A Daydream Believer

A disco ball speckles light on an historic house near downtown Petaluma, California

A disco ball speckles light on an historic house near downtown Petaluma, California

We used to pass through Petaluma on our way to go wine tasting in Sonoma and the Russian River. It's one of those towns that you daydream about moving to, with its lovely downtown, historical homes and proximity to everything that makes California the geographic paradise that it is. Just on the outskirts of town to the west you find dairy cows grazing on grassy hills, beyond that the craggy coastline of the Pacific ocean. To the East you have the Sonoma and Napa Valley wine regions, to the north the Mendocino forest, and to the south, the most beautiful city in the world, San Francisco, and my beloved, ever-evolving Oakland.

Petaluma is a quirky mix of old and new, independent design and local agriculture. There are families that have lived here for generations, and there are transplants like me, looking for that perfect place to put down roots.

When my husband suggested we move up here a couple of years ago I was nervous about leaving my urban existence behind, but wanted the opportunity to live in my daydream, where our boys could have a hometown, and we could buy a house to make our own. Last month, after renting downtown for a few years, we finally closed on our first home, a small 1960's fixer, perched high on a hill at the top of a cul-de-sac in an area called Cherry Valley. My daydreams have come true... 

Champion the mechanical horse-   Heebe Jeebe     on Kentucky Street, downtown Petaluma

Champion the mechanical horse- Heebe Jeebe on Kentucky Street, downtown Petaluma

We have spent a lot of time exploring this little town. If you are a city transplant like me, you seek out creature comforts like a pour over coffee shop, and a farm to table restaurant with a good wine list.  You also look for things that you can only find in a smaller town, like Champion the beloved mechanical horse, and the slew of parades and oddities like The Rivertown Revival Festival. As a foodie I have come to realize that Petaluma doesn't offer everything that we had in the city, but it does the artisan/farm to table genre better than anyone. For coffee there is Acre. They play my tunes, they make great drinks, and it's where the cool kids hang out. For a night out we have Central Market. I feel at home in one of their booths with a plate farm food and a glass of grassy wine. For beer, an important consideration in this part of the state, it's Taps. We sit at German biergarten tables with friends or at the bar to catch a Giants game. For lunch it's either Topsy's Kitchen, the new fancy fried chicken cafe, and official post-looking-at-houses eatery for our family, or Della Fattoria, the makers and bakers of a rosemary-lemon bread and a white beans on toast that will knock your socks off.  Even newer to P-town than me is Thistle Meats- an ethically sourced, local meat, whole animal butcher.  We just picked up some good looking pork butt for homemade carnitas. And then there's Free Range, a new shop two doors down from Acre, that serves a little nosh and sells local indie housewares and gifts like make-your-own cheese kits. It's just the kind of place I was hoping would come to town. 

Thistle Meats     - Petaluma's new whole animal butcher shop, selling ethically sourced, local meats

Thistle Meats - Petaluma's new whole animal butcher shop, selling ethically sourced, local meats

Taps     in it's new location on the river

Taps in it's new location on the river

A midday stop at Acre Coffee, downtown Petaluma

A midday stop at Acre Coffee, downtown Petaluma

Farm to Table at it's best.  Petaluma's Central Market restaurant 

Farm to Table at it's best.  Petaluma's Central Market restaurant 

Buying a home in California was pretty challenging for us, but we had a trusted partner in our REALTOR®. She has since helped my husband's parents purchase a home in Petaluma, and she's in the process of getting our best friends from Oakland to P-town. We kind of love her like family at this point. For this reason, I decided to collaborate with CA Association of REALTORS® on this post. I wanted to show you my beautiful hometown, and spread their message for home ownership, and the idea that it can start with one really competent REALTOR®.

Petaluma, California // Poppy Haus
Petaluma, California // Poppy Haus

Here's more about their ad campaign: 

What starts with one California REALTOR® benefits all of California. That’s the underlying sentiment of the

California Association of REALTORS®

(CAR) integrated consumer ad campaign called 'Ripple'.

While highlighting the intrinsic value of REALTORS® as Champions of Home™, the "Ripple" campaign goes beyond the story of the individual REALTOR® and focuses on the powerful positive economic impact that REALTORS®, buyers, and sellers are making throughout California. The facts (Source: National Association of REALTORS®):

  • One job is generated for every two home sales
  • One home purchase stimulates the economy by $60K
  • A homeowner’s net worth is 34 times that of a renter

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of

Clever Girls Collective

and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.