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Joanna Gaines is a doting mum of 5 and is now feeling the loss as her first child leaves the nest

Reality TV star Joanna Gaines may still have a few more years before she and husband Chip Gaines become empty nests. The celebrity couple raised their offspring while trying to grow their family business, and they were broke at the same time.

TV presenter Joanna Gaines seems like the perfect wife and mother, but she had to endure many hardships to find her happiness.

She met her future husband, Chip Gaines, in 2001 in Waco, Texas. Chip immediately knew that Joanna would be his bride-to-be just by seeing her in a photo behind the counter of her father’s shop.

Actor Chip Gaines and his wife, TV presenter Joanna Gaines attend arrivals for Warner Bros. Discovery Upfront 2022 on the red carpet at MSG Studios on May 18, 2022 in New York | Source: Getty Images

“I knew I would marry her one day right next to the picture on the wall,” he once told PopSugar. The actor took the first step in hopes of meeting the brunette beauty by taking his van to Firestone.

Luckily for Chip, the stars aligned and he finally met Joanna in person. He first told her that he had seen her in advertisements. “Hey, you’re the girl in the commercials,” he said.

The pair then had a sit down conversation outside the auto shop and conversed for 30 minutes, according to The Insider. The next day, Chip boldly called Joanna and asked her out.

HGTV stars Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines attend AOL Build Presents: "Upper fixator" at AOL Studios in New York on December 8, 2015 in New York |  Source: Getty Images

HGTV stars Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines attend AOL Build Presents: ‘Fixer Upper’ at AOL Studios in New York on December 8, 2015 in New York City | Source: Getty Images

She agreed, and for their first official date, the couple revealed to Texas Monthly that they ate fried chicken for dinner while sitting on the porch of a restaurant “housed in a historic mansion “.

Although Chip was nearly an hour and a half late, according to Joanna, he only thinks he was 20 minutes late for their date. However, to date, she has not worried about her confidence at the time.

Also, Joanna felt she was meeting a different person as she assumed Chip had no hair. The first time they met he was wearing a baseball cap, so she figured he must have hair underneath, only for him to go bald on their date.

Regardless of their official date becoming almost non-existent and Joanna’s hesitation at first, the duo had their second date several months later. Although they fell in love for the first time, Chip didn’t make contact until months after their first date.

He had made a $50 bet with a friend to hold out to see who would get in touch with their dates first. Chip explained that was the only reason he didn’t contact Joanna after their first date.

Either way, she was already taken by his strong personality, which was the opposite of his shy and introverted self. What’s more, they discovered that they had similar backgrounds, including religion and “very similar environments.”

While Joanna remained guarded most of the time, Chip’s kindness eventually won her over. She told PopSugar how she knew he was “the one” for her:

“At first I couldn’t believe how nice Chip was – he had good eyes and made me laugh a lot. I knew it was him because I knew I could trust him.”

After a year of dating, Chip popped the big question in 2002, telling her they were going to a private gig but were instead taken to a mall where he got down on one knee.

After Joanna said “yes” to the proposal, the lovebirds went to a jewelry store to have the bride-to-be’s engagement ring designed. The couple walked down the aisle May 31, 2003 at the Earle Harrison home in Waco, Texas.

As newlyweds, Baylor University graduates were just fledgling business owners and were penniless. However, their lives drastically changed for the better as they went from average couple to celebrities.

In a December 2020 issue of People, Joanna opened up about their humble beginnings, revealing that they had to make their situation work for them wherever they could:

“I remember when we first got married, the only money we had was what was in Chip’s pocket. He always had a wad of cash, but we were broke. If I had needed to go shopping, that was what he had in his pocket. That’s how we paid the bills.”

In “The Magnolia Story”, Joanna revealed that in 2012 TV producer Katie Neff contacted her after seeing her design blog and asked if she would be interested in filming a TV show. reality.

When she told her husband about the offer, Chip profusely believed it was a scam. However, Joanna followed her instincts and returned the producer’s call.

A year later, the “Fixer Upper” pilot aired on HGTV, featuring the couple. Television stars have thus become household names.


As their business grew, so did their family, as the couple welcomed their four children while growing their business. Their youngest child arrived very late in their lives.

In an interview with Southern Living, Joanna reflected on raising five children and admitted she forgot everything that happened raising her first four children. The doting mum said the experience passed quickly, but she lived through it throughout her older children.

When asked if she wrote some of the stuff about motherhood and the juggling job, the author confessed one of her regrets about being a mother of five:

“One of my regrets is that I can’t remember things from the other four. It was such a crazy time. Now it’s the little moments that stop me in my tracks because that’s what is the life.”

Also, being a quiet person didn’t help her case, so Joanna realized she needed to make some changes and get out of her comfort zone. After realizing that her children wouldn’t be young forever, she had to learn to play with them to keep up.


Joanna and Chip practically raised their brood on the HGTV show and they made frequent appearances on their social media accounts.

The couple’s eldest child, Drake, is a sports fanatic and loves football. In 2021, the teenager takes a step forward by obtaining his driving license.

Chip and Joanna’s oldest daughter, Ella, would be like her mother. Among other things, she likes interior decoration. She was often seen helping her mother decorate ahead of their TV series’ big reveal.

The duo’s third child and second son, Duke, also plays the sport like his older brother. However, he particularly likes baseball. He and his sister Emme would like to own a food truck in the future to sell fruits and vegetables.

Emmie is Joanna and Chip’s youngest daughter. She also has similar interests to her mother; she loves to bake chocolate chip cookies, is religious, and is a plant lover.

The youngest of the siblings is Crew, whom the couple welcomed in 2018. According to his parents’ social media posts, the youngest loves watching his mother’s cooking show, “Magnolia Table,” harvesting fruit, fishing for socks and going to the beach.

Speaking of motherhood, Joanna said it was the center of her universe, adding that everything else could disappear but she lived and breathed it:

“Motherhood means everything to me. Everything else in my life may go away, but that’s my thing. That’s what wakes me up. That’s my heart – those kids.

In March 2019, Joanna reflected on having her youngest child in her 40s. She shared that the experience made her feel rejuvenated:

“I joke with people, ‘If you ever want to feel young again, have a baby at 40.’ It brought me this whole new thing where I’m a lot more laid back. People joke that I’m the ‘Fun Jo’ now.

That said, in the midst of her busy schedule while managing her home, Joanna always finds time to balance her work and personal life. In a letter to Motherly, the Kansas native revealed that every time she got home from work she left her phone in the car to bond with the kids.

Even though she comes back tired, she finds it fulfilling when she sees the look in their eyes when she asks them to cook with her to play with them outside. Joanna noted that as a mother, it’s important for her to change her mindset and be aware of what’s important, adding that she won’t be small forever.

The proud mom also reflected on the fact that her eldest son, Drake, will soon be going to college. In an essay for her blog Magnolia, she wrote that while seeing her son would feel “like a loss,” she and her husband were simultaneously excited about the next chapter in their child’s life.

She noted that with Drake’s absence from the home, their family dynamic would change, “and that can feel like a loss in itself. I now glimpse what this life will be like and wonder if – or how many times – it could knock me down.”


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