From the days when El Finnster didn't fight off a good smooch.
In advance of St. Paddy's day today, the boys explained that they wanted to try and trap some leprechauns. This is not something John or I had done as kids, but apparently building leprechaun traps is a new practice for kids these days.
Finn explained how the traps were supposed to work, and we did some online research to see examples before we started building our own. Critical trap components include Lucky Charms, which Dad-O & Henry ran out to get, fake rainbows, clouds, and of course, the trap. Finn and I stayed home during the bait run to devise cereal bowl and Lego-based traps. You'll see in the gallery what we came up with - paper rainbow entrances with Lucky Charms and fake cotton ball "clouds" to lure the leprechauns into leaving gold at the end of each rainbow, before the cereal bowl trap fell onto them.
We set the traps out on the back steps before bedtime and listened for suspicious rustling on the back porch. John thinks he might've heard something but was too sleepy to go out and check. This morning, as soon as the boys awoke, the first words out of Henry's mouth were: "Dad-O, could you shut off the burglar alarm so we can go out & see whether we captured any?"
Lo and behold, our traps worked! Well, partially... Although the little bootprints left at the scene indicated the leprechauns eventually escaped, they did leave a pile of gold coins (old Mexican pesos), and chocolate coins under each trap. The boys were ecstatic! Henry exclaimed "Now I know that leprechauns are REAL!"
Erin Go Bragh, 2009-style! (See previous St. Paddy's images & videos.)
What happens when the Micronaxx take some Macronaxx to the Children's Discovery Museum for some celebrations of the lunar new year? Why, a little trip through Saigon, of course. (More pics to come soon, I hope.)
Yesterday marked the exciting first day of Little League season. We signed the boys up for T-ball this spring, to give them an opportunity to try something new, learn how to play a team sport, and do a lot of running around. Since neither guy has ever played ball before, we are starting with T-ball so they can learn the fundamentals without any pressure. They've been really excited about going to practice with their fellow Mets (inexplicably represented by the letter "B" and a cartoon bumblebee).
Prior to yesterday's opening ceremony and first game, shown in this gallery, they've been learning base running, "base position", catching, batting, and throwing. They're both catching on pretty fast, and they are really enjoying themselves. Henry is actually pretty fast on his feet when he's focused enough to remember to run! And Finn has a pretty good arm!
They had a blast yesterday, playing their first game against the Dragons, and are looking forward to Saturday match-ups with the Scrappers, Tin Caps, and Sea Dogs. We had an equally great time cheering on all the players and watching the constant tangle of outfielders, all trying to get the ball and throw it back to first base.
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.
How does one work off a couple of delicious sliders & fries obtained at a Movable Feast truck? Like this, of course. And a 1 and a 2 and...
We took advantage of President's Day to make our first-ever visit to the San Francisco Zoo, meeting up with the guys' longtime pal Magdalena & her family. Some fun bits:
- While there we learned that some rhinos prefer to file down their horns (like the guy we named "Stumpy") and that some owls' ears are positioned asymmetrically on their heads (one high, one low) to help them hear creatures above & below them.
- We cracked each other up by noting the absurdity of calling what amounts to a raccoon a “red panda” and then extending that “logic” to other animals. For example, we dubbed a house cat a “furry four-legged land octopus" and a flamingo a “soft-skinned pygmy rhino." The more ludicrous, the better!
- After being thwarted in previous owl-quests (e.g. at the Oakland Zoo), Henry was thrilled to see some real live owls, one of which was named Athena. He happily trundled home with a little stuffed owl by that name.
Here's a gallery from the outing.
I'm so charmed to have gotten some excellent loot for Valentine's Day—from the lads a custom-made bowl, and from Margot a trio of Lego minifigures depicting the boys & me as a boombox-wielding band! I'm the guy with spiky hair & stubble.
While we took our birdmen to the land of the Birdman, I snapped a couple of photo spheres: 360º images that you can explore by clicking & dragging with your mouse below. You can also see a short video clip showing dissident artist Ai Weiwei's giant Lego portraits of political prisoners at bottom.
I think I neglected to share Finn's leonine antics from one year ago, so let me fix that now.
You know those people (inevitably from Florida) who claim to see Jesus burned into their toast? Henry's a bit like that, but he sees orange-clad Lego construction workers in his Cheetoes.
"Sun's out, guns out," they say, but in foggy San Francisco, we have to go with "Sons out, guns out." Here Henry explores the artillery at the Presidio.
Oh hi, don't mind me—I'm just enjoying multiple suckers at once. Why, do I seem different? — From Halloween 2013
During our time in Mendocino, journeyed south to the Point Arena Lighthouse, then up to light at Point Cabrillo. Here's a gallery from the outing, as well as (below) a couple of interactive 360º panoramas I captured. (You can click the icon in the upper-right corner of each to make it full screen, then drag to explore it.)
The boys are, of course, insane for trains, so kudos to Margot for discovering the Skunk Train that operates out of Fort Bragg (the town just up the coast from Mendocino). The train winds its way through redwoods en route to an old logging camp that offers BBQ & knickknacks (but not BBQ'd knickknacks). We met some nice families along the way. A 3-year-old kid named Silas ended up lending his name to Finn's little souvenir stuffed skunk (for which we devised the mnemonic, "He makes you sigh less"), and a couple from Fremont helped the boys squash pennies on the rails while keeping Henry from being squashed as well! Despite the cold & wind, Hen insisted that he & I stand outside for mile after mile, so he's a bit overrepresented in the photos.
Here's a gallery from the day, as well as some video highlights: