Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A few more...

1. A Christmas present from Grandpa Gary.
2. Snuggling with Nana Sayre.
3. Ho ho ho. In my xmas onesie that Kel's friend Krissy made (

Round 3

1. Grandpa Gary and V on xmas Eve. The jogging suit is the traditional present opening outfit!
2. Kel and I in our new hats we purchased in downtown Clear Lake.
3. Grandma U (the biggest blog fan there is!) Todd, and Veda.
4. Uncle Chris, Todd and Veda. She had enough xmas fun at the Uhtof family xmas (Todd's mom's side).
5. Todd's Aunt Darlene and Veda's second cousin Emma.

More holiday pics...

1. Nicole, Kim, and me at Culvers in Clear Lake - a special treat that we were all able to get together when Brandon, Nicole, and Ava drove through on their way back to MN. We look like we are in a line-up though - I think this was taken after we ate and Todd informed us of the fat content of our sandwiches - Kim had the cod (although she only had a couple of bites) and it had 134 grams of fat - certain things you just don't need to know!
2. Baby Veda and Ava. I think Ava was more interested in Veda's toy than Veda. So cute.
3. The Baldes and Sayre crew at our annual xmas dinner at Mom and Dad's
4. Janice, Rylie, Veda and Me in our party hats. Mom always leaves a little surprise on our plates.
5. The weather was so bad the first weekend we were in Clear Lake that the Laabs family smas was postponed. We weren't there for the rescheduled party so we drove to Algona to pay a visit to Great Grandma Laabs. Veda was very happy to meet her!

Some holiday pics...

1. Carson feeding Veda 2. Grandpa Bull and V 3. I'm so tired from all the fun in my new exersaucer! 4. Ry's best friend Matt comes to visit. 5. Uncle Ry reading me a book - I love books!

I don't get it????

So I've tried formula a few times with her now. Once before Mexico to make sure she would take it if I needed to give it to her. Once on the flight home to Iowa in December because I was in a bind. Both times she took it no problem. When we were back in Iowa I tried it again at Todd's parent's because I thought my breastmilk supply was dwindling. Diane, Kelly, and I spent a rough evening caring for sweet V while she projectile vomited the entire bottle and then spent a good hour dry heaving. I thought it might have just been a bad batch or she wasn't feeling just right so we tried again yesterday. Good thing Todd had the day off because he spent it cleaning up her vomit and holding her for hours while she slept - exhausted from the ordeal. Here's a pic of her just staring into space - waiting for the next round of dry heaving to begin. Poor poor thing! The Dr. office was closed yesterday so we are back to breast milk until we can figure this out. I may try another type of formula today - but just a little. We'll see...

Monday, December 29, 2008

Dry spell

I know I know... how can I neglect the blog for five full days... well it's been a busy week. My brother went back to Japan yesterday and we had an early morning flight today. We showed up at the airport this morning and were greeted by hundreds of Hawk fans who were flying out to the bowl game. Bad timing on our part. The good news is that I ran in to a lot of old friends in the airport. The bad news is that it took an hour to get through security. Then our seats were changed at the last minute from Chicago to LA and we had to sit 6 rows apart. We took turns with Veda.

I was so tired I didn't know which way was up. Veda started to get really crabby. So much so that a flight attendent came over and suggested I take off her sleeper because she might be hot. I was a little miffed by the suggestion but I complied and it worked for about 30 seconds. Then the lady sitting in front of me (who was very friendly and with her own small children) offered to hold Veda and take her for a walk. Strange but again - I was so tired I didn't care. The funny part was that she was walking around in the aisle with Veda in front of Todd and he didn't notice the stranger with his child. We both sat comfortably in our seats resting while this nice woman kept her happy;) Turns out I got a little confused by the time change and the real reason she was crabby was because I was about an hour late with her feeding - that'll do it!

Here's a pic from her bath when we got home. I'll post some random pics from the Iowa trip in some follow-up posts... there are a lot of them!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry First Christmas

I get so emotional at church on xmas eve. Gets me every time. I can't even sing because I'm holding back tears. (This is to Todd's benefit and anyone else in earshot). The Pastor at the church we went to had just returned from Iraq and the first thing he said was that we should thank God every day that we live in the United States. I spent the rest of the service thinking about how much pain there is in the world tonight and how unbelievably blessed we are. I kept looking at Veda and thanking God for her health (and smarts;). The Christmas Message was that we should join in God's work. No matter what you believe in I think we can all afford to give more and appreciate all of our blessings. This will be my New Year's resolution.
We wish you a very merry, safe, and blessed Xmas. Happy Birthday Jesus. Happy Birthday!!!

Top Chef

While we were home we went through some old papers and found both of our "recipies" from preschool.

She puts it on the grill. She uses matches. She cooks it 6 hours. Mom calls it done.
Lima Beans
She cooks them on the stove 10 hours.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
She puts in chocolate chips, butter and makes dough for it. She puts it under the stove. She cooks them on a pan. They are kind of brown when they are done.

By "Tobb" (Preschool with Mrs. Sweers)

Two cheerios. Two milks on top.

By Kathy (Preschool)

You know you're in Clear Lake, IA when...

You can sit in the kitchen and watch pick-ups driving around on the lake out back.

You own at least five pairs of Carharts.

You leave your car running while you are at the movie theatre so the deisel doesn't freeze.

You use a shower cap to cover your leftovers in the fridge. (Actually I think Glad makes these but Kelly and I didn't know any better - either way it's genius!)

You bake four pies in two days.

Everyone has a "deep-freeze" that also doubles as the front porch.
The local bar has a pole... enough said.

And finally, your pimped out ice house with the flat screen goes missing and you aren't too concerned about it. Pee Wee probably has it.
(Picture of Grandpa Gary, Uncle Chris, and Todd on the way out to ice fish)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Veda's Baptism

Veda was baptised this morning. We had a private service at the church in Britt, IA where Todd grew up. The weather was touch and go today and Mom, Dad, and Ryan braved the trip from Iowa City this morning. They made an immediate exit after the ceremonies to try and beat the wind storm. They aren't home yet but by the looks of the doopler they should make it home ok. It was a very special day and we feel blessed to have our immediate family with us at this important milestone in Veda's life.

Here's a pic of sweet Veda in her Baptism outfit (which was mine when I was a baby). The blanket and super cute headwear are gifts from Veda's God Parents, Uncle Chris and Aunt Kelly (headwear made by Kel's friend Krissy and can be purchased at The bracelet from Grandpa and Grandma Laabs.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Still trying to figure out who Veda looks like...

I think this pic looks like Veda... do you? It's my brother as a baby. Mom swears that she still has this outfit somewhere and is tearing the place up trying to find it. Veda had the hat one the other day (as seen in one of Ryan's posts).

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Back at it...

Thank you Ryan for taking the wheel for a few days. I returned from my trip to Chicago yesterday. I've posted some pictures with friends from my trip. I've also posted a pic of Veda with her friend Evy. We went to visit Evy and my friend Emily the day before I left and I haven't had a chance to get this pic up. Pretty cute;) You can't tell in thsi pic but Evy is winning at the hair growing contest and she is only 6 weeks old - Veda 4 months.
The trip to Chicago was fun. Good to see co-workers and friends that I haven't seen in a long time. Also good to get some work done and connect with clients. I really thought I would have a difficult time being away from Veda but it wasn't so bad. I knew she was in good hands so I wasn't the least bit worried. I just missed snuggling with her. I think she grew in the few days I was away and I've decided that she is definately teething. Her drool has become a steady stream and every time you hold her she tries to chew on your shoulder, neck, or face;)
I am really starting to miss California - yes - I said it. Tuesday was the scariest day of my life. I drove home in 7.5 hours of blizzard with ice on the ground. I was never sure if I was actually driving in my lane (the road was covered) and every time I was forced to brake I would feel the tire's skidding. Of course the semis were just blazing past - no wonder that there was a pile-up on I80 involving 7 of them. I was caught in that traffic. It was bad. It should have taken only 3.5 hours to get home. I was actually relieved when I hit the closure on the interstate and we were re-routed on a county road. We could only go about 3 miles an hour which seemed much safer to me given the 4 inches of packed snow covering the road.

