Our Advice on Social Distancing: Embrace It

Greetings from the Land of Social Isolation
Hi everyone and greetings from Good Hart.  Our lives have changed a bit in recent days and it’s largely suggested by medical professionals that one of our best defenses in fighting this global outbreak is to practice a little thing called “social distancing”.

Social distancing.  The words sound confusing or even frightening for a lot of people and because of that, we wanted to hopefully offer some tips, some humor, and some hope on how to get through this unique time in our history.

Our idea for this post came while out for a walk this afternoon.  We were walking here in Middle Village down by the beach, and as we enjoyed a Bald Eagle flying overhead, the tallness of the trees and uniqueness of each barren limb, the crunch of the snow under our feet, and the calm rolling waves of Lake Michigan crashing against an icy shore, we couldn’t help but realize that social distancing is something we practice each and every winter here in Good Hart. The off-season in Good Hart is the very definition of social isolation and by subsequent default, social distancing.  Let’s face it, at any any given time, there are more people shopping at your local Walgreen’s, than we see all month during the winter.

Prayers for All
Thinking about life in Good Hart and our norm during these quiet winter months, we also couldn’t help but think about our friends who are struggling right now.  Hopefully you’ll join us in either praying, thinking of, or sending good vibes to those in your life who are having a hard time.  We’re praying for our friend in a Westchester County hospital, our friend with elderly parents in Italy during lock-down, our friend in Seattle with five kids home from school indefinitely and no toilet paper in sight, our friends in senior facilities unable to get visits from their loved ones, our neighbors out of work, our fellow small business owners being forced to temporarily close and facing an uncertain future.  We’re praying for our friends in law enforcement, our military, our government.  Gosh, so many people out there need prayers and good thoughts right now in overcoming these uncertain times.

Because there’s so many of you navigating uncharted waters, we thought it might make sense to share some of our advice for making the most of this new found time at home, time together, or possibly time alone.

Credentials in Social Isolation
First of all, let us begin by saying we've been mastering what we believe is the art of social distancing and social isolation since the beginning of time!  Social isolation is something that just happens here in Good Hart every single off-season.  It’s automatic.  It’s our norm.  We were deep into practice before it ever became the trend.  And while we understand that not everyone has the luxury of getting out for a walk in an area as beautiful as Good Hart, social distancing doesn’t have to be an entirely negative experience.  On the contrary, it can be quite positive and productive!

Winter in Good Hart is slower.  There’s days on end when the only people we see are our employees, our mail carrier Heather, and UPS driver, Matt.  Maybe “Sarah” might come down from the farm for a bottle of wine.  Or maybe “Bill” might stop in for his mail and to see Maggie.  "John" comes by for soup, to check messages that neighbors leave for him (yes, we're his answering service) and to pet the dogs.  Maybe the highlight of the day will be when the Budweiser truck pulls up.  In general, things are pretty quiet — weirdly quiet to those not used to the pace.

Our pace is a near stand still January through April.  It’s during this time, our lives in social isolation take new shape.  We hunker down,  catch up, learn new things, and Lord knows we binge watch plenty of things on Netflix.  Time flies, and before you know it, the Trillium are blooming, a new season of life is being breathed into our daily routines, and it’s time to jump back into the hustle and bustle of another busy travel season in the tourism industry.  Boom — everybody jump, it’s show time!  

Embrace This Time, Find the Good
We hope you’ll find solace knowing that this time at home can be both productive and positive.  Learn new things.  Do good for others.  Engage your family in new activities.  There's plenty to do alone, or with family during this new found time.  Hopefully when this has passed, you'll appreciate more than ever the art of social distancing.  Thanks for reading.  Maggie says hello.  While we may be altering the physical operation of our store in coming days and weeks, our online business is going stronger than ever.  Links below to order some our top social distancing must-haves.

Now go on and wash your hands, stay hydrated, sanitize those frequently touched items and areas, and enjoy your time practicing social distancing.  


Good Hart’s Guide To Successful and Positive Social Distancing:

  • Start an indoor garden (visit your local hardware store, for us Meyer Ace in Harbor Springs, and purchase the goods to begin your own greenhouse of fresh veggies like greens, peppers, and tomatoes)
  • Learn a new skill like yoga or meditation
  • Learn a new language as a family
  • Do a puzzle
  • Play a board or card game
  • Shut off the news before doom sets in
  • Start an in-house book or reading club (discuss book chapters or online articles with family members)
  • Create your own family games (I.e. a variation of charades or jeopardy)
  • If able, take a walk in a park or on a trail
  • Journal your earlier years to share with siblings or children, documenting those important family moments of the past
  • Write cards or letters to mail for friends or family
  • Write cards and letters for elderly in a community home or assisted living facility who are now quarantined
  • Make a scrap book for an elderly friend or family member to enjoy
  • Bake or cook together as a family
  • Clean that largely neglected basement, garage, or closet
  • Begin making a list of plans for after the virus has passed with all new goals
  • Check on neighbors
  • Binge your favorite shows
  • Call a friend or family member (phones still make calls - it’s bizarre)
  • FaceTime with friends or family
  • Stop worrying about toilet paper (they make it in Cheboygan)
  • Whenever possible, get outside and take some big deep breaths of fresh air, look up, and admire the day, counting your blessings!


Additional Resources:

Free Online Resources for Learning a New Language

12 Must-Know Yoga Poses for Beginners

Tips on Cleaning and Organizing Your Home

40 Great Card Games

How To Start an Indoor Veggie Garden

The Beginner’s Guide to Meditation


Shop Social Distancing Tools at Good Hart:

Our World Famous Pot Pies
There's a reason it's called comfort food…

Our Favorite Reads
So many great Michigan themed reads here for all ages…

Michigan Puzzles
Made in Michigan celebrating the Great Lakes State…

Pine Soy Candle
Zen out with this Up North scent…

Tunnel of Trees Soy Candle
Musky and magical and also Made in Michigan…

Good hart Coloring Book
Let kids creativity shine…

The Nature Connection
Awesome resource for getting kids outside and learning…

Tunnel of Trees Vegan Soap
If we have to wash, we may as well smell good…

Classic Retro Mug
Pairs well with a nice herbal tea…

Good Hart Playing Cards
If every resident of Michigan hasn’t mastered Euchre when this thing is over, we’ve done something wrong…

Good Hart Note Cards
Send a “no reason” note to someone in your life…

Tunnel of Trees Gift Set
Wash up, apply lotion, light a candle and chill…

Etched Wine Glass
And when all else fails, pour yourself a tall glass of red, take a deep breath and turn on the Golf Channel…


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