Green means GO!

Green is the emblem of optimism. Like a green traffic light, setting us free to GO! It’s also the color of Spring! This will put you in the mood even if spring is coming in on little duck feet where you live! MUSICA!


Still a lot of attitude out there! (Dark cold short days do that to a person!)But, as we know . . .JUST SING!

This is our idea of OH MY GOD IT’S SPRING!!! SHOUT IT TO THE ROOFTOPS. Daffodils!


So we walk under leafless gray trees, through the woods to the gray sea . . . breathing clean ocean air, listening to the most wonderful English accents reading us the most wonderful books, still a little bleary-eyed from jet lag caused by daylight savings time, but too absorbed in The Last Bookstore in London to care. And THAT’S how you fight reality! Which I know you know. And P.S., that book was wonderful, you would love it! We get inside these stories and don’t want to come out. On the rare days we decide to just listen to the wind, the stories are now in the woods and wrap themselves around us as we walk. We fed the woods and the woods feed us back.🥰

We commune with the sun, when it comes out, we lap it up ~ and my watch says, “Good Girl, you walked 23 miles this week,” and I give myself a gold star, and my dad whispers, “Good work.”

And all the while, I know this dreamy thing is coming . . .I’ve been getting lots done. Staying close to home, watching some fun TV, just BEING. I’ve so enjoyed this period of quiet, of rebirth I believe, just in time for spring, I’ve been deep in the throes of what I call the foundation for the creation. It’s working, I feel excited, my head is filled with ideas, I’m always grabbing note paper, writing in my diary, or typing out a quick paragraph of ideas … I can’t wait to see where they go. You might remember that during the Pandemic I shredded most of my diaries, freed them, is the way I like to think of it. (You can read about the philosophy of shredding HERE) . . . I kept a few pages, but let most of them go. I still have several diaries, my dinner-party diary of course, my England diary, a couple of others . . .

and this one (above) . . . it’s a long diary, it goes from 1992 to 2007! It comes from pre-internet days, before digital cameras ~ before phones, or blogs! When we still shopped in actual stores! So much good stuff in that book, almost the entire 90s! Little notes, bits of art, photos, plus, I didn’t say anything quite as moronic as I did in those first books.

Of course, I saved this page. So funny, asking that question while I’m writing! I just didn’t know yet. But I imagine that even Shakespeare asked himself this question when he was young. It’s got to be a question every dreamer asks themselves in some way or another. Which makes me think, for my own little world, that maybe I wasn’t a late bloomer like I thought, I was probably right on time.

Anyway, back to this diary, only one problem: Poor thing was dragged onto too many trains and is now coming apart. It had a cloth spine… what was I thinking!

It’s a very fat book . . . but the pages are still holding together,

. . . they’re stuffed with all kinds of bits and pieces, a newspaper clipping when Frank Sinatra died in 1998, my first national book tour schedule for Girlfriend’s Forever in 2000 (by train), a note from me to God thanking Him for not “letting me have arthritis,” lovely bits of fan mail, a recipe card from my mom for Green Bean Casserole, a ticket stub for Miss Potter ~ and so much more, making this diary even fatter . . .

This is how the happy gene manifests . . .Good old 1999!

 I don’t want to lose this book . . . so, yesterday it went off to Mitzie Pratt, a bookbinder here on the Island… she will put it back together for me, and give it a brand new spine! There are a few blank pages left in the back . . . so maybe I will give it a little 2023 update.

And other things I’ve wanted to do have also been checked off my list ~ I finally got our wedding rings in to be engraved ~ I’ve always wanted to do that, and it’s finally happening.💞 Sending some of that love out into the world all alone someday. Also, I found a 1923 dime on my dad’s grave the first time I visited, I took that in too, to make a pendant out of it. He was born in 1923! And it’s 2023. So this is the perfect time. I’m having them put a gold ring around the outside, with a loop for the chain.💖 For forever. And, guess what just came in? ⬇️ Samples!

Our cups!!! They arrived from England for approval, which they definitely got! Color turned out great! They do such an amazing job!❤️ They’re being made now and, as promised, will ship at the end of April. I just wanted to show you. I can’t give an exact arrival date right now, because once anything is shipped these days, no one is ever quite sure when it will get to its destination. But never fear, we will stay on top of it, as I receive notices and more information, I will share it with you!!! I’m thinking May . . . but we will see.

Aren’t they wonderful? I’ve already had tea in all of them! Took ’em on a test run! ❤️ We haven’t sold out yet, they are all still available, but I should say if you want the Queen Elizabeth cup, you probably need to order soon.

My book, Fairy Tale Girl has been hard to find anywhere but on our website, and we’re down to just a few, saved just in cases, for Girlfriends. . . because we sold out everywhere else! So now, it’s being reprinted . . . the printer sent me the entire book so I could check the pages for color and layout, be sure the cover is right, and make sure it has that new book smell. I am still getting thank you letters for this book, warming the cockles of my heart.

And not just one book reprint this time . . . two!

Because A Fine Romance, Falling in Love with the English Countryside has also been missing in action! Thank you so much for liking them! You know it’s all you . . . your word of mouth that has made this possible. Mom’s to daughters, sisters to sisters, girlfriend to girlfriend ~ and so many of you took that word of mouth to Amazon.💖 Such a huge help! Word of mouth, my very favorite thing. Who do you trust more than your mom or BFFs? No one! I love it for my books, for movies, restaurants, exercise, for EVERYTHING actually, and feel just the same about it for the books I read … We are a sharing bunch aren’t we!?! Kindred spirits!

Oh yes, they sent the ribbons too! All approved and I bet we get them in the next month or so. 

And yes, we also ran out of our fine art giclee prints . . . they are all being reprinted and will be coming to the Studio any day now! Beautiful reproductions on heavy watercolor paper ~ the color is so good it’s very hard to tell the difference between them and the originals! I left enough white paper on the sides and top so you can frame them if you like. I will sign and number them before sending them to the Studio for our webstore. And SURPRISE! See the geranium there on the right? That is a print of the very first painting I ever did, when I was 30, before I even knew I could paint. Painting this geranium with my brand new Birthday watercolors was a real awakening. I have one here in the house and I thought it would be fun as a giveaway ❤️❤️❤️ . . . I’ll personalize it to whoever turns out to be the winner of our drawing … so leave a comment (you’ll see where to do it directly under the end of this post… click on the word “comment.”) I just want to show how much …And that’s the truth! You’re family! One of my favorite things about winter is how quiet and hushed it is here on the island. Tourists aren’t here yet, ferries sometimes stop running due to the weather, otherwise I can hear the boat horn echoing every time it leaves the dock. We have church bells clanging and ancient sad sound of foghorn too. All we need for perfection is a train whistle! Dark quiet mornings before sunrise, just me and Jack, a cup of tea, and my watercolors, are a pure gift to my life.

I’ve been painting . . . so fun to watch a piece of art come to fruition … the smell of the paper, the pencils, it’s back to school time for me. I start with a sketch, decide where her shoulders should be, what her hair might be, hat or no hat, what groceries should she have, what colors, everything . . .This is where the eraser comes in handy. I think of my eraser the same way as I do my seam ripper . . . tools I could not live without.

Once I like the basic idea, I redraw it on the “good” paper . . . Then comes the scariest part . . . putting on the first paint. Still scary after all these years!

Then I begin adding the layers of paint, trying not to hurry, enjoying every hair in my two-haired paint brush! Right here is where I sometimes want to stop! I love it right now! But then, I think, those lips, gotta do them! I’m trying to get ahead of next year’s calendars with some new art. And while I paint, thoughts and ideas pop into my head, so I write them down before I forget, sometimes it’s just a few lines, sometimes I have to stop because the idea takes pages . . . Everything seems so inspiring to me! Must be the longer light in the day, Spring! Or maybe the books we “read” while walking, I think about them, the magic the authors portray with their words, those wonderful wonderful words . . .

So in honor of St. Patricks Day AND the first day of Spring, I thought I’d give you some GREEN. I file my photos in lots of different ways, and one of them is by color! For all of you suffering from constant storms, and for everyone else living on the edge, ready for some green, I give you . . .

Almost time to mulch and dig my picket fence garden . . . and I can’t wait!

Green, most wonderful quilt, and Jack, one happy cat, make my kitchen a little bit of heaven.

Slippers warming next to the heating vents. So I can take off the cold ones and put on the warm ones. Foxy, don’t you think?🤠

The green rag-rug collection getting a little fresh air.

Luv-lee green glass, antique store find.

From my 2020 English Countryside photo Calendar…

. . . I should have included this miniature car covered in artificial grass in that calendar! Must totally disappear driving through the hedgerows! English people have the best sense of humor!Green! 

My happy cutie in the English Countryside, wearing his Scotland scarf.

In honor of Girl Scouts Week, my cooking badge. Didn’t quite make it to the sewing needle, still pinned on my sash where my mom put it.❤️

A window in a cottage in the Cotswolds. Kitty curtains framed in  Green!👏

Driving through Vermont in the snow.

And the reason I LOVE clover and let it do anything it wants. But what I really need are sheep!🍀 

Here we are at Carrie’s house in Oxford. As you can see, she has the charm decor gene in spades ~ loves green too!

Here’s how to make them: Cut stem flat against artichoke. Rinse it in water. Boil a pan of water, enough to cover artichoke. When it boils, add all ingredients except lemon juice … Check it after about 20 minutes to see if fork slips into stem easily. It’s done when it’s soft. Drain, and squeeze on lemon juice just before serving. It’s good hot or cold. Pull off a leaf, dip the wide end in mayonnaise, or mix mayo with lemon juice, or try melted butter ~ and pull “meat” off with your teeth. Keep going this with each leaf until the leaves are too flimsy. Then scoop out the center choke, dip and eat the “heart!” Yum. Fun to grow and they make the perfect dinner for losing that last 10 pounds, or the first 20. Here’s why they’re good for you!

Me, on a walk in the New Hampshire woods!

Needlepoint pillow. Goes with walls, lamp shade, green in chair, little Irish house roof on hutch. Goes good with Christmas too!

Me, way back when I lived at Hollyoak, when the cows escaped into my backyard from the farm next door, and I ran outside to see them, paintbrush in hand!

Beach booty. Heart shaped rock for the collection.


This is the color we get in spring . . . I call it “screaming New England green.” It’s like the day green was born! So green it even reflects on the gray roof of the house and turns it green!

Despite what this camera says, this is green . . . and it’s our dining room the way it was in 1989 a few days after we moved in ~ I’m playing house, setting the table for our first dinner party in our new home, which, I can tell by the bowls, nutcrackers, and lemons, was lobster! I’m pretty sure I bought the white paint for the trim and started tearing that wallpaper off the next day!🤪 That’s Girl Kitty. Jack isn’t born yet.

First thing I noticed about my first house on the island, when we drove into the driveway ~ it had a name. On a green sign nailed to a tree.

Black beret, but a green jacket and green pants  . ..

And this, soon we will be drying our sheets and tablecloths in the salty wind and dappled light of the green-drenched island. It’s gonna happen!!! ART, my dears, is what you THINK IT IS. Which is almost everything!

So book-time, walk-time for me and Joe . . . off I go. Wishing you a wonderful weekend! If you’re in California, you’ve had SUCH a tough winter, but I envy you your lupin and poppies that will be popping up any day. Hillsides and beach walks full of them, your reward, and you deserve every bit of it! Texas bluebonnets too . . . probably something to look forward to every where! Here’s to us Girlfriends! Don’t forget to leave a comment if you’d like a chance to win the Geranium giclee!

Your pal for life,

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1,137 Responses to Green means GO!

  1. Pat S says:

    Geraniums remind me of my mother, who always had a pot of red geraniums blooming on the front porch. Such a happy memory of her!

  2. Teresa Mosley says:

    Hi Susan! I love seeing an email from you and getting to read the post. I have most of your books and would absolutely be so honored to have a geranium print. Geraniums are one of my favorites! Blessings!

  3. Sharon Brown says:

    I am always cheered by Willard! Thank you. I love seeing Jack. My sweet sister just put down her beloved Amy after 21 years! It was a mutually blessed life for them. As it is for you and Jack. So glad for your sharing precious moments and his stretches!

  4. Dori Molletti says:

    Happy Spring, Susan!

  5. Marcy M. says:

    Once again, Susan, you’ve lightened my heart and filled me with optimism on this, the first day of Spring! Even though the ground here in California is sodden, I’ve been planting my garden in between rain storms, hoping I’ll see buds and blooms soon! Thank you for a lovely Willard and here’s to a beautiful springtime😊💚🌸🌹

  6. Pat Hoffarth says:

    Thank you Susan. Willard always brightens my day.

  7. Bernadene Stammer says:

    Susan, you have been the guide light of my adult life! I started reading your books at 19, when I was a new wife. I envisioned my home around your artwork, recipes and joi de vivre. Now I am widowed and my children are grown but you still inspire me to seek and enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Girlfriend is too small a word. You have been a muse. Your soul is evergreen and I look forward to your perpetual good spirits. Thank you.

  8. Dearlie Sue,
    What a lovely Willard! Thanks so much for the drench of Spring Green.
    This is the most hopeful time of year and my greed for plants exceeds the space in our garden. I have new little seedlings on a heat mat under a grow light on the front porch while it snows a blizzard outside.
    BTW I am mad for your fox slippers.
    much love

  9. Jacqueline+Caron says:

    Happy Spring! Hi Susan, lovely blog .. was anxiously awaiting another one. LOVEEEE your foxy slippers! the green is stunning, as well as the glass you found antiquing. Cannot wait to get my Queen Elizabeth mug! I have the santa and birthday one already in my collection – I use the birthday one for the whole month of my birthday, as a treat to a piece of cake each day with my cuppa tea! hoping you have a wonderful spring season on Martha’s Vineyard this year .. still lots of snow on the ground up here in Maine … so thanks for sharing all your green pics! lovely musica to go with this one too 🙂 xoxo

  10. Mary Webb says:

    Happy Spring! Wearin’ of the green and loving everything we see…

  11. Jennifer Farnes says:

    I love your geranium painting. Weren’t you so proud of yourself when you finished it? That sweet little painting reminds me of the red geraniums my mom and dad had growing in the dining room window of our little house where I grew up. My mama brought the geraniums inside every winter and took them out again every summer. She had a small glass pitcher with a hobnob design on it nestled next to the geraniums that turned a lovely lilac from sitting in that sunny window with those geraniums for so many years. Thank you for bringing that memory back to me.

  12. Kathie B. says:

    Thank you for the green. We are up to our ears in white snow. Your blog put a little spring in my step. Ha ha.

  13. Linda McMorrow says:

    I love geraniums! I had a collection of 10 different colors, and have been able to winter them over here in northern minnesota. But this winter my husband needed lots of health care and I neglected them. They didn’t make it. Oh well! Will just start again. You painting reminds me of them.

  14. Joan says:

    Thank you for bringing so much joy into our lives, Susan!

  15. Robin Foster says:

    Loved your green pics so much! My favorite color! I’ve been enjoying your letters for so long. Always look forward to Willard!

  16. Coco Andrew says:

    Oh dear Susan,

    What a wonderful Willard, thank you so much. In the deep heart of winter, I sometimes stop and imagine the very particular scent of geraniums for an immediate hit of Spring. Lov-er-ly! Please put my name in the hat.

    Coming off a looong power outage here after some crazy winds blew everything down on the San Francisco Peninsula last week. I enjoyed the deep quiet and living by charming candlelight. Did not enjoy my crazy clown hair which was quite mad looking… I had to stuff my wet hair into a ball cap to go to an appointment when the power went out right after I had washed my hair, about one second before I was going to turn on the hairdryer. It dried super funny looking in the cap, but too cold to start over until power was restored. Enjoyed it off, enjoy it on.

    Great to read your very green and happy Willard on this first day of Spring! Many thanks indeed,
    xoxox Coco

  17. Gail Tomei says:

    I’m a bit late reading your thoughts interspersed with glorious “Green”! We spend winters in warm climate but I work in freezing AC way too many hours during our Florida “winter season”. I have to make time to step back and linger with my tea as I so enJOY your insights. Thanks for offering a wonder filled break in my very busy schedule.

  18. Vicki Panzarino says:

    Loved this spring-y blog! I have always enjoyed your book recommendations so now I have one for you…. THE LAST BUS TO WISDOM By Ivan Doig it is absolutely adorable, humorous and (very important) has a happy ending. It’s told through a young boy’s eyes and takes place in the 1950’s (when we were both growing up so lots to relate to) Happy spring!!!

  19. Barbara H. says:

    Thank you for Willard! Spring is my favorite time of year, until Summer comes. 😊

  20. Debby Rickett says:

    Hi Sue!
    Lovely blog today 🙂 So glad life is treating you, Joe and Jack well!
    I am in Southern California and my garden is coming alive! So much beauty after all of the rain and sunshine. Green really is the color of HOPE as Mary Beth said.
    I just finished reading The Last Garden in England by Julia Kelly. It was a very good book. I think you and Joe would like it.
    Thank you for encouraging me. I love you!!!

  21. Carol I Nicholls says:

    Your posts are so warming and cozy. I always look forward to them. It is like you know how to read my heart!

  22. Cara M. says:

    Happy first day of Spring , Susan! I love your blog and all your inspiration ! thank you for your beautiful creativity!

  23. Barbara Michalewicz says:

    Thanks for another post. I have loved each and every one. Love always, Barb🌻👭

  24. Cara M. says:

    Happy first day of Spring , Susan! I love your blog and all your inspiration ! thank you for your beautiful creativity! May you enjoy all the Spring has to offer!… all the little things and nature’s gifts!

  25. Diane Brown says:

    You’ve outdone yourself, Susan! Your missives always lift my spirits. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself. I feel like we’re such good friends! Happy Springtime!

  26. Ruth Elder says:

    You blog posts always manage to ‘save me’ and my Spirits! Thank you for all you do. I wish you would print a book of all your blog posts so we could look through them, season by season and have them forever.

    • sbranch says:

      I wish I knew how to do that!! Without rewriting the entire thing… that’s a LOT of words!💖

  27. Patti MacLeith says:

    Your posts inspire me more than I can say. Thanks for a chance to win! Happy Spring!!

  28. Marta P. says:

    Hi Susan, I love how you organize your photos by different themes. What a genius idea! Oh and I’ve been looking for art for my kitchen for a while now.. Your geranium would be just perfect! <3

  29. Joan Lesmeister says:

    It’s good to see green, very refreshing & promising! Love all your pictures & words, thank you so much!

  30. Sharon Sellers says:

    I love reading Willard 💕 it makes me feel like we are friends. What a good start to the first Day of Spring 🌷

  31. Elizabeth says:

    Any chance you could be persuaded to publish that 90’s journal for us??!! I can’t be the only one who would devour every word! I re-read your trilogy every fall and it feels new every single time.
    I had four children in the 90’s – born in 92, 94, 96, and 98. So I was, quite literally, either pregnant or nursing for the entire decade, and just in general consumed in baby and toddler la-la land. So I would love to hear another perspective of the 90’s, especially if it’s from the pen of Susan Branch! Please won’t you consider!
    Thank you and I love you!

    • sbranch says:

      It’s funny, I thought of that myself. It’s got all those good years in it . . . I will have to look it over once it’s back home and see how that could be done! But you know, your memories are the sweetest! Babyland is a very nice place to live!

  32. Maureen from SoCal (4irisheyes925) says:

    What a wonderful welcome this has been to see your post and all the green. Green is my favorite color. Ireland is green, St. Patrick’s Day brings out a lot of green; clothing, beer, rivers. And I have always loved that green umbrella with flowers and your darling birds. They remind me of my backyard birds who I love to watch after feeding them. And my eyes are green. Everything is coming up green her in So. California and lots of flowers are blooming. My tulips are coming up too. Only one yellow flower so far, but the stems and leaves are appearing and I’m excited to see them. And I’m going to order the QEII teacup which also has the queen in green!
    Your post has been balm for my weary heart. My husband had a tumble and broke his ankle 9 days ago. He went into the hospital for what we thought was a sprained ankle and they kept him for 4 days to do testing as to why he fell (passed out for a second) and now he needs surgery on one of his carotid arteries as it is 80% blocked. And he has to wear a boot but isn’t supposed to be putting weight on the ankle. As a result, we will be missing our grandson’s wedding in Washington now. So all the happy green and cozy decor has lifted my spirits.
    Yes, the California weather has been extreme, even our mountains in So. California received an incredible amount of snow. In one of the small communities, where we have a friend who was snowed in, trucks with food and fuel couldn’t get up the hill with the initial storms, but once the roof collapsed on the only grocery store in that village, the Nat’l Guard came in and took over to help! YAY! Our military are great heroes!
    I’ve always admired your geranium painting. It’s really quite amazing that this is your first painting. What a great birthday present you were given-it changed the course of your life; opening up opportunities for new adventures and inner strength. May you continue to be blessed for all you do in blessing us with the peace and beauty that are found in your art, photos, stories and quotes.
    Hugs to you, Joe and Jack. Happy first day of Spring!

    • sbranch says:

      Love to you too Maureen, and I’m so very sorry about your husbands ankle, and artery, all of it. Especially your weary heart. 😘 That might just turn out to be a lucky break once it’s all over and he’s on the mend. I’m so sorry about the wedding!! Blessings and love . . .❌⭕️❌⭕️

      • Maureen from SoCal (4irisheyes925) says:

        Well Susan, he’s still in a boot and not supposed to walk on it. We have a follow up at the ortho 4/18 and carotid surgery on 4/28. We’ll be married 39 years in May, so looking forward to May for more than one reason.

        I saw on my SB wall calendar (and mini calendar) that tomorrow is Gladys Taber’s birthday and remembered that you shared the same birthday. Soooo, I wanted to send you warm greetings from California for a beautiful and very special and very happy birthday! Happy Birthday girlfriend!!
        Enjoy your special day. Hugs to you, Joe and Jack.

  33. Kate says:

    Another gem to read and savor. Reading your blogs is like taking a wonderful journey to a beautiful world where we’d all love to live. I still love Winter because it gives me a chance to stay inside and make things like quilts, knitted stockings and hats. As soon as it gets warm, I want to be outside playing with my pups and planting my garden. I’m so glad you found your wonderful talent because you have provided all of us so much happiness in your blog and your books. Have you ever painted chickens for your calenders? Just wondering as I raise them and think they would make a lovely page.

    • sbranch says:

      I did a rooster once, But I should do some good chickens!

      • pat addison (cave junction, OR) says:

        Susan i can send you some pictures of my chickens, i have speckled sussexes, New Hampshire reds, buff orpingtons, and a buttercup hen. my rooster is an Americauna named Chance, and i have 5 Swedish blue ducks …. Daisy, Dottie, Deidre, Daniel and Donald. i think the Buffs would make good pictures, they are so fluffy and the sussexes have a pretty pattern on their feathers. Chance he is a big boy and very colorful with a big tail of black, glossy feathers. now if we could only get him to crow on cue at the rooster crowing contest this summer. he crowed last summer when all the other competitors crowed but when it came to his turn he shut up. boy did he get a talking to when we got home… and he was shown the stew pot!!! off to go water and feed the chickens and ducks, and fetch up some firewood for tonight. have a good one, hugs …… 😀

      • Debbie Boerger says:

        Yesterday on NPR, the hostess did a piece on urban chickens, and how easy it is to love them. I know, as our next door neighbors had chickens for a number of years, and I loved them…except when they’d get in my garden. Yes, paint a chicken…when you have time 😉
        Thinking about friends out in California today. Even the climatologists are awe struck, and didn’t think it would get this bad this quickly. But of course our friend, Mitch M. calls it Climate nonsense.

  34. Marion Esposito says:

    There is so much happiness in your writings, in your watercolor art, and photography. I have your Distilled Genius book next to my bed, your calendar on my desk, A Fine Romance on my bookcase along with some others. You just spark joy all around my house!

  35. Barbara Lowdermilk says:

    Red geraniums are what I first planted when we moved into our house built in 1920. We still have them every year. They are one of my favorites.

  36. Mari Elizabeth Webb says:

    Happy Spring everyone! Thank you for another wonderful Willard Susan!

  37. Cozette Bolshaw says:

    thank you for the lovely Willard this month, all the green is wonderful. we have had a very grey winter here in Idaho. I always look forward to your reports of life on Martha’s Vineyard.

    thank you!

  38. diane rawski says:

    Hellooo. Trying my second note because first didn’t show!!! So happy about the geranium picture!!!

  39. Carisa Iezza says:

    I drove through California’s Central Valley today…so much flooding in fields, but it didn’t stop the almond and peach blossoms from showing off. They remind me of those ruffly fancy panties little baby girls sometimes wear! They make me smile. The sun will shine again here in California…maybe not this week, but that’s ok, cause the reservoirs and aquifers are getting replenished and that’s a good, good thing! Welcome spring!

  40. Dianne says:

    Happy First Day of Spring! Thank you for all your wonderful blogs–they always seem to come at the right moment! And, yes, Susan you are very, very lucky not to have arthritis! Have a happy, happy spring!

  41. Laura says:

    Yeah for all the green you shared…you must be part leprechaun 🍀

  42. Paula LaMont says:

    Thank you thank you thank, as always lifted my spirits, encouraged me to paint 🎨 and entertained me. What more could I ask from a girlfriend 🩲👗🩱🧤🐸🦎🦜🍀lots of green things for you💚💚💚

  43. Claire and Dolly (pug mix) says:

    Love to read your Willard’s. They brim with cheer and your art and music, thoughts and memories are moments spent with a dear friend I’ve never met but feel I know by heart. Thank you for sharing your talents with all of us.

  44. Nora Cavic says:

    Susan, your blogs come at JUST the right time! Gearing up for Spring, finally, on the beautiful college campus where I work. Students are back from Spring Break………and ready to sprint the next 47 days until freedom for them! Life is good. My cup runneth over!

  45. Marisa Montalbano in sunny Florida says:

    Just bought lovely daffodils from our local market…..they’re grown in England! Nothing says Spring like daffodils 🌼 btw, on our visit to MV last September, we met your charming Joe as he was putting up bunting for the Queen’s funeral. He was so polite and let me take a picture of him …it made my day 🤗

  46. Grace says:

    Thank you for the Willard! It’s great to celebrate Spring with all the green photos!

  47. JoLynn H says:

    Happy Spring to you too, Susan! I so enjoy your art (in all of its forms). It reminds me of all that is good, true, and beautiful in our ordinary days here in the world. Thank you for sharing your light!

  48. Amy Cardin says:

    Spring has been a LONG time coming this year in Michigan. Thanks for this inspiring Willard and another slice of your art process. The green photos give me hope. Huzzah.

  49. Mary Jo L says:

    Such wonderful snippets of green! I love the moss covered car, your friends adorable shelf with her lovely things, and of course your adorable foxy slippers!
    Thank you for the peek into spring and also how you start your artwork. That was very interesting.
    You my dear are a national treasure!!
    Mary Jo L from MO

  50. Jane says:

    Just happened to be drinking hot chocolate out of my Spring mug by YOU when I started reading this. 🙂 Spring is having a hard time coming to Dallas this year, but I know that it will be here soon! Love the green, and especially the musica! Thank you for all you do!

  51. Cathy+from+Golden,+CO says:

    I LOVE your kindergarten art! I’ve saved a few of mine also AND I saved my girl scout sash – I also have a cooking badge!!! Love all the green but ESPECIALLY your creativity and girlfriend connection….

  52. Becky says:

    On our walk today my daughter and I are seeing signs of spring EVERYWHERE!!! I do LOVE seeing winter melt away!!! Love all the Willards, do so miss the ones in snail mail. Thanks Susan for bringing me spook much Sunshine🌞🌞🌞🌞

  53. Carolyn RectorRector of Troy, Ohio says:

    I feel so inspired by your first print. I am retired one and doing a little watercolor myself. Love to read your “Willards” Thanks for all you do.

  54. Marianne Nichols says:

    I always look forward to Willard!

  55. Kim Young says:

    Hello Susan,
    Don’t you think that ideas seem to percolate best in early morning? I can not wait for April. Here in the NC Mountains it is pretty close to the perfect month. The weather stops bouncing around from 27f to 75f and seems to steady. I steal out onto the deck early, to the little corner I’ve created with a wicker love seat. bring my tea, quilt,magazines and notebook, and just listen and think. Breath and dream. I love that YOU love the seasons. Drawing attention to all their little delights..the quite as well as the busy. Soon time to climb out of our little winter cocoon and start the ” out door projects”. So glad you’ve had a season to be quiet and rejuvenate. Congratulations on all the reprints!!!! Looking forward to that first bouquet of Daffs and tulips on your kitchen table. 🙂
    Happy Spring to you and Joe.

    • sbranch says:

      That quiet time is SO creative!!! Love hearing from you Kim . . . happy spring!!🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷

  56. Gaye Marie Gruber says:

    Hi Susan,
    I’m several days late, noticing your adorable new Willard! How did this happen? Oh – I know how. Like so many of our kindred spirit girlfriends, time is swiftly marching on! I recall a quote from the movie Steel Magnolias – something like, “Time marches on and sooner or later, you realize it’s marching across your face.” My 92 year old Dad has been living with us since a week before Christmas. As my husband and I do our very best to make this “all good”, I must says that YOU help me get through, so sweetly, with your words, books, art, and photos. Thank you!

  57. Nancy R. says:


    Today in central PA it is 61 degrees. The last of the snow is gone. My daffodils are coming up. My neighbor gave me snow drops in the fall and I was surprised that they came up this year after just being transplanted last fall. Nature is wonderful.
    Please write another book of your last England adventure. I have enjoyed your other stories.
    Have a wonderful spring.

  58. Janice C. says:

    Dear Susan,
    Loved your Spring post, and inspirational as always! Daffodils are are popping up here in Michigan. Hoping we are finished with the snow. Love your artwork and the new cups. (Can’t remember if I purchased the Birthday cup the first time around). Happy Easter! Happy Spring! 👒🐰🌷

  59. Sue Hobbs says:

    I loved your kindergarten art! My oldest son had a kindergarten teacher who had been teaching quite a few years, and she took me out to the hallway to show me the pictures the children had colored of themselves on the first day of school. She said she could always tell which would be successful students and possibly artistic. Some were just scribbles with a crayon, but there were a few that had a body, a head, arms legs, and other details. Yours surely predicted what was to come! Susan, I’ve been a fan of yours for 27 years! I found your books, The Summer Book and Christmas Joy at our library and I fell in love with those sweet books! I’ve been buying your books and lots of other products since then, giving books as gifts, and got my sister hooked as well. They have been favorites and I read the books over and over! I have kept all of the paper Willards from the start, when they came in the mail – I love those! Thank you for making all our lives a little more beautiful!

    • sbranch says:

      Thank you Sue, that is so sweet of you. That’s an interesting comment coming from your son’s teacher. Makes me feel a little better! Love that we’ve been friends for so long!!🥰

  60. Mary Anne Spradlin says:

    As always, love hearing from you. Here in Salem, Oregon it’s a sunny but cool Spring day and I am looking out my window to a beautiful yellow forsythia and a dark pink camillia tree that is probably about as old as my house, built in 1910. I would LOVE to win the geranium painting! Mary Anne

  61. Monica Wilson says:

    As always, your post brings a smile to me, on this windy and rainy California day. But I just figure it is getting us prepared for English weather as we head over there in just one month! (But definitely hoping for some sun and spring flowers!) I have been reading a stack of novels set in and books about England. I loved The Shell Seekers, The Last Garden in England, and The Road to Little Dribbling. The Last Bookshop in London is also on my list! Thank you, Susan, for all the green photos. I know we will see a lot of green on our trip! Blessings! (We are leaving on Thursday for an anniversary weekend -35 years- in San Luis Obispo so I will think of you in your old stomping grounds!)

