Traveling Armchairs

While armchair travelers dream of going places, traveling armchairs dream of staying put.      ♥ Anne Tyler

 OMG Girlfriends, 2,300 comments, this definitely wins the award for most exciting Giveaway so far!  Aren’t you amazed?  Who knew!?   Most of the time we hum along so quietly, like a big happy quilting bee or something, and then suddenly, this! I like it!!  I just wish I had 2,300 of these special little books — you all deserve one!  I don’t even want to set Vanna* in motion — ‘no winner’ means everyone is still a winner!

I have exciting news: our girlfriend Georgie contacted the Gift Shop at Hill Top Farm to see if she could order a copy of the special edition book to be sent to her, and GUESS WHAT?  She Twittered to tell me — they’re all sold out!  I was really surprised, they had lots of  them only a month ago when we were there and now they’re all gone!

WHEW, we came so close to missing it!  Not really, I don’t think missing it was ever part of the plan!  What it means is that our little book here is the very last of them, ever in the world, that still has no real home.

So I think it’s only fair, because so many people are on vacation at this time of year; I’m going to let the contest go on a bit longer; I don’t want anyone to miss their chance!  There’s only this one last book; it’s not going to happen again.  And this way everyone stays book-winners for a little bit longer . . . I told Vanna*, take off the sparkly white dress, get back into your jeans, go to the beach or something, it’ll be a couple more days. 

This is how I feel when I read your comments (both to me and to each other), that you want me to “stay” — what a nice compliment that is, thank you all so much! I hope you feel the same way when you read my blog!

As for the “mystery rose” on Beatrix Potter’s house, you guys came up with some great ideas as to what it could be — I’ve been checking them out on Google.  The old rose called Zephirine Drohin seems to match all the characteristics I could see in the roses on Beatrix Potter’s house.  It’s a tall climber, will do well in partial shade, smells wonderful, do you think it’s too pink to be it?  There were a couple of others you suggested that I thought looked great too.  Albertine is gorgeous, I’m not sure if it will do OK in the shade, but it’s beautiful , and Caroline Testout was another.  I wasn’t sure the cabbage rose Centifolia would grow tall enough.  I also found this chart of David Austin roses that bloom well in partial shade . . . See what you think. I think I can’t go wrong with any of them! Loved your input.  I know exactly where to come from now on when I have a question about something!

  I also love the Fairy roses we have bordering our garden, they grow so well, are now climbing up the rhododendron planted next to them making a very interesting wild-looking thing in our garden.  But I think the flower is a bit too small for the spot I have in mind.

Here are some special roses I’ve had good luck with; a glorious peach one called “Just Joey” and the prolific yellow one called “Julia Child.”  These are the ones that send me to the moon . . .  both of them bloom and bloom, and are deeply scented.  Put your nose in there and stay awhile!  The gorgeous white one is “Iceberg.”  But none of these is a climber.

Here’s the arbor Joe’s been working on since we got home, with sweet “New Dawn” climbing roses on it.  This photo was taken a while back; both the arbor and the rose need help right now!   The trees in our garden have gotten bigger, and although we’ve thinned them, this rose hasn’t been getting the full sun it prefers  . . . so once Joe finishes and repaints the arbor, I’m thinking the Beatrix Potter rose, if I can find it, not requiring so much sun, may look wonderful here.  And keep us immersed in the memories!  (BTW, a movie I just thought of, if you haven’t seen Mrs. Miniver, you would love it, especially the parts about the “Mrs. Miniver Rose,” and when she buys the hat–I don’t own a lot of movies, but I do own this one!).

And here’s what we plan to do with the arbor as soon as its finished!  Ahhh, yes, this “traveling armchair” is very happy to be home!  I am back working at my watercolor/book-writing schedule: up early, before the birds, while it’s still quiet, painting for the Diary, feeling like we (me and kitties) have the whole island/world to ourselves; then Joe and I include beach-glass-hunting on our walk out to the water; there’s sun tea and checking out girlfriends gardens in the afternoon; walking downtown at night with Joe, for ice cream or a movie (we saw the oddly interesting and very original Moonrise Kingdom last night — fun link!  Maybe better than the movie!); I can’t tell you how much I love being in my own home sweet home where I can play house to my heart’s content! (And don’t think this is some sort of unnatural perfect world here, there’s plenty of laundry, dentist appointments, and weeds in the garden to balance everything out!  Life is normal around here!)

  But I don’t mind, it all fits into the general scheme of “playing house.”

And the Book! I’m having a wonderful creative time putting it together. I think you are going to love it.  Even better than the blog!  At least, that’s my plan. 

OK Girlfriends, if you haven’t left a comment yet for the Last-One-in-the-Whole-World darling Beatrix Potter Book (scroll to the post just below this one if you have no idea what I’m talking about!), here’s your chance; just a couple more days and we’ll announce the lucky winner.  And don’t worry, you can leave as many comments as you want, either in the first post, or this one — Vanna* (so talented) knows to only count one comment per person — and I always love to hear from you!   Soon I’ll show you how England was decorated while we were there.  So festive!  Happy day girls and boys! Stay! XOXO

PS. fyi . . .* Vanna White is what we named the Random Number Generator for the blog.  But we just call her Vanna.  And here’s my theme for the day . . .

This entry was posted in Blog and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

739 Responses to Traveling Armchairs

  1. Joyce Maloney says:

    Wow, I have JUST discovered your blog as was reading Rookery Ramblings (I am a BIG Tudor fan) and was curious about your site mentioned in Twitter. You are now in my “favorites” as I LOVE everything I have read and seen. I will look forward to following you!! I so enjoyed looking at all the famous places you have seen. Thank you for sharing with us. We have had many cotton tails in our yard this year enjoying our flowers and garden, but they are SO cute:) I have them all named of course. I HAVE heard of your “work” but now will be able to see what is available, etc. LOVE IT!!! Thanks for sharing your talent with us.

  2. Rachael says:

    Love your blog and I have been sharing it with other girlfriends. We all love the great photos of England.

    Thank you for sharing.

  3. Thank you, Susan for sharing your fairy tale world with us!!! Even with dentist appointments and weeds, it sure looks fabulous and beautiful! I love, LOVE the night time shots. I have always been a big fan of twinkly lights!!!!!
    **Thanks also for giving us more time to comment and to have a chance to win!!! WOOHOO!

  4. You have beautiful roses, Susan, and I love the arbor.

    The Zephirine Drohin seems to be a match to me. Thanks for sharing those links. Love looking at all the beautiful roses.

  5. Linda says:

    I loved “traveling with you” on your trip! I especially loved the Cotswolds (if one can possible have a favorite place!) You made it easy to imagine myself walking down quiet lanes, besides rambling dry-stone walls and English gardens. Thanks for taking us all with you!

  6. Kate says:

    I love your website and hearing all about your England adventures! Thanks! 🙂

  7. Janet says:

    Oh – those incredible California roses! So glad to see that beautiful picture again. I saved that to my photo collection the first time I saw it on the website – just couldn’t believe how beautiful they were. Every day I use a different picture from my collection – now approaching some 3000 photos – to center on my office computer screen [like wallpaper only just in the middle of the screen]. I get more comments on those dazzling roses than any other shot I’ve ever used. Some people have actually gasped when they saw it! That California climate must be like heaven to roses – because I’ve seen gorgeous roses here in the Mid-Atlantic [upstate New York] but nothing that approaches those. Another GF mentioned that she imagined she could smell the scent – I have had the exact same reaction. Wishful thinking….

  8. Karen Saunders says:

    Well, I know I’ve commented a few times but I have to tell you about when I was younger, maybe 7 or 8. (It was a time when it was safe to walk by yourself without fear of being kidnapped!) And as I was walking to the public swimming pool I would stop and smell EVERY rose, and in those days everyone had roses. Back then most all roses had a lovely rosy smell. You didn’t have to BUY a rose that smelled, they all smelled good. There was not a dog or cat I went by that I didn’t stop to pet or a rose I didn’t stop to smell. I think it was my artistic nature that enhanced my desire to touch and smell. Were you like that?

    • sbranch says:

      I don’t think I was as much like that as I was the one always in a book. I don’t remember lots of roses where I grew up, I remember lots of ivy!

      • Karen Saunders says:

        I guess living in Southern Oregon roses loved the climate. After all….in Portland, the ‘city of roses’, they have the Rose Festival. A good thing to catch if you’re ever in that beautiful clean city!!

        • sbranch says:

          I remember the first time I went up there I was amazed at how green it was and how many flowers . . . I grew up in Southern California and in those days we would have 100 degree days pretty regularly in the summertime!

  9. Cindy Johnson says:

    Hi! I’m behind on following your stories since you have been home. I was delighted to see I still had chance to receive the Beatrix Potter book! Thank you Susan, as I so enjoy seeing your home and sweet displays of dishes and little characters.

  10. Brenda says:

    I love, love, love your roses, they remind me of the ones my Gramma used to have in her yard. She had a beautiful yard just filled with so many roses and other wonderful flowers! Unfortunately I did not inherit her green thumb but I still try to have flowers in our yard.

  11. Doreen Strain (from Florida) says:

    Hey Girlfriends…was just thinking of you all as I saw the picture of Susan’s beautiful arbor and thought about how wonderful it would be to sit underneath it with an ice cold glass of lemonade as the evening descends and the night sky becomes a beautiful stage of all the heavenly stars to glitter in all their glory. Boy, just the thought of it brings a peacefulness to my heart. Well, maybe I’ll pour myself that glass of lemonade tonight and think of you all out in your backyards doing the same as me and knowing we are all looking into the same beautiful sky and sharing the simple abundance of it all. Happy Summer to you all! I hope you all allow your hearts the few minutes it takes to enjoy the beauty of nature that is all around us, that we don’t always take the time to enjoy. Take a few minutes to think about what you used to do on summer evenings while you were child. Allow your heart to play with those memories. Then give yourself a hug and remember that life really is wonderful. Hugs to you all! FOSB 4~Ever! ~ Doreen ~

  12. kare Banks says:

    Well…i guess it Looks like i put this off even further than the next day after tommarro…but No..i’ve been off the Web for a bit…Monsoon here in the Arizona Desert is lovely but the Barometric pressure changes wreck havoc on my body.
    if i’m too late to enter the contest it’s o.k. … You sure know how to make a ton of fun for all of your friends out here! We all think You are The Best!!
    Just though you should know:]
    Thanks for being You!
    Blessings & Buzz’z

  13. Katherine says:

    Hey Susan,
    Thank you for extending! How wonderful!
    We have a beautiful arbor just like that one at our summer home within concord grapes growing on it.
    Was wondering is you watch the show “Downtown Abbey”. If not you absolutely must! Takes place in England in 1912 and you would love it! So addictive!
    Wishing you the best,

  14. Peggy Davis says:

    Oh Susan, I envy your trip so very much ~ it’s been many years since I traveled in England and do long to return. Beatrix Potter has been a favorite artist and author of mine forever – I try my hardest to channel her!!! What a lovely little book!! Thank you so much for sharing your trip.

  15. Sue says:

    Hi SUe,

    Ok, I’m sure there are many of your loyal group that take the time to send in many, MANY, comments to increase their odds, but I will give you one more only. I wish I had your green thumb! I can almost smell you yard when you post the photos. I have always been slightly in awe of people like you that have that knack for creating a fairyland in your yard.
    Anyway, I can dream of one day having all that AND of getting my hands on that wonderful book!

    Sue from Simi Valley

    • sbranch says:

      Our random picker (her name is Vanna) is very smart…she knows to only choose one from each comment . . . so you can leave as many comments as you want, but it still gets counted as one. Isn’t that wonderful!

  16. Kelly Wilson says:

    I am so glad I didn’t miss the drawing!! I love all of the Beatrice Potter stories but I am especially fond of Peter Rabbit – I read them to my boys many times when they were younger. I loved hearing about all of your travels and adventures, and having the opportunity to travel by sea (I have never been on a cruise). Thank you for all that you share with us – I loved getting away and I didn’t even have to take off time from work!

    Thanks Susan!

  17. Teresa G., Lafayette, CA. says:

    I’m going to ask that all our minds jump over the pond into France. All this talk of Beatrix and Jane had left my heart in England, until last night! My mom recommended a NetFlix pic called “My Father’s Glory.” It has French subtitles, but was such a lovely, lovely heartwarming story of a boy’s reflection on an idealic part of his childhood. I know that Susan, and so many of us, adore our fathers and this boy’s memory is no exception. It is funny and beautiful. Tell Joe to throw on his beret while you make the popcorn. You won’t be disappointed!

  18. Teresa G., Lafayette, CA. says:

    Correction, it is in French, but has English subtitles! *phew*

  19. Janee says:

    Thanks for sharing your vacation with us. I loved reading about your adventures.

  20. Cathy Geisler says:

    Dear Susan:

    Thanks so much for taking me along with you on that wonderful trip to England. We visited all of the places I had hoped, well actually I would loved to have visited the Brontes too, but that can wait for another time.
    I wish I had a name for your roses they are beautiful and I have just the wall I would love to see them climbing. I just purchased “David Austin ~ The English Roses” will browse through and see if I come up with anything. I’ll surely let you know if I do.
    I have a new grandson Peter, he is 7 months old and a charmer~ we call him Peter Rabbit and I imagine he will get into quite a bit of mischief also as he grows.

    Well thank you again Susan, you brighten my days ♥

    Take Care,

    • sbranch says:

      Peter, darling, and 7 months, my favorite age for babies is 7 to 9 months, they are so fat and beautiful but they can’t walk!

      • Jack says:

        We got into a neighbor’s garden when we were small kids — about 7 or 8, and the owner chased us down the alley — I led the pack ….. I’d been afraid of Mr. Mc Gregor since I could understand who he was. And while those other guys were just lopin’ along and laughing — I was the blue streak a block ahead. I remember, I kinda had to justify my Blazing speed to my own gang ….

  21. Christy says:

    Susan! Susan! Susan! I just returned from a lovely little trip up the coast from Orange County to San Francisco…stopped in Solvang (darling!), stayed in Monterey (beautiful – but cold – only in the mid 50’s in July?!), went up to the Disney Family Museum in San Francisco (unbelievable), stayed another day in Monterey, visited the aquarium (those sea otters!), drove the 17 Mile Drive in Carmel (magical) and thanks to YOUR wonderful recommendation stopped at the Ventana Grill on the way home (yum!)

    My bags were filled to the brim with fun little souvenirs (I just love old fashioned collectable spoons!) and my heart is overflowing with memories! While I was busy fluffing this and that around the house today (home sweet home!), listening to the birds singing in the garden and finding a perfect place for my new little trinkets, I thought I would stop in and see what’s new in your enchanted world.

    Adding lights to your arbor is a wonderful idea– so pretty and twinkly! As for the rose…I think the Zephirine Drohin was the best match to the Beatrix Potter rose and may not be too pink since color can change depending on the picture, monitor, etc…plus, it’s thornless! The Albertine is gorgeous and I may just have the right spot for that one in my garden!! I wish I could be of better assistance in helping you find the exact match for the rose. You could contact Roger’s Gardens. They seem very knowledgeable:

    Thank you again for sharing your holiday in England with us. I have enjoyed every single minute of it. I am looking forward to your England Diary (it’s a perfect idea) and as for the Peter Rabbit give away – you are so generous!! Wishing loads of good luck to each of the Girlfriends…I am crossing my fingers for all of us!!

    xo, Christy in Orange County

    ps… Your painting of Jack atop the stack of Beatrix Potter books – adorable!

  22. PauliJ says:

    I appreciate that you love wherever you are, Susan. It is good to hear you rejoice in your home and routine, even including the dentist and such, and your own yard and island!

    Recently I was sitting in a darling breakfast/lunch place here in Central Oregon, McKay Cottage, with my husband, looking out the open front door onto the lawn where tables set on the lawn and beautiful flowers, irises among them, bordered the lawn– and I thought of you over there in England enjoying beautiful tea houses and other eating places and gardens. It is so fun to travel and experience other cultures and houses and places, and then, it is delightful to have our eyes open to the beauty in our own “neck of the woods,” as well. 🙂 You do that well!

    Your arbor is so pretty; I hope you find the Beatrix Potter rose to grow on it.

    Thank you for your generosity in offering the limited edition book.

  23. Diane says:

    Hi Susan. I admire the way you are so real, yet so uplifting and positive. Thank you for being here in a blog for whenever i feel the need to “get away”. Due to health problems I am not able to travel to England [or most any place else right now], so it was a thrill to me to be able to travel there via your blog. You went to all of the places I would have wanted to go and I really felt like I had walked into the computer screen and was there. Thank you for such a fun and interesting opportunity for all of us – but especially for those who would have never had the chance to see England so realistically. And by the way, the Peter Rabbit book would go beautifully in my Beatrix Potter/Peter Rabbit room.

  24. Vicki in Cincy says:

    Hi Susan, We are wilting here in Cinti, but all looks blooming well up north. Heat index of 105F today!! Hooray for air conditioning, but I am missing our alfesco dinners on the deck with a little wine and my Jerry’s guitar. My daughter-in-law to be’s bridal shower is this weekend…I’m so excited. Love the arbor…enjoy!

  25. Sarah says:

    Dear Susan,
    I’m completely inspired by all these roses! As soon as I finish writing this quick note to you, I’m calling my friend Emma, whose flower-riot of a front yard must make at least a thousand drivers smile as they zip past her house each day. I want to ask her if it’s too late in our New England summer to plant roses. Thank you so much for your blog..I love it.

  26. Ruth Thomas says:

    2300 – YIKES!! But I’m not surprised. I search and search for any of your lovely creations. I can’t wait to turn every page of the calendars; I love to send a note to a friend on one of your lovely cards or stationery. The problem is that it’s so beautiful, I can hardly stand to write on them. But, then when I sent my best friend your Friendship book and she couldn’t talk for a few minutes, I realize how wonderful it is to share beauty and beautiful words with friends and loved ones. Your inspiration is priceless – and your sharing with your fans – who else does that? Thank you dear Susan for sharing so much with us. You are a gem.

  27. April Scott says:

    My mom and I both love your blog and talking about your new postings. Thanks for sharing your adventures with us!

  28. Susan says:

    Thank you for sharing yourself through your wonderful blog! I really enjoyed “our” trip!!
    Your blog (and the girlfriends’ comments) were a respite from the real world for me. Thanks for staying so upbeat and positive.
    As I live in Texas and my granddaughter lives in Colorado, I send her a children’ book every week to encourage her reading. She is 6 years old now and quite a good reader! She had a Beatrix Potter nursery. A couple of years ago the Aboretum in Dallas had a Beatrix Potter festival called Dallas Blooms. It was complete with 3 “houses” designed to look like ones from her books and a petting zoo of the animals she featured. We were able to purchase all of the Beatrix Potter books in the gift shop, too! We had a great time reading them together before she took them home. If I were lucky enough to win your book and rose, I would give it to Annabelle, as I know she would treasure it and it would bring back happy memories! (By the way, I inscribe each and every book I send to her.)
    Thanks again for ALL you do for us!:)

  29. Laura Peters says:

    I just love your blog. Also love all your ideas – they make the world a much nicer place!

  30. Cheryl Sandlin says:

    Susan it’s funny you should use the term “playing house”. We have been in our home over 30 years and I still catch myself feeling like I’m playing house here. I have always loved this place from the first day. The roses in my scruffy garden,now side by side with beautiful tomato plants, to the dusty attic with so many memories stored away. I love every inch! We are blessed by our homes!

  31. Sharon Cloyd says:

    Hi Sue,
    I just wanted to comment that I have chosen to water my flowers only (lawn watering is strictly banned in Indianapolis) in the morning, oh about 5:30 or so, and love, love special sounds and smells before everyone is up and bustling….the birds sing their morning song, it is definitely different than any other time of the day. I just hold watering wand and quietly soak up the smells and friendly chatter.

  32. Susan in Maryland says:

    I just got back from visiting Portland, OR, nicknamed the City of Roses, where roses grow like crazy. It reminded me of England. Thanks for posting the pics and info about Jane Austen’s house.

  33. JoAnn Petersen says:

    I got called away from the computer when I was writing my comment so I will try again. My grandmother sent a pressed flower in letters to me whenI was a new bride and home sick. It was so special to have some thing from her wonderful garden. She had a wonderful green thumb which I didn’t inherit. Have enjoyed your posts from England so much. JoAnn

  34. I love my ‘Fairy’ rose as well, Susan. It has been blooming its flowers off this season! It is just the greatest rose ever made. Hope Vanna picks my number! xxoo Nancy

  35. Ellette says:

    I so enjoy reading your blog. We share the same things that are near and dear to our hearts. Was so envious of your wonderful trip to England but felt like I was there with all of your detailed descriptions.

  36. Edie says:

    Thanks so much Susan for the trip. I enjoyed every minute. I do enjoy your picket fence garden and long for one myself.
    Edie from Oregon

  37. Debbie Gemmill says:

    Your words and your photos make me feel that I’m right there, no matter if it’s England or in your home and garden. Being in the middle of a Jane Austen summer (I’m hoping to get through all of her books this summer) it was an especially lovely treat to read about and see her home. Thank you!

  38. joanna says:

    I have a Zephirine and she smells heavenly. I also have a New Dawn and she tolerates a north facing wall. My Graham Thomas’s are yellow climbers-I have 4 of them. I got them from David Austin-I buy most of my roses from David Austin. Glad you’re home from your trip. I love Beatrix Potter and would love to win!

  39. Cathy L. says:

    I throughly enjoyed going on the trip with you! OK, you got more exercise out of it than I did, but I am mentally exhausted. Ah, the Lake District. I visited there on my first backpack trip to England and Scotland when I was in college. I fell in love with the area (and Cornwall.) Now for my confession, as an English Literature major and avid reader, I never knew the connection between Beatrix Potter and that area. The shame I feel can only be erased by a trip back to England. I must see about that!

    I used to give my niece Beatrix Potter figurines with an accompanying little book on her birthdays when she was young. I stopped as she grew older not knowing if she really cared for them and because I did not see them anywhere in her bedroom. So, I have decided after following your blog, to begin my own Beatrix Potter book and figurine (and other items) collection.

    And lastly, I have been a serious gardener for about 10 years now and have planted Zephirine Drouhin on both sides of my arbor. I believe that may be the climbing rose in the photo, though the color seems a bit too light compared to mine. But, mine are very young and do not bloom in profusion yet so it is difficult to tell.

    Thank you again for sharing your trip. And, thank you for your wonderful stickers which I put on everything I mail !

  40. Victoria says:

    Ummmmmmm Sweet Sue….
    I can smell those roses from here! Love the scent of beautiful roses! …and also the flavor is yummy too! I found the best rose tea, but sadly, they no longer make it, I was wondering if you or any of the girlfriends may know of where I could purchase some or how to make my own? I do have a recipe for rose jelly. …and I suppose there are many other ways to use roses…but just seeing, touching and smelling them is so delightful! …however, , the beautiful long stem variety without scent just doesn’t quite do it for me as much as the ones growing in the garden….but there is nothing more pure than a rose! …and I am so glad to know about BP’s roses and the ones you recommend, especially the ones that tolerate some shade.
    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
    Your home and garden is enchanting!

