Max's new bike is stolen. The Fitzpatricks are concerned with a stolen bicycle, but the more important issue is that the lost item threatens a good friendship. A nice family with average concerns.
Mo is accused of cheating on a test.
Sean and Jack seek revenge on their arch-enemy on Halloween.
The Fitzpatrick boys - Sean and Jack and their two friends are forced to take drastic measures to cut down to size the town bully Katch who has a habit of spoiling their plans and antagonising them.
Sean is provoked even more when Katch fouls up their Halloween party plans. But the plan to trap the bully in an old house goes awry when..
With the arrival of a new baby, the Fitzpatrick kids worry about the family's finances, so Sean gets an afterschool job to help.
Although still a sophomore, Sean has a good chance of getting into the school's football team and winning a scholarship if he makes the grade.
He faces opposition when he takes his studies and football too seriously because the other Fitzpatrick children, in an effort to help subsidise their parents' meagre income, have taken on part-time jobs.
Sean doesn't contribute but later relents and tries to be a superman — working, studying and playing football with the same vigour.
Max, the youngest Fitzpatrick, makes his first communion and the experience has special meaning for the entire family.
The problem arises when he has to forsake one for the other when the schedule becomes too hectic.
Mo learns it's not easy being a cheerleader.
Jack's girlfriend may have to leave town if her parents get a divorce.
Jack and ice skater Lacy have a mutual admiration and affection for each other. Jack is in Cloud Nine with his new love but something happens which leaves him doubting Lacy's sincerity he finds out that Lacy's parents will be divorcing and that his father will give her mother custody of their skater with Olympian dreams.
Lacy's mother hopes to move to Colorado Springs.
More than just getting a new job. Jack also gets a new heartthrob.
He really likes Lacy Sloan, who skates with such case and grace, and Lacy, in return, admires Jack's handling of the ice machine which makes the ice just perfect for her practices.
Things, however, get a little sour when Lacy's mum wants her to appear in court for some family matter.
Later, it is revealed that Lacy's mum, Paula, is divorcing her husband and wants to ensure that she gets custody of the kid. That's why she wants Mike, her high-school friend, to put in a good word at court tomorrow.
If everything goes well, Paula intends to bring Lacy to Colorado Springs where she has a job lined up and also where, hopefully, Lacy can train under a good teacher to qualify for the Olympics.
Jack is unhappy about the way things are running and he urges Mike not to go to court as he doesn't want Lacy to leave.
Jack is caught smoking markjuana.
Max has his first communion, despite the family's financial struggle.
Sean's friend has a nervous breakdown.
Sean invites ex-school mate Buddy, who has just been released from a mental institution to spend the weekend at his home.
Sean's family reacts in different ways to his presence. Buddy was a diving champion in school and an accident caused him to break down. Sean realises that Buddy has to cope with the problem and come to terms with himself before he can fully recover.
Sean brings home a high school diving star who has been committed to a mental institution after the death of his father.
The family's reaction to Buddy is mixed. Mike thinks Buddy should have a chance to prove himself, Maggie thinks he should go home to his mother, Max is inquisitive, and Mo is totally indifferent.
Sean feels responsible when Kerry runs away from home.
Sean and Mo catch Karen taking some money from their mother's bedroom. Karen insists that Maggie told her to take the money and give it to Mrs Burgers but the Fitz kids are not convinced.
Kerry is discovered trying to take some money from Maggie's drawer in Runaway.
Maggie is out of town and the rest of the Fitpatricks seem to be nowhere around. So Kerry lets herself In with a key left in a concealed box outside the house.
Rich in gold
She has just taken the money when Mo, hearing a noise, goes in and finds her. Naturally. Mo thinks Kerry is trying to steal ihe money as Kerry had often taken skateboards and other things without permission before. Sean thinks the same too.
Kerry, however, insists Dial Maggie had rung her up and told her to take the money for Mrs Burgess, the neighbour.
But Mrs Burgess disclaims knowledge of such an arrangement and Kerry's mother says she didn't hear the phone ring.
Kerry is hurt that even her mother disbelieves her. So she prepares to run away to take up a modelling job in Detroit.
Helen Hunt plays Kerry.
Jack works for an auto mechanic.
Mike warns Jack about working at Joe Devlin's garage as part of his work-study programme for Joe's known to be unscrupulous. Jack however feels sure of good grades from Devlin until he gets into the bad books of the garage owner.
Jack fixes a master cylinder for a customer but is told to put in a new one so that he can charge more. Jack is disillusioned when Devlin threatens to flunk him if he protests.
The family's closely-knit relationship helps them pull through a bout of crises.
Jack has been assigned to work at Devlin's garage as part of his work-study programme. Mike, however, is sceptical about the assignment as he knows Devlin isn't exactly the best man to work for as he is dishonest and irresponsible.
But Jack assures his father that all will be fine as the teacher has been sending students there in the past and all passed with good grades.
As it turns out, however, Jack finds working life miserable. First, he is set upon by other work-study students from the rival school football team. Then Devlin makes him pump gas instead of teaching him mechanics.
Much later, Jack also discovers that Devlin is a crook who charges for new spares even though he hasn't fixed them. When Jack threatens to blow the whistle on Devlin, the latter counters with a promise that Jack will flunk his course.
The other troubled ones are Max and TJ. They have been given permission slips for vaccination and if these are not signed and returned, the students will not be allowed to return to class.
Max and TJ seize this chance to skip school by not having their slips signed. But they soon regret their decision when they run out of places to hide during the day and realise that it wasn't such a grand idea after all.
The family soon gets to know about Max's truancy when the truant officer comes a-calling.
Maggie goes into labor. Mike and Maggie decide to go away for the weekend despite it being too close to their new baby's birth. Jack and Sean meanwhile arrange to have a party during their parents' absence. But their plan is interrupted when Mike and Maggie return because Maggie's having labour pains.
Mike and Maggie's decision to spend the weekend at a lakeside cottage is met with mixed reaction by the family.
Concerned Mo thinks it would be better if Maggie stayed home since Maggie's baby is due quite soon. But Sean, Jack, Max and R.J. see it as a chance to do the things they haven't been able to do because their parents are around.
While Sean and Jack plan a party, Max and R.J. have already decided to bring the class guinea pigs home.
At the same time, Sean and Jack, knowing that they will not be able to have a good time with Max and Mo in the house, have made plans to get the two out of the way.
The result Is a lot of commotion in the house — Sean and Jack making the party preparations, Max and R.J. having a guinea pig race in the kitchen, and Mo preparing for her date with a football star her brothers have fixed up for her.
Mike and Maggie walk into all these when they return suddenly because the latter is having labour pains....