Drinks with... Liz!

Each month, Root Realty sits down with a mover-and-shaker, someone who is cool, captivating, and a consistent contributor to our Jacksonville community! We bring their favorite drink and a list of questions, and at the end we cheers to the city we love. 

This month we sat down with Liz Grebe, Marketing Manager for Riverside Arts Market . 

Whatcha drinkin’?


Coppertail Brewing Co. Independent Pilsner from Tampa. They have the most gorgeous branding, their labels look like they match their building.

What do you love most about Jacksonville?

I love that there is such a great community here. It is such a big town with a small town feel, and there are so many people here trying to improve the community. It’s a great thing to watch and be a part of.


Would you rather be be told you were forbidden to drink iced coffee from Brew (with agave!) OR be told you can never have Bold City Beer again?

Oh god. Probably the coffee. I don’t like this game.

Oh you don’t like this game? Well what about this question then… would you rather lick an armpit after a marathon or eat your own earwax every day for a year?

Why are you making me do this?! I would probably lick an armpit bc that’s a one time deal. Once and done.  


Who are you Jax role models and why?

My get shit done girl, Lisa Goodrich. Not only is she a mentor of mine, she’s also a good friend. Lisa is very involved in the arts, and she has a ton of passion projects that devotes her time to that.

I also have a great group of friends that are all doing different things for the Jax community--business owners, event planners, all on the same page, asking themselves, “How do we make the city cooler with events we do?”

What does the word ‘home’ mean to you?

Home could mean a lot of things, but I keep coming back to the same answer… home is the safe place where I can run around naked.


Do You Really Need a REALTOR®?

YES!  And here's a few reasons why...

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1We are experts. This is what we do all day, every day.  The real estate world is constantly changing, so even if you have purchased or sold a home before there is bound to be something new to learn.  We continually attend trainings and take courses to ensure we understand every aspect of buying or selling a home, including laws and regulations.  We know the best way to price your home, as we take more variables into account than a zestimate or other online sources, making your home value as accurate as possible.  We are familiar with closing costs + loan procedures and can guide you through each step of the home buying process. 

2Negotiation skills! "Top producing agents negotiate well because, unlike most buyers and sellers, they can remove themselves from the emotional aspects of the transaction and because they are skilled."  We love you, promise, but we look at this as a business transaction and we don't let our judgement get clouded with emotions.  We strive to do everything we can to negotiate in your best interests.  

3We have access to vendors.  Can you google "painter" or "lawn care"?  Sure you can, but have you worked with them before?  Do you know the quality of their work?  We can provide access to almost any source you need with confidence.  We work with the most talented lenders, inspectors, + home improvement pros in the industry.  Let us connect you and see if you would be a good fit together! 

4We can't lie to you.  REALTOR®s are bound by a code of ethics that prohibits us from doing so.  If you are working with someone who is not an agent, they may not be disclosing everything or telling you the whole truth about a property, which can lead to BIG problems after you move into your new home.  I know what you're thinking, of course an agent can lie--we are human after all, but the truth is that we rely on referrals for business, and we aren't going to be successful if we aren't trustworthy.  You can rely on us to be honest with you throughout the whole process. 

5Marketing Power! In most cases, a home won't sell on advertising alone. We network frequently to meet contacts to help sell your home or find out about off market + upcoming listings.  We have a large social media presence and use professional photography to ensure your home is marketed to the right audience so that it will sell quickly.  

Buying and selling a home can be complicated, but with a REALTOR® it doesn't have to be.  This is our specialty, let us help you!

P.S. -- Click on the links above to see even MORE reasons why you should buy or sell a home with a professional.  

Client Spotlight: Lori and Warren's Mid-Century Modern Bungalow

Lori and Warren purchased their home in Jacksonville last year and and have carefully curated a beautiful space of mid-century modern design. They kindly let us take a look and shared a bit about the individual pieces, upcoming projects, and their neighborhood. 

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What drew you to mid-century design?
We became interested in mid-century design when we purchased our first home in St Petersburg.  The house is very small and we had to make the most of our space.  Before we purchased the house, we really didn't have a style, just a lot of our old furniture from our single days.  This was our first chance to combine our styles and get items that we picked out together.  Mid-century fits well in a small space and we really fell in love with the clean lines and bright colors.    

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Which is your favorite room in your house? 
The living room is our favorite room.  We spend the most time there and it feels very bright and happy.  It is also a very comfortable space for us to spend time with our dog.   

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You have done a fantastic job of curating every piece in your home. Which are your favorite items? How did you acquire them? 
The teak china cabinet from my grandmother is the most special piece to me.  It is filled with memories from my childhood as it was in her home, in the same spot until she passed.  I suppose that very piece might have been what drew me to mid-century from the beginning.  It's such a classic MCM piece and I'm lucky to have so many memories attached to it.  The dining room table is also one of our favorite pieces.  It is a double drop leaf table with 8 legs, very unique.  Again, it has the very classic MCM style that we love.  My grandmother owned and operated a thrift store for years and continued to operate it until she became sick in early October last year.  She was 91 and still opened the store almost every day and dining table came from her store. The bottoms of the dining chairs have the furniture store name, a date of 1961 and a price of $45 per chair in pencil, cursive writing.  All we had to do was give the table a good cleaning and reupholster the seats.  

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What will your next home project be?
We are very excited to create a living space in the back yard.  We have a good size yard that really gives us a blank slate to work from.  We know that we want an outdoor dining area and a fire pit but not sure what else yet.  

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What do you appreciate most about you’re your neighborhood, Glynlea? 
The neighbors are the absolute best part of this area.  Most have lived here for 20+ years and were so welcoming from day one.  It is a very safe, clean and friendly community.

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Where is your favorite place to spend time in Jacksonville?
We have only lived in the area for a little over a year now so we still enjoy exploring Jacksonville.  So far, we really like San Marco and Riverside as it reminds us a little bit of St Petersburg.  We are big on breakfast dates and love Metro Diner and Beach Diner but our favorite dinner spot so far is Black Sheep.  

Thank you Lori and Warren for opening your home to us!

-Heather De Laurentis

Murrary Hill Gem

Murray Hill has recently taken off as one of the hottest neighborhoods in Jacksonville! Over the past couple of years, amazing restaurants, successful small businesses, and newly renovated homes have brought historic Murray Hill into the spotlight. One family-owned business, Faith Jewelers, has called Murray Hill home for over a decade, and paved the way for local entrepreneurs in this unique area.

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I met with John Strickland, manager of Faith Jewelers, to learn more about the jewelry store and his family!

How did you decide to get into that business?
I’m not sure that there was a conscious decision on my part to become a jeweler. I’ve been around the jewelry business for most of my life! When I was a kid, my mom worked at her best friend’s jewelry store in downtown Jacksonville. I would go there after school and clean and polish jewelry for customers.  Years ago, just after her friend passed away, Mom decided to open her own jewelry store in Murray Hill. So I’ve been here in some capacity since the beginning, except for the time that I was a student at Florida State.

When did your business first open?
Mom opened Faith Jewelers on November 2, 2004. It’s easy for me to remember because November 2nd is election day. We’ve been here for almost 13 years now.

Is there a story behind the name of your business?
8 out of 10 small businesses fail within their first year, so opening any business can be a risky endeavor. That’s especially true when opening a fine jewelry store, because it costs so much money to stock the merchandise that people expect—gold chains, diamond engagement rings, birthstone jewelry, etc. My grandfather put the idea in my mother’s head about starting the business, but she was scared to death about finding the capital to open. My family isn’t rich, and at the time my dad (who was a K9 officer for the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office) was the only source of income for our family. She put a lot of thought and prayer into the decision, and in the end, she decided to “step out on faith” and open the store. They mortgaged the house, and trusted the Lord, and that’s why she named it Faith Jewelers.

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Gwen and JR Strickland- Owners of Faith Jewelers

What is a fun fact about your business?
We are masters of affordable customization. Speaking as a millennial, millennials LOVE having custom jewelry made, because we are all very special snowflakes, and each of us is unique among other snowflakes. So when it comes to a jewelry item that you wear every day—like an engagement ring—you really want it to speak to your own personal style.

The problem with custom design is that it’s typically very expensive, because you’re paying a person to design the jewelry item, then carve a wax model of it, then use the wax model to cast the jewelry item in gold or silver, and then they have to set all of the stones into it by hand—diamonds or whatever gemstones you choose.

We can do that the old-fashioned way, but my favorite thing is customization rather than custom. One of my favorite lines that we carry—Ever & Ever—allows us to take a ring that you like, and change the design online in real time (set different shapes, sizes or colors of stones, add or takeaway design components like halos and filigree, change the finish, you name it…) to make an end product that you absolutely love. The difference in cost is pretty remarkable, too. About $600-$1000 to the customer for a setting that would otherwise cost thousands.

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A handful of the incredible custom diamond rings Faith Jewelers has made

What is the most rewarding aspect of your business?
Jewelry is special. If you think about many of the important moments in your life, jewelry is often involved. An engagement ring is probably the most ubiquitous example, but there are others: a mother’s ring or pendant for your wife after the birth of a child, a strand of pearls or a watch for someone who is about to graduate from school, or handing down a special heirloom when a loved one passes away. I think what is most rewarding is that I’m always getting to meet new customers, and they often wind up being friends because I catch them right before or right after some of their more meaningful milestones. It’s a special bond. I’m reminded of a customer that I had at the beginning of the year. It was a 94 year old woman who brought in an inexpensive Star of David pendant in sterling silver, that was set with marcasite stones. Her grandmother wore it when she came to America from Austria to flee the Holocaust. It had already been passed through three generations of women in the family, and she wound up giving it to her granddaughter that weekend when she turned 18.


John showing me the process of buffing, polishing, and rhodium-plating my rings!

What is your favorite local Jax restaurant?
Oh that’s a tough one. Can I pick two? I love the pork chop at Orsay, but the chicken and waffles at Moxie is pretty life changing, too. Okay, three. M Shack.

What is your favorite thing to do on a sunny Saturday?
Well, the jewelry store is open on Saturdays, so my weekend starts on Sunday. I usually roll out of bed, go to church, go eat somewhere, take a nap, wake up got to the Y (maybe), then head to the Dreamette for a birthday cake-dipped ice cream cone. And then it’s Netflix. Right now I’m watching Stranger Things.

What is your favorite thing to do on a rainy Saturday?
I’m kind of a nerd, so I usually like sitting on the front porch with a good book. 

How long have you lived in Jax?
Pretty much my whole life. I went to FSU, so except for the few years that I lived in Tallahassee, and my first job after college in Charlotte, NC, Jacksonville has always been home.

What part of town do you live in?
Not quite Riverside, not quite Ortega. I think the official name is “Fairfax Manor?”

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I am treated like family every time I walk into Faith Jewelers! The warm smiles, customization, and attention to detail make this gem of a store stand out. Be sure to stop by and say hi next time you’re in Murray Hill!


Faith Jewelers – 1165 S. Edgewood Ave. Jacksonville, FL 32205 – (904) 388-3340

Local Spotlight: BARK's Jamee Yocum

Tell us a little about yourself and how long you have lived in Jacksonville?

Needless to say I'm an extreme dog lover, I've been in Jacksonville for a decade and have lived in Riverside, Downtown, San Marco and have recently purchased a home in Springfield. I love attending community events, concerts, gardening and dining at some of Jacksonville's amazing restaurants.

What inspired you to start your own business and why did you choose a doggie boutique?

I've always had a dream of owning my own business. I worked at a Dog Boutique during high school in South Florida and LOVED it! I've always been a huge supporter of local business, and couldn't be more proud that I'm part of that community.  

Why did you choose your location in 5 Points and your second location in downtown Jax?

When I opened Bark years ago, Riverside was an up and coming neighborhood and I knew 5-points had great potential, plus lots of dogs!  I knew then, I had to jump at the opportunity to open a store. I see the exact same potential in Downtown, Jacksonville.

What are some services BARK in 5 Points offer and your downtown location? 

Bark in 5-Points specializes in Grooming, Boarding, Daycare and Training. We also have a boutique filled with high quality products, organic food, home made treats and birthday cakes!

Bark Downtown is a dog retail boutique dedicated to the downtown working and living community. This location is designed for a quick grab and go, dog food pickup. We also offer dog food delivery and dog walking to the Downtown and Riverside residents.

What is your favorite part of being in business for yourself and your favorite part of BARK?

In all honestly, my favorite part of being in business for myself is being able to run a business the way I believe it should be ran. It's fun to experiment with new and creative ideas. For almost a decade, I've met some amazing people and have made some great friends by owning this business. My customers mean the world to me. My favorite part of Bark is easy, the dogs!