  41. Chrissy Thrower says:

    STAY! 🙂

  42. Jamie from Virginia says:

    Susan & Minette,

    The Linda Lear book is a fantastic resource and a delightful read. All of the old photographs of Hill Top Farm show a “scraggly” rose around the door. I have never seen any of the photographs taken when the rose was in bloom though, which is a curious point. Another lovely reference is “At Home with Beatrix Potter” by Susan Denyer. Unfortunately there are no good photographs of the rose in that beautiful book either. But LOTS of great information about her gardens in general. Beatrix was an admirer of Gertrude Jekyll’s talent and vision and spent some effort in following the gardening ideas of Gertrude. Can’t you just see Beatrix and Gertrude together at tea discussing the best way to handle the scraggly rose around the front door we so admire today?

    So then my mind goes to who owned Hill Top Farm before Beatrix? According to her letters there was a rose there that she most likely did not plant. I wonder if there are any writings about Hill Top Farm pre-Beatrix. This has become extrrrreeemmmeeelly intriguing now!

    Minette, thank you for the links to the Beatrix Potter Rose, it is absolutely beautiful. And it’s a shrub rose which is so manageable in small gardens. And who can resist a rose presented by none other than Hyacinth Bouquet?? The rose has gone on my “future garden plants list”. The other link you gave to “Number One London” is great, thank for posting it I had not seen it before.

    Beatrix’s birthday is coming up, July 28. What better way to remember her life and talent she shared than to plant a rose in our gardens in her honor.

    ~ Jamie

  43. Sandy Smith says:

    I have loved Beatrice Potter since I was a little girl and I know my children will live her work just as much as I do! Thanks for giving us the opportunity to win such an amazing book:)

  44. Sandy Smith says:

    Beatrix that is-love auto correct-not!

  45. Joan says:

    I love your blog! I have been to Martha’s Vineyard it is beautiful.
    I also have your books, stamps and fabric.

  46. Katy Noelle says:

    I have this problem…. I read your posts and, the whole time, I’m thinking, “oh! OH! oh!” As in, “oh, this….!” and, “Oh, I love that….!” and, “Oh, that reminds me…” and, “Oh, me too….!” I want to respond to everything. It’s a trouble, I tell ya! =D

    I thought that it was interesting that, as you mentioned different roses’ names, I responded to different ones with such warmth – as if they’re friends we have in common. Oh, but they’re just roses. 😉 ‘New Dawn’ is so winning – as in charming! But, I just researched ‘Zephirine Drouhin’, a month ago, and am going to go get one, for the shadier side of the house, next month. I’m so excited! Then, my sister just loves ‘Pal Joey’ – it’s one of her favorites but nothing beats a David Austin! etc. =]

    Thank you so much for putting in the little reminder post for the giveaway…. I had gotten called away before I could finish reading the post and respond and, then, forgot and I might have put it off till too many ‘days after!’

    and, speaking of quotes and ‘staying’…. it’s curious how life goes… so many of my dear friends that I’ve made since I moved to VT have moved away and only come back for glorious surprise visits, now and then. A few things that have happened over the last four years have kept me a bit isolated, up here on the hill and…. I was just realizing, this week, that I haven’t talked way into the night with a friend for ages and ages. Something wrong there, I think. =/ I have some lovely, lovely friends (from church, etc.) but we are so darned responsible…. we need to live a little – with a little abandon…. and just ‘stay’! (Although, just this second, I’ve realized that it’s probably because there’s a few of them that have goats that need to be milked and that always breaks the party up. – never mind! I have good friends, after all….. sigh! =/ I just need to find a few friends without goats…. and without kids that might need to be fed… not the goat kind…. I’m rambling….)

    and, I LOVE Greer Garson!!! I first met her as an adorable Elizabeth Bennett played next to a charming Mr. Olivier with his tiny glimpses of melting vulnerability as Mr. Darcy. Then, I cried all the way through ‘Goodbye, Mr. Chips!’ and she was ensconced as a firm favorite. How funny it is that I’ve heard the name ‘Mrs. Minever’ but never have seen a bit of it and didn’t know anything about it. So, thank you!!! =] There’s so much fun in this ol’ world to discover. When I was young, I was afraid that I had discovered every ‘best thing’ there was but now I know that another always comes along.

