Joanna Gaines is the queen of fixing up houses, as well as filling them up! We can’t wait to see her and Chip welcome baby number five into the fold, especially now that we’ve figured out the due date. But while we’ve gotten rare and sweet glimpses of their brood, we still don’t know how mama Jo juggles her Fixer Upper success (RIP, our favorite show), runs a booming home renovation and design business, released a Magnolia Home collection of decor, and still keeps her soon-to-be family of seven functioning.
While the help of a nanny is never mentioned on HGTV’s hit show, it’s unclear whether the Gaineses actually have one. Due to their evangelical faith and their strong family values, we think it’s very possible that the Gaines family hasn’t recruited full-time help to care for their four adorable kids (though it would certainly be understandable if they have!).
The version of herself that Joanna plays on Fixer Upper is not overly religious, but faith plays an important role in the Gaineses’ family life. Chip and Joanna are longtime members of the Antioch Community Church, a nondenominational, evangelical church in Waco, TX. And through her work, Joanna helps empower women to own their domestic space and act as the head of household.
As Joanna talks about in a testimonial YouTube clip, she often turns to God for advice on matters of career and family, such as when she closed the original Magnolia retail shop in 2005 because she believed God told her to do so. “I was also pregnant with my second child,” she says, “and I really felt like God was saying, ‘Hey, I want you home, I want you raising those babies at home, at this age.'”
That doesn’t mean Joanna keeps herself confined to the house. As she wrote in a special Mother’s Day post on her blog, “As a working mom, it’s the hardest when my kids grab onto me as I’m walking out the door and say, ‘Mommy, please stay home!'” Part of the reason she and Chip will only film within a 40-mile radius of Waco is so they’re always close to home for their kids. Joanna’s Instagram posts have also revealed that the kids are often helping out on set with their parents, even when they’re not on camera.
Joanna has expressed that the desire to focus on family (especially with a new little one on the way) is what motivated the hosts to say goodbye to Fixer Upper after season five. She and her husband may not have ever confirmed or disputed the need for childcare assistance, but we have a feeling that being the primary caretakers for their children is a job this power couple takes seriously.