NIKKI GREENFIELD | STEADY MOTHERHOOD

Being a stay at home mom does not come easy to me.  If you would have asked me five years ago about staying home with my kids, my answer would have been a hard NO. I wanted a glamorous life filled with lunch appointments and traveling.  I thought that I would lose my identity if I stayed at home and became a mom.  What I didn’t know at the time was that God was writing a different story for my life. One that was much richer and sweeter than I could have imagined.  Staying at home with my kids, although it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, it’s also the best thing that has ever happened to me.  It’s not a glamorous life by any means (I have Emory’s lunch splattered on my shirt as I type) but it’s a sanctifying service that brings me closer to the Lord and reminds me of my dependency on Him day after day.

So if you’re a new stay at home mom (like me) this series #steadymotherhood is just for you! 

I have introduced you to Mary Beth from Annapolis and Company , have shared with you a my top five morning to-do’s on and our kick-off post.  Today, I have the pleasure of introducing you to Nikki Greenfield.  I met Nikki about five years ago when Alex and I joined Riverside Church.  She’s a pastor’s wife and the Director of Riverside/West Lauderdale’s Classical Conversation.  She also has three beautiful babies (and one adorable foster baby) and has been an encouragement to my life since the day we first met.

Nikki Greenfield

 

How long have you been a stay at home mom and to how many kids?

10 years, 3 biological kids and 1 foster baby

If you could describe your parenting style in one word, what would it be?

Grace

If you could offer some advise to a brand new stay at home mom, what would it be?

Have grace for yourself as much as your child, especially on the days when you don’t feel well, or your hormones are going crazy or you burned breakfast, or your husband has no clean underwear and you forgot to start the dryer or when you feel utterly overwhelmed or completely bored or just plain discontent with your life. Newsflash: you’re not perfect! Challenge yourself to be more patient with your crying baby, more organized around the house and more attentive to your husband without expecting yourself to do it all perfectly.

What’s your one tip for getting your day started on the right foot?

Get out of bed before your baby! Honestly, I think it looks different on different days.  Sometimes a walk or run before everyone else wakes up is just what I need. Other days, it’s a few quiet moments with a hot drink and some time in God’s Word. Or it might be simply washing the dishes or grabbing a quick shower before little ones are requiring my undivided attention!

Do you have any book/movies/pod-cast/IG feeds recommendations to help us on our journey?

Hands down, Revive Our Hearts, with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, is the podcast I listen to most. Incredibly encouraging.

If you had one whole day all to yourself what would it look like?

The beach. Coffee. A book. My journal and Bible. An undisturbed nap. That pretty much sums it up!

What do you enjoy most about being a stay at home mom?

It’s a huge privilege that I get to spend all day almost every day with my kids while they’re so small. I love that I get to be there for all their cuteness and to see the hilarious things they say and do as they figure out the world around them. In the difficult, pull-your-hair-out, hide-in-the-closet-and-cry moments, I try really hard to remember that my time at home with them is a gift and that it’ll be over before I know it.

Nikki Greenfield

Thank you so much Nikki for taking the time to share and encourage us stay at home moms. I just subscribed to the Revive Our Hearts, with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth podcast and have been listening to it nonstop!

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Steady Motherhood | Starting a club

Finding balance in the everyday

Steady Motherhood | Top Five Morning To-Do’s

Home Workouts- getting it done

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MARY BETH FROM ANNAPOLIS & CO. | STEADY MOTHERHOOD

If you’ve followed along with us, you know that over the past couple of months, my world has taken a turn.  After practicing as a nurse and having our third child, I put down my stethoscope and embraced my new title of stay at home mom.  This gig is not easy. I am finding myself in need of a tribe and for that reason, I started a club for newbie stay at home moms, like myself on Instagram with the hashtag #steadymotherhood.  I am also in desperate need of advise for this new season in my life, and I am seeking out wisdom from more seasoned stay at home moms.

The truth is that I have no idea what I’m doing.  Ok. I know the kids need to eat and wear clothes and the dishes and laundry need to be washed, but what do I do about my child’s heart? how do I impart Godly wisdom? how do I go about teaching them the word of God, and how do I keep it together and not lose my marbles every time they all start screaming… at the same time??

Honestly, I don’t know. But I do know some amazing women who are raising godly children and are doing an incredible job at it.  This week, I want to introduce you all to the sweet Mary Beth from Annapolis & Company.  Mary Beth is a mother of four and lives in the suburbs of Atlanta. She is a writer, photographer, an encourager at heart and is launching her very own children’s clothing company soon! I have been reading her blog for years now and Jesus is at the very core of everything she writes and of who she is. She was kind enough to share some of her steady motherhood wisdom with us and I know you are going to love her!

Mary Beth from Annapolis and Company Mary Beth from Annapolis and Company

  • How long have you been a stay at home mom and to how many kids?
I left my job at a doctor’s office when I was 3 months along with my first baby. Call me a chicken, but I hated dry-heaving over a public toilet every day so I told my boss I was pregnant and I wanted to go home. We ended up having 3 kids in 3 years, a miscarriage, and then our fourth baby made for 2 girls and 2 boys and that kind of rounded things out for us. Although, we’re the type of people who never say “never”….so….
  • If you could describe your parenting style in one word, what would it be?
Laid-back
  • If you could offer some advise to a brand new stay at home mom, what would it be?
I’d hand her a book called Steady Days, A Journey Toward Intentional, Professional Motherhood and I’d tell her that first of all, she can do it! Our culture will tell her she can sit in her sweatpants all day watching TV, forgetting to brush her teeth, and letting Elmo babysit, (those things all have their time and place – believe me!) but I’d tell her that motherhood can and should be an intentional position of leadership. Being a mom is like being a guide. We show our kids what to value, where to spend their time, and how to take care of themselves and their surroundings by what we model. Yes, motherhood will be all of things people tell you it is – messy, full of mistakes, and selfless – but after you’ve gone to the bathroom and had a good cry about that, tell yourself that it is not an excuse to just survive every day. Create good, intentional habits in your home. These don’t have to be Pinterest-mom-perfect. I’m talking a Word document with some chores printed out and stuck to the refrigerator. Or a ritual of nightly prayers with your kids. Or family dinners (we love pancake night!) at 6. But be intentional.
  • What’s your one tip for getting your day started on the right foot?
I always, always get up before my kids. Having a little quiet time to read and drink my coffee before the household comes alive is the oxygen I breathe from all day.
  • Do you have any book/movies/pod-cast/IG feeds recommendations to help us on our journey?
How much time do you have?! Just kidding. My favorite podcast that has to do with flourishing in motherhood is The Simple Show by Tsh Oxenreider. She has many of the same values our family has and I find myself coming away inspired.
  • If you had one whole day all to yourself what would it look like?
I’d book a hotel around the corner, bring my stack of books, and order room service for dinner.
  • What do you enjoy most about being a stay at home mom?
I love just being here for my kids. I get to be the one to pull my baby out of his crib every morning and give him a hug. I get to be the one in carpool to pick up my kids from school and watch them run to me with big smiles, talking all at once. I get to be the one who hears their stories and their creative ideas. These tiny moments are the ones that build up over time and create the memory I will have of them and they will have of me. 
I think that’s beautiful.
Find Mary Beth here: Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
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STEADY MOTHERHOOD | TOP FIVE MORNING TO-DO’S

top-five-morning-to-dos

 

I’m all about that “rise and shine” life, but there’s something about HOW I “rise” that helps me keep my sanity throughout the day.  First off, I don’t like to be woken up by little people, it makes me cranky and makes me feel like I’m playing catch-up the rest of the day.

For that reason, I have my top five morning to-do’s that sets the tone for my day and overall mood.

  1. Wake up before everybody else. Even if it’s just five minutes before the other kids wake up, spending a couple of minutes by yourself will give you an opportunity to hit the start button on your own.  I like to change into some sort of exercise attire and stretch my back before having to pick up my sweet babies. Waking up early is especially hard for me since I’m still getting up in the middle of the night to feed Emory. However, spending those five minutes by myself are enough for me to do a few stretches, splash some water on my face or even get the coffee started.
  2. Pray and ask God for help. The days are long and demanding, and praying first thing in the morning sets me up for success. It gives me an opportunity to pause and remember that He is my strength (Psalm 28:7). Sometimes my prayers are longer than others, but spending that time (however long it may be) really sets my mind on all that is good.
  3. Caffeine. Drink your Ice coffee, hot coffee, tea or whatever else you feel helps you feel awake. I try to sip it as fast as I can so it can kick in quickly, but most days, I end up throwing a few ice cubes in my mug and sipping it throughout the day. Some days I embrace the crazy and leave the pot on the counter for refills as the day goes on.
  4. Do your make up. You don’t have to glam up, but a little concealer, mascara and lipgloss goes a long way.  Sometimes I even put on my favorite shade of red lipstick. Maybe I won’t leave the house all day or see anyone other than my kids, but I have to look at myself every time I pass by a mirror and seeing my cheeks rosie and my lips shine, brightens me up. Also, I’m more likely to take a selfie if I look a little bit more decent.
  5. Figure out your top three priorities. When you’re dealing with kids, you have to expect that absolutely everything is going to go wrong. You are going to have to deal with temper tantrums, spilled food, dog poop, kid poop, tears, disobedience, night terrors, day terrors… you name it. Sometimes an entire day goes by and you have picked up the same toy and cleaned up the same spilled cheerios and you feel like you’ve done absolutely nothing all day long. I know. I’ve been there.  What helps me is making a top three list and make sure that I do my best to accomplish those three things in spite of what is thrown my way. Sometimes the list is simple ex. make a dental cleaning appointment, water the plants, vacuum the rugs. Sometimes it’s a bit more taxing like take Emory to her three month appointment, wash one load of laundry and make pasta for dinner. It’s a simple list, and it’s obvious that I do WAY more than that (like 20 diaper changes) but somehow seeing it and crossing it off, gives me a sense of productivity.

