Ree Drummond is opening up about a new addition to her family. The Pioneer Woman star revealed she and husband Ladd had been fostering their son Jamar for the past year and a half on their Oklahoma ranch in an except from her forthcoming book of essays, Frontier Follies, shared with PEOPLE Tuesday.
"I haven’t written or spoken publicly about him much, because for one thing, the state agency that handles fostering has strict rules against posting about foster children on social media, which I get," the Food Network star said in the excerpt. "Also, I’ve never wanted to subject Jamar to more attention than he wanted or needed before he had a chance to settle in and get his bearings in our home." Now that Jamar is 18, Drummond continued that state restrictions on making his identity public have been lifted, adding that Jamar "told me he’s tired of feeling like we’re trying to hide him from the world."
Drummond is also mother to Alex, 23, Paige, 21, Bryce, 18, and Todd, 16, and said that while she and Ladd hadn't considered fostering a child in the past, their mindset shifted when Ladd met Jamar at high school football practices in their hometown of Pawhuska. "Jamar’s circumstances presented themselves to us in a way we couldn’t ignore," Drummond continued.
Since bringing Jamar into their home, Drummond said the teen has become "an inextricable part of our wacky family." She then revealed he was bed-ridden for six weeks early on after an ATV accident on their ranch, which she said "forced all of us to get pretty darn close, and fast." Luckily enough, Jamar has recovered completely since the accident, and is "back to full functionality," Drummond assured. He is currently looking forward to the future and possibly playing college football. "Through a ton of determination, Jamar has excelled in football, and he’s already received a couple of college offers, with more sure to come in!" Drummond gushed. "I’m proud of the kid, and I can’t wait to see where life takes him. I’ll be in the stands cheering him on."
The Drummond family has other happy news on the horizon as well, with daughter Alex getting engaged in August to longtime boyfriend Mauricio Scott. Alex and her husband-to-be first met during their freshman year at Texas A&M University, graduating together in 2019. Drummond shared that she was "so happy" for the couple after they announced the big news on social media.