Wearing Green?

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!  If you’re not wearing green, run, get something, save yourself. I found out in grammar school that a pocketful of green grass was better than nothing!

Hi girls, this one’s long, get tea, get comfy!  Well, yesterday, I was thwarted.  Came to the computer early to update the blog and show you what we were up to on Thursday and found out “the server is down.”  Grrr.  #$@%*$# I do not like to be thwarted by my machines!  And it stayed down until noon!  By that time, all the magical morning juice (the stuff that’s manufactured while I sleep) had burnt off me; I was no longer the creative blogger I so wish to be, so I cleaned the studio instead.  Which makes me very happy this morning, because here I am, all juiced up from dreamland, in a clean studio, with a full cup of tea, a kitty on my lap, ready to go.

So what I have for you today is a bit of a travel log.  We went off island and because this is New England, because there is so much history here, whenever we have errands to do, we try to do them in a cute little town so we can eat in cute little restaurants, and see wonderful old houses.  We needed to go to an  Apple Store (to put more memory into my computer!).  Luckily Apple has lots of stores, so we picked the one in beautiful, downtown, Hingham, Massachusetts.   So here we go… arm chair travel!

Guess what year Hingham was incorporated and recorded as the twelfth town in the Massachusetts Bay Colony?  Yes! 1635!  The first courageous settlers of this town came across the cold gray sea in a wooden boat from Hingham, England.  I guess to make themselves feel more “at home” they named their new settlement after the town they’d come from, which is pretty much what all the settlers did.  That’s why it’s called “New” England.  That’s why there’s a Plymouth, a Boston, a Woodstock, a Tisbury, an Andover, and so many other towns, both here and in England.  But this isn’t a history lesson, this is a house tour.  Because, one of the things this town is famous for is that Eleanor Roosevelt said it had “the most beautiful Main Street in America.”

I thought you’d like to see some of it because so many of the original houses are still there!  And although Eleanor Roosevelt and Hingham don’t have much more in common than perhaps belonging to a mutual admiration society, I thought I would take advantage of the situation and pepper some of the wisdom of Eleanor Roosevelt amongst the photos; she is one of my heroes, her words resonate in my heart.  The world was and is better off because she was in it; I like her to be remembered.  So here we go, not in any particular order . . . here’s Hingham!

All of these wonderful old houses are either right on Main Street or just off; we walked up the street taking pictures as we went.  I would have liked hearing this music come from the windows of this house when the song was brand new!

Remember, Spring has not yet sprung here in New England; the bushes and trees are leafless and gray.  You have to look very close to see the buds; you have to imagine the green that is still to come.  But this robin’s egg blue house is very cheerful anyway.

Here’s the only fixer-upper I saw; anyone in the mood for a project?  It’s a beautiful old crumbling early American house.  The bathtub is right there, waiting to be reinstalled.  Most likely will need the floor to go under it too!  Some new glass panes, a little paint, and voila!  That was easy!

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.       ♥ Eleanor Roosevelt

Huge old trees line the neighborhood streets.  It must be stunning in the summer and fall.  I would like to take a nap under a tree like these.

This house was built in 1692!  That’s old!  Many of the houses had plaques with historical information on them.

Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.    Eleanor Roosevelt

This is that same 1692 house, of the “First Period” style of architecture . . . you can see that over the years, they kept adding on, and one day, they no longer had to walk through the snow to get to the barn!

Here’s a close up of the front door with a heart wreath.  I already like the people who live here!

How can you not fall in love with a whole antique village filled with stately homes, ancient trees, gambrel roofs, picket fences, shutters, old fireplaces; they speak of our whole history!  There’s definitely been knitting going on in this house!  And if you look real close  . . .

The lawn is full of springtime blossoms.

This is the Old Ship Church, built in 1630 — I’ll let the sign tell you the rest . . .

It is written that Abigail Adams took a sleigh ride over to Hingham from her home in nearby Quincy.  Can’t you just picture it:  A horse-drawn sled, bells ringing through the snow, horse’s breath visible in the cold air, furs layered on to keep the people warm?

It takes as much energy to plan as it does to wish. ♥ Eleanor Roosevelt

Here’s another wonderful old house and barn, but what is that in the upstairs window?

I think it’s a person.

A baby! A baby, peering out and he waved to me!  How many babies have done that over the last 300+ years since this house was born?  Waved, to daddy, back from the Revolutionary War, to people on horseback, to people in Model T’s?  Now, to us!

Faith and Begorrah, more MUSICA?

 So then we’d walked far enough; we were hungry so we took a vote and decided we would pop in, to what else, an Irish Pub, for lunch!

Too often the great decisions are originated and given form in bodies made up wholly of men, or so completely dominated by them that whatever of special value women have to offer is shunted aside without expression.  Eleanor Roosevelt

We had delicious Shepherd’s Pie with mashed potatoes and gravy, hot and steamy and fragrant and toasted Soda Bread and we listened to the Irish music that was playing there and decided, when we got done, we’d go to the old burying ground.  I hope you still feel like traveling, because there’s more!

So we started out, stopping at this beautiful green Georgian style house for a photo … could I really drive by without showing you this one?

Continued up the street and saw this beauty with the double gambrel roof . . .

To the gate of the old burying ground; New England churchyards are so beautiful, so full of history, they are wonderful to walk through, they set the imagination on fire.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you look fear in the face.  You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror; I can take the next thing that comes along.’  Eleanor Roosevelt

This graveyard was filled with old trees; keeping watch as they have for centuries.  Double graves of moms with babies are so sad.  The elements had blown some of the markers clean of any engraving at all.

The history of our country is right here.  Gone but never forgotten.

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. ♥ Eleanor Roosevelt

 Twigs and yellow grass crackled under our feet; it was too dreary a day for a graveyard, gray and chilly; but it was filled with austere beauty and memory and truly, love.

These headstones look like they are leaning back in their chairs about to put their feet up.

 As for accomplishments, I just did what I had to do as things came along.             Eleanor Roosevelt

Time out for coffee . . . off to the local bakery to get a brewed awakening!

How cute!  Giant bakery-made cupcakes with cream on the inside that look just like Hostess Cupcakes!

Trays full of delights, but we were good, still full of mashed potatoes and didn’t even get one of these checkerboard cookies!

We’re beginning to head out of town, but my camera won’t stop clicking — this large Georgian-style house caught my attention, but it’s the beautiful old gate that became the subject.

With my imagination, I remove the car in front of this Federal-style house (that I would like to move into in my next life); insert horses and wagon; let chickens run loose in the yard.

I think there may be more American flags per capita in this town than in any I have ever seen.  Look at those porches.  Make some lemonade, put a pillow in one of those rocking chairs, and call me when the sun comes out! 

Friendship with ones self is all important, because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else in the world.  ♥ Eleanor Roosevelt

So many beautiful old churches with bells and weather vanes.  They take such good care of everything.  It must be a monumental job to keep this painted and beautiful.


Right about here Joe mentioned that if we go any further I will probably use up all the new memory I just had inserted into my computer!!!  Time to go home . . .

About 1 ½ hours later, we’re back on the boat and heading across the sound for home; we have kitties waiting!  I go to the snack bar for tea and when I come back . . .

Sitting on our table, was this!  And Joe, with a catbird expression on his face.  A little worse for wear, having been tucked into a shopping bag, but still recognizable from the bakery; Joe got us a Hostess Cupcake when I wasn’t looking.  Starvation is not imminent. Dinner is served!  A haunch of cupcake.  You’d think, after all these years, I would know Joe always has something up his sleeve!

Just delicious!

A woman is like a tea bag; you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.    Eleanor Roosevelt

And that, my darlings is all.  I hope you enjoyed your trip!


What shall we talk about now?

Oh!  OK! I guess you have been the most patient people in the world, waiting for me to go to Apple, waiting for the server, and then this story that would never end —  and you would like to know who the winner is of our last giveaway?  Am I right?

OK, here we go, in honor of all of us who Love Cursive, the winner will receive signed copies of our new Home Cooking Recipe Keeper, my new book, Grandma Tell Me Your Story, and a set of notecards called ‘How to Be Happy.’  It will be going off to one lucky winner via snail mail just as soon as I hear back from the email I sent her.  Who? You ask?  Her:


On behalf of all the girlfriends, I want to say it couldn’t have happened to a sweeter more deserving person!  Right girls?  Congratulations Kristina!

Byeeeee Girlfriends.  Thank you all for sticking with me through thick and thin; your comments are just wonderful — you make me cry!  Just better and more interesting every day.  Thanks for entering into these drawings; they’re always fun because of YOU!!  Have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day weekend!  Willard starts going out on Tuesday, watch for it in your email box.  Sign your moms and best friends up for it if they aren’t already! XOXO!

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434 Responses to Wearing Green?

  1. Yvonne Shafer says:

    Absolutely fabulous!! I love old historical towns and love New England in particular!! Thanks so very much for the stroll through Hingham! I’m stopping there on my next trip east. I’m also hitting Amazon right now for a book of Eleanor’s words. Priceless wisdom!!

  2. DebbieHallock says:

    Congratulations Kristina! right down the road from me in Austin. Love all the pictures of the old houses. I also want to live in one like these in my next life

  3. Kerry S. from San Pedro, CA says:

    I’m sitting at the computer with a cup of Marco Polo hot tea in the lovely Bird Toile cup while the rain lashes So Cal outside! Thank you for the trip thru Hingham this morning!
    I wanted to tell you that Le Pain Quotidien in Manhattan Beach (that you introduced us to in your NYC posting) is now my regular Tuesday morning stop after I go to the Farmer’s Market (Torrance) and before my weekly trip to Whole Foods! Love their food! Plus I get a mixed berry tart for my Tuesday evening treat while I watch NCIS (Mark Harmon & berry custard tart – too much!)
    Have a fun St. Patrick’s Day! Warm thoughts to all the friends and congrats to Kristina!

    • sbranch says:

      Say Hello to San Pedro for me! California dreamin!

      • Christine from Lafayette, CO says:

        Hi Kerry!
        My dad had a dental practice in San Pedro in the 50’s and early 60’s! We lived up on the hill in Miraleste until 1964 when we moved to Santa Barbara. I loved that city, especially on the weekends when dad would take us down to the docks. We loved watching the boats coming and going out of the harbor, the sea smell… feeding the pelicans and seagulls. Is it still “quaint’??

        • Kerry S. from San Pedro, CA says:

          The port of LA & Long Beach has expanded so much that there are acres filled with shipping containers! Cabrillo Beach still popular though. Still San Pedro is one of the last beach towns that hasn’t been overdeveloped! So many cute neighborhoods – often come upon areas that surprise us even after living here for 15 years!

          • Laura Ann says:

            My husband’s grandparents lived in San Pedro for half a century and I adored their cute little house! We’re lucky to have the china and a few pieces of furniture from that sweet little bungalow. Reminds me of the old days in California.

  4. Double Celebrations . . nay . . Triple!
    First, it is Saint Patrick’s Day . . Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to you Susan
    Second, we have a wonderful new post from your good self!
    Third . . . (drum roll) Wales has just won the RBS Six Nations 2012 with a Grand Slam . . . there will be many a sore head on the morrow 😉

  5. Janet from Macomb, Michigan. says:

    Hi Susan,
    I just Love taking trips with you. The pictures are Wonderful and you narration is just fantastic. I love the feeling of almost being there with you !!! Thanks for the afternoon. One day soon I really do hope to get to your part of the world, its a dream of my Bestfriend and I to come and visit there when we retire and can truly start enjoying life. May the Luck of the Irish be with you Today and Always !!!

  6. Amy says:

    What a wonderful journey. Thank you for letting us come along. Many hugs to your wonderful sweetie for his surprise!

  7. Barb says:

    I have an autographed photo of Eleanor Roosevelt! In the 1960’s my father was the Director of Public Relations at Slippery Rock State College, (now Slippery Rock University), in Pennsylvania and Mrs. Roosevelt came to speak there. He even drove her back to the airport in Pittsburgh in our family car after her visit. The photo is one of my treasures and I, too, think she was an amazing woman.

  8. sharon says:

    Hi Susan! I feel like I have benn on a wonderful vacation to New England! Gorgeous homes–very stately.Thanks for the free trip!

  9. Christine Anderson says:

    I adore looking at old houses and we have nothing in California as old as these! We did one driving trip in 1984through New England after a train trip to boston. We loved driving through the states and staying in B&B’s. We need to go back again now we are retired and have more time!

  10. Linda Pintarell says:

    “”LIKE” and “DOUBLE LIKE” – thank you for letting us join you on this beautiful trip. I’m a California girl – born and bred. We just don’t see a lot of towns like that; with character and history attached. I LOVE porches – and seeing the flags flying from them gives you such a warm feeling. My appreciation to you for taking us along on your little journey. Linda in San Diego.
    P.S. I love California – just appreciate so much the beauty of another time.

  11. beebarbs says:

    What fun to see such a charming old New England town through your eyes — thank you! And a Willard is on the way — Oh Happy Day! Plus all of those wonderful Eleanor Roosevelt quotations — just love her — one of my favorites . . . “Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. “

  12. Lynn McMahon says:

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  13. Sylvia Johnson says:

    A wonderful trip, plus Eleanor! I am going to put some of those quotes in my “Quote Notebook”

  14. Jan from Michigan says:

    I just LOVED your post about Hingham! I will have to put that darling town on my bucket list for sure! Since my Mom was born and raised in Norwich Ct. I hold anything New England close to my heart. When we were little our parents would rent a cottage on the Cape. Such wonderful memories! Anyway, you are an AWESOME tour guide! I felt I was right there with you and Joe (loved the cupcake BTW) Congrats Kristina! What a LUCKY girl to receive such a special gift from our BEAUTIFUL Susan! Happy St. Patricks day everyone and stay safe!

  15. Jennie says:

    I loved being on tour with you, Susan! Those old homes are the stuff of dreams! Sounds like an ideal day to me. 🙂
    I loved the quote from Eleanor about woman being like tea bags- so true!
    Happy St. Patrick’s Day!! (don’t forget a green ribbon for Jack and Girl- of course, if they’re like my cats it doesn’t last long; photo op only!)

  16. Lisa R (northern Arizona) says:

    Congratulations Kristina!! Enjoy your treasures!……How sweet is that Joe, quietly bringing along a yummy cupcake to share with you Susan, such charm. 🙂 I SO enjoyed this trip! As a lover of history, and beautiful American historic homes, it made my day. Don’t we just live in the greatest country in the world!!

  17. Kim says:

    The houses that you’ve photographed and shared with us are so very beautiful. Do you ever see any small homes, though, I wonder? It would be such a treat to see some beautiful little cottages to model dreams after!

    • sbranch says:

      For some reason this was a street of big houses!

      • mari1017 says:

        I lived there – all gorgeous HUGE houses by center of town – wonderful smaller homes and former beach cottages in other areas – Hingham is rather large and also on the water – and extremely beautiful! love Virginia now but miss the area!

  18. Jacquelyn Wirthlin .... Las Vegas, Nevada says:

    What a beautiful surprize! Such gorgeous homes peppered with Eleanor’s wisdom. They go together, don’t you think … I love the small New England towns, graveyards, schools, churches, etc. So much history just for the looking. The cupcake was too much! “Joey” did it again and bless him for it …LOL Once again Sue, thank you for making an errand into something grand. Congratulations to Kristina! Happy St. Patrick’s Day Sue and the Girlfriends.

  19. Susan says:

    Thanx for the post. One of my college roommates was from Hingham, but I never realized how lovely the town is.

    (Congrats to the winner.)

  20. Kate garfield says:

    Hooray for Kristina! I know the goodies will have found a wonderful home.
    Enjoy the day, ladies!

  21. Barbara (WA) says:

    Just Wonderful – thank you!!

  22. Francine says:

    Well Susan – your house looks like it could fit right in there!! Thanks for the tour, I enjoyed it so much! Beautiful, just beautiful!! Those houses are dancing around in my head.

  23. {oc cottage} says:

    oh, once upon a time {1643}, a young
    man, who shares my last name, appeared
    in Plymouth. and one day, i will get back
    there to visit Berkley & Taunton to see
    all the cool headstones of my peeps!
    {and by calling them “peeps” i imagine
    they all just spun in their graves! ;}
    one day!

    m ^..^

  24. em says:

    Susan-next time you’re visiting the graveyard in Hingham, try to find the “Angel of Grief” – http://www.hinghamcemetery.org/pie_3f.html – such a touching memorial. Also, they give tours of the graveyard sometimes!

    • sbranch says:

      Oh how beautiful, would have made me cry!

    • Lori from Maine says:

      Hi em: I went to the cemetary site – what a beautiful, peaceful looking place it is. The information on the folks buried there was so interesting. Thank you for including the “address” in your post.
      xoxo from SW Hbr. ME

      • mari1017 says:

        Oh, yes, Susan – you must see the Angel the next time you go – that was the first pix I looked for once I saw the cemetery – google her and you’ll find that she’s quite famous ♥

  25. em says:

    Here’s the map – http://hinghamcemetery.org/HinghamCemeteryNewMap.pdf
    but, I’m sorry, I couldnt find info on upcoming tours.

  26. Ritchie Saunders says:

    This was a great trip through history! Wanted one of those cupcakes too!
    My daugter and a friend are at the Cape this weekend for what she calls their annual scrapbooking weekend with 300 other scrapbook junkies”!! Hope one of these times they will get to visit your area. Pouring rain in Pacific Palisades today but we so need it! I’m going through old pictures to try to find a picture of my Mother in her Middy Blouse to take to a gathering of 5 gals whose Mom’s were all friends at the U of Montana in the 1920’s! We let the husbands come too! They get a real kick out of hearing us talk about our Mom’s! Such Fun!
    Glad your computer is updated! We had a power outage last night and this morning ours wouldn’t boot up and I have lots of pictures to get scanned! But it came through and woke up! Yahhhhhh! Happy Shamrock Day!!!!

    Ritchie Saunders….Pacific Palisades CA XOXO

  27. Kathy in San Diego says:

    Oh my gosh…how can your blogs get any better?! And they always do! I lived in NH/Maine for 5 yrs. fron 2nd thru 7th gr. and so loved it. No wonder these beautiful Hingham brought me back in time–thank you for such beautiful pictures. I’m with you as to the one with the wreath on the door!–I know she could be my new best friend, for sure! But, my favorite was the baby peeking out the window! Soooo sweet…and to think you got a wave! As special as the pictures are, your comments are just as special! I don’t know how you can put it all together –picture, comments, baking, travel, etc!! Just promise not to stop–you bring joy to so many! Happy St. Paddy’s Day! Kathy in San Diego

  28. Linda K says:

    Oh I loved the tour. I live in California and don’t think I will ever get back there so this is so much fun. Thank you for sharing. p.s. Your husband is such a dear.

  29. Kathy R says:

    Thank you for letting us spend the day with you, Joe and Eleanor! What a wonderful little town! I love walking through old cemeteries and reading the history. Some day I will make it to New England and experience this first hand. Until then, I will live vicariously through you!
    Happy St. Patricks Day and National Quilting Day! I’m off to quilt now….

  30. Marie (Long Beach, CA) says:

    Hi All!
    I really enjoyed traveling to Hingham with you and Joe, from my comfy couch, with a cup of tea, listening to the rain come down outside. What beautiful old homes! It’s amazing how long all those churches and homes have lasted throught all these years! I also enjoyed all the Eleanor Roosevelt quotes sprinkled throughout this wonderful post! It was so sweet of Joe to suprise you with one of those giant Hostess Cupcakes! What a delicious surprise! Thank you Susan for another wonderful post with the most marvelous pictures! Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone! ♥♥♥

  31. Julie says:

    Loved the road trip-
    felt like we were all, just two steps behind you.

    Beautiful, New England town & houses-
    the 1692 house was incredible & my favorite,
    can just imagine how primitive & historical, the interior must be.
    Maybe, someone from Hingham can fill us in, on this property-
    if only those walls could talk.

    Even the Ma & Pa Kettle “Fixer-Upper” was sweet-
    kind of whimpering sad, but sweet, nonetheless….just begging for attention.

    The mystery baby in the window…..awwww !
    Hope his Mama reads your blog & identifies him-
    wouldn’t THAT be a coincidinky ?

    Ending your blog,
    with that photo of Joe’s sweet surprise, cupcake
    sent me running thru the house,
    searching for anything chocolate….thanks a lot, you two-
    the most I could come up with
    was a wrinkled-wrapped, smashed, Tootsie Roll,
    out of a coat pocket,
    with 7cents stuck to it.

    Who was it that said, “Life is not fair”………..Eleanor Roosevelt ?

    • sbranch says:

      seven cents, that’s good!

      • Bonnie Perkins says:

        I believe that is a JFK quote, I use it all the time. Bonnie in Bakersfield, CA

      • Julie says:


        When you snapped the photo,
        did you notice the lady,
        standing behind the baby in the window ?
        She has glasses & appears to be grandmotherly-like.
        Was worried the baby found himself, near an open window
        and looking for a way out-
        Glad to know, Granny or Nanny was right behind him
        and had him by his diapers.

        • sbranch says:

          There was a storm window between him and the great outdoors too . . . what a little dollface he was . . . I was such a peeping tom, and the whole time I was wishing I had a telephoto lens!

  32. Linda in Texas says:

    Loved, loved, loved going along with you on your adventure. All of those wonderful old houses. That baby in the upstairs window! The ancient cemetery. An Irish Pub. And Joe sneeking a giant cupcake onto the ferry to share with tea. Girl, how did you stand so much wonderfulness in one day? Thank you so much for sharing with the rest of us. Every time I read about any of your travels–near or far–I want to hit the road.

    Congratulation to fellow Texan, Katrina.

  33. Pamela Duffy says:

    If I knew you were coming (so close to where I live) I’d have baked a cake…Probably one of your recipes!! We absolutely love the Snug-Hope you tried the onion rings- they’re to die for!! I want to thank you for turning us on to the Griswold Inn. Had a great time over my Feb. break… Can’t wait to go back.

  34. Kimi says:

    You out done your self here I tell you I could just look at the houses all day! I’m the same way I will look at a home and think wow what that old house could say if it can talk, all the families it help raise, all the holidays, babies born what memories. I notice on the blue house a big gnarly tree how its bark twist from the years of wind pressure. Susan here in the Midwest we have budding trees & flowers every where and yellow daffodils too we are having very warm weather 70s & 80s Scary if you ask me not to normal for this time of year Oh well I like just fine. Thank you for the lovely pictures Happy St. Patrick day to you and Joe…. God blessing be with you both…

  35. em says:

    Another PS! Next time you’re in Hingham, you might just like Strawberry Fair restaurant.
    (feel free to delete my comments – I just thought you might like the info.)

  36. Paula says:

    It truly is a small world of girlfriends! The winner, Kristina Wagner….is an actual friend of mine!!!! I am so excited that someone I actually know won!! Although, I must admit, I am just a wee bit jealous! :o) Thank you for the trip Susan and hooray for Kristina!!!!

    • Lois Burgess from Nova Scotia, Canada says:

      Isn’t that neat Paula!! Congratulations Kristina–I can just imagine how thrilled you must have been to see your name come up on the screen 🙂 Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Susan, Joe and Jack. “Top of the evening” to you and all the girlfriends!

      P.S. Two signs of spring I saw today: a flock of FAT robins in our maple tree and crocus shoots peeking up…YEAH!

  37. Carol Maurer says:

    Happy St. Patricks Day to you Susan,
    I was in 7th heaven this morning looking at all those old and stately homes!! I just love older homes…. we live in a 1886 Victorian home here in Eureka, CA. We are selling our home to move back up to WA and will be buying a modern ranch style home. We want to be closer to the kiddies.
    Congratulations to Kristina for being the big winner this time around!!
    The sun is coming out and the rains are going away for the time being!!!
    Til we meet again,
    Carol M

  38. Deb from Dixie says:

    Amazing…….ah what a wonderful trip to Hingman….just loved every bit of it!
    Those new England Homes, so charming…..so much history…..wish we could hear their stories! Thanks so much for taking us along on your off island trip.
    And……I am so inspired by each of the quotes from Eleanor Roosevelt, what a smart woman
    Happy dance for Kristina, what a wonderful gift….and surprize on St. Patty’s day! And speaking of St. Pat’s……..happy day to all the girlfriends…..wear a little green so you don’t get pinched…….and be on the watch for Leprechauns…..because they lead you to rainbows and pots of gold…and that gold can be anything that enriches your life…….like the kindred spirits here…..now I’ll do an Irish Jig about that! ♥ ♥ ♥……. Happy Weekend!

  39. Holly says:

    Congratulations Kristina! What a WONDERFUL post!! Your trips to small town New England should be a regular here! I LOVED that baby peaking out the window of that house. You MUST paint that! In fact, you could do a calendar, or series of prints of the old houses. That big tan home with the double gable type roof, I’d love to see inside it. Imagine what the woodwork must be like! Big sigh! Our little town in Indiana has so many old homes from the early 1800s and so many are just falling apart. It’s sad. Thank you for sharing your day with us!

  40. Beth from Virginia says:

    Dear Susan,

    I love Joe. Just saying.


  41. Carolyn (SoCA) says:

    It’s a perfect St. Pat’s day in SoCal, rainy and green! I am running to the store in a few minutes for the ingredients for Irish Stew and soda bread, although my husband will probably insist on cornbread, too. I so enjoy the way you share your excursions! and the fact that you and Joe aren’t afraid of food!! Congratulations to Kristy, guess you had the luck of the Irish today.

  42. Lorie Hartsig says:

    Eleanor Roosevelt is my favorite, too! Thanks for the quotes.
    I just took a break from making your carrot cupcakes, the recipe for which I got when I ordered the recipe kit with the liners and cute little chicks to put on top. Our little beach town is fogged in today so it is a good day to bake…..and travel with you through Hingham. Oh, and drool over your bakery Hostess cupcake!
    Lorie Hartsig

  43. Lisa V. from Flower Mound, TX says:

    Yay! Someone from Texas won! Congratulations to Kristina! Thank you, Susan, for the wonderful tour of Hingham. We have nothing like that here so it’s wonderful to see and daydream. By the way, I watched Enchanted April for the first time this morning. Loved it! Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone!

  44. Thank you so much for the lovely Eleanor quotes and the tour of those beautiful old homes. They made my heart flutter. The first house my husband and I owned was 100 years old. Since then they’ve all been new or new-ish. I miss the creaky wooden floors and quirkiness of that first old house, the one we brought our first baby home to. Maybe, someday…! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  45. LindaSonia says:

    What a fun fun fun trip – enjoyed everything about it1! Thanks for sharing – and that cupcake!!! what a sweetheart you have there!

  46. Tana says:

    What a wonderful posting. I love all the homes and I so admire Eleanor Roosevelt. Oh, and I live in Renton, Washington. It is just south of Seattle, where I grew up.

  47. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you so much for sharing pictures of your trip! You know how much I enjoy seeing every little bit of New England. Wouldn’t it be fun to meet the folks that live in such wonderful homes! I wonder who’s half of the cupcake was eaten so you could tease us with the wonderful inside – yum. Congratulations to the winner ofyour wonderful treasures!

    • sbranch says:

      I had to show the inside, it was the first thing I wanted to know — how does the inside look!

  48. I enjoyed every inch of this post today. I LOVE old houses and I dont think they make them as well as they did in the past and out your way. I will have to pour over this a few more times. I loved the cupcake story. Joe still can suprise you after all these years.. Got to love it. 🙂
    Congrats to Kristina Lucky Gal.

  49. Dolores says:

    What a delight our trip was today! I was feeling a tiny bit sad because my daughter was visiting Boston going to all the places we always go. She of course texted me pictures of all they were doing and that was fun, but sure wish I was there! But then you take us on a wonderful trip of all those beautiful homes with so much history to imagine and all is wonderful. Just beautiful and I am putting this lovely place on my next visited to New England.

    As a little girl we were suppose to do a report of a President, I instead found my life long hero, Eleanor Roosevelt! I am afraid I may have flunked that report that day but gained a belief in all the things I could succeed in. What a blessing to see her words again in such a beautiful way. I am sending a link to my daughter of your page. She will love the homes and history of Hingham and learn more about the person her mother idolized as a child.

    Thank You

  50. Sarah says:

    So this quaint little town has an Apple store? 🙂 The juxtaposition of the two must be jarring! 🙂

  51. Joanie B from San Diego says:

    Congratulations to the winner and Happy Paddy’s Day to all . My corned beef is in the crock pot, later I will make the Irish Soda bread.
    Lovelovelove old houses. I visited the old area of Spokane Washington and drove my relatives crazy by requiring them to pull over every other minute so I could photograph the houses.
    Your expression a “haunch of cupcake” made me laugh. It must have been a huge cupcake, well the bigger the better if its chocolate. Yumm!!!
    Thanks for the grand trip. I check in every other day for my country pick me up, forget the caffeine, just drink Susan’s blog. 🙂

  52. What a lovely afternoon stroll I had with you and Joe! I can’t begin to imagine the fun to live in New England and feel all that rich history all around you. Thanks so much for sharing your day with us. I will look at it again later tonight. Deeeelightful!

  53. Pat Mofjeld says:

    Congratulations Kristina! And “Thanks!” for the tour, Susan. We LOVE looking at old houses–admire their architecture and character. I would love any one of the houses you have photos of but particularly the one with the double gambrel roofs!!! Our townhouse is probably about 1/4 of the square footage! LOL! (Just think how many schnauzers I could have if I lived in a big house like that, Sandy!!!) 🙂 We have gone on several house tours of old houses in historical neighborhoods here where we live–one of my favorite fun activities!!! When I visited my friend, Sandy, in Boston many years ago, I shot a lot of photos of the beautiful old houses. In New England you are surrounded by so much history–I love it! Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all! 🙂

  54. Becky says:

    Thanks for the trip and the lovely old homes. My favorite was the door with a door that could close over it. Your blog is always worth waiting for. My husband and I may be watching The Quiet Man this evening. Happy Saint Paddy’s day.

  55. Oh, Susan! I am so in heaven seeing these photos. I grumble about the winters in the northeast. I swear I’m going to get away from the cold. But there is just something so special about the other three seasons!! Thanks for the ‘road trip’!!

  56. Rita Baker says:

    Loved your travelogue and photos – I love being an armchair traveller with you, Susan! Today here in northern Illinois it’s almost 80 degrees and everything is budding and bursting into bloom – a rare treat for us who really don’t get spring until mid April. I’m so happy for this wonderful weather and hope you get some warm days soon too. And Happy St. Patrick”s Day from a non-Irish girl who was in the minority at St. Kilian’s Grade School in Chicago in the 50’s.


  57. Linda - Bakersfield, CA says:

    Enjoyed the tour – went to their website and then googled ‘homes for sale in Hingham, Ma. There are a few and some inside shots too. I love small towns, so anytime you want to take us along – I am ready.

  58. Carlie says:

    Than you for the wonderful mini-vacation – I am totally relaxed!

  59. Judy from Oregon says:

    This has got to be one of your best posts ever. I love looking at old homes and was amazed at how many there are in Massachusetts when we were there. We don’t have that many here in the west and none that old. I would love to go through all of them. Thanks for the music. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  60. Polly says:

    Thank you Susan, for posting this blog, just as I am having a late lunch after a day of cleaning and spring/Easter decorating. Reading your words, looking at your wonderful pictures is like a reward or gift! Thank you for always filling my heart with happiness!
    Yay for Kristina!

  61. Treese says:

    Boy, old Eleanor was a bit of a looker when she was a girl. Even though I am 100% Swedish I still enjoy a bit of the “Luck of the Irish!” I put a big green ribbon on my horse’s mane this morning when we went out for a ride. I loved the Travel Log-all those dreamy old homes.
    Treese/Colorado Cowgirl.

  62. Pat Mofjeld says:

    P.S. Loved the surprise “Hostess Twinkie” cupcake surprise. Norm does things like this–only he is terrible about doing things on the sly to surprise me as he will get this funny look on his face, kind of guilty-looking, and I usually say, “Why do you look kind of guilty?” and his neck and face get red, he starts to laugh, and says “What do you mean?” and I KNOW he is up to something!!! I actually try to not accuse him of something when I suspect it so it doesn’t ruin it for him now–but I told him he had better never do anything wrong behind my back because his face is an open book! 🙂 LOL

  63. Mary Ann - Central Highlands of Mexico says:

    What beautiful homes. I miss them all.

  64. Jan says:

    First of all Congratulations to Kristina!! Old homes are one of my favorite things to look at. Loved seeing all the old homes and churches – just beautiful!!
    I also enjoyed reading all the quotes from Eleanor Roosevelt. Thanks for the trip. It’s a beautiful day here in Michigan. Birds chirping, warm breeze blowing, and grass greening. Have a great weekend!

  65. Sheila Brazzell says:

    Congrats to Kristina! Thanks for the trip. I had a great time in Hingham. You have the sweetest husband. Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

  66. JudyCinNC says:

    The armchair travel log was a beautiful time-out for me this afternoon, along with the beautiful music, while I spend my time waiting for the corned beef and cabbage to be ready. Thank you Susan for my afternoon tea party of one.

    Don’t you just love towns that have every shape and size of an American flag displayed? Makes you feel all wonderful and patriotic inside and just downright proud. Judy C

  67. Dale Worness says:

    Thanks so much for your great pictures of Hingham. I would simply go nuts there, taking pictures of every house in town! They’re all beautiful, but I especially love the Dutch Colonials. The old houses have so much more character than the cookie-cutter architecture of today. I can just imagine being curled up on the couch with an afghan and a good book, with a crackling fire in the fireplace and watching the snow fall outside. So much for Spring thoughts! Well, time to go eat my mini cupcakes with the green icing. Happy St Patty’s Day to you all! Think I’ll wear my Shamrock T-shirt to church tonight but I’m debating about the Shamrock head-piece. Whaddya think? Congrats to Kristina!

    • sbranch says:

      We stayed on Main Street because of what Eleanor Roosevelt said about it; next time, maybe we’ll have more time; I’d love to get back into the neighborhoods and see what they’re like.

  68. Terri from Swansboro, NC says:

    History of Hingham by Susan Branch in pictures of red white and blue lines down the streets, (loved that!) and all the flags are so near and dear to my heart with hubby in the Army and of course all the old houses! What a fun tour! LOL!! And what a fabulous tour guide you are! Hugs to ya! And Joe is a darling! Give him a hug for me for being such a wonderful hubby to you! Smiles!!

  69. Lisa says:

    Hi Susan, This was a dreamy post; thank you! My brother used to live in Plymouth, and I just loved visiting there. Your life of half CA and half Martha’s Vineyard is like a fairy tale to me. Thanks for sharing….

  70. Cyndi Harp in NC says:

    What a great guy Joe is. I think you should keep him!

  71. Mia Sophia says:

    Happy St Patrick’s Day and congrats to lucky Kristina! Though I am born and bred a California girl, I do love the East Coast. We took a New England cruise and I felt right at home with the architecture, the history, the colors and the homes. Loved Bar Harbor, Newport and Martha’s Vineyard so much. Can’t wait to go back again! Thanks for taking me on a stroll with you this morning! Loved it!

  72. Sue Miller says:

    Thanks for another great day trip. Because of you I am able to experience so many things I would love to do in person!! You add such color to my life.
    Congrats to Kristina!! Lucky girl.

  73. Janice says:

    OH, what a treat for my morning meditation. You always get me started in such a fun way, along with Gladys. ER’s quote about great decisions resonates with me at this time in our political climate, thank you for her remembrances.


  74. laurie says:

    Thankyou so much for taking us on your trip! What beautiful homes, looks like spring has really touched down in your neck of the woods.Its such a romantic and histirical area, soooo much history.Love the child in the window, love to think as you said how many have looked from this window.
    Thats a good man to remember the treat, mine would have too, thanks again, I can’t beleive its time for Willard already, time is flying.We have spring here today, sunshine and snow banks are melting, yippppeee!I made you cheesecake recipe today, it has become a family fav.

  75. Lesley Baker says:

    Good Morning Susan!(it’s Sunday morning here in NZ) I love the old New England houses,especially the covered porches.. I want to join you on a rocking chair with a jug of lemonade!!!and that baby peeping at you out the window,deeee-lightful! Here in NZ our very oldest houses are early 1800″s,we’re just a baby country really .
    Oh..and i wanted to tell you i just read Elizabeth and her German Garden,and now reading The Enchanted April…..very much enjoying the books, Elizabeth was so witty,she had a wonderful way with words(like you!)
    all the best!

  76. Thank you so much for the beautiful tour! I wasn’t going to go out today and now I won’t — I feel like I’ve been out riding around in Hingham, MA. Love those homes and the little purple flowers just beginning to bloom. You saved my favorite Eleanor Roosevelt quote until the last. If you hadn’t included it, I was going to send it to you. And I’ve got my cup of hot tea right here. Congratulations to Kristina from Georgetown — a fellow Texan!

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day Susan! Love from Tay in Kemah, Texas

  77. Laura B Jenkins says:

    There is a special place in heaven for hubs who suprise their wives with sweet treats…thank you for taking us along on this tour of Hingham!..I should add this to our list of farther afield places to go from Beantown in May…xo

  78. Lisa G. says:

    “A haunch of cupcake” – now that’s one I haven’t heard!! Very cute. And, thanks for the trip – I loved it!

    • sbranch says:

      It was not a mini cupcake, thats for sure. It was really BIG. I almost called it roast beef of cupcake, but that didn’t seem quite right!

  79. Jeannine Holmes, SC says:

    Oh gosh darned!!! You make me miss Massachusetts SO MUCH! Thanks for all the gorgeous photos of Hingham. You are my new Travel Channel!

  80. Wendy Louise says:

    What a wonderful way to spend St. Patrick’s Day afternoon with a cup of tea and your wonderful, marvelous, beautiful blog that fills me with beautiful emotions, it just touches my soul, Thank-you ! My husband and I love to take historical trips close to home too. If you haven’t already, visit Abigail and John Adams homes in Quincey, I especially like seeing Abigails roses in her garden, the library they had and the Old homestead, just wonderful. I love how Eleanor Roosevelt teaches so much with just short little sayings, just like you spreading your HAPPY genes to us all ! And your cute Joe, he’s one of the best !!!

  81. Diana - Highland, IL says:

    Oh Kristina you lucky girl!!! Congratulations .. you definitely have the Luck o’the Irish working for you today!.. Thanks to you Susan for taking us on your trip. One of my goals is to make it to New England some day to explore. I have driven through but haven’t stopped anywhere… but I WILL … someday and hopefully sooner than later. Until then, I so enjoy being a passenger and enjoying the sites! I Love Love Love the history of towns, houses, well just history. New England is so rich in it and the only place I have been to is Boston for a couple days and that was work-related..so it doesn’t count! LOL.. Thanks again and happy St. Patrick’s Weekend to you too!!

  82. Charlene H. from No. Hills, CA says:

    Hello Susan! I just loved this post. ♥ Early American history, old homes, Eleanor Roosevelt, a thoughtful husband, and a new Winner! Congratulations, Kristina! Thank you for this wonderful lesson in turning an errand into an adventure! Truly…each day can be filled with wonder and appreciation if we just have a bit of imagination! Thank you so much for providing just that for so many of us! ♥♥♥

  83. Pat M. says:

    Thank you so much for sharing the tour with us. I love this historic trip, hope to have the chance to see it for myself someday. Pat in Indiana

  84. Sara says:

    Oh Susan…so many of my favorite things are in this post: old homes and churches, historical cemetaries, Eleanor Roosevelt quotes, American flags flying, and secret sweets from a bakery. You make my heart swell and my lips smile! Thank you for sharing your day.

  85. Bonnie from Iowa says:

    Thank you so much for taking us along on your historical tour of Hingham! I just loved it…..what a nice St Paddy’s Day treat. This is the only way I can travel now (through others) as I can’t walk very far now without pain. I just told my son this morning that I can go “anywhere I want” on the computer and see all the wonderful things……..just can’t eat the scrumptious food! I love going to youtube and “riding all the rides in Disney World”, vacationing with Face Book friends through their photos, or reading blogs and experiencing life through such amazing people as yourself. I love my computer and am very thankful there are people like you in it sharing things through your eyes that I enjoy tremendously. Thank you so much Susan for introducing me to such richness……Gladys, Beatrice Potter, Jack and Girl Kitty, train rides across the country and ferry rides to history, beautiful art, beautiful gardens, beautiful decorating and beautiful food!

  86. Joann says:

    Oh Susan….I JUST loved the tour….When we took our Fall vacation to New England in 2010, I took SO many pictures of homes, so I am so happy to see that you do the same thing, too. We don’t have many like those in CO, that’s for sure. Especially not with the big lawns and gorgeous trees.

    You know…..that Joe is a keeper….. a man with a cupcake is a treasure!


  87. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I can’t think of anything I’d like better than eating a giant chocolate cupcake while on a ferry to Martha’s Vineyard 🙂 Thanks for sharing your trip. I LOVE ♥♥♥♥♥ old houses! xoxo Debbie

  88. Ann Y. (Adamstown, PA) says:

    Hingham is now on my list of places to see. Thanks for sharing your day with us. And that Joe, what a sweetie surprising you with a cupcake ! I loved the photos of the homes – they were so well loved. Well, most of them, but even the run down one could be beautiful, with love. Wanted to share that I love the photo of the little baby, and love the way you think…what has that window seen. There is a little “tea room” place near here we visit…on an old road, in an old colonial house, across from a corn field, and when I sit in the window and look out through the wavy glass I think the same way…what have people who looked out this window seen ??? So glad you included the cemetary…we love to visit them all over…such stories. Once again, a very old one just down the road ( church was started in 1737, so there are some stones so old we can’t read ) is a regular route for our long, Sunday walks. The old graves make me wonder, the new graves do too….and now we know someone who rests there, so we stop and put a stone on the monument so eeryone who passes knows this person is remembered. We leave the cemetary, continue our walk, appreciate our life a little bit more. Thanks for sharing your beautiful day with all of us, congratulations to Kristina, and have a magical St. Patrick’s Day !

  89. Dee says:

    thank you for such a beautiful afternoon! this “trip” was just awesome! and a “Happy St. Patty’s Day” to you, too! Looking forward to Tuesday spend a little time with Willard. I so enjoy the visits!
    Pink Hugs,

  90. Paulie says:

    Hi Susan: What a wonderful little excursion you gave us. Just love these historic little towns with all of these beautiful buildings. I look at these photos and I am thinking paintings, lady, paintings…..wouldn’t they make lovley paintings? Oh my gosh…..
    also loved Eleanor’s quotes – they are so right on and something to appreciate for sure. Thank you for the lovely post t Susan. So thankful I just finished a nice chocolate cake otherwise I would have been drooling..

  91. Jace says:

    Looking forward to visiting my friend Sally in Hingham in the fall-can’t wait after seeing these pictures!!!

  92. Heartsdesire says:

    Oh Susan, that was the most wonderful tour of those beautiful, beautiful old homes. You are so lucky to have all that history so close to hand. Here in Victoria, on Vancouver Island, most of the homes are stucco with a few Victorian beauties. Some lovely, but nothing compared to New England. And not much age to them either. I think British Columbia was the last province settled. I know that in the Maritimes, you see those beautiful old homes, but here, everything is quite modern. I envy you that giant Hostess cupcake. Joe is such a thoughtful fellow. Enjoy your St. Patrick’s Day, hubby and I are off to the pub for a pint of Guinness.

  93. miriam says:

    What a wonderful road trip…thank you for taking us along on your “errand”! I have always wanted to visit the New England area. My dad was born and grew up in Plainville, CT. His folks had an inn there. And I have always loved old houses, in fact, This Old House used to be my favorite program (wouldn’t mind fixing up that sweet one in Hingham if I had more energy and $$$ !!) The closest I’ve gotten to an “old” house was the one I grew up in in Los Angeles (near Sunset Blvd and Glendale Blvd overlooking Echo Park). It was built in 1900. Still dream about it!!!! Creaky wooden back stairs, pocket doors, beautiful wooden columns, a great pantry to hide in, gas outlets for the chandeliers and the wooden box toilets that my dad changed right away!! Would LOVE to go into those old houses in Hingham! Imagine they have lots of stories to tell! And YOU would be the best one to tell them!!! 😉
    Thanks again for the lovely trip….you’re the best!!!!
    Hugs from Miriam, wintering in Austin…

  94. Paula B. says:

    Wonderful post and although this New England girl has always dreamed of living on the southern California coast, there is no place like quaint New England towns. We should have known that extra special cupcake was going to make a second appearance… add mine to the names of those who love Joe, what a guy! And may the luck of the Irish be with you both.Thanks for the day trip to Hingham

  95. Oh wow! Such gorgeous homes, HUGE trees, beautiful photography and wonderful history. I am a history nut so I loved this post! Thank you so much for taking the time and energy to share beauty with us. It is a delight to me when I read your blog. It also makes me hungry and desire a kitty! Anyway, keep sharing loveliness with us.

  96. Susan Craft says:

    I LOVED this post. Just yesterday I said to my husband I would like to take a trip but I wish I didn’t have to leave home to do it….. and today I got to do exactly that! Thanks so much for the armchair travel. Your pictures of these lovely homes were just wonderful along with your thoughtful and charming commentary interspersed with Eleanor Roosevelt’s wisdom. As a lover of history and historic homes I was enthralled.
    Of course, no trip is complete without stopping to eat( often, if you are with me) and you find such interesting places. Both your restaurant and menu choices were perfect.
    I laughed when I saw the picture of the Hostess cupcake with the smudged icing–your Joe is a real sweetheart with, I think, a sly sense of humor!
    Congratulations to Kristina and I hope everyone enjoys their St. Patrick’s Day.

  97. Ann says:

    My sister lives in Hingham! (In a condo, alas, not one of those beautiful old homes.) It is such a lovely town, your photos did it justice, Susan. Next time you are there be sure to have a meal at the “Square Cafe”. Joe’s cupcake surprise is something my husband would do, too. You and I are very lucky. Congratulations, Kristina! Happy letter writing.

  98. Lori from Maine says:

    Happy St. Patty’s Day Susan and girlfriends! Loved the trip through Hingham – I love living in New England so much. We’re going to Boston a week from Monday for three days…a Bruce Springsteen concert Monday night 🙂 🙂 🙂 and wandering around town for two days. We’re staying right in the North End (home of the best Italian restaurants in N.E.) and near the Freedom Trail. We’ve been to all the sights before, but there’s always something that we’ve missed. It’s kind of awe inspiring to be in a building where the Revolutionary War was debated, or to stand on the spot of the Boston Massacre. We haven’t visited Paul Revere’s house, so that’s on the list. If it rains, we’ll hit some of the amazing museums. Can’t wait!!!!
    Congratulations Kristina!!! Happy, happy, joy, joy! Have fun with your goodies.
    Looking forward to Willard. Have a wonder-full weekend everyone!
    xoxoxo from SW Hbr. Maine

    • sbranch says:

      Paul Revere’s House was maybe one of the first things I ever did on my first trip to Boston. Amazing. I won’t say why, but you’ll see! Have fun!

  99. Tamar Weaver says:


  100. Siobhan in Santa Monica, CA says:

    What great advice, to get a cup of tea and sit back and enjoy this post…super-loved this day trip! I’ve never been back east either, like some others here. And, wow, the California girlfriends represented in the comments! Hi Sistahs! You’re such a heartwarmer, Susan. I send you a big hug…and that last quote of Mrs. Roosevelt’s…wow! Looking forward to Willard on Tuesday…yippee! (btw, thank you for explaining the delay in the comments shifting from awaiting moderation to actually posting a few posts ago. that was really helpful. you take all the time you need!) And finally, congratulations to Kristina! Such a joyful post. Thanks again!

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