Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Jessa and Ben's Wedding Vows

Jessa and Ben's vows are a personalized version of ones found online. 
 
Ben's Vows:
Jessa Lauren, you are the love of my life. You are my best friend, and I have learned so much through your love for me. And today is a beautiful day because I have the privilege of committing my life and all that I am to you. 

Jessa Lauren, today I take you to be my wife, my faithful partner, and my one true love, loving you now and as you grow and develop into all that God intends. I promise to encourage you, to inspire you, and love you truly when we are together and when we are apart, when our lives are at peace and when they are in turmoil, when I am proud of you and when I am disappointed in you, in times of work and in times of rest. I promise to passionately pursue you, to pray for you, and to empower you to do the things that you dream. From the depth of my being, I will seek to be open and honest with you. I will forever be there to laugh with you, to lift you up, and to love you unconditionally, through all of our adventures in life together. I say these things believing that God is in the midst of them all.

And I give you this ring as a token of my unending love for you. 

Jessa's Vows:
Benjamin Michael, Ben, today I take you to be my husband, my faithful partner, and my one true love, loving you now and as you grow and develop into all that God intends. I promise to encourage you, to inspire you, and love you truly when we are together and when we are apart, when our lives are at peace and when they are in turmoil, when I am proud of you and when I am disappointed in you, in times of work and in times of rest. I promise to passionately pursue you, to pray for you, and to empower you to do the things that you dream. From the depth of my being, I will seek to be open and honest with you. I will forever be there to laugh with you, to lift you up, and to love you unconditionally, through all of our adventures in life together. I say these things believing that God is in the midst of them all.

And I give you this ring as a token of my unending love. 

Recap: "Jessa's Wedding"


19 Kids and Counting "Jessa's Wedding"
  • It's the day before the wedding, and everyone is bustling around making last minute preparations. "There are a lot of thoughts and emotions running through my head right now," says Jessa.
  • Jessa and Ben meet with Mike Schadt, the pastor who will perform their marriage ceremony. Mike is the founder of S.O.S. Ministries, the organization that the Duggars partner with during their mission trips to Central America.
  • Pastor Schadt makes it clear that Jessa and Ben's commitment to save their first kiss for their wedding day is a personal decision, not a biblical command.
  • Jessa is reusing a lot of Jill's wedding decorations and is trying hard to stick to her parents' budget. Everyone is grateful to have so many family members and friends volunteer their time to set up for the big day.
  • Sierra, the Duggars' friend and Jessa's wedding coordinator, gathers the volunteers and gives instructions. Joy is Seirra's personal assistant.
  • Meanwhile, Guinn Seewald, Ben's mom, is busy preparing for the rehearsal dinner.
  • As the wedding party runs through the ceremony, Jim Bob says he is trying not to suppress his emotions, but he still lets a few out.
  • The Duggars are touched by the beautiful rehearsal dinner that the Seewalds put together. They are especially blessed by the table Guinn set up to honor Grandpa Duggar.
  • Grandma Duggar, whose husband died soon before their 49th wedding anniversary, says the secret to a successful marriage is sacrifice. "You really have to sacrifice for the other person."
  • During dinner, family members share how much they love Jessa and Ben. Jinger's speech is the most emotional, as she and Jessa have been best friends since birth. "I think this is really hard for Jinger, seeing Jessa get married," says Jana. "I think it is hard for her to let Jessa go."
  • The next morning, Jessa and Ben arrive at the church with Jinger. The weather is a little chillier than Sierra expected, so she tries to rent a few heaters to keep the guests warm at the reception, but she is not successful.
  • The wedding party shows up at 9am to start getting ready. After Jill puts on her dress, Derick paints her toenails. "He's so sweet," says Jill.
  • Michelle arrives and gives Jessa a high protein snack for energy. Ben realizes that he has forgotten Jessa's ring at the Duggars' house, so Jim Bob has to bring it.
  • Josh, who had a very important business meeting that he couldn't reschedule, arrives shortly before the wedding begins.
  • When Jessa puts on her wedding dress, her 11 bridesmaids are stunned, and so is Jim Bob. "I can't believe my little girl is all grown up," says the Duggar dad, tearing up. Jessa, who isn't wearing waterproof makeup, starts crying, too.
  • Meanwhile, Ben and his groomsmen head outside to take pictures. Jessa and her bridesmaids and flower girls do the same. "We were freezing," says Jinger.
  • Just before the ceremony starts, Jim Bob shares another tender moment with Jessa, and both start crying again. The Duggar dad prays with the ladies, and Ben's dad prays with the guys.
  • The wedding begins! "When my dad and I stood together behind the doors, I just couldn't believe it," says Jessa. "The moment was finally here."
  • Jim Bob has tears in his eyes as he gives his third oldest daughter away. Pastor Schadt shares a short sermon, and Jessa and Ben recite their vows, which they adapted from a set of vows found on the internet. 
  • They pour their green and yellow unity sand, and their parents join them on stage for a word of prayer.
  • Pastor Schadt pronounces Ben and Jessa man and wife, and they run out of the sanctuary. After the wedding party leaves, Mike Schadt announces that the couple decided to have their first kiss in private.
  • The pastor jokingly invites Jim Bob and Michelle to share a kiss with the crowd, although that scene is not shown in the episode.
  • "Our first kiss was nice and slow and romantic," says Jessa.
  • When Jessa and Ben return from their alone time, the Duggars and Seewalds take family pictures, and the couple signs their marriage certificate.
  • At the outdoor reception, guests enjoy ice cream sundaes. Jessa and Ben share a sundae and a few more kisses.
  • Before Jessa jumps in the horse-drawn carriage with her husband, she hugs as many family members as she can. The couple heads to Europe for their honeymoon.

Watch Duggar Wedding #3 in 1 Hour!

Jessa's wedding airs tonight! Here is one more sneak peak video:

Jessa's Wedding...TONIGHT

The moment you have all been waiting for has finally arrived. Tune in to TLC tonight at 8pm ET/7pm CT for a two-hour episode of 19 Kids and Counting featuring Jessa's wedding. Preview videos below.

Watch Jill's Delivery


Baby Dilly still hasn't made his debut, but TLC is giving him an eviction notice. The network just announced they it plans to air a two-hour episode featuring the delivery on Tuesday, May 5th.

Jill Dillard is seven days overdue and feeling great. She and Derick are still planning for a home birth with a team of midwives. Jana will assist as Jill's doula (birthing coach). The couple has not announced their baby's name, so stay tuned.



Sunday, March 29, 2015

5 Days Overdue

One year ago today, Derick Dillard proposed to Jill Duggar. They were married less than three months later (June 21st) and became pregnant about two weeks into their marriage. Now, the Dillards are anxiously awaiting the arrival of their son, whom they have affectionately nicknamed "Baby Dilly." He is five days overdue. We made another chart that shows the progression of Jill's baby bump for you to look at while you wait for Baby Dilly to make his debut.


A Look Back Before the Wedding

"By the time that Ben had asked Jessa to court, we were just like, all for it," says Jinger Duggar, looking back on her sister's relationship.

Relive the early days of Jessa Duggar's courtship with Ben Seewald in the following video. The couple's wedding airs this Tuesday at 8pm ET/7pm CT on TLC.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Another Baby Bump Pic

Jill and Derick Dillard snapped this picture yesterday. Baby Dilly is now three days past his due date, but Jill recently told PEOPLE that she isn't surprised.

 Jill Duggar Dillard

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Gas Explosion on Duggar Property

Earlier this week, Jedidiah Duggar witnessed a gas explosion at one of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar's commercial properties that sits on the same plot of land as the family's house in Tontitown, Arkansas. A reporter from 5 News shares the full story in the following video.

Don't Mess with Jess

"The younger kids listen to Jessa," says Jill. "When she starts speaking, they listen because they know she means business." In the following video, the Duggars discuss Jessa's role in homeschooling and her ability to motivate the children to do their work.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Baby Dilly Will Be Late

Jill Dillard, whose due date is today, is having Braxton Hicks contractions, but her son has still not made his debut. In an interview with PEOPLE Magazine, she shared that she is planning for Baby Dilly to arrive late. Watch the video below for an update from Jill.

Recap: "All About Jessa"

19 Kids and Counting "All About Jessa"
  • Only two days to go until Jessa and Ben tie the knot! The Duggar house is packed with family and friends who are in town for the wedding.
  • Jessa and Ben decide they don't want separate bachelor and bachelorette parties because they don't want to be apart, so they plan a joint flag football game.
  • Jim Bob and Ben are the team captains, so there will be intense competition. "He's getting Jessa, but I was going to win this football game," says Jim Bob, whose team ends up defeating Ben's team.
  • After the game, the married couples share advice with Jessa and Ben.
  • "I think Ben is as ready for marriage as he will ever be," says his dad, Michael.
  • The family looks back on Jessa's childhood. "Jessa was full of energy," says Jim Bob. "She was a handful." Jessa says she loved growing up with 18 siblings, and she learned to be very organized from a young age.
  • "Jessa's gift of organization was there when she was a little bitty girl," says Michelle. The mom of 19 was especially thankful for her third-oldest daughter's gift while Josie was in the NICU after her premature birth and Michelle had to be by her side.
  • Jessa is also a master packer. She usually doesn't forget anything important, except for the time when the family left for a road trip and then realized that they didn't have socks or underwear for the eight youngest boys.
  • Josh says Jessa is a lot like him. She will tell you what she thinks, even when you don't want to hear it.
  • For the past several years, Jessa has played a key role in homeschooling her younger siblings and is very good at motivating them to work. "The younger kids listen to Jessa," says Jill.
  • Who will fill in the gap once Jessa leaves the nest? Michelle isn't sure yet, but she knows that whoever steps in will have big shoes to fill.
  • "We respected Jessa as a teacher," says Jedidiah. "She pretty much knew what she was talking about all the time."
  • Jessa also has a lot of spunk behind her, as proven when she and her mom went skydiving a few years ago. "Whose mom goes skydiving?" says Jessa. "I have the coolest mom."
  • Jessa is very close with her sisters, especially Jinger, who is just 412 days younger than her. "Our personalities are totally different, and so we work together very well," says Jinger.
  • The Seewalds also reflect on Ben's childhood. "He's really kind," says Ben's brother Ethan. "And kind of acts like you are his age, and he treats you kindly."
  • "He was a big encourager," says his mother, Guinn.
  • Jessa and Ben started getting to know each other in group settings in 2013. Guinn reminded her son that Jessa has a bunch of guys knocking on her door, so he shouldn't get his hopes up. But he ended up winning her heart.
  • "Ben is definitely a good match for Jessa," says Anna. "...they definitely balance each other well."

Tonight on TLC

Tune in tonight for a new episode of 19 Kids and Counting.

9pm ET/8pm CT: "All About Jessa" It's game on for Jessa and Ben, who host a flag football game. Before the couple ties the knot, the Duggar family looks back on Jessa's 22 years. See how she matured, and relive the special moments from her relationship with Ben.

Jill Dillard Due TODAY

Today is Baby Dilly's due date, which means Jill Dillard is 40 weeks pregnant. It's hard to believe how quickly time has passed. In just five days, Jill and Derick will celebrate the one-year anniversary of their engagement.

Jill Dillard

Full Episode on TLC.com

TLC just uploaded a full episode of 19 Kids and Counting, "A Duggar Says Yes." Relive the moment when Jessa accepted Ben's offer of courtship in September 2013, and then tune in tonight to watch the couple make the final preparations for their wedding. Click here to view "A Duggar Says Yes" on TLC.com.

Jessa Duggar and Ben Seewald, September 2013

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Still No Baby...

Jill Dillard is two days away from her due date, and Baby Dilly still has not made his debut. This evening, Jill and Derick had Jana Duggar and Jinger Duggar, as well as Jessa and Ben Seewald, over for dinner and board games. The Duggars really enjoy Settlers of Catan, as it is a great game for large groups of people.

Jill Dillard, Jinger Duggar, Derick Dillard, Jana Duggar

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Just a Few More Days

Jill and Derick Dillard tied the knot exactly nine months ago. Not only are they celebrating their 9 "monthiversary," but they are also celebrating that Jill is 39 weeks and 4 days pregnant. Baby Dilly will be here very soon. How much do you think he will weigh? Derick was a very large baby, so there's a good chance that Baby Dilly will be, too.

Jill and Derick Dillard

Friday, March 20, 2015

Marriage Counseling with the Duggars

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar did marriage counseling with both Jill and Jessa and their fianc├ęs leading up to their weddings. During counseling, the parents of 19 asked the husbands and wives to be questions from the Getting Ready for Marriage workbook, available on our Duggar Store page. During their sessions, Michelle had to work to keep Jim Bob in line. Video below:

Josh Duggar in IN

Josh Duggar will be speaking at a free event in Indiana this spring. Details below:

Thursday, May 7th, 2015
Josh Duggar to speak at the LifeCare Services Annual Fundraiser Banquet
Purdue Union Ballroom
101 North Grant St., West Lafayette, IN
Seating starts at 6pm
Complimentary dinner begins at 6:30pm
Two-hour program and presentation to follow
The event is free, but space is limited
Call 765-743-4488 to register

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Duggar Fruit Favorites

See what happens when Johannah Duggar decides to celebrate her birthday with a variety of different fruits instead of a birthday cake. Video below:

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Anna Duggar on Patience


We have another segment to share from our interview with Anna Duggar. (Click here to view our previous post.)

You always seem so patient with children. Is that something that comes naturally to you?

Anna: Being patient does not always come naturally. My children have their moments, and I have my moments. I am really thankful for the examples of my mother, mother-in-law, and husband; they are so patient and calm. When I feel that frustration rising, I remind myself to stop and breathe and pray. I ask God how He would handle the situation. If we humble ourselves and go to God for wisdom, He will be there to answer us.

There have been times when I have tried to figure things out on my own, but when we try to do things our way, it usually does not turn out the way we thought it would. You will never regret humbling yourself and asking for God's wisdom. 

Patience is not something that we can fully achieve because there will always be those frustrations in life. But there will always be a perfect response, and it's not always easy to figure out what that is, but that is what we are working towards.

I am thankful for my mom because she really understood having a quiet voice. I am very loud and boisterous compared to my mom. She is just so meek and so humble, and she knows how to pray and seek the Lord. Each day growing up, unless I got up late, I saw my mom having her quiet time with the Lord and spending time in prayer. We are not always going to make the right decisions, but as a child, it was a great example to have parents who always sought to honor God and each other. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Recap: "Wedding Prep"

19 Kids and Counting "Wedding Prep"
  • Jessa and Ben's wedding is only a few days away. Jeremiah chaperones the couple as they pick up their marriage license.
  • Grandma Duggar and Michelle, along with several of the little ones, make a special wedding gift for Jessa. They cut a piece of netting off Grandma's wedding dress to attach to Jessa's bouquet as she walks down the aisle, which is something they did for Jill.
  • Meanwhile, Jennifer grabs a horse head on a stick and a pair of headphones and pretends to be Mr. Jim the soundman.
  • Jill and Derick chaperone Jessa and Ben on an arts and crafts double date. Each couple paints a picture of a tree.
  • Back at home, the rest of the family makes homemade pizza. Jim Bob attempts to hand-toss his dough, but it does not work very well. Some of the kids put pickles on their pizza. "That's a Duggar thing," says James. "We just all love pickles."
  • Josie uses the "lick and stick" method to make her mini pizza. She licks each topping and then places it on the pizza. "I am not going to eat Josie's pizza," says Michelle, laughing. "I am labeling it. We will all know which one is hers. She's quite the chef."
  • Jessa and Ben have their final marriage counseling session with Jim Bob and Michelle, which has been a weekly occurrence during their engagement. They discuss the importance of communication. "I think you all are going to make a dynamic duo," says Jim Bob, who then demonstrates the best way to kiss.
  • Sierra, Jessa's wedding coordinator, comes over to make a test batch of homemade brownies to use as a topping for Jessa and Ben's ice cream sundae bar. The little kids are eager to help. "Sierra does a wonderful job having a lot of little helping hands around," says Michelle.
  • In Washington DC, Anna and the kids are packing to leave for the wedding. When they arrive in Arkansas, Ben, Jessa, and Jinger meet them at the airport. Josh has another commitment and is scheduled to arrive four hours before the ceremony begins.
  • A couple days before the wedding, Anna Hackel (Jessa's friend and one of her bridesmaids) chaperones Jessa and Ben as the pick up their wedding bands. The couple chose Ben's ring together, but Ben wants Jessa's to be a surprise.
  • Then, Jessa and Anna pick up Jessa's wedding gown. As the wedding draws near, friends and family members from across the nation begin arriving at the Duggars' house. It's almost go time!

Tonight on TLC

Tune in to TLC tonight at 9pm ET/8pm CT for a new, hour-long episode of 19 Kids and Counting, "Wedding Prep."  

Jill, Derick, Jessa, and Ben paint together on a double date while the family has a pizza party. Later, it's all about the wedding, as Jessa and Ben finalize last minute details. Will everything come together, or is there too much prep even for the Duggars? Video previews below:

Ellie's Engagement

The past seven days have been a whirlwind for our family. Ellie, coauthor of the blog, got engaged to her Mr. Handsome. At the request of our readers, we would like to share the details.

Ellie and Mr. Handsome

I (Ellie) work for Mr. Handsome's uncle at a Christian organization. Mr. Handsome arranged for me to fly to Florida last Monday and had my boss tell me that I was going on a work trip to interview someone at a retirement community for missionaries.

My parents, Lily and Mr. Lily, also happened to be in Florida on a business trip, so they picked me up at the airport and took me to a hotel. The next morning, my parents told me that we were going to meet my dad's high school friend for a quick lunch on the beach before I had to leave for my interview at the retirement community. Mr. Handsome popped out of the bushes and said, "Hey, do you want to come over here?" My parents joined his parents on a bench about a hundred yards away. Mr. Handsome read Proverbs 31 and said: "I've been looking for a Proverbs 31 wife all my life, and I've found one. Will you marry me?" I said yes!

After the proposal, we were blessed to be able to spend a couple days in Florida with our parents. I am considering starting a blog about wedding planning and will keep you all posted. :)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Baby Dilly...Coming Very Soon!

Jill Dillard is almost 39 weeks pregnant! Baby Dilly is due on March 24th. (This photo was taken yesterday.)


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Duggars Vacation in Texas

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and the kids spent last week vacationing in Texas. The weather was a bit chilly, but they enjoyed bonding as a family while fishing, roasting marshmallows, boating, and playing sports and board games. Josh and Anna Duggar and their kids, along with Jill and Derick Dillard and Jessa and Ben Seewald, also joined in on the fun. Here are a few snapshots from their trip: