Joonie Jatho: Hi Winter! Thanks for meeting with me today.
Winter Loxely: Thank you too! It’s a pleasure to meet with you!
Joonie: You are one of our awesome Event sponsors. Thank you so much! What made you decide to sponsor?
Winter Loxely: I’ve been wanting to participate in this event. This is an important cause to me, personally, as I lost my RL mother to cancer. I am very excited to be a part of the Expo!
Joonie: I’m so sorry to hear that, Winter. I lost my mom, too. It’s such a hard thing to go through. We couldn’t do this without sponsors like you. What do you have waiting for us at Christmas Expo this year?
Winter Loxely: Lol. We’ll display our limited edition holiday items that are already out on our Potomac region. One of those is this gazebo we’re sitting in now. And gifts! :) I love making gifts, and there will be new items out as gifts for everyone that stops by.
Joonie: Gifts! Yay! I love gifts! Winter, how did you hear about SL?
Winter Loxely: Actually, I read about it in a magazine some time ago. I filed it away in the back of my head and didn’t actually try SL for a year after I saw that article. Once I did, I certainly regretting waiting so long!
Joonie: What was your first impression?? What made you try it again?
Winter Loxely: My first impression was…. I can’t find anything! I can’t manage to walk up stairs. But I HAVE to see more! We can dance the night away and meet new friends at any hour. I was immediately hooked.
Joonie: Me too! How long were you here before you started building?
Winter Loxely: Probably about five or six months. Actually the first thing I ever built was a railing because I kept falling off the stairs in my house!
Joonie: Lol! How did it evolve from there?
Winter Loxely: I loved log homes, in particular. I always have. So I started collecting them! Then I wanted to offer a great place for other people to live, in a north woods type of setting, so I created Big Bear Lake, which is one of four rental home regions my partner Max and I own. The region you and I are on is one of them. After a while, I found that I was modifying homes to suit my needs for those regions, and from there, it just made sense to start building them myself.
Joonie: So the land came first? And then the need came second for homes to fit the land?
Winter Loxely: It sure did. Initially I only built the homes for our use on the rental home sims, but then we wanted to share them with everyone!
Joonie: Awww. I love log homes! So then you started building these awesome homes! What was your first home?
Winter Loxely: Well, the first home I started building was the Greenbriar, but it wasn’t finished until after two other homes were completed! Go figure. I just kept learning more and more and had changes to make to it, so it actually took a long time, about a year, to build.
Max, my partner, and I manage the four rental home regions, and about 20 full sims that are rented out. I couldn’t do it without him. He’s amazing. Those regions can keep us on our toes! We buy and sell occasionally, so it fluctuates a bit, but that’s where we are now. Most are rented by the entire region. We don’t rent just parcels, except for the home rentals. Most full regions. We have a couple of homesteads in the mix.
Joonie: That is awesome, Winter!
Winter Loxely: It’s a lot of fun! And fantastic people :)
Joonie: I can imagine! Do your family and friends know what you do in SL?
Winter Loxely: Yes! My family is very supportive. It’s wonderful! My closest friends do know and are also very supportive. I find that I don’t try and explain it to everyone, though. You have to be in SL to really get it.
Joonie: It can be hard to explain. Is this the first time at Expo? What are you looking forward to?
Winter Loxely: Yes, this is my first time at Expo. I’m looking forward to doing the hunt, and SHOPPING!
Joonie: Hahah! Me too! Do you get your inspiration for your designs from living in Colorado?
Winter Loxely: Sometimes. I love driving through the mountains and getting ideas there. But all my life, even before I moved to Colorado 10 years ago, I loved log homes.
Joonie: There’s something just so cozy about them. Do they all have fireplaces?
Winter Loxely: You’ve GOT to have at least one fireplace! Most have more than one.
Joonie: What was the first thing you sold? How did it feel to sell something you made? And how do you find time to build?
Winter Loxely: I was so tickled that someone liked my build enough to buy it! LOL! I do remember that. It was the Telluride home. That was the first one I had completed. Between the two of us, Max and I manage to get everything done. Usually. ;) The other reason we get it all done is that it’s not work. It’s a joy, even when things go wrong. I love a good challenge.
Joonie: Awww. Would you say you’ve always been creative?
Winter Loxely: Creative, I guess so. Mostly I just love houses. All houses. I have, all my life. I still have a real estate broker’s license here in Colorado, and did when I lived in Maryland, too. I am no longer in that business, but was for many years. I loved it.
Joonie: Did you have any idea you would be doing this when you first rezzed into SL? How did you spend your first few weeks/months in SL? If you could do anything other than what you’re doing now, what would it be?
Winter Loxely: First let me say I wouldn’t trade what I do for anything. I had NO idea I’d be doing this when I started. None. I didn’t even have a place to call home for months, I just rezzed in wherever I happened to log out! LOL! But the addiction is strong. I crossed paths with a not-so-great landlord or two and wanted to offer a great alternative, and that’s how all this started.
Joonie: It sounds like you took a not so good situation and turned it into a positive.
Winter Loxely: Exactly. And, if I am not up to my ears in a dozen projects or so, I get bored!
Joonie: Well the expo should keep you not so bored! :)
Winter Loxely: No kidding! Lots of preparations! :)
Joonie: Winter, what would you tell other people who might have thought about sponsoring like you are but haven’t made that leap yet?
Winter Loxely: This is an amazing event. I would tell them to go for it. You’re working with everyone else toward such a worthwhile cause, the more you participate, the better for everyone!
Joonie: With all the work you have to do here in SL, how do you find the time to create? Do you try to set aside “building” time?
Winter Loxely: No, I don’t actually set aside time for building. I just fit it in whenever I’m not needed on another region. But this way I’m available to help our tenants anytime, and I can build at the same time. I was even building when you messaged me tonight. :)
Joonnie: Lol. I often wonder if builders here in SL ever have time to actually have FUN in SL. Are you able to have fun here or is it mostly about sim management and building. Not that that isn’t FUN…. lol… but you know what I mean?
Winter Loxely: LOL I do know what you mean. When it comes to SL, I do get to get out and have some fun! I love what I do so much, though, that it’s what I always want to be doing. But Max and I get to go out dancing occasionally, and sometimes I do gridwide hunts. And Greedy! There’s a reason our gazebos fit a Greedy table so well. ;)
Joonie: Lol I love Greedy! I haven’t played in a long time.
Winter Loxely: Sounds like a Greedy game is in order soon!
Joonie: Yes! How did you come up with the name – Potomac Signature Homes?
Winter Loxely: Actually Max came up with the name. I’m originally from Maryland, and spent a good deal of time walking the towpath along the C&O Canal, by the Potomac River. He knew about that, and as soon as he said the name, it was a done deal.
Winter Loxely: I love getting to chat with the visitors here on the sim. I’m usually working so I don’t get the chance as often as I’d like. I love hearing what people think, and their ideas, too! I’ve seen some modifications to the homes after purchase, too, that are amazing. So fun to see how everyone decorates! In fact we have a bulletin board at the landing point with photos of how our home buyers have decorated their homes.
Joonie: How do you get started building?
Winter Loxley: LOL! Sometimes I just rez a prim, start building and see what happens. Sometimes I see a photo of a real world home that has an element that I want to incorporate.
Joonie: Now we are at the part in the interview where I ask a few very important questions.
Winter Loxely: Lol! Uh oh!
Joonie: Hahaha. What’s your favorite color?
Winter Loxely: Ummm… that’s the important question, huh. Let’s say green. I love forest green.
Joonie: If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be?
Winter Loxely: Shanghai. I’ve been to a few places in China, but never Shanghai.
Joonie: You’re stranded on a desert island. What 3 things do you hope to have with you? That was an easy one.
Joonie: I love that! Thanks so much, Winter. It was so nice meeting you and I’m so happy you’re a part of Christmas Expo this year.
Winter Loxely: I’m so excited to be a part of it! Thanks again, and have a great evening.