Back when we booked our daughter’s flight to Orlando, Jimmy and I discussed heading out of town too. We mused that it would be a great excuse to get away, after all, with no teenager at home for three nights why not spend those days somewhere else?
Then, life happened.
We began looking at some of the other trips on the horizon–trips that would require us to earmark dollars today, for fun we wanted to have next year. After much debate we decided that rather than leave we would make the three days Chandler would be gone a “Staycation Vacation.”
Staying home, as it turns out, was a wonderful decision.
After consulting my San Diego Bucket List, we decided on three things: An afternoon trip to Julian, a new dining experience and a hike. Today’s post is dedicated to exploring Julian.
We left our house just before 2PM on Friday afternoon and headed up to Julian, it was about a ninety minute drive. We had both forgotten how charming Julian is, loaded with shops owned and run by local people and a main street that looks as if it has been frozen in time.
Our late lunch at the Apple Alley Bakery was amazing. (No. I did not eat-clean on this trip and it was worth every bite!) For $9.95 each, we enjoyed half a sandwich — with salad for Jimmy and soup for me — followed by a slice of their delicious homemade berry-apple pie.
After, we definitely needed to walk!
We headed NW on Main Street and walked until we reached the Book House book store. And I’m not talking chain book store, nope, this book store is a jewel in the crown of Julian.
After wandering the cozy rooms of the Book House, we ventured a little bit further north where we happened upon an antique store. While there, we discovered this old flexible flyer you see in the photograph.
For a moment I was transported back in time to the golf course hill in Old Greenwich, Connecticut, where I grew up. There, my siblings and I used to sled as children — cold air whipping at our cheeks. I could almost feel the steep hill climb my little legs endured over the promise to ride down the hill again wedged between my brothers on the sled.
By the time we stepped out of the antique store the sun had dropped lower in the sky and the air began to feel more like the autumn I am always in search of as a transplanted New Englander living in Southern California in the fall.
Bare trees against puffy clouds and blue sky were everywhere.
We climbed the hill of the Pioneer Cemetery where we chuckled over the proximity of the final resting spaces for two local families — do you see the humor in this too, ah yes, but it is a wonderful life…
Visiting Julian is a little like stepping back in time.
We marveled over the hand-painted signs and countless shops where fresh pies are baked and sold.
There are art galleries, general stores, bike and boat rental shops and of course loads of eateries and lodges.
I fancy the idea of returning with some of my blogging friends who live close by — yes Lois and Ruth I am looking at the two of you — I think we could easily make a night and day of it.
For Jimmy an afternoon was perfect. He’s not much for poking through stores or really shopping of any kind.
Although we did amble through a few stores, mostly we enjoyed the scenery and spending time in each others company.
We left in time to watch the sun disappear behind the hills. Still full from our late lunch — we made it back home in time to catch the local high school win the football game — all in all a great end to the first day of our staycation.
Carpool Goddess says
What a charming town! I’m adding Julian on my list of places to visit.
Carol Cassara says
We need to spend more time in San Diego, and Julian sounds charming!
Roz Warren says
I’d never heard of Julian before reading your post. Now that lovely bookstore is on my Places To Visit list. 🙂
Cathy Chester says
I love this Elin cause I love stay-vacations. We did that this summer and it was wonderful exploring together and having fun! Lovely post once again.
I have never heard of Julian…I must go. I love the stay cations…
Ruth Curran says
I love Julian! It has a Colorado feel, doesn’t it Elin? You know I am in!
Lois Alter Mark says
I love Julian, and Michael has eaten more of those Julian apple pies than I’m sure he’d care to admit. Ready to go back with you any time!
Mary Lanzavecchia says
My sister has mentioned Julian often and now, through your wonderful description and beautiful photos, I can better understand why. It looks charming!
And, I love that you and Jimmy are making it a staycation together. Our girls were gone for a week a couple of summers back, and we loved having our home to just the two of us again. We got to play newlyweds again and/or test drive the empty nest years. I think we’ll handle that transition just fine. 😉
Wow that looks like much fun! I enjoy staycations a lot because there are so many awesome places to visit and they are often in your own backyard. I love the pics, and the idea of checking this place out for a future vacation too!