ACcenutate the POSITIVE

Yes, when we AC-centuate the Positive, we find we have so much to be grateful for! Some MUSICA? Yes! Not sure if you’ll have time to read this today, but I couldn’t let Thanksgiving go by without sending you LOVE.💞 

My house is wonderful right now, everywhere I look, pure domestic bliss.🍁 Oven warming the house, pie crust, all pinched and pricked, ready to be filled and put into the oven, music playing old songs, Little Women on TV (for old-fashioned, back-in-time, I like the black-and-white version on Thanksgiving), volume down, music up …🎶

Dish cloths washed and folded, bread drying for the stuffing. Maybe this year, more than any other, as I’ve stood at the kitchen sink washing dishes or watching the birds at the feeders, I’ve been counting my Getting the cranberries ready . . . 
It’s just going to be the two of us, plus Jack, in front of the fire. I’m roasting a big chicken, stuffed with my grandma’s heavenly stuffing, making gravy and mashed potatoes ~ all the goodies, corn pudding and Pumpkin Pie too! Making extra cranberry sauce so we can have my delicious

And I don’t even mind it being quiet here … I consider it to be a part of the blessings . . .💞

What’s making it all bearable is that the vaccine is coming soon. I KNEW the scientists of the world would walk on water to get this to us as fast as they humanly could, and look at them! Heroes, like the doctors and nurses and other front-line workers, who’ve stood by us, even giving up their holidays, sacrificing for us, while saving and comforting so many despite their own fears.😢 They make me cry. True blessings of Thanksgiving.🕯🕯🕯 We’ll be lighting candles in their honor and saying prayers of gratitude. As for the vaccine, I’ll wait until I see Dr. Fauci put that needle in his arm, but then? Oh yeah, we are having it!💉 We already have two plans set in stone: One, California, next fall, a family reunion next to the creek, big long table, lots of delicious food, and us, sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, in-laws, out-laws, together at last, in honor of our mom/grandma, and OMG: HUGS galore. Eeeek. I can’t wait. I will NEVER take a hug for granted again! The other plan involves a ship across the Atlantic!🚢 Everything to look forward to. And in the meantime . . . a long dreamy winter . . .

We’re all hunkered down here, storm windows are on, wood pile is stacked, it’s brisk and beautiful on our walks ~ when we get home, I make tea, Joe makes a fire, I carry my tea to my studio, and paint. I just did this portrait of Beatrix Potter, for the HERO page in my 2022 calendar, you know I love her. Watercolor brush, swirled in water, ringing the side of the dish, dipped in paint, swooped across the paper, spreading color any old way it wants! Portraits are my favorite thing to do, and slowly but surely, over the years, with lots of practice, I’m not unproud of them! Practice is the miracle ingredient.💝I still don’t understand how this art thing happened, but OH! Thank you!🙏 I am so grateful!

I’ve been busy reading my quote books and painting what I love, no real rhyme nor reason …

I’m going to do lots of meditation this winter, make myself strong, mentally and physically (at least for my age and weight class🤐), so when the time comes I will be READY!🤸🏾‍♂️

So I have a surprise! FINALLY. The new puzzles were just shipped to the Studio and they sent me samples! I HOPE they make it to California by the end of next week! Trust me, the MOMENT they arrive, Sheri and Kellee (they’ve been working out to get ready) will SHIP like crazy! 💌 I am so proud of these two women, such hard workers who love you ALMOST as much as I do. You can tell by how they decorate the packages they send you! Big pats on the back and “thank you” to both of them!💖 Something ELSE I am grateful for!😘

Of course I opened the box and spread out the pieces. I love it. Perfect for winter. Talk about a meditation!

Couldn’t wait to get started…See I have all the border pieces in a pile? SUCH a sense of satisfaction when you find a piece that FITS!

And look at this darling new thing! Janie, our creative Girlfriend who makes all our bunting and banners, made these for us! A few of my new books, Home for Christmas, came from the printer damaged … so we decided to recycle the pages and make them into limited edition Christmas trees! And Janie made them for us!

Kellee and Sheri packed them three-to-a-package . . . Two for you and one to tuck into a Christmas card!🎄

Mine are already hanging from my kitchen windows!

Something else, I’ve started putting my Yard Sale on the blog as promised ~ all things I love, some of them you’ve seen before, some of them I’ve had here, and some I collected on our cross-country adventures … To view them, click on Shopping at the top of the blog page, see the list on the left? Scroll to the bottom and click on Vintage. This way, we can shop our way across country next fall and can get MORE!

And, mark your calendar, because on December 6th at 4pm EST, I’m doing the very last virtual event to celebrate my new book Home for Christmas ~ it’s a Christmas Tea, hosted by the wonderful independent bookstore in Plainville, MA called An Unlikely Story! And guess what? These generous people are doing it for FREE.❤️ You don’t have to buy anything to join in… which means you can ALL come, even if you live in Canada or England or Norway, everyone is invited! If you DON’T have a book, or maybe even if you need to buy books for winter or for Christmas gifts, please make a list and consider purchasing your books from them if you can! Never did “shopping small” mean more than it does this year. HERE’S where you go to sign up!

Well, time for me to go. Here’s a view of our wild turkeys, flaunting themselves the day before Thanksgiving! They know they’re safe with us!🦃

Well, Girlfriends, time for me to put on my apron! Tomorrow we will toast you, our family and friends, and the coming new year. We’ll count our blessings out loud and say prayers for those who’ve lost loved ones, and for those across our country who are facing food lines. Please find a way to donate if you can ~ these lines won’t end at Thanksgiving and you know, it could happen to any of us. I have every faith that we will come out of this thing better than ever.❤️ Happy Thanksgiving!

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343 Responses to ACcenutate the POSITIVE

  1. Toni says:

    Thank you Susan.

  2. Lorrie Orr says:

    Happy Happy Thanksgiving, Susan and Joe (and kitties)! Have a wonderful time counting your blessings and indulging in your feast. I love your words – “a long dreamy winter”! Yes!

  3. MoeWest says:

    I’m surprised Jack doesn’t steal some puzzle pieces. Our cats would do that! Love the 3D tree ornaments. I may photocopy some pages from a book of yours and try making a few. Happy Thanksgiving to you both!

    • Maureen from SoCal says:

      More, I think I’ll have to do the same thing. I check her store every morning and they weren’t even there this morning and now sold out. They are so cute. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

  4. Amy E Warren says:

    So, so happy to see the puzzles have arrived. Looks like FUN..Can’t wait for mine to arrive. Your piece about never taking another hug for granted really got me emotional, I can’t wait ..I will be giving out free hugs everywhere I go!♡♡ Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joe, Susan!! Thank YOU for giving us beauty, peace and tranquility!♡♡♡♡♡

  5. Maureen Palmer says:

    Thank you for a nice blog. Happy Thanksgiving!🦃

  6. Edie McAdoo says:

    Again, thank you for your wonderful blog. I discovered a very special TV channel. Radiant TV. The nature scenes are incredible. Happy Thanksgiving to you, hubby and Jack.

  7. Chris Wells. Knickerbocker, TX says:

    Happy Thanksgiving! Have we ever had a cozier one? Gone is the hoopla, the excitement, the nervousness (is the house ready? Did I forget something?)! I thought I was planning for dinner on the porch with my inner circle when that suddenly came to a screeching halt and it is dinner for two, Jim and I and 2 hopeful dogs under the table. And you know what? Suddenly the pressure is off, the 20 pound turkey went in the freezer and I am making a turkey breast. We will still have dinner by candle light and I am leaving the porch option open, just because it sounds lovely.
    So Happy Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. May you be blessed beyond measure and treasure this very special Thanksgiving because we are here!!
    And those paper trees from misprinted books…what a lovely idea. So I am on my way to order NOW

  8. Emily D. says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan! My house is currently a jumble of holiday prep–Christmas cards on the table to write out, stamps, cookbooks, and a peppermint candle on the counter! 🙂

  9. Peggy Willoughby says:

    Thank you for the best Thanksgiving gift, your blog!
    It’s just us too. I will miss my raucous gang, but….😷
    Today I made a breakfast casserole that spends the night in my fridge to be baked for just us two in the morning. Tiny turkey breast for two for dinner tomorrow as well. We have both been grateful for being able to buy what we need, having a cozy house, healthy family.
    I am loving the Christmas paper ornament! Your puzzle will keep me busy in between the holiday decorating. Your recipes will keep me busy baking too.
    See you on the next tea. Look at you in your kitchen! Great picture.

  10. Kristina says:

    I love this post! It’s sure been a rough year for everyone! I was supposed to cook Thanksgiving dinner for my family but I got Covid-19 three weeks ago. I’m so much better but my husband said “NO Cooking for you!” So we are getting curbside turkey dinners from our local Lutheran Church. It will just be he and I and it will be perfect. Happy Thanksgiving and blessings to you, Sue, and all who read here!

  11. Well, I have time to read your lovely post today because for the first time in over 40 years I’m not hosting Thanksgiving dinner. It will be just my husband and me. I am making a pared-down version, however. Already prepared your cranberry recipe. I wish now I’d made extra so I could make that jam! I made just one pie–pumpkin–and we already had a slice with our tea this afternoon! I will miss my family, but we plan to Zoom tomorrow. We have a new grandbaby born last month which we have yet to hold even though she lives 50 minutes away. But we have enough to be thankful for that what we’re missing seems minor compared to so many other heartaches people have had to suffer this year. I’ve put your puzzle on my wish list. I did a 1000-piece puzzle for the first time earlier this year and found so many “lessons for life” that I wrote a blog post about it. If anyone is interested in reading it, just click on my name. One of the things I’m thankful for, Susan, is YOU❣️Happy, happy Thanksgiving!

    • Chris Wells. Knickerbocker, TX says:

      Happy Thanksgiving Cathy. For so many of us, it is a dinner for 2! Congrats on another sweet grandchild. So hard to not hold that baby in your arms. I understand completely, it has been 2 years since I have seen my grandkids in Ohio, not sure how much longer I can hold out!
      I will check on that blog post

  12. Anna Robinson says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you, Susan. I am counting my blessings. Home is safe and warm. The day before Thanksgiving is my baking day. I wake up, have a very strong cup of coffee, roll up my sleeves and GET GOING. The house smells wonderful as I bake my favorite pumpkin pie. I think about all my friends, family and loved ones. I think about all the other kitchens around this wonderful country of ours, all doing our best to make some good food. I think about next year, when this table will be full of loved ones again. But most of all, I am grateful for what I have, love and good health and a home.

  13. Mary Ann in Mid-Missouri says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Sue and Joe! I am making your grandma’s stuffing this year; first time ever making “real” stuffing. I’m nervous and excited. We, too are having a scaled back celebration. We’ve always gotten together on Thanksgiving and Christmas with our best friends and their kids and grandkids. This year, we are being careful. But, our kids and grandkids that live close will be here, since we see them almost everyday anyway. Virtual schooling is truly a family affair, so grandkids are in and out all the time asking for help, or we are taking them here and there while their parents are at work. Anyway… I have spent the past couple of weeks reading The Best of Stillwater. I’ve made myself go slow so I could really savor it, and finished last night. I used little sticky tabs to mark places where I found beautiful things she wrote that I know I will never want to forget. Now, I have hundreds of tabs sticking out of the book. What can I say; I don’t want to forget any of it. What a talented woman, that Gladys Taber! S0 beautifully written.

  14. Nicole Pivec says:

    Always so thankful for your effervescent hope, Susan. May you enjoy your peaceful day and know that you are loved by many. Happy Thanksgiving!

  15. Susan says:

    I followed the link to sign up, with the book shop, but it just shows your book for sale.
    Anyway, I want to wish you and Joe a very Happy Thanksgiving. Blessings to you both!

  16. Carolyn Hodgson says:

    I’m making your turkey gravy stock right now. The house smells so good. I saw you at a book signing in Kansas City a few years ago and you told me the story of your dad bringing his own jar of gravy to dinners because it was his favorite. I could certainly understand why. It has been our family’s favorite for years now. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

  17. Christine Perica says:

    As always, thank you for your contribution to the beauty of the world! This Thanksgiving post was just what I needed today – the words and the photos – can hear the wood crackling in your fireplace. Will order your puzzle in a minute. I just tested positive for Covid so my husband and I will be living separately
    in our house for a while and a puzzle will be a great distraction. My sisters and I read “Home for Christmas” together as soon as it arrived – cried and laughed throughout. So many similar memories were created on our street, Calvert, in Reseda. Whenever something you wrote about jogged a memory, we stopped to share. A wonderful gift to us! Your mother was a darling, wonderful “fifties woman” who spread great joy to her family! We wept for your loss and thanked God for her legacy. Have a blessed day tomorrow with all the trimmings. Love!

    • sbranch says:

      Oh darn Christine, I’m so sorry. Yes, this will be the perfect time for a puzzle! Thank you so much for the kind words. Calvert! A word I haven’t heard for a long time! Please get better soon!

  18. Jodi Luciano Sanders says:

    Can’t think of a better way to celebrate gratitude than to read a Susan Branch newsletter!! You cheer us up and we all need some of that. As we mostly celebrate alone in our family “pods” let us be thankful for our girlfriend love 💕 Happy Thanksgiving to all!

  19. Cindy Huk says:

    Thank you Susan. And Joe & Jack too. May you all enjoy a peaceful and lovely feast.

  20. Rae Ann R. says:

    🦃Happy Thanksgiving🦃 to you and yours…I can’t wait to make your cranberry sauce+orange marmalade!

  21. Barb says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joe and Jack. I have much to be thankful for.

  22. Rosemary says:

    Truly grateful that you shared your love of painting, recipes and family stories with all of us. I re read your books for inspiration. You have made all such happy people. Happy Thanksgiving to you, Joe and Jack!

  23. Christine S says:

    Hello!! God bless you for your wonderful post. I too have been cooking. It will be just my husband, me and our animals. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family from us. Know you are a blessing I am thankful for.

  24. Kathy Kuhl says:

    I love that picture of Jack!!! Happy Thanksgiving from Northern California.

  25. Jane Hahn says:

    Your thanksgiving dinner sounds lovely. My husband and I will be having Cornish game hens, no big turkeys this year. We will take dinner to our son and his girlfriend since we all decided it is better and safer not to be together, but we will be in spirit. Next year will so much better has become my mantra.
    I gave my BFF your Island book and she called and thanked over and over she enjoyed so much, she too lives in a little house in the woods in WA state.
    Enjoy your holidays and thank you for your wonderful blog.

  26. julia walker says:

    Susan, What a beautiful letter!!! You outdid yourself with this one. Thank you for sharing your home once again. AND thank you for recognizing the Native American Indians! Many blessings to you, Joe and Jack.


  27. Susan Holcombe says:

    Dearest Susan, Joe and Jack. May Thanksgiving blessings explode at your home tomorrow. May love abound and food surround you as you give thanks in all things. You are a blessing and I’m thankful I received one of your books as a Christmas gift back in the 80’s. I’ve been enchanted ever since! Party hearty!

  28. Janet Freeman says:

    Happy Turkey Day!

  29. Helen "Maggie" Giltmier says:

    Your work is exquisite and touches my heart always! Thanks for always reminding us of all the simple but dear blessings we have, simple things are the best. Someone to love, and someone who loves you, that and good health is everything. My little”Smokey” sat up with me last night till 1:00 in the morning while I was going over my bank statement which did not come out right, and my husband said, here you figure this out, I’m going to bed.

    So we had a cup of tea, a nice little fire and Christmas music playing softly as I worked and Smokey snuggled on my lap. How would I ever get anything done without his little loving heart keeping me company. Thank you dear GOD!

    A very Happy and Loving Thanksgiving!

  30. Cassandre Faimon Haygood says:

    Beautiful blog! Thank you so much! My Mom has gifted ne with your amazing calendars, mugs and other beautiful pieces. It is the little things that matter and we appreciate them all!
    God bless you! Happy Thanksgiving.

  31. Marybeth Rogers says:

    Beautiful and Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Marybeth

  32. Penny Carpenter says:

    Blessings to you and yours and HAPPY THANKSGIVING from north Idaho!!

  33. Wanda McCay says:

    Susan, I’m looking forward to making your grandma’s dressing (we always cooked it outside the bird in the roaster) tomorrow which is just like my grandma and mom always made! Must be an obscure-even-for-Iowa thing because I’ve never heard of anyone else preparing their bread that way. But it’s so fun to do – and so yummy😋! Your blogs have been one of the things that have gotten me through since March when our world drastically changed. So I am very grateful to you for faithfully writing those for us! Blessings to you, Joe and Jack and all the rest of your family!

    Wanda McCay

  34. Susan Stout says:

    Have a wonderful thanksgiving!

  35. Laura Eveland Swanson says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you & Joe!!!

    Laura in Illinois

  36. Carrie LGH says:

    Counting my blessings & one big blessing is you. And all the friends I’ve made here. xxx ooo
    *Carrie In Wales

  37. Maureen Bryan Waring says:

    I love your last line..I too have every faith we will come out of this thing better than ever. I truly think…it happened to make us stop..and appreciate all we took for granted. I can’t wait to take my 5 mth old grandson…born during a pandemic…out into the world. He has rarely left his home for safety. I want him to see this wonderful world.

  38. sharon taylor says:

    Dear Susan, Joe and Jack,
    Happy Thanksgiving from a Canadian. Even though there is just the three of you I’m sure your day will be wonderful. Enjoy. Hugs to all. Sincerely, Sharon

  39. Lynn says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan, Joe and Jack,
    We have many blessings to be thankful for if we focus on what and who we have in our lives. I’ve talked many times with my elderly uncle who I normally would only see/talk with a few times a year. Such fun conversations.
    My youngest daughter graduated from college in the spring with a bio-systems engineering degree. She is working with a team on the production of the covid vaccine. We won’t see her on Thanksgiving because she will be working. Small sacrifice for the good of many. (FYI. All the usual safety guidelines have been kept in place to get a safe and effective vaccine to us all. They just didn’t have to wait in queue to get funding and paperwork finalized. It was made top priority. )
    Looking forward to a small Thanksgiving. To stay with tradition, I must wonder as cooks do every year, will my turkey be large enough? It’s 14pounds for just three of us. 😉 The husband and son LOVE turkey so the leftovers will be enjoyed.
    Your words, painting, pictures, and inspiring quotes always bring a smile to my day!
    You are a blessing!

    • Rachel Lucas says:

      A special wish to your dear daughter Lynn – dedicated scientists like her will give life back to us, just as surely as the amazing doctors and nurses who treat those who are sick xoxo Happy Thanksgiving!

