Motherhood is…”It hurts you more than it hurts them.”

I guarantee in your motherhood journey a friend is going to say to you, “It hurts you more than it hurts them.”

When it comes to discipline it hurts mom hearts A LOT. I feel guilty, I question myself and what I’m doing, I feel sad for my kids…

And my kids? They just get mad at me and frustrated. Well let me tell ya mad and frustrated are a lot easier emotions to feel than guilt, self-doubt and sadness.

And just when I think I’ve emotionally damaged my kids with a punishment they turn around and repeat the behavior. Yup, pretty sure the punishment hurt me more than my kids.

The truth is, my boys know that I love them. And I’m just doing my best not to raise little assholes.

Weekend Recap • Low Key

Weekends aren’t too exciting for the Tumelsons. We aren’t winter people so we turn into major homebodies in the winter.

Friday night we had our weekly pizza night. We just hung out in front of the TV.

Saturday Nathan wanted to work in the Skeeter boat that is hibernating in our friend’s shop so we went over to Ryan and Tina’s. Nathan worked in the boat in the shop and I sat in the house with Tina. We chatted for hours and it was great to catch up.

We stopped by Rosauers on the way home and grabbed some steaks to grill for dinner.

Sunday was all the Sunday things. I made pancakes and bacon for breakfast. I love cooking weekend breakfast for my family.

Then Grady and I went to Walmart and Costco and got some groceries. I found a dog bed for Sage at Costco. Our girl is getting older and I feel like she needs spoiled in her old age. She loves it!

I did laundry and cleaned the house with Nathan worked in his little boat and the boys played “fishing” games.

I baked some yummy Valentines cookies from scratch…

HAHAHA! Yeah right. I don’t bake. I need really simple cookies. Like break the cookie dough squares apart and put them on the baking sheet simple.

Real life.

I made Costco chicken Alfredo for dinner, got all caught up on The Bachelor and it was early to bed for Monday.

Grady would have slept here all night with his puppy if I’d let him.

Happy Monday!

Follow Friday

It’s Fri-Yay!! I am so ready for a weekend with my family. My hubby is finally feeling better (not quite 100% but getting there) and I’m looking forward to a happier weekend the last 2…

Today I thought I’d changed it up from the typical Friday Favorites to my favorite Instagram profiles to follow. So in no particular order, here we go!

Autumn Calabrese. She is my favorite fitness instructor. I love working out with Autumn on Beachbody on Demand and I love her no bullshit approach to fitness through her Instagram. If you have excuses Autumn is going to call you out!

Joel Freeman. I mean other than the eye-candy, HELLO! He’s another fitness coach I love to follow because he takes a REAL LIFE approach to health and fitness. He drinks wine and eats the birthday cake. Joel teaches how to be fit and healthy yet enjoy some of those indulges in life guilt free.

Just Ingredients is a page I recently discovered and you all need to follow her right NOW. She brings to the forefront all of the chemically made ingredients that are SO bad for us. I mean cancer linked bad for us. She will tell you simple, easy alternatives (we’re talking same shelf at the grocery store) that could save your life.

Teachers Follow Teachers. Because this teacher loves to get sneak peaks into other teachers’ classrooms and steal ideas.

Tony Robbins. Just a life mentor. This guy is probably my #1 to follow.

Baby’s First Breath. This is the birth photography page of my dear friends Amy McCall And Whitney Barnes. And because birth stories are my favorite I love all the mamas and babies in my feed. Plus Amy and Whit are amazing at their job!!

There you have it. Go find them on Insta!

Happy Friday!!!

Mom Guilt

Mom guilt…every mom everywhere has experienced it. And lately it’s been heavy on my heart. Why? Because I don’t play with my kids enough. And I yell. A lot.

It’s winter and the Tumelsons hate winter. We aren’t the family to gear up and head to the mountains for sledding because we’d all last about 10 minutes and then we’d be cold and wet and want to go home. Even though this winter has been mild and in the 40’s that’s still about 15 minutes max for us and then we are back indoors next to the fireplace. So we are stuck inside and bored. My kids have more energy than they know what to do with. And the running and the jumping and the screaming and the fighting, even the delightful squeals are pushing me over the edge. So I yell. I lose my cool.

I’m also a firm believer in kids learning how to entertain themselves. It’s not my job to be friends with my kids and play with them. They should be able to play by themselves and boredom creates creativity. But sometimes I think I take that belief so far that a whole weekend will go by and I haven’t engaged in anything with my kids except cook for them, pick up after them and lose my patience with them.

But let’s be honest. Board games are ZERO fun with my kids. Joshua is a poor sport and sucks the fun right out of a game. Grady is too little to follow the rules or know how to play. Scratch that idea. Anytime I’ve got out coloring or crafts it holds their attention for about 5 minutes and then I have a huge mess to clean up. Anytime I’ve looked up Pinterest projects like slime or shaving cream Joshua freaks out about the texture and doesn’t like it. Each time I’ve tried to get them in the kitchen to bake cookies with me I end up doing it by myself because they last in the kitchen about 5 seconds.

I’m raising boys. Boys that want to run and jump and wrestle and shoot nerf guns at each other. And Mama just ain’t into all that. I do hang with them a lot outside in the summer. But this winter thing is lame. And we are all cooped up. And I don’t want to play with my kids.

And that’s the guilty truth.

February Home Decor

Getting out the Valentines Day decor made my heart happy for a few reasons…

1. It reminds me that February is so close. My birthday month. Joshua’s birthday month.

2. Valentines Day. I will always remember that first Valentine’s Day as a mom. Joshua was only 5 days old. Nathan had been home with us on paternity leave and my heart was so full. We always stay home and have a steak dinner.

3. When it’s time for the Valentines decor to come down the SPRING decor goes up!! YAS! Spring makes me heart hopeful.

So here is a little peak at my home. All signs of December/January officially gone.


The boys table in the living room. This is where they eat sometimes and do homework.

Entrance table. Valentines Day is all about the roses.

On top of our coat rack in the dining room.

Our dining room table and the table runner Grandma Linda made me. 💕


It’s the little things like a home decor change up to pull me out of the winter blues!

Recap • Recovery

Where have I been?! This blog has been pretty quiet. Well, here’s the truth. When life gets overwhelming for me this space is the first thing to take a back seat. I love to write but often the blog feels like something else on my list that I have to do so when life gets hard I just don’t stress about getting it done. So I’ve taken some time off. And here’s why…

My class this year is HARD. So hard. The most challenging class I’ve ever been called to teach. Coming back from Christmas Break has been rough. It felt like the first few weeks of school all over again and I came home just completely spent. Mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted. I would make dinner for my family and then hang out on the couch with my boys and was in bed by 8pm every night.

I also started a new workout program in the mornings. It’s Shaun T’s Transform 20 and it’s intense cardio. I just have the hardest time getting up for cardio at 4am so I changed my morning routine a bit. It works for me but it doesn’t give me as much quiet time in the mornings. I get up at 4:45am and drink my pre-workout. I workout from 5-5:30am and then after my shower I get coffee time from 5:45-6:15am. Between reading my Bible and watching a few minutes of the news I don’t have time to write a blog post. So I’ve gotta figure out how to add this into my routine.

And the other thing that’s been going on…well…Nathan had a vasectomy. And this was supposed to be a simple procedure that turned into a simple recovery. He had it done on Friday, January 11th. Today is the 21st and he’s still not better. He’s still swollen and bruised and in pain. Because it was supposed to be a simple recovery but he got an infection. It’s been awful. He’s been in so much pain and discomfort. To make it worse this morning he took his last antibiotic and he’s still not better. And the antibiotic he’s taking is really hard on his stomach. And now he has to call the doctor and ask for more antibiotic because he’s not better. And he’s losing his patience and I don’t blame him. I’ve cried multiple times for him. I’m so helpless. I can’t do anything to help him. So I’ve just been trying to make really good food for him. I’ve been nurturing the heck out of him. Probably overboard because it’s the only way to feel like I’m helping.

Here’s a couple of the good meals I’ve made in the last week…

Skillet pizza

Breakfast casserole

meatballs with penne pasta

Needless to say my anxiety has been pretty worked up lately. And when I get anxious I get quiet. So that’s where I’ve been and why this blog has been quiet.

Prayers for my husband are welcomed.

P.S. It’s still January.

Sunday Meal Planning • Jan 6th

Wowza we have a busy week ahead! It’s all about report card assessments at school as we near the end of the first semester. I have 2 parent meetings and a training at the district office. Nathan has an pre-op appointment and a surgical procedure on Friday. I took the day off to be with him. So ya know throw sub notes into all that mix. Joshua has his breakfast of champions at school and is being recognized for being the respect student of the month. My mother-in-law has a birthday on Tuesday. But what I think I’m most excited for this week is…The Bachelor starts tomorrow!

So with all that being said, my meals this week are quick and easy!

Monday: Sheet pan baked chicken wings and steamed veggies

Tuesday: Crunchy Taco Hamburger Helper and corn

Wednesday: Baked chicken breasts topped with cheese & salsa and a green salad

Thursday: Elk fried steak topped with country gravy, mashed potatoes and green beans

Friday: Pioneer Woman’s skillet pizza

The nice thing about a busy week is they go by fast and next weekend at home with my family will be here before ya know it!


Share Your…Resolutions!

My bestie Jenna over at Tractors and Glam started a fun little link up with The Bolin Bunch. The first Thursday of each month we will be sharing parts of our lives!

So today it’s all about our 2019 resolutions/goals.

Set goals. Yes, I just made a goal to set goals. Monthly goals. I got this awesome little planner from Commit 30 and each month I can set a 30 day challenge (goal) and then mark off each day that I meet it!

January’s challenge is…

Coffee stands on Friday’s only. I have a bad habit of visiting the coffee stand daily when I’m perfectly capable of making my own coffee at home. This will save me time and money and make the coffee stand feel like a treat!

Workout 5x per week. Every week of the year!! I want to fully commit to my health and just feel my best through daily exercise and moving my body.

Read the Bible. I’ve never read the entire Bible. In fact, I’ve only read bits and pieces. I want to know the stories and know the Word.

Let go of the past. This is going to take some work, and possibly some counseling, but there are some things I’ve experienced the last few years that I’ve buried and this year needs to be the year I surface them, work through them and let them go.

And you know, just be more present with my kids. Be a better listener as a wife. Continue my gratitude journal. Stress less. Worry less. Be happy.

Share where you see yourself in 5 years…

I will be 39. Nathan will hit the big 4-0. Joshua will be 12 and Grady will be 9. We will still be living in our house. I hope the boys are involved in sports and/or obsessed with fishing. Nathan will have his big ol’ shop built in the backyard. I will still be teaching in the Lewiston School District and Nathan will have been promoted at SEL. We will be a happy, healthy little family of 4 that hangs out a lot together outside camping, fishing and hiking.

10 Days of Christmas Break

Today we are back to school and winter break is officially over. Small sigh. But life keeps moving forward. I am so thankful for the quiet time with my boys and for all the rest. I am refreshed and so ready to see my Webster Family and my 2nd graders today!!

Here’s a look at out holiday break!

On the first day of Christmas break we…

Went to see Santa! Our Elf, Chuck, also brought us treats to celebrate our first day of vacation.

Grady refused to even stand next to Santa this year. He was being shy and stubborn and it didn’t matter how much I bribed he refused. But Joshua was excited to see Santa and smiled so big! He asked for a mountain cave LEGO Minecraft set and those elves better be able to build it because it costs $350 on Amazon. I’m trying to explain to Joshua that Santa has been watching him all year and will get Joshua what he feels is the best fit gift, not necessarily what he asked for. Because the reality is Santa is bringing the boys a basketball hoop. NOT Legos that cost almost $400!!!

On the second day of Christmas Break…

The boys went to Grammy’s and I got to go out to Asotin Elementary and see all my friends! It was great to see some of my old co-workers and my past students. It filled my cup right up! And the boys loved getting to play with Grammy for an afternoon.

On the third day of Christmas Break we…

…had a PJ day!! We never got out of our pajamas and it was glorious! The boys lounged all day long and I cleaned out the downstairs bedroom. That bedroom had become a holding tank for all the things that I had no idea what to do with. It became a place I just dumped everything and you could barely walk in that room. Now it can actually function as a spare bedroom. Next steps are to get our friend Kyle to get his cougar out of there. Buy bedding and window treatments that actually match and a few more things we need to haul out like a broken TV and some chairs. But it’s so much better!

On the fourth day of Christmas Break…

…the boys went to the junk store with Grandma and Grandpa! They picked up these goodies and were so excited.

On the fifth day of Christmas Break we…

…went to see The Grinch at the theater as a family! We loved the movie. It was such a great version and followed the book pretty well, which I always love when a movie is true to the book! We ate too much popcorn and had some family fun.

On the sixth day of Christmas Break…

…we had family time in Moscow! We had the Sprenger family Christmas and everyone could make it this year. It was a full house and it was great to see all my cousins again.

On the seventh & eighth day of Christmas Break…

…we had Christmas! And you can read all about it here.

On the ninth day of Christmas Break…

Joshua Ball Camp

…Joshua had a day camp with the LCSC Warriors basketball team. He was so excited to learn new skills to practice on his basketball hoop that he got from Santa!

On the tenth day of Christmas Break…


…the boys had a sleepover with Grandma and Grandpa while Nathan and I had husband and wife time fishing with our friends on the Clearwater River.

It was such a good winter break. I loved every minute of it. It’s hard to go back to work for sure.

December Recap & January Goals

New month, new YEAR, new goals!

First let’s take a look back at December…

Workout 5x per week. Did this!! This is a goal I’m carrying into the new year!

Say no. I did. I said no. I had some guilt. I even got into a dispute with family. But I held my ground and said no for my mental health this month. I don’t regret it.

Santa Pictures and Locomotive Park. We did get Santa pictures taken but we never made it to the light park this year.

Buy a 2019 planner. Done! I bought a planner from Commit 30 and I LOVE!!

So let’s take a look at what I want to accomplish in January!

Read to the boys 5x per week. As a teacher mom this is so shameful for me to admit but I don’t read to my kids. I know it’s awful because I know how important it is and I tell parents of my students alll the time to read with their kids. So, it’s time I make a conscious effort to read with my boys!

Workout 5x per week. I wanna keep it up!

Hot Shots coffee only on Fridays. I have an expensive habit of stopping by Hot Shots every morning on the way to work, and even on the weekend before getting groceries. I want to make it a treat by only getting an iced Americano once a week!

Leave my phone in my purse until the boys go to bed after work. Hi, my name is Tara and I’m a phoneoholic. Seriously. I’m addicted to my phone and I’m setting a terrible example for my kids and screen time. If my phone rings or I get a text I will take my phone out and check it. But otherwise it’s staying in my purse so I stay off social media!

And there ya have it. I hate January. It’s just a long, dark, cold month and I hope it goes by fast!!