My kitchen update is done!!!  We need some celebratory MUSICA!  I haven’t put everything back yet; it’s SO clean; I almost don’t want to overwhelm it with my stuff!

So far, my new magnet is the only one that’s made it back onto the fridge.

We had a wonderful weekend, the weather’s been beautiful, definitely sweater weather, chilly in the morning, but sunny, fresh island air — this is how it looks in our living room right now . . . my book is waiting for me!  Kate Morton is folding me into her world!

I’ve been getting so much done, I’m on page 71 of our book!

But I did get a start on putting things back in the kitchen, beginning with some of my cookbooks!

When I was about twenty-two I decided I wanted something cute to get me to the high shelves in my kitchen, so I went to an unfinished-furniture store and bought this little child’s chair.  I put it on newspaper in my driveway and spray-painted it red, and it’s gone everywhere I have since then.

First thing’s first for a new kitchen, get some flowers from the garden.

Time to hang up some pictures — these two have been in my kitchen forever . . . the bottom one I found at a yard sale years ago; the apples, I painted in 1978, one year after painting my first painting; the glass is all shined up.

Jack’s helping, as usual.  Guiding me.

Jack follows the ladder wherever it goes.

He may be moving to the barn when we are done.

This leg from our kitchen table is indicative of the distress the whole kitchen was in at the time we decided to update . . .

Joe took them off, sanded the wood top of the table; I oiled it, and he repainted the legs.  It looks like new!

One reason I’m so glad we have our kitchen back is because all this stuff came off the floor.  That’s not a bug, it’s just some sort of thing on the cardboard, but every day when I would come around the corner I would catch a glimpse of it and jump three feet!  I’m so glad it’s gone!

Joe sanded and repainted all the doors.  There are six doors going in and out of this room!

The old brass doorknobs are so beautiful, they are like jewelry.

But they seriously needed a good polish!

Aren’t they gorgeous?  They don’t make ’em like they used to!

Joe washed and put the glass knobs back on the cupboards.

He painted the set of shelves that fits next to the stove.  The previous owner of this house, Mr. Bowditch (he and his family bought it in 1949), was a wonderful woodworker; he made so many things for the house, almost all the charm around here came from him.  He made the arbors, the pergola, the adirondack chairs, we think he made the kitchen cupboards and counter, and he made this shelf.

It fits next to the stove and is the perfect place for the phone book and all the little office things you need in the kitchen.

We did not work all the time.  We’ve been taking advantage of the lovely weather and having lunch in the garden.

I’m getting my cup shelf back!  We’re almost there!

While Joe is doing that, I was hanging sheets on the line . . . it’s so fall around here, and sheets dried in autumn wind smell like heaven!

 Jack and I washed the kitchen windows, might as well do a little fall cleaning and eek out as much sparkle as possible.  (See my handy little chair?)

Then it was time, it was done, and all we needed to do was figure out where everything goes.  Here are the pictures I took to remind me!

I almost don’t want to put anything back, it’s so perfect and clean.

But it’s time . . .

I started slowly, cleaning everything as I go . . . back go the cookbooks . . .

 Jack is wondering what is going on . . .  “Are you saying this in NOT my throne?”

I washed the platters, and shined the glass on the pictures before they went back up.  I love the color of the walls! (Benjamin Moore Woodlawn Blue, and the white is Swiss Coffee OC-45, also Benj. Moore.)

 I got enough done to make it feel like home again, it was about time for dinner, so I went to the garden to get the last cabbage and made fresh coleslaw with honeycrisp apples — if you can find these delicious, organic apples in a store near you, snap them up!  So good!

 By the way, this coleslaw is made with thin-sliced cabbage, apples (any good, crisp, sweet apple),

golden raisins, and a dressing made with mayonnaise thinned with lime juice, salt and pepper, and that’s it.  SO good!

And while I did that, Joe made lobsters!  And that was the end of our red letter day!  Happy we did this big job, now it’s all ready for the holidays!  I have to say, what would I do without Joe! 

And FYI, I’m sure someone will ask where that little magnet came from, and I think, from this photo, you can see!  This is a new recipe scrapbook that just came in . . .  it’s the only place this magnet can be had . . . it has the same cover of another of our scrapbooks, but it’s different on the inside and is an inch or so smaller . . .

