‘Counting On’ Season 9, Episode 5 Recap: Parenthood, a Pop-Up Shop & Pouring Flour on a Birthing Tarp

Pro tip on how best to watch this show.

On this week’s episode of Counting On, Jeremy is left to “babysit” his own kid while Jinger runs an errand; pilot-bride Abbie looks for a wedding dress to accommodate the parachute John has requested she wear during their nuptials and the Duggar boys prove yet again that the only thing more foreign to them than R-rated movies and premarital sex is having actual fun.

Let’s pop a handful of caffeine pills to keep ourselves awake and jump right in! 

This episode kicks off at Jinger and Jeremy’s house where the two are packing for an upcoming trip to see Jeremy’s family. Now that baby Felicity is four months old, Jinger says her personality is developing and reports that she is a social, happy baby. (That’s no doubt because she knows she’s thousands of miles away from Jim Bob & Co. and the Duggar Compound.)

Jinger tells Jeremy that she needs to run to the store to pick up some necessities and tells Jeremy he’ll have to tend to their blessing solo while she’s gone. That’s right, folks… Jeremy is babysitting his own child for what could be an entire hour and a half! What a hero!

Rally the band! Start erecting (giggle, giggle) the statue because…a man associated with the Duggar clan is actually taking part in child care! 

“Hey dad, it’s not really baby-sitting if I’m your actual kid. Just sayin’!”

We then see Jessa Duggar-splain to the producers the responsibilities that come with breastfeeding your baby and having to leave its side for anything longer than a bathroom break, all while Ben nods in agreement while simultaneously trying not to laugh because Jessa said the word “breast.”

“Boobies are scary!”

While Jeremy continues to pack suitcases/save the world, one diaper change at a time, the producers ask the married Duggar kids and spouses what things you need to pack when traveling with a baby.

Kendra quickly rattles (sorry, we had to) off a list of must-haves while Joe says the only thing he needs to pack is Kendra. Geez, Joe, save something to write in the next anniversary card you give Kendra: “I like you cuz you know how to pack…and stuff. -Joe”

Jessa recommends packing an extra shirt in case your baby throws up on you, which she says she’s experienced first-hand during a flight. We assume The Spurge or Henry was the vomiter but honestly, Ben looks a little guilty here. 

Once Jeremy takes a break from packing (which is, of course, riveting television), he takes Felicity around the house to feed the stray cat they’ve let into their home and vacuuming said stray cat’s hair from the couch. (This reminds me of the scene a few seasons ago where Jessa made poor Joy vacuum all of the baby Spurge off of her couch. #NeverForget)

“Whatever keeps you and mom from popping out another blessing right away.”

Jeremy realizes that Felicity is getting hungry and, sadly, his man-nips are still dry as a bone. It’s been a whole 20 to 30 minutes since Jinger left, so Jeremy decides he should call her to see when she’ll be back. Not long after, Jinger arrives home and the “crisis” that is Felicity crying for a minute is averted.

Ben informs us that it’s scary when you have a hungry kid and your body can’t make milk for them. He does this while sporting a new beard that makes him look like an extra in Weird Al’s “Amish Paradise” music video so it’s hard to take anything he says seriously, honestly.

“Jessa said if I grew a beard I wouldn’t have to wash my face as much so…here we are.”

Joe regales us of with the tale of the first (and probably only) time he was left alone with his son Garrett. He says that the baby got fussy as soon as he realized there was “no food around” and just dry man-nips. We know that those Duggar boys get mad if they don’t have any plates to lick clean, so this makes sense.

Jinger “finally” walks in and hasn’t even put her purse down before Jeremy is literally shoving the baby into her face. 

The fact that the producers actually made this 30-minute trip to the store a story line this episode is both sad and impressive. 

Next we head to the guest house at the Duggar Compound, which basically looks like some sort of gas station/mobile home/rusted out barn fit for a shanty town. Jana must have cleared whatever street youth and junkies were living in this space because she is now leading the troops in transforming the barn-thing into a wedding dress shop. I mean… no Fundie housing compound is complete without it’s own wedding dress shop, am I right?! 

“Just hang a welcome sign on the front and put your old living room couch ’round back and brides will be comin’ in droves, I tell ya!”

The inside of the guest house is actually pretty fantastic. (I’m shocked ol’ Jimmy B hasn’t moved one of his kids and their insta-families into it, actually!) 

John and Abbie (who are probably pretty strong candidates to move into The Duggar Barnhouse ‘o’ Horrors) tell us that their wedding is only a month away!

“I am super excited to get to marry the love of my life!” John— who mind you has only dated one girl in his lifetime…for one month— tells us.

“Wanna come live in my dad’s extra barn with me? I’ll clean the vagabonds out just for you, baby cakes!”

Jana has collected a random herd of her brothers, sisters and in-laws to turn the house into a pop-up wedding dress shop for Abbie. 

If only they had dress shops where you could just go to and buy a dress! Oh…wait…

Jana puts the guys in charge of building a giant mirror frame and pedestal, both of which she will likely have to go back and fix herself.

Why does Ben look like a blind Amish Man going to play basketball at the gym?

Ben— sporting his super-cool transition lenses and his new Amish-Paradise-esque beard– is basically just “spurging” on the couch with Jessa. They are all slouched down, looking bored as Jana explains her plans. I have a feeling Jessa will nominate herself as the “supervisor” of this job, as per usual, so she can watch her siblings work while she bosses them around. 

Kendra explains why she and the rest of the Dugs are going to so much trouble as to build a wedding shop for Abbie, rather than just scoot her butt down to Kentucky to get a signature “Miss Renee” masterpiece like the rest of the married Dugs did. 

Basically, they are rushing this wedding so much that Abbie simply doesn’t have time to go to Kentucky to have her dress made. Miss Renee is going to come to the Duggar Compound with a bunch of off-the-rack dresses for her to try on. 

Wait…so instead of just flying Abbie & Co. down to Kentucky one day (via John, her pilot fiance), they are ordering all this crap, redecorating an entire guest barn and making poor Jedidiah Ben work when he should be out plowing the fields?! WTF? 

“I hope this doesn’t take long. I’ve got a barn-raising at 4, and I’m getting fitted for a new seeing eye cane at 6 so…”

Jessa explains that they want their wedding dress shop to look elegant and classy…on a budget. 

Someone call Miss Cindy and get some of the background Duggar kids to go fetch up some hay and pick some flowers from their neighbors’ yards! This here’s gonna be a classy affair! 

Once the boys start building the frame, everyone begins voicing ideas on how best to put it together. Amidst the group talking over one another, someone insists that everyone listen to Ben because he used to work for a glass company, though we’re pretty sure that summer he spent taking tickets at the local carnival’s House of Mirrors won’t come in handy here, bro.

Next, the group busts out the power tools. (Surely Ben was kept inside and away from any sharp objects. I’m sure he got to be Jessa’s special “supervising helper.”) Jana takes a giant saw like a boss and starts cutting like a pro as her brothers and sisters mill around behind her.

They offer suggestions for the platform where Abbie will stand. Well, actually, the brothers do…Jessa just stands there being useless with a sour look on her face. 

“Just let me know when all the work is done so I can take all the credit. OK, Jana?”

Jana assures them, “I’ve got this!” 

Josiah tells us that Jana doesn’t stand around waiting for people to do stuff. She’d rather just go do it herself. (She probably knows it will save time, since she has to re-do most of what her siblings do, anyway!) 

After getting everything put together, the producers ask Jessa, Jana and Kendra if the Duggars are ready for another wedding and of course, Jessa doesn’t miss out on the opportunity to remind everyone that Jana is single. She joking asks Jana if she’s told the producers about her wedding yet.

Jana, being the professional she is, brushes off the comment and quietly reminds herself that Jessa is the one that has to go home to Ben every night and, while few things are worse than that, being single isn’t one of them.

“Dear Lord…please give me the strength not to hit Jessa in the head with a dress form after the cameras leave…”

The following day, Abbie, her mom and her sisters (and all of Abbie’s never-ending enthusiasm) arrive to the “pop-up shop” with the Duggar crew to meet Miss Renee and try on some modest frocks. (Naturally, Michelle‘s big ol’ mug is all up in there trying to get into the camera shot whenever possible.) 

Miss Renee is instantly at least 10 times more excited than everyone in the room, especially Abbie, but with all the free publicity she gets from this family’s plethora of weddings, who could blame her? Honestly, though, we haven’t seen this 10+ level of excitement since Sierra was involved. They seriously need to keep a tranquilizer gun on-hand in case Miss Renee gets out of control. 

“Business is booming, y’all!”

“The Duggar girls are absolutely wedding experts,” Abbie tells us. 

Well…that’s the understatement of the century…

The producer asks John what he would like to see in Abbie’s wedding dress.

John says he’d like to see Abbie in the wedding dress.

“Hold on right quick. Did I just make a funny?”

