La-De-Daa ♫ Perfect Cake-Baking Weather!

La-de-da, la-de-da, another day , and here comes the weekend!  No snow for us, but I know lots of you are socked in!  Perfect!  It’s cake baking weather!  Cake baking, with this music, and soon, a pair of darling green salt and pepper birds winging their way to one of you lucky girls. ♥  What a day!

Just in case anyone forgot how truly darling these birds are, here’s the photo again!  You can almost hear them tweeting a song about spring! 

Also, I wanted to show you another item I designed for Wedgwood that I really wish I had today!

It would have had the thinnest glass top, etched lightly with flowers, and would have been perfect to cover and keep our delicious  M I L K  C A K E fresh!

So!  I found this “old Vineyard recipe” for Hot Milk Cake in our local paper.  I’m always attracted to interesting old recipes that say, “This is plain food, simply prepared, and absolutely delicious.”  What’s not to like?  Thought it could be perfect for a tea party; had to try it.  

Here’s the original recipe as printed, although I finished up the directions with suggestions for things such as what size pan to use, what is “a little salt,” and what temperature to bake it at. I’ll rewrite the recipe and put it at the end of this post so you can print it out.  I broke the rule and “thought” about frosting it, but didn’t; and since I was “fresh out” of yellow tomato conserve, I made a sauce to puddle in the bottom of a bowl full of  cake. Y U M !  It’s still not fancy, never fear . . .

So here’s what you do:

Set the temperature for 325 degrees.  See how easy it is?  Piece of cake!

T H E   C A K E

First you get yourself a “rounded teaspoon” of butter (love the way old recipes are written — this was much easier than one that reads add a “knob” of butter!); drop the butter into a half cup of whole milk and heat it on top of the stove until hot.

Whisk a couple of eggs within an inch of their lives.

Gradually whisk in the sugar . . . beat well.

In goes the first half cup of flour, the baking powder, salt, and vanilla.

Stir well . . . then add the other half cup of flour and the hot milk with butter . . .

And that’s all there is to it!  Pour the cake batter into a buttered 8″ square (or round) cake pan.  Bake 40-45 min.

Pull it out of the oven when the edges start to pull away from pan, or check it with a toothpick in the center . . . allow your kitty to watch . . .

Let the charmingly plain little cake cool while you make the sauce . . . (There’s Jocelyn’s two Love books, all ready to send to her!  Remember?  She was the winner of our last drawing!)

So, for the sauce, which is also really easy, scrape the seeds from a 1″ piece of vanilla bean, put it in a small pan with heavy cream and sugar, bring to a boil, stir and cool.  Chill.

I tried the cake, as suggested, plain and unadorned, and it was wonderful.  I have to say I would like to bite off all the chewy edges first (like corn on the cob), so good!  BUT . . .

. . .  then I added the sauce and this is when the heaven’s parted and this cake melted in my mouth becoming God’s Gift to the World; I was proud to be human and able to cook.  The sauce turns it into a kind of pudding cake.  Just delicious.

You could also add the zest of either one orange or one lemon to the cake batter if you wanted.  Probably currants too and even mini chocolate chips if you were so inclined.  It’s a plain cake — and if it would be good with yellow tomato conserve, as the original recipe says, I think you could put it with anything.  Mmmm, strawberries and whipped cream! ♥

OK, I guess that should keep you busy — that, and then of course, you have to leave a comment at the bottom of this post if you’re interested in the birds!  We’ll let our Random Number Generator choose a winner for this drawing in a few days.  See how the bottoms twist off for easy filling?  Pretty wonderful!

OK girls, off I go.  Scroll down to get the recipe if you want it.

Also, btw, not sure if you know, but I moved the list of my Favorite Movies up to the top of the blog, under where it says, “All About Me” — click there, you’ll see the movies in the drop-down.  In case you’re looking for them!

Had to toss in a photo of this cheerful little cupcake.  I bought the cupcake pan with the deep narrow pockets and the cupcake papers to go with it a while back at Ikea. I just found them on their website — the cupcake pan is red and only $10, and that’s the cupcake papers in the upper right hand corner of their page; aren’t they cute?  I love mine and thought you might like them too. I bet you could make plain cupcakes from the milk cake recipe!  I forget what recipe I used here; it was last winter, there were no flowers, so I stole this one from my African violet!  I think I was thinking “spring” then too!  Have a wonderful weekend girlfriends! XOXO

  S A U C E   for  H O T  M I L K   C A K E

  • 1″ piece vanilla bean
  • 2 c. heavy cream
  • 1/4 c. sugar

Slit vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape seeds into small saucepan.  Stir in cream and bring to a boil.  Add sugar, stir well, let it cool. Chill well.

