August 27, 2011

Larger than life

For all you naysayers of families with more than 3 children....

Every time people start bashing on the Duggars or other larger-than-average families, I get defensive. I had several friends growing up who came from households with children totals in the double-digits. All of them were healthy, well-adjusted and not only "normal," but in most cases, above average.

One of those families was the Reneau family. We grew up in the same neighborhood and were all homeschooled in elementary school. The course of life naturally drew us apart, but thanks to facebook, we're all mostly in communication again. It's fun seeing people you knew "way back when" and seeing where they are now, and as I expected, all the kids have gone on to become successful, productive members of society.

Of course, that's because they had a great role model. Allyson, mother to this tribe, made the front page of the state newspaper today. Aside from being a great general human interest story, I found the piece very inspiring and motivating. Never be afraid to chase your dreams!

Oklahoma City mother of 11 heads to Harvard

BY DARLA SLIPKE Staff Writer dslipke@opubco.com Comment on this article 30
Published: August 27, 2011

Allyson Reneau dropped out of the University of Oklahoma in 1981 to get married and start a family.


photo - Allyson Reneau, left, serves dinner to her family at their Oklahoma City home after working at Victory Gym on Thursday. Reneau, a mother of 11, plans to attend graduate school at Harvard University this fall. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD <strong>STEVE SISNEY - THE OKLAHOMAN</strong>
Allyson Reneau, left, serves dinner to her family at their Oklahoma City home after working at Victory Gym on Thursday. Reneau, a mother of 11, plans to attend graduate school at Harvard University this fall. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD STEVE SISNEY - THE OKLAHOMAN

She promised herself she would return to school after her first child turned 5.


Thirty years and 11 children later, Reneau is finally fulfilling her promise, and then some.


The Oklahoma City woman is just three credit hours away from earning a bachelor's degree in communications from OU.


Somehow, she has maintained a 4.0 GPA while raising her children — nine girls and two boys, now ages 6 to 29 — and running her own business.


Starting Monday, Reneau, 50, will begin graduate studies in international relations at Harvard University. Once a week she will fly to Massachusetts for classes. School officials are allowing her to finish the three undergraduate credits she has left at OU later this year, Reneau said.


“Sometimes those dreams, you bury them,” Reneau said. “You get so busy raising your family that you forget your identity.”



Read more: http://newsok.com/oklahoma-city-mother-of-11-heads-to-harvard/article/3598824#ixzz1WFBgBgru

7 comments:

  1. Great article! I get angry when people bash the Duggars too - I love them!

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  2. My host parents had 9 kids - with me there was 10 of us. All of them turned out just fine - most of them have their own families by now and/or are going to university. I don't judge large families - I only judge those parents that cannot handle having all these children.

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  3. We aren't in the double digits but I love coming from a larger family than most. The 7 of us kids have a bond with each other and our parents that cannot even be described. VERY inspiring!

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  4. I love large families as I intend on having a large familiy (well, maybe not 19, but around 4 or 5 kids) and I don't judge people who have a lot kids but only those who can't handle having that many.

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  5. That is an encouraging story! Thanks for sharing! I have missed you =) I love your posts...looking forward to spending some time catching up!

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  6. Love the article. So inspiring!

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