Friday, January 28, 2011

Cousin Tia's Obituary

Tia Lee King Murtaugh, 35

HERRIMAN, Utah — Tia Lee King Murtaugh, 35, passed away unexpectedly in her home on January 25, 2011. She was born April 22, 1975, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

She married Michael Matthew Murtaugh on June 26, 2010. They were extremely happy and excited about their new life together.

Tia was a very compassionate and loving person who often thought of others needs before her own. Hard work never intimidated her and she tackled every task whole-heartedly. Tia loved being with her family and enjoyed spending time outdoors in the mountains. Some of her hobbies included camping, 4-wheeling, going to the beach, spending time in California with the family of her husband, and learning and trying new things.

Tia had a great love for children, especially her nieces and nephews. She volunteered time working in elementary classrooms in high school and throughout college.

Tia graduated from Centauri High School in 1993. She continued her education at Adams State College, earned a degree in marketing, and worked as an operations manager at Home Depot. Tia had recently finished her student teaching at North Point Elementary as one of the last phases in completing her Master’s Degree in Education.

Tia was a dedicated member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in many callings. She loved the Gospel of Jesus Christ and served in the Alabama Birmingham Mission.

Tia is survived by her husband Mike of Herriman, Utah; her parents Gregory and Terri King of Manassa, Colo., in-laws Rick and Kathy Nelson of Westminister, Calif.; grandparents Harley and Janice Gilleland of Manassa, Colo., Coreda Adams of Santa Ana, Calif., James Murtaugh of Mesa, Ariz., and Mary Nelson of Huntington Beach, Calif.; siblings April (Patrick) Galan of Lehi, Utah, Kile (Nate) Carling of Lehi, Utah, Keith (Jamie) King of Manassa, Colo., Ashley (Andrew) Gray of Orem, Utah, Jordan (Kella) King of Hereford, Texas, Bryce (Brooke) King of Orem, Utah, Elder Tate King Philippines Olongapo Mission, Mike’s sister, Michelle (Brett) Beale of Corona, Calif., and numerous other relatives She was preceded in death by her grandparents Horace and Lavern King.

A viewing will be held on Monday, January 31, 2011, at the Manassa LDS Church beginning at 5 p.m. and again on Tuesday, February 1, 2011, from 9:30-10:30 a.m. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, February 1, 2011, at the Manassa LDS Church beginning at 11 a.m. Interment will be at Manassa Cemetery.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Snow Day Stuff

We were snowed-in today and judging by the way the fluffy white stuff is still falling, it may be awhile before we thaw out. Here are a few things we did to make our day a little less like a scene out of THE SHINING. First, we made the world's best and easiest play dough. It is super soft and smells so yummy that I just had to join Atley in taking an occasional taste.

1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup salt
1 pkg. Kool Aid
1 cup boiling water
1 1/2 TBL Oil
Mix dry ingredients, mix wet ingredients, combine, knead, let cool and play.

Then we collected the falling snow in a bowl to make ICE CREAM. Obviously, you don't need to collect it in a bowl. Just don't eat any yellow snow, if you know what I mean.

1 large bowl of fresh snow
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup milk-or more depending upon desired consistency
Combine snow, sugar, and vanilla, add 1 cup milk. QUICKLY, put ice cream in bowls add sprinkles and enjoy.

Monday, January 24, 2011

10 Minute Super Heroes

Nash spends a part of each day writing in a book that he calls his, "journal comic book." The characters in this comic are Superboy and his adorable sidekicks, Wormsday and Zeke. Atley has created an alternative universe in our basement that he calls Noray City. In Noray, he is married to a woman named Mrs. Meaner. Mrs. Meaner also teaches at the local elementary school. Atley's job in Noray City is to defend citizens from the evil clutches of his wife. With such vivid imaginations, I decided to whip up some capes for our daring duo. Afterall, it is WEEK #2 of Make-it Monday.

Step 1: Find an old pillow case and turn the open end over about 2 inches and hem across the bottom. (If you don't have an old pillow case take a long rectangular strip of fabric, fold it in half, then sew up the long sides leaving the top open, to resemble a pillow case-and follow the instructions in the first sentence.)

Step 2: Pick out your super hero emblem. Nash wanted an "S" for Superboy and Atley wanted a fish. (Actually, Atley wanted a cherry picker or an oil pipeline. I insisted on something a bit less difficult.) Iron Heat & Bond onto the fabric you are using for your emblem. I prefer felt. Cut out the object, peel the paper away and then iron it onto the cape. You can put a different hero emblem on each side of the pillow case, just in case your super-hero has more than one alter-ego, like mine do.

Step 3: Take a skinny strip of fabric, ribbon, or rope and using a safety pin slide it through the 2 inch hem. Tie it onto your little super hero!

I don't know about you, but I feel like the universe is a bit safer now that these capes are officially completed. Each cape took less than 10 minutes and they played in them for almost half an hour before moving onto the next mess. Therefore, I considered them a huge success.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Yesterday I watched the boys play with LEGOS while Harley fed herself the tiniest bites of rice puffs. I found myself a little mesmerized by each of their tiny hands as they manipulated the LEGO pieces or food in between chubby fingers. It seems like only minutes ago all 3 sets of these hands were born. Those hands seemed so helpless then. Now they are learning and growing everyday. It struck me what miracles these hands are, how quickly they are learning, and how much potential for good little hands have in the world.

Atley's hands are skinny with long fingers. They are a hard for him to maneuver sometimes. They are always busy and always creating. Nash's hands are thick. They remind me a of bear cub paws. He prefers his left hand over his right. Both of the boys usually have an ample supply of dirt and grime underneath their fingernails. Harley's hands are small and covered in squishiness. She gets goobers between her fingers like the toe jam the boys get between their toes. She uses her hands to pull hair, scratch, and find the most minuscule pieces of string on the floor or clothing. She uses her finger, more specifically her thumb, to suck when she is sleepy. But, her hands refuse to hold her own bottle. She knows that is what mommy's hands are for.

I love all six of those little hands and all 30 of those chubby fingers and I am in awe of them as they daily learn something new.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Should you have kids?

I cannot take responsibility for this hilarity, but I had to share with all those contemplating reproducing and for those of us who have already taken the leap!

Lesson 1
1. Go to the grocery store.
2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home.
4. Pick up the paper.
5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2
Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...
1. Methods of discipline.
2. Lack of patience.
3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
4. Allowing their children to run wild.
5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.
Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3
A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...
1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)
2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.
3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.
4. Set the alarm for 3AM.
5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.
6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.
7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.
8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.
9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)
Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out...
1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.
2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.
4. Then rub them on the clean walls.
5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.
6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.
Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.
1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.
3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.
4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 7
Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 8
1. Hollow out a melon.
2. Make a small hole in the side.
3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.
You are now ready to feed a nine- month-old baby.

Lesson 9
Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 10
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 11
Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 10 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Make It Monday

A long time ago I tried to make Thursdays, THANKFUL THURSDAYS. I think it lasted one week, not because I didn't have anything to be thankful for, I just failed at being consistent. That being said, I am going to try something even more difficult by making Monday's a day to share some of the projects I have been working on. I love reading CRAFTY blogs, but I am neither creative nor organized enough to have a blog completely devoted to crafting. But, I think I can handle once a week.

Project #1: Fabric Bead Necklace

I love the vintage quality you get when using fabric as an accessory. When I finished the necklace I thought I needed some matching earrings as well. I dug in my jewelry box and found some fluorescent heart-shaped earrings. Using hot glue I covered them with black fabric and then made some tiny rosettes to glue on as well. I distinctly remember proudly wearing those bright pink earrings to school in the 80's. I think I have made a substantial improvement to the original style. Here is the TUTORIAL for the fabric necklace. I am really happy with the way it turned out.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Tutor Me!

When you have children, especially children like Atley, you get a little nervous when you get phone calls that begin with, "I would like to talk to you about your son!" I received one of those calls last week. The woman on the other end informed me that her children rode the bus with Atley. I thought, "GREAT! What did he do this time?" She asked if I was aware that her daughter sat with Atley each day on the bus ride home. I thought, "No, of course I was not aware. Frankly, I have no idea what my kid does when he is not at home, and sometimes I am not even sure what the heck he is doing here." Her daughter, who happens to be a 5th grader, was hoping that she could help Atley with his problem. I thought, "I wonder which problem she is referring too! Oh no, could it be a problem I didn't even know he had." She continued to explain how her little girl wanted to be a teacher when she grew up and how much fun she was having reading to Atley each day. I thought, "That's so sweet of her, but let's get to this problem!" In as tactful a manner as anyone could relate the illiteracy of a complete stranger's child, she told me how Atley had confessed to her daughter that he did not know how to read. In fact, he was the only one in his class that didn't know how to read. Apparently, the story was so convincing that her sweet little girl felt compelled to somehow help him. I thought, "Oh, that problem-THE LYING/WOMANIZING/LAZY PROBLEM!" You see Atley reads very well. He just doesn't like to do it. Somehow he convinced this little girl, who just so happens to be super-cute, that he desperately needed her help. What could I say! Atley now has a reading tutor that Nash also gets along with quite well. Their first session was Saturday. The tutor was thoroughly convinced that she was a magnificent teacher, when at the end of lesson one, Atley had already progressed to chapter books!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Canvas Playhouse

It has only been a few short weeks since Christmas and MOST of the toys have been lost, broken, or just forgotten about. I am glad I didn't get this project done in time for Christmas morning, as I intended. Maybe now the kids will actually play with it, instead of just losing it in their pile of Christmas excess.

I borrowed this idea from the September issue of Family Fun Magazine. I used a giant paint drop cloth for the fabric because it was much cheaper than buying muslin. I measured it to fit on top of our kitchen table and then went after it with markers and crayons. The boys are busy decorating the inside with the same crayons and markers.

I hope they call me on a mission to...

At the age of 19, young men of our faith are expected to serve a two year mission for our church. Through inspiration the presidency of the church extends calls to these missionaries to share the gospel all over the world. Sunday Atley was telling us all about where he would like to serve his mission, maybe Brazil, or Greenland, or India so he could be near Mt. Everest. Nash chimed in with, "I want to go on my mission to Colorado at Granny's house." That was cute, but then he added, "Or maybe I want to go on a mission to Olive Garden. I could just eat and get coloring books every day." While the statement was hilarious, what made it even more random was that Nash has not been inside of an Olive Garden for at least 2 years.

Since deciding to go to Olive Garden on his mission, he has had it on the brain all week, so yesterday I relented and took him and Harley on a lunch date. I think he might have been a little disappointed and maybe even rethinking where he would like to serve that mission.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Day in Life

I am learning that with my kids each ordinary day is an adventure. A day in Atley's life consists of school and...

lots of homework. Sometimes I feel like the whole "great school" thing is a little overrated. A day in Nash's life...

dressing up like a "Monster Pumpkin with frog hands." Each day in Harley's life brings something new. I forgot how fast a baby learns and changes.
She is now pulling herself up on the furniture, she loves riding the rocking horse, and likes to use her razor sharp teeth for evil purposes.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Catch Up on Christmas!

Christmas Break officially ends tomorrow when Atley goes back to school. Everyone is a little sad and a lot tired. We had a great Holiday, so great I failed to keep up with my 25 days of Christmas via my blog. However, let me assure you that we more than completed our 25 days of Christmas. We went to an NBA game, mom and I saw South Pacific at the Kennedy Center, Atley had a most splendid school party, we shopped, we ate, we watched holiday movies, read holiday books, we took the boys to a hilarious play at the Imagination stage in Bethesda called-Junie B. Jingle All the Way!. We had lots of fun and made great memories. It was truly a special Christmas with baby Harley.

We spent Christmas Eve with some of our very favorite friends. One made amazing costumes and the kids acted out the nativity. Harley played a ginormous Baby Jesus and was as sweet as can be. Nash was Joseph and Atley a wise man. Nash wasn't really into the whole marriage/baby thing! He complained and then got a bloody nose which probably ruined his adorable costume.

When the party was over and the kids were in bed Scott did what every good dad does on Christmas Eve-built things until the wee hours of the morning.

The boys were so excited as we made them wait on the stairs while Granny, daddy, and my camera got ready for their happy faces on Christmas morning.

Santa was good to the kids, even though the kids were not always that good! Harley got her very first American Girl Doll and the boys rode their scooters all day with their new cowboy boots on. There were a few crashes but no serious injuries. Occasionally, they would stop to make us a special treat with their new kitchen set, or play with their crane and Pillsbury Dough Boy, aka Nash's new best friend.

We are so grateful for the year we have had and we are excited for the adventures that a new year will inevitably bring!