But first, we go Ommmmm.

musicHow can so much happen in so short a time? But first, we go ommmmm, we take a deep breath and we make tea. Then we turn on our MUSICA ~ Did I mention that I’m going to tell you the story of where the “MUSICA” came from in the new book? I think you will like it almost as much as the MUSICA.flowerLake Winnipesaukee

Now that we are all kicked back and relaxed, do you remember this gorgeous spot?  Isn’t this the most magical view in the world?  I can hear the lake lapping at the shore and smell the pine trees from here.

Lake Winnipesaukee

Have you figured it out where we are?  Yes!  You are so smart! It’s Meredith, New Hampshire, in 2013, where we went for one of our very first book signings for A FINE ROMANCE. 

moon over Lake Winnipesaukee

And I was taking these pictures from the deck of our room at the most wonderful hotel called Mill Falls at the Lake . . . LOOK at that moon!

Moon over Lake Winnipesaukee

And that was how it looked over Lake Winnipesaukee . . . Wasn’t it amazing?  One of my best moons ever! Well, we’re going back! To the same hotel, to the same bookstore.

Insider Bookshop with A Fine Romance 2013The wonderful Innisfree Bookshop called and invited us (and all of you) and THE FAIRY TALE GIRL for our first planned book signing together! New Hampshire in October? Be still my heart!!!

leaves

Fairy Tale Girl Name Tag for book signingsI hope you can make it.  I hope I’m giving those of you who live nearby enough time to plan a balloonslittle getaway. I made name tags for us again so we can recognize each other. The book signing is Saturday, October 3, from 11 to 1 p.m. and I’m sure it will be very festive!  Please come! Put it on your calendar! It’s very pretty there!  Innisfree Bookshop is in the Mill Falls Marketplace. Just CLICK here  to print out your name tag . . .

Staff, Susan Branch Studios

Here are some of my favorite people, wearing their name tags from A FINE ROMANCE … that’s Sheri on the left, her daughter Maddie and our friend Bonnie (both of whom came to help last time when all the books came in), and Kellee on the right.  They’re standing in the garden of my California Studio ~ I know many of you have spoken to Sheri or Kellee on the phone, so this is what they look like!

leaves

By the time we get to New Hampshire the hills and woods of New England will look like this! Even after all these years, I still can’t quite believe the colors are real! We’re not going to do Autumn artsa lot of signings this year, we’re going to save ourselves for a cross-country tour next May after Martha’s Vineyard, Isle of Dreams makes its debut.  We’re going to stay home and enjoy fall and Christmas on the Island this year and cook and paint wonderful things for my second new book! I promise to take lots of pictures in New Hampshire so if you’re too far away, you won’t have to miss a thing . . . we’re also heading up to Lake Champlain, a place I’ve never been, for an actual vacation!!!  Unheard of around here!  We are so ready!  I’ll tell you all about it, we don’t go until the end of the month.

The Fairy Tale Girl

I couldn’t think of going anywhere until that book gets here. If I see a UPS truck, my heart falls into my feet.  But so far, we are still waiting. Kellee and Sheri are on pins and needles too, the studio is all ready to get a whole lotta books!   IN THE MEANTIME ~ I had a party and promised to show you, so here we go! We’ll just have to take our minds off that UPS truck !

more dappled walls

While I chopped, squeezed, measured and sautéed, the sun shimmered through the wisteria onto the wall, which I just LOVE.  Pretty darn fairy-like if you ask me!

shadows and dappled rooms

I have a thing about that kind of light . . .

morning light

The way it lands sort of willy nilly, and puts those lacy shadows on the wall, I just have to take pictures of it. It’s such a moment in time.

dappled walls

Even in the laundry room . . . 

Cocktails in the garden

drinkAnother moment in time.  I adore dappled things, even these big blotches of light through the trees.  We decided to have cocktails and bites of cheese and pickles and smoked fish and olives and gin and tonics with crushed ice and lime wedges in the Adirondack chairs while the sun slowly slipped out of the sky  . . . it was just cool enough for a little shawl, and when it got dark, we had this to look at . . .

clam lights

the arborAll lit up and so pretty. . . But we decided to be comfy and totally bug free, and eat indoors . . .
setting the table

Dish Playtime!  This night I wanted everything to be light and airy, end of summerish with just a TOUCH of fall… 

polishing the silver with cat

And Jack, my little shadow, totally agreed with me!  Just a touch of fall, he meowed catwhile I got out the silverware. Most of my silverware came to me over the years .  .  . a little from my grandmother and lots was collected from flea markets like Brimfield in MA, and from antique stores all across the country . . . it’s very mix and match, but very romantic too. 

setting the table

See summer?  See fall?

vintage glassware

But of course, you can’t get people to look at your table settings UNLESS you include food!

spicy mango salad

I made spicy Mango salad, with red peppers, chopped mint and cilantro, lime juice and sesame oil (from p.82 of the Girlfriend book).  Joe made a brilliant saddle of lamb with rosemary and garlic that was melt-in-your-mouth juicy and delicious.cooking

making basil ice cream

basket of tomatoesI also made basil ice cream, to serve with wonderful summer tomatoes that were salted and peppered and drizzled with olive oil and left to sit for a few hours.  Then I put a spoonful of tomatoes with juice in a small dessert bowl, 

homemade basil ice cream

. . . a scoop of basil ice cream on top, then a drizzle of balsamic reduction, and voila! Tastebud heaven.  This is the dessert that reminds us that a tomato is a fruit. It’s a different kind of dessert but easy and fun. I thought we might reprint Heart of the Home next year and add a few new recipes like this one. 

bean salad

I made our favorite bean salad too, with sage and little bits of cauliflower for crunch. I also made a quinoa salad with fresh ginger and currants, green onions, water chestnuts and roasted All kinds of old stovespeanuts. All was served with hot crusty raisin rolls and butter. My goal was to make everything ahead and I did and I was so glad I did!  I got to spend the entire time outside talking with every one . . . it was so easy!

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Was a wonderful dinner party

It was wonderful, dinner for eight, and all my favorite MUSICA was playing. . .

music

table setting dinner party

All very simpatico and charming, catching up with good friends. Made me think . . .Julia Child

A little credit where credit is due. I wrote this in my Autumn book in 2004 ~ it was in being printed when she passed away.

Julia ChildJuliaChildI really didn’t mean to get into Julia today, but there is hardly a dinner party I have where I don’t say a little thank you to her for her inspiration.  It’s like she reached out of the dark when I was around 22, took me by the shoulders and said, WAKE UP! I’ve loved her ever since.

Moon at the dinner party

And look what was watching over us during dinner!  The MOON! Or was that Julia? 

Country Living British

And so now, it’s cocktail time somewhere, right here, it’s now, and this is my little excitement for today, my new British Country Living just arrived, so that’s where I’m going . . .  Hope you’re remembering to give yourself a little treat, because I know you and you deserve it! small treatsRabbit Rabbit Girlfriends, Happy September

love

YOU!

bunnies

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373 Responses to But first, we go Ommmmm.

  1. Angie says:

    A truly lovely ‘post.’ I think I will read it again and again. Here’s to a wonderful fall and winter season full of color and some R&R on that gorgeous island. You deserve it.

  2. Cindy Maulin says:

    Hi Susan! I don’t think that there is any other act of kindness and love then cooking for those you love. Be it an intimate dinner party or family supper or arriving at at the doorstep of a friend or family member who is in need with dinner in tow. The special touches that you add to your inviting table scream ” we are so happy you are here and we get to have this special time together”. I love people who understand this and appreciate those that have made these gatherings paramount in their lives. It doesn’t have to be fancy or fussy either…..a picnic is a wonderful way to gather people together…or…. it can be a very special romantic moment for two. Our beloved Julia Child knew this and her creativity, warmth, humor, and terrific recipes have inspired millions…. just like you Susan…. and we are all the better for it. So, thank you again for your inspiring words and beautiful thoughts in yet another special blog post. Even without a morsel, you have brought us together and inspired us to spread the happiness to others….. imagine what would happen if we had a pot luck!!!!! The books look devine and i can feel the anticipation in the air. We had tossed around the idea of making a quick trip back to NE to see our son and daughter-in-law this fall and now knowing that you all are planning a signing in NH… that may be just the added draw to make it happen. My son’s in-laws live in Jackson, NH, so I have to crack out that atlas to check out the whereabouts. Have a great week-end Sue and Joe… and as they say, ” keep livin’ the dream”……
    love, cindy
    PS…the daughter of a very very good friend of mine was in a bad car accident last week-end and was hospitalized with several broken vertebrae. She is home now and on the mend. To help out a bit, I delivered a bit of comfort food… homemade chicken noodle soup, crusty bread and cucumber salad …. but the hit were your carrot cake cupcakes….she absolutely loved them and is begging for more!! I loaned her my copy of “A Fine Romance” and she is smitten…. 🙂 your comfort knows no bounds…..xo

    • sbranch says:

      And yours either! I’m so lucky because I have about six close girlfriends here on the island that all believe the way that you and I do, that cooking is a pure gift, and they make it as beautiful and wonderful as I try to do. Talk about living in a fairy tale. Dinners in front of fires, or on the beach, or on porches in gardens, and somehow always romantic.

      • Cindy Maulin says:

        I inherited my love of cooking and baking from both of my grandmothers; one of whom was from Italy and the other from Poland……they could make any dinner a romantic event in my eyes…They put their heart and soul into every crumb…..from potato soup to stuffed artichokes to simple pesto pasta to the perfect roast chicken…. I know, and am grateful, how truly blessed I am….thank you friend…for sharing the love….❤️

  3. Paula Lewis says:

    Don’t you just love the word “dappled”? It is one of my favorites! I have been to the Shelburne Museum and it is a treasure….you will really enjoy it. My first visit to the East Coast was in October 1973…..Boston and the Cape. Couldn’t have been more beautiful and I immediately fell in love with fall color. Being a Southern California girl….we don’t get much change of season so it was wonderful to see all the beautiful colors. Your picture of all the different colored leaves reminded me of that first magical trip. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and pictures. I always enjoy them so much!

    • sbranch says:

      I came from southern California when I moved here to the Island, and there was SO MUCH to learn . . .! The seasons really have a rhythm to them.

  4. Vicki says:

    I enjoyed seeing the photos of Sheri and Kellee! I have indeed spoken to each of them either in emails or on the phone; both very helpful and nice. Your place in Arroyo Grande always photographs so beautifully; it must be a really nice place to go to work! The grounds are lovely and manicured.

    I’m really looking forward to seeing photos you’ll share of your upcoming travels. This makes me now want to go read everything about Lake Champlain (did I spell that right?). Where exactly IS Lake Champlain; I’ve gotta go find a map (geographically-challenged here!). You kinda missed a New England fall last year, didn’t you, when you made your way west? (Wow, has it been a whole year since the train trip; I think so, wow, time races…) Do share gorgeous fall colors via the camera with the rest of us (like me in dry, barren SoCalif) who never really see such phenomena.

    Are you constantly vacuuming cat hair off that white upholstered (or slipcovered[?]) furniture of yours? My cats over the years have always shed tons of hair and, unfortunately, I’m highly allergic to it. When we first got married, he came with a cat who loved to poof, poof, pounce on the down comforter and the cat hair would literally take flight…right into my airways as I slept. It was even in the ice cubes.

    • Vicki says:

      One other thing…you are the second person I’ve heard say this week that the UK version of Country Living is fab. I tried to go online to get a subscription and it would just not let me do it. I’d send a bank money order via snail mail with a euro conversion but I don’t think they’d accept it (they no doubt like the credit card company to do that). Obviously, I can make an overseas call this week although I’d rather not. Because it’s print and not parcel, there’s no extra duty imposed, right? It’s just a mag! My last order with Cath Kidston, which is a company whose products I so love, was a disaster, just this past month; it got held up at LAX and I had to pay over $100 in duty to get it released, which was just ridiculous. There’s fine print (but not hidden) when you place an order, that the U.S. can do this (so, it’s my ignorance and I’ve kicked myself plenty over it), but I’d had a few orders with Cath Kidston before, less recently and in other years and nothing was ever imposed dutywise once in this country, so I was just shocked…and really, really annoyed. I’m CLEARLY very wary now of ordering anything from Britain or another country not my own! The carrier who ultimately got my UK order to my front door volunteered that the U.S. does this, apparently randomly (and I guess I just had bad luck that day), to protect its own economy, whatever the h*ll that all means (nothing Cath Kidston could’ve controlled). Anyway, I just wondered if you’d had any problem with the overseas subscription. I’m afraid of getting ‘stung’ again and winding up getting, say, charged double [or something] for the subscription. Maybe it’s my computer and my system, but UK Country Living’s site wouldn’t even let me complete the info for getting on the mail list for their newsletter! Darn. The recipes alone look tantalizing!

      • sbranch says:

        It’s definitely more expensive, I don’t even know how much anymore, because postage in this world has become ridiculous. But to me, it’s worth it and it always shows up right on time. Try going here for a subscription . . .

        • Vicki says:

          Thank you for taking the time to provide a link. I’ll keep trying!

        • Judy Young says:

          Pretty expensive subscription still. I buy mine at my local Barnes and Noble and don’t spend as much as the subscription would cost because I don’t buy every issue, just the ones that “speak to me”! And I always get the Christmas issue of course.

          • sbranch says:

            I gave up trying to find them here. They had them for a while, then they quit, now I don’t know. It’s the only magazine subscription I have, so it’s a real treat.

          • Vicki says:

            Oh, I’m glad to know I could maybe buy it here in the U.S. I’m really ignorant of which stores carry what when it comes to an out-of-country magazine/subscription.

      • Mary S. says:

        If you don’t want to pay around $95 for the subscription to the U.K. Country Living, you can buy it each month (or every other month) at bookstores like Barnes and Noble. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      We have actually been away for two falls in a row, and will again be gone next year, so we decided enough is enough, we are staying at home this year. Fall is gorgeous anywhere, but it’s best from home! Those cats seem to hold onto their hair! I don’t really find in anywhere. Once in a while in the spring I might see some on the black painted stairs, but that’s about it. I did have some cats in the past that left bits of hair in my watercolors!

      • Vicki says:

        They are BEAUTIFUL big cats, your two.

        It’s 97 degrees (f) since before noon…what else is new, as we’re in the 90s continuously; just wilts me and everything else, poor plants, poor wildlife [poor dead trees EVERYwhere it seems; just so sad to see those trees]…and we’re in for a horrendous week of heat here near the SoCal coast. I get to the point to where I don’t think I can live in it another day. I’m a native but this drought and heat is beyond anything I’ve ever experienced. I positively yearn and crave the autumns that the rest of you all talk about but all I can do is read about it and drool. And thank goodness for that…I revisit your books and others, like Gooseberry cookbooks or even the Vermont Country Store catalog, to transport me to [the idea of] cool weather and oven meals (and sweaters…can’t even remember the last time/last year/any year I wore a sweater, much less a coat!). You did prompt me to read about Lake Champlain and, oh, it sounds just wonderful. Can’t wait for your ‘report’ from the road! Have a simply marvelous time, you and Joe and friends!

  5. Sally Roth says:

    Good morning, Susan! Thank you for sharing your “evening light” photos and your dinner party ones too. Early morning and evening light is so peaceful and pleasing, starlight too…
    I am on grandchild duty on October 3rd, wish I could come and see you in NH. I am looking forward to your Isle of Dreams book, though, so I will look for your stops on that trip.
    I live near Lake Champlain, will I see your Fine Romance van or are you traveling incognito? I would so love to meet you in person one day ~ you have made it to my “bucket list”! Thanks for all the beauty and human-ness you bring to us.
    Sally

  6. carmel says:

    I love enjoying the New Hampshire pics again. Takes my breath away! The sunlight play in your home are so lovely. A few years ago, I had a small group of 3rd graders for a writing group. When I’d walk them back to their classroom across campus, they would absolutely delight in watching their shadows in the gentle morning light. So precious. Morning light and twilight are so under appreciated, I think. I love the “moon shot” you shared during your dinner. Spectacular view of that moon. I’m rethinking the idea of fairy tales come true. I think it really is all the little joys of each day that enrich me and the good things that happen to make my life full. It’s fine to dream and wish for anything, but I think if I come close or see the unexpected fairy tales in my daily life, I will be more content and find joy instead of feeling like things are missing because particulars have not happened. I know I’m not being articulate, but just wanted to share these thoughts which I hope you all don’t mind.

  7. Sue says:

    I’m not quite sure how to put this, so it doesn’t come across as a “downer,” but this past week in Houston has been tough…a sheriff’s deputy was murdered (shot in the back walking back to his patrol car after pumping gas). There was a wonderful outpouring of support from the public, but it was still a difficult week for those of us connected to law enforcement (officers, and their friends and families). The deputy’s services were yesterday, and today, finding your latest, beautiful blog posting has helped sooth my saddened soul. It’s helped remind me of all the good, simple things in this world that bring us joy (friends, nature, old treasured dishes…), and it is helping me face the world with a more optimistic outlook than this past week has generated. Thanks for bringing back smiles…

    • sbranch says:

      It breaks our hearts every time something like this happens. I’m glad you’re here, that’s what I have to do too, sooth my soul with lovely things and thoughts and say a prayer because, what else can we do.

  8. Robin Ann Barron says:

    What a lovely post! While I can’t make it to NH for the book signing (work!), the Inn looks fabulous, and pet-friendly so I can bring my lil foxy buddy!
    You will love love love Lake Champlain – you might be there at the right time to see huge flocks of Canada and snow geese on the move. If you have a chance, a drive right around the lake, over the Champlain Bridge in Addison, into New York, then up the west side of the lake and down through the Champlain Islands of Vermont is just fantastic – gorgeous views in every direction, sweet little villages, too.
    And every time someone says “what difference can one person make?” I think of our dearest Julia Child, who changed our lives in so many wondrous ways and awakened our creativity.
    Thanks once again for a beautiful, inspirational post!

  9. Judy C in NC says:

    Dinner with Susan and Joe – my very most favorite dinner party evah … it is as if my honey and I were sitting right there with the rest of you super sweet and wonderful people.

    Cocktail hour must have been at twilight time, which has to be the most magical of all times in the evening. My honey, being born in Harrow, England, would probably partake of a gin and tonic … guess mine would have to be vodka and tonic (bad experience with gin). Enjoying the excitement of friends and experiencing all the sounds and beauty of nature – couldn’t ask for anything more (Musica).

    Thank you for your wonderful hospitality and please expect a return invitation to our lovely cottage home. Judy and Himself

  10. Laura says:

    Good Morning!

    Spending my time with you this morning with a hot cup of coffee in hand. You always make me feel like I’ve just had a visit with an old friend. Love you!!
    Have a great Saturday!!

    Laura in Waukegan, IL

  11. Debra in So CA says:

    Susan,
    I just loved your post. You did it again, you never stop amazing me. Basil Ice Cream – wow I’d like that recipe. I’m still harvesting orange & red tomatoes daily from my kitchen garden & wonderful fresh Basil too. I’d love to make it. Yum!
    Looks like you had a really fun afternoon & dinner party. I’ll bet you missed things like that while working on the book. Glad you’re back, I’ve missed your fun posts.
    Glad you’re to take some vacation time too. Enjoy! You and Joe deserve it.

    • sbranch says:

      I did miss it, very much! It’s just wonderful to be so normal again. My neighbor and dear friend Lowely is walking over at 7:25 a.m. this morning to get me, and we’re going to walk around the corner to another Girlfriend’s house — Elizabeth, for TEA!!! It’s a beautiful cool, morning and the light is already changing. The Basil ice cream recipe is going into the updated version of my first book and will be out in plenty of time to get your tomatoes involved for next year. Plant all colors, try to get a plummy looking one!

  12. Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

    Hello Susan~~~~

    Seems to me that Autumn is pushing out summer pretty fast here in SW Washington. The temps have been in the 70’s for this past week. Woke up to rain (which we really need!) this morning. Love it. As much as I’m not looking forward to cold weather, I’m thrilled with the cooler weather. I’ve already had to put on jeans and a long sleeved top yesterday and today. Of course, next week is suppose to become warmer with a high of 83 degrees on Friday. I’m starting to think of bringing out my fall decorations. Also, thinking of re-reading your book “Autumn”.

    I loved all the pictures on your latest post. Looking through the arbor with all the trees on the other side ….

    Your party table looked so festive as always! I liked those bird vases. I’ve never seen any large ones like those before. It’s hard enough to find the small ones. And those fall flowers…..

    I’ve been meaning to ask you about your drinking glasses. They all seem so delicate. I seem to only find heavy looking ones. Would love to be able to know where to find some like yours.

    Off to work on my Christmas cards again.
    xoxo,
    Carol M

    • sbranch says:

      I get most everything at antique stores. But you have to haunt them, because delicate glasses go quickly. Those bird vases, two of them, were a downright miracle to find! You’re doing your Christmas Cards! Brilliant!

      • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

        I do have to start on my cousin’s Christmas cards early as she lives in NH. I’m thinking that antique shops back east are different than they are out west. More of a selection to choose from. I will keep looking for the glasses. Persisence pays off in the end.

      • pat addison (cave junction, OR) says:

        carol hope you get a nice cool fall with lots of rain, and a cold snowy winter. we’re hoping for the same here.. a nice cool wet Fall and a cold snowy winter. we are in the triple digits again, hopefully this is the last of it and on to cooler temps.

  13. Deb Harmon says:

    Susan, I have been wondering for some time now, but keep forgetting to ask. I’m sure you have been asked this question many, many times. Where do you find all of the wonderful quotes that you fill your posts with? They are so inspiring. I love reading them! Your dinner party looked magnificent! Makes me feel like entertaining my friends soon! Love you!

    • sbranch says:

      It’s kind of a good story, so I told the whole thing in the second book that’s coming in May. xoxo

  14. Love, love , love the pictures of the moon on the water!! Just beautiful. Your dinner party has inspired me to have one myself – will have to study your cook books to make something special. Wonder if I can arrange to have the moon shine thru my window as well! Thank you, Susan, for another wonderful blog!

  15. Lovely, Susan. And even perfect music. How did you know I needed this boost today? We aren’t summer-into-fall here in NC as yet — hot and dry and fall-hungry instead. It’s on the way, though. Excited about the new book and can’t wait to read it! (Even the name tag is special!)

  16. Elaine Depo says:

    Saturday greetings Susan! Your post was absolutely wonderful, such a fun variety of topics, all a treat to read! Count me as another who’s happy for you (and us) that you’ll be home for Fall and the holidays this year ~ I’m sure Girl and Jack would agree as well. The photo of Jack and your glorious silverware really touched my heart, he’s a sweetheart like my Missy-girl, breathtaking adorableness in such tiny packages! I’m not much of a photographer so when I finally got a digital camera I was shocked that some of my shots were pretty artistic. Without even realizing it I’d taken some gorgeous pictures of morning light in my dining room decked out for Fall. Wow! Golden, warm, dappled ~ thrills my heart every time I look at them. Thank you for always sharing your always beautiful photos, memories, common-sense insight, and warmth…what can I say, you delightful, dear girl! Happy Fall to you and Joe, and the kids.

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Elaine! Yes, I was pretty impressed with myself too when I got a digital camera! What little miracles they are!

  17. Bernie says:

    All those dishes you made sound scrumptious! I had to laugh when I saw the magazine cover…”Decorate with Harvest Golds”. That was my mother’s favorite, and I spent YEARS getting rid of it. Sigh.

    • sbranch says:

      My mom had avocado green! 🙂

      • Elaine in Toronto says:

        We had the brown. The fridge went a few years ago but the stove is still churning out good things to eat 47 years later! I know it and it knows me, lol.

        • Judy Young says:

          I will always remember the poppy red fridge that I had in the late seventies. Sometimes I wish I still had it, stainless steel seems so cold compared.

  18. Mary S. says:

    Thank you for sharing your amazing dinner party with us! Sooooo beautiful! What is that darling little figurine in the glass? It really caught my eye! I am so happy you and Joe are going to take a real vacation!! Maybe you can take SONG OF YEARS along with you to read!! xoxox Love from Mary S. In Fresno, CA

    • sbranch says:

      It’s hand painted on the glass. Like a gnome walking through the snow. Antique store of course. Good idea about Song of Years, I just went and got it and put it out to remember!!! Let’s see if I can do that!

      • Mary S. says:

        Oh, wow! Never would have thunk it (the gnome)!! I sure hope you can read the book – it’s my favorite :-). Lots of love!

  19. diana navarre says:

    Just a week from now we will be on your island all the way from New Mexico!
    So excited for a visit to the ocean – from the land of dirt and cactus!
    Just like you – we love a vacation once in a while!
    Have a great weekend.

  20. Susan, I am hoping you will be signing books after your first signing, maybe a little closer to where I will be leaf peeping in early October, in the Finger Lakes region of NY! Have a great time on your trip to NY in late Sept.!!

    • sbranch says:

      Maybe not this year, we are going to do a big tour when the second book comes out . . . I need to stay home this year and finish it!

  21. Heather L. says:

    I’m so excited you are getting a vacation at Lake Champlain!!! yay!!! I was born in VT so that lake is special to me. LOVED your dinner table!! Very inspiring! Have your September calendar page on my fridge right now. It is far too hot in Indiana at the moment but fall hints are everywhere. Just this minute finished ordering “THE BOOK” (Fairytale Girl). I made myself save up for it by paying myself $1 each time I exercised. 🙂 This is my new plan to make sure I exercise. Now I will have to start saving up for some other book (and I’m sure it won’t be nearly as delightful as yours). But I need to keep exercising! 🙂

  22. Ann Woleben says:

    Susan,

    I appreciate your observation of the simplest things in life – sunlight, shadows, shells. Every time I read your blog, I am reminded to take time to look for the simple gifts that come our way each day. Thank you.

    Ann

  23. RosemaryK says:

    Susan, on your next book signing I hope you will visit Wisconsin.

  24. Deborah in Odessa, Tx says:

    Lovely, just lovely. I love dappled light. It is pure luxury to sit in a light dappled room. I love your dishes and plaid napkins. Perfect. I also love, love, love the golden atmosphere September’s days bring. It is like looking through a gold tinted glass. My Favorite time of year is Awesome Autumn. All I can think about now is pretty light. Thanks for sharing all you share and I ordered My Life in France. I can hear her voice. Enjoy this beautiful weekend. “See” you next blog.

  25. Charissa says:

    Oh Susan you made me cry today. I loved your post so much. I felt like I got to attend your dinner party and I loved loved loved all your comments about the light. I had forgotten how much I loved the light coming in like that. We have lived in a zero lot line home for over 10 years and don’t get that light anymore. So I lived vicariously through you today and it was wonderful. I am so excited to hear about your book signing. It looks wonderful. I think I will drop a hint about it to the hubby. I remembered a song that goes perfectly with you bless this house print from your last post. It is perry como’s bless this house. This was my mother’s favorite song too. I just love it. Here is a YouTube link youtube.com/watch?v=934lUuATPME I hope you like it too☺️ I wanted to give something back to you xoxo

  26. Charissa says:

    PS Julia knows what you wrote and how you think about her. I am 100% sure😉

  27. Sara McKeefer says:

    You do ‘enchanting’ better than anyone I’ve ever known, Susan! From moon to moon, sheer enchantment! The dinner party looked lovely, and the Basil ice cream over-the-moon yummy! I have a feeling it will be worth buying another “Heart of the Home” just to get the recipe. Your mention of the Girlfriend book reminds me I need to find another one, because every time I buy one, I end up giving it away to one of my girlfriends! I love that book!

    I don’t blame you a bit for delaying your cross-country book signing until next May. You deserve some down-time after having your nose to the grindstone for months on end. Besides, it will be nice to see fall and winter on Martha’s through your eyes, Susan.

    I’m looking forward to winter, because all the canning will be over! Just got my peaches canned yesterday and am starting on applesauce Monday. We had so much rain this spring and summer that the apple trees in our orchard are loaded, so I’ll be giving some away for sure. I don’t have them sprayed, so they’re not perfect, but they taste perfect, especially in apple butter and sauce.

    I sure hope the UPS truck comes soon, so you can get your vacation underway, and I can get my book! 🙂 🙂 Sara 🙂 🙂 P.S. It was Julia.

    • sbranch says:

      Mmmmm you make me hungry for you apples! How lucky the people are around YOU Sara!

      • pat addison (cave junction, OR) says:

        we’re doing apple butter, and apple sauce. along with fried apple rings. yumm!!!!! 🙂

      • Judy Young says:

        Found beautiful honeycrisp apples today at a local store. Tonight since it is still hot in Texas, we are having French bread, Brie, honeycrisp apples and Parmesan Zucchini Rounds for supper.

  28. Tatiana Sciancalepore says:

    Oh please reprint heart of the home!!! That would be amazing!

  29. Ann says:

    Oh, WOW, Susan, another post with fabulous pictures, inspiring words and mouth watering recipes. Never sure exactly what it is about your posts that touch my heart but they often bring tears of joy to my eyes and this one was no exception. Best wishes for the first signing event of your new book (my copy has been ordered and is eagerly awaited) Just love the name tag so much that even though I’m too far away across the pond to make it to the event I might print myself one off and wear it when Fairy Tale Girl arrives. Please say you will be doing one for the Stourhead picnic. I’m also a regular subscriber to the wonderful Country Living magazine and fyi, another one I subscribe to and can recommend is Country Homes and Interiors which is slightly different but equally as good. Your talents bring me joy, thank you.
    With love from, Ann in Chester xx

  30. Anne S says:

    A tasty gem of a post…sun-dappled, dinner, a nod to Julia, and a visit back to New Hampshire, and forward to Lake Champlain ( do go to the Shelburne Museum, it’s a great place), and all of those fine little places in Vermont.

  31. AngieTink says:

    ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰Just Flying By & Saw that You Had a New~Blog~Post Sweet Sue! Yay! 🙂 The 1st Book~Signing for “The~Fairy~Tale~Girl” OMG!!! I’ll Be There in “Spirit”…..& My Wings~Are~Staying~Crossed That When You Begin “The~Book~Tour” for Both~Books You Put Florida on The Map!!! 🙂 & Come on Down!!!….. It Could Happen!!! Right? 🙂 Ahhhhhhhh I Know …Breathe….Anyway….Your Dinner~Party Was Perfection….Your Tribute To Julia Child (Goosebumps) 🙂 I Watch The Movie Julie & Julia a Lot…..& Every Time PBS Shows One Of Julia’s Episodes… Herbster & I Sit & Watch With Joy….We Love Her!!! & When Julia is With Jaques Pepin!…… 🙂 ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰ Well You & Joe Are Going To Have a Magical~Well~Deserved~Vacation…..& All Us “Girlfriends” are Anxiously Awaiting The Arrival of “The~Fairy~Tale~Girl” OMG!!!!!!!! Sweet Sue!!!!! Thank~You For Everything! Wishing You & Joe & Girl~Kitty & Jack a Magical~Wonderful~Scrumptious~Autumn!!!! xoxo Poof! ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰ P.S. This Morning Very Early Herbster Was Calling Me….”Angie Angie Quick Come See This!!!!” We Live on a Canal….Our Bedroom is Upstairs & The Canal is in Our Backyard….& When The Sun Rises It Glistens on The Water & The Reflection Dances on Our Bedroom Walls….So As I Walked into The Room There it Was Glittery Sparkly Reflections which Delighted Herbster & I Said…”Doesn’t it Look Like The Autumn~Fairies are Dancing???” 🙂 😉 & Herbster Said…”Yes! It Really Does!” Oh Heavenly~Day! ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰

    • sbranch says:

      We haven’t plotted our course yet for next spring, but we are really going to try hard for Florida. This country is just so darn BIG when you’re driving it in a car!!! Getting to all the nooks and crannies is difficult. You really do need to BE a fairy to do a good job of it!

      • AngieTink says:

        ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰ Good~Morning Sweet Sue…It’s A Huge~Country!!! 🙂 I’ll Keep My Wings~Crossed For Florida!!! 🙂 & You My Dear Are The Most Magical~Fairy of Us All!!! You “Inspire~Us” Every~Day…..Last Night I Had a Dream That Our Mail~Man Rang Our Door~Bell & Handed Me My Copy of “The~Fairy~Tale~Girl” I Woke Up Squealing “OMG It’s Here”!!!!! 🙂 Sooooooooooooon! xoxo Poof! ☆♡♬♪♫❀✰ 🙂

  32. Sandra Gillanders says:

    Loved this post (I love all your posts.) Reading your posts is an Ommmm… moment or two for me. I know what you mean about “the light.” It is something I have always noticed and continue to enjoy in my home and any other place where it dances, shines, sparkles, twinkles and inspires. Even the light as the sun is low in the sky and shines in on my washing machine. I would like to take down walls and let in more but found skylight are a wonderful invention. Looking forward to reading your book. Hope you have a great and wonderful adventure in New Hampshire. Maybe I can visit there sometime. Love the leaves in the window. I do it almost every year since I first saw your garland. Going to put on in the window in the laundry room and watch the leaves sparkle.

  33. Lynn Cunningham says:

    Happy September to you also! I loved this post ~ everything about it. I don’t know why, but my imagination has always been captured by light dappling anywhere, and I always stop what I’m doing to watch it. I loved the pictures you shared of the dapples in your world! And your dining room looked so cozy with your friends enjoying that great-looking food ~ everyone looked engaged and happy to be there.
    Fall really is on the way ~ enjoy your walks through that charming woods you and Joe love!

    • sbranch says:

      We felt fall all weekend, the walks were splendid! We came back by the ocean and took our time! Nice to hear from you Lynn!

  34. Samantha says:

    Wish I could come visit you at the October signing..But I will be getting MARRIED that day!! 🙂 Your dinner party looked fabulous! What fun! Enjoy these last bits of summer <3

  35. Janet says:

    Susan,

    You are sort of a little Julia Child to me … inspiring me in so many ways. Not just in cooking and making my house ‘home’ but in painting and gardening too. I just got a new baby Tuxedo male kitty (born May 15) . He has a tiny mini mustache and reminds me in so many ways of Jack. How would I go about sending you a photo of him. He is so precious and loves to fetch already!!!!! He came from a rescue locally and already had the name Wally … fits him perfectly.
    Janet

  36. Susan Morgon ( an Ohio gal in SoCal ) says:

    What a lovely post! I especially love the moon; I can never get enough of looking at the beautiful white lady of the night. Add to that the pictures of the splashes of light here and there – I always feel something I cannot name when I see such things. It’s exciting to read of books signings and such. I do hope to be able to catch you, whether it be in CA or Ohio. By this time next year, my husband and I should be settled in our new home in Ohio. We have lived with his mother for five years, but she passed away this month, so we will be moving back to Ohio to be near my mother. ( I will need a new screen name for this blog, won’t I? ) It’s been all kinds of crazy. I just noticed that I missed the blog entry before this one, and I still haven’t read Willard! I am waiting for a peaceful moment when I can have a cup of tea . Your plans for a nice time of being at home are well deserved. I hope you enjoy it bunches , along with having a wonderful time at the lake!

  37. Wendy Louise says:

    Ohhh Susan, Thank-you so much for a special get away treat ! I just love your dinner parties! There is such a cozy, loving feel,all your senses are vibrant. I can taste your food because I have made so many of your recipes. What a treat. I hope to get to the book signing and enjoy the fall in wonderful New England. Aren’t we so blessed to have the change of seasons to live by. We just had a wonderful family picnic this weekend outside all day and in to part of the night, it was heaven! Such joy to be had ! Love to you and Joe and kitties ohhhh and to everyone here on this magnificent blog, Wendy-Louise Things that fairy-tales are made of. oxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  38. Susan Dear,

    I never got back to leave a note ‘after’ I read your latest post. Oh my, what loveliness you’ve shared.

    Like you, I fall in love with light playing on windows and creating soft shadows and twinkly fairy spots on walls. It’s one of those free huge treats that so totally satisfies my heart and my need for beauty in unexpected places. Heart happy to see those pics.

    And that Jack… OMGoodness… he so reminds me of my own kitties, Gilbert and Sullivan (long departed to their kitty rewards). As soon as we’d bring out the tablecloths and set the table, they’d be sure to plop right in the middle of it all. Just like Jack. And if there was baby’s breath in the flower arrangements, well, they were mowing that down like sheep on a meadow. I never did catch them doing this, but a friend once found her kitties sitting right in the plates.

    Oh, before I forget, my mom says thank you so much for the birthday wishes. She really appreciated it.

    On that note, I wish you a beautiful week ahead. Will watch for Twitter notes.

    Sending hugs and blisses,
    Brenda
    xox

  39. Joan Lesmeister says:

    Musica to moons & pure delight in between! Beautiful!!! Perfect words escape me, except.. love you back!!! xoxo

  40. Judy says:

    Yes, PLEASE reprint Heart of the Home! I am looking forward to collecting your books that I missed the first time around-with ribbons. I also would love the Summer book and the Christmas book…..just keep them coming.

  41. Kathy Fletcher says:

    Hi Susan love the post as always….but i have a question….when you go to the UK next year- will you be doing a book again like “A Fine Romance”? i am hoping you be saying YES!@!@!@!@! Love your blog- love your books- can’t wait to get my Fairy Tale Girl book- i pre-ordered it i think the first day you announced it- so i have been waiting – like waiting on Christmas to come as a child….hahah. thanks for all you do to make my days a little more happy…..
    big hugs from Kentucky!

    • sbranch says:

      I’m definitely keeping a diary, and we’ll just have to see if it turns into a book. Thank you Kathy!

      • Rhonda D. says:

        So glad to hear that you will be keeping a diary on your trip to the UK. Oh Susan…I’m hoping it will turn into a book. This is one trip that we would always love to remember. Even something like your book of Willards, a diary form of that would be awesome. You’ve taught us well, and I can already see it in print. I told Sheri to put in a good word for us too. Is this helping “the cause?” Okay, I’m stretching…..but you could turn anything into a great book!

  42. vicki says:

    Greetings for Labor Day! I was excited to see you will be in Meredith when the leaves are at their prime. We actually just returned home to NJ from there….it’s been our summer vacation spot for almost 40 years…..so beautiful! In 2013 the timing was perfect and I actually met you at the bookstore signing during our summer getaway. I think you will love your Vermont vacation near the lake. (We also lived in VT for 10 years and still have a son living there) It is a magical place especially during the fall. Loved seeing the beautiful settings for your dinner party…..I do keep waiting for the UPS truck!!!!

    • sbranch says:

      I’m as excited about the drive up there as I am about actually getting to the Lake. Such a perfect time of year!

  43. Leslie says:

    I am so thrilled you are coming back to Meredith. Loved meeting you and Joe and am looking forward to seeing you again… can’t wait to get my book. I got the 2016 small calendar and the blotter – which I LOVE,LOVE,LOVE!!!! See you soon!!

    • sbranch says:

      Goodie! I won’t be there alone! Always the biggest fear is that you go and no one comes! 🙂 Love to see you Leslie!

  44. Rosanne Murphy (Oregon) says:

    Today I got out the Autumn book (a bit early, but I needed inspiration) and out slipped a thank you note from you dated January 25, 2001! What a little treasure, back from the time there was no blog and the connections came only through your books and Willard. I remember writing a big long letter, feeling compelled to say how much you inspired me, and how perfectly you expressed my own feelings with your art, words, and very unique talent. Well, here we are 14 years later, and it’s only gotten better! From my heart to yours, thank you again, and still.

  45. Mamey says:

    I would LOVE LOVE LOVE a reprint of the Home is Where the Heart is book with added recipes!! Yes!!!!! Are you going to Lake Champlain for a book signing??? Or just a vacation?? Love your posts and I’m soooo excited about getting the book!! Can’t wait!!

    • sbranch says:

      The Lake is just vacation, punctuated with reading! 🙂 I think it’s one week more and the book ships from the printer…. to us, and then from us to YOU!

  46. Danella on the West Coast says:

    Love the blog…love reading all the comments. Another wonderful treat! Thank you for once again inviting us all to dinner and into your home.

  47. Trisha K says:

    I am so excited for my favorite season to start. And cannot wait for any pictures you share from New Hampshire, it will be beautiful. I really think you deserve a vacation. Enjoy!

  48. Susan Stretchberry says:

    I was transported to another world when I read your blog. Thank you. Also wondering if the ‘Girlfriends’ book is available for purchase….would love to own it. I was a big fan of yours before facebook and the web. Discovered your cards in a little shop in Dresden Ohio. I was thrilled. Dresden is where Longaberger Baskets are made and I was a consultant, selling the baskets at home parties. My goal was to recruit enough other consultants so that I could become a Branch Advisor. I was encouraged to ‘name’ my branch and I did….Heart of the Home Branch. When I saw your cards…Heart of the Home….and noted that your name was Susan…..and then that your last name was Branch. I felt the gods were sending me a message of future success …that I would indeed reach my goal of becoming a Branch Advisor….and I did! So thanks for the boost to my confidence.

  49. Georgie (FTW TX) says:

    Hello everyone! ~ I’m so happy to report I found the 2016 Calendar Blotter! I usually stock up on the mini-calendars to share with the girls during the holidays. The Blotter is SO BIG AND COLORFUL! For any of us who sit at a desk most days, it’s a special treat that’ll last all year!

  50. Jean says:

    YES!!!!! Please do another Heart of the Home…..mine is looking pretty shabby, it gets pulled from the bookshelf a lot 🙂 I have to tell you, I made your mothers Potato Chip cookies….without my knowing about it till the next day, my husband took all of them to work to share with co-workers! They ate them all….in one afternoon….and all I got were the crumbs! I have requests for more, this time I’m going to stash a few for me 😉 Thank you for the recipe!

  51. Isabel says:

    Hi Susan,

    Once again, a beautiful post during the beginning of my favorite time of year. Being stuck in Florida for too long, makes me homesick for all the “FALL” things they don’t have down here. As soon as I saw your picture of the British Country Living, I remembered I had bought it once before and had LOVED it. I had to run out and get it right away. Like one of the other girlfriends, I am a little leary of trying to get a subscription from overseas. The only negative thing about that magazine, if there is one, is that it makes me want to visit England. I just LOVE everything England, the people, countryside, etc. Also loved seeing pictures of Jack. Did you ever think about an answer to that much asked question: If you could pick any people in the world, what 3 people would you want to have dinner with? Put in my order for FairyTale Girl and am anxiously waiting for a package at the door.

  52. Jack says:

    So, it’s one of those cool clear fall days – the sun is shining bright but the house is cold and as time passes , the afternoon sun gets over to the west side of the house and shines in the open front door , warming that rectangle of carpet on the floor …..you’ve been kind of cold all day so you grab the pillow off the couch and stretch out in that warmed square of carpet !
    Delightful chills of warmth caress your entire body all at once giving you a case of the
    ” goosies” -saying , close your eyes for ten minutes — thirty minutes later , you wake back up ,all warm and cozy — the square of sun has moved on but that’s OK cause you feel so good ! And the fairy-tale magic of another fall day is fulfilled…..

  53. Well it was a perfect afternoon to read your post im inside because today it’s just to hot ran to the postal and came right back home.. Tired from lack of sleep from last night. It was wonderful to read your post.. I’m a big moon fan.. Beautiful moon. Wish i could jump on a plane and meet you there.. But can’t so I will have to await your post about it all. Your table and all looks wonderful your lovely fluted glasses look just some I found in Mamas basement over the weekend They still had some labels on them saying crystal but they were light as a feather very delicate. Wasnt sure wether to keep them on not. But it’s big possiblity I will I dont own any in clear glass and last Christmas I found a lovely set of clear plates etc.. Glad you could relax and have lovely time among your friends … Enjoyed this post so much.. Have a wonderful week Susan… Ps you so remind me of myself in so many ways Blessings 🌸🐝💐🍴

  54. Barbara from Wolverine Lake MI says:

    Susan, I love the moon, love your table, set with all the twinkly glass and polished silver! I started collecting antique etched wine goblets not too long ago, and have 5 now, no end in sight! each a treasure 🙂 and man, do I love polishing silver (well actually polished silver, not the polishing itself). I hate to see tarnished silver, that says it better. I am famous for picking up pieces and polishing them into perfection, although my Dad told me you can’t polish all the way, you have to leave some of the black in the pattern so you know it’s really silver. anyway I have a friend that whenever I go to her house I’m grabbing silver and polishing it since it’s always tarnished. She hates polishing it herself, and leaves it for me. Guess that’s my job 🙂 Once for Christmas I wrapped up a jar of polish with all her presents with a tag that said – “I will be your favorite gift! Hours of enjoyment” she opened it up and just laughed and laughed 🙂 Silver, china and crystal — such lovely beauties.

  55. Elaine in Toronto says:

    Susan, I just had to share this with you and the girlfriends. I was at the mall this aftetnoon, sitting on a bench waiting for my husband when I saw a couple walk by and I knew they were in love. Was it the way they looked at each other, or the way they were engaged in conversation? Maybe it was the way they were holding hands. They were older, perhaps in their eighties. He was elegant in grey dress pants, sky blue dress shirt and tie. She was in camel slacks and a pretty blouse. How did I know they were in love? He was carrying her purse. Oh, my, so sweet.

  56. Jack says:

    The garden gate , stands up so straight
    It shines out through the fog …..both winter , summer ,or fall and spring
    Good grief how do we get rid of this thing
    No progress here , with time so dear
    The blog is in the bog
    Take heart dear friends , this to shall end …..
    The UPS man’s on his way!

  57. Candy Lyons says:

    You are going to one of my favorite places in the world when you go on vacation. Vermont is a gorgeous state and Lake Champlain is incredible. I know you will have a fabulous time. Can’t wait to hear all about it!

    Candy

    P.S. Love your blog!

  58. Mary D. The says:

    Soooooo excited! It’s on the calendar! I’m coming!

  59. Marie (Long Beach, California) says:

    Hi Susan! Another wonderful post, filled with so much eye candy! Your sit down dinners and the beautiful tablescapes always inspire me. I was wondering where you got your subscription for the Country Living British Edition. I’m looking online and there are many different companies, but it seems you’re happy with yours. Thanks again for all you do for us girlfriends! ♥ ♥ ♥

  60. Saartje says:

    I totally understand what you mean with the dappled light bringing fairy magic into the house. I actually planted a willow in front of our south facing living room window (in the front garden) just for the shadows it would cast. It wasn’t easy to decide where to put it. I didn’t actually plant a tree, I just stuck a branch from a pollard willow in my sister in law’s garden in the ground. That’s how we do willow in Flanders: you stick a stick in the ground and it grows. And after a few years you pollard it, unless you want a huge willow to swallow your whole front yard and your house with it. I had to look that word up, ‘pollard’. I’ve never read it, or heard it used in English. I always think of pollard willows as typically Flemish. They are everywhere here, surrounding swampy meadows: pollards and poplar trees. Anyway, my willow now casts beautiful dappled shade on the chestnut floorboards of our living room! It just makes me so happy, especially on days with a light breeze. And it marks the seasons, because in summer the sun is too high for the shadow to reach the house, and in winter there are no leaves on the tree. It’s my small gardening victory!

  61. Susan on Bainbridge Island, Washington state says:

    Hi Susan! I was just on Amazon and saw that anyone can preorder your new book….It will be distributed on September 18th through Amazon….I like to shop local, and I ordered mine from YOU and was wondering when we will be receiving ours..I am soooo excited to read this one!!! Counting the days!!!!
    I loved this blog ….The moon, twinkle lights, dinner parties, Julia….what more could anyone want on a “last of the summer” evening…….And now we head to my favorite time of the year also….Autumn. So special in so many many ways. Must run for now…from my island to yours….be good to yourself…xoxo

    • sbranch says:

      Well, Amazon won’t get them until we ship them to them, which isn’t going to be on the 18th! Probably the people who are ordering from them will get them in 2 or 3 weeks. Yours will be coming next week! eeek! rhymes with week!

      • mary spring says:

        ..Wow !!..next week ?!?..’so excited !!!..I was worried about getting this new book before my big move back to the pacific northwest..perfect timing !!..i feel magic in the air !!..thank you, Susan, for all you do for us !!..with love, as always..

  62. Carla says:

    Your feast looks truly wonderful. I love that you take the time to make it so special with all the beautiful dishes and glassware.
    I just came across this blog from England and thought of you – serendipitypatch.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2015-01-01T00:00:00Z&updated-max=2016-01-01T00:00:00Z&max-results=8. How I would love to see these beautiful scenes in person! But, you can! Looking forward to “going along” on your next trip across the pond!

  63. pat addison (cave junction, OR) says:

    Hello Susan, Howdy Girlfriends!! whew what a summer, its been hot and miserable, then cooler and almost fall-like and now we are back up in the triple digits hopefully for the last time. but I have some wonderful news for all of you. remember awhile back I posted about some idiot neighbors dumping their cats on us, mama cat and her 6 kittens, well we have done it, all the kittens and mama have been adopted out to good homes, the last 2 kittens leave this afternoon for their new home, the man is keeping them together as we felt they should stay together to keep each other company. well they are going to their new forever home today, and I get my backyard back…. I beat the deadline my hubby set down, and got them all adopted out and into new homes before Fall. WHEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!! I am so happy and so relieved we got them good homes, and I will miss all the mischief those kittens got into, like hiding under the grape vines and pouncing out on the turkeys and the geese, and biting the turkeys’ tails. things that would have you all laughing at the mischief they get into. i’ll miss them, but I am so happy for them, new homes for them all, and I don’t have to worry about them needing shelter from the winds, rain and possible snow this winter. what a day, now out to go play with the kittens for the last time and enjoy their mischief, and then watch them go to their new home….. what a day!!!! hugs…… 🙂

  64. Cathy Dupuis says:

    I live 20 minutes from Meredith I am going to try to get there to meet you as it will be my 40th anniversary that day. I have preordered your book and just can’t wait. We hiked today and saw plenty of signs of fall peeking through.
    Cathy

  65. Becky says:

    Hi Susan. I can’t remember if I’ve already purchased the new book (not enough band width for everything!) How can I check on this? Thanks and LOVE this post!

  66. Sandra Mailey says:

    Here I sit at the computer with my back to the open door. This is one of the first mornings here in south central Pennsylvania that a sweater is not only comfortable, but also really necessary. It is such a JOY to be contemplating the need to close the door!!! These chilly late summer mornings are absolutely wonderful!!
    Can hardly wait for Fall to arrive officially! Oh. AND “The Fairy Tale Girl” should be arriving soon as well!! Double Wonderful!!

  67. Oh my word, I’ve never commented on a blog before that has almost 300 comments!! But now that I’ve come across your site, I can quite understand why, I just love how you write and also set out things, so pretty and highly enjoyable! I also note that you love England, thank you, that’s made my English heart happy! Oh but I must read your books, bet they are fab! I’m so glad I found you and your super blog, thank you for some warm, happy moments!

  68. Jack says:

    sbranch who?

  69. Kathryn says:

    Susan,
    Do you remember that the adults in our lives thought Earth Angel was terribly scandalous? By today’s standards it seems pretty tame! Loved hearing it again.
    Your blog today was fully of beautiful pictures and thoughts. Thank you!

    Kathryn in Los Angeles

  70. Kathryn says:

    Oops! That was full, not fully. 🙂

  71. Suzanne says:

    I so look forward to all that you write and draw. It takes me back to a simpler time before cell phones and 24 hr everything. I enjoy relaxing and reading your posts. Thank you so much for all that you do.
    It makes me feel happy.

  72. Sonya Hewes says:

    Hi Susan ~
    So excited that I ordered the new book today and excited for when it arrives. I have had a really, really tough couple months, so I just want to get lost in your book and leave all the worries behind me. Thanks for continuing to give us the warm fuzzies and the love – we appreciate it more than you could possibly imagine!

  73. Betty Hopkins says:

    There’s nothing like finding a new Susan Branch blog on my computer to give me a good case of the warm fuzzies on a crisp, cool September morning. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful life, books, and positive quotes, etc. with your girlfriends. You add so much joy to our lives. Thank you so much!

  74. debra sewell says:

    This was a fabulous blog post. Slow dancing is the best of all. You can cuddle, talk and just be. So great fall thoughts as it tickles us in this Indian Summer weather. When will you be doing a book signing in Clearwater, FL. You cant only spoil New England with yoyrself. Hey us MA transplants need you. Happy Very very early fall

    Debra

    • sbranch says:

      We’re really going to try to get down there this time! Not this year, but next, when the second part of the book comes out.

  75. ChristineLeonard says:

    Oh to be a guest at one of your dinner parties! Just pre-ordered your book. Can’t wait until it arrives!!! Enjoy your trip!

  76. Nancy Williamson says:

    Loved this post. Just returned from your wonderful island last week. Was there with my daughter, Stephanie and her husband Jerry. Stephanie was a fan from your very first book and 18 yrs ago visited with you on your front porch, the highlight of her life. We are envious of your Home Port dinner as we went on the first Wednesday after labor day to find the closed. Very crowded in Menemsha as there was a beach wedding taking place. How romantic is that? A beach wedding with a Menemsha sunset as the backdrop! We just love the island, had a great time and we will be back.

  77. Nancy Williamson says:

    We are from Indiana and wonder in what town your book is printed. So proud it is printed in Indiana.

  78. Mary Anne says:

    Please sign me up to get your New Letters. Been slightly ill, so somehow I kept hearing from you less and less. I love to hear what you are doing, and your husband Jack and Girl Kitty. I miss what you are cooking and how books are
    coming along. Love you Blog so much. Please ad my name. Thanks.0

    • sbranch says:

      Sheri will do it when she gets in to work ~ I asked her to sign you up to get the blog sent via email, and also for WILLARD. . . if you don’t get them, check your spam file, because sometimes they end up there. xoxo Hope you feel better soon.

  79. Debbie Vaky says:

    Hi: Do you ever make it to Atlanta for book signings?

  80. Meg says:

    I just began reading your blog, and found this entry so beautiful. The lovely table setting, the moon, Julia Child, a CAT! And so many more pleasant thoughts that I know I’ve found a kindred spirit here. One question: can you tell me any more about the bird vases on your table? They’re just perfect!

    • sbranch says:

      Nice to meet you Meg! I found them at an antique store, just as you see them. Not much more I can say . . . I think there is a name for them, but right now I’m away from home and can’t look to see. Remind me in a week or so and I’ll go see if there’s anything written on the bottoms.

  81. Mónica Patricia Benítez Poveda says:

    Me encanta esta página. Tengo un libro tuyo, lo compré en Miami hace casi 8años. Quiero mantenerme en contacto.

    • sbranch says:

      Monica says (via Google Translate):
      I love this page. I have a book of yours, I bought in Miami almost 8 years go. I want to stay in touch.

      Hola Monica! Muchas gracias!

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