Chip Gaines of Fixer Upper fame is well known as a family man. After all, he rose to fame alongside his wife Joanna on HGTV renovation show Fixer Upper. The reality series first aired in May 2013 and ran for five seasons until coming to an end in April 2018.
And when Chip and Joanna weren’t busy renovating other people’s properties, they had plenty to be getting on with at home. That’s because the couple have five children together, the youngest of whom – a boy named Crew – was born in June 2018. And it’s safe to say that the proud parents dote on their brood.
So after quitting Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna vowed to spend more time with their family. And it seems that the couple are taking that promise quite literally. Because, when Chip took to the streets of Waco to take part in the Silo District Half Marathon in 2019 he decided to take youngest tot Crew along for the challenge.
During its four-year run, Fixer Upper proved to be extremely popular with audiences, making stars out of Chip and Joanna in the process. The premise of the show revolved around couples looking to purchase homes in the central Texas area. After deciding on a property, Joanna then helped them redesign it, while Chip managed the build with a budget of around $30,000.
Before starring on Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna had made a living out of renovations, helping to remodel more than 100 properties. But the couple hadn’t always worked together. In fact, when they first met, Joanna had been employed at her father’s Firestone Tire store. It just so happened that Chip was a customer at the Waco, Texas, business. And he had his eye on the young Joanna.
In fact, Chip didn’t even need to meet Joanna to know that she was the girl for him. In 2018 he told PopSugar, “Her dad made the mistake of putting a pic of the family behind the counter at his shop.” And clearly, it was love at first sight for Chip. “I knew I’d marry her one day just by the picture on the wall,” he revealed.
With that in mind, Chip began stopping by the store regularly, in the hopes of running into the girl of his dreams. “My buddies used to always joke that no one could get their brakes done as often as I got my brakes done,” Chip told KWTX. Then, in 2001 he at last met Joanna at the shop.
However, despite his eagerness to meet Joanna, Chip soon cooled things off. He was late for their first date then didn’t call her for months because of a stupid bet with his buddy. “I’d made a bet with John to see who could hold out the longest before calling our dates back,” Chip explained in The Magnolia Story. “I really wanted that 50 dollars from John! That’s the only reason I didn’t call.”
But Chip and Joanna did eventually get their romance back on track. And while Chip readily admits that he fell for her first, it didn’t take long for Joanna to reciprocate the feeling. “At first, I couldn’t believe how kind Chip was. He had kind eyes, and made me laugh a lot,” she told PopSugar. “I knew he was the one because I knew I could trust him.”
After more than a year of dating, Chip and Joanna tied the knot at Earle-Harrison House in Waco in May 2003. And following their honeymoon they embarked on their first renovation project together: remodeling their first home as a married couple. “The house was bad,” Joanna told PopSugar. “Chip did all the construction, and I remember many nights he was on his hands and knees staining floors or laying tile.”
The experience clearly inspired Joanna, who later established her home decor store Magnolia Market. At first, the business was a solo endeavor. But Chip soon joined Joanna to offer a construction element to the company. Consequently, Magnolia Realty and Magnolia Homes were born.
It was these businesses that brought the Gainses to the attention of HGTV. The network was impressed after seeing a photograph of one of their renovations. As a result, they snapped the couple up to front Fixer Upper. The gig was a golden opportunity for Joanna, who’d wanted to become a broadcast journalist. “I always dreamed of the idea of television but never thought it would have to do with design or renovations,” she told PopSugar.
Because of the success of Fixer Upper Chip and Joanna were credited with popularizing the “farmhouse-chic” interior look. Joanna has also worked with brands including Target and Anthropologie to create home decor lines. Furthermore, in April 2019 the couple announced the launch of their new media company.
By that point, Chip and Joanna had already quit Fixer Upper. And it was reported that they’d brought the hit series to an end so that they could focus on their family, which included four little kids. And what’s more, in early 2018 Chip and Joanna were expecting their fifth child.
Chip and Joanna welcomed their first child, a boy named Drake in 2003. Their second baby, a girl called Ella, arrived in 2006, followed by their second son, Duke, in 2008. The fourth Gaines child came in 2010. It was another girl, this time named Emmie. So it was safe to say that Chip and Joanna already had a full house.
Nevertheless, Chip and Joanna decided they had room in their hearts – and home – for one more baby. As a result, in January 2018 the couple announced that they were expecting a fifth child. Two months later, they used social media to confirm that their newest addition would be a boy.
Chip and Joanna welcomed their fifth child in June 2018. Announcing the arrival on Twitter, proud dad Chip wrote, “And then there were five. The Gaines crew is now one stronger! 10 beautiful toes and 10 beautiful fingers all accounted for, and big momma is doing great! #BlessedBeyondBelief.”
Later, mom Joanna took to Instagram to reveal the name of their new son. “Our baby boy, Crew Gaines, is here and we couldn’t be more in love,” she wrote. “He made an unexpected (and speedy) entrance into the world two-and-a-half weeks early — which is fitting given he was a sweet surprise from day one. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. We are so grateful.”
Alongside her update, Joanna also shared the first photographs of Crew on Instagram. All the shots were seemingly taken in hospital, apparently showing some of little Crew’s first moments on Earth. The post contained the first of many snaps that the family would go on to share of their latest addition, each of them as cute as the last.
In fact, Chip and Joanna have been careful to document as many of little Crew’s milestones as possible, starting with his siblings’ adorable reaction to his birth. In a sweet photograph shared to Instagram by Joanna, the four oldest Gaines children can be seen waiting outside a hospital door. “They couldn’t wait to meet their new baby brother,” the mom wrote.
