VIDEO: Preemie Josie Duggar Growing Every Day; Parents "Thankful"

Mar. 3 2010, Published 3:57 p.m. ET

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The newest episode of 19 Kids and Counting on TLC began in the hospital with the littlest baby Josie doing much better as the nurse explains her progress, and has the latest on her struggle. She said that Josie was growing every day and they were trying to help her gain weight. The nurse updated viewers about Josie’s progress saying she had “increased her food amount to get some meat on her bones.”

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The father of the family, Jim Bob Duggar, lamented about having their youngest daughter in the hospital. "We can’t touch Josie or stimulate her, that’s the way it is with preemies." But despite her status, he had good news about her progress. “She has doubled her size in the last couple of weeks. That’s the best she’s ever looked. She is 39 days old. She is feeding with breast milk."

VIDEO: The Duggars Donate Blood For Josie And She Gets A Feeding Tube

He admitted that she has had a few set backs, "her bowel perforated but it healed," and she is gaining strength every day.

“She’s off the ventilator now,” dad Jim Bob said. “We have the ability to touch her and touch her foot but we look forward to the day we can actually hold her in our arms.”

Michelle and Jim Bob cooed over their daughter and Jim Bob said to Michelle, “This is the best she’s ever looked Mama. She weighs about 2 pounds now and is doing excellent so we’re thankful.”

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Michelle touchingly whispered sweet nothings to her daughter. “It’s my little baby, I love you.”

The Duggar's have moved three hours away from their home in Tontitown, AR to Little Rock to be near their daughter Josie while she is in the hospital. Their older sons have stayed at home and are taking care of their home and their properties but their father is confident that they oldest boys can handle the responsibilities.

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Dad Jim Bob said “John is staying back to work on projects and help Josh at the car lot whenever he needs him. It’s been great for them to take care of things.”

However, Joseph said “It’s been really weird.”

Jim Bob had confidence in his sons. “John and Joseph will go to our house to fix the leak.”

VIDEO RECAP: The Duggar Family’s Emotional Birth Of Baby Number 19

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The next part of the episode shows the the boys helping make dinner!

A fun fact about the Duggars – they all love pickles! “They’re sour and juicy,” say the kids. A pop-up read “Pickles are the Duggars favorite food. They eat 150 jars of them a year.”

While their preemie sister Josie is in the hospital the younger Duggar children are managing the house, which they are all prepared to do, and in fact embrace their responsibility.

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“Our parents are at the hospital a lot... so we’re just trying to hold down the fort,” said one of their children.

Daughter Joy Anne joked about how much help the little children could actually provide. “Sometimes the little kids are a big help in the kitchen and sometimes they ain’t.”

Little James was shown earnestly trying to peel a potato, but as much as he peeled, he accidentally put just as much potato in the trash. Justin deadpanned the camera adding, "He was a really good help."

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Sister Jessa admitted “They’re help,” and little Jason wanted everyone to know what he does well for the family. Jason told the camera: “All I can do good is pick pickles.”

The Duggars have defined roles for the girls and boys in their family, but the children accept these responsibilities. Jill said “I think it‘s good to be able to learn these skills, being a homemaker, to learn them before I have my own family. It’s a joy and it is really neat.”

Her sister Jinger agreed with her. “As long as the kids have good intentions when they’re helping us it’s all good.” And she cutely rolled her eyes. The boys were definitely more than the sisters had bargained for and they admonished them, saying: “Don’t be acting silly guys.” The next scene in 19 Kids and Counting showed the properties at home that the Duggars run in dire straits.

Jim Bob Duggard said “Over the years Michelle and I have invested in commercial property, it’s what kept us afloat. We have a little bit of residential property.” The problem he sees with owning homes is “you have to make repairs and you have to make emergency repairs.”

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John David is taking care of family properties and said, “Dad has owned a house for about five months. We stopped doing home church and we’re meeting out here."

A pop-up said “The Duggars belong to a home church group made up of 10 families. They run their own service each Sunday.”

John David was worried about the condition of the property but his family had confidence in him. His dad said “From the time John David was a little boy he was always taking things apart and putting them back together. He was very mechanically inclined.”

Joseph and John David were working on getting the lock cut so they could fix the problem but the brothers were always supportive of each other. “We had to cut the lock because we lost the key to the lock."

As water was shooting out of pipe dad Jim Bob depended on his son. He said “Whenever we have a problem we usually call up John David, he can fix everything. Once he sees how to do something once he can duplicate it.”

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John David has embraced his role in taking care of the family and the property back home while the family wait for little Josie’s release. “It’s been a lot of fun spending some time with Joseph,” John David said. “Joseph has really started taking on a lot of responsibilities working.”

The Duggars always have a sense of humor, and they definitely give camera guy Scott some grief.

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As John David and Joseph fix the leak the screen says “Scott Enlow 'Extremely high maintenance cameraman'" as he complained about his situation. “I keep getting sprayed with mud and water and it is because John David keeps wacking stuff in my direction. On purpose.”

The final part of the episode shows the Duggar family spending time together outside of the hospital.

Michelle and Jim Bob decided to take the kids to see a submarine. Jim Bob told the children they were going to see a submarine. “It’s a ship that goes underwater,” he explained.

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The kids were excited, except for one. Cute little Johanna was NOT happy about the submarine visit. “I don’t want to go cause it’s too scary for me,” Johanna said as the family arrived at the submarine. “I don’t want to go on the boat.”

Dad Jim Bob said that Johanna is “usually the most adventurous one, but all of a sudden she freaked out.” The sweet little girl finally came down into the submarine and joined the rest of the family, and everyone was happy she was there!

Always a cute part of the episode, her brother Jackson said “You were about to get embarrassed!” and Johanna cutely nodded yes!

As the family entered the Arkansas Island Maritime Museum their tour leader jokingly asked them “have you ever had a lot of people in closed spaces?” Dad Jim Bob said “That’s kind of the way it is in our house.”

Using the trip as a fun educational trip for the kids Jim Bob told them that the USS Razorback was built in 1933 and “is the longest used sub in the world.”

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The kids actually really liked the trip and said “I thought the submarine was really fascinating with all the controls.” Another Duggar said “It was kind of scary being underwater to me anyway.”

The family toured the torpedo room and a pop up read: “If the Duggars were torpedoes, there would be enough of them to fully arm the USS Razorback.”

After touring the crew mess area the kids said “We had a really good time at the submarine, it was really educational, I guess you could say.”

Jessa loved the submarine visit and said “It’s really awesome.”

The next episode of 19 Kids and Counting will show Michelle being able to hold little Josie Brooklyn completely out of the crib and in her arms.

New episodes of 19 Kids and Counting debut Tuesdays on TLC.



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