Rabbit-Rabbit Girlfriends! It’s been way too long, and I’ve wanted so much to write, but I needed to finish something before I did . . . so I could tell you! And yesterday, in the nick of time for July first, so we can celebrate Christmas in July . . . I did! I finished! I’m a person again! Let’s start this celebration with MUSICA from the way-back machine (pure proof I love you), because this is the way I like my house to sound when the screen door is open in
I come bearing gifts. Meet one of the characters in my new book! Yes, it’s finished! Many of you know I wanted to write something special for this Christmas, which may, considering the circumstances, be our most memorable and creative ever! So, I did, I’ve been deep in Christmas every day since March! A lovely place to spend a pandemic since choice does not seem to be on the menu!😷

I used my tiniest brush to make a childrens’ book for big people, and little people too.❤️ It’s been so much fun choosing shoes and clothes . . . like playing with paper dolls! 

And Look! I blot my paintbrush on watercolor paper ~ so I saved them, and cut them, and look at all the new bookmarks! I hope I can meet you at a bookstore someday ~ because I made them for you! I’ll come there bearing gifts too!❤️

So, I finally named it Home for Christmas, because no other title would do . . . that’s where it looks like we all might be this year the way things are going! Not the worst place to spend Christmas!

I painted every little bit of the book, even this . . . little things matter too…

That’s the truth, and here’s the cover! One day, after months of putting one foot in front of the other inching along to today (which was going to happen one way or another) . . . the cover materialized right on my art table! I saw it happen! My Santa has never been in a book or a calendar, it was now or never! After all, Joe was my model for Santa. And yesterday, I turned in the very last page and realized, it was okay now, I could go ahead and put it up for presale! It’s a 64-page storybook, with watercolors and photographs ~ it’s

And going off to the printer in Crawfordsville, Indiana at the end of next week. And that’s when I get started on phase-two of book publication . . . Waiting for it to arrive at the end of August . . . knowing that…If you want one . . . you can get it HERE . . . I am going to TRY and see if any of my favorite independent bookstores would like to have a zoom-book-party. I’d love to invite you to something, we’ll see what they say. There is one party I know FOR SURE is coming next month, in August. Remember when I was going to be in Duxbury, MA for a luncheon and book-talk last Mother’s Day? And it had to be canceled? Well, they’ve gotten creative! They’ve planned a computer party that you will ALL be invited to.❤️ Don’t ask me how it will work, I have NO idea, I don’t know if it will be on Zoom or what, but I hear it’s going to be amazing ~ that you’ll be able to hear and see me, that I can even show pictures. I’ll send you details the minute I know them! So keep your calendar looking like mine, with nothing on it except for full moons and birthdays you’re not attending!

And because it seems many of you missed them the first time ~ we ordered more Santa Cups to go with the book! Kellee put them up for preorder too! HERE. They’ll get here the same time as the other cups!

Speaking of . . . everything’s on schedule! They should be here the end of this month! If you wanted one, I hope you got one because the Little Things cup is now completely gone. Before they’ve even arrived! There are still a few Bluebirds available ~ you can see the handle, back, and bottoms of them HERE. If you placed an order, we’ll send them the minute they arrive, first come, first serve.💝

And, yes, Calendars are coming too ~ the 2021 wall calendars (one of them is all art, the other one is mostly photographs) are up for presale now… but they’ll all be here, including the Blotter, the Mini, and the purse calendar, too, around the end of this month.

And one last bit of business, YES! (isn’t that the BEST word?!) We did reorder the Pandemic Postcards, and they did come in . . . Okay, well, we have other plans too. We’re going to make Christmas cards and Thanksgiving cards, and new wrapping paper for Spoonflower ~ and other surprises ~ we’re doing our best to create the best distancing, but reaching-out Christmas we know how to do. What do we want for Christmas? A vaccine, thank you very much.💞 It makes me happy to think we have the best minds in the world working on making that happen in the safest and quickest way possible. I can’t live in here the rest of my life. I need to do a yard sale!!! Stuff is piling up. I may end up having an estate sale in the antique section of my webstore! Might just have to! Wouldn’t that be interesting.✔️ What do you think?

Back to our regular scheduled programing . . . the little things that make life sweet. Morning shadows ~ so quiet here these days.  This pandemic asked us to go inside in more ways than one. Just like all the other unexpected, undesired, unplanned-for events in our lives. I wrote a book about it which a lot of you read … Martha’s Vineyard Isle of Dreams was my very own maskless pandemic! Same question I was always asking then, time will pass anyway, what am I going to DO with it? Now that I’m a person again, I’m about to find out! Paint is probably the answer! 🤣 I’m a little bit addicted! Although Joe thinks I should say “cook!” 

I know I’ll take pictures of shadows! Nature’s art! I love it when the sun tips off of things. . . so pretty.

One of the many reasons I love morning!

Minding my own business, washing apples and making toast, and hello sunshine, poof, magic!

I flipped the light on in the kitchen this morning and found these two like this. Doesn’t it look like they’re up to something? Things go on around here I know nothing about.

While I was busy, one of my favorite people, the wonderful Vera Lynn died . . . 😢 The thing about losing people, especially the very old, it’s not just them, it’s their connection to history, what they could tell us if we asked, and even to our own ancestral past . . . even if we aren’t related.


Such an important person of her times. If World War II had a heart, it would be her, if it had a soundtrack, it would be her. Whether or not you’re familiar with her, you’ll enjoy this tribute . . . We always took her music to play in the car when we were driving the back roads of England. James Taylor is the voice of Martha’s Vineyard, Vera Lynn is the voice of Britain. 


There was something else I learned about I wanted to tell you . . . oh yes, have you heard of Radio Garden? Go HERE ~ and hear what’s playing on any radio station in the world! BBC London? Yes! WMVY, our Martha’s Vineyard Station? Yes. WCAI from the Cape and Islands? Yes. Homesick for somewhere? They have a radio station!

Driving home from the market the other day, I rolled down the car window to take this picture ~ if this mitten looks familiar but you only have one? The other one is on the fence post at the corner of Look and Spring Streets on Martha’s Vineyard!

I haven’t touched the garden this year! Sad thing is, you can’t tell! You don’t do gardens at Christmas-time in this neck of the woods, and that let me out. It’s lucky a lot of ours came back. Can’t ask much more than this!

All doing fine without me. I think roses and hydrangeas are the two number-one flowers on Martha’s Vineyard! (Don’t you like the way I said that?😂)

I always do what my dishtowels tell me to do!

And there’s my boy, in his regular position when I’m putting clothes on the line! Doesn’t want to miss a thing!

And here’s my other boy. Life is good. We decided to start watching Foyle’s War over again (on Acorn) . . . I missed some of it the first time! Joe and I meet at 6 pm and quiz each other on what we remember from the show from the night before! So good, if you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it. It has the gift, removes today from your mind completely!

Flag’s up!

I’m a flag putter-upper from way back!

No fireworks on the island this year!

So happy I have the photographs! Jack’s fine with it, he’s asleep next to me in his drawer right now, breeze coming in through the window, and no loud bangs to scare him.

Did you know about this “co-incidence?” ⬆️ I think this is just too much. The same DAY? On the 50th Anniversary? Miles and miles apart? So far apart, and news traveled so slow then, people had to put two and two together! Imagine their faces! Just like mine!😲 How can that BE?

You will need a taste treat for the fourth . . . why not try a recipe for something delicious that also makes you laugh! This is the one! It’s in the new version of Heart of the Home if that makes it easier…p.99.❤️

Well, time to face the Musica and go be a person, if I remember how. First up? A nap! Then back to

W E A R   A   M A S K 😎

Yours forever,💞 Anna Susana Dana Branchburger, the third.

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585 Responses to CHRISTMAS in JULY

  1. Pamela C Payne says:

    As always your letters bring delight! I cannot wait to order your Christmas book.
    Thank you for introducing Vera Lynn to us… her voice! I also enjoyed the country roads of England…so beautiful !

    I didn’t know you played oboe…me too but I was so shy at the time and feared it squeaking☺

    Thanks for sharing your God given talent with us all !!!


    • sbranch says:

      I don’t play the oboe! 🤣 I am an enjoyer of music, but unfortunately, not a player. That comment was about one of our Girlfriends seeing something, I think it was a movie? that inspired her to go out and learn to play the oboe!! Movies always inspired me too, but much easier stuff, like curtains and singing!

    • Lynne Pickens says:

      Thank you for including the segment on Vera Lynn. Wonderful!

  2. Cindy Balon says:

    Glad your project is over……I’ve missed you, my friend I’ve never met.😊

  3. Elaine from MN says:

    Please don’t ever stop posting! Many times I turn on my computer hoping you’ll brighten day. Today was one of them. Thank you, dear Susan! Oh, and thank you again for making more Little Things mugs. This time I was lucky enough to pre-order one. I am sooooo looking forward to receiving mine! If you don’t post on a day I need you, I’ll just have a cup of tea in it. take a breath and pick a past post to enjoy. Stay well, Stay safe and here in MN, believe it or not, I’ve been adding Stay cool!

  4. Chris says:

    Happy Fourth to you! Congratulations on finishing your book! Really appreciate your lovely blog post full of wonderful goodies to explore! That world radio site is mind boggling! Stay well!

  5. Sherry Johnson says:

    I was anticipating your “Rabbit, Rabbit” yesterday and you did not fail me!! I too, loved my 3 vacations in Great Britain and Ireland. I’ve loved Gladys Taber since discovering her in 1974. And of course I have collected your books and hers. They sit happily side by side on my bookshelves. I have a beloved cocker spaniel boy, Buddy, who is 7. I collect cocker spaniel figurines, books, etc. Vera Lynn is one of my favorite singers too. Have not watched “Foyles War”, but will put it on Netflix list. Thanks for making us all happy at home.

  6. What a lovely tribute to Vera Lynn…thank you for sharing. One of my favorite things…those early morning shadows. Now, when it’s cool and quiet in the early morning before the heat of the day, and then again in fall…when it seems everything is golden. Thanks for helping us remember…it’s time for flag waving, bunting hanging, sparklers glowing, and cheery waving to friends & neighbors over the picket fence. Oh and yes, please…an estate sale, just what we all need!

  7. Nancy B says:

    I love getting lost in your blog posts! It’s a great and wonderful escape these days ❤️

  8. Nancy Jane says:

    Hello there,
    I would dearly love to purchase some postcards but despite the assurance in the newsletter the order form says they are not in stock…?!

    Thank you

    • sbranch says:

      Oddly and irritatingly, we sold out already, so we will just have to get more. I think it takes about a week. So sorry!

  9. Joyce Dupont says:

    Always fun to see your post in my email.
    Glad your book will be printed in the U. S. A.
    Now what about the mugs? Where are they made?
    Have a great 4th of July. Someone had mentioned reading the Declaration of Independamce. What a great idea for a n ew 4th Tradtion. Perhaps a trend will start.

    • sbranch says:

      My cups are made in England. We don’t make the elegant wonderful bone china stuff here in America anymore.😢 You know what else is a killer reading for the 4th of July? Casey at the Bat…so sweet and old fashioned, it makes everyone cry!

  10. Evie Tong says:

    Congratulations Susan …. Christmas in July🎄🌴🎄
    Definitely will pre-order your new book and that is
    something to really look forward to!! Since March
    it has been challenging but forces one to be creative..
    at home … where the ❤️ is..A-lo-ha-ha w/❌⭕️
    Evie in San Diego

  11. Mary Cunningham says:

    Yay rah for Spring surprises, new books, Christmas any old time of year, kitties, dependable flowers , and you! I must go pre-order the wonderful gifts you are creating for us! Shopping has saved me from the blues! Happy Fourth of July! Let Freedom Ring!

  12. Susan Eyerman says:

    Looking forward to getting your new book. Hope your postcards will be available soon! Happy Summer!

  13. Frances Fowler says:

    The perfect Santa with all of Joe’s kindness about him! I look forward to your new Christmas book to complement the first one from thirty years ago (every recipe is divine, there is no other recipe for either butter cookies or creamed onions). Bless sweet Jack, the world is full of interest looking out the back door! I hope the mitten was found, it looks very unhappy and homesick 🐑

  14. Frances Fowler says:

    Foyle’s War is the best!

  15. Patti B says:

    Just have to ask- however did you get the flag on the roof of your little house in the woods??
    Btw just turned the page over for July on your calendar— great photo of the sheep and border collies!! 🙂

    • sbranch says:

      You see the house is newly shingled? Carlton was working around the house and he put it there for me. You know it wasn’t me that climbed up there!😅 The day with the sheep and dogs was SO amazing. I love being reminded of it!

  16. Louise Cavanaugh says:

    I always love receiving your blogs, but it’s extra-special to receive them during the pandemic! They bring us such hope and joy which we sorely need right now.
    On another note, is that a hitching post in the lovely photo of your roses?
    And lastly, I can’t wait for the Christmas book!
    P.S. Did you know today is Olivia DeHaviland’s 104th birthday? Amazing!!

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, good eye, it’s a hitching post . . . it came with the house! Olivia DeHaviland is still going! wow!

  17. Karen V from CT says:

    Thanks for this post and congrats on finishing the book! I can’t wait to read it, I bring out your original Christmas book every year so it will be so nice to have a companion book! Also looking forward to the new calendars and the blotter that I depend on each year. If you did decide to do an estate sale online, that would be amazing! I’m sure that you have some wonderful treasures!

  18. Lisa B. says:

    Not sure what is happening but I can’t link to paypal from my cart. So excited about your Christmas Book. It is going to be lovely, I just know. Thank you.

    • sbranch says:

      Try refreshing, Kellee said that it’s coming through okay for others, sorry! Let me know!

      • Elaine in Toronto says:

        I had trouble, too. Tried twice. I’ll try again tomorrow. Can’t wait to get your Christmas book. Happy 4th of July to everyone. Hugs, Elaine

        • sbranch says:

          Hmmmm. Let me know this morning Elaine! xoxo

          • Elaine in Toronto says:

            Hi Susan, still no luck with PayPal this morning. I’ll call or send an email to Sherri. Here’s the message I get: “We’re sorry but the page you are trying to access has experienced an error.” Hugs, Elaine

          • sbranch says:

            I think you wrote again to say you found the way? Let me know if not! So sorry Elaine!

  19. Patti says:

    Cannot wait for the Christmas book and mug!! On another note, have you ever done a 4th of July banner? I was decorating my mantle and thought… Susan would have something!!! Happy 4th 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

  20. JLamarre says:

    This made my whole day! And darn those postcards – gone gone gone.
    God Bless America and all of you! Happy Summer!

  21. Jana Jopson says:

    Congratulations on completing a veeeery special new Christmas book. It joins the legions of books in that genre in a never to be forgotten year. Good going, Anna Susana Dana! Peace and ease to you and all in your household, Jana Banana Lana Turner (Yep!)

  22. Zoe Greenwood says:

    Thank you once again for reminding us what really matters and what life is really about-HOME !!! You should be named a national treasure.

  23. Laura says:

    Have been enjoying Vera Lynn since I first ‘met’ her and her music on your blog. Such an inspiration to so very many.
    Now about that estate sale in the antique section? Yes please!!!

  24. Linda Henry says:

    Oh thank you Susan! Always brings a big smile to open my email and see a Willard post! Christmas lives in me all year (how could it not with my name), so I ordered the Home for Christmas book right away!!!!! Happy 4th from Anchorage, Alaska!!!!

  25. Sherry Reis says:

    Happy 4th of July Susan, Joe and Jack. Susan your illustration of the children and your mention of paper dolls brought back memories of my mother. When she was 10 yrs old in 1930 she drew and water colored handmade paper dolls with adorable cloths for all her friends in the Neighborhood and charged one cent per outfit to make money during the depression. Thrilled about your Christmas book and plan to get several for gifts. I’ve started emailing shadow photos of my garden and yard to family …you inspired me …as I adore your photos.
    Tom and I just finished watching “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” with Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy (1967]. Spencer died a few days after the movie ended. It’s so appropriate for “today” with a timeless heartwarming message. Virtual love and hugs my friend.

  26. Tana says:

    Thank you for a wonderful post!! I always think of you around the 4th of July. You have such great 4th of July art! May you and Joe have a great day.

  27. Maureen from So. Cal says:

    I’m so excited about your new book. I just ordered it and will now wait patiently. It looks wonderful by the wee glimpses you’ve provided us. I very much enjoyed the clip of Vera Lynn and Radio Garden-wonderful. Clicked the link and it was BBC just signing off and then God Save the Queen played after which, talk radio. Fun. I need to check this out more.
    I know the feeling about needing to do a yard sale. I was planning one for March 28 and well we know that didn’t happen. I’ve been chomping at the bit to get rid of things. I love the idea of the estate sale in the web store. I’m sure your “stuff” is far more amazing than mine. 🙂
    Ta ta for now-I love Christmas in July. I may have to have my tea tonight in my SB Santa mug! Ho Ho Ho
    Blessings to you and Joe and darlin Jack.

    • sbranch says:

      Well, being such a dish collector, I think I have 5 sets of dishes, which I probably don’t need, but they’ve all got wonderful DNA of dinner parties and garden parties and years of loved service! They should go to people would would love them too. Thank you Maureen! Happy 4th!🇺🇸

      • Dezi Haasch says:

        I have three sets of dishes, all which are precious to me, which my husband does not get, (could you explain it to him please?). I do not know how to leave a comment, but found if I click on the reply of another comment I can get in here with your “girlfriends”!

        • sbranch says:

          One word. Beauty. Beauty, beauty, beauty. The color, the sound they make when you put them in a saucer or click them together, the moment they provide, the creativity they inspire. Half the food I make, I make so I can use a special dish! I give dinner parties for the dishes! Your husband has probably eaten very delicious food just because of your dishes! Kindred spirits Dezi!💞

  28. Sally Jenks Roth says:

    Just when I start thinking “I NEED another Susan Branch post” – here it is!! I especially love this one with the photos of early morning shadows, the hydrangeas and roses, Jack at the door, Joe at the window, tea towels on the line… and your tribute to Vera Lynn, so special! I can’t wait to try the “Garden Radio” too.
    You deserve a break after all your hard work, and perhaps you’ll enjoy some cooking soon to give Joe a break now you’re not so busy! Have fun and a different-but-lovely Fourth of July.

