Good Morning Girlfriends . . . the first thing I do at 4 am when I get up is turn on a light and get the tea-water boiling… it’s my favorite time of day, the house is quiet, no cars are on the roads, the world is all my own for a little while. Just the scuff of slippers on the floor. (And perhaps a little MUSICA . . .)

After the water’s on, I go from room to room, from the kitchen to my studio, clicking on lamps as I go . . . and this morning, when I did, I was reminded of how much I love lighting; how cozy it can be.  How it instantly warms everything up and brings a sense of home and safety.  And I thought, what a perfect time of year it is to talk about it.

Because lighting can add to the ambience of your house, and with these shorter, colder, and darker days ahead, making a house warm and bright is part of

I’ve never been one for overhead lighting.  I know it’s modern, and can come in quite handy when you really want to see, but I’m a lamp person from way back! I love the shadows they cast. Not that it’s my way or the highway, not at all, I think if you LOVE something, it becomes imbued with that, and can be wonderful even if it’s overhead lighting; just depends on how you use it.

But here’s my other side of the coin, light like this . . . Plus, btw, I have always thought that dressing rooms in clothing stores do not understand the importance of lighting!  Nothing like trying on a bathing suit, or anything really, under flourescent lighting (tinged pale blue).  Very unkind.

I mentioned this before . . .  in my Girlfriend’s Book . . . but they still don’t listen! 🙂

 But since I’m in charge at this house, I get to have it the way I like . . .  I know you understand that I had to have this lamp for my Peter Rabbit room!

I’ve collected lamps for years, I have no idea where any of them came from; sometimes I find them as is, but most often I find a base, then, a shade, and do a little  mix and match.

Glass shades can sometimes be a little too bright, so I starched and ironed monogrammed (got lucky with the initial!) vintage luncheon napkins and popped them over two matching guest room lamps to diffuse the lamplight on either side of the bed.

There’s a woman on the island named Ayn Chase …. she makes the most beautiful lampshades, this is one of them.  Lowely and I took a lesson from her a few years ago, so I know, these are truly handmade shades.  Sometimes you can find an Ayn Chase shade at Rainy Day, a darling shop here on the island.

Dining room lighting is important while setting the table, but candles take over from there!  Because I’m in love with . . .

Speaking of which, here we are back in blissland at my darling friend Rachel’s house in England.  I’m still in love with this lamp, with the glass balls, and the color of the shade with the wallpaper.

This is the lampshade I made in my class with Ayn.  I only did one, because I have not discovered how to clone myself yet (this took ten hours to do, even with Ayn right there — but it was worth it)!  It used to be really hard to find cute lamps and especially shades.

I’ve found them mostly in flea markets, or at Brimfield, or in antique stores, wherever I come upon one that I like.  It’s been a long time collecting, something that I always have my eyes open for . . . fun to find when I can!

But they are making more interesting new ones all the time, like this one, also from Rachel’s house.  She did the same thing, found the base in one place, and the shade in another.

Lamps in guest bathrooms make a beautiful soft light, and keep the ambience going at a dinner party, instead of your guests going in and flipping on a strong overhead light, they find this.

This is the lamp in our front hall.  Since all we do is welcome guests here, never try to read anything, it’s nice that it’s softly lit.

This one’s in the guest bedroom, welcoming guests with a cozy reading lamp next to a comfy chair.

Another kind of fall and winter lighting that I LOVE on cold rainy days is candlelight.  I have candles all over the house at this time of year.  I light one wherever I am, cooking in the kitchen, or knitting in my chair.  Like little mini fireplaces.

And there’s nothing like a candlelight dinner to make everything prettier and more dreamlike.

This is our morning today . . . outside the front window . . .

Here, the view from the dining room . . . it’s a dark rainy day here, at least so far . . .

But, no worries, turn on the lamps, and the house is cozy again . . . even at my house, where the kitchen is still totally destroyed!

Jack tries to point out to Joe that time is marching on.  Three sides of the room are done, these windows are next, he’s doing them today!  As soon as it’s done I’ll show you!  We can cook in here though, that’s the good news, and it’s coming out beautifully!  I am still happy we are doing it, the part that’s done is so CLEAN and PRETTY!

And I saved the best for last. 

I know now, the only way to end a post that will make everyone happy is with this little person.  Huggy wuggy.  Bo-Bo-Boy.  Bye girls (and boys!), have a wonderful day, thank you for your wonderful comments, I do love us!  

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654 Responses to TURN ON THE LIGHTS ☂

  1. Becky says:

    LOVE your post. I must ask about the glass shade on your piano; it looks a little sinister, a little Halloweenish, and I covet it!
    If I am looking at it correctly, it resenbles the little creatures from the British Sci Fi movie, “5 Million Years to Earth.” Do you know that movie? My husband is a real, old school, science fiction, wonk (she said lovingly) He would be so happy to have a shade like that.
    Very cool to see your lamp lights. Look out your window to the west tomorrow morning when you get up, and I’ll wave to you, from California.

  2. Susan says:

    Your thoughts on lamplight surely brightened up a dreary day:) Here we often lose power so I stock up on oil lamps- they are always handy and they instantly warm up a room with their soft glow. Amish nearby use much larger oil lamps(these lamps hiss loudly); there are nearby Amish stores which can repair oil lamps if needed, or sell you a large one like the Amish use in their homes and stores. I used to go to a quilt store where they only used oil lamps. That also made me think fabric + oil lamps= fires?? Never happened as far as I know of. It was a memorable way to shop for fabric! Nice warm thoughts in your blog today

    • sbranch says:

      Wow, a quilt shop that was lit with oil lamps!

      • Linda from Lancaster, Co PA says:

        Yes, but it is hard to see fabric colors. I remember going to an Amish fabric store in my “sewing my own dresses days”. And, yes, it was cozy, but I had to take the bolts over to the door or windows to make sure about the colors!

  3. erica says:


    I am thoroughly entertained by this post Susan! Your mind is most fascinating! Like, what would make you THINK to write about lamps??! It’s true, what you say that lamps with decorative lamp shades or not, definitely give a room a much cozier feel. I too am a lamp-lover-lady. Lamp-lover-ladies unite!

    Today, after I read your post, I headed to the basement storage and carried up my ‘winter season lamps.’ Subsequently, I felt an urge to move some things around (artist, remember) and continued on with sorting and cleaning up my china cabinet, my nick-nack cabinet, and my brown-betty teapot collection. Everything washed, sorted and put away again. It took me ALL day! All for the love of a lamp.

    Did you say you rise at FOUR A.M.??! You never cease to amaze me! lol. I know that would be difficult for me to do. I have gotten to bed at that time, but haven’t voluntarily woken up at the hour. Truth.

    Of course, your little Jack is adorable. I have 3 dogs, and I think they are the best too. Two are rescues. I love them to bits, so I understand the love connection between animal and human. Amazing, and a beautiful kind of love, isn’t it?

    Hope your kitchen work is nearly done. I’ve put off doing mine for years, but you’ve put a ‘bug’ in my ear. You do have that effect, y’know?

    Take care….

    • sbranch says:

      4 am has a lot of magic in it for me! 🙂 Yes, our pets are such a gift! Little petty pets that live inside for us to love! A miracle of a gift!

  4. Dinahsoar says:

    So, so cozy Susan…and inviting. I love your home, your island, your writing and your kitties among other things. Jack is irresistible. Have you heard the song The Old Lamplighter by Jim Ed Brown–from the 60’s? Your post makes me think of that song. It is a lovely song. You can listen on youtube:


    …from the hills of TN.

    • sbranch says:

      Love it!

    • Victoria Miller says:

      Have always loved this song! Thanks for reminding me about it!

      • Cathy McC. says:

        Hi girls — when I clicked on “musica” for this post, I thought it might be just the lamplighter song. So, after reading, I went to You Tube also and found it — played it a few times, then went on to so many others from that era: The Wayward Wind, Tumblin’ Tumbleweeds, Don’t Fence Me In … Gosh, just in grade school at that time, but for some reason, those songs left such an impact. Was it the harmony? the haunting melody? Anyway, I am glad your post, Susan, took me that way down memory lane, as it often does. Thank you.

  5. Sue says:

    Another wonderful post, Susan! Love your lamps! I’m totally with you on “no overhead” lighting! The only one we have in our house is in the kitchen. Hubby sometimes will turn it on when he is in there but if I come in at the time, it gets switched off! Ughh! The brightness bugs me bad!
    I love your handmade shade — it is wonderful and so worth the time you put into making it! I went to classes years ago and made two similar ones. Still have the one in my living room. I think I sold the other one along with the lamp some time back. It was a bowl & pitcher lamp and needed a shade — which I made a navy blue one with the open cut design in it. Hmmmmmmmm….thinking about it now —- maybe I should have kept it……..But how many lamps can a gal have AND still use them all????:)
    And of course what can I say about Jack? He brings a smile to my face and I just want to hug him! What a handsome fellow he is! Thanks for letting us see him again! He projects the attitude that “he is all that and then some”. 🙂 And he is very comfortable in that mind set! How adorable!
    Our “new” kitties are doing well and adjusting very nicely. Kittie gyms are now here and fully assembled. What fun and very entertaining to watch!
    I can’t wait to see your kitchen when it is all finished!

  6. Patsy in Nixa, MO says:

    Isn’t it wonderful to know that someday our descendants will be coming to Martha’s Vineyard to tour Susan Branch’s house just as you went to see Beatrix Potter’s? They’ll say, “And I was told that this lampshade she actually made herself, and this lamp came from a flea market and this lamp and shade were from two different places, etc.”

    I’m just going to die. You’re going to live on through your books, through your blogs someone is printing and filing away, and through the words passed down by those of us who love you for all the happiness you bring to our lives.

    • sbranch says:

      Thats a very nice thought! I’m not sure any of us “just die” as the echoes of our good lives go on forever, I saw it first all over England, and now I’m much more aware of it here.

    • Holly says:

      Patsy, I am sure that you have touched many lives during your lifetime and have affected people in ways that will continue even after you’ve passed on. I think you are probably underestimating your influence on others!

      • Patsy in Nixa, MO says:

        That’s very sweet of you, Holly. I’m working on “leaving something behind” so I won’t have just been “traveling through”.

        Today we had a lunch on my 27th everyday tablescape, which leaves 25 to go. I’ve been buying dishes, placemats, candle holders, etc. at flea markets, thrift stores, on Craigslist etc. to do a year of everyday tables – one for each week and each one different from the others. Then I explain where everything came from so they can see it doesn’t have to cost a lot. My favorite source is Dollar Tree. I have people I email the pictures, who in turn send them on to friends and relatives. My goal is to inspire young people to sit down at least once a week as a family at a nice table – not expensive, but not just a plate and a paper towel for a napkin. I don’t expect a different table each week. I’m just giving examples of how easily they can come up with ideas once they start thinking about what they already have available.

        I sympathize with working mothers, as I was once one, but on looking back, I hope they’ll do a better job than I. I didn’t do enough of what I’m preaching now.

        If I every find that gold Kruggerand I hid when I went on a trip, I’m going to actually publish a book of the tables to pass on to friends, hoping it will hit its target somewhere.

        Wish me luck!

        • Rhonda D. says:

          Patsy, I love your idea. I, too, was too much of a plate and a paper towel kinda person. Now I’m doing better at that. And inviting more people in for dinner…forces me to step it up, which I truly love to do, just didn’t make the time for it. When my daughter got engaged, it was in October. When she came home to show me the ring, I planned a whole fall/Halloween setting for them. Pulled out everything black, orange and fall that I owned. Even bought a black spider web tablecloth. I was so impressed (and a bit shocked) with myself. It is really so much fun and a lovely gift to give to your guests (not to mention the memories you’re creating to pass on). I’m wishing you luck and good luck with the gold Kruggerand!

          • Patsy in Nixa, MO says:

            Hi Rhonda D.,
            Would have loved seeing your Halloween table, because I’ll be doing one soon, and I need ideas. My daughter-in-law has been visiting and we had her birthday lunch on Thursday – totally pink – right down to the lemonade. Now I need to switch gears and start on Autumn and, of course, Halloween. I tried to post a photo of the pink table, but it didn’t work. Sorry.

            My company leaves tomorrow, so I’ll be back to doing tables and looking for the Kruggerand.
            Thanks for the well wishes.

  7. Nicolette says:

    When I was young, I worked at a small home improvement store…during my breaks I would spend my time wandering through the home lighting section and fall into an instant state of contentment! All of the beautiful lamps shone and sparkled like a million diamonds! Even better was when the store closed and I got to put returns away in the lighting section all by myself. It might sound funny, but it was heaven to me! To this day I too love little lamps that shine a cozy light onto a sometimes harsh world..my bedroom alone has four lamps…I am happy to hear so many other girlfriends share in the delight. Thank you Susan for a beautiful post!

  8. Linda Pintarell says:

    “Buy more lamps” has been on my to do list for several years…and you have inspired to DO IT! I’m on the lookout for more than several. It will be a fun “hunt”. I just can’t get into the mood to decorate for Fall yet; it was a beautiful, sunny, late 80 degrees today in San Diego. I was down by the ocean and just pulled into the parking lot, took our my beach chair and spent a few hours on the sand enjoying the view and doing some reading. Just not condusive to Autumn decorating YET…soon, perhaps.

    • sbranch says:

      It’s later in California, I know! I used to be forced into it at least by Halloween … the holiday dictates!

    • Victoria Miller says:

      Yes, seasons run later the farther south you go, and earlier the farther north. Years ago I was in Quebec, and in August it seems like fall. In Ohio, visiting my daughter, on the 4th of July, the fireworks didn’t go off until 10 pm! Here in SoCal, we are still doing summer. As I recall, it can go right through October. And I remember Thanksgivings when it was so hot I didn’t want to cook! But this year, our spring went well into ‘mid summer’. Someone could do an amazing book on how the seasons work in different parts of the country, and world for that matter!

  9. Marilyn S. says:

    Loved your blog post and here I thought I was the only one crazy over lamps and candles! My favorite time to take a walk is at dusk when people are just starting to light their lamps and you can (discreetly) peek into their windows and see their cozy rooms as you walk by. I have always been a candle person. My very best friend of 35 years finally had to tell me, “you know for the last three years, you’ve given me some kind of candle or candle holder for every birthday and Christmas present.” Can there be such a thing as too many candles??
    I save your blog for the last part of my day so it something to look forward to. And I love to read all of the comments from my Heart of the Home friends.

  10. Jack says:

    Sue since you were here , I put a small Palm tree in the corner between the ends of the two couches . It sits on a small heavy wire ( about 3/8s” diameter ) stand without a top — just a circle of wire going around that the Palm (7 fronds about 4th high) in a pretty planter rests on . I had a funny shaped lamp like a small round globe in a box — and that sets on the floor shining up through the table and the palm fronds reflecting a glow off the walls — in front of this is a small half round etched glass top table with a regular table lamp on it and the light underneath makes this shade glow also —- that is the only light we have going in the living room at night –very soft , warm and comforting! The Palm asks nothing but to be left alone , very down to earth *pun*?) with only a glass of water monthly , no leaves or shedding –nothing like that egomaniac Ficus out on the deck …..

  11. stephanie says:

    LOVE your blog so very much!

    1) I LOVE lamps and am anti-overhead lighting. Lamps are so cozy – especially in fall/winter. You’ve inspired me to add a lamp in my living room.

    2) I learned an important lesson today – and that is – when you see a cute lamp – BUY IT. Cute lamps are hard to find and we need to snap them up when we see them! You have an amazing collection of lamps – just lovely every one.

    3) I go to sleep about 2 hours before you get up! I want to be a morning person in my next life.

    4) Every picture I see of Jack always seems like the cutest picture EVER and then we get another one!

    • sbranch says:

      I love #2, this is so true … they go fast. But some of the glass bases, or even these sort of marble ones I’ve found, they last forever … it’s the shades that cause the trouble!

    • Victoria Miller says:

      When you see a wonderful anything, buy it! My daughter is 37, and occasionally I still wish I’d bought her that wonderful pink tiniest corduroy weave bonnet that had a huge brim and little white pouff ball on the side. I can still see it in my mind clear as day. I think some things we are met to find, a ‘match made in heaven’ so to speak.

  12. Ginny Petitt says:

    I just have to say your blog notes always bring a warmth and happy feeling! I can’t even imagine not being able to have this contact with you! It is so inspirational! Thank you for having this blog! I love anything and everything Susan Branch!

  13. I am so funny about lighting too. I have some overhead lights in certain rooms … and I’m not sure I have ever seen them on. I’m telling you … don’t glare at me! I’m not gonna lie it drives my (grown) children nuts. Just give me a soft glow and I’m happy.

    Thanks for showing us the rain. It looked heavenly ~ Mary

  14. Linda says:

    Very interesting photos taken from your windows…….but what kind of a building is that outside your living room window—is it a Town Hall or a boarding house? Love the lamps……use them in every room when I can but need my overhead lighting in the kitchen , sewing room, computer room and bathrooms as I have glaucoma and don’t see really good anymore! Loved the picture of Jack and think it is a splendid way to end your blogs…just wish Girl would let you include her too! This night owl has never seen 4AM except for an emergency trip outdoors for the doggies! Am anxious to see the kitchen finished…….thank you again for a beutiful blog. Linda from Idaho where it is still hot–90’s for the weekend…..

  15. Kathy Thompson (in Rialto, CA) says:

    Hi Susan…
    Your post today was about lamps was like little corner brighteners all over the house. Very nice! You were right, though, you save the best for last. That little Jack just gets cuter and cuter. What a little corner brightener he is. Too cute.

  16. Pat Johnson of Paso Robles says:

    I too love lamps – those with character are the best. When my son & his family (including my grand-girls) come for a visit, they always turn on all of my over-head lights and it just sets me on edge. For one thing, my house looks stark and sterile all of a sudden – ugh! Bright lights bring on tension. Give me a cute little lamp with a soft light – just enough to read by – and I am serene and comfy. Of course, if the weather is cool (or snowing) it makes me feel even better. And my house takes on that special feeling of a HOME! Thank you for sharing your wonderful lamps. Once again you have made my day! I know you have been busy so when I see a new blog I am extremely grateful! XXXXOOOO And isn’t the first-thing-in-the morning wonderful!!!!

  17. Susan, like you I am an early bird. I am always up with the birds, usually about 5:00 am, and sometimes I sleep in til 6:00. This is when all the pistons are firing in my brain and when I do some of my best work. Maybe that is so with all creative people? I don’t know! It’s what works for me, and I am in bed between 9 and 9:30 at night. I love those few hours in the morning all on my own. Its my “me” time. Love, LOVE all of your beautiful lamps. I, too, love lamps. I can remember being thrilled to pieces back in the early 1970’s when I was able to purchase a lamp just like the one in Wally and Beaver Cleaver’s bedroom, and then I found a fabulous one at a yard sale once upon a time. It was a picnic table on the base and the shade was covered with small stones. I thought it just wonderful, but then again in my late teens I thought the decor in Chinese Restaurants was beautiful as well! LOL

  18. Sivje parish says:

    Oh I do love lamps so much. And I love wonderful lampshades too. I find that I have a hard time parting with a pretty lampshade even with it is very worn out. But the glow of a pretty lamp is just so much nicer than overhead light. I struggle with ugly lighting but I find that I have to fall back on certain lamps because they give more light while I am smocking and sewing. So, I have my pretty little lamps with my ancient Laura Ashley and Pierre Deux shades, and then I have my utilitarian work light that gets folded up and put away when it is not in use. Whatever works, eh? Now, back to my smocking……

  19. Nancy B says:

    Hi, Susan. Love this post today. So warm and cozy. Just thought I’d mention that I’m about to go to bed, and in about an hour, you will be getting up! I wonder if it’s too late for me to reverse my habits? My husband is an early riser and I’m a night
    owl. I know I would be more productive if I were an early riser.

    Enjoy your morning and cup of tea!

  20. Lisa Jorgensen says:

    I look so forward to reading what you will write about next. I always say I feel exactly the same way!! I love lamps and the cozy look they give a home. You have some really cute ones!! Love your home, it looks very British!! When you are getting up at 4:00am, I have just gotten to sleep. I am a night owl, that is when my creative ideas come out. We have to go with our own inner clocks to be happy. Jack is so cute!!
    Enjoy the beauty of Autumn and keep us dreaming of happy things Susan.

  21. Mary says:

    Loved this on lamps. It really spoke to my heart and almost made tears come to my eyes. It is so hard to find people who are kindred spirits. Thank you for the lovely pictures and as always thank you for your blog. I love the light coming in open curtains or shades. Lamps and candlelight of all kinds are gateways to my soul.

  22. Suzanne says:

    I love your kitty’s face… I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an interesting design of color on on a nose! It’s just do fun to look at. Looks like you painted it on there with your water colors. So sweet! Oh! Can’t forget the lighting! It makes me want to curl up in a nighty and have pumpkin pie and watch a Catherine Cookson story on the tellie.

  23. Terry says:

    Hi, Susan!

    I love knowing that you get up at four. I too am an early riser. I was wondering if Joe minds you going to bed at nine! I love, love, love going to bed early with my book, but my husband likes me to stay up with him and watch TV. I can not physically make it beyond ten, but I would go to bed with my book at eight every night if my husband didn’t mind. However, I do Love my husband and enjoy being with him. It is a wonderful problem to have. Isn’t it?

    Right now it is six a.m. and all is quiet and peaceful here. Bliss!

    Have a wonderful day!

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, a lovely problem to have! Joe doesn’t mind; he gets to watch foreign war movies and other things that instantly make my eyelids weigh a hundred pounds; he enjoys his quiet time also. Jack and I take him his tea every morning at 7. Good Morning Terry!

  24. Tara Baker says:

    Someday will you please do a post on making tea in your house. I just use a tea bag and my ‘instant hot’… so boring. I’d love to see how you make it! Thanks and the lamps are inspiring, cozy and beautiful.

  25. Jackie Walton says:

    I ,too, love little lamps — they have a personality of their own. Your kitchen will be darling — can’t wait to see it finished. ….and I’m still so in love with Jack!

  26. Jamie from Virginia says:

    Good Morning! Your lamp collection is lovely. I collect and use oil lamps (not electrified) and absolutely LOVE the light they give off. There is nothing like finding a beautiful implement of the past that can still provide such pleasure and usefulness (sounds a little reminiscent of William Morris!). Every time I go antiquing I think to myself…why does anyone need to buy something new? there are plenty of wonderfully beautiful and better made things to buy in these shops!

    Speaking of William Morris, I have a beautiful book called “The Gardens of William Morris”. Your previous post made me pull it out again and read it. It amazes me how history repeats itself. Morris was very concerned with “modern” improvements and their influence over “old” ways of living. He did not necessarily believe in the value of modernization. His thoughts ring true today for many of us.

    I loved the last photo of Jack. I had a very very dear kitty named Camellia who had to be a cousin of Jack. She passed away a few years ago, she was 17, and if you removed Jack’s little mustache they would look like twins with identical markings. She was a tuxedo cat too. She was wild and crazy like Jack, I used to call her fits of crazy behavior “the kitty crazies”. She always kept me laughing….and spending a great deal of time trying to think ahead of her to prevent broken dishes! What precious creatures they are. Enjoy every minute of him.

    Everyone enjoy this beautiful Autumn weather. 40* here this morning!


  27. Suzanne says:

    Hopefully you will tell us where we can get a “Heart of the Home” cookie cutter!! 🙂

  28. Kathy from Heafed to the Fell, Brevard, NC says:

    Hi Susan, I loved all the cozy photos of your home in lamplight. Agree with you 100% on the overhead lighting, which does nothing to make a girl irresistible!! A new lampshade can do so much for an ordinary lamp. You did a terrific job on the lamp that you made; well worth the effort. I love your green and white toile lamp. I have the same shade of green but a different toile design in my great room drapes. I just absolutely love anything “toile”; our bedroom is done in black toile. Jack and Girl would look right at home there! Speaking of which, thanks for the dear photos of Jack! Have a wonderful day everyone! xoxo

  29. Donna Ray says:

    Hello Susan,
    As I read your post this morning I started laughing as I remembered some hideous lamps in a furnished apartment where we lived in Syracuse while my husband was going to graduate school. It took 5 years to get that Ph.D. and for 4 of them we had HIM, a matador, on one side of the couch and HER, a flaminco dancer, on the other side. I could have warmed up to them, I think, if they had not been pea green with black and gold accents and the shades were pea green also!!! Imagine the horrible light they cast! I still remember the absolute joy when we were able to afford two ceramic lamps from KMart with lovely ivory shades. I remember how much we paid for them….$7.99 each (that was 1969).
    I am so glad (I certainly was not then!) we started our marriage in rented furnished spaces because I continue after all these years (we’re married 48 years now) to appreciate all the ways we get to make our home ours. That’s one of the true joys of home making………having your home and gardens make your own heart sing. Who cares what others think or what’s “in”!!! I think I’m preaching to the choir, huh Girlfriends?
    It’s a sunny, crisp day here on the shore of Lake Ontario, which is brilliant blue with white specks all over…… a large flock of seagulls is floating out there. Gulls must have bad breath because they always, whether on ground or on the water, position themselves a good foot or so apart……why? Morning Science. Have a lovely day. As always, DonnaRay

    • sbranch says:

      LOL, I have seen those lamps! Oh that would be reason enough to study quicker! Love the morning science! Maybe because if they see something, they want to be the first to say “Mine.”