That’s it!  Simple right?

Sweet mama, what’s important is that you figure out what works for you and that you remember WHY you decided to become a stay at home mom. Also, give yourself some grace because I’m sure that even super woman’s floors aren’t mopped daily and her laundry probably runneth over… 

Happy mothering!

What are your thoughts? Is there anything that helps you stay focused through your day or is there a routine that helps kick start your morning? I’d love to hear it!!

Like this post?  Are you a new stay at home mom who needs encouragement? Are you an experienced stay at home mom who has some wisdom to share to us newbies?

Head over to Instagram and tag a few of your motherhood photos with #STEADYMOTHERHOOD  and maybe send me a emoji hand wave or a prayer because man… I need it!

 

 

You may have missed:

Steady Motherhood: Starting a club 

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How to make it through your first week post-partum 

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STEADY MOTHERHOOD| STARTING A CLUB

Steady motherhood

I have a confession to make.  Up until one month ago, I thought I was going to have to go back to work as a nurse, working 12 hour shifts at the hospitals and saving the lives of those who look at you  as a glorified stewardess, and the thought of that, scared the you know what out of me.  Nurses have a tough job and they are highly under appreciated and for the most part underpaid. They do jobs that no one wants to do and get beat up by patients who should be kissing the ground they walk on.

On to my next point…. you know who else has a really tough job??? STAY AT HOME MOMS!!  Seriously,  there’s nothing like spending every ounce of energy on little people who don’t thank you and don’t let you sleep.  They follow you everywhere, disobey and then hit you with the cutest smiles after they’ve emptied the entire roll of toilet paper in the bowl.

So, as a nurse turned stay at home mom, you can only imagine my fears about the next 10 years of my life, and all of the questions that come with it… like how do I tap into my time management skills and get these kids on a schedule? Can I call in a consult on my crabby toddler? Are there any pamphlets that I can print out to help with this scenario? and my favorite… can I medicate these children and let them sleep it off?

Truth is that no one really prepares you for full child-immersion and regardless of what job you work, there’s always quitting time. So, as a working adult, turned stay at home mom, I have had to figure a few things out to help me keep my sanity as I attempt to raise three little humans.

For those of you mamas who have no idea what they’re doing when it comes to being a stay at home mom… fear no more. I am starting a club.  A we don’t know what we’re doing but we really want to figure it out club.  A lets lean on God’s grace because we surely can’t do it on our own club and a Lets hold each others hand as we dive hard into a life that we are freaking out about, but we know that it’s ultimately for the best club.

So does it sound appealing?  Are you interested in joining because I could certainly use the moral support.

For the next few months, I’ll be dedicating an entire section of this blog to this new adventure of being a brand new stay at home mom.  I’ll share a few tips, write about what I’m learning and introduce you to some amazing mamas who have totally figured this stay at home mom thing out.

My hope is that if you’re a newbie-stay at home mom like me, you’ll find some encouragement through these pages and you’ll feel comforted knowing that we are rooting for you and are here to offer up all kinds of ciber-support.

 

I’ll be calling this section Steady Motherhood and I’ll be starting a IG tag #STEADYMOTHERHOOD if you want to join me there too!

So here’s to all the stay at home moms, the ones who have traded in their Masters degree, briefcase and corporate ladder accolades for leaky breasts, Daniel the tiger re-runs and potty training accidents. Here’s to the moms who have sacrificed so much to see their kids grow up with the knowledge of the Word of God and who time and time again show their kiddos the love of God through their daily tasks!

Lets start a club yea?

“Your greatest contribution to the kingdom of God may not be something you do but someone you raise.” -Andy Stanley

P.S: Don’t forget to tag your Instagram photos with #steadymotherhood

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