It’s a Miracle!

Well, it’s a miracle, I still remember how to do this! Including even MUSICA!  I still got it!

I just wanted to say hello to you all, send a thousand kisses, and tell you how sorry I am for being away for so long.  But most especially I wanted to thank everyone who’s been sending me  positive messages via the blog and email. You will never know how much they’ve meant to me. They’re like verbal backbone strengtheners! And I’ve needed every one of them! There’s an element of guilt you know, locking yourself away like I have. Your words tell me you forgive me.


The Fairy Tale Girl

Especially on the days when the blank page just stares back at me.  If you wonder where I’ve been, I drew you a picture  . . . I’ve been doing this and this and this and this for all these weeks and months.  And I am so close now.  And when I get done, I will do my best to make up for lost time.  I know you wonder why I don’t just put up a little something to say hello, but it’s the concentration thing that I really need to write a book, and almost everything breaks it.

Fairy Tale Girl

Pay no attention to me . . . I have these little guys on my side now, one of them sits on my paintbrush just like in the picture below . . . and I’m almost done! I probably should have started writing books like these when I was 28 rather than 68 — I’d be so much better at it by now!  ‘Course, then this would have been a much shorter book!  (But that could be a good thing!) You do what you do when you do it I guess.

The Fairy Tale Girl

I think it’s turning out good ~ I just want to set it free and let it fly by itself and very soon, I’ll be able to do that.  I just underestimated how much time it would take.  But you know I couldn’t turn it in until I felt like I’d done my best on each butterflies in lovepage.  You scrapbookers know what I mean! Also, I’m VERY boring these days, you would have been sick of me by now anyway because it’s all this, all the time.  I’m a broken record living in Groundhog Day.  Yes, you’ve heard this song before! 🙂 But soon, I will get interesting again. There will be food and gardens and home grown tomatoes and farmers market and walks and ocean pictures, maybe even a train ride and a Willard! Lots more Jack and much more Girl Kitty, and maybe even a little Joe.

The Fairy Tale Girl

One of the big excitements this week was when I remembered my baby book and thought how cute the pages would look as end papers for the book.  That’s one of them up there.  With my baby hair still on it!  (What I ought to do is take that hair in and see if they can make a clone of me from my baby hair and have the clone finish The Fairy Tale Girl!  Good idea!)  Remembering those pages put me in a good mood for two full days!  On one of them my mom writes about my birthday and says I received squirrel slippers for a gift! She is going to LOVE this book!  BTW, she is healthy and happy and so is my dad!  I spoke to him this morning and he says, Hello Girlfriends!

bird flowers get-attachment.aspx


Pookie Boy! Even though this is short, and just a hello and big thank you, I know you would maybe never forgive me if I didn’t include a photo of my sidekick who is always right here beside me, just like you, through thick and thin ~ Jack will also be glad when I’m done working, he’s ready for MUCH more playing.

day lilies


But he still loves me. And look at those paws. OMG I want to eat them.

I promise I’ll be back soon.  Your generous words of encouragement, here and on Facebook and Twitter too ~ they’re what I’ve been leaning on to get through this. You keep me sane, and that is saying something ~ XOXO and see you soon! Back to work I go . . . I’m writing the words for the copyright page now!  P.S. don’t get me wrong, this is a labor of love. I would do it no matter if anyone else wanted it or not.  It’s been in me forever and has always wanted out.  It’s actually more of an exorcism than a book writing adventure! xoxo

This entry was posted in Blog and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

582 Responses to It’s a Miracle!

  1. Sheree McMahon says:

    I was so thrilled to see your new post! I think all of us were getting concerned and I’m so glad all is well! I too can hardly wait for your new book but I decided I will just keep re-reading A Fine Romance and getting lost in it until The Fairy Tale Girl is ready! As Carly Simon sang ” Anticipation…an ti ci payyaa tion

  2. Carilyn Wolski says:

    Hello Susan! Keep up the hard work!! Your book will be magnificent……because you are!!!!! Missed you soooooooo much this summer! But whenever I would get that empty feeling, I would look at your beautiful wall calendar and smile. Daily little prayers I say for you to keep healthy, happy, and full of strength to reach your goal! Take care of yourself and God Bless!

  3. Helen says:

    So excited for the new book. We all understand the need to work. Thank you for the people you have brought together based on a shared enjoyment of all the things you share. I love that there is a place where thoughts that are full of positive energy flow so freely . . . An island for persons of goodwill.

  4. Julie says:

    You have gifted me with another great lesson. Sometimes you just need to bear down and finish what you started. It is so much easier to take breaks and change tracks, however, it is good old fashioned discipline that gets the job done each and every time.

    You go Girl! Can’t wait to devour the finished product!

  5. Danica says:

    Hi! I love your books and blog. The funny thing is I’m not really into homemaking or crafts at all. I enjoy socializing, traveling and…working. I know. I’m weird. However, I’ve always been drawn to your work. I think deep down there’s a domestic goddess in me that is dying to get out. And I have to be honest I’m drawn to the fact the you find beauty and joy in the little things. This is a special quality to have. Good Luck with your future book!

    Also you mentioned above that you’re 68. I would have never guessed 68. I thought you were maybe like 50. You look great!!

  6. karen says:

    So glad to see your post. I can’t even imagine what a huge undertaking this must be! Your book is so exciting, and I look forward to reading it. I love to have something charming to look forward to, and your books are always such a lovely read. A Fine Romance is sitting next to me on my bookcase. I pick it up sometimes just to reread an excerpt that will cheer my day.

    I hope that you are enjoying these final touches to an already loved book. We love you.

  7. Evie Tong says:

    There you are … coming up for some air! I am so glad to hear from you and of your progress! I have been a follower for two years now (read Fine Romance when it came out and thanks to the Tea Time magazine, I saw your book!); some 15 years ago a girlfriend gave me your Christmas Book which I loved and kept! I have been collecting your books and recently found: Happy Birthday Little Book and Happy Summer Little Book. The Little Books are difficult to come by; do you plan on writing anymore? You are very inspiring and add much sweetness to my life …
    and I’m most certain to many many Girlfriends! Keep giving us your dreams ….
    you help us to dream forward! Greetings and Aloha from San Diego, CA.
    PS: Love your Blog, Love your Life, Love your Memories Shared…. Evie

  8. Marion Rose says:

    Good evening My Friend,
    Yes it nice to receive you blog! I have missed your wonderful notes to us.
    It has been a lot of work for you, but we will all be happy when we get to
    read your new book.
    Just got back from New Hampshire, a wonderful trip to attend the Eagle ceremony for our Grandson. I must say he has the proudest Grandparents.
    He has worked many years to attain the award. His project was to plan and
    be in charge of building a Gazebo at an assisted living home. It come out
    beautiful and the old folks will enjoy relaxing in it. He started the Scout program in the first grade and never gave up. He is a real leader!
    Keep working and enjoy some of our wonderful weather——

  9. Margaret Parks says:

    Dear Susan,
    So nice to see a blog post from you. I know that you are hard at work, but I like to think of you walking the beach on a sunny afternoon on the vineyard, just walking, maybe skipping stones.. or looking for some sea glass & shells. I hope that is so, because it seems a shame on these wonderful summer days not to be by the ocean. It soothes me, just listening to the waves crashing on the rocks. (I live on the Maine coast so we have mostly rocks, not the lovely sand that you have there). I like to go to the lighthouse and sit there and just think..or not. Do you do that ? It was a very long cruel winter here so I guess I am especially grateful for summer this year. Anyway, I hope that you will enjoy whatever it is you want to do and look forward to your next bit of news.
    Give your fur babies a “pat” on their heads.
    warm wishes,

  10. Gladys Marie says:

    An Artist Understands. Truly. YOU ARE worth the wait. I’ve long ago taken time out of the equation. Bless You Dear Susan.

  11. Susan, Today I checked and there you were!!! Oh happy day! Thank you for sticking your head out the door to say hello!! All the best to you as you finish up a beautiful work! You’ve made my day,,,,,,,,,,,,~~~~~~Just happy to be, Teresa
    PS Oh ya!! Those paws and nose! So kissable! Thanks to Jack too!!!!

  12. Ridgely says:

    So, so, so glad you’re fine, I was worried. Of course the book is consuming all your energy and time…that’s what good books do, and you ALWAYS, produce great things, so I will be patient and stop worrying now that I know all is well!

  13. Susan in SC says:

    I have a feeling that many of the girlfriends are going to recognize bits of their own personal coming of age stories when we finally read your “magnum opus,” so I will thank you in advance for the memories that will be awakened in your readers. So inspired by your dedication and determination to create this gift for all of us.
    P.S. Our mothers had the identical baby books for their “Little Susans.”

  14. Jan Bass (Stillmeadow Society of Iowa) says:

    Susan — How could you have possibly gotten this far on “Fairy Girl” without Jack and Joe and Kitty Girl? Even if they’ve been a bit impatient waiting for their warm fuzzies from you, they still must surely (maybe secretly) cheer you on and comfort your heart. We readers will always be here for you also, cheering you on! Hugs!

  15. Donnie says:

    So excited to see the end result of all the hard work. I appreciate so much the beauty and wonder you share with us. Be well!

  16. Joann says:

    Susan…you are worth waiting for…… will you wait for me, too? Updates way over due………..

    Thinking of you hard at work…………you give me SO MUCH encouragement with your own determination and enthusiasm!!


  17. Susan (in VA) says:

    Thank you for my Jack fix, Susan. I now have a renewed will to live and the strength to endure until your next post. 🙂 (OK, I exaggerate. But not much.) Seriously, thanks for surfacing to let us all know you are well and that the book is getting close to the finishing point. Take care.

  18. So good to hear from you Susan! Not to worry. We know all good things are worth waiting for. I feel like we girlfriends have been keeping ourselves busy, all the while like tip toeing around saying “Sssh….don’t bother Susan, she is busily working on her book that we will simply adore”… Hi Jack! You handsome kitty you. Hugs~

  19. Nancy B says:

    Oh, there is maybe a train ride coming up soon? Sure hope so. I need another in person autograph in my soon to have in my hands Fairy Tale Girl! Can’t wait. So good to hear from you….just wanted to say, Hi!

    Warmest wishes,
    Nancy (from Bakersfield)

  20. Pat Johnson says:

    My BFF Susan, don’t you dare answer this with any comment!! Keep working on your FABULOUS WONDERFUL DELIGHTFUL book! Sooo happy to hear you are still among the living. You are just so dedicated and working to make everything the way you think WE want it to be. Just don’t forget that this book is for YOU and your family most of all. You have been missed – I have missed you – and the gift was opening up the blog tonight and finding you once again. Thank you – keep working……….I am sitting in my cozy little cabin in Newport, Washington, enjoying the rain and the moon and the deer in my backyard. Friday I leave for a trip to Grand Teton National Park and the Moulton Ranch Cabins – my yearly destination for peace and tranquility and basking in nature. I get 7 days here and I will look at the mountains and wish you could share it too. Life is good and we do more than simply survive. God is good!! Hugs…….Pat

  21. Janie says:

    Its great to hear from you Susan. Can’t wait to hold your beautiful new books. Bless you lots!

  22. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Susan, I just knew you were up to your eyeballs in work with your new book, so I have been sending you hugs through the mail!! No apologies needed. I can’t imagine how hard it is to do what you are doing! Hearing your comments of what it is really like to write a beautiful book is a learning experience for all of us girlfriends who tag along. We all love you and I am so excited that I already have my book ordered ’cause it is going to be awesome!

    Thanks for checking in and I wish you all the best finishing up this latest creation. Take care and I look forward to hearing the whistles and bells when the final work is sent off! Whoop!!

  23. Glenda says:


    So good to see a new post from you. Very worried something was wrong – maybe you were not well or someone in your family wasn’t. Glad all is well and you are busy. I think having a blog and keeping it working, would be difficult. Wishing you continued success on your new book…take care of yourself though! You are such an inspiration and so missed when not heard from…..:)

  24. Laura Ann in Vermont says:

    What is it about kitty paws? I love to eat them, too! My cats don’t understand this at all.

  25. Marie (Long Beach, California) says:

    I’m with Jack… can’t wait for you to be done working and be able to play with us too! 😉 So happy you are almost done with your next masterpiece! You’ve put your heart and soul into it and I can’t wait to read it! ♥

  26. AngieTink says:

    ☆♡♫♬♪❁☮♥ Huge Smile on Me “Pumpkin~Face” 🙂 ….. Breathe…..& an Extra~Huge~Hug Just For You Sweet Sue….Thank~You For “Checking~In” Those Photos of Jack…”Pookie~Jack” 😉 OMG! Meowzers! 🙂 Excellent Musica ♫♬♪ Too! Sending Love & Summer~Pixie~Dust We Know You Are A “Genius~at~Work” & We Must Be Patient…..(It’s Just So Darn EXCITING Sweet Sue!!!!!!! ) We L♥ve You! xoxo Poof! ☆♡♫♬♪❁☮♥ Carry~On….. 🙂 ☆ ♥

  27. BECKY ALLEN says:

    So thankful to hear from you again. Glad you have been working not dealing with a family emergency or something terrible. You positive posts are a joy to so many & we have missed you! God BLESS!

  28. Mich Lueken says:

    Susan, thank you so very much for this post !!! I can only imagine how busy you are trying to get this book finished. Your blog posts absolutely make my day. Thank you again for this little treat. I’m waiting on pins and needles for the book to come out !!

  29. Susan, don’t feel guilty! We miss your posts, but I know the book will be worth it. I love seeing a little bit of your wedding dress from the cover photo. The 80’s – that was my favorite fashion era. When you are back to doing regular posts again, could you maybe show us some more photos of your wedding? I’d love to see your whole dress.

    • Ooops, I also meant to say that I am so glad to be one of the girlfriends. You are my inspiration for the perfect example of how to live a joy filled life. Take care of yourself while you are hard at work.

    • sbranch says:

      It’s in the book! Can’t wait to talk about it after everyone’s read it . . . it’ll be like Downton!

  30. Linda g says:

    So happy to hear from you !! So excited to read the book! You take as long as you need! We are all so grateful for you… It’s kind of like waiting for Christmas morning!! Xo

  31. Gail Rose says:

    Oh I can’t wait for Fairy Tale Girl to arrive in my mail box. Because I know I will soon after get to preorder the next one. I have missed you but I know why you were amiss. We all love you my friend. That a nap and then work work Thank you Susan for being our friend.

  32. Debbie P says:

    Oh, how I miss you!!!

  33. jackie bienemann says:

    So good to hear from you Susan! Writing a book has to be so much work and time consuming, I can’t imagine it! Thank you for all of the joy you bring and I can’t wait to read it. Take care of yourself, so glad you have your kitties and Joe to take you away from writing for a bit! We are all cheering you on and appreciating what you give to us!
    God bless you!


  34. Merci says:

    Welcome back, missed you! But understand the importance of the book, I look forward to reading it!!!

  35. nancy says:

    The clouds parted and a choir of angels could be heard….a new blog post! So happy to see a new message from you, Susan. I am so very anxious for this book!!!

  36. Idelsy says:

    So glad all is well! Can’t wait to read that book!!!!

  37. KATHLEEN in Michigan says:

    So very, very glad to have heard from you. You are truly missed but we all know that you have been very busy on your new book and it will be worth the wait.

  38. Mary in Washington says:

    ♥ Prayers and blessings to you and thankful to see your post ♥ Your words and ideas are always an encouragement to me! ♥

  39. Audrianne Hill says:

    A brief respite to the “land of the living” is a good thing.

  40. Oh Dearest Susan! The ends are SO worth the means…

    You just keep up the great work. Those of us whom adore you and all that you do will happily and patiently wait, as we know the goodies that are awaiting us!! And you’re only as old as you let yourself act and feel and you are definitely 28 in spirit and it comes through and I LOVE it!! You’re a favoritist faux girlfriend that I can just pick up with you where we left off. And even a quick post like this and getting your kitty pics helps bide the time just fine.

    Take good care of yourself (like your folks) and we’ll see ya when we see ya.

  41. Anne Rowe says:

    So glad you popped your head out of the manuscript for a breather to say “hi!”. I have books unwritten on paper but whilring around in my head…even when I am trying to go to sleep. Many who have heard some of my stories say “you should write a book”. I am 76…just. ought a voice a tivated tape recorder to carry with me…when the fun times pop up…I will start talking…never too late, is it? My kids need to read my voice when I am gone. Can’t wait for…already pre-ordered. Love to you and yours…wonderful to see Jack, too! Go…nimble fingers!

  42. Sylvia Johnson says:

    I have the same baby book-December, 1947! I have missed you and your thoughts, but really looking forward to THE BOOK! Remember to take care of Susan most of all.

  43. Laurel in VA says:

    I can’t wait to see the fruits of all your hard work Susan! I think my Mom had the same baby book for me 🙂

  44. Linda in Texas says:

    You go, Girl! And just in case you haven’t heard (head down, paintbrush in hand), Friday is a Blue Moon date.

    God bless.

  45. Jane says:

    Hello Susan,
    I’ve MISSED YOU! Thanks for checking in.
    I’m of a similar age and your Baby Book page looks like mine. I’d love to see the cover and any other pages you want to share. Mine was spiral bound. I think the spiral wire was pink and the cover blue. Probably so it could be used for a boy or a girl.
    Best wishes for completing the book. I can’t wait to read it.

  46. Victoria Miller says:

    Oh, Susan, I understand. I tried writing a book once, and I couldn’t even talk to people. I was so living in the world of the book I was writing. We look forward to seeing more of you when you have completed your mission! Until then, happy writing. (AKA ~ a lot of hard work!)

  47. Julie C says:

    Glad to hear from you! You are missed. Glad you will be back for my favorite time of year Autumn! Then the Holidays! Our boy Jack is so big! I know your book will be wonderful with all the love you are putting into it. Kisses to the Kitties! Hello to Joe too!

  48. Way to go Susan! I cannot wait to see your completed new book! Thank you so much for sharing this post with all of us who are waiting patiently!!! We readers LOVE you!!! Hugs!

  49. Though we all understand the work you are doing, it’s very good to actually hear from you again–we’ll be patient now and quit bugging you. I’m only hoping that Fairytale Girl will at least bring you to M.V. and snug into your first real-estate venture where you wrote your first book–Oh, how do you decide where to come to an end in this book and where to begin the next??? We’re with you all the way though, right to the end (which won’t actually be the end). There’s still another trip to be planned, and that Pancake book waiting on the shelf for you–Just remember to breathe–in–out–in–out–in–out. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      I just sort of stopped in the middle, between my old life and my new where I balanced for a while before finally tipping in. I’m breathing more every day!

  50. Danella on the West Coast says:

    So glad you stopped working to say hello. We were starting to worry. Have missed you but totally understand the need to stick to the task. I know the end result will be wonderful. Take care.

  51. Diane from Poulsbo says:

    Sending you love and hugs! It was a treat to hear from you and see Jack. The Girlfriends all love you! Xxxxxxx

  52. So happy to see a post from you Susan. I knew that you must be very busy finishing off your book. I, for one, (and one of a great many I know) cannot wait to get my copy of it in my little hands and devour it. I just know that it is going to be even better than the last one (as impossible as that seems!). You will soon be able to breathe a huge sigh of relief that it is all done and dusted. I can’t think that you will rest on your laurels for very long however as I am sure you have many projects waiting for you in the wings! My mom also had the same baby book for me. I wonder where it is now . . . ♥♥♥

  53. Jan says:

    So glad to see your post! Have certainly missed it, but knew you were hard at work. Keep plugging away and it will soon be done. You are so dedicated and talented. I know your book will be beautiful! Can relate to your comment about wanting each page to be the best it can – being a scrapbooker myself. My husband tells me at the rate it takes me to do one page, I’ll have to live to be 100 to accomplish what I want to. Oh well, it’s not just about the end product – it’s also about the enjoyment along the way.

  54. Anne Miller says:

    Susan, we don’t have to do it ALL (I am also in my wonderful 60s) I am slowly learning that, and we certainly don’t have to do it all at once…. Thinking you will soon be in a place for a wonderful read. I can give strong endorsements for Anne Tyler’s new book, “A Spool of Blue Thread” and Ann Patchett’s “This is the Story of a Happy Marriage.” Peace , Love and Light!
    (Another) Anne

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Anne, love both of those authors!

    • Judy Young says:

      I have been reading books by British author, Marcia Willett. Has anyone read any of her books? They are wonderful and all set in the English countryside and so readable! I have read “A Week in Winter” and “The Courtyard” so far. She has several more that I can’t wait to read. Marvelous author, the girlfriends will enjoy her books while we wait for Susan’s NEW BOOK!! Such an exciting time of year coming up……..

  55. Shelia Wotring says:

    I didn’t see my comment. Hope it made it!?

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve approved all the ones I had . . . but we do have periodic gremlins that attack, at least this one came through.

  56. Wanda Susanne says:

    Hello dear Susan: Love you and love your work. I do miss your posts, but am anxiously waiting for my copy of your new book! It’s so exciting! Keep up the good work and know that you have many friends who love you and think often of you!
    Hugs and a kiss from Iowa!

  57. Joan says:

    I feel like we are all whining and hope not making you feel guilty. If we all read your blog we know you are working so hard to finish your book. Please don’t mind us and just keep plugging along and forgive us all for asking over and over if you are ok and begging for blogs and willards. We promise to be patient so you can get finished quicker. Isn’t it wonderful though you have such a wonderful following. Your concern for your followers is so evident. I have said it before your large calendars are just great with each month being completely different from the other and your Mini calendars so different from large wall ones. Thank you and we appreciate all your beautiful artwork. Also thanks for your reply re the change of paper stock. Joan (who is lucky also to have a Joe in her life)

    • sbranch says:

      I think you are wonderful and everyone is doing great . . . I don’t hear whining, I hear love and concern. xoxo

  58. Lynn Cooper says:

    I hope that you are taking some time for some fun with Joe and simply time to wind down. We are all looking forward to your new book, but be good to yourself.

    • sbranch says:

      Not too much this time. I underestimated my time by oh, only a couple of months, so then I had to work to get it done as close as I possibly could to the original goal.

  59. Cindy Maulin says:

    Hi Susan !! saw this…reminded me of you…

    “I want to do something splendid……. or wonderful that
    won’t be forgotten after I’m dead…..I think I shall write books”
    Lousia May Alcott

    Not crazy about the “dead” part but I get what she was saying….there is something very special about a book……it is forever…….
    Been keeping you close at heart…… good luck on the last leg…..
    love, cindy

    • sbranch says:

      LOL, “Not crazy about the dead part!” I LOVE Louisa May Alcott . . . thank you. She was so brave for her time, saying exactly what she thinks. . .

  60. Rhonda Cooper says:

    All that matters is you are well. Waiting on your news is much easier knowing you are working hard, exactly as you need to be, and all around you are well, too.
    Now, I can carry on and cross you off my “Should I be concerned?” List. Three Cheers to you! Have to admire your tenacity – it’s going to be so worthwhile reaching that point, knowing you gave it your very best.


    • sbranch says:

      That’s the important part . . . I only have this one chance to do it right. Hope that’s how it looks to everyone!

  61. Dianna Swartz says:

    What a surprise to have your words and pictures today! Your Girlfriends have been worried. So happy to know that you have been releasing your creativity and there was nothing wrong in your world…just focused. We can all expect that. Thank you for sharing your gifts with so many of us. Know that you have been missed.

  62. Jean Rosenfeld says:

    I hope this is the right place to post a comment to win one of your new books. I loved your first book and read it twice in a row. It is so special. Winning your book would be a perfect birthday gift for me on August 9! But if I don’t win, my husband said he would preorder me a book. A wonderful husband he is. Sure enjoyed your new posting after so long. Thanks for getting us up to date.

    • sbranch says:

      The contest was a month or two ago, I think you were reading an older post, but I’m sure we’ll do it again Jean!

  63. Cindy Boggs says:

    Hi, Susan! It’s so great to see your new post! I was getting worried about you and your family, but I tried to remind myself that you were just very busy on the new book! So glad that all are well 🙂 I know we are all in for a huge treat when “The Fairy Tale Girl” makes its arrival! You take care of yourself and we’ll try to be patient!

  64. Wendy Louise says:

    Hi Susan,
    You keep going girl, you are almost at the finish line and all your loved ones are there waiting patiently for you ! Your zillions of girlfriends have a heart filled with anticipated excitement and we are soooooo proud of you. You set such an example of a life well lived and it gives so much. Can’t wait to celebrate with you and everyone here in blog land. Cheers, Wendy-Louise oxoxoxoxoxoxox

  65. Susie Kunze says:

    Thank you for the post, the new book will be well worth the wait. Enjoyed some of the sneak peaks.
    Loved Martha’s Vineyard! Enjoyed everything, Farmers Market, Oak Bluffs, everything. My 2 1/2 year old granddaughter asks daily if she can go back and ride the horses. The only problem was the 8 hour wait for the ferry after the storm. I was glad the Black Dog was in the parking lot so we could get breakfast and lunch while we waited. It’s a long way back to Kentucky.
    Best of luck finishing the book. Wish I could come back for Illunination Night. Hung some lanterns on my porch so I could be there in spirit.

  66. Linda Kidd says:

    Susan – Glad to see your post. Can’t wait for your book! Take care and know that all of us love you and your beautiful art. I do oil landscapes, and am teaching my granddaughter. She loves art! Take care. Linda Kidd, Loganville, GA

  67. Yvonne says:

    It’s so lovely to read a new post from you.The new book looks fabulous, I hope you’ll make it available for pre-order at Amazon UK ( pretty please with a cherry on top )

    Jack is looking mighty fine, in fact, downright handsome! No cat should be that good looking!

    When I saw the first illustration in this post my first thought was “Who’s Lee.?” Then I realised it was a fairy flight trail! 🙂 It’s about 10.30am over here and my only excuse is that I’m only on my first coffee and therefor not fully conscious!

    All the best to you, Joe, Girl Kitty and Jack

    • sbranch says:

      Amazon is something I don’t have too much power over. I’m not sure how things get up there, I’m only grateful that they do! I’m pretty sure it will be there, just not exactly sure when! English girls should be the first to recognize a fairy trail — but “who’s Lee” is the perfect 2nd guess . . . ha ha ha!

