trying to create something beautiful out of the broken pieces

How times have changed June 27, 2008

Filed under: Life — kunderwood @ 8:46 pm

When I was almost eight years old, my family moved back from Brazil. I remember clearly how we got out of the airport in the US and went to McDonald’s for breakfast. It probably wasn’t my first time at McDonald’s, but it has certainly been one of the most memorable times. There was something so special and magical about that breakfast- besides the fact that I discovered that I don’t like Egg McMuffins.

In the years after, that was a place that my dad and I spent a lot of special father/daughter time. In elementary school the two of us would go there for breakfast- and I discovered that I loved their pancakes and sausage breakfast! In high school my dad would get me out of school to take me to lunch there and then take me back. Sometimes we would just get an ice cream sundae. But we would always have this special time there just the two of us.

So as I an adult I happily took my kids to McDonald’s. Truthfully, I liked the food just as much as they did and was thankful for an excuse to go. I’m surprised that Avery didn’t come out of me looking like a McD’s cheeseburger and strawberry milkshake because of all that I ate during my pregnancy with her!

So, what the heck is going on with me now? I’m completely grossed out with McDonald’s now. Part of it has to do with the fact that I’ve given up red meat… a whole other story for another time. But the other part of it, and the part that my husband now has one more reason to think I’m losing it, is that they are trying to go healthy and fancy. What?! I know that whole “Supersize Me” thing hurt them and all, but who with half a brain ever thought they were eating healthy when they chose McDonald’s anyway? So what has me so bothered? I don’t know what to eat there anymore. Is it wrong that I trust them to make unhealthy food, but I’m weirded out by them trying to make an Asian Chicken Salad, complete with edamame and roasted red peppers (which under “normal” circumstances I love both!)? The stuff I like to eat there I don’t eat anymore, and the stuff that I could eat totally grosses me out. So today I was at a total loss at this McDonald’s that even called itself “McD’s Cafe” and sold not only iced coffee, but also lattes, cappuccinos, and mochas.

I don’t know if I’m more bothered by them trying to keep up with the times, or that they’re erasing all of my fond childhood memories… but I do know that I miss a good Big Mac!


I’m Stupid! June 26, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life — kunderwood @ 2:17 pm

So… just because you put your baby under a beach umbrella at the beach, it apparently doesn’t mean that they can’t get sunburned! My poor baby…

I am seriously so stupid….

Other than that, we had another great day. Things overheard being said by Avery on the beach:

“Happy Sunny Day, Mommy!!”

“It’s snowing… just joking! It’s sunny!!”

“Water… water… I love you water.” (trying to get the waves to come to her)


i LOVE vacation!! June 25, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life — kunderwood @ 4:26 am

I have to admit that I was actually sad to leave for vacation…. Our sweet friends, Jan and Scott, just welcomed their sweet daughter, Lucy Janelle, into the world on Sunday. She is beautiful, has been blogged and blogged about already in her short life (not counting me!) and is just altogether hard to leave behind. But, this vacation was upon us and so we left. I’m just thankful that I wasn’t out of town when she was born, so I really shouldn’t complain.

So after a long ride made longer by our (futile) quest to find NC BBQ, we arrived in the rain and dark. But… we woke up this morning to a beautiful, sunny day!

We walked to a great coffee shop this morning and not only found wonderful coffee, but freshly made bagels! We returned to the rental and I walked to the grocery while we let Tessa nap for a bit before heading to the beach. We were finally off.

A couple of hours into the beach excursion and Brent and I looked at each other and started laughing. We were exhausted. Oh, the days of going to the beach early in the day, reading and playing in the surf all day, and returning late in the day are SO OVER! At least for a few years. We had only been there for two hours, never even thought to take a book because there’s no point in it, and we were ready to come back. We lasted one more hour and then came back for showers and naps. How pathetic are we?! Not losing four kids (or letting anyone drown) is a lot of work!

Trey bit it within his first five minutes of boogie boarding, but after a few minutes he declared himself fine and ran back in.

Karis and Avery had a great time digging in the sand and jumping in the surf with daddy.

Tessa hung out on the blanket for the majority of the time trying to fend off the four year old boy that was enthralled with her and didn’t try eating the sand until the last half hour.

We even managed to find some NC BBQ for dinner tonight so all is well in the world again!


Use yes, Abuse no June 14, 2008

Filed under: Books,Life — kunderwood @ 2:27 pm

It’s so hard when you read something and that something starts convicting you. It’s especially hard when it not only goes against how you’ve done it all your life, but also how you were taught in your “religious” upbringing to think about it.

For instance, I was always taught that God created the earth for our use. While there is truth in that, it also implied, in no uncertain terms, that it was for our abuse. It gave the okay to, at the very least, mock environmentalists and at the most say that they were being unscriptural and unGodly.

In defense of my upbringing, I think a lot of those views came with the fact that they started back in a time when things were simpler and cleaner, and we just got stuck in them. I think that anyone now can’t argue (intelligently anyway) that we can just keep on like we have been. There are too many signs pointing to the fact that we’ve abused our rights.

I have been severely convicted to change my viewpoint of that. One of the benefits has been the amazing reduction in our trash output. We’ve been recycling for years, but this year I got really serious (otherwise known as obsessed) about it. I have always recycled the easy stuff… glass, cans, etc. Amazingly, I wasn’t recycling that much paper. A few months into the school year I realized that my kids bring home a ridiculous amount of paper. Instead of putting it into the trash like usual, I started placing it in the recycling bin. Besides the fact that it made it a lot easier to retrieve when I had “accidentally” put something in that I shouldn’t have (which I did often to the dismay of many teachers), it also reduced our trash output by more than half. MORE THAN HALF. For two kids in school, our trash was cut in half. I won’t get into what that probably means about their education… but that is just a crazy amount of paper being wasted.

So… back to reading convicting stuff. I’m in the middle of reading Serve God, Save the Planet:A Christian Call to Action.

This book was written by a Christian doctor who started looking at what we’ve done to this earth and the results he now sees around him- specifically in his work.

I can’t get through a chapter without wanting to turn my life upside down. I know that doesn’t make it sound like such an appealing book to read, but it really is fascinating.

As I can process better I might blog more about this, but right now- it’s kicking my butt!!


I went to church today… in my driveway June 9, 2008

Filed under: Life — kunderwood @ 1:10 am

So my neighbor across the street from us isn’t one of our biggest fans. I have a couple of theories as to why he isn’t, and I’m pretty sure it’s not because I completely took out his mailbox with the back of my car a couple of years ago… even though that would at least be a good reason.

My first theory has to do with us having had church at our house and the subsequent large number of cars parked on our street each week. Every Sunday morning (or a few Saturday evenings) he has diligently gone out and moved two of his cars out onto the street so that no one could park in front of his house. He has gone so far as to park the cars, get out and check distances, and get back in to move his car half a foot one way or the other. Admittedly, we have been entertained on occasion weekly to watch him do this. Our neighbors have noticed he does this. People at our church know he does this. Needless to say, he’ll at least be happy that we don’t have church here anymore.

My other theory (and I think it’s actually both of these theories) has to do with our pathetic lawn. Everyone who knows us knows that our lawn sucks and that we don’t have the first clue how to fix that. As you might guess, our neighbor’s lawn is perfect. He spends hours and days working on it each week. Us… if I had the time, I still wouldn’t know what to do.

I do know that mulch covers a multitude of sins though, and so I’ve been wanting some for awhile. My mom and I had planted some new things to replace all the others that I had killed, but it really needed mulch to finish it off. Well, this week we were given a TON of mulch!! I was so excited that I spent the entire next day putting it all over the place. I spent the entire time, though, thinking about our neighbor. Did he notice my attempts at making it better? Did he at least appreciate the effort? Couldn’t he have just asked us nicely not to park in front of his house each week? I exhausted more energy in worrying about what he was thinking about me hauling mulch all over the yard than I did actually hauling mulch all over the yard.

So anyway, today as I was one of “those people” finishing up some yardwork while others were driving by all dressed up and going to church, I made a decision that if he came outside I would walk up to him and ask for help. I didn’t really give him a chance to say no as I asked him to come over and tell me if something was a weed. He told me a bit about what ended up being a tree and the moles in my yard and then continued on his way. I was pretty happy with that.  It took me not caring that I can’t tell the difference between a weed and a frickin’ tree (in my defense it was a VERY SMALL tree) to start a conversation between us and hopefully begin mending whatever was broken.

But I became ecstatic when a little while later he came up my driveway on his own to show me something that might help me chase my moles away.

To me, that was more of what Jesus is about than going and sitting in a building somewhere just so I can “check off” church.


Jesus For President June 8, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — kunderwood @ 1:04 pm

Now that Hillary is out of the running… just kidding.

This summer, July 23rd to be exact, we will be bringing Shane Claiborne and the Jesus For President book tour to Richmond. To get ready for this, many different people from different backgrounds have been blogging about sections from this book on Brent’s blog. It has been really interesting so far- and not just because I’m one of the bloggers!

The whole purpose of this is to start conversation, so head on over there and lend your voice!! Here’s where it all starts.


What I need to “Say”… June 6, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — kunderwood @ 3:00 pm

John Mayer’s song “Say” keeps speaking to me…

Take out of your wasted honor

Every little past frustration

Take all of your so called problems

Better put them in quotations

Say what you need to say

Say what you need to say

Say what you need to say

Say what you need say

Walkin’ like a one man army

Fightin’ with the shadows in your head

Livin’ up the same old moment

Knowin’ that you’d be better off instead

If you could only

Say what you need to say

Have no fear for givin’ in

Have no fear for givin’ over

You better know that in the end

It’s better to say too much

Than to never say what you need to say again

Even if your hands are shakin’

And your faith is broken

Even as the eyes are closin’

Do it with a heart wide open

A wide heart

Say what you need to say