Thursday, August 30, 2018

Recap: Kate Plus 8 "A Decade of Kate" and "The Big FOUR Oh!": Kate wouldn't dream of not taking the kids, until she dreams it

Coming up on Kate turns 40 and she's old now 😂😂😂 ..... 

But first, before the oh-so-monumental episode in which like every other 40-year-old-woman before her, Kate turns 40, TLC shows a whopping three-hour recap of the entire last ten years of the show, narrated by a male voice. Three hours! I watched the whole thing for the recap, and not ten seconds of this massive beast was at all meaningful or necessary. The narrator sounds like maybe that Extreme Couponing guy. I keep waiting for him to announce, "Kate's amassed a four-walled, floor to ceiling stockpile worth over $30,000 dollars!"

Turns out this truly is a look-back, with absolutely nothing new, not even a new couch interview from Kate, which I guess we should be grateful for. All her yammering on explaining away and re-writing history during clip shows gets really old. Just like Kate, old! Of course a lot of the old clips they show I didn’t really much remember it's been so long, so I’ll just highlight a few that stood out, especially knowing what we know now.

  • Collin was one of the last babies to go home from the hospital, along with Joel. This is significant to me for two reasons. One is that he and Joel had the toughest time getting going when they were premies, which can be a risk factor a child will develop special needs. The other is that Collin certainly lost out on crucial bonding time with his parents the other children were getting, which can also be a risk factor for special needs. As it is, by virtue of there being six babies I think they were all at risk for not getting enough bonding time with their parents even if their parents were perfect. Interestingly enough, Kate describes Collin as laid back, and the biggest child. I always saw him as generally laid back anytime we've seen him on film, so the idea ole Kate here couldn't handle him in the family home was always hard to believe.
  • Kate's terrible makeup job back in the day, yeesh. That blush makes her look like a domestic violence victim. She often doesn't even have it placed on her cheeks evenly, channeling Tom Hanks from toward the end of Philadelphia.
  • The mind games Kate played with toddlers surely has to have affected them later. For instance, allowing them to take a piece of chocolate from a park worker, then immediately turning around and forcing them to give the chocolate to her, Kate, to be eaten later because it will melt. A toddler doesn't understand that! That's way too complicated for them! Give me back the chocolate now for safe keeping to eat later because it will melt in your hand now? That's like Harvard for a toddler. If you must do this take-back to such a young child, don't give them the chocolate in the first place, take it directly from the worker yourself for safe keeping for later. At least then the chocolate won't have to be taken from the toddler after they actually got to hold it for a moment. Naturally a few of the toddlers end up hysterical over this. Sigh, these little ones know it's no guarantee they're seeing that treat ever again.
  • It's nice that Jon is shown a lot during the old clips, as he was as involved with these kids as Kate and arguably much more involved. There is a sweet moment where he teases Cara after her cooking class, warmly placing his hand on her shoulder and telling her, "You didn't save me some cake? What kind of chef are you?" Cara looks up at him with such a loving little grin. These kids adored their dad and he them, and Kate sabotaged that special relationship, and that's a fact. 
  • Kate's trip to I think Wyoming with the three boys is the only time in the history of the show I can remember her doing something with just the three boys. If someone can remember any other time I'd love to know. It's embarrassing and pathetic that horse trainers have to give her lengthy and specific instructions to please not scream on or around the horses as it freaks them out. Kate laughs this all off of course, which makes me mad. A close family friend of ours was killed in 2004 when a horse got spooked for unknown reasons and kicked her neck (she was bending down to clean its hoof). It's not funny, Kate. Horses are gentle animals but huge and skittish, which means many people have been hurt or killed by horses who, though they weren't trying to hurt anyone, got freaked out over something and accidentally did so. Interestingly enough, there was a successful campaign from many folks to plead with the barn to not put the horse down over my friend's death, and they didn't. Us family and friends generally supported that decision and still do. He wasn't trying to hurt her and she wouldn't have wanted him killed over this. To top this all off Kate whizzes around on an ATV without a helmet. Kate's just an idiot and very, very oblivious.
  • Now here's some really interesting insight into how Kate handled a child who has special needs. She remarks that Collin, and Hannah, like to play by themselves. How interesting that the two independent (and perhaps more free-thinking) children are the first two to leave Kate. She then laughs as she remarks that she doesn't understand when the children complain they have no one to play with. A sibling is a wonderful and special relationship but the children are craving friendships and other social interaction with peers outside the family. She doesn't get it, but it's actually not good enough to simply stick a sibling in front of a kid and tell them to go play and expect that to meet all their social needs. These kind of complaints from the kids suggest they in fact were not getting enough social interaction outside the family unit and were craving more of it. It suggests Kate was lazy about their social development, and ignorant, and again, this can contribute to a child developing special needs. 
  • The boys swim trunks are at least three sizes too large while the girls' suits fit them perfectly. Not only do they look ridiculous and pathetic, but cheaping out on swim clothes can be dangerous. All that extra fabric can make it harder for the child to float and swim. Get them trunks that fit for god sakes, you cow.  
  • Don't you just want to strangle Kate and her terrible command of the English language? Why is it "ironic" that the show arranged for a trip to Alaska and Alaska is on their wish list of places to go? That's not what irony means! Irony does not mean a coincidence!  
  • I've since been to Australia myself in 2015, including the Australia Zoo, and so seeing the footage now of the Gosselin trip there I have a pretty neat context for everything. What really stood out to me was the family's trip occurred during a persistent drizzle. Having been there I know that zoo is so exposed, with long, long open walks between exhibits. That's good, that means the animals are given lots of space in their enclosures. But it sure sounds like a miserable trip in the rain. I don't like zoos in general, but for what it was I found the whole thing to be clean, laid out well, and very appealing. Here's a photo I took of one of the kangaroos in the enclosure. They really do let you get right up close and pet and feed them just like Steve Irwin did. 


And here's the incredible, gorgeous beach we stayed at near the zoo called Dicky Beach. That's an old shipwreck that was there that they've since removed and placed in a museum. When people ask was Australia worth it, I tell them well it's a nice place but it's an awful lot of money for an American to spend to go so far to see some exotic animals in their natural habitat. I was working there, so I was very, very fortunate to have my expenses covered. But, I will say if you like beaches, go. The beaches are just fantastic, as you can see. I don't think the Gosselin episode in Australia really captured the beauty whatsoever that I saw on that continent.

  • My God, I forgot this comment from the Mother's Day episode but Kate says she always is asking herself why she was "chosen" to have twins and sextuplets. LMAO, she's coo-coo! She's not an Israelite wandering in the desert. She went to a fertility doctor and got too many eggs implanted and they almost all fertilized. No "choosing" involved other than her own very questionable choices when it comes to her own reproduction. What is wrong with this woman? Also I don't believe a doctor told her she would never have kids. I think she's Kate being dramatic. That is an extremely rare thing to say to a woman nowadays, especially a woman only in her 20's. Basically you're only told that if you have no uterus. The technology is so good now and has been for awhile that statistics show most woman have a very, very high likelihood of having a biological child if they want to, though you may need fertility treatments.
And that wraps up the long and pointless recap show. Good news is, Kate has been getting even older as we suffered through this. Now onto the big 4-0! 

Coming up, the family is going to Mexico for Kate's 40th. I predict a lot of offensive Mexican stereotypes ahead. Mady says Kate is constantly talking about how she's 40 now and it gets annoying. Mady's right, Kate fixates. Whatever it is on her little pea brain at the moment, it's all she wants to talk about. Whether it's her divorce, or dating, or organic food, or running, or turning 40, she goes through these cycles where there's nothing else playing but that one track. It's annoying enough when you're just watching her yammering on TV or social media, it must be hell to live with.

Deanna and Andrea are over at the house putting up badly clashing decorations. Haven't seen those two young ladies in awhile have we?! Do Deanna and Andrea not understand how to twist two steamers together? It looks like a first grader did this job, it's terrible. Maybe they don't care.

