Funny Friday - All Aboard Again! Our Fantasy "Jon & Kate Plus 8"

Note: some of us thought it would be fun to rewrite the "All Aboard" episode as we would have liked to have seen it. Then we realized we had a blog post! Writers include xsandlapper, SecretMonkey, Breanna, hurtinfrog, grammier, geistmadl, Ravello.

The show begins in the tups’ rooms. They're up and at 'um getting dressed and making their beds. Not perfectly but a good try. They all skip down the steps following Hannah, the leader, in anticipation of their great train ride that morning. “Woooo! Woooo”ing with Alexis sounding VERY much like the train whistle!!!!!!!

As they enter the dining room Mady and Cara are setting the table as Mom fries bacon, scrambles eggs and checks on the cheese toast in the oven. Dad is catching a few more winks as the drive home from NC last night was exhausting.

Kate says, "I've never been to Strasburg Railroad, but I'm looking forward to it! I heard there will be lots of other kids there - our children will have fun meeting new friends!"

Joel asks Collin, "Tell us about when you went there for your special day!" So Collin gives a brief recap.

"I'm sooooo excited we're going there today!" Leah exclaims, keeping her voice down so she doesn't wake the sleeping Jon.

"Mady, your earrings are so pretty", Kate says as she serves breakfast. "That orange really goes well with your shirt".

"Thanks Mom!" Mady replies, as she graciously helps Aaden onto a dining room chair. "Be careful Aaden, remember we got rid of the high chairs last week in the garage sale to help out those less fortunate than us!"

Kate turns to the camera and says, "Jon is still sleeping. He drove all night, the poor guy. He's really wonderful about helping out with the kids around here, so I'm letting him sleep in until it's time for us to leave."

Jon gets up and stumbles to the kitchen. Kate says, "Good morning honey, here is your coffee, just the way you like it."

They both sit down at the table to eat breakfast with the kids. They all have an enjoyable breakfast, and Kate compliments the ‘tups on keeping their shirts so nice since they are no longer wearing bibs. Just after she says that, Aaden drops a piece of bacon on his shirt and it leaves a grease mark. Aaden looks a little scared, but Kate assures him that it's only a shirt, and spots don't matter, and besides, he will get dirtier than that when they go to the train place.

Since the 'tups are no longer using sippy cups, all of the boys and Alexis manage to spill their non-organic Juicy-Juice all over the table, themselves, and the floor.
Kate says cheerfully, "Oh, don't worry about that! No need to cry over spilled juice!" She calmly mops up the mess. Then she cleans up the 'tups, bathing the ones that are particularly sticky, dresses them, and settles them into coloring with markers. She compliments Joel on his superb coloring ability and hangs his artwork on the refrigerator.

After cleaning up the kitchen, Kate turns to Jon and says, "What can I do to help you?"

They all go into the garage to put on their shoes, and all the shoes fit, and everyone is happy with their shoes. The boys go to the driveway and start playing with the water in the downspout. Jon comments how he used to enjoy that when he was a kid, and not to worry, it's only water, it will dry. Kate comes out, sees the boys playing in the water and throws her head back laughing. She notes how cute they are, and how they can find enjoyment in the smallest thing, like a puddle of water. Kate encourages the girls to come and join in the water play until it is time to leave.

Jon reminds everyone to go to the bathroom before they get in the van. The kids line up, half at the downstairs bathroom, half at the upstairs bathroom, and wait their turns.

Mady and Cara wait their turn at the bathrooms, too: one upstairs, one downstairs, to make sure that the little ones go and don't make a huge mess of themselves. M&C do this without screaming, yelling, crying, or descending into Instant Low Blood Sugar.

Mady does a little interview to the camera where she says that she feels a real sense of love and responsibility toward her younger siblings, and that her mother taught her to love all of the children equally for their own strengths, faults, and unique talents. When asked if this included Joel's lisp, Mady answers, "What lisp?"

Cut to a couch segment: Jon and Kate, puzzled. "What lisp?"

Out in the garage, Kate starts to laugh. “O Lordy Bee! Help, Help, Cara, Mady,” Kate laughs. “Daddy has his face all stuck in a funny look. He looks just like when we finish laughing in bed!”

Once all the children are outside, where Kate is patiently waiting for her brood, Mady and Cara report that all of the children used the bathroom, wiped if necessary, and washed their hands. Kate and Jon are delighted at the grown-up behavior of their four year olds, and give them each a thumbs up, and a "good job!"

The children climb into the van, Cara and Mady strap themselves in, and Kate and Jon each take three to strap in. Once all the children are safely in the van, Kate climbs into the passenger seat, and Jon climbs into the driver's seat. The van seems so much cleaner and smells so much better now that the potties have all been removed.

Kate puts on a CD of kid's songs, and the whole family begins to sing along. Later, they plan to play an alphabet game, because the ‘tups are beginning to recognize and be able to find both upper and lower case letters. Kate is hoping that today on the ride, after a tup finds a letter in a sign or license plate, Mady and Cara, and some of the ‘tups will be able to think of other words that begin with that letter. Lately, the children are playing many of these educational games, and having so much fun with them that they have no idea how much they are learning.

Kate's new hairdo ripples in the breeze as she rolls down her window. "Remember those spikes in the back that poked you in the eye when you hugged me?" she asks Jon. "What was I thinking?!?"

"You were thinking you had to look a certain way because you were on TV", Jon says. "And because I was unfairly asking you to be blonde like you were when we met. I'm sorry I ever did that."

"It's all right, Jon", Kate says. "After all that intensive therapy, I now know that I am responsible for my self-esteem and I can look however I want to. What happened in the past stays in the past."

When they get to the station, Kate is excited to see how many people there are. "I was hoping we wouldn't be the only ones here! It's always nice to be with family, but it's nice to meet other people too!"

Kate squats down to the tups' level and gathers them in a circle around her. The tups look so cute in their different colored shirts. “My little Rainbow Coalition,” Kate says happily. 'Now, remember,' she continues, “These people are nice enough to arrange special things for us. Let's always be polite.”

She stands and Hannah moves to her side. "Now, Hannie," Kate says, "I want my special boy, Joel, to hold my hand today. You be Mommy's big girl—and we'll discuss that when we get home—and walk with Cara."

Their designated rep greets them. The kids smile and listen attentively as he outlines the planned activities for the morning. The sextuplets wriggle with excitement, but they do not shriek because they don't want to interrupt the nice man. As pre-arranged, he escorts them to Thomas the Tank Engine. But they don't jump ahead of anyone - the show producers have carefully been managing the line-ups so that everyone will get a turn. Jon & Kate take their place in line and hold hands, like they did when they were newlyweds.

"Hey, it's Jon and Kate Plus 8", exclaims someone passing by. The Gosselins turn and wave. They smile as people take pictures of them in line, and they are careful to keep the line going at the same time.

Commercial Break!!! (Cheesy music)

Hey Kids! Now you can party like the Gosselins!

Twelve hits sure to be a classic with YOUR family! Sing along with the Gosselin 10 to the following:

You ARE the Sunshine of My Life (Stevie Wonder)
You'd Better Run (The Young Rascals)
You'd Better Sit Down Kids (Cher)
You Are The Only One (dedicated to Hannie) (Ricky Nelson)
You Can't Do That (dedicated to Collin and his bowel issues) (The Beatles)
You Can't Take It Away (dedicated to Bear-gate) (Fred Hughes)
You Could Have Been a Lady (Dedicated to Kate) (April Wine)
You Don’t Have to Be a Baby to Cry (also dedicated to Kate, in airplanes)
(The Carvelles)You don't own me (dedicated to Jon's missing balls) (Lesley Gore)
You Don't Know What You've Got (Until You Lose It) (sung by Jon to his missing balls)
(Ral Donner)You Will Cry (from Kate to Jon) (Rene Y Rene )

and that old Sinatra favorite jazzed up as only the Gosselins can, "We did it ARE way!"

(Back to the show)
On each train, the Gosselins take their seats along with other families. They listen attentively to the conductors and make a special point of thank each helper. The kids are happy and chatty, so thrilled to be on a real train!

Everyone is smiling as the van pulls into their driveway. Kate has a surprise for the boys. She has planned a make up "special day out" with them and it is this afternoon!

Kate will drive hither dither and yon with the 3 boys and each child will choose an activity. They will choose in reverse birth order, which means Joel goes first.

Cheering erupts, with broad smiles on the boys’ faces. Hannah starts to cry and grabs Kate's legs. Kate kindly byt firmly tells her this is a Boys only activity with Mom. Hannah settles down and goes into the house.

Kate and the boys get into the white van. Jon offers to load it up, Kate informs him all she needs is her purse and the three boys.

Joel chooses first. He reminisces about how wonderful the Happy Meals were in Utah. He chooses McDonalds. While in line, Kate holds him in her arms and they snuggle, hug and kiss. Kate allows him to place all the orders.

The manager sees the family and rushes out to apologize- they just ran out of plastic bibs. He offers to go next door to K Mart to buy plastic ones. Kate laughs and tells the manager not to worry, everything they wear is washable.

By coincidence, Aunt Jodi, Uncle Kevin and the kids are there. Kate moves a table and 4 chairs over, and the Gosselins join in the fun. The 2 families eat together. Everyone laughs when Aaden's ketchup packet explodes on his shirt and there are ketchup drops on his glasses. Even Aaden giggles when Kate shows him his glasses – he knows that they are laughing at the ketchup, not him.

The kids finish eating and go outside to play on the playground equipment. The parents can supervise through the window.

Kate and Jodi catch up on old times and plan their upcoming joint family vacation to North Carolina. Jodi asks what she should bring. Kate assures her no need to pack anything but their clothes. The rental house is fully furnished, they will rent bikes on site and grocery shop down there.

Next choice is Collin's and he chooses an outing at the 9 hole chip and putt course. Kate rents clubs for everyone and cheerfully assists each child with the mechanics of holding the club and aiming for the hole.

Kate is surprised at how much fun they are having. They are through 9 holes before she can blink. Since it is Collin's choice, he holds Mom's hand and goes first on every hole.

Next choice is Aaden and he chooses an outing at Jon's gym. He wants Kate to meet the nice lady who trains Daddy and he wants another strawberry smoothie. The ladies are happy to meet each other. The trainer raves about Jon's dedication to his job and family and Kate remarks how proud she is of him.

The trainer apologizes, her smoothies are not organic, Kate said not to worry. Everyone has a smoothie, even Kate. Kate assists the boys into the van. They drive home.

Some neighbor kids are out on their bikes and Kate agrees they can skip naps and join the neighbor kids. What a day, what an afternoon Kate had with her beloved sons. Kate tells Jon she cannot wait to do it again.

While the kids are playing with the neighbours, Jon prepares a Korean dinner. Kate walks through the kitchen on the way to the laundry room, and makes a big show of playfully smelling the air and making yummy noises. She then gives Jon a quick kiss before she goes into the laundry room and turns on the CD player. She sings along to her favourite music while she removes the clean clothes from the dryer and folds them. When everything is folded, she calls out for Cara and Mady, and they help her put away the clothes.

The phone rings and Kate answers. It's Beth! She's calling to confirm the slumber party tomorrow. Her daughter will be spending the night at the Gosselin's, along with the twins' special friends from school.

Supper is now ready. The twins help the ‘tups get settled in their big boy and big girl chairs. The supper is delicious and organic. After supper, Jon loads the dishes into their energy-efficient dishwasher. Kate takes the children downstairs, to their crafting table. The children make “Thank You” cards for all of the people at the Strasburg Railroad. Cara and Mady do all of the printing. Each child draws a little something on each card – Hannah draws a purple horse. Jon comes downstairs to watch and to help when needed.

After the cards are made, Jon and Kate direct the children to say “good night” to the camera. The ‘tups blow kisses and wave, and then are led upstairs.

On the couch, Jon and Kate explain their new nightly routine. The parents bathe the ‘tups, while Mady and Cara practise on their musical instruments. Then they gather for family prayers, and the ‘tups are put to bed by both of their parents. Cara and Mady take their own baths while Jon & Kate go downstairs for a couch interview.

But none of the night-time activities are filmed. Jon explains, “This is personal family time and we think it is important to have the privacy to bathe our kids and say our prayers, just the ten of us.” Kate simply smiles and nods her head in agreement, her right hand loosely intertwined with Jon’s hands.


Serena said...

That is bittersweet... like an "It's a Wonderful Life", only in reverse, where we get a glimpse into what the Gosselin family could have been like if greed had not corrupted them.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, bittersweet. Like Serena said, this could have been their family. . .

Kind of sad to think about. I wish the Gosselins would just wake up and be happy like this.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't that be all of our dreams for this to be a happy, functional family that was truly grateful for its blessings?

Anonymous said...

This scenario is almost as creepily contrived as the show itself.

Unknown said...

This was fantastic, loved EVERY part of it and so well thought out! You all did an amazing job. Too bad it IS more like a fairy tale for the children however....sigh...

Anonymous said...

"Aaden drops a piece of bacon on his shirt and it leaves a grease mark. Aaden looks a little scared, but Kate assures him that it's only a shirt, and spots don't matter, and besides, he will get dirtier than that when they go to the train place."

This made me smile. If only it was reality. I also really liked the parts about writing thank you notes and not filming bathtime/bedtime. I really don't think we need to see the kids in their "underwears".

The bedtime part made me think.. I know we've seen the kids with books, but have we ever really seen Jon or Kate read to them? They're old enough for simple chapter books. Have one parent read a chapter to the boys at night, and the other parent read to the girls and the twins. (that way, the little ones could fall asleep listening in their own beds, then the twins could go to their room and have some quiet reading time of their own). Reading to kids is such a peaceful, comforting way to end the day.

Anonymous said...

Because I am partial with two of my own, my biggest hope for the family in all of that is for the boys. Kate is really missing out on how much fun boys are, and I watch with sadness each week hoping she will snap out of it before they get one day older.

Anonymous said...

I don't know why, but this post made me really, really sad.

Anonymous said...

How bizarre....
The fantasy blog is more realistic than the reality show.
Am I making sense?
No matter, well done all.
Love this site.
Damn addicting.

Anonymous said...

Ok, do the tups really never use toilet paper? I saw a comment on here about it a while ago and just caught one of the kids going in the bedroom with no TP on a rerun. Tell me this isn't true?!?

Anonymous said...

Go find a family that is even 50% like that and I will give you a million bucks. Pure fantasy.

Anonymous said...

Nice scenario, but I don;t think even The Beav, Wally, Ward and June could pull that off. No one is perfect, especially a family with 8 kids. Cut them some slack.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if you'll post this, but this posting is disturbing in so many ways. Are we expecting perfection in this family? I don't know about anyone else, but when my children were small, family outings did not go perfectly EVER! Did we have good times, you bet, but there was also bickering and tears in that fun. I disagree with a lot of things that happen on this show, but give them a little break on their behavior. I admire the blog's initial purpose (What do we want on the sidebar), but I am seeing some things on it that are getting away from your purpose of trying to protect the children (i.e., the horse picture). Some seem to harp on the really small details of the Gosselin's lives (such as the kids wearing bibs - who cares if they wear bibs still and who is this hurting?) and forget the biggest problem - exploitation.

Anonymous said...

I am definitely *not* a sheeple, but that was so unrealistic. I would cringe seeing that!

Alexis said...

Please, no one lives in this perfect happy world you have created in this post. Your absurd expectations for everyone smiling, laughing and loving at every minute creates unrealistic expectations. The thing is, with children, they get hot, tired, messy, upset and feel resentment to their other siblings at unpredictable times.

I know this post was just a fantasy--but I don't think I would want to live in a 'perfect' world like this. It's simply not realistic and gives kids unreal expectations as to what life is like when they will (eventually) go to college, get a job, and have to find a mortgage.

5monkeys said...

Great work with the story! It was fun to read, but sad at the same time.

FIONA said...

This is Kate on good meds! Seriously, you can lose yourself in this post, because, although a joke, of course, this type of lifestyle IS normal, and is what we all thought we were in for when the cute kids hooked us on the show.

This is what we wanted...a normal, well-behaved a thankful family.

Now this is an article to be sent to the G's as a model of what your family shoud be like.

Thanks for the post! Kind of refreshing!!!

Thesaurus Rex said...

It's a little "Leave it to Beaver" but so sad because I know there actually are families like this, so sad what great fun it could've all been (all the outings AND their lives). I really hope Kate gets help soon because the kids are getting older and deserve so much better. There was a post on ONTD last night with some pictures of them in Hawaii and people there were still defending them. No one in the pictures looked particularly happy, either. Such a shame.

sistah2 said...

This post made me wonder, do they even go out with the kids, as a family, without the cameras? I heard Kate say recently they had never been to the movies. Are they really that isolated? It would be nice to hear the whole family did normal things on non-filming days, like go the the mall, the movies, or the local playground, etc. - without the nanny! Does this ever happen ?
Scarily, I doubt it.

FIONA said...

One more thing....I bet the Gosselin kids have never written a thank-you to any of the places they have visited. Not their fault, but Jon and Kate's.

Not only would it be absolutely appropriate but it would help teach the kids good manners.

I have to add that good manners, such as "thank-you notes", RSVPing, etc...are fast becoming non-exsistent.

The best thing my Mother instilled in me was a prompt thank-you. And my kid knows within the week of a gift, a note or card goes out. I believe she will keep this up as in was such a part of her life.

(How fun for Ellen to have showed the G kids thank-you cards on her show) Now that is good PR!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comments. We agree that this is a fantasy - no traffic snarl-ups, no blistering hot weather, remarkably upbeat kids, etc. As a whole, this is not realistic and we know it.

We had fun writing snippets in turns. When we read it in total, we also found ourselves feeling bittersweet. Because there are choices that the Gosselins could be making, but aren't. They could choose to sing along with the kids, instead of wearing earplugs in the van. They could choose to have Kate spend more time with the boys on camera (who knows if she does off-camera?). They could choose not to film bathtime, which is something many of us really want.

I rejected a snarky comment that speculated on what the GWoP group looks like (we're all smokin' hot) but I did want to address one part of it. I don't begrudge Kate her tummy tuck. I do sincerely admire that she sacrificed so much to carry the sextuplets as long as she could for them to have the best chance for survival. It must have been terrible to be bedridden for so long, and I can only imagine the physical difficulties involved, and what havoc the pregnancy must have wreaked on her body.

Anonymous said...

There ain't enough Prozac in the world to make Kate that mellow.

Anonymous said...

Sadly unless they do personality transplants I don't think Kate would ever think of anything or anyone outside of how they or it reflects on her. There people that can laugh at accidents and entertain their children on long trips. I find it weird they don't allow talking at a table during meals. Even more so since she claimed she couldn't remember if she interacted with each child in a given day. Wouldn't meal times be a perfect time to interact with the whole family.
I guess those children are going to college with bibs and sippy cups. Lord love a duck.

Anonymous said...

I find it weird they don't allow talking at a table during meals.

When was this said? I've seen plenty of talking/laughing/whining/crying/teasing/joking during meals. Just like any other family.

sistah2 said...

Lighten up, guys. Of course there is no perfect family like this, its all in fun - but made a good point. No one would argue that a family outing is without its mis-steps and tensions, or kids meltdowns. The point of the post is, wouldn't it be great if the PARENTS reacted differently to it all? Kids are kids, but parents set the tone of the day, and a postive, pleasant, humble attitude by a parent makes all the difference. It's not that hard. The family could have a better experience if they could appreciate the even the simplest things!

Anonymous said...

I was one of the people who took part in writing this "recap." Of course, we don't expect the Gosselins or any other family to be perfect. We just took turns addressing how we would like them to be in their treatment of each other and their children in the best of all possible worlds. It's fantasy and presented as such.

If we all spend all our time in serious pursuit of bettering the lives of the kids, we'll burn out. This is a chance to take a break and write about how we wish the train episode had evolved. I hope you go back and read it with that in mind. You know, wishful thinking, the kind we all indulge in sometimes.

Anonymous said...

I was raised as one of those kids that were not suppossed to talk during a meal. We did have meals in the traditiional sense that we turned off the TV, didn't answer the phone and all sat at the table. But looking back now I don't see the point if you are going to ignore each other anyways.
Now that I am a parent I make sure that not only is the TV off, etc. but that we all have real communication. We ask our kids how their day was and let them vent all their problems. What Kate may not realize, this can be done without screaming and crying. I just thought it was sad that she wouldn't let her kids talk during meals and then blamed it on their nerves and not hers.

Anonymous said...

"I was raised as one of those kids that were not suppossed to talk during a meal. We did have meals in the traditiional sense that we turned off the TV, didn't answer the phone and all sat at the table. "

That is how it was at our house too. Except we could talk at the table, but all other distractions were not allowed. One thing my father did not allow was singing at the table too. He was old school LOL (but he was a great man!)

My parents taught me at a young age how to behave in a restaraunt too. They used to get so many compliments from wait staff about how well behaved I was.

It's important to set boundries and teach children how to behave. If I had temper trantrums like the Tups have I would have been toast. Well not really, it just simply was not tolerated in our house. I'm not blaming the Tups, I'm blaming the parents for being too self-involved to teach their children how to behave whether in public or private.

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone really expects them to be Ward and June Cleaver, or some kind of Stepford family.

I think one of the points of the post was to illustrate how far a few little things could go to improve the public's perception of the family. A few "thank yous", some kind words exchanged between Kate and Jon, and a generally more relaxed, thankful attitude would go a LONG way.

Anonymous said...

OMG - I can't believe someone sent you a nasty email over THIS.

It's a PARODY. So what if it's a little over the top, that's what it's suppose to be! I see it all as stark contrasts to things we have seen on ALL episodes combined into this one, and I get it.

For goodness sake! For all those who say you all can't find one good thing to say about the Gosselins (which I don't find true BTW), can others find one thing to NOT rip YOU GUYS on??

Anonymous said...

If there is ANYTHING on this site that the Gosselins read, PLEASE let it be this post. Beautifully written! (Can I live there, too?)

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure that all the intesive therapy and meds in the entire world could actually make Kate that mellow.

Sometimes I actually think that she is upset that she had six at one time in the beginning credits she says "We wanted one more, but instead, we got six (kinda eyore like!). Her lack of patience with the kids along with her seeming to be as little involved as possible (unless it benefits her directly) makes me think that she hates having all those children around. How often SHE laments about only having to take on or two children somewhere and home much she COMPLAINS about getting everyone and everything ready.

Anonymous said...

Well done and yes, bittersweet. Sad what a huge change there would be in all of their lives if they read that story and just adopted ONE change. Not perfection, not everything, just ONE.

I'd love to see them close the show like the Beverly Hillbillies with everyone hanging around the front door at a reasonably early evening time while waving and say, "Goodbye! The rest is ARE life"...pan out.. as they all go back in to have a normal family night at home.

And yeah, now I'm all curious to read what a sheeple would describe us like. LOL Were there bon bons and polyester housecoats involved?

And for those that think this is absolutely pure unrealistic fiction...Um, our family outings come pretty darn close to this...far closer then this tv show does! Lots of people manage the little things in life with much more grace!

Irish said...

I am far from a perfect parent. far from it...But these incidences that were written about in parody are not far fetched.
My 7yr old has a habit of wiping his mouth on his shirt. I hate that he does it and it drives me mad, but I won't break his spirit because of it by demeaning and embarassing him.
My 6yr old will go through numerous outfits a day playing in puddles, mud, sand...again - I hate it but he's a 6yr old boy...
My 19mos old flings food from her highchair at each meal. She think it's hilarious. I do not.
But this time last year she was very ill and hospitalized...I'm grateful she's here throwing food.

I bet if they'd ever had to deal with sick or special needs children they wouldn't sweat the small stuff so much.

Anonymous said...

Loved this parody! I'm a little surprised some people complained that it was "too perfect" and just did not seem to understand it for what it was.

To me, the point is that their outings are so incredibly dysfunctional most of the time simply because of how the parents behave. This showed the exact opposite of what it could be.

For the "average" family that is not so critical and anal towards their kids, a parody like this would not be needed.