Lambie-Pie Cuddle-Bunch

There’s something new in the saga of Lambie-Pie Cuddle-Bunch, the lamb I painted in England which I’ve been wanting to show you and finally, today’s the day! (Here’s MUSICA, in honor of 1920’s Downton Abbey. )


So here we go . . . You know I’ve loved lambs for a long time . . . here’s one from my artwork that probably looks familiar to you . . .

Baby Love Fabric line

They’ve been in my calendars and a few years ago I added them to my BABY LOVE Fabric Line (there’s a teeny bit of this left in case you like it).

In Bibury

But the real and true falling-in-love-forever took place while we were in England.  Can you see why?  Bubble gum pink ears.  How could you not?


English sheep

Look at the smile on that mama . . .


Of course it was spring . . .



When a young girl’s fancy (and mine too) turns to . . .


Lambs . . . baaaaa!


on Windermere, Lake Dis.

Sheep dotted the landscape everywhere in England, baby lambs were jumping and leaping and playing in every meadow ~ across the Dales, up in the Peak District, in a field in front of beautiful Chatsworth.  Even next to freeways; they kept everything looking like a manicured park.


They had them in the buttercups at Hill Top Farm (with a bunny, of course) . . .


Castle Cottage

And in front of Castle Cottage . . .


Artists have been painting lambs since the beginning of time . . .

fine art

. . . representing a peaceful bucolic lifestyle . . .

The Fair Sheep

. . . in pastoral country settings . . .

painting sheep

And of course I included lambs in A FINE ROMANCE . . .


What would a book about England be without them?


painting sheep

You all remember the bookmark I made from one of the lambs I painted in the book? (If someone’s new to our blog and didn’t get one yet, HERE it is)

lamb on van

Then we put him on our Fine Romance Van for our cross-country tour — now back home in our driveway outside this frosty morning . . .


from Maddie

And then this arrived at my door last year ~ a little felted lamb made for me by twelve-year-old Maddie, the daughter of Sheri who works at our studio in California!  Isn’t it adorable?  Such a sweet thoughtful surprise!

a fine romance

While we were immersed in thoughts and baaing of sheep in England I noticed that although Beatrix Potter was very proud of the prize-winning sheep she raised on her farm in the Lake District, heroically saving the rare breed called Herdwick from extinction. . .

Beatrix Potter People

. . . She never made one of her darling characters a sheep.  A sheep with an apron and some children, a straw hat or a basket.  She’s got everyone else, but no lambs. I can’t help but wonder why!  Seems like a no-brainer for her, her cup of tea, and mine too. I think she probably got too busy with the real thing and just forgot!

Lambie Pie

So with time on my hands, painting and writing in my diary one early morning in England, I imagined Lambie Pie for myself and put her in our book. (More MUSICA? Same Vintage?  Okaaaay…)


Lambie Pie #2

When I got home, I painted her for the second time . . . this one was for . . .

Peter Rabbit

. . .this limited edition of the Peter Rabbit book I bought at the Hill Top gift shop . . .

Lambie Pie

. . . and when I got home we had a giveaway for it here on the Blog . . . Betsy Flannery won the drawing and the book, and that little piece of Lambie Pie art . . .


Lambie Pie goes to work

And here’s Lambie for the third time (which they always say is the charm) ~ she’s coming alive to me, I gave her some gloves and put her to work to do some spring cleaning in our 2015 calendar.  I’ve already named her children even though I haven’t painted them yet.  They are penciled in.


Lambie Pie Cuddle Bunch

a pictureNow look:  Here’s the point of this post, it’s what I wanted to show you . . . my Christmas present from Maddie this year!  A complete surprise!  Just before Christmas, Maddie read  A FINE ROMANCE . . .

Lambie Pie

. . . and then she made Lambie Pie from clay, matching my drawing and putting her next to Lake Windermere just like I did . . . because that’s where Lambie Pie was born.  I couldn’t believe it!  This is how it is, from Beatrix Potter, to me, to Maddie, and then, where else will it go?



from Maddie

Maddie knew I wished I had a Lamb to go with my other Beatrix Potter people, so she made it happen.  Isn’t she brilliant?  I’m still not over it.   Proof that there’s nothing you can’t have if you just make it yourself.  And look how she fits in!


lambie pie from the back

Three dimensional!  With curly back of the head, apron and flowers on the lawn!  How did she DO that?



Signed and dated!  Precious to me. ♥  Thank you Maddie, and Happy Birthday!

Sheri, Maddie, Bonnie, Kellee

That’s Maddie in the green and she is turning thirteen-years-old tomorrow!  She’s with some of my favorite people: her mom, Sheri, Bonnie, and Kellee in front of the picket-fence garden at our California Studio. ♥  They’re the ones that wrap all your orders from our webstore so cutely!


Lambie Pie Cuddle Bunch

I knew you’d want to see Lambie Pie!  Isn’t our world full of wonderful things?  And wonderful people!

flowersI hope you had fun dipping your toes back into England today.  I thought we deserved a little shot of fairytale springtime.  It made me think to tell you, if you remember places in England you’d like to see more pictures of, let me know, because I do have lots of photos!

I love this Blog!  It’s playtime!  How did I ever go through life without it?  I don’t know!  But I’ve got it now!  Thank you all for coming!  Have a wonderful day!  One more photo of lovely English Spring for you:


Wild orchids in Stourhead in Wiltshire, the place I hope we can all meet for a picnic when Joe and I go to England again.  It’s a wonderful place.  There are lambs there.  Byeee!  (oops, forgot to say, when Kellee gets in to work today she’s going to put up some Lambie Pie Wallpaper for your computer.  Just click HERE. ♥)


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511 Responses to Lambie-Pie Cuddle-Bunch

  1. Melina Bush says:

    OH my, I’m first? Those spring pictures are warming my heart this morning. So cold here in Colorado, but those spring flowers remind me it will be warming up soon.
    Love, love, love lambs.

  2. Oh, Lambie Pie is perfect! Such a thoughtful gift for you. I have fallen in love with England from a distance again—such a delight to travel vicariously with you today. Spring WILL come. Your lovely post just may hasten it…

  3. Kathie says:

    Maddie’s a real gem. That’s the most thoughtful thing anyone could do for you. Yes, we needed a little English spring in our day where we’ve been in freezing drizzle for almost three weeks. Very weird weather for the desert. They say we’ll have some snow this week, though. That will be a lovely change for us. Lambs are wonderful. Our friends nearby will have a herd of 60 this year. They started six years ago with just 5! They spin and weave and garden. It’s lovely. Thank you so much for sharing. I agree; blogging is ONE-DUR-FUL. How did you like the look on Mr. Bates’s face in that last scene? Cold, hard, fury…..and of course we all hate the rapist. I was thinking: no valet could “get” a valet like another valet. We hope Julian will be clever and not send Mr. Bates back to prison in the end. Of course Lord Gillingham will not be a Downton much; unless he decides to be a real cad and have a fling? Then, his poor valet will be in the paws of the lion, whom, we hope (the lion), will be very heroic (and careful). Spring cannot be far away……

    • sbranch says:

      Mr. Bates is pretty tricky. I think he can do it and get away with it. I will be rooting for him! He made me cry last night.

      • Kathie says:

        Me too. Julian can write more of those tender scenes for us, can’t he? Of course, we wouldn’t want to be too soppy…….

        • sbranch says:

          Did we all notice Lady Edith went to the Doctor?????? Hmmmmm.

          • Kathie says:

            Yes. And she’s sooooo in love and he WAS a hero at the house party…..but what dangers does he face in Germany? Is he still alive? Will she go off to Scotland to be “confined”?

          • sbranch says:

            Only Julian knows (and all the English people since they’ve already seen it!)

          • Sherry Palla says:

            Oh no…I didn’t notice that…thought she was going to her bosse’s office….but then it didn’t figure that they didn’t show any more of that…so “thanks” for mentioning that Susan!! [I was kind of torn between Downton & the marriage of Sean & Catherine on another channel!] I like your perspective of Mr. Bates also! We just can’t give up HOPE!

          • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

            No, I didn’t realize that Lady Edith went to see a doctor? Wow…. you saw something that the rest of us didn’t. I have been wondering what he went over to Germany for. She just signed the paper, but didn’t read it. I’m wondering if she will be taking over his property? That means he would have to die though.

      • Pat Mofjeld of St. Paul, MN says:

        I know, his response to Anna was priceless…I don’t think we have seen the last of Lord Gillingham and his valet…watching Downton Abbey last night was more relaxing than the last couple of episodes… 🙂

        • sbranch says:

          I loved it. Eyes were glued. No movement except for kitty stroking.

        • Pat Mofjeld of St. Paul, MN says:

          Carol–I think, unless I am mistaken, that he went to Germany to deal with paperwork to dissolve his marriage to his wife who is apparently instituted for insanity–so he can marry Edith. Girlfriends–is this right or did I dream it? 🙂 I saw that she went to the Dr. and I thought, “Oh-Oh!” and now she hasn’t heard from him for a while so does that mean he lost interest after she stayed with him overnight or has something happened to him??? See–at this point, if this was in a book, I’d put in a page marker here where I am and then look ahead and read near the end of the book to see “what happened” and THEN come back and read the rest…this drives my husband nuts! 🙂

          • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

            Pat Mofjeld ~~
            You are right in that he went to Germany to dissolve his marriage so that he can marry Edith. Haven’t thought of Edith becoming pregnant, but they do need more drama. Love it!

          • judi says:

            Pat, yes he went to dissolve marriage. Think Bates will get the fiend, hope he is clever and not get caught!!! Oh, what if….Bates really did kill his icky wife??? yikes, murder in his veins? Ah, yes, Edith did go to a doctors office – hmmmm. Now a new guy that interests Mary. la te daaaa 🙂 judi

          • Karen P (Wisconsin) says:

            I think, if I’m not mistaken, he went to Germany to become a German citizen because that’s apparently the only way he can dissolve his marriage? Could be wrong. He will be there for an extended time…I forget how long.

          • Nancy says:

            Yes Karen, he went to Germany to become a citizen in order to divorce his wife after a period of time goes by and Edith did visit her doctor’s office.

      • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

        Hello to you Susan and to all the girlfriends out there ~~~

        I haven’t made any comments for a while, but after reading this surprise post just now, I knew that I had to comment! Thank you thank you so very much for a bit of ‘SPRING’!! We, on the west coast, have been under a weather inversion for weeks now it seems to me. I’ve actually forgotten that the sun looks like. You would think that in a ‘high pressure’ it would be sunny all the time. Usually, it is, but not this time…. dreary fog like weather. I was, until I read you post just now, getting pretty depressed. You see, I’ve got Seasonal Depression from lack of sun. Not really bad that I need that special light, but after weeks of no sun….

        Lambs, they can be sooo cute!! The felted lamb that Maddy made you a while back sure is a cutie! I never really thought about it, but it makes sense that is why the hills in England look so inviting all the time. Lambs eating and eating their hearts out.

        I bought a Cuddlebug a couple weeks ago and have been expermenting with it. Also bought a sticker maker. Just been cleaning up some of my cards that I’ve made, but didn’t have an insert in them as yet. Bought a couple more tall storage units also. My studio is looking quite presentable now.

        Well, I’m off to see what else I can get my hands on for the time being.

        Carol M

        • sbranch says:

          Carol, pop over to the store and get vitamin D. It will change your life, the sun will come out!

        • Kathie says:

          Hi Carol – I’m just about 90 miles north of you and we’ve been sharing the same inversion/patchy foggy/silver frost kind of winter. Supposed to snow, tomorrow. Well, we’ve heard that before, haven’t we? And patchy fog = The Big Bend under Big-Ben-Kind-of-Weather (A Foggy Day in London Town). Kathie in Odessa

          • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

            Hi Kathie ~~ I’ll believe the weather change when I see it. They just keep extending it. I can see you guys may get the snow. They are talking of freezing rain here in Kennewick. Well, at this point, any change will be a welcomed one. At least California is now getting the rain that they despartally need.

            Nice hearing someone so close to us here on the blog. 🙂

          • sbranch says:

            California’s getting rain??? Yay!

      • Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

        Mr. Bates’s face was something else wasn’t it? Right, I don’t none of us want him to go back to prison. I’m with you, Susan, I think that he can get away with it

  4. sandy says:

    oooh all these lovely pix of Spring! so hopeful! so encouraging on a low foggy 32 degree morning here. cheers!

  5. Julie Marie says:

    Oooh Susan, I so loved this post today!… so full of Springtime happiness, and your new Lambie Pie is precious and snuggled right in with your other Beatrix Potter people!… I adore lambs!… my sister brought Tessy a darling doggie toy lamb from Scotland several years ago… Tessy laid on it and when it squeaked it scared her, so she “gave” it to me… it looks just like a real live lamb, so it lives with my BP people… I do hope you will come out with the Lambie Pie dishtowel so many of us asked for!… I would LOVE to see more pics of England… especially any wildflowers along the country lanes… I loved reading once more about how you snipped a rose and an Irish at Beatrix Potters gardens… she would be happy you did that… I just know she was (is) a kind and gracious soul… I say “is” because she is still that same sweet Beatrix… just a bit father away now in Heaven… xoxo Julie Marie

  6. Gill says:

    Dear Susan,
    What a perfect little Baa-Lamb! I just love those eyelashes- you can tell she’s a real flirt 😉
    Now heres an interesting fact that I learned lstening to a radio drama on BBC radio 4 ( I don’t know if you can get it over in the States- I listen on the computer from Norway)… In the days before motor mowers, right up until the 1920-30’s, the parks and green spaces of London were actually kept “manicured” by flocks of sheep! Shepherds would come from as far away as Scotland with their dogs and flock and a wheeled shepherds hut, and spend the whole summer on Clapham Common or in St James Park etc; gently raising their sheep and lambs, caring for the lawns and when Autumn time came the sheep were herded to Smithfield Meat Market walking through the streets of London nice and fat and stressfree!

    • sbranch says:

      We saw them on the sides of freeways … they must still be doing it! One more mark in their favor, what a nice thing it is to see.

    • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

      I LOVE that story! (except maybe the ending–I am one who needs to have someone fill in the blanks–does that mean they became–gulp–meat??) I will not dwell on that part, but think about the sheep and shepherds and dogs and all that green grass! Lovely! Thanks so much for sharing.

      • Kirsten in So. Cal. says:

        Did you know that here in So. Cal. They hire flocks of goats to clear brush during fire season? Sometimes you can see them when you’re driving along the freeways.

        • sbranch says:

          I’ve seen them, pretty wonderful way to do it!

          • pat addison (cave junction,OR) says:

            they hire the goats to clear the brush from around our local museum in Kirby, and they are also used to clean up the brush around the historic old buildings and homes around the area, just makes sense to they cost way les than a crew would to do the same job.

  7. Sandra Gilbert says:

    Hi Susan, lovely pictures of a bright Spring day just what I need as England is gloomy and cold today, the kettle has been on all day trying to cheer ourselves up with a nice cup of tea 🙂

  8. Julie Marie says:

    I read my Fine Romance some more each night… that’s where I read once more about your snipping the flowers for you girlfriends who thought you missed it in this post…

  9. Julie Marie says:

    Wow, I meant to say “Iris” not “Irish”… I need to slow down when I type… sorry!…

  10. Betsy says:

    Maddie is one talented girl, Lambie is a true classic. There is nothing in the world like a gift made from the heart. Thank you for posting this morning Susan. I am pacing the floor waiting any time now to head to the hospital for the birth of our Grandson. My dear husband said “wait for me, don’t leave without me”! I said to myself I need something relaxing to read so I went right to your blog. Just so you know, my husband is in the process of making a Beatrix Potter shelf for what we call in our house THE BOOK and other Beatrix related items. Thank you again and have a great day. Betsy Flannery xoxo

    • sbranch says:

      Happy New Baby, Betsy!!! How fun I mentioned YOU and your book today of all days! Please say congratulations to Grandpa shelf-builder from us too!

  11. Pat Mofjeld of St. Paul, MN says:

    The last photo looks SO GREEN when I’m looking out a frosted window at white snow with -17 temperature and -35 wind chill temperature! We do have blue sky and sunshine, though…Think I’ll be walking “laps” of the length of the townhouse today instead of a walk in the nature area… LOL! 🙂

    • Gert~Iowa says:

      Smart idea….laps inside!! We’re the same (with out the snow thank goodness!) Below zero windchills along with blue sunny skies!! Wierd!

    • judi says:

      Oh, Pat, I used to go to MOA (Mall of America). Put my big coat in one of those lockers right inside the door and feel my skin just soaking in the humidty from the stream/river at Camp Snoopy. How nice it was to stroll along without a heavy coat on and hear running water and see/smell the greenry. There are regular groups that are “mall walkers”. Had I retired near there – I’d be there every day joining them:)

      • Pat Mofjeld of St. Paul, MN says:

        Would be great if we lived near there but with the wind chill factors we have this morning plus warnings of black ice, one would be taking their life in their hands to go there! 🙂 Frankly it is hard to work up much enthusiasm to go out for anything unnecessary when it is this cold… The weatherman said last night that there is no real warm-up in sight through Valentine’s Day! 😯

    • Paulie says:

      Ah……..makes me feel so good to read this. I do laps in my house too since we have had so much ice outside. My house is an open floor plan so I can do laps round and round. I do five every hour of each day from noon to five. It helps……….be thinking of you partners! Here’s to good health!

    • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

      oh, Pat, this morning–5 degrees! But something new–THE SUN! Very happy about that! Will soak in some rays if it’s only beside a window. Actually, if it “warms up” to the 20’s I might try to sit on our front porch in the afternoon. With the sun warming my front and the bricks on the house radiating some kind of heat, it just might be a very good place to be!

  12. Cindy Maulin says:

    hi susan….that is one of the most endearing tales of friendship EVER!!! one person inspiring another and then another…. and THAT’S what makes the world go round!!!! Love the magic of your blog and so very happy to be a part of our Girlfriend network that never fails….thank you Susan…and thank you Maddie….. carry on!!! XOXO love, cindy
    PS…..relieved but worried about the Bates situation…..

  13. What a talented young lady Maddie is. I definitely believe there is a bit of magic in sculpture – that there is something in that lump of clay or wad of wool that is just waiting to be released and uncovered. Maddie found the magic and added a big dose of love to create the most precious Lamby Pie for you. A true gift from the heart!

    • sbranch says:

      It takes one to know one.♥

      • Shannon (Pennsylvania) says:

        Suzanne found the magic in the wad of wool that became mini Jack, Maddie found it in the lump of clay and the wad of wool that became darling lambs, and you find it every time you sit down in front of a blank piece of paper, water color brush in hand! Such a trio of talented, creative ladies! Happy 13th birthday, dear Maddie.

  14. Ann Jane Koerber says:

    I must ask you, Susan, if you are familiar with the lamb cake pan that was from the late 50’s or early 60’s? I have my Mother-in-laws and since she made the cake for my children’s 1st birthdays, I have made a family tradition of making it for my 3 grandchildren’s 1st birthdays. However, amongst my many flea market/yard sale finds I’ve collected two more of the cake pans. I can post the picture of my latest creation (I’m not too creative) on my FB page if you’d like…..

    • sbranch says:

      I am and they are so adorable! Yes, post it! So cute.

      • Tawni urrutia says:

        I made a lamb cake from a lamb cake mold for Easter, when our son was about 5. It was darling BUT, he and his cousins protested and pleaded not to cut it up!! We’re a Basque family, so my husband still shakes his head and laughs at those kids so appalled at eating a lamb shaped cake!!

        • sbranch says:

          LOL! I’ve heard of a tradition for grooms cakes shaped like an armadillo; the cake itself is red velvet, so you can imagine what it looks like when you cut into it. Sounds pretty awful!

  15. Jocelyn says:

    I’ve never been to England but love all the beautiful pictures. Would love to see more 😉

  16. Willy says:

    Hej Susan, I love the photo’s with the lambs and spring in England. Your drawings are lovely. Thank you for the bookmark. Have a nice day.

  17. Priscilla from So. Ca. living in SD says:

    This is why I cannot and will not eat lamb!

  18. Annette McD says:

    Love all the lambs, such serenity. Love Windermere also. I think she’d make a good mascot for our upcoming Spring Cleaning ahead of us, she seems like a roll up your sleeves and ” git ‘er done” kind of lamb. Thanks for all you do, I enjoy each and every post!

  19. Sherry Palla says:

    Only 52 days til SPRING Susan! Thanks for sharing a bit of it with us on this cold, cold day… [the school I teach at is closed]…[but this too shall pass!] The little lambs are lovely! God bless!

  20. JoAnne Daniels says:

    Susan — thank you for giving us a visual of Spring…it’s been so COLD and
    snowy, and exhausting — bringing in the firewood and shoveling off the walk for
    the 3rd time in three days. You can share more pictures of the English countryside anytime you want — and I love the lambs too! A farm in the valley
    below our house used to have sheep grazing and I always loved to see them
    on my way to and from work (they were dark brown but don’t know what kind that is), but now someone else lives there and they don’t
    have sheep…:o(
    How lucky you are to have such a talented young woman making you gifts!!
    JoAnne — who is dreaming of balmy days and yellow forsythia!

  21. Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

    Dear Susan,
    It was lovely taking a “trip” back to England! Much needed! Life here in Lancaster County revolves around snow-cold-mittens-scarves-warming by the fire-tea by the fire reading a good book in the evening–you get the picture!

    I feel I am doing better this winter. Last winter you and the Girlfriends helped me through my “blue time” by suggesting Vitamin D. I have upped my dose and am doing well.

    I will always feel like hibernating over winter time. (If it’s dark, my body says, “Stay In Bed.”) But at least now I’m not moping about. But when I hear about you waking up at 4am and “tippy toeing” downstairs to do your artwork, a little flash of desire lights up inside me. “Why couldn’t you do that?” that little flash asks me. “It sounds so appealing. Why don’t you get in an early morning routine?” So I set my alarm for an earlier wake up call. But when it wakes me up, my body says, “What?!? Are you kidding? Forget that little Flash of Desire! I am your body and I am NOT getting up!” Well, so there. That ends it all.

    But I will say this, when spring and summer come and with them, longer days, I DO get up earlier. So I guess I just have to follow my body and be happy (which I am).

    As far as Beatrix Potter goes, I’ve read Linda Lear’s book about her so I know she spent lots of time and energy learning to draw animals anatomically correct. I wonder, did she ever study sheep to draw them correctly? And if she didn’t, maybe that’s why she never put them in her stories. I’m as bewildered as you are because sheep are so darling. I love the sheep that Maddie made you–especially the curly hair in the back!

    I hope you and all the GFs are doing well–staying contented and healthy.
    Until next time,
    Love to you,

    • sbranch says:

      Happy to hear the Vitamin D is helping — it did for me too. Such a little thing to have such magic in it! I’ve seen gorgeous formal drawings of sheep that Beatrix did .. one little study actually, so I know she can do them.

    • Pat Mofjeld of St. Paul, MN says:

      oh Linda–you and me both! The idea of getting up early and getting a lot done while the rest of the world is sleeping sounds great–in my mind. But my body, too, speaks and says, “NO WAY!” Of course, it would help if I went to bed earlier,but then I probably would not go to sleep. We are just all “wired” differently–Susan is right. And I, too, feel like hibernating in the winter and can’t get up in the darkness…so you aren’t the only one… 🙂

      • JoAnne Daniels says:

        I’m with Linda! The IDEA of getting up at 4:30am is appealing as the house is quiet but in actuality, I don’t like to get up when it is still dark outside (and COLD). During the long days of summer I can easily get up before the sun rises, make coffee, and sit outside with my first cup and listen to the morning happen around me. For now, I can just hope I get up early enough to feed my dog, cat, husband and myself,
        put fire wood in the wood stove, take the puppy out for walk, get dressed, and get to work by 9AM.
        But Susan inspires us……………..

        • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

          yes, she does, JoAnne. And you nailed it! That’s exactly how I feel–even down to drinking coffee outside listening to the morning sounds! –Linda

  22. helen says:

    Here in Ca our homeowners association contracts GOATS and their herder to come most years to clear vegetation from our dry hillsides. Not quite as pastoral as a flock of sheep in green pastures (think scruffy goats on brown hills and the herder in his beat up trailer:) but a fun sight for our grandchildren to enjoy. How thoughtful of Maddie to create Lambie for you……We met her along with her lovely Mom on Saturday at the end of the day at Remnants of the Past…..the evening before your signing. They were at a small table with a stack of your books and were delightful to talk to. You have such great women “representing” you here on the west coast! Helen

    • sbranch says:

      I feel honored! They’re darling, and all so creative!

      • helen says:

        Special Happy Birthday wishes to talented thoughtful Maddie 🙂

        • sondra fox says:

          The transition from twelve to thirteen is enormous. At the beginning of twelve, most girls look like young children, then when thirteen rolls around, they somehow become young women. Happy Birthday Maddie. I hope you cherish your creative spirit.
          My folks lived in the country & had baby goats each spring. Those babies used to be able to stand very still one second, then the next, jump straight up into the air. Love the sounds lambs & goats make. They’re all so adorable. I used to watch them for long periods of time.(Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

          • sbranch says:

            Our California studio is out in the country and we used to have goats living next door. I feel so in love with them. What charmers they are.

  23. Nicoline says:

    Hello Susan,
    Once again, we are transported to that lovely great country called England, through your pictures, thank you!
    Here, too the snowdrops are slowly appearing, and in stores are many pots full of lovely spring bulbs!
    In your book, you wrote about your visit to the little village in Yorkshire, where the vet, James Herriot lived. You read the books, am I right? But do you know there was a lovely TV series too? It was lovely to see all the people and animals come to life, the BBC did a great job of bringing his stories to life.
    What a true friend you have, to make a lovely cute Lambie Pie for you!
    Have a lovely day (its night already here in rainy Holland…)

  24. Gill says:

    I have been wondering what to do on Sunday to celebrate St Brigids day and a lamb cake sounds ideal ( after all, however yummy shepherds pie is, it is hardly a celebration dish!) now to dig out that pan.

  25. Marie says:

    What a sweet gift and a wonderful likeness of Lambie

  26. Vickie in Olympia says:

    OH! Thank you for pictures of Spring. Another foggy day here and one forgets so quickly that the world isn’t always grey. I’m sure those covered in snow are longing for color in their lives too. Maddie’s talent is to be encouraged. Never ever give it up, my dear. Creativity is what makes the rest of life sing. Lucky her to have you for a mentor. Lucky us for having all these fascinating girlfriends, through you!

  27. Ricki says:

    Please tell Maddie how much we love her Lambie and wish her happy birthday. She is very pretty, too.
    I let out a long sigh of relief when Anna moved into Mr. Bates’ arms. Precious Anna…blaming herself just about did me in. I love the pictures of England, too, Susan. Scotland is equally lambified as well as Wales. Heaven on earth. I loved going there. Thank you for cheering us on this cold windy day.

  28. Ann says:

    What a cute Lambie-pie! Good job, Maddie. My granddaughter’s name is also Maddie so I know how special she is. And thanks for the trip back to the English countryside in the spring. It is a balmy 39 degrees today in MD, although I’m sure tomorrow will be in the teens again.

  29. Soooo sweet! You have such wonderful readers, Susan and you can tell how much they love you! Love your sweet Lambie-Pie…adorable!

  30. Carol Maurer~~~~ Kennewick, Wa says:

    Hello to you Susan and to all the girlfriends out there ~~~

    I haven’t made any comments for a while, but after reading this surprise post just now, I knew that I had to comment! Thank you thank you so very much for a bit of ‘SPRING’!! We, on the west coast, have been under a weather inversion for weeks now it seems to me. I’ve actually forgotten that the sun looks like. You would think that in a ‘high pressure’ it would be sunny all the time. Usually, it is, but not this time…. dreary fog like weather. I was, until I read you post just now, getting pretty depressed. You see, I’ve got Seasonal Depression from lack of sun. Not really bad that I need that special light, but after weeks of no sun….

    Lambs, they can be sooo cute!! The felted lamb that Maddy made you a while back sure is a cutie! I never really thought about it, but it makes sense that is why the hills in England look so inviting all the time. Lambs eating and eating their hearts out.

    I bought a Cuddlebug a couple weeks ago and have been expermenting with it. Also bought a sticker maker. Just been cleaning up some of my cards that I’ve made, but didn’t have an insert in them as yet. Bought a couple more tall storage units also. My studio is looking quite presentable now.

    Well, I’m off to see what else I can get my hands on for the time being.

    Carol M

  31. Lynda Hovan says:

    What a talented girl that Maddie is! And what a lovely, thoughtful present she made you. I can feel the love that’s wrapped up in that little lamb all the way from your house to mine. Thank you for sharing it with us. If you have any more pictures of watching-out-the-window Basil, I would love to see them. What a fine little fellow he is! And let’s not forget darling Jack. I never tire of seeing pictures of his antics. He has cracked me up so many times with his priceless expressions. He has chased my portion of the winter blues away many times, and for that I am entirely in your debt Susan. Thank you both.

  32. Tisa @ Seattle Retro says:

    All I can say is….shhhh…I think Maddie deserves to be a character on one of your book or calendar pages as a surprise thank you for her loving tributes!

  33. Heartsdesire says:

    What a thoughtful gift you’ve received, and what a talented 13-year-old Maddie is. Looks like she has a bright artistic future ahead, especially with you as a mentor. Love the lambs in the meadows, reminds me that spring is getting closer. Quite a few things are popping up in the garden here on Vancouver Island: crocuses, snowdrops, calendula (they seem to be around all year) and primulas. Our Japanese cherry tree is budding, and with a few more days of sunshine should have some blossoms soon. Oh, I so love spring. What would make it even better would be to spend it in England. Just want to thank you again for your wonderful book. The photography is so beautiful and the words so heartfelt.

  34. LindaH (northern IN) says:

    Thanks, Susan, for such a cheerful, spring-like post today. My husband and I are home this afternoon together after his work place closed early due to the dangerous winter weather. We’re watching old movies on TCM, and I was delighted to see a new post by you! That is such a good question–why Beatrix didn’t include lambs in her stories–glad you have included them in your pictures and artwork. That photograph of the mother lamb smiling with her baby next to her is precious. I also love the picture of Castle Cottage–such a gorgeous landscape–the hills, the lilacs, lambs and stone fence. Wish Maddie a Happy Birthday from us–looks like she has artistic blood in her veins!

  35. What a wonderful thing for a girl of thirteen to create and share with you- I can tell that Maddie is a real treasure! Happy Birthday Maddie!
    Love the Lambie-Pie Cuddle-bunch character as rendered from you both. <3

  36. Christine in Covina says:

    Once more transported to the English countryside. Love it! I love when there is a new blog, but I must get time alone to savor it! Poor Bates, so hurt but he must be wise! I worry!

    thanks for filling my soul with beauty and lambs today! Here is my kitty, Mr. Peabody , he needs attention! Thanks again, love!

  37. Mary Brehm says:

    Hi Susan! I wonder if this was the music you were referring too!
    Now I will be singing this for the rest of the day : )
    You cheered me up once again…Thanks

    • sbranch says:

      I had the perfect song for today — I don’t know why, but all day long, all youtube screens have been blank for me, including the one you sent! I’m singing anyway, and alls well that you can’t hear me!

  38. Judy says:

    Loved your post. But my mind wandered too far and disappointed me. The whole time you were building up to the end of the story MY brain went where it should not have and imagined that you had turned your own little lamb design into a little figurine just like the BP people we know and love. One for us to purchase for our own collections. Oh my.

    • sbranch says:

      Hahaha, that would be quite a thing these days when most of the pottery world has closed up and moved to China!

  39. Jane in Pennsylvania says:

    Awesome talent, Miss Maddie. Please keep pursuing it and bringing smiles to the world. Thanks for sharing, Susan. In today’s world, we need to be reminded there are young people out there giving from the heart. xxoo

  40. Gloria L. Nugent says:

    I loved the pretty pics today of warmer weather!! The gift from Maddie is amazing! Hopefully she understands the exceptional meaning behind homemade goodies. I am counting the days til I can safely navigate the Amish neighborhoods & photograph the spring lambs they raise. Black-faced are my fav. Everybody stay warm & safe out there. Still waiting for my son in Pittsburgh to let me know if he finds the pear cider as listed online!! Thanks to the 2 Girlfriends in those lucky states for letting me know their sources. Wonder if my hubby would go for flying me to California to check it out????

  41. Amylisa says:

    I love your blog! I just ordered a calendar and your Fine Romance book this past weekend. I can’t wait to get it. I was watching some Susan Branch videos on youtube and got a glimpse of what a cool book it is.
    It is fun reading people’s comments about Downton here, too! I loved what Mr. Bates said to Anna…perfect response. <3

  42. Debbie J says:

    Hi Susan!
    As soon as I read about the lambie fabric I hopped right over to your shop to order some (as well as a couple of other cute baby fabrics). All three of my son’s wives are having babies within a few months of each other!! And they all love you so I need to make them baby quilts with your sweet fabric. Thank you!!
    Big (((HUGS))),
    Debbie Johnson

  43. Dear Susan,

    Love your felted lamb and Lambie-Pie figurine made by Maddie! Is your Lambie-Pie illustration in AFR picking violets? I pick violets round my herb garden in May for violet jelly. Delicious and such a pretty pink colour!

    In “The Tale of Little Pig Robinson”, Beatrix Potter drew a sheep named Fleecy Flock who ran Fleecy Flock’s wool shop. Pig Robinson and Betsy visited the wool shop to find some darning-wool. There is an illustration of Fleecy Flock behind the counter with “bundles and bundles” of wool about her shop. Fleecy Flock’s wool shop sounds like a place I’d love!

    Prior in the book, on his way to Stymouth, walking along footpaths and through stiles, Pig Robinson passes meadows of “daisies and buttercups” and he sees lambs frolicking about! In Beatrix Potter’s “The Fairy Caravan” there are sheep and lambs in the green grass at water’s edge.

    I’ve always loved sheep ever since I was little! How I delight in spinning, knitting, weaving, and dyeing my skeins with natural materials. I spin the wool in the grease without washing it first. The smell of the wool in the grease has always been a comfort to me as it reminds me of when I was little and I would go in the old barn with its lovely stone foundation and hug the new little lambs!

    Your photographs of the sheep, green grass, and flowers were nice to see on a cold blustery day!


    • sbranch says:

      I googled Beatrix Potter Fleecy Flock — do I have the right name? Because I didn’t find anything. Would love to see her lambs but I don’t have that book ~ yet! I’ll look for it. I was really meaning a lamb in the form of the little figurines, such as Jemima Puddleduck or Mrs. Tiggy Winkle. You really know your BP books!

      • Sharon Calvert says:

        Susan, if you google The Tale of Little Pig Robinson, you’ll find the sheep Diane mentioned … it is amazing the ‘education’ one gets here on your blog 🙂

        Sharon in Alabama

      • Karen P (Wisconsin) says:

        It’s beautiful in lovely Beatrix Potter form but not adorably cute like Lambie-Pie Cuddle Bunch! She would make a darling figurine. Maddie’s lambie is adorable and fits right in with your BP figurines! What a sweetheart!

  44. Elfie Haab says:

    Having my Downton Abbey English Rose tea as I read your blog. I love Maddie’s Lambie Pie, she is a sweet girl and very talented. Also, love the pictures you posted of spring in England. We all need that reminder here in PA, where we are freezing, that spring will arrive in a few months. I too found DA more relaxing last night. Great to see Anna’s quivering chin relax for the time being, she is so good at that. I am so glad Mt Bates, reacted the way he did. I fear that this is not over and the valet will be back. I need to re watch as I too missed Lady Edith going to the doctor, maybe I dozed off for a minute. Thank you for mentioning it. Thank you for brightening my day.

  45. Francine Werlinger says:

    Lam is Pie is just darling!! Love her! I enjoyed the flower picture too! No school today and tomorrow due to the record breaking cold here in Wisconsin! Can’t wait for spring and real flowers! Meantime, I’ve got a pot of soup simmering on the stove!

  46. Trisha K ~ Missouri says:

    Its such a TREASURE when a friend knows a secret heart-wish, without being told, and then creates it into existence just for us!

  47. Years ago we travelled through England with our two daughters who were then seven and eleven. It was March and lambing season was in full swing. While they spent too much time with their noses in books that we had bought at the fabulous English bookstores, whenever lambs were sighted their response was the same: “Aww! Cute!” (Usually in unison.)

    Thanks for the lovely reminder, Susan.

  48. I love the smiley lamb picture! How sweet is that?!


  49. Martha Ellen of VA says:

    Such a talent Maddie is! How sweet she is to make you the perfect gift. Love the visit to England Susan. I love all that you share here, but would love to see more of your visit to Emma Bridgewater. I’m just facinated by the whole process of pottery making. Enjoy your day! xoxo ♥

  50. Holly says:

    You know we all love Lambie and all things lamb/sheep too! Maddie’s little Lambie sculpture is adorable. I am in serious want though… that piece from the Martha Vineyard Agricultural Society 2003 is wonderful. Is it a calendar? I wonder if there are prints for sell anywhere? The largest watercolor in my living room is a pastoral scene (large with lots of hills & trees) with sheep and two English riders. It was a gift nearly 20 years ago, and I’ve been hunting sheep artwork every since!

    • sbranch says:

      It’s a poster from the fair . . . you might try connecting with the chamber of commerce here — maybe they know where you could find one!

  51. Lisa from Connecticut says:

    Hi Susan, thanks so much for this post. Your blog is definitely a breath of Spring to me. I would LOVE to see more pics of England on the blog!!! You are so generous to share with us. I have always wanted to travel to England.

    Also, going to re-watch Downton tonight on PBS video. Have to make sure I saw the part with Edith going to the doctors…

    thanks again Susan!!!!

  52. Penny Harrison from Oceanside, CA says:

    Thank you for sharing Lambie Pie by Maddie – BIG applause for you Maddie you gave her so much character 🙂 – and Happy Birthday to you! And love your watercolor rendition of her Susan! I too did not catch that Lady Edith went to the doctor!!!! Hmmmm for sure! – and I too am concerned for Anna and Mr. Bates, but glad he finally knows. How ’bout Lady Mary? She definitely seems ready for a man in her life again – how many potential suitors will parade through the episodes?!!

    • sbranch says:

      Nice to see her smiling again! Who’s that new guy?

      • KarenV says:

        Yes, who’s that new guy?? Lady Mary seemed to be smiling a lot when he arrived, even after she looked a bit upset after reading the wedding announcement. And what’s with the new lady’s maid? What does Thomas have on her? She doesn’t seem obviously evil like O’Brien. Well, I’m just grateful that Julian Fellowes is quickly resolving some of the “tension-builders” like getting rid of that nasty Edna and letting Mr. Bates find out what happened to Anna. I think you are right, he might get revenge and get away with it.
        Anyway, loved the post today and you are the luckiest girl to have received such beautifully crafted gifts from such a lovely young lady. Such talent, she really captured the expression on Lambie Pie’s face, that sweet smile.
        Stay warm, thanks for the thoughts of Spring!

        • sbranch says:

          Thomas! What in heck is he up to? I can’t quite figure it out. Thank you Karen!

          • judi says:

            I can’t figure out connection between the ladies maid and Thomas either. Thought perhaps I had missed something obvious???

        • Karen P (Wisconsin) says:

          I think the new guy was the “buddy” of Mr. Pamouk (or however his name is spelled) from the 1st season (?)….the one who died in Mary’s bed. I think Lord Grantham mentioned something about Mr. Pamouk in connection with this guy.

      • Penny Harrison from Oceanside says:

        Yes – that’s what I was wondering too! Thought maybe I missed something in the past 🙂 – glad I’m not the only one wondering – he is definitely eye candy!!!

        • Karen P. - Wisconsin says:

          What I found to be funny was how excited she was to see him. I should think it would stir up terrible memories but…

  53. Sweet Sue says:

    I just love lambs and think Windmere which Maddie made for you is so precious. Looks just like she belongs on your shelf with Beatrix Potter figuerines. 🙂
    My husband and I have a book, “The Crippled Lamb” by Max Lucado that we have on our coffee table and read every Christmas. You would love it! Maybe even want to add it to your book list.
    I had a pair of lambie pjs growing up that I just adored. Thinking about getting your lambie material and making a matching hat and purse. Don’t you think that would be cute?
    Have a delightful lambie day and give Maddie a hug when you next see her and tell her she is the best!

  54. Jeanne Hedin says:

    Your post was a breath of spring and much needed on this frigid 20 below zero winter day in MN! And Lambie Pie was the cherry on top. 🙂

  55. Angie(Tink!) says:

    ✫♥*¨☆*✿✫♥*¨☆*✿ 1st! Happy Birthday Maddie! & Happy Birthday to Our Georgie! Birthday Wishes for Them! 🙂 I Love Lambie Pie & Beyond Magical About Maddie Creating Two Lambie Pies for You Sweet Sue! So Cute! I Love The Photo with The Fine Romance Van in The Snow! So Pretty! Okay Downton~Abbey…I Too Wept a fewTears Regarding Mr. Bates! ( & He Will Get That Bad Guy….Shhhhhhh…..He Has His Ways….) 😉 & Yes Lady Edith At The Doctors….Oh Oh…. 🙂 & Isobel& Violet….. 🙂 Love Those Two! & Now I Shall Ponder Why Didn’t Beatrix Potter Paint Any Lambies????? Could We Ever Find Out Why? Well Have A Delightful End of January Week Sweet Sue….I Love The Winter But Before We Know Springtime will Be in The Air! xoxo Poof! ✫♥*¨☆*✿✫♥*¨☆*✿ 🙂

  56. Terri says:

    What a wonderful gift, having your Lambie Pie brought to life, by such a sweet, talented and generous young artist! Happy, happy birthday, Maddie!
    Once upon a time, in springtime, we would have shepherds bringing their flocks through the hills here in inland southern California, but sadly, I haven’t seen them for a few years now. I’m not sure if I’ve just missed seeing them or if it’s been legislated out, or if all the building and traffic’s just become too congested to move them through here, nowadays. It always lit up the day though, when they would show up suddenly in a usually vacant field. I get that same sort of wondrous feeling though, whenever they show up here. Thanks for letting them graze across your book and your blog!

  57. Gert~Iowa says:

    Oh, you are so blessed! Maddie did an amazing job on the sheep…she is so pretty! Maddie is so gifted…at only 13? Happy Birthday other!!

    Thanks for the pictures of spring in England!

  58. Cyndy Szarzynski says:

    I am 75% into a Fine Romance (reading as slow as I can so the book lasts longer) after waiting for just the right time to read it – I can relate to the loveliness and beauty of England since my daughter and I made a trip almost 5 years ago. I was the driver, Becky was the navigator – no GPS for us – Becky just put her hand up and pointed her finger to the correct exit of the roundabout – a few extra laps were common. Car Talk has me laughing so hard each time I read it to some one else – so true! Just love all the stories, photos and artwork!

    As for the sheep, we are in our third year of raising hair sheep – just as cute as wool sheep. We have raised cattle for years and decided to add sheep when we changed our farm management from a mechanical method to one more natural and historic – no more haying, just grazing – saves fuel, time, money and improves the quality of livestock, forage, and pastures and all without adding chemical fertilizers. Even though the sheep and lambs are more challenging to raise then cattle, we are hanging in there based on their ‘cuteness’ alone. Why not?


  59. Sylvia in Seattle says:

    Love the cleaning Lambie Pie with red polka dot gloves :-). I was inspired to do in depth cleaning of my fridge today! Kind of amazing. What sweet gifts from Maddie. Love the eyes on that clay Lambie Pie. What a lucky girl – what a lucky bunch of girlfriends situated as we are in this love fest of cozy creativity. Thank you Susan and the California crew. Hope your screens come back on soon. Are you operating on generator power?? Man, what a winter you all are having back there. I’m longing for tulips . . . all kinds of tulips. Think I’ll go get a bunch right now — a little reward for cleaning the fridge.

  60. Diana from Ohio says:

    Hi Susan
    This blog just made my day! Love Lambie Pie! Very interesting that Beatrix Potter never did lambs, I guess I never thought of it before.
    Love all the great pictures of spring as we are getting ready here in the midwest for some cold weather. We haven’t had this cold of weather for a few winters. We did get spoiled and now we remember what those winters were like! Hundreds of Canadian geese have been flying around here all day. I don’t know what that means but I hope they will find a place to keep warm tonight as it is suppose to be -33 with the windchill.
    I am really thankful for you and your wonderful blog. I really look forward to them and set aside a time alone with my cup of coffee. (Sorry very seldom drink tea, always been a coffee drinker) Also thank you for Lambie Pie with Maddie doing a great job. What a talented young lady!

  61. Sweet Sue says:

    Just discovered that your birthday is just 5 days after mine. One more thing we have in common……no wonder I enjoy your artwork, blogs and books so much!
    We are not getting older though right? Just better! Or like my husband likes to say we are 21 with so many years of experience!
    Now if your birthday is in a few months that would make today your “Unbirthday” ! 🙂 So “Happy UnBirthday to You!”
    Have a most lovey lambie day!

  62. pat addison (cave junction,OR) says:

    good afternoon Susan and girlfriends. what a cute little lambie pie, and Maddie is talented, how wonderful that you now have a lambie pie character to add to your Beatrix Potter characters. Happy Birthday Maddies, may you have a fun and wonderful day. been busy locating and finding the pottery place that made my spoon jar, one of the cats knocked it off the counter in the kitchen and I was heartbroken. that piece of salt glazed blue stoneware meant a lot to me, a very dear person gave it to me over 20 years ago and now she is gone, but I found the place and ordered a new one, when they heard why I was looking for them and what happened they gave me 20% off the item I was purchasing. I am so thrilled, and such a great place to get crocks, and items for the house and kitchen, just look up salmon falls in Dover, New Hampshire and you will be treated like royalty, well they made me feel pretty special. the cats are off the hook for now, but next time there will “H” to pay if they break up any more of my crockery. off to go fold the laundry and get myself a cup of tea for the afternoon. have a great day everyone. hugs….. 🙂

    • pat addison (cave junction,OR) says:

      hmmm we’re clouding up, may finally get some rain instead of this blasted fog we have been getting lately, now I know how Londoners feel when its gets soupy thick and foggy there. do I hear a fog horn out there??? hmmmm!!!!! LOL!!!

  63. Judy says:

    Lambie Pie is absolutely adorable!!!!!!! Have you considered turning her into a stuffed animal — complete with her apron? She would be wonderful! (I’d love to have one to go with my stuffed black lamb whose name is Ewenice.)

    Love all the pictures of sheep and lambs. They are so very cute.

  64. Pam says:

    The lamb Maddie made for you is gorgeous. It just fits right in with the other Beatrix Potter figurines. Well it’s not very spring like in England at the moment. However, the snowdrop season at Anglesey Abbey in Cambridgeshire starts at the end of January and goes through February so we are planning a trip to see them soon. It’s turned quite wintry this week but we actually had a rose out in the garden until a couple of weeks ago and we also still had some flowers on one of our fuchsias. It’s been very mild but very wet and we’re starting to get webbed feet!

    • sbranch says:

      All the baby chicks will be born soon!

      • Pam says:

        Hi Susan, I’ve just been showing Dave some of your pictures of the cardinals on your bird feeders, (he loves watching the birds in our garden). Anyway he would like to know if the female birds have the same colour as the males?

        • sbranch says:

          No, from what I understand, all female birds are less colorful than the males — its true with our birds — the male cardinal is a very bright vibrant red but the female is dressed like winter leaves … brown with a bit of rusty color. Hi Pam, Hi Dave!

  65. Lnda says:

    I smile when I see and read about your lambs; they are so sweet and adorable. Here is a story… My brother and his wife raise sheep here in Iowa. In order to have lambs you need the male/buck sheep; they have Jasper. Brother says that Jasper is actually a rather laid-back buck – I’m truly wondering if that can be true. 🙂 A short while ago when entering Jasper’s territory (Brother says he had his eye on Jasper except for a split second.), Jasper got him from behind and sent him flying over 10 feet!! Jasper is rather possessive when it comes to his ewes and resents anyone that comes close! Brother ended up with a wrenched knee and a skinned elbow. Yikes! But…brother’s sciatic nerve that had been giving him fits for months was cured! Guess it was an adjustment that was better than even the chiropractor could give.

    • sbranch says:

      Wow! Apparently there is more to this sheep thing than just picturesque cuteness! 🙂

    • Holly says:

      Male sheep are not to be trusted! I raised a male lamb for 4-H once, and we played with him constantly until he was about 9 months old. When he was small he would chase us, then we’d get on the ground and butt heads with him. It was all great fun, especially because our little sister was afraid of him! If she discovered we had him out of the pen she would run by, screaming for Mom, and of course he ran after her, making it all that much better. Well, one day he caught up with her her, and butted her right on the backside, and she went flying into the grass. You would have though he killed her for all the noise she was making. The next Saturday Fluffy went to live at the neighbors sheep farm as he was quite the buck it seems. It was so sad for us, but he was happy because he had many new girlfriends. We still tease our sister about that episode, and she still hates that lamb!

  66. Shannon (Pennsylvania) says:

    I’d forgotten about the little bookmark sized strips of cut up “practice paper” that you took along on your signing tour to hand out to the girlfriends. That was such a great idea…hope you’re saving more of those precious scraps for further signings!

    • sbranch says:

      I can’t believe how many of those I’ve thrown away, but never again!

    • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

      hey, Shannon!
      I read in another message from you that you had no idea you were going to collect Emma Bridgewater until you had a collection of 6. (I think.) Same with me! I have four now–of the flowers collection, but when I saw Susan’s “flock” of beautiful blue mugs!! Oh my! It sure was eye candy for me! –Linda
      PS. Susan, yes–do not throw away your practice paper! Even your “throw away” paper is adorable!

      • sbranch says:

        OK, I almost did today then remembered and fished it out!

      • Shannon (Pennsylvania) says:

        Hey back, Linda! Yes, my accidental collection of Emma Bridgewater mugs has now grown to seven, and it’s pretty eclectic!! My first was the old zinnia pattern, still my favorite. It lives happily with two Matthew Rice…the bunnies from last spring and year in the country, summer. I also have reindeer in a snowstorm, buff orphington chickens (we have three of the real ones in our little flock), a pumpkin patch design I found on eBay, and my latest, blue splatter. I love the new roses and bee, and hubby’s a hobby beekeeper, so I think that one will join the others before too long. Have you heard the weather news for south central PA? We may have temperatures above freezing for the weekend!! I planted snowdrops right outside the back door last fall. Anxious to see if there are any signs of them when the snow starts to melt. Hubby cut a small branch from the pussy willow this morning and brought it in. It’s sitting in a little water on a sunny window sill…hope I’ll soon be rewarded with fuzzy little catkins.

        • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

          Shannon, I, too, have the zinnia mug. I think the spatter ware mug is speaking to me! I would be delighted for some above freezing weather. I was looking ahead and discovered snow for Monday-Wednesday. I think they call it a “mixed bag”–it looks like snow/sleet. Yuck! And a pussy willow branch! A sure sign of spring! I hope it inspires you! I have some snowdrops too. I love them! So small, but filled with hope!

  67. Carilyn Wolski says:

    Hello Susan! Your precious Lambie Pie is the cutest!!! Your full length version is the best!!! She looks as though she “dances” her way around, instead of walking! Maybe one day you will write a book starring her as the main character??? (Thank you for the her wallpaper…in advance.) With the windchill temps in the -35 degrees forecasted tomorrow, in Dearborn, Michigan, she helps me dream of Springtime!!! Oh, by the way Susan, is that lavendar in the picture from Stourhead, Wiltshire? (I’m dreaming of lavendar and all flowers, since mine is sticking its dried woody stems through the snow drift over the flowerbeds in my backyard.)

  68. Kate says:

    It is sub zero temperatures here so I needed some Spring and some England and some Lambie Pie. Warmed me down to my toes. Thank you, Susan. That Maddie is one talented girl. How blessed you are with such kind friends. Been checking your fabrics also and really want to get some. Especially love the chick fabric. Would make a darling ironing board cover as I am in love with chickens. Did I see a hint that you and Joe will be going back to England?

  69. Lorraine says:

    Happy birthday Maddie! You are incredibly talented and thoughtful – two wonderful assets. Keep up the good work.

    Thank you Susan for a glimpse of spring. It is much appreciated this time of year.

    I noticed Edith going to the doctor and also wondered why he hasn’t contacted her. I can’t believe he dumped her – I certainly hope not… Hopefully, things will work out for Edith – she has had more of her fair share of “bad” romantic involvements. I would like to agree with you about Bates taking care of the valet and not getting caught – look at all Thomas gets away with – but somehow it doesn’t fit with Bates’ character. I sure hope he can get past it… I also wonder if Tom will go to America and take little Sibby? That would be so hard for Lord and Lady Grantham. I really like Tom and hope he stays in the show. I agree with whoever wrote that if it were a book she would look ahead. I think I would too…

  70. Starr miller says:


  71. Jeanne says:

    Susan – your blog is my escape! Thank you!

  72. Lambie-Pie is so sweet. I love how Maddie made her for you. She did a wonderful job.
    And I also would love to see more photos of England. Never~ever will get tired of looking at photos with you.

    Stay Warm!

  73. Linda Petersen says:

    So enjoyed the post today! The lambs are so precious & I love looking at the pics on the blog & “our” book :0). Maddie’s creation is adorable & you are blessed to have her & her mom in your life. She is very creative & sweet to be so aware of little things that bring happiness. Have a lovely week!
    XO, Linda

  74. Val says:

    Maddie’s quite a talent! I love gifts with such creative sweetness behind them. ♥

  75. What a sweet gift of love!

    I needed to visit “you” today as the wind chills outside are to reach -45 tonight. Your blog (and books) warm my heart. 🙂

  76. Cathy McCann says:

    Oh my, what a treat to see a new posting today. South Bend weather has been horrific and most of us here have been homebound — today and tomorrow by order of the county police. Brrr! So, I’ve been checking your site since Friday, fingers crossed, waiting for new news. Lucy and I were texting today that we needed a “Susan fix”. And lo and behold — it’s here! I had a kidney stone “blasted” on Friday and have been antsy as the dickens, so what fun it will be to reread the post and enjoy all the comments.
    I am so impressed with Miss Maddie! Not only does she have an artistic talent, but she is so sensitive, kind, and giving — what a thrill to see that in our young ladies of the world! You have a treasure there, don’t you?
    Anyway, Lucy is coming over tomorrow if she dares venture out on our neighborhood streets. (We can no longer cut through the woods as we have had over 75″ of snow this winter — much of it in the last couple of weeks, and it’s really rough going.) She’s bringing some pick-me-ups: cardstock, yarn and ribbon, stencils, hearts, a variety of baubles — and we’re going to make Valentine garlands and banners! I am so excited –already picking out tea cups and napkins for the occasion. Made some yummy banana-raisin cookies yesterday so am set there. So, we’ll be chatting, creating, and I know, loving every minute of it. Thanks for getting us going on a fun project.
    Enjoy your work on the calendar — and believe me, we all here are anxious to be able to turn to February soon — another page closer to spring! Hugs, Ethel

    • sbranch says:

      If you knew Maddie’s Mom you’d see immediately why she’s the way she is. 75 inches. Oh my!

      • Cathy McCann says:

        What a beautiful compliment to her mom! I bet they have a strong bond. Tomorrow is my mom’s birthday — she passed away in 1959, way too soon, and it just does my heart good to see young ladies learning the right things from their moms.
        Reread your post this morning and with our -23 windchill, I’d really love to be cuddling with Lambie Pie today:) I haven’t kept up with the east coast weather — do you have lots of snow now? Lucy and I will let you know how our garland making goes:) Hugs!

        • sbranch says:

          We had a tiny bit of a break in the temperture, our snow was rained on last night and almost gone today! But today it’s 20 degrees, and we are expecting 5″ of new snow after midnight.

          • Cathy McCann says:

            Now that’s the perfect kind of snow — with moderate temps so shoveling is not painstaking, and a great opportunity for a sitting fireside:)

  77. Allegra Bridges says:

    Susan, how lucky you are to have Maddie in your life. My little granddaughter Lily is the family artist and someday I hope she makes a treasured piece for me. About SAD–how weird, I love fog and cloudy days. It makes me feel Englishy and cozy. Right now I’m hugging my hot water bottle and listening to classical music AND reading your wonderful blog. Thanks for adding warmth and charm to my day.

  78. Georgeann from Texas says:

    I have always wanted to see more pictures of your first little home there and pictures of you and joe when you first got together. I mention this because the first part of your book just made me want to see more. I went through a divorce and I admire your courage to seek your dream and start over again.

    • sbranch says:

      I’m going to write a book about that … I can’t wait, it’s one I’ve wanted to do for a long time.

      • Shannon (Pennsylvania) says:

        Yay!!! We’d love that! I think I read the other day that the breakfast book is near completion? Let the pre-orders begin! 🙂

        • sbranch says:

          Not really, I’ve been working on calendars … the breakfast book is still only half done. We have a ways to go!

          • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

            Somehow I got the idea that you were going to do another book before Pancakes. Well, whatever–just tell us what you’re working on and we’ll be sure to cheer you on!! It was so much fun being “in” on A Fine Romance. Of course, that was so amazing b/c so many of us GFs went on the trip with you (we were like Flat Stanley and fit very comfortably in your suitcases!) and then we came back home and thrilled all over again as you wrote the book. Ahh–so much fun even thinking about it!

          • sbranch says:

            My problem is that I have three. And only one small brain and two hands. But I am trying to be calm. Flat Stanley 🙂 you were! We did have a good time didn’t we!

          • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

            oh my goodness! yes!! We did have fun! And I REALLY don’t care which book you work on! I just love when you let us be part of the cheering section! You know, Susan, I do enjoy seeing how you create–your process–it is helpful to me!

          • sbranch says:

            It’s much more fun for me too. Not so alone!

  79. Karen P (Wisconsin) says:

    You have THE BEST sheep pictures EVER!!! When we went to England, I tried….must have taken a thousand pictures of sheep to get just the perfect one or two but none come even close to how wonderful and darling and sweet and PERFECT yours are! So, I will live my perfect sheep picture fantasy through your photos! xo

  80. Carol says:

    Beautiful little tour through the balmy spring of ol’ England on a very cold blustery winters night. Love all the Lambs and especially Lambie Pie, such a talented young lady with a big heart! may spring find us soon!

  81. Jody says:

    It is strange that Beatrix didn’t do a lamb in all of her illustrating. Glad you did. We’re just a couple weeks away from lambing here. It’s not very springtime-ish, but we’ll have babies anyway. We have a barn to take care of them in.

  82. Chrissy says:

    Happy Birthday dear Maddie! Wonderful job on the lamb.

  83. Marilyn says:

    Oh my, you receive the most wonderful, thoughtful gifts.
    I just love Lambie Pie.

  84. judi says:

    Happy Birthday to a very delightful and talented Maddie! I think you have many magical times ahead. Great and timely post Susan. Nice of you to bring flowers, lambs, greenry and more happy tales to all of us.

    My sister and brother-in-law just arrived here in FL from WI this afternoon for their 2 1/2 month yearly stay near us. She said they were sweating after unloading their car and DID I REALIZE this is a 100 degree difference from when they left. UFF DA. 🙂 I told her to go jump in the pool:))

    • sbranch says:

      It must be a shock to them!

      • Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

        A friend and her family visited her family in Costa Rica over Christmas. It was in the 80s there. Beautiful. When they arrived back home, it was 1. Weather shock for sure!! It took them awhile to get acclimated.

  85. Maddie is so talented 🙂 She could make a mint making and selling Lambie Pies for your shop 😉
    Thanks for the shot of spring- it was desperately needed here 🙂

  86. Vikki Lovelady says:

    I swear Lady S; this is not the first time that your post has brought tears to my eyes. And, if this world had more Susan Branch people; what a splendid and fine world it would be. Your industry and love for the charm of life is precious and admirable. Joyful. Thank you.

  87. Joy says:

    Your Lambie Pie is adorable, and Maddie’s 3-D version is amazing!