    • sbranch says:

      Really truly, I can’t WAIT to start cooking . . . in fact, I made Gazpacho yesterday… a must-have in the summer!

      • Sally Jenks Roth says:

        I’ve had watermelon gazpacho with basil twice recently. A very unique taste and quite refreshing… I like the “crunch” too! Enjoy your summer…
        My daughter is coming to MV with her 2 children this month and I rather wish I was too. However, I’m staying at home. She wants to swim with as little contact with people as possible. They all wear masks, as I do. She badly needs a break!

        • sbranch says:

          She’ll be fine. I wouldn’t go to Oak Bluffs right now. . . it’s our most party-town and I hear it’s packed. I think most islanders are staying home and letting the towns go to the visitors. The weather has been gorgeous, just enough rain to keep it green. I know she’ll have a wonderful time!🏊🏼🌦

  29. Loren M. says:

    The picture of your garden made me smile. It’s just lovely and there is nothing like a picket fence.
    July is my birthday month and I am going to make myself a cherry chip birthday cake. Do you remember those? They came as a boxed mix when I was little.
    Wishing you a happy Fourth from tiny Tyner, North Carolina.

  30. Melissa Houston says:

    Hi, Susan and Joe!
    Happy 4th to you both! I’ve ordered the Christmas book and the Santa mug. My friends’ mug got chipped in the dishwasher but I’m using it for pens and pencils on my desk after mending it as best I could. Time for another 16 oz. Susan Branch mug! Thank you so much for “Radio Garden” and Dame Vera. My dad was in WWII in the Battle of the Bulge. He developed trench foot and nearly lost his legs. We’re so grateful he kept them because he was a marvelous dancer! Listening to Dame Vera reminds me of the music he so loved. Thank you so much for all you do! Your terrific and uplifting attitude has helped me through this pandemic. I’m a teacher so I had to learn a lot to keep up with distance learning.

    • sbranch says:

      That connection to history . . . there it is. 😌 Beautiful. Thank you for what you do Melissa . . . your kids need you!💞

  31. Cheryl Wright says:

    Dearest Susan:
    What a delight to see an email from you; so good to hear from you this first day of July. It seems like we should have Musica from Holiday Inn – Bing Crosby singing freedom. At this time when we are not celebrating in close proximity, we can and should rejoice in all the freedoms we do enjoy.
    I love everything about your new book! Our oldest daughter Jessica died this past February. She loved all things Christmas, books and children. I will be preordering the book in her honor/memory. She would buy your books for me and then we both enjoyed them. God bless you, Joe and Jack.

    • sbranch says:

      Oh Cheryl, reading that made me so sad . . . your first child . . . 😢. Blessings on you and your memories. xoxoxo

  32. Annette Saul says:

    Just ordered 3 of the Christmas in July books!!! Can’t wait… love the artwork, takes me back to my childhood! Take a long deserved rest now… Just wondering though, are you also working on a book about your travels in England in 2018 with the picnic at Beatrix Potter’s cottage? I thought I remembered that from somewhere!

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, I hope to get back to it soon! It’s got soooooo much goodness in it. Broke my wrist last year at this time. Was a setback!

  33. Cyndi in NC says:

    I loved wandering around England listening to different stations. Will have to check out other areas too.

    Poor lost mitten. I hope it finds it’s home again. For some reason it’s always sad for me to see a piece of clothing that has been lost.

    Good to see Jack as always. His sweet face always make me smile.

    Happy 4th to all. It’s still a great country to live in. Hugs.

    • sbranch says:

      I’m watching the mitten to see is it is found!

      • Cyndi in NC says:

        Me too! Let us know. Also I failed to mention Vera Lynn’s death. She was a wonderful talent but more so she helped to keep her country and military’s spirits up. She oft times put her life in danger to visit with the troops.

        We also lost Olivia de Havilland at 103 yesterday. Ladies who will not be forgotten.

        Rest in peace ladies.

  34. Cathy M. says:

    The tribute to Dame Vera is so touching and inspiring….”The Greatest Generation.” Thank you for reminding us, we WILL get through this.

  35. Harriet W says:

    My husband and I watched all of Foyles War last month and were once again impressed with the actors and the scripts. We found the series comforting and a little like the present day.

    I was interested to note that your new book is being put together in Crawfordsville Indiana my birth town.

    Best wishes.

  36. Tracy R says:

    Is the new Christmas book filled with recipes?

  37. So happy to hear from you again! I’ve been checking everyday lately! You bring so much happiness into so many lives. We need it for sure!! Your new book sounds so exciting too! God bless you and yours!

  38. Margaret Harke says:

    Am totally thrilled that the Christmas book is finished and I could preorder! Also I ordered a towel like the one you had hanging on the line, Hope and Keep Busy. What a wonderful bit of advice for these times.
    FYI: Crawfordsville, IN is where my family settled in 1850. I have visited there several times to do family genealogy. It’s a pretty town.

    • sbranch says:

      We’ve been there too, stopped in to see how our books were printed and met lots of nice people! Probably some related to YOU!💞

  39. Darylene says:

    Hi, Susan. I just ordered your Christmas book, but the postcards were sold out no matter how many times I refreshed. They are fabulously cute, and so spot-on. Also, I want that Christmas cup SO badly (always have since its creation), but after the loss of my job due to the pandemic, I need to count every penny. So, I’ll just worship it from afar. I’m sure something will come along soon though – but at my age, starting a new job is daunting to say the least.

    I’m sure you are aware that Mt. Rushmore is hosting Trump on Friday for the 4th celebration. Governor Noem said no masks, no social distancing will be practiced. That’s about one-half hour from my house. I’ll be gladly staying at home and bracing for the new Covid cases that are sure to follow. I don’t understand people.

    My cat is terrified of loud noise, but she has a space inside the china cabinet where she goes to hide. This year, she better make way for mama, cause I’m coming in! Stay safe, Susan. You are one of my anchors in this topsy-turvy world. (If I could do a heart emoji, I would put one here but I’m seriously tech-challenged.

    • sbranch says:

      LOL, I can picture you both in the china cabinet!🤣 And here’s a heart, just for you ❤️ xoxo Stay safe. Common sense is the only way to beat this thing!😘

    • Dezi says:

      I don’t know how to leave a comment, hows that for tech challenged. But I wait deliciously for a new blog from Susan and bookmarked it to see it almost every day.

