Monday, October 10, 2011

Niagara Falls

Before heading to Newark, New Jersey to catch our flight to Tel Aviv, we decided to take a quick jaunt up to Canada to see Niagara Falls. None of us had ever been to Canada before so we figured we couldn't miss out if we were so close. We got to the falls just as the sun was setting. It was beautiful!

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B is for Bald

There are about a million awesome things that come with having a baby, there are also about half a million things that are not so awesome. Today is a good day to vent about one of them. Starting about a month ago, my hair started falling out... A LOT. I wasn't too worried. I read up on it that after you have a baby, your body starts to shed the extra hair that you grew while pregnant, so although it may look scary, you're more or less going back to normal. Well, WRONG. And, wrong again. I have a reseeding hair line and there is no end in sight. When your husband starts laughing as you run out of the bathroom yelling all sorts of profanities, you know it's not just in your head. Here's a picture to prove it. And no, I haven't always been blessed with a square hairline. I just about died when I saw this picture. So, number 13 on the list of uncool things that happen in result of having a baby, balding.

(Isn't that the sweetest boy you've ever seen though?)
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New York

We had a bit of a hard time getting out on flights to Tel Aviv, so we stopped in upstate New York to see some church sights. My Mom happily volunteered to go with us... she's always up for running around that part of the country.

Hiding from the rain, on the trail up the Hill Comorah.

Hill Comorah

Getting carted around like crazy.

Sacred Grove

Nothing like nursing your way through the Grove.

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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Yom Kipper

I'm taking a break from updating old blog posts to tell you about our weekend in Israel. Since we've been here, we've had three holidays. I can't stand it because the entire country shuts down. No eating out, going to the grocery store or any shops. I'm locked in the house most times with the baby during the day, so I look forward to evenings when Jerid and I walk around Sokolov street where we can window shop, grab a treat at the bakery or do some shopping at the fruit stand. So, this weekend (also my birthday) was Yom Kipper, their holiest of holy days. You cannot drive a vehicle on this day... Nope, not even the Gentiles! They even shut down their airport and their borders, it's a little eerie. On the day before Yom Kipper we stopped to ask a police officer what time we had to stop driving, he replied "Well, you can actually drive anytime but you may get stoned.... (long pause for emphasis) by some religious people if you do!" Awesome, thanks.
So, the Eve of the holiday we went on our usual evening walk before Axel's bedtime. It was unusually quiet because people weren't driving. Once we crossed the street we saw tons of kids on bikes, kids in electric cars, old people in wheelchairs, everyone out in the streets! Walking, talking, riding, visiting. There were thousands of them, as far as the eye could see! We heard that even the freeways are filled with bikers! Jerid said he felt like we were in a post apocalyptic time, it was so weird. I didn't have my camera with me that evening unfortunately, but the next morning I snapped a few pictures. There weren't a lot of people out because it was early, but it'll still give you an idea. The one thing I kept thinking was, how much money the country saved on fuel. I wish I knew the stats.

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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Packing and Planning

Jerid applied for an internship, in Herzliya, Israel. We sadly left our dog Millie with Jerid's parents in Idaho and headed back to Monterey to pack up our apartment and plan our trip out.

My Mom came down a few times because I was having such a hard time with Axel. He wasn't sleeping for more than 10 minutes a few times a day and the nights were horrible. He was up every hour. He started having 10-12 diarrhea diapers a day. I went on an elimination diet for 2 weeks without success. I was literally eating dairy free, gluten free, citrus free, nut free... ok, I was eating rice and veggies every meal! My milk was turning clear! Finally, I switched him to a soy formula the night before we went to the Dr. for the 3rd time in a matter of weeks. During the visit, we had a consult with a GI specialist who advised us to switch to a specialty formula (he supplements with) and for me to stay off dairy completely. Before 24 hours was up, we noticed a huge difference! Diarrhea went away and he started sleeping for 2-3 hour periods at night. What a relief! Week after week my baby boy did better. He's still a handful that doesn't like to be set down, put in a stroller, carseat or crib, but we deal with it with smiles because there was nothing like a sick, crying baby!

Sadly we left our loved apartment on the beach and moved all our belongings into a storage unit that's anxiously waiting our return. I'm so sad that Axel hasn't been able to use so many of his baby things! That's something I can't wait for! Getting his room set up again.

We hung out at my parents house for a week before heading out on our journey. It was a nice break before the unknown. Israel... Jews, schnitzel, and the Mediterranean Sea!

Taking a snooze while Mom packs up the room.

So sad to leave all him monkey friends behind... all but one.

To Grandmother's house we go!

Trip to Idaho

We took a little road trip to Idaho for the 4th of July. Darla had an open house for the baby and we celebrated the 4th of July. Axel was about 6 weeks old. He was pretty fussy this trip. We didn't know at the time, but he was allergic to the formula we were giving him as well as dealing with a dairy allergy... and I ate a lot of cupcakes, unfortunately. All and all, we had a good time and were able to see a lot of good friends. We were very blessed with all the kind gifts we received! Thank you all!

He did a good job sleeping in the car on the way up!

Stopped in Tahoe for some pizza and a bit of milky! Axel peed through his clothes again. Diaper time!

Meeting Jacob for the first time. What a proud cousin!

Hanging out with Trav.

Meeting Great Grandpa Wes.

Axel was an early smiler. I think his first real smile was at about 5 1/2 weeks. What a cutie pie!

Emma, Jon and Shandee's little girl, was such a big helper! She loved to be with Axel wherever he was!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Newborn Pictures

We wanted to do some professional newborn pictures of Axel, but we were tight on money, so I found a student photographer on craigslist to try her hand at them. She did a great job and we got some great family pictures! The green chair was my Grandpa, Oscars chair. My Moms held onto it for me until we had a place with enough space for it! Love it and the memory of Grandpa.

The first few weeks

We brought Axel home from the hospital three days after he was born. We did a quick stop at my parents house in Shingle Springs before heading down to Monterey. My Mom came down a few days later to help out. From day one, our little Axel has had a feisty little temper. Change his diaper or change his clothes and it's game over! There's only one thing in this world that could calm him down and that was, of course, nursing. I loved those first few days, even though I was still hurting like crazy. I was able to fall asleep with Axel in my arms and we wouldn't move an inch for a few hours, we were both so tired. Jerid was a superstar. He helped me with everything and I could see in his eyes how much he loved our little boy! After the first four or five days real life hit, the adrenaline and excitement started to ware and it became harder and harder to wake up for those feedings every hour and a half. For the first 6 weeks, as most Moms, I slept only a few hours each night. I was never able to nap during the day for some reason. I wish I could have. Axel was one fussy, fussy baby! I knew there was something different about him. His crying was persistent and he sounded like he had a tummy ache most of the time. I went on elimination diet for two weeks and we visited a few doctors and came to find out he is allergic to milk whey. Poor little boy! After we changed my diet and changed to a special formula, he started feeling better immediately! He is still a "high needs" baby, but he for once started to calm down for a few hours in the day. We were so glad to find out his problem and fix it! Those first weeks, I was in true survival mode. Survival mode didn't start to fade until a few weeks ago for me. Thank goodness we're sleeping more and we have a much, much happier baby!

Coming home from the hospital.

So itty-bitty!

Daddy's little boy!

So sweet when he sleeps!

He only took a binky a few times, unfortunately.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Our baby boy

I'm going to be trying to update my blog since I have a little extra time now. Haven't done a thing since before Axel was born. Bare with me, there's so much to tell...

Our Bundle of Joy!

Born after 12 hours of labor and 21 minutes of pushing! What an exciting, emotional and extremely painful experience! I wouldn't have changed a thing no matter how difficult it was. I'm so grateful for Jerid and my Mom, who helped me through it, even if I did try to kick them out of the room a few times. I wouldn't have made it without them.

Axel Emmanuel Hensley
Born May 31st, 2011 11:43pm
8lbs 11oz. 21 1/2 inches

The sweet boy who changed my life forever. I loved him from the first time I felt his kicks and the first time I saw his sweet, sweet face.