Parents of 18 CHILDREN share downsides to raising so many kids

Parents of 18 CHILDREN share the downsides to raising so many kids – from spending $15K on Christmas and birthday presents each year to NEVER having time to themselves

  • When Chris Hart-Spegal met his wife Desiree, from Texas, in October 2013, he already had eight kids of his own from previous relationships and she had three
  • After tying the knot in July 2014 and blending their families, the couple went on to welcome seven more together – making them a family of 20 now
  • While the pair love having a large brood, they said there are some negative aspects to it, including not having privacy and struggling to keep the house neat
  • Desiree estimates that she spends between $250 to $500 every week on groceries – which equates to $13,000 to $26,000 a year on food alone
  • The couple said they usually fork out around $10,000 on Christmas presents, and another $5,000 between the kids’ birthdays each year
  • They addressed the ‘misconception’ that their house is constantly ‘chaotic,’ explaining, ‘Everyone knows what their role is. We make a great team’ 

A couple who have 18 children have opened up about the downsides to raising so many kids – from spending an upwards of $15,000 a year on birthday and Christmas presents to never having time to themselves. 

When Chris Hart-Spegal met his now-wife Desiree, both from Texas, in October 2013, he already had eight kids of his own from previous relationships and she had three.

After tying the knot in July 2014 and blending their families, the couple went on to welcome seven more together – making them a family of 20 now.

And while the pair love having a large brood, they admitted that there are some negative aspects to it – including having to spend a massive amount of money on food and struggling to keep the house neat.

‘The difficulty for me is keeping things clean and organized,’ Desiree told Truly recently. ‘And keeping everybody on track.’

A couple who have 18 children have opened up about the downsides to raising so many kids – including spending an upwards of $15,000 a year on birthday and Christmas presents

When Chris Hart-Spegal met his now-wife Desiree, both from Texas, in October 2013, he already had eight kids of his own from previous relationships and she had three 

After tying the knot in July 2014 and blending their families, the couple went on to welcome seven more together – making them a family of 20 now. They are seen with 15 of their kids

https://youtube.com/watch?v=8pqzoj4oFIA%3Frel%3D0%26showinfo%3D1%26hl%3Den-US

A typical morning for the mom-of-18, who works at a car dealership, starts with her doing the laundry – she estimates that she has to do more than 10 loads a week to keep up with the kids’ dirty clothes – before she starts making breakfast for the kids.

The logistics of raising 18 kids, according to Desiree and Chris

  • Has to do 10+ loads of laundry a week
  • Spends $250 to $500 weekly on groceries, which equates to $13,000 to $26,000 a year
  • A night out at a restaurant with the whole family costs roughly $300
  • Spends an estimated $10,000 on Christmas presents, and another $5,000 between the kids’ birthdays every year 
  • Lives in 37,00-square-foot, five-bedroom house with the middle-aged girls, the younger boys, and the older boys, each sharing a room
  • Owns two SUVs to drive their kids around

‘When I cook for the children, it usually takes me anywhere between one to three hours depending on what I’m making,’ she explained.

After the meal is finished, she gets their lunch ready, and she then has to spend hours cleaning up. 

Desiree previously admitted to South West News Service that while it’s sometimes hard for her to keep the house neat, she has a lot of help from her kids.

‘I’ll always be getting them to tidy up a few times a day, so it is not a mess at the end,’ she told the outlet.

She explained that although their house can be ‘manic’ sometimes, she makes sure to ‘stay organized’ and ‘spend quality time’ with each child. 

When it comes to grocery shopping, Desiree estimates that she spends between $250 to $500 every week – which equates to $13,000 to $26,000 a year on food alone.

‘I buy four or five gallons of milk at a time,’ she shared with Truly. 

According to Desiree, a night out at a restaurant with the whole family will cost them roughly $300. 

The couple admitted that they never get any privacy, explaining, ‘I don’t know when we’ve ever had the home alone to ourselves. I don’t think we ever have.’

While they said that Christmas time is ‘fun,’ the pair admitted that it could be a lot of ‘work,’ and that they usually fork out around $10,000 on presents, and another $5,000 between the kids’ birthdays. 

Together, the couple share Christa, six, Izabella, five, Christopher Jr., four, Lily, three, Heavenly-Grace, two, Elliesiah, one, and Briella, who is seven-months-old.

Desiree’s children from her previous relationships – Maliki, 16, Makaila, 15, and Andrew, eight – also live with them, as well as Chris’ children – Skyler, 21, Braden, 17, Kaden, 15, Jayden, 11, Sarayia, 11, and twins, Chevelle and Donny, eight.

They live in a 37,00-square-foot, five-bedroom house – with the middle-aged girls, the younger boys, and the older boys, each sharing a room. One of Chris’ sons, Gavin, 20, lives by himself in Spokane, Washington. 

Desiree explained that she wanted a big family her ‘while life.’ She gushed, ‘It seemed like my whole childhood, I had been preparing to be all of their moms.’

She added to SWNS that each of their children have different personalities, and she tries to match what they like to do with their chores. 

According to Desiree, a night out at a restaurant with the whole family will cost them roughly $300. She and Chris are pictured together at a restaurant


While they said that Christmas is ‘fun,’ the pair admitted that it could be a lot of ‘work,’ and that they usually fork out around $10,000 on presents, and another $5,000 on the kids’ birthdays

They live in a 37,00-square-foot, five-bedroom house – with the middle-aged girls, the younger boys, and the older boys, each sharing a room. Some of the kids are pictured

‘Christa is so organized so I get her to keep the shoe rack tidy,’ she explained. ‘Christopher Jr. thinks he is my husband – he is a mini Chris, like his name suggests. And then my preemie baby, Lily, is such a fighter.

‘The kids are really good at doing their own washing now too – so that helps out.’

Makaila recalled being ‘excited’ but ‘kind of nervous’ when her mom married Chris and his eight kids moved in with them.

‘It was just the three of us and then having a ton of more people come into my life was a little weird but it was fun,’ she explained to Truly, adding that she likes that ‘there’s a lot of different personalities in the mix.’

Kaden, Chris’ son, added: ‘What I like about having so many siblings is you’re never alone and there’s always something to do. There’s always somebody to do something with.’ 

The couple also responded to haters who have accused them of ‘over-populating the world.’ 

The couple admitted that they never get any privacy, explaining, ‘I don’t know when we’ve ever had the home alone to ourselves. I don’t think we ever have.’ Chris is seen with five of their kids


When asked if they were planning on welcoming any more kids in the future, Desiree admitted, ‘We’re not planning on having anymore but…’ before trailing off

But Chris insisted, ‘I am absolutely 100 per cent not planning on having any more children. I love the numbers that we have right now.’ The couple is pictured with 15 of their kids

‘My hope is that we’re raising world-changers, people who are gonna come in and show the same grace and mercy they were raised with, and make the world a better place,’ Chris explained. 

Desiree added: ‘What I love most about raising a huge family is really the end goal. We’re molding people, it’s a huge responsibility.’ 

They also addressed those who think their household is constantly ‘chaotic.’

‘There’s a huge misconception, people believe it’s chaos,’ Chris said. ‘It is work, obviously, but any home comes with work.

‘Everyone in our family knows what their part and their role and their position is. They know how to move when they’re called on. I think that’s something we do well. We make a great team.’ 

When asked if they were planning on welcoming any more kids in the future, Desiree admitted, ‘We’re not planning on having anymore but…’ before trailing off.

But Chris insisted, ‘I am absolutely 100 per cent not planning on having any more children. I love the numbers that we have right now.’

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