Few mothers are likely to get more cards, flowers and phone calls this Sunday than Joyce Dumont.
Mrs. Dumont, 77 years old, a Native American of the Chippewa tribe, is at the root of a family tree so tangled that it seems more like a forest. By her reckoning, she has had 69 kids–including six through childbirth, five stepchildren, 11 who were adopted, several dozen foster children and a few who simply moved in when they had no better place to go.
Her latest three were adopted by Mrs. Dumont and her husband, Buddy, also 77, over the past few years. They range in age from 7 to 10. “They’re really rambunctious,” she told a recent visitor to her home near the Canadian border, where a washing machine chugged and a chubby Chihuahua named Peewee scoured the floor for Cheerios.