Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar are going to be grandparents! The couple made famous by their TLC show, Eighteen Kids and Counting, is growing their family. But, this time it's not Michelle who is with child, but her daughter-in-law, Anna. Joshua Duggar, 21, the eldest of Jim Bob and Michelle's brood, got married in September and the newlyweds recently announced their exciting baby news. The parents-to-be plan to leave the number of children they have in "God's hands" and name them with a theme, but no word if they will continue the "J" tradition. The bundle of joy is due on October 18. We're looking forward to the next generation of Duggars!
In their spacious abode for their big brood, the Duggars have two kitchens — one for looks, a "pretty" place to make smaller meals and another for the more industrial cooking required when you have so many mouths to feed. Jim Bob and Michelle's book, The Duggars: 20 and Counting! ($11) is filled with recipes for their clan's favorite meals and thirst quenchers — from tater tot casserole to poor man's pizza and snow ice cream to lemonappleade.
There are even some thrifty ones for how to make household products like laundry detergent and inventive baby wipes from paper towels and an old ice cream bin. While chatting with the mama of 18, Michelle told us her thoughts on eating organic, how she stays trim between babies and even let us in on her very basic beauty regimen.
lilsugar: There's a big movement in parts of the United States to eat local and organic, but many of your recipes include canned or processed ingredients — do you not believe in that type of diet or is it an economical decision?
Michelle Duggar: We probably don't eat as healthy as we should. If we were trying to feed our large family, it would be a lot more expensive to do so. Our health and our children's health have been very good. We don't eat organic, but we do make wise choices with our food, we do eat candy and cookies occasionally, but it's not day in and day out. I will admit, I like ice cream so I consider a freezer without it not properly stocked. Overall, we eat a lot of vegetables and fruits and our meals have a lot of whole grains, we use brown rice and make our own bread after grinding our wheat. We have salad just about every meal and on any given occasion, we're going and buying five more bags of apples, but they're not organic (laughs). We also cook with ground turkey and season it so it tastes really rich. But, we also love dill pickles and pretzels as snacks.
To see Michele's way for losing her postpartum pounds and what surprised her most about motherhood, read more
One Duggar flies the coop and another arrives! The large family known for their TLC show, The Duggars: 17 and Counting has had an eventful year. First born Joshua got married in September. (Tune in tonight to watch the wedding, which includes the 21-year-old's first kiss with his wife, Anna.) Then just before Christmas, baby Jordyn made her debut as number 18!
Despite their hectic lives and sleep deprivation, parents Jim Bob and Michelle took time to write a book, The Duggars: 20 and Counting! and carved time out of their schedules to talk to me about it. While their oldest son settles down to start a life and family of his own, Jim Bob and Michelle still have plenty of charges. They shared their thoughts on the future and how they are preparing their offspring for the real world. Aside from helping build the home they live in, the Duggar kids have been taught everything from plumbing to tile work and learned about politics while sitting in on committee meetings when their father was a state legislator in Arkansas. Other youngsters have the business inkling having built and sold bikes and eventually motorized vehicles for as long as their parents can remember.
lilsugar: Josh is now married and living with his wife, but in regards to your other children at what age would you encourage them to move out and become independent?
To see their answer and thoughts on modest dressing and setting their girls up for success, read more
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar are perhaps one of America's most fascinating couples. They are raising their eighteen children with conservative values in a very progressive world as the cameras roll for their TLC show, The Duggars: 17 Kids and Counting.
With twenty personalities (21 including their first daughter-in-law, Anna), visitors coming in and out, and Jim Bob's parents living with them so they can help care for his ailing father, how do they keep the peace? In the hour I talked with Jim Bob and Michelle over the phone about their new book, The Duggars: 20 and Counting ($11), I never heard more than the soft murmur of a baby in the background. How does the couple manage this? They shared their parenting secrets.
lilsugar: On your show you are always together, do the kids, particularly the older ones get any time to themselves to go out with their own friends?
Jim Bob Duggar: They go to the ice hockey rink to play broom ball usually every Friday and Saturday night. Sometimes I go with them and sometimes I don't. There's kids there from public schools, Christian schools and some who are homeschooled — it's like a meeting center. The boys and girls both play and they have a blast. Usually 30 to 40 people show up. And, they usually go out for ice cream after.
To see what Jim Bob and Michelle have to say about homeschooling and controlling their tempers, read more
Michelle Duggar has been pregnant for 12 years if you combine all the time she spent carrying her 18 children. She and her husband, Jim Bob, have two sets of twins in their brood aged one month to 21 years old.
The mom and dad made famous by TLC's 17 Kids and Counting took time away from their family to chat with me via phone about their new book, The Duggars: 20 and Counting!, and the topics — marriage, raising children, conservative values, financial freedom, and faith — it covers, while their newest addition Jordyn gurgled in the background. The couple was candid, open, and incredibly kind. And if you assume they set out to have kids by the dozens and name them all with the letter "J," then think again!
After suffering a miscarriage, Michelle and Jim Bob, who are religious, chose to forgo the birth control they had been using and leave it up to God to decide how many children they would have. Michelle, now known for her soft voice and calm demeanor, spoke of a time when she had five children under five, was exhausted and shedding tears. She credits her faith for getting her though the challenges of motherhood.
As far as their children all having names starting with "J," in the text, Jim Bob and Michelle explain that they initially picked names they liked that all happened to start with the same letter for their first three children and then continued the trend not wanting the newest baby to feel left out — only they never suspected there would be so many names.
To see Michelle's candid responses to a couple of lil questions, read more