Friday, January 2, 2015
"Meet The Bates" Recap
Gil and Kelly Bates, parents of 19 kids, got pregnant with Zach three months after their wedding. Like the Duggars, the couple has decided to leave the size of their family up to God.
Even though they have a large family, the Bates insist that each of their kids has a unique personality, and they can tell you what makes each of them unique.
Zach is the teacher/researcher. Michaella has a heart of gold. Erin is the organizer. Lawson is the family police officer. Nathan is everyone's best friend. Alyssa gets things done. Tori is a ball of energy and the family cook. Trace has a highly competitive nature.
Carlin is high-energy and very expressive. Josie is quiet (when you first meet her) and caring. Katie is spunky. Jackson is always growing and thinking. Warden is always moving. Isaiah has a tender heart.
Addallee thinks of others before herself. Ellie is miss smiley. Callie thinks she is the boss of the family and is little miss sassy. Judson is a teddy bear and loves to cuddle. Jeb is full blast, 90 mph and can tackle his older brother Judson.
How does Gil afford 19 children? He owns a tree-trimming service, a dangerous but well-paying job. Gil says his daughters keep telling him to get a safer job.
Gil’s older sons (Nathan, Lawson, and Trace) often help him with tree jobs.
The Bates are planning a big family supper. Tori, the family cook, shares her view on meal preparations: "Here’s what I say: If you want to complain about it, get in here and cook it yourself. Otherwise, you shut your mouth and sit down and eat it."
Everyone but Alyssa Bates Webster and her husband, John, come over for the meal. Alyssa and John married in May and live in Florida. To make the distance easier, Kelly and the girls FaceTime with Alyssa frequently. Alyssa is the only one of the three married Bates children who lives far away.
Life with 19 kids can be crazy, but Kelly, who is often referred to as the "chaos manager," loves her life. "If we wanted a clean house and no work and no effort, then we would have no children, but we would miss out on all the fun," says the mom of 19.
Kelly sits down with Gil to discuss a budget for the baby shower they are throwing for Zach and Whitney and the baby boy they are expecting, whose name will be Bradley. The Bates' goal is to pull off a beautiful party while keeping the costs down.
Erin shares the heartbreak she has gone through with her miscarriage. She and Chad found out they were expecting three months after their wedding, and their due date was a week and a half before Zach and Whitney's. They were devastated to find out at the first ultrasound appointment that Erin had miscarried.
"The hardest thing was to see how much it hurt [Erin]," says Chad.
Although Erin often gets emotional when her family members talk about Zach and Whitney's baby, she has decided to be involved in all the preparations.
"It’s not about me," says Erin. "It’s really about friendship…making the other person feel special and important. And I want Whitney to feel special and important because I really am happy for her."
Kelly and the older girls get together to address envelopes for Zach and Whitney’s baby shower. Whitney, who comes over to the Bates house often to help out Kelly, joins her in-laws. Erin and Carlin head to the store to pick up supplies for the shower.
Zach and Whitney begin renovations on their baby’s room. Gil comes over to lend a hand. While they work, Gil shares parenting wisdom with his eldest son: "Bradley and Whitney are more important than anything else you are trying to do."
One of Gil's favorite mantras is that "people are more important than projects."
While setting up for the baby shower, Kelly is informed via phone call that 17-year-old Trace has been in a car wreck.
"I know that the family has a tendency to minimize things when they tell it to me because I panic," says Kelly.
Trace is shaken up by the accident, but the rest of the family is thankful to find out that he has escaped uninjured. He had been driving too fast and had slid off the road.
Everyone heads to the baby shower. Alyssa and John come up from Florida for the first time since their wedding.
The highlight of the shower is having all the married couples, each person with one hand tied behind his or her back, try to put a cloth diaper on a baby doll. Gil and Kelly are pros, but Zach and Whitney have a harder time figuring it out.
After the shower, Alyssa and John go back to the house with the rest of the family to make a big announcement. Alyssa is wearing a shirt that says "bun in the oven." Everyone is thrilled to find out that there is another Bates grandchild on the way! Alyssa is due in April.
"We’re the last of a dying breed…single guys," jokes Lawson, while sitting with Nathan and Trace.