Reasons to have a BIG family:-)

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My husband and I, both grew up with one sibling each.  I have a younger sister, and he has a younger brother…so what ever possessed us to have 10 kids? I think that it may have been insanity, but who knows…We lost our minds a long time ago.

So why would you want to have a big family?

Here are a few things that I can think of:

1.  You figure if you’re peeling potatoes, you might as well peel the entire 10lb. bag. For breakfast, the  hoard would go through a loaf of bread, a box of cereal, a large bunch of bananas, and a gallon of milk, or a couple dozen eggs, 2 lbs. of bacon, a package of English Muffins, and a gallon of O.J. We would make dozens of sandwiches at a time, and freeze them for lunches. A flat of strawberries was gone in a day or two. We didn’t eat a lot of fancy foods, but we never went hungry.  Once, I got a great deal at our local butcher shop.  I went ahead a put a roast in the oven, on the day that I was able to stock up.  The kids came piling into the house after school and stopped dead in their tracks.  Noses started twitching.  “What is that smell?” one of them asked.  Another said, “I don’t know, but I like it.”  Our oldest shouted out “I know what it is…It’s MEAT!!!”

2.  You really don’t care about date nights, eating out, going to the movies, or taking a vacation. Well, maybe not ever going out…fast food was a big hit, and we would rent videos.  We did take all the kids to the movies one Christmas (and at this point that included a few extras – daughters/sons-in-law, grands).  I think that we went to see CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN.  The tickets alone, even back then, were well over $100, so hitting the concession stand, wasn’t in the budget.  We brought cans of soda, bags of candy, and individual bags of chips (big purses and diaper bags came in really handy), and we took up a couple of aisles in the balcony. Everybody had a fantastic time.

3.  You think that doing homework with your kids, is a great way to spend a few hours each day.  OMGosh – I am NOT smarter than a 5th grader! I was probably more frustrated with homework, than the kids were.  Math was the worst.  They quickly learned that there was no sense in asking me for help…”Just wait till your father gets home!”, was a phrase that was used often…and not because they were in trouble.  Dad was the math expert.  I was the “go to gal” for things like art projects and posters. Older children were paired up with younger ones, to help with reading and spelling words.  We did not do our kids schoolwork, but we believed in pitching in, when needed…AND we were readers.  Stories every night before bed.

4.  You find doing laundry relaxing.  In our “Hay Days”, I did at least 5 loads a day.  Whites, lights, darks, and 2 loads of towels.  We had separate hampers for clothes, towels, and socks…and speaking of socks – matching them was a paid event.  Each child had a small basket of their own.  I would do the laundry while they were at school, and place the folded clothes into their baskets (that were labeled), and they were responsible for putting them away. Sheets were washed on Saturdays, and in theory, everyone was supposed to make sure that their church clothes, were ready to go, by bed time. Geesh – I don’t think there was a single Sunday, when we weren’t frantically searching for a belt for one of the boys, or a lots shoe for one of the girls.  Ahhh good times.

5.  You thrive on little to no sleep. Our oldest was 16 when our youngest was born, and I nursed them all.  They were NOT good sleepers.  I think that in 19 years, there was only 3 months (when I was 6 months pregnant) between the 5th and 6th, when they were all sleeping through the night.  I was a walking zombie for a really long time.  Mommy spent a lot of time “playing on the floor”, with her eyes closed! Nap time and bed time were sacred.  They really didn’t give us a hard time going to bed…it was staying asleep that was the problem.

6.  You don’t need privacy in the bathroom.  I don’t think that I had “alone time” in the bathroom until I was a grandmother  – oops, I take that back.  My youngest was just 3 1/2 when my first grandchild was born, so I had kids and grand kids in the bathroom with me. Well, maybe that’s an exaggeration.  All of them knew that tub time for mom, meant NO DISTURBING.  I didn’t get a long soak very often, but when I did, I made the most of it. If anyone asked where mom was, the answer – “On Vacation”! My trip was well planned out, and always included snacks and a book.

7.  You love spending time at the pediatricians office.  You also, like getting to know the emergency room staff. We made it a point to find a great pediatric clinic, with personable office staff.  This makes a huge difference, when it comes to being able to get worked in on short notice, and with communication with the doctor(s).  I brought treats, like homemade bread, cookies, and cake, as often as possible.  This made a really positive impression, and was worth the effort.  Dad took off, when little ones needed shots, or blood work, as I would more than likely pass out, from the stress – AND – he always did the emergency room runs.  Our absolutely FAVORITE general practitioner, was a female from the Philippians.  Her receptionist and nurse were the best.  I could call in the middle of the night, and leave a message saying that we would be the first patient of the day…and they would be waiting for us to come in.  I even had the doctor’s cell phone number.  Her name was Norma Fernandez.  She told one of the kids, in her delightful accent, what her name was, and they thought that she said No More Bananas – so  that became her name from then on.  Her nurse was dubbed Lollypop. One of my boys was the very last patient that she saw.  She added an extra appointment to her schedule.  She was only going to be in the office for the morning, as she was having exploratory surgery that afternoon. Sadly, they found that she had advanced cancer.  Gone is just a few months, leaving two young girls, a husband, and dozens upon dozens of grateful patients.