While the girls are on dress duty, John and the Duggar boys decide to go off on a little “bachelor” adventure—AKA another opportunity for John to talk about and demonstrate his pilot skills. They collect a motley crew of slack-jawed Duggars including Jim Bob and a bunch of the “background boys.”

When you find a shirt you really like so you buy it in every color they have…

The guys have decided to celebrate John’s upcoming wedding with a “flour bombing” competition that essentially involves dropping bags of flour from an airplane onto a tarp. While the blatant disregard for the environment is hard to overlook here, we do commend the Duggars for finding another use for all those birthing tarps they have lying around.

Jedidiah is up first and before they drop their flour contraption, they hit some turbulence and Jed starts to feel the way we do anytime we think of Josh Duggar or Derick Dillard: very, very sick.

“That’s it Jed, aim right for that mystery birth stain!”

Back at the Duggar Factory Warehouse Dress Shop, Abbie tries on her first dress, the “Lovely in Lace” as Miss Renee calls it.

The producers then ask Abbie how she feels about moving to Arkansas after the wedding and she says she’s excited but will miss her family, as she’s “kind of a homebody.” Luckily, Abbie’s future husband is a pilot (in case you haven’t heard!), so she should be able to jet on over to her family home whenever she starts to miss sharing a bedroom and bathroom with 10 of her siblings.

Back at the Duggar Bridal Shop, Abbie isn’t really feeling the first dress due to the abundance of lace and the lack of sparkle, because when your personality doesn’t really jump out at people, it’s important that your clothing makes up for it.

“Is this the highest setting on her personality or does it go up a few notches?”

Abbie decides to try on a pink dress next, despite John telling her he really wanted her to wear a white one because it best compliments the color of his airplane. Once Abbie reveals the “Blushing Bride” dress—- or “Rushing Bride” as we’re calling it—- her mom immediately announces that it’s the perfect color for a bridesmaids dress.

In addition to the shady comment from Abbie’s mom, Joy and Kendra flat out shut the little pink number down. (Meanwhile, Jessa— who wore a blush dress to her wedding— sits there disgruntled.) Miss Renee makes the executive decision to move on to option number three—the “Simple Stunner.” The group decides they like the dress, as does Abbie, however, she’s less than thrilled (we think… tough to tell with this one) by the dress’s lack of sparkle.

Like the overly caffeinated fairy godmother she is, Miss Renee pulls out a layer of sparkles to throw on top of the Simple Stunner (the dress and the person), which nearly makes Michelle’s eyes pop out of her wispy-banged head.

“Oooh, I gotta get one of those for my denim jumper!”

Despite Miss Renee’s probably bedazzled and monogrammed bag of tricks, Abbie is still worried about the dress not having enough sparkle on the top, so she decides to move on to dress number four, the “Hint of Sparkle” dress, otherwise known as the “Miss Renee Still Doesn’t Understand That This Girl Wants To Be Seen From Outer Space” dress.

Back at the flour-bombing field, Jeremiah is the next to drop his flour-filled box to the ground, followed by Jason. Sadly, Jim Bob doesn’t get to partake in any actual flying or flour-dropping during this outing because someone had to stay on the group to make sure that birthing tarp didn’t blow away. (I mean, Abbie’s bound to be squeezing out a blessing on that thing in about 10 months, after all!)

In the end, Jedidiah is named the winner, thus concluding the saddest and most random bachelor party in Duggar history.

Relax, Jim Bob… the tarp isn’t going anywhere.

At our final check-in at the Duggar Compound, Abbie has thrown on dress number three again and now says she loves it. Because Miss Renee is anything but subtle, she offers to throw some sparkles on the top of the dress before the wedding and Abbie is thrilled that she will shine brighter than an air traffic controller on her big day.

Miss Renee then asks Abbie if she can rename the dress “The Abbie,” and Simple Stunner Abbie gives her the go-ahead.

Let’s see if they all have that same enthusiasm when Abbie has to shove that thing into the cockpit of an airplane.

After things wrap up at the DIY Duggar Dress Shop, Jessa says they’ll probably just leave the giant mirror in the corner of the guest house until they need it for the next bride… that is if Michelle and Jim Bob don’t snag it for their bedroom first.

“This would look great on the ceiling of our bedroom, Mama!”

On next week’s episode of ‘Counting On,’ Joe, Kendra and the whole Caldwell Family Clan vacation on the wholesome and family friendly beaches of Panama City where they will undoubtedly opt out of wet t-shirt contests. We’ll also see Jackson take driving lessons from a local police officer while driving a predator van full of Duggars—a sentence we never thought we’d have to type.

To read our previous ‘Counting On’ recaps, click here!

(Photos: TLC)

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