HAPPY SEPTEMBER GIRLFRIENDS, Rabbit-Rabbit, one day late, but with heart!  MUSICA


Hello Everyone

fall leaves

 Are we ready for a change of seasons? 

leaf garland

We are so ready!  Did you all see the new fall leaf garland Janie designed for us?  She was inspired by the garland of leaves I put in my window every year ~  but hers is going to last a lot longer than mine do!  They do not curl and will not crumble!♣ 

Books came in!

SO!  This was our big excitement last week.  AUTUMN BOOKS!  Arriving at our Studio in California.  


The first book under our own Spring Street Publishing imprint.  We are so proud. Our first child.  And she is a beauty.  All ribbons and curls, oooh what a girl . . .



For all of you still waiting for yours, they are on the way!  And you are the very first to have them. They aren’t in any bookstores yet, nor are they on Amazon.  JFY.  Just for you. Because we like us best.


leavesHere’s Sheri, Kellee and Robin, with Alfredo behind the camera, getting the books ready to ship, putting a signed bookplate into every copy before they go out.  They’re all gone now, because this is the MOST hard working crew (Thank you Everyone!), so if you haven’t gotten yours yet, look for it today or tomorrow!  

About a half an hour ago an email went out from our Studio to all our favorite Independent Bookstores to tell them about AUTUMN, so hopefully you’ll be able to find copies in your local stores in time for Thanksgiving!  Fingers crossed.  If you want your bookstore to carry my books and calendars, be sure to tell them, they have so many things on their minds these days, they just forget.  I think we know exactly how they feel!


JackThis is my To-Do list this morning: 1. Pack two hundred more pages of my new book to send to  my dad (Blog Daddy) to read and edit. (done!)  2. Pack a thank you gift to Jessica and Bob for watching the kitties when we went to Nantucket. (done!) (Jessica sent this picture  via phone while I was over there.)  3. Sign as many bookplates as I can.  4. Go get my yearly blood test.  ✔5. Sign and send updated contracts for Time Factory for the 2016 calendars and for Publications International for the mailnew Mom Tell Me Your Story and Recipe Books. (done!)  6. Send new 2016 covers for all five calendars to Time Factory for their catalog layouts. (done!)  7. Read over schedule for Rhode Island PBS co-hosting appearance next Tuesday night (not to make total fool of self).  8. Send requested photos and bio to stores for signings in November.    It’s like my Back to School list.  Lots too do, but this time of year makes me WANT to do it.

leaves and p.s. The book girls, the book.  It’s really my thing now, more than anything else. I’m working hard to choose just the right words.

I would have also added #9 to the list: Work in the garden, but I changed my mind because apparently we are going out with a bang here on Martha’s Vineyard, weatherwise, it seems, this is what it looks like outside this morning:

IMG_5443 . . . drippy and dark, but it’s not raining. I wish I could tell you the sprinklers were hitting the door, but that’s not it either. It’s supposed to be 80° here today, we’re luckier than Boston, they have the same humidity we have but it’s 90° up there.  So I am inside for the duration.  With my little cool boxes of air conditioning keeping me happy.


Isn’t this gorgeous?  I can just about smell these flowers, and feel those clouds overhead, and breath that misty air while standing on that bridge. We have a lot to do between now and next Spring, but we are really trying to have everything under control so we can go there  and take you all (virtually, I have to say, not to start any rumors I may have to explain to Joe) to Scotland via England and the Queen Mary 2, in May. Are you ready? The thought just sends a chill through my whole body. I hope we can do it!!  Fingers crossed!


I’ve been doing a little investigation to see what we might be getting ourselves into, and I like what I’m finding, just look how beautiful this place is!


To drive on this road, past that little white house, stopping for sheep to cross, listening to old MUSICA, willy nilly, with no schedule nor rhyme nor reason to the day . . . this is my idea of nirvana.  


This too.  Walk over this bridge?  Please.  Would we not love this?  I think we would.  So we are trying.


My dad is doing the first edit of the book right now (the most important one, he one with the in it ~ you all know how good he is with words).And on September 14, I plan to send the whole thing to the “real” editor to see where we stand. Also on my To-Do list is an educational adventure which I’m doing in the evenings after my day of writing and painting is done. It’s important that I understand the people when I get to Scotland so I can eavesdrop in the pubs and find out what’s on the menu without saying, “huh?” all the time. From what I hear, in some places the accents are quite strong and it’s not always easy.  So I have accepted the additional burden of attuning myself to the Scottish accent and maybe a bit o’ slang while I’m at it. You ken?

OutlanderAye, it’s a heavy burden but I found the perfect way to make it not only bearable, but a pure pleasure.   Have any of you read Outlander by Diana Gabaldon?  I loved the Jamiebook (it goes back in time from the 1940’s to the 1740’s and is wildly romantic) so when I heard they’d made it into a movie for cable TV, I actually had to do the unthinkable (because of those ridiculous “packages” you have to buy), and sign up to get Starz, just so I can watch Outlander.  I had to.  For science.  It’s my back-to-school project.  And, shockingly, it only added $10 to my monthly bill.  So I’m glad I did it ~ for more reasons than one, as I’m sure you can see. #1. It’s working, The movie is filled with people with strong accents, and I’m beginning to understand them ~ can even speak a little of it to my bathroom mirror and whisper into Jack’s pointy ear that he’s my little Sassenach.

Highlands of Scotland

But #2, the movie has been wonderful. A wee bit more violent kissthan I like and there seem to be naked people here and there, but what else is new.  I just look the other way while they bandage up his shoulder, don’t see much of the jousting, and hope for some kissing.  And in the meantime I turn to Joe and say, “what’d he say?” less and less all the time.  So when we get there, maybe we’ll be ready. I love my school and my teachers are never boring.

Oh, we are in for a good time . . . and between now and then we have a lot to look forward to . . .


In late October we go home to California, crossing the country our favorite way, by train, packing up our teapot for our room to all trainswith a view . . . It’s going to a short visit because I have a book to finish, but any visit will be wonderful ~ I’m homesick for my family ~ so we are going.  We’ll have a week at my Dad’s and another at my Mom’s, and one more in San Luis Obispo. And of course, we will bring you along via the Blog, and there will be Twitter from the Twain for those of you who are on Twitter and updates on FOSB Facebook too!

Downton AbbeyAnd then, we’ll be home for the holidays, and then we’re THERE Girlfriends, back to where it all began!  Our little English relatives, to see what they have been up to.

But before we do all of that, how about a few memories of summer?  Because it’s not over yet . . .

clam lightsThere’s still time for a little dinner under the twinkle lights…

June 2010 142

Out in the moonlight in the garden ~ because as much as we love our books and movies, we want some of our memories to be real and star us in lead roles. The following will be our cast and crew . . .


The most wonderful sunsets . . .

August 2010 005

Quiet evenings at the beach . . . watching the sun slip under the waves . . .


Seeing the whole sky try to follow it down . . .


And then it’s us, who follows it home . . .


Or maybe we find someone else’s deck to park ourselves for a while.


Good Night Sunset


and Hello


Moon Rise . . .


I know you’ve been following the moon too this summer . . . what a treat she’s been, eh?  Aye, a freebie beyond compare.


flirtatious too . . .


I found this on someone else’s website and I thought, that’s the truth. I could never in a hundred years get tired of this.

The moon belongs to everyone artwork Susan BranchExcept now.  No . . . kidding, I’m just going to see if I can put a few more check marks on my To-Do list.  BTW, I just opened my back door ~ Martha stopped by to drop off some DELICIOUS vegetarian chili she just made (extra for us) ~ when the door opened my glasses instantly fogged up.  That should tell you something. It’s a wall of wet heat outside my delightfully air conditioned room.  The grocery shopping part of my to-do list will have to wait until some other day!  

Have yourself a wonderful day dearest ones. Do something sweet for yourself and the ones you love. Maybe something cold on ice at the end of the day?  I will too.   XOXO 

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452 Responses to HAPPY SEPTEMBER

  1. Pat Johnson says:

    There are so many things that I can’t wait for!!! The trip sounds fabulous which brings me to my trip I will be departing on tomorrow morning – Jackson Hole, WY for a week at Moulton’s Ranch Cabins – directly across from the Grand mountain range. I am soooo excited. Traveling alone and with much music to keep me happy. Yes, a few books on CD too. After the week there – I travel on to Newport, Wa and my little cabin for as long as I wish! I got the Autumn book and love it – still! Congrats on the first edition from the new publisher! There are just too many things going on to keep up with. I am happy to see you are still stopping long enough to enjoy what is around you. See you in November in Cayucos!! So proud of you still……XXXXOOOO

    • sbranch says:

      I’m proud of you too Pat, you are our pathfinder! Have a wonderful time!! It’s going to be BEAUTIFUL up there! xoxo

      • Jack says:

        Oh yeah , it was Louis and Clark and Pat Johnson…never a dull moment and you know a moving target is harder to hit — so keep on keepin’ on roving and rovin’

      • sondra fox says:

        Hi Pat, I just checked out the Moulton Ranch. When anyone mentions Jackson, I’m interested. We spent many summers there, especially at Jackson Lake (Yellowstone), which isn’t too far from where you’ll be staying. Jackson Lake has a tour boat that you can take. Pleasant excursion. Mother Nature at her best. Moulton Ranch looks fantastic. Have you heard about the melodrama theatre in Jackson? It’s a hoot. Also of interest is the Million Dollar Bar. We always took a ride around the area, near dusk to see all the animals. Beauty surrounds this wonderful area. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

  2. Julie Marie says:

    Helloooo Susan!… do I sound excited???… I am!… my 10th anniversary Autumn book JUST arrived!!!… I have not even opened it yet, as I want to brew a nice cup of tea to go with it when I sit down on the couch… I just checked my blogs, and saw yours and had to tell you how excited I am!!!… the Seasons have already begun to change here in my little town of Centerville in Utah and I am loving every minute of it!… I have your first edition of Autumn, so now it has a new friend with your new one… you have shared so much exciting news here today, so happy for you and Joe getting to go on another adventure next year!… and taking us all with you even!… when you are in San Luis Obispo this October I hope you are stopping by to visit my sweet cousin Sharon Lovejoy again… you two are my MOST favorite ladies ever!… I will come back later and look at everything again, but right now… “Autumn” is waiting to be opened, opened, opened!… much love, xoxo Julie Marie

    • sbranch says:

      So happy Julie Marie, and lucky you to have a little fall in your town. We had it most of August, but it seems to have left town these last couple of days. Yes, we’ll definitely see Sharon!

