It is the first day of school for all the kids,and Karen is off to college.Carol on the other hand is feeling like she has nothing to do, so she registers for college. Signing up for all of Karen's classes and following her around.She then tell a story about when Karen was a baby in class. Carol finally realizes that she is ruining Karen's life.
Rich is happy about getting a C on his pop quiz and Dana tells Rich that if he doesn't start taking something seriously, they don't have much of a future.So after talking to JT, Rich stays up all night studying (instead of watching Xena, the Warrior Princess with JT) and gets an A,while Dana only gets a B.
JT raids the refrigerator,wearing his trenchcoat, Frank catches him, he hugs JT and the food squirts every where.
After explaining to the guys the various virtues of getting the role in the next Jeremy Beck movie; Karen, Dana, and Al audition for the part. Karen and Dana are not quite what the producers want, but Al is just what they are looking for. Al also has great acting talent and does a fantastic job. She does so well that they rewrite the script to include her in another scene. Al loves it and decides to quit school and move to Hollywood. Frank and her agree that she can join the drama club and, if necessary, move to Hollywood afterward.
Lilly is having a bake sale so she and Carol are making cookies. When Lilly's friend, Traci, and her mother make fun of the Lambert duo and their cookies. Carol takes it personally and makes a dessert that is loaded with alcohol that will knock the socks off of Traci and her mother's dessert. Then Lilly doesn't want to use it because she didn't help and they use the cookies after all.
Rich begins making stupid excuses for skipping out on Dana. Karen and Al convince Dana that he is cheating on her after they follow him to some girl's house. The three of them see Rich dancing with another woman. Dana barges in, but realizes that he is taking dance lessons to impress her.
Frank and Carol are having trouble with distractions in their love life. Finally, they are able to get together for a distraction-free evening but are too sick to make it enjoyable.
JT loses his fourth job of the month and cannot even afford a date with Sam. JT convinces Sam to get her boss to hire him as an apprentice mechanic at the place where she works. JT is terrible and Sam is forced to hire him on the second day after he nearly kills the boss, twice. JT is frustrated and angry, but the only sympathy he gets is from the people who lost the pool (of how many days he would last at this job). Carol advises JT to not lose Sam because he is too proud to say, "I'm sorry." After JT apologizes to Sam, he gets a job that he is a good at-- as a giant weiner.
Meanwhile, Frank is delighted when he receives a dilapidated boat in lieu of payment on a job. He spends every free, waking hour fixing the boat. He annoys the whole family, and even though Carol supports him in front of the kids, she is concerned. Frank explains to Carol that his dream at one time was to buy a really nice boat and go sailing on the weekend. While he loved all seven kids, the only opportunity for
Karen has a professor (actually a teaching assistant) try to date her by influencing her with grades. Karen tells Dana about her predicament. Dana has the perfect plan to catch Jason in his own deceitful web. While a battery that does not keep going and going causes a hitch, the plan does end up working. Mark's date comes in all her glory for a date with Mark. Actually, she is repulsive to Frank and Carol, a source of comedy to Rich and JT, and a shocking match for Mark to everybody. Mark stays out past curfew, is grounded, and runs off in Frank's truck with this girl.
Karen and Dana are given invitations to pledge to a sorority, DTZ, known for their vanity and airheadedness. This seems to be a natural fit for Karen and seems to have no stipulations. Dana finds out, however, that they really want her (and her GPA) to join and will only let Karen join if she agrees.
Frank does not have a job or any prospects of jobs. An acquaintance of Carol's from high school is building a new complex and Carol invites him over to try to convince him to allow Frank to work on it. He gives Frank a job but tries to pursue Carol. When he crosses the line, Frank quits, kicks him out of the house, and informs him what he can do with the gift.
After the cancellation of the best Halloween party in town, the clan (JT, Sam, Rich, Dana, Karen, and Al) decides to have a party in an abandoned, haunted house. They clean it up and the party turns out to be a success, and while everyone else is having a good time JT secludes himself to get advice from a ghost. He and Sam then break up yet remain friends.
Lilly gets to have the house for her Halloween party and dresses like a sunflower. A friend of hers scares her. Lilly gets advice from Carol on how to deal with being scared and Lilly uses the advice to advise her friend who gets scared at the movie. Teddy T-Rex (Frank) was the life of the party-- he fell down the stairs and was attacked by the kids.
When Rich's former friend Cassie moves back to town, they enjoy playing billiards and video games together, so Dana asks J.T. to teach her how she can she can have fun like that with Rich. Meanwhile, Frank's con-man cousin Bert shows up.
Karen's boyfriend Chip takes Carol's advice to get some backbone and stand up to Karen, but he surprises everyone when breaks up with her. Karen is furious with her mother for interfering. In the meantime, Dana has better luck helping JT and Rich with a relationship problem of their own, with the use of her straight A in psychology - and sock puppets.
Lilly becomes disillusioned when she recognizes that it is J.T. portraying Santa Claus at the local department store. Meanwhile, J.T. pines for his former girlfriend Sam after finding a Christmas present that he bought for her back in July.
Al gets an acting job in what she thinks is a commercial for suntan lotion, but altered dialogue turns it risque. Meanwhile, Carol and Dana try to force healthy food on the family after taking a nutrition class.
When Carol forbids Dana from having sex before marriage, Dana decides to elope with Rich. Meanwhile, J.T. pretends to be a fitness fanatic to impress a sexy aerobics instructor.
When Dana and Rich take a pottery class, she must cope with him being better at it than she is. Meanwhile, Carol and Frank's sexual role-playing make J.T. and Karen think Carol is dating another man.
When J.T. watches TV instead of paying attention to baby-sitting Lilly, she disappears. Frank is reluctant to attend his 25th high school reunion and confront his childhood nemesis.
When Rich and J.T. need money for a ski trip, they enter a male-stripper contest rather than admit that they are penniless. Meanwhile, while speaking about their successful marriage to young couples at their church, Carol and Frank get into a fight.
Frank acquires two tickets to the Bucks-Bulls game. He invites JT to go with him. They really enjoy the first half, but then a guy with a huge "Yosimite Sam" hat sits down right in front of JT. Frank agrees to switch seats with JT. Immediately following the switch, the seat JT is now is drawn and JT wins a brand new truck. Frank and JT spend two days arguing over who should get the truck. Finally, Carol arranges for them to meet a friend of hers who is a judge. Just before the judge rules Carol makes a speech on how their friendship should take precedence. They decide she is right and decide to sell the truck and split the profits.
Karen and Al have no interest in Dana's self protection class-- until they see the instructor, that is. Upon seeing him, both girls attempt to win his heart, argue over him, and threaten each other's lives. A week after the class is over, both girls call 911 to have the instructor refresh their memory on a self-defense tip.
After getting only an understudy role after auditioning for the lead in a local theatre production, Al refuses to learn her part and ends up in hot water when the star falls ill on opening night. Meanwhile, after Lilly gets an exceptional score on an aptitude test, Dana tries to help her fulfill her destiny as a genius.
After traveling around the world for a year, Cody returns. He bought gifts for the family, including some magic necklace for J.T., that makes him attractive to woman. Unfortunately, J.T. can't accept the gift since he is dating Sam. He also gives Frank and Carol a huge check and they have a dispute on how to spend the money. Frank decides to buy himself a leather chair and Carol gets furious and they get into a big arguement.
When obnoxious yuppies offer to buy the family's home, Lilly is the only family member who isn't excited about getting a bigger house, but then Frank and Carol have second thoughts.