Sunday, March 31, 2019

Zoey's Unicorn Party

Zoey Joy Webster celebrated her first birthday yesterday at the Websters' home in Florida. Just as she did for Allie and Lexi, Alyssa went all out with decorations and desserts for the party. The theme was unicorns. To see photos of Allie and Lexi at their first birthday parties, check out Thursday's post.

Lexi Webster, Zoey Webster, Allie Webster

Alyssa Webster and Zoey Webster
Alyssa Webster and Zoey Webster

"Granny" Kelly, "Pawpaw" Gil, Judson Bates, and Jeb Bates attended, as did John's family, who live in the area.

Gil Bates and Allie Webster
Gil Bates and granddaughter Allie Webster

Photos courtesy of Alyssa and John Webster,

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Everly Turns One

Two days ago was Zoey Webster's first birthday, and today is Everly's. Happy birthday, Everly! The Paines have had photos taken by the talented Taryn Yager of each of their children at one year old. For fun, we have included pictures of all three kiddos.

Everly Paine
Everly Paine, age 1 March 2019
Everly Paine
Everly Paine

Carson Paine
Carson Paine, age one May 2016
Chad Paine
Carson Paine
Carson Paine
 Brooklyn Paine
 Brooklyn Paine, age 1 August 2017

 Brooklyn Paine
Brooklyn Paine

Photos courtesy of TarynYagerPhotography

Friday, March 29, 2019

Full One + One Music Video

Lawson Bates and Oliva Collingsworth

It's here! The official music video for Lawson's new single "One + One" has just been released, and you can watch it below. The video features Lawson, Carlin, Evan, and gospel singer Olivia Collingsworth. Olivia is a friend of both the Duggars and the Bates, and she sang the song "Holy Ground" during John-David Duggar and Abbie Burnett's ceremony last November. But before you start thinking that Lawson and Olivia should get together, we should mention that Olivia has a boyfriend. 

Photo/video courtesy of UPtv

Reminiscing with the Paines

Erin Bates Paine and Chad Paine
Erin Bates Paine and Chad Paine
Erin: "I look like a teenager! Oh my goodness, those three kids have aged us."

Chad: "I wouldn't trade it though. It's worth getting aged over."

Erin and Chad Paine love to reminisce. During their romantic getaway at Whitestone Country Inn, they look through a photo album of pictures from the day of their engagement. That was five years ago, and they can't believe how young they looked and how quickly the time has gone (web exclusive video from last night's episode is below).

Photo/video courtesy of UPtv

Thursday, March 28, 2019

'A Proposal to Remember & A Baby on the Way' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "A Proposal to Remember & A Baby on the Way"

  • Chad takes Erin to Whitestone Country Inn, which is where they were engaged, to celebrate their fifth anniversary. “It’s wonderful to be back,” says Chad. They have booked the Mallard Suite. “This is like the most luxurious thing we’ve ever stayed in,” says Erin.
  • When Erin enters the room, she finds a bouquet of wildflowers and a little package of goodies from Chad. “I would take this over a million roses any day,” she says. They kick off their getaway with a private cooking lesson with the inn’s chef. They make a pan-seared chicken breast with a portabella cream gravy. The secret to the perfect pan-seared chicken breast is to sear it in a cast-iron skillet with the skin side down first. “I think Chad knows that I love cooking,” says Erin.
  • Later, they sit inside the little country church and exchange gifts. Erin presents Chad with his beloved Bible that she had rebound. She also gives him a journal because “One of my favorite things about you is that you journal,” says Erin. “I love that you take time to reflect, and I love the fact that I can go back ten, even 15 years into your life. It’s just the sweetest thing to me.”
  • Chad takes Erin on a ride in a horse-drawn carriage, just like they did before they got engaged. And then just like they did five years ago, they get off at the gazebo, where Chad has flowers waiting. “You’ve been the best mom, the best wife, and I just want to say thank you so much,” says Chad. “This is a little token of my love for you, and it’s also a little token from our three little children.” He gives her two beautiful rings that fit together. Erin is blown away.
  • “…Erin has poured her life into three little lives, and...she has poured her life into me, and so one ring was from the children, one ring was from myself,” explains Chad.
  • Gil and Kelly are back home with the Paine kids playing a game of Mother May I. “Gil says that it’s hard for him to picture himself as a grandpa because he still in his mind pictures himself as 24 and wrestling and running…but me, I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I will keep dying my hair. I don’t want the gray hair, but I love being Granny.” When Gil was Chad’s age (31), he had 7 children.
  • The East Tennessee Bates get together at a pumpkin patch to celebrate Bradley’s fourth birthday. “Wait, who’s four?!” exclaims Lawson. “I thought he was two!”
  • “He’s so full of energy, and yet he’s so sweet and sensitive,” says Kelly of Bradley. “I’m Granny’s favorite cause I am so good-looking,” Bradley tells the camera, laughing.

Baby Balka is a...

Kelton Balka and Josie Bates Balka
Kelton Balka and Josie Bates Balka

As promised, Josie and Kelton Balka have just announced the gender and name of their baby, due July 25th. It's a girl! And they name they have chosen is Willow Kristy Balka. Kristy was the name of Kelton's beloved mother (Kristy Balka) who passed away in April 2009 during the birth of Kelton's youngest sibling, Kerstin.

Josie balka Willow Kristy Balka

Photos courtesy of Taryn Yager Photography, UPtv

Zoey Turns 1

Zoey Webster and Alyssa Bates Webster
Zoey Webster and Alyssa Bates Webster

Happy 1st birthday, Zoey! The Websters will celebrate their daughter's first year with a birthday part this Saturday. For fun, we have included photos of both Allie and Lexi at their first birthday parties. 

Allie Jane Webster, one year old 2016
Allie Jane Webster, one year old April 2016

Lexi Mae Webster, one year old January 2018

Photos courtesy of Alyssa and John Webster

One + One Music Video

Several weeks ago, Lawson Bates filmed a music video for his new single "One + One." The video features Carlin (wearing Josie's wedding dress) and Evan, as well as some surprise special guests. Below is a sneak peek. The full video will be released tomorrow.

Photo/video courtesy of UPtv

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Balka Baby Guesses

Josie Bates Balka and Kelton Balka
Josie Bates Balka and Kelton Balka

As we shared last week, Josie and Kelton Balka are gearing up to announce the gender, and likely the name, of their baby to the public very soon. What do you think it will be? And what "type" of name do you predict they will choose? Will choose something from the Bible, or will they go with a very traditional name that is back in vogue, like Bryon or Iris? Or do you see them going "royal" with a name like William or Catherine? Josie's middle name is Kellyn, and Kelton's is Edward.

Photo courtesy of Josie and Kelton Balka

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

2 Bates Daughters Move Home

Tori Bates and Bobby Smith moving
Tori Bates Smith and Bobby Smith move back to Knoxville

Have you heard the exciting Bates news? Michaela and Brandon Keilen are relocating to East Tennessee! (Michaela also has an announcement regarding her career plans, which you can read about in the post we published earlier today.)

And guess what? Another Bates daughter is moving home, as well. Tori, Bobby, and almost-five-month-old Kade have left Nashville. Less than one year ago, the Bates family transported all their belongings three hours west. And they just moved them back. Kelly is thrilled to have two of her daughters back in the Knoxville/Rocky Top area.

East Tennessee is home for Michaela and Tori, but it isn't where their husbands hail from. Bobby is from Florida, while Brandon's family lives in Michigan. 

Photo courtesy of

Michael Moves Home

Michaela and Brandon Keilen

On our blog about the Duggar family, we just announced Jinger and Jeremy Vuolo's upcoming move to Los Angeles. Well, a member of the Bates family just shared news of a move, as well. Michael and Brandon Keilen are moving to Michael's home state of Tennessee!

Michael already has an EMT-IV license and a degree in medical health science. She will begin nursing school this fall, and she found the most affordable schooling in Tennessee. She and Brandon are completing the process over the next several weeks.

The Keilens have always known that Chicago would not be a permanent home for them, and Michael has missed the Smoky Mountains and her family very much.

Photo courtesy of

Monday, March 25, 2019

The Bates Kids Love Katie

Jeb Bates, Judson Bates, Katie Bates

Mom and Dad are away, so Katie and the kids will play. For the first time ever, 18-year-old Katie is watching her younger siblings while Gil and Kelly leave town. And it sounds like they are going to have a pretty good time (video below)...

Jeb: "Can I have ice cream? Eat Popsicles?"

Katie: Of course. What is my name?

Jeb: "Katie."

Katie: "You can have whatever you want. Mom and Dad are gone."

Photo/video courtesy of UPtv

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Sunday with the Websters

The Websters have a tradition of taking a family photo outside their church on many Sunday mornings. Today, the ladies were looking pretty in pink (and purple), and John was sporting a deep purple shirt.

John Webster, Zoey Webster, Alyssa Webster, Lexi Webster, Allie Webster
John Webster, Zoey Webster, Alyssa Webster, Lexi Webster, Allie Webster

Photo courtesy of Alyssa and John Webster

Friday, March 22, 2019

Gender Announcement Coming Soon

Josie Balka is almost 22 weeks pregnant with her first baby. She and Kelton Balka found out the gender of Baby Balka and announced it to the family while everyone was in town for the big Bates Valentine's Day party last month. The expectant parents are hoping to share the news, as well as the name they have chosen, with the public next week, so stay tuned!

Josie Bates Balka, 21 weeks pregnant
Josie Balka, 21 weeks pregnant

Photo courtesy of Josie and Kelton Balka

Addee's Hearing Aids

Addallee and Carlin Bates
Addallee Bates: "The biggest difference in the new hearing aids is probably that I don't pick up so much background noise.

Kelly Bates: "Ya ‘cause there’s a lot of noise going on here all the time. There’s always background noise!"

Last night on Bringing Up Bates (check out our recap), we watched Addallee visit the otolaryngologist for a reevaluation of her hearing. Addee really likes her new children's hearing aids because they work better and are less bulky, and her family says they have boosted her confidence levels. They have also helped improve her speech and her ability to play piano (video below).

Addee's was born premature and stopped breathing soon after for several minutes, causing Gil to begin CPR while they waited for the Medford Volunteer Fire Department, which the Bates credit for saving their daughter's life. Addee was in the intensive care unit for a week, but miraculously, she doesn't have any other medical problems, aside from her hearing difficulties.

The three double letters in Addallee's name symbolize the second chance at life that God gave her. Her situation inspired young Zach, Michael, and Nathan to join the volunteer fire department.

Photo/video courtesy of UPtv

Thursday, March 21, 2019

'A Newlywed Nest & Trace Put to the Test' Recap

Bringing Up Bates "A Newlywed Nest & Trace Put to the Test"

  • Gil and Kelly take Addallee to audiologist Samantha Wallenstein and pediatric otolaryngologist Dr. John Little.
  • Addee was born premature with the cord wrapped around her neck, causing her to stop breathing for a period of time. “…Yet she had no problems,” says Carlin, who helps Addee with schoolwork and piano. “It literally was a miracle. But when she started school, we started realizing she couldn’t really hear what we were saying.”
  • “Addee was struggling to hear, but Gil would talk to her, and she seemed to hear fine, and when we ended up making an audiology appointment, we realized she could hear the male lower range voices better than she could hear the higher range female voices, so they prescribed her hearing aids,” explains Kelly.
  • Addee’s previous hearing aids were uncomfortable and caused a lot of feedback, but the new digital ones work much better. The hearing test determines that she has normal hearing in the low frequency sounds and significant hearing loss in the mid to high frequency sounds, and the new hearing aids help balance those out. Thankfully, the doctor says that her hearing loss is stable.
  • “I’ve noticed an improvement all around, her hearing, her speech, everything,” says Kelly. “… I don’t have to worry about her confidence level. She feels good about herself right now.”
  • “The biggest difference in the new hearing aids is probably that I don’t pick up so much background noise, which is kind of nice when I’m here,” says Addallee. “Ya ‘cause there’s a lot of noise going on here all the time,” agrees Kelly. “There’s always background noise.”
  • Josie’s church friend Samantha comes over to help her decorate her new apartment. Whitney stops by to see the progress. “I’ve always been more drawn to the bohemian type of decorations,” says Josie. “I wanted to have something that was a little bit modern but still different from everything else.” Josie likes more muted colors, versus brighter colors.
  • Later, Gil and Kelly surprise Judson and Jeb by taking them to an indoor rock-climbing gym. “Let me just say this,” Kelly tells the boys. “You have never seen your mama do this before.”
  • “Because we have such a big family, we really want to make sure that we make ourselves put something on the calendar so that some of the younger kids don’t get lost in the shuffle of things,” says Kelly. “There’s something about little outings and to say, ‘You are special, and we’re going to take time to have fun with you.’” 
  • Kelly makes an attempt at the rock wall, but she doesn’t get very far before she climbs down. “The problem is, from the ground, these walls look not very high,” says the mom of 19. “But I’m going to tell you, when you get up there…I couldn’t have been more scared. I just froze. It was terrifying.”
  • Judson makes it to the top of a really tall wall. When he’s halfway up, he starts freaking out, but Gil and Kelly encourage him to finish, and he does! Like Kelly, he doesn’t trust the belay and climbs all the way down to the bottom.
  • “I really think, I’ve got a good tree worker for at least the next twenty years,” says Gil. “I’ve got me a new replacement.”
  • At the end of the episode, Trace, who just joined the deputy reserve as a volunteer, goes on a ride-along with Zach. “I’m super excited to be kind of a mentor for my younger brother,” says Zach. “He’s really looking at making a career out of this…” 
  • "I really would love to go full-time deputy, but right now I've got something very good for me working with Chad, learning a little bit of construction, but I'm just trying to figure out which one do I do