  62. Julia says:

    I’m so happy it’s spring!! And I’m very much enjoying your wall calendar (especially this month’s reminder) which is hanging in our kitchen. I sent a dear friend who lives in California a handwritten note on gorgeous, new stationery I ordered from England. I miss receiving handwritten notes and letters and cards in the mail -texting and email are just not the same so I’m trying to bring it back. Take care.

  63. Carla Ludwig says:

    Oh Susan, a new Post from you is like getting a warm hug. Just what I needed while waiting for our 30″ of snow to melt here in New Hampshire. Seeing all that green certainly helps! I cleaned today using my “Beach Days” cleaner, a little escape to the Ocean for me.
    Happy early Easter!!

  64. Brenda Hannon says:

    Happiest of Springtimes to you! I can’t wait to get to the island and see, hear and smell all the signs of spring! It really is coming and our daffies will be out in about 1 week, here in western MA. Thank you Susan for your cheerful, fun blog and for all the wonderful things you offer in this world. You make it a better place!

  65. Barbara Heinsohn says:



  66. Marie says:

    Such a lovely post about spring, which has yet to arrive here on Prince Edward Island. I’m longing to see some green! Please enter me for your giveaway. Happy spring!

  67. Donna Rowe says:

    I am not good at this. Hope this email reaches you. I am writing in regards to your geranium print. My friend of over 45 years, Mary Sakamoto, loves begonias. She is the past president of the United States Begonia Society. I feel she would love, appreciate and take great care of your wonderful print. Again, I hope this reaches you and that you will consider her a good candidate for the print. Thank you for your time. I always enjoy Willard and look forward to its arrival.

  68. Ka’ena Shimada says:

    Mahalo for brightening mine like many others around the worlds day. Thank you for existing and sharing all that you do. Writing to you from Maui, it has even been gloomy here too. We have random sunny days and don’t experience such drastic seasons but none the less…loved this green blog post.

  69. Sarah from Vegas says:

    I love all of the green!! I also need to start listening to audio books on my walks. Happy spring!

  70. Anne says:

    Hello from Maine and happy Spring! As always, love, love, love Willard!

  71. Ellette says:

    Always makes me happy when I see a new Willard in my email!

  72. Sara K. Balanchuk says:

    Hi, Susan! I so enjoyed this post (as always). On a cold, rainy day in Texas it reminds me that Spring is just around the corner. It also reminds me to slow down and really look at things as you do, which I sometimes forget. Anyway, have a wonderful Spring! I look forward to your next post.

  73. Kattywhiskers says:

    Thank you Susan for another wonderful Willard…
    Love all the green!

  74. Edie says:

    You always have a way with words and pictures. Wish I could visit your home and the island. You make it look magical. Hope you have a happy spring.

  75. Linda Auwerda says:

    Celebrating our Irish history I had the children and grandchildren over for my annual St. Patrick’s Day dinner. Lots of green, even found shamrock lights this year and a darling green apron. The Girl Scout badge brought back some more green memories….sash and dress and hat! Fun green optimistic history: First Lady Lou Hoover connected the White House to the Girl Scouts. Hopefully this link works. If it doesn’t go to the White House Historical Association to read of the connection of First Ladies to the Girl Scouts. (if you didn’t know this already) Now I’m waiting for green here in Utah.–n

  76. Kathy Hughes says:

    How do you do it?!! Your descriptions of everything are so wonderful! Not only are you an artist, but also you paint pictures with your words. Love, love your blog!
    Happy spring!

  77. Debbie McBride says:

    I always enjoy looking at your artwork, lovely displays, cute items like your heart shaped rock, ideas, photos, and sayings. Looking for warmer weather and walks. Thanks for sharing it!

  78. Patty says:

    Happy Spring! Green, the color of nature, grass, leaves, Thank you for this wonderful posting!

  79. Lee in MI says:

    Thank you for yet another lovely inspiring post. I am pretty sure nothing you have ever said was moronic 🙂 It is officially Spring to me no matter what the weather is doing outside… and it is doing quite the act here in Michigan. I do love that geranium picture – I love them… so much that they were the flowers at my wedding to my sweet man. Lots of different hues of pink and some white potted geraniums. It was fun that day to give special people in our lives a pot of them to take home. Thank you for the green Spring celebration of quotes and pictures. Enjoy the day!

  80. Sue Sanch says:

    As I eagerly wait for the first signs of green flower heads popping up in the yard (I saw my first robin yesterday!), I breathe in your Springtime words and know that it’s all coming soon!!

  81. Pamela Patridge says:

    Thank you, as always, for the inspiration! You make me believe spring is really just around the corner! I love all your work-your writing, your photography, and your beautiful illustrations!

  82. Cathy Dziadul says:

    Thank you for another wonderful, inspirational blog post! Happy Spring!

