trying to create something beautiful out of the broken pieces

This Week’s Quotes September 29, 2008

Filed under: Family,Humor,quotes — kunderwood @ 10:59 pm

So Trey is the one with the quotes this week.

Do you think we’ve been in the south too long? He just asked me:

“Mom? Do you reckon we oughta move the ladder so Tessa doesn’t get hurt?”

I even asked him to repeat what he said, sure that he didn’t use the words “reckon” and “oughta”, but he did.

Brent was leaving after dinner tonight to speak at a seminar and Trey wanted to know why he couldn’t go with him.  Not really thinking, I replied, “Because it’s not appropriate for you.”  His answer, “Oh… do you mean Dad is gonna be cussin’?” ( I assured him it was because it would be boring, not that daddy would be cussin’!!!)

Then after hanging out with too many girls (nevermind that he is related to all of them) he said:

“Girls. They just want to marry us and take over the world!”

yeah… I’m still laughing at that one!



Filed under: Life,pieces — kunderwood @ 11:21 am

My OBGYN (i know… can’t beat a sentence that starts with that!) told me something when I was pregnant with my third child that has stuck with me. I had miscarried right before that pregnancy, which is when he became my doctor. So, as I was in the beginning stages of this new pregnancy, and praying that all would be okay with the baby he told me something like this: In all of his years as an OB, he became more and more convinced of what a miracle a healthy baby was. He said that we tend to think that a miscarriage, or a baby born with any kind of problems is what is out of the ordinary, but that when you consider when all of the things that have to go right within a pregnancy actually do, it has to be a miracle.

I have been thinking about that lately as it relates to life… specifically the life that follows God. We tend, as Christians, to think that a person who can’t make all of the “right” decisions, someone who maybe struggles with an addiction or an attitude and can’t break free, is “less than.” We think that they should be able to put that aside, and live this perfect life… even though we know we can’t. They should pull up their skirt and run like a man… even as we ourselves are screaming like little schoolgirls when we don’t get our way. Or maybe that’s just me.

But this is what I think about this life we live. We rely on those around us to be loving and faithful. We expect our children, siblings, parents to be without defect or disease. We want our children to remain innocent from the hurt and pain of this life. We count on violence not really touching us personally. We expect to live stable, comfortable lives in the homes and places of our choice with the belongings we feel we deserve filling them up.

But what happens when something goes wrong? How do we respond when one or more of those things doesn’t happen the way we think they should? We live in a fallen world, among a bunch of fallen people- ourselves not excluded- and unfortunately, we will have to face something.

So this is what I’m realizing: when you take into consideration all of the things that have to go right, it’s really a miracle when someone does live a selfless, holy life on this earth.


Better Late Than Never? September 27, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life — kunderwood @ 10:28 am

A week ago today was my husband, Brent’s, birthday! It, from the start, was not a typical birthday day for him. We spent his birthday in Angelica, NY, where he officiated the wedding of two sweet friends of ours. This included walking across the town’s “center” from the church in which the ceremony took place, to the other side of the park where, in another church, the reception took place. On our walk, we did what most people do (I’m sure) in between the wedding and reception: we teeter-tottered on the playground (yes, in our wedding clothes), we stopped at the farmer’s market and bought honey that had just been taken off the hives the day before, and we admired the Civil War Festival (complete with reenactment) that was taking place. It was a really beautiful Fall day in the Finger Lakes region of NY.

But because of that, and the craziness that now takes place when traveling with 6 of us, I didn’t honor my sweet, sweet man on here! Those of you who know us probably agree with me when I say, I don’t know how I keep up with this man, but I’m honored that he has allowed me to tag (okay, sometimes be dragged) along on all of his adventures. I love you, baby!!


noise September 24, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life — kunderwood @ 9:49 am

I have heard over and over that communication is the giving AND receiving of information.

Well, lately in my house there has been a lot of giving of information.  We’ve been telling Trey how to act at school.  Karis has been trying to explain how she (for the second time this week) caused her sister to bleed.  (Before someone calls social services on our butts… we witnessed both accidental- albeit stupid- occurrences)  Avery, needless to say, has been trying to communicate her pain and displeasure greatly.  And Tessa… have I mentioned how much I don’t like the second year?!  She is trying to communicate… by screaming when she doesn’t get what she wants.

However, I don’t know that there’s a lot of “receiving” going on.  For it to truly be communication, someone has to be receiving the information, right?  Is Trey hearing how he should be acting in school?  Are we understanding what Tessa is trying to communicate in the only way she knows how?

And when no one is receiving… it’s just a lot of noise.

So my house has been pretty loud lately.


Perspective September 22, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life,parenting — kunderwood @ 8:28 am

I remember Trey being about 1 or almost 2 years old and Kindergarten seemed like it was so far away… especially on those long, rough days.  Karis came along 21 months after him and time started moving a lot quicker.  When I was pregnant with Avery (#3), I remember thinking, “What have I done??”  The older two were finally getting more independent.  They would get up in the morning without me and if they got hungry, Trey would get them each something to eat… I had no idea how good I had it, until I “messed it all up” by starting over… 😉  And then I did it again.  Even though after Avery we said we were done, we had Tessa.

Needless to say, some days my life seems like pure chaos.  Some days I’m sad that we’re done with babies (as crazy as that makes me sound).  Even though I wonder where in the world time has gone with Trey as he is in third grade this year, Tessa going to Kindergarten seems so far away again.  I know now that is a lie though and that it’s right around the corner.

Something funny happens every time I go to visit my sisters though.  My perspective towards and about my children changes.  My oldest nephew is a senior in high school this year.  He drives a car.  He leaves to go places by himself… what?!!  When did that happen?  I was just changing his diaper a few months ago.  I was just carting him around with me places last week (and getting dirty looks as if he were my son and I was a teenage mom… whole other rant.)  I watch my sister as she is well into the “letting go” process (and doing it so calmly- on the outside!) and realize that next week Trey will be driving.  And looking at colleges.  And all the other stuff that today seems so far away….

I am so bad at enjoying today.  But I’m going to try.  I’m going to start with today and when that doesn’t work, I’ll try again tomorrow.  But, I’m going to try to slow down and enjoy my kids and where they are today.  And everyday.  Because tomorrow they’ll be gone….


The 1 Year Old September 15, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life — kunderwood @ 3:28 pm

Tessa’s birthday wasn’t complete without breakfast out with mom and dad:

A trip to the bookstore:

Friends (the Spauldings and Wieses):

The birthday picture with mommy & daddy:

And… CAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh… and did I mention the call to Poison Control??!!…

Yep, couldn’t celebrate her first birthday without having to call Poison Control… just to be on the safe side. Tessa put the cap from the “Goo Gone” in her mouth…. Their advice? To keep her away from open flames for 24 hours… in case she burped… like grills being lit, cigarettes, and uh… birthday candles.

Happy Birthday, Tessa!


always be my baby September 12, 2008

Filed under: Family,Life,pieces — kunderwood @ 3:19 pm

A year ago right now I looked like this:

(leaving for the hospital… no fat jokes please… :))

I was going a little berzerko waiting for Tessa Grace to arrive… not realizing I still had several more hours ahead of me! But then, this!:

I can’t believe it’s been a year already! I’m trying not to be depressed that I am done with babies. In so many ways, the first year is my favorite part. Beyond all of the lack of sleep and feeding constantly, the only other thing babies really need is love. I can do that. It’s this “raising them” thing that’s giving me a hard time!

But in true Underwood fashion, we can’t let her sweet, special day go by without honoring her, so here are her accomplishments as of today:

+says “DaDa”, “Momma”, has a name for each sibling that I don’t know how to type out, signs and says “more,” and waves and says “bye.” She also says dog, which sounds a lot like the first name I wrote! 🙂 (However she says, “da da da” for dog… can’t you tell the difference??)

+she figured out how to climb up stairs… argh!!!

+she discovered the “water park”- known to everyone else in the family as the toilet- and tries to play in it whenever a kid leaves the bathroom door open.

+and to celebrate this day, this morning she figured out how to climb out of a high chair at the coffee shop!

Yep… year two, here we come~