Buying and wrapping Christmas presents for eight kids
sounds like a job that would require the help of a team of elves, but
Kate Gosselin is doing it solo this year. Ever since she split from
husband Jon Gosselin in June 2009, she's been doing most of the everyday
work herself — since she has primary custody of 12-year-old twins Mady
and Cara and 8-year-old sextuplets Aaden, Alexis, Colin, Hannah, Joel,
and Leah — and this holiday season will be no different. Although the
brood typically spends Christmas Eve with their father who lives nearby
in Reading, Pennsylvania, "They're at the age now where we ask them,"
Kate tells omg!. "So they basically dictate it and they want to be home
Christmas and the days surrounding it."
Now that the kids — who grew up before our
eyes on TLC's "Jon & Kate Plus 8" and then the spin-off "Kate Plus
8" for seven seasons — are older, they're much more into the holiday
spirit and what it truly means. Kate, 37, got a lot of help decorating
from her eldest girls, who even put up a Christmas tree in their shared
bedroom. "Mady and Cara are so cute; they shop for each other with their
own money and they hide in the store from each other," she says
proudly. "They're so fun just to take shopping because they genuinely
really think through what the other wants."
As for the younger six, their eyes seem to be bigger than Kate's
wallet. "We don't do Santa," she explains, "but they give me the list,
and they have really really big requests and I really really work really
hard to honor them. The littlest ones want iPods and all this stuff,
and I'm just like, 'Oh my gosh.' All that electronic equipment is so
expensive. I'm trying to explain to them, 'If that's on your list then
please understand there's not going to be, like, a two-hour [Christmas
present] opening session.' They're at the age where you have to explain
that. You really have to do a disclaimer at the beginning before opening
And the Gosselin kids are just as excited to play Santa for children
who aren't as fortunate. This year, just like years past, they will take
part in the Toys for Tots charity, which collects Christmas presents
for the underprivileged. "They cannot imagine kids that don't have
Christmas," shares Kate.
Though it's been over a year since the Gosselins have been on TV,
they could all be coming back very soon — whether it's as another family
series or Kate all on her own. So does that mean it will be a dating
show, as reported? "Well, all I can say to that is you're just going to
have to wait," teases the usually chatty mom. Regardless if that
happens, the kids really want to go back to having the cameras document
their adventures. "We definitely have fond memories of those days," Kate
says. "The kids decide now, they have voices. If they're not into it,
it's not happening, but I happen to know they honestly miss it, and they
still talk about it and think it's exciting."
Until then, Kate is keeping busy raising her eight kids out of the
spotlight. And although that can be extremely stressful at times, she
finds a way to burn off the tension: running. Last December, she
completed her first marathon in just under five hours, and this coming
Sunday, she's returning to the same Rock 'n' Roll race in Las Vegas, except, "I'm doing a half [marathon] this time around," she explains.
But she does want to one day run another 26.2-miler and improve her
time, although working in practice runs when you're raising eight kids
is nearly impossible. "[My trainer] understood finally that I just can't
… if someone's sick tomorrow morning and they can't go to school, then
there went my whatever-mile run," says Kate. "So I literally fitted in
the amount of time on my own, I'm my own trainer in my head. It takes
out a lot of stress. I have a lot of stress in life and it gets all of
that out in a healthy way. I always say looking good is a side benefit."
And when she runs 13 miles on Sunday, her kids will all be cheering
for her, even if they won't be standing on the sidelines in Vegas
(because of school). Still, "I have a lofty goal of running the New York
City Marathon and having them at the finish line — that just gave me
chills thinking about it," Kate tells omg!. "They are lined up to get
the text notifications [with the runners' times], and that's really exciting for them. They're really, really proud of me. They're my biggest encouragers."
OT: I hate LJ's new posting system, everything looks off balence to me. D: