Micronaxx The adventures of Finn & Henry

17Feb/151

SF Zoo Crew

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.

ZooCrew

16Feb/150

Lucky papa Valentines

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. :-)

FullSizeRender

LegoBand

10Feb/150

Immersive Alcatraz

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.

Views: San Francisco Bay, California by John Nack

Views: San Francisco, CA by John Nack

A video posted by John Nack (@jnack) onJan 31, 2015 at 11:05am PST

3Feb/150

Turn that meat-frown upside down

Must be Guys' Night. :-)

Burger Smile

30Jan/150

Throwback Thursday: A well-lit looen

I think I neglected to share Finn's leonine antics from one year ago, so let me fix that now. :-)

LitLooen

29Jan/150

His Cheetonic Majesty

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. :-)

CheetoDancer

CheetoDance_CloserUp

13Jan/150

Son & a Gun

"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.

Son Gun

Son Gun

12Jan/150

Retro sweetness: One sugared-up owl

Oh hi, don't mind me—I'm just enjoying multiple suckers at once. Why, do I seem different? :-) — From Halloween 2013

Sugared-Up-Owl

4Jan/150

Lighthouse Adventures

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.)

Lighthouse

2Jan/150

All aboard the Skunk Train!

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:

HenTraxx

[YouTube]

1Jan/150

An evening in Mendocino

Having really enjoyed our trip down the coast at Thanksgiving, the boys were super amped for another "Roadtrip, roadtrip!!" as they called it. Therefore on Sunday we took a drive in the opposite direction, heading north to Mendocino. I'll post a bunch of other photos & videos soon, but in the meantime here's a little gallery showing off the gorgeous sunset lighting we encountered upon rolling into town & exploring the bluffs. (Vertigo-inducing shots have been omitted to Grandpa Nack's presumed relief. ;-))

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25Dec/140

Merry Christmas!

From our family to yours, we wish you much love, peace, and (ideally Lego-fueled) happiness. :-)

ChristmasStory
SantaDoor

23Dec/140

Uvas Canyon Adventures

Following our torrential rains, the dudes & I explored the waterfalls of nearby Uvas Canyon. The boys even took turns rocking my big camera, so this set includes the first Finn-captured photo upload to Facebook! They were also keenly aware of things we could do to images after the fact ("Dad-O, take a picture & then Photoshop me falling off the bridge!" "Dad-O, will your Google friends make this into a little animation?").

Stay tuned for the Photoshoppery, and in the meantime, here's the gallery plus a short video below.

Trailblazing

Goofyballs

Micronaxx + DSLR = Proud Paparazzo!

A video posted by John Nack (@jnack) on

22Dec/140

Sons From The Big Chair

Anyone excited to drop in on Dad-O at Google & pound down some ice cream? Anyone, anyone? :-)

Big Chair

20Dec/140

The 12 Bots of Christmas

Thanks to Auntie Laura for some fun new reads!

19Dec/140

La Familia de Finny

We were delighted to discover this little composition en Español in Finn's backpack. It shows our immediate fam plus Liggett grandparents & Lingle cousins, each performing our characteristic activities (click for larger version).

Mi Familia

Some translations:

  • Mom-O: Drawing
  • Dad-O: Working on the computer
  • Henry: Playing
  • Finn: Working at school
  • Auntie Laura: Being a teacher
  • Grandpa: Playing with kids
  • Grandma: Guitar (?)
  • Uncle James: Going to Safeway (!)
  • Patrick: Playing video games
  • Charlie: Playing
16Dec/141

We Like Sheep!

I've always gotten a goofy kick out of the line in Handle's Messiah that says "We like sheep!" We sure did like some the other night when—thanks especially to Margot's crazy skills with hot glue & cotton balls—our dudes were resplendent in sheep threads. Check out a gallery from their performance in Aesop's Fables.

Lollipop

Special thanks to our pal Magdalena & her dad David for coming out to enjoy the show.

Munching1

In the clip below, the Willow Glen Elementary sheep take us to the jungle—the mighty jungle!

10Dec/140

G & Tree

Why hello there! You've just caught me drawing a little somethin' somethin' for Grandma & Grandpa... :-)

Hen Tree

8Dec/140

Strigiform Silliness

Ladies and gentlemen, I give to you, the North American Bizarre Owl. :-)

Silly Owl

5Dec/140

Thanksgiving road trip!

Hearst1

This Thanksgiving we did not plan any long-distance travel, and did not have any out-of-town relatives visiting, so we decided to spend some of our long weekend on a family road trip to explore parts previously-unknown. Our good friend Reen came down from San Francisco to feast with us on Thanksgiving day, and by the time we went to bed that night, we had booked a motel in Cayucos, CA and had plans to visit the beach, San Simeon, and nearby Hearst Castle - all of which are just off the gorgeous coastal California Highway 1, south of Big Sur.

On Friday, the trip took a little over 3 hours, and we asked the boys to draw maps of what they were seeing as we headed south. Both boys did a fantastic job drawing mountains, trees, vehicles, road signs, oil pumps, freight trains, vinyards, and other things that they saw out the window, and the mapmaking kept them engaged and busy the entire trip. Listening to Johnny Cash on the stereo was also a crowdpleaser.

We checked into our vintage motor court motel room that evening, just after stopping at the beach to watch the sun go down. We popped some popcorn and watched a movie before bed, and then got some rest for the big day ahead. Friday we visited Hearst Castle (opulence is an understatement!), and spent some quality time horsing around on the beach before dinner. Sunday was rainy, so instead of spending tons of time on the windy, cold, wet beach, we toured Morro Bay's famous Shell Shop (Excelling in Shells since 1953!) and then drove up to poke around some of the art galleries in Cambria, just south of the Castle. Then we drove home through the mist and fog.

Here's a gallery of the weekend's proceedings.

[Dad-O addenda: We were charmed that for some reason Finn took to referring to William Randolph Hearst as simply "The Hearst." Henry asked our tour guide whether the castle featured a dungeon or a dragon, giving us a chance to learn about the fur-stocked basement & a statue of St. George battling a dragon (as glimpsed in the gallery). Finn named a little stuffed lion from the gift shop & named his shell-based race car driver "Shelby" (transporter of Henry's little shell owl "Shelly"). Mom-O's art history background came into play as we checked out the lion-heavy statuary, and Finn was fascinated to learn about the lion-headed Egyptian deity Sekhmet. Henry, meanwhile, was delighted to learn about The Hearst's wiener dog swimming around in search of goldfish, and to point out the little ramp a gardener built so he could stop fishing the dog out of the pool (see also the gallery). —J.]

Hearst2

Hearst3