry line! Are those little birds?!?

    • sbranch says:

      They are little birds! Given to me by Peg — who hosts my FOSB site — you can ask her where she got them, I’m sure she’d share!

      • K. Ross says:

        Thank you, Susan Branch. What a cute way to brighten a household chore! Just love your black-and-white kitties. Had one when I was a little girl — another years later. The four that we have now just needed homes, so we didn’t have the fur-color “option.” Maybe the next stray will be a black-and-white. 🙂 (Did someone say the “next” one? I hope my husband doesn’t read this – ha ha.)

  2. Marcia says:

    Hi, Susan! How are you? I would love to see how you decorated your home for Christmas…

  3. Christine from Lafayette, CO says:

    Good Morning Sunshine! We were enjoying the same beautiful weather in Colorado as you were on MV…Just woke up under a blanket of snow! Must be December. Do you and Joe walk even in snowy weather? My lab, Bella, is looking at me with those “com’ on…its only snow at 430 in the morning – we can still walk” eyes!

    • sbranch says:

      We walk as long as there isn’t ice or a full-on storm, but not at 4:30 am! I can just see Bella’s eyes!

  4. SuzK says:

    Loved the end of this entry. It’s wonderful to have a favorite spot like that. Good luck with Jack and the tree. Our older cat, who has now gone on to kitty heaven, would lay on her back under the tree looking at the lights and the glitter – she’d stay there for hours. Our “younger” cat – she’s 11 – checks it out each and and since it doesn’t fall into either of her important categories – (1) does it taste good?; (2) will it pet me? she ignores it.

  5. Lori says:

    Rabbit, Rabbit – Happy December! I just found out that the wonderful holiday movie Christmas in Connecticut, with Barbara Stanwyck was inspired by Gladys Taber. All the more reason to watch. : )

  6. Susan, being from IN I have never seen Sea Glass or Heart shaped Stones….I adore rocks of any size and now have my Mother-in-Laws lovely Geodes which are indigenous to IN…..they have crystals (mineral deposits)inside of them if you want to break them open which I do not!!! If you find the time I would appreciate seeing a picture of the sea glass/heart stones (maybe after the Holidays)?? Also, are the heart shaped rocks only found in your area…could some of the “girls” let me know that……Thanks

    • sbranch says:

      We find them on the beach, I think the ocean is what makes them heart shaped. But I would imagine you could find them elsewhere. I’ll put photos up soon.

    • Lynn McMahon says:

      Hi~
      I live in Wisconsin within walking distance of Lake Michigan and have found lots of sea/beach glass. I have a jar in each of my bathrooms. I have also found shards of china and stoneware on nature walks that I keep too. Only once have I found a heart shaped (white) stone. It was on the beach after a storm. Good luck in your search!
      Happy Thursday!~
      Lynn

      • sbranch says:

        Fun to know!

      • Thanks Lynn I appreciate your response and my parents live in FL and I plan on making a trip next year to visit them. I don’t know if anyone in that area knows if they are in that region,
        and I guess my next question is are they products of lakes or oceans?? I find this very interesting and would love to find a heart shaped stone someday!!!

        • sbranch says:

          Probably products of both, anything with waves, that wash over and over until they make a heart!

  7. Gloria Howard says:

    Loved your Thanksgiving entry. I tried very hard to make a Susan Branch Thanksgiving happen at my house. How would you handle Thanksgiving if almost everyone arrives late? How do you keep all the delicious food warm without drying out completely in the oven ( like mine) and when do you carve the turkey. My turkey was a big platter of cold meat. UGH!
    And how do I remember to just laugh and enjoy it all…instead of getting tense?
    I think hearing from my mother-in-law a few hours before dinner that she wasn’t coming because she had a runny nose didn’t help my level of anxiety.
    I did follow your suggestion and run outside and look in at the coziness of it all.
    That helped.

  8. sondra fox says:

    Loved your latest blog on your cats! Your blog is always the start of my day. I sat by my computer, coffee in hand, reading about the antics of Girl cat & Jack. Soooooooo adorable. You are truly blessed Susan, having two very special friends in your home, enjoying one another on a daily basis?

  9. karen saunders says:

    Susan….I love having your snowy house for my screensaver. You and I are kindred spirits….and I know everyone says that but we love all the same things! ( I bought the Washington dishes and am so excited about that.) BTW….I can’t believe how perfect Jack’s moustach is….are you sure you didn’t just take a felt tip pen and…….

  10. Susie Klein says:

    So so wonderful! Thank you for sharing your lovely place. Seems to fit my fantasy place to a T!

  11. My hubby took me to Martha’s Vineyard two years ago. It was a surprise trip and I didn’t want to leave. We did end up staying an extra day because we missed the ferry. (Certainly not on purpose, certainly not, oh no!). I love the pictures you post, they remind me of our visit. Hopefully we’ll return soon, although he doesn’t quite trust my timing anymore. Go figure.

  12. CATHERINE says:

    THANK YOU FOR YOUR LOVELY PICTURES. I JUST GOT BACK FROM CAPE COD, I SPENT EVERY SUMMER AND CHRISTMAS THERE AS A CHILD, AND EVEN NOW. I WAS PRAYING FOR SNOW, BUT NO SUCH LUCK! THE TOWN WAS SO BEAUTIFUL, ALL THE LITTLE SHOPS LIT UP, AND EVERYONE SO FRIENDLY. SHOPPING WAS GREAT, CHECK OUT THE LEMON TREE VILLAGE SHOPS IN BREWSTER. ESPECIALLY IF YOU LOVE JEWELERY, AND GREAT OLD FASHIONED TOYS. THANKS FOR YOUR DOLL STORY, EVERY YEAR I WOULD WAKE UP TO A NEW MADAME ALEXANDER DOLL UNDER THE TREE. HERE’S A GOOD IDEA FOR EVERYONE, PICK THE ONE THING YOU USED TO LOVE TO GET AT CHRISTMAS, THEN BUY A BUNCH FOR TOYS FOR TOTS!! I WAS VERY BLESSED, A LOT OF CHILDREN AREN’T. MERRY, MERRY……

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