Isn’t she a doll?
Isn’t she a doll?
Ciana Jean Valiant:
Born January 14, 2010
7 lbs 12 oz
A full head of hair!
Super sweet and adorable!
Casey had a conference in Vegas for Sign-A-Rama, and he and I stayed a couple extra nights to celebrate our anniversary.
I wasn’t sure I’d be able to go to Vegas because I had basically been on bedrest for about 2 months. I was throwing up twice a day with morning sickness, but far worse was the crazy dizziness I had. If I would stand up, or look at my computer, or basically do anything besides stare at the wall, the room would spin and spin and spin…
My first trimester ended the week before our Vegas trip, and the dizziness mostly let up – yay! The nausea and throwing up was still around somewhat, but it’s much easier to handle that when the room’s not spinning in circles. (The severity of the dizziness I had was rare for pregnant women, most don’t even get dizzy, so those of you not pregnant yet, don’t worry – you probably won’t have it). We’re so thankful that the baby is healthy. Next Monday is another doctor’s appointment and I can’t wait to hear the heartbeat again.
So here’s our fun week in Vegas:
My pregnant belly is starting to show, at least I can tell it’s popping out there. We stayed at Caesar’s Palace for the conference. Quite a beautiful place!
Casey’s parents at the Sign-A-Rama awards banquet. Yes, Casey gets his goofiness from his dad.
I like palm trees.
The Venetian is so gorgeous! This is around 8 am. Apparently the only time Vegas sleeps.
This is still all indoors. Casey’s showing off his muscles on the bridge.
Here I’m trying to convince Casey that my baby belly is showing.
Casey’s looking like a total tourist at this nightclub.
In front of the Mirage.
The Chihuly ceiling exhibit in the Bellagio
The Bellagio gardens
The Mexican restaurant where we had lunch inside the Miracle Mile Shops – yes, that’s a painted ceiling, Mom.
My uncle and aunt, Ed and Lynn, were also in Vegas, and they took us out to Paris for linner… or dunch… or whatever it’s called between lunch and dinner. Yum.
So during dinner, Ed convinced us that the greatest game in all of Vegas isn’t poker, or blackjack, or a slot machine… no, it’s a game in the kid’s area of Excalibur called Pitch a Witch!!! You position a stuffed, ugly witch on a launchpad and then whack the release lever with a mallet. You have to get the witch to land in a cauldren in order to win a prize.
My witch is positioned, but I never made it in the cauldren. Casey, Ed, and Tom all did. What’s with the guys winning Pitch a Witch? Well, afterwards we played a dragon racing game, and I won that one!
We went home with 3 adorable teddies – the first toys for our baby!
Outside of Luxor. That’s the real sky, Mom, not painted.
For our anniversary, we splurged and stayed at the Wynn – a 5 star hotel (we got a deal on Hotwire). We went to a cirque du soleil show at the Wynn, Le Reve. It was fabulous! Of course we weren’t allowed to take photos at it though. We also spent some quality time in the pools – both at Caesar’s Palace where we stayed for the conference and at the Wynn. Didn’t take the camera in the pool.
The Wynn even made their casino elegant.
It’s been a lot of months since I’ve had a chance to update this, so here’s a long visual update starting in fall and going to March.
International World Tour Dinner
International World Tour Dinner
Caramel Apples with Mom and Dad
Evansville in the fall
Jeremy, Tama, me and Casey
Barn dancing y’all!
Friends we meet with once a week to study the Bible and hang out
Casey made our Thanksgiving turkey
Thanksgiving at our house with friends
Casey and brothers at Walt’s graduation
Grant and Jakey love playing with Uncle Monkey
The Valiants are a family full of boys!
"We’ll never let go of Uncle Casey"
Kristi and Grandma
The Gerner side
Playing on Lake Winnebago
Snowball fight in Fondy
We don’t get snow like this in Evansville
Me and Ji Yeon and our new friend – he’s a little stiff though
New Year’s Eve in New Harmony, IN
We had a romantic weekend in New Harmony
Casey at Tae Kwon Do testing
Casey’s sparring the instructor
A hippo friend at the zoo in Nashville, TN
Shuang, me, and Ji Yeon at the Creation Museum in Cincinnati
Petting a piggie
We celebrated our anniversary in Amish country in northern Indiana at Spring View Bed and Breakfast over the weekend (photos below). Casey and I had a sad week last week, so the weekend was a much needed getaway to relax and reflect.
We also got to visit my friend Alyn and her fiance. I completely forgot to pull out my camera to take photos of them, that’s how excited I was to see Alyn! She’s lived in the middle east for the last 2.5 years, so it’s rare that we get to hug and chatter in person.
We came home to our huge and lovely hibiscus flowers blooming in our backyard (my hand for comparison):
Friday, November 18th, 2005 Casey Valiant proposed to me at a gorgeous restaurant at a winery. Here’s the story:
In October we took some friends on a wine tour and tasting at a winery near my house called Messina Hof. We picked up a flyer there about some romantic movie nights that they do and I noticed that Casablanca was going to be shown the beginning of November. Around the third week of November I saw the flyer in Casey’s car and I realized we had missed the Casablanca movie night. That Wednesday Casey brought the flyer and was all giddy as he showed me that Casablanca was to be shown in two days on Friday, November 18th. I was really confused because I was so certain that the flyer has said either the 4th or the 11th. The thought crossed my mind that maybe Casey faked the flyer by scanning in the original and changing the date (which he had done), but I really became more suspicious when he asked if I was going to dress up and he told me to bring my camera. I thought about calling one my friends, Alyn, to discuss my suspicions, but I didn’t want to think that maybe he was going to propose and then if he didn’t I’d be disappointed about a really nice date at a winery. So I didn’t call her.
At that same time that I was going to call Alyn, Casey had called her for help on his plans setting up everything. She went along with him to pick out the ring. We had never talked about a ring, but he picked out the perfect one -simple and elegant – white gold with a v-shaped cutout (for his last name – Valiant), and a diamond with the most fire (sparkle)! I love it!
On Friday night when we arrived at Messina Hof, Casey brought me into the restaurant. I was bombarding him with questions because I thought we were going into the wrong building to watch Casablanca. "Where would they show Casablanca in this nice restaurant? I think we’re supposed to go into the gift shop building. The people in here look like they’ve been eating awhile but the movie night is supposed to start now. Did we need reservations to come tonight?…" Casey ignored all my questions and had us seated at a table near the Christmas tree and wine barrels. It was so beautiful! The waiter came over and dropped off glasses of water and then left before I could ask him any questions. Casey had set up for them not to have the waiter speak to us or I’d figure out pretty quickly that there was no movie. Casey chugged his whole glass of water. Then another waiter came from behind me and set a red rose across my plate. Another waiter quickly came and set a bottle of wine on the table. I didn’t have time to look at it right then, but it was a bottle of Messina Hof’s private reserve Port (my favorite kind of wine) and Casey had them print a special label on it that had our names and the date and "As the Mouse…". There was a Chinese song we learned in Asia this summer that went "I love you, loving you, as the mouse loves the rice…", so we’ve been saying "As the mouse" since then. Right after the waiter set down the wine and before I had a chance to look at it, the maitre d’ came and handed Casey the ring box. He had them keep it in their safe because it was large enough that I would have noticed it in his pocket. He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! And I said, "Of course, yes yes yes yes, did I say yes yet?"
Check out our wedding photos here.