“The Pioneer Woman” Ree Drummond is opening up about her foster son Jamar.
In an excerpt from her upcoming book, “Frontier Follies,” posted on her blog Monday, the Food Network star wrote about Jamar, who has become a part of her family in the past year and a half.
The cookbook author says she was previously unable to write or publicly speak about Jamar because of state agency rules, and because she “wanted his story to be his own and not fodder for my social media.”
However, the young man is now 18 and “is an inextricable part of our wacky family.”
“We have a foster son now. His name is Jamar,” Ree began her message, adding, “He’s eighteen now, which means the state agency restrictions no longer apply — and most notably, he told me he’s tired of feeling like we’re trying to hide him from the world. He’s ready to sing, to dance, to make his debut! Jazz hands, Jamar!”
In her note, Ree explained that her husband Ladd first met Jamar “a couple of times during high school football practice” and that she only officially met Jamar when he moved in to their Oklahoma ranch.
“Fostering a kid was never something Ladd and I pursued or felt called to do, but Jamar’s circumstances presented themselves to us in a way we couldn’t ignore,” she wrote. “My boys knew him, too.”
Two days after moving in, Jamar unfortunately injured his foot in an ATV accident when he made a sharp turn and tipped over his vehicle.
Despite this, Jamar’s injury “forced all of us to get pretty darn close, and fast.”
“We were all up in Jamar’s business, and if there’d been any hesitation on any of our parts to interact and get comfortable with one another, his injury quickly knocked down those walls and gave us all a reason to come together,” she wrote.
After living with her “bonus son” for almost two years, Ree admires Jamar for being “a great kid who’s overcome some difficulties in his life.”
“I could go on and on about Jamar, my bonus son. He’s larger than life, has a hilarious laugh, and is extremely smart — both book and street,” she added.
Ree also reveals that Jamar “has excelled in football, and he’s already received a couple of college offers.”
“I’m proud of the kid, and I can’t wait to see where life takes him,” she concluded. “I’ll be in the stands cheering him on.”