Dearest Girlfriends, Happy Sunday and Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Unmother’s Day too XOXO . . . Happy May!  Here’s a song to celebrate this lovely special day . . .  MUSICA  I have a little story for you . . .

A wise Cherokee grandmother told her granddaughter about a battle that goes on inside people. She said, “My darling, the battle is between the two “wolves” that live inside us all. flowersOne wolf is Evil.  It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false, pride, superiority, and ego.”

“The other wolf is Good.  It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”


The little girl thought for a moment and then asked her grandmother, “Which wolf wins?”

The old grandmother put her hand on her granddaughter’s chin, tipped her head up, looked into her eyes and replied, “The one you feed.” 


heart-border bird


I have the perfect day planned.  First I write to you, then I go bake this blueberry angel food cake to take to a Mother’s Day party at my girlfriend’s house tonight . . .

Light and lemony . . . I’ve made this before, the recipe is below if you haven’t tried it, it’s a perfect cake for spring and you can use fresh or frozen berries.  Rather than separating the 12 eggs yourself, just buy plain egg whites, then it goes together in a snap.  And just think, it’s fat free!


happy spring

And then I call and shoot the breeze with my mom for a while ~ we have exciting family news to talk about . . . my niece had her baby yesterday, a 6 lb. 8 oz. baby boy, her first.  He’s beautiful, would you like to see him?


Karis's new baby boy Isn’t he the perfect Mother’s Day present? For my mom and sister and her daughter, perfect for the whole family. ♥  My dad is going to love seeing this picture! xoxo

baby shoe



Ain’t life grand?  Oh yes!  Our tulips are still going strong ~ and I started my salad garden yesterday, crunchy fresh homemade organic salads, crisp tender leaves from our garden, I can’t wait!  I planted arugula, two kinds of parsley, lemon thyme, rosemary, and three kinds of lettuce so far.  And right now (it’s 6 am here) we have the softest gentlest rain that is going perfectly with my cup of lavender earl grey tea and Anne of Green Gables on TV  . . . it’s also making all my new little plants drippy, immersed in delicious rich compost and very happy.

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strawberry patch

But this is my most exciting thing in our garden right now.  The strawberries jumped out of the strawberry pot where they were originally planted and made themselves at home all over the garden!  Even into the path.  But that’s OK with me.  This looks like a bumper crop ~ and there is nothing like a juicy strawberry fresh from the garden, still warm from the sun.  I’m already thinking about jam and freezing and we haven’t even gotten to strawberry shortcake yet. But we will!



I hope you all have the most wonderful day.  Call all the mom’s you know and spread sunshine . . . and don’t forget your “Other Mother’s” ~ the women who’ve inspired and nurtured you. Forward them this post, they will have a Mother’s Day “card” with Musica to dream a dream on . . .  Sending love to all of you! XOXO


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229 Responses to XOXO MOTHER’S DAY

  1. Rochelle In TN says:

    Dearest Susan,
    Guess what I received from my four darling children for Mother’s Day? Your new book! What a happy present, our whole family enjoys flipping the page on your calendar and reading your pithy little quotes. Great day, indeed. Thanks for making a fun book to enjoy after bed time smuggles are done.

  2. Sherryl says:

    Oh that baby. That beautiful, beautiful baby… sigh.

    Okay, I have to stop thinking about that baby (we all need babies in our lives!) – tell me, how do you keep the bunnies out of your lettuce patch!?!? I need help!

    • sbranch says:

      We have two foot high chicken wire that goes all the way around the inside of the picket fence and that protects the lettuce. Today I saw a bunny do the most wonderful thing. I was hanging clothes on the line out back and he came up right close ~ while I was watching him he reached out, pulled off a dandelion flower on a long stem. He put the stem end in his mouth and munched all the way down until he got to the flower which sat on his nose and mouth for a moment looking so cute, and then, pop, he swallowed it. I said, “Welcome to the neighborhood!” Anything that eats dandelion flowers is a friend of mine. (Just not in the salad garden!)

      • Janet in Rochester says:

        Oh, I was just wondering whether Joe is getting his Dust/Dandelion Buster ready for dandelion season?

        • sbranch says:

          It’s surprising, but we have a lot less of them this year. Right now, any that we had seem to have already lost their heads. So we’re either in deep trouble or not, we don’t know! 🙂

      • Thanks for the beautiful word picture of the bunny with the dandelion on his nose. I always wish I had a camera when moments like that happen, but your description is just as good!

        • sbranch says:

          It was such a perfect image. He was looking at me the whole time, almost as though he knew how cute he was. Little gift-giver.

          • Sara says:

            About that cute little bunny, do you suppose his surprise snack was just to trick you into thinking he would NEVER jump the fence to steal goodies meant for the table? I think he’s not just cute but remarkedly smart! 🙂

          • sbranch says:

            He’s got my number! 🙂

  3. Cindy in CA. says:

    Happy Mother’s Day Ladies ~ may you find hope, peace, and love in the extraordinary, ordinary things you do each day! Many blessings ~*

  4. Barbara says:

    Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Birthday to your great nephew. What is his name?

    • sbranch says:

      They just named him . . . Xavier Henry Jenkins. They don’t let the great aunts vote.

      • Mary in Phoenix says:

        So I’m wondering if there is a Jesuit connection in using this name? Saint Francis Xavier was a Jesuit priest. The name means “the new house”. It’s ranked #83 in popularity in the US (Henry is ranked #37). The hardest thing is how to pronounce it. My daughters’ HS was named Xavier and the nuns there made sure everyone knew “there’s no EGGS in Xavier” 🙂 Such a beautiful baby! “A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on.” Thanks for the lovely Mother’s day gift post … xo

        • sbranch says:

          I’ll have to ask! I’m not sure why they chose that, but we do have a propensity for interesting names in our family. We have Wyler, Paden, Karis, Ruby . . . no mundane Joe’s or Sue’s 🙂

  5. sondra fox says:

    What a wonderful gift for your family Susan. Congratulations on your new baby boy! He’s adorable. He looks like he’s having a beautiful dream. May his life be full of love, contentment, & happiness, as well as a few (just a few) mistakes to build his character. I feel loved everyday, & my family showed me lots of love on Mom’s Day. I’m so blessed, as I hope all of you GF’s are. One of my favorite things to be in this life, is being a mom. Loved every part of it. Oh, there were times when being a mom was challenging to say the least, as when our teenager wrote notes to be excused from school & signed them with my name on the note saying it was OK for her to be excused, seemingly she didn’t think that one through, as there were waaaaay too many notes for one parent to write for one teenager. Then there was the the time I left her off at a girlfriends house, & while driving away, looked in the rear view mirror to see her kissing a boy. She’s was way under age for that to happen, at least in my estimation. I look back on those times & chuckle. At the time, the incidents were major, to my way of thinking. All in all, most of being a mom was a grand experience. Nothing tragic occurred through those years. Thank you Lord. Being a grandmother was even better. How I love each child in our family. It’s great seeing them all develop into fine young men & women, watching them make mistakes & be accountable for them. One of the hardest things for me to handle was seeing our daughter go through piano recitals, often held in huge auditoriums. I’d sit there with butterflies in my stomach, hoping she’d succeed. May all of your problems in child rearing be ones you can look back upon & say to yourself, “hey, we made it over “that” one. & we’re fine, just fine.” (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

    • Janet in Rochester says:

      Hi Sandy! Hey, my mom always said that becoming a grandmother was the reward you earned for making it through Parenthood – LOL!

  6. Anne in Maine says:

    Beautiful post (as always!). I love the story about the Cherokee grandmother. Truly words to live by. Congratulations to your family on your new addition. I was a Mother’s Day baby too. I’m heading to the grocery store to make the blueberry angel food cake. Looks yummy! Thanks for such a happy, happy post. Anne

  7. Anne in Maine says:

    P.S. The baby is beautiful. What a way to celebrate Spring. New beginnings.

  8. sondra fox says:

    A P.S…….forgot to tell you Susan, how much I love the Native American story. That’s one I’ll remember when I need to be ashamed of myself for something I’ve done, & when I need a good talking to. Such a wise story. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

  9. Karen Saunders says:

    Question: Is that cake in one of your books??

  10. martha says:

    What a perfect day! Babies. Strawberries. AND Cake? Who could stand it??

    Tomorrow is my birthday and I ALWAYS spend it with my Mother picking strawberries and making jam. Can. Not. Wait.

    Have a happy, happy day!

  11. Marty from NYC says:

    What an extraordinary blog! A beautiful bit of folk wisdom, a delicious spring cake, the joy of welcoming a new soul to the world, I swear I could even smell the Lilacs that were in bloom.

  12. erica says:

    The wide Spectrum of Mothering:

    To those who gave birth this year to their first child—we celebrate with you.

    To those who lost a child this year – we mourn with you.

    To those who are in the trenches with little ones every day and wear the badge of food stains – we appreciate you.

    To those who experienced loss through miscarriage, failed adoptions, or running away—we mourn with you.

    To those who walk the hard path of infertility, fraught with pokes, prods, tears, and disappointment – we walk with you. Forgive us when we say foolish things. We don’t mean to make this harder than it is.

    To those who are foster moms, mentor moms, and spiritual moms – we need you.

    To those who have warm and close relationships with your children – we celebrate with you.

    To those who have disappointment, heart ache, and distance with your children – we sit with you.

    To those who lost their mothers this year – we grieve with you.

    To those who experienced abuse at the hands of your own mother – we acknowledge your experience.

    To those who lived through driving tests, medical tests, and the overall testing of motherhood – we are better for having you in our midst.

    To those who have aborted children – we remember them and you on this day.

    To those who are single and long to be married and mothering your own children – we mourn that life has not turned out the way you longed for it to be.

    To those who step-parent – we walk with you on these complex paths.

    To those who envisioned lavishing love on grandchildren, yet that dream is not to be – we grieve with you.

    To those who will have emptier nests in the upcoming year – we grieve and rejoice with you.

    To those who placed children up for adoption – we commend you for your selflessness and remember how you hold that child in your heart.

    And to those who are pregnant with new life, both expected and surprising –we anticipate with you.

    This Mother’s Day, we walk with you. Mothering is not for the faint of heart and we havereal warriors in our midst. We remember you.

    By Amy Young (messymiddle.com)

    • Barbara says:

      I so love this.

    • Diane says:

      This is one of the most beautiful poems I have ever read. I think it helps all of us to acknowledge these circumstances, especially around Mother’s Day. Thank you for posting it.

  13. Cindy A. says:

    Just got caught up on this post, the two before it, and Willard. I’m pumped! Loved all the flower photos and the recipes. I’ve got a cabinet full of various teas, but it wouldn’t hurt to buy and try some of your favorite as well. Tea is one of those things that helps to feed that good wolf in me. I must admit to getting a bit on the grumpy side if I miss more than a day of tea drinking. If I’m addicted, I’m sure it’s a good addiction.

    Thanks so much for the beauty you bring into our lives. I do so look forward to the release of your next book.

  14. laurie says:

    such a beautiful post, yummy as well, I never thought of buying just egg whites, thats a great idea!!! A baby born on Mother’s Day you can’t get a better gift than that can you , an what a sweet heart, I love the way strawberries spread their love!!!

  15. salve says:

    Best gift to give a Mom – a Baby! A beautiful baby! Happy Mother’s Day! What nice hat, is it crochet or knit, I wonder if you could tell me please. We do baby stuff at work for donation each year – whatever we make – blankets, hats, etc. – goes to a charity in need. Thank you.

  16. Diana says:

    A beautiful baby boy. Oh what a wonderful excuse to stay in a rocking chair just a little longer, to hold and squeeze him, and smell that wonderful baby smell, to singing silly made up lullabies and reading stories as much as you want. As a mother of three now grown sons, what wonders to come. Congrats on this miracle. Hope all the girlfriends had a wonderful day yesterday. We celebrated Mothers a Day and May birthdays at our home. Had most all of the family together except my youngest son now living too far away in Texas, but did get to talk with him and got some beautiful Texas tulips from him. My other two hearts(sons) were here as well as my mom and two sisters and brother and nephews and a few surprise guests. Life is grand. Today is recovery day for me. Ahh. Nothing better than home and family. Thanks Susan again for sharing your life and talents. You are a blessing !

  17. Beth Keser says:

    I love Anne of Green Gables! A perfect day when my kids were young was to lay around all day and watch the whole series!! Great memories! Your new great nephew is adorable!

