My garden of thoughts and dreams

Yorktown garden stroll gate April 2015

You’re just in time to come with me on the Yorktown Garden Stroll!

“In my garden there is a large place for sentiment. My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams. The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful.” — Abram L. Urban

This year, the Yorktown Garden Stroll was scheduled a month early, in April instead of May. There weren’t quite as many flowers to admire, but the lovely little historic village is charming any time of year, and the weather was absolutely perfect for a leisurely walk.  Hosts on the tour offered refreshments and friendly chat along with displays of their gardens, and naturally I ended up at my favorite of the homes on the program: the festive dwelling where my friend Darla lives with her family.

Every time I visit the historic district of Yorktown, I tell myself that I ought to spend one or two afternoons each week there.  I think our little hometown is one of the best-kept secrets in America.  What you won’t find there: noise, crowds, commercial hype or lavish, costly restaurants and nightspots.  What you will find there: flowers, trees and birdsong in abundance, lovingly restored homes, friendly people, a gorgeous riverfront view with a white sandy beach, and unparalleled historic significance.

The hours I spend in the historic district are filled with thoughts and dreams, as I wander its streets and gardens.  After nearly eleven years of calling this county my home, there is a large place for sentiment, just as Urban describes.  Come along with me and see a few glimpses of it through my eyes…

Yorktown garden stroll,April 2015

as we wander through the gardens…

Yorktown garden stroll 4 April 2015

Yorktown garden stroll 1 April 2015

…or in town, visiting historic buildings and galleries featuring local artists’ work.

Yorktown garden stroll Fifes and Drums HQ April 2015

Yorktown garden stroll art gallery April 2015

I never tire of walking here, but you can take a Segway if you prefer.

Yorktown garden stroll Segways April 2015

Wait!  We haven’t been down to the beach or the waterfront shops!

Yorktown garden stroll, pier April 2015

But I guess there’s no time for that today…maybe another day.  Let’s head back to Darla’s for a look at her herb garden.

Yorktown Garden Stroll, Darla's herb garden, April 2015

She’s taking a break at her next door neighbor’s home — let’s pop over and say hi!

Yorktown Garden Stroll, Darla April 2015

Just a few steps away from Darla’s front door is a staircase to the beach!  A great place to go before tea, or after tea, or both!

Yorktown garden stroll stairway to beach April 2015

Darla’s neighbors across the street have quite a view, don’t they?

Yorktown garden stroll, Darla's neighbor April 2015

WOW, where did the afternoon go?  Let’s come back sometime soon!

This post was first published seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.


  1. Judy

    Well that was a fun stroll! I’m glad you took your camera along because you gave me a little mini-vacation to start my day. Unlike most people, my husband and I have had to live in small, very local circles since the start of the pandemic due to our age and medical conditions. Plus our 13 year old, beloved dog needs our care. Our confinement to trips within about an hour of home is starting to wear thin. Seeing the lovely scenes from your stroll 7 years ago is such a joy. I think that a trip to Yorktown is now definitely on my list of places to see, maybe even this year.

    • Judy, I definitely think you should go to Yorktown! I no longer have my lovely York County home (complete with large guest house where you and Stew could have stayed) but there are a couple of lovely Bed and Breakfast Inns right in the historic district, and Williamsburg has other options (of course you’d want to plan to visit all three points of the “historic triangle” of Jamestown, Yorktown and Williamsburg). Something tells me you would love the slower, quiet pace of Yorktown. Autumn is, in my view, the ideal time to visit all three places. Summer is hot and too crowded for my taste. Keep me posted if you decide to go! You could perhaps stop and see me on your way there.

  2. bendichoso

    Thank you, Ms.Julia … I love the photos. Your posts reminds me to “stop and smell the roses.” … Have a wonderful day.

    • Thank you, Ben– you too!

  3. Good morning, Julia! I remember the fun day we had, when we went to the Historic District. I remember you showed me which was Darla’s house, and the fun we had at the bookstore. That was just delightful!
    I hope you’re able to get out and about, to enjoy peaceful times like that again.
    Those photos show such a beautiful day!

    • Yes, the garden tour I photographed that day certainly was a different lifetime. I can’t think too much about it without feeling sad for all I’ve lost, but I try to focus on being grateful for the memory.

      • Memories like that seem double-edged somehow. So glad to have made those memories, but wistfully longing to repeat those times. Surely, there must be equally delightful, although very different, memories we can make today, if only our eyes can see it?

        • In my case, “equally delightful” is kind of an impossible standard, since so many of the people who brought me delight are no longer here. But your point is well taken; no doubt I have blessings right now that I’ll one day be missing. For example, even four months ago, I had beautiful teeth that I will never have again. Who knew I should be thanking God each day for my front teeth? We need to open our eyes to the blessings of today, but also realize that the gift of a long life means that our loses are more gradual, but ultimately greater than those who die at far too young an age. After all, it is we who grieve them; they will never have to grieve us. And physically, whether by accident or attrition, we lose a lot of our physical gifts over time.

  4. Julia, Beautiful!
    In the movie “The Field of Dreams” often is asked this question about the baseball field that brings all the old ballplayers from the past to life to play again: “Is this heaven?” And the response of the still living landowner is: “No, it’s Iowa.” Yet, it IS heaven because it is a place where dreams come true, and all makes perfect sense.
    I believe in a world gone made, you’ve found that place. Visit as often as you can, for individual lives and our country will be saved because of places like this.

    • Thank you, Alan. In general I’ve never liked Kevin Costner, but “Field of Dreams” is one of my all-time favorite movies. And he was perfect for that role. When I heard of the death of Ray Liotta recently, I thought of his memorable role as the ghostly Shoeless Joe in that movie. Another of my favorite lines from that movie is when Terrence Man explains why people will pay to see Ray’s crazy baseball field — “It is money that they have, and peace that they lack.” Hope you are doing well and enjoying the late spring weather! Thanks for being here.

      • Well casted movie. All is OK. Hope the same with you. Always glad to weigh in on your great thoughts.

        • Hi Alan, I’m so happy you are here with us after all these years, and I’m glad to know all is OK with you. I’m doing OK also, but as my long absence from the comments section here might suggest, I’m a bit overwhelmed with life in general, and with having to juggle my medical appointments and Matt’s. Oh for the “good old days” when I had only Matt’s health to manage– Jeff was so good at managing his own labyrinthine medical procedures and appointments, and though I always insisted on being with him, I never had to keep up with what he had to do and when, as I do now with both Matt and me. Bone grafting coming up in August. Please keep us in your prayers!

          • Julia, You have them, without question. I too, though doing well find most of my outings are at the doctor or church. Could be in worse places. Just finished repainting our house, replaced doors and repaired the deck. Like new! A church member got a good laugh when I told him, when I was young none of my friends were doctors. Now it seems my only friends are doctors.
            Stay well and keep the faith.

            • Hi Alan, yes, what you describe seems to be something a lot of us “of a certain age” have in common. I congratulate you for finding someone actually willing to come out and take care of the home repairs…I haven’t found the secret to getting people to show up. I do know a good, reliable electrician but power washing? not so much…However, my niece-in-law has volunteered to help with that. Meanwhile, like you, my circle of doctors keeps growing. Between Matt and me, they long ago became the most consistently-seen group of people in our lives. 😀 But as you say, there are worse things. You take care and we’ll do the same! As always, thanks for being here…

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