  68. Oh, Susan! We are going to LOVE The Fairy Tale Girl from the moment we open the cover!! (Just peeked at your ‘tweet.’) It is a true work of heart! Just another day or two!! So excited for you… and us!!!!!!!!!!!
    Watercolor hugs!
    Dawn (in Illinois)

  69. Bernadette Gibson says:

    Susan, Susan, Susan! I celebrated my 70th birthday on July 25th. When you wrote your book about your trip to England I pre bought several books for my daughter and sisters. Well, My daughter Nicole, has given me for my birthday a trip on the Queen Mary !! for next year! And we are going to spend a week in the Lake District. Can you believe it?!!! She and I are great traveling companions. I am so excited I could burst! We are both re reading your book to get some more ideas of where to stay, etc… I wish I could send you some pictures of how she decorated my dining room for my birthday. It was amazing! You would have loved it. Very much like you. I will keep you posted on our trip and where we are going. Can’t wait for the Queen Mary. A trip of a like time!!

    • sbranch says:

      NO! How wonderful Bernadette! Now that’s something to look forward to! Give Nicole a big hug from me!

  70. gloria L. Nugent says:

    So the “trick” to making my favorite blogger appear is….go on vacation & don’t checkk the computer 2 times a day!! left on the very day you (at long last) gave us the post. Just as a watched pot doesn’t boil…a busy author/artist/friend does not blog…HA! Good to see you are well. Enjoy the journey to your next publishing venture.

  71. Jackie Walton says:

    Jack is looking so grown up, god bless him!

  72. Jean says:

    Coming up to the surface– as you swim in your sea of words and drawings! Dearest Moon Girl!!! Take a deep breath, dive in, finish your creation! I look forward to reading your book so much! We keep your MOON bookmark on our Family Bulletin Board (blotter calendar is tacked up on it, too) and look forward to this month’s Blue Moon!!!

  73. Jennie Lou says:

    Keep going, Susan! I am so proud of you for bearing down and working when all the deliciosity of the world beckons you away! To Play! It sets such a good example, I challenge all the girlfriends to use this time while you are finishing to bear down and finish one task each! How much can we have done! And how much to share later! For me, I have a bathroom with walls half-denuded of wallpaper in need of prepping and painting before the damp Washington weather settles back in. Just one task. Name it and focus, get ‘er done and let us all celebrate Susan’s Big Finish together. Any takers?

  74. carole hines says:

    Glad I found you today….been looking for you! So it was nice to see that you took some time to let us know that all is well. Just finished reading “Enchanted April” which I ordered through you. Loved it. I could almost smell the lovely flowers in the garden. Thanks for recommending it. Now I’ll have to wait patiently for your new book.

    • sbranch says:

      Wonderful book Carole!

      • carole hines says:

        Have you heard the buzz about coloring books for grown-ups? Not being a talented artist like you, or even close to being one, I have purchased a coloring book and some beautiful pencils to color with. It’s very relaxing! It’s not your children’s coloring book. That being said, I would love for you to do a coloring book for your fans. Your drawings would make a wonderful book to color. It would be a great next project after your book. What do you think?

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

    good afternoon everyone, welcome back Susan, you have been missed. wishing you all the best for the new book, sorry I haven’t been around much, been pretty busy with things here, especially now… triple digit heat, try 109 today and tomorrow and trying to keep the barnyard brats cool and comfy and hydrated, so far so good, no casualties yet. also have a bunch of kittens from my idiot neighbors next door ( they don’t feed or care for the kittens so I loosely call them idiots, could say much worse but I won’t!!!) and we are caring for them, feeding them seeing to it they have shelter from the heat and loads of water available to them so they can drink plenty and be cool. also have the laundry out on the line, and as soon as I get it off and inside, fold it and put away I am off for the river and some cooling floating to cool off. dinner tonight is subway sandwiches… too hot to cook!!!!! have a great day everyone, stay cool, and comfy. hugs….. 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      Wow, 109, you have your work cut out for you Pat! That’s crazy weather. I get the idiot thing exactly! Sending love xoxo

      • Pat addison (cave junction, OR) says:

        thank you Susan, we cooled down a bit, 89 degrees on Sunday and for today 91, I can handle that. as for the kittens, we are trying to find them good homes, just stuck a free kittens sign out front and people come look. they are so adorable and so full of mischief, but I can’t keep them… I have 5 cats of my own and that would not be fair to them. nor can I afford it, so we are trying to find them good homes, we already found a home for 2 of them, 4 more to go and mama to!!! I fail to understand those idiot neighbors, she claims she loves the cats and wants them, yet she does not care for them or feed, I have seen mama cat in my barn eating chicken food to fill her belly before we started feeding the whole family. once mama got pregnant and had her kittens she didn’t want them anymore so mama brought them all to us for safety. that idiot neighbor also owns dogs and does not care any better for them, in fact one neighbor shot one of the dogs for attacking his chickens. and we have since let her know if those dogs come on our property they are good as dead, they will be shot on sight. guess that worked as we haven’t seen the dogs for awhile. well off to go get the laundry out on the line, at least it cooled down for laundry day. talk to you soon, hugs….. 🙂

        • sbranch says:

          Our humidity broke this morning, at least enough to open the windows for a while! I imagine you won’t have those kitties very long Pat! Take care. xoxo

          • pat addison (cave junction,OR) says:

            I sure hope we find the ret some good homes, they deserve that much… they didn’t ask to be born and have those idiots for owners. for now they are all peacefully napping on the back patio in the shade. poor little things its very hard not to get too attached to them.

          • sbranch says:

            I can just imagine. Too bad I don’t live next door!

  76. Jayne Parsons says:

    Hi Susan,
    So glad to see your new blog. I was afraid we might of lost you underneath all your papers. Can’t wait for your new book. My copy of a Fine Romance is getting worn out from my daughters and friends borrowing it and my rereading it for the I don’t know how many times. Take care of yourself. Hope to see more of you soon. Jayne

  77. Laura Anne says:

    Susan, I just saw some glimpses of OUR new book on your Twitter page! I am getting more and more excited to read it! I can’t believe you’re almost done!

    I don’t mean to be “one of those people” but I spotted a possible error? On the front cover flap, you write 1950’s with an apostrophe and then write 1960s without one!! Shouldn’t both be without it? Sorry! I think I was an English teacher in a former life 😉

    • sbranch says:

      You are so right, it’s not supposed to be there, but that was still the mockup of the layout thank goodness, before editing…. It’s fixed! Yay!

  78. Hello Darling Sue!
    I , for one, am glad you are working. It gives me something to look forward to in this lost summer. At the end of June, Rick had a ladder collapse under him and broke his leg quite badly- four days in the hospital and no walking until September. We were planning an England trip and it is now postponed to next year and we are housebound but trying to make the best of it. At least I work from home. And he was SO lucky not to be hurt more severely 🙂
    Thinking of you painting away makes me happy and keeps me looking forward.
    So paint on fair maiden and when you come up for air give Jack, Girl and Joe a hug for us! xxooxx

    • sbranch says:

      Oh Noooo, how awful! I hope he’s feeling no pain these days, give Rick my best. . . and thank you for checking in. xoxo

      • Thanks! Doing well, all I can say is thank goodness for knee scooters. I used to laugh at them a bit but they are so great compared to crutches. Midway check up next week with x-rays to look at the bones- hopefully healing under the plates and screws. The hardest thing is keeping a busy bee down when he never usually sits at all. Oh well we shall persevere. 😉 Sending love and light!

  79. PAULA says:

    Glad to know you are doing well. It’s nice to know that you do give yourself a breather once-in- awhile, but you accomplish more in your “hour” than most people do, and it’s all so lovely when you’re done. We can be patient, so don’t rush, creating takes time. Love, Polly from Oxnard.

  80. Heather L. says:

    So good to see this post from you!!! But, every day that we don’t see a post we know that’s because the book we have been waiting for is one day closer to reaching us!!! We can’t wait! Keep up the good work!!!! Reading a book you will have to read when you have free time again: “The Natural World of Winnie the Pooh”.

  81. Karen P. (Wisconsin) says:

    Just checking to say hi! I forgot to mention how much I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those little butterfly fairies/creatures! Magical! Adorable!!! xo

    • sbranch says:

      We have these little blue butterflies that seem to run down the road ahead of us here on the Island — only for maybe a week each spring. I’ve painted them before, but this time, I turned them into fairies!

  82. Vickie Getty (Little Rock, AR) says:

    I’ve been missing you! But I have been patient knowing the reason behind your absence from the blog. It will be worth it!!!!! Cannot wait, simply cannot wait.

  83. Joy Woodman says:

    So nice to hear from you Susan. We just miss you. Thanks for always being an encourager and for brightening my day. I just got my new 2016 calendar from you. Love it. Can’t wait to get my signed copy of your new book. Thanks for posting a picture of POOKIE BOY !!!!! I love his lil “stash” and little “beard”. I have 2 cats at my house Mr. Colby and Miss Brie the cheese brother/sister team. They are a delight. I can’t imagine my life without cats in it. I love your cat stories. I love the way cats hang out with you even when you are busy. Keep on keeping on and know that we all love you.
    Love, Joy

    • sbranch says:

      There’s a big cat story in my new book! Pictures too. A couple of them, actually. Thank you Joy!

  84. Marsha MacLean says:

    Dear Susan,
    I, along with so many others, am delighted to know you are doing well. We all understand the challenges of a deadline, and so I don’t want you to feel pressured by us, just know we are thinking of you and glad everything is good, including your parents’ health!
    Looking forward to the new book!

  85. Kari says:

    Even though we’ve not met and this sounds very silly, I think about you every few days and wish you well on your project. And, sometimes, picturing you at your drawing table working away motivates me to get busy myself. There you go!

  86. Pat W says:

    Thanks Susan for stopping your work to let us know all is well. Cannot wait for your new creation. You are such an inspiration to us all. Go Girl!!

  87. Steph says:

    Tell your dad hi from us girlfriends in Concrete, WA and you can do this and got this.

  88. Sue says:

    As with everyone else, I’m thrilled to hear you’re back, hale and hearty. Just overworked and busy, busy, busy. That’s good news, because I’ve been saving up ransom money, just in case… LOL.

    Now that the ransom money isn’t needed, I may use it for the veggies to make your wonderful gazpacho. I made a batch earlier in the summer, but it’s so good that I’m CRAVING more. I always add shrimp and crabmeat and a good hit of tabasco to it for a little zip, and it’s my lunchtime meal for several days.

    Hugs to the furry children. Can’t wait for the new book!

  89. Martha says:

    Your posts are so worth waiting for, Susan! I can’t wait for the book to be released, too. Thank you for all your hard work.

  90. Diane R says:

    can’t wait for your book! and sooooo happy to hear from you, and see Jack again…. doggone it, you are right, those paws of his are totally adorable. 🙂

  91. Cindy Bailey says:

    Bless your heart 🙂 The greatest experiences in life take time to build and my favoite part of the whole journey is the anticipation. So thankful to be on this journey with you! Thank you for sharing.

