It’s Spring and Time for a New Look on the Blog!

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Central Park yesterday

Central Park Yesterday

Let’s celebrate, for no big reason other than I have a new banner on my blog, and want to thank the talented artist, Julie Rowan Zoch, and spring has finally arrived. My first full New York winter, while I appreciate the magic of snow, left me wondering if I had lost a few marbles in giving up the two-month above freezing, blue-skied Nice winters! But an adverse winter makes for a sweeter spring.

It sneaks in overnight following its own time frame, just like snow does, and we all become kids again. Spring. It begins, not when the clocks go forward or at the spring equinox, but on that day where you realize you’re sweating in your winter jacket and someone smiles at you on the subway! Spring is about much more than the weather, though that’s a lot to do with it. We all get that feeling winter has finally relinquished its frozen grip and won’t be back for months. It’s about the promise of good things to come, like bare feet and barbecues, beach days and ice-cold beer.

Do you hibernate? Do you shovel? How was your winter? Mine was seeped in: hoodies, hot chocolate,  accommodation swapsies, a heavy study-load, crazy commutes to Long Island and twinges of loneliness in this new city—all good character-building challenges. But, I sure am ready for some fun! The blossom is still only a promise on most of the trees in Central Park, but the Magnolia buds are teasing us with their swollen tips. Spring simply injects optimism into one’s step.

Snowdrops, crocuses and daffodils cheer up yards and parks, and if I were in England, bluebells would be carpeting the woods. I fling open the windows wide and breathe in the freshness of the Manhattan air scooping down 79th from the Hudson!! It is fair enough to sit in the park on warm rocks  and read. The extended daylight and heat are a tonic to my mood. The bottom line is spring is the doorway to summer and I am a summer gal at heart. When I lived in the tropics I never became bored with or complacent about the heat but I missed the seasonal transitions. Spring is a time of birth (lambs, fledglings, kittens, hope), awakening, a resurgence of life, a promise of change.

“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
Rainer Maria Rilke


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22 Responses to It’s Spring and Time for a New Look on the Blog!

  1. Thanks for the nod! Really like that Rilke quote. We’ve had a lot of snow fall this year, but not stick for long, mostly dry powder – easier to sweep than shovel. It snowed again all day yesterday, but is melting away already – might be gone by the end of the day. Just some of the advantages to mile high living!

    • Joanna says:

      I love your creation!

      I think I had a real baptism of snow this winter! I believe Colorado has had its snowiest winter in many years, no?

  2. I meant to comment on your new blog header the other day. I love what Julie created! It is very abstract/contemporary and reflects your love of nature and children. At least that’s what I see in the illustration.

    Love your thoughts on spring. This has been such a harsh winter for most of the midwest and east coast. Didn’t think it would ever start snowing. Buds are appearing and we had tempertures in the 70s over the weekend. But, today the temperatures will be drop to the 50s. A lot of rain and cold tomorrow. Could see some snow showers tonight. I don’t get my hopes up for spring until after April 18. Used to be able to plant flowers by the end of the month, but with the changing weather patterns in past years, we don’t dare plant until early May.

    Happy Spring!

    • clarbojahn says:

      Your weather seems a lot like mine, Patricia. I am in Northern Western Virginia right up on the Maryland border of Fredrick. I Live in Leesburg in western Loudoun county and we are calling for that same weather you are. It is raining here and cold. In the 40’s with it dipping down into the 30’s tonight..

  3. Joanna says:

    I think you perceive the illustration banner as I do, Pat. Thank you. Why April 18th? I used to start planting out at the end of March in Nice!

  4. Nathalie says:

    Love the new look, Joanna! I just recommended your blog to a mom looking for children’s book recommendations.

  5. Happy Spring! It’s not like it’s pouring here! Nope! Not at all! 😉

  6. Love the header, Julie! Me want one 🙂 I just learned how to install them today but I would love a unique one from you. Let me know how much I owe you, I can’t wait!

    Joanna I felt the same in NZ I really missed the change of seasons. What a strange thing to complain about. Here in Canada we were in flip flops yesterday and today back to snow boots, bizarre!

  7. I adore everything Julie draws! This is a lovely new look for spring. Sorry to hear you’ve been feeling a bit lonely in NYC. I should get you in touch with my SF critique group writer friend. She and her husband recently moved to NYC (I think she used to live there but it’s been many years), and she’s finding it hard to make new friends there too. She just got accepted to a MFA program for creative writing at City University so you two have things in common. I think she’d love to have a sweet and talented writer friend like you. 🙂

    • Joanna says:

      That sounds great. Thank you. I had to move out of the Brooklyn neighborhood, where I had gotten to know quite a few folk and it’s now an hour away, which is a little far for just a quick coffee. I love living near Central Park, but know few people around here.

  8. clarbojahn says:

    I Love your banner, Joanna! Julie did a great job. Now I want one, too. How do you do it? Can you tell me? here is my email. cbowmanjahn at yahoo dot com. But you knew that didn’t you? 🙂 Can you ask Julie to get in touch with me? I know it can’t be too expensive,

    Happy Spring indeed! I am so enjoying the daffs and hyathins! They seem awesome this year! 🙂

    • Joanna says:

      Hi, Clar, uploading a new banner is super easy in wordpress, as I just go in and change the header under “Appearance”, uploading an image or photo of my choice. It tells me the size, which I gave to Julie. Her address is, if you want to contact her for a quote.

  9. Ahhhhhhhh, this post was like a breath of fresh air after a day that had more SNOW in it. The snow didn’t stick around (for the most part) but it still was unwanted. Your post gave me joy and hope. Thank you, Joanna.

    Love Julie’s birds in all the shapes and forms they take in her art. A very happy looking spring banner!

    • Joanna says:

      Thanks, Beth, and I am sorry that my blogging about spring on Monday may have brought the return of the snow to many of us yesterday!

  10. Rhythm says:

    That Ms Julie is most talented!! I love your new fresh look. And your post makes me want to go dancing through the bluebonnets! The bluebonnets are especially fine this year, in spite of the lack of rain. I like the picture you present of people smiling on the subway! Thanks for sharing your spring thoughts!

  11. Joanna says:

    Aren’t these chickadees cute and full of fun? Dancing bluebonnets is a lovely image, Rhythm!

  12. Love the banner. Julie is amazing and she certainly captured you in her vision for your banner.

    I think our spring is here to stay but it’s not its usual springy self. We’ve had lots of clouds and winds and colder temps than spring should have. My duck is back for the third year and is setting on 12 eggs. Some days I’d like to take her a blanket or find a way to block the wind…but, you know what? I don’t think she gives a quack!

    Happy Spring, Joanna!

  13. Love the new banner!! Happy spring. 🙂

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