Thursday, January 18, 2018

'Bobby's Happy Camper' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "Bobby's Happy Camper"

  • “I’m extremely excited that Bobby is finally moving here,” says Tori. “Life is just going to be grand. Everything is going to be easy. Well, not really, but I like to think so.”
  • Here's Judson's take on the situation: “Bobby’s moving up to Tennessee so he can marry [Tori] and so he can engage her and so he can (makes kissing motions with his hands).”
  • Zach and Whitney meet Tori at the camper, owned by a friend, that Bobby will be staying in before the wedding. 
  • Later, Erin and Chad stop by to help Tori make welcome signs. One says, “Welcome to Tennessee, God’s Country,” and the other says, Bobby, this is my commitment to you: I will pamper you in your camper. Both have colorful doodles on them. 
  • Josie and Jackson bring Kelton over so he can take a look at the leak under the kitchen sink. Kelton ends up having to fully replace the faucet. 
  • Raising girls is a bad deal, says Gil, who likely has three weddings (Tori, Carlin, and Josie) coming up in the near future. 
  • Down in Pensacola, Bobby picks up the custom ring from Jewelers Trade Shop, the store where his dad purchased his moms engagement ring. Bobby is blown away when he sees the finished product. 
  • When Bobby and his parents, Robert and Sheri Smith, finally arrive in Tennessee, Tori is on cloud nine. Theyve had to be apart for so long, says Sheri. So for him to be able to get up here and get to know the family betterits the best thing right now. 
  • As Tori helps Bobby unpack, she asks him where the ring is. I dont know what youre talking about, responds Bobby, chuckling. Whats a ring? I dont even know why wed be talking about a ring. 
  • Bobby brings his parents over to the big house and gives them a tour before they have to leave. “I don’t think I was quite prepared for the tour, and I don’t know if they were either,” says Gil, laughing. “They might be glad Bobby’s in a camper.”
  • “Whenever company is coming to the house, it’s a super big deal to my mom that the house is clean and…perfect,” says Tori.
  • The Bates are thrilled that Bobby has decided to move to Tennessee ahead of the engagement and wedding. Tori and Bobby are starting to make plans for the future, and there's always a chance that their ministry will lead them out of Knoxville after Tori graduates in May 2018.
  • “I’m really glad Bobby’s willing to make a sacrifice to really invest in us getting to know him better and him getting to know the kids better, and he really acts like he’s happy about it,” says Gil. “I’m really grateful.”

Bobby Arrives in TN

new episode of Bringing Up Bates

It's Thursday, and we all know what that means....

A brand new episode of Bringing Up Bates airs tonight at 9ET/8CT on UP. Will you be watching? Check out the promo video below.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Kelton's Got Skill

"It's great to have a boyfriend that is good at everything, like Kelton is, because he's like another Chad."
-Josie Bates

Between Tori Bates' wedding and Carlin Bates' courtship, we haven't heard much from Josie Bates and her boyfriend, Kelton Balka. In the video below, Kelton, a certified plumber, puts his skills to the test by attempting to fix the kitchen sink in Bobby's RV. Will Kelton be the new Chad Paine?

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Benevolent Bates

Bringing Up Bates

Which member of the Bates family is the most generous? The more accurate question is, are there any Bates who aren't generous? Everyone polled in the video below has a different answer, and they are all eager to shower praise along with their responses.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Monday, January 15, 2018

Tori's Engagement Ring

 Bobby Smith

Before leaving Pensacola to move up to Tennessee, Bobby Smith stops at Jewelers Trade Shop, the store where his dad purchased his mom's ring years ago (video and photo below).

He hasn't quite nailed down all the details of the proposal, but after he sees the finished product, he is even more eager to get down on one knee and unveil it to Tori, who knows an engagement is coming but doesn't know when. When Bobby arrives in Tennessee, Tori asks where the ring is hidden, but Bobby tries to play it cool.

Watch more of this Bringing Up Bates story line this Thursday at 9pm ET/8pm CT, on UP.

Tori Bates engagement ring
Tori Bates' engagement ring

Video/first photo courtesy of UP; second photo courtesy of Shannon Benfield/UP

Sunday, January 14, 2018

'You Hold the Key"

Carlin Bates courtship

"Because it's like I'm staring at the stars up in outer space when I'm looking at those eyes on your pretty face."

A few readers requested that we post the video of the full song that Evan Stewart wrote for Carlin Bates. He performed it when he asked her to begin an official courtship back in August. Watch the clip below, and, if you would like a copy for yourself, click here for the purchase links.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Friday, January 12, 2018

Erin the Decorator

Erin Bates Paine the decorator

Carlin Bates: "Erin's first house, her decorating styles were definitely a test run because her whole entire room...was bright pink."

Chad Paine: "I felt like I went into a little dollhouse every night to go to sleep."

Erin is the Bates family's unofficial decorator, but she admits that it took plenty of trial and error to reach that point. Hear more in the bonus scene below.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Thursday, January 11, 2018

'Decorating Dilemmas and Job Decisions' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "Decorating Dilemmas and Job Decisions"

  • Kelly and Erin arrive in Chicago to help Michaela decorate her new rental home. (She and Brandon recently moved out of their tiny, one-bedroom rental house.) “I have one condition for family coming to help decorate,” says Brandon. “If my wife likes it when they’re done, it can stay.”
  • Although Brandon slightly prefers more modern d├ęcor, Michaela decides to go with a country/farmhouse theme.
  • The three ladies head out to a quilting store to search for fabric to make curtains. Kelly’s ideas prove to be very different than Michaela and Erin’s.
  • “At least we got some ideas,” says Erin, as they leave the store without having chosen fabric. “We found out that we don’t want turquoise curtains.”
  • “Well, I didn’t find that out, but I’m going with y’all,” replies Kelly. “I’m along for the ride.”
  • While the ladies decorate, Michaela shares an update on her journey to motherhood. She has been seeing a specialist for about a year and has done several tests, but they are all expensive. There is one last test she wants to have done by Dr. Vick, the Bates’ obstetrician.
  • “The whole journey to find an answer and just see what might be the problem is very emotional,” says Michaela. “I think we’ve tried all of the major tests, and there’s one more procedure that I want to have done. And then after that, just take a break and enjoy each other and maybe start this journey again later if we don’t have an answer.”
  • That evening, Brandon and the ladies go bowling at Pinstripes. “Mom had let us know that she was the only person, she said, that was allowed to have bumpers up,” says Erin. “I figure since she’s over 50, that’s acceptable.”
  • Kelly is surprised at how competitive Michaela and Erin are with each other. “I do not like for Erin to beat me,” Michaela says firmly, but with a chuckle. “That’s terrible!”
  • After bowling, the three ladies stay up late into the night, but the finished product is worth it. Michaela loves her newly decorated house, which means Brandon is happy, too.
  • Back in Tennessee, Bobby goes to work with Chad to see about taking over his position at the metal recycling facility, in addition to helping out at the Bates’ church. Chad has been offered a job with a local builder, which is a field he has been interested in for a while.
  • Tori, Ellie, Addallee, and Callie come by to pick Bobby up at the end of the day. They make an ice cream run at The Chunky Monkey.
  • While they eat their ice cream, Tori asks Bobby when he is going to propose and if he has looked at rings. “Have you ever heard of a surprise before?” asks Bobby. They change the subject.

Bates Pregnancy Updates

It won't be long before the Bates welcome two new members into their clan. Erin Paine and Alyssa Webster are each past the halfway mark in their pregnancies and are looking forward to meeting their daughters.

Alyssa is due with Zoey Joy Webster on April 2nd, and Erin is expecting Everly Hope Paine on April 28th. Based on their past two pregnancies, there is a good chance that Erin and Alyssa will deliver around the same time. Erin gave birth to Carson and Brooklyn more than three weeks early, while Alyssa welcomed Allie and Lexi within one day of their due dates.

Alyssa Webster at 28 weeks pregnant
 Alyssa Webster at 28 weeks pregnant
Allie Jane Webster and Lexi Mae Webster

Erin Paine at 23 weeks pregnant
 Erin Paine at 23 weeks pregnant

Photos courtesy of Alyssa and John Webster,,

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Bobby...the New Chad?

Chad Paine and Bobby Smith

"Multitasking like crazy? Running around all over the place? Sounds a lot like college and being in a long-distance relationship."
-Bobby Smith

Tomorrow on a new episode of Bringing Up Bates, in addition to watching Michael, Erin, and Kelly decorate the Keilens' new place, we will check in with Chad Paine at the metal recycling facility where he works.

Another employment opportunity has presented itself, so Chad is looking for someone to take his current job...and he is hoping that person will be Bobby. In the video below, Chad shows Bobby what he has been doing for the past few years. Bobby also plans to spend time helping out at the Bates' church, while he and Tori search for a more permanent ministry opportunity.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

North Pole vs. South Pole

"Everything's beautiful to Mom. Everything goes. There are no dead ends. Everything is just beautiful."
-Erin (Bates) Paine

Coming up this week on Bringing Up Bates, Kelly Bates and Erin Paine head to Chicago to help Michaela Keilen set up her new rental home. But it's no secret that Kelly and Erin have very different ideas when it comes to decorating. You'll see what we mean in the promo video below.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Zach and Whitney's Home Reno Project

Last month, we announced that Zach and Whitney Bates had purchased their first home. Over the past several weeks, they have been hard at work doing extensive renovations, including knocking out walls and replacing drywall, building an arch, and installing lighting. Below are a few snapshots to show their progress. Have you ever taken on a similar project?

Zach and Whitney Bates home renovations

Zach and Whitney Bates home renovations

Zach and Whitney Bates home renovations

Photos courtesy of Zach and Whitney Bates/

Monday, January 8, 2018

Snacks at Erin's

"There's some things you can count on. The sun's going to go down, the sun's going to rise....And Erin, if you go to her house, is always going to have good food."
-Lawson Bates

As part of Evan Stewart's scavenger hunt courtship "proposal," the Paines invited some of the couples over to their cottage for snacks and refreshments. As usual, Erin went all out and blew everyone away.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Friday, January 5, 2018

Download Evan's Love Song

Last night on Bringing Up Bates, Evan Stewart asked Carlin Bates to begin an official courtship. Leading up to the big moment, he took her on an elaborate scavenger hunt.

The last stop was Norris Dam, Carlin's "happy place," where Evan performed a love song he had written, called "You Hold the Key." He followed it up with a question: "So I guess what I'm trying to ask you is, 'Will you accept the gift of my heart?'"

That love song is available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon, and CD Baby.

"Because it's like I'm staring at the stars up in outer space when I'm looking at those eyes on your pretty face. Ya you are my dream come true, so I wrote this song to prove that I love you...And out of this whole world, I don't want another girl. See, I've got my heart locked away, baby, and you hold the key."

Photo courtesy of UP

Thursday, January 4, 2018

'The 4 Cs: Carat, Clarity, Carlin and Courtship' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "The 4 Cs: Carat, Clarity, Carlin and Courtship"
  • The Bates are attempting to pull off two big surprises--Josie's 18th birthday and Carlin's courtship "proposal"--in one weekend.
  • "In the Bates family, keeping one secret is hard enough, but two secrets is a whole different story," says Jackson. 
  • To throw Josie off the trail, Kelly, Alyssa, Kelton, and two friends from school take her shopping at a store called Josie's Boutique and out to ice cream at Cruze Farm. Gil and Kelly don't allow their kids to start serious relationships before age 18, so this birthday is especially important for Josie and Kelton. 
  • Back at the Bates house, Gil and the kids are decorating for the party. Michaela flies down from Chicago, Papa Bill and Mama Jane drive in from South Carolina, and other family and friends arrive, as well. Josie is shocked when she walks in the door and hears everyone yell "Surprise!"
  • "When you turn 18, that's a really big deal," says Erin. "Josie, I think she's trying to really push that level, since she's already got a boyfriend, she's already in college." 
  • Down in Florida, Bobby stops by Jewelers Trade Shop, the store where his dad bought his mom's engagement ring. He shows the jeweler a photo of a ring that Tori had said she liked. The jeweler tells Bobby about the 4 Cs of diamonds--clarity, cut, color, and carats. (The fifth C is cash.) 
  • Bobby is moving to Tennessee in less than two weeks, but the jeweler says he should be able to finish the ring by then.
  • The next day, Carlin thinks she is going to the lake with her family and Evan's, but when Evan shows up at the door with roses and a clue. Carlin changes clothes, and she and Evan head out on a scavenger hunt with both sets of parents. The first stop is a lunch cruise on the Tennessee River. 
  • Next, they head to the Bates' church, were Carlin teaches Sunday School. They are greeted by the little kids from both sides of the family singing a love song. 
  • The next stop is Erin's house, where she and some of the married couples are waiting with dessert and refreshments.
  • "[Carlin] was just literally beaming," says Erin, the matchmaker who matched Carlin and Evan. 
  • Evan presents Carlin with a scrapbook filled with photos of the two of them, made by himself and one of his sisters. 
  • The final stop is Norris Dam, Carlin's "happy place." Before they arrive, the family sets up a fancy table, a big box covered in purple wrapping paper (purple is Carlin's favorite color), and a keyboard for background music. 
  • Evan puts a blindfold on Carlin, and he steps behind a tree while she takes it off and opens the box. Out comes a bunch of balloons, and one has a key attached to it. 
  • Evan walks back over and sings a song he wrote for Carlin: "Because it's like I'm staring at the stars up in outer space when I'm looking at those eyes on your pretty face. Ya you are my dream come true, so I wrote this song to prove that I love you...And out of this whole world, I don't want another girl. See, I've got my heart locked away, baby, and you hold the key."
  • By this point, Carlin is sobbing. She unlocks a small box that Evan is holding and finds a bracelet.
  • "So I guess what I'm trying to ask you is, 'Will you accept the gift of my heart?'" says Evan. Carlin says yes!
  • "I kind of was thinking that it should have ended as an engagement," says Kelly. "It was so special, I'm thinking, 'Give her the ring, we'll just all cry right now.'" Gil, on the other hand, isn't so excited about that idea.
  • The families, who had been watching from afar, walk over to exchange hugs. Carlin and Evan are thrilled that they can now hold hands. They seal the deal with a meal beside the edge of the dam. 
  • The Bates end the weekend with the dedication of their new church building. (Their congregation had been meeting in various buildings for about four years.) The Stewarts sing to open the service.

Official Courtship Announcement

Carlin Bates and Evan Stewart start courtship

Just a few hours ahead of the Bringing Up Bates season seven premiere, the network has released an official courtship announcement video from Carlin Bates and Evan Stewart (embedded below). Tune in to UP tonight at 9pm ET/8pm CT for the season premiere.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Kelton in the News

Josie Bates' boyfriend made the news! Kelton Balka, a licensed plumber working in his uncle's business, has been extremely busy this week, as a cold front has caused pipes to freeze across Knoxville. He was featured on WATE 6, the local ABC News affiliate, to help viewers understand what they can do to keep their water running well during the winter. Check out the video below.

Photo courtesy of Josie Bates/; video courtesy of WATE 6

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Bates Relationships Galore!

Josie Bates and boyfriend Kelton Balka

Four daughters married, one daughter courting and headed for engagement, and another daughter quickly moving in the direction of courtship. It's no wonder why Gil Bates is holding his girls close!

In the new season of Bringing Up Bates, which premieres tomorrow (Thursday) at 9pm ET/8pm CT on UP, you'll see Tori and Bobby's engagement and wedding, Carlin and Evan's courtship "proposal," and updates from Josie and Kelton.

Photo courtesy of Josie Bates/

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

2 Days!

Bringing Up Bates season seven premiere 2018

"They're all good guys, and I want [my daughters] to get married, but maybe a little later. But we're just going to try to rejoice in it...and slow it down as much as we can."
-Gil Bates

Season seven of Bringing Up Bates premieres in just two days! As promised, UP has continued to add footage to the sneak peek, so check it out below. "The 4 Cs: Carat, Clarity, Carlin and Courtship"  airs this Thursday, January 4th, at 9pm ET/8pm CT, only on UP.

Photo/video courtesy of UP

Monday, January 1, 2018

Bates Dad Turns 53

Happy New Year to our loyal readers, and happy 53rd birthday to Gil Bates!

Gil and Kelly Bates
Gil and Kelly Bates

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