    • Victoria Miller says:

      As I recall, those bullfighter and flaminco lamps used to be given out for prizes at carnivals! When you started describing them, I thought “that sounds interesting”, but when you got to the “pea green with the black and gold accents” I thought, “Oh, no, I know where I’ve seen those….” I can remember as a kid hoping my brother would knock down all the bowling pins and get a giant teddy bear and not one of those lamps!

    • Cathy McC. says:

      “The choir” knows exactly what you’re talking about!

  30. Pam Bengier says:

    Hello Susan,
    What a cozy letter today. I always read your posts first thing in the morning – gives my day a happy start. I love the ambience of lamps also. My dad always kept a lamp on the kitchen table – it was a softer way to begin the day. Your new kitchen is almost painted. Hang in there just another day or two and it will be done!! Hooray! Nothing like freshly painted walls…

  31. Joy Pence from Ohio says:

    Lovely post. I have become more of an early riser since a sweet golden retriever mix came through our back yard last spring. I had always told my girls to not pet stray dogs; and guess who ran out to pet this cute thing…ME!!! and that began me becoming a dog owner (only had kitties before) So every morning around 5:30 I hear this little whine outside the bedroom door telling me he is lonely and ready to start the day. So I get out of bed and have the house to myself and just love that time. I do love your lamps and the shades are beautiful, especially the one you made yourself. Now I want to go lamp shopping! Jack gets more handsome all the time!

  32. Verla says:

    I was just wondering if the cookie cutter at the end of the post was made special for you, having the “heart” in the “home”. Very cute!

    • sbranch says:

      I designed it, for a company that had asked me to, then they were sold, so this prototype was the only one made.

      • Victoria Miller says:

        Someone should make some more, because it is wonderful. Just sayin’ (My daughter and grandkids say that last all the time, and I think it’s adorable).

  33. Jeanne Hedin says:

    Love this post! As much as the post, I love that you take the small gifts of each day and bring them to light (pun intended). 🙂 You beautifully put into words the simple things that we all enjoy and love. And then there’s Jack, of course . . . a mustachioed bright spot in any day!

  34. Lin says:

    Wonderful post, Susan! I have a friend who made those pierced shades, and have a few of them………love seeing yours! I am right there with ya on the overhead lighting…..when we added on to our house, none of the new rooms have it.

  35. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says:

    I’m always so amazed at all we have in common. I use almost nothing but lamp light in my home…only turning on an overhead light when searching for something I’ve dropped on the floor. You have a wonderful collection! I know you can’t wait to get order back in your kitchen. It will be so much fun putting everything back and seeing it all come together! I know Joe can’t wait to see the painting part end. 🙂

  36. Linda says:

    You have brightened my day!
    Thank you,

  37. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says:

    Susan, no need to post this comment…I just thought you might enjoy these two tablescapes after reading your wonderful post about lamp-light. 🙂


  38. Lynn says:

    My kitties are so jealous of how I feel about Jack! ha, ha. I have to show my husband every picture of him. My kids away at college will ask how Jack is doing these days. Too funny. He is just so adorable. And I love this time of year with the early darkness and lots of candles! Can’t wait to see the kitchen pictures. It will be so cozy this winter.

  39. Lynn McCormack says:

    Love your copper cookie cutter!! Where can I get one? L

    • sbranch says:

      That was a one of a kind prototype from a company that was subsequently sold, that’s the only one like that I know of! Sorry!

      • Janet [in Rochester] says:

        I love that copper cookie cutter too! Love copper things and the simplicity of the design. It sort of “sums you up” too – do you know what I mean? A heart at the center of a home! Suggestion – you should use that design as a logo or trademark or just as a personal talisman. It’s just YOU! For years I’ve been trying to come up with a little artistic “signature” for myself – something small I could include on personal stationery, embroider on things etc. I love coffee so I considered a coffee bean, and I collect pumpkins so I’ve considered the outline of a pumpkin. Still haven’t settled on anything – but I’ll know it when I see it, I think. But this would be absolutely PERFECT for you, if you like that kind of thing anyway. Does this make any sense?

        • sbranch says:

          Yes, I’m using that little photo already as a logo — although most of my logos are hand painted, that one is just too cute as it is. Maybe I should paint it too! How about a coffee cup for you?

          • Victoria Miller says:

            We should all sign a petition and send it to a company that makes cookie cutters. It’s a wonderful ‘logo’ for you (although so is Jack), but it would be wonderful to decorate those little cookies!

          • Janet [in Rochester] says:

            Oh Sue, you should DEFINITELY paint it! It’s just absolutely YOU! I was thinking how cute it would look as a simple outline “frame” around page numbers too. With the number set inside the heart? That would be a lot of work though. Maybe just drawn with copper-ish brown ink so you wouldn’t have to paint?

            I wonder if there are any enterprising metal artisans on the Island who’d be interested in crafting copper cookie cutters? [1] I know just a few folk – wink wink – who’d line up to get them. [2] Helping to support hand-made craftmanship. [3] Helping to support US-made products. [4] William Morris will smile down upon us. And good grief, here I go again! Coming up with more work for YOU!

          • sbranch says:

            That’s Enthusiasm talking! 🙂

          • Yes you should definitively paint that cookie cuter!! Love this post. I passed up a cool lamp base recently and now I am sorry I did. To bad I didn’t see this post before that.

          • sbranch says:

            If I had a quarter for all the wonderful things I thought I could live without and left behind and have never forgotten! 🙂

  40. stephanie says:

    As a pro-lamp, anti-overhead lighting knitter – I finally bought a light on a strap that hangs around my neck so I can actually see my knitting and not strain my eyes. It’s not the sexiest look in the world, but I get to have my little lamps and my candles and still be able to knit easily! Here’s a link to show you what I use:


  41. Barb says:

    Hi Sue, I am also an early riser, as my friends always say to me, I am even up before the roosters! LOL! I get so much more accomplished this way. I have many projects working on now and just taking a break and got to read your nice posts on the lamps. I so enjoyed seeing all the different styles you shared with us and how you made one yourself as well. I enjoy all styles to. One of my favorites though is the three way lamp. Its one tall lamp with a nice shade but has three different settings which is good for reading by, crocheting, needlepoint work. I also have craft lamps when doing scrapbooking ie a gooseneck lamp and it can be folded and put away. I also use nightlights and one I have is a teapot that was given to me as a gift and I use that always. I don’t live far from Brimfield…anitque capitol of the world as they say. I love it…..everyone should go at least once…..its such a great time. Candles…love those also. I have worked in Business and Retail both and had the opportunity to work
    at Yankee Candle for a few years as a Seasonal Job. Met people from all over the world and was surrounded by every type of candle you can imagine. It was such a fun place to work. It’s a beautiful fall day here and our Ginormous Pileated Head Woodpeckers are back…….they are truly something to see!
    Have a wonderful Day Sue and Jack on the ladder with the clock…Priceless!
    Hugs & Smiles:) Barb, Ludlow..MA

  42. I agree with you about the lighting, what a difference it makes! I don’t have as many lamps as you do which, by the way, I love how they are all so unique! But I recently purchased a small one for a new table in the living room and I just love turning it on every night and seeing what a difference that little thing makes. And you reminded me of the “buttered maple syrup” candle I purchase over the summer and saved for the fall. After reading your post I got it out and am burning it as I write this! Oh my goodness, does it smell good in here now!

