Micronaxx The adventures of Finn & Henry


Yellowstone Tuesday: A Ride to the Top

"Hey Dad, call me 'Hannibal Deflector!'" yelled Finn as he & G-Man duked it out with me in our long-awaited "epic snowball fight." We'd climbed some 4,000 via the tram at Teton Village, where we were staying at the local hostel. While Margot wisely kept her feet dry, the rest of us trudged to the top of the snowy hill to glimpse the Grand Tetons poking through the clouds. Mippy (Finn's robot dinosaur) made the ascent & an appearance, and we were treated to seeing a paraglider toss himself off the mountaintop. Oh, and happily we didn't need bear spray. 🙂 Check out our little gallery from the adventure.


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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Yellowstone Monday: Teton & Beyond

The first full day of our Yellowstone trip saw us make our way to Jackson, Wyoming for a whole bunch of adventures, including:

  • Rubbernecking at the amazing, snow-flocked foliage
  • Wolfing down some tangy meat at the Big Hole BBQ
  • Battling it out in an impromptu snowball fight on a mountain pass
  • Getting some new stuffed buddies (Teton the wolf, Alexander the bear) at the Jackson Hole visitor center
  • Driving up towards the Tetons & spying some moose (meese? :-))
  • Spotting a pronghorn hopping around near Jenny Lake
  • Catching a whole family of lady elk along the road

Check out the gallery!



Yellowstone Sunday: Treehouse of Wonder

For our first night’s stay en route to Yellowstone, Margot somehow found a super funky, sword-filled Quonset hut with its own treehouse. After driving through hours of snowy darkness (what we dubbed “the jellyfish,” given its appearance in our headlights), we were greeted by colorful & charming retired fire chief Jonathan. He told us that he’d built the treehouse for his grandkids & that he now runs ropes courses for student groups. The cabin itself had been built to house workers who’d been constructing a nearby dam, after which it was disassembled & moved up to its current location.

As you can see in our photo gallery and in the video below, we all had a blast staying there—especially the dudes!



Mountain Men, Young & Old

Last weekend Finn & I joined his Webelos scout crew on what proved to be a rather epic hike in the Santa Cruz mountains just off Highway 1. As you can see in our gallery, on Saturday we climbed & climbed over the course of a six-mile trail, then set up our rather sad & bizarre little pup tent. Thankfully Sunday was mostly downhill, and upon returning to civilization, Finn was more than happy to take me up on my offer of an immense burger.


Take a helmet full of ice cream…

...add one Hen, apply liberally; observe from a safe distance. :-p


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. 😀


Chalk-Rockin’ Streets

Yesterday Mom-O & Hen buzzed over to San Jose’s Luna Park to check out the annual street-chalk festival. As you can imagine, the young art connoisseur flipped out over giant owls, soda-drinking goats, and more. Here’s a little gallery from the outing.



Portraits of the Artists as Very Young Men

At Back-to-School Night this week, Margot & I got to drop in on the dudes’ new classrooms and teachers. We were charmed to find their self portraits hanging up. Note Finn’s inclusion of green racing stripes on his glasses, plus Hen’s generous application of freckles. 😊




NYC Wednesday: Empire State of Mind

I’ve been remiss in sharing a few last shots from our great adventure in NYC. As usual on Wednesday we packed things in:

  • We began with a picnic lunch in Central Park (thanks to Auntie Laura for organizing things so that we could simply pick up chow & walk over), followed by the four boys & me touring the American Museum of Natural History. (Henry’s as taken with their owl collection as he is horrified by naked proto-humans. 😜)
  • From there we headed down to Rockefeller Center. We took in the sights of Atlas, rendering in both bronze (a towering statue I remember seeing when I was three years old!) and Lego!
  • Afterwards we headed down to Little Italy for dinner at La Mela & cannolis across the street.
  • Finally we wound things up atop the Empire State Building. (Dad, I included the vertigo-inducing 360º shots hanging off the side just for you. 😲😉)

Here’s our gallery plus a little video compilation of some random moments.



First Day of School 2017

Look at these big, handsome beasts! 😍 The Walking Train is underway!