I was supposed to travel to Ohio tomorrow morning for my company xmas party and meetings. Given my experience on Tuesday and that I need to be home Friday so that we can make it to Veda's baptism on Sat. I have decided to cancel the trip. A major storm is expected to hit the Midwest and I was scheduled to travel through Ohare -not a good combination. I'm hoping my boss understands!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Old Macdonald had a ... What?

The feeding/changing/playing operation here at Chez Sayre is a well-oiled machine. Grandpa handles in-put, Grandma's got her hands full with out-put, and uncle Ryan likes it best when all the fluids stay-put. We share all the 'singing duties'. Last night Veda was telling me how much she enjoys Grandpa's Old Macdonald had a Farm... “but...” she said, leaning in close and bringing her voice down to a whisper, “....Grandpa doesn't know his animal sounds very well, does he?” I had to admit that I'd never heard a horse go “braay.”

While none of us is any closer to earning the 50 dollars that Kathy has promised to the first person to get Veda to say “mommy,” we have managed to make modest progress in the “rolling over onto her stomach” department.

1. right leg pulled over left leg - check
2. head turned in the direction of the roll - check
3. right shoulder twisted over body - check
4. A little bit of umpf - check

Only one small hitch -- she keeps her left arm stretched out to the side like a backhoe outrigger. After a few failed pushes against the laws of nature, the bean gives out a teeny groan and rolls back over, only to re-discover the collection of colorful toys dangling overhead in her play-pen. “Ah,” she smiles, “here's what I was looking for!”

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Uncle Ryan at the Wheel

Kathy's work took her to Chicago for the weekend and Veda kindly agreed to stick around to look after mom, dad, and me. The bean has appointed me temporary guardian of her blog (pssst... shout out to Kelly, my fellow guest-blogger!!). As Kath mentioned in an earlier post, I'm living in Japan, so this was my first time to get to bounce the little bean on my knee. For those of you who haven't been on the receiving end of her full-body smile or heard her spot-on impression of chattering adults, you're in for a real treat. She is nothing short of sweetness and light! Until this week, my interactions with the little one had been confined to the two dimensions of the computer telephone. I ran a few tests with the hallway mirror to see if she had even been able to see me at all. The results suggest that either (1) she doesn't understand two dimensional images, or (2) she is free of all vanity and has no interest in mirrors. Given how much of a flirt she is, I think we can easily rule out (2)! I've got big plans to train her with the mirror over the next few days and to teach her how to log onto skype so we can keep chatting it up in cyberspace when I go back across the ocean at the end of the month.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Thursday In Iowa City

It was a busy day for Mom - I ran around town getting things knocked off my to-do list including a trip to the dentist. It's a good thing I'd forgotten how horrible it is to get a cavity filled - I do not like the dentist. To top it off - I didn't consider the fact that my mouth would be paralized for hours after the procedure. I hadn't eaten anything but a bite of coffee cake before my 1pm appt. I was so hungry and so frustratated. I couldn't even take a sip of water because I couldn't feel the glass against my mouth... I had to get a straw and even then I felt like I might swallow my tounge. Not good. I'm still up - thinking about everything I have to do before I leave Saturday morning. We are having our good family friends over for the annual holiday dinner tomorrow night so I have until tomorrow afternoon to...

Finish client xmas cards
Get stamps and mail cards
Run 4.5 miles
Print out a medical release form for Veda in case of emergency while I'm gone
Return a gift I bought that I found at another store for $10 cheaper
Have lunch with my friend Em and little Evy
Run to the Bagolitas office to pick up a gift
Touch base emails out to all my clients and prospects that I will see this weekend...

I'm sure I will think of more tomorrow...

Anyway - I'll leave you with a pic of Veda and her new girlfriends. I dropped my Mom off at bridge tonight and brought Veda in for an introduction. Mom has been getting together with these ladies for as long as I can remember. Most of them have children who I went to school with. Some time back they quit playing cards and decided they would just chat, eat and drink. They still call it "bridge" though as I believe they should - this cracks me up. Sounds like my bookclub. We don't talk much about books;)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Hi I'm Veda - Pleased to meet you Uncle Ryan

Well we made it to Iowa City with only a slight delay in Chicago. We were expecting the worst and were happy when we climbed into bed at the end of the day. My brother Ryan met her for the very first time (he lives in Japan and couldn't get back until now). They are getting along marvelously!
I'm also happy to report that Nana Sayre found the perfect hat for Ms. Veda. She doesn't know what to think about the cold but she seems to like her hat and giggles when we laugh at her cuteness;)
Now we're trying to get her on Iowa time and I'm trying to prepare for my departure on Saturday. The thought of being away from her for four days is freaking me out!

Monday, December 8, 2008

My Buddy

Veda fell asleep bear hugging her bunny friend yesterday. Cute. I can't believe I am blogging right now. I am going crazy trying to get everything ready for our trip to Iowa tomorrow. Veda and I are flying through Chicago O'Hare and 100% percipatation is expected. I have already phoned my college roommate to let her know that we might need a place to stay tomorrow night if we get stuck in Chicago;) We will be in Iowa City until Saturday and then I will drive back to Chicago for a four day conference. My first time away from Sweet V. I don't know how I will handle it but I suspect an extra glass of wine here and there will help;) After Chicago I will make a quick stop in IC and then on to Ohio for a day for my company Xmas party.
Veda gets to meet Uncle Ryan for the first time tomorrow - assuming we don't get detoured by the weather. She can't wait. She's all smiles! I'll try my best to blog while we are on the road - we don't want to disappoint our readers;)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Winter Hat Shopping

Last night we went out in search of a winter hat for Veda before her trip back in Iowa next week. She tried on about 12 different hats and was less than impressed. Here was one of the hats, it was a bit more lumberjack than Veda, so we decided to pass.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Baby Ride

Veda has become totally uninterested in laying on her back for long periods of time. She wants to be held and she wants to be upright -she won't let us craddle her anymore;((. Although this little gadget is recommend for babies 6+ months I thought I'd try it out a little early. She really likes it -she just scoots herself around. We are on the lookout for baby walkers and exersaucers now to keep her completely entertained. We don't have door frames on most of our room entries so I had to rig this up in the walk-in closet...

Tis the season...

We received the Proctor & Gamble holiday box in the mail this week. Veda wanted to open it right away but Dad made us wait until he got home! It's always fun to see what surprises await. Here's a pic of the goodies we scored. These are a selection of some of the newest P&G products to hit the market - new twists on old favorites.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Milestone Monday

Yes it's Wed and I'm writing about Monday. Things have been a little crazy around here. Veda has been off her schedule since we returned from Mexico but I think today we are gettng things back on track. Monday we introduced her to a small helping of formula as an experiment. I really don't think there is anything you could feed her that she wouldn't eat. I gave her another bottle Tuesday - a little more than before. Again, no obvious side effects. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel... I don't plan to ween her off immediately but I look forward to the days when I don't have to pump or wake up in the middle of the night to make sure I don't burst;)) Exhausting!
I opened a Christmas CD yesterday and Veda and I sang along. We live next door to an elementry school and as we went out for morning coffee I noticed the crossing guards were wearing deer antlers - what fun! We leave for Iowa next Tuesday and I just can't wait for the festivities. I get to spend four days on Michigan Ave next week in Chicago - working of course - but it's going to be so much fun to see all my co-workers that I haven't seen since June and my BFF is flying in for a couple of days from MN to join me. I'll also make a side trip to Ohio while my parents and brother watch Sweet Veda. Let the packing begin!!!

This photo was taken last night. I took Veda upstairs so I could get some zzz's around 8pm. I couldn't fall asleep but someone had no problem... Veda was playing with her blanky and didn't seem to notice the snoring from next door;)