  43. Starr miller says:

    Your home is so warm and inviting. Thanks for sharing. You keep me inspired. It’s a beautiful day in Naperville, IL.

  44. Kathryn says:

    Ahhh, so much fun to connect with like-minded ladies/men to discuss the merits of soft lighting! First, I had an O’Keefe and Merritt stove (I think exactly like the model in your kitchen, Susan, complete with Grill-o-Vater on the bottom left?) for many years. My favorite thing about it was the built in lamp, which brought a decidedly warm glow to the kitchen. MISS that stove!!! A thought for those with mostly overhead lighting: a quick and inexpensive way to create soft light is to add “dimmer” switches for the overheads. This, plus some candles, could be a quick fix for those yearning for a warmer environment after reading this wonderful post. Thank you, Susan!! I look forward to every one of your posts… Keep them coming!!! xxo

    • sbranch says:

      So helpful Kathryn, thank you! My stove just has two ovens and two broilers below, but I’ve seen those grill-o-vaters!

  45. Susan ( an Ohio gal in SoCal ) says:

    What beautiful lamps ! I feel exactly as you do : overhead lighting is just too harsh and not relaxing at all. I so enjoyed seeing your lamps. When I get my ‘ Someday House, ‘ I’m going to be on the lookout for pretty things to put in it. My husband and I live with and care for his elderly mother , so we don’t have much space to call our own just now. It’s fun to dream, though! I get lots of ideas from you!

  46. Cindy Maulin - St. Louis says:

    hi susan..yes.me too..always have used lamps in all of the places i have lived..even my old dreary college dorm room with one barely connected to the ceiling overhead light…never used it..went to the local 5 & !0 store and found lamps on the cheap and a few extension cords and voila…let there be lamplight!!! It was while in college that I discovered the thrill of the farm sales and estate auctions…found lamps there too..(for my sorority house) and a few wonderful items that..believe it or not..I have lugged around with me for years and still have!!! You have a warm cozy inviting home…. just lovely… happy fall…love, cindy

  47. Kathryn says:

    Susan, can you share the pattern name of the white plates pictured in your table setting (with red/white table cloth)? Looking for something like that, and thanks!

  48. Brenda Caldwell says:

    I admit that I get a warm and cozy feeling each time I read any of your posts 🙂
    Loved this one, as usual….Just one request; Please make a space for Jack’s ladder when you are finished decorating! I would just love to see how you redo it as an accessory!

  49. Angie(Tink!) says:

    Happy Thursday Sweet Sue! OMG….The Photo of Jack That Face! 🙂 Makes Me Smile….He Keeps Getting Cuter! 🙂 & I Love The Bunny~Lamp in Your Peter Rabbit Room! Perfection! & You are So Right about Taking Out The Horrible Lighting In All Dressing Rooms! lol so Funny & so True…. I Adore Your Collection of Lamps Through~Out Your Home Sweet Sue…Lighting Does Set The Mood…Makes Us Feel Cozy & Safe…For Autumn I Put Lots of Twinkling Orange Lights…On The Mantle Up The Staircase…Around The Front Door….On My Staircase I actually Put Mini~Lights that are Colored like Candy~Corn….so Cute! ok…Now Get This… Herbster Puts Dimmer~Switches on almost All The Lights in Our House! I’m Not Kidding…so Talk about “Mood~Lighting” 😉 I Keep Everything Low ( I Look Better! ;-)) lol & if Ya Need Bright Light Ya Just Turn it Up! Pretty Cool….& Of Course Like You Sweet Sue I Have Candles Everywhere….Makes The Whole House More Magical…ahhhhhhhhhh Yep Our Enchanted~Cottages…..I Do Love The Early Morning Hours too…Everything is so Quiet…shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…..Nice Way to Begin Each Day…..sipping Tea & Savoring The Quiet Moments…….I am So Excited Your Kitchen is Almost Done! it was a Huge Project & You & Joe Know How Wonderful Your New Clean & Shiny Kitchen Will Be! Yay! Kitty~Hugzzz & always a Meow or Two…Wishing You a Dazzling Day Sweet Sue! xoxo Poof! ♥*¨`*.✫*¨*.¸¸.♥*¨`* 😉

  50. michelle in ohio says:

    You must be reading my mind today! I was wondering about the little lamp in your kitchen, Is the shade MV? I forgot to look for one when we were on the island.

    • sbranch says:

      I have two that I use depending on the season, yes the MV one for summer, and a red toile one for winter … Ayn used to sell the MV ones at Rainy Day … I linked to that in the post . . . maybe they still have one??

  51. Carin B says:

    I love lamplight, too. Also loved the rainy view from your window and you have inspired me to rise a little earlier in the morning. My mom was an early riser. As a child when I would wake up she was always busy in the kitchen and the radio that sat on top of the refrigerator was always on. One of my favorite lamps is one I bought years ago at a thrift shop. It’s a floor lamp with a ceramic tea pot with roses on it at the top of the lamp (just before the bulb part) and a matching saucer near the base. Love it and would love an Ayn Chase type shade for it. Can’t seem to find one that “fits” the lamp. Thanks, again for a lovely blog Susan.

  52. Gillian Neary says:

    Hi Susan, I love the heart of the home cookie cutter. Do you sell them? I would love to buy a couple.

  53. Susan (in VA) says:

    Thank you, Susan! I thought I was the only one with a lamp fetish. I should have known I’d be in good company here. Some of mine are new, but most are either old hand-me-down family lamps or lamps I’ve gotten at flea markets, depression glass shows, antique stores, or (my new standby) Etsy. I have no overhead lighting (except in the kitchen) so I love all my weird vintage lamps. (>‿♥)

  54. Ruth Thomas says:

    Candles – I love candles – not only for the lovely light, but for the warmth they give no matter where they are, and the scented ones are Heaven. They are perfect on cool Fall mornings and evenings and especially those evenings when it snows. I can sit in just candle light and watch it snow out my front window here in Indiana. I am a winter girl – I love to watch the bird eat from my bird feeder and watch my cat, Zoe, cluck her jaws as she watches them from her perch on the window sill. Your lamps are beautiful – I think I am now inspired to look for more interesting lamp shades and then mix and match – great idea. Have a wonderful weekend and I hope your kitchen is done soon – I’m anxious to see how beautiful it is!!!

  55. Kristen says:

    Goodness…finally someone who loves lamps as much as I do and has as many…I have them everywhere…from big to small (tiny actually), and I used to be so bad with candles my husband was furious as the ceiling was showing how many candles I loved. I now use the battery operated ones…I get such pretty light, I can put them anywhere, and never a dirty ceiling. 🙂

  56. Susan Joy says:

    Hi Susan,
    Your sweet blog reminded me of my dear uncle who owned and operated a lamp shop in Charlton, Massachusetts from the late 60’s until he passed away in February. He is truly missed. His old store is still full of some great lamps along with plenty of cobwebs and dust (the cobwebs and dust were always a part of the store, haha). A wonderful place! Thank you for the memories.
    Love, Susan

  57. Dawn from Minnesota says:

    This morning the quote on my little thought-for-the-day calendar was, “If you have knowledge let others light their candles by it.” And then after work, I excitedly took my first peek at your blog and it’s filled with warm thoughts, musica (l o v e), cozy lights and mini fireplaces (too cute). How cool is that?! I am one who also appreciates cozy (even moody) lighting… Birthday candles, Christmas lights, light peeking out from the oven door window, and all the little lamps that just sit there and look so shadowy and cute. One of my favorites (in my kitchen) is a Mrs. ButterWorth syrup bottle that my Dad made into a lamp for me…..and she has the most Beautiful hat…….a multi-colored beaded lampshade made one happy summer by my kids when they were little. Susan, the lampshade you made….I have a blue grey one almost like it in my bedroom. I bought it at a craft fair years ago….it has flowers and a heart and dots. And, do you know what it shines down on? My Beatrix Potter bookends that have been sitting there looking cute for many, many cozy nights. Life seems to live on happy coincidences. Cozy lights make me inside out happy and so does the most adorable Jack kitty ever….he himself looks so content and cozy wrapped in your embrace. Happy thinking of you enjoying your new kitchen. I remember your: My Kitchen, November 2009 utube….The early morning blue outside, the little lamps reflecting in the windows, the song Marshmallow World, and the kitchen dance. And now…..she danced by the…….. light of the moon….Scuff, scuff, and twirl…..twirl, twirl and scuff, scuff, scuff …..”just the scuff of slippers” on a NEW floor! Be happy Susan and I hope you feel the warmth being sent your way from all the candles you have lit! .XoXDawn

  58. Debra V. ~ Southern California says:

    I’m Sorry to hear that the heart of the home cookie cutter was only a prototype. I came to the comments to ask about it, and read the answer just before I started to type. I love it, I’d purchase it, if it would ever be produced. Have you thought about it? You see we are all lovers of our homes and the warmth and love that they nurture and that is what you are all about too. Could you have it manufactured for us gal friends, I know others would want one for themselves and to give as gifts too.

