Season nine of 19 Kids and Counting ended Tuesday, so it’s a good time to look back at the season’s most memorable moments. Included in this Top 10 list are moments that happened both on and off the show. As always, the super-sized Duggar family made a big impression on their fans.
- Michelle’s miscarriage and Jubilee’s memorial. Although Michelle Duggar miscarried her 20th child back in December 2011, Jubilee’s funeral aired during Tuesday’s season finale. It was heartbreaking to watch, but it helped other mothers who have also had a miscarriage. During the season finale, Michelle bravely said on camera, “Everyone has a purpose. God does not make mistakes. He gives life and he also has the privilege and right to take life. In Jubilee’s situation, her life was so short, 18 weeks, but she brought such joy into our family during those weeks. When I thought of her eyes, I thought, ‘God, she saw you first.’ She may never have seen my face or have known my voice or love, but she saw God. She is at peace with God.” That was one of the most moving moments ever on 19 Kids and Counting.
- Amy Duggar extortion plot. Freelance photographer Teresa Hunt tried to blackmail the Duggars and TLC with supposedly racy photos of Amy Duggar and 56-year-old Branson musician, James Garrett. In a letter that Hunt sent to Discovery (parent company of TLC), she demanded, “$10,000 and I keep my mouth shut. Otherwise this story with exact details and photographs will hit the tabloids very soon.” In the end, the FBI set up a sting operation and authorities arrested Hunt for trying to convert the supposedly intimate photos into $10,000 cash. The photos were completely innocent and Amy Duggar went on the Today Show to talk about the botched attempt. James Garrett also spoke to nextooze.com about the incident.
- Josie Duggar continues to thrive. The season of 19 Kids and Counting started with little Josie getting ill in Israel, so Michelle and Jill had to stay a few extra days. However, as the season progressed, Josie was seen running everywhere and getting into things, just like 2-year-olds are supposed to do. The Duggar’s 19th child was born prematurely at 25 weeks and 4 days on December 10, 2009 and weighed only 1 lb. 6 oz. at birth. The Duggar family feared for the tiny tot’s life and relocated to Little Rock for five months to be close to the hospital. Michelle Duggar credits prayer and science for Josie’s good health today. It was great to see the tiny tot looking so healthy and happy this season.
- Amy Duggar’s new boyfriend. Although he didn’t appear this season on 19 Kids and Counting, Amy Duggar’s new squeeze is 23-year-old Reed Taylor from Oklahoma. The two met on Facebook and they are in love. Over St. Patrick’s Day weekend, Amy, her mom Deanna and her grandmother spent quality time with Reed’s family at a cabin in Colorado. Could this be the real deal? In an exclusive interview with nextooze.com, Amy said, “He’s great! It’s still too early to see what the future holds, but he has potential. We’re going to make it work.”
- Duggar family field trips. Throughout the last season of 19 Kids and Counting, the Duggar family hit the road and visited Farmland Adventures in Arkansas and Huntsville Space Center. There was also a “boys only” camping trip at Fort Rock Family Camp. In addition, the Duggars helped raise money for Alex’s Lemonade Stand, a charity started by a 4-year-old cancer patient as a way to raise money to cure cancer.
- The Duggars at home. Duggar fans got a good look at their favorite super-sized family in action at home. Justin celebrated his ninth birthday with a trip to a pawnshop, the Vanderhoofs visited, and Jim Bob led the family in planting new trees on their property. When the Duggar men returned home from a camping trip, they presented each of the girls with a flower. Jim Bob said, “One of the most important things I can teach my sons is that they need to treat women like they’re a queen. They need to love them and cherish them, take care of them, and be a protector. They learn this by honoring their mom and sister.” Jedidiah had a scare when he had to have a pesky cyst removed. Fans learned that over the years, the Duggars have had a total of 156 stitches. That’s a lot of trips to the emergency room!
- Amy Duggar’s national singing debut. Towards mid season, Amy Duggar made her national singing debut on 19 Kids and Counting. She performed an a cappella version of a gospel hymn at the Little Opry Theater in Branson, the same place where James Garret performs his John Denver tribute show. Concerning a future singing career, Amy said, “I love to sing. I think it’s a gift, but I didn’t know if that would actually start a career. I’ve been working in Nashville and in music for 3 to 4 years. Lately, I’ve had some really, really amazing opportunities and it’s very exciting.” Well done, Amy.
- Updates on Michael and Mackynzie. During this season of 19 Kids and Counting, fans were treated to updates on Michael and Mackynzie Duggar. During an episode that aired last month, Duggar fans learned that both children of Josh and Anna are thriving. Anna explained that Michael has a very laid back personality and Mackynzie has adapted well to being an older sister. Josh and Anna both said that they would like to have a big family, but Anna added, “I’m glad it takes nine months so I can work into it slowly.” Their two car lots are still open, despite a slow economy.
- The Duggars stump for Rick Santorum. Throughout this season, the Duggar family has traveled across the country to stump for GOP candidate Rick Santorum. Although their appearances weren’t featured on this season of 19 Kids and Counting, the Duggars were certainly in the news a lot because of their campaigning. In January, they stepped in for Rick Santorum when his daughter fell ill. Over St. Patrick’s Day weekend, several of the Duggars went to Illinois, Wisconsin and Missouri to help out their fellow republican and GOP candidate. As usual, the Duggar bus was emblazoned with “Santorum for President.”
- The Bates family gets their own TV show. Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar became friends with Kelly and Gil Bates when they met at a homeschool conference many years ago and the two families have remained close ever since. Like the Duggars, the Bates family has 19 children and they have appeared frequently on 19 Kids and Counting. Now, Kelly and Gil have their own reality show called The Bates Family: Baby Makes 19 on TLC, which begins airing in June.
So, what do you think? Did you enjoy this season of 19 Kids and Counting or was it too difficult to watch? Are you looking forward to the next season?
More about the Duggar family from 19 Kids & Counting:
The super-sized Duggar family includes mom Michelle, dad Jim Bob, plus children Joshua, Jana, John-David, Jill, Jessa, Jinger, Joseph, Josiah, Joy-Anna, Jeremiah, Jedidiah, Jason, James, Justin, Jackson, Johannah, Jennifer, Jordyn and Josie. The family resides completely debt-free in Arkansas and stars in a weekly reality TV series called 19 Kids & Counting.
Note from the Editor: While this season of 19 Kids and Counting may have come to a close, be sure to check back here for news about your favorite super-sized family. I’ll stay in touch with Deanna and Amy Duggar for all the latest news during the Duggar’s hiatus. Thanks to all of my loyal readers for another great season.
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