Micronaxx The adventures of Finn & Henry

12Aug/121

Sunday Training

It's hardly a secret that our dudes dig all things railroad (note to self: Post birthday Lego pics ASAP!), but even I didn't know they could get this into "training": the boys spent easily two hours today attending to "Little Buttercup," an 1899-vintage steam engine on display at San Jose's History Park.

No snack breaks, no potty shots could stay these intrepid workers from the greasy completion of their self-appointed rounds. Back and forth they went, toting every filthy bolt, nut, "dipstick," and piece of wood they could find to "Engine" (as they named "him"). We were aided & abetted by the almost-as-old retirees who patrol the shed (read: drink coffee & grumble about Obamacare). The boys would shove bolts into holes, pile up wood on buffers, etc., and I'd reward them with a booming "Oh, thanks, guys--I feel much better!" Again, this went on for hours... Here's a little photo gallery.

At last a conductor finally asked us to stop, and the guys were pretty crushed: "I miss Engine!!" they blubbered almost all the way home. (Let's blame the lack of food & nap a bit, too.) Still, we had a pretty terrific time; Engine now features prominently in T.A.L.B.; and the guys can't wait to drag Mom-O back to the shed. (Hah, tag, you're it, hon!)

Oh, that reminds me: Margot is in Europe this week (hence the lads' free-range filth exploration), and this morning she sent a note detailing her ride on an electric train in Oslo. The guys loved it, as you'd imagine, drawing a fun response from Henry. Here, have a listen:

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(In case the gray triangle above doesn't work for you, here's a direct link to the audio file.)

23Jul/120

Soundergarten & The Black Tarantula

A few weeks back Finn took a real shine to Johnny Cash's version of Soundgarden's song "Rusty Cage." I played him the original version and found him captivated by lead singer Chris Cornell's screeching. That's led to some Finn-as-Chris-Cornell renderings of popular hits--in this case, Harry Belafonte's "Day-O (Banana Boat Song)":

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(MP3 link)

14Jul/120

T.A.L.B.: Bandito Edition

Now listen (no pun intended): I have no illusions that almost anyone would want to sit through 8 minutes of bedtime lunacy involving a bandit-chief raccoon, a banana slug named Bonobo, brother firemen, Kawasaki Ninjas, and Chief McGillicuddy's "flavor savor"--but just in case that sounds up your alley, press the little triangle below:

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And if you're on a machine (phone, iPad, etc.) that doesn't have Flash installed, here's a link to the audio file itself.

16Feb/120

A Carrot for Your Ferret

On Sunday the boys enjoyed meeting both a ferret (Silvio!) and a parrot (Solomon!) at Happy Hollow. During that night's T.A.L.B., we spooled up some related craziness (complete with inexplicable accent), then hit "record." Press the little arrow below to give it a listen:

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(Here's the direct link in case your phone/computer doesn't support Flash.)

17Dec/111

T.A.L.B.

I fondly remember my dad delighting me with bedtime stories, devising ever more elaborate tales of "Mrs. Mootsy" the rabbit, our colorful neighbors the Mosers, and more. We never recorded or transcribed any of them, of course, so the details are lost to history.

Finny & I carry on the tradition via something we've dubbed "T.A.L.B.," short for "Talk A Little Bit." This nightly ritual started as a recap of the day, but Finn quickly morphed it into a chance to get a bonus (and custom-made) story. Over the last year+ we've covered an insane amount of ground (War and Peace? short & simple compared!). Lately the stories have centered on Mr. Elefante (the elephant who lives in an apartment in the bathroom wall) and his friend Rooster, plus the neighbor cats (Tuxie & Samantha) and their endless attempts to turn Rooster into a delicious "chicken sandwich." Putting posterity way ahead of dignity, here's just one little slice of the story. Click the little gray arrow to play:

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If for some reason that doesn't work (e.g. you're on an iPhone), here's the direct link to the audio file.

28Jul/110

“Thanks, MrsW!”

The boys have really enjoyed the Curious George book Henry received for his birthday courtesy of our friend Eileen Whitson--popularly known as "MrsW." I managed to catch the G-Man in the act of telling her thanks--a little endeavor that quickly sidetracked into a bizarre little 2yo's imaginary tour. (Having just gotten off the train, he's referencing Finn's Cheerio-tossing escapades.) Press the gray triangle below to take a quick listen:

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(In case the audio player doesn't work for you--for example, on an iPad--here's a direct link to the sound file.)

And apropos of nothing, here's a shot of Henry yesterday gathering flowers while helping the rest of us trim branches & haul them to the street. He's intense in his craft! 🙂

28Apr/111

“Love You, Beh Beh!”

"You call Mom-O 'Peanut,'" noted Finn the other day, "and she calls you 'Peanut,' and sometimes she calls you 'Beh Beh'!" (A few days earlier I'd read him a note to me that Margot left, signed, "Love you, Beh Beh" (as in "baby").) Henry immediately chimed in with "Love you, Beh Beh!," and now he inserts it as a total non-sequitur in other conversations. I caught one such episode in the tub the other night. Press the gray arrow to hear it:

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10Aug/100

Funk Soul Brutha!

The resale value of a used iPhone, it turns out, is next to nil. That makes it easier to justify turning retired phones into iPods, and Finn is the beneficiary of my recent upgrade. Now he approaches me and says, "Where are those white headphones? I want a little 'Funk Soul Brother!'"

Oddly, "Funk Soul Brother" is the one nickname we haven't given to Goonie G-Man Little Billy Goat Henry, and Finn's referring to a certain Fatboy Slim track. Here's his rendition (click on the little gray triangle below the photo to play):

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20Jun/101

A Father’s Day greeting from Henry

When he's not passing out during a morning hike (poor little guy--but we all had fun), there's something (or rather someone) Henry would like to tell you about--repeatedly. 🙂 (Press the little arrow beneath the photo to play sound.)

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29Apr/102

“Gahweetawings & Salutations”

Our local "Finnish dialect" is evolving, with our big guy getting better able to pronounce things--not to mention more apt to deliberately contort them. ("Lion" is "Looen" this week. ("What's that looen doin'??") Here's the Finnster from a few weeks ago:

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And here he is talking earlier this week:

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Off to practice "Constantinople & Timbuktu" (from Hop on Pop),
J.

2Apr/100

Dirty Dipes (Done Dirt Cheap!)

With apologies to AC/DC, I've gotten Finn hooked on describing diaper-changing time as "Dirty Dipes (Done Dirt Cheap!)". Here, take a listen (click the little arrow below):

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With the weather improving & our outside time increasing, of course his feet are getting dirtier--leading to sessions where we sing about "Dirty (Domen)dites." Lots o' fun.

By the way, I left the audio unedited as I kind of enjoy the way Finn's verbal stylings resemble early flying machines: they often start out strong enough, only to derail hilariously. 🙂

25Jan/100

“Yep Yep Yep Yep, EE-Bay, EE-Bay…”

More often than not, Finn wakes up happily chattering in his room. It can be fun to listen for a couple of minutes via the baby monitor, trying to figure out what he's saying.

He really seemed animated the other day, so I poked my head in and asked, "What's Finny talkin' about?" Without missing a beat he replied, "Yep yep yep yep, happy happy boing boing, eBay, eBay, eBay!!" Why yes, son, we're all very happy that Mom has a job, but--Ah! I realized he was referring to this bit from Sesame Street, one of our near-daily favorites.  Here's a later re-enactment (click the little arrow to listen):

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14Jan/101

The Frumious Bandersnatch

Several weeks ago, Finn & I were playing in the park when some little girls came by and asked to borrow our trucks. That was cool, and Finny & I actually went off a little distance while the girls played in the sand. After a few minutes, the littlest girl popped out of the bushes and called to us, "Hey!," then rattled off a stream of gibberish.

At that point Finn & I enjoyed a kind of magical moment: We looked at each other and exchanged a look of bemused bewilderment: What is that girl talking about??  In that moment we smiled and shook our heads at the craziness of the world.

Pretty soon the story solidified as, Q. "What was that girl talking about?" A. "Hey, Bot de BAH!"  This morning I poked my head into Finn's dark room and said, "Bot de BAH!" "What that girl talkin' about??" he immediately responded.  Here's a sample of our conversation:

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11Jan/100

Mr. Brown is Out of Town

Let's be honest: there are certain things that no one--even grandparents--wants to hear too much about, and potty training details must be at the top of that list.  Therefore let's be mercifully brief and just note that the Finnster has turned a big corner, putting his potty chair to good use.  He really digs us reading Time to Pee! as we all, uh, wait out the proceedings.

Here you can hear the "Proud Pooper" (as he calls himself) give his thoughts on the subject; click the little arrow to play:

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Oh, I do have to note that as I walked out of his room tonight, I heard a little voice in the dark remark with some wonder, "Poop is brown!" 🙂