    • sbranch says:

      Unless you have thousands of something made, they cost you about $150 each, which I doubt anyone would really want to pay! Otherwise, believe me, you all would be inundated with wonderful things!

      • Pat Mofjeld says:

        Yes, unfortunately this is so true…my degree is in Design and I weave, spin, etc. I think a lot of us “girlfriends” are creative. But you quickly learn that unless you want to be a one-person assembly line, which most creative people don’t want to be, it is hard to get items mass-produced and marketed without investing a LOT of money and then, as the market can be fickle, there you are with a zillion of something on your hands. LOL! To be “successful” in the design/creative field means a lot of hard work, being in the right place at the right time, and just plain “luck”…and then, of course, one can debate the definition of “successful”… 🙂

      • Debra V. ~ Southern California says:

        Susan, You are so sweet to reply. Thank you for the info. I had no idea that it would be so expensive to make. Maybe someday I can have someone make one for me too. Love it!

  59. Caroline Delao says:

    Oh how that dreary weather out side your window looks so nice we have been having hot weather over here in ventura county (Santa Paula). I’m so ready to have a nice cool drizzly day, So I can enjoy my little lamps and candles. All of yours are so pretty and have their own personality. I’m a big candle lover and have lots of them, it is even hard for me to toss them once they are done. I use the excess wax and dip live flowers in them and lay them on a plate so I can continue to enjoy their smell.

    Love your cat, He is soooooo cute!!!!

    Thank you Susan.

  60. judy dow says:

    I could not believe this post from you. It was soooo heartwarming for me. I learned many years ago of the comfort of many lamps, little to big, placed all around the house from my friend Cathy AKA Ethel. As I am still teaching for one more year I only do my lamp lighting routine on Sunday and Saturday mornings. It brings such comfort to me to light up the place I love to be. I’m already looking forward to retirement next year when I will be able to do it every day! I do have to comment on your lamps and shades. Wowser!! My hubby will now find that I have something new to search for when we go antique hunting. Thank you for making my day. Cant wait for the kitchen reveal.

  61. mary spring says:

    ….for all those cookie cutter fans of yours : check out Susan’s web-store for her cute Autumn cookie cutters .. thanks Susan for all that you do !!! ..( you have the patience and love .. as an angel would….. just saying..)

  62. Deborah says:

    I love the ambiance. Makes it warm inside while it rages outside. Check out the crazy patch lampshades on the website piecemakers.com. They are to die for and easy to do. Good way to use up all those odd scraps of fabric.
    Thank you again for sharing your gift.

  63. Care Kester says:

    I love little lamps too and so I am just sitting here totally “befoogled” why your awesome post didn’t include the new little Emma Bridgewater lamps! Oh my, I am yearning to order one of those! Will your shop have them? And you have such a beautiful array of little lamps. You are a very, very lucky gal, Miss Susan….for many, many reasons. I am lucky too – just not as lucky! :O)

    • sbranch says:

      I’m sure they’re beautiful in person, what Emma thing isn’t! But they are so expensive (as are the cups, but these are even more so) — the shipping for them to the USA is almost prohibitive for a little business such as mine . . . if they had included a really fabulous shade I might have been unable to resist!

      • Care Kester says:

        Aw pooh! That old shipping prohibits me from ordering so often – oh well. We will just enjoy the Emma mugs!

  64. How did you make that beautiful lampshade!

  65. Nellie says:

    Wonderful time lighting up your house for the day, Susan! Thank you!!

    Jack’s new toy – that ladder! He will feel lost when the project is finished and the ladder is returned to its “home.”

    I agree that lamps make a room cozier than lighting from overhead.

    We are having some cool mornings here – finally! I believe Fall is knocking on the door.

    xo Nellie

  66. Ooh ooh OOH, I could not agree more with you, dear Susan! I loooooove lamplight (can hardly stand overhead lighting) because it really does make everything warm and cozy. And candles – oh yes! Everywhere!
    You know, I even cook by lamplight. Yep. There are two lamps on my kitchen corner – one brightening up a dark corner and the other casting warm light on the cutting board. 🙂
    This is one of my favorite blog posts of yours *ever!*

  67. Becky from Lockport, Illinois says:

    Love lamps too! Bought the sweetest little rooster lamp in North Carolina this past summer. Camping this weekend in Michigan and hope to find another little lamp.

  68. Carolyn says:

    Hi Susan,
    ~~~Until one has loved an animal, part of their soul remains unawakend.~~~ Fur friends love so unconditional.
    I have just had my ‘Ode To Fall’ with one of my children. When all at home, a yearly ritual. Decided why stop with fall…all seasons work. Glazed doughnuts, and cider for fall…the best was everyone had to make up a poem to honor the occasion. Brought laughter and joy to the point of pandemonium. Nothing like the laughter of children. Such grand memories.
    I love wallpaper,doilies, lamps and anything that beckons…come sit and visit.
    Your lamps all have a special character. I began to wonder how many lamps do
    I have? Checked them out and could not believe 30+. So cozy, and as you, place special treasures around them. All sizes, shapes, personalities, fitting into a special place to give that added touch…..just like people. I love collecting things that are useful and beautiful and make me smile.
    If I may ask…do you use a special cleaner for your woodwork? Something that cuts the cooking film? Not all cleaners do that so the paint will stick. It looks like you painted all the woodwork and cabinets as well.
    This will be so lovely…a woman(or man) needs her (his) kitchen. I know you can hardly wait!…
    Thanks for your informative blogs. Do enjoy them.

    Great memories

    • sbranch says:

      We mix dish soap and water with a little bleach. And yes, we painted them this time, he’s almost done!

    • Carol C says:

      Carolyn, have you heard of Flylady.com? Her site is about getting organized and keeping the house neat and clean. Her purple micro-fiber cloths are fantastic for cleaning everything and often you can do it with only water!

  69. Sharon Avinger says:

    I adore lamps, too, and the first thing I do each morning is make my cup of tea! Kindred spirits! Seriously, the first item I head toward at a yard sale is a pretty lamp. My husband just rolls his eyes. Like you, Susan, I love the cozy ambiance of lamps.

  70. Marion Rose says:

    Good evening Susan,
    What a nice surprise when I opened your blog. Lamps and shades!!! I just loved the tour of your Lamps, in your home. Lamps tell a interesting story of the homemaker. They give you a warm and welcoming feeling. Maybe this is the reason I like the Fall Season. Fall is the time when you start turning lamps on earlier because the sun sets so early. One of my lamps in the diningroom, I change the shade according to season. The shades rest on the chimney. I have two for the Autumn season. I guess the one I like most is the one with hand painted pumpkins. When you light it, the pumpkins have faces! They make everyone smile when they see it.
    It adds to the fun of your blog when you read about so many girlfriends from around the country that share the same love of home and treasures.
    Thank you for bringing us together. Anyone for Tea?

  71. Judy Young says:

    Lovely post Susan. I too love lamps and especially enjoy the two I have in my kitchen. I have them on the counters in two different areas. They are smaller than the lamps you would have in a living room and oh so cozy-looking. The base of one looks like several bowls stacked together (found in a local shop that sells “new” primitives in McKinney, Texas and the other one has a blue grey stoneware base with a country small checked red gingham shade found at a garage sale. I just love them and the ambiance they give the kitchen. I love the look of lamps instead of over head lighting, but alas, my husband, ever mindful of expensive electricity goes around turning them off!

