Hey Ya’ll! This is Crystal Renee from The Peach Palmetto. I run an online planner boutique with my 18 year old daughter, Angel, where we specialize in making beautiful, Crystal encrusted planner clips that we’ve coined “Planner Pops”. What you’re about to read is my Boots To Beauty story.
In 2017 with my retirement from the USAF looming in the horizon, I sat down in my craft room with the hopes of diverting my attention from the growing anxiety that was creeping into my life. Crafting, planning and listing had always got me through rough moments, this would be no different. On this particular day, I allowed myself a moment to ask a question that I never took time to ask of myself on a day-to-day basis as a military service member: what do I want? What would I like to see?
Up to that point everything about me was defined by my Air Force career. What I wore, my opinions, my day-to-day schedule, even when off duty. I’d been serving in the USAF since I was 17. Everything that was me, was defined by my career choice. But on this day, sitting in my craft room I attempted to give myself a moment to explore my own likes a little deeper. I finally came to the conclusion that just about everything around me was a little too bland, a little too blue, and a little too CALM. I knew life to be measured, rigid and not so pretty. I didn’t know WHO I was outside of my uniform and the persona that came with it. The realization that I’d have to stand alone in a few months and learn how to be someone completely different than I’d ever known, scared the living hell out of me and drove me nuts.
And then…I pulled out some spare supplies and went to work being as EXTRA as possible. That’s how The Peach Palmetto was born. A therapeutic crafting session…but glitter does that, right? Over the past two and a half years as a business owner, this little shop has taught me more about myself than I ever thought possible. Some, but not many, know that I, like many Veterans, suffer from PTSD, anxiety and depression stemming from various incidents in my military career.
Crafting, planning and the comradery that comes with it, has been my outlet.
Being able to make beautiful pieces of art on a daily basis has helped me more than any therapy session I’ve ever had on base. In my shop, each planner pop is meticulously adorned with several hundred (and sometimes thousands) Swarovski crystals. All by hand. My work, allows me the time to be introspective on a daily basis. It’s in those moments, I’ve learned to find myself and from there, I continuously work thru any issues I may have. My experiences with The Peach Palmetto and the many beautiful souls I’ve met along the way, have smoothed out my rough edges and given me a new mission, a new way to be of service…and for that I’m super thankful.
To the Peach Posse, if you’re reading….please know, you all have been my absolute heart these past few years. Every stone I lay is done with an abundance of love. Thank you for helping heal me!