Don’t you agree? Nothing is normal these days? So let’s explore not normal with an open mind, and see what we think. We will require MUSICA for balance. Because THAT is normal.💖
Didn’t it seem like we went along for years and years and everything seemed normal (with a couple of deviations), but now every day is a new day of NOT being normal? Well, that’s what we’re “celebrating” today. This is one of the fisherman’s shacks we walk past every day. Been perfectly normal every day for years. It’s buttoned up for the winter, the summer people have gone, but it looks like they forgot something! #NotNormal Right?
And you KNOW this white rainbow wasn’t normal… but very beautiful anyway. Our poor little Island has had 80 new Covid-19 cases in the last two weeks, another 11 today.😳 Definitely not normal. More, by far, than we’ve ever had before. Twelve from our main Supermarket, Cronigs, which is now closed! Probably like where you are, we are getting that fall-winter “second-wave” they predicted. So it’s basically lockdown-city around here. Please watch out for yourselves, your families and neighbors, and the exhausted first responders in your hospitals because this is #NotNormal😷. The goal is simple: to keep as many people alive as possible until we get a vaccine. Which is coming! And God bless our very simple Thanksgivings this year. I just heard airlines are ADDING flights for Thanksgiving. This is a terrible idea. Giving thanks does not require a room full of people.🙏 Haven’t we just HAD it with this thing? Yes, we have. I will be knitting on Thanksgiving, watching old movies, calling people, and counting my blessings. You are a big part of my blessings, so please stay safe. For me.💞
So, on the more cheerful end of #NotNormal, I thought you might like to see a couple more photos from that beautiful foggy White Rainbow day. Because it was magic in more ways than one.
Fog was licking the shore with little cat lips. No, that’s not right, it’s little cat’s feet!🐾 Although I kind of like cat lips!
There it was, just here, waiting by the shore, that oddly warm, very wet day. Hello stranger. Normal? Not normal? Hard to say . . . but it was definitely magic … and it ushered in a nice long stretch of #NotNormal that we have very much appreciated.For over a week now, we’ve had highest temperatures for this time of year in history, almost 70º every day! The other day on our walk, the empty beach had two people sitting on it. Just them, and the sea, and their ice chest. It was a BEAUTIFUL day, and I was so jealous looking at them. I told Joe, we have to do this tomorrow. We haven’t just gone to the beach, sat down and done nothing for YEARS. But this is not a normal year, is it? So the very next day, here we are, for a day at the beach, and as usual, we brought the kitchen sink. It was the perfect place for distancing! Just us. And a big drink of fresh air.💫
It’s like riding a bike … you don’t forget . . . total paradise! Usually the heat is on this time of year and we’re sitting in front of a fire. This isn’t normal but it was heaven.
We brought chicken sandwiches wrapped in waxed paper, carrot and celery sticks, red grapes, and Joe surprised me by sneaking in bottles of PEAH CI-DAH. Ice and everything! When we closed our eyes and listened to the whoosh of the water, we were back on board the ship to England again!
I read my most wonderful book, out loud to Joe … The Splendid and the Vile, I love it, all about my hero . . .
And 8th cousin on my Dad’s mom’s side ~ a Murray/Jerome (as in Jennie) . . . Oh yeah, DamPanic inspires hours on Ancestry . . . I love reading about our history … one of my favorite things! And WHAT character this guy had.🇬🇧 There is so much to learn by reading about that war, the entire human panoply spread before us. Like the title of the book says, from the splendid to the vile!
I finally got out of my chair because I knew you needed the sound of that day . . . wish I could send you the smell, but maybe someday! There was a cool breeze off the water, I wore a long wool sweater, a hat, jacket, Joe’s jacket, a beach towel and one of the nap blankets my Grandma knit to keep me warm! Could have used a scarf!We stayed almost 3 hours. Was the most stress-relieving thing I’ve felt in years. I slept 8 hours that night!
It was still beautiful and really warm on our walk yesterday, but we could see things were beginning to change . . .
It wasn’t this dark, the contrast was playing games with the camera. The silver sky, the silver water, that was all there.
I’ll take it any way it comes . . .
And here we are, walking home on the dirt road heading into the woods . . . have you ever been around a bubble machine and had bubbles landing on your shoulders, your hair and face, and how it tickles and makes you laugh? That’s just what happens when a sudden wind blows the leaves off the trees, and they fly through the sky, across the road, onto our heads, into our faces, makes you giggle the exact same way. It’s like a star shower. Nature at its most adorable. Me and him.
Forgot to show you the crew reshingling one of the old fishing shacks out by the water under that silver sky. So warm, working in T-shirts!
Back home we went . . . I prayed for a late fall this year, and I got it!
Past one of my favorite little houses . . . This cutie looks wonderful in all seasons.🍁
Back home we go … I took this picture from the car as Joe was backing into the driveway … the color of the Linden trees!
Inside, we have all the doors and windows open, whooshing fresh air into the upstairs bedrooms, Jack is on his perch on top of the ironing board, keeping his eye on the neighborhood through the pantry screen door.
The view from upstairs . . .
I worked in the garden too, cut back perennials, and brought in the last of the mums and the roses for the kitchen.
I still can’t get over it. What happens here in the fall. Growing up in California did NOT prepare me for this and it never gets old! Our fire pit and chairs are still out, we’re hoping to sneak in at least one more afternoon in front of the fire. Only thing we can do is make hay while the sun shines. And stay safe.
And in the meantime, doing the normal thing, I’m working on the 2022 Calendars. Think of it. 2022: No more virus. Life resumed. Everyone hugging madly. HUGE Thanksgiving dinners! Kids in school. People getting on boats and planes. Normal. What will we have learned? I would love to hear what you think . . .💞
I loved painting these small windfall apples . . .
Something you might like: For years I never read AARP magazine because I thought it was for old people, and I wasn’t old.🤣 I’m over that now! Do you get it? It’s so good! This month Bruce Springsteen is on the cover. He’s turning 71, proving it happens to the best of us ~ they interviewed him about his new album. There are book and movie reviews, how-to tips, travelogues, stories about families, thoughts about careers, and lots of great suggestions about money and health, even recipes. Pretty much every subject under the sun. In this issue there are “Life Lessons from Queen Elizabeth,” “How to Host a Virtual Thanksgiving”, and ideas for helping socially isolated friends. Loneliness has to be the worst part of this Pandemic, there are interesting ideas in the magazine that can help. I love anything that helps us to lessen the pain of our separation, anything that makes us feel less alone.❤️
SO, more normal stuff: This puzzle. It was supposed to be here by the end of October, I know, it’s late, I’m SO sorry, but they are trying, they keep updating me, and right now “it’s on a train,” “on the way,” and “almost here.” Just want you to know I’m watching like a HAWK, and the moment they arrive, Kellee and Sheri will get them right out. We’re all excited to get them! BUT, also, truly, if this is in any way upsetting to you, this wait, please contact Sheri@susanbranch.com for a refund. I’ll understand. It’s coming, I promise, and they are telling me it’s almost here! I probably shouldn’t have put it up for presale. But we were trying to make sure we would have enough of them for everyone. Here’s my makeup offering:Is everyone ready for their 2021 Full Moon bookmark? Because HERE it is! Just print it out, fold it in half, and voila! Every moon needs to be a prayer for 2021 normalcy. Kindness, health, something hysterically funny every day. Lightheartedness. Healing.
I’m making us something. It’s being printed right now and should be done in a couple of weeks. After I broke my wrist last year, I had to stop working on Enchanted, my newest diary book about our travels through England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. But I had finished some of it… so, as a surprise, Kellee and Sheri made the first chapter into a little book and we gave it away to some of our Girlfriends last year at a book-signing at the Apple Farm in California.
It’s only 28 pages, and they only made a hundred copies, which took quite a little while, all the cutting and stapling. This time, in order to make copies for everyone, we had to send it to a printer, and that’s what we’re waiting for. And, something else, you know how A Fine Romance started with a love story? Well, that’s how Enchanted starts too, with a love story. Rather than boy-girl love, this is family love.
Here’s the back of it. I’ll let you know when it gets here. They are tying it with gold ribbon! I can’t wait to see it!
One last thing … to my Betsy-Tacy (or Lois Lenski) Book-Loving Girlriends. There is a virtual tour of Maud Hart Lovelace’s absolute CHARMING childhood home, on which so many of her books were based ~ and you can watch it HERE. You will want to sell your home and move in here immediately! You can also join the Betsy-Tacy Society, and maybe find something fun in their gift shop to stuff a stocking with.💞 Shopping very small here, and I’m sure much appreciated. Okay dear ones, off I go