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Stratford the Great

Of course I've been to Stratford many, many times. I always walk the beautiful, bustling Main Street, in and out of the shops and restaurants. I walk along the river, hoping for a glimpse of the great swans, or if I'm lucky, one of their giant nests. Saturday, though, the mission was, of course, houses. So instead of driving straight to Main Street and parking, we went to the residential areas. We, my lovely daughter and I, started out gaping our way along some of the streets... gaping, jaws dropped, between the beautiful blooms and the fairy tale houses, we couldn't have asked for more. 

Early on in our self directed tour, one of the neighbours popped her head out the door and took the opportunity to give us some neighbourhood history. Her mother had lived in the house she was in at the moment, since 1956! So she knew the neighbourhood and some of its history. She'd also told us about how she feeds the blue jays peanuts.... and how during that feeding process she'd met a squirrel she named Beautiful, but she hadn't seen Beautiful in a really long time and that Beautiful was 6 years old with only 3 paws... and how she'd buried 10 squirrels this year and how she thought they were scarce this this year (I told her to come to London and help herself to the squirrels that were lopping the heads off my tulips, she was quite welcome to them!)... anyway, day turned into night... sighhh, this lovely, lovely lady talked our ears off (she didn't take a breath while she told us her story!). We backed slowly down her walkway and managed to get back to our picture-taking meandering, stories of Stratford swirling in our heads... Off my wee girl and I went to wander the streets once again... we went in search of "The White House" she mentioned... 

This striking red brick was actually down near the river, a gorgeous symmetrical dream! Now an office. 

I love this streetacape--I love editing the photos when I get home, adding colour and drama to each photo. I've mentioned before how much I enjoy the editing process. It was quite a grey day and I added some much needed drama to this photo. 

Here's my little partner in crime! I love the colour of this store front! So cheery!!

Another lovely storefront. There are so many great shops in the bustling town of Stratford, for a small town you could spend a few days there. And that's not even including seeing their theatre productions. 

This is the town courthouse. What an amazing building. Built with limestone and red sandstone, it displays dramatic Romanesque and Italianate influences. In a theatre town, this is truly the perfect building to loom over Main Street!! Like the main actor in a stage performance, it takes the lead! 

How is this house even REAL?! It feels like it's a fairy tale house and Mother Goose is going to come strolling out that front door with her grocery basket! This is a real stunner of a house. We stopped in front of the house just swooning. 

This building is pretty amazing. This was one of my favourite shots from that day, actually, because of the colour and the starkness of it. I was standing in the middle of the street with traffic whipping by me! The stark serenity of this photo does not reflect that! Anyway... apparently they used to manufacture threshing machines here. It's now offices--we parked in front of the doctor's office portion of the building. 

This house is a dream... I adore ornate wooden gables, and here we have a plethora of them!! Thank you architect and builder!! And that round porch?! To die for! Lots of wine and coffee would be consumed in that area. 

This is a stunning building (notice the matching Vespa on the right!). What happened to all the windows in the turret?! Like, if you're gonna build a turret... anyway, it's still gorgeous. And so unique. 

Another red brick beauty... I love the double wooden doors and the lacy details. What a sweet house. And a lacy gable! 

And another, if you zoom in you can see clusters of ornate brick work on this house. I love the wrought iron fence trepidatiously guarding its house. 

This little purple sweetie was to die for! With its blooming magnolia... it couldn't have been more perfect. We were very lucky to have caught all these trees in bloom, as we had torrential rains and most of the blooms were washed away the next day. 

I took hundreds of photos and of course I won't post them all here, if you want to see them all, click up above on  the Instagram icon and you should be directed to my account there. It's taken me three days to edit and post all of the photos. Stratford is an amazing little town, you can wander, you can shop, you can eat, you can go to the theatre... galleries... so much to do. There are tons of elegant and charming bed and breakfasts there, here is their website in case you want to go: Visit Stratford, Ontario

Here is the famous Stratford White House. It has a storied past (which I will not include here for fear of sparking controversy, I just post the photos, I don't start the fires!), you can look it up online. Please zoom in on this photo, it's a remarkably beautiful home. I find it remarkable how alike that birch on the right is to the house. 

I hope you enjoy the photos, we had such a lovely afternoon there. I want people to know that I can't get to every area of the towns I go to in a day. I live in the area and will be back. If I don't feature your favourite part of a town or city, it's mainly because it's just me on my own two feet exploring... I will go back and explore more.. Thanks again for reading. 

#Stratfordontario #houses #heritage #tourismontario #bedandbreakfast

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