8.  You like to shop for Christmas all year long.  With so many to buy for, I was on the hunt from the “get go”.  It was such a help, when the older kids knew that there wasn’t a Santa Clause – they got to stay up all night on Christmas Eve to wrap stocking gifts.  One of my daughters told me recently, that one of her fondest memories, is of  spending Christmas Eve’s – wrapping presents, and consuming mass quantities of cookies and hot cocoa. Breakfast on Christmas morning was always the same.  Scrambled eggs, bacon, 2 or three different kinds of sweet rolls, milk and orange juice.  We had a great Tangelo tree in our back yard, and I would spend hours the day before, squeezing the fruit (and straining the pulp – for the pickier family members).  Our 8th was born on Christmas Eve.  After that, Christmas Eve wasn’t Christmas Eve…until he had cut his birthday cake.

9.  You don’t mind NOISE.  TV on, stereo’s blaring, kids talking on the phone, little ones, running through the house squealing at the top of their lungs.  “Mom”…”Mom”…”MOM!”  “He’s touching me.”  “I’m hungry.” ‘Mine, Mine, MINE!”  What is the definition of a kid? Noise with dirt on it!

10.  You have room in your heart, for more love than you could ever imagine. We didn’t have a big house, or fancy furniture.  We didn’t buy expensive clothes, or new cars.  We lived paycheck to paycheck, and had nothing put away…but our home was filled with something more precious than gold.  We had love…in abundance.  Sticky kisses, sweet hugs, whispered secrets, high five’s.  Our cup was overflowing! Stephen, Stephanie, Simon, Sarah, Suzanne, Seth, Sariah-Lynn, Solomon, Sonnie, and Senterpiece (actual name – Joey – long story for another post:-), thank you for letting me be your mom.

 

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Comments

  1. What a fun and funny post. It’s amazing how one’s perspective changes depending on life’s circumstances. I only had 4, but for a long while, I wondered if I’d ever be able to go to the bathroom alone, so with 10? Whoa!

  2. I was raised in a big family and LOVED it. After reading your post I’m pretty sure I owe my mom a few more thank you’s than I’ve given her over the years! The funny thing was, it seemed like the whole neighborhood was over at our house besides. I guess when you have a big family, what’s one {or ten} more??

  3. Those are so very true. We have two great boys and are hoping for more.

  4. I was an only child and my husband is one of two kids. We have six children! God made the decision for us, we didn’t set out for six, but we are so blessed because of them.

    Stopping by from the 100 Comments event.

    http://www.AsToldByLisa.com

  5. I love your sense of humor. My husband and I stopped at two…we were concerned about being outnumbered. However, my dad and my father-in-law came from families large enough to be lovingly called “tribes,” so I can relate.
    I love the way you closed with “You have room in your heart, for more love than you could ever imagine.” That’s the best possible reason.
    Thanks for opening the door to your world.
    Peace and good to your big, happy family.

  6. Thanks for the laugh! We actually join you in reasons to have a large family! You beat us by two children though, but not for lack of trying on our part. I lost five! I am thinking my days of fertility are numbered, but am ok with that as we have been stealing this line, “Eight is enough!” :-)

  7. I love your style, and what a blessing it must be to have your big family!

  8. my husband came from a family of 10 and when we first got married he wanted that many luckily I got him to settle for our 3

    http://adventuresfrugalmom.com

  9. Love it! I come from a family of 3 kids, but I love listening to my friend talk about her huge family. I have such a hard time imagining it but it such like crazy fun!

  10. Holy cow, you have 10 kids?! Wow – I am super impressed! I love your list. :-)

  11. Oh my, you have all my admiration for raising 10 kids! My mom had 6 and that was a handful!

  12. You need to add #11 as the memories you will hold onto forever. All of your kids had their name begin with an ‘S’ except one?

  13. Sparta Savings says:

    Loved this post! Laughed all the way through! We have 5 and would love more, except we are getting close to outgrowing the vehicle we have! lol I am a new follower and had to read this to Mr. Right!

  14. WOW!

    I loved the 10th point. Makes it all worth it in the end. What a blessing!

  15. Love big families. Wish we had more children. They are a blessing. Only have two, but feel very blessed to have be able to deliever two healthy babies. Enjoy your life.

  16. Glad you can poke fun at yourself. 10 kids. Dang. Mad props! It must be a party at your house always!!!!

  17. I grew up in a family of 6. I was the oldest and I have a lot of fond memories. I tell you, the funniest thing is that sometimes it seems my kids are like the younger siblings to my siblings, especially to my youngest brother.

    Sad story about your Dr. What an awesome relationship your family must have had, though!

  18. Healthy Frugalista says:

    Fun stories! Thanks for the peak inside your lively household.

  19. Ohmygosh! You must have nerves of steel. I almost went insane with two until they got to be three years old. I saw a TV documentary on a woman with a dozen kids. They had each one trained to his/her own laundry by age 7. Think I’d have to do that if I had that many children. You have my highest compliments (and prayers). Thanks for the great article. God filled your quiver with blessings. Deb

  20. Ever since I was a little girl I always though 2 would be the perfect amount. Two years into our marriage we had our first biological child. 9 months after, faraway in Ukraine, we didn’t know that our oldest was born! He came home 2.5 years later. 4 months after our oldest was finally home from Ukraine, I became pregnant with our youngest and so far, only girl. As of now, we are trying our hardest to bring home our oldest son’s biological sister from Ukraine. She is about 2.5 right now. If all goes well, I’ll have a 4 year old, 3 year old, 2.5 year old, and my youngest will be approaching the one year mark! So… while I always stated 2, my husband has always compromised with 4. He really wants 6. We’ll see when/if we hit 4, but honestly, I can’t imagine 6 more after that! Kuddos to you for having such a large family! I will gladly accept any amount God decides to give me. Also, some of the things I look forward to are the adult relationships I may have with my children. I’m excited to see the type of adults they mature into! By the way, I love your definition of a kid- “noise with dirt on it” – so true!

  21. Nichole @ readitagainmama says:

    Great post. We only have 3 boys right now and want to have another. Hopefully a girl but in God’s timing. We would also like to adopt internationally someday. My husband was adopted from birth and it is near and dear to our hearts. I can’t understand someone who wouldn’t want more than 1 child.

  22. WOW you sorta make it sound fun! :) I actually wanted to have a big(er) family but fertility issues are making it impossible. We are expecting #2 this year and it’s not likely we’ll get past #3 due to my age at this point and uncertainty about whether we can even have another. But… I did always like the idea of a big family because then you ALWAYS have people who love you around! :)

  23. Glad to see your sense of humor is intact!:-D You are my hero! I don’t think I could handle it. (Picture Mom in the corner throwing the tantrum while the kids watch in amazement.) I really do admire anyone who have large families and still remain sane! God Bless Ya!

  24. Cambria Hazard says:

    LOVE THIS POST! Some very funny and touching (like the doctor) stories. I have a 3, 2 and 1 year old and am 32 weeks pregnant. . .I wouldn’t be surprised if we hit ten kids. We live in a small trailer, total of 520 square feet and love having our kids! People think we are crazy but we wouldn’t trade them for anything!

  25. Growing up it was jsut my brother and I. I have always been a little envious of large families. Always so much activity and someone to talk to. Great post!

  26. What a great post! I grew up an only child but now I have 3 kids and really want a 4th. Hubby says no though so 3 it is for me. Some days require more patience than others but overall, I really love watching big families interact. I know several of them (5 or more kids) and they’re all just wonderful!

    Christy
    http://www.alivinghomeschool.com

  27. I only have three kids, but I love the noise! When they’re being noisy, I know they’re OK and it becomes background noise to me.

  28. My mom has 7 siblings, my dad had 5, I have 4. I’m so used to living in a house where there’s always a lot of people and it’s almost always a lot of fun!

  29. Betsy @ Romance on a Dime says:

    This was a great post to read. Thanks for sharing!! We don’t have any kids yet, but we are hoping for several!

  30. I love this post. You have a great sense of humor.

  31. 10 children? – What a blessing! I have trouble coping with my TWO children and their noise factor sometimes. LOL

  32. Great post! Big families are great. I only had one sister, but always wished I’d had more siblings. My husband and I have five daughters. I love all the hugs and kisses. And even though there isn’t 10 of them, mine are still very noisy!

  33. Millie Rojas says:

    I love your blog. You have a wonderful sense of humor. Thansk for sharing :D

  34. A lovely post. I shed a tear of happiness because I got to reminisce my childhood. I have 3 siblings and a lot of cousins. I had a happy and eventful childhood. My dad and mom has 9 siblings each and each family had at least 3 kids. Big family are the best!
    Thank you for sharing your story about your precious family.

  35. Wanda Tracey says:

    It sounds to me like you would never have a boring moment.Nor would either of you ever be lonely. It also sounds like a lot of fun despite all the hard work.

  36. md kennedy says:

    I had 2 brothers, 1 sister (all younger) and 1 Mom who worked and went to school, both full-time. So…..for all the reasons above I had ZERO kids! I already did my duty!

  37. Beanybopp says:

    I came from a big family (was only 3 of us for while til my mom remarried and adopted 3 more). So I had a taste of “both worlds” so to speak. My husband was basically an only child (has a 1/2 sister but only saw her in the summer when he was in school). I did not like living in a big family. I feel that we missed out on a lot and sometimes felt “lost in the shuffle”. It did have it’s perks, like learned how to pee with an audience, but yeah lol As for my husband, spoiled! He admits it and it has to do with being the “only child”. That is why we have agreed on 2 and ONLY 2! I feel that it is a good number. You have 2 hands, 2 parents, 2 kids. lol

  38. Maria Iemma says:

    I am an only child and always wanted to have siblings. I envy my husband that has six brothers and a sister. We have three kids and three grand kids.

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