  18. Stephanie Semro says:

    The greatest gift for mothers day is a beautiful new addition to add to the family. It doesn’t matter if you’re a mother, grandmother, aunt or great aunt its always exciting and such a blessing. Congratulations to your whole family and he is absolutely gorgeous and will bring so much joy.

  19. Elaine Osborne says:


    You were put here on earth to bring joy to everyone who is lucky/blessed enough to find you! Love, love, love all of your posts. Your lovely photos, quotes, and blogs are so life-affirming! May the joy you bring to others return to you many times over. Happy Spring, Happy May, Happy Days!!!


  20. Congratulations on your new lil great nephew! What a cutie! The timing could not be better for a new Mom. Loved the cake recipe. How can I lose weight when all I want to do is make and eat cake? I loved the Indian wolf story. Wow. I must remember which one to feed. Thanks Susan for another uplifting post.

  21. Carrie says:

    What a lovely newsletter to read – it made me think of the ways I could care for myself this summer!

  22. Ann Jane Koerber says:

    Susan, you never cease to amaze me! What a great surprise blog! Congratulations on the new addition to your family. You inspire me to at least start some aspect of gardening (maybe tomorrow)…..I am enjoying my few perennials that keep coming back in the Spring to encourage me to have a hand a gardening. The cake looks delicious and I shall try it someday. But for now, for right now, I want to thank you for sharing your spirit, your dreams, your talents, your life with us. xoxo

  23. Arlinda says:

    Oh my! May God bless sweet Xavier. Congratulations Susan XO

  24. Deb W says:

    Look what I found!!!! youtube.com/watch?v=zkwTsDMH8dI&index=4&list=PLkW9P8cSHS0Ife6bXTb0k9THS-iy6Whv3

    I don’t know if you have ever seen this, but at about 6:00 in the video, they visit Beatrix Potter’s Hilltop Cottage garden!!!! Besides being a lovely walk down memory lane for you, I thought – considering what you DID there – you might appreciate how Beatrix said she aquired most of the plants for her garden. 🙂 And when the camera lingers on an English Robin, it reminded me immediately of Emma Bridgewater!

    • sbranch says:

      She’s a thief! My kind of girl! You have no idea how that took a load off my shoulders! Thank you Deb!

  25. Helen says:

    Thanks for reminding me about the two wolves. This is one of my favorites.

  26. Hello,
    I just love the photo of the strawberry plants. So much fun, gardening is just so much fun. 🙂
    A dear friend of mine ~ her daughter had twins on Sunday! A true Mother’s Day blessing.

    xx oo

  27. Jan says:

    Congratulations on the new little one. How precious! I got a wonderful surprise for Mother’s Day. My daughter showed up Saturday from out of state with our two little granddaughters. Got to do some shopping, story reading, game playing, bird feeding, tea drinking – all of those Mom and Grandma activities. We had a great time. That blueberry cake looks yummy! Would really like to try making it. Am looking at planting lettuce again this year but would like to plant a different kind. Have been buying a longer leaf kind that resembles the shape of celery. Would like to try growing it if I can find the seeds. Guess I need to find out what kind it is first. Ha! Thanks for the recipe! Have a great day!

    • sbranch says:

      So fun to try new things in the garden. You never know. I just planted rhubarb for the first time. Love the huge leaves!

      • Elaine in Toronto says:

        Susan, you are going to love rhubarb. You can almost see it growing. My husband picked the first stalk this morning. He chops it very fine and adds it to his oatmeal. I can’t wait to have enough to make rhubarb crisp.

      • Jan says:

        My parents and grandparents always had rhubarb in their gardens. Mine is a start from my Grandma’s. It makes great sauce and pies. Can freeze it too, for use later. The leaf is supposedly poison. Did you see the recipes using rhubarb in Yankee magazine?

        • sbranch says:

          YES! I grew it a long time ago, but for some reason we haven’t had it. Happy to get it back. The first year you can’t take a harvest, but that’s OK, you get to look at the leaves!

  28. debbie says:

    There is so much goodness in this post….the story, the cake and most of all that sweet baby boy!!! I wish you a belated Happy Mother’s Day. You are one of the women who have inspired me so much!!! xoxo Debbie

  29. Teresa says:

    Hi Susan,

    I wanted to let you know, I am not receiving your posts in my email inbox. I have always received them and noticed I was not getting them. So when I went on your website, I could see that you had posted. This is also a problem with many cooking blogs I subscribe to. As I understand it, it is a widespread problem among bloggers. Have you had others tell you about not receiving emails? I think it is with FeedBurner. Some bloggers I follow have had to change to a better, paid service to rectify this.

    • sbranch says:

      Interesting. Yes, we have had others just recently, but yours is the first to mention that it might be widespread. Thank you so much Teresa, I sent your comment to Kellee and we’ll see if she can figure it out.

  30. Loved this post, the Thomas Moore quote, your new nephew… the beautiful baby Xavier….the cake looks heavenly….when I need a “pick me up” all I have to do is come to your blog and I feel so inspired! I am anxiously awaiting your new book, also. Thank you so much for all of the inspiration and positivity you share with the rest of us.
    Kathy from New Albany

  31. Christie Ray says:

    So lovely, as always, and that darling baby in that sweet little hat! I stand at attention these days when I spy something knitted or crocheted…Like a dog pointing at a quail, or duck, or whatever they point at…as I have been knitting/crocheting myself into a cocoon I may never come out of;) I have found the sweetest knit shop, where my new friends there, and I, gather and drink tea, and talk, and knit away the hours. Such a special place, and I can’t help wanting to say thank you. My goodness, you fill us up with such wonderful things and photos of places we think we can only imagine…and then when we find those places, why, we’re just over the moon! Last night (errr…actually 2:00 this morning)…I was summoned to little girl’s room. she couldn’t sleep. she had to sing her songs…We aw Wiv in a Wewwow Submarine and Good Ship Wowwipop. Well…had to tell you, she’s certainly a future girlfriend…The Beatles AND Shirley Temple!
    Making plans for MV around Grand Illumination week, so I’ll want to visit that darling Knitting shop you posted about. (And …I’m so glad I don’t have to worry anymore about opening a shop, either, since I found one here. Whew. Mark that off the list of things to do;)
    Have a hap hap happy day, Great Aunt Sue
    (and I’ve had my fresh blueberries with granola and yogurt this morning…sooo…another thank you for that brilliant delicious idea)
    Christie Ray from Franklin Tennessee

    • Christie Ray says:

      P.s. Back to knitting my daff-a-dilly yellow linen tea towel. Its color is an exact match to your adorable tea tin:)

    • sbranch says:

      I don’t think I need to tell you to “Have a Happy Day,” Christie, something tells me that’s already a done deal! xoxo

  32. Teresa says:

    Hi again Susan,

    Thank you for your response and for forwarding my comments to Kellee. You might want to refer Kellee to one of my favorite blogs, melskitchencafe.com. Specifically, there is a recent post on a lemon chicken pasta with broccoli recipe. In this post, she talks about the email problem and, in the comment thread, explains how she fixed it. She had a lot of people affected and changed services (although the service is no longer free). Mel and I were corresponding on this problem. First she tried deleting my subscription on her end, then I resubscribed via email, but it did not fix the problem. After researching, she was forced to do more, and I was so happy it was resolved for her. I hope other bloggers can fix things as well as we all love to receive our posts!!! Thanks for looking into this.

    • sbranch says:

      I have my true computer wizard person looking at it now. Hopefully he’ll find a way around it. Thank you for the alert Teresa, I’ve passed all of your comments on to him.

  33. Shanda says:

    Dear Susan,
    I haven’t commented on your site before and I can’t believe you may actually read my words! 🙂 I’ve been enjoying your work since I was newly wed, when someone gave me your cookbook “Vineyard Seasons” at my bridal shower. I remember many quiet and sweet moments studying all of your books, being inspired by the art, quotes, and suggested little tips for living. Thank you! I also saved the article which was written about you in “Creative Workspaces” magazine (I think that is the title of it, anyway!). I love how you are part of a big family of siblings. My husband and I have seven children ranging in ages from 17 on down to almost-four.
    I enjoy your blog now, too. This post was lovely, congrats on the new baby in your family and thank you for the Mother’s Day wishes.
    God Bless. ~Shanda from CT

    • sbranch says:

      Hi Shanda — oh yes, I love to read everyone’s comments! It’s nice to hear from you — seven children! I hope they were good to you on Mother’s Day — I know you deserve it! 🙂

  34. Sara says:

    Wonderful blog, Susan! I love how your mind works…you touched on on so many things and everyone brought a smile to my face. Not long ago, I happened on my mother’s two-piece angel food cake pan, which I had tucked into the back of a cabinet, because, after all, it couldn’t be as good as mine. Was I wrong! The angel cake, which had the old-fashioned look (wider and not quite as tall), turned out fantastic! So, your blueberry version will be the second cake I’ll make in Mother’s pan. I have to admit I’m not a particularly good made-from-scratch cake maker–I’ve had some frighteningly funny looking cakes, which have elicited many a guffaw and caused my kids to tell their friends that I make great “monster” cakes. But let me tell you, I’m expecting them to dub all future cakes I make in Mother’s pan as truly ‘angelic’. 🙂

    Inspired by your previous blog, I picked lily of the valley and a sprig of lilac to place around the house in some of my antique vases. I had no more gotten the first vase placed on the piecrust table beside my favorite living room perch, when I heard a plunk and turned to see a mini-waterfall splashing on the lower shelf and Diddy flying off the couch toward my bedroom to hide. “Brat Cat,” I yelled as I grabbed a towel to clean up the mess. And then I had a lightbulb moment and decided to place the delicate vases Diddy and Boo could get to inside a little white teapot and a rose-covered coffee cup. Guess what, they’re still standing! (As you know, it’s extremely difficult to outsmart two cats–I’m convinced they’re in cahoots most of the time–but hope springs eternal!)


  35. Elizabeth says:

    Good morning, Susan

    Not a post for your wonderful blog but did you know the Queen Mary 2 arrives in NY Harbor tomorrow morning…..early. It generally says 9 am arrival but I’ve found it arrives as early as 5 or 6 (for those of us up at that time) yay!!

    Love the pictures of lilacs, aren’t they wonderful?

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve been watching!

      • Elizabeth says:

        I think we missed it. Started watching at 4:30 and the satellite showed it near the bridge, but never did see it. Oh well, I expect it will leave without us this afternoon. Have a great day.

        • sbranch says:

          I got an email yesterday from some people (who read A Fine Romance) who wanted to tell me they will be on the boat when it leaves! So exciting!

  36. chris consentino says:

    well, the mother’s day “visit” has been wonderful to savor and enjoy all week long! all I can say is…as Susan has nicely pointed out in her messages elsewhere…EVERY day is Mother’s Day!!!! I have always said and felt and lived that concept. this mother’s day was extra-special as it was the first one I got to spend with our grandbabies….and it was wonderful !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! our hearts, they do soar!!!! many good wishes to that sweet new baby for a long, happy, healthy life!!!! he is gorgeous!!

  37. Rosanne Murphy (Oregon) says:

    Last night the moon was sensational!! Your calendar tells me it was a Flower Moon. Lovely! Re the sky: I found a kit called Knit the Sky. I got one for my girlfriend who moved to Indiana and one for myself. Each day we will look at the sky and knit a row of the color that day, mixing blue, white, grey, and after a year will have a scarf. We meet up once a year, so will start and finish them together. So, every day we will look to the heavens, think of each other, and be creative. I like it.:)

    • sbranch says:

      How darling, knit the sky, be sure to look at it just before sunset for some extra excitement!

  38. deborah t. norling says:

    WHAT A SWEET AND BEAUTIFUL BABY BOY! Hope he gets to visit you sometime…and wonder how Jack will react with another baby boy in the house ??

    • sbranch says:

      I think he will sniff him all over and then rub him. That’s the usual m.o. with any new guest!

  39. Margot in Virginia Beach says:

    I got to spend Mother’s Day with my sons this year. First time with both in 11 years. Thanks for the recipe!

  40. Terri says:

    How perfect is that! A new baby – and a new mommy — in the family, just in time for Mother’s Day. He’s adorable! Congratulations to all.
    We’re in strawberry shortcake mode here…perhaps a little too much, ahem. I’ve been trying to tell myself that putting a dollop of yogurt instead of cream on top, makes it so much healthier, though. ; )

    • sbranch says:

      More fat in our diets is getting to be popular again, you’re just the leading edge!

  41. Wendy Louise says:

    Ohhhh My Heavens……….My wonderful husband man of mine just surprised me for our 32nd Wedding Anniversary that he is taking us to your wonderful island for a long weekend ! I don’t know how he arranged it with out me wriggling it out of him, nothing gets by me ! He did it, he really did it. We are going to your heaven of an island Martha’s Vineyard ! We are bring our car and bikes so we can explore all over with picnic lunches ! Paul has been a few times, I was only once. You’ll never believe where, I was at Ernie Boch’s home ! Paul had a guy that worked for him and he had a boat, we were on it for a day and he knew Ernie, he was a customer of his business. Well,he said let’s go meet Ernie, so we went ( This was in the 80’s ). We had our three little children with us and our friend had his two little ones. We got off at Ernie’s dock, we met Ernie and he took us on a tour and the children were amazed, they got to meet “Chico” the llama ! The famous Chico that did all the car commercials with him. He had other llamas to keep Chico company and they were just wandering around his place, happy as could be ! That was my funny visit to Martha’s Vineyard. Now I get to go to experience the Romance of it all, I can’t wait. I think you will feel my excitement when I am on the island, so if you start to get a tickled feeling you’ll know I am riding my bike with my best friend all over your island ! Heaven I’m in Heaven ! I’ll be sure to visit Nancy Luce’s grave and say a little prayer ! OXOXOX

  42. Tina Mandeville says:

    Hi, Susan!

    So nice of you to send along such sweet Mother’s Day wishes! In being a Mom yet having lost my Mom 5 years ago, it’s a day that has become understandably rather bittersweet since. Love the yummy recipe! Congrats on that new, beautiful bundle of boy that has graced your family! I so appreciate the glimpse you give to springtime blossoming on the island! So glad it has sprung! Also wanted to say that that I can’t quite tell if your new book project was something you had planned or if it just “came to you” one recent day – I missed the memo if you had said – but I am sooooo excited about it! I just cannot wait!! I can only imagine what you have in store for us!

    • sbranch says:

      It’s sort of been in the back of my head, but “how to do it” was my question. I think I’m figuring it out.

  43. Patricia Harris says:

    The picture of the lemon cake roll is beautiful, but lilies-of-the-valley are highly poisonous! I enjoy your blog!

    • sbranch says:

      Yes they are, I was careful, they were very fresh, tied together, and lifted off in one piece, so we all survived!

  44. Shirley Graham says:

    I have your Spring and Autumn cookbooks (my daughter does too) and love them. My daughter & I especially love the fall and pumpkins! Thank you for the joy we get from the drawings and recipes! Would love some more stickers so will keep my eye out for them. Thanks again!

  45. Barbara Thomas says:

    I love love love Lily of the Valley! I remember a huge bed of them underneath my bedroom windows as a young girl. The fragrance takes me back. I cannot seem to get them to grow in California though and it makes me sad. Your picture was most welcome!
    Fondly, Barbara

    • sbranch says:

      I never saw them until I moved here, so they probably need a winter to make them grow.

  46. ann says:

    Thank you!!! I’ve been looking for old copies of your books and now I can have brand new ones! I want a stack like yours….

  47. Carol says:

    Susan, I have ALL your books. Are you going to continue with “season” books? You know, like the Autumn book? We need a spring, summer, and winter book! I’m addicted!!!

  48. Well, I made that Angel dream cake…but need some help! All the blueberries found there way to the bottom of the pan instead of being swirled into the whole cake. I did swirl it with a knife before the baking. So the top stuck a bit when it came out of the pan but it still looked ok and tasted great…more like a top layer of blueberries. Can’t be altitude since you are at sea level too;) Can you tell me your secret for getting the blueberries to swirl throughout?? Thanks a million.

    • sbranch says:

      That’s never happened to me. I’m not sure … my berries just mixed in and were caught in the batter and stayed that way. I folded them in, poured the batter into the ungreased pan, swirled the knife, and put the cake in the oven. Were your berries wet? Not sure why that would matter, it’s just a thought. I wish I could help . . .

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