      • Lynn says:

        Thank you! And I agree, so grateful for all the healthcare people trying to do their very best in the midst of this pandemic.
        Happy Thanksgiving to you too. 🥰

  40. Lorraine says:

    I have my cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie done. It’s just my husband and I for dinner tomorrow. We’re still making most of the dishes we normally have, just in smaller quantities. I’m going to try your cranberry marmalade. Sounds wonderful. We’ll watch Trains, Planes, and Automobiles tomorrow evening. It’s our tradition…

    Here is a Thanksgiving Blessing that I found on a greeting card years ago in an airport gift shop. It’s my favorite.

    A Thanksgiving Blessing
    Wishing you,
    Walls from the wind,
    Roof for the rain,
    And tea beside the fire.

    Laughter to cheer you,
    Those you love near you,
    And all that your heart may desire.
    Author Unknown.

    Even though we may not be able to have all of our loved ones near this year, I hope everyone can connect via Zoom, FaceTime, Skype, phone calls, etc. Stay strong and healthy. Gobble, gobble

  41. Tania says:

    Hi Susan…I love your pie plate. Is that Polish stoneware?

  42. Deb Schwabe says:

    Thanks giving for sure! Thank you for always illuminating the blessings that abound! Heart and home more important for comfort than ever! Blessings to you and Joe and Jack!

  43. Anna says:

    Susan, I’m never too busy to read your blog! Your words and thoughts warm my heart and mind. My husband and I are “hunkering down” for the holiday (and likely Christmas, too) without our children and grandchildren in the room to hug. Uma and Umpa want to be here for several more years for birthdays and holidays and play dates in the park.
    I will try the cranberry marmalade – an easy new recipe is always welcome! Our neighborhood turkeys will feast on my front porch pumpkins that I’ll cut open and leave for them to feast on in the back garden tomorrow.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones!

  44. I love that you thought of all of us girlfriends and that you had some sweet surprises in your post! I am getting three new ornaments for my tree! Or I might share…. Have a wonderful day with Joe and Jack. Happy Thanksgiving!

  45. Janet Lagrange says:

    So excited to get a Thanksgiving letter from you. Glad I looked at my mail again. Wonderful surprise. My husband and I are staying safe on our own too just like you. We are having a delicious fat chicken plus all the good veggies that go with Thanksgiving plus pumpkin pie. So happy Thanksgiving to you and all your faithful readers.

  46. Nan from Michigan says:

    Just LOVE your blogs… they always feel like a personal letter to me. Thank you for sending them and sharing your talent with us. I am thankful for you!!

  47. Sandy says:

    Thank you so much for your, as usual wonderful post. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joe, as well as all the special people in your life.

  48. Pam Schmidt says:

    Thank you ❣️❣️❣️
    Love all of your posts.
    I can’t wait for your quote books come out. Love verses and samplers. Love the letters,too! When you have the quote books available ? Can’t wait.
    Thanksgiving blessing to you and yours. 🍂🍁🍂🍁🍂

  49. Peggy Cooper says:

    Happy Thanksgiving Susan, Joe, and Jack! It’ll just be 4 of us here, so a turkey breast it is. I just got out of the hospital with diverticulitis, so our daughter is making all the sides and dessert, including your corn pudding of course. So all I’ll be doing is the turkey and gravy, and the rutabaga, which is a family tradition. A very nice relaxed day to be grateful this year is almost over, and there is so much hope for 2021. Seeing all the smart, competent people who will be taking cabinet positions next year has given me a renewed sense of calm. Be well, and know you are loved by so many.

  50. Salve S Stamatelaky says:

    Susan and Joe – Happy Thanksgiving Day!
    Re – Home for Christmas – damaged books: I make origami boxes or kirigami cutouts – out of my Susan Branch old calendars!
    Stay well and prayers to all! Salve

  51. Debby Rickett says:

    Dear Susan,
    Loved the blog today!
    I just had to have the paper tree ornament 🙂 Home for Christmas is such a delight… I may need to keep one of these ornaments up all year long – I’ve been known to do that lol…
    Your Thanksgiving sounds perfect! Enjoy Joe and Jack, all the the yummy stuff you are making! I’m going to try your pie crust!! Wish me luck.
    Love to you!!!

  52. Cindy Berry says:

    Happy Thanksgiving….peace and love and good health to you and Joe….Hugs

  53. Becky Maxwell says:

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  54. Vicki South of Arroyo says:

    I just LOVE that from Chief Seattle, the words and your illustration of the corn.

