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A Petaluma360 Blog

Disparate Housewife

Colleen Rustad: wife, mother, entrepreneur

The spin (cycle) on college laundry

Three weeks from today we’ll be driving to Southern California to deposit our youngest daughter, Jennifer, in her freshman dorm at Pepperdine. There are some aspects of her transition to living away from home that I sometimes get anxious about. Thoughts such as: Will she get along with her roommates? Will she focus on her classwork? Will she know how to set boundaries in relationships? Will she floss her teeth? One thing that doesn’t concern me, is whether Jennifer will be… Read More »

Bypassing life insurance

Friday we celebrated – if you consider managing to stay awake in front of the TV until 10pm a celebration – the three month anniversary of Steve’s triple bypass surgery. We continue to be very grateful that the arteries in his leg have adapted so well to their move uptown to his heart. And even though his sternum went through something akin to “cut along the dotted line,” it has knit back together just fine. We hope and pray that… Read More »

Philomena is phenomenal

If you’re old like me, you might remember how movie critics Siskel and Ebert used to give a film either a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” at the end of their TV show “At the Movies.” But for me, instead of my thumb indicating whether a movie is worth watching, it’s my head. You see, if we pop in a DVD or start a movie on Netflix on a Friday night and I manage to stay awake for the entire… Read More »

Minor no more

So our youngest daughter, Jennifer Lynn turned 18 yesterday which is certainly bittersweet for me. All our children are adults now. Of course, they never stop being my “children;” but I will have to start thinking of them as my “adult children.” My days of being a mother first and everything else secondary, are past. Jennifer Lynn started listing off everything that she can do now that she’s an adult: rent a hotel room in her own name, get married,… Read More »

Country Music convert

Compared to drivers who commute from Sonoma County to San Francisco every day, my Cotati to Novato commute is pretty lightweight and easy. I just point the steering wheel forward and fall in line with the other several thousand cars creeping up 101. Now that I’m in the car for significant chunks of time, I’ve started listening to the radio again. But what station to tune into? For a while, I just kept pushing the scan button – I think every… Read More »

Visiting Petaluma

Just in case you didn’t know, Petaluma is a great little town to spend an afternoon window shopping and sight-seeing. I spent three years working at the Petaluma Visitors Center encouraging people…as the Sonoma County Visitors Guide says…to experience Petaluma’s “charm of hometown Americana with wine country sophistication.” But I’m sorry to say now that I live in Cotati and work in Marin County, most of the time I think of Petaluma as the five miles on 101 where traffic… Read More »

A grateful graduate

Where I left off in last week’s blog was a photo of Jennifer Lynn in her cap and gown, beaming with enthusiasm about leaving high school behind and moving onto the independence that she believes awaits her in college. She has good reason to smile because she is a very blessed graduate.  Her prayers that a fat envelope from a four year school would be her ticket out living with her “I’ll take the senior discount” parents in a 1600… Read More »

Graduation #3

The interesting thing about graduation season, unlike other seasons of the year such as the holiday season or allergy season, is that passes by unnoticed by most of the population. Unless of course, you have a student graduating. Then, it becomes a date on the calendar that all other plans revolve around. I found myself thinking in terms of tasks that I wanted to take care of as B.G. (Before Graduation) or A.G. (After Graduation).  Shivering through Jennifer Lynn’s graduation… Read More »

Graduation #2

On Saturday, we celebrated the second of the three graduations happening for our family this month. Our middle daughter, Valerie, graduated from Chapman University in Orange County with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. We arrived on campus an hour early for the 9:15 a.m. ceremony and the minute we stepped on the campus, we could feel the energy of the parents, family members and students who like us, were all a little stunned that this day which seemed so… Read More »

Four weeks post-op

Last Friday marked the four week anniversary since Steve’s triple bypass surgery. And we continue to be thankful that those are four weeks that we won’t have to go through again. Now, Steve is in that awkward period of recovery where the lines of what he can do (or shouldn’t do) are a fuzzier than a couple of weeks ago. Immediately following the surgery, there was no question that no demands should be placed on him. No one would expect… Read More »