In search of cherry blossoms (memorial edition)

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(This post was originally published April 19, 2014. I’m reposting it as a memorial to my mom, who passed away on August 21, 2019. My sister and I were honored to be at her bedside as she made her transition. It was a beautiful moment that I will never forget, as is this moment in time among the cherry blossoms.)

This spring has been a little chilly for us in New Jersey so our famed cherry blossoms still haven’t reached their peak bloom. But I visited Branch Brook Park in Newark anyway this morning after helping my mother run some errands. Branch Brook has the largest collection of cherry blossom trees in the U. S. but today in some spots, the display was a bit anemic …

IMG_1057IMG_1019Some trees, though not in full bloom, were lovely nonetheless …

IMG_1081

IMG_1096IMG_1022Yep, that’s my mom. She’s 87, which gives me a little hope for longevity.

Of course I had to throw in some random selfies …

IMG_1034My mom learned the word “selfie” while watching the recent Academy Awards, so she was happy to take some with me …

IMG_1043By the way, I just love the type of people who kindly offer to take pictures of you with your own camera. (Why do they do that, I can never be so bothered. Shame on me.)

IMG_1094Some out-of-townies asked us directions to the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, which was further than walking distance from where we were in the huge park at the time. I had to pass it on the way to driving my mom home, though, so I stopped to get a few shots for this post. It’s the fifth largest cathedral in the U.S.IMG_1112IMG_1105

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All photos by A. D. Joyce.

©A. D. Joyce, 2014

the pisces solar eclipse

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an odd new jersey february
the waning days of the month
as warm as spring
tonight a torrential rain
heralded by thunder and lighting
and a howling wind

what does this mean
other than what it is
first this strange weather
then the pisces solar eclipse tomorrow
the end of a long cycle
the death of what no longer serves us
and a new beginning
new possibilities
new choices

or is this
a simple storm
now losing steam
thunder fading
into the distance
deluge slowing
to a single
drop

©A. D. Joyce, 2017

Greenbrook Sanctuary

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Back in June I went to an awesome writing workshop. It was held at a wonderful woodland preserve in the Palisades cliffs overlooking the Hudson River. It was fun and a great way to commune with nature. My next two posts highlight some of the work I did there (finally getting around to doing that!).

Photo by A.D. Joyce

Photo by A.D. Joyce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

©A. D. Joyce, 2016

Beautification (street art)

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Street art is adorning the walls of more and more buildings in Newark, NJ, lately. I think some of them are being commissioned by Newark mayor Ras Baraka? In any event, these works are increasing the unique character of the city. Just beautiful.

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All photos by A.D. Joyce.

©A. D. Joyce, 2015

In search of cherry blossoms

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This spring has been a little chilly for us in New Jersey so our famed cherry blossoms still haven’t reached their peak bloom. But I visited Branch Brook Park in Newark anyway this morning after helping my mother run some errands. Branch Brook has the largest collection of cherry blossom trees in the U. S. but today in some spots, the display was a bit anemic …

IMG_1057IMG_1019Some trees, though not in full bloom, were lovely nonetheless …

IMG_1081

IMG_1096IMG_1022Yep, that’s my mom. She’s 87, which gives me a little hope for longevity.

Of course I had to throw in some random selfies …

IMG_1034My mom learned the word “selfie” while watching the recent Academy Awards, so she was happy to take some with me …

IMG_1043By the way, I just love the type of people who kindly offer to take pictures of you with your own camera. (Why do they do that, I can never be so bothered. Shame on me.)

IMG_1094Some out-of-townies asked us directions to the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, which was further than walking distance from where we were in the huge park at the time. I had to pass it on the way to driving my mom home, though, so I stopped to get a few shots for this post. It’s the fifth largest cathedral in the U.S.IMG_1112IMG_1105

IMG_1104

All photos by A. D. Joyce.

©A. D. Joyce, 2014

New roots

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It was a rough winter here in New Jersey. It even was tough on my potted plants. To be fair, these are older plants that had grown big, and probably should have been redistributed and repotted some time ago. There might have been an issue with how frequently I watered them, but we won’t get into that.

Yuck

Yuck

So I figured it was time to do something serious. Many of stems had grown long over the years but had lost a lot of the leaves. So I cut them off the main plant into shorter segments.

Cuttings

Cuttings

I put them in water so they can grow new roots.

Ahhhh!

Ahhhh!

I threw away the old roots, many of which were attached to nearly leafless stems, coiled in the dirt they had been feeding off for years.

Useless

Useless

I’m waiting for the new roots to grow.

Growing roots

Growing roots

Future new soil and repotted plants — photos not shown.

[All photos by A. D. Joyce]

©A. D. Joyce, 2014