Micronaxx The adventures of Finn & Henry

16Jul/180

Bricks By The Bay 2018

As we’ve done a couple of past years, on Sunday we made the pilgrimage to Bricks By The Bay, a ginormous gathering of fellow Lego nerds & their bonkers creations. The dudes were happy to score a few vintage bricks to take home—and Henry even found a set of tiny Lego currency! 🤑 Here’s a quick tour of some of what we saw.

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5Jul/180

Happy Birthday, America!

Greetings from 10,000ft.! As we’ve gotten to do in many past years, we checked in on America’s highest Fourth of July parade—this year complete with vintage fire trucks, marching lions, hailstorms of thrown candy, and more. Afterwards Henry went BERSERK over his new metal detector (more on that later!) and the whole fam journeyed to a nearby campground to picnic. Here’s a little gallery & some quick video highlights:

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4Jul/180

Riding the Rockies!

We’ve taken the boys on the Leadville & Colorado Southern scenic railroad a number of times since they were teeny. This year’s ride was more special than the rest. Grandpa Liggett treated each guy to a trip that included riding in the caboose and in the engine! Needless to say, Henry was beside himself with excitement, and Finn was pretty jazzed, too. The engine pushes the train up the mountains from behind, so the caboose is in the lead on the way up. The boys loved sitting high in the cupola and enjoyed the 360-degree scenic view from the top. The brakeman, Jason, let us ride on the outer deck of the caboose and take in the scenery from there.

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When the train made a brief stop at the top, Henry hopped off solo (against the advice of the brakeman) in hopes of finding a stray railroad spike. Just as Henry found one and put his foot back on the step of the caboose, the horn blew and the train started rolling again! On the way back down to the depot all four of us sat in the huge diesel engine and chatted extensively with the railroad owner & engineer, Derek, who’s been manning the controls since he was a teenager (supervised by his own dad back in the day). All in all the day was a blast, and one we hope will provide some happy core memories for both guys.

Here’s a gallery from the adventure, and you can watch the highlights below:

Being a nostalgic guy, I can’t resist posting a vid of the first time the lads rode the train, all the way back in 2011:

That’s the day they got to explore a whole fleet of motorcars with Patrick & Charlie; see gallery & video here:

30Jun/180

Buffalo nickels, won’t you come out tonight…

We’ve always known that on some level, Henry’s always been something of a 65-year-old man 😌. Therefore it’s no surprise that he loved spending the afternoon in the company of such guys, nerding out about all things currency at the Modesto Coin Show. Sticking out so clearly from most of the attendees, Hen was kind of charming & fascinating to them, and folks treated him so kindly, offering all kinds of little goodies. Below you can see the short “haul vid” he recorded after we got home, as well as a handful a photos I snapped during the show.

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26May/180

Take Your Kids To Work Day 2018

From our first outing in 2015 through installments in 2016 and 2017, Google’s annual Take Your Kids To Work Day has provided unique adventures each time. This year both guys joined me and enjoyed a parrot show, performed some ostensibly scientific explorations with slime, tried their hand at drawing Google Doodles, grabbed stickers & Android figurines at the company store, and wrapped up with hot dogs at The Sports Page. Here’s a quick peek at our day:

22May/180

A Van Down By The River

Chris Farley was a prophet. 🚐💦😝 Check out a few sights captured around our campsite last weekend.

24Apr/181

Best. Night. Ever?

With Mom-O off to NYC & Finn tucked firmly into a Harry Potter adventure, Henry proposed that he & I set off for a little bike adventure last night. To his absolute delight, we were treated to not one, not two, but THREE trains barreling past in quick succession. Watch this and tell me: Happy kid, or happiest kid? 🙂

21Apr/180

G-Man Ahoy — Port of Call: Point Reyes

During last week’s Westy excursion, Hen & I explored the famous (and now sadly half-burnt) Point Reyes shipwreck while Mom-O & Finn read in the van. Hen was eager to keep hopping over the little creek & scrambling around (as you can see in last week’s gallery) and watching windsurfers, while I happily tried my hand at capturing him & the boat from above. Check out the resulting short vid:

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29Mar/180

The Pearly Whites Emerge!

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The time has come! Our man Henry got his braces off after 15 months. He was a complete orthodontic champ for the entire duration of brace-wearing. He was always on top of wearing the required rubber bands, and he never complained about tooth or mouth pain - kind of miraculous for our little grump! He was pretty nervous about how painful it might be to get them removed, and also anticipating how weird it would feel to not have them on his teeth anymore!

Happily the removal was no big deal, and he is getting used to having more room in his mouth and beautifully-aligned pearly whites. To celebrate the braces' removal, we gave Henry two more of his dad's old Lionel train cars - a flatbed and a crane car, so he was immediately off to the basement to add them to his rig!

24Mar/180

Democracy on the Move

We were honored to walk the walk—literally—behind our lads today in the March For Our Lives, hoping to bring some sanity to the debate over gun violence and control. When some high schoolers asked for help carrying their sign in this student-led movement, Hen stepped right up, then stepped to the front of the 10,000-strong march. We love our soon-to-be-voters! 💪🇺🇸

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22Mar/180

Finnster, Now & Then

To commemorate our big man’s tenth (!!) full orbit around the Sun, I compiled a little photo tour of him through the years:

Compare that to how grown up he looked this week reading the qualities of a good Scout at our recent pack meeting:

And just for completely random comparison, here he is cavorting with Grandpa Nack right after Hen was born (“Kinda steep!”):

22Feb/180

Dogsledville!

Even twelve hours later, I kinda can’t believe it: we took the dudes dogsledding today!

Yesterday en route home from a great day of skiing (more on that soon), we happened to spy in the distance tiny teams of what looked to be dogs pulling sleds. Sure enough, Alpine Adventures (“Your destination for dog-powered fun!” ☺️) is happy to host little tours and even let you try driving a sled! We booked a lunchtime session and were delighted to take turns driving, riding in the sled, and riding in a little sleigh behind a snowmobile (as the dogs pull just two people at a time).

We learned a ton from our guide Joe, a transplant from Georgia who’s been working with dogs for a decade. Just in case you were curious, each dog can run up to 20 miles per day, consumes roughly 6,000 calories worth of meat & other food each day, and comfortably lives outside all winter in his or her own little straw-filled barrel—as you can see in the pictures. Check out this gallery from the day plus a couple of quick videos below.

19Feb/180

Foamy Hailstorm: Denver Edition

Our trip to Colorado got off to a rousing start as the boys joined their Nerf-loving cousins Patrick & Charlie for a battle royale at the nearby “Dart Warz” (i.e. a suburban warehouse full of sugared-up pre-teens & flying projectiles; what could be better? 😉). Here’s a brief taste of the action:

7Feb/180

Science Fair!

The lads got their learnin' on over the last couple of weeks, conducting experiments with conductivity (Finn) and plate tectonics (Hen). Here's a brief peek at Willow Glen Elementary's science fair, held last night:

18Jan/180

Firing away with Matthias

Being a big German dude with pellet guns, a 4x4, and a cool accent, my teammate Matthias has quickly become something of a folk hero to the boys. (“You’re still #1, Dad,” Finn informs me, “but Matthias is definitely #2." :-))

He recently upgraded the pellet gun he uses to defend his chickens from bobcat attack, so he quite generously passed his older one to Finn & invited the guys over for some backyard target practice. We also enjoyed joining Matthias & his wife Samantha for some clay trap shooting. Though the boys didn’t shoot that day, we ran into their pal Damian at the range, and they’re up for trying it out on our next visit. (Meanwhile born-scavenger Hen took to filling his pockets—and later my car—with dozens of spent shotgun shells. 🙄)

Check out the young marksmen in action:

14Oct/170

Yellowstone Friday: Lava Hot Springs Swimming

Driving up from Salt Lake City, we happened upon the charming little town of Lava Hot Springs. Although we found some amazing pizza & square-shaped ice cream cones (!), we didn’t have time for a dip in any of the local springs. Happily Margot was able to rejigger our travel plans & book us a place to stay on our return trip.

Check out a gallery & quick video showing the amazingly beautiful evening we got to spend taking a dip with our dudes!

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23Sep/170

The Hentastic Voyage

I awoke to find that Google Photos had made me this fun little retrospective of our beloved G-Man. Check out his evolution from squashy little blob to fun-sized goofball. 😀

30Jul/170

NYC Saturday: Katz’s & the Lower East Side

Given that our flight wasn't set to leave Newark until afternoon, we decided to spend some time Saturday exploring a bit of Manhattan's historic Lower East Side. At Katz's Deli the boys & I challenged each other to partake of some especially sour pickles; Finn learned that bacon sadly isn't kosher (darn!); and we washed things down by splitting some cheesecake. Afterwards we discovered Economy Candy (where Hen scored a Tootsie Pop the size of his head) and made our way to Morgenstern's Ice Cream (perhaps you're detecting a theme? :-)). Here's a brief photo/video montage from the day:

23Jul/170

Whiplash rides again!

Twenty-odd years ago, I took young Ted Nack to a rodeo in Galena where we saw Whiplash The Cowboy Monkey—a crazy little collie-riding Capuchin. I've never forgotten that little dude & had told Margot and the boys about him over the years. Imagine my surprise and delight, then, when I learned on Friday that not only is Whiplash alive & well (age 25!), but that he was coming to a rodeo near us. Check out this brief tour of our trip to the California Rodeo in Salinas yesterday—and Whiplash, long may you ride!

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: