Press Release

November 17, 2018

When I first met Stacy Ryan, back in 2014, she was like no one I had ever met before…she was one of those people you couldn’t help but be drawn to.  She was attractive, charismatic, full of life, a brilliant marketer, and fun to be around.

At the same time, she was being pulled in many different directions.  Her life was a whirlwind of activity:  she was starting a new business, rekindling an established business, doing some consulting work, preparing her home of 15 years for sale, planning a new home purchase with her then-boyfriend, and (as if that wasn’t enough) working at a Halloween store.  Talk about the Energizer Bunny!

Stacy told me she took the job at the Halloween store for a variety of reasons:  to get out of the house, to boost her confidence, to reconnect to retail businesses so she could better help her clients, and, last, but not least, remind her of why she was building her businesses …to give her the freedom to work when, where, and with whom she chose.

Today Stacy is living her dream.

She and her husband, Mike, are living in their 3,200 square foot dream home on the water in Fulshear, Texas.  Stacy and Mike usually start the day with a stroll around the lake, then enjoy coffee in their outdoor living area, watching the bunnies eat and play in their yard.

I am completely impressed by their beautiful home…the large kitchen is a cook’s dream and the perfect spot for entertaining, since people ALWAYS gather in the kitchen.  Stacy even enjoys washing the dishes, because standing at the sink offers a beautiful view of the water and the sky at sunset.  When I complimented their home as being the perfect combination of style and comfort, Mike laughed playfully, put his arm around Stacy, and beamed with pride, letting me know “Stacy was in charge of all the decorating, because my former home was decorated in ‘early bachelor’ style.”

I asked them about their story, and they BOTH laugh, asking if I want the long version or the short version.  Since I had the time, I voted for the long version.

“We met because of 9-11,” Stacy tells me.  “I was supposed to be in Italy, and Mike was supposed to be in Chicago.  Since travel was not advised, we cancelled our respective trips and, by chance, got tickets to a dance in the Galleria area on November 9, 2001, which is when we first met.  After the dance, we met for coffee.  I thought he was a nice guy, he thought I was a nice girl…but it just didn’t click.”

“I kept running into Stacy at different events…wine tastings, events at the museum, you name it…and there was just something about her.  Whenever I saw her I always made a point to talk to her,” Mike tells me.

Mike continues, “And then at one event, in April 2006, I see Stacy in a crowd of men showing them something.  It’s a concealed handgun license.  So I show her mine…and that’s when it clicked.  I asked her out on a date to the gun range…and then she cancelled on me.”

“It was work!” Stacy exclaims.  “Granted, it was the Rolling Stones concert, but it was work!”  (Apparently there’s a deeper story here!)  “I admit, we had a couple false starts, but once we had our first date, that was it for me.  I was hooked!”

Now, 16 years after they first met, 11 years after they started dating, and 3 years after buying a house together, the love they share is obvious to all.

Together, Mike & Stacy have weathered all the storms that life brought their way:  job loss, loss of friends and family members, health issues, and even cancer.  Because their relationship can manage the “big stuff,” they celebrate life to the fullest.  They enjoy traveling together, and they somehow always find adventure wherever they go.  When I ask about their favorite travel experience, they find it difficult to answer.

“Well…we like different places for different reasons,” Stacy says.  “Alaska was pure, unadulterated beauty, and the cruise ship we were on raised the bar for all future travel experiences.  Greece was amazing…for the food and culture, as well as seeing the modern and the ancient right next to one another.”

“Oh, and let’s not forget our first trip to Napa, where you reserved that little red convertible,” Mike says, “eating in the car because we were burning daylight and wanted to get in as many winery visits as possible.  That was an expensive trip!  We checked two cases of wine on our return trip, and were SO thankful our ‘luggage’ wasn’t leaking when we arrived back in Houston.”

They do love their wine!  They are members of the Imagery Wine Club and return to Sonoma for the Wine Club open house every year to taste the new wines, and they especially enjoy it when Joe Benziger himself fills their glasses with barrel samples of the new wines.  Stacy said she will never forget the first Wine Club event they attended, and how beautiful the Tusca Brava was…and it was the first time she bought wine futures.

When I ask Stacy about business, she tells me “That requires a bottle of wine!”  So she opens up a bottle of the Imagery Viognier for us to enjoy while she shares more of her story.


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