Graytly Inspired Corporation
Tarzana, CA 91356
April 20, 2007
Dear Family and Friends,
Hi! I am asking you to share with me the journey to make my dream come true. Let me explain. As a child, I loved to give. It didn’t matter if someone loved what I was giving, I gave because they asked. I don’t remember how old I was when I first saw the 1950’s black and white television program, “The Millionaire.” The concept of a person giving away a million dollars to strangers fascinated me and I decided that’s what I would do as an adult.
Fast forward to my last year of graduate school, my degree in Social Work nearly completed. During that short period, three significant things happened to change my life. First was the illness and subsequent death from brain cancer of my older brother, Gray. Second was an art teacher who knew the severity of my brother’s illness and suggested I paint--as in art. I painted a picture a day, some days more, until my brother’s death in April 1987. The painting continued through all the stages of grief, so that when the time came, I accepted his death. Third was a conversation I held with myself while waiting for a professor to open her classroom. I decided to be a social worker for twenty years, thinking that to be a goodly amount of time before burn out. There was no thought of what might follow.
After Gray’s death, the paintings were put away, forgotten until my long-time friend discovered them. With her encouragement, I began to paint and even sold some canvases and cards, but only the creative part was satisfying. After a couple of years I stopped again. Art helped me heal, forgive, and accept my brother’s fate, thereby my own. While relating this to another friend and self-styled wordsmith, I admitted, “What I wanted was to help people through art.” She coined the name, “Graytly Inspired.”
Six years went by before yet another friend, and I spoke of our dreams and decided to work together. Four years ago, we welcomed the first Graytly Inspired volunteers into my home to paint and send “YOU ARE LOVED!” cards. Since 2005, Graytly Inspired’s numbers have grown substantially. We are now donating our handcrafted gifts to social service agencies and doctors who treat cancer patients.
As lives are meant to do, it’s time to move on. This journey is about living to the fullest, using my life lessons and implementing the tools I’ve acquired. It is about understanding that if one stops dreaming and asking and if one accepts a life of give-ups, believing stops and so does the journey. For three years, my life’s journey was stuck in that particular pot hole. I didn’t like the view. In the midst of all that inner and outer turmoil, I kept asking, “God, what is it that you want me to know?” At the end of 2006 I felt the answer—to dream again, to live with purpose, with dreams and goals, and with knowledge that I came to live out loud. During the last week of December I wrote out those goals and dreams, and put little reminder signs around my home; always my dream is in front of me. I visualize those dreams and I am excited about where my life is going, because that decision of twenty years ago is coming true.
Allow me to share the continuation of my journey with you, beginning by standing to be seen. I’ve spent a lifetime of hiding behind others. Those who know me will think that’s pretty funny because what part of me can really hide? Nonetheless, I was hiding, and I will not hide again. I will live out loud, live to be seen, live to be heard. I will live my heart’s desire, and that is for Graytly Inspired to be a humanitarian organization that supports all of God’s children as they walk on their journeys toward their destinations.
Graytly Inspired’s next
phase is to implement new programs, beginning with “
Now to the point of this letter, Money! We need donations to start these two programs and to continue our existing endeavors. For that support, we have devised the Graytly Inspired Loose Change Campaign. Please now discuss this campaign at church, at your workplace, and with your family, friends and neighbors. Send our letter to your email contacts. Give out our email address (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will be pleased to talk with every person. Get everyone on board and save your Loose Change.
During May, save your change
at the end of each day, then gather everyone together at the end of the month
for a pot luck, count the change and rejoice in the accomplishment. Convert the
change to a check or money order and mail it to Graytly Inspired. The proceeds
will be the start of
THE Graytly Inspired Loose Change Campaign will begin May 1 and end May 31. YOUR Graytly Inspired Loose Change Campaign will begin June 1 and end June 30—unless you decide to keep on giving. We ask only that you give in the name of Graytly Inspired and write to us about your experience and the person or persons who received the donation so we can post it on our Website and in our newsletter.
Visit our website for more information about Graytly Inspired at (www.graytlyinspired.com). Make your check or money order payable to Graytly Inspired and send it to the address listed above.
Thank you for your commitment to Graytly Inspired, thank you for your Loose Change, and thank you for helping those you will help. If you have a dream, let us know. Graytly Inspired is all about helping to make dreams come true. Dr. Martin Luther King said, “Not everybody can be famous, but everyone can be great, because greatness is determined by service.”
Love and Blessings