It was certainly a big year for Amar’e Stoudemire and wife Alexis, but 2013 may just prove to be their slam dunk.
“We’re blessed that we were able to extend our family,” the New York Knicks forward, 30, tells PEOPLE exclusively.
“We’re both huge on having a nice size family. It was something we’ve been talking about for a while. It happened naturally and at the right time so it all worked out.”
“It was just perfect timing,” adds Alexis, 29, who says she’s had some morning sickness but overall, “can’t complain!”
The duo, who already have three children together — Ar’e, 7, Amar’e Jr., 6, and Assata, 4 — say everyone is thrilled for the impending arrival.
“They’re very, very excited,” says Alexis. “They just keep guessing if it’s a boy or a girl.” And it won’t be long before the sex is revealed, “I can’t wait to know what it is,” says Amar’e.
“As soon as Amar’e walks into the door those kids are all over him,” says Alexis with a laugh. “He’s like a big kid. He’s a great dad.”
And as for mom, who mans the house while Amar’e is on the road, “she does it all,” says Amar’e. “She does such a phenomenal job with the kids. I’m just here to be the big teddy bear.”
After marrying in December, the couple will hold another wedding celebration this summer. “We’re planning a big, extravagant Cinderella wedding for Alexis!” says Amar’e.
“It was beautiful to have a private ceremony with close family and friends,” says the star of their December nuptials. “I planned it; I wanted to have something that was more spiritual where we could really understand what being married means. It was a great way to end 2012.”
And, says Alexis, “We included the children in our ceremony as well. That was very important to us. It’s something they’ll always remember.”
Amar’e will be honoring his brother Hazel, who passed away last year in a car accident, this weekend by inviting 30 kids from his Florida hometown to the upcoming Orlando Magic vs Knicks game. “I just want them to get away for a little bit and enjoy.”
Looking forward to the new year and a new baby, “Hopefully we’ll bring home a championship and we’ll celebrate with a wedding after that!” adds Amar’e.
– Jennifer Garcia