Kindness is trending.
There are times to be a good human being. This is one of them.
I have never experienced times such as these (neither have my parents).
Humanity has collectively found itself in a situation that seems to drastically polarize human behaviour — showcasing both the ugly, as well as the true kindness and beauty that we seem to naturally share. Circumstances such as these bring out the worst and the very best in humanity.
In these times, I prefer to focus on and emphasize the best of humanity. And there truly is an ample amount of it; an abundant avalanche that can be immersive. An unprecedented amount of the world is focused on social and traditional media, both of which are turning to good works and instances of kindness across humankind. The collective appreciation of one another has been raised.
This impulse towards positivity at this time brings me to actress Olivia Munn, her mother Kimberly, and their family kitchen.
You’ve seen Olivia Munn in multiple films over the last few years, the latest being Love, Wedding, Repeat, which just dropped on Netflix. It’s very much a British comedy — and I recently watched it and definitely enjoyed it.
Another one of Munn’s projects caught my eye — one that was surprisingly right smack in the middle of my industry.
An act of love and kindness from Olivia Munn to her mother which celebrated its two-year anniversary on Mother’s Day 2020. It’s a beautiful example of a quality Design-Build project, and I wanted to shine the spotlight on it right now in 2020 while our very own families are dealing with our current situation.
A touching family story
Olivia Munn surprised her mother two years ago with a home remodel and an entirely new kitchen. It was a renovation of her childhood home in Oklahoma City, OK, where her mother Kimberly still lives.
As a bit of backstory, Munn’s mother Kimberly Schmid is originally from Vietnam and arrived in Oklahoma in 1975 as a refugee following the Vietnam War. She was an immigrant here in the United States to make a life for herself and later her family.
Olivia was born in Oklahoma, then primarily raised in Japan — she moved back to Oklahoma with her mother in high school. Munn then attended the University of Oklahoma, graduating with a B.A. in Journalism and a minor in Japanese and dramatic arts (she is additionally a blackbelt in Taekwondo).
Kimberly’s kitchen remodel
Two years ago, Munn decided to make it an extremely memorable Mother’s Day by teaming up with Houzz.com, her stepfather, and a local Design-Build specialist by the name of Travis Morelock who she found through www.Houzz.com. Travis is the owner of MIDMODERN design based in Oklahoma. MIDMODERN creates caring and absolutely beautiful work, of which Kimberly’s kitchen and home are a prime example.
This creative team redesigned her childhood kitchen to accommodate the 5’1’’ Kimberly, who loves to create in the kitchen and cook amazing meals, as well as invite others over and entertain.
They actually tackled more than just the kitchen — in the process, they addressed and sorted out the dining room and living room, which at the outset were all combined in the same space.
Kimberly could not reach upper shelves and the overall kitchen space was cluttered, with insufficient storage space for the full battery of pots, pans, and cooking items Kimberly needed.
Munn had the goal of keeping her mother off the step stool as much as possible. As a result, the counter was lowered several inches and cabinet rack systems were installed for increased access to these items. The ceiling was raised to increase the feeling of space, and an innovative “appliance garage” was built to house appliances while keeping them plugged in.
The end result is truly beautiful. A testament to the creativity and care of those involved and the inherent truth and efficiency of the Design-Build method.
Considering how much time we are all spending at home during quarantine, there is a lot to be said for a home makeover of the family kitchen, dining, and living room areas.
Design-Build style for maximum efficiency of financial investment, speed, and quality.
Thank you, Olivia
Munn has risen to international stardom with films such as X-Men: Apocalypse, The Predator, Iron Man 2, Magic Mike, Zoolander 2, and Violet. She’s also advocated for animal rights for years and recently helped her friend and fellow actor Henry Golding and his wife foster a dog during the COVID-19 home quarantine. That in itself was beautiful to see.
Munn seems to be a strong, grounded, and caring human being. Exactly what the world needs at these times.
Thank you Olivia for the beautiful example. Spread strength — and kindness.