Today is my day for B I R T H D A Y   G R A T I T U D E  and we’ll start with my favorite song ever in the history of the world . . .  MUSICA Good Morning Crocus,  Good Morning Daffodils, Hello Tulips,  Hi there Miss Hyacinth! Hello fresh spring air,  you smell so good!  Hello Sunshine ~ Hello GIRLFRIENDS!  

happy april!


T O M O R R O W   I S   M Y



So many things  to be grateful for and I thought today would be a really good day to talk about them.

my favoriteLet me first say that if I put every one of my blessings in this post, reading it would become a full time job because they pretty much go to the moon.  But I have to start somewhere!  My favorite magazines have arrived and for my own birthday present to me, I’m taking them to lunch this week.  Me and them, alone, at a corner table, with a knife to hold them open so I can eat Sesame Noodles and read at the same time.  One of my most favorite luxuries, reading all alone in restaurants (a sidewalk cafe on the Champs Elysees?  Oui!)

JackAnd him, my shadow, he’s more than a luxury, he is my must-have.  And the very best present I could ask for, he and Girl have been playing this last week, chasing each other up and down the stairs, you can hear their feet running back and forth upstairs, ambushing each other, jumping off the beds.  It’s wonderful!  So good for Girl and just what I was hoping for her when I brought Jack home.  I hope it lasts. Jack is 2 1/2 years old and this is a first!

sunrisesSpring has come to Martha’s Vineyard!  The early morning light is exquisite.  Pristine, fresh, clean, and a miracle if ever I saw one. Especially after this winter!

forsythiaI have huge amounts of gratitude for Mrs Bowditch who lived in our house from 1949 until 1980 and was so good about planting for spring bloom. I got to meet her once.  She’s been my inspiration.I hope she knows I’m taking good care of her house for her.

come and get your happinessOur daffodils are in bloom.  Thank you!


the walk

We have nature’s address, it’s out through the woods along a dirt path that takes us here . . . no leaves on the trees yet, but the sun is lovely and the breeze smells wonderful, and you can hear the waves.


Crocus! Pure miracles.  First there is snow and then there are crocus!


I’m grateful for talented Kellee who made me this kitty last year. xoxo

kids say the darndest things

And for little children who write me beautiful letters with borders.  Thank you Little Children! xoxo



I’m grateful for these, my own research department, my diaries . . . Yes, I know I’ve been MIA from our dear blog, and I’ve missed you!  But every time I’ve tried to do an update (and I have tried!), I think “Oh, just let me add this one more little thing to my new book and THEN I’ll go do a new post” . . . that’s when I fall into “the zone” and have to say help I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.  But no one comes, so what can I do?


I can’t save myself, and honestly, I really don’t want to.  I like it in there.  I’m driven in the best possible way.  I wake up and RUN to my paper and pen before all my morning fresh-from-dreamland thoughts disappear.  I have 418 pages of our new book written, Girlfriends.  Of course, probably 50% of it is what English people would call “a crapjob” ~ but that’s OK, first I have to get the whole entire thing down on paper, and we’ll worry about crap removal later on.  I promise, it will be distilled, only the juicy bits will be left when I get done.  It’s almost my birthday and  I feel so grateful to have this passion.


Daddio and Joey-0

And then this . . . digging through my photos, I found this one.   I am SO grateful for these two cutie-pot-pie Leos in my life, the Blog Daddy, John Patrick Stewart Jr. (hi Dad!) and my partner in crime, Joseph Buckminster Hall.  

little family

And I’m so grateful I was ever a part of this group of little people. ♥    


Gladys Taber

I love sharing my birthday with Gladys Taber.  I love being born on the same day as someone who was a light to the world. 


I’m excited that Joe and I will be at the Friends of Gladys Taber meeting in Connecticut in June — I’ll be speaking and signing A Fine Romance and we get to tour her house Stillmeadow for the very first time!


High school

And right after that, I come home to this . . . these are my high school girlfriends (last fall in California) . . . and they are ALL coming to stay in my house for four days in June! I’m grateful I have this to look forward to!  We have stories, we laugh, we have fun!  They are like sisters to me.  I have some house fluffing to do!  (And with my “passion” in full bloom plus old man winter to sweep out the door, this house needs it! 🙂



I’m thankful for this, because this means YOU. 

girlfriendsCounting the blessings of my last year, one of the best of all was going out to meet so many of our Girlfriends.  Look how cute Lucy and Ethel are!  I’m telling you, this was a ball!


in CAA Fine Romance was such a blessing ~ it took me here  (both of those horse pictures are still on the door of my studio, one from Jessie and one from Sydney) . . . and it took us all here   To Beatrix Potter’s house in the Lake District.  M A G I C A L , I almost can’t believe we were there.


A fine romance at Castle CottageAnd tomorrow, on my actual birthday, I get to go to lunch with my best girlfriends here on Martha’s Vineyard ~ flowermaking me grateful for a Spring Birthday ~ the perfect excuse for a girlfriend lunch.   And then we’re all going to the nursery together!  Our nurseries close in the winter, so this will be a treat, our first visit this year!  Sometimes my California girlfriends wonder why I would want to live in a place that has such a cold winter, and this is part of the reason.  It’s  thrilling to go to the nursery for the first time, seeing the first flowers, smelling the warm sun on grass.  It’s a miracle every year.  The more miracles, the better. 

To remember on your Birthday

And this weekend, I’m going to write us a new Willard!  Oh yeah, I think you deserve a birthday present too . . .  make sure your addresses are all up to date.  It won’t go out for about a week and a half, I’ll be sure to let you know.

magicOne more wish, my birthday wish for you is that you go through your days gracefully growing more beautiful and wise, never missing a sunset or the opportunity to count your blessings, I hope that’s how we stay forever young. xoxo Love you . . . Wham, *❊ BAM,✱ whoosh,✶* sparkles *♫*✱•*¨*•.☆.♪•*¨❋**••*¨ ✱*•★.* ♪* ✱ •*¨✸*•.★.♫•*¨☆✱*•*♥. . .  feel that?

aint life grand

D O N ‘ T    F O R G E T    T O 

The little things in life SB

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931 Responses to BIRTHDAY GRATITUDE ♪

  1. Chris Wells Knickerbocker, W TX says:

    QUINOA! Finally made it! Had to go to Fort Worth to buy the Quinoa, but it is made and sitting in the fridge waiting to be taken to work tomorrow. I am widening the horizons of my co-workers. I think they are going to love it! Between Quinoa and your White Bean Salad I am one happy camper. Thank you for being you and sharing so much.
    Glad your birthday was wonderful!

  2. Anna Marie says:

    Happy Birthday, Susan! I am so glad you were born. I love springtime so much! Have a lovely day.

  3. Victoria Miller says:

    Happy Birthday, Susan! I know this is late; however, in my circle, birthday celebrations are known to continue for days. In fact, it is not at all surprising to receive a birthday (or even Christmas) card a month or two after the fact. Different people sometimes live in different time zones, in more ways than one! And what a great way to celebrate a birthday, by treating yourself to a favorite thing to do that you don’t get a chance to do very often. I’m having a birthday later this month; perhaps I shall ride my bike. Something I keep meaning to do, but things always come up! Now, are Girl Kitty and Jack really playing, or is she just thinking, “Hmmmmm….he’s still around…perhaps if I chase him, he’ll get tired of it and go away….” But better to think, finally, they are bonding! Spring there is so beautiful, and kudos indeed to Mrs. Bowditch. I miss Forsythia, even though it wasn’t one of my favorites when I lived back East. However, I’ve never seen it in Southern California, and miss the harbinger of Spring. And crocuses, too! However, there are trees here which have been leafless all winter and now show little new green leaves. In fact, at the local Botanic Garden, Spring is bustin’ out all over! I know what you mean about Spring back east and in the midwest. I’m always reminded of the Disney film, Uncle Remus, where the film is black and white and he is walking down the road, and he begins singing ‘Zip-ah-dee-do-dah,’ and suddenly the film changes to a cartoon creation of Spring, in wonderful color. That to me is Spring back East, and I really do miss it. But can’t do those terrible winters! Kudos to all who endure and brave winter! Know you loved your trip to the nursery with your girlfriends (too bad we couldn’t all come along and help you celebrate!) And delighted to hear you are so far along on the new book. A treat in life to look forward to ~ always a good thing! Happy Spring Birthday…keep celebrating all Spring!

  4. Lynda says:

    (Singing) Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Susan Branch, Happy Birthday to you and many more…………

  5. Linda Sanderson says:

    Happy, happy Birthday Susan! Thank you so much for all the wonderful things you share with us, and thank you for showing us how to make every little part of the day special! I wish you every blessing and am sending my best Spring celebration thoughts to you.

  6. Debra V ~ Southern California says:

    Happy Birthday Susan! So much to look forward to and so wonderful that you are living in the present and are so grateful for your life and the blessings God has given you. I certainly am grateful & blessed by you, your blog and your creative talents that you share with us all. Have a wonderful celebration. Bless you.

  7. Mary Cay Martin says:

    Happy Birthday a day late! As a thank you for A Fine Romance (I’m rereading it for the second time) and introducing me to the Friends of Gladys Taber (I just sent off my check), I would like to recommend three of my favorite authors, who turned me into an Anglophile when I was in my teens. Elizabeth Goudge-my favorites are the trilogy The Bird in the Tree, Pilgrim’s Inn. and The Heart of the Family. Miss Read, who wrote two long running series about the villages of Fairacre and Thrush Green. Elswyth Thane’s best works are a series about Willimsburg, Virginia from the Revolution to World War Two, but a number of her other books are set in England. They are all,more or les, available at Amazon or abe books .

  8. Marilyn says:

    Happy Birthday to you!
    Keep the JOY coming, I love it all.

  9. Jack says:

    I was really wondering if you could provide that casserole recipe for the lamb & biscuit &
    Sauce — we used to have. ?

  10. barbara lassiter says:

    Happy Birthday to you! I’ve been giving my girlfriends copies of A FINE ROMANCE for their birthdays and I would give you one, too, but you already have it! 🙂
    It is the little things that make life BIG!
    Oh happy day! CELEBRATE!

  11. Linda Joan says:

    Happy Birthday to You, Dear Susan!

  12. Faith Rose says:

    Susan I just finished A Fine Romance (I know I am a slow reader!) and I love it! The whole book seems like a long letter from a dear friend. Every page is a work of art, I can feel all the heart poured into each page! I felt like I was everywhere you went! When you said how many days where left till home I was so sad! I love the end when you say all that you learned. The way that you said it hit me so well. I almost cried at the very end when you left England! Before I read your book I wanted to go to England but now I know why I want to go to England.I am definitely going to have a tea party in the river like your friend Siobhan! What a treasure of a friend! This book will be a long time favorite on my list! Thank you Susan for all the heart that you poured into this book.You have touched my life and many others.

    • sbranch says:

      You felt like I felt counting those days! I’m so happy you enjoyed it Faith. Makes me very happy to read this! XOXO

  13. Crystal says:

    I hope you had the most wonderful birthday. It is fun to share a birthday with someone you really admire. I happen to share mine with St. Nicholas and my daughter with one of my favorite inspirational people, Tasha Tudor. I plan to start trying to find Gladys Taber’s books. I am certain since I love everything you create, I will adore her books as well. Enjoy you spring. I cannot imagine living where there is not a true change of seasons. There is nothing like opening the window and the scent of lilac blooms comes drifting in.

  14. Pamala B says:

    Susan, I do hope you had a wonderful birthday. I live to stroll the nurseries. Hope you enjoyed. Many happy returns

  15. A wonderful belated Happy Birthday to you, dear Susan. My husband John shares the same “cake day” with you – as does David Letterman, not a bad group of guys to share a birthday with, in my opinion. John is four years ahead of you. I wanted to post a birthday greeting yesterday, but was up at the crack of dawn – 4 a.m. – to make a happy birthday banner for him with our granddaughter Molly, a creative gal to say the least who loves rising early to follow her creative muse. We made the banner and also trimmed our house near the water in Wells, Maine with streamers, balloons and other festive fun things…had birthday cake in the afternoon and continued the party today with presents and a delicious dinner…all the while thinking of your creative flair that inspires me. Thanks, Susan, and hope to meet you in June at the Gladys Taber event…Happy Birthday and many, many more….

  16. Pat Johnson from Paso Robles, CA says:

    Well, I am back home after helping with 3 little girls & their Mom & Dad get ready for girl #4 – she should be coming out to greet us any day now. My message to you: HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BABY!! I did miss you but knew you had your head down and your brain was in high speed, putting those words down for your new book – how exciting!! Your talent and joy of living encourages me (and I am sure all of us) to do special things in our life as well. The best part is sharing what we have with the people around us and in your case “the world!” My world in Paso Robles is filled with roses – all of my ugly old roses and filled with blooms this year. They aren’t ugly anymore!! I celebrate the beginning of another fabulous year!! Can hardly wait to see what you send our way…….. Sending hugs & a big YAHOO for your birthday (even though I missed it by one day)…….XXXXOOOO

    • sbranch says:

      Our roses are sticks! Sticks with teeeeeeny little buds coming from them. Hope for the future!

  17. Karen says:

    Susan please post the details of your visit to Gladys Tabor’s house

    I live nearby and would love to attend!

    • sbranch says:

      Here’s the information, just scroll to the bottom of this LINK. You can find it (if you need it again) at the top of the blog, there’s an icon that says “ABOUT ME” in the drop down, click on “Gladys Taber Fan Club.” Hope to see you there Karen!

  18. Brenda says:

    Happy Birthday Susan! May your special day be a special as you are.

  19. Sharrieboberry says:

    Happy Birthday, Susan! Birthday celebrations need to last at least a week, right?

    I’d send you a bouquet from my garden–but I don’t know how well it’d travel! I have Irises and Bridal Wreath Spirea, Perrenial Verbena, a couple of tiny Roses, Ajuga, and lots of Mint. Lots of Mint! But it’s nice tucked anong the flowers. Happy Birthday.

  20. Wendy says:

    Happy Birthday to you! Yes, I know my greetings are coming late, but I have been late for all my April birthdays so far. Aaaagggghhh. Where does time go?
    I love the pic of curious Jack; it looks like he wants some time to pore over those mags, right? Perhaps with a nice cup of tea and a crumpet?
    Great post. Great pics, especially the childhood one.

  21. Rebecca W says:

    Good Morning and Happy Birthday (just reading the blog). Hope your day was so very special. I will also celebrate with girlfriends tomorrow my birthday, which is on the 16th. Is it not fun to have a birthday in the spring?

  22. Debbie P. ~ Weedsport, NY says:

    Happy Monday morning, Sue ~
    Wishing you a Happy (belated) Birthday and wishes for a year ahead that is full of blessings for you!
    I was off on a wonderful retreat this past weekend with 3 girlfriends/soul sisters. We stayed in a house on the shore of Skaneateles Lake and experienced nature and the breath of Spring first-hand as we watched the ice melting and shifting on the lake…evidence of a long, cold winter dissolving before our eyes. I thought of you and your love of Spring…and the water….and of girlfriends…and of the inspiration that just wafts off of you and onto everyone who comes to know you…just like the breath of Spring!
    Indeed, if Gladys Taber was a light for the world (and indeed, she was!) then you, dear Sue, are a continuous spark of that light, skipping and jumping into the hearts of us all ~ igniting the flames deep within us and showing us that our greatest blessings are right under our noses, if only we open our eyes and our hearts to see them.
    I’m so grateful and appreciative that our paths have crossed! God Bless!

  23. Mary in Phoenix says:

    Did you know how much you are loved? I guess you do now with 700+ wishes AND a special Irish blessing from your dad 🙂

    Did you know your HS girlfriends would be the start of your amazing Girlfriend Sensation? Just curious … which one had red hair? 🙂

    Did you know we share a birthday month (mine is the same as Queen Elizabeth’s), a birthday tradition of Angel Food cake, and a love of all things April including Sweet Peas? 🙂

    Did you know there’s an April total lunar eclipse to celebrate your birthday? 2 a.m. on Tuesday. First of 4 in a row … and the start of the Blood Moon. 🙂

    Did you know Arizona shares the same spring planting ritual up north? Just spent the weekend planting hollyhocks amid the forsythia and lilacs in Prescott while you were planting your new bulbs. 🙂

    Cheers to a year ahead filled with fresh memories, cherished girlfriends, new adventures, peaceful gardening, innovative recipes, whimsical Willards, and the birth of a novel novel … Ain’t life grand?!

    With ♥ and Gratitude for ALL you do … HB 2 U … xoxo

    “Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music.” ~Ronald Reagan

    • sbranch says:

      Karen is second from the right. She had the most beautiful red hair . . . you can see it on page 12 of the Girlfriend’s book. Once again, I’m reminded with your comments, how connected we all are! xoxo

  24. Janet Reilly says:

    Happy Birthday Susan. I hope it is just as amazing as you are…which is pretty darn amazing!

  25. Candice says:

    Big birthday wishes to you. I love reading your blog — it takes me out of my life in the office to a place of creativity and beauty and is a big inspiration. Wishes for many, many more celebrations!


  26. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Hope Saturday was a special day and that you continue to have a spectacular birthday month- because really one day is not enough time to celebrate living. 😉 You share your birthday with my oldest nephew, Andrew, who is a flyboy in the Navy, and it must be a portentous day because you are two of my most favorite persons-Lights in the world indeed!
    Steep yourself in joy and wonderful moments- you deserve them all!

  27. Karen Lotito from Aquebogue, NY says:

    A very Happy Birthday to you, dear friend! Thank you for your uplifting spirit. You are an inspiration. My mom’s birthday was the 10th; she’s 79 years young. The North Fork of Long Island looks so much like Martha’s Vineyard in so many ways yet it is different. Spring is here – yes, yes, yes! My daffodils and crocuses and forsythia and bloom and very soon we will see the blossoming trees. The birds are happy, twittering away in the trees while my kitties – Cecelia, Snuffles and Boo Boo – are happy to sit on our stone walls and watch them. Boo Boo chatters away. Our dogs are happy to be outside, too. I’m opening the windows and the fresh, breezy air is wonderful. Have a wonderful day and be well and be happy!

    (slightly late – sorry.)
    What a perfectly glorious spring day you had to celebrate too!
    Spring this year does seem rather miraculous after that very long winter we had. The ice only broke off the lake just less than 3 weeks ago – and yes! the flowers sprung right out of the ground and are growing like crazy! The birds are all twitterpated and flying about with bits of grass in their beaks – and the ducks are back! I feel as if I am fully alive again as well!
    Love reading your blog and seeing your pictures! Jack and Joe! Kitties! Bet Jack kitty was rather surprised by this recent turn of events with girl kitty, too! Seems as if his secret dream is coming true, too!
    Happy Birthday dear Susan Branch! And Happy Spring to all!

  29. Janet Hundley - Grafton, WI says:

    Happy Birthday to someone I feel as if I’ve known forever. Thanks for filling my world with your art and inspirational joy!
    Many more happy, healthy years and lots of love to you…

  30. Judy Wooley says:

    Wishing you birthday wishes from the Bluegrass State !!! Did Gladys Taber write in Country Living Magazine??? Judy

    • sbranch says:

      She wrote for Lady’s Home Journal and Family Circle, Country Living came out just a couple of years before Gladys passed away.

  31. Cheryl says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Susan from snowy Michigan. I hopse U had a lovely day of flowers and tea..gleaning insight from the powers that bring your beauty for us to see and teach us how to be the REAL ME..Blessings Abundant!!

  32. Sheron Fitch says:

    Thank you Susan for this cheery, happy blog post! I needed this today (I’m late in getting to read it)–as I was in the doldrums from the school knife killings last week, the Jewish community shootings this weekend, and then today my sweet granddaughter’s school was in lockdown due to a crazed man hiding, with a gun, in the Jr. High bathroom after a domestic dispute. Oh how I love reading your blog and your book “A Fine Romance”….filled with optimism and gratitude for the simple things of life. You bring JOY to me through your art and writing. Thank you!!

  33. Cora says:

    A belated Happy Birthday wish to you. You help us remember all the things in our daily life that makes each day a gift.

  34. Happy Belated Birthday, Susan. Remember, there is no law that says you can’t celebrate the whole week. 🙂 My birthday was in March, but you and I share the same birth year!
    I am so happy to hear that girl kitty and Jack are now playmates. It took a long time for my husband’s aunt’s elderly tabby, Maggie, to get used to the new kitty siblings, Zach and Pasha, but I think they did bring companionship to her in her final year. She stayed a bit aloof but tolerated them, after a year or more of hiding from them. Here is to a rollicking good future for your two loves. (Feline loves, that is. )

  35. Marilena DiLiddo says:

    Happy Birthday Susan! I am so happy to share a birthday with you and Gladys Taber 🙂

  36. erica says:

    And then you were born!

    Mommy’s little helper, big sister, daddy’s girl,
    girlfriend to many, beloved to Joe.
    Rearranging and changing the corner of your world – in fact “our” world,
    one inspiration, watercolor, word and smile at a time.

    To those lives you touch, including mine – I am grateful.

    I wish you a Happy Birthday!

    Erica xo

  37. Sharon says:

    Hope you have a wonderful birthday, Susan. You have given us a wonderful year with A Fine Romance and your blog. Now we have another to look forward to as you start the adventure of a new year. May you be richly blessed as I am for having your words of encouragement and joy in my life!
    My husband and I are headed on a tour this summer that includes your lovely Martha’s Vineyard and I am beside myself with excitement. I’ve made it through much of your website info link but have time ahead to devour the rest!

  38. viv says:

    Belated Birthday wishes….I’ve been doing taxes and working in the garden.
    It’s your birthday, but I feel like I received the presents-your blog update, pictures, music and the recipes. Thanks.

  39. Roseann Copeland says:

    Happy Birthday from Overland Park, Kansas
    My birthday is April 20th and my granddaughter will be 4 on April 21st. She is my favorite birthday gift of all. I, like you, love having a spring birthday.
    A visit to our local nursery is one of my favorite things to do. I have exciting ideas for my garden this spring and I must say you have inspired me. Keep spreading the joy around. Have a blessed birthday YEAR!

  40. Jackie Bienemann says:

    Happy Birthday Susan!!! and Happy Spring, so glad it is here. My Granddaughter Isabella turned 3 today! Thank you for your wonderful blog and so looking forward to your Willard. Love that you are working on a new book! Take care

  41. Ericka says:

    Hope you had a lovely birthday! My birthday is the first day of Spring, and I absolutely love that. My birthday is the first day of Spring on the calendar, but yours is more like the first day of Spring in how it feels, so enjoy! (Also, I’m all about birthday WEEKS, so enjoy your week!)

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

    good afternoon Susan, hello girlfriends. how is the birthday girl today?? I hope you had a wonderful birthday weekend. is everyone ready for the lunar eclipse tonight, are we all ready for the blood red moon, starts at 1am eastern time and 10pm pacific time. I hope I can see some of it, if I can stay awake for it. must be why the cats are acting up and jumpy today, they sense something is going to happen, should be interesting to see tonight. well I have to get the peeps back inside and get busy on the dinner preps, you all have a great evening and watch for the blood red moon tonight. hugs…… 🙂

  43. Heather L. says:

    Happy Birthday Susan! Your life has enriched mine in many ways this year! Thank you again for A Fine Romance and your blog!! You mentioned Gladys Taber on the blog awhile back so I ordered her books from the library! Wow! What a find! I love her! It’s always nice to find a new author you love. I’m going to have to collect her books now…..So happy for you that you get to tour her home!!!

  44. Susan, I hope you had a wonderful birthday! Thanks for being such a blessing in my life…I’m thankful for you!

  45. Rhonda D. says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Susan! I spent your birthday in Halifax babysitting my 18 month old granddaughter. The sun was shining (finally) through the big windows overlooking the backyard, had the patio doors open, the crocuses were up, birds chirping in the trees and shrubs everywhere, beautiful blue sky, leftover chocolate cake from someone’s birthday, tea with visitors, successfully taught my granddaughter to dance and sing “Yummy, yummy, yummy, I got love in my tummy”…though all she could get out was the yummy, yummy, yummy part. A perfect red letter day. Hoping your birthday shone with this same brilliance and presented you with the same special treats that the day offered me. Your life and all you do is like enjoying a birthday every day for us…you deserve a special day just for you. xo

  46. Jennifer S from CT says:

    Happy VERY belated Birthday, Susan!! (one of my daughter’s shares your special day!)

    I so enjoyed reading many of your blessings. 😀

    Just wanted to say that I received my first order from your store last week and there was a beautiful surprise in there—-a wall calendar!! I put it up yesterday next to my bureau and looks so lovely. It brings a smile to my face every time I catch a glimpse of it. Thank you!

    • sbranch says:

      We had a few calendars left over so I thought we might just surprise people 🙂 so happy you like it! Happy Spring, and Happy Birth-day to you for your daughter.

  47. kat DeBlois says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Susan!
    My wish for you is that you grow even more sassy, creative, and lovely with each passing birthday. I’m a Scorpio and all my very best friends female & male always turn out to be ARIES…You’re such a wonderfully fun, and loving bunch (with a wicked sense of humour to boot!)
    Happy Spring

  48. Martha says:

    Dear Susan – Happy belated Birthday!! I just returned from New Orleans (have you ever been?) and I’m getting caught up with e-mails, blogs, etc. My first time in New Orleans and I fell in love with it! I recommend a visit if you haven’t been – the architecture, the music, the people, the weather – all amazing! Happy Spring!
    Martha from CT

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve actually been there twice, more by accident, because the train stopped there overnight! I haven’t seen it the way I ought to, but both times I did go out and see the town. Just not long enough.

  49. Terri McKenzie (Richmond, VA) says:

    Happy belated birthday, Susan!! We almost share one. Mine was yesterday, and all my presents were garden related! So love having an April/Spring Birthday! I think a birthday is a perfect day to count our blessings and also to thank our parents for the fact that we even have a birthday! Much love and joy for the coming year to you and all the girlfriends.

  50. Phyllis Downey says:

    I hope that you had a wonderful birthday!
    I remember meeting you at Borders Bookstore in Towson, MD; you were kind enough to chat a bit and to sign my copy of “Summer”.
    Have a blessed Easter.

  51. Pam says:

    Hi Susan! Happy Birthday to you! Absolutely love this blog post. 🙂 I finished reading A Fine Romance. OH. MY. GOODNESS. I treasure this book! I have been to England twice, but not to the places you visited. I so enjoyed reading about your adventures, enjoyed the photos and artwork…felt like I was there with you! Thank you for sharing your life with us. 🙂 Have a lovely week. xoxo

  52. Jennifer says:

    Like so many others wishes…..Happy Birthday Susan!

  53. Yvonne Bumanglag says:

    Happy belated birthday Susan! I also have April birthday the 13. I just celebrate the whole its my birthday month. Hope u had a wonderful birthday. Thanks for alll the great stories.

  54. Gail Buss says:

    Happy Belated Birthday, Susan. Joe and I were away for a little trip up to South Carolina and we had a lovely time. Sorry I missed your special day! So happy you have gotten so far on your next book. I know it will be super duper!
    I must tell you living in Fl is great but I miss lots of things – especially forsythia, daffodils and tulips! But our azealas bloom 3 times a year which sounds crazy! My favorite part of this blog is the picture of your Dad and your hubby. That is so neat………..a forever together picture! I haven’t written in a while……….too much to go into right now……….but someday. So happy Spring has Sprung on MV. Enjoy every minute and especially those with your high school girlfriends. God’s Blessings for you belated birthday! Hugs, Gail xo

  55. chris consentino says:

    wow. I find it simply AMAZING….how could there EVER be MORE “happy-birthday” wishes in ONE place as there are here, for beloved Susan?????????? wow. quite deserved. again, happy, happpppy!!! as for the weather situation…..quite BRRRRRR and BREEEEZY here in va. wind-chill in dc will be in the TEENS in the morning!!!!!!!!!! oh, dear. and to think of the soft, delicate lil cherry-blossoms….not to mention my lil grandbabies…..oh, can’t the temp be adjusted to about 70ish with nice, soft breeze and gentle sunshine for several days in a row???? oh, well, we must make our own sunshine, yes???

    • sbranch says:

      I feel exactly the same way Chris! My heart is (and I know this sounds rather gooey, but it’s true) laughing all these days, from how happy everyone has made me feel. How did I ever get so lucky. xoxo We are Brrrr and Chilll here too, but bright yellow spots of daffodils and even first unfurling of magnolia give us much hope! Tomorrow we are supposed to have 60 degrees.

  56. Beverly Brewer says:

    Happy belated birthday wishes from the English Rose Tea Room—keep on celebrating! I noticed on the April calendar you wrote “pink moon” for the lunar eclipse, which sounds so much more April-ish and Springlike and sweet—like you!

    • sbranch says:

      Hi Beverly! So happy to see you here! I think about our visit often! xoxo Make sure you are signed up for WILLARD . . . I just finished writing a new one ~ it will go into mailboxes next week. xoxo Happy Springtime to you!

  57. JMH says:

    Dear Susan,

    I didn’t see it on your kitchen table, but might The English Home be among one of your favorite magazines? I thought of your gorgeous book when I read the article in the current March/April issue written by Caroline Zoob who lives in Virginia Woolf’s former country home, Monk’s House. It features so many lovely photos of the home and the gardens. As I read it, all I could think was “I hope Susan has seen this!”. Now I’m in search of her book Virginia Woolf’s Garden. It could be the next best thing to a long walk over the Downs. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      We tried to get to Monks House for National Trust visit but we started out too late and were waylaid. Next time! Sussex is a beautiful part of the country.