This is what it looks like . . .  I think we have ten of them in stock … and more coming in about ten days . . . here is a LINK so you can see it!  OK, back to our England book I go!  Have a wonderful day girlfriends! xoxo

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470 Responses to KITCHEN UPDATE, DONE!

  1. Linda... Gardnerville, Nevada says:

    Nothing feels better than the satisfaction of a sparkling clean, ‘new’ kitchen! I love your kitchen ‘project supervisor’ with the distinguished little mustache! He is certainly ‘on top’ of things!?! (…And looks like nobody better mess with him!) Well, you’re off to a holiday-ready start and kudos to Joe for executing a well done kitchen! …Enjoy!

  2. Vida Howard says:

    Wow! You have accomplished so much. Does it ever seem funny to you that when you say, “First I put away some of my cookbooks”, that you seriously mean, “MY COOKBOOKS…that I wrote and illustrated!” Ha! I think strangely sometimes, but love irony like this.
    So glad you have your little nest re-feathered for when the winter gets there. Just Beautiful!

  3. Oh my goodness! Your updated kitchen looks amazing, Susan! The colors and the homey touches are so inviting. Jack is just the cutest boy kitty ever. And your lunch and supper looked (and almost tasted!! LOL!) divine!!! Mmmmmmm . . . Thanks for sharing a little bit of YOU with us!

  4. Harriett says:

    Susan, your blog is exploding with replies. How great! The kitchen looks fantastic; I love the wide wainscoating, the POLISHED brass doorknobs (the pre-polish ones looked good, too), and of course the fantastic cabinets. If Joe is nominated for President I have the perfect Veep-my husband-who just finished ‘refreshing’ our old dark cabinets to shiny white ones. I also love that flowers went in first and the pretty red chair. I think every room needs a little touch of red somewhere. I may just have to visit: keep the lobster water boiling. Are you coming to NY again for another gift fair or possibly a publisher’s meeting? Enjoy waking up to a new kitchen and a cup of tea. Loved that you redid the table and kept the beside-the-stove shelves. Why mess with success. Go green! or blue and white!

    • sbranch says:

      No plans for NY now, still working on the book! It must be so fun to go into such a new kitchen as yours! That’s a huge difference from wood to paint!

  5. Denise from Wpg says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your kitchen makeover I have been looking forward to the finished pictures.Well made things by hand are so worth looking after and the beauty is in the finished product and the glow of a job well done. Congrats to you and Joe, and Jack of course!!

  6. pat addison says:

    good morning susan, everyone. okay what was that thing that looked like a bug, you jump 3ft, i would have been on top of the cupboards yelling for help, and my husband would have been sitting there laughing. i just love those old brass doorknobs, my grandma had those old brass doorknobs at her home and those old brass keys that fit in the keyhole, i still have one that i hang beside the kitchen door, it sort of my good luck charm and it reminds me so much of grandma and her wonderful kitchen. well i know its Fall here, the squirrels have bombed the mail carrier, poor woman ran for her life to get to the front porch and away from the acorns and those “acorn bombers”, that mail truck must have done something to tick them off, they also bombed MIL’s van..hehehehe!!! she always comes around and tries to trap the squirrels to take to her house. but there is no food for them there so any squirrel she catches ( so far only 1) does not stay but heads across the busy road she lives on, and across the railroad tracks to the old oak trees there, if the squirrels survive the run across the road, which usually they don’t. so thats why my squirrels don’t like her. but i do have to admit that the bombing is fun to watch anbd to hear the furious chattering those squirrels do at her, almost like they are cussing at her. yep its definitely fall around here, and i hope the acorns don’t run out for awhile..LOL!!! hugs…… 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      You have some very smart squirrels in your neighborhood! LOL!

      • pat addison says:

        well either very smart or very sneaky, but whenever someone ticks them off they bomb that person, or their bird feeder, car ..whatever and its hilarious to watch. i keep threatening to paint a target on my MIL’s van so they will hit it every time she comes around. LOL!!!! 🙂

      • pat addison from cave junction, OR says:

        gotta love those lil guys, they provide as much amusement as the cats, they hang about in the trees all summer long and plot their revenge, by fall they are ready to carry it long as the acorn supply holds out. LOL!!!

  7. Sandy Connors says:

    Oh, it is just beautiful!!! And yes, your Joe is just amazing….is he for hire? just relax now that all that work is done…..Enjoyed the William Morris blog so much..I went to his house outside of London which I just loved, and sketched in my diary the lovely silver case with his lock of hair and his initials on it, the wonderful hand-painted tiles, the embroideries…..what a treat! I am just loving your blog and admire all the effort you put into it, Susan!!! Thanks – it is such fun…

  8. erica says:


    Great job on the kitchen you two! Well, maybe three including SuperCATvisor, JACK!

    Yes! I Love apples and raisins in my coleslaw! And, sunflower seeds. Will try the lime/mayo dressing. I ususally make a simple any kind vinegar/sugar and a wee bit of canola oil, s & p dressing. Easy, peasy I like.

    Here’s to sheets blowin’ in the wind, doggie door stops, vintage glass juicers, platters on the wall (I love vintage platters), polished brass doorknobs…although they looked good with the patina, and TEAMWORK! Rah! Rah!

    Happy decorating!

    Erica xo

  9. Lori from MN says:

    Hi Susan~ Thanks so much for sharing the update on the heart of your home! It’s so cute and cozy. I stopped by the farmer’s market on my way home from work this morning and now I’m going to get busy making your coleslaw. Thanks for the idea!

  10. Elly says:

    You say at the end of this day’s blog, “what would I do without Joe?” What would you do, indeed! You are one lucky girl to have such a willing and handy husband to keep your home looking wonderful and cozy!

    I also love how your kitty, Jack finds the highest spots in your home! It’s funny how kitties always want to do that! I guess they really want to have the best vantage point to see what is going on, so they can be “johnny on the spot”! Our cat Mercutio always does that too!

    Hope your day is a wonderful one!

  11. Rhonda Ripplinger says:

    Dear Susan~
    I so love your homey blog! I’ve never been to the East before, so it’s fun to share in that far off place. Here in the Rocky Mountains, all is quiet and peaceful, and the mountainsides are covered with a riot of color. Don’t you just love that autumn nip in the air?! Ah, pure serendipity!

    Your kitchen is beautiful, Jack is a delightful imp, and you, dear Susan are a gem! Thank you so much for all you do.

    Hugs! Rhonda from Wyoming 🙂

  12. Deb says:

    We picked a huge bag of Honeycrisp apples on Saturday – they’re one of my favorites. Your kitchen looks wonderful – I also have a tabletop that needs refinishing. I’m wondering what “oil” you used to finish yours. I use mine as an extra counter so I want something people friendly. Keep up the good work – what room will be next?

  13. Joan Allert says:

    Your new kitchen is beautiful! I bet you just love to stroll in at 4:30 am and start your new teapot up on the stove. Best of luck and many wonderful meals cooked in your beautiful kitchen.

  14. Sheryl from Chico says:

    Dear Susan,
    Each time I move the first thing to go on my kitchen shelves are all “my” (I mean your.) cookbooks too. They are covered in cheerful colors and design and are a great accent. It’s like having new books for each season. I always have something to look forward to in them to make.

  15. Barbara T, Wolverine Lake MI says:

    my 2 cents worth today – I have a friend who collects knobs for her kitchen cabinets. She is systematically replacing all of her knobs with different ones, no two the same. It’s quite quirky and fun. I have picked up a few for her as gifts – one from a renovation warehouse in NYC, and others at garage sales. I found her a clear glass one that looks like a spiderweb, that’s our favorite 🙂 She would love those brass doorknobs! beauties!

  16. Tisa at Seattle Retro says:

    Ah, the joy of a clean sparse kitchen (not like mine either!). They say sometimes ‘less is more’ but I think it’s often just …. “less”… and miss those little knick knacks when I try to eliminate. Yours looks so sweet, I see you like those vintage prints I call ‘little flower vase prints’, I have a whole wall of them in my office *currently taken down for repainting* like the one in your kitchen that you’ve had forever. I got most of mine at the Sunset Drive in swap meet in SLO way back when. What brand is your kitchen stove? I’ve been trying to figure it out to see if I have a vintage ad in my collection that matches it, but I can never read the logo on the front! Happy fall!

  17. Jenny says:

    Susan, Your kitchen looks fabulous. What a sweet, fresh, homey space you’ve created. And that JOE – what a hard worker he is, and quick too.

    I had a good chuckle over the “bug” on the cardboard.


  18. Stacey says:

    You do realize that your cottage in that setting is absolutely dreamy, right? I know you do. I just love looking at your home, your kitty, and your books. 🙂

  19. Jane in Pennsylvania says:

    How beautiful! So nice to see you kept the original look of the kitchen, too. And Jack is so cute on top of that ladder. I laughed out right loud 🙂

  20. Joan Lesmeister says:

    What a treat to see your beautifully painted, sparkly kitchen! Love the colors! Joe did a great job on the painting! Susan you’re doing a fabulous job on the redecorating! Salad sounds yummy, only we didn’t have cabbage in our garden, will run to the store. Good progress on the English Diary, you’re amazing! Super pictures & blog, looking forward to seeing the decorated kitchen & I love the comments. Oh, how does Daddy Blogger Jack like the color now (I know Kitty Jack seems to love it)? xoxo

  21. Juliana - Jackson, NJ says:

    Love it! Must be a great feeling to have everything clean and fresh! Joe did some job! It’s just beautiful – love the color and all the little touches that make it yours! And who couldn’t love Jack?? Always puts a smile on my face. 🙂

  22. Dorothy Ann says:

    * Hello…Susan * Time: 12:50 AM Pacific Time. Temperature: 59 degrees.

    I’m here on your new Post, “Kitchen Update, Done”!

    Before I comment, I want to go back a bit to the prior post, “Turn On The Lights”. You received so many wonderful comments from the girlfriends, I just have to add mine. It is so “de-LIGHT-ful” and yes, I too, have a LOL (Love Of Lamps).

    Those lamps in your home, are just charming, lovely, warm and so inviting and I love where you place them all around your home. Can I tell you my favorites? Actually, they are all marvelous, but I do have 2 favs. One is your lamp with the crystal base and green print pleated shade. You had a picture of that one in the August Willard too… (Jack posed adorably next to it).

    The other lamp is in Rachel’s home…you highlighted it on your “Rachel’s Wallpaper” blog and again in the “Turn On The Lights” post. It has a green-polka-dotted-base and a unique Sanderson shade; it has a yellow background with a green/apricot dandelion print. Rachel wrote to me on your blog and told me where to buy it in England. I sent her a “thank-you” reply on your blog too.

    Any chance you might link me to your lamp? I know you said you gathered your lamps over the years, so that might not be easy to give me information on it…so, sweet girlfriend, I understand that completely!

    Now, onto your new post…Oh! Where do I begin? The new floor…stunning, especially the view of it with the sunlight peeking through the screen door.
    The kitchen walls…beautiful blue…like the subtle blue of an afternoon sky…the sparkling new white trim, the polished-doorknobs, the new-ly refinished table…all lovely. Then, slowly, your charming little kitchen favorites are finding their way back in their places, including sweet Jack, on one of the shelves! Well done, Susan and Joe! Your LOL, (Labor of Love) Kitchen awaits you!

    Take your time putting everything back, Susan, you’re at the fun part now. So, enjoy it all…you both deserve to. Hugs from me…
    * Dorothy Ann on Cougar Mountain, Washington *

    • sbranch says:

      Good Morning Dorothy Ann! Believe it or not, its all back! It’s perfection. I stare at it I love it so much. I doubt if anyone else would even know we did anything, but to me, it’s spotless! I really don’t know where any of my lamps came from, sorry! I’ve had most of them forever, and change shades whenever I happen upon one. I don’t have a “source” — I wish I did! Enjoy your day! xoxo

      • Dorothy Ann says:

        * Hi again…Susan *

        Oh Yes, I beleive it, The Kitchen…It’s all back! That’s good news! Go ahead, look at it, stare at it all you want…be amazed by it…your perfectly new and charming, cozy, “come-on-in-and sit-down” kitchen welcomes you and all who enter.

        Oh yes, I really do understand…about the lamp, Sue. I have some lamps, also forever, that I add new bases and shades to, and I don’t know where they originated from either. I will just have to seek and find a lamp with an almost-crystal base design like yours, with an almost-green pleated print shade.
        My LOL (Love of Lamps) could turn into LOL (Lots of Luck)!

        Thank you for replying about it…so sweet of you to do that!
        And thank you for sharing your love of lamps and your beautiful new kitchen “happenings” with all of us girlfriends!
        Have a wonderful time next week, as you and Joe go on your countryside meanderings!
        * Dorothy Ann on Cougar Mountain, Washignton *

        • Dorothy Ann says:

          * Just a quick note, Sue re: my previous post…*

          I wish there was a “spell-check” for our comments…

          I “believe” I let my fingers type too fast and there was “beleive” instead. Then, there I did it again… spelling my own beautiful state incorrectly.
          Should have been: Washington.

          Note to all teacher girlfriends out there…sorry!
          Hugs from,
          * Dorothy Ann (no e ) on Cougar Mountain, WA *

          • Carol Maurer from Eureka, CA says:

            Dorothy~~~ Where is Cougar Mountain, WA? I’m from the Tri Cities and Wenatchee.

            Carol M

  23. Debra says:

    I just love your blog. I always look forward to pictures of the cats – they are just so cute and funny. They totally remind me of my two black and white cats. One is just a clown and the other is so serious. And she would always look at me like “When is he going back?”.

    Thanks for sharing your world with us.


  24. Angie(Tink!) says:

    Good Morning Sweet~Sue…it’s Early Morning 4:40 am shhhhhhhhhh It’s Black as Night Still & The Stars are Out Bright & Twinkling….& it’s 69 degrees the first time it’s been below 70’s in Months!(here) All My Orange Lights are On & Twinkling so You Know I Am in My Autumn~Glory! 😉 Yay! Herbster & I went Out & About Yesterday…ended up at a Few Local Farmer’s Markets & Bought a few REAL Pumpkins…so You Know There is a Huge Smile on My Pumpkin~Face! 😉 ok I’m sipping a cup of Peppermint Tea & I’ve just Savored Every Word & Every Photo of Your Blog! yay! 🙂 Bravo to You & Joe Sweet~Sue You have Worked so Hard! & Your New Kitchen is Beyond Dazzling! Fresh Paint! The Perfect Colors! Everything All Clean & Shiny! I Can Imagine You Two Dancing On Your New Kitchen Floor sipping a Few Harvest Moon Cocktails & Jack & Girl~Kitty Purrrrrrrrring & Playing while You & Joe Cook in Your New Kitchen! Even I am doing The Happy Dance for You! 🙂 Yay! Now After All This hard Work & Your Kitchen is All Ready for The Holidays are you & Joe gonna Pack a Picnic~Basket & Fill up a Thermos or Two with warm Yummy Things & go “Leaf~Peeping” ??? Tis The End of Sweet September You Have Your Chilly Autumn Weather…& it’s The Harvest Moon this Weekend! Let Us Know! Cause My Bags are Packed… 😉 & I’ve made The Cucumber & Roast Beef Sandwiches (Yummy!) & I am So Ready for some “Leaf~Peeping” Sending lots of Autumn Pixie~Dust….an Extra Bravo to Your Joe….I Can Feel Your Happiness Sweet~Sue! xoxo Poof! ♥*¨`*.✫*¨*.¸¸.♥*¨`* Hugzzz & Love & Always Kitty~Kisses! 😉 Meow! ♥*¨`*.✫*¨*.¸¸.♥*¨`*

    • sbranch says:

      We ARE going leaf peeping Angie . . . next week! Ferry boat to Mainland, and then meandering through the countryside. And I know you’re in Autumn Glory!! Miss Pumpkin Face. Have a wonderful day!

      • Angie(Tink!) says:

        Hooray! Next Week “Leaf~Peeping” I Am Sooooooooooo Ready Sweetest Sue! 😉 & I Shall Have a Wonderful Day! Yay! I Thank Thee! “Miss Pumpkin~Face” Signing Off! Twirling of Course! 😉 xoxo Poof! 🙂 ♥*¨`*.✫*¨*.¸¸.♥*¨`

      • Lynn McMahon says:

        We are going leaf peeping too ~next weekend in Door County~
        (Here in Wisconsin.) I have a feeling the leaves will be changing earlier here due to the odd weather this year. ~Have a Good day!~

  25. Thank you for the morning chuckle…jumping three feet when you came ’round the corner…still chuckling…and glad it’s you and not me. (Awful but honest -smile-)
    Does Jack jump to the top of the ladder or does he climb? Cats do love their perches, don’t they?
    Lily, my rescued barn kitten, saved from being a warm snack of two barn owls, is growing like a weed and will soon the the Boss of us all. For the time being, she’s just the boss.

