Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Please post more photos!

John, I know you are a busy man, but our new photos need to be posted. I know that you will say I need to learn how to do this, so maybe it's time!

Love you, Jayne

Christmas Blog 2007

This year we became a family of FIVE! John and I are officially outnumbered. Emma Jayne entered our life at 10:49am on October 30th, 2007. After about 5 hours of labor I delivered Emma without any drugs. This is the second birth without drugs and I still can't believe that I am alive. She is a cute little girl and we think that she has daddy's chin and mommy's eyes. This could change, but she has reddish brown hair! I hope this stays! I have always wanted a girl with John's hair. I can't wait for it to grow! The first few weeks with Emma were a transition. She likes to be held and cuddled, so we had to work on getting her to calm herself to sleep. Now at 6 weeks she is sleeping all night long. She will go about 10 hours at night! I hope this lasts. She is still very little, so I am keeping my fingers crossed. I had a melt down two weeks ago. John was the recipient! Sorry honey! God must have known that I needed to sleep through the night again. Thank you Lord for putting your hand on Emma. I am a happier mom now! It's so fun to have PINK in the house. I love it! A girl is fun to dress. She has two Christmas dress and has worn them every other week to church this December. She has looked so cute. Ok, I will move on. We are so blessed now to have boys and a girl. We have always wanted to have one of each. God is so good!

Ean, our first born, still is in love with all the "Cars" movie diecast cars. He likes going to Wal-mart and Target to look at them. We keep collecting them and thier stocking will be full with them again this year. Physically Ean has become a little boy. He is very lean and slender. All of his baby look is gone and he looks just like his dad. Aunt Jen can't believe the similarities. He also loves his dad to death. The other day he told me that Evan and I could leave and he would stay at home with HIS dad. I am glad that he favors his dad. He needs a male figure to watch and John is a wonderful one. We are still working on being nice to our brother. They are playing better together, but we have our moments. He has become very independent. He likes to do everything for himself. Keep us in your prayers as we raise a strong willed first born. This summer he took off on his bike. We can't keep up when we take walks. He used water wings in the pool this summer. He liked being able to "swim" by himself.

Evan is still our boy who loves to be hugged! He carries around his burp rag for comfort and his thumb still makes it into his mouth. Every morning he asks for "chocit juice, mommy?". Thank you dad. Chocolate milk is his favorite food. Yes, food. Physically he still has that baby/toddler look that mommy loves. He is a solid thick boy. He may be our football player! We may have an Uncle Joe in our future! Evan does follow Ean around and plays with what Ean plays with. He has become attached to a couple of "Hot-Wheels" cars, so that is different from his brother. He surprised mom and dad and at the aquatic center this summer by going down the toddler water slide all by himself. He is a little more outgoing than his brother.  As he grows it will be fun to see what he has intrest in. Right now being guided by his brother seems to take up a lot of his time.

Both boys were wonderful at welcoming their new baby sister. Hugs and kisses are always being given. We hope that Emma's eyesite comes in good, because they get right in her face all the time! She is a great trooper and most of their poks and pushes don't bother her at all. The first week home Ean said, "I love my new baby sister", "Emma, I love her." Evan calls her "baby" most of the time. "mema" has come out a few times. We are also working on getting him to say "Jen". Aunt Jen has been called Grandma a few times. I don't know if she likes that!

As John and I continue to both work and raise three kids, we just talked about how blessed we really are. We are very thankful for the family that the Lord has given us. We want to send everyone a Merry  Chirstmas and Happy New Year! And lets remember the ture meaning of the season. Ean's Bible Buddies verse says is best: "Today... a Savior has been born... He is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:11.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Emma Jayne: Day 2

Emma Jayne 315

Our family is growing!

Today was full of a lot of fun introducing Emma Jayne to her brothers, great-grandma, and a bunch of friends. She slept through most of the introductions but occasionally opened her eyes to check out the action.

Many thanks go to those of you who've reached out via emails, notes, and phone calls over the last couple days. We've really enjoyed sharing these precious moments in our family with you. (I've really enjoyed Judith's comments on various photos on Flickr.)

Our friends from Nashville, Josh and Julie Berry, happened to be town this week for a funeral so we were able to have a great visit with them at the hospital today. It was a lot of fun catching up with one another and sharing a lot of laughs. They get the prize for traveling the furtherest to see us at the hospital.

Tomorrow will be full of new experiences for us as we'll be taking Emma home for the very first time. (Dad needs to remember to bring the car seat to the hospital!) Checking out of the hospital is always an interesting experience for us. It always takes forever! Jayne is really looking forward to dressing Emma up in PINK for the very first time. It will be first of many new firsts as we take these next steps into the future with our first daughter.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Emma Jayne Stark

Emma Jayne 097

Emma Jayne Stark was born this morning! We praise God for the blessings of this new child.

The stats:

  • Born:
    October 30, 2007

  • Weight:
    6 lbs 12.8 oz.

  • Height:
    20 inches

Everyone is heathly and doing great. A big thanks to Jennifer, my sister, who came over early this morning to watch the boys when we went to the hospital this morning. Grandma Mary and Grandma Connie are going to help us out a bunch this week as well (yeah!).

We'll keep uploading photos to our Flickr account so be sure to check it out!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

99% Sure It's a...

It's A Girl!Today Jayne and I went to the doctor to have an ultrasound done to check out our baby due on November 3. While we've never had a chance to find out the sex of our baby before it was born in the past, this time around we really wanted to know.

For weeks, months, people have asked both Jayne and I if we were going to find out the sex of the baby. Today, we found out.  The doctor had to tell us twice before it really sunk in. With God blessing us already with two boys we both were hoping for a girl. On November 3 the doctor is 99% sure we'll be having a girl.

Today she weighed 13 oz (don't ask me how they can determine that). In a few months she'll be a lot bigger.

I've already had several people asking me if we'll be naming our next child with a vowel again. I'm pretty sure we won't be telling anyone in advance what we are naming her until she arrives, but I can tell you that it probably will be with a vowel. We already had some girl names picked out in the past so now we can dust those names off and consider a bunch more.

I think Jayne deserves to have a pink party sometime. She is pretty excited and so am I. If you get a chance be sure to drop a line to Jayne to congratulate her. I don't think she'll tire of talking about this particular bit of news.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Motor Fest '07

Ean & Evan having fun at Motor FestThe boys had a good ol time at the Motor Fest rally at First Federated Church on Sunday. The rally involved a lot of cars, motorcycles, a couple tractors, a boat, and a drag car.

Jayne said Evan could wait to get into the bounce house. Both boys really enjoyed jumping around.

Dad was busy taking photos of the rally and making sure things were running smoothly. If you look at all the photos you'll see a few where dad was given a card and a present (the book "The Bourne Ultimatum" by Robert Ludlum).

Being the father of two boys is still pretty new to me. Less than eight years ago I was single! It is a challange living up to the standard my boys deserve in a father. Perhaps on this Father's Day and in Father's Days to come I'll use that day to spur me on to being a better dad.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

New Baby Stark

At Evan's birthday party on Friday, April 20, we annouced to the family that a new baby Stark is expected to arrive on November 4, 2007.

We had Evan open up a present with this doll inside. We attached a little note to the doll annoucing the news. Not only was everyone excited about the news, we caught everyone by surprise. We really had hoped Joe and Jennifer could have been at the party to hear the news with everyone else.

We've known for over a month this particular bit of news; however, we waited until our families were together at the party to break the news.

Evan's 2nd Birthday

Our family celebrated Evan's second birthday last night. His birthday is actually April 18th; however, we couldn't schedule the party until Friday, April 20.

Traditionally, we've invited our immediate families to the birthday parties. This time around only our parents and Justine were able to make it. Aunt Judith, Aunt Joann, and Uncle James all live out of town. No one knew for sure where uncle Joe was. Aunt Jennifer was at a conference, but she came by the house on Thursday night to see the boys.

Both of the boys really get excited for birthdays now. Ean just couldn't contain his enthusiasm. I think Evan will be that way next year.

If you click on the photo (or here) you'll be able to see all the photos we took along with some commentary. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Easter 2007

The boys had a lot of fun celebrating Easter this year. Not only did they learn about the resurrection of Jesus they also spent time with their extended family.

This year the day started off at church with a special fellowship time where the boys got to see some puppets, eat some yummy donuts, and see a lot of people. We then had a great lunch at grandma Mary and grandpa Terry's place. My mom made my favorite meal (noodles, mash potatos, green peas, sliced ham, and biscuts) and the boys were entertained by learning how to find easter eggs, getting an easter basket, a new car movie, some new toys and a bunch of candy.

Later in the afternoon we drove to Winterset to visit Jayne's extended family at the Frey farm. Jayne's entire family (except her dad) was their including her grandpa, aunt, and cousin Tim. We all did the tradition easter egg hunt outdoors. The eggs not only have candy inside but some of that really fun stuff called "money."

You can check out all the photos on Flickr.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Judith Leinen's Junior Recital

Jayne's sister Judith had her Junior Recital on April 1, 2007 in Sioux City, IA at Morningside College. Our whole family took the three hour trip to see her play the violin.

Judy has gotton pretty talented playing this particular instrument so it was fun hearing her play a wide variety of song. One song she even did memorized which seemed to be pretty complicated to me.

Following the recital Judith held a reception with really cool food which seemed to be a huge hit with everyone. I was the official photographer so I didn't get much of a chance to make a list of the food items.

Following the reception we all went to the Olive Garden which opened in the last year in Sioux City.

The boys behaved great on the entire trip. All of us were a little tired when we finally got home late that night.

The only bad thing about the entire trip was the high pollen count that weekend which really got my allergies reacting in full swing. I recovered a couple days later.

You can check out all the photos I took from the event on Flickr. We also video taped the recital for Judith who now has a pretty cool DVD made to remember the occasion. Ask Judy to play it for you sometime (if you know her!).

Monday, March 19, 2007

Pool Table For Sale

7' Brunswick Cherry Hawthorn Pool Table
If anyone has been to our place in Ankeny then you know we don't have room for our nice pool table. Friends of ours had it set-up in their basement until they recently decided to remodel. The table is now in storage.

We don't anticipate buying a new home anytime in the near future so if someone is willing to pay $2200 for all the pool table stuff (including the ping pong top and a bunch of accessories) then we'd let it go. If we don't get any good offers we may end up keeping everything. We really liked having the pool table around. Plus, we know our boys would love it when they get a little older.

You can get more information about the table either at:

Craigslist | Pool Table

If you are interested... send me an email.