Graton's Parks-via Lesa Tanner

From time to time we will invite a guest writer to contribute to our blog. Someone like ourselves, who loves living here and finds inspiration everyday from our beautiful place in the world. Introducing Lesa Tanner; she is the author of the book Images of America: Graton, a compilation of over 200 historical photographs with captions that spans Graton’s founding to its 100th birthday. As a lifelong Graton resident, she also writes the column, Hometown Graton, published the second Thursday of each month in Sonoma West Times and News.

Lisa tells us the story of Graton’s history with preserving park land for all who pass through. The portion of the article about the “Shoot the Chute” is from an oral history left by my maternal Grandfather, Jack Robertson.

My "Gaddy" Jack Robertson, and my mother as a little girl in front of Handy's Service Station-Graton

Lesa says:

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Live/Work Vintage Home For Sale-Sebastopol

Walk Everywhere…

From this charming 1910 Victorian bungalow in downtown Sebastopol!

Great Old Fashioned Front Porch

This is a beautiful property with a detached office, great front porch and lovely back yard. Close to all the amenities such as hospital, groceries, library, and town square. It’s not often that one of these comes up.

lovely back yard

With the master bedroom suite on the second floor, this 3 bedroom, 2 bath home is in great condition. And best of all you get a lovely backyard with room for children to play, your own organic garden, and space to entertain Sonoma Style!

Backyard for entertaining and growing your own vegetables, with detached office

Zoned Residential/Business, this home offers options and opportunities for the empty nester, entrepreneur or starter family with work at home parents. The details are endless for this charming vintage Sebastopol Bungalow.

For more information on this property or any others in Sonoma County,

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             Sonoma County Properties;                 

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Graton Day-Via Sonoma Properties

click on the picture to see the official Graton Day Flier

This upcoming Saturday the 24th is our annual Graton Day!. Held this year on Bowen Street, festivities will begin with a parade (including one for pets) at 3 p.m., then live music, food, vendors, a raffle, kids’ activities, a pie contest, and more.    [Read more…]

Redwoods-#8 of 100 Reasons We Love Living in Sonoma County

Sun Dappled Redwoods in Armstrong Woods

“I firmly believe, from what I have seen, that this is the chosen spot of all this earth as far as nature is concerned.” – Luther Burbank in discussing the Redwood Empire

I agree with Luther. I firmly believe there is no greater place on earth for it’s natural beauty and the variety of terrain found here in the Redwood Empire, of which Sonoma County is a part of. From Armstrong Woods State Park, a great place to hike, to the Petrified Forest out on Calistoga Road, we are blessed with an abundance of Redwood Forests.    [Read more…]

Valley Oaks-#2 of 100 Reasons We Love Living in Sonoma County

My parent real estate company is called Valley Oak Real Estate. I chose that name because I have a deep love for these fine old trees. The Valley oaks (Quercus labata) have a mystical, magical look to them, and along with the Black oaks (Quercus Kelloggii) are to me, some of the most beautiful species here in Sonoma County.

image courtesy of Bob Cornelis. Click on photo to see more amazing pics of Sonoma county, all are for sale!

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Sonoma Coastline-#1 of 100 Reasons We Love Living in Sonoma County

There are many reasons my family settled here and why the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th generations of that family still loves living in Sonoma County. Our coastline is one of them! Especially on these hot summer days, it can reach 100 here at home and it will be a perfect 70 on the coast. This cool air usually sneaks inland after a couple of really hot days, keeping us from having any prolonged heat waves.

photo courtesy of Irene Turner at Home

One of our favorite places to go is Bodega Bay, a 20 minute drive from our home in Sebastopol. Sand Dunes, cliff walking, hiking up the hill off of Shell Beach for a view of the coastline and to see the Russian River emptying into the ocean.    [Read more…]

Sonoma Property For Sale-Beautiful & GREEN!

I don’t often write about homes over two million dollars, but this one tugs at my heart as it embodies all that we in West County, Sonoma stand for. It’s beautiful, green, organic and the location is spectacular! 1160 Pleasant Hill, this home, as seen in Dwell Magazine is nestled in an apple grove in Sebastopol.  The house called, Orchard House is a rural idyll of concrete prefab construction, and is quite literally a feast for the soul.

photo courtesy of Dwell Magazine and photographer Dave Lauridsen

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6 Home Renovations That Help Sell


photo via Reliable Remodeler Blog

Basics: Buyers expectations differ but they do tend to have a similar set of basic standards on their list. Ensure the roof is in good condition and doesn’t allow leaks, and all outside guttering and downspouts are clean and functioning. Make sure your furnace is in good working order, so it’s maybe a good idea to get a professional to check it over.    [Read more…]

24 Tips to Green Your Home

Here in Sonoma County we all know that Green homes are not a passing trend.  And…we know that Greening your home saves money while you live in it, and will help should you need to sell in the future. However, there is so much information out there that we sometimes don’t even know where to start.  The good news is that there are many small things you can do in your home right now that will help tremendously.  Here’s a great list from Irene Turner’s Little Bit’s of Beauty™ Blog:    [Read more…]

Sonoma Wine Country-Russian Hill Estate

p style=”text-align: left”>Living in Sonoma wine country affords us some of the best wines in the world. My personal favorites are the Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs. I don’t know what it is, but something about this appellation creates some of the smoothest reds I’ve ever tasted.

One of the wines served with our Mushroom Risotto

One of my favorites is created by my good friend Patrick Melley, winemaker extraordinaire at Russian Hill Estate Winery. The Russian Hill estate is located at 4525 Slusser Road, Windsor CA, and is a well kept secret here in the valley. Not always easy to get at retail, people often go directly to the vineyard to purchase. And, it’s definitely worth the trip.    [Read more…]