Changes in Rhythm
As stay-at-home orders have changed the way most of us live in the short term, some folks, like Greenwood jewelry designer Christina Shirley, are enjoying life at home. “We haven’t slowed down,” she says, “We’re homebodies anyway. We like to park the car on Thursday and stay home all weekend. For us, it hasn't been that different.”
“It’s really nice to like where you live,” she says of the family’s home on beautiful Lake Greenwood. With her design business, Stella Blue Gallery, based at home and her husband working in an essential business, daily life is largely unchanged for them. “We’re fortunate to be able to get out on the water,” to keep from feeling cooped up. “We’re lucky to have yards to sit outside in, to talk to neighbors across the street.”
The big difference in today lies in their interactions with friends and neighbors. “When I’m out shipping packages, I wave to people and talk from a distance.” In the meantime, they are talking with friends from coast to coast.
“It’s so much calmer here than other places; in other places, they see fear,” she says. “We’re checking in on everybody. It doesn’t have to be a long call, but just to know that person is okay. You hear more emotion in the voice. I think there’s a little bit more love when you hear the voice. And to hear others’ take on things can be calming.” They also continue to send texts or check in through social media. Christina’s daughter stays connected through video calls and homework sessions with classmates.
Work From Home Pro
Because Christina designs and hand makes her jewelry and runs her business from home, she’s a pro at carving out time and space for getting things done. Here are some of her tips for making it work.
Curate your space. “As soon as I wake up, I clean the house to have a really fresh aspect,” she says. “If you need to designate a space [for work], make it nice, a place you want to be. ‘Shop’ your house for things to make it special, add a rug or a beautiful pen holder.”
Prepare yourself. “Put on clothes, not pjs.” she says. “Don’t start your day messy and sluggish. Start with a clean slate; make sure things feel fresh and comfortable.”
The bottom line: “If you feel good to start the day, you’re going to have a more productive day.”
Supporting Local Business
“All the people we know are either small business owners or work for small businesses,” Christina says of her friends. “We try to purchase what we can from them. The mentality here is to help each other get through it, to encourage each other.”
What Visitors Will Find
Still, they have faith that their community will come back strong. “It shows a lot about our community that we’ve all stuck together, supporting businesses. We all worked really hard to get where we are and want to be sure that Greenwood continues to flourish.”
For more information on what’s happening in Greenwood, check in with us on social media and follow #discovergreenwood. You can also follow Christina on Instagram @thestellabluegallery.