The Bates Family

Birthday Party

by Kelly on May 23, 2011


The ABC film crew was here to film a segment during a birthday party for an upcoming Nightline show. We were very honored to have Claire Pedersen, Juju Chang, and Andy Bowley join us for this project.

The children had fun playing basketball, Rook, riding horses, and playing bluegrass gospel music with their company. It was a wonderful time celebrating with old friends and hearing testimonies of what God is doing in the lives of others!




{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

brenda May 23, 2011 at 1:34 am

Do you know when Nightline will be showing the segment? Your family is an inspiration for those of us who have a large family! We have six & whenever anyone says “OH God Bless You, I respond He certainly has!”


Gil May 23, 2011 at 2:29 am

Dear Brenda, I think the show will be June 8th at 10pm. Thank you for your encouragement! God bless, Kelly
PS… the date has just changed, so we’re not sure when it will air.


brittani May 23, 2011 at 2:35 am

you have a nice family mr. and mrs. bates


Hannah in England May 23, 2011 at 10:29 am

Thank you for this post. I’m wondering what the game Rook is? I’ve read about it a few times in your posts and am curious. I’m newly married and since reading your website my husband and I have been encouraged to cancel our cable TV and look for other ways to spend time together. After reading about it in your posts we got some UNO cards and now love playing.
Thanks for be such an inspiration,


Gil May 23, 2011 at 5:27 pm

Dear Hannah,
Rook is another card game that is quite fun! Try reading books together out loud and go for walks holding hands! Fill your spare time with talking and laying on a picnic blanket together watching the clouds… and more talking! You’ll have lots more time for hugs and kisses! Have Bible study together! And if you want to opt for an occassional DVD together choose some purposeful ones like Flywheel, Facing the Giants, Fireproof, Sheffey, etc. Have company over and play some board games then do a Bible study together. The time will be well spent and you’ll be amazed at how communication and romance blossom when you’re spending time gazing at each other instead of the tube! Love, Kelly


Emma Culverhouse May 23, 2011 at 5:40 pm

As always it is a pleasure to see your updates. Kelly I love the fact you have taken the time to offer Hannah some advice & as usual they’re great words. I have taken to reading a psalm a day to see if I can find some comfort and encouragement from the bible.
I look forward to your next update xxx


kyra May 23, 2011 at 8:50 pm

thats fantastic advice kelly, i will have been married to my husband for 5 years in august, and we have 3 little ones, so finding time to spend together isnt at all easy, as soon as we sit down to talk, or to play games or watch a film, i have things that need cleared away or a baby to tend to. do you have any tips for a young mum of 3, to keep organised aswell as being able to spend the much needed quality time with my husband? you are a lovely inspiration to us all!! love Kyra


Gil May 24, 2011 at 5:48 am

Dear Kyra,
I’ll try to do a post on this subject in the next few weeks since my heart goes out to young moms with little ones. For starters, work to make time for one another and teach your children at young ages to appreciate that time. Make sure there’s plenty of playtime for them too… But secure children won’t panic if mom and dad are hugging and sitting together for a few minutes while they play by themselves… in fact, they’ll appreciate the strong marriage relationship you build and the quality time you’re able to devote as a result! We’ve listened to many teens who are anxious to get out of the house because of all the arguing dad & mom do, so your time invested in each other will pay off for everybody! Take advantage of childrens bedtimes… thats time to do a few needed projects and then its alone time for you & hubby! Make it a point to go to bed together at the same time so that you don’t lose valuable talk/ cuddle time! Keep each other as a priority! Try to organize your life & schedule so as to take advantage of each moment (for the children & the hubby!). Hold hands every chance you get… walking, driving! Use your cell phone often to keep in touch during the day. Write love notes. Have a regular date night (This is a wonderful, but often neglected means of spending time together & giving mom a chance to be treated special!) And its a fun thing to have date nights with your children to show them they’re special also! Love, Kelly


Ana May 23, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Bates Dear Family, I am writing from Buenos Aires Argentina, my name is Anna and for almost 33 years I’m happily married to Alberto, we are blessed with 9 children and adopted 2 young disabled and foster family are also collaborating with the Family Court. The love of God is wonderful in our lives and has transformed us and we can serve you in this way 12 years ago that we are in the way of the Lord and have accepted Christ as our only savior and everything we do and say in our family tour around the person of Jesus.Nos often wish we could contact to talk about the wonders of our God in our lives and in yours, we know you are very blessed and have much love to give to others. Blessings and greetings in the Lord’s love to you all. We hope you respond soon.


Gil May 24, 2011 at 5:33 am

Dear Ana,
To God be the glory for the marvelous things He has done in your lives (and ours!). It amazes me so much that His gift of salvation was free (not earned) and that it was extended to me! We serve a LIVING, LOVING God! Love, Kelly


Melody May 24, 2011 at 4:37 am

When will this air??? I would love to watch it.


Gil May 24, 2011 at 5:27 am

Dear Melody, We think June 8th at 10 pm. Love, Kelly
PS… We just found out the date has changed and we’re not sure when it will air now.


Gil May 25, 2011 at 4:15 am

Dear Melody, Actually the date has changed, so we’re not sure yet. Love, Kelly


kyra May 24, 2011 at 8:17 pm

Thankyou very much for replying, and giving me some wonderful advice that i will of course use, we have always tried not to argue and if we do have any issues we will try to discuss them in private, i try to get my children involved in lots of activities to, whether its projects at home or playgroups, even outings with friends they seem to enjoy very much. I think we do tend to forget about how important our spouses are when were trying to raise a family, but from now i will remember that having alone time with him is priority. Holding hands we can do, texting and calling no problem, and we will definatly be arranging some date nights, think that is just what we need, also to have nights out as a family will be lots of fun to!! i will look forward to reading future updates, and getting lots more advice to!! And on a `Birthday Party` note we are very excited to be planning our first sons 1st birthday coming up in June…my 2 daughters Ellie and Grace have been making him cards, so no doubt we will have a very colourful house that morning!! love Kyra


Ana May 24, 2011 at 9:15 pm

Dear Friends: Greetings in the peace of God and we thank them for having responded to the email. We want to share with you as with other life brothers in the Lord and how much that has blessed us. God has for each of their children gifts and talents given to us beforehand and we should use the benefit of others, always looking at the needs of others before our own. For some time we care and give hospitality to orphans in our home, we share all that God gives us, until these children return to their homes or are adopted by other families. It is a labor of love without pay, just knowing we did what we asked that the word is more than enough, especially lead them in the teachings of our Padre.Desde 12 years ago that we gathered in the Christian church GRACE AND GLORY Buenos Aires in Argentina, we have been visited repeatedly by pastors in his country, his brother Virgil Crook and her son? “I think they know them are Colorado, they have brought messages from the Word of God that have been a great blessing and edification for the life of the saints. We give thanks that our country still have freedom of worship and we can meet in churches for worship, worship him and give him all the grace of our Savior. It is well known for the persecution suffered by many fellow Christians in other countries, like India, we have seen videos they are watching heartbreacking are punished and put to death for preaching the gospel of salvation., pray for one others. Discuss in more continue to communicate, and I leave a lot of writing to share with you that to me in particular fills me with joy, is Psalm 15, who shall abide in thy tabernacle?. We said goodbye to the love of God! Blessings.


Hannah May 24, 2011 at 9:36 pm

Dear Kelly,
Thanks for your precious suggestions, we will try them all! It is also so helpful to hear your suggestions for couples with little ones, what pearls of wisdom! Thank you for taking the time in your busy life to share and encourage others, it is much appreciated.
God bless you and your family,
Love, Hannah


brittani May 25, 2011 at 5:23 am

i like playing baketball to but i go over to a local school in my area to that and i have to wait the school gets out or after dinner.


Melody May 25, 2011 at 8:02 am

Hello Kelly,

When you find out the date and time, can you please let me know?

Also I was reading a few of your responses to time alone with your spouse, granted I’m still single. But going to bed together will hard for me to do if I ever do get married. I work night shift for an emergency communications department. I can’t sleep at night anymore. Even if I’m off I stay up all night. It does allow me to get laundry, cleaning and even shopping done at Super Walmart without being distracted. This is a bonus to my lifestyle. It also allows me to be involved in the youth ministry at my church. My church has the sunday sermons online. Since I miss sunday morning service and I can go online get caught up on the teachings.

Your family is an inspriation that you can live in the world but no be of the world. I hope to you continue to allow us to watch your family grow.




Rudy Tecat May 25, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Hi! I think you have a wonderful family. My wife and I have just cancelled our cable and have put the TV in the closet, so we won’t have the distraction of it all. And, we’re just about ready to put away our computer, too, so we can spend extra time in prayer. The downside is that we won’t be able to watch you on Nightline or 19 Kids, and we won’t be able to read your blog. Can we please come and stay with you instead, so we don’t miss out on any of your wonderful, encouraging personal stories?


Gil May 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Dear Rudy,
I think the time together and the time in prayer will be time well spent! We usually have a great time of fellowship with other families on Wednesday night after church, and we’d love you to join us!! God bless, Kelly


Thomas Paine May 25, 2011 at 2:23 pm

HA! I know those people!!! look forward to seeing them this next week! ;D


Kay Walter May 26, 2011 at 4:20 am

Here’s a little different perspective…granted that most of the TV my husband and I watch is part of the Discovery Channel family, National Geographic, and the History Channel…however we find this type of TV watching gives us interesting conversations and keeps us current. We are in our late 60′s and feel that learning continues throughout life. I have no problem with people who don’t watch TV for whatever reason, but it is not evil. We also enjoy emailing people from many parts of the country and world, as well as getting fresh ideas from many internet sources. I do agree if a person’s life is very busy, as I know yours is, Kelly, what free time you have is a precious commodity and must be used to it’s best advantage. We’re retired, which is quite different. I am a big fan of the TLC shows about families and a big fan of the Bates, so my TV stays where it is, and the cable stays on. Different strokes for different folks as we old hippies used to say. God Bless, Kay


Gil May 26, 2011 at 7:00 am

Dear Kay,
You’re right, the TV itself is not bad…it’s often what we allow on it that’s bad. For instance, I wouldn’t want someone to come into my home with my children if they are cursing, taking the name of the Lord in vain, or engaging in an adultrous relationship; however that is often what we allow ourselves to be entertained with.
TV can be used to show productive things, which is why we use a monitor for selected DVDs that are wholesome and character building. The reason we don’t personally have a TV is because of our own weaknesses to want to watch unproductive or uneducational things. Some may not have that same weakness. The other thing we have to personally monitor is the temptation to let TV viewing waste a lot of precious time together. Often dads in front of a TV are annoyed when little Junior steps in front and accidentally blocks his view, because it is so captivating.
We found that by limiting our viewing and by using only selected shows, we could enjoy an occassional show together plus have quality active playtime with dad & mom regularly. Our children much more prefer one on one time with us and they enjoy the great outdoors. Many children with a heavy diet of TV are inactive and become less creative and less sociable, not to mention they often role model bad habits picked up by watching inappropriate role models. But healthy monitoring can make good use of a device that can enhance learning. We love watching educational DVDs like Moody Science and Creation seminars. And yes, we love watching the Duggars on DVDs that were given to us as a gift!
So, if you are at peace with TV in the home & the selection of shows chosen to watch, my suggestions are not aimed at you. As mentioned earlier, some may never struggle with the “magnetic” pull TV can have and we are so grateful for choices of shows that can be helpful and harmless. However, for those that struggle with redeeming their time or with filtering out the bad, a monitor may be a wiser choice so that some form of self control can be administered.
Love, Kelly


Kate May 26, 2011 at 7:49 am

Hi Mrs Bates

I am writing from Australia. I just wanted to say you and your family have been such an inspiration to my husband and I. We were not very religeous but in the last 12 months we have started reading the bible together and reading a few books on keeping our hearts and minds turned towards the Lord. We were inspired seeing your family and the faith and commitment you have made to the Lord. We have significantly cut down our tv viewing time to spend more time together in our young marriage and we are currently looking in to our local churches to see which one would be the best fit for us. We want to accept the Lord as our personal saviour.
Are there any books you could reccomend to us to read to develop a better relationship with the Lord?

Thanks for your time reading this, I hope God continues to bless your wonderful family



Gil May 26, 2011 at 4:48 pm

Dear Kate,
I’m so encouraged and excited about the changes taking place in your lives. There is a terrific book by John Phillips called Exploring the Scriptures or Bible Explorer’s Guide which gives a very understandable overview of the Bible ( Another resource we love is sermons by SM Davis, many of which can be downloaded for free ( We also enjoy sermons by David Gibbs Jr, and you can download them also (
Since this is such an important question, I’d like to do an entire post on it with several more resources, so I’ll begin to work on that over the next week or two! In the meantime, keep up the quality time! Much love aqnd God bless, Kelly


Kay Walter May 26, 2011 at 8:14 am

Dear Kelly, Since I grew up an Army Brat I spent a fair share of my childhood overseas where there was no American television. Perhaps that is the reason I don’t feel the need to watch TV with the exception of the shows I enjoy. In fact, just the other morning I enjoyed a rerun of the Bates, Duggar and Wilson families when your house makeover was in progress. The new addition is beautiful but your ‘old’ house had a certain coziness and charm, too. The kids sure have grown in since then!!! My TV plan is to tape the shows I want to watch each week and then watch them at our leisure. God Bless, Kay


kimberly May 26, 2011 at 8:26 pm

That looks like so much fun! You guys are so encouraging. Happy late birthdays to the birthday babes!

We are considering getting rid of our tv…it is very time consuming and we can think of much better things to spend our time doing as a family.

Love your blog! Happy Thursday, Bates family!


Kate May 26, 2011 at 10:07 pm

Hi Mrs Bates

Thank you so much for your prompt reply you truly are a Blessing!

We will have a look at those resources tonight together and we look forward to reading your post in a few weeks time. You are such a wonderful person to give of your time in this way when you are so busy it is very much appreciated!

God bless


Melody June 5, 2011 at 7:48 am

Did you find out when this will air? Last you wrote the date had been changed.


Gil June 5, 2011 at 12:54 pm

Not yet, but it will be after July. I’ll let you know when we do find out. Love, Kelly


Melody June 6, 2011 at 6:43 am

Thanks Kelly


Natalie November 18, 2013 at 11:09 pm

Dear Mrs. Bates,

Would you mind telling me when Josie’s birthday is?


Kelly November 26, 2013 at 2:06 am

Dear Natalie,
Josie’s birthday is in August. Love, Kelly


Natalie November 28, 2013 at 6:43 pm

Thank you!


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