    I know it’s not ‘politically’-sensitive now, but when we were growing up, we called it ‘Indian’ corn, not calico corn. My third-grade teacher spent a lot of time teaching us about Native Americans and how they treasured the land and were so resourceful about their food and supplies, like how they used dyes from nature (plants, etc.) in their wovens, how they made and gathered food; used wild herbs for medicine; it was very respectful and interesting learning and always stayed with me. I still have a little workbook we made “The Indians” (c. 1962), tied with a string on the side, where we colored in the drawings of the members of the tribe working a hide or carrying water. I knew somehow with family lore that I, like so many Americans, have some degree of Native American heritage; something in the bloodline (for me, with more info known over time, it’s my grandmas many steps back, both from Cherokee and Creek tribes, and I’m proud of it; very thrilling to see your ancestor on one of the tribal census rolls). Being from SoCalif, I was always enthralled with the Chumash tribe, the coastal natives, who were brilliant in how they made their ‘canoes’ and sealed them with natural tar (I think I’m remembering this correctly!) so that they could maneuver around the offshore channel islands for fish and abalone. Of course, here, we all grew up reading, “Island of the Blue Dolphins”. (Children’s book; maybe too young for you when it was published, Susan; I think you were probably already a teen.)

    Big Santa Ana wind event for us tonight and on Thanksgiving Day; you remember those, Susan! I’d rather be cozy like you and Joe, with a fire going, but I have your recipe out for the corn pudding; I’m making it! And it was so nice of you to send heartwarming wishes out today; same back atcha. You are loved.

    Happy holiday to you; you’re with Joe and I’m with my ‘Joe’; we’re lucky. And my friends who decided to do the right thing, stay home, and who are alone, with maybe a kitty or a dog but no humans, we’ve got the phone and we’ll be sending cheer apart but cheer all the same. Next year WILL be different, and it’s going to be so, so good!

    • sbranch says:

      So, so good, Vicki! I remember studying the Chumash, and even made a Wikiup for a class project! I have a book of Native American quotes. The voices that speak there are quiet, connected to the earth and their ancestors, I just love them.

  55. Sally Woodall says:

    I just checked on the status of “my” puzzle yesterday. Very excited to know it should be on its way soon! Can’t wait! Thank you for making one of my favorite things!💕

  56. Laura from Portland, OR says:

    Yes, this has been the year to find what is most precious to us…and now to celebrate and give thanks. Your messages are always on my “Thanking List”…

  57. Barb says:

    Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

  58. Carol Neill says:

    A very happy, peaceful and relaxing Thanksgiving to you, Joe and Jack. My husband, myself and our two kitties are so fortunate and blessed with a wonderful home and plenty of good food. We worry and pray for so many who are not. May the coming year find everyone in a better place. With many thanks for the all the calm, love and peacefulness you bring us from your heart and your home always. Carol

  59. Sandy Schmidt says:

    Gratitude IS the attitude! Happy Thanksgiving to all!

  60. Kathryn D. Rehrig says:

    Have a bountiful Thanksgiving Susan, Joe & Jack! Even in this year of weird, we have much for which to be thankful. I just made green bean casserole from scratch and now understand why people are happy to use Campbell’s soup. It will be worth it, I’m sure! Am very excited about the quote books. I keep a little book already and half of the quotes in it are from your blog. Happy Turkey Day!!
    P.S. Did you ever get the Seattle Chocolate bars celebrating Women’s Right to Vote? Just checking in case they got lost in transit! Stay safe…

    • sbranch says:

      Oh I did! I’m so sorry Kathryn, I have lost TOTAL control of my mail!!! But THANK YOU!!! Perfect thoughtfulness for me.💝

      • Kathryn Rehrig says:

        No worries Susan…I know you are an incredibly busy person! I just wanted to make sure they were received. You do so much for us, I thought it would be nice to do something little for you for a change!

  61. Melissa C. says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan! I’m very thankful for you and all the joy you bring to our lives. 🙂

  62. Danella on the Canadian west coast says:

    Happy Thanksgiving Susan, Joe and Jack! Love your art Susan and all your posts. So thankful for you. You cheer me up on these grey days.

  63. Charlotte from Williamsburg says:

    Your post and my new kitty – Ruthie Bader – are giving me joy during this very quiet Thanksgiving. I am so thankful for blessings again this year and you are certainly one of them.

  64. Gloria Cheney says:

    Great surprise to hear from you on this day before Thanksgiving. So thankful for you and your love for “us.”

  65. Jasmine says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan!

  66. Dayna says:

    Such a lovely post Susan. Blessings to you, Joe, Jack & all the girlfriends this Thanksgiving!

  67. Julie V. from Springfield, MO says:

    Thank you for your beautiful artwork and perfect quotes. So excited that the puzzles are on their way. I plan to save mine for January when things have slowed down after the holidays and the weather is cold and dreary outside. It is always nice to have something to look forward to in the future. I agree that we should all take stock in our blessings and be extra thankful this year. Our medical staffs, first responders , essential workers and others have given more than their fair share to our country this year. Wishing you and Joe a Happy Thanksgiving and please stay safe and healthy.