  58. Happiest of birthday wishes dear Susan. May all your wishes come true. Our wish came true the day you were born.

  59. Becky says:

    Happy Birthday!!

  60. Margot in Virginia Beach says:

    After two days of driving and three days of searching for my computer cord I am here to hope you HAD a wonderful birthday. We thought Spring had sprung last weekend, but today I am not sure about that. LOL
    Counting my blessings along with you.

    • sbranch says:

      I’m still celebrating although now it’s getting mixed up with Easter and Cadbury’s Coconut Cream Chocolate bars (for breakfast). Extra book-writing energy! xoxo

  61. Ramona Horta-Riedeman says:

    Happy Happy Susan Branch! It’s been so busy here at work and your blog is the most amazingly refreshing respite in my weary day. When I read through all the lines you have written, I feel totally transported to where you are and into the pictures that you post. Here in California, I have never experienced, the fall, winter and spring quite as you have, although my family lived in Kansas City, Missouri when I was little and my dad was in the Air Force and there was snow there. In any case, thank you on the day that you were born for transporting us all to the “world of Susan Branch”. I love love love it! Easter Vacation is coming very soon! Happy Happy Easter as well Susan! 🙂 Ramona from the Central Valley of sunny California.

  62. Happy belated birthday! I so enjoy your books. I’m late to the dance, but trying to catch up. We have so much in common, I know 800 people tell you that all the But we do love so many of the same things. I just ordered the Gladys Taber book The Best Of Stillmeadow. You see I’m playing catch up. Have a beautiful Easter. My hubby gave me a wonderful chicken coop and four hens for Easter. Love that guy. MiMi Lawrence

    • sbranch says:

      And I’m telling the 800 people the exact same thing! 🙂 Catchup is fun, just like discovery, so nice to meet you Mary. Happy chicken raising!

  63. jane lusk says:

    Hi Susan! Happy, happy Holy Week. I am in a bit of a panic. I decided to make your fabulous sounding chocolate sauce as part of my Easter basket surprise. — the one in which you used Hershey’s syrup. I’ve scanned through several past blogs and cannot find it! Could you please remind me where I can find it? The perfect addition, I’m sure! Thank you.

  64. Linda from Lancaster Co. PA says:

    Dear, dear, Susan,
    Happy spring!
    Happy birthday!
    Happy GFs because we get to bond with each other and YOU! on your wonderful blog.
    I know, I know, I haven’t written recently, BUT a day does not go by that I do not think of you (uh oh, double negative—did I say that right?? they should cancel each other out to make a positive—) some time and wonder, “what is she writing in her book? will it have maps? early years recipes? oh I hope so!”

    We had about 6 days of lovely 60-70 degree weather, then rain and some nightly frost alerts, now it’s sunny and I think 50 today–chilly! But I have some lettuce, spinach and parsley out and they have braved the weather! I can see my neighbor’s forsythia blooming from my sun room window. Yes, little signs of spring. Oh, and robins–bob-bob-bobbing along, too!

    Blessings to you dear friend of us all–wishing for you a grand year ahead!

  65. April says:

    A belated birthday gift from me, to you. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      Wonderful! That might have been my life if my Yorkshire ancestor had not left for America! I felt so at home there in the strongest and oddest way. Probably my favorite part of the trip was crossing the Dales. Thank you dear April!

  66. Jody says:

    Congratulations on another beautiful year here on earth. We’re blessed to have you here with us. Thanks for all you do, Susan. God bless you on your birthday.

  67. Gert~Iowa says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Susan! I’m so sorry for the lateness! Our home was full of family, love and laughter, as my daughter, granddaughter and husband of my granddaughter were here from down south!! I got nothing done but love on them!

    It’s always wonderful to see a post from you! And yes, we all have so much to be thankful for!

  68. Happy, Happy Birthday Susan! Wishing you a spectacular year with much success and plenty of blog material! 😉 Isn’t it lovely that spring is finally here?

  69. Ann Beirne says:

    A very belated Happy Birthday to you, Susan! Have been away from my computer for awhile(and actually find that very refreshing!!), so I am now catching up on your blog.

  70. Jack says:

    I remember that day you took the picture of Joe and I …….We (Jeanie) and I were staying
    for a couple days in your little beach house and I was out fishing off the shore for Bluefish
    In the waters of Cape Cod –You and Joe came by to invite us out to dinner at the Black Dog —- We all had a Mahavelous time Dahling !”

  71. Wendy Louise says:

    Hop, Hop, Hap, Hap, Hoppy, Happy, late Birthday and early Easter Susan !
    I just sat down and got on the computer. I’ve been very happily busy with family and friends helping out when ever I can. Now just a little breather until it’s time to entertain for Easter Sunday. We have so much to be grateful for and I just keep counting my blessings one by one especially when I can’t sleep. Before I know it, it’s time to get up ! You and all the girlfriends are in my Thankful prayers every night ! Spring is finally here and the earth smells great so I am out digging in the dirt ! Happy Easter, Happy Spring, Happy Love to everyone ! 🙂 ox

  72. OK Susan I know I sent you birthday greetings days ago but I never saw it posted soooo I’ll just wish you happy Birthday once more. Hope you, Joe and those adorable fur bags have a lovely Easter! Thank God it finally feels like Spring!!

