James Van Der Beek and his wife Kimberly are already parents to Gwendolyn, 16 months, Emilia, 3½, Annabel, 5½, Joshua, 7½, and Olivia, 9

By Aili Nahas
October 30, 2019 08:45 AM

James Van Der Beek admits that when he tells people he’s expecting his sixth child, it can provoke quite a reaction.

“I do find with the number six, an explanation seems to be asked for,” James, 42, tells PEOPLE with a laugh in this week’s issue, on newsstands Friday. “But we love the chaos!”

But the Dancing with the Stars frontrunner and his wife Kimberly, whom he wed in 2010, did have “serious questions” about whether they were ready to expand their family once again. (They’re already parents to Gwendolyn, 16 months, Emilia, 3½, Annabel Leah, 5½, Joshua, 7½, and Olivia, 9).

“The biggest concern was having enough one-on-one time with each child,” says Kimberly, 37. “And it’s getting wildly expensive to travel. But we really felt another child knocking at our door.”

“And when we look at our kids, and they’re a tribe, and they take care of each other, we’re like, ‘You know what? We got this,’ ” she adds.

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Jillian Goulding Photography

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And James and Kimberly have settled into a comfortable routine, even with five kids under the age of 10. They don’t have a nanny, but rely on the help of a housekeeper and the occasional babysitter.

James does drop-offs (the older kids are homeschooled, but attend classes with other children several times a week) and at bedtime, they alternate reading, teeth brushing, storytelling and snuggles.

James Van Der Beek and wife Kimberly
Jillian Goulding Photography

“It can be exhausting,” admits James of their 90-minute nightly routine. “But we’re so busy, and it’s important to fight for that dedicated one-on-one time, just to give them the space to say what’s on their minds.”

Date nights have shifted, too. “Now, date nights are on the couch ordering in and snuggling up,” says Kimberly. “I’m down for the couch time!”

James Van Der Beek and wife Kimberly with their five children
James Van Der Beek/ Instagram

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Ultimately, “I wouldn’t say the more children the merrier is necessarily for everybody,” says Kimberly. “But for us, it works very harmoniously with our lives.”

Adds James, “We just love our time with all our kids. I know the day will come that I will be making pancakes and nobody will be pulling on my pant legs or asking me 20 times when they’ll be ready. And honestly, I dread that day.”

For more from James and Kimberly Van Der Beek, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.

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