Silly Day Friday, for some unknown reason . . .

Feeling very silly today!  Must be because it’s Friday and we are planning some fun this weekend.  Plus, I came downstairs this morning and noticed

. . . that Joe has been decorating.

Despite the silliness, I have rather a serious subject to discuss with you.

 OK, here goes: I have a very difficult request to make of you. It’s something I thought I would never say in my life, EVER.  It’s actually against everything I stand for. 🙂  I’ve been so torn as to whether or not to even bring it up; I’ve racked my brain to think of a good way to do it.  I’ve written it six ways from Sunday and I’ve come to the conclusion, there is no good way to say this without sounding like I’m looking a gift horse in the mouth, the opposite of gratitude, which is the way I truly feel: Grateful.  But I have to do it, so taking a deep breath (as I said a paragraph ago but chickened out), here goes.

 Please, darling wonderful creative people, don’t send me any more presents.  I said it.  That wasn’t so bad. It feels like a terrible thing to say for more reasons than one — you send me darling things!  What am I thinking? But it’s gotten to be too much to handle.  Joe is in line every day at the post office waiting for the man to give him the packages, he’s beginning to give me the evil eye about it.  He’s a doll, but he has his limits, which are now overwhelmed with boxes.  

Also, I open them and then, thinking I am going to find time to send a nice thank-you note, I keep the present intact with the card and the return address, so now there are stacks of them, on the kitchen and dining room tables that no one’s allowed to touch.  I think you see the problem.  Plus, the guilt level for a person who was raised to send thank you notes when she gets a gift, especially a beautifully wrapped handmade gift, is growing.  A person should feel lucky to have problems like “too many presents!” I’ve been so blessed by your thoughtfulness; I’m sure I’ll regret this someday, so I’d like to reserve the right to say, “OK you can start sending me presents again!”
You should know that the greatest gift you can give me is when you comment, share, and are a part of this blog.  That’s what I love best.  You inspire me!  You give me gifts every day when you do that! Plus, by freeing up my P.O. Box, you give me the gift of time, which is the greatest gift of all (as the Gladys Taber quote above says).     XOXO  
I just wouldn’t want you to think I’m not appreciative of the thought that goes into the wonderful things you send.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 
And you know what’s really not fair?  I get to give YOU gifts! SO not fair.  But, that just has to be the way the cookie crumbles; there is only one of me, no possible inundation can occur.
And especially today, because, YES, it’s time, once more, to announce the lucky winner of our random drawing for the vintage Christmas book!
Are you ready? 
 Or, would you like to think about it more?  Time out for a short prayer?  OH, you’re ready?  OK, here goes . . . the Random Number Generator is up to his elbow in the hat with the names in it, digging, digging; round and round he goes. (Have I told you RNG looks very much like Harvey in that old Jimmy Stewart movie?  He does!)
  Why is he going so slow?
 COME ON Random Number Generator, choose one!!!  (He’s a big tease.)
He’s got one!  He’s pulling it out.  It’s coming, it’s coming, here it is, surfacing, now give it to me RNG, please.  No, no, let’s not play, give it, give it, no, give it to me right now!  You are so bad.  Thank you.  Let’s see, what does this say?  Where are my glasses.  Just a minute.   JOE HAVE YOU SEEN MY GLASSES???  Oops, NEVER MIND, I FOUND THEM (RNG had them).  It’s coming into focus . . . ah yes, the winner is. . .
 L  I  N  D  A    M  U  N  R  O ! ! !
So happy for you Linda!   Please leave me a message so I know how to send you the book!
And these girls are what our weekend will be all about . . . This is Eliza and Maggie, coming from New Hampshire today!  Aren’t they darling?  So off I go, to finish getting everything ready for them.
Have a wonderful day!!!
This entry was posted in Blog and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

343 Responses to Silly Day Friday, for some unknown reason . . .

  1. Lorrie says:

    What delightful little girls. You’re going to have a fun weekend! Congratulations to Linda!

    Just tell it like it is. You’ve done it well.

  2. Robin says:

    Joe’s decorating is funny! How clever! I haven’t sent you any gifts (sorry) even tho you give me one every time you write this blog!. I totally understand your situation and admire you for saying something – how brave and wonderful you were! I admire you. Happy Holidays with love.

  3. Sweet,darling girls. You will receive good karma for being a good person. I do believe in karma.

  4. Country Gal says:

    Its lovely to recieve all the gifts I am sure but your right in asking to please stop as it does and will flood your P.O Box . I am sure all will understand as you have asked so wonderfully in this post . Reading and commenting on ones blog and sharing your time to write, take photos and post about it is a special time in its self ! Blog friends are awesome ! Such lovely looking girls have a great time this weekend !

  5. Joan Lesmeister says:

    Well said, my dear! Those darling little cotton candies will overflow your lovely home and spirit with Christmas Cheer (as if you didn’t already overflow)! And, well done, Joey! 🙂 And, congratulations Linda! xo

  6. Diane P. says:

    I know it had to be really, really hard to hit “post” for that one Susan, but we wouldn’t know if you didn’t tell us! You are so very generous, your girlfriends just can’t help themselves but try to reciprocate!
    Love it that Joe is into the decorating spirit, despite his extra “Santa” duties!
    Enjoy your weekend with the (little) girls! Adorable!

  7. Yvonne Shafer says:

    Susan, no one can be offended by you! Thank you for the glimpse into your wonderful life through your blog. Your glee is contagious! Have a wonderful visit with your lovely nieces and Merry Christmas to you and Joe!

  8. Lisa says:

    Ha! I love the “E.” He must be a Joy! I have to let you know that my husband has been enjoying pieces of your blog too. (He really likes Jack.) He also enjoys seeing me enjoying your blog 🙂 Thanks SO much. It truly is a wonderful community gift as Seth says.

  9. Barbara (WA) says:

    Very bravely and sweetly said! So important, too. Now with freedom of spirit, have a wonderful weekend with those darling girls. I look forward to photos of Jack in seventh-heaven!

  10. pat addison says:

    good morning Susan and everyone, that was very brave to say that Susan and i am sure it was also very needed. love that Joe is adding his decorations to everything, can i borrow him to get my hubby, ed, into the mood??? those are adorable lil angels, have a fun and wonderful weekend with them. Merry Christmas Susan and JoEy, and Girl Kitty and Jack, hope Jack has lots of fun with his new friends this weekend. Merry Christmas everyone!!!! hugs…. 🙂

  11. Jeanette says:

    Susan, Good for you for staying true to yourself and saying what you need to – we understand! Joe’s decorating is hilarious – looks like something my sweetie would do – everyone needs a good chuckle. I’ve begun my search for Christmas books locally, no success yet. But, the hunt is part of the fun. I know you’ll have a spectacular weekend with those adorable little girls, I can hear the giggling already. Sending hugs filled with holiday cheer! xoxo, Jeanette

  12. Debbie Hallock says:

    Congratulations to Linda And Thank You again for everything you give us everyday.


  13. YOU are such a very
    gracious lady and I think
    you made your case just
    beautifully! I’ll only send
    you hugs : ) Enjoy those
    precious cuties!

    Merry Friday,
    xx Suzanne

  14. debbie says:

    LOL!!!! Joe’s “decorating” reminds me of these cute little mugs that I had years ago that spelled N O E L that I displayed on my kitchen windowsill. EVERY SINGLE morning during Christmas, I would come downstairs and it would read
    L E O N!!! My kids thought it was hysterical… 🙂 Congrats to Linda and have a wonderful weekend with those two sweet girlies!!!

  15. Paulie says:

    Dear Sue:
    Oh my goodness what sweet young ladies …..lots of fun in store I am sure. Love your decorator! I sure could use one like that to liven up this place. Do you think you could clone him ……..but just a tad older maybe? Or maybe he has a twin someplace? Just got an email from a friend that I introduced to your blog….she was reading it and she lost two plus hours navigating all over it….she is now hooked the same as the rest of us………..made me chuckle so I said, good, now I and many others have company! So Susan, girlfriends a plenty you have for sure!
    GF – Paulie

  16. Diana Jean Hall says:

    I spied that JOeY at the very beginning and didn’t quit smiling all the way through today’s post! You are a special gift to us and I am sooo loving staying in touch with you through it. Even though we don’t know each other PERSONALLY, our friendship is true and true friends may speak the truth to each other without fear…. I can understand the “difficult” position you were in with this, but have no fear..I do thank you for your gift of this blog and cherish it!.. Those girls are PRECIOUS and I know you will have an awesome weekend and probably need a day to recover!! LOL.. Happy Weekend Susan and Joe and the whole bunch!!!

  17. nicole says:

    ha ha!!!!!! How funny! I never even thought a second to send you a present!!!!! Now I really feel ashamed I never did!!!!!!!!!!!
    Perhaps it is because I am part of thes one that have been getting used to getting letters and gifts ! (the one wh receives!!!)
    Having been in hospital for severall month ( beginning of the year), one of my illustrators gave my adress to many other illustrators and children book authors (french ones!), and it all started to arrive, first at the hospital, later at home… Just this week I got two sweet gifts… It is just the right amount… 🙂
    There are so many people with a big heart out there! How nice to know!
    Now I realise that if I want to be part of your family, I must send you a gift!!!!!! 🙂
    Enjoy the little girls! It is such precious moments!

    • sbranch says:

      So many with big hearts, and I think they all are finding each other right here. Hope all is well with you now!! xoxo

  18. Aggie says:

    I understand completely….guess I was too late, because I wanted to send you a little something from MI (heard of Pewabic Pottery?). I will have to reserve for another time in case you change your mind down the road.

    Hope you have a lovely time with your cute nieces and company!

  19. Tana says:

    I bet I am your favorite ’cause I didn’t send you a gift! You are such a sweet person and I know you love every single thought that went into these gifts. So if we all keep sending wonderfully happy thoughts your way, you will be thrilled! Right?

  20. Mary Clewley says:

    Oh my gosh, what a terrible dilemma you have there! Lol! Too cute! It’s funny about having gifts all over the place with names and addresses still attached so you can send thank you notes.
    Eliza and Maggie are beautiful. I hope you have a great time sharing with your family and that you get everything done just in time.
    I would love to interview you on my blog in January…(don’t know if you do that)…

    • sbranch says:

      I would LOVE that . . . I wonder if we can do it next fall? I’m buckling down after Christmas to finish my book and not doing any thing else until I do…it would be great do to when the new book comes out!

  21. Kim says:

    Hey there, Sweetie ~ Kudos to you for saying the uncomfortable, with love. Everyone who “knows” you knows your kind and tender heart and understands your conundrum. One of my favorite (now departed) poet/authors, May Sarton, used to write a thoughtful note/letter to each and every admirer who wrote to her. (This was in the days before email and social networking.) It became such a time-taker, away from her writing and her life, but she felt terrible guilt if she didn’t respond. Take a relaxing breath, and know that you’ve given us all something very much worth pondering here (as you always do!). Now … Go and have a Jo(e)yful time with those darling little girls this weekend!

    • sbranch says:

      For the first 5 years, I answered every single fan letter by hand, but then, it got out of hand, and so Willard was born. That’s why I answer everyone here now, while I still can!

  22. Lynn McMahon says:

    Happy Silly Friday!
    Did you happen to see America’s Funniest Videos Christmas Spectacular? Maybe “Joey” was watching?
    Have a great weekend with your family…especially those little s!

  23. pat addison says:

    hello again and good morning!! Susan i have a question for you……. have your kitties gotten into mischief in the kitchen??? the only reason i’m asking is because mine just did, i had all the things out for baking cookies and the cats got into the flour…there is flour everywhere in the kitchen, and instead of 3 black cats i now have 3 grayish white cats. someone jumped on the flour bag and poof…flour everywhere. i know what i get to this morning….clean up the kitchen and try to get some cookies baked, then run to the store for more flour. all part of the holiday mischief i guess. Have a fun weekend. hugs…. 🙂 Merry Christmas everyone!!!! 🙂

  24. Sunnybec says:

    It always interests me the way things are done in different parts of the World. We have postboxes here (in France) but they are just outside our door, the postman has his own key so just puts them in one side and we can open it from the other side!! My postbox is just outside my front door. In the UK the letterbox is usually in the front door, if parcels are large the postman just knocks on the door and delivers it person to person. We don’t realise how lucky we are to have this service, and, until I started blogging I didn’t realise it was different elsewhere. I am sure I would feel the same as you if I had to actually go to the Post Office everyday to collect my mail. Merry Christmas!! Linda

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, little island, no home delivery . . . we go get it, which is fun, we see everyone we know down there!

  25. Shanon says:

    Dear Susan, I have a wonderful FREE gift for you … I have your magnetic note pad hanging on my fridge and every morning, my husband tears off a sheet and write me a simple love letter and leaves it by the coffee maker for me to find 🙂 so thank you for giving my husband an outlet for his romantic gestures!

  26. Carmel says:

    Very well expressed! And one can tell that the girls are so full of life. Last year you had that adorable picture and recipe from your dad. I loved the shredded wheat with blue berries and whipped cream. I think there was a cherry too :). Would you share again if your dad sends another one of his gems? Many thanks for the wonderful tour of Martha’s Vineyard at Christmas. So cozy and charming. Take care, everyone!

  27. Charlene Hisayasu says:

    Susan…I have laughed throughout this reading. Not laughing-at but laughing-with! 🙂 What a wonderful community/family you and your readers (including me!) have become. The sharing, honesty, and caring is so evident here! I loved the visual of the tiny font on your sweet request. :)))) (big smiles)
    Congratulations to Linda!
    Enjoy your family time…especially those adorable nieces!
    Merry Christmas to you and JOeY! <3

  28. Karen P says:

    Love JOeY!!!d I can see that he fills your every day with JOY!

    You are so sweet to be torn over how to share your “present” concern with us! It shows what a loving, sensitive person you are and how much you truly do value your newfound girlfriends! I had to laugh when I read how you were raised to write thank you notes for every gift….me, too, and the guilt can sometimes be too much when we procrastinate, can’t it?! Shoot, though, ’cause I just found a little handpainted black tin tray that I was going to send you. Guess I’ll keep it for myself and think of you every time I look at it!

    Have a wonderful weekend with those precious, darling little girls! I just KNOW that you have some very special plans in mind for their visit. They will LOVE to see Jack! Love you TONS! Thank you for the everyday gift you give us of your blog, your creativity, and your caring spirit….xoxo….kp

  29. Christie Ray says:

    I heard a quote not long ago…”A true southern girl writes her thank you note before the wrapping paper even hits the floor.” I think it really applies to all the women of our age who were taught by their conscientious mothers…guilt was priority, right? Most young women today don’t worry about such things…they get by with texting their thankyous;) but, oh no, not us…so thank you for sharing your plight with us. Well said, and well received. We are also the same bunch that has to bring a hostess gift, so it’s understandable why we have this urge to give you something …to show we are truly grateful for all you do for us. Aren’t we just a!! We will show much restraint…especially those of us raised in the south with an extra measure of guilt;)
    We love you and appreciate your humor, your realness, your humble self!
    Have a wonderful day and a delicious weekend with those darling little girls!

  30. karen saunders says:

    It’s okay Susan….I think we all know there is nothing you could do or say that would upset any of us. We all love you!! Have a great weekend with those cute little twinkly fairies.

  31. Deborah says:

    Wow! Your local post office must be going crazy! It’s too bad we all didn’t come up with some kind of Secret Santa for Susan Branch Bloggers! We all love the same kind of homey, quaint, homemade, country and adorable kinds of things! We could pick a name from some kind of pool and send to one another!

    The girls in pink are adorable…little dolls! Have a great weekend Susan and all-I have 4 grandsons from 2 to 6 and have been shopping my heart out today! We finally got a dusting of snow…hugggs to all!!!!

  32. So now what am I going to do with this box of kittens?! Totally understand your feelings of being overwhelmed. Nobody ever sends me a thing and I feel it. Ohly kidding. I know what you mean about the comments, unless you write a blog you just have no idea.
    I heart you Susan!

    • sbranch says:

      OK, I take it back, put the box of kittens on the UPS truck ! 🙂 Heart you back Suzanne, thank you for your understanding!

  33. Susie says:

    It never occurred to me you would get too much stuff. Sorry for the Girl Kitty pillow cover : \ Susie

    • sbranch says:

      Please don’t be sorry Susie!!!. I love that pillow SO much. It’s on the bed in the guest room right now! The MOST adorable thing. I was so afraid someone would feel bad! All I can say is thank you so much, it was very kind and thoughtful of you. I know where your heart is!!! xoxo

  34. kathy gibbs says:

    You’re like a sister and I give my sis gifts. But enough is enough…I understand. My hubbies name is Joe, too……love the Joey! Merry Christmas.

  35. Sarah Maldonado says:

    As always, a very caring post with just the right words that conveyed love and appreciation. Your request is completely within reason when you multiply all the girlfriends I’ve witnessed on here with big hearts but the limits of your own home-space and time. Thank you for the blog that keeps us connected, the books that inspire us, and your generous spirit as you respond to comments. Now, as for JOeY, I think you need to add a little glitter to his ‘e’. Maybe you can get those pretty in pink girls to do that….

  36. Betsy says:

    Dear Susan, you have hit upon a subject that we all think about and thank you for doing it so gracefully. How do we tell people we care about that it’s their friendship and love that we care about. Gifts are nice but a good cup of hot tea and time with special ones, either on a blog or in person, are the true gifts of life. This time of year especially it’s good to remind people of that. Have a wonderful visit this weekend! From the pictures you post I can’t imagine anyone NOT feeling comfy and cozy in your home. xo

    • sbranch says:

      To be honest, gifts are my least favorite thing about Christmas, it’s really the family stuff, the cooking and being together … of course I would not have said that when I was seven when I would cry because it was all SO exciting!! Gifts for the nieces are under the tree, that’s for sure! xoxo Thank you Betsy!

  37. Mary Lou says:

    I think the best gift you can give a friend is to dro p a few dollars in the Salvation Army kettle, or give to an animal shelter. or other worthy cause you know the person has an interest in. I have asked my children to do this for several years. They have finally ‘got’ that it means more to me than a material gift.
    Never feel badly about sharing what is on your heart.
    We are all friends and understand! Have a fabulous Friday. 🙂

  38. Maryellen says:

    What cutie-patooties! I bet cookie making will be super fun with these mini bakers.

    I understand your request, dear Susan. I have collected so many precious Christmas things over the years and have reached the point where I don’t even have time to unpack them all, much less display and enjoy them. I am going to have to make some hard decisions about what to keep and what to share and I sure hope no one gifts me with more this season.

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Maryellen, it was hard to ask, but I’m glad I did, and JoEy is even gladder!

      • Betsy says:

        Maryellen, when my Mom was severely ill and in a nursing home they were trying to decorate for the holidays on a very limited budget. Us daughters came up with the idea that we would donate Christmas decorations from each of our homes and some of Mom’s. Our children made paper chains out off construction paper and glitter. The nursing home people were thrilled beyond words and our Mother got to spend the holidays surrounded by her decorations. It made everyone’s day a little brighter.

  39. jeannine leonard says:

    congradulations to linda, and have a great weekend with those two adorable little ladies.

  40. peg says:

    …not even edible ones with a disclaimer, ‘no acknowledgement necessary’? I do get it, though. I am one of those who also grew up with the lessons of thank you note writing. At the little school where I work (as an Admin. Asst.), I get gifts from time to time (especially during the holidays and the end of the school year). And, sometimes its a couple of weeks before I get some time to sit down at my writing table and put my gratitude to paper. And, I love doing just that. Oh, and I love adding the special postage stamps to dress up the envelopes. The whole process is really not a chore. I can only imagine the onslaught of lovely gifts and cards that hit MV on a daily basis. That was a very brave post, dear Sue. I know how difficult it was for you. Just know that we l♥ve you and that we totally get it! (Is this why the post office is going to cut back mail service to 5 days?!?!?). j.k…….! xoxo peg

    • sbranch says:

      It used to be fun like yours is, when it was every so often, it actually is still fun, but there’s just a lot more!! Thanks Peg!!! Loved the picture of you on FOSB!

  41. Laura B Jenkins says:

    JOEY reminds me of my parents’ gorgeous letter candle holders that spelled “NOEL” beautifully on the mantle throughtout the holidays…that is, until “LEON” appeared…seeing JOEYmade me laugh, loudly!!! Bravo to that witty man of yours! No gifts…an honest, heartfelt, sincere request to be honored by all, thus preventing gifted overload and stress at Christmastime….an apropriate, appreciated and understood request! Whew! xo 😉

  42. Tamar Weaver says:

    “straight talk makes for clear understanding, how you doin?” – wendy williams

  43. I promise not to send you a present as long as you promise not to send one back . . just the gift of the exchange of friendship and fun here on your blog, how about that?
    You are going to have a fun and busy weekend with those two lovely Princesses! More decorating? Baking? Girlfriends Forever! Enjoy!

  44. Amy says:

    I love the way you put your request in tiny print! It’s clear that it was hard for you to say and that you were trying to be as delicate as possible. Maybe you could ask your fans to donate all these wonderful handmade things to people who don’t receive many gifts during the year (assisted living homes etc., disadvantaged children) That way, everyone feels happy- the giver, the receiver and you for inspiring people to be creative! Merry Christmas!

  45. zinnia patch says:

    congratulations to Linda! What fun and I know you will have fun this week-end with those two beautiful little angels. I’ll be thinking of you…..

  46. Paula Abay says:

    We’re never to old to have some fun, like Joe did! And think of all the fun you two are going to have with those precious girls. Enjoy the tea party all weekend long! Thank you Susan for giving us the gift of your blogging. It puts a smile on my face every time I read it. You are Gods gift to each of us.

  47. Lori C. says:

    Sweet Sue!
    “Charm is the quality in others that makes us more satisfied with ourselves.”
    Henri Frederic Amiel
    How could we EVER find fault with you!
    Kiddies and kitties – what a wonderful weekend you’ll have – is JOeY going to help decorate cookies???

  48. Joan B says:

    Hi Susan,
    Love the decorating Joe did and your nieces are adorable. Have a great weekend with them!! Thanks for your very kind words, I am so loving your blog and happy to contribute by posting a comment. Your tour of town was something else – I owe all of my Christmas spirit to you this year!!

  49. Joann says:

    Dearest Susan,
    Only YOU could say it so beautifully—-and I understand what you are saying. You are a sister to so many of us….and me? I don’t have a brother or a sister; my dad passed when I was twenty….and girlfriend, you are a fun person to shop for….
    I’m a hunter of presents….when I know someone likes a certain something…..or mentions something, my ears perk up….’Maybe this person would like THIS or THAT!’ My gift is in the giving. You give so much to all of us….inspiration, joy, laughter, virtual hugs.
    But I also see the other side of this….like if you were getting 5 or 6 gifts at Christmas, that would be special….but if you’re being flooded with gifts….well then… becomes less special.
    I wonder how many people out there feel this way but don’t say it? Well, you’re very brave to say it and I think that since we are your girlfriends, we’ll respect that wish….
    But don’t stop giving us gifts, ok? We love them!! Your blog is awesome….and so are YOU!!

    • sbranch says:

      I think it must happen to Oprah. Joe said, this must be how Oprah feels! LOL! She probably has a warehouse! Love you Joann!

  50. Susan, you are just about the kindest and most gracious person I’ve ever encountered, online or in person. You actually make one feel GOOD about NOT sending you something! Just know that we are all sending you warm thoughts and good wishes and thanks every time we get to read one of your blogs, your books or anything else you create. And congratulations to Linda… I am going to keep looking for that book!

    Have a great weekend!


  51. Patricia says:

    (loved the JOeY- too cute!)
    You can send some of those lovely gifts our way, Susan, as Mary, Alice, and I love presents! 😉 (just adding to the silly!)

    Enjoy your weekend and have lots of fun! And congratulations to Linda for winning the lovely red book. xx

  52. suzy says:

    JOY by Joe..very cool. Merry Christmas from all of us in Sarasota….had lunch on (next to) the bay today and on the way home let my husband visit a train store – the kind we had as kids, H&O trains and what he calls O 27 guage..greek to me and we would both rather ride on a train..esp.with a big observation car..but Menou, our cat, would be unhappy. Love your kitties, best of holidays to you and Joe and the girls visiting you this weekend.

  53. Cynthia Krynock says:

    How sad to say that I have never sent you any gifts…but for many years you have given me the gift of Willard, and now your blog! I am glad that you are able to trust us enough to just tell us what you need us to do our not do….I will honor that request!

    Love the JOeY in the window…it gave me great joy and laughter!


  54. Jane alexander says:

    Ahhh I thought you were going to tell us you don’t have time to do this blog!!! I was trying to prepare myself!! We gals are your friends, and we want to give you the time you need to sleep and eat and play and paint and write and visit with your other girl friends! And I just enjoyed my cup of hot chocolate, now i’ve GOT to wrap some presents!
    Love and blessings to ALL!
    Jane Alexander

  55. Patty Page says:

    I laughed out loud when I saw the “joy” turned to “joe-y”.
    I guess it’s our natural desire to give back to someone who brings us such joy (you!). Maybe we all need to look around us and give a gift to someone who truly is lonely and without friends!

  56. Martha Ellen says:

    Oh Susan, you bravely stated what you needed to say! I’ve been shopping this week and have said to myself, that looks like something Susan would like! You have given so much to me and my girlfriends! We understand! ” Joey to the world! ” ♥

  57. Pat Beckman says:

    Wondered if you have ever read Susan Albert Wittig,s books about Beatrix Potter? The cottage tales….They are just wonderful stories all fiction with Historical back ground. if you haven,t check them out of the library
    Pat Beckman

  58. Karen W says:

    We learn from you every day. Such courage to ask for what you need. To know what you need is such a gift. So many wonderful things you have shared with us the last few days. And now your nieces so pink even down to their toenails. How many ways can you say fun. Jack will be pooped after all their play time. Looks like you are headed for great memories Merry Christmas! We’ll keep spreading the magic of the season.

  59. Judy says:

    Susan – everyday I look on my computer to see if THIS is the day you are going to write something in your blog. I always feel like I am peeking into your daily life and I love it.

  60. Patricia from Philly says:

    Oh no! I just shipped off to you and JoEy several dozen batches of homemade, delicious, melt-in-your mouth Christmas cookies! I guess there is no chance of me getting them back from the post office now! I tell you what: I’ll call that nice postmaster at the Vineyard Haven P.O. and tell him he can have ’em ALL!

    (December fools! LOL!)

    Have a memories-in-the-making weekend with your nieces, you lucky Auntie!

  61. chris z says:

    Love Joe’s little rearranging game..we had a little block decoration that spelled out the word Santa and during a Christmas gathering a guest commented on it..and I turned to look and one of the “little darlings” had rearranged it to spell satan…was my face red..and to this one will ‘fess up..15 years later! Kids

  62. Dale Worness says:

    When I was a kid I used to switch my Mom’s NOEL candle holders to say LEON to get back at her for putting a big horse in our Nativity scene. It just didn’t look right. It really was fun to see how long it would take for her to notice the change. It was like “No horse, no LEON”! And here I thought I was being original! Guess not. My friend got me good the other day though. I have one of those wooden calenders with 2 separate blocks for the days of the week. I was looking at it and couldn’t believe it said December 83rd! I figured I must have really been tired the night before to do that, but when I questioned Don he confessed. I thought I was spending too much time in the catnip again! P.S. Isn’t a Joey a baby kangaroo?

  63. Terri says:

    Guess what I bought today? Calendars. Yours. Your wall calendar AND your adorable pocket calendar or whatever it is called! LOL! AND on the front of that small calendar it said “The Best Things in Life Aren’t Things.” and I would have to agree with that! I would say don’t buy me things, spend time with me instead, now that is a priceless gift isn’t it? LOVED both calendars! xoxo to ya…

  64. Rosinda says:

    Oops, feeling a bit silly now. It’s hard for those of us who don’t see the amount of mail/gifts you get, to see how it could be a problem for you. You are such a source of happiness & inspiration for so many, that we just feel the need to give something back. Thank you for being honest.

    • sbranch says:

      Please don’t say that Rosinda, I’ve really loved everything I’ve received, truly, it’s been such a sweet blessing. Just began to take over the house a little bit is all. I didn’t know what else to do. xoxo Thank you so much!

  65. Mary S. says:

    Joe(y)’s decorating is great!! So funny!!!
    I can certainly understand not wanting to receive any more gifts!!! I was taught to write thank you notes, too, and that, in itself…. wow!!! I am very glad you told us, because there are a couple of books I have been wanting to send you and I was going to ask your address 😀
    You know we all love you, and we could NEVER be offended by anything your sweet self says!!!

  66. deezie says:

    Hi Susan
    You are just adorable do you know that? I think you are so funny to have to tell everyone to stop sending you gift. I get it though, its too much. Those little girls are just as cute as can be
    Have fun with them Susan
    Happy day

  67. Deborah Winter says:

    Dear Susan;

    Ok, I did send you something but it is a law of the universe after all–the more you give the more you get in return! Good thing you sent that blog because I get the feeling that a lot more was on the way! Just know that you are appreciated and we all just want to make you as happy and joyful as you make all of us! Thank you for your honesty; totally understand.

  68. Heartsdesire says:

    Oh, what sweet looking girls. You are going to have the best weekend with them. And I’m sure they are going to enjoy playing with Jack. He’ll probably love it to, having all that attention. Be sure and give girl kitty some hugs as well.

  69. Giovanna says:

    Ciao Susan,
    I wanted you to know, my gift to you is spreading the word that Susan Branch Illustrations and Cookbooks are a most in every persons life. I’ve lost count of the number of your books I’ve given as gifts. I have your stickers, note cards and scrapbook papers. Just recently I found a beautiful box of Susan Branch All Occasions Cards. It was the last one on the shelf and I made sure it came home with me. There are several I will frame for my new kitchen. I have always loved water colors, but yours are particularly charming.
    Enjoy your weekend with your adorable little guests. Until next time, Giovanna

  70. Janie Phillips says:

    Bless your heart, Sue. I can imagine your dilemma. It’s just that we all love you so much! The important thing is that you know how much you’re loved and appreciated, and we can tell you that here.

    Your nieces are about the ages of my granddaughters. You’re going to have a houseful of fun with little girls, a kitten, and a prankster 🙂

    Congratulations to Linda!


  71. Congrats to your winner and thanks for being honest with us! We are friends and that’s what matters most! We all love to give at this time of year, especially! Enjoy the holiday season and have fun this weekend! I have your Christmas book out on my coffee table to enjoy…it’s the red and green Christmas book from 1990…I treasure it! Happy holidays! ♥♥♥

  72. Susan L says:

    Your blog is your gift to us!!! I love to see it in my email box!
    I hope you have a wonderful weekend with your “company”! Me, I am hunting for Christmas ornaments that “Tempe” has knocked off the Christmas tree! She does love climbing the tree and poking her head out of the limb, then swatting at the nearby ornament! Tempe, by the way, is my ADORABLE Maine Coon Tabby mix. Last Christmas, she was only a few months old, a mere kitten. So THIS Christmas, she is making up for lost time!
    So enjoy your weekend and all the special Christmas moments that happen! 🙂

  73. Janie says:

    Susan, you are so sweet about the gift giving. Although we all want to share with you I certainly understand the dilemma for you and JOeY. (Ha! Ha!)

    I hope that you, Joe, and your nieces have a lovely weekend. How blessed your nieces are. We all need to follow yours and Joes ideas about living. Maybe the greatest gift we can give is to help someone who has so little and needs us to be a “light” in the darkness.

    My dear grandfather sang this to me all the time when I was a little girl.
    “Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat…please put a penny in the old man’s hat..if you haven’t got a penny a half-a-penny will do..if you haven’t got a half-a-penny God Bless You!!”

  74. Laura says:

    You are so funny!! I thought you were going to say to stop leaving random crazy comments on your blog…and then where would I be?? LOL

    P.s..I do believe Mr. Jack is about to meet his match!!

  75. Doreen Strain says:

    Hi Sue,
    I totally understand how you feel about receiving gifts. It can get out of hand. If all of us did it JOeY would have to build another barn to store all of them in. Didn’t it make you feel so good when you finally got it off your chest? Susan…we are your “girlfriends” girlfriends can say those kinda things to each other…if we couldn’t we wouldn’t really be “girlfriends”! Right “girlfriends”? We love who you are as a person, and how you have a way of touching our lives through your blog. Thank you for being honest with us and for trusting us enough understand. Have fun this weekend. How is “Queen” Girl kitty doing….putting up with Sir Jack? I can hear her now…”Who invited you here anyway, little boy?” Hahaha!
    FOSB 4~Ever! ~ Doreen

    • sbranch says:

      That’s about it . . . still going slow in that department! No terrible tantrums though, so we feel lucky!

  76. JudyCnNC says:

    I love that people have sent you presents – I personally did not, but only because I was never sure what I could send that you possibly did not have or would want. Thank you Susan for this most opportune posting, you have taken a big load off my shoulders and now I can trulthfully stop trying to find the perfect present to send you. You bring so much joy into my life with your blog posts, and I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Judy C in NC

  77. Jeanne Hedin says:

    Message received, Miss Susan, with gentleness, kindness and affection. 🙂 Enjoy those two cute little gumdrops this weekend!

  78. Carilyn Wolski says:

    Congratulations to Linda for winning the precious Christmas Book!!! I am yearning to start reading a Christmas book….maybe this weekend….after all of my Christmas cards are written,sealed, and mailed. (Our furnace broke last evening and the repairman was over and interruptions galore came one after the other.) But, I did bake your Apple Cranberry Crisp, Susan, and my hubby and son loveeeeeee it!!!!!! I’m a big believer that the most important things in life are “the invisible”…….not the material……family, friends, time shared with one another, and singing Happy Birthday (even if out of tune!), phone calls, and this wonderful Susan Branch Blog. (The time and effort you put into it Susan, for all of us to enjoy.) TGIF and thank goodness for the snowflakes that fell in Michigan today…it’s a winter wonderland!

  79. Mia Sophia says:

    You must be a mind reader! Was getting ready to send something your way. I will hold off until another time… You are a wonderful writer and could not have expressed your request with more care and compassion . I will honor your wishes and you keep spreading the JO(e)Y through your artistry.

  80. Connie B. says:

    Dear Susan,
    I cannot believe how timely your blog post is concerning no more presents! I am in Las Vegas (on a business trip with my husband) and it’s Rodeo weekend…and there’s a Cowboy Gift Show at the Convention Center. One of the booths had jewelry made out of broken (purposefully or not) china. There was a slide made out of a piece of Wedgewood Peter Rabbit china. I almost bought it for you and now I’m glad I didn’t, but it was oh soooo adorable!!! I took a picture of it and have tried to upload it to Facebook, but don’t seem to have enough signal…when I get it on my FB page, I’ll post it in FOSB! Have a fun weekend, girlie!

  81. Marilyn says:


    Your wishes were very gracefully expressed, and the very fact that you worried so about the wording shows how much you care about us, the girlfriends. We care about you, as well.

    As mentioned earlier, I ,too, was afraid that you were going to give us bad news about continuing to blog. You have no idea how relieved I am! 🙂

    Have a wonderful weekend with those 2 cutie-pies and tell JoEy he’s been a really good sport to have spent all that time at the Post Office!

    Marilyn (in Dallas)

  82. Pat Mofjeld says:

    Well done, I’m sure we all understand. Actually the way you started off, I was afraid you were going to say you were going to stop blogging or something, so I was relieved at your request! Besides the issue of dealing with the packages and the time it takes for thankyou notes, etc., I don’t know about you but I’m getting to the point where if something comes in the front door, something should go out the back door. Know what I mean? In fact, I could go into giggles just thinking of your fan base and if even half sent you a package, that is a LOT of stuff!!! LOL 🙂 I think you handled it just fine. Now, as to Mr. Joe’s decorating, it kind of reminds me of the time I got up and Norm told me he heard that there was a polar bear wandering in our neighborhood. Now, this is Minnesota but polar bears are NOT found here. I wondered what was going on until I opened the draperies and there on our deck was a “snow bear” that he had made the night before and placed on the deck! I’m so thankful for a partner who has the same sense of humor and pure FUN that I do, and I know you and Joe have together… 🙂 Have a fun weekend with the kiddles–looking at that photo makes me know you and the kitties will be kept on your toes this weekend! 🙂

  83. Sarah says:

    I have an idea. What if we keep sending you gifts, but address them all to JOE? Then maybe he wouldn’t begrudge those trips to the post office. But then again, people might begin to talk…”Say, Hazel, did you hear that Joe got a gift from yet ANOTHER woman? Just what is going ON in that house?” 🙂

  84. Jacqui G says:

    Well, it’s so hard when you see or make something darling not to think “Susan would love this!” I admit, I’ve done it…never sent anything- but I thought about it! It’s just that we all like you so much:)
    ANYWAY love those two little blondies…and I’m pretty sure the one on the right (Maggie?) has Movie-Star blood in her. So cute:) You’re going to have a ball!
    XOXO Jacqui

    • sbranch says:

      I feel it, like you back, and just love this connection we all have with one another. Movie star blood is right! And kindness blood too.

  85. Ginnie says:

    Whew! I thought you were going to say, “Would you stop leaving such long, involved comments already?!” With the presents, I think you have the same problem royalty has. You’re our American Royalty. Queen Susan and King Joe, your subjects adore you. (I think the royals donate their stuff to charity, don’t they?)

    Good for you for gathering up your courage to let us know. I applaud you!

    PS Those little girls look adorable.

  86. Diane says:

    As I started reading the blog and what you were trying to say….and it was so difficult for you….I thought at first that you were trying to tell everyone that you must discontinue this blogging…and my heart started sinking! Then I started laughing because it was all about the mountains of gifts that you receive….how hilarious! Then I felt happy that I had never sent you anything, and then ashamed….because I probably should have been sensitive and caring enough to send you a gift……! Now I feel like the whole thing is quite adorable and funny that you have this “problem” in your life! How sweet everyone has been to send you gifts and you were very sweet in explaining your problem. I also laughed because even though it sounds like a great problem to have, it truly must be overwhelming! I would also feel guilt and run out of room. What you could do is what Tori Spelling has done ….she has a warehouse! Filled! LOL. Anyhoo….I hope you have a wonderful wonderful time with those gorgeous little nieces of yours! I loved Joe’s bit of humor in the window…lol.

  87. Patty says:

    Perfectly said Dear Susan! It will still be amusing to see something that reminds me of you…Love when you come to mind!
    As for this weekend, you are going to have such fun with those darling girls!!
    I Love spending time with the children !! (Joe is clever!..)

  88. Karen says:

    I have to say – that’s one of the nicest, ‘gee, you shouldn’t have’ – no REALLY – you SHOULDN’T have:)! And besides – I think we all have to downsize at some point. I realize the older I get – the less I want ‘stuff’ -and I am in the process of donating a lot of it to my favorite charity shop – the Humane Society:)

  89. Ellen Beeton says:

    Eliza and Maggie are just as adorable as they can be. You will have a great weekend. I can’t wait to hear all about it.

  90. Jacquelyn Wirthlin says:

    Like Diane, I was concerned about the beginning of your blog today … worried that it was getting to be too much for you to keep sharing as much of yourself and your world with us girlfriends. How wonderful it was to read on and find that it wasn’t the case at all. I honestly don’t know where you find the time to do all of the things you do and to continue to write the books, create the calendars, etc., that we all love. This is a wonderful blog you have created and the ladies are all so special. Thank you Susan. Have a special weekend with the little cuties, Jack, Girl and Joey.

  91. Let us help you out Susan – we’ll each take a day of your gifts!! jk of course.

    It was a good problem that you solved beautifully.


  92. Karen says:

    I love what your hubby did to your decorating! Cute!

    Have a wonderful weekend with the little girls. Hope you will post pictures later!

    Hugs, Karen

  93. Cindy Garner says:

    Kudo’s for your honesty♥
    “have too’s” and “should haves”, can suck the life out of our living.
    Have a fun weekend with the girls and be blessed…..

    I am hoping to rent “The Bishops Wife” this weekend…..I will let you know what my review score is on that….LOl


  94. Oh Susan, I as others have thought OH NO! Susan’s closing her Blog! What am I going to look forward to! What a relief! I am one of your “favorites”, thought about but never sent a thing! Sorry! Love Love Love your blog, I thing Oh boy! when I open a new one, never know what excitement waits around the next bend! Thank you for not closing your blog! You are a very brave and tactful sweety!
    So, I wonder what JoEy has up his sleeves for this week-end!
    It is certainly going to feel like Christmas has arrived when you get in the kitchen with those two cuties, I can see the flour flying now, and the giggles, oh my! Don’t forget to put on the music! Jack will probably have his paws in everything also! Course Girl Kitty will probably be watching from afar!

    Have a wonderful and fun filled week-end!

    Oh! Congratulations to Linda!!!!

  95. Nellie says:

    What darling little girls! You are SURE to have a special week-end with them around!

    No presents coming your way from here. I’ll be lucky if I even get to a Christmas card.:-) My so-called “creative homemade efforts” have to do with cooking, and that consumed the early morning hours here today when I hosted the bridge group for breakfast.

    As always, I send along the very best wishes to you!


  96. DonnaRay says:

    Too much of a good thing isn’t always wonderful. Well said, Susan…….you are such a sweetheart! I’ve never sent a gift to you, but now I REALLY want to because you make my heart sing. So……here it comes……a big fat fly-by smooch, sent via friendship, through the falling snowflakes and up and around that big moon in the sky tonight! It’s going to land smackdab in the midst of all your cuteness…..JoEy, niece dimples, cookie dough, Moustache Jack and adorable YOU. Have fun…….that’s what it’s all about! As always, DonnaRay

  97. Cathy in Golden, CO says:

    Children at Christmas-time are the very bestest gifts!!! What would Christmas be without them??? You will have a blast this weekend! BTW – thanks so much for the gingerbread house post! I’m doing them for the first time with my little grandchildren and now I have good ideas – like putting the candies in a muffin tin. I read and watched over and over so I could “get it”!! I would love to have that little instruction booklet. I bet it would be a great little find for my grandma friends!!! Happy Weekend! 🙂

  98. Peggy Cooper says:

    Susan, I’m just going to return to you the gift you’ve given to me, and all your followers – LOVE!!!

  99. Hi Susan,
    I so understand. I am so proud of you for being true to what you need. that is something I am working on. I always worry what other people will think when I voice my needs. Thank you for being a wonderful role model.
    I got my Gladys Taber newsletters today.. Thank you for telling us about her. I got my first book recently and it is wonderful. I also got a couple of your older books. I have my SB fix for a while now. 🙂 That will hold me over till your new book comes out,
    Elizabeth Q

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Elizabeth …. hard to ask for what you need. One time I was getting a massage from this woman, who was KILLING me, massaging so hard, but I just lay there and never said a word as she performed assault and battery on my limbs. It was the first time I regretted having two of everything. Because I knew when she got done destroying one shoulder, she would be moving on to the other one. When she put a boiling hot towel over my face I started laughing in a hysterical way, thinking, that when I get up . . . I am going to TIP her. And I did!!! SO ridiculous!!! I’m better about that now. 🙂

      • Oh Susan,
        Thank you for sharing this with me. Isn’t it silly the the things we put up with??????? And to tip her. 🙂 That sure sounds like me. I too am getting much better at standing up for myself.It is so wonderful to know I am not alone on this journey.

  100. Kathy Thompson says:

    Hi Susan, Your blog today reminds me of the wonderful old movie, “Christmas in Connecticut,” with Barbara Stanwyck, where she is a beloved writer for Smart Housekeeping, and makes up her fabulous life on a farm, and mentions in one of her articles that she is looking for a certain kind of rocking chair. Of course, she is inundated by her fans with tons of rocking chairs…but ends up getting the love of her life out of the deal when “her future Joe” brings her one on his visit to her “farm.” Such a charming story. Here’s to “blog gifts” that will unclutter your mailbox.

    • sbranch says:

      If I didn’t already have my Joe, that story would have scared me! 🙂 Love that darling movie! Thanks Kathy!

Comments are closed.