Book Review: The Duggars - 20 and Counting!

Y'all know how I am a fan of the Duggars.  that's not to say that I agree with them 100% or would make the same decisions as they do.  They have their views and I have mine.  But I have a lot of respect for them and their choices (ps, they have 18 kids and they have never once received government assistance).

So, naturally, I was stoked to get my hands on a copy of Jim Bob and Michelle's book, The Duggars: 20 and Counting., which they wrote to give a closer look at their family and how they operate.  The book also has a bunch of photos, stories, and (yay!) family recipes.  Major topics include family history, including their business endeavors past and present; Jim Bob's political career; and a fantastic explanation of their systems and organization.  I found most helpful Michelle's detailed section on packing for a move/organizing storage.

A lot of the content is geared toward clearing up misconceptions and explaining their worldview - and this is why I love them - without judgment or condemnation.  Yes, they are conservative Christians, and yes they are extremely frugal and yes, they homeschool, but they take the position that their policies are what work for them, and they don't ever get preachy or arrogant.  A lot of people, for example, think they must have a ton of money.  The truth is, Jim Bob is a fantastic entrepreneur and they are both extremely frugal.  They are committed to a debt-free life, and they're prepared to accept the consequences of that.  It took them years to be able to save up for the house they currently own, and it took more years to get it completely outfitted.  Did you realize, for example, that they were in their house for more than a year before installing air conditioning?  I certainly didn't.  

I hear a lot of people criticize them for having too many kids, and how could it be possible that they were spending enough individual quality time with each child.  Well, I don't know about everybody, but I know that spending gobs of quality time every single day doesn't happen in most families, no matter how many kids there are.  And each parent does spend quality time with each of their children - moreso than a lot of parents do with their kids, I'd wager.  So I don't think that's a valid complaint.

Michelle and Jim Bob have made a concerted effort to teach their children discipline, character, and life skills.  They want each of their kids to grow up to become productive members of society, with the skills and know-how to succeed.  Whether you agree with their decisions or not, you can't miss the benefits of their commitment to God and to their family.

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