Kate was "invited" by Generations resorts in Mexico to spend three days and nights there and she "jumped at the chance." Ha, I bet that heifer did. The days of a resort offering her a free stay are probably long gone now, but it's true that many resorts do do this for celebrities. It's worth it to them to get some paparazzi photos taken at their resort and develop a reputation for hosting celebs, almost free publicity. They even would put offers like these in Oscar gift bags. You have to pay the taxes on the stay and figure out how to get yourself there, but Kate could probably swing it so production covers that. In fact I'm wondering if this offer wasn't really exclusive to her at all but just something found in a swag bag she picked up somewhere. The most shocking thing I discovered working for a celeb is that the richer you are, the more freebies you get. It can get to the point where half your expenses are freebies or heavily discounted. At the time, iPods were the big freebie thing, and celeb had amassed about six of them in the span of as many months. It was insane, especially for someone like me from a little town back east who at the time had never even known someone who had an iPod much less so many you couldn't even hold them all at once.

In any case, bring on the Mexican stereotypes! They have a bunch of plastic sombreros out everywhere and they're setting the table with a Mexican theme which I guess in Kate's head means sombreros and lots of clashing bright colors. Right on the money.

Kate tells the kids this is a send-off party for she and Deanna to go to Mexico alone. So, you tell little kids you're going to leave them again with sitters for days on end while you go off and have all the fun in another country, and this is funny? There really is something wrong with this woman. Sure enough, Hannah is downright mad Kate won't be there when she wakes up for school, and Leah bursts into tears! My god, will Kate end the prank already now that children are sobbing? (She won't. She blows this off as the kids just being dramatic teenagers. Right, a kid who would prefer their mom be around for their lives in dramatic. Flipping tool.) What is her obsession with tricking or surprising the kids about trips? Why not just tell them from the beginning they're going and give them some time to build up some fun excitement about it? She prefers sobs and anger to tickled as pink kids who are thrilled for weeks on end leading up to the trip? Again, something is wrong with her. It's no surprise a kid like Hannah realized she prefers to live with Jon. Eventually you get tired of the emotional manipulation.

We have talked a ton on this blog about Kate's mental state and the terribly nasty things she does to others, including her own children. As Concerned Aussie just posted recently, "She's never seemed to have any foresight in her relentless pursuit of revenge and the limelight and her mental deterioration has been evident over the last few seasons. Now though, I think it's clear she really is evil, an it's getting harder for her to hide it."

All I would say to that is it's clear she was evil a long time ago and this little prank she played on her own children proves it.

Leah lets slip on the couch that Kate is never around and here she is about to take off again, and I'm sure that's just about true around this time period. This was Kate's heyday when she really was traveling the country, spending a heck of a lot of time in New York getting her hair and nails done, and going off to L.A. for whatever and all that nonsense. It is obviously totally believable to the kids she would take off on them again to another country in the middle of the school year, and that speaks volumes. Kate deserves that comment slipping from Leah. Had she never played this cruel prank on the poor kids, Leah never would have let slip her mother is not around. Bam.

It doesn't surprise me someone like Kate is solely focused on the fact that she is now 40 and single instead of in her 30's and single, because she's one of those insecure and old-fashioned women who still thinks a woman's self worth is defined by her relationship. I haven't heard her say a single positive thing about this milestone birthday, what a drag she is to listen to. Mady says she needs to shut up and this is all about Kate knowing darn well she doesn't look 40 but loving to tell everyone she is 40 for that very reason, and no truer words were said. Mady's got her pegged. Kate's one of those women who gets herself all skinny and toned and dolled out in a beautiful outfit for some fun event and then tells everyone she is fat and ugly and waits for the compliments to flow. Yep. I kind of think Kate does actually look all of 40, she looks exactly her age, but that's not the point. The point is that Mady is right, Kate doesn't think she looks 40 and loves to show this off.

Kate gradually seems to realize this prank is not funny, especially after some of the kids have stormed off to their rooms to sob. Um, so anyone else could have understood this was a bad idea before she ever even started. Why didn't Deanna tell her this was a bad idea, or Andrea? Are they this much in Kate's back pocket? So Kate tells them the truth and the kids are happy but the emotional damage is done.

Lol, the terribly strung streamers in the back as Kate lies and said it was never a thought in her mind to not bring the kids on this her second trip to Mexico. Right, just like the first time she went to Mexico  in 2010 with Steve for "work" and didn't bring the kids.

I'm really realizing now how terrible Kate is as describing things, which probably plays a huge role in why she's never really made it on any kind of spin-off like a cooking show where you really do have to be able to speak. The extent of her description of the outright gorgeous Mexican resort right on the sparkling clear aqua water is, wait for it.... "oh my gosh." I'm not kidding.

It looks like they're heading straight from the airport shuttle to go snorkel with turtles. That's an amazing activity, but did they at least get a nap and some food or anything first? This can't have been an easy travel day.

Deanna, who is only slightly better at describing things than Kate, says they saw a beautiful corral reef. Wait, what? Why didn't they show that on film? I only saw a few turtles. Stupid.

The kids hit up a marketplace that is all just touristy junk, which unfortunately, is on every corner in Mexico. You have to go pretty far off the beaten path to get yourself some really great authentic finds, and that's not advisable for Americans to really do right now. Oh, this is a shopping trip for Kate's birthday present? I thought this was for the kids. Figures. At only 200 pesos each to spend, some of the kids are struggling to buy what they really want for Kate. Poor Collin looks really bummed he can't afford the 550 pesos bear figurine he wants to get. Has it occurred to the kids if they pooled their money they could get Kate something really fantastic? Apparently not. Maybe Deanna or Andrea could help them by suggesting this? Don't hold your breath. The twins finally figure it out and pool their money with one of the younger girls.

Collin is somehow able to negotiate getting the bear he wants for a flat 200 pesos, and he's blown away with gratitude. "Thank you, thank you, oh my god," sweet little Collin says. Awww. Yeah, stay tuned on this one.

Also, if something is listed for 550 pesos and you're willing to chop off a whopping 350 pesos from the sticker price (about 18 bucks), doesn't that suggest this is all really just junk meant to bilk tourists for whatever money they have in their pocket? Sigh. I'm glad to see the kids happy to shop, but I wish someone was teaching them how to be more discerning while traveling, find the good stuff, the gems, and avoid cheap-o tourist traps like these on vacations.

The Mayan ruins wouldn't let them film for reasons nobody explains. Well boo-hoo! I take great joy in this for some reason. Screw this show and their entitlement thinking they can just go wherever and film whatever they like. They have to film this excursion on their iphones, which really seems like breaking the rules if they intend to use the iphone footage on their show anyway, which they do. Can Mexico sue?

Is this all still the same day, their first day off their flight? I'm not familiar with this place. Is the market, sea turtles and Mayan ruins all in the same vicinity? This trip looks just exhausting so far.


The next day it's Mud Buggy driving on ATVs. Looks just awesome, and just expensive. You can predict Kate doesn't enjoy any of this at all and complains the whole way. If Deanna is slightly more descriptive than Kate, the kids are slightly more descriptive than Deanna: It was a dirt road, and muddy.

Andrea is an awesome nanny. She is having fun, engaging the kids, and driving through the biggest puddles. It's criminal she doesn't seem to be around anymore. Now that's what a nanny should be: fun, funny, adventurous, encouraging. See Tiggy Legge-Burke, the patron saint of modern nannies. The little princes put on their wellies and grabbed their fishing rods under her watch, spending countless hours along the river at the nanny's home in Wales. No doubt she played a huge role in how well-adjusted they turned out after the tragedy of their mother's death and their unusual upbringing. Tiggy didn't much approve of things like movies and tennis, she thought the boys were better off doing something that would make them muddy, and she was right. She had moved on before Diana's death clearly in part because Diana didn't like her and it was causing too much conflict, but when Diana died, it was Tiggy Charles called, asking her to come back and help him with the boys. And she did exactly that for a couple more years until about the time William graduated from high school. Her son was in William's wedding years later.



Despite the tension between her and Princess Diana, I think Diana would have been grateful for the love and support and fun Tiggy gave the boys during terribly sad times.

I really don't like how slow Kate is driving and how she says she doesn't want to drive recklessly. Even some guy who works there complains. I'm sure the cars and track are made such that it's almost impossible to do anything that would hurt you. Good grief, she's one big killjoy as per the usual. Kate finally gets it together and drives like a real person, flying through the mud and making Cara happy. Kate can stop with the timid I'm such a safe driver act because we know for a fact she's such a lead-foot on the roads she once amassed four speeding tickets in two years, one for hitting almost 90 mph! God, her constant act is obnoxious and no one believes it.

After a whirlwind day yesterday, apparently the racetrack is all they did today because suddenly it's nighttime and Kate's ditched the kids and gone out on the town with Deanna. Deanna is 40, too? Geez, she acts like she's all of 26 and, like, uh, ya know, a millennial. Coulda fooled me. Seems like by 40 you would have learned how to twirl two streamers together nicely or at least know how to look up how to do it. Why is Deanna acting like by age 40 you're basically invisible as a woman and must retire yourself to the attic to knit and that she's such a strong and powerful feminist she will be able to overcome all this? So dramatic, self-fulfilling, and in my view a pretty inaccurate description of the state of women in the world, unless you're in Hollywood (even then, that's getting better).

They head to Sur Steakhouse, and my first thought was you've got to be kidding me, they're going to Lisa Vanderpump's restaurant, a British woman? But turns out Sur Playa del Carmen isn't associated with Lisa at all and is supposedly owned by locals.

Some interesting truth comes out that Kate actually initially planned this whole trip with just Deanna, no kids. Just like her prank on the kids. Wait, I thought she wouldn't dream of going on this trip without the kids. Heh. In fact that's not true, per her own admission she sure did dream it, and only planned for the kids to come later as an afterthought. More than likely, because production wanted to make an episode. Tool, and liar.

Deanna goes into some meandering diatribe about how she used to think she and Kate needed a man in their life (like, to share, or they each get a man?), then they start trolling the venue for available hunks, and I think Deanna's a terrible role model for Kate's kids and wouldn't want her around any kids at all much less these vulnerable kids who are going to be messed up enough from Kate.

Kate's goals are for the kids to grow up and be best friends with each other. Well, when you ostracize certain ones and call them liars, that's unlikely, Kate. 

I cannot imagine eating an entire dinner out with these two dimwits. What a mind-numbing experience. Their stupid conversation consists of dating, being defensive about dating and all their other lame choices that they think were good ones that in fact has left them both single and alone, yammering on about a divorce that was five years ago, patting themselves on the back for what wonderful strong women they are apparently seeing no irony in all the man trolling they did all night, and drinking overpriced fruity drinks with leaves in them. When Kate is with Deanna she forgets she has eight kids? Huh? She would like to forget this? Why? She's unbelievable. I can see enjoying a night out not having to parent eight kids constantly, but to forget you even have them is kind of a weird thought.

Can I say something about being single and alone? I've been there and done that, I did it for a long time well into my thirties, and it was fine, it was something I needed to go through before I could give myself fully to a man and be the best that I could be as a woman. But around about the time I was ready to find my forever relationship and stop with this dating crap, I found it very detrimental to be around other single women. Toxic even, especially when those women were bitter and angry about being alone and single. It would make me bitter and angry, and I knew I'd never find someone in that state of mind. No, I needed to be around women who had found their other half, who knew how to do it and what to look for, and who would be encouraging and give me good advice. I needed role models who were living out what I wanted. I needed women who believed what I wanted was out there. He was. Point being, I think Kate thinks Deanna is a wonderful friend and support to her. But I think Deanna has actually been harmful to Kate, does not give her good advice or encouragement when it comes to relationships, because I realize now Deanna too is forty, single and bitter. You know who would have been better best friends to latch onto all these years during this post-divorce era? Beth and Jodi.

It's Kate's 40th birthday out, Kate calling it one of the most memorable nights in a long time, and it's just her and some dolt of a friend she met not a few years ago who's super bitter and gives bad advice. No family, like sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews, parents. No husband or boyfriend you love, no life-long friends or at least long-term friends, just one co-worker who doesn't even live in the same state. At the end of the day, watching this all is actually quite sad. But as they say, you reap what you sow.

No, TLCgo app, I do not nor will I ever want to watch any show called Dr. Pimple Popper.

They spend forever showing the kids swimming in a giant hamster ball. Then Joel, Aaden, Hannah and Leah go off with Andrea to make cakes in what looks like a kids' baking class place. They never explain why the other kids didn't go but they went to the beach with Kate and Deanna. Weird. You guessed it, boys vs girls competition for best Kate cake. Typical. It's just one birthday for one person, doesn't it make more sense to team up together and make one really great cake for her? Grr.

Later I guess they're having a party with the kids now. In a rare occurrence, Kate compliments both cakes very nicely with specific and sincere comments, and the boys are so proud of themselves, which is sweet. Kate didn't even do anything that makes me want to strangle her like pick a "winner" or something. I'm shocked.

Someone says something about how "Mom" won't want them to eat all this sugar but I can't tell who. Mady, who has a mean streak the size of Texas, says the cakes looked like crap and she couldn't eat them out of self-respect. Where are the adults to make her stop with such cruel and inappropriate comments about her siblings? The cakes were just fine for an 11 year old, but even if they weren't, you don't have to be so nasty. I don't care if she doesn't want to eat it, but there is no reason to be hurtful.

The kids start giving Kate the gifts they bought and Kate is so excited and appreciative until she gets to Collin's bear.

Collin tells her it's supposed to represent himself and Kate, which is adorable, and you can armchair psychology that one pretty easily. In front of Collin, Kate says "Ohhh" as if she doesn't like the gift, and demands to know where the other seven cubs are. Wth? Kate, I doubt Mexico sells a bear figurine with eight bear cubs! She then calls the gift "off the wall" on the couch, which it wasn't at all. No more off the wall than that weirdo turtle container some other kid gave her where the lid is the shell. What are you supposed to put in such a stupid thing? I know many viewers found this segment just downright outrageous, but the editors cut so quickly out of it we're spared Collin's reaction. I hope the little guy wasn't too hurt by all this, but it would be hard not to be. Remember when he found out he scored the bear? "Oh my god, thank you!" I also think when comparing the bear incident to the cruel prank she played on the kids making them think she was leaving them to go to Mexico without them, they are both equally terrible things to say to her children.

The titles of these episodes are usually stupid and uninteresting, but this time I wonder if that "oh" in the Big Four-Oh title was a play on Kate's stupid "ohhh" when she saw Collin's gift. That would be unusually creative of the editors, but who knows.

Kate goes back to being over the top excited over the rest of the children's gifts. Blech.

Kate gives an awkward speech to someone, not sure who, about how she feared her birthday was going to be just another day with the same old same old. Okay, well that's not our problem. If you want a 40th birthday trip to a foreign country, then plan it yourself. Go online to Orbitz and book some flights and hotels. Deanna said she was game for it, and the kids wanted to go. I don't understand why this was TLC's problem or anyone else's problem to figure out. Kate's lucky she got this trip thrown into her lap after being so helpless about the situation. Has anyone read The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, a modern self-help classic? I would almost call it a philosophy book more than anything else, and it's extremely highly regarded. Kate basically violates every single habit all the time, but one of the habits is that you don't just sit around passively letting problems happen to you. You go out there and fix things before they even break. What I'm saying is I have no sympathy for Kate here thinking this birthday was going to be so sad when she could have had something fun planned ages ago. Kate was pathetic and waited for 40 to happen to her, instead of grabbing 40 by the horns and making something great out of it. And I'm highly suspicious the reason she didn't plan anything is she was holding out on TLC to pay, so I also find her trite. (The Seven Habits author also believes strongly in what he calls "abundance mentality," which is what we've talked about so much here, that just because another person is "winning" doesn't mean you're losing, that there is no such thing as a fixed pie or rarely so. Kate disregards that one, too, pretty much constantly, and to her detriment.)

At the end of this all I find it sad that Kate is clearly saying this was the best birthday ever because she got to go on such a fantastic free trip. Sure, fantastic trips are wonderful on birthdays and all don't get me wrong (I went to Italy for my 30th, not for free though), but it is not the trip that makes the birthday, it's doing such an amazing thing with family and friends you love. Even if it's a day trip to the next town, it doesn't matter so much where you go. Kate does not get this, of that I'm sure. She admits she brought the kids along as an afterthought, remember? And now there's just one episode left, another birthday episode this time of the Tups, of the long and painful SEASON THREE of this terrible, terrible show.