What does a dream look like?

What does a dream cost?

What does a dream require?


(I’m giving you a second to pause and reread those questions.)

It started simple enough. An email from my friend Danielle in which she shared about her dream to build a community for women living overseas.

More than a blog or a website, the vision is an on-line watering hole—you know, a place to come when you need refreshment, a place where you’ve been out working in the fields and just need a moment to catch your breath, a place to let your guard down, a place to swap jokes or books or prayers, a place to known and be known.

Was I interested to hear more? To be involved? To dream with her?

This was in December and I knew that I’d resigned, but it hadn’t become public knowledge yet. I told her I’d resigned, other than that small tidbit, I. WAS. SO BEHIND. THIS.

Seeing as the vision wasn’t tied to one organization or place or calling, it really did turn out to be a small tidbit.

And since then three of us have been working on the launch (and truth be told, Danielle has done the lion’s share). Busy finding a name for our watering hole and a list of contributors and colors and all that goes into building something that is BIG.

Danielle shares in ways that are so beautiful I return to it again and again.

Ready for the name? and the look?

Velvet Ashes. Bet you didn’t see that one coming. We’ll share more later (there is just so much to say!), but here’s a hint. Think botany.


So, what does a dream cost? Again, Danielle is ahead of the curve and has written a description of why we need $6,600 in the next three weeks. 

You can give by going to our super spiffy site: http://fundly.com/velvet-ashes-launch-fund

Or just click on the “Please Donate” button on the side menu –>(if you’re looking at this online)

Let me be the first to stand up and say WE WANT AND NEED PROFESSIONAL HELP and it costs and that’s OK. (And we have the added bonus of Contemplate Design being generous beyond words, to boot). Remember when I redid The Messy Middle and the helpful comments I gave my blog designer? Or, let’s go back to that dark, dark period when I was a modern day leper and people ran running and screaming from me. Being hacked IS NOT FUN. Lesson learned. When you are in the deep end, like we are, and not wanting to belly flop, like we don’t, you WANT THE PROFESSIONALS.

{Sorry for all of the CAPS, but the feelings on this one run deep, my friends. If we were in person you’d see me become more animated and almost embarrassing myself with my enthusiasm. Caps are all I’ve got here. I’m excited and money has a way of bringing the crazy out in people — let’s channel it towards crazy excited :) }

OK, so now we know what a dream costs. What does it require?

Me to be brave and risk sharing with you on behalf of Danielle, Patty, other contributors and myself. It also begs me to come clean with you.

I not that really into womens things like blogs or retreats or bible studies. I’m into human things that apply to humans and don’t require me to roll my eyes. Require or result in. Same same.

So this, this requires me to stick my neck out and say, “Even if you roll your eyes, this is what I’m doing.” Too often these “women things” are really mommy things or young single women things and those of us, um, of a certain age, fade into the background.

By now you know I’m for moms, I’m for young single women, I’m slowing becoming for Peyton Manning. But I’m also for single women who aren’t going to be moms because the clock has stopped ticking. I’m for women who have lived deep and wide and loud and could pack a suitcase in the dark, they’ve done it so many times. I want a space for us too and I’m willing to hold the door open.

And we need your help. Dreams don’t come cheap, but they are worth the investment. Would you be willing to give to Velvet Ashes?

Anne Lamott wrote in Bird by Bird: “[Life’s] like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can’t stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.”

Will you sing with us?

p.s. A Messy Middle Newsletter will go out next week. If you’re interested it’s easy to sign up for AND receive a free copy of “Signs of Eden Regained.” It won’t show up here on the blog and wanted to give you warning since it will have an except from a hope-to-be-published book AND a video that will show up no where else but in the newsletter :)



Leave A Comment

  1. Marilyn July 25, 2013 at 6:54 am - Reply

    Hi Amy – this was great to read as I’ve needed a boost around dreaming! I think it gets harder as we get older?! I was
    wondering if you’ve seen this site? http://www.alifeoverseas.com/ It isn’t just for women but has had some great stuff on it. Angie Washington and Laura Parker started it around a year ago I think.

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      Amy July 25, 2013 at 7:47 am - Reply

      :) … I HAD heard of it from seeing a button on your blog :). I signed up earlier this week, but unfortunately the use of the m word means it can’t be that public for some of us. Still, looks like lots of great stuff!!

      • Marilyn July 25, 2013 at 10:23 am - Reply

        So true. I’ll pass that on. Important to note.

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          Amy July 25, 2013 at 12:09 pm - Reply

          You’re a better woman than me! I should have said something to them myself. Thanks :)

  2. Caron July 25, 2013 at 7:15 am - Reply

    Check out http://www.moola-hoop.com. An organization that helps women fund their dreams!

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      Amy July 25, 2013 at 7:31 am - Reply

      thanks for the tip!

  3. Mark Allman July 25, 2013 at 8:06 am - Reply

    I wish you guys well in this. It is those that stick their necks out that make a difference. I can’t sing but I’m in. :)

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      Amy July 25, 2013 at 12:09 pm - Reply

      Mark, I was asked gently by my elementary school music teacher to sing a little softer as I have “more of a choir voice” — your support means more than I can express. Truly.

      • Mark Allman July 25, 2013 at 1:14 pm - Reply

        :) It has been suggested more than once that I don’t sing at all.

  4. Bess Anne Corwith July 30, 2013 at 7:12 pm - Reply

    Interesting ideas. As some one who has a tendency to stick my neck out – we need more people who are willing to do that. I think we were put here to make a difference. You can’t make a difference if you keep you head tucked into your shell. (Which I’m also guilty of.) I’m getting ready to leave Kuala Lumpur after nearly three years. KL certainly isn’t a hardship assignment, but it can still get messy. The American community is reeling from increased violencehere. I’m really looking forward to returning to the US and discovering someplace new – but I know it won’t always be smooth sailing.

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      Amy July 31, 2013 at 6:25 am - Reply

      Bess Anne, ah yes, the mess of life is everywhere … meaning the good, bad, hard, and fun all woven together. Blessings as you transition! Amy

  5. Amy L Sullivan August 12, 2013 at 11:30 am - Reply

    How cool. How very, very, very cool.

  6. […] back in July where I stuck my neck out and shared about the dream for women who serve overseas. I described it […]

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