Counting On fans, it is time to celebrate, because Jill, Derick, and Israel have safely returned home from Central America and are reuniting with family. It was shared on Twitter today that the Dillard’s have made it home and have reunited with Derick’s brother, Dan.
After spending almost 10 months in Central America, Jill and Derick decided it was time to take a short break from being away from home and spend some time in Arkansas with family and friends. The pair announced their plans to return home on their family blog on July 16. According to the blog, Jill and Derick plan to continue to work for the ministry by taking bible classes while they are in the U.S. While they did not give a specific time frame as to how long they plan to stay in Arkansas, they did mention their break from Central America will extend into the fall.
Jill and Derick’s return to Arkansas coincides with the return of their TLC TV show, Counting On. Originally titled Jill and Jessa: Counting On, the show focused on Jill and her sister Jessa’s lives as they moved on from the scandals their brother, Josh Duggar, brought to the family. Now that the newly renamed Counting On has been renewed for Season 2, the show will focus on more of the older siblings in the Duggar family. This will include Jana, Joy, and Jinger, who was recently engaged to soccer player Jeremy Vuolo.
Jill and Derick did not play a large part in the first season of Counting On because it appeared TLC was not willing to fund the cost of keeping a camera crew in Central America. Most footage from Jill and Derick was either self-filmed or via Skype calls with Jill’s siblings. It looks like Jill and Derick would like to be a larger part of Season 2 of Counting On with their timely return to the states. They have arrived in time for film crews to record them for at least two weeks before Season 2 of Counting On premieres on TLC on August 23.
Jill and Derick’s return to Arkansas also brings up another possibility many have been hoping for. While rumors spread like crazy that Jill was pregnant while the couple was in Central America, Jill made it clear on the season finale of Counting On that she was not pregnant. Social media was very harsh when they initially believed the rumors that she was pregnant, and slammed her for putting her baby in danger in a Zika-laden country. Now many are wondering if Jill and Derick will take this time in Arkansas to expand their family. While their blog stated they only planned to stay until the fall, a pregnancy announcement would be a very valid excuse to remain in the United States until the new baby was born. As the Zika virus can cause great harm to a fetus in utero, the Dillard’s would not be able to live down the backlash if they decided to return to Central America while Jill was pregnant.
Are you excited to hear that Jill, Derick, and Israel have returned from Central America and are safely back in Arkansas? Do you think their return was strategically timed so they would be able to have more screen time on the new season of Counting On? Do you think Jill and Derick will use their time in the United States to try and bring another Dillard into the family? Leave your feedback in the comments below and tune in for the Season 2 premiere of Counting On on Tuesday, August 23, at 8/7c on TLC.
[Image via Twitter]