H O T   M I L K   C A K E

  • 1/2 c. hot milk with 1 rounded tsp. butter melted into it
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. flour, divided
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Butter an 8″ square or round cake pan.  Prepare milk and butter.  Whisk eggs well in a med. bowl.  Gradually whisk in sugar and beat well.  Stir in 1/2 c. flour, the baking powder, salt, and vanilla.  Stir in other 1/2 c. flour, then the hot milk/butter.  Pour into cake pan; bake 40-45 min.  Pour the chilled sauce into a dish and put a slice of cake on top.  Enjoy.

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1,422 Responses to La-De-Daa ♫ Perfect Cake-Baking Weather!

  1. Denise Leavens says:

    THANK YOU for keeping the chance to win these birdies open. I Fell. In. Love. with them when I saw them on the previous post. Then we had a record breaking snow storm here in Chehalis, WA and then an ice storm on top of that and then our son and his girlfriend and black lab came to stay with us because they lost power for 3 days…and I forgot to check your website to leave a comment. So NOW I have a chance at winning these green little charmers- whew! I really, really, love them. Hope I win these two or God gifts me a set like them someday! He’s really wonderful that way.

    Oh, such beautiful snow pictures you posted today! I love all the house and neighborhood pictures. *Sigh* Our beautiful snow lasted less than a day before hard rain and ice marred the beauty. And the cake recipe here on this post sounds really cozy and good. I am going to surprise my hard working husband with this for dessert tonight!

  2. maybaby says:

    Oh, I need a run to Ikea quick to see if they have any pans and papers left, adorable!

    It is indeed cake baking weather, I just pulled a fresh banana cheesecake with sour cream topping from the oven. I was thumbing through an old Junior League cookbook and it jumped off the page at me.

    Love the birds, can’t wait to try the Hot Milk Cake!

  3. Merle says:

    I just found your blog! I don’t know why I never thought to look for it before, I love your books. I would love the little birdies.

  4. Tiffany Magnuson says:

    These little birdies are just toooooo cute! I am a new follower and I am loving your blog!

  5. Nancy T. says:

    Don’t see my comment. Love the green cake plate and darling birds. Have a new shelf above my stove and they would find a warm, cozy home there!

  6. Heather H. says:

    I just realized that I don’t even own a set of salt and pepper shakers, and these are adorable! Thanks for the giveaway!

  7. becky allen says:

    Wonderful cake recipe! I love your blog and the directions! Thanks so much for a wonderful idea for a rainy cold day in SC!

  8. Well it would appear I am a needle in a haystack here, but I have to tell you how much I wish your dish designs had become reality! I love every single one.
    And the bird salt and pepper may be the most charming I have ever seen. Thank you for sharing beauty:>)

  9. Sandy says:

    Hi Susan, Thank you for the time and creativity that you put into your blogs. I look forward to each one. Your writing, drawings, photos, recipes. etc. all give me joy. And it would be a joy to win the salt and pepper shakers. I also have a small collection of little birds on my kitchen window sill and enjoy feeding the real ones outside my window as well. I love how the Bible says that God takes care of the sparrows and not one falls without Him knowing. I also thought you might find it interesting that I live in a place called New Vineyard that was settled by people from Martha’s Vineyard. Small world!

    • sbranch says:

      Where is it?

      • Sandy says:

        Hi Susan, New Vineyard is a very small community located in the western mountains of Maine. You will have to make a visit sometime! There is a rare book in our library where I work called “A New Vineyard” by Dorothy Cottle Poole. In the preface of the book, the author writes,”When I learned that a little village in the mountains of Maine, over eighty miles from the sea, was called New Vineyard,because it had been settled by people from Martha’s Vineyard, I was intrigued. Being the ninth generation of my family to live on the island, I wondered who these emigrants were; not just their names, but what kind of people they were, and what circumstances led them to leave their comfortable island homes to settle in the wilderness, far from the sea. A NEW VINEYARD is the answer.” Hope this info helps!

  10. Phyllis says:

    When I read your blog I’m reminded of the Miss Read/Fairacre books, where the reader rejoices in the comfort and delight of old fashioned domesticity. Until I became familiar with the internet I had no idea there were so many soul sisters out there! In the cyber world there are so many who love cooking, baking, needlework, sketching, homemaking. Not so many in my real world. My heart has found a home.

  11. Karen says:

    What a unique bottom to the quaint birds. Thanks for the chance to win!

  12. Debbie Choate says:

    I look forward to seeing what my friend Susan is up to all the time. Those birdies would love to be on my vintage hoosier style cabinet visiting with my little yellow chicks. Your blog is a pure pleasure!

  13. Deanna Briscoe says:

    Love those little birds. Would love to see them sitting in the middle of my table looking out the window at the bird feeder. They would really brighten my day! Lovin’ the blog. Keep writing and speaking about the simple things that enrich our lives! I hate it that I missed the ’12 calendar. Next September I’ll be looking for it and be extra ready for the new year!

  14. Theresa Tucker says:

    Green…my face color. Thanks for the chance.

  15. Cindy West Chester PA says:

    Oh the food in those pictures looks so tasty. I could almost lick the monitor of my computer. Made my husband a cake tonight. Little does he know he has you to thank!!

  16. Patty says:

    This recipe sound delicious, have a few old cook books that belonged to my grandmother I love reading though them.

  17. Cynthia says:

    Susan, my sister & I dearly love everything about your blog – your art, the food, the kitty stories & videos, your endearing humor, the music, the photos…but especially the vintage surroundings of your home & beautiful neighborhood. It is so charming & cozy & we are always emailing each other to point out something we just discovered after reading & looking at your blog time & again. The birdie salt & pepper shakers would mean so much to me if I could give them to my sister ( she lost so much of her vintage collection in a recent hurricane) as a surprise. Please continue your lovely blog with more of the same- it is a joy!

  18. Lori Hemmis says:

    Once again I can count on one hand how many times I have seen snow. Wow, thank you for all the dedication you put into this blog to make sure your girlfriends who live in the south get to experience the seasons. I think I am going to put Martha’s Vinyard on my bucket list:)

  19. Nancy Taylor says:

    Love the cake stand and love love love the birdies. I have a new shelf above my stove and they would find a warm, cozy home there!!

  20. Beth says:

    Love the ‘shaker’ birds!

  21. Suzanne says:

    I love the green birds! Green is my favorite color and I love to sit and watch the birds at my feeders. I’m going to have to get a second job to keep up with the bird seed bills! At least your birds won’t eat anything!:)

  22. Margie from Lavender Cottage says:

    Hey girls – I’m just posting “just because”. I’ll catch up on the post above!!

  23. Mischelle says:

    Oh how perfect those little birdies would look in my little country house! I decorate it with birds and bird houses!

    The cake looks heavenly! I must try it soon!

    Take care and stay warm!

  24. Doreen says:

    After visiting your blog I always feel like I’ve had a homey visit with a comfortable old friend. Tea, cake, pretty dishes, fabulous surroundings and poetry too! I live full time in a motor home and while I LOVE it, there’s not a lot of space for smile inducing treasures like your little birdie S&P shakers — however, we just bought a lake cabin in northern MN and it is evolving into a venue of vintage finds. Your precious little birds would fit right in so I’m shamelessly hoping I can bring them home. They’re delightful and I’m especially intrigued by the screw on bottoms.

    Thanks for always making me feel welcome here.

  25. Karen Byrd says:

    Being a Byrd, I love all things ‘birdie’! I even live in a ‘Byrd’ house!! Ha!
    Love your blog, as usual. Especially all the wintry pictures you are posting these days. We are having a very mild winter here in North Florida. Even hosted an outdoor lunch this past Saturday!! Enjoy your snow and winter days.

  26. Claire says:

    How can you bear to part with them ! After all the grey skies and rain this week, they will certainly brighten someone’s day!
    I do so enjoy visiting every day. I am working on the movie list, perfect for when I am quilting!

  27. Lin says:

    I’ve missed you the last couple of posts, but just caught up – lovely, both of them. I love the snow, too, it’s magical to me – my husband says because I don’t have to shovel it or drive in it (I just stay home until I can :)). As I scrolled down to make my comment I see there are 1200-some comments ahead of me! ! My goodness, girl, you are popular! Isn’t it nice to see that there are so many kindred spirits out there? I’d love to win your little birds – love that they’re green! Thanks for the chance!

  28. Nancy L says:

    Hi, love reading your blog, you have a gift for story telling and so glad you share it with all of us girls. Love the little birdies. Green is my favorite color and this Sunday is my birthday. They would make a great present for me!

    Enjoy those snow days.

  29. Tasha Railton says:

    Those little salt and pepper shakers are too cute ! love em! Also, I really wish you would still design some of those dishes are they are great! very nice!!! 🙂

  30. Stacy from the Hoosier State says:

    The milk cake sounds delicious!! I just made some blackberry syrup and that sounds tempting to try on top. My Aunt shared your blog with me and I have been checking in ever since. Thank you for sharing your heart with all of us. I am a country girl at heart, who longs for days on the east coast. Your blog fills my cup!

  31. Kathie L says:

    I, too, love to watch the birds at my birdfeeder. I’d love to also watch these bird shakers on my table. Thanks. Kathie L in allentown

  32. Olivia Stellitano says:

    Thanks for bringing sunshine into my home….I read your blog first thing every morning and reread if you skip a day; enjoy all your suggested readings, as well as movies. (going to Ikea for tall slim cupcake pan) I have a 1942 Norge stove that we inherited when we purchased our home and remodeled the kitchen around it…we do not have that darling shelf to display but I can certainly find a special spot for a Susan Branch gift. Just had our first grandchild and it would be a lovely grandma remembrance for me.

  33. Ingrid says:

    Thanks so much for the lovely snow pictures Susan!..I grew up in Southeastern Idaho, close to West Yellowstone, Montana, so I am no stranger to COLD weather!
    I now live in the Phoenix area, so snow is a bit foreign to me, but I love to remember my childhood growing up in “snow country” Most of the time it would be 30 to 40 degrees BELOW zero!!..(It is a joy to live in a warm climate during my “Golden Years!” ha ha

    The darling salt and pepper shakers are so lovely to look at! I am a bird lover, and at this time have an African Gray parrot named Piper that talks up a storm. I also have a Lovebird named Skye. She has beautiful teal colored wings, a robin egg blue breast, and light yellow head. I think as long as you have birds and the opportunity to hear them sing, how could you EVER have a bad day?
    Take Care Susan, and keep those wonderful blogs coming!

  34. Maria-Helena says:

    Dear Susan,
    I would love to win the little bird salt & pepper shakers. My Dad loved birds and raised many different breeds of them. I used to help him feed the babies. Those little birds bring back bittersweet memories of a special bond with my Dad. Thank-you for your lovely blog we are kindred spirits you and I would surely be friends.


  35. Barbara says:

    I love, love, love those little green birds! Checked Ikea for tins and liners, looks like I need to go to Ikea for the tin, oh darn!!! Ha, ha heading there in the morning!

  36. Juanita says:

    I have been baking all day! Your cake is next! It has been raining, and raining here….fireplace is going, and I have been in a cooking, and baking mood….hence….the family ate quite well tonight!

  37. MoeWest says:

    Thanks for all the magical winter photos. I love a pretty snowfall. Your bird s&P shakers are so cute, I don’t know how you can stand to part with them!

  38. Becky Antel says:

    Dear Susan,
    Thank you so much for the cake recipe. Sunday was our lab, Maggie’s 13 birthday so i made the cake. A piece for her and some for hubby and me. Yum!! I made blueberry sauce and raspberry sauce to put over it, and with a dollop of vanilla ice cream it was a real treat.

  39. Carolyn says:

    What a treat to be cruising blogs and happen upon yours! Your art always opens a tender spot in my heart and lightens my mood. I am happy to have a place to visit from now on. Thanks!

  40. Anne Matuszak says:

    Oh I fell in love with those cute little birdies! They would be so perfect sitting on my shelf in my kitchen waiting for spring with me! I have never seen any just like them! They would be an inspiration to make a new table runner for them to sit on. I just love your blog! I look forward to seeing iteach day. Tomorrow is my day off and I think I will try the cake! I am jealous of the snow! We also had a storm here in Wisconsin but we mainly got ice and rain. Maybe some pretty snow soon. Thank you for the wonderful break in my day!

  41. Pat Holland says:

    Hi Susan,

    I have been a fan of yours for about fifteen years. I collect your books and have given many as presents. Your blog is just delightful. You have a wonderful way of sharing your life and your creativity with all your followers. Thank you for bringing joy to so many people. The salt and pepper birds are just adorable..


  42. Eugenia says:

    You got me. I have to enter to win. Green in my favorite color and I collect birdies for our Easter display. I’ve started decorating early this year because my youngest, and only girl, is turning 5 in February. Her birthday falls on Ash Wednesday so we are going to celebrate right to Fat Tuesday with birdies.

  43. Shanon says:

    Dearest Susan, I would love to win the bird salt and pepper shakers … because I collect bird salt and pepper shakers! if my name is chosen, I promise to take a picture of your precious green birds feeling right at home with my white and brown ones 🙂

  44. Libby says:

    I have been a huge fan for YEARS! Thanks for all the joy you bring to our family.
    These little birdies would sit on my open shelves and make me smile every day!

  45. Vivian Sutton says:

    Oh Susan- I would love those two birds but sadly I was showing a friend at work how cute Jack is but she spotted the birds and said “Oooohhhh I would love those for my collection.” So I will be paying them forward if I win -shucks.

  46. Jennifer says:

    I love the little birds!! We have four birds in our family. Two we chose and two came to us as “foster birds” that have now become adopted birds. They would love to have the birdie salt and pepper shakers join our happy home!!

    • sbranch says:

      My sister lived with us for a while — she had a darling Love Bird named Grace. They are wonderful pets. We also took care of a friends cockatiel — a little gray bird with orange/pink cheeks … such a doll! But I always worried because of our cats . . . and both of these birds were normally allowed to fly free for a while everyday. Not in my house though!

  47. Linda Stone says:

    I love the little birds, but win or lose, I mostly love your blog and that you share your beautiful island setting with us. The snowstorm was so beautiful . . . a perfect setting for Hot Milk Cake! Thanks, Susan.

  48. Julia Waterbury says:

    What a wonderful enjoyable visit to come to your home in Mass. and see the beauty in the snow… Thank you for sharing!

  49. Nancy says:

    You brighten my day…and I love the snow, too. Nothing as beautiful as a coating of snow on everything. Thanks for offering the s & p birds!

  50. sew susie says:

    I can’t wait to try your Hot Milk Cake recipe. My DH loves a good plain cake and I think this will hit the spot. I have so enjoyed seeing your beautiful snow pictures.
    I have only seen snow once in my life and don’t really remember it, so I appreciated your beautiful pics today. They are very much like looking at a wonderful story book.
    The little green salt and pepper pots are so sweet, I hope I am lucky enough to give them a new nest.

  51. TeriGrace says:

    Oh My! The little birdies are darling! I like them almost as much as I like your Blog! And that is quite a lot. And almost as much as I like SNOW! We have yet to get any (worth mentioning) here is SW Idaho and I do miss it! So enjoyed our drive around your neighborhood. Keep the blog posts coming…… and enjoy your wintery weather!

  52. Lynnette W. says:

    The birdie salt and pepper shakers are darling, but your home is beautiful!!!
    I love it in the snow, but I love all the pictures of it in all the seasons. What a wonderful life you have on Martha’s Vineyard. Hope to visit it someday, but for now Texas will have to do. I do love Texas!!

  53. Diana says:

    Computer problems caused a delay in my seeing this post!!! I am probably too late to get in on the drawing, but had to tell you that even though blue is my favorite color, when I saw the cake plate with the ETCHED glass dome.. oh my…. I really do wish some magic could occur to make it mine!!! GORGEOUS! I am a sucker for etched glass and could always give it a home! Thanks for the recipe too! Must try!… I think a little powdered sugar glaze and some strawberries would be tasty!!! Good day to you Susan and girlfriends!

  54. Kim says:

    Gosh that cake looks scrumptious!! I think the addition of orange zest sounds really yummy.
    As I sit here watching the birds at my feeder, I think I heard one say he’d be quite happy to see those charming salt & pepper shakers sitting in my kitchen. I have to agree :). They are so cute. I can hardly believe that you are able to part with them. Thanks so much for giving the girlfriends a chance to show them a good home.

  55. Vicki From Virginia says:

    Glorious snow! Thanks for such a nice treat by braving the weather to snap those enticing photos! We have been having unseasonably warm temps here in NO VA and I am ITCHING for a good snowfall! I spent some time last weekend trying out cheesecake recipes made without cream cheese, trying to duplicate a European version my mother used to make. It was made with Quark, which I am having a hard time locating locally, so have been trying out ricotta as a substitute. It has been a tasty experiment, but so far not quite Mom’s! All you young whipper snappers out there, make sure you record all your family recipes made by the elders! They can be lost forever if someone doesn’t appoint themselves the steward of recipes!! Enjoy your snow Susan and family! Hopefully those little adorable snow birds will wing their way to my home!
    ( would love to see Jack playing with his first snowball!)

    • sbranch says:

      Good advice Vicki!! I’m still pining after my Grandma’s peanut brittle that everyone forgot to write down!

  56. Patricia Griffiths says:

    After reading your blog I feel as though I’ve just had a chat with a good friend. Thank you for sharing your life with us.
    The little birdie salt and pepper shakers are just adorable. Would look so pretty on my table and be a real treasure to pass down to my daughters and granddaughters.

  57. Diane says:

    Oh how I would love to own those little birdies! I think I would nest them in a cloche, just so they would know how special they are!

  58. Ellette says:

    Thank you for the chance to win those sweet shakers and also thank you for the pictures during your walk about on the snowy island! Absolutely beautiful. Right now I am watching and waiting for what looks to be a gorgeous sunrise here in Northwest Montana. We are about 45 minutes from Glacier Park and we too have just received our first accumulation of snow. Also, I made the Hot milk cake and my husband and I loved it. He thought it tasted like an angel food cake!

  59. Pegeen Alexander says:

    Once again I am transported to another time and place through your blog, your beautiful photos, and recipes! My childhood memories from New Bedford, Martha’s Vineyard, and so on (and on, and on, and on) become more vivid each time I visit your website. Thank you for the absolutely beautiful snow photos!!! Thank you so very much for the Hot Milk Cake Recipe. I searched several sites for the recipe recently for some odd reason… I had been thinking about the one my mother made when I was a child and unfortunately I had only written down the ingredients but never noted the directions. Today, I re-visited your site and found EXACTLY what I needed. Thank you. I was also pleased to find you extended the Birdie S&P Shaker giveaway…I’m glad I did not miss the opportunity to be included. I have come to enjoy checking you site every day or so to see what’s new!!!

  60. Deb H from the Heartland says:

    Oh, I think this little birds would just love to come visit the midwest. They would add such a cheerful touch in all seasons! Love your blog and love your books! So glad I found you!

  61. Gill says:

    Oh, I have been trying to resist these darling little birds but the snow and James Taylor have finally tempted me! Happy snow days Susan:) Gill.

  62. Debbie Mays says:

    Love your blog, the recipes, photos, the kitty’s and your kind heart. Thanks for sharing!

  63. Susan says:

    Hi Susan,
    This is the first time I have made a comment…
    I met my husband of 40 years when we both worked on martha’s vineyard in the summer of 1969.. We were college kids..
    Wish we could get back for a visit but his health is failing.. Your stories and pictures warm our hearts..
    Thanks so much… My name is Susan too

    • sbranch says:

      Sorry to hear about your husband, wishing the best to you both — I’ve heard 1969 was a very good year on Martha’s Vineyard!

  64. Susan says:

    PS. In 69 Martha’s Vineyard was known as “The Storybook Island”

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve never heard that, but it’s definitely what I call it! I have an old stamp, looks like a postage stamp, from the 40’s or 50’s and it says, “Martha’s Vineyard, Isle of Dreams.”

  65. Kati says:

    Those little bird salt and pepper shackers are so cute! I love anything bird.

  66. Jenny says:

    I collect all things egg and feather related and I love these little birds! I’ve been an admirer of yours for a very long time. I have some of your cookbooks (which I love) a journal, and a lovely quilted table runner made from SB fabrics. Your work is an inspiration to me.

  67. Debbie E. says:

    Hi Susan,
    I am really enjoying your blog! The snowy pictures, your beautiful collection of dishes, the adorable kitties, etc. I also love finding the old-timey recipes like the milk cake. I will be trying it soon. Have a wonderful day!
    P.S. The little green bird salt & pepper shakers are so sweet. I would love to be the winner. I have a good kitchen window perch for them.

  68. Brenda Scinto says:

    I have a wrought iron, two tiered Longaberger shelf that is right by my front door where I see it everyday. I change the items on the shelves every month and as it happens, I never seem to have just the right thing for some of the spring months. The shelves are not that big so the items need to be smaller things, like little birdie salt & pepper shakers!! They would be so perfect… thanks for thinking of us so often! 🙂

  69. Sheri says:

    Just finished reading “Too Many Things to Write about and Just One Blog!” Oh,My! You paint such pretty pictures with your prose and those photos are simply wonderful! If I could only describe things as you do…so many things come to mind with such descriptive words…you are truly blest to “tell it like it is”! I look so forward daily to what you have in store for us…it’s a little like Christmas or a Birthday present every day. My words try to tell you how much you are appreciated and I don’t know how I would start each day if you weren’t here to inspire us. What a wonderful gift you have, cherish it, for I know there are many who wish we could draw a straight much less to be able to describe such beautiful scenes. Thank you for sharing your gifts with all of us!!

  70. Beth says:

    Oh sweet goodness, I love those little green birds. Charming. Yes, do enter me into your drawing. As the snow falls, I watch the little quail family visiting our yard. I am loving this quiet day. Thank you for sharing your island and baking photos. It has been a delight to peek into your world. Today, I am inspired to create something special in mine…xx
    Happy Winter!

  71. Lynn Beck says:

    Susan , I am new to your Blog . Don`t ask me why it took me so long to find you . I have all your cookbooks , going back to The Heart of The Home .I use them for inspiration when it comes to making something special . My late husband Ray used to correspond with you on a regular basis , as he was an artist & a writer . I LOVE the bird S&P shakers and would love to have them. They would certainly brighten up my kitchen ! Thank you so much for your wonderful blog & the give away ! <:)

  72. Veronica Butler says:

    These are so cute and remind me of Spring!

  73. Donette LeTourneau says:

    O-pick me!~ I am in the back row! Waveing my hand o-so high! To shy to step further,yet bold enought to say in my strong voice inside. “Please pick me!”

  74. Betsy says:

    How I would LOVE to have those birdies on my kitchen windowsill. When I look out, no matter what the weather, I would be happy. I am saying a little prayer. Have a wonderful day!

  75. Paulette says:

    The bird salt and pepper shakers are just asking to make a home in my kitchen or dining room. My Campbell Kids on my Hoosier cabinet say they’d be fun up there with them and the pie crow. Otherwise, they wouldn’t mind spending spring on my mom’s old book shelf and my teapots in the dining room. Maybe I’ll be lucky!

    • Linda K Foster says:

      I’d love your kitchen Paulette I’m sure! I am very blessed to have my husbands grandma’s Hoosier Cupboard. And I have a black Pie bird inside of it. Guess I should put it out on display once in awhile! do you read Gladys Taber too? : )

  76. Kate says:

    Ohhhhh! Please pick me!!!!! Those birdies make my heart beat a little faster !!! Love you and your blog!!

  77. Joyce Heffner says:

    Susan: thank you so much for leaving the drawing open for a few more days! I am a Loooooooong time fan of yours. The minute I saw these bird salt and pepper shakers I fell in love! I am a birder from way back and collect all sorts of bird things. I hope you share who made these adorable birdies. I also grew up in the snow in lower Michigan and the is such a peacefulness about a good snow. Have a wonderful day and keep doing what you do so well. I am so happy that you share your kitties with us!

  78. Judy in CA says:

    Susan, I have a bird feeder attached to the outside of my kitchen window, and I can just see the birds on the outside, confused by the birds on the inside!!
    Thanks for the recipes today — on my way to the kitchen to make a cake!!

  79. Lynn L. says:

    My husband walked by and saw the pictures of the cake and thought that might be a very nice thing for me to make him!

    Love the little birdies. I am sitting at my desk with my kitty watching the birds eating from a window feeder. The cat keeps chirping to them. I’m sure he just wants to be friends!

  80. Stephanie says:

    Would love, love, love these shakers!

  81. Carolyn says:

    I love the pictures of the snow! I wish Old Man Winter would show up here. On Friday we had 7″ of snow and then the rains took it all away. It was sad to see our neighbor’s snowman melt!!!!! But those adorable green birds would certainly brighten up the gray day, that’s for sure!

  82. Kelly G says:

    I just saw the little birdies and I must have them! Thanks for the giveaway!

  83. Gris Svejcar says:

    You had me at Heart of the Home!

  84. Lynnie says:

    Thank you for keeping the birdies open another couple of days…would ADORE these in my home….love birds and vintage so much. You are a generous soul. Have a blessed day!


  85. Lynn B says:

    I thought I replied to this but wasn’t sure and didn’t want to lose a chance for these sweet birds, what a clever idea. Anyway, to make sure I had posted I just went through all the posts (didn’t find mine, thus this one) and would like to say that you must spend a lot of time reading these. There are thousands! Thousands of lives you touched today really. Anyway, also wanted to reccommend Sarabeths in NYC, there is a location on 59th St across from the Park but the original is up between 81st and 82nd on Amsterdam and you would love its quaintness. Very sweet. Thanks Susan.