    • sbranch says:

      Jack climbs the rungs, he can jump really high, amazingly, to get the ball, but that ladder is a tall one, too much for him!

  26. Love the re-do–the best part is always putting everything back and seeing how much you still love your collections and books that make your kitchen “yours”. Good job both of you! And the obvious questions now–which room is next? My next room is the den powder room, which is wallpapered now. Everyone tells me wallpaper in Austin is out, but I love wallpaper! Thinking of a wonderful grass cloth. Jealous is your cool mornings and days. Still so hot here in Austin, but the roses are re-blooming, so it’s not all bad!

    Enjoy your new space….

  27. Janis says:

    Oh My Susan! I LOVE LOVE LOVE the new kitchen! Love the blue too! I just love Benjamin Moore paints don’t you? I’m redoing a bedroom in a botanical theme and using Airway by BM. : ) I love the white and lovely blue and the floor is perfect! Oh so lovely to have all those beautiful windows and a husband who is so helpful, loving and kind and who works right along with you! I think I may have Jack’s Brother! My boy looks so much like him! He is so comical the way he is “center stage” in the midst of the update. Enjoy your beautiful new kitchen and do take your time. Half the fun is arranging and rearranging until things are just right ! Autumn is Here and Lovely Enjoy ! <3
    From Southern New Jersey, the Blueberry Capital of the World with Love <3

  28. Kimi says:


    Over whelm it, that’s what you do when you redo Kitchens after all its yours!!!!
    and no matter what you do to it Susan, it always looks so (cute&cozy)so you can’t go wrong….Besides think tea yeah what a nice way to walk in a warm cozy kitchen a happy place drink hot tea….and its yours. So nice to see you happy about it! kiss Jack the cat not Jack the Dad that’s you’re Job!

  29. Kimi says:


  30. After I had my daughter, 15 years ago, my sister gave me her kids little table set. I would use the table as a side table and the little chairs as a step-stool. When she painted my kitchen she found the set and took it back so she could paint and sell the set. Sigh! Buying a kids chair does make a great step-stool but I do have a regular step-stool/ladder and I have mini plastic ones to get into bed with the risers (so I can hoard more stuff under the bed). Your kitchen is gorgeous and will be so grand when you are done. 🙂

  31. Candice from Ohio says:

    Hello Dear Susan,
    Love, Love, Love your kitchen re-do! It is such a wonderful feeling after it is all finished. I know what you mean about wanting to keep it all nice and simple. It is difficult to decide what to put back….I always choose my very favorite items first, but the problem is…..I love everything!! I love seeing your little Jack, he is definitely a velcro kitty, I have 8 kitties, yes I know I am the crazy cat lady, I guess you could say I decorate with them! They always seem to everywhere! Aren’t we lucky ladies who marry such handy men! My hubby is very clever at doing just about anything. We haven’t had to have repair men in too many times over our 36 years of marriage. Saves a lot of moola! No service call fees!
    Just make hubby his favorite meal and dessert for his hard work!
    Have a wonderful fall weekend!
    Warm Regards,

  32. DENA from New Orleans says:

    All i can say is lovely , lovely , reading your blog brings back such memories of home, family, and reminds me of the enjoyment in the simple things in life , and see how you see beauty and enjoyment in so many things we take for granted, The kitchen is amazing!!! Love the red chair story! Just planted my winter garden, one of the things i planted is cabbage, need your recipe for that colesaw, sounds yummy, and oh my goodness why up so early in the morning !! ? Im the opposite , scince my kids are grown, I like to stay up late do my crafts, read, etc. it is quiet, no phone calls , everyone is asleep , and then i sleep late. Well to each its own, Look forward to reading your blog for inspiration, take care

  33. Colleen from Reno, NV says:

    Oh, Susan! I too have a little chair EXACTLY like this one, but I painted mine black. I’ve been a faithful follower of yours for about 8 years now, but this is my first time to write to you. I’m getting bolder in my old age 🙂

  34. Robin, NV says:

    Going to your blog is so special! It takes me away, gives me a smile. I love the “new” kitchen! In my little beach cottage at the Jersey shore, just got back, I have a tiny galley kitchen – painted all white with sunflower stencils!
    I have the Home Cooking TRADITIONS scrapbook and the HOMEMADE recipes scrapbook – neither one came with that adorable magnet! Perhaps I need to go shopping on your website! I get so many lovely ideas, not to mention recipes, from your blog. I love small lamps and you have inspired me with better ways to use the ones I have. I may need a few more! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  35. DENA from New Orleans says:

    Oh my gosh susan, Im not to computer savy, i just found out that if you click on the name thats highlighted of the people that leave you a comment, it takes you to their blog, now i will be doing to much computer surfing, even though yours will always be my favorite, Stayed up to 4 this morning reading a new one i found , called for any that loves italy like i do, will love it too.

    • sbranch says:

      Oh yes, and also … don’t know if you noticed, there’s a section of this blog called INSPIRATION … you can click on it and I’ve made a list of some of my very favorite blogs and websites . . . I know you would like.

  36. Ginger says:

    I watched the movie and loved it. Thanks for the recommendation. It’s been a long while since a movie made me choke up. It was sweet.

    Since I’m out in the wilderness at our lake house (where the leaves are beginning to change) for yet another glorious week, I drove 45 miles into town for fresh fruit and veggies. My choices were Walmart and a quaint little organic general store complete with board walk. Even though the prices on organics are twice Walmart’s prices, the flavor and lack of poison is my selling point. Anyway, the farm stand feel of the tiny general store made me smile after reading your post yesterday. Alas, I also had to go to WM for dental floss. Sigh…..

    • sbranch says:

      And you just helped to keep that little place in business! Isn’t it nice to have a choice?! I too, very big on lack of poison! LOL!

  37. willemien says:

    Hi Susan,

    Wow, the kitchen looks great! I love those doorknobs! The paint on the walls is also nice too. Gives me inspiration for our future-kitchen. Our house from the 1930’s is going to be demolished cause of dike reinforcement, next year.I’m gonna miss this house.. But I’m glad we can build a new home on the same spot again, we’re going to have to stay somewhere else for a few years though.
    Your blog is always so inspiring and colorfull it’s a pleasure to read it everytime! Keep it up with writing such an beautiful blog!
    Lots of love from Holland,( where autumn ‘s beginning to show, the leaves of our tame chestnut and birch are changing color. Simply wonderful! )

    Again love and Dutch: Groetjes!

  38. jose antonio says:


  39. Becky says:

    Thank you for your beautiful blog! I look forward to reading your emails when they arrive. You are truly a gifted person~ thanks so much for sharing so much of your heart and your home.

  40. Scott Millman says:

    Hello from upstate NY. Love your beautiful kitchen! I actually stumbled onto your blog through a search on the paint color you used, Woodlawn Blue. I was wondering if you used the color as is or did you lighten it with any white paint? Thanks for your help!

  41. Lynette Morley says:

    Help!!!!!! I cannot find the coleslaw recipe anywhere I click!

    Thank you!!!!

  42. Jessica in Australia says:

    Oh! treasured life …
    x Jessica

  43. Bonnie Porro says:

    Beautiful kitchen!

  44. Linda Harrington says:

    Love reading Willard and Blog and love all of your books and can’t wait to order my blotter calendar for next year – this year’s greets me everyday on my desk. Oh and love your kitchen.

  45. bonnie says:

    Susan, the kitchen looks amazing-so homey. It does a soul good to be able to come home to the shelter of a comfortable home. I am a “nester” and I can see you are one too! I’m so happy for you that you are “the fairy-tale girl” who has found her “isle of dreams” and Joe. The kitties are the cherry on top.
    I feel like I am sitting down having a visit and a cup of tea with you when reading your blog or WILLARD. Thanks!

  46. I never saw the recipe for Cole Slaw…I saw the lovely photos, but I’m the type that has to cook with an exact recipe :-0 I kept scrolling down because the text said….I promise the recipe is there! 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      Oh, well, it’s just too easy for an exact recipe. Sometimes I just need a little bowl, but sometimes I want to serve a crowd, so I figured it’s like that for everyone when it comes to coleslaw. You put in the amount of cabbage you want and go from there. Maybe someday I will measure it . . . sorry Kay!

  47. Lexy Lawrence says:

    Fantastic post. It will be a joy for you to work in your all clean, all bright and shinny kitchen.

    QUESTION – can’t read all 400 plus comments but I’d sure like to know what you used to shine up your “old” brass to beautifully? Thank you.

    • sbranch says:

      It’s just a brass cream we got at the supermarket, nothing very special — requires elbow grease!

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