Love & Family

Mum of SIXTEEN reveals the truth about raising so many children

Their 12-year-old even cooks roast dinners!
The Bonell Family/Facebook

A mother with an incredible sixteen children has revealed the behind-the-scenes tricks to running her busy household.

Queensland mum Jeni Bonell, 50, has sixteen kids aged five to 29 – meaning she has to run a tight ship.

The Bonell family includes Jesse, 29, Brooke, 27, Claire, 24, Natalie, 23, Karl, 21, Sam, 20, Cameron, 18, Sabrina, 17, Tim, 15, Brandon, 13, Eve, 12, Nate, 11, Rachel, 9, Eric, 8, Damian, 7, and Katie, 5.

The stay-at-home mother shares details of her home life on The Bonell Family, speaking about everything from how she organises chores to their weekly cost of groceries.

Although only 13 of her children still live at home, Jeni keeps a rigid chore roster and plans her weekly meals down to the last grain of rice.

‘Our job roster came about back when we had six or seven children,’ Jeni said in a YouTube video.

‘We put our kids on the roster from the age of eight. We have to keep some sort of order to the chaos that is our big family.

The Bonell Family/Facebook
(Credit: The Bonell Family/Facebook)

Jeni also prints the roster and sits down with her kids weekly to determine which child does what chore.

‘If you live here you work here…. after all when they move out into their own homes all the jobs are theirs,’ she said.

The busy mum also revealed her 12-year-old even pitches in by cooking roasts. 

The Toowoomba-based family can spend an incredible $900 on their grocery shopping haul – and that’s just a ‘top up’ shop.

One grocery shop can include six three-litre bottles of milk and five loaves of bread – all of which likely won’t last the week. 

Even with 16 children already, Ms Bonell has not ruled out the possibly of more children. 

‘We’re always open to being blessed again but Ray has just turned 50, though we always say it ain’t over till it’s over,’ she told Woman’s Day magazine last year. 

The Bonell Family/Facebook
(Credit: The Bonell Family/Facebook)

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