  3. Stefanie Price says:

    I so relish each and every post on your blog! Sometimes I save them…for just the right time…when each word can be savored — each imagine fully painted in my mind’s eye…what an incredible gift you have!….Thank you for sharing it with us all! Looking forward to future armchair travels with you!!!

  4. We’re going to Scotland, we’re going to Scotland…!! My Autumn book came in the mail today, but I’m saving it until it’s not so hot outside. I’m in my sewing room working away on some autumn quilts to go along with your wonderful book. Isn’t air conditioning grand?

  5. Jackie P says:

    Hi susan,

    Congrats on the 10th anniversary release of Autumn. It has been in my collection for, well, 10 years! Love it.

    I’m glad we signed up for Outlander too! (Unthinkable, but necessary.) I’m still learning the accent, use “closed captioning” so that my dearest husband can follow along. I’m hooked.

    The humidity has been thick here in southern NH, but it is sunny and lovely when viewed from the comfort of an air conditioned space. My geraniums are just huge this summer — will be sad to seem them go when the weather turns.

    Be well.


  6. Lacy Province says:

    Looking forward to cooler days & evenings here in the Northwest (Oregon). It has been much to hot this summer for both us & our pup-dogs. I’m ready for autumn leaves, brisk evenings knitting by the fire and anything with pumpkin spice . . . sigh.

    Thank you so much for sharing your comings & goings with all of us. It gives my spirits a lift and inspires me to create loveliness in my own home.

  7. Cindy Boggs says:

    Oh, Susan! Scotland!!! I am so excited! My husband and I were so fortunate to spend a week there last year during a tour of the British Isles. We never could decide which country was our favorite, but Scotland was right up there! I cannot wait for “Falling in Love with the Scottish Countryside” (or some derivation of that) in the future 🙂

  8. sondra fox says:

    You’re here, you’re here! It’s a miracle of miracles that you ever have time to write your blog. Looking at your “to do” list made me tired. The heat here in CA has also worn me out. It’s a bit cooler (just a bit) here today. I couldn’t survive without air conditioning. I go outside at sundown to do yard things.

    I leave for Scotland, Ireland, Netherlands, Iceland, & England on the 21st of this month. I, like you, loved the “Outlander,” book, as well as the other books in the series. Haven’t seen the movie as yet. Yes, the book really leads you on to wanting to visit Scotland. I’m going on a cruise & I know we won’t have enough time to really explore Scotland the way I’d like to.
    On to fall, which I’m really looking forward to. Summer is just way too hot for me. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

    • sbranch says:

      It’s going to be a lovely trip Sondra, you’ll get the lay of the land and know just which places you want to go back to!

      • sondra fox says:

        Like you Susan, I get concerned about my pets when I’m gone. Jack (Wired Hair Fox Terrior) will go to my daughter’s house. But, Sheba (Himalayian/Persian) will stay at home, being fed by an animal lover we’ve always used to take care of our pets. I’m worried that Sheba will be really, totally, lonesome. She won’t come out to see her caretaker while I’m gone. She’s very shy with anyone other than myself. I’m feeling bad for Sheba already. (Sandy from Chihuahua Flats)

        • sbranch says:

          Leave the TV or a radio on for her. Also, put out objects that you’ve worn in her nap areas, so she will have your scent and be comforted with it. She’ll be fine, and when you come home, it’ll be like you never left. xoxo

  9. Diana from Tennessee says:

    WAHOO!!! You have made my day…you see today is my birthday! I feel the new is post is just for me! Of course I am very happy to share it will all the girlfriends! I already have a copy of your wonderful Autumn book but my sweet husband bought me a copy of the printed Willards for my birthday!! I am so enjoying the good news! I have been practicing my drawing with the pencil. I am very surprised that I am able to draw things that look close to the originals. Thank you so much for sharing your life with us. You make me smile every time we meet! Have a blessed evening!

  10. Janet in Rochester says:

    Wow, another trip to the UK and aboard the Queen too! I can’t wait. Will you be doing a book from this trip too? And renting an SUV? Smart to go now while you still have all your own original joints, as my SIL’s mom always says. LOL. I’ve always heard Scotland had cool Summers – which would be strictly OK with me – so traveling should be very pleasant.

    PS – if you haven’t done it yet, I’d recommend reading “Outlander” too, to pick up the accents, inflections, dialects etc. It’s very helpful to SEE a language in text form in addition to hearing it.

    • sbranch says:

      I know I’ll keep a diary, we’ll see about another book, mostly I’m so involved in this one, I can’t see the forest for the trees. Oh yes, I read Outlander! Read it at the same time as a girlfriend, we called each other everyday speaking our versions of the accent to each other, it was very fun.

  11. It feels like I just opened a letter from a dear friend, Susan! We would LOVE to walk over the old, stone bridge in Scotland all together!! So much happy news to ponder! Autumn days are slowly slipping in here. Yesterday, we noticed green leaves with the tiniest bit of red around the edges! So, today I’m adding Autumn touches all over the house. My ‘Autumn’ book is always the first sign of the changing season. ♡
    Happy hugs!

  12. Mary Hobart says:

    Just got back from visiting Ireland and your pictures of Scotland are so similar to mine. Lots of sheep, beautiful stonewalls, lovely views. Even walked on the scary rope bridge in Antrim. And of course—-huge rainbow!

    • sbranch says:

      Of course! Welcome home, it sounds just perfect!

      • Margot in Virginia Beach says:

        Ah what a beautiful couple. Love the heathery plaids. There is a store in Wmsburg with beautiful tartans and heather jewelry. I would love a scarf and a brooch.
        I rescued yet another book of yours today…Waiting for the announcement of the new one.
        Get used to the misty days…I am sure there will be plenty in Scotland. Morning mist over the heathery moors…aye tis a good morn.

        • sbranch says:

          We’re all going to have Scottish accents when this is over! 🙂 Can’t wait.

          • Margot in Virginia Beach says:

            My Scottish friend here in VB opened a restaurant next to her British grocery store, called The Highlander. She serves a full English Breakfast. When some of her friends are in there it does sould like a different language. I often wonder how much the Vikings influenced the English language in Scotland.

          • sbranch says:

            There is a fascinating, very long, CD collection called The Story of English. You might be interested to see how it came to be!

          • Margot in Virginia Beach says:

            Oh yes. I believe I saw part of it on PBS in the mid-80s. I will check the library.

  13. Vickie in Olympia says:

    What an exciting post! Can’t wait for our trips to start. I, too, have been making little checks on my list of things to do, but none so weighty as yours! You are such an inspiration 🙂 Things have begun to cool into a new season in Western Washington. My son told me this morning that this was the coolest 70 degree weather he has felt in a while. LOL How our perception changes through the year. In April or May we would have been running to get our shorts on. BTW the Autumn book one of my favorites (who am I kidding, they are all my favorites). The recipes are soooo gooooood.

  14. Jules says:

    Your book arrived over the weekend. It’s absolutely beautiful! My niece was staying with me. I had a difficult time prying it from her hands so I just ordered her an Autumn book of her very own. By the way, she loves peah-cida too.
    I hope you do get to go to Scotland and write another “Fine Romance”. I read a lot of George MacDonald. He was a Scottish writer and minister in the late 19th century. That Scottish accent can be a trip to read. I have to read it out loud to make sense of it sometimes. Thanks for all of the beautiful photos in your posting!

  15. Sarah Maldonado says:

    Oh my goodness…Scotland? Really? We get to virtually go with you?? My dear English Cocker is named Annie Laurie after my grandfather’s nickname for my mom who was Bonnie….the song goes, “my Bonnie Annie Laurie”… A lovely tribute in a Scottish song to a lover. You’ll have to research it! Ha, but it has a nice history. Plus, my favorite rendition of Auld Lang Syne is with the traditional Scottish words and sung by John McDermott, I believe. Check it out. You’ll love it and the Scottish words are lovely! Can’t wait for the adventure but I’ll enjoy our prep time, autumn, holidays and winter as we wait! Oh, goody!

  16. Robyn genau says:

    Hi Susan,
    It has rained here all day long. I was so happy to see your new blog. Last week a friend and I shopped at a second hand store and I found the sweetest gently used teapot. So today I made myself a nice pot of tea and watched the raindrops. Thanks Susan so making our lives so rich.

  17. Penny Harrison from Oceanside, CA says:

    Hi Susan!
    Thank you for more beautiful pictures of sunsets, and life as summer gives us it’s last “Hurrah”! One vivid memory of childhood growing up here in southern California and going back to school was wearing my new school clothes and new shoes when it was still hot and getting blisters on my heels! Ouch!
    Scotland in May, how wonderful! We drove up there many years ago from London as far as Loch Ness, and Inverness, stopped by St. Andrews for my Dad the golfer! I told my husband I felt like we were driving to the top of the world – it was so very beautiful!!! Will certainly be looking forward our virtual trip with you!
    For now it’s time to refill my glass with more ice and tea! Love, love, love your blog letters!

  18. Sandi Skeels says:

    Congrats on your 10th Anniversary “birth” of Autumn being ”delivered” to all of us sooooo quickly. What a great read …I too have had the pleasure of reading it a few years back with enjoyment!! And it looks fantastic with my other Susan books~~being held up by the “westie book ends” Looking forward to your up~coming new ”read” .. Love the name of your publishing company and that you print in the United States of America !!! What a hoot for us !!!
    Blessed be..smiles and sparkles 🙂

  19. Rhonda D. says:

    This beautiful September post put the perfect ending on the perfect weekend for me…our last long weekend of summer here in Canada. That fall/september feel is in the air. It’s exciting that everyone will now be able to have a copy of the Autumn book. I have the first one (my fall eye candy), but looking forward to the new one coming in the mail. I just had to have it…my birthday gift to me. September 1st was my birthday. My daughter took me to her husband’s annual family reunion in a quaint village by the sea in Nova Scotia. She hosted a birthday party for me when we got back. My granddaughter presented me with a card and she was wearing a t-shirt that said “big sister.” I puzzled over the t-shirt for a moment and thought to myself, “yes, someday she will be a big sister” and completely missed the moment for a moment. The best birthday present ever…grandchild #2 is on the way.

    Looking forward to our “virtual” trip to Scotland. Hard to believe this is really happening, but as you’ve said, “there are no coincidences.” I lived with or near my scottish grandparents for close to 40 years, and there were still some things I didn’t quite understand. The vast majority of my friends just listened and smiled politely, and had no clue as to what they were saying. It was almost like a foreign language. So, I’ll be thinking about you on this trip (smile). Glad to see you’re “brushing up”. If you’re asked “do ya ken what yerr aboot?”, the correct answer is “aye, I ken fine.”

  20. Brenda says:

    We traveled to Ireland and the highlands of Scotland in June so I am so envious of your plans and so looking forward to checking if you go to places we went to. Your first picture is of Eilean Donan Castle, the most photographed castle in Scotland. Our favorite was Castle Campbell which gets only 25 to 50 visitors a day.

    • sbranch says:

      I prefer the smaller places where you can still feel real life. I wrote down Castle Campbell!

      • Maureen MacKenzie says:

        Castle Campbell in Dollar? We went there on our trip to my sister-in-laws in 2009. My mother’s family name is Campbell so we had to visit! There is a beautiful walk (you can also drive) up to the castle through woodlands and streams with bridges. You can see the castle on the hill through the trees and just imagine Mary Queen of Scots visiting in 1563. The town is beautiful too. It has a stream/river running through it. It’s where we first tasted Typhoo tea…at a tea house in town. If you don’t already know….two websites that are informative are: historic-scotland.gov.uk/ and nts.org.uk/Home/. Most houses/gardens/castles have been gifted to one of these organizations, but some are privately funded as well. (Similar to England) I’m so excited for you and Joe to experience it! I’ve been there four times so far and it never gets old. They also have pear cidre…. 🙂 Yes, it’s hard to understand “some” people, but most don’t have thick accents so don’t worry about that….very easy to understand. Over the phone….not as easy. We’ve stayed in Pitlochry at the thegreenpark.co.uk/. Beautiful views, delicious menu, great rooms, and many cozy common/public rooms to get lost in a book by a fireplace. They even have a puzzle that they leave out for guests to put together. They serve tea and cakes every afternoon. We just came back two weeks ago from a visit and can’t you tell….I miss it and my family already!

        • sbranch says:

          Sounds just wonderful! I bookmarked all your suggestions.

        • Brenda says:

          Yes, Castle Campbell up from Dollar. You can’t drive all the way up, but the walk is amazing as are the views from the castle. My husband’s family has Stirlings and Campbells so it was fun to visit the two castles one the day after the other and to see that one has endless money and employees and one has little money and two employees. Both are amazing. On this trip we only did little places and I would do that again. We loved the Isles of Mull, Iona, and Staffa, particularly Iona.

  21. Carol from PA says:

    Dear Susan,
    My heart is all a flutter! My “Autumn” book arrived today along with a replacement copy of “A Fine Romance”. I gave my original copy as a gift to a special friend back in May. She can’t stop thanking me enough as she passes it around to family and friends who just love the book. So very happy to have a copy back in my hands. I have missed it so! “Autumn” is a beautiful book. Just love the ribbon color you chose. Perfect! Smiled when I read your family recipe for “My Grandma’s Stuffing”. I, too, make the recipe my grandma made and in turn my mother. The two recipes are practically identical. It always was and always will be about the stuffing! One question…Is the cranberry apple crisp as good as your peach crisp. That peach crisp was out of this world!

    • sbranch says:

      It might even be better. Those cranberries perk the apples up into another stratosphere! You dip the bread in hottest water? I think you are only the second person I’ve met who’s familiar with that recipe. SO good!!!

      • Nina From England says:

        Hi Susan I was wondering about your apple crisp recipe. The fresh cranberries aren’t out here yet but I have loads of apples on my tree and wanted to make your apple crisp recipe. Can I used dried cranberries for now? xxxx

        • sbranch says:

          Can you find them frozen? We have them frozen year round here. Fresh cranberries are tangy, juicy and soft — where dried can be more sweetened and chewy. I’m sure it won’t hurt, but I think I would probably just make the crisp without them, which I did for years before I added the cranberries and still LOVED it. Then, make it again when the cranberries get here! Use tart apples if you can. Mmmmm, I can smell your house already, I love apple crisp!

          • Nina From England says:

            Thank you Susan I will try that first, I’ll let you know how it goes! I don’t think I’ve seen frozen ones here at the moment you can get frozen “Summer Fruits” so maybe they’re seasonal too! lol xx

  22. Jack says:

    Loved that picture of the Sheep ? (goat faces and sheep bodies) crossing the road …. The man with the stick on one side and that big ol’e black boss sheep , guarding the other side .
    That one looks like it could kick the stuffing out of a coyote —kind of a Marie Dressler
    Of sheephood.

    • sbranch says:

      LOL! I read comments before I see who made them, and whenever I read yours, I read it twice before I start laughing and then I see your name and say, oh, of course! Him!! “Sheephood!”

    • Marty from NYC says:

      I know that Susan won’t have the trouble that I had photographing sheep in Scotland. The sheep are accustomed to being herded on the roads in some places. I went into the road to photograph the sheep. The sheep kept coming,, I kept backing up until they overtook me, without so much as an “Excuse me”.
      My husband , standing on the side was doubled over with laughter. Fortunately he wasn’t holding a camera, as I struggled to stay on my feet and get out of the way. We have never forgotten my Sheep pictures–or the fact that they will always have the right of way!
      So smart of Susan to have you do the first edit. What a joy as well as a responsibility. Happy reading, Jack.
      Susan–my goodness you sound so busy you make me feel lazy-Have to sharpen up my “to do’ list and get at it. Marty

  23. Audrianne says:

    I was so ready to turn the calendar to September. They say we shouldn’t rush through our days but the last days of August went to the dogs – so hot and humid along the shores of Lake Michigan. Now it’s time to think redecorating for fall – pumpkins, pumpkins, and more pumpkins. Apple picking is already on the calendar for next week. Our bookstore has its order in for Autumn; back ordered of course, but I will love seeing it on our front table when it arrives!

  24. Ann Y in PA says:

    Oh, a trip to Scotland ! What a dream ! And traveling across the country on a train with tea…bliss. Good luck in all your plans. I am with you…still want to enjoy summer, but anxious for fall. Turned my calendar over and love the fall creeping in…and will enjoy my Autumn book, which I have since the first run….it’s “vintage ” !!! Thanks Susan for sharing your days with us !

  25. Elle Baker says:

    Although I’ve enjoyed your cards and stickers for a while, just discovered you as a book author…bought a used copy of ‘A Fine Romance’ and couldn’t put it down. Now to hear that you will be sailing back on the Queen AND going to Scotland! Will be joining you on your blog! Love the fall leaf swags (real and paper) and congrats on the 10th anniversary of your Autumn book. Looks like I have a lot to catch up on. Glad I found this piece of your world. What a blessing you are!

  26. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful island and ocean pictures with us! Hopefully it will dry out soon so you can get out and about…..
    Congratulations on your new old book release and almost finishing your very new book!

  27. Carrie says:

    I just received my Autumn book in the mail today and can’t wait to devour it! I loved A Fine Romance SO much and could read it again and again. I just can’t say enough how much I love your artwork, your humor, and basically your sweet soul.
    I also have been loving Outlander!! I don’t think they could have picked a more perfect Claire and Jamie. Now I’ll be thinking of you when I tune in each week.
    Keep up the great work lovely Lady. I anxiously await your new book and PLEASE go to Scotland and do another book just like A Fine Romance.

  28. Mary Lawrence aka Mi Mi Elizabeth says:

    Oh Susan your trip sounds so wonderful. Also the train travel, my husband and I love train travel. We will be taking a trip in November to the Rome, Greece, Florence, Ephesus, Istanbul,Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Valencia,Sardinia, Naples we are so excited.It is a dream of mine to visit Rome. The other cities will be wonderful as well.We take a train from our hometown and head to NYC where we will catch a plane to Rome. In Rome for two days and then get on our cruise ship, returning to Rome for a few more days after visiting other cities and countries.It is a 23 day cruise.Yikes what will I wear?lol Mary Elizabeth

  29. Bernie says:

    Aaah Humidity! That is pretty much a year round “treat” here in south Florida. there’s nothing quite like stepping out your front door at 7:00am for your morning walk, and feeling like you can “chew” the air….

  30. Nellie says:

    How lovely, Susan! Yes, it is time to put away that Summer book and bring out Autumn! I’ve had my copy for a number of years, and have even given our three daughters their copy in past years.

    It is really exciting to think about a Twitter from the Twain opportunity! That will be lots of fun.

    I know you will take us along to Scotland next spring. You have to be so excited to be planning it.

    We have some of that humidity here, too. Even in the house with our central air going there are signs! Our temperature is approaching the low-nineties for highs.

    It is such a good idea to have a “to do” list. That gives us direction and a sense of accomplishment when we are able to check off things as they are finished. You’ve made great progress with your Tuesday!

    Sending good wishes to you, Joe, and those precious kitties!

    xo Nellie

  31. LynnMarie says:

    My husbands family spent the Labor Day Weekend in upper Michigan. We rented a huge log home and it was just lovely. The leaves are turning up there—just beginning but it is happening. When I got home Monday evening, Autumn was waiting for me on the doorstep. I am enjoying and devouring each and every page. Thank you so much!

  32. Candice OHIO says:

    WOOP WOOP!! My Autumn book arrived today!! I sat down and started to read it, but then had to make myself mark the page with the wonderful ribbon book mark and get on with my “to do list” which never seems to end! Love the book so far and cannot wait to try the recipes! Wonderful news about the shhhh (whisper)…..secret trip! We have a God Daughter getting married in February and her sister is getting married in April! Would love to go for both of the weddings! Oooo just thought…..go in Feb and stay until April……now that would be the bees knees!! I keep watching the air fares for the best! Time will tell.
    Thank you for sharing all the lovely photos in your blog today they always lift my spirits and give me that dose of vitamin I for inspiration that I love!!
    Hugs to you!! Have a great week!

  33. Barbara in NC says:

    Oh, you will just love Scotland….we went a few years ago…the people are so friendly and the scenery breathtaking. So glad you are watching “Outlander” before you go…I think they have done a great job being faithful to the book. I’ve read all eight of them…a real feat as they are huge as you know! So many Highlanders settled in North Carolina…I love the North Carolina history in Gabaldon’s later books. Many folk songs are still alive and well back with the mountain folks today in NC. Loved your post from Nantucket and am looking forward to your new book and posts from the Californis trip. Have fun!

    • sbranch says:

      I was worried who they might get to play Jamie, but I think they picked the perfect guy. My imagination could not have done a better job, and it definitely tried while I was reading it!

  34. Teresa says:

    Oh, I can’t wait for that book. It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job, as you do with everything else. I know it is so busy for you, but it is always worth it in the end, right? Thanks for all you do.

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, it’s worth it, especially when you have a book pressing on you that’s wanted out for many years. Even though it seems to be taking a while, it is truly writing itself. Thank you Teresa!

  35. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Happy September to you, Susan!! Wow, your new book sounds like it is rounding the curve to completion. I am pretty jazzed we are getting a new book so soon after your last one!! And another vacation next May to the British Isles, you say? Ahh, that will be totally awesome and I am going to one of your virtual girlfriends stuffed in the back seat. The trip will be glorious and I cannot wait to follow along all of the delicious details of the various stops.

    Speaking of trips, we just finished taking AmTrack across the US from Chicago to Idaho. It was an amazing journey and I enjoyed seeing states I have never visited before. I hope your trip will be relaxing and fun as well.

    The arrival of the Autumn book is right on time and for those you don’t already have one, you are going to love, love , love this one! Ten years later, I never tire of reading and re-reading it for inspiration.

    Thanks for posting so much excitement today!

  36. Betty says:

    Hi Susan,
    I just received my book combo in the mailbox today. I was going to give one of the books in a raffle basket I’m making, but not now! I love, love, love my books. I have been to Scotland. I traveled to Scotland in 2011 with a group to the island of Iona… It’s a small island in the Inner Hebrides off the Ross of Mull on the western coast of Scotland. It was a centre of Irish monasticism for four centuries and is today renowned for its tranquility and natural beauty. Thanks your wonderful post today.
    Betty @ My Cozy Corner

  37. Laurel says:

    Hi Susan,
    Have you watched “Monarch of the Glen”? It’s a lovely series that takes place in Scotland and it is second best to Downton Abbey when I go through withdrawal from Downton at the end of each season. I have been able to borrow the”Monarch of the Glen” series from our library and it has been wonderful. Give it a try, I think you’ll quite like it.

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve only happened upon an episode or two, but don’t know the whole thing. Thank you for the recommendation Laurel. Lining up my winter-watching!

  38. Marilyn says:

    I just love visiting you, but don’t usually leave a comment. You have so many to already read, but I am early to the list today; so saying hello. How I would love to watch the Outlander, as I have read the books, but no cable at my house. Maybe I should check on just getting it online. Hummm?

  39. Peggy Cooper, Pueblo, CO says:

    Hello Susan! Just thought I’d take a chance and see if you had written anything new on the blog, and there it was. Just what I need after a somewhat stressful day. Nothing major, but you know sometimes it’s the little things. Anyway, I got a kick out of you mentioning trying to understand the accents. I’m usually pretty good at that since my grandfather came from Ireland and never lost his, and I once had a job in an international department that involved many different accents.

    We went to Edinburgh several years ago, and wanted to find out what bus went to the Brittania (the Queen’s decommissioned yacht). So we went to the bus station to find out. We asked the young girl to repeat it 3 times, and finally gave up and just nodded and smiled and said thank you, but when we left I said to my husband “the only word I understood was what sounded like the number 16.” He confirmed that’s the only thing he understood also, so we went and found the stop for the number 16 bus, and sure enough it got us to the Britannia.

    Will be excited to go along on this trip with you. I’d like to go back to Scotland some day. We were only there for a short time when we did a two week whirlwind of England, Scotland, and Ireland. I did find my Irish relatives on that trip. Lived in a town called Crookhaven where there are only 35 full time residents, and 5 of them were related to me!

  40. Helen says:

    My Autumn book arrived today!…….Well it isn’t technically mine since I ordered it for a friend’s birthday 🙂 I still have my copy from 10 years ago and this happened to be one of your books she doesn’t have……but shhhhhh…..shouldn’t say more since she also reads your blog!
    I haven’t been to Scotland since 2005 but have many memories and wonderful pictures to bring it all back………looking forward to be hopefully “going” on your trip with you and Joe. Any chance of visiting Ireland as well? Was there again more recently (2012) with my sister and enjoyed our time immensely.

    • sbranch says:

      When we travel, we sort of like to stay in a place long enough to get a feeling for it, and I’m not sure, but maybe Ireland deserves its own trip. Then again, maybe we should. We really haven’t planned much yet.

      • Judy H in FL says:

        Ireland definitely needs a trip of it’s own. We’ve been there twice and I’m ready to go again. Looking forward to reading about your impressions of Scotland. It’s on my wish list since I have ancestors that came from there.

      • Helen says:

        But……since you are there…..so close….so amazing….the light like no other…..the land…..the sea….the amazing people….just a thought 🙂

  41. Dorothy says:

    Susan, made your cucumber / tomato soup recipe for tonight’s dinner! It was delish! Served it with a cold meatloaf sandwich packed with baby greens ( following “7 years younger diet” with great success ). Life is so good, enjoying the somewhat early change of seasons here in south western NY. Always love a new blog posting!

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

    good evening girlfriends, hello Susan. Happy September, and Autumn blessings to all. I’m with Lacey up in NW Oregon, down in Southern Oregon we are soo ready for the Fall, cooler temps, and cooler evenings, we are ready for it. but for now we have hot temps to contend with and soon the cool Autumn will arrive and cool us down. our little town just had its last hurrah for the summer, our annual Labor Day festival put on by the Lions club, and the best burgers in the valley… Lion Burgers. I only get them once a year and I enjoy and eat as many as I can for 3-4 days, and now my tummy is happy and full of Lion Burgers, I can now patiently wait until the end of next summer and then I get my favorite burgers again. time for me to head on out to the hen house and gather up the eggs, and move the sprinkler over. have a fun trip to California and of course I can’t wait to see Scotland, do we have to wear kilts???? have a wonderful evening everyone, time to get in some of that last porch sitting for the season. hugs…… 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      We might have to wear kilts!

      • pat addison (cave junction,OR) says:

        oh dear, well my older cousin went to Scotland years ago and of course she got a couple of kilts, but she can’t wear them anymore, she sort of wore them out and I managed to get the scraps and make a warm Fall poncho/cape for myself, does that count as wearing a kilt???

  43. Deb W says:

    I cannot tell you how thrilled I am that we are all going to Scotland!!!!! As soon as I saw Eilean Donan, I started jumping up and down! Never having been in real life, I can hardly wait for the vicarious experience! A friend from here is on her way there NOW! I understand it has a wilder beauty than England, but that’s what makes it irrestistible.

    I’m waiting for the DVD release to see Outlander, but there have been lots of on-line previews, so I get an idea what it’s like. No trouble with the accents – multiple watchings of old episodes of “Hamish Macbeth” and “Monarch of the Glen” have taken care of that. 🙂 They are very entertaining – and might be good wintertime ‘homework’ for your trip.

  44. Charlene says:

    Susan , just received my copy of your Autumn book. It is so special ,I love it. Just in time for my favorite season, you can’t know how this book makes me feel. Thanks so much for being you and sharing your ideas with us.

  45. Oh Yes – to Scotland we go with you – MY kinda travelling (I don’t fly or like boats either). We had to get a package to view Outlander too. But we also need a new TV now so we can all watch Outlander… BUT it is sooo worth it.

    CONGRATULATIONS on getting your Autumn book out. As we are hitting spring here in New Zealand – maybe, just maybe you might like to add to your to do list a book like your Autumn but all about spring. If you do please put in some lilacs – mine will be ready to flower real soon. Sorry you can’t retire from writing any time soon.
    Love Leanne

  46. Gail Buss says:

    Dear Susan, I am so excited about your trip to Scotland. My mother was born in Glasgow but came to this country when she was around 7 yrs. old and never had any accent, but I can still hear my Grandmother’s accent and she would call me a “wee” little one, or say would I like a “wee” little drink. My Dad was born in Belfast, No. Ireland and came to this country when he was around 11 or 12. He had no accent either but would say some things differently (pronunciation) like they do in Ireland. I enjoy reading M.C. Beaton’s Hamish MacBeth mysteries from the library, and I learn words from that. Instead of haven’t……..they say havenae and there are other interesting words as well. So great and a quick read. I recently found out most places in Europe drive the same as us and it’s only in Ireland, England, Scotland and I think Wales where they drive on the other side of the road. I wonder why…………guess I should google that to see how all that started.
    So nice that your Dad helps out with your books. I love all the sunsets and the moon pics too. I am going to pull my Autumn Book out to get ready for Fall. And I was just telling Joe the other day…………once Christmas is over and done, then we will have the pleasure of watching Downton Abbey. I must say it’s my favorite.
    Can’t wait til the book you are working on is ready. And I’m still not forgetting about the Pancake Cookbook. Happy September to you and Joe. Hugs, Gail & Joe

  47. Vicki S says:

    Oh Susan … Scotland! Have you ever been? If so, then I know your heart has been aching to go back … once you’ve set foot on those heather-covered hills or tripped the moors, the land of kith and kin calls you back. And if you’ve never been, be prepared to fall head over heels in love with everything … tartans, the skirl of bagpipes, kilts, the sweaters, the wools, the history, the stories, the people!

    Your preparations should include endless replays of Brigadoon … even though it was shot in a studio, it’s still magic. And the idea of a place just across the bridge that disappears into the mist and only wakes up once every hundred years is just too irresistable. You’ll be humming about the heather on the hill all winter long!

    Hope all the stars align so that you can go. It’s my ancestral homeland, so I love the idea of making the trip along with you! Write, write, write and finish that wonderful book so that you have no reason to spend springtime anywhere else but Scotland! xo Vicki

  48. denni from MN says:

    I’ve been thinking how busy you must be with all the different directions you’re going, waiting for your next blog, and sure enough, your check-off list proves it!
    How happy I am with the news of your trip planning for Scotland next Spring!! More castles and lambs to view in the future, am loving the photos in this blog, too! Congrats on your successes and have a great train ride across the country.
    I am traveling to the North Shore to enjoy the color changing of the season after last week’s fun at the MN State Fair. I love finding little treasures, as you do, to make life a bit more surprising when you least expect it. Enjoy the moments, Susan!

  49. jeannine leonard says:

    I got my Autumn book in the mail today, what a wonderful surprise. I have been reading it in between my to do list. A perfect reason to also stay inside today. The humidity is just awful here in the eastern part of PA.
    How exciting to go to Scotland. I always wanted to go there and visit, and now in a way I can.
    Happy September!

  50. yvonne b says:

    It’s here your book Autuman and a fine romance. yeah! thanks for the joy you spread around the world, take care :).

  51. Kathie says:

    Oh, we are so excited. California and, then, winter, and, then, Scotland. I’ll try to tune my ears, too. I’ve heard some Scots and was amazed I could na’ ken it. So, we’ll practice a lot. Thanks for thinking of us. I’m getting my woolens out already…..

  52. Jamie from Virginia says:

    Be still my Scottish heart!! Those photographs took my breath away. A Scottish travelogue? Very exciting. Ok, Susan, you have TOTALLY given me permission to add on the Starz package! LOL, I looked at it and watched the first episode of Outlander online and thought, Jamie you can’t add a whole package to the tv just for one show…I think I need to do it. 🙂 I did not get to write under your last Nantucket post but just wanted to thank you again for “bringing us along”, thinking of Nantucket made my heart sing.

    Also, wanted to tell you I recently listened to a talk by Marta McDowell who wrote “Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life” (lovely book by the way). As she had done significant plant research at Hill Top, I asked if she knew the name of the rose around the front door. She was thoughtful and referred to some of her notes and unfortunately said no one seems to know. She did say Beatrix mentioned lots of plants in letters here and there and as for roses only ever mentioned…moss rose, bourbon rose and a pink cabbage rose. Maybe it is the pink cabbage rose by the front door. In the book I mentioned if you have it on page 210 Marta writes that Beatrix notes “there is nothing more sweet than the old pink cabbage rose that peeps in at the small paned windows”. Both the bourbon and cabbage roses have intense scent. So in the end….maybe one day we will know the name of the lovely pink rose at Beatrix’s door.

    Enjoy your week and congratulations on the re-publication of “Autumn”!

    • sbranch says:

      Something else I found out about Starz — if you have On-Demand, they have truly jillions of wonderful movies for no additional charge if you’ve subscribed. I’m watching one now, Something’s Got to Give is on. I’m really happy with it. I’ve read that about the cabbage rose, I guess that’s all we get to know about that. I won’t forget how good it smelled!

  53. Diana from Ancaster says:

    September is finally here….and with it comes cool, crisp air-brilliant blue skies and spectacular fall colours. Many thanks to you for yet another wonderful blog entry.

    I have been enjoying your Autumn book for the last 10 years and have been cooking my way through all your wonderful books!

    Needless to say, I am awaiting with barely contained anticipation for your next

    As if it couldn’t get any better, you and your Joe are going to Scotland ! Fantastic news.
    I will be enjoying the “Outlander” series along with you…..(read the books all those years ago)

    Cheers from here.

  54. Liz says:

    I was lucky enough to visit Edinburgh last year, and I would have happily stayed for a year. I felt some ancestors whispering to stay a wee while…maybe someday I’ll return. It’s more than beautiful, it’s soul-stirring.

    The humidity here is not so beautiful. I’ll just enjoy the world from within until it’s safe, like you; thanks be to A.C.

    • sbranch says:

      Soul stirring was how I found the Yorkshire Dales. I was hoping for more of that, thought perhaps the further north we go, the more wildness we might find.

  55. Gert~Iowa says:

    Oh my goodness….you have given me something so exciting to look forward to! Ireland! Via England no less…smile… Boy you do have a way with checking off things on your list!! I do a list…but never seem to finish checking them off! Lol Your weather sounds terrible, and you sound like me…I stay in the air conditioning on hot and humid days like that. Speaking of days like that we’re in for one of them tomorrow! Ugggg.. Today was gorgeous, in the 70’s with low humidity! I’m so glad we got our doctors appointments in today! Here is a funny..when I was checking my calendar to make an appointment I saw your PBS show next Tuesday! I really hope we’ll be able to see it on our local channel!!
    I love the fact that we’re going on the train ride heading west! We will be twittering from the twain!!

    Your sunsets are amazing and so inviting..making us all want to be right there with you!


  56. Robin G says:

    Scotland is so spectacular and when I am in Edinburgh, the National Trust of Scotland has apartments above Gladstone’s Land. Lots of steps but it is a stones throw from the castle. Fun, fun, fun!

  57. Donna H says:

    Oh, I look forward to all the travels we can follow along on, the train, Scotland! I have always wanted to go to Scotland! I am so happy for us all!

  58. Debby says:

    Hi Susan, just started reading Stillmeadow Daybook, and am enjoying it very much. Is there an order that her books should be read in? Thanks, Debby

  59. Jane Franks says:

    Dear Susan: What a delightful blog! Scotland!! Just beautiful. I’ll be there with you! We’ve had that hot streak, too! Lovely all summer here — cooler than usual, then WHAM!! It was 95 at 11:30 p.m.!! Whew!! But it’s beginning to cool off again now and back to 70. Hang on! The cooler weather is heading your way!! 🙂 So excited for your Autumn book and plans for your train trip, and your biography book! I’m excited, too. Some dear folks came out of the blue — literally — and have got Gene into the premier juried Arts Festival in all of Northwest Arkansas!! You can read about it here: http://www.bellavistafestival.org/index.php. It’s in October and they got him in last week! Unheard of. It usually takes months. These people have clout! We never dreamed it! They are literally doing everything! — all the “heavy lifting” and I’m supplying our promo stuff. Gene just has to show up for an hour or two each day (3 days). We didn’t ask! They just said, “We’re doing this!” They used to do major estate sales in the Fresno area. They know how to do this!! It is a very big deal for us, and our heads are still spinning!! Haven’t done anything like it since Gene’s accident in 2007, and we could not do it alone. It’s like having our own private manager/agent! It is going to be a fabulous Autumn for all of us!! And my book is coming, too. Watch out world!! 🙂 Thank you again for your inspiration and visual treats! I know how much you are enjoying your beloved MV now with the season winding down. Enjoy!!

  60. Lauren Naudain says:

    SCOTLAND!……Did you say SCOTLAND?!! You see Susan, when I was 17, I spent a glorious year at a riding school in Yorkshire, England, and the privilege of traveling back with you two years ago brought tears to my eyes, as you so perfectly described all the beautiful places I fell in love with so long ago. Now, SCOTLAND! You see,(again) Susan, I spent an equally glorious summer in Edinburgh at the home of my roommate and her family, and now I get to travel back with you and experience Scotland again through your magical words. Tonight I will read “A Fine Romance” (for the third time) to review and remember. P.S.- If Edinburgh is on your itinerary, don’t be surprised if you find a beautiful, ancient CASTLE right smack in the middle of the city! O.K…..I warned you….no falling down dead from joy and surprise.

  61. What a great pix of Jackson Catte! He looks like he’s saying “Waiting for my cue, C. B.!”
    On a Scottish note, January 25 is Robbie Burns’ birthday. We celebrate each year with a Burns Night Dinner complete with the Selkirk Grace, Toast to the Queen and Absent Friends, Toast to the Lassies, Reading of the Immortal Memory, musica, poetry by Burns readings, address to the haggis from the Scottish Gourmet (877/814-3663), and a table set with Stuart tartan plaid linens. The toasts are made with shots of Glenlivet – I usually can only manage 2 of them and then I have to sit down. It’s a whole bag of fun especially in late January when there’s hardly anything to do.

    Scotland is so very beautiful – you’ll have a wonderful time. I can remember standing inside Edinburgh Castle and it still gives me a thrill. Holyrood Castle at the other end of the street is marvelous as well. So many little nooks and crannies along the Royal Mile to investigate. The people were welcoming and friendly and a delight to talk with. We found that the older the Scottish person is, the stronger the accent. The younger generation has a lighter accent and is very easily understood. You’ll have a memorable time. We always do!

  62. Rebecca ~~ Riverside, CA says:

    Autumn is no where in sight. Hot here, at least it’s not humid too. Though I’d love the cooler weather I hate to lose the light. I remember saying autumn in elementary school when did we start saying fall instead?

    I hope to visit Scotland one day, I’ve been to Ireland and England. Maybe when you arrive, Scotland will have become independent, the big vote is in three weeks.

    I’m also watching Outlander. Do you know they’re only showing half the episodes this year, the rest in 2015? Verra annoying. Ah, weel, the scenery and music are lovely and they are keeping pretty close to the book.

    Stay cool.

    • sbranch says:

      I’m so interested to see which way they go on that vote. How long will Outlander run this year, do you know? Sounds like they may be doing it like Downton Abbey. And yes, grrr. But then I do love that anticipation.

      • Mary-Agnes from Long Island says:

        Susan, Outlander is running for 8 episodes now and the remaining 8 episodes of season 1 will be on “sometime early in 2015.” And yes, I agree. Grrrr. But at least by the time Outlander’s first half ends, Ichabod Crane will be returning in “Sleepy Hollow” (if you haven’t watched it, you should!) and then “Downton Abbey” will be returning on Jan. 5, 2015.

      • Rebecca says:

        Starz has chosen to split the first season of Outlander. The first eight episodes will premiere on August 9, 2014 and end on September 27, 2014, and the last eight episodes will premiere in 2015 though a specific date has not been announced. (from outlandertvnews.com)
        A second season for the 2nd book, my least favorite of the series, is in the works, .

  63. Cindy Maulin says:

    dear susan… and Happy September to you too!!! such an exciting blog post today!! and everyone on here is so positively happy!!!! I just LOVE it!! Beats the heck out of the nightly news that’s for sure!!! Thank you again for this sensational blog susan… we are so lucky that we have all found each other and I highly doubt that would have ever happened without you! I love being linked with all of the girlfriends here… we are like-thinkers and appreciate many of the same things…and now…. we are going to travel together again!!!! There is so much to look forward to …. I love the “ber” months….they are my favorite…September ,October, November and December ….they have so much to offer!!! the new book takes a big step towards being finished .. nice to have an editor in the family!!! can’t wait until it is unveiled… …until next time… enjoy the beginnings of the fall…stay cool! love, cindy
    PS…@Pat Johnson… we have been to Moulton’s too!!! …. just this past summer while in JH and Yellowstone…. love it… enjoy!!!!! giddy -up….

  64. Lisa Jorgensen says:

    Your words and pictures are like a breath of fresh air, I just love reading them. I received your Autumn book a few days ago, just in time as I am beginning to decorate my house for Fall. Wishful thinking here in California since it’s still 95 degrees today. Even though I have your Autumn book from years ago, I had to get this one too.
    Your trip to Scotland sounds so exciting, is Petey getting ready to go? Will he go with you on your train trip to California too?
    It’s so nice to know that other people appreciate the real things in life like full moons and sunsets, and don’t always have their head in their phones!!
    Happy Autumn, it’s almost here!!

    • sbranch says:

      I haven’t mentioned the trip to Petey yet. But I imagine he will demand a spot in the suitcase. He’s a sailer after all. No head in phone. The only machine I belong to is this one! And of course the domestic variety.

  65. Watching Outlander on Saturday evenings is my new guilty pleasure. It’s helping tide me over until Downton Abbey returns. Another great show that just ended it’s first season on BBCAmerica is The Musketeers ( what dreamy hunks ). If you can catch it on demand by all means watch it. The actor playing the Cardinal is the new Dr. Who. Fantastic acting and the most handsome men you’ve ever seen in one television show!

    • sbranch says:

      Mmmm nice to know. Isn’t it fun to get our history this way (or at least a little of it, redeeming quality!)

  66. Penny says:

    What a lovely surprise to see my own homeland on your blogpost this morning Susan! So thrilled you will be coming to Scotland, I can’t wait (cannae wai’) to see what you make of it all! When I moved to Glasgow from Edinburgh 25 years ago I couldn’t understand a word of what anyone said to me, and that was only a distance of 40 miles! My invitation stands for you and Joe to call in for tea and some home-baking! The kettle is always on! (Meg will give you a nice wet-nose welcome too! ) X

    • sbranch says:

      SO funny, 40 miles and new world. I will keep that lovely invitation (and Meg) in mind! xoxo I cannae wai’ either.

  67. Janet says:

    I couldn’t believe you posted a picture of one of our favorite places on earth! My husband and I check in daily via webcam:
    eileandonancastle.com/eilean-donan-webcam.htm We stayed on the Isle of Skye for 10 days. That castle is in Dornie right near the bridge to Skye. so you must go. Go to Dunvegan Castle on Skye for a tour, also. It looks like what I always imagined Manderlay in the novel “Rebecca” would look like. And don’t miss the Fairy Glen near Uig – really. But do bring rain suits – jackets and pants. I thought my husband was overdoing it when he made me buy a set but I was very glad to have mine. The weather goes from driving rain to sun and 3-D rainbows in minutes!

    • sbranch says:

      Look at that beautiful day they are having! Thinking of lucky people crossing bridge right now and how they must FEEL!!! Oh my! We saw people wearing those rain suits at Windermere — a whole family of them. It looked like a must-have for that neck of the woods! Thank you for the reminder, because I don’t care what the weather is, we have to go walking in Scotland!

  68. Kim says:

    Susan! I canna wait to read of your Highland adventures! Two of my dearest friends and I have been planning a trip there– it has been in the works for YEARS. I’ve been saving all the money I earn teaching knitting classes so the trip will be paid for before I leave…. guilt free travel and spending. The plan is to take our youngest kids to college in August 2016, and then OFF WE GO! ( No empty nest sorrows here!) I’ve been collecting photos of Scotland on Pinterest, have tons of websites bookmarked and my library of Scotland travel books is growing. You will be another valuable resource!
    By the way, I’ve warned my friends that if I disappear while visiting some standing stones, they are not to come looking for me!

  69. Heather L. says:

    Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh!!!!!!!!!!! I was really hoping your next trip would be to Scotland. 🙂 Good thing that boy at the hotel in England put that bug in your ear!!!!! I am SO excited!!!! Most especially because that is the home of my great-grandmother and the birthplace of two of my children and I will forever love Scotland!!!!! So fun that you have a year to get ready!!! We loved Neil Oliver’s History of Scotland DVD series. It was terrific. On our trip to Scotland last year we kept running into the Outlander people! They were all practicing their horse back riding at the stables we stopped at and then a few days later they were in Falkland at the same time repainting the whole town for the movie shooting! Fun! Must leave you with some of my favorite places in Scotland: Skye (far too amazing, and has the BEST tearoom ever called “The Small and Cosy Tea House” blackberryrambles.blogspot.com/2013/10/scotland-small-and-cosy-teahouse.html), Stirling Castle, Edinburgh Royal Mile with the Castle and Holyrood Palace (must visit Victoria Street), Sir Walter Scott’s home at Abbotsford, St. Andrews, The Isle of Arran, and Blair Castle. This lady has blogged about all kinds of tea rooms: lornastearoomdelights.com Okay, I better stop talking about Scotland and get on with my day!!! 🙂

  70. Good morning, Susan. Everyone’s comments have gotten me interested in reading Outlander (I don’t have STARZ). I see that my library has the book on CD! I’m on the waiting list as both copies are checked out and more are on order–it must be pretty popular. I thought I’d alert you to the existence of the audiobook because, if it’s like most audiobooks I listen to, it will be acted out true-to-life and would a great listen-to while on your exercise bike.

    • sbranch says:

      I actually did “read” Outlander on CD — I listened to it as I walked round and round on my property in California (9 times around equaled 3 miles) — it was perfect!

  71. P.S. re: Outlander…….I’ve written my own time-travel story, if anyone is interested in reading about a dog and cat adventure in viewinglifefrominsideout.blogspot.com/2014/03/poetry-gabriel-in-scotland.html#more ☺ Be sure to click on any words highlighted in blue because they’ll take you to songs and recitations and at the end are links to several videos.

  72. Margot in Virginia Beach says:

    When I told Arnie that you were going to Scotland, he told me this story. He was working in Glasglow for Lockheed along the Clyde (sp?) River, down on King George V Piers. He went to the convience store and the young girl there understood him, but he didn’t understand a word she said. When he stood there with a look, that resembled a deer in headlights, she called a man up from the back of the store. Well, Arnie couldn’t understand him either, so the man got a man who hailed from London to translate for them. LOL

  73. Karen says:

    When I came home from work last nite what a treat was waiting….my new autumn cookbook from you and your new publishing company. I love it. Scotland is exciting Rosamunde Pilchers books will add delightful reading

  74. Wendy Louise says:

    Greetings to the most splendid busy person I know !!!!! Then I have been slendidly busy too. Just had 30 people this weekend at our home for a lovely garden party to celebrate our two little baby granddaughter’s christening ! What a beautiful joyous day ! The weather was hot but nothing fresh sliced watermelon and a little water sprinkler couldn’t fix. A long with cool drinks, cold cucumber water from the garden, do I ever have delicious cucumbers this year ! I made your Chicken Salad and put it on Brioch rolls, divine ! Everyone else brought their favorite salads. I made a big cake and had ice cream to go, with cake or on a cone ! The rain held off just as we put all the tables back in the barn ! What timing !
    I am soooooo excited when I think of all your travels, I can’t wait to go ! You can tell I am extremely HAPPY. You my dear make me delirious with all your wonderful posts. It’s Christmas all the time ! I can wait for all your wonderfulness to unfold, the little Susan Branch happy gene in me just keeps bouncing around. Love you and sending all good thoughts for all your endeavors ! OXOX OXOX to Joe and Kitties too !

    • sbranch says:

      Your party sounds delightful, a summer treat! I always knew if there was a way readers of my books could find one another it would be a wonderful thing, I knew it from the letters I received. And it’s exactly how I hoped it would be. Thank you so much Wendy Louise for being part of the reason it is the way it is.♥

  75. Mary Whiting says:

    Good Morning Susan,

    Scotland sounds wonderful! As I mentioned before, my husband Rick and I are following your footsteps, literally, in April/May next year through England…with “A Fine Romance” in tow…we now will have you as our guide for adventure #2. We already have planned our second trip visiting the Lake District of England and Scotland the following year. Thank you, in advance, for being our guide.
    I too look forward to receiving my “Autumn” book and will hold reading it until the weather breaks and it is cider mill time.
    Thank you, for all you do for us….we love the ride.

  76. Chris Wells In Knickerbocker, W TX says:

    I think it is so wonderful that your dad is helping to edit your book! I love his comments, they always crack me up! Just like his comment to Pat this morning. What a wonderful wit he has. I am feeling guilty lying in bed and reading your blog with my morning coffee, while you are checking things off your to do list with great resolve. I GOT MY BOOKS! they came yesterday in the mail. I have Autumn, my very first of your books. I bought it new! But I had to have the anniversary addition as my original had no ribbon…LOL.
    It may be September, but it is HOT. Sap the life out of you hot! Thank you Lord for air conditioning, but living in the house is not my idea of life. This too shall pass. I will get my fall decorations out this weekend and pretend it is Fall!
    I am ready to travel whenever you are, you are so kind to drag us all along. Joe is really the sweet one. Most men would take a look at all those women and run! I love that I don’t need a passport and as Gladys would say, I am home every night in time to light the candle and have dinner. No better way to travel!
    Thanks for the new post, you refresh us and bring so much joy!

  77. Sandra R says:

    You will love Scotland! The NYT did 36 hours in Edinburough (sp?) last Sunday. The vistas are breathtaking. Have flapjacks, and haggies (they even have a vegetarian version). I can’t wait to see it through your eyes. But bring warm stuff to layer, and of course prepare for rain. I never could understand the strong accent, but I did not “study” like you are doing.
    We got back from Sweden yesterday evening, and your lovely book was here! I am saving it as a reward for doing the “catch-up” chores. And you should put Sweden on your list! You would be over the moon about Carl and Karin Larssons house, and the countryside is stunning. Everyone speaks English. You would also like Djurgardens, Skensen, and so much more. But brace yourself, it is pretty clear this is the source of the tall, thin, long-legged blue-eyed blonde beauty gene pool. But they are so charming, I try to overlook it! (Being older and more secure helps!) Now I have to hit my to-do list, not as exciting as yours. (catboxes for instance)

    • sbranch says:

      I was in Denmark and everyone on the subway looked like a Nordic Viking Vogue model, the men, women and children, students, ragamuffins, it didn’t matter. Beautiful! And btw, catbox was on my other list! 🙂

      • Margot in Virginia Beach says:

        My husband and his seafaring friends said, the tallest women are in Denmark (My husband and his friends are over 6 ft.and they felt short! LOL), they said the most blondes are in Poland. My mother-in-law is a red-headed Swede, think Ann Margaret. I am just amazed by the stunning blue eyes. My husband’s blue eyes were muted by his father’s hazel eyes.

  78. Hi Susan,
    My favorite two seasons are quickly approaching, fall and winter, time to get the fall decorations out and then Christmas decorations.
    I received my new 10th anniversary edition of, Autumn” yesterday, I ordered two, one for my best friends Christmas gift and one for myself. I’m looking forward to try the recipes.
    Have a wonderful fall season.
    Millie Ellis-Deal

  79. Barbara from Argentina says:

    Hi Susan! I´m so happy for the release of the Autumn book, dreaming of buying one. For us, 26 dollars is like 400 pesos (which means like buying a 400 dollars book to us, so it´s out of my reach right now) hope some day I will have my own copy. Congratulations!

  80. Robyn genau says:

    We have Starz here in No. Ky. through On Demand and until the 31st of Oct. you can watch the first five Highlander episodes for free. Didn’t know if that helped our girlfriends or not.

  81. Marianne says:

    L O V E Scotland! Went with my sisters a few years back and now I get to go back again with you and Joe! How lucky I am.

    Thanks again for the blog. You lead a busy and productive life and you take time out for conversations with us. Thanks again.

  82. Liz says:

    So pleased to see your post this morning – so much better to read than the newspaper. Hot and humid here too today – here in Lincoln, Nebraska. Looking forward to hearing about your upcoming travels! In two weeks I am off for a girl’s weekend (all family) in Belfast, Maine – so excited! I lived there in 1970. Happy Fall!

  83. Christine Perica says:

    Scotland in the Spring! We are so excited since we are going in June via England. We have planned the first part of our trip using “A Fine Romance” but have been left to our own investigations in planning the Scottish end. The Scottish people have helped through websites and via email so we love what we have planned. Of course we will be following your journey via blog! In the meantime enjoy all your plans and creative activity which we so enjoy participating in and learning from. You are the best!

  84. Nancy says:

    Hi Susan! So excited to hear you will be traveling to Scotland! Can’t wait to read all of your blogs while you’re on your trip:) Every time I see you have a new blog post it just makes a wonderful start to my day, thanks so much for sharing your life with all of us:) Have a wonderful Autumn!

  85. Marla says:

    Hello, Susan! So happy to read about your upcoming trip to Scotland!

    We just returned from a trip to Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales. I loved them all – each having their own unique beauty. We took the ferry from Northern Ireland to Scotland and drove a beautiful route to Robert Burns Birthplace Museum and gardens – which included the Brig o’Doon bridge. We spent two nights in Edinburgh and enjoyed a guided city tour with a local (and handsome!) guide dressed in authentic kilt attire. We stopped at the Holyrood Palace, where the Queen visits about a week per year and we also visited the Edinburgh Castle with amazing views from the top. We stayed in the Grassmarket area and enjoyed several local pubs including the oldest, The White Hart Inn. Greyfriars Bobby is within walking distance and a must see due to the story behind the pub’s name. You can have your photo taken with the dog’s statue out front.

    One last thing – I have to tell you when we drove through the Lake District of England I was overwhelmed with the beauty and folklore of the area. Our guide explained that a fork in the road ahead was due to a fairy tree. He said during the building of the road, all kinds of things happened to the road equipment & it was determined it was because of a fairy tree in the way. So not to upset the fairies further, they made the road go around the tree. ☺

    We also enjoyed our lunch stop in Grasmere – which included the famous gingerbread – you were right – yum! Thanks to your book, I knew what to look for along the way! We saw Herdwick sheep and the wooden ferry as we passed on the road next to the lovely Lake Windermere.

    For those who haven’t been, a highly recommended addition to your bucket list!

    P.S. – Thanks also for your idea to bring back pressed flowers. I brought home a piece of heather, lavender and a tiny fern that was growing out of a stone wall in Grasmere.

    • sbranch says:

      Loved reading that Maria, took me back. You said it just right about the Lake District, the beauty and the folklore of the area . . . the Yorkshire Dales are like that too, filled with echoes of the far past. SO happy you have your little pressed flowers. A solid little memory. xoxo

  86. Kathie says:

    For a lovely taste of Edinburgh read Alexander McCall Smith’s series of the Isabel Dalhousie (light) mysteries. Isabel “walks” Edinburgh in every episode. I enjoyed those stories very much and got a nice taste of the city, as well as the university.



  87. Tammy M says:

    Oh, Susan! I just LOVE when there are things to look forward to!! I miss you when you are not blogging as much. But, I am trying to stay very still and fairly quite so you can finish the new book and I can soon be reading it! I say to myself, “Tammy, be patient…it is gonna be SO WORTH IT!!” “It won’t be long now!”

    • Tammy M says:

      Dang! I had more written and when I posted my comment from my ipad mini half my comment appears to have disappeared!

      Here’s the rest…
      🙂 I am getting so excited! Nantucket was FUN! (I got some of those lanterns;))…and now we get to look forward to a cross country train ride and a trip back across the pond! “I wanna go!…I wanna go!” Oh, and let’s not forget about another thing we can ook forward to …they’re tight around the corner….PUMPKINS!!!
      Love ya and so grateful for you. You brighten my days! -Tammy

    • sbranch says:

      xoxo Tammy, once again you remind me I’m not in this alone!

  88. Melissa says:

    The bridge in Scotland is definitely different than the ones we just visited…Covered Bridge tour in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania…beautiful country.

  89. Thimbleanna says:

    I’m squealing with delight Susan — Scotland is my VERY most favorite place to visit. Ever. And if you’re going to be in the vicinity of Eilean Donan for very long there are two fabulous drives to take:
    1) The drive to Sheila’s Tea Hut which you can read about here: thimbleanna.com/blog/?p=369 (I know I called her Sheena but I think it’s Sheila — I couldn’t understand those accents LOL!), and
    2) The road to Applecross which you can read about here:
    Puh-leeeez take me with you. Not on the blog — I can drive you around LOL!!! I hope it really happens and you have a wonderful trip — all the fun is in the planning — SOOOO exciting!!!

  90. martine levy says:

    Hello Susan! Thanks for the wonderful blog.I am SO ready for autumn,and getting your book! When you’ll come to California please bring some rain with you.We are so desperate for water.Your pictures of Scotland are so gorgeous and inspiring.I hope your trip will be fantastic and will lead to another great book.I am a great fan of anything scottish! My favorite author,Robert Louis Stevenson,and my favorite
    person,John Muir,were scotts!And who can resist anything plaid?And KILTS!!!
    If you really want to have a great time watching a scottish fun serie,watch”The Monarch in the Glen”.with John Fellows and Susan Hampshire and plenty of bonnie lasses and Gillies! Not to speak of the gorgeous country side.I took the dvd from my local library.So enjoy and practice everyday!
    In the meantime,stay cool and enjoy the rest of the summer.

  91. Janie Phillips says:

    Good morning, Sue! I had a “Where am I?” moment when I saw the first picture on your blog today. It looked so familiar :). I quite loved seeing it there. The Autumn Garlands have been popular, but there are more on their way to the studio, so they’ll be back in stock soon!

    Oh my … Outlander. You were the first person to tell me about Outlander when we all first found our way to Twitter and I was sitting in front of the computer with my mouth wide open because Susan Branch sent me a Tweet!! The Outlander audiobooks have kept me company through countless hours of banner making. Each one is over 40 hours, so when I finish them all I can start over. I will have forgotten the beginning by then :). And now there’s a series — it just keeps on giving! My son and daughter-in-law were here for a visit this summer and as I came into the kitchen my daughter-in-law, who is a Yale PhD, Rhodes Scholar, college professor, said to my son, “Just ask your mom, you’ll see.” So my son asked me if I’d heard of Outlander, clearly expecting me to say no. I said, “By Diana Gabaldon?” at which point my daughter-in-law laughed and said, “I told you, every woman over 16 has read Outlander.” Including, to my surprise, my daughter-in-law! The books will make your trip to Scotland even more interesting. She really does manage to squeeze in a lot of history, which is of course, why we read the books …

    • sbranch says:

      Makes me want to touch some stones! But then again, hmmm, would have to think twice! I didn’t realize we’d sold out of the Garlands! Of course, well, I should have known. Thank you for sending us more! Have a great day Janie!

  92. Kathy G says:

    Whew, humid here in Iowa, too…..and my treat for the day will be further reading of Outlander…….it keeps me compelled. And what a bonus, you will take us through Scotland next spring; I’ll look forward to it.

  93. Tessa~ says:

    I certainly ken, that you have delightful plans.
    And will always take us with you. 🙂
    Gentle hugs,

  94. Tessa~ says:

    Oooops, guess that should be spelled “Crivins”… ,-) Or not. -grin- Oh well, anyone who has read about “The Little Blue Men,” will recognize it.
    “Ach crivens”!!! That’s it!
    “The Little Blue Men”—>the Nac Mac Feegles in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novels…
    Gentle hugs,

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

    Happy September to you also, Susan!! I’m so feeling Autumn about now! I must take down my Spring cupcakes from your store and put up something Autumn. Speaking of Autumn…. I received in the mail yesterday your book!! I was so excited…. I’ve already started reading it. Only a few pages thus far though.

    Love the picture of Jack! I also like the bouquet of fall flowers. I have one sunflower blooming. While feeding the birds, I found a couple of sunflower starts…. at the time not knowing if they were to be sunflowers or not, but one had a bit of sunflower seed attached to it so….. It looks so nice in the garden as all my other summer flowers are at their end.

    The pictures that you put up of Wales are great! Makes me want to go there as well. So, I’m here to say….. let’s go. I’ll be one of the first to depart with you, along with all the other girlfriends, haha.

    Your ‘to do’ list has inspired me to get busy this morning. Have alot to do as well, so I’m off to work 🙂

    Carol M

  96. Terri McKenzie says:

    Very exciting about the Autumn book, and the possible trip!! I was also going to suggest Monarch of the Glen. The whole series is on Netflix. My brothers went to Scotland and met with our clan chieftan. I am very envious, especially since I am the older one! It will be a glorious trip, and cannot wait to hear about it, in your own special way!!

  97. salve says:

    Hey Susan, your picture of the whole sky – look again on the right side of the picture and you will see a cloud formed like a big pink winged bird! Beautiful! Wonderful picture of the Summer moons! Love them and many thanksalve!

  98. Hi! I finally had to go find out what exactly “rabbit-rabbit” means. I’d seen it on your blog before, but my fuzzy brain overlooked it, and thought nothing of it. It was fun to read about. It’s an English superstition, and I wonder why I didn’t grow up with it. Is it localized to some areas? I was from W.Va. Maybe the tradition never reached the mountains there?

    We are sweltering here as well, in NC, and eager for AUTUMN. Both those garlands are perfectly gorgeous, but I will admit that your natural one is my preference 🙂

    Well, now we have another trip to anticipate!

    • sbranch says:

      You are not alone, it seems to be a little hit and miss in this country, but more well-known all the time as requirement for magic is growing. 🙂

  99. Christine says:

    So excited about our trip to Scotland!! We were there briefly in the early ’80’s and love driving through the countryside. Pretty warlike folk back in the old days! I was so excited to receive my Autumn book yesterday! Well actually I have my original but had to look as it is a gift for my friend. Loved the publisher mark!! She is such a “fall: person I know she will love it. She even collects pumpkins!!! I have looked for a copy for her for quite awhile and now we have a beautiful new one!!!

    Thanks as always for your wonderful post!!!

  100. Mary-Agnes from Long Island says:

    The minute I read “Scotland” I thought “Outlander” and lo and behold, there was Jamie and Claire’s picture. I just finished the 8th book in the series and think they’ve done a wonderful job with the series so far, particularly in the casting of Jamie. It’s gotten great reviews, and they’ve already renewed it for next year.
    I’ve been to Scotland and loved it. Such a wild and beautiful country. I’m sure you’ll fall in love with it as well. Lots of sheep, that’s for sure!

    • sbranch says:

      So happy to hear that! I haven’t heard the reviews and I’m so glad to hear it’s going over well and will be going on!

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