  40. Becky Clark says:

    Susan, I so look forward to your posts, it is like a breath of fresh Tennessee air. Our world is hurting so right now, I wish everyone could read your posts. Thank you so much.

  41. Ann Woleben says:

    Looking forward to the Christmas book! I tried out the Radio Garden – loved it as I listened to music from Italy. Thank you for sharing.

  42. TERI CARDOT says:

    Hi Susan, love this post and your positive attitude about happily staying home—I feel the same way. There is a place called “Happy Days Cottage” on Martha’s Vineyard with a chef from a cruise line who is also laid low like the rest of us. Maybe you two know each other, and if not, you should! Chef Jon Ashton from Crystal Cruises does a half hour cooking class each Sunday at 3pm ET. He is British, funny, your island neighbor and a great cook. You would like him, his wife and his show.

  43. Bonnie Brown says:

    Dear Susan,
    Thanks again for brightening the day! Enjoy the 4th!
    Mmmmmm-muh 😘(like Dinah Shore!)

  44. Mary Julienne says:

    I love the cover of your new book! Vintage Santa is perfect like all your pictures. Something during these down times to look forward to getting my copy and wall calendar too!

  45. Cindy G says:

    Thankful you still LOVE the American flag and display it proudly. May God bless America and the law enforcement officers!!

  46. TERI CARDOT says:

    Hi Susan, love this post and your attitude about happily staying at home. There is a home called “Happy Days Cottage” on Martha’s Vineyard, and you should meet the occupants–or maybe you already have? Chef Jon Ashton and his wife, he works for Crystal Cruises and is laid low like the rest of us. He is British and funny and a great cook. He does a half hour cooking show each Sunday at 3pmET. –you would love it! His shows from the past few weeks are on YouTube.

  47. Judy Young says:

    I think an online estate sale would be the most fun, you might have girlfriends competing for stuff! To have something of yours would be terrific. Please consider doing that. Is the new book Home for Christmas non fiction or is it a novel?

  48. Kathy Fletcher says:

    HI Susan-ordered my Christmas book and I am sooooooooo looking forward to it. Thank you for another great book. Can’t wait for the one about your last trip to the UK too- but i know it will be a while. I wanted to ask you- have you ever read the book- COMING HOME by- Rosamunde Pilcher. OH if you haven’t – you will love it- it is soooooooooooo good- all England and WW2 and is just the best book- i just finished it a couple weeks ago and i have been recommending it to the people like you that i think will love it. I would love to hear if you have read it- Have a wonderful day. Happy 4th to you and Joe and Jack too.

    • sbranch says:

      It sounds wonderful Kathy! Hope to get some time for reading soooooon!

      • Elaine in Toronto says:

        Hi Kathy, I’m a Rosamunde Pilcher fan, too. My favourite book of hers is “Winter Solstice”. I’ve read it at least five or six times.
        Hugs, Elaine

        • Kathy Fletcher says:

          Hi Elaine in Toronto-
          I have not read Winter Solstice yet- but it is on my to be read list. I loved Coming Home- so much….it was just the best book………..I hope you and yours are all safe and well……
          Hugs back to you-
          Kathy from Kentucky.

    • Debbie Boerger says:

      Yes, Yes to Rosamund Pilcher. I’m new to her books, so glad I heard about them a couple of yrs ago right here. Many good things come to us from this wonderful Blog, right?
      Debbie in Maine

  49. Pat Harmon says:

    Yes, it is amazing about TJ and JA🎇🇺🇸 Book is ordered, 2 calendars are ordered. But I didn’t find the others for presale. I fell utterly in love with you and your art when I saw your first Christmas book in a bookstore many years ago. That started me on a little book collection and a Susan Branch collection. Your shadow pix are so wonderful. I must try that. Happy July Fourth💙🇺🇸❤️ dear ray of sunshine🌅

  50. Rachel says:

    You are a source of such joy for us all out here during this strange time in our lives. Please oh please do an online yard sale, I will buy something! An old quilt, some old china, I would love to own something from you! I just got myself the new Christmas book and a Santa cup! Christmas is my favorite time of year. Except for summer. And fall. And spring…

  51. Sarah(sally) Gainer says:

    Good to hear from you again

  52. Linda dolhay says:

    Omg! I’ve been dreaming, hoping for your post. I just can’t tell you how very much I need it and love it. I too am so excited for your new book….the waiting might do me in but patience is a virtue. Thanks so much Susan you do bring joy and comfort to these wretched times .

    Linda D.

  53. Karen Pedevillano says:

    I love your blog. So uplifting.
    I wanted to go to your talk in Duxbury. So excited to hear we will all be able to attend and see and hear you.
    I cant seem to find the blotter calendar in your online store?
    Stay safe.
    Karen from Upton MA

    • sbranch says:

      We didn’t put it on presale because we knew they’d print enough . . . just weren’t sure on the two wall-calendars! The Blotter is coming along with all the rest of the usual suspects!

  54. Jonna says:

    Thank you Susan! Happy 4th! Just pre-ordered my book, so excited!!!

  55. Jeannette from the Central Coast says:

    Lovely surprise today getting your post! I LOVED the video of Dame Vera Lynn. What a beautiful lady she was. I’m excited about the Christmas book. I’ll have to try and order tomorrow – something doesn’t work for me tonight. I will persist. Have a wonderful 4th celebration!

  56. Merci Schon says:

    Always look forward to your blog! With all that is going on in our country right now, and all so very sad, you are like a breath of fresh air! An inspiration to keep the faith and all will turn out well in the end. Thank you! Yes, I definitely ordered your Christmas Book!

  57. Helen Edwards says:

    Each year I treat myself to a new Christmas book! This year it will be yours! So excited! Also the on line yard sale sounds fabulous! ❤️

  58. I love Hydrangeas and roses together. Great companions. My hydrangeas are all loaded with buds and about to pop. I think it’s going to be a wonderful year for them…which we all need so much! A gift from Mother Nature when we need it most. I really enjoyed this Christmas in July post. Thanks, Susan!

  59. Great work on the newest book! Looking forward to “Enchanted”.

  60. Mary M Simmons says:

    Many,many thanks for sharing Dame Vera Lynn’s tribute with us. She was the most inspiring person during the war and people of my generation will always be grateful to her for raising the moral of the everyday people of England.

    • sbranch says:

      I can barely listen to her without crying for all the hardships of the people who were singing along with her.

  61. Linda says:

    Have been looking for an update from you. Now I understand why it has been a bit. How I look forward to your Christmas book. I hope things have improved by then, but if they haven’t, being home for Christmas is not so bad. Except I need to hug my kids and grandkids. It has been four months and now I understand how my elderly patients are feeling, since there have been no visitors where I work since early March. Keep posting, as it brightens my day! Thank you for that. Stay safe and healthy, and enjoy summer on your beautiful island.

    • sbranch says:

      I think the hug thing is such a hard part of this . . . us too, I talk to friends, social distancing, and it almost HURTS not to hug them! Joe and I hug more now because of it! I worry for the missing affection for people. We do need that so much.

  62. Linda Miller says:


    So good to see your blog waiting in my email today! And a new book to anticipate! 🥰
    Before I read your blog, I thought the Santa on the cover looked a little like Joe, especially the eyes! And than to find out you modeled it on Joe! Hoping to see you virtually sometime this summer perhaps. Congratulations on the completion of Home for Christmas! Can’t wait to read it! Hope you and Joe have a wonderful 4th of July!

  63. Ferol Snead says:

    Yes Please, on the estate sale on your website!! Loved “Time will pass anyhow, what am I going to do with it?” Just in case we are faced with another shut down, we have time to gather our thoughts on being productive. Get that yarn, DMC thread, recipes, paint, motivational books!

  64. jeanie says:

    So much happiness here, so much to anticipate! All those lovely books and mugs and yes — you have FINISHED! Well, at least for now. Maybe you’ll be able to go to the Grand Illumination without guilt! (Now THAT’s a mug I’d like!) Vera Lynn — ever so sad, and then Carl Reiner, too. Mary Tyler Moore’s apology fo rAlan Brady’s hair. I laughed so very hard! And finally, thanks for the Radio Garden link. I’ll check that one out for sure! Happy Fourth!

  65. Ann S. says:

    Just finished reading Fairy Tale Girl and Martha’s Vineyard and am re-reading My Love Affair with England. Look, now where you are, having soldiered your way alone all that time. You made light of it but it wasn’t all that easy. And it amazes me how like-minded people somehow wind up along the same track. Fans of Susan Branch somehow find Brambly Hedge, Gladys Taber, and the Foyle series. I love the Vera Lynn songs, too, though they do have a sad/poignant quality to them.

  66. Linda Mallory-Gravis says:

    Hi! Pre ordered christmas book! so bummed tho-JUST got email today and it states the Postcards are back in. so i went to order and it shows ‘Out of stock” already!! Will you have them again soon? That wasnt enuf time to even get the order in, ha.. Would love to get some! thanks! Much Love

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, and this time we’ll order more! Very surprising to be out so quickly… should be back in within a week.

  67. Diane Collins says:

    I was sooo excited to get a new blog! You are like a breath of laughter and sweetness.I have been collecting all your books since the beginning and love re-reading them. I am a conservative 💕

  68. kimj says:

    pandemic postcards sold out?? oh noooo… bring back more please!

  69. JoAnn from SoCal says:

    Oh dear. I’ve been refreshing and refreshing and refreshing…. no postcards available. Please reorder so we can get your darling postcards in our hands and send them to our loved ones! Thank you, dear Susan.

    • sbranch says:

      Yes, I found out we ARE out of them again… they are already on re-order, and because the printer has the artwork and layout already, we should get more in very soon, within a week.

  70. Karen Kotowski says:

    Christmas my VERY favorite time of the year. I can’t wait to get your new book Susan ❤️🏠‼️

  71. *C*O*N*G*R*A*T*U*L*A*T*I*O*N*S*!* on finishing your book! I enjoyed this post, you seem so happy and relieved.

    -:¦:-·:*'””*:·.-:¦:-·* HAPPY 4th of JULY! *·-:¦:-·:*””’*:·-:¦:-

    ((hugs)), Teresa 🙂

  72. Oh, I really, really, really, really hope that your book will be available for me to buy over here in the UK! It sounds (and looks!) a real charmer, just like all your books. (Calendars, mugs, postcards, etc.) I just adore everything that springs forth from your beautifully creative hands and mind!

    I remember travelling often to the US to visit relatives when I was a child (and as an adult for that matter) and loving the presence of the American Flag everywhere. I love the American flag and the people of America.

    I am hating 2020 however. I don’t think I am alone in that. All I am doing is trying to keep as busy as I can and living in hope that things will soon be better. This has certainly been a year for the record books!

    We need to dwell on and cling to all the positivity that we can, and your blog is one of the positives. My heart brightened up to no end when I saw that you had done another post! Thank you so much! You are a bright light for so many people. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Oh that we could all be bright lights! Can you imagine how the world would be transformed? The mind boggles and delights!

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you so much Marie! Not sure when, but Amazon put my other books on Amazon UK, so I suspect it will be available! You are so sweet to say that, we love you right back. You ARE a bright light, every one of us that chooses it, is a link in that goodness chain. Prayers for 2021.💞

  73. Nancy B says:

    Just preordered Home for Christmas! I can hardly wait to read it! Uh oh, I just noticed you have another friend named Nancy B. Loved your post. I admire the way you keep busy.
    Warmest wishes,
    Nancy (from Bakersfield)

  74. jan shafer says:

    Great post! Thank you for being YOU.

  75. Jan Lane says:

    Christmas is a lovely day, no matter when it is celebrated. Thank you for brightening so many of our lives during these strange times! It is good to see that you are keeping busy in such a creative way. You have so many special talents. Thank you for sharing the simple beauty that we often overlook in life.
    I was also saddened by the passing of Vera Lynn. She reminds me of my dear Mum in Law, Thelma, who passed away 2 yrs ago in the UK. We all used to gather and sing so many of the songs from that era, and “We’ll Meet Again” is a favourite.
    HAPPY CHRISTMAS & 4TH OF JULY. What a lovely idea. Stay safe, and well..all of you!

  76. Bette Petersen says:

    So excited about the new Christmas 🎄 book! Love everything of yours and the Santa cup, icing on the cake!

