The boys & Grandma Nack share a love of our neighborhood bakery/flower shop, Flour Flower. In anticipation of her visit this week, we visited the shop on Sunday and made sure that the crepes are as delicious as ever. Henry was so jazzed about buying Mom-O some flowers that he kinda fell apart when she tried to politely decline. Thus we’re the proud new owners of a cluster of sunflowers.
You know how a watched pot never boils? We were starting to feel that way with Finn’s front tooth: the darn thing has been shifting around and striking crazy poses for well over a month. We thought it would make its exit in Tahoe, then in Galena, then by the start of school… but it wasn’t until last night, when the car hit a bump & Finn’s knee flew into his mouth that it finally happened.
Anyway, the tooth is free at last—no bar fight required! Here you can see the Finnster trying to avoid showing me his smile during daycare drop-off. He only relented when I said I’d stick around & hug him in front of other kids unless he let me take a pic of the goods.
Braving Chestnut Mountain's Alpine Slide was a favorite part of my childhood, so we were delighted to get the Micronaxx in on the action during our trip. They enjoyed the action (and playful smack-talk between me & Margot!) so much that they begged to go back the next day. That time—unlike what you see in the vids below—I was smart enough to put my cameras away and focus on smoking the competition—finally redeeming myself in the eyes of our sons.
During our Galena trip my mom had the great idea of taking the lads to E.B. Lyons interpretive center in Dubuque's Mines of Spain wilderness area. They enjoyed checking out all manner of critters, both living (snapping turtles, snakes) and stuffed (badgers, owls, flying squirrels, and more). Here's our little gallery.
The boys have always been fascinated by anything related to Uncle Ted & his big vehicles. He's given them some great tours, from checking out his ambulance one year to riding in his 18-wheeler the next. This time around we paid a visit to the Tri-State Tours "bus barn" as the dudes call it. By the end Henry was literally jumping for joy, as you'll see. Check out the gallery!
The boys & I had a ball (and about a million kernels of corn) visiting our friend Tom Moser's farm outside Galena. We were joined by Alicia, Alejandro, and Elena, plus Uncle Ted & Jenna. Stay tuned for a gallery & more videos soon. Meanwhile, enjoy Finn the Corn Angel!
Who's got two thumbs, one spoon, and loves eating honey directly from the farm? This guuuuy.
Whenever we visit John's family in Illinois, we fly to Chicago, then drive to Galena. We've now made it a tradition to spend a day in the city before heading out on the 3-hour drive west, so that we can soak up some urban sights and adventures with the boys. This time, we led our own Nack Family Blitzkrieg on Chicago. We kicked off our day on the 103rd-floor SkyDeck of the Willis (Sears) Tower before heading over to the amazing Museum of Science and Industry.
While Henry was fascinated looking through the floor of the observation pod in the tower, Finn was somewhat...um...less enthused. He was, however, really excited to see and learn about the captured WWII German U-Boat, the U-505, at the MSI. We also visited their coal mine experience, and spent some quality time touring the famous Burlington Pioneer Zephyr train, which set a diesel train speed record in 1934 traveling between Denver and Chicago.
Loath to go back to our suburban hotel, we rounded out the day by heading back uptown for a water taxi ride to Michigan Avenue, and then a "cheezborger" at the famous Billy Goat Tavern, a local Chicago landmark. Here's a little gallery of the day's events.
Greetings from Lake Tahoe! Margot & the lads have been enjoying the heck out of this place for the last few days, and I flew up last night from LA to join them. Our dreams of riding the mountain gondola fell victim to possible thunderstorms (which never materialized), but as a pretty great consolation prize, we got Henry set up with a bungee trampoline outing. Check out the results! I'll try to upload videos of the adventure once I get onto a faster connection. [Update: Here it is.]
Last 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!
We enjoyed an action-packed Forth with the lads yesterday—first enjoying a party & parade at our friends' Lorraine & Brad's house; then catching a nap (well, trying) to prepare for a late night; rocking a Slip n' Slide at our friends' Jake & Shay's BBQ. Check out a gallery from the festivities!
The boys had fun testing their mettle—and their absorbency—on Sunday at Natural Bridges State Park in Santa Cruz. Check out a little gallery from the adventure.
I keep meaning to record & post the bizarre little song the boys composed to celebrate our "Guys' Night" outings. Its singsong lyrics in full:
Tryin' a bite of my poo-poo sandwich!!
Apparently Guys' Night is all about transgression & chow, so it kinda works. Anyway, last night I took the dudes out for some Five Guys burgers (faaaar more delicious than the sandwich in the song), and Henry celebrated by walking on the giant piles of potatoes:
Afterwards the guys happened across the trunkful of birthday presents I'd recently scored (shovels "Seymour Jr." for Henry & fold-up "Root Chop" for Finn). They were pretty pumped—Hen especially!
Oh, just a typical summer Friday afternoon at Pasitos... The guys have great fun getting drenched with their pals, including (pictured here) Clark & Jacobo.
This weekend marked our 4th year of camping with many of our Las Madres friends and their families. Instead of our usual Big Basin forest camping trip, this year we headed to Sunset State Beach near Watsonville. We camped in the trees on the leeward side of the big sand dunes, and could take a quick walk down the road and over the dunes to the beautiful beach.
Henry made a new best friend this year, and his name is Seymour the Shovel. Our friend Jake brought an enormous shovel along for things like fire-tending, and giant-beach-pit-digging (said pit provided HOURS of fun for the kiddos at the beach). As soon as Henry caught sight of that shovel, he was hard-pressed to ever let it out of his grasp. He spent the entire camping trip happy as a clam, dragging Seymour around the campsite, digging hole after hole in the soft, sandy dirt. By the time we left the campsite, it was as pocked with craters as the surface of the moon! Here's a gallery of the action.
He also kept Seymour busy at the beach, shoveling sand into and out of the giant pit that Jake had dug. All day and long into the evening Henry just dug and dug and dug. I thought we might find him asleep, curled up with it beside him in the tent! Jake spent quite a bit of time calling out "Henry! Where's my shovel?" when he needed it! Henry has now asked for a shovel for his birthday, so it looks like John and I are off to OSH to dig one up