The many talents of Ruby

Reading time:

Ruby attracts the best and the brightest.  Our receptionists are smart and wonderfully creative.  Here we present a sampling of the varied products of our gifted Rubys.


Macaroni Phone by Sara Lee


Handbag by Holly T


Set of Three Hollow Rings by Kendra


Tea Bot is Such a Thoughful Host by Kris R

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Say “Hello!” to autumn!

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Fall is officially here.  In some parts of the country, that means crisp, dry weather and leaves crackling underfoot. Not so in Oregon! Here, fall means the start of the rainy season.  The rainy winters of the Pacific Northwest aren’t as bad as you might think, though.  We don’t have many downpours—it’s more a consistent drizzling through October and usually into the start of May.  We Rubys are seasoned winter-weatherers (yes, pun intended).  We don’t really mind the gray skies that hover over our city for most of the year because we make the best of every day even if there are dreary clouds on the horizon.

Here are some of the Ruby staff’s favorite things to do on a rainy day:

  1. Snuggle up on the couch with a good book or a pet.  We love our dogs and cats, but some Rubys have more exotic tastes, like reptiles, bunnies, and chickens.
  2. Make a big pot of soup or bake some treats.
  3. Work on projects.  (We have a lot of budding artists, crafters, and bike mechanics here—stay tuned for more on this next week!)
  4. Clean the house and get organized.
  5. Find someplace warm and cozy to enjoy a day out.  We’re real library and coffee shop aficionados.

What’s your favorite thing to do while we wait for our friend the groundhog to announce the coming of spring?  Make this winter your best yet!

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Commonly Misspelled Homonyms

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It’s and its, you’re and your, who’s and whose: All these words are short and distinct in meaning, but despite their seeming simplicity, they are often misspelled.  These word pairs are homonyms, meaning they sound the same, but are spelled differently and have different definitions.  Sure, we know what we mean when saying these words, but spelling is a different story.  We’ve probably all experienced a glitch in our brain-to-fingertip connection at one time or another, and typed its when we mean it’s, or your for you’re.

In addition to being homonyms, each of these word pairs is made up of a contraction and a pronoun. A contraction is a combination of two words, or a shortened form of a word.  Don’t is a contraction for do not.  Every contraction contains an apostrophe, and the apostrophe takes the place of any missing letters.

Plainly put, a pronoun is word that replaces a noun or noun phrase.  She, he, I, they, it, you, and who are all pronouns.  Thanks to pronouns, we say things like “Suzy said she wants ice cream,” rather than “Suzy said Suzy wants ice cream.”  Nouns and pronouns are different in the way they show possession. While every possessive noun is noted with an apostrophe, most possessive pronouns do not include apostrophes.  If something belongs to Suzy, it’s Suzy’s, but if something belongs to her, it isn’t her’s, it’s hers.

Here are some brief definitions of these often-misspelled words, and a few examples of how to use them correctly.

its and it’s

Its means “belonging to it.”  Its is the possessive form of the pronoun it.

  • The dog wagged its tail.
  • The new store is open, but its sign isn’t up yet.

It’s is a contraction for “it is,” or less frequently, “it has.”

  • It’s so great to have you in town!
  • It’s a beautiful day.
  • I love my new car, but its sun roof is broken.  Since it’s been raining, it’s been a hassle to deal with.

whose and who’s

Whose is a pronoun meaning “belonging to who/whom.” “Whose jacket is this?” means “Who does this jacket belong to?” or “Who owns this jacket?

  • Whose car should we take to the movies?
  • I don’t know whose boots those are.

Who’s is a contraction for “who is,” or less frequently, “who has.”

  • Who’s going to the movies?
  • Who’s wearing my boots?

your and you’re

Your means “belonging to you.” Your is the possessive form of the pronoun you.  “Your scarf” means “The scarf belonging to you.”

  • Thank you for all of your help.
  • May I borrow your rain coat?

You’re is a contraction for “you are.”  “You’re welcome” means “You are welcome.”

  • You’re invited to my birthday party.
  • I know you’re going to have a great time in Spain.
  • If you’re available, I would really appreciate your help.

Even our bright and detail-oriented virtual receptionists make typing errors from time to time, which is why proofreading is the rule at Ruby.   We suggest you make a habit of it, too, and take special care with these same-sounding pairs.

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Missed connections translate to lost revenue. With Ruby, you have a partner in gaining and retaining customers. Plus, we’re so confident you’ll love our service, we offer a 21 day money-back guarantee*.

*Ruby is delighted to offer a money-back guarantee to first time users of both our virtual receptionist service and our chat service. To cancel your service and obtain a full refund for the canceled service (less any multi-service discount), please notify us of the service you wish to cancel either within 21 days of your purchase of that service or before your usage exceeds 500 receptionist minutes/50 billable chats, as applicable, whichever occurs sooner. Some restrictions may apply.