  86. Theresa Thayer says:

    Oh Susan the birds are so adorable!! I am such a sucker for anything “birdish”! Your cake sounds divine! I am not a fan of most frostings, so a plain cake is for me, BUT, I am trying so hard to loose those nasty pounds that have found me….what to do???

  87. Kim Jensen says:

    How blessed I would be for these two little birdies to make their way across the Pacific to share some aloha! Love your myriad of blog writings and photos sharing the snow, the many holiday delights, recipes, treasured memories and kitty cats learning to dwell together! We all love your sharing spirit, Susan Branch! 🙂 With much aloha, Kim on The Big Island in Kailua-Kona.

  88. Marge says:

    The birds are charming! They remind me of growing up in the 50s….so vintage looking. Thank you for all of the inspiration that you provide me with your blog.

  89. Cynthia H. Riley says:

    Thanks for this darling giveaway! I also left the lights up and enjoyed them the last few days…but now all the snow has melted in this crazy 50 degree weather! I guess it is finally time to put ‘Christmas’ away! That’s why the birds are SO needed here- a new touch of an early Spring!

  90. Linda K Foster says:

    Such cute little S&P shakers! My grandma had a large collection of S&Ps in her round glass front secretary! Loved them. I have to resist the urge or I would have that many too! Thanks so much for your lovely posts, wonderful recipes and all you do for us girls!!! Love it all!

  91. Bonnie says:

    Love the birds. Love your posts!


  92. Elisa says:

    I LOVE these adorable bird salt & pepper shakers and I would LOVE to win them. Thanks so much for the opportunity. By the way – please send some of that beautiful snowy winter weather to VA!!! We haven’t had any yet this winter.

  93. claresgabby says:

    Yay! The contest is still open! Each day I check my email at lunch and I am always happy when you have a new blog to keep me company at my desk while I eat. (In a classroom that usually includes a group of 8th graders!) Your blog gives me so much pleasure…like a letter from home. Thanks!!!

  94. Pam K says:

    Hello Miss Susan!
    So glad I didn’t miss the give-away but more than that, I LOVE the pictures of the snow. I used to live in Pittsburgh and was beside myself with joy when a snow storm would roll in. We had a wood burning fireplace too so on those snowy nights we would be warm and secure by the fire.
    Your pictures of dishes and sketches are beautiful and I hope we “girlfriends” see your creations in the stores someday. I think when I read your blog, I almost feel as though I’m there enjoying the playful Jack and Girl Kitty, watching the snow and hearing the fireplace. I miss those things, as we are now in Texas. Not that I’m complaining, just a little homesick.
    Anyway, the salt/pepper shakers are sweet, would love to have them displayed in my Texas kitchen. Thanks for keeping the drawing open for a few extra days. Stay safe girlfriend! Pam K.

  95. Juliana Mahlmann says:

    Oh, those little birds are precious … I know that they would love to fly right to me and they would be so welcomed and cared for here 🙂 Susan, thank you for your amazing talents that you share with the world …. you are such a warm and welcome harbor in this very crazy world !!!

  96. peg says:

    just had to stop back by and ‘tweet’ about those darling S & P shakers! So cute….if only you had a flock to share!!! Loved today’s blog…all snowy and full of winter. We are approaching 83 by Thursday. As you know, dear Sue, the weather in So. CA. is like a yo-yo…..up and down….with no rhyme nor reason!!! Stay cozy. ♥

  97. Jan says:

    Would love for these birdies to nest in my home. I love birds, the color green, and salt; and they would be great company for my kitty cat, Meg.

    I couldn’t wait to try the milk cake and made it the same day I read your blog. I didn’t make the glaze, but served it with mixed frozen berries (defrosted) from Trader Joe’s. DELISH! What a great recipe and one that everyone would have the ingredients in their pantry. Thanks

  98. Christina says:

    Cute little birds. Bet they would like to spend the winter on my mantle.

  99. Melissa says:

    Oooh! Am I going to be the 1300th to comment on this thread! I hope so 🙂

    Can’t wait to try the milk cake, I have never heard of it, sounds amazing though! Thank you for the recipe.

    Well good luck to us all on the birdie S&P shakers (fingers crossed)!

  100. rita baker says:

    Looks like a really lot of us would love the birdies! You might have to keep this drawing open another few days, Susan, that is if it still is. Keep on inspiring us- you make so many us feel happy!

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