  83. Wendy says:

    Spring is such a glorious time of year…. I’m at the beach now in Florida enjoying the warmth of sea and sand…when I arrive up north I will be welcomed home with a lovely bouquet of tulips and daffodils and hyacinths in my yard!

  84. Donna Erickson says:

    I love how you live for the seasons in everything you do. Green is such a refreshing and rejuvenating color. I’ve come to really enjoy it in my own home. You are such a talented artist and it shows in your first painting. I love geraniums. Have a lovely Spring, Susan!

  85. Kathy+W says:

    Hi Susan, such a delight to read your blog. So many interesting nuggets shared.
    I have the cooking badge also. It is sewn on my sash and last year I donated the sash to the museum in my hometown of Harbor Beach, Michigan. They have a display on the Girl Scout program over the years there. 💚😊
    Happy Spring! 🌸🌼

  86. Colette says:

    I was feeling a bit blue this morning but now I’m feeling the green!
    Brightest blessings to you and your wonderfully creative spirit.

  87. Janet Hundley says:

    I save your posts until the perfect time to read uninterrupted and with my cuppa. So very special, thank you. There are definite signs of spring here in SE Wisconsin even though the snow is still in piles by the roads. We need one good warm and sunny day and whoosh! Apricity is in full force.

  88. Monica Wilson says:

    A nice treat to read your lovely post, especially while we are having some days of pouring rain in Southern CA! We leave for England in just under a month so i guess this weather is preparing us for the cold and rain we might get in the UK, but hoping for some sun and spring flowers as well! Your book A Fine Romance inspired this trip and we can’t wait! This weekend we will be up in your old stomping grounds, SLO, for our 35th anniversary! Blessings to you Susan!

  89. LT says:

    Working at my desk, looking at by SB desk blotter calendar as I do, and am struck by the daisy border on the month of March. Each little daisy appears to have a petal “missing”. In my head, you were playing with the old tradition of pulling off petal after petal reciting “he loves me, he loves me not.” I agree wholeheartedly…just stop with one petal off …”He loves you!”

  90. Martina says:

    What a wonderful cheering happy look at your life and early spring! Thank you!
    Love your antique drinking glass find.

  91. Anna S says:

    Okay, as my Instagram account will show you, I have several gardens throughout the front and back yard, growing ALL KINDS of shrubs, trees, cut flowers, etc., but I don’t have ONE geranium…not a one….And now I must change that!

  92. Viffy says:

    Happy Spring!

  93. Pat R says:

    I look forward to your writing and pictures so much. What a refreshing lift after the long dark days of winter.

  94. Melinda says:

    With so many changes in our world it is good to feel and see the continuity you share. Thank you for showing the love and beauty

  95. Fran Vella says:

    Thank you so much for all the beautiful “green” photos. My favorite color! Can’t wait to get my Queen Elizabeth mug! Thank you for your beautiful work!

  96. Coco says:

    Dear Susan,

    What a wonderful Willard, thank you so much. In the deep heart of winter, I sometimes stop and imagine the very particular scent of geraniums for an immediate hit of Spring. Lov-er-ly! Please put my name in the hat.

    Coming off a loooong power outage here after some crazy winds blew everything down on the San Francisco Peninsula last week. I enjoyed the deep quiet and living by charming candlelight. Did not enjoy my crazy clown hair which was quite mad looking… I had to stuff my wet hair into a ball cap to go to an appointment when the power went out right after I had washed my hair, about one second before I was going to turn on the hairdryer. It dried super funny looking in the cap, but too cold to start over until power was restored. Enjoyed it off, enjoy it on.

    Great to read your very green and happy Willard on the first day of Spring! Many thanks indeed, xoxox Coco

  97. Lisa in Georgia says:

    Intrigued by the diary that escaped shredding! I plan to read more about the philosophy you mentioned, but I’m thinking that it made room for more creativity. The geranium painting reminds me of my Mother-in-law. After her death February 2022 we received one of her pink geraniums. I managed to keep it alive for over a year now, and it bloomed the day before Christmas, making us feel like she was with us! Thank you for sharing your self and your work. It brings so much joy and inspiration to my life!

  98. Karyn Bokariza says:

    Always enjoy your postings! I’m so happy to hear I will soon be able to get a book for my BFF! Could never part with mine, have been looking & looking. Will wait to find it in your site. Will make a perfect gift for her. I’m in the Santa Cruz, CA area & our winter has been one of the worst I’ve lived thru since I’m a native. All your books have kept me entertained on days we didn’t venture out!
    Wishing you a wonderful Spring!

  99. Joanne Hayden says:

    Thank you for reviving my flagging rain sodden spirit with that gorgeous green umbrella at the beginning of your post! My favorite color! Any chance that you might create an actual real-life umbrella like this one to sell on your website?

    • sbranch says:

      I would love that! Always difficult when you start trying to manufacture … they usually require you to get 10s of thousands of something (they only serve very large corporations), only rarely do you find someone like my cup manufacturer whose requirements are actually do-able.

  100. Sue Stoodt says:

    I just want to say THANK YOU, from the bottom of my heart, dear Sue. It’s been the roughest week of my life, my mom is now in hospice, and unfortunately the siblings are not on their best behavior. THANK YOU for popping up in my mailbox today, the first JOY I’ve had in awhile. I don’t think you realize how special you and Joe and Jack are to all of us “girlfriends.” Sending you love and gratitude, for always bringing so much happiness into our lives, just when we need it most! xoxo

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