    There’s more (nervous, heh, heh…. =]) just saw ‘Moonrise Kingdom’ with my sister…. what a subtle humour! What a different way of building a story – not with the characters building emotions but by layering the plot till it’s very thick with incidences. and, It’s like it was told through the eyes of a youth – youth thinks it’s the only mature and right reality – so strong – so confident – but it only sees so much – in such a simple light. The children were like adults in their seriousness and the adults like children in their tenderness. Ah, I love unique and different – it’s so refreshing! =]

    What was really funny for my sister and I is that it was TOTALLY our childhood! Playing jacks by the braided rug and rocking chair/window seat – the record player and the music played – the clothes – the covers on the library books – the books themselves – and ‘Noye’s Fludde’! (I was a desperately awkward cat!)

    and, I decided early on in this comment that I would stay and write with abandon. 😉 🙂

    I love seeing you dinner party under the stars and twinkling lights! Entertaining has always been such a huge thing for me – for my family – but, when we moved up to our gorgeous, fixer-upper kingdom, four years ago, we put it aside and rolled up our sleeves and…. it’s time to have some fun and to see our dreams come true, just a little, up here…. and I cannot tell you how inspiring the photos of your dinner party are! I was planning on a big party up here, this summer, but it almost just got lost in mundane realities of troubles with our well…. I think that i need to press on……. and, Rats! I’d love to tell you all about it but that would take many more paragraphs and that would just get silly…. I’ll just say that your post has met my thoughts and my heart and been such an encouragement – and, not for the first time!

    Best wishes to you and Joe! Happy summer! Happy housekeeping! =]


    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Katy! Good job rambling! And yes, the best thing I’ve found out is that there is ALWAYS something new to find and learn about. Thank goodness! While you’re at it with Greer Garson, try Random Harvest with her and Ronald Coleman, wonderful movie! One of the most wonderful movie cottages ever! Happy housekeeping back to you, see you tomorrow!

      • Katy Noelle says:

        Oooooh….rambling….. It’s a gift! =]

        Thank you for reading it – heh, heh – ahem!!!! =] =]

        and, my son, who is breathing over my shoulder (to mix a metaphor), just said…. ‘Oh, no! Are you going to write another essay?’ LoL! sigh. His turn for the computer!

        and, Oh, boy! about the movie – going right to my Netflix queue!


    • Victoria says:

      Dear Katy,
      I love your rambling too! …as I am a rambler as well…just so many thoughts about so many things, it’s nice to share. I especially love hearing about the good ol days, playing jacks near a braided rug and the covers on library books… A fixer upper in VT!!!! How perfectly wonderful! My dream is to retire somewhere in new England!… And friends with goats!!! I belong there!
      Your writing is so refreshing!

  47. Debbie Snyder says:

    I love your blog! Even my 14 year old daughter loves it!! We would love to win the lovely book. But even if we don’t, who cares. Love hearing from you!

  48. Lesa says:

    Oh, my goodness, I have come late to the party! But what a wonderful time I’ve already had visiting with you and your many, many friends. What a beautiful and special place to be. Thanks for being here to share your wonderful art, life and spirit.

  49. madelyn says:

    maybe third time will be a home run!! have a wonderful wednesday!

  50. Denise says:

    Summer delights are even sweeter with frequent visits to your blog, the beautiful rose photos have me craving a beautiful rose perfume by Crabtree and Evelyn , i think its called Tea Rose or Eglantine……. delicious
    Thanks for your hard work in spreading news views and good cheer !

  51. Mrs. Wendy S. says:

    I’m missing Jack stories and pictures! How did the little guy make out while you were gone? Did he punish you by ignoring you for a while? Or worse?! I had a kitty that was SO mad at me for going on vacation that she backed up to the stair riser and left me a present…I was not amused…hahaha! Pretty funny now though! Welcome Home Sue!

    • sbranch says:

      No punishment, he’s still a kitten and hasn’t gotten a single punishing bone in his body. I had a cat one time that punished us as we were going out the door, made a cat box out of Joe’s carry-on luggage! Uh huh.

  52. Lady Jayne says:

    Delightful post, thank you so much.
    Have you seen Mrs. Palfrey at The Claremont, per chance? A delightful British movie…..check out the gardens, if you do!

  53. julie says:

    thank you for letting me live vicariously through your blog; and i LOVE your roses, they are beautiful 🙂

  54. Jena says:

    you be a great boon to my day.
    Thank you for this!

  55. diane says:

    Loved traveling with you. Each day I would think this one is the best and then the next day would be even better.

  56. Julie Perkins says:

    If I close my eyes, I can smell the roses – and the rain. Thanks so much for sharing.

  57. Julie Buck says:

    I had decided not to enter to win the book because I wanted to be absolutely sure I could get one, so called the gift shop – but no…. I do want to enter – I so love BP and your blog is such a bright spot in my day. I was there with you on every inch of country road in England – loving every minute!


    • sbranch says:

      Yes, we found out the other day they were all sold out!! Very surprising! So sorry, but then at least we do have this one!

  58. Vicki in Cincy says:

    Getting some MUCH needed rain here, thunderstorms actually. My children’s paternal grandmother, (Oma in German) gave the girls some Beatrix Potter figurines when they were small. I believe they were her own. I wonder which of the girls still has them. The girls are now 28 and 24! LOL We had some of the small books and the girls loved reading them. Thanks for all the joy you bring.

  59. Stacy says:

    I am always late on the pick up- what a great contest. I love your work and your blog and your cats- I am a huge cat person!

  60. Ritchie Saunders says:

    Hope I’m not too late but wanted to exclaim about the lovely roses.
    We have a family of 5 deer and now a new one…a darling fawn. He has jumped down from our hill several times and can’t quite jump back up. We open up our gates and he seems to find his way back up through another yard. We thought he was finally big enough to get back up but yesterday I looked out the window and there he was eating my rose bushes!!! We had been on a trip and I had sprayed them with something they don’t like but guess it was gone because boy did he have dessert! So your roses will have to take the place in my mind instead of just sticks in my garden!! Your are just amazing!! Cheers!

    Ritchie — Pacific Palisades CA

  61. Lauri in VA says:

    I just finished The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton last night (another of your recommendations). What a fabulous story – I couldn’t put it down last night so I stayed up way past my bedtime. I’ve been dragging today, but it was so worth it! Next up is Beatrix Potter: A Life In Nature. Thanks again Susan!

  62. Susan Scott says:

    Loved traveling to England with you. The pictures were wonderful. It was great catching a glimpse of the world my ancestors came from. I’ve traced our family roots to England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales – but don’t know exactly where they once lived. The search goes on… However, after viewing your pictures I can see why I love green fields, cool and cloudy weather, rolling farmlands, fires in stone fireplaces and tea in a pretty cup… it’s in my DNA!

  63. Willa Brown says:

    2300 A*N*D* counting! Do you know how loved you are by each of us? Do you know how special you make us feel each and every time we “connect” with you? I am not the only person that gets very excited (and turns on the teapot) when I see a new blog entry. Thank you again and again Susan, for being such a giving and generous person…..and I’m talking about the time you take to keep us in your life in such a wonderful way!
    XXXOOO, Willa

  64. Crystal Burns says:

    Dear Susan,
    As always, I love treating myself to reading your blog. It is as much fun as visiting with a special girlfriend. Yesterday when my special girlfriend, Patti came for a visit we went for a nice refreshing swim in the lake to see the limestone cliffs around the bend and then I was able to treat her to some blueberry iced tea and my Mother’s yummy homemade fruit cake. It tasted great after our swim. So thanks for our online visits. I love your roses and arbor. So prelly. Take care.

  65. Lori Edmonds says:

    I have 2 of the Zephirine Drouhin, got them from “Heirloom Roses”, ordered them on-line. They are beautiful & smell soooooo good! Bet it’s the same rose!! I looked on line and they are still available : ) Happy Rose Shopping!!

  66. Sallie Dee says:

    This little Beatrix Potter book is darling! I teach little ones and use her books as often as I can. Would love to be the winner of this sweet prize! Thanks for being so generous Susan and for sharing your good times with us!

  67. caroline De la O says:

    oohhhh goodddy another chance to win something fun, so glad that you are back from England.

  68. Cindy says:

    Loved the flowers!! I miss my garden so much! In Southern Illinois, we have lots of flowers and rain(even floods) in April, May and June. This year less than an inch since March and temps over 100 for weeks now. All flowers shrubs and herbs are gone, even losing our beautiful dogwood trees. Soooo your pics are a welcoming sight, thank you!

  69. So sad….so sad….How did I miss all of this wonderful chatter! Had my little nieces visiting and took a few days away from my computer. So much for disconnecting from the internet for a while–good and bad idea to do that I guess! But we had a fun time making rainbow pancakes, swimming in the lake, painting nails, and watching Mirror Mirror with Julia Roberts over and over again in our pjs. Next time I’ll just have to get up earlier and catch up with everyone on your blog. BTW-there are lots of August birthdays coming up……:)

  70. Susan says:

    Just HAD to try your pretty Skip and Go Naked cocktail! Since we live in Florida I served it in glasses with pink flamnigos painted on and sipped it through a pink flamingo straw! Deelicious! My husband enjoyed playing bartender!
    ♥ from another Susan

  71. Joyce Maloney says:

    Good Morning, Susan, I tried to leave a message under”contact” you, but I don’t see it so here goes again!! In your last blog (a wonderful one!!) you mentioned you saw a life size sheep yard ornament and wondered about buying it. I just thought I’d mention where you can get one or more in case you don’t know about them. They have three different ones, including a lamb, in the Wind and catalog!!! I just LOVE them and would like all of them:) I think you will find them under Garden Statue or something like that. They look wonderful!!! I can just see them in YOUR yard !!! Hope you like them. Have a great weekend!!!!

    • sbranch says:

      I wonder if you got my message on this? Anyway, those are nice sheep! We are trying to figure out if they would be big enough, they aren’t full size, but the comments from the people who bought them were all very positive. Thank you! I’m thinking we might have to at least try it!

Comments are closed.