On the SevenFREAKINteenth Day of Christmas Break

On the SevenFREAKINteenth day of Christmas break, I was busy giving myself a pretty good guilt trip.

I need to get out in the sub-zero weather and peddle some Girl Scout cookies with Ella.  

I really should take the kids somewhere fun on one of their last days of break.  

And then after looking at Facebook…Oh look at the super fun trip they are on!!!  Geez my poor kids don’t get to do anything fun.

Alas, my nose was running like a faucet, and I had a ton to do to get ready before my Daddy’s surgery on Wednesday.  My sweet friend, Rheanne, gave me a pep talk when I was having a mini breakdown.  She reminded me that the kids were going to be just fine and that I just needed to focus on taking care of myself and my daddy.

So I allowed myself to remove “Entertainer” from my Mama job description and let them entertain themselves.  And guess what?  The day was pretty awesome.  Sure we stayed in our pajamas all day.  And Matthew played his Lego Dimensions WAY too much, but he also colored an entire dinosaur coloring book.  No one fought (excessively that is) and I didn’t have to take anyone to the ER.  Score!

When I found the below video on my iPhone after the umpteenth low storage message on my phone, I decided we need to have a lot more days like this where the kids can just be kids.

Too many quotes that I love to even pick one!  Of course I had to find the original one that they made a couple of years ago…

We (me included) spend so much time trying to make sure our kids are involved in the right activities, getting good grades and all the other absurd pressures for kids today.

We need to just let them be kids, have fun, use their imagination and record a talk show in their room with their big sister  🙂

 

 

Immanuel in the Hard Times

“Mama, please don’t let me watch another movie that will make my nose burn!” Matthew said with tears in his eyes. We had just watched E.T. for the first time, and my sweet sensitive son was overcome with sadness.

I thought his description of how you feel when tears are starting to form was quite accurate. My nose burns as I feel my eyes start to well with tears. Unfortunately, that has been a daily feeling for me the last couple of weeks.

I am in one of those seasons where there has been tragic event after tragic event in my little community. I feel like my heart is being held together by a very thin thread. One more thing and it will just fall apart.

This morning I sat in my Sunday School class and asked for prayers for each of these heartbreaking situations. Just one of these would have been tough to bear. My nose burned and my eyes watered as I asked for prayers for my friends, my family, and myself.

Our lesson was in the 1st chapter of Matthew as we prepare to celebrate Jesus’ birth on Christmas.

The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel – which means “God with us.” Matthew 1:23 (NIV)

God whispered to my heart, “Immanuel – God is with you. I am holding your heart together.”

Unfortunately, we will all go through seasons where we feel like we are dealt blow after emotional blow. I am so thankful for Immanuel, God with Us.

Immanuel.  

Immanuel.  

God is with YOU.

%22The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel – which means “God with us.”

The GRINCH Who Hated Football

The Grinch Who Hated FootballI am not sure if my youngest, Matthew, is actually related to me. I mean I look at him and see that he is the perfect combination of Eric and me, but there is something that is just off about him.

He hates football. Seriously. Hates it. He can’t honestly be a Greer and hate football. I mean it is our family tradition.

We can usually convince him to go to the first few games, but I never make it to a game past mid-October. Eric still goes with Ethan and Ella rallies sometimes too. I stay home with the Grinch who hates football.

Yesterday on the way home from our trip, I asked Matthew why he hated football. Without skipping a beat he growled (just like the Grinch)… 

When they get in the stadium it is filled with that

Noise! Oh, the Noise! Noise! Noise!

Then they Feast!

Feast! Feast! Feast! Feast!

They feast on popcorn and nachos and hot dogs

And they Sing!

Sing! Sing! Sing! Sing!

They Sing Rocky Top every time they score!

I cannot take it any more!!!

 Drop the freakin mic.

I am just passing the MacBook on to him.

Peace Out.

Two Hospitals in Three Hours – EEEKKS!!

Today we visited two hospitals in less than three hours.  EEEKKS!!

One visit was planned.  The other was…not.  Lemme explain.

Last weekend we had a combined birthday party for our three children.  They are all October babies, so we thought having a costume party would be a blast.  We decided that instead of asking for presents, we would ask for donations.  We asked the children to bring donations for the Centennial Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).  We did this for several reasons:

1.  The Centennial NICU has a very special place in our hearts.  My twins were preemies and spent their first 5 weeks and 1 day of their life there.

2.  We thought it was important to teach our children the importance of charitable giving.

3.  We didn’t want any of the guests to feel like they needed to buy a present for all three of my kids.

4. We spoil them enough; my kids don’t need one more thing in their room!!

Today we loaded up 48 receiving blankets,12 bibs,12 onesies, 2, sleepers, 6 of the tiniest most precious pants, and over $100 in donations for the Centennial NICU.  The nurses were over the moon excited about the donations.  We even saw a nurse that was in the unit when Ethan and Ella was there, and she remembered them!

Southern Lady Mama - nicu donations

We had such a good conversation on the way home about how God wants us to show His love and help take care of His people.  They also had a lot of questions about my time in the hospital.  Ella asked me if I was scared.  I answered, “I was but God blessed me with such a peace that just isn’t possible without Him.  We had hundreds of people praying for me and you!”  It is amazing to me that God used this situation to not only strengthen my faith, but also as a way to teach my children about His love and faithfulness. They have a very real example about how your faith can give you peace in the worst of times.

We were home from the hospital for about ten minutes when my youngest, Matthew, hit his chin with his handlebars on his Razor scooter.  Hospital #2.  3 stitches.  It was a rather uneventful visit with the inevitable long doctor wait for the stitches.  After he had enough of the waiting, he started counting (quite loudly) “1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi, 3 Mississippi,” then sighed loudly and exclaimed, “Oh for Pete’s Sake!  This is ridiculous!!  1 Texas, 2 Texas, 3 Texas….”all the way up to 100 Texas 🙂

I feel so blessed that God gave me these three babies to raise to love Him, care for His people, and for Pete’s Sake – laugh.  Like A lot.

A Halloween Matthewism

It is 46 days until Halloween, so we are obviously in deep negotiations with the kids about costumes.  They have been tossing out ideas for weeks now and it is crunch time.  I have two hard and fast rules for our costumes: 1.  I will not make any costumes (I know my limits) and 2.  Nothing scary.

IMG_3458My 6 year old, Matthew, is always trying to get around the last rule.  Last year he wanted to be a skeleton, and he skirted it by picky out the goofiest looking one and being “Funny Bones.”  This year he is on the Grimm Reaper campaign.  I promptly told him, “No way.”  He was completely perplexed when I told him that it was a symbol for Death.  “No,” he told me emphatically, “the Grimm Reaper is a farmer that carries a hoe around!”

When he got home today, he was armed and ready with his arguments to be the Grimm Reaper.  The entire walk around the block, he entertained me with his well thought out, creative story about the baby Grimm Reaper.

You see Mama, I am just a kid, so I wouldn’t be the big Grimm Reaper.  I am the baby Grimm Reaper.  My parents (the big ones) were really tough on me always wanting me to be bad.  But I decided I didn’t want to be bad and I loved God and wanted to help people.  So you see I am not a bad Grimm Reaper, I am a good Grimm Reaper.  I go around and tell people about God’s love and farm wheat.  Everyone likes wheat, right?  I am a Missionary Farmer Reaper.  So instead of saying “Trick or Treat” on Halloween, can I say “Let the light of God be with you?”

Are you kidding me?  Grimm Reaper costume. In. The. BAG.

How This Simple Game Can Solve Any Problem

“Rock, Paper, Scissors, GOD!!!!”How This Simple Game Can Solve Any Problem

(God is jazz hands in case you were wondering…)

This was the new game that my three young children were playing. Over. And over. And over again.

Have I mentioned that my kids are a tad bit on the weird side? I have no clue where they came up with this variation on the classic game. The rules were similar to how I played:

Rock smashes Scissors.

Paper covers Rock.

Scissors cut Paper.

Then there was their addition. God. Simply put, God beats everything.

Even given that divine slam-dunk, they didn’t choose God every time. Then they would be shocked if their sibling chose God and won. My husband, Eric, and I would die laughing.

Why wouldn’t you choose God every dang time??

But we are all that way, aren’t we? When we are faced with a tough situation, do we always make the right choice? Do we immediately choose God? Or do we choose:

Rock (trying to deal with the issue on our own),

Paper (avoiding the issue by filling up our life with distractions) or

Scissors (talking to everyone else about it except God)?

Rock? Paper? Scissors? God?

BAM. God Wins. Every dang time.

********************

My youngest, Matthew, put a different spin on it this weekend. Instead of doing Rock, Paper, Scissors, or God, he added a new one. He made a motion in sign language. When I asked what it was, he yelled, “I just went all Holy Spirit on you!!”

Never in this world has this phrase ever been uttered.

How Can Little Ole Me Make a Difference?

Baltimore…Chattanooga… And Now Layfayette.

I am not gonna lie, there are times when I shake my head and think, “What is this world coming to? Sweet Jesus, please just come take us home now.”

It can be so overwhelming because there is so much hurt and need in this world. Senseless Violence. Sex trafficking. Domestic Abuse. Cancer. Racism.

How can little old me make a difference?When you wanna throw your hands up, you gotta bow your head down.

What kind of an attitude is that to have? Talk about being a defeatist. That is not Stephanie Greer. And that is not what I am raising my three kids to be. No. Siree. Bob.

When you wanna throw your hands up, you gotta bow your head down. I can’t make a difference everywhere there is a need, but I can where God lays my heart.

One of my favorite songs is by Matthew West, “Do Something.” I cannot hear it without being inspired and tearing up. Every dang time.

“I woke up this morning

Saw a world full of trouble no

Thought, how’d we ever get so far down

How’s it ever gonna turn around

So I turned my eyes to Heaven

I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”

Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of

People living in poverty

Children sold into slavery

The thought disgusted me

So, I shook my fist at Heaven

Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”

He said, “I did, I created you

Songwriter

WEST, MATTHEW

Published by

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

That’s right. He created you. He created me. And He wants me to Do Something.

Well last weekend I did something. I did something BIG. This little stay at home mom packed up and flew to Charlotte. Yes, I was the annoying person in the airport security line. Do I take my shoes off or not? Do I take my laptop out? What about my jewelry?? Because I was fancy…because I was traveling…without kids!! Cool people who travel all the time, have a little heart for those of us who fly once a year if they are lucky 😉

I traveled to Charlotte for a HUGE conference for writing and speaking. It was called She Speaks, and it produced by Proverbs 31 ministries. It was AWESOME.

I humbly sat in a room filled with eight HUNDRED women who were ready to do something. This team of sixty or so women from Proverbs 31 trained and armed us to go out to our mission fields and do something.

I met women whose ministry was to help end sex trafficking. Women who empowered women to break free from abusive relationships. Women who clothed cancer survivors in dignity. Women who worked with organizations to rescue people from extremely dangerous situations. Women who were bridging the gap between races.

And then there was little old me. A woman whose ministry is to love on mamas and sweet ladies who hope and pray to someday be a mama. How blessed am I to be called to do this?

God lays on our hearts a little piece of His kingdom that He wants us wrap up in our arms and love. We can’t do it all, but we can do something.  Whether it is volunteering your time, giving your hard earned money, or starting a ministry, you can make a difference.

Every night after dinner, my family and I take our dog, Lady, for a walk. We walk around the neighborhood and talk about our days, tell jokes, and are often quizzed about anything and everything. One night our six year old, Matthew, and I were walking hand in hand. As usual, he was quizzing me. Sometimes it is about things he learned in Kindergarten and sometimes it is about deep things. I often struggle to answer both!  I can’t remember all the word blend rules dang it!! “Mommy. Can you do nothing?” he asked. After a long, long day, I laughed and said, “Matthew, I could easily do nothing tonight!” He quickly corrected me and said, “No you couldn’t. Even if you were laying down you would be doing something.” “I suppose you are right, Matthew!” I agreed. Then he continued, “You see, God made us so that we had to be doing something all the time. So if you have to do something, then you better make it SOMETHING.”  He wiggled his eyes for emphasis 🙂

Maybe you are in a season in your life where your mission field is at home with your babies. There is no better place for a mama to spread her love. You are raising children that are going to grow up and do something. Maybe you are like me and all your babies are in school now. Now I have the luxury and a little extra time to focus on where I am called to serve. Maybe you know you want to do something, but you don’t even know where to begin! Where are your passions?  All you gotta do is pray about it, and God will make it clear.

Come on, girls. Let’s do something.