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Blue Walkers


NYC Thursday: 30 Rock, Brooklyn, and the Yanks

With Margot & her dad opting to take it easy on Thursday morning, the guys & I accompanied Laura’s family to Rockefeller Center for a trip to the Top of the Rock. The beautiful weather afforded us sweeping views of the city. I’m still not convinced that the boys know New Jersey from Brooklyn from Harlem, but I think we made some progress. ☺️

After that, we met up with Margot in my old neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights (making a brief detour to Remsen Street, where I found my late, beloved cat Remsen) in order to visit the NY Transit Museum. Train-loving Henry was predictably over the moon—saying specifically, “I love this to Pluto and beyond!” We scored him some terrific subway-themed socks, and he treated himself to a little working subway setup.

Following the museum visit, we grabbed a car to Grimaldi’s Pizza under the Brooklyn Bridge. After the boys drew on the plates, we wolfed down what Finn is (justifiably) calling the best pizza he’s ever tasted, then walked over the bridge.

Last—and by no means least—we rejoined the rest of the fam to head to our first-ever Yankees game up in the Bronx (exactly as spelled out on Henry’s miniature set—161th St. station). Seeing Grandpa Liggett’s name flashed up on the Jumbotron was a particular treat.

Here’s a gallery from our jam-packed day.



NYC Tuesday: Lady Liberty, Ellis Island, Flatiron, and the High Line

By Tuesday the rains that doused us Monday had largely moved on, so we made our way out to Liberty Island to see the big gal in person. As souvenirs the boys picked “Liberty” and “Donut,” a crown-wearing lion & panda (hey, it’s a free country 😉).

Following our visit we sailed to nearby Ellis Island. Hen loved the historic train artifacts (“Look, it’s the WaBASH line!”), and I enjoyed/winced at the collection of ethnic newspapers and propaganda posters.

From there we sailed back to Manhattan and visited the Flatiron Building (a longtime favorite which we’ve built in Lego!). We walked to the High Line—an elevated subway track that’s been converted into a park that meanders through, among other things, the old Nabisco factory that’s become Chelsea Market (where we had dinner). Henry particularly enjoyed the benches that roll along the old railroad track.

Lastly, after getting everyone home for the evening, Margot & I found the energy to rally & hit one of our favorite Manhattan bars, the Peninsula Hotel. Here’s a gallery of the day’s explorations.



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:


NYC Friday: Library & Central Park

Man, we've been zooming around the city like mad, barely catching our breath.

Today we started out at the NY Public Library, home to the stone lions Patience & Fortitude, who Finn & Margot knew from their roles in the Percy Jackson book series. After that we split up, with the boys & I heading up to Central Park for some exploration, boating (a first for all of us!), and watching street performers (the Afrobats). Happily Hen (mostly) overcame his fear of sailing into the bushes, and Finn's "interpretive dance" style of rowing didn't result in (permanent) oar loss.

Now we're all laying low a bit at home, grabbing some chicken on the corner & watching The Hunt for Red October before Margot & I head out for a nightcap. Here's a little gallery from our day. Note that you can click the stretched-out panoramas to load them into interactive 360º viewing mode. Enjoy!



NYC Monday: Sailing, Rain, & WTC

Greetings from sometimes rainy but always thrilling New York! I'm being pulled out the door for day 2, but in the meantime here's a little gallery of what we've been doing so far—visiting Brooklyn and the 9/11 Memorial, sailing around the harbor, and more. To be continued! 🗽😀



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!


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:


Camping with Las Madres 2017

Continuing our great tradition from the last 5+ years (see previous installments), we were delighted to join our gaggle of Las Madres pals for some s'more-spattered fun in the woods. This year was beset by bees & biting flies (released, no doubt, by the increasingly large & far-ranging kids' explorations), but fortunately our dudes were mostly spared. Highlights included playing Old Maid, Mancala, and Rush Hour Jr. Check out a gallery from the adventure.


Happy Fourth!

We've been having a great Fourth of July here in San Jose—missing our traditional Leadville scene a bit, but happy to get to party with Las Madres pals along the Alameda. You can check out a little gallery of photos by mousing over the image below & clicking the little arrow at the right, or by clicking this link, and I've shared a little vid from the parade below. Happy Fourth from your West Coast Nack pals! 🎆🎇🇺🇸😀


A post shared by John Nack (@jnack) onJul 4, 2017 at 6:11pm PDT