Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Big Sister Allie Jane


Before the arrival of Lexi Mae Webster, Alyssa and John Webster did their best to prepare soon-to-be-two-year-old Allie Jane Webster. In the video below, Alyssa shares how she thinks her daughter will react when her little sister is born. How did your older children respond to the arrival of their younger siblings? (Click here to view pictures of Lexi Mae.)


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Monday, January 30, 2017

Photos of Lexi Mae Webster

Did you see our post on Friday evening announcing the birth of Lexi Mae Webster? (Click here for details and family photos.) She is only four days old and has already been visited by quite a few family members. Take a look at these adorable snapshots:

 Lexi Mae Webster with sister Allie Jane Webster (21 months) 

 Lexi Mae with aunt Carlin Bates

 Lexi with uncle Lawson Bates

Lexi Mae Webster (look at those beautiful eyes!)

Photos courtesy lawsonbates.com, thebatesfamily.com, John and Alyssa Bates, Carlin Bates

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Shopping Cart or Buggy?

 Jeb Bates and Judson Bates

When you go shopping at the grocery store, what do you call the object that you push around and collect your food in? Is it a shopping cart, a buggy, or something else? Cast your vote in the comments section, and then check out the video below to find out what the Bates call it in East Tennessee.


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Friday, January 27, 2017

Lexi Mae is Here!


We have exciting news to share! Lexi Mae Webster was born last night (January 26th) at 7:20pm, weighing 6 pounds 2 ounces. Alyssa and John Webster are now the proud parents of two daughters. Lexi was due today.

Click here to view more pictures of Lexi on the UP website. The photo above is used with permission from UP TV. Photos of the Websters' new addition may not be used without written permission from the network.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

'Doggy Dilemmas' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "Doggy Dilemmas"

  • Warden, Judson, and Jeb head over to the Paines’ house to help Erin and Chad train Max the puppy. Max is great at sitting on command, but he doesn’t quite understand fetching.
  • Lawson visits the local children’s hospital with music friend Emily Ann Roberts to sing for patients.
  • “Seeing situations where children are challenged to go on…it makes you realize, ‘I should be really grateful for all the things I get to experience in life,’” says Gil.
  • “When we were done and we had met all the kids, I was already ready to plan the next time to go back,” says Emily Ann. “It’s amazing to meet all of them and just see how positive they are...”
  • Kelly’s plan to tear down Gil’s shed and use the concrete slab for a basketball court was vetoed by Gil, but he and his sons work together to make a court in the side yard. Lawson comes outside just before the concrete truck is scheduled to arrive, but he is wearing nice clothes. “When I saw him come out there, I said ‘Nah, he didn’t come out here to pour concrete; he came out here to watch,’” says Nathan.
  • “No, I came out there to pour concrete,” responds Lawson. “It’s like this, I figure if you do it right, you won’t get dirty.” His dad and brothers finally convince him to change. The concrete truck doesn’t show up, so Gil has to call another company and make an appointment for the next morning.
  • The following day, everything is going great, until the Bates run out of concrete just before the end of the project. “Dad, being frugal as he is, got the bare minimum of concrete we needed,” says Jackson. 
  • Thankfully, they are able to make it work, and the finished product looks great. The kids add their hand prints and names to the edges of the court. 
  • Up in Chicago, Michaela and Brandon are loving married life. “Marriage has been the most incredible adventure,” says Michaela. 
  • As a surprise for Kelly's 50th birthday, Brandon is working on a video that will feature his sketches and some poems. “In making a video, I don’t have a conventional process or setup,” he explains. “Basically, it’s whatever I can rig so that the camera is the right distance from the paper that it’s recording.”
  • Michaela spends her days working as a nanny, sewing girls’ dresses for the business she is starting, and scrap-booking. “Everyone in the family has always predicted and said Michael is going to be the one that has a really, super large family," says Kelly. "She loves children. She rejoices when another person is pregnant as much as we do, but at the same time…there’s got to be that feeling of, ‘I wish I could be pregnant and join them.’”
  • When Michaela and Brandon had been married about six months, they started realizing that most of their friends and siblings were expecting by that time. In this episode, they have just celebrated their one-year wedding anniversary and are considering visiting a specialist.
  • “There’s definitely the excitement of wanting to start a family," shares Michaela. "It was always my dream as a little girl. It’s been amazing, just having each other, but then realizing at the same time, there’s just maybe some complications and some difficulties."
  • Brandon shares some very wise words on the subject: “That area is an area we want the Lord to have control in, and for a lot of people, that means kids can come along just as soon as possible, but for us that hasn’t been the case. I still see that in the Lord’s hands. He’s just saying no for now. We hope it’s not no for always, but it’s no for now, and it hasn’t been wasted time. The most important thing in life is not all the things you can accumulate, but really see the value in what you have been given. In Michael, I have just been given a treasure that I couldn’t have asked for."

Lawson on Country Music, Values, Boundaries


Hot off the press! Lawson just sent us the link to an interview he did with Fox News.

In the interview, Lawson Bates discusses his music career, his trips to Nashville, and how he feels having a career in a big city three hours away from his parents and 18 siblings. He also reveals how he went about setting boundaries when he first entered the country music scene.

"[My songs are about] faith, values and standing up for what's right," Lawson tells Fox News. "I feel like a lot of my faith is weaved into my album and that has a place in country music. I won't sing something...that is contrary to what I think is morally right."

Visit the Fox News website to read the full article, and be sure to tune in to UP tonight at 9pm ET/8pm CT for an all-new episode of Bringing Up Bates. (Click here to view snapshots and watch a promo video.)

Photo courtesy of Taryn Yager Photography

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Doggy Dilemmas Photos and Video

The fourth episode of Bringing Up Bates season five is coming your way tomorrow. Kicking off at 9pm ET/8pm CT on UP, this half-hour segment will check in with Michaela and Brandon Keilen in Chicago. The Keilens have been married almost a year and a half and share the fertility struggles they have been having as they seek to start a family.

Later, Erin and Chad Paine invite some of the Bates siblings over to help them train their puppy, Max, and the Bates family starts working on the new basketball court. Lawson Bates and music friend Emily Ann Roberts pay a visit to the East Tennessee Children's Hospital to spread joy to the patients. Scroll down to see snapshots from the episode and a video preview.

 Michael and Brandon Keilen

 Michael Keilen



 Lawson Bates and Emily Ann Roberts with a patient at the hospital



 Emily Ann Roberts

Lawson Bates

 Jackson Bates, Lawson Bates, Nathan Bates, and Trace Bates

Judson Bates



Photos/video courtesy of UP

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Lexi Mae Due in 3 Days

 John Webster, Alyssa Bates Webster, and friends

Alyssa and John Webster will soon welcome their second child! Lexi Mae Webster is due this Friday, January 27th.

The couple's first baby, Allie Jane Webster, was born smack dab on her due date--April 11th, 2015. When do you think Lexi Mae will arrive, and how much do you think she will weigh? Post your predictions as a comment, and we will reveal the closest guesser after the baby is born.

The photo above was taken 10 days ago, when the Websters attended a wedding. 

Photo courtesy of Alyssa and John Webster

Monday, January 23, 2017

Training Max Paine



Life with 20-month-old Carson Paine and 5-month-old Brooklyn Paine is busy, but can you imagine adding a lively puppy to the mix?

Coming up this week on Bringing Up Bates, Erin and Chad Paine attempt to provide Max the puppy with some much needed obedience training, with help from a few of Erin's siblings. Check out this video:


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Happy 27th, Michaela!


Wishing Michaela Bates Keilen a very happy 27th birthday! Did you know that Michaela has a degree from Roane State Community College? In addition to being the loving wife of Brandon Keilen, she also works as a nanny.

Michael and Brandon Keilen have been married 17 months, and they both love children but are having difficulties starting a family. The Keilens will open up about their fertility struggles this Thursday on an all new episode of Bringing Up Bates.

Photo courtesy of UP

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Gil Bates: 'We care for you'


"Getting a purity ring from my parents is really special, and it shows how much they care about me and want the best for me."

-Katie Bates

Thursday evening on Bringing Up Bates (click here to read our recap), Gil and Kelly Bates gave Katie Bates a gold heart purity ring. In this deleted scene, they further explain the significance of the ring and why they spend time and money on a fine piece of jewelry, a bouquet of flowers, and a fancy dinner for each of their teenage daughters.


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Saturday, January 21, 2017

'You Guys' vs "Y'all'


The Bates have more tidbits of knowledge to share in this new Southern speak video. Last time, they unpacked the phrase "Bless your heart," and today they're discussing whether "You guys" or "Y'all" is the "correct" way to address a group of people. Do you agree with their opinions?


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Recap: 'A Birthday and a Birdie'

Bringing Up Bates "A Birthday and a Birdie"

  • Gil and Kelly have a tradition of giving a purity ring to each of their daughters on her 16th birthday. It’s Katie’s turn, and her older sisters help her find an outfit to wear for her dinner date with Mom and Dad. Katie says she isn’t a dressy person, but they insist she wear something fancy.
  • “Watching these young girls grow up to be young ladies is really hard for a dad,” says Gil.
  • When the producer asks why the guys don’t get purity rings, Zach jokingly responds that “the guys in this family don’t get a lot of free things.”
  • “Don’t worry about the ring,” says Lawson. “But if you want to get me a new saddle, maybe even a new pickup truck.” The younger boys say they would love a steak in place of a purity ring.
  • At the restaurant, Gil and Kelly explain the significance of the ring. “This is valuable, but your purity and your life is way more valuable than any ring or trinket or anything in the whole world,” shares Gil. 
  • Katie will wear the gold heart ring--a symbol of her commitment to stay pure, the talk she had with her parents, how much her mom and dad love her, and the goals she has set for herself to pursue godliness--on her right ring finger until her wedding day.
  • “Going into this dinner, I was really nervous, not really knowing what to expect, but it was just great spending time with Mom and Dad, and they made me feel really special.”
  • Later, Gil and Kelly, who have been looking for a permanent meeting place since they started their church plant more than three years ago, visit the building that they recently secured. It doesn’t have a steeple, so they are having one added.
  • Papa Bill and Mama Jane (Gil’s parents) are visiting from South Carolina. Gil, Papa Bill, and Lawson go on a golfing outing. “He’s just been one of my best friends, and I look forward to any chance to be with him,” says Gil of his father, who is 78.
  • “Lawson is a card,” says Papa Bill. “He is very funny. Lawson enjoys golf, but this game doesn’t quite go as well as he hoped it would.
  • Gil asks his son if he needs to have a “large talk,” which is Bates code for, “Are you interested in any girls?” Lawson says no; he is married to music right now.
  • Papa Bill offers up wise advice: “Just remember, whatever decision you make today will determine what decisions are available to you tomorrow.” 
  • At dinner that night, Gil and Kelly single Katie out. “She was ready to hide,” laughs Kelly. “She does not like attention.” While they eat, the family shares birthday praises. Gil's words bring everyone to tears.
    • Carlin: “Katie never ceases to make me laugh.
    • Erin: “Katie is like one of my best friends. I would kind of like to adopt her if mom would let me.”
    • Mama Jane: “Katie tries to make sure I don’t say anything that’s not acceptable. And that’s been a little problem with me through the years. Things I think just come out. But she corrects me.”
    • Kelly: “You’re just so content and so grateful for anything.”
    • Gil: “When I’m getting stressed out about stuff, you say, ‘Dad, it’s alright. It’s going to be okay.’ You help me get the right perspective on things.”

Golf, Purity Rings, and a New Church


It's Thursday, and you know what that means! A brand-new episode of Bringing Up Bates airs in less than six hours. Tune in to UP tonight at 9pm ET/8pm CT. Did you see the promo video and snapshots we posted yesterday?

Below are two additional videos. The first is a quick overview of the whole episode, and the second is a scene from the golf game that Gil, Lawson, and Papa Bill play. Be sure to listen closely to Papa Bill's advice towards the end. What do you think of his words?



Photo/video courtesy of UP

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Win Lawson's New CD

 Lawson stops by Ellie and her husband's house to deliver CDs for the givaway

Who doesn't like free stuff? We're giving you another chance to win Lawson Bates' new CD, What Country Means to Me! Follow the prompts on the Rafflecopter widget below to enter to win one of four copies.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Carlin Meets a Kangaroo


Last week, we announced Gil and Kelly Bates' speaking engagement Down Under. While there, they took the opportunity to experience attractions unique to Australia. They visited Healesville Sanctuary, a zoo located in rural Victoria, Australia, that is home to a host of native Australian animals. 

Carlin also went on the trip, and she enjoyed getting to know Kanga the kangaroo (pictured above). Have you ever pet a kangaroo?

For those who live in the United States, the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere has an exhibit that allows visitors to touch kangaroos. (Read about it on NashvilleWife.com, written by Bates Family Blog author Ellie.)

Photo courtesy thebatesfamily.com

Photos: Golfing and Sweet 16

The Bates have a lot in store for viewers on tomorrow's new episode of Bringing Up Bates. In addition to announcing their new church building, Gil and Kelly take Katie out for a special outing in celebration of her 16th birthday. Papa Bill and Mama Jane come to Tennessee to visit the new great-grandchildren, and Papa Bill goes golfing with Gil and Lawson.

The show starts tomorrow at 9pm ET/8pm CT on UP. Visit our Showtimes page for more details. To get yourself in the mood for a new episode, scroll through the snapshots below.

 The Bates family

 Gil and Kelly Bates

 Gil Bates, Kelly Bates, and Katie Bates

 Gil Bates, Kelly Bates, and Katie Bates

 Katie Bates

Katie Bates

 Lawson Bates, Gil Bates, and Papa Bill

 Lawson Bates, Gil Bates, and Papa Bill

 Lawson Bates, Gil Bates, and Papa Bill

 Lawson Bates, Gil Bates, and Papa Bill

Lawson Bates (looks like he missed the hole by quite a bit)

 Warden Bates, Kelly Bates, Jeb Bates, and Judson Bates

 Carlin Bates and Katie Bates
(Look at all those hangers!)

 Whitney Bates, Bradley Bates, Gil Bates, Kaci Lynn Bates, and Mama Jane

Papa Bill and his granddaughters

Photos courtesy of UP

Interior Decorating; Gil vs. Kelly



"[Gil is thinking functional changes, I'm thinking cosmetic. I'm thinking change the lights, change the paint. He's only thinking about size."
-Kelly Bates

Tomorrow on an all-new episode of Bringing Up Bates, Gil and Kelly Bates are thrilled to announce that they have finally found a building for their church congregation, which has been meeting in a hotel for more than three years. Check out the sneak peek scene below:


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Watch the Bates Online


Many of you have asked when the newest episodes of Bringing Up Bates will be available online, and we have answers for you. (The blue/orange text represents a link; just click to follow.)

Watch Bringing Up Bates on iTunes
Seasons 1-4, as well as the first two episodes of season 5, are available for purchase on iTunes. You can buy individual episodes ($1.99 for SD or $2.99 for HD) and full seasons ($16.99 for SD or $25.99 for HD).

Watch Bringing Up Bates on Amazon
Seasons 1-4 are currently available for purchase on Amazon Instant Video. Full seasons and individual episodes are listed at prices similar to iTunes. According to the network, season 5 will be available soon.

Watch Bringing Up Bates on Up Faith & Family
Available through xfinity, Amazon Channels, and Dish. Amazon is currently offering a 7-day free trial. The service costs $4.99/month after your free trial expires. Follow this link, or search 'UP Faith and Family' on Amazon, click "browse all," and scroll down until you find Bringing Up Bates. The network plans to upload season 4 on January 25th, but season 5 will most likely not be available until after all the episodes have aired.

Photo courtesy of UP

Monday, January 16, 2017

Deleted Scene: Chattanooga Getaway


In this deleted scene from last Thursday's episode of Bringing Up Bates, Erin Paine finalizes the details for Kelly Bates' 50th birthday celebration. The entire family (including the Websters and Keilens) is headed to a cabin in Chattanooga to honor the Bates matriarch. Have you ever been to Chattanooga?


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Win a Bates-Cation 2.0


Bates-ca·tion (bāts-kā-shən) n. a time of rest away from the demands of work, school, and household chores that includes tons of exciting adventures with the Bates family.

The Bates-cation promotion is back! Two weeks ago, Gil and Kelly Bates and most of their 19 children went on a ski vacation Massanutten Ski Resort in northern Virginia with Danielle, winner of the first Bates-cation raffle.

Visit the Bates-cation page on the UP website to read the rules and enter the contest. This promotion ends Friday, February 24th, at 3am ET. At that time, 70 finalists will be randomly selected and asked to submit a video. On or around April 13th, 2017, the grand prize winner will be announced. He or she, accompanied by one guest, will meet the Bates at a vacation destination.

Photo courtesy of UP

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Bates Interpret 'Bless Their Heart'


UP just started a new series of videos called "Bates Family Southern Speak." In the clip below, the Bates discuss the phrase "bless your heart" and whether it is a positive statement or a negative statement. Do you agree with the Bates 'interpretations?


Photo/video courtesy of UP

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Recap: 'Plans, Bands and Mashed Potatoes'

Bringing Up Bates "Plans, Bands and Mashed Potatoes"
  • Erin gathers her siblings to discuss a surprise weekend getaway for Kelly's 50th birthday. "This is going to be a complete surprise, so the main thing is that nobody talks about it," Erin tells the little kids. Judson and Jeb claim they can keep a secret, but that remains to be seen.
  • A few weeks ahead of Lawson's concert tour, he has the band over to rehearse. Some of the members don't know the songs, so the practice is a bit rough. "I'm sure that the pressure is setting in and that Lawson is starting to feel nervous," says Kelly.
  • Later, Gil and the boys discuss building a "basketball goal" in the yard. They have been playing on gravel for more than 10 years and have been saving money to pour a slab of concrete. 
  • "When you learn how to play basketball on gravel, you have home court advantage over anyone that comes to your house because most people don't have that talent," says Nathan.
  • Everyone has their own idea about where the court should go. "Lawson always has the perfect plan, no matter what anyone else says," says Erin. They decide to shoot for it. Whoever makes a basket makes the final call.
  • "I know one thing for sure," says Kelly. "You boys definitely need a court. You need some practice. How about y'all take up a different sport."
  • Kelly suggests the guys tear down the junk shed and use that concrete slab for their court. Gil says that will cost too much money. "That doesn't cost a dime, darlin,'" says Kelly. "One match."
  • So Kelly decides to shoot a basket. "I've never even seen my mom throw a basketball, in her life," says Zach. And she makes it! 
  • "When I saw my wife make that shot...I'm kind of shaking in my boots," says Gil. It still might be a while before the actual project goes down though. The Bates do operate on Bates time, after all.
  • Warden heads over to Erin's house, which is about 30 minutes away, for a cooking lesson. He makes chicken, mashed potatoes, rolls, salad, and cookies.
  • "In a lot of households, the guys kind of do these things and the girls do these things, but in our house, it's not really that way," says Lawson. "It's all hands on deck." Zach jokes that he is the best at everything because he is the oldest.

Bates in Australia!


For those of you who live in Australia and have been eager for the Bates to visit your country, Gil and Kelly Bates are finally headed Down Under!

Alongside David and Priscilla Waller (Anna Duggar's sister and brother-in-law) and their three children (Paul, Davia, and Phillip), Gil and Kelly will be speaking at the Institute in Basic Life Principles Walk in the Light Family Conference in Lilydale, Victoria, Australia. (Lilydale is northeast of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.)

The conference runs from Sunday, January 15th, to Wednesday, January 18th. Visit the IBLP Australia website for details on late registration. Sessions on Sunday and Monday night will be free for guests. Contact the IBLP Australia office (details on the website) for more information. If you end up attending, please send pictures and let us know if you were able to meet the Wallers and/or Bates.

Photo courtesy of thebatesfamily.com

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

This Week on 'Bringing Up Bates'

Are you ready for another round of all-new footage featuring UP TV's largest family? Episode two of Bringing Up Bates season five, "Plans, Bands and Mashed Potatoes," premieres tomorrow at 9pm ET/8pm CT and 11pm ET/10pm CT. It's only a 30-minute show, but you'll still see several story lines.

Ahead of Kelly Bates' 50th birthday coming up on October 26th, Erin Paine gathers her siblings together to discuss plans for a surprise party. Jeb and Judson Bates vow to keep their lips sealed, but some of the older siblings are wondering if the two youngest Bates kids will actually be able to keep a secret.



 Bates kids

Later, Gil Bates and his older boys head outside to find a location for a basketball court. They have always played on gravel, but Gil and Kelly agree that it's time to build a solid foundation.


 Who knew Mama Bates could shoot hoops? Does she make the shot? Find out on tomorrow's episode!


With all the older girls either married or busy with college, Kelly has to rely on the boys for help with meals. (The Bates mom says that has been a big adjustment.) Warden, the Bates' budding chef, visits Erin to learn how to cook a family favorite.

 Warden Bates

 Erin Bates Paine and Warden Bates


Max the puppy is growing! He waits eagerly for Chad to return home from work.

 Chad Paine and puppy Max Paine

Later, Lawson Bates hosts a band practice for his upcoming concert tour. 

 Lawson Bates and his band

Carlin Bates rehearses with the band

Photos courtesy of UP