On Monday's brand new episode of TLC's "Jon & Kate Plus 8" Kate Gosselin took her eight children to Bald Head Island in North Carolina for a fun beach vacation, while Jon Gosselin stayed behind while the kitchen at the family's home was being remodeled.
Kate took the kids to see snakes at a Serpantarium, played with them on the beach, and whipped up some pudding for the kids to paint themselves with. Although she tried to stay positive and see to it that her children had a great time the kids still missed their father, and Kate spoke out on the changing family dynamic.
"Many times every day it occurred to me this will probably be how it was," she says. "While the kids had a great time they mentioned numerous times, 'We wish daddy could be here.' The hardest thing is I can do the best that I can do for my kids. I can absolutely make every decision based on them and what's best for them, but I can never make up for him. I can't make up for the fact that he's not here, it's difficult."
Jon, who stayed behind at the house to supervise the remodeling, confessed he felt lonely without all the children.
"I'm extremely bored without the kids," he says. "I don't think I'll ever get used to it, but it's becoming more scheduled, more comfortable now."
The oldest of the Gosselin children, twins Mady and Cara, returned home early to start school, and were surprised by their father's new earrings.
Jon explains that his new look is not the result of a mid-life crisis, and that he has had his ears pierced since he was a teenager and just decided to put in some new earrings.
Meanwhile in North Carolina, Kate explains how she deals with the paparazzi that continue to follow the family.
"Most of the time I just completely ignore them and go about my business," she says. "There have been occasions at home and away as on this trip where they were on board, they were going to hound us, they were going to follow us all day long. Usually our security person will strike up a deal saying, 'okay if they sit on the ferry, smile, wave, do whatever, and give you your shot will you get back on the ferry and go back?' So we agreed to give them their shot, and they left us alone."
Kate and the kids had fun during their vacation, and Kate reflected on the trip without Jon during the closing of the episode.
"Last year we were all together, this year we're not so much," she says. "I am looking at the positive, seeing the memories I'm making with the kids. Trying not to feel sorry for us, and for myself, and for them. I'm glad we got a chance to just literally get away from it all."
"Jon & Kate Plus 8" airs Monday nights at 9 p.m. on TLC.
Related stories on ETonline.com:Kate Gosselin: I Feel A Lot of FailureKate Gosselin's First Televised Interview Since Split with Jon
- Oct. 12, 2016 Check out the celebs who've run for political office