Micronaxx The adventures of Finn & Henry

11Jul/170

Henry’s Eighth!

We can't believe that it's been eight full rides around the Sun since our young Hen suddenly charged into the world, and we continue to have a blast with him. We'll try to post more pics from his birthday shortly, but in the meantime here's a peek at our epic day at Great America:

2Mar/160

It’s Great to be Eight!

Our big guy had a blast all day long. In this little gallery you can see him enjoying a cake topped with his Lego doppelgänger; getting The Dangerous Book for Boys from Grandpa Liggett; blasting Mom-O with a "High Eight"; and getting Captain Underpants from Grandma & Grandpa Nack.

Ocho

2Mar/160

¡¡Cumpleaños Ocho!!

Happy birthday to the marvelous Mr. F—cha cha cha! 😀

15Aug/150

The Old Men & The Lake

Up in Tahoe I rang in the start of my 40's just two days after our friend Hans started his 50's. Just as last year we shared a cake, and this year Margot & the boys took the sting out of mortality by giving me "Benny's Spaceship Spaceship SPACESHIP!!" from The Lego Movie—a loving throwback to the 80's-vintage sets I had growing up. Amazingly (miraculously!) despite our cabin being darker than Carlsbad Caverns, we built the beast and got it home without losing any parts.

Here's a handful of photos from the festivities—including impatient Henry realizing that yes, he will actually get to eat some cake 🙂 .

Cake Triptych

10Jul/150

Henry: 6; gift wrap: zero!

Hen BDay Anim

Our lad Henry marveling excitedly at the Birthday Lego set he has waited for!

10Jul/150

¡Enrique Seis!

Our Henry has hit another milestone - he is officially a 6-year old! He has been so excited to turn six, and we've been stretching the celebration out over the past two weeks. Last week, at Henry's request, we took a family vacation to Legoland California as a special birthday treat. While there, we also visited San Diego's Maritime Museum and the USS Midway aircraft carrier, and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. At long last, Henry got to celebrate yesterday with singing and vanilla cupcakes, cards and gifts from cousins, grandparents, and our beloved Coco, and of course a new Lego City construction set from us.

Feliz Cumpleanos to our youngest, but no longer little, Henry!

2Mar/150

Happy Birthday, Big Finno!!

Somehow—to our absolute shock—we've done seven full laps of the sun since our once-wee man made his debut. ("The days are long but the years are short.") Happy birthday, our blonde & dimpled treasure!

Stay tuned for more photos & videos from the celebration, but in the meantime check out a gallery of the marvelous Lego-themed cake Mom-O crafted & Finn decorated, on which each member of the fam + Grandma & Grandpa Nack appear. Here, let's have Finn explain it; just don't tell him I shared this clip with you. 🙂

Cake-7-(3-of-12)

Cake-7-(7-of-12)

[YouTube]

14Jul/141

Henry is 5!

14653314642_605479cddf_zLast week our Henry turned 5 years old. Five! We can hardly believe our "little guy" is five already. We celebrated his actual birthday on the 9th, with family gifts and a sushi dinner at our favorite sushi restaurant, where Henry's friends "the sushi ladies" presented him with the long-anticipated and much-talked-about green tea ice cream with umbrellas in it. He was thrilled!

His favorite part of the day, by far, was opening his new Lego Cargo Train set, his special gift from Mom-o and Dad-o. He'd been talking about it for a long time and was really hoping he'd get it for his birthday. He spent the next couple of days building the engine and cars with some assistance from his equally Lego-crazed brother and father. Now we've got the set up and running in the basement, and in Henry's own words, he's "obsessed with it"!

Yesterday we had his big birthday party in the backyard. He was really excited about its construction theme - we had caution tape streamers, a dump truck mylar balloon, real orange safety cones, hardhat party hats for the guests, safety signs, a bulldozer piñata, and a box-tower building relay race. Oh - and a bouncy house! There is no kid who enjoys a bouncy house more than Henry Nack. As soon as it was delivered and inflated he was in there hopping around and doing somersaults. All the kids played so hard they were dripping with sweat and red-cheeked by the end of the party. We decided to do a post-party cool-off at the Elks pool, with a little poolside takeout Bibo's pizza to go with it.

Here's a gallery from the big party!

9Jul/130

Hen Four, Good Buddy!

"Equal parts grumpy old man and delightful, snuggly, hilarious kid," says Margot of Henry*, and I fully agree. Amazingly it's been a full four years since our crazy little "El Segundo" barnstormed into town. What a crazy ride...

We're a bit pooped from taking the lads out for some celebratory sushi, but here's a little gallery of the terrific party we had on the Fourth with our wonderful pals, plus some delightful present-opening with my folks & then this morning.

And from memory lane:

* She also says this about me 😉

4Mar/130

Fantastic Five!

On Saturday my Finny turned five. I can hardly believe it's been five years since this dimpled, smiling, blond little person made us a family. Before we tucked in for the night on Friday, all four of us shouted "Adios, four!", and when we awoke on the big day, we all said "Hello, five!" before wishing our guy a happy birthday.