  77. Peggy Ott says:

    HOME for the Holidays….Happy 4th!! But cherishing every moment. Was so excited to get my email reading from you. Can’t wait to get my coffee/tea and kick back and sit quietly and take it all in. Like minds we have, being the same age, with so many of the same memories and cherished moments in life. And the shadows…warms my heart every time I see your pics…being a 5:00am person and catching every site and song bird sound I can. Continue on my friend, for you bring such joy to so many with your colorful way. Can’t wait until my next read from you!!

  78. Karen says:

    I couldn’t love this blog post more! Pre-ordering your Christmas book makes me so happy!

  79. Martha says:

    Thanks for the post that takes us away from it all! I’m wondering if I can purchase the mug and book at the little store in Vineyard Haven September 1? Thanks!

    • sbranch says:

      I THINK so. Three things will need to happen. She will need to be there. As time comes closer, call Robin at Vineyard Arts and tell her when you’ll be there, and see if she has everything . . . she has family off-island and often goes there, and she sometimes isn’t in the shop in the morning. The other two things is that both manufacturers will have to ship on time. 99% of the time they do!! xoxo

  80. A delightful post, Susan, full of hope for the future and a poignant look at the past. Loved the beautiful tribute to Vera Lynn. You have inspired me to revive my blog that’s been dormant for 9-10 years. I’ve been writing memoir essays for a life-long learning class at South Coast Senior College and decided they were blog-worthy. Hope to eventually put them into book form. Thanks for the inspiration, Susan. Much appreciated. XX,
    Nancye T., Wells, Maine

    • sbranch says:

      GOOD for you Nancye. Writing is such a good practice, and nothing better than a blog to help you keep the habit!❤️

  81. Jena says:

    Thank you for this lovely note.

    At first, Christmas in July took me sweeping right back to my teenage years as a camp counselor at a Boy Scout Camp. One of the first years teenage girls were allowed to work camp. Having 4 older, cooler brothers that all did camp with my Dad every Summer or worked camp, etc. I wasn’t missing the chance for my Camp experience- no way!

    We always had a Christmas in July week but it was called Cheesemoose. It was really a week of highjinx when morning turned into night, light into dark, and silliness abounded. Some mornings camp may wake up to all of the furniture of the dining hall found floating in the pool on all of the canoes setup like breakfast was served, or whole staff campsites may be relocated from one end of camp to the next, it was crazy fun and a time I hope I never forget.

    Memory lane- you inspire us to travel down it so gently, I never know where I am going to end up.


  82. Lena Boyd says:

    Oh Susan, was waiting for your latest and here it was and I so enjoy hearing from you and your latest adventures. We in the fine state of Michigan are in what our Governor named “phase four.” We are slowly going out for dinner, Salons and Barbershops are open, lets just say, the Essentials are available, to assist us in living a life (with restrictions) hoping we humans grow up and practice the prompts.
    I enjoy your Blogs so much, you finished the Book, that is fabulous, sounds as if you are on schedule, I am so glad, I try and follow my schedules, keeps me on track..Wishing you a great month of July, you and Joe and Jack, be happy, till next time, Lena

    • sbranch says:

      Here’s to success in Michigan, we need some good news on that front!!! July, I was soooo hoping it would be gone by now!🙃 Wrong! We are doing fairly well in MA, things are beginning to open, and I think, so far so good. Everyone is very “Maskie.” I’m still not going out, not while we have so many people from other places here. It’s okay, don’t mind it. We have a tiny hospital everyone’s been trying to protect. Happy 4th Lena!


    Dear Susan, So excited for you, and for all of us, upon your completion of your Christmas book, Christmas at Home. I have all of your books and so happy to know that I will have this book to add to my joy. I really think that this year’s book will be a most important part of our holidays, it’s been such a challenging time for so many. Thank you Susan for all you do to make life more warm, love filled, comforting, and satisfying to enjoy our own sweet homes. BTW, would love an online estate sale!! Stay well. Love to each of you. Susan CB

  84. Marge says:

    Delightful as ever! I pre-ordered the Santa cup because I did not have it. See you next month and take care you, Joe, and Jack.

  85. Rene Foust says:

    Every day I sit down to my computer ready to begin my work day and always I look for a new entry to your blog and I was so excited to see this today. I cant wait to get my copy of the Christmas book in my hands and I just love your Joe Santa. Thanks for providing so much sunshine and happiness to my day.

  86. Janet Senatore says:

    I’ve preordered your Christmas book, and am excitedly ANTICIPATING with you.
    Thank you for your tribute to Vera Lynn. When I heard last month that she’d died, I just cried. Another treasure lost, but thank you God, for YouTube, Spotify, even vinyl, so we can enjoy her voice for years to come!

  87. Nancy T. says:

    Good morning. Thank you so much for bringing back the Santa mug. I have ordered one and your Christmas book. Can’t wait until they get here. I will also be ordering another book for my daughter in law for her birthday. She found your blog through me, and enjoys your posts every bit as much as I do! Thank you for sharing your talents of writing and painting with us. You are my lighthouse in this ocean of craziness. Nancy T.

  88. Laura Morarity says:

    Hi Susan. Always love to see your new blog in my in box 😊. Such a nice read & lovely pictures-especially of sweet Jack.

    We are planning an end of July trip to MV. Are shops open? Just curious. We will have our bikes in tow to enjoy nature as well!

    Happy 4th

  89. Patricia Randall says:

    Happy 4th! So glad we are able to pre-order your book! Can’t wait to get it!!!

    LOVE Foyle’s War!!! We watched it again during the beginning of the pandemic……needed something that made us smile! And it does!!!

    Have a wonderful weekend and a Happy, Healthy July!

    Thank you for all of the joy that you bring to us❤️

  90. starr miller says:

    Congrats Susan on your finished birthday book. I’m on the list and can’t wait. Book and mugs.
    It’s really hot here in Naperville IL- lots of watering and bouncing in our pool- social distancing of course.
    I always enjoy seeing and reading about your world.
    I finished reading The Undergound Railroad and The Killer Flowers Moon- both are difficult to read but very educational.
    Sending you a virtual hug ❤️

  91. Nicoline says:

    Dear Susan,
    Congratulations on finishing your Christmas book! The cover looks darling, and I’m sure the rest will just as nice! Can’t wait to read it!
    How are things on the Island? Are you allowed to go out, at all? From what we hear on the news, the USA is not doing so good, and the number of people getting sick is still rising, so sad….
    I’m knocking on wood, while I write and say that we seem to be quite lucky over here, and restrictions are (partially) lifted every few weeks.
    We were supposed to go to England for our summer holidays, but that was cancelled of course, but we know we’ll be back later on….Traveling in the country was allowed, and we were lucky enough to go to one of our 5 islands here, and so we pretended to be on Martha’s Vineyard, even though we were on Texel, and the population spoke Dutch haha!
    Had the best time! We were SO lucky with the weather, bright sunny days, beaches that went on forever, taking walks along the shore a few times each day! Brought “you” along too, all 3 books, and had delicious afternoons reading them again….Thank you!!
    The boys came too, separately, for just a few nights, and that was good, spending quality time with each of them, while enjoying strawberries, ice cream and whipped cream!
    Just a thought, have you ever considered making bowls? Not huge ones, but the size you’d use for cereal, oatmeal, cornflakes etc?
    Happy 4th of july, and lots of hugs and sunny kisses from Holland

    • sbranch says:

      We have walked our walk everyday since this happened, so we’ve been lucky that way. Haven’t gone anywhere else but supermarket and post office … and then we wait as long as possible to do it. I’ve had two small parties, where everyone brought everything and we sat far apart, no touching! Going to one of those today! The island managed to go a whole month without a new case . . . but then summer came, and people came and so we still have to watch what we do. No one wants to give up all the hard-earned sacrifices of distancing we’ve already endured. I’m so glad you’re able to travel a little bit! Your island sounds wonderful! I’d love to make bowls, of course, it’s finding a manufacturer for them that’s the difficult thing! Most of our dish manufacturing went overseas years ago … and buying from another country is difficult. We were so lucky to find the people who make our cups in England!!! But they don’t make bowls!!! Lovely to hear from you Nicoline. See you in England when the world gets back to normal!💞 Love to Gabriel, Tim and Mick too. xoxo

      • Nicoline says:

        Did you have a lovely party? Yes, Texel was really great. Apparently it’s a place where bird watchers come to, and besides many wild rabbits, we saw many pheasants, mostly the colored males, but even a few families with cute chicks too! We were woken each morning by the screeching of oyster catchers flying over! but the best thing was seeing a small flock of about 7 spoonbills!! They were wading through the large nature reserve, a salt marsh plain, using their beaks to find food!
        It’s hard to imagine that we had such warm and sunny days there, because right now it’s dull and damp and much cooler, more like the day of the Lake District picnic.
        What a shame the company doesn’t make bowls….It would be lovely to eat my overnight oats, with fruit from a cute SB bowl…Maybe in the future, lets keep fingers crossed!
        How are your brothers and sisters and your Mom? I hope they are all safe and healthy.

        See you in England when the world gets back to normal, yeah, that sounds just great!! Looking forward to that already!!

        Lovely to hear from you, and hugs and kisses back to you both (well 3 of course, with Jack the man) from us all

        • sbranch says:

          So far so good, everyone’s doing their best to stay healthy. Beautiful evening last night, a lovely country setting, fireflies were out and we took turns reading the Declaration of Independence … mostly the “reasons” … we felt be had to be independent, a list of grievances our founders had against Crown. Quite touching. Not just a declaration of independence but documenting how people should be treated. So that was really nice, and we ate. Of course. And stayed distanced. All safe and sound. Yes, see you “over there.” ASAP! xoxo

  92. Carol Kindt says:

    So glad you are able to again join our virtual fan club. Love, love, love the cover of your little Christmas book. It’s perfect! Well I got lost on the Radio Garden you put us on to. Check out one of our local stations WDVR in NJ. Oh what a beautiful morning by Doris Day is playing. It’s sunny, the lawn greened up after the hard rain we had last night. Life is almost perfect. Welcome back.

  93. Joanne Conte says:

    I love your blogs. They make us all happy! I can’t wait to order your Christmas book, and I too love morning shadows!!👊🏼😷 looking forward to the virtual meet up too! Kiss Jack for me!

  94. Lynette M. says:

    Thank you for the post, I check your site every day, hoping, wishing, praying you have a new post!! When I get to missing you too much I re-visit your archive posts!! I love everything domestic as well. An on-line estate sale would be so great!! Happy 4th to you, Joe and Jack!

  95. judi says:

    Happy 4th dear friend🇺🇸❣️. Sweat, sweat, sweating in FL🥵

  96. Beverly Armani says:

    Another magically delicious blog! Thanks for sharing…
    Wishing you and yours a Happy & Peaceful 4th of July!!! Stay safe…Be well…

  97. Lisa Battis says:

    Definitely an antique sale on your website! I am an avid yard “sailor!” I’d hop on the ferry to attend yours any day of the week! Love this fast-paced, can’t stop reading, lovely post! And yes, there are fairies, which is why a flowering plant that my dad bought me for my birthday, keeps getting “forgotten” every time he comes to visit. I told him yesterday that the plant wants to stay with him, so the fairies keep making him forget it!! Merry Christmas in July, Susan!!

  98. Sonja Willis says:

    Susan congratulations on finishing your Christmas book. I live in Southern Indiana and know where Crawfordsville is. Found that choice very interesting. Also stood out to me in your post that we are both watching Folye’s War. My husband and I for the first time. We are enjoying it every evening. It it not always easy to fine a show that my husband and I can both enjoy.
    Take care and stay healthy.

  99. Gina Mahoney says:

    Hello Susan. And Happy 4th of July to all! I love the name of your Christmas book and the cover is perfect for the wonderful story I am sure is inside! I just pre-ordered mine. Thanks for everything you do to help keep some calm in a world that is quite foreign to us these days. Take care all.

  100. Victoria says:

    As a girl raised in the country ( the heart of Amish country), but now living in the city, I look forward to your emails. This one in particular had such comforting ideas as we begin to carefully and maybe hesitantly visit the thought of Christmas being very different.
    I plan to order your book. I have ambient farm sounds playing on my Youtube channel as I write…I can almost smell the barn. Be well everyone and stay the course.

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