06/23/2009 at 04:00 PM EDT
There's a lot of shouting happening in Kate Gosselin's house. The mother of eight children – twins Mady and Cara, 8, and sextuplets Alexis, Collin, Leah, Hannah, Aaden and Joel, 5 – has barely had time to change out of her morning workout clothes before her brood descends upon her, clinging to her legs and loudly wondering what to do given the rainy weather.
"Let's do a project," yells Kate, 34, above the clamor. The eight children race to the kitchen table and promptly pull out their construction paper and crayons to make Father’s Day cards for their conspicuously absent dad, who'll receive them two days later.
"Will you help me draw a heart?" asks a giggling Collin. "I want lots of hearts."
Lately, the family has seen lots of heartbreak, culminating with the news that Kate and Jon, 32, stars of the reality series Jon & Kate Plus 8
, have decided to end their marriage
"On a good day, I feel relief," Kate says, curled up in a chair in her living room. "On a bad day, I feel failure."
For more of Kate Gosselin’s revealing interview – including why she filed for divorce, how she and Jon told the kids about the split and her hopes for the future – pick up the July 6 issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday