On Chip and Joanna Gaines' hit show "Fixer Upper," fans fell in love with the couple's five kids, Drake, Ella, Duke, Emmie and Crew.
In May 2023, Drake graduated from high school. During a Nov. 7 appearance on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna, Joanna and Chip Gaines reflected on the moment that Drake left for college and said they both felt differently about the matter.
While Joanna Gaines said she definitely cried when Drake left home, Chip Gaines joked, "I would have cried if the boy stayed any longer."
Despite their different views about Drake growing up, Joanna Gaines has said she's learned a lot from being a mom of five.
“Just the perspective of having an almost 18-year-old and then this 4-year-old, I feel like is such a gift,” she said at the time.
Joanna Gaines has said she sees herself as a guardian of her children’s “youth and innocence," especially since they're getting older.
“As their mother, I think my biggest job is how do I keep them where youth and innocence is something that they relish in, that they love it,” she told TODAY.com.
“Life is coming and it is what it is,” she continued. “But right now, these moments are the best moments of your life. And remember these moments — they will one day be healing for you when you’re older.”
Meet Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines' five kids.
In 2005, the Gaineses became parents when they welcomed their first child, son Drake, now 18. On "Fixer Upper," fans would occasionally see Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines' eldest boy giving their parents a helping hand.
“They love being here,” Joanna Gaines once told People about her kids being on set. “I always try to involve them with what we’re doing at work.”
“Drake loves the production side, so in the summer he’s up with the guys, and they’re teaching him how to edit," she added.
Chip Gaines spoke about the emotional and exciting rite of passage that came in 2021, when Drake got his driver's license.
“I was so excited leading up to it, and Jo was too, kind of,” Chip told People. “Then we get this kid his license, and the first morning he goes to drive, Jo bawls her eyes out. She was just devastated and wanted no part. She wants to hire him a chauffeur!”
In August 2022, Joanna Gaines started to reflect on life without her son Drake. In a personal essay she wrote for Magnolia Journal, she talked about Drake one day leaving for college.
“In the grand scheme of heartbreaking things, this one comes with a lot of gratitude and excitement," she said.
“But still, my first child is moving away, and our family dynamic will change because of it, and that can feel like a loss of its own.”
In May 2023, those changes started coming when Drake graduated from high school. On Instagram, Joanna Gaines shared a photo of her son in his cap and gown hugging his younger brother Crew. She captioned it, “Melt. My. Heart."
In another post, she added, "It feels like just yesterday that we were cheering him on as he took his first steps … but last weekend, as he walked across the stage to receive his high school diploma (!!) we were cheering him on as he took his first steps into a world beyond what he’s known."
After Drake left to go to college, Joanna Gaines told Jenna Bush Hager and her twin sister, Barbara Bush, on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna that she cried when she watched her oldest child leave.
However, Chip Gaines joked that he felt differently about the matter.
“I would have cried if the boy stayed any longer," he said.
Ella Rose Gaines
In 2006, the Gaineses welcomed their second child, daughter Ella, now 17. In 2019, Joanna Gaines told People that out of all her children, Ella was the most like her.
"Ella is like me,” she said. “I think she’ll follow in my footsteps and have her hand in a lot of things. Right now she wants to cook, be a lead designer and have a donut truck.”
Ella seems to be pursuing her baking hobby in earnest. In 2018, she received a shoutout from her mom for her sweet summer project.
“Her new summer business is selling baked goods at the office when she goes to work with me,” Joanna shared on Instagram. “Tonight we stayed up late and she made Aunt Opal’s banana pudding and the chocolate chip cookies from my cookbook.”
In 2022, Ella turned 16 years old, and her mom commemorated the occasion by throwing Ella a Sweet 16 party. On Instagram, Joanna Gaines showed off the decorations, which included a bunch of balloons in their living room and what appeared to be gifts on the table.
"My sweet girl turns 16," Joanna Gaines captioned the post. "I’m trying my darnedest not to cry like a big fat mama baby when she drives off by herself tomorrow."
In 2008, Chip and Joanna Gaines welcomed their son Duke, now 15. In a 2019 interview with People, Joanna Gaines said that Duke and his sister Emmie dream of owning a farm truck where they can sell vegetables and eggs.
“We printed labels for them, and once a week they go out and sell,” Joanna Gaines said. “They’re just like Chip: They don’t take no for an answer!”
In a funny 2021 Instagram post, Chip Gaines shared what "take your kids to work day" looks like when work is a demo project. Duke is seen traipsing around a work site, declaring, "Nothing's cool (here)."
Emmie Kay Gaines
In 2010, Chip and Joanna Gaines welcomed their youngest daughter, Emmie, 13.
In 2019, Joanna Gaines showed off her little one’s skills when she shared a photo of Emmie baking cookies in front of her little brother, Crew.
"She was determined to make up her own cookie recipe and I left the kitchen so she could surprise me (and so I wouldn’t micromanage her work in the kitchen)," Joanna Gaines captioned the post. "Let’s just say this was one of my favorite cookies I’ve ever tasted!"
Not only can Emmie bake, but she’s also good at putting together a meal in the kitchen. In 2020, Joanna Gaines shared a video of them cooking soup together.
Crew is the baby of the family. In 2018, his parents welcomed him into the world, and he quickly became Joanna Gaines' "little sidekick."
“He comes to work with me every day and goes to all my meetings," the HGTV star told People. “I always tell Chip, ‘This boy is going to be able to run the company by age 5!’"
Although Crew, now 5, is not yet running the company, he has learned how to cook. In August 2022, Joanna Gaines shared a video of Crew assisting her in the kitchen while she made a pot of pasta sauce.
“My little sous chef,” she captioned the clip.
Then, in November 2022, Crew warmed fans' hearts when he made his dad a card for Chip Gaines' 48th birthday. "I love you, Dad. I really hope that I wanna go fish with you," Crew said while writing his card.
In 2023, Joanna Gaines further showed off his crafty side by posting a video of the fairy garden he made.
Joanna Gaines noted that she's learned a lot from being a mom to Crew. During a November 2022 appearance on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna, she said that Crew is like her "little wisdom" that she carries around.
“I’m like, I can learn more from Crew — just the way he teaches me to live and to notice things," she said.
Joanna Gaines added that Crew has made her a less uptight parent and a “more light” and “airy” person who's “not so controlling."
This article was originally published on TODAY.com