Okan Arts, Wauconda WA

white space : the sequel

By Patricia Belyea

WAUCONDA WA  On this date one year ago, I shared my plans and hopes for the new year. My blog post outlined upcoming changes at Okan Arts—switching the store to online sales only, and no longer hosting workshops and retreats. These shifts in our business were designed for me to find more creative time.

Wow! I was foreseeing future adjustments that our small business would need to make due to COVID-19—before anyone knew about the pandemic or the stay-at-home mandates.

So, how did my year go? Bittersweet describes it best. 

The losses were huge—two of my family members died. My brilliant, charming, and generous nephew Ben took his life. And my elderly mother succumbed to COVID-19. Those were the jumbo events that painted a gray wash over everything.

All the same, I took on some big challenges in 2020: 

I set up an indigo farm—an endeavor I hope to expand in the coming year. 

Okan Arts Website

I updated the Okan Arts website—something I’ve wanted to do for years.

Okan Arts Video Studio, Republic WA

I created a video studio—so now I can give Zoom talks to guilds anywhere and teach quilting techniques to students around the globe.

2020 also brought a transformation in my location. Last February I headed east to our cabin in the Okanogan Highlands. Since then, I’ve sheltered-in-place with Michael—in the forest and rangeland of Wauconda, Washington. I’ve found great joy in my simple life here. 

Dare I make any predictions for what’s next? You bet not. 

These days, life seems suspenseful. No longer can I take anything for granted. I’ll have to wait and see as this freshly minted year reveals its twists and turns.

And what about the White Space I longed for? It’s all around me—12 inches of clean white snow on the ground, frost in the evergreens, and a low blanket of clouds in the sky. That’s what I wished for and that’s what I got!

Happy New Year!


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