The Bates Family

Erin’s Engagement–Part 2

by Kelly on August 29, 2013

inn

  It was a fairy tale setting… Chad took Erin to a resort called Whitestone Country Inn in Kingston, Tn. He had pre-arranged a day full of activities!

   First, he took Erin on a canoe ride. Next, they changed clothes for a formal dinner. AIMG_5181 horse and buggy arrived to ride them around the property. Meanwhile, the owners placed Chad’s flowers, guitar, and ring box in the gazebo overlooking the lake, where they were to be dropped off.

   Chad had placed a note in the box, inIMG_5171stead of the ring. The note red, “I finally worked up the courage!” When she read it, he dropped to his knees, pulled the ring from his pocket, and asked her to marry him! They hugged for the first time, and cried many tears of joy! Then Chad sang to her, before taking her to a luxurious 7 course dinner at the beautiful Inn.

    It seemed like it was right out of a story book! They have set November 2nd as their wedding date. We all greatly appreciate your prayers for their new beginning together!

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{ 357 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous August 30, 2013 at 4:01 am

What a beautiful love story!!! Congratulations!!!

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Hailey August 30, 2013 at 4:04 am

So romantic! How sweet. Truely out of a story book.

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M August 30, 2013 at 4:12 am

Awwww!!!! What a beautiful setting. Good job to Chad! Congratulations to Chad and Erin!

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Kim August 30, 2013 at 4:15 am

What a beautiful proposal! Way to go Chad! It is so precious to see two young people in pure, true love! Thank you for sharing these sweet photos with all of us. We can’t wait to see what God has in store for this talented young couple. :-)
Is there a possibility that the wedding would be televised? We were fans of your show and was disappointed when it was not renewed.

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:39 pm

Dear Kim,
They did film it, so we’ll wait and see what they decide to do with it! Love, Kelly

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Natalie Haber September 4, 2013 at 5:14 pm

I am so happy for all of you! What a exciting time! I to was disappointed when the show was not continued. It was a way of being “mentored” almost when mentors are harder to find. The Lord has really taught many so many things threw watching the practical ways you and Michelle duggar live. The gentleness you both have is something I pray daily the Holy Spirit will develop in me.. I hope they televise the engagement and wedding!!
May The Lord bless you!

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Shannon August 30, 2013 at 4:40 am

How beautiful!! I’m sure that was SO special! Congratulations, Chad and Erin!

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kelly August 30, 2013 at 4:45 am

You all have a great photographer! What beautiful pictures…I guess they are both photogenic as well! Congratulations! We have been out to that place too, just to see it, a couple of years ago.

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Susan August 30, 2013 at 4:50 am

So beautiful! Congratulations Erin!

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Libby M. August 30, 2013 at 5:36 am

These are wonderful pictures. Thank you so much for sharing Erin and Chad’s story with everyone on your blog. It is such a huge inspiration to me to wait for the one God has for me and to pursue purity in that relationship when He brings it about. I am so very thankful for the examples that Erin and Chad are as well as your entire family. I especially love the photos of them after they got engaged and they are just taking it all in. The peace of God is so very evident on their faces. Are you all praying in that last picture? – if so, that is absolutely beautiful. Blessings to your entire family!!!

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:37 pm

Dear Libby,
Yes, we were overwhelmed by God’s goodness! Love, Kelly

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Anonymous August 30, 2013 at 5:44 am

Congrats to Erin and Chad!!! Lovely photos can’t wait to hear more!!!

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Laura Melendez August 30, 2013 at 5:46 am

Greetings from So. Cal!!

Congratulations Chad and Erin! This is my hope for my children in the future :) I look up to you so much Mrs. Bates!

Blessings,
A young mom of 9

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Yvette Walshe August 30, 2013 at 6:58 am

Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!! This is super exciting news! I pray for this new time in your lives. Have patience, Love, Love and Love some more. Always kiss goodnight. Always have the Lord as the foundation, walls, studs etc of your Marriage. Pray to Him for guidance. God Bless you both.

Yvette W

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:36 pm

Dear Yvette,
Great advice! Love, Kelly

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Kyra August 30, 2013 at 8:04 am

A huge congratulations to the Bates family, especially Erin and Chad!!
We are so so happy for you!!

Mrs Bates, I have sent you a message, via the contact us, regarding designing a bracelet for Erin’s special day…

I hope you are all enjoying that wonderfully exciting feeling of a wedding in the air!!

Love Kyra x

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:35 pm

Dear Kyra,
I’ll try to find it :) That is sooooo sweet! Love, Kelly

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Kyra August 30, 2013 at 3:43 pm

Thankyou…will look forward to hearing back from you, and Erin of course!! : )

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Amélie August 30, 2013 at 8:53 am

Thank you for all those pictures and the update! Beautiful couple! Your family is such an inspiration to me. I would love to have some updates on Zach!

Amelie from France

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Sara August 30, 2013 at 8:58 am

Congratulations. They make a lovely couple. Your family is an inspiration.
kisses. A big fan from Portugal.
God bless you,
Sara

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Melody August 30, 2013 at 9:22 am

Oh that is so sweet! I can’t wait to hear when Zach and Whit get engaged! :)

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Dani August 30, 2013 at 9:39 am

I had tears in my eyes reading this. This must be the most thoughtful, romantic, gracious proposal ever…an absolute fairytale. A beautiful start to a long and happy, loving life together! Congratulations to the beautiful couple and their families.

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Julie August 30, 2013 at 9:45 am

Wow how romantic!!! :-)
Congratulations to Erin and Chad!

we’ll keep you in our prayers! May all your dreams come true!

Best wishes from Austria, Julie

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Maria August 30, 2013 at 9:54 am

Beautiful. May God bless them and both families abundantly. Thank you so much for sharing this with us – it brings such hope that there are Godly young people in the world today.

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Renee Helller August 30, 2013 at 10:44 am

congratulations! so happy for you. The pictures say it all… they are truly happily in love which each other! may God bless them both.

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Jennifer Lavallee August 30, 2013 at 10:59 am

So beautiful Kelly! Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful and exciting occasion with all of us! What a beautiful couple! I know their wedding will just be a beautiful day as well!
Hope you all are doing well. We met you all back in April at your church and then had lunch with you all. I’m expecting our 8th in December. ( I guess I was pregnant and didn’t know it when we were at your house!)
Best of wishes for the new couple and happy planning for the up coming wedding!
~ Jennifer

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Jenn August 30, 2013 at 11:22 am

Oh, this is a wonderful thing to see. Many thanks to Erin and Chad for sharing their joy with us. And I must say, well done Chad. You planned a special day that you a d your bride-to-be will remember forever. God bless.
P.S. Kelly, who was crying more, you or Gil? :-)

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:33 pm

Dear Jenn,
Haha! We all tease Gil…he cries at the drop of a hat…and he cried all day! Love, Kelly

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Fotini August 30, 2013 at 11:37 am

I read the post in the morning -mind you I live in Greece, so we have quite a time difference :) -, and just now I ‘m able to write a comment as I ‘ve been rereading it and going awwwww countless times… this was indeed a fairytale engagement! They both look so happy! May they always be blessed with faith, health and love!

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Alison August 30, 2013 at 11:37 am

This us so truly awesome! How good our God is!!! Love the photos, the beautiful words, and the encouraging and inspiring courtship.

My parents’ anniversary is November 1st, and they have been together 27 years this year. I know Erin and Chad will have many years together, as well!

Blessings to you all!!
Alison

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Sunshine August 30, 2013 at 11:46 am

Awww!

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Sarah Ellen August 30, 2013 at 11:55 am

These two seem just precious! Thanks for documenting this special day and sharing it with all of us. God bless you, Chad and Erin.

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Amy Faulkner August 30, 2013 at 12:04 pm

Beautiful, just beautiful. I am just tickled for the two of them. Bless them! Bless them so big! Oh, and I LOVE Erin’s 2nd dress! Is it hand made or is there somewhere I can buy it?

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Kelly August 30, 2013 at 1:31 pm

Dear Amy,
Both dresses came from Dress Barn. They were sleeveless, so she added the sweaters. Love, Kelly

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Khiana August 30, 2013 at 5:04 pm

Dress Barn is a nice store. We have one here at Tanger Oulets in Atlantic City, New Jersey. I have shopped there in the past.

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Caryn September 3, 2013 at 4:35 pm

Thank you for the tip on Dress Barn, there is one near me and I’ve never gone there….so went in last week, for a wedding outfit for Friday night and found the perfect outfit and accessories!! :)

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Susan August 30, 2013 at 12:22 pm

What a wonderful way to spend the day. :) Super excited for Chad and Erin. :)

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Rebekah M. August 30, 2013 at 12:48 pm

Oh, it does sound like a storybook! So very sweet! It will be a day they treasure for the rest of their lives! And you all were so wonderful to allow the rest of us to “share” it too. May God bless Chad & Erin!

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Amy August 30, 2013 at 12:58 pm

Precious!! Congrats!

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Elizabeth August 30, 2013 at 1:00 pm

Brought tears to my eyes! Simply beautiful. Congrats to this precious couple and the way they are honoring God with their lives.

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Donna Jordan August 30, 2013 at 1:09 pm

What a beautiful and romantic beginning to their new life. I pray God’s blessings on their new journey. As their parents you must be so proud and feel blessed. Looking forward now to pictures of the wedding. Love your family!!

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Patricia Thebarge August 30, 2013 at 1:12 pm

Erin & Chad,

Thank You so much for sharing yourselves with the world. Your Godly example and Christ-Like behavior is a testimony to us all. I so much enjoyed following your
love story. For all of us who are single let us look to Jesus and not waver in being an example to others. Your story is yet to be told.

Kelly thanks for all the posting of the events. We sure appreciate it. Erin and Chad
we in the Canadian IBLP office (Deanna & Patricia ) have and are praying for you. Keep looking to Jesus.
Blessings,
Patricia

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Kari August 30, 2013 at 1:19 pm

How beautiful! Congratulations, again! We’ve been praying for Chad and Erin since they announced their courtship! Praying that they will have a wedding as special and lovely as they are!

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cassidy August 30, 2013 at 1:28 pm

ahhhhh that is beautiful! chad and erin you two are so amazing together!! I cant wait for another post, you are inspirational. congratulations. I wish you a fantastic life together<3

~ Love, Cassidy (waterloo, Ontario)

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Emillie August 30, 2013 at 1:33 pm

Oh, praise the Lord! Congrats to you all, and I’ll pray for nothing but joy, happiness and many fulfilled years of marriage and worship for these two! May God bless the wedding and may it be a day you all won’t soon forget!

May I suggest two books for your family and Erin? Both books have been a blessing to us! The first is called “All Things Are Ready – A Bride’s Complete Christian Wedding Planner” by Amy Hayes of Doorposts. It’s one of our favorite Christian wedding planners, and as IFB’s, it has showed us how to include Him in ALL aspects of a wedding, rejoicing in what the Lord has done in the lives of 2 people and their families! The second is also from Doorposts. “As Unto The Lord – A Tool for Wives Who Want to Glorify God” by Pam Forster. It has been such a wonderful tool (in KJV) for highlighting scripture that is relevant to a marriage, where God is the center of it all. This book has called me to be a better wife, helping me to identify the things that are Godly and whole, and to recognize sin in various places of our marriage that I didn’t even know about! I wish I had that book when I was first courted! But I was able to get a hold of “The Excellent Wife” by Martha Peace a few years ago! :) I’m sorry for such a long message, but I pray that these books (if you don’t already know about them) help to make the marriage smooth and filled with Him! Congrats to you all and I can’t wait to hear how the planning goes! God bless & sing his praises to glorify Him!

- Emillie

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Michelle August 30, 2013 at 1:51 pm

What a blessing. I say this as I brush tears from my eyes basking in the beauty of a truly blessed courtship and engagement. Praising God for His abundant grace and glory. Erin and Chad have been a dear blessing to me and my family and we will continue to hold them up in prayer.
Thanks Kelly for sharing this with the world. I check your website daily and always am astounded by your honesty, patience and generosity.
Keeping you all in my prayers.
Michelle

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Tiffany August 30, 2013 at 2:07 pm

I have been following your family since your appearance on the Duggar’s show. This was such a beautiful moment, it brought tears to my eyes. What a loving and thoughtful way to profess his love and intentions for Erin. They are truly a beautiful couple and I uplift them in prayer. Congrats and God bless.

Tiffany

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Denise August 30, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Hi Erin, I don’t want to ruin anything but I was wondering if any other Duggar women were going to be bride maids?

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 8:14 pm

Dear Denise,
That was the hardest choice of all!! Erin had so many dear friends, but she only has so much space up front. Michael doesn’t enjoy being in the lime light in front of people, so she humbly declined. So three sisters, one of Chad’s sisters and a close friend make up the 5 bridesmaids. Love, Kelly

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Latisha August 30, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Such a sweet proposal!! I am so excited for them. I can’t wait to see pictures from the wedding.

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Pam A. August 30, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Great job Chad! What a special and beautiful way to propose! Love Erin’s surprise look on her face when she sees the horse drawn carriage! They look very sweet and in-love! It all brought a smile to my face :)

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Khloe Grace August 30, 2013 at 3:28 pm

What a cute couple! They so inspire me to be pure in relationships.:)

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Ann August 30, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Kelly,
Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful proposal! God has truly blessed your whole family! I will keep you in prayer as you plan the Nov. wedding!! Will the wedding take place in Tennessee, and will Erin be moving to Oklahoma?
Thanks for being such an inspiration! God Bless you!

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 8:12 pm

Dear Ann,
Yes, the wedding will be in Clinton, TN. They will live here for the first year since Erin delayed her last semester of school in order to have a fall wedding. We’ll have to wait and see where God leads after that :) Love, Kelly

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Sharon August 30, 2013 at 4:01 pm

Oh my…this is the SWEETEST thing ever!!! It brought tears to my eyes to see how happy they are!!!

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Lydia August 30, 2013 at 4:16 pm

Dear Kelly,
It might be weird to say, but I literally cried over these pictures! Especially when I saw the ones where Erin and Chad were crying! The feelings are just so overwhelming for me right now, I’m so happy for them!
I bet all of Erin’s siblings are going to miss her terribly!

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Symphony August 30, 2013 at 4:50 pm

aww! that is so sweet! i love the pictures!=) congratulations to you both!!!!! praying for you, Symphony

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Beka August 30, 2013 at 4:51 pm

What a wonderful story! You are going to be blessed with some gorgeous grandbabies :)

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Symphony August 30, 2013 at 5:05 pm

are Chad and Erin going to be holding hands from here on? or was that just a special thing for the day?=)

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Kelly September 6, 2013 at 4:15 am

Dear Symphony,
Yes, they hold hands now :) Love, Kelly

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Symphony September 6, 2013 at 9:44 pm

thanks for replying! i cant wait to see more pics!=)
symphony

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Kirsty August 30, 2013 at 5:08 pm

How beautiful… lots of congratulations!

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Hannah August 30, 2013 at 5:17 pm

May God continue to direct there paths. Please let us know if Erin has Bridal register and where.

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 8:10 pm

Dear Hannah,
They would just appreciate your prayers! Thank you! Love, Kelly

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Rachel August 30, 2013 at 5:18 pm

They are such a cute couple! Congrats! I loved seeing all the pictures. I am so happy for them :) I know this is totally random but do any of the older girls have a “Pinterest” account?

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Kelly January 12, 2014 at 3:01 am

Dear Rachel,
Actually Erin never used pinterest, but I started an account to help look up wedding ideas to send to my sisters about cake or flower ideas that I had shown Erin. Later I used it to look up stuff for Whitney. Its not something I use often, simply because of time limitations, but it can be a huge time saver if you’re looking for something specific. Love, Kelly

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Ebersole Girls August 30, 2013 at 5:59 pm

AWW! that was Perfect! so sweet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! are you coming for the turning Hearts Celebration at Bontragers Farm? I hope so!!! :)

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Dear Ebersole Girls,
Unfortunately, wedding plans kept us from coming this year…but I’m sure it was an amazing time with the Duggars there! Love, Kelly

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Kristy J. August 30, 2013 at 6:09 pm

Ok, I was all smiles until I got to the picture of Chad crying, then I lost it! I have been waiting excitedly for the engagement updates! Way to go Chad, that was an amazing proposal! I will keep them in my prayers as they start their new life together. They probably need more prayers to get through the wedding planning though! LOL! Is it wrong that I keep thinking what beautiful grandbabies you and Gil will have? HaHa! Congrats guys!
Love and blessings,
Kristy Jeske

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sonjapetersen August 30, 2013 at 6:10 pm

Dear Bates Family!
Your photos just made me cry…they are full of joy and love- so romantic and honest!
I wish all the best for the young couple and their life together in love and respect.
Thanks to the Lord who brought two young hearts together, may He attend Erin and Chad on their way, in every single step.
Congratulation to all of you!

Regards and greetings, Sonja

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Lyn August 30, 2013 at 6:16 pm

Congratulations to you both, you look truly stunning together and sooooo much in love. Thank u to Mrs Bates for the updates. Love and best wishes to everyone from Great Britain x

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Katrina August 30, 2013 at 6:43 pm

The Lord really is the Best Author of love stories– congratulations everyone!

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Melinda August 30, 2013 at 8:08 pm

Thank you, Kelly, for posting this…I am praying for them!
Where will Erin and Chad have their wedding? Will it be held at your family’s church at the Holiday Inn?

Has Erin started looking for her wedding dress yet?!? I am so excited for them!
Blessings on your day!
Melinda

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 9:11 pm

Dear Melinda,
There is a lovely church near us that is by the river which will make beautiful pictures. Love, Kelly

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Nancy Faver August 30, 2013 at 8:30 pm

Congratulations! What beautiful pictures. May God bring all goodness and peace to them and to your families. I love Erins face when Chad presented his ring to her, priceless.

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Ellen Smith August 30, 2013 at 9:15 pm

Thank you for sharing these beautiful tender moments with us! Congratulations to Erin and Chad and many wishes for God’s blessings to be with you always!

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Lea August 30, 2013 at 9:23 pm

Looking at these pictures almost made me cry!

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Amy August 30, 2013 at 9:36 pm

That is such a beautiful story! Congratulations to them!! I wish them a lifetime full of happiness!

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Diva August 30, 2013 at 10:55 pm

Chad & Erin, could you possibly be ANY cuter?! On a serious note, thank you for being such a great example of purity and trust and faith in God and what he has in store for us. Best wishes!

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Jessica August 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm

Awwwe! Tears swelled up here! Just beautiful. Honestly…..beautiful. What a special couple and am thankful for their precious testimony of purity and love for our Lord!!! God bless you two! Squeals!!

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lisa anne August 30, 2013 at 11:41 pm

How wonderful to read that fairy tales do exist. Kelly is there anyway we can send wedding gifts to the happy couple. In a world filled with unhappiness, your children give me faith each day that I can rear my children properly.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 9:09 pm

Dear Lisa,
That’s really sweet. You certainly don’t have to go to any trouble or expense, I’m sure they’re happy just knowing so many are praying for them :) Love, Kelly

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Carrington August 31, 2013 at 1:27 am

Congratulations to Erin and Chad!! I just love reading y’all’s blog and couldn’t wait for the ebgagement update! You can definitely see the love they have for ech other within each picture. Being a 24-year old young woman, it is great to see a young couple in an amazing relationship this pure and Godly, especially in this day and age when people don’t seem to have standards anymore. I am single right now but know that God has ordained a special man for me and I wait for the day when I can have this mazing relationship like Erin and Chad, and you and Gil. I thank you and your family for being such Godly examples in this world! I will continue to pray for all of y’all and ask that you pray for me as well.

Blessings,
Carrington, TN

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Tara G. August 31, 2013 at 1:35 am

:) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Jody August 31, 2013 at 3:00 am

They literally are the cutest couple ever.

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Miriam August 31, 2013 at 3:07 am

How exciting!!! May the Lord continue to bless them both as they grow closer to the Lord, and soon start a new life together!

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Kimberly Kurkinen August 31, 2013 at 3:48 am

What a beautiful sight! Brings tears to my eyes.

Our God is so good to bring us marriage- and the ability to love so deeply.

Blessings to you as you tie your hearts together!

-Kim and Tim Kurkinen

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Diane Dye August 31, 2013 at 3:59 am

Hi Kelly,

I am THRILLED for Erin and Chad! Thank you so much for sharing this special time in their lives (and yours and Gil’s) with all who follow your blog. Chad has a romantic side I see. Will Gil marry them? My grandfather married my husband and I. It made the occasion so special. They look so in love and I am extremely happy for them. When our daughter, the oldest, was married, her dad cried and cried all through the ceremony. He is emotional too. It is hard for dad’s especially to see their little girls get married. (no matter what the age, they are their little girls).

Please tell Erin hello for me and I am thinking of her at this special time! I so enjoyed meeting her last year at the Indy Conference and hearing her play. =)
I love the scriptures below and are good reminders for all of us. Perhaps Erin will enjoy them too as she embarks on this new chapter/season of life.

Christian Love,
Diane

Eph 4:26…”never let the sun set upon your anger” …
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
New International Version (NIV)
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8 Love never fails.

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Piper August 31, 2013 at 5:05 am

What a lovely day Chad planned :) I love the note in the box! Congratulations again to Erin & Chad!

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Adrienne August 31, 2013 at 6:17 am

Congratulations Erin!!! The photo are beautiful. :)

Is the middle diamond on Erin’s ring heart shaped? I ask because my is, but instead of diamonds on each side mine has sapphires.

November 2nd was my original due date last year!!! (And also my cousins and uncles birthday) It got changed to the 13th, but I had to have a scheduled c-section, so my son came on the 8th, lol. Does that date have a special meaning for them?

God bless! :D

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 9:02 pm

Dear Adrienne,
It is a princess cut stone. Love, Kelly

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Jennifer From France August 31, 2013 at 8:27 am

It’s so beautiful!!! Congratulations! God bless Erin and Tchad and your family

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Rachel C. August 31, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Congratulations, Chad and Erin! :)

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Elena August 31, 2013 at 6:09 pm

Brought tears to my eyes..This was a beautiful moment cought by your camera people. A memory they will have forever. You can see how much they want to reach out and kiss eachother. The commitment to wait is so incredible. What a fine man and an exceptional woman. Congratulations to their engagement and pray that this new faze of life will be filled with joy, happiness and blessing from God.

Congrats to you Kelly and Gil, what a moment for you both. To witness this beautiful exchange between your daughter and Chad. Wow, I put myself in your shoes, i have a baby girl, not a baby 18 years old but still my baby. It has to be an incredible feeling to see her experience this. You can see that you also love Chad. Its just so important that parents respect and love their son in law or daughter in law. And a relief comes with knowing that your daughter is going to be well taken care of. Continued happiness and happy planning.

with respect,

God Bless, a fan for life
xox

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Bethany in Brazil August 31, 2013 at 10:02 pm

Lovely engagement and gorgeous pictures! I love Whitestone!!!
Congrats again to Chad and Erin!

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Ashton August 31, 2013 at 11:03 pm

Aww! I love the photos!!
You all will definitely be in my prayers.

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Abbie September 1, 2013 at 12:38 am

Congratulations to ya’ll! Thanks so much for sharing pictures and Chad and Erin’s story, Mrs. Bates. It’s a such a blessing and encouragement when I see/hear of a couple who leave their love story in the hands of the Master Storywriter. Chad and Erin have been an amazing example so many young people.

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Stacey September 1, 2013 at 12:39 am

I love how Erin is looking at Chad when he sang to her. So sweet. :)

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Denise S. September 1, 2013 at 2:44 am

Thank you Kelly for sharing such a romantic story with the most beautiful pictures.. What a loving way to propose to Erin!! How did she manage to keep her dress dry in the canoe? Two very special people deserve such happiness. My best wishes to them and many grandbabies for you and Gil!!

Denise

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:58 pm

Dear Denise,
Lol…I thought it was gonna tip! But she had a change of clothes! Love, Kelly

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Denise S. September 7, 2013 at 11:53 pm

Forgot to ask if Gil will be performing the ceremony? I am assuming not since he would not make it through without crying:)

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:20 pm

Dear Denise,
He is supposed to do the charge, but another pastor will do the vows. Love, Kelly

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Jeanette Gartman September 1, 2013 at 12:13 pm

<3 <3 <3 <3 I hope for the best for them.

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Amanda September 1, 2013 at 5:31 pm

How beautiful! What a awesome example of a Godly couple! I wish this for my children! Congrats to Chad and Erin!

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rw September 1, 2013 at 6:28 pm

My daughters birthday is Nov 2nd, she’ll be turning 7 and her grandfather’s birthday (my father) is Nov 1st. :-) congrats to Chad and Erin, I hope they have a wonderful and blessed wedding and future marriage.

On a side note: Will you be posting on Alyssa’s trip to visiting John Webster in Orlando?

Thank you for your blog and keeping everyone up to date with your family.
Blessing to all of you! :-)

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Liza Jane September 1, 2013 at 7:02 pm

Yay Erin!! I am so excited for Chad and Erin and I don’t even know y’all! I just wanted to say that I am so encouraged by your older daughters ( Michael, Erin, Alyssa and Tori). They stand strong in their convictions and are great examples to other young women. I definitely relate to Michael and Tori the most….quiet and shy like Michael, and a bit of a tomboy like Tori but still strong in my convictions to dress modestly. So speaking of Tori…as the youngest of the “older girls”, she seems kind of quiet…what are her future goals, what are her interests?
So what are Erin’s colors, who are her bridesmaids? Will she have any friends like the Duggar girls in the wedding party or just sisters and Chad’s sisters?
Thanks for your encouragements

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 8:07 pm

Dear Liza,
The colors are blue, and there are 5 bridesmaids…3 are sisters, 1 is Chad’s sister, and 1 is a friend. Oh my, Tori’s sisters might giggle at the thought of someone describing her as quiet. She’s our bubbly, fun, and always laughing daughter! Love, Kelly

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Melody September 1, 2013 at 7:58 pm

Congratulations, Erin and Chad!!! What an amazing love story!!!! I can’t wait to see the wedding.

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Jordon Korneef September 1, 2013 at 9:26 pm

If you need a Christian video production company to film Chad and Erin’s wedding, check out these people. They have done a great job for a friends wedding.

http://www.johnson-marketing.com

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MH September 1, 2013 at 10:18 pm

Wow! What a beautiful story created by God! Praying He will continue to be with them. I have a question, which song did Chad sing for Erin? :)

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:52 pm

Dear MH,
He sang “When We’re Together” that was on the Christian film Courageous. Love, Kelly

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Sarah September 1, 2013 at 10:59 pm

I am so so happy for Chad and Erin! They are such an inspiration and a beautiful you g godly couple. Can’t wait for November 2nd! My thoughts and prayers are with them at this special time in their lives. And I wish your family all the best especially with the wedding planning and preparations :)
Blessings,
Sarah

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Tammie September 2, 2013 at 12:26 am

So happy for Erin, Chad and your entire family! What a wonderful encouragement to all those sisters she has and an encouragement to you and Mr. Bates as well. God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him. Rejoicing with you from NJ!

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Gen September 2, 2013 at 12:36 am

I am guessing your producers paid for the lovely setting and dinner, in order to make it look nice?

This is not the best way to start a new life. Honestly.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:51 pm

Dear Gen,
I’m sorry you misunderstood…the film crew did not pay for anything…Chad did! However, the film crew came at their own expense, meaning they bought their own motel rooms, food, and filming expenses. They are very thoughtful and love us as much as we love them! God bless, Kelly

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Lesa September 6, 2013 at 5:35 pm

Gen:

Please don’t be negative about such a lovely experience for Erin and Chad.
Their engagement is a BLESSED event, and we are happy that the Bates family takes the time to share their personal life and faith with us (STRANGERS).

Thank you to the Bates family – for your patience and understanding with people who choose to criticize or judge you falsely, and your continued willingness to share, teach and include ALL others in your GODLY journey.

Congratulations and prayers for Chad, Erin and both of their families.

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Tiffany September 6, 2013 at 9:11 pm

Dear Sweet Kelly,
You truly are a virtuous woman :) . A soft answer turneth away wrath.
Love,
Tiffany

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Marie September 2, 2013 at 12:45 am

Beautiful proposal. Chad did good. Wish them the best.

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Annalee September 2, 2013 at 12:49 am

So enjoyed reading about this and seeing the lovely pictures! :) Thanks so much for sharing! And congratulations again! :)

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Eileen September 2, 2013 at 1:46 am

What a beautiful and blessed day! Congratulations to Chad and Erin. Exciting and wonderful times lie ahead!
It brings to mind this verse in the Bible.

“The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice,
And he who begets a wise child will delight in him.
Let your father and your mother be glad,
And let her who bore you rejoice.”
~ Proverbs 23:24-25

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Kenzi September 2, 2013 at 2:05 am

CONGATULATIONS!!!! that proposal was so sweet. you can truely see the love in their eyes. i hope they show the video. i was wondering how erin styles her hair? its so voluminous an curly!!! love it. im going to a wedding and would love to do my hair like this!!!! thank you so much.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:43 pm

Dear Kenzi,
She has a lot of natural body, but she uses 8 sponge rollers at night. It’s very quick and easy! Love, Kelly

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Emily September 2, 2013 at 3:48 am

Wow how very beautiful! :) Just curious, what song did Chad sing for Erin?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:42 pm

Dear Emily,
“When We’re Together.” on Courageous. Love, Kelly

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Emily S. September 2, 2013 at 4:41 am

What a beautiful, tender moment to capture!! Thanks for sharing Chad and Erin’s wonderful news with all of us! God bless them in their new life together!

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eva September 2, 2013 at 9:03 am

Congratulations!
Kelly, will the wedding be broadcasted via internet or will a TV team be present? I would so love to see footage! I can’t wait to see what kind of dress Erin will pick!

Also, I want to share some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten about relationships (in general): If the other person says something that hurts you, don’t assume. Don’t assume that it was intentional, or that it was meant that way. Ask again. Make sure. You’re not in each other’s head, and it’s important to always remember that two different people will also understand words in different ways. Talk and make sure you know where the other one is coming from. Most problems in marriage start with misunderstandings, but quickly build up to holding grudges. Don’t let that happen. Always resolve as soon as possible.

Hoping that we will hear from you again soon, and that we’ll see some glimpses of the wedding preparations! EEEH!

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:41 pm

Dear Eva,
Great advice!!! If all of us could heed this advice 90% of problems would be resolved…not just in marriages, but all relationships! I’m not sure if they’re planning on live streaming or not, but I think it will be filmed. Love, Kelly

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Kaelah September 2, 2013 at 9:13 am

Congrats! I wish them the best in this new stage of life. There’s one problem though- Erin can’t be a bride AND a performer at her wedding! :-) She plays so beautifully I would hope that she could use her own music arrangements if that is her wish. Again, congratulations and best wishes for both Chad and Erin!

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Rebekah September 2, 2013 at 3:01 pm

I was wondering if Chad and Erin have a website? I found: http://www.chadloveserin.com, but I’m not sure if it’s real or not.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:38 pm

Dear Rebekah,
Yes, Chad is working on designing it so family and friends can keep up!! Love, Kelly

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Mamie September 2, 2013 at 4:22 pm

Oh, this just made my day!! Beautiful couple, precious family. Can’t wait to see the wedding pics!!

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Elizabeth September 2, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Congratulations ! I was wondering, what song did he sing to her ? Erin’s ring is gorgeous! Did she pick it out or Chad ?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:37 pm

Dear Elizabeth,
He knew the style she liked with princess cut, past present and future stones…but he had it special made to his request and surprised her. Erin hasn’t seen the guard yet, but it is unbelievable!! Love, Kelly

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Kirsty Morley September 6, 2013 at 8:36 am

Dear Mrs Bates,

Many heart-felt congratulations to both the Bates and Paine families. Thank you for sharing details of these precious events with the world at large.

I’ve got a linguistic question (hope I’m not being too trivial – I like to understand and tend to ask questions when I don’t). There are a great many difference between American English and the English we speak in England (which I always find fascinating – the book “Mother Tongue” by Bill Bryson covers many of these differences in a captivating and entertaining tome). For the most part I’m assuming I understand the differences in our languages. However, I’m not sure what you were referring to when you mentioned a “guard”. Is this what we would call the wedding band or wedding ring? My English understanding of a ring guard is a small ring, band or strip that fits inside an existing too large ring to make it fit snuggly. I’m guessing this isn’t what you meant.

Sorry for waffling on.

Sincerely yours, Kirsty (Cheshire, England).

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 8:02 pm

Dear Kristy,
I’m sorry for the confusion. I meant that her wedding band is shaped so that the engagement ring fits inside, and it looks like there is a band of diamonds on each side. I might be calling it the wrong thing. In any case, she’ll be surprised, and Chad has gone the extra mile to try to pick the most special thing he could find! Love, Kelly

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Kirsty Morley September 11, 2013 at 9:03 am

Dear Kelly,
Thank you for your reply and absolutely no apologies needed. Your description paints a beautiful image in my mind. I believe you must be spot on when you say Chad has gone the extra mile and found a very special ring. It sound stunning.
Thank you again for taking the time to indulge my curious and inquisitive ways. I perceive you to be a very patient and giving lady. If I can ever to anything to help you or be of any assistance, I am at you disposal.

God Bless,

Kirsty (Cheshire, England).

Nicole September 2, 2013 at 5:05 pm

Such a beautiful way to propose! Congratulations! Erin and Chad make such a cute couple. I’m so happy for them and, off course, the rest of the family. :)

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Donna September 2, 2013 at 7:35 pm

Congratulations to Erin and Chad, so happy for them. Now not only do they get to start their lives together come this November but you and Gil get to enter a new phase of life as mother and father in law.
Best wishes as well to Zach and Whitney, hopefully they will follow Chad and Erin and become the next engaged couple.
Best wishes to all the other Bates family members.
I do hope that TLC will bring your family back even if it’s for specials.

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Jillian September 2, 2013 at 8:37 pm

So happy for them!!!! Chad and Erin look so in love and I can see the joy of Christ in their faces…will Erin have all of her siblings in the wedding?!? Blessings!

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:36 pm

Dear Jillian,
3 siblings and 2 friends most likely. Love, Kelly

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Alice Ann September 2, 2013 at 8:55 pm

Such a sweet love story! God’s blessings as they embark on the wonderful adventure of marriage!

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Brianna September 2, 2013 at 8:56 pm

Congratulations to Chad and Erin!!! I loved reading about and seeing pictures from their engagement. So sweet!! You all are an inspiration to me. Thank you so much!!

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Alexis September 2, 2013 at 9:30 pm

Dear Kelly,

Blessings to you, your family, Chad, and Erin on this new stage in life. May their engagement seem like a shadow of the love and faith they will grow into. Please let us know, if you don’t mind, where they register for their wedding>

Love,
Alexis

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:31 pm

Dear Alexis,
They are registered at Target and Bed Bath and Beyond….but they REALLY don’t want anyone to feel obligated to get anything. In fact, Erin almost didn’t register, because she didn’t want family to have to spend extra with the added expense of travelling to the wedding…but several family and friends insisted! Love, Kelly

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Alexis September 6, 2013 at 2:43 am

Dear Kelly,

Thank you for letting us know. We will continue to pray for them and for both families.

On a side note how was Michael’s mission trip?

Love,
Alexis

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Kelly September 6, 2013 at 4:08 am

Dear Lexis,
I’m horribly behind with posts…Thanks for reminding me…I’ll try to update on Michael’s trip! Love, Kelly

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Alexis September 7, 2013 at 1:48 pm

Dear Kelly,

You lead a wonderful, full life… we are just thankful for the updates.

I just wanted to know if you could please convey a message to Erin and Chad from my husband and I as I messed up. We purchased some of their items from the Target registry but I was not thorough enough and forgot to send them with the “gift note”. If you don’t mind please share with them that we are praying for their love story to grow, for their spiritual life to be enriched, and for their home to always be a place of peace, prayer, and plenty.

The items should arrive with my full name on them (Alexandra Deller-Kushner) by the end of next week.

No need to publish this :)

Sorry for the extra work!

Love,
Alexis

Caryn September 11, 2013 at 2:10 am

Alexis, I had the same issue as you. I went thru the ordering process and with each click thought this must be the “gift note” screen coming & off the order went….. I’m thinking it is Target not us! LOL!!!!

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Tracy September 2, 2013 at 9:58 pm

I cried looking at the photos! Kelly, as a mother myself I can’t imagine how precious a gift to be at my daughter’s engagement. My beautiful baby girl left this life suddenly in 2009 at the age of 18. She’s moved on to be with her Heavenly Father, and I know one day I’ll hold my angel once again. These times are precious and priceless. The relationship you and your husband share with ALL your children is a gift beyond all gifts. May our Lord continue to bless your family on this day, and everyone after.

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Kelly September 3, 2013 at 2:36 am

Dear Tracy,
My heart aches hearing about your loss. May God meet your every need! I can’t imagine, but I know God is able to comfort! Love, Kelly

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Piper September 7, 2013 at 1:03 am

I’m so sorry for your loss, Tracy {{hugs}}

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Rayne September 3, 2013 at 12:57 am

This is such wonderful, wonderful news! I remember watching the episode where Josh and Anna were getting married and there was a part where Erin was practicing piano and I just remember thinking how lovely her spirit was and now it’s her turn to experience all of these exciting things at her own wedding! Time flies!

Your family is a huge inspiration to me and you set a wonderful example not just to your children (as is testimony in their development into wonderful, mature adults) but to all of us out here too and I can’t thank you enough :)

I wish you all the best for the preparations for the wedding!

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Dolly September 3, 2013 at 1:55 am

What an awesome, awesome experience for these two and for the rest of us to watch unfold. They are so beautiful together and their purity radiates through. Congratulations! So happy for them!

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Carlotta Royce September 3, 2013 at 3:00 am

Hi Kelly.
Congrats. Your family’s visits are our favorite episodes on the Duggars. We also loved your show. My Husband and I were rolling when your family visited the Grandparents.

Our children pray for your family and the Duggars before bed often. In fact I have had to institute a ” no stalling your bedtime by naming each Duggar and Bates” policy lol.

God Bless you my Sister in Christ. One day I hope to tell you how much you and Michelle have changed my life.
If you are ever in NJ, please stay with us!

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Dear Carlotta,
You’re sweet to offer! love, Kelly

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Julia September 3, 2013 at 3:07 am

So amazing that he did that for her! I hope they have a great life together!

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MH September 3, 2013 at 3:12 am

Wow! That is one beautiful story! Praying God continues to lead them. I have a question, which song did Chad sing for Erin? :)

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Dear MH,
“When we’re together.” It was played on the Christian movie “Courageous.” Love, Kelly

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Jody September 3, 2013 at 3:39 am

Kelly,

Do Erin & Chad have a wedding registry yet? I’d love to send them a little something as they start their lives together.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:16 pm

Dear Jody,
They do cause so many relatives asked…but Erin almost felt guilty about it, cause she didn’t want any of her relatives and friends to feel obligated. She’d rather their expense be put toward coming top the wedding! Love, Kelly

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Amy September 3, 2013 at 7:25 am

Dear Kelly How many children will Chad and Erin be having ?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:15 pm

Dear Amy,
I guess that’ll be up to God and them…lol! We’ll just have to wait and see for that one! Love, Kelly

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Becky September 3, 2013 at 11:26 am

Oh Congrats Erin and Chad! Oh, let the fun begin. Two full months! What a sweet and precious time! :) May God richly Bless you and you prepare to be husband and wife. That is just great news! Gil and Kelly, when my brother got married my mom was quite sad, my dad leaned over to her and whispered this means grandkids. Well, her attitude quickly changed! May God Bless you both as you prepare to cut some strings. As a Homeschooling Mama, I understand how tough this is going to be!

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Shay September 3, 2013 at 11:33 am

Congratulations!!!!! Erins hair in rhese pictures is just beautiful!!!!! How does she style her hair this way? Im going to a wedding…and this hairstyle would be perfect!!! Beautiful couple. ♥

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 8:12 pm

Dear Shay,
She uses 8 spom
nge rollers, only rolling 1/2 way up at night. It makes loose curls, but her hair has a lot of body and holds curl well. Love, Kelly

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Leah November 4, 2013 at 8:29 am

Just wondering what size the rollers are? Does Erin apply product before the curlers are put in and/or once