  73. Lisa aka Jessies mom says:

    Susan! We love you so much! Thank you for putting Jessie and Syd(your biggest little fans ever!) in your blog, I am going now to wake up Jess and I just sent a message to Rachel. The girls are going to be so excited! After we left the book signing, Rachel and I had tears in our eyes, the kindness and care that you showed with our daughters will never be forgotten. You are a treasure and YOU make this world a better place. My the bottom of my heart, thank you and Happy Happy Birthday! You made my really tough week a whole lot better!
    PS please say hi to your girl friends we were fortunate enough to be in line and meet them at your signing, what a bunch of great gals!!!

    • sbranch says:

      I was hoping to hear from you Lisa ~ say hello to Rachel and please give my biggest littlest fans big hugs for me! Hoping next week will be much better for you! xoxo

      • Lisa aka Jessies mom says:

        Hi Susan!
        This week is shaping up much better as I am on vacation in beautiful Sequoia National Park, we went to see some of the trees today, OH MY GOSH, absolutely incredible! Tomorrow we will go back for more, what a treat. I will say hi to Rachel and Syd and again thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the kindness you showed our girls. I will give Jess her hugs in the morning and Syd her’s next time I see her.
        Enjoy your spring!

        • sbranch says:

          I Love Sequoia, it must be gorgeous right now. That’s where my family went every summer to camp in tents when I was a kid. I remember a huge log up there called Tharp’s cabin I think, a hollowed out log made into a house. I wonder if its still there. Have fun Lisa!

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

    good morning Susan, good morning girlfriends. just popped in to wish everyone a Happy Easter, hope the Easter Bunny arrives and is good to you all. just have a few minutes then its off to the Lion’s lodge to help with the coloring of all the donated eggs, they ask for folks to donate 1 dozen eggs so they can have the egg hunt each year at the park, and well I got a bit carried away and donated 6 dozen eggs, our hens are laying close to 2 dozen a day so why not share and yes I may donate a few more dozen. I like the Lions, and I love their Lion burgers… best burgers in the valley. never colored as many eggs as they plan to color, so this is going to be fun.. and messy. but had to drop in and say Happy Easter to everyone. have a great day and a great weekend. bunny hugs….. 😉

  75. Linda H says:

    I hope you had one of the happiest of birthdays! The cold winds and gray skies of winter are leaving Northern Michigan as well … saw my first crocus of the season at the post office this morning. Talk about a renewal of the spirit just to look at them!! Happy Easter as well!!

  76. judy young says:

    Hi Susan, I know my comment has nothing to do with this post, but I was just revisiting your house while the Yankee Workshop folks were there photographing your house for the magazine. I love this post. I wanted to ask you if you have ever put the recipe for that wonderful looking cranberry coffee cake on your blog, and if so, which one? It’s a long time to wait until the “Breakfast Book” comes out!

  77. Karen C says:

    Happy Belated Birthday!

    Here’s wishing you only the best for the end of your Birthday week! Everyone should celebrate at least a week for their very special day.
    Happy Easter! Enjoy the upcoming weekend. Hugs! from NC where Spring has sprung!

  78. Nellie says:

    Sending wishes for a blessed Easter, Susan!

    Hoping the shop will have more “Kitty Love” charms very soon!

    xo Nellie

  79. Sheryl says:

    It’s a little late, but I still want to wish that you had a glorious birthday filled with fun, good friends and good food too. You deserve so much because you share everything with all of us. Big Birthday Hug, Sheryl from Chico, CA

  80. Anne Marie Pohl of the countryside of New Richmond , Ohio says:

    Happy birthday, Susan!
    Loved this blog….you have a way of making the change of season feel like such a blessing and a miracle. You express your thankfulness in so many ways! I need to write more things that I’m grateful for in your diary book for 2014. You are a blessing to me!

  81. leannamckanna says:

    Love your birthday thoughts. I have to laugh about Girl and Jack. I think it took Girl 2 1/2 years to figure out you weren’t going to get rid of him so she gave up.

  82. Julie says:

    I used to think I was a little strange for the absolute peace that fills me when I spend time alone (I’ll take that booth by the window please) in a cozy restaurant with a favorite magazine, book or journal. I am so utterly content. One of those simple pleasures. It is nice to know I’m not the only one.

    • sbranch says:

      I always think it’s funny when I read one of those articles about “women alone in restaurants” and how they feel odd or out of place and I just want to tell them, bring a book!

  83. Cheryl Danley says:

    Just wanted to say I hope you had a wonderful Birthday and, guess what??? I just got my dream job!!! I’m working at a plant nursery!!!! Love it!!! I feel like I work in Heaven! I do not take one single step through the greenhouses for granted. If you ever come out west to Boise, ID, I’ll personally give you a tour! 🙂

  84. MARILYN P. STALEY says:

    Susan, my sincere thank you for all you do for us to make our world more wonderful. I love your stories, recipes, photos, blogs, etc. that always bring such joy and beauty into our lives. Thank You.

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