As Crew settled into the Gaines household, there were many more shots of nap times and cuddles. And just over a week after he’d joined the clan, his mom reassured her Instagram followers, writing, “He’s settling in just fine.” It appeared that Chip, Joanna and their children were completely smitten with their new addition, and it wasn’t hard to see why.
One of Crew’s first family outings that was posted on Instagram was a trip to a ball game. The whole Gaines gang support the Bears, from Waco’s Baylor University. Both Chip and Joanna attended Baylor back in their youth. So although they didn’t meet there, the university has a special place in the family’s hearts.
In fact, Crew’s first game was such a special occasion for the family, that both Chip and Joanna shared snapshots from the outing on Instagram. And when they did, people couldn’t help but notice the striking resemblance between little Crew and his father. One fan even went so far as to call the infant “a mini Chip Gaines.”
And there have been many more social media posts that have since shown the close bond between Chip and Crew. There were photos of the baby sound asleep in his father’s arms and another of Chip gazing lovingly at his young son during a doctor’s check-up. In another adorable image, Crew stands smiling in mustard dungarees and a matching coat. Under that picture, his dad proudly wrote, “Chip off the old block.”
But it appears that Chip and Crew may be even more inseparable than first thought. Because when the TV handyman decided to run the Silo District Half Marathon in April 2019, he decided to take his 10-month-old son along for the ride. As a result, he was seen speeding through the streets while pushing Crew along in a stroller.
Of course, the Silo District Marathon had already been a family affair for the Gaineses. The event came into fruition in 2018, after Chip challenged himself to run a full marathon. He was inspired to take on the feat after meeting professional runner Gabriele Grunewald, who had been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer known as ACC.
Chip explained how the encounter with Gabriele had impacted him in a blog post on the Magnolia website in 2018. “After hearing Gabe’s story, I realized two things: I didn’t want to spend another second standing on the sidelines, and secondly, given what she’s gone through, I didn’t have any excuse not to give this a shot,” he wrote. “So I committed.”
Consequently, Chip began training for a marathon, and what’s more, he wanted others to join him on his quest. As a result, he announced that he and Joanna would be hosting the first Silo District Marathon in 2018. And he urged others to join him by running the full 26.2 miles with him or take part in separate half marathon or 5K events.
Presumably, the 2018 Silo District Marathon was a success. Because in 2019 it returned, and once again Chip committed himself to running, although this time he opted for the half marathon event. But while he may have halved his distance, Chip decided to double the fun by bringing Crew along for the experience.
Before the race, Chip had given no inkling that he would be running with Crew in tow. Instead, he took to Instagram to share an image of his race T-shirt and number, alongside some vital supplies. In the accompanying caption, Chip wrote, “This is what I’m bringing. What stuff you got in your #SiloDistrictMarathon pack?”
Giving some words of encouragement to other participants, Chip added, “Win or Lose here’s to all the personal records, all the personal bests. All the nice tries, and we’ll get ‘em next year. But most importantly, here’s to all the folks that can’t be here today because they’re having to focus all their energy on their personal battles with cancer. And for me, today I’m running for @gigrunewald! Let’s do this!”
It was only when Chip arrived on the start line of the race that spectators got their first clue that Crew might be joining his father on the route. In photos taken before the event, the tot was dressed just like his father. As part of their matching ensembles, both were wearing race bibs and sweat bands.
In other images taken at the event, Chip and Crew are seen out on the course. In the snaps dad looks motivated – if not a little red faced – while baby looks content sitting in his stroller. One picture shows baby Crew with a hand outstretched, making him look as though he is waving at onlookers out of shot.
When the images of Chip and Crew landed online, certain fans of the Gaines family couldn’t get enough of them. Writing beneath a photograph shared by Chip on Instagram in April 2019, one user joked, “When you’re supposed to run a marathon but you promised your wife you’d watch the kids.”
But Chip and Crew weren’t the only members of the Gaines family who took part in the 2019 Silo District Marathon. That’s because Chip and Joanna’s daughter Ella also ran in the event for a second consecutive year. At just 12 years old, that was an impressive effort from the youngster. And what’s more, it was all for a good cause.
Chip and Joanna founded the Silo District Marathon to raise money for the Brave Like Gabe Foundation. The organization was founded by the Gaineses’ friend and professional runner Gabriele Grunewald after her diagnosis with ACC in 2009. Money raised by the foundation funds research on rare cancers.
After the 2019 Silo District Marathon, Joanna took to Instagram with a message for the thousands of people who took part in the event. She wrote, “We are so thankful for and blown away by each and every runner who participated in this year’s #SiloDistrictMarathon. Watching the grit, the fight, and the spirit of these runners left me speechless.”
In her heartfelt post, Joanna added, “So many of you would tell me who you were running in honor of and I was literally teary eyed the entire time. Thanks for running with us this year. You helped raise $300k for cancer research and the @bravelikegabe foundation. I was also so proud of @chipgaines and Ella (and baby Crew) for running the half marathon today and killing it!”
Wrapping up her post, Joanna paid tribute to the people that helped make the marathon happen. “Finally, thank you to the city of Waco and all the law enforcement, volunteers and sponsors that helped make this event possible,” she wrote. “We hope to see you next year at the #SiloDistrictMarathon.”
With that in mind, it seems that the Gaines family don’t plan to stop running any time soon. Perhaps we’ll see more members of the clan taking part in the Silo District Marathon in the future. But nothing will beat Crew’s first appearance at the 2019 event. After all, how many other kids can say that they completed their first half marathon before they could even walk?