The Joy of Six
It's 9:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, and Jenny and Bryan Masche are frantically getting ready for church at 11. Jenny is pouring milk into sippy cups, holding one toddler in her arms while two others hang onto her pant legs. All three are whining for their "ba-bas." Meanwhile, the three other toddlers are raiding the kitchen cupboard, looking for pots and pans to bang.
Suddenly, there's a knock. It's Olivia, 11, and Reese, 6, neighborhood kids who drop by often to play with the children. But their timing is off today. As soon as Bryan opens the door, all six kids run past the young visitors and into the front yard, toward the street. "Stop!" Bryan yells, corralling them back into the house.
The clock is ticking, and everyone is still in pajamas. Jenny and Bryan have a shot at arriving before services begin, but based on their track record they'll probably walk in well after the sermon has started.
Their fellow congregation members at Calvary Chapel are willing to cut Jenny and Bryan some slack. They know it's difficult enough to run a household with one or two kids, let alone to raise walking, talking, willful sextuplets. The Masches, who live in Lake Havasu City, Arizona, somehow maintain a sane (if exhausting) family life with Savannah, Bailey, Grant, Cole, Molli, and Blake, who turned 2 on June 11. "It's a challenge to keep things running smoothly," says Jenny. "But for every five bad moments, there's a good one that makes up for it. My kids give me joy and strength. I could not imagine my life without them all." She and Bryan agreed to give us a peek at the systems and tricks they use to minimize time struggles and chaos.