  68. Shirley Burt says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. I was thinking about your drying bread out on the ironing board just yesterday. Glad you are doing some of your favorite food !!!!
    I just finished reading your darling “Santa” book. As I read it reminded me of growing up in the 50’s. Not the exact same, but the feelings were and are. I just wished that my little sister had been alive. We would have read it outloud and laughed and cried together. She would have loved the book and memories, yours and ours. 6 years now but miss her every day.
    Thank you so much,
    Much love and lots of bunny hugs.

  69. Darylene from So. Dakota says:

    Dearest Susan,

    I count you among my blessings because the way your words, thoughts, stories and photos envelop me and transport me back to my own childhood memories is a gift that few possess. My gratitude runneth over, and I send you love – and air hugs. Happy Thanksgiving, and every day.

  70. Beth Watson says:

    Love, love to read you Blog. The puzzle takes my breath away. What fun.
    Happy Thanksgiving. Thank you for your sharing of that amazing talent God gifted to you.

  71. Laura Croyle says:

    Bless you!! I was feeling kinda blue because we had to cancel Thanksgiving with our kids, as I came down with a flu bug. Then I read your blogpost that you are roasting a whole chicken for just you and Joe, and I thought, “We can do that, too!” I have everything to make a pumpkin pie, our favorite salad and your cooked cranberry recipe! So the big turkey is going in the freezer (it was a fresh one!) And I took out a frozen chicken! It can be our own little mini-Thanksgiving! Thanks for the ideas! And a Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joe (and Jack!)
    ~Laura C.

  72. Sherry Winchester says:

    A warm and wonderful Thanksgiving to you and Joe and Master Jack. A lovely blogpost today, Susan! Let the Christmas movies begin! Bless you!

  73. Ann Meads says:

    Nice to hear all is well on MV. Enjoy the holidays. We start decorating for Christmas tomorrow after our TWOSIE Thanksgiving dinner. Missing the crowd we usually have around out table but being safe counts! 2020. What a year!

    • sbranch says:

      WHAT a year! 🙀 Getting VERY comfortable with the thought of having it OVER with! Making the best of these last days!🦃🎄❤️ xoxo

  74. Mary Julienne says:

    Thank you for your beautiful letter and pictures, sayings and artwork! I’m looking ahead to my new calendar and enjoy your blogs oh so much! The wild turkeys are fantastic! Happy Thanksgiving!

  75. Krissie says:

    Happy Thanksgiving from Yorkshire!
    Enjoy your day the three of you and all those delicious ingredients made into a wonderful meal, we need scratch and sniff back! sniff sniff ahhhh cranberries and marmalade.
    p.s i’m so glad you got a tripod for your halo, they get so heavy don’t they lol? 🙂 Toodle pip Krissie xxx

  76. Julie says:

    Thank you to lift the spirit! It’s so true that we have so many things to be thankful about!

  77. Margaret Harke says:

    Thank you, Susan, for taking time out of your busy schedule to encourage and inspire us to do kind and lovely things for each other and in doing so, doing them for ourselves, too. Happy Thanksgiving!

  78. Linda says:

    Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving. I thought I read somewhere that you were considering leaving Martha’s Vineyard and moving back to Cali? Did I dream that? Ha! I signed up for your event!! I bought the book directly from you and glad I am still able to attend. I plan to read the book out loud wth my husband starting December 1. We read A Fine Romance together too (I also read that book to my Mom when she was declining a few years back). Thank you for all you do.

    • sbranch says:

      One of these days we think we will need to live smaller… and we are so far from family, and they would like us to move back to California… It’s a very difficult decision… love everywhere no matter where we look! xoxo Thank you too Linda, it’s very nice to have you here!💞

  79. Karen Baron says:

    Happy Thanksgiving 🍁🦃 to you and Joe!! Another lovely blog!!🌻🍁🧡

  80. Gina D says:

    We JUST printed out the hymn lyrics to sing around the table tomorrow!
    Thank you for the lovely reminder.

  81. Barbara Jean says:

    Blessed be those who know they are blessed and do not take it for granted, those that pay it forward, and remember how it felt.

  82. Linda says:

    Loved finding this message today. Loved the prayer and inspirational messages and cheery pictures. Though our Thanksgiving will be smaller than I’ve ever had- only three, I am still baking our traditional cranberry apple pie and sides today to be ready for tomorrow and our cooking the stuffed bird. Good times; good times no matter how small! Thank you, as always, for your wonderful blog! XO Linda

  83. Denise Marie says:

    This blog made my day, thank you! I’m reading my much cherished copy of your Autumn book with a fire going and a cup of tea. Happy Thanksgiving, wonderful lady!

  84. sarah says:

    Beautiful message as always! Thank you, Susan, for taking the time to write to us today. Happiest of Holidays to you and Joe. Gratitude! You are at the top of my list. You brighten so many lives!
    Hugs from Austin ~ Sarah and Sadie

  85. Patty says:

    Thank you for the Thanksgiving blog post, Susan. It was just what I needed! Happy Thanksgiving and keep the books coming!

  86. Linda Michael in PA says:

    Here’s wishing you and Joe a blessed Thanksgiving. xoxo

  87. Pam Bonina says:

    What does “Musica” mean? Maybe I am late to the party, but have never figured out the useage???? Thanks

    • sbranch says:

      I put MUSICA at the top of each blog post, and if you click on it, you should be able to hear the music, and come back to the blog at the same time. (iPads or phones seem to make this more difficult, but it works with laptops) I fell in with all kinds of different sorts of music when I was in Mexico many years ago, so I call my music MUSICA… it’s usually vintage, anywhere from the 1920s to the 1950s, and every so often, something younger!

  88. Nancy says:

    So neat that you had Turkey’s visit. Love the quote pages and the tree ornaments. What a great idea to recycle them! Have a happy Thanksgiving, stay warm and safe. God Bless you!

  89. Carla vdM says:

    Always wonderfull to read your lovely writings and seeing the photo’s and drawings in the middle of the night.
    We do not celebrate Thanksgiving here in the Netherlands, but I hope you have a wonderfull day and a nice dinner….it sounds yummie ;o)

  90. Jana Jopson says:

    So thankful to read this today, late afternoon on a day of preparation for the grateful meal tomorrow. YOU and your many gifts are a perpetual blessing! Thanks and blessings to and Joe on this historic Thanksgiving. Much love, Jana

  91. Vicki says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joe and Jack! It will be a quiet Thanksgiving here too, just me and Max, Alyce, Sophia and Malcolm (my cats). I’m roasting a small turkey today because we’re supposed to have high winds tomorrow and Edison may shut off the power…yup, I live in California, up in the San Bernardino mountains. Again, have a wonderful Thanksgiving and thank you for all the happiness you bring to my world! ❤️❤️❤️

    • sbranch says:

      Edison! What has happened to them? They never did this when I lived there. I guess a few more people must have moved there since! 😅San Berardino.. like Big Bear or Arrowhead … favorite spots!

  92. Ginnie Judd says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan and Joe! I’m so glad you are setting a great example for all of us by being just the two of you. Because it’s just my mom and me at our house this year, I’m adjusting the menu to things she likes. She’s never been a fan of pumpkin pie, so even though that is what I always make to take to the family gathering – no gathering, no pie. Pavlova instead – a new one to make for me, though I’ve had it, many years ago in Australia. And I am making a variation on your Sweet Potato casserole from your Christmas book – my mom doesn’t like sweet potatoes but does like butternut squash, so that’s the base. And no added sugar, and for the liquor, I have black currant liqueur from Montreal. Hope it works!
    I just finished a book that came out in 1993 and highly recommend it: Noah’s Garden: Restoring the Ecology of Our Own Back Yards by Sara Bonnett Stein. Lovely writing.

  93. Brenda Chambers says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to You & Joe and of course Jack. Thanks so much for your post. Loved every bit. This just doesn’t seem like Thanksgiving, our children & their spouses are not coming for the holiday because of Covid. I am hoping for a good 2021 for everyone.

  94. Charlene M Boyle says:

    Happy Thanksgiving and peace to all! Listening to Billy Joel! Enjoy this beautiful day!

  95. Samantha Brakefield says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Susan and Joe! I always appreciate your kind and thoughtful words of hope and happiness. 🦃🥧 See you on December 6. I signed up! Yay!
    Samantha Brakefield from Idaho

  96. Barbara Vlcek says:

    Dear Susan & Joe & Jack,
    HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! I’m just taking a little break from putting together an apple pie to wish you & your family many blessings of happiness & love!!! There is just so much to be grateful for, despite the worry & stress of the “damn-panic”!!! I am so grateful that our country has chosen a kind-hearted, generous-spirited, compassionate, knowledgeable, experienced person to be our leader!!! My heart feels lighter and so much more hopeful!!! May your holiday be filled with love and hope, as well!!! Take care, stay safe & be well!!! Love & hugs, Barbara VV

  97. Lisa Jo says:

    Aww, what a blessing to have a new blog to read on this Thanksgiving Eve! 🦃
    Getting ready to make a pie crust for an apple-cranberry pie 🥧…just my husband and me this year, but will be zooming with our children and grandsons tomorrow ~ thankful for zoom!
    So thankful for you and the love and joy you share with us all!
    Wishing you, Joe, and Jack a wonderful day!
    Love to you!💌

  98. Sandie Eyner says:

    Thank you so much for taking time to write to all of us. Your positivity and warmth always cheer me. I often pull out one of your books when I need a moment of reflection. Like you, our family Thanksgiving will be a much smaller gathering than usual. We find that though we miss gathering with extended family, it makes us cherish them even more! Blessings to all! Be well!

  99. Marge:) says:

    Happy Thanksgiving!

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