Dear Friends,

July was my birthday month and a milestone birthday at that. Candidly, I have been having a bit of a hard time embracing the aging process. Most of my life I have been mistaken to be younger than I actually am. I relished in this and yet, the reality is, I am no spring chicken!

As I near this milestone I have been thinking a lot about the subject of legacy. In fact, my husband and I recently returned from a trip to Healdsburg having enjoyed visiting a number of different wineries. It struck me that what I enjoyed most about these trips is not the wine in and of itself. Every winery we visit we are greeted by a host (or hostess) who shares, oftentimes very passionately, the legacy of the winemaker and their family. I love to learn about the rich history & legacy of how each winemaker worked to build their business and create their brand and how their love for winemaking has passed on from generation to generation.

It made me question what kind of legacy I’d like to leave and what story I would like my children and my children’s children to share with others. For me, I’ve asked myself that question numerous times over the years. I’ve been intent on making sure that my “audio matches my video.” In other words, I’ve worked on making sure my personal life matches my professional life – that who I am at work is the same person I am at home. That is what impassioned me to start my own brand in real estate. Meraki was born out of my heart’s desire to honor God in my business. I prayed about what name would best represent me and the way I do business. Meraki is of Greek origin and means doing something with soul, creativity, or love. When you put “something of yourself” into what you’re doing, whatever it may be.

I wear my heart on my sleeve. I am sensitive to the injustice in this world. I always seek to include others, especially those who are marginalized and are seemingly forgotten. I desire to encourage & help others and give them hope where there seems to be none. I want everyone to know how much God loves them because He grabbed a hold of me at a time in my life when I felt so unloved and forgotten and helped me embrace my value and my worth and showed me that, even in my brokenness, I was loved.

For me, helping others buy or sell a home is so much more than a purchase or a sale. It is an emotional experience for many and it is my privilege to help them through the process with the utmost care, compassion and professionalism. My hope is that I treat those in my personal life the same way I treat my clients. Candidly, as I reflect on this I realize how much room I have to improve … in my personal life.

So, as I pen this message, I am convicted of all of the ways I need to improve my personal relationships to achieve my intention of “matching my audio with my video.” After all, that is the legacy I wish to leave, especially with my family & friends.

When asked what I wanted for my birthday this year, all I wanted was to spend time with those I love the most. It’s funny how a milestone birthday makes you realize what truly matters in life. As much as I adore my clients and colleagues, I intend to work on investing more time with those who mean the most to me. So, when you get a call from me to hang out please know it’s because I love you and I desire to know you more and invest in our relationship because you matter to me. Just like the Meraki tagline says, my heart’s desire is for all of you to know that I am FOR You!

That is the legacy I hope to leave – for people to feel loved & cared for because they knew me. How about you? What legacy do you want to leave?

With love,

Rica Ruiz

p.s. What 1 person do you know that I can help with either their real estate goals or any other way that you think I can be an encouragement or support?

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