Saying Goodbye – Changes in store for Open Hearth Studio

I haven’t reached out through my blog or newsletter in the past few months or so because of some big changes my family and I have been contemplating. During the weeks that our situation was most uncertain, it felt like it would be unfair to current clients to create anxiety around changes that might not even happen. It was really important to me that they be able to hear the news directly before it became public knowledge. And, to be honest, to write about anything else except the intense process of making decisions and waiting for news felt like it would be really inauthentic. So instead, you got silence, for which I apologize.

As of August 2nd, I will no longer be serving clients at my studio. The “in-person” side of my practice will be closing at that time to allow me and my family to prepare for a move to the Greek island of Crete. We first became aware of this opportunity just ten weeks ago, and we’ve opened our minds and hearts to embrace it. While I am incredibly excited about this change, it comes at the cost of having to say good-bye to many parts of my life and work here in Victoria.

My husband will have a job there, and I will have the chance to reconnect with my own identity as an artist. I will be able to serve clients via video conferencing, but not under my qualifications as a Registered Social Worker. It feels really lucky that this move came along right at the time that I completed my years of studying to become a Spiritual Director through the Anamcara Project! You might want to know more about what that means, so I’ll be writing more about it in another newsletter soon.

Even if we haven’t been in touch in some time, this change is still an ending, and I imagine and regret that it might create a sense of loss. Every new ending recollects other endings in our lives, and as I say all the time, we just don’t “do” endings and transitions very well in this culture. I’m no exception. I wanted so badly to do it well, and get the news out “the right way” (whatever that could possibly be!) that I created a lot of tension for myself and for those people who did know and have been there to support me and my family through the waiting and uncertainty. We are making the leap into public knowledge now, however, even with many questions still unanswered and quite a few bureaucratic hoops still to jump through. I figure, if nothing else, I can at least work through this change out loud from here on, and we’ll see what happens!

My hope is that you will wish to continue to accompany me on this next adventure through the newsletter and my blog. I honestly don’t know what it will look like. I hope there will be lots more of my own art, definitely lots of photographs, and maybe more writing!

My deepest thanks for hanging out with me here, and many blessings to you.

-Frances

P.S. Here is a photo of a small chapel built right on a spit of land into the Mediterranean near where we’ll be living. And some felt vessels I’ve been making, trying to catch the blues… I think I’ll get better at it once I’ve seen the colour in person!

Felt vessels