Then it was off to breakfast in the hotel for a much-anticipated birthday waffle (seriously, he'd been talking about it for weeks!), followed by a very slow, traffic-jammy drive up the mountains for an afternoon of snowball fights and snow tubing. The combination of all that partying and the high altitude wore us all out, so we saved cake and presents for Sunday.

Here are some photos from our adventure so far. Happy birthday, Finny! We love you to bits!

[Note the triumphal unveiling of the giant Lego Unimog. 🙂 Finny went tearing around the room yelling "Iloveit Iloveit Ilove it" before doing "donkey kicks" of joy on the stairs. Now, if we can just finish building the thing before he's eligible to vote, the success will be complete! --J.]

9Jul/120

G-Man B-Day!

Our little Mr. Henry Nack officially turned 3 today! We had a big birthday party for him while we were with the rest of my family in Colorado last week, complete with a VW Beetle-shaped cake, homemade ice cream, and presents; check out the photos. Today we had another, smaller party with our friends the Wiggins at the park down the street. This time we celebrated with a big ol' pizza and a tiny little cake, and lots of running around!

Although Henry has not really grown much taller during the past year, he has made enormous leaps and bounds in other ways - both literally and figuratively! Figuratively, he's become so articulate and conversant - especially in the last couple of months. He easily articulates pretty complex ideas and observations, and recounts events and conversations in great detail. He and Finny have extensive conversations and make up elaborate narratives while they're playing. And literally, he has started hopping and jumping around like crazy, especially when he gets excited about something. For a little guy, he gets pretty good air! He also loves physical horsing around with all of us, and usually starts laughing uncontrollably when we tumble around with him.

His love of vehicles continues unabated, and he reaped many wheeled and winged presents for his birthday - including new variations of his favorites, Lightning and Mater (from Pixar's Cars). He is also nuts for fire fighting, and was THRILLED to receive his fireman "backpack" - which is a tank you fill with water, then pump out the attached sprayer hose (usually onto his brother).

His fondness for owls is also going strong, and he received a couple of terrific owly gifts. Grandma Nack gave him a beautiful book about an owl flying around at night, and his Auntie Laura made him a super-cute little knitted, stuffed owl with big brown eyes, named "Roy," just like the one his cousin Patrick has.

We can't wait to see what Henry's next year holds in store. He's off to a terrific start!

4Mar/120

Finny’s Fourth!

We feel so happy & lucky to have gotten to celebrate the Finnster's Fourth with so many excellent pals (both large & small), and with my folks who trekked all the way from Illinois. We couldn't have asked for more gorgeous weather--72 with not a cloud in the sky (rather different from last year's slightly shivery fun). Everyone seemed to enjoy packing away greasy pizza & Margot's brilliant fire truck cake before taking a whack at the piñata. Thankfully neighborhood "big kids" Dom & Charlotte were able to liberate the candy at last.

Thanks so much to everyone for coming out and partying with us! Here's a little gallery from the festivities.

2Mar/121

“Finnegan Nack, Now with Cuatro!”

Happy B-day to our Fantastic Four-Year-Old!! We've had a great day celebrating the Finnster's cumpleaños with his Nack grandparents, and we can't wait to dive into tomorrow's party, piñata, and fire truck cake. He was so excited about his Lego birthday present that he literally spun out of control, doing a donut by the couch! 😀 We'll share more photos and videos soon; for now, here's that moment of ecstasy (click it for larger):

10Jul/110

Happy Birthday to Hen!

A birthday wouldn't be complete without singing and (cup)cake, so thanks to nephew Patrick for documenting the proceedings:

We neglected to mention that just before the festivities, Henry had been forcibly awakened from an epic nap (lest he be up all night). That left him pretty lethargic & unsure what to make of all this fuss. (In the previous gallery you can really see the effect of the cupcake sugar hitting his bloodstream!) It's also funny to observe Finn's oversight of the candle-blowing operation. He really had to work at not jumping in and doing the honors himself!

Nostalgic bonus roundup:

14Mar/110

Birthday action!

We had a terrific time celebrating Finno's Big 3 a couple of weeks back, and now that the sugar crash has worn off, we can post our little photo gallery and a video from the birthday train ride!

2Mar/113

Birthday! Birthday! Birthday!

Our blond, sunny, hilarious little Finnegan turns 3 years old today! We can hardly believe he's gotten so big, so talkative, and so imaginative. His head is always filled with characters and made-up stories, and he couldn't be happier to share them with us. He's also a terrific big brother to little Henry--offering him toys or books when Henry's upset or grouchy, and working hard at sharing and taking turns with his toys. As Henry gets older I hope he realizes what a nice, caring big brother he's got.

I started the day by greeting Finny with the Happy Birthday song, then we opened presents from Grandma and Grandpa Liggett. He is already in love with his new toy lawnmower and weed wacker (specifically requested by the birthday boy!), although he and Dad-o had to make a fast trip to the hardware store to get batteries and a tiny screwdriver so the weed wacker would fire up and make all the appropriate noise. (We have umpteen tiny screwdrivers, and all of them lost the minute we need them!) Henry was not thrilled about not getting to play with the new lawn toys, but we're hoping he'll either get over it, or eventually Finny will decide that sharing them is ok.

Tonight we'll take our boy out to have pizza and open some more presents. His birthday party was this past Sunday, and with Grandma and Grandpa Nack here, every day has been an adventure!

Happy birthday to our wonderful firstborn boy. We couldn't be happier to have you in our lives!

[The OSH staff seemed delighted by the presence of a PJ-clad tot dragging milk, banana chips, and a toy weed whacker through their hardware store at 7:30am. And as for sharing, Grandma & Grandpa report that Finn was great about letting Henry terrorize the grass with the new toys. When I got home they couldn't wait to show me "how nice the yard looks!" --J.]

11Jul/100

Hen Party!

What a nice birthday party we had with our little buddy Henry! A posse of niños, including Harper, Charlotte, Dominic, Ken, Julian, and Madison, along with their respective parents & of course Grandma & Grandpa Nack, were on hand to help us celebrate. Carrot cake, juice boxes, and other treats were flowing near the guys' new sandbox. Mom-O & Dad-O remain kind of bushed, so without further ado, here's our gallery (HTML).

By the way, with the Flash galleries, if you happen to be using a large monitor and like high-def images, try pressing the little square in the lower-right corner to get a full-screen display. Press the ESC key to exit when finished.

9Jul/100

El Segundo Es Uno!

Oh my goodness. Henry is one year old today! We can hardly believe a year has flown by since he arrived on the scene last year after only 1.5 hours of labor.

Our littlest dude has got a lot going on these days--so busy growing, growing, growing. He's getting ready for many more teeth to arrive--they're making themselves known in big bumps and lumps in his boca. He's been working really hard on practicing his walking, forcefully leading his hapless escorts around the house and getting very upset when we want to take a break and sit him down on the floor!  (I am prone to calling him "Stampy" because of his disproportionately heavy footsteps!) And he's really starting to chatter away. Lots of babbling and even some honest-to-goodness words like Dada, Mama, ball, cool, go, Coco, and uh-oh. He loves his little sleeping buddy Ollie, and has warmed up to his stuffed cat (an Xmas gift from Grandma Nack).

More Henry-based action includes "rock stance": standing with his feet wide apart and jiggling one leg up and down (think David Coverdale in the 80's). In addition to assisted walking, he's able to pull himself up to standing unassisted, and has even stood (stock still) on his own for several seconds at a time. Dad-o has introduced Henry to "fountain inspection" both at our newly repaired fountain as well as neighbor Richard's kid-magnet front yard fountain.

I'm only half joking when I call Henry my bossy baby. He wants to do everything himself, and when he needs your help he's very clear about what he does and doesn't want you to do. If you try and feed him, he grabs the spoon or piece of food and puts it in his mouth--he doesn't want us doing it! He's gotten into some serious chug-a-lugging, grabbing both his and Finny's milk cups and jamming in both sippy lids at once. He'll also let us know if and when he wants to be held (or not!) and is remarkably strong for his size (evidenced by pushing himself off me when he's had enough of my lap).

This week he's gotten in plenty of playtime with Grandma and Grandpa Nack, and was introduced to his very own sandbox (a wonderful gift from them) this evening. After his initial uncertainty about sitting in the sand, he got pretty engrossed in scooping and pouring. Every day this week has been an adventure--trips to Happy Hollow, Blackberry Farm, and other parks, along with shopping trips and picnic lunches. He was yawning his brains out by 6:30 this evening--I've never seen him that sleepy! But now that he's in bed he's having kind of restless sleep. Maybe he knows his birthday party is tomorrow! Happy Birthday little G-Man!

2Mar/101

It’s Official: The Finn-Man’s Two

Happy birthday, big-little guy.  We sure do love you a whole lot. <:-)

1Mar/100

Finnster Party Pix (aka, “Now eat some *candy*!”)

We really had a ball celebrating the big guy's birthday with so many pals yesterday. At first Finn wasn't quite so sure he was ready for the "Totpocalypse" of toddlers descending on our homestead. Five minutes after the party started he said, "All done... all done with kids!" He then wanted to hide out in the "bat cave"--i.e. the pullout couch that Grandma Nack had been occupying. Fortunately he chilled out pretty quickly, and Grandma was a huge help in minding the sometimes overstimulated Henry.

Anyhow, it seemed that everyone had a great time, as you can see in our photo gallery (HTML). Special thanks to our pal Hughes (Hoot) for manning the camera and getting some great Finn's-eye-view perspectives on the scene.

PS: "M&Ms are *GOOD*. Finny like to EAT them!!"