    God bless ~*

  92. Mary Coleman says:

    Dear Susan , so delighted you peeked out your lovely door to wave
    A cheery ” Yoo hoo” to your waiting girlfriends. We were wishing you and Joe happy days of summer and hoping all was well in Branchville! Looking forward with delightful anticipation! I had to find my same baby book with my mother’s beautiful hand writing. A treasure if sweetness. See you soon… Blessings, M

  93. Mary Brehm says:

    Good Morning Dear Sue! I posted to you earlier, but I can’t find it now. Maybe I didn’t hit the send button. I’ll try again, Like an earlier post from a girlfriend, I kept looking and looking every day for a post and then went away to move my daughter to her new apartment in Ann Arbor Michigan. It’s ten hours away from home ( in up-state, NY). We spent two exhausting days, moving, cleaning, shopping for furniture at thrift shops, and touring The University of Michigan campus. She is going for her masters, then PhD, in geology. I am so scared to have her moving so far from home and yet, so very proud and excited as well. The morning after we arrived home I popped on for a look and Poof!, there you were! I know what if feels like to be in a creative stupor, It’s all consuming. I just know the results are going to be fantabulous! Thanks again for being a bright light and inspiration to all us girlfriends.

    • sbranch says:

      How exciting for your daughter, but I can just imagine how proud you must feel. xoxo Thank you so much Mary!

  94. Beth L. says:

    I bet you are dreaming of a SLOOOOW, cold winter hunkered under a warm down blanket with a hot cup of tea DOING NOTHING but watching Downton Abbey and breathing deep!!!! (OK…maybe flinging a few hair bands Jack’s way, too!)
    Keep on KEEPING ON, Girl….It’s ALL GOOD!

  95. Judy in Ohio says:

    “I probably should have started writing books like these when I was 28 rather than 68 — I’d be so much better at it by now! ” You are so funny…and I guess I must be also, because I say this toooo often about so many things!! …The great thing is that you are doing NOW!! 🙂

    I am so excited for you! And yes, we girlfriends do understand about how consuming this must be…all in a good sort of way, of course! I am so glad too that you are able to do this while your parents are still here and will be so happy and able to enjoy it,too. Most of my work I have done since my dad passed (21 years ago) and quite a bit since my mom passed (12 years ago today, actually.) I know they would be proud of me (even though I am as yet unpublished) and would truly enjoy my stories and little watercolors…But knowing this is still not quite the same as hearing it from them, or seeing their faces when they experience them for the first time.

    Carry on, dear lady and keep on keeping on!!
    You will have much FUN to catch up on when you are done! 😀



    There is a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that I always love to read and I am sure that you know of it,too… I thought I would relay it to you, in case it has been awhile since you have seen it:

    The Poet and His Songs

    As the birds come in the Spring,
    We know not from where;
    As the stars come at evening
    From depths of the air;

    As the rain comes from the cloud,
    And the brook from the ground;
    As suddenly, low or loud,
    Out of silence a sound;

    As the grape comes to the vine,
    The fruit to the tree;
    As the wind comes to the pine,
    And the tide to the sea;

    As come the white sails of ships
    O'er the ocean's verge;
    As comes the smile to the lips,
    The foam to the surge;

    So come to the Poet his songs,
    All hitherward blown
    From the misty realm, that belongs
    To the vast Unknown.

    His, and not his, are the lays
    He sings; and their fame
    Is his, and not his; and the praise
    And the pride of a name.

    For voices pursue him by day,
    And haunt him by night,
    And he listens, and needs must obey,
    When the Angel says: "Write!"

    • sbranch says:

      That’s exactly true, I’m so very blessed to be able to share this with my parents. I’m so excited for them to see this book. And yes, when the Angel says write, you best listen! Thank you Judy! Have a wonderful day!

  96. Christy says:

    So glad you came up for air! I was really worried that we hadn’t heard anything from you in such a long while. Glad all is well and cannot wait for the book. I’ve already pre-ordered a copy for me and a copy for my best friend in the world…she introduced me to you, in fact.

    Thanks for the pics of Mr. J…and you’re right…those paws are adorable. I don’t think anyone that isn’t a cat aficionado could understand the “I just want to eat them” comment. But I do!

    Hang in there, Susan…the end is in sight!

  97. Marianna says:

    Can’t wait for this book!! I’m currently without a kitty–lost our 21 year old girl in May–and I just want to jump through the screen and squeeze Jack.

    • sbranch says:

      I’m sorry. I’ll have to make sure I get Jack in more often. Took him out into the rain this morning. He votes against us doing that again. 🙂

  98. Cathy Prentice says:

    So happy to hear you have been busy with finishing up the book and not sick. I know you are trying to meet deadlines but I am getting excited about the book coming out. My friends are almost as excited as I am……I vote that you take a vacation before going out to plug the book. We already know it is going to be wonderful….(Jack told us!)

  99. Cindy in Paso says:

    Our Dads share a birthday. Mine will be 91 tomorrow!! He also worked for the telephone company ( Pacific) in So.Cal. after serving in WW2. And they both have fabulous daughters:-)

  100. Im so glad to see a post from your… Your my inspiration..i look forward to your post yhese days more than ever. With Mama gone i have more time to visit im so happy with my new calendars for 2016. There just beautiful. I thank you for all your hard work.. I love all my recipe cards so much i ordered more … I cant wait to see your book… Stay strong to finish upcause im looking forward to all the new post ahead.. Sending love and hugs from San Francisco… With love Janice

Comments are closed.