  88. Pat Beckman says:

    Love your lambs, we enjoyed them on our trip to England too..Ireland and Scotland have them all over Ireland they wander in the streets. They put a mark on them to keep track of who they belong to
    Love you
    In cincinnati

  89. Elaine says:

    Lovely post and photos ! Your lamb art is coo cute as are the photos of the real lambs ! Oh that English country side is just how I remembered it when I went to England to visit my Aunt and Nana years ago soo pretty ! Thanks for sharing . Have a great week !

  90. Lynn D says:

    Anow and freezing cold in my Colorado. Love pictures of the beautiful English spring. Reminds me it’s coming. Probably not until May, but it’s coming. Thank you for the lovely photos. Lambic Pie is wonderful.

  91. Charlotte Anderson says:

    Once we went to stay on a farm in the Lake District. When we arrived there were 2 baby lambs peeking out from a fence watching us. They ran behind a tree when we went to say hello to them. Then they played “peek-a-boo” with us from behind the tree! Was I smitten! My daughter and I think about it together sometimes! We have a Lamb Mold that makes a 3D lamb. It’s cast iron with beautiful details. Is this the same as the pan you all talked about? It has been a wonderful family tradition. It has always been the 1st birthday cake, the centerpiece for Easter and Christmas (with a gold crown) and for tea. We have surrounded it with roses, marzipan fruit, given it a Juliet cap of red hots for Valentines, an ice cream cone purple iced with silver draggees wizard hat for Harry Potter Party, orange glitter covered with a black mask made of fimo for Halloween. I worried with the Halloween lamb my son’s friends were too old to enjoy, when one said in amazement, “That’s the coolest thing I’ve ever seen!” Here’s to friends of all ages! Here’s to lambs dancing on hillsides! Love you Susan! Love to all!

  92. Linda Ishmael says:

    Finally got my copy of A Fine Romance and can’t put it down. Thank you so much for sharing such a wonderful adventure!!

  93. Maddie’s little lambie is adorable! Love the curly wool head! Beatrix would be proud.
    It is curious why she didn’t make a lamb . But maybe she left it for Maddie and you to carry on the tradition.
    By the way my daughter just loved the copy of Fine Romance I got her for Christmas ,which you signed for her in the bookstore in KC, Mo. She’s hooked now and has decided she will collect books signed by their authors. 🙂 Looking forward to the journey continuing…

  94. Jan Lane says:

    I love your blog about England. Being a part of an extended English family, I truly appreciate your keen delight and appreciation of English life and traditions.
    Chatsworth is so lovely to visit in the springtime when the fields are green and the baby lambs are bouncing around, frolicking in the beautiful countryside.
    If you have never visited Bakewell, which is near Chatsworth, you should try to squeeze in a visit there on one of your next trips. The famous or perhaps not so famous Bakewell Tart was first originated there. There are so many good treats to enjoy with tea, as the list of wonderful tea shops is nearly endless. Tea is such a delight, whether you sip it from fine china tea cups or whether you warm your hands around a steaming pottery mug……I like both. Currant scones slathered with rich creamery butter AND Devonshire cream AND lovely lemon curd or fresh fruit preserves……there is nothing more satisfying.
    I hope to get to England in May. We will miss the beautiful bluebells blooming beneath the canopy of trees which are just budding with new green leaves…..but we will inhale the sweet fragrance of lilacs in bloom, and see yellow fields of what they unfortunately call rape, and then all of the Rowan trees are flowering along with the horse chestnuts and various other beautiful trees. In June, the primulas and the clematis vines and roses come into display rich colour and delicate scents.
    And as the spring breezes blow, you can still see clothes on the line, and they smell much fresher than any artificial laundry scent. I do so love it in England and thanks for sharing the beauty.

  95. Pat Johnson from Paso Robles, CA says:

    Always does your heart good when a young person uses their talent to make something and present it to you. Maddie, you did a wonderful job with your art work and, as you can see, we are now all into YOU! I, too, wish you a beautiful birthday and a fabulous year! As Maddie knows our neck of the woods is so brown and we are in such dire need of rain, that puts us in a state of depression. I loved sharing the pics of England once again and remembering how lush it is there. I have turned off the sprinkler system in my yard because soon we will be asked to use wisely and conserve water. We cannot spare any water at this point. So, right now, if you are in the part of the country that is getting freezing temps and snow OR you are in the western states that are hurting for water – life is kinda blue! That is why the messages from the BBFs (as well as the lead BFF – Susan) is so vitally important. You take us to another place just when we need it the most. Thank you! Hugs is my gift back to you! XXXXOOOO Pat

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

    Speaking of Beatrix Potter…..I just got in the mail the cutest Benjamin Bunny smoking a pipe with a vest and jacket. I had to have it! If my father had been a bunny, that’s what he’d have looked like! I just love him! I wondered though about the bottom. My sister told me they have to have the stamp so you know it’s made in England and isn’t a cheap knock off, but I wondered if you knew why some have the year and some don’t. I spent a bit more than I should have on this and there’s no date so I can’t be sure how old it is. Do you know why some have the year and some don’t?

  97. Sara says:

    What a talented young lady Maddie is… first, making the felted lamb for you and then Lambie Pie! And what a beautiful heart she has!

    I love your statement that we’re never too old for fairytales. We’re in good company. Albert Einstein said, “If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairytales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairytales!” Don’t you love that, Susan?

    My grandsons have quite a collection of outfits to feed their insatiable appetites for make-believe. On any given day, they might be a pirate, a knight, Robin Hood, an entomologist, or a doctor, thanks to their Nanny, who’s more than happy to feed their imagination! 🙂


    • sbranch says:

      One of my favorite Einstein quotes ~ he was so wonderful!

      • mary spring says:

        …Sara…I absolutely love this quote from Einstein !!..thank you for sharing..didn’t Einstein also say that imagination is more important than knowledge ?!?..’love that !!.. also, dear Susan, thank you SO much for taking us back to England !!.. I can hardly wait ’till you and Joe go back (so you can once again bring us along…hopefully..)..perhaps you will also go to Scotland and Ireland. …a girl can dream, can’t she ?!..also, Susan, thank you for so oftenly recommending Vit. D and talking about important..(my Dr. recently recommended that I take up my wheel throwing pottery again..’haven’t done it for awhile)..creativity is like balm for the soul…..take care…with love,as always..

  98. sondra fox says:

    One of my very favorite lambs is Lamb Chop whose Mommy was Shari Lewis. Remember Shari? She has passed on, but oh what a love she was. She was on TV before the explosion time of TV, before kids got their kicks out of explosions & second to second flicks of pictures flashed before them. There is theory that the pictures flashing quickly on the TV screen (when children’s brains are developing), trains their brains to become used to thought processes that change quickly, therefore, children never linger on a thought & become bored easily. Lamb Chop had the most charming smile, with a small little voice. Shari was a wonderful person who played before children who enjoyed their innocence. I was an adult who loved to view Lamb Chop, so much so that I got my own very own Lamb Chop, a long time ago. To this day, I won’t eat lamb. No, never will lamb touch my mouth. Sweet, quiet, gentle, beautiful animals. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

    • sbranch says:

      Lamb Chop was my favorite too! So cute!

    • Shannon (Pennsylvania) says:

      Oh Sandy, thanks for the sweet memory! I used to watch Shari and Lamb Chop (and Charley Horse!) on PBS with my oldest grandson in the early ’90’s. Such a dear show for the little ones. My grandson had a Lamb Chop puppet when he was about three years old, and he would play with it and act out his own little stories. My youngest grandson is now five. He is not permitted to watch too much tv, but he is still a Thomas the Tank Engine fan.

      • sondra fox says:

        Since we’re discussing wonderful programs for children, how about Mr. Rogers? So many good ideas to build character in children. Character counts! (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

  99. Janet Reilly says:

    Oh Susan, after a tough Monday your blog relaxed me. Felt my shoulders come down and my face loses it’s “fierce work woman” look!
    Thank you!

  100. Debbie says:

    I get so excited when there is a new post, Susan!! What a great way to end the day! Thank you so much for all the happiness and joy you bring to so many. I wanted to add…if you have ever been in England in the wintertime, it is so lovely to see primroses growing in the freezing cold weather. We spent one winter in London and I loved seeing those flowers peaking up bringing color and life to the dreary winter days there. Now, every winter when primrose plants hit the grocery store, I have to buy a few for my kitchen table and it just makes me so happy…so those of you having a hard time with the freezing cold wintertime…look for a touch of England and they will cheer you up!!

    • sbranch says:

      Great idea, primroses!

      • sondra fox says:

        I’m planting lots of Primroses today, lots of different colors. Just love them. Lots of them growing around gardens here in CA. Guess there are lots of people around here who love them. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

        • I always buy 3 primroses in January when they come to the grocery stores here in Maryland. They usually stay in bloom until I can plant them in my garden in early Spring. They’re my ‘Hope of Spring’ tradition.

          • sondra fox says:

            Happy gardening Cathy. Primroses will definitely lead you into spring. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

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