    Give Jack a kiss for me! Such a sweet kitty!

  72. Jenny L. says:

    We have a small group of families we camp with and one of the girls always brings a lamp for her camper so it will look cozy. It works! I never get tired of looking at your wonderful home. I especially like the lamp next to the lace curtains. While I was reading your post, my cat Teddy was on top of my desk knocking things off on to the floor. He is a sassy boy and I love it. Don’t you think tuxedo kitties act a little bit like dogs? Teddy even growls when someone comes in the house he does not know.

  73. Marge says:

    Susan, if you are up at 4:00 am I am curious to know what time you go to sleep

  74. Tami in Simi Valley, CA says:

    Hi Susan!! :o)
    You are absolutley right about the warmth & coziness of lamp light & I couldn’t agree withyou more! I really enjoyed seeing the snippets of your home while lamp peeping. Can’t wait to see the kitchen when it’s done too!! Just a tad envious of your rainy day.. Sorry, can’t help it. So beyond ready for Fall!! Lastly, I loooovvve that cookie cutter in the last picture!!! I’ve seen similar ones online & they always make me think of you! :o) Glad you have it as it’s soo fitting!

    Hoping you enjoy your rainy day tea & kitty cuddles!

  75. Betty Marie, Pennsylvania says:

    Great! blog….. It just reminded me I have two lamps that came with my bedroom set 46 years ago. They need to be rewired and put to use again. Jack is just adorable. Early to bed, early to rise makes a man(person) healty, wealthy & wise. Getting up at 4am everyday sure covers this rhyme. Wow! I just keep saying Wow, to your the 4am schedule.

  76. Suzanne says:

    I share your love of lamps, but they do drive my husband crazy. I think when he just sees them turned on he imagines that electric meter wheel spinning faster and faster. Two of my favorite spots for lamps are on the kitchen counter and in the laundry room on top of the drier. Both create such a warm glow to otherwise cold hard surfaces. We enter our home through the laundry room so the lamp there is on most of the time and acts as “welcome home” light.

    • sbranch says:

      Very nice … I have a lamp in my laundry room too … there’s a fridge in there too, with a lamp on top of it …

  77. linda says:

    Thank you for such beautiful photos and thoughts about lamps and lighting.
    Scripture comes to mind about Jesus being the light of the world and
    His word being a lamp to light our path.
    Also, Revelation 21:22-23.
    We are blessed.

  78. Kristy Brandon, MS says:

    Yesterday was my daughter’s 5th birthday and she asked me if she could get in my bed for just a little while before going to bed. I said sure and when I walked in there she had taken my husband’s side of the bed and was coloring from a new coloring book she received and had opened your “Girlfriends” book for me to read! I got in the bed and she asked if I would go to the recipes section. She wanted me to pick out something she and I could make together. It was the best part of the whole day!

  79. Sarah says:

    If you ever go to Aurora, New York, there is a lighting shop there called Vintage Lighting. It is a beautiful store that is a feast for the eyes!

  80. Clair Becker says:

    I have just returned from a 2 week visit to England,I stayed with friends in the Malvern area. Thanks to your visit this summer I knew what places to explore. All the while I was vacationing I thought to myself this is what Susan Branch did,even had a train ride to London. Just love your blog.

    • sbranch says:

      How wonderful Clair! It sounds like you had a wonderful time! Welcome home!

    • Carrie says:

      Hello Clair,

      Malvern is a quaint town. I was there end of May visiting a friend’s sister who has a caravan on the water. We went to the Tipton tearoom that was right on the water and I hoovered up a lovely scone drowning in clotted cream and jam. I had a ball at the Marks and Spencer (aka M&S or Marks and Sparks) store in town buying fun little tins marking the diamond jubilee and they were filled with chockies as my favorite people call them. Bet you had a lovely time. Pip pip and cheerio!

  81. Cindy says:

    I really like your lamp photos. I am a lamp collector as well and have found most of them while “treasure hunting” in thrift stores.

  82. Mercina O'Neil says:

    Well, okay, Susan, you have me all excited with the fall weather approaching. All your beautiful lamps, your home looking so warm and cozy with the perfect rainy day backdrop. Living in Payson, AZ, with an elevation of 5,000ft our fall is almost here and I am so thrilled, our days are warm and sunny and the evenings cool down to sweater time. Every season does have its joys! As always, thank you for sharing.

  83. I loved reading this post about lighting! We don’t have much overhead lighting in our home, either, and I think it is very cozy!!!! I have one of your lamp shades with “Heart of the Home” on it!!! My sister gave it to me for a birthday gift a long time ago and I have it in my craft room on a lamp base that I got earlier. And I, too, am sorry about the Heart of the Home cookie cutter! I wanted one!

  84. Sharon H says:

    Your house looks so snug and inviting with all your beautiful lamps. I think you did a good job Susan on the one you made, but I could see by the detail how it would take a lot of hours to do.

    I love the Peter Rabbit lamp and I’d love to get one, but I have a feeling maybe you got it on your trip to England? It looks like it’s part porcelain and part something else, it’s hard to tell. I tried to search on the internet but didn’t have any luck finding him. It would be a good suggestion to my husband for my Christmas present if I could find out.

    Can’t wait to see the kitchen when it’s all finished. It’ll be just in time for the holidays, all fresh and new! Visiting your blog is like getting a big hug every time. Thanks Susan for sharing your days with us. Sharon from Maine.

  85. Victoria Miller says:

    Another lovely post. All those beautiful lamps, and I loved the photos of the rainy early morning. The only time I see morning that early is if I’ve been up all night. I love “in the still of the night” (the experience and the Cole Porter song!) The photo of you and Jack at the end with the kitty talk nearly brought tears to my eyes, it was so sweet. I, too, have never liked overhead lighting, and until this post, no one has ever understood…. Love reading the posts from all parts of the country and even world! What a wonderful weaving of stories! This blog is a world of its own!

  86. Jacquelyn Wirthlin - Bainbridge Island, WA says:

    Love your lamp collection. So warm and cozy. Just wondered if you have watched the series, “Foyle’s War” from England set during the years leading up to WW2. The husband and I are hooked on it. So much beautiful countryside in every episode. Almost like being there with you, Joe and all the Girlfriends this summer. Have a wonderful weekend.

  87. pat addison says:

    good afternoon susan, everyone. well the Fall fun has begun here already, the white domesticated turkey is stuck up on top of the woodpile, and can’t figure out how to get down. my opinion is she flwe up there by herself and she fly down all by herself, if she is still stuck up there by the timne my hubby gets home, then we will get her down. bet she doesn’t do that again for a long time……LOL!!!! Happy Fall everyone!!! hugs……. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      I would agree with you, but I hear that turkeys are not famous for brilliance!

      • pat addison says:

        i have heard that, she is still trying to figure out how to get down, well i can’t climb up the woodpile and try to carry her so she is on her own until hubby gets home and has an idea on how to get her down….the fun never stops around here. my neighbor suggested calling the fire dept over to see if they have an idea, i don’t think they want to climb up on the woodpile to rescue a turkey.

      • pat addison says:

        well hubby got home early from work, and the turkey was rescued. she’s fine just a little thirsty.

        • Pat Mofjeld says:

          Is this the “Thanksgiving turkey”? LOL! 🙂

          • Tawni urrutia says:

            Haha! I was so excited to see a post between the two girl friends that always make me smile! Have a wonderful first weekend of Fall ladies!

        • Kathy from Heafed to the Fell, Brevard, NC says:

          Hi Pat & Susan, I bet there’s a book in all your adventures on your farm! If you don’t already have one, better buy one of Susan’s “Days” books and start jotting down all these adventures. You can put me on your pre-list! Maybe Susan would agree to do the illustrations—especially if it was printed by a professional printer?? Susan?? Just an idea. . . in your spare time. . . after the Kitchen’s done. . . after the English Diary. . . after the Breakfast book. . . after Retirement???

        • judi says:

          How HIGH is your woodpile? Maybe you need to keep a long 2×4 on hand to prop up there for a slide 🙂

          • Pat addison says:

            hello everyone, no its not the Thanksgiving turkey, not if i have anything to say about that. we are hoping that by next Fall we will have a nice large family of turkeys, but this one is one of the breeders. i could write a book on our adventures here at the poultry farm, but i doubt many people would want to read it, an interesting idea though..what do you think susan??? just popped in to wish everyone a Happy First Day of Autumn. Happy Fall and Happy Harvest everyone. hugs…… 🙂

  88. Suzanne says:

    Lovely lighting….but I must ask, do you play the piano too? Sooo much talent in you girl!

    • sbranch says:

      Nooo, I don’t play … the only song I know is “The Happy Woodpecker” from a few months of lessons when I was 8! Joe doesn’t play either, but that’s his childhood piano!

  89. Peggy H. says:

    Hi Susan, We just got home from a twelve day vacation in New England — three days of which were on Martha’s Vineyard. We had beautiful weather while we were there. One of the BEST things we enjoyed while we were there was walking by (back and forth, really) past the Charlotte Inn at dusk and then in the dark. Talk about beautiful lighting! It was magical. Had to go back several times trying not to trip over our own feet as we gazed into that beautiful and beautifully lit Inn. Just dreamy! Peggy

    • sbranch says:

      Such a beautiful place … all that attention to detail! They have a wood pile out back that I always take people to see because it’s PERFECT. So happy you had fun!

  90. Susie says:

    thank you so very much for the “musica” 🙂 I love all you’ve shared with us all. Now my daughters and daughter-in-laws have been enjoying you, too, in so many ways. ty Susan… 🙂 Susie

  91. Kristi says:

    I have to tell you how you’ve inspired some girlfriends here in Oregon. Four of us were driving to another friend’s house for a book club meeting when one friend said she was taking her mother (aged 80+) to England, since her mother always wanted to go. Another friend mentioned she had just read your blog about your trip to England. I said that I read your blog, too! The fourth girlfriend wanted to know all about your blog and we gave her your name and blog address. And, then we decided we should all visit England together to see some of the sights you blogged about! We probably won’t go over a year or so (need to save $$) but what a fun adventure it will be! We will use your blog as our travel guide. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • sbranch says:

      OH how fun. My first thought was, OH I want to go!!! 🙂 My book will be out by then, you will get lots of ideas there too! Happy for you Kristi, say hello to the girls for me!

  92. Carrie says:

    Good Morning Susan Branch!

    It wound seem “The Merry Maven of Martha’s Vineyard” and I, “Carrie who doesn’t cook in California”, seem to be crossing paths here at 1:07 a.m. Pacific time. Unless you are having an unexpected lie-in (Great British slang for sleeping in) on this, the first day of Autumn. Just wanted to say you mean a great deal to sooooo many of us in the blogosphere – your artistry speaks to all the senses via this blog and it is what I consider a ministry to the soul. It is the first place I go to in the morning and I often go back for a pre-nocturnal perusal of the girlfriend’s comments and your responses to them. * Note to fellow girlfriends: by persuing Susan’s responses to other’s comments, you can learn lots of fun things about her that perhaps you don’t already know. For example, don’t you think it’s a kick that she hardly ever uses the black box with the numbers you punch to heat things up? I live and die by a microwave but then, dare I confess on this, a blog of culinary whizzes that I don’t cook – that is to say, I never learned how. Can’t boil an egg without calling my sister but I can dream that some day I’ll be able to whip up that delish recipe for corn chowder in Susan’s autum book. Thank you for the unconfined joy you and your wonderful blog have brought to me each and every day since since finding your blog. Hail to the chief, Queen of all things bright and beautiful and a down right cool chick! Susan Branch for President!!

    • sbranch says:

      Sweetheart! That’s what you are! Have a wonderful day, tell your sister I said hello, and know for a fact, that if you want to make that corn chowder, you definitely can, because it’s very easy. It allows queen-like feelings in a person when they do it, also, just so you know, especially when you invite your sister over and give her some. xoxo

  93. Betty Marie says:

    Good Morning Susan, This is my first day up at 4:08 this morning,when I put my feet on the floor & headed for the shower. Now I am just deciding what to wear. I think light layers will do the trick. Wow! here I am with more hours added to my day because of you. I have been saying for years there are just not enough hours in a day. Now I have just added two more, all because of you. I can do this as I too go to bed nine-ish. Now I will see how much more I can get done. It will be cooking/baking that will fill up these two hours. Have a great week-end Susan……..:)

    • Betty Marie says:

      P.S. You can see I am not quite with it as I said, “because of you” two times… LOL

    • sbranch says:

      Me too, up and showered … it’s already 6:30 here, and I have two new pages for the book mapped out! Pretty soon I take Joe his tea and my revery will come to an end! 🙂 Have a wonderful day Betty Marie!

  94. judi says:

    It’s 5:20 a.m., Sat. morn and the Queen Mary 2 is just south and WEST of you on it’s way to Rhode Island:) Looks like you are getting cooler weather…50’s? I’m still waiting.

    • sbranch says:

      Hi Judi … Good Morning! It’s 6:30 am, just starting to get light here. I’m working on page 68 of my book (careening around England on paper); it’s definitely sweater weather . . . and the kitchen is almost done! I love to check on the ship every so often myself, she must be coming in for her early morning NY arrival! Have a wonderful day!

      • judi says:

        Actually, the queen is in Newport, Rhode Island…just arrived there 15 minutes ago or so. Suppose some “leaf peeping”??? So, she is right in your kinda ‘neighborhood’:)

        Yes, I am on your same schedule. Go to bed about 9ish and get up between 4 & 5 a.m. JUST LOVE that time of day. My husband stays up late….and sleeps late :)))))) so noise doesn’t start until he’s up. If we are going to be going out in the evening I have some ‘pop’ (MN) with caffine in it about 5:00 p.m. so I don’t nod off.

  95. Suzanne in Sydney, Australia says:

    I too love your lamps. It is a cosier feel to have table lamps rather than overhead lights. OK, so maybe we have to put reading glasses on sometimes to read a book!
    If you get up at 4am what time do you go to bed?
    I was up at 4am yesterday to go to ‘Floriade’ in Canberra (Australia’s capital city – it is 3 hrs by car and 4 hrs by train from “home” which is Sydney) for the day. Being Spring down here it was a glorious time to be starting the day, but not my regular get-up time 🙂

  96. Roxanne in NY says:

    Ahhhh, Good Morning & Happy Autumn! Susan, I so enjoyed my early morning quiet time today loving all your gorgeous lamps and heartwarming blog. As always, THANK YOU for the great start to my Saturday. I absolutely adore every detail you share of all your collections and decor. Sooooo always right up my alley! I’m wondering if you have ever showcased teapots in a blog? One of my most treasured possessions is your friendship teapot that sits on a doily on my kitchen counter. An all time favorite Xmas gift from my very best friend. I have searched everywhere for the matching cookie jar but with no success : ( Any hints on where I might find one? Now that would truly make my day!

    • sbranch says:

      Sorry, no, the only place maybe would be Etsy or Ebay? I haven’t showcased teapots yet, but I should! Good idea Roxanne! Thanks!

  97. mary spring says:

    ….the Autumnal Equinox arrives at 10:49 a.m. (E.D.T.) this morning … happy first day of Autumn , everybody !!

  98. Karen C says:


    Happy Autumn from Greensboro NC !!

    It’s such a wonderful day today( I am off from work). I had apple dumplings for breakfast. I just love the wonderful smell of baking apples. I am thinking about making an apple torte for tomorrow. Hubby and I went to the apple orchard last weekend and have been making applesauce all week for the upcoming year. I am officially in love with Autumn. I must thank you, I think you had set the mood, and inspired me. Hope you and Joe have a Great weekend. Hugs to all. Karen

  99. I love lamps too and I especially love little ones. You know, the kind of little lamp that you can tuck into a bookcase or hutch and love it’s warm soft glow. We have so many lamps in our cottage that when we turn them off at night my hubby jokes and says “call the power company and notify them that they are about to have a power surge!” I love that you are featuring Jack in your posts. I have fallen head over heals for him, but don’t tell Bentley.

    Susan and Bentley

  100. Betty Marie says:

    Hi Susan, I saw your reply… Here is how my first day went with getting up at 4:08 this morning…. Perfect! I plan to keep this time ajustment. Looking forward to 4am tomorrow and all I can get done. You have made a convert.

    • Betty Marie says:

      P.S. I well be sure to buy your new book. It will be my very first one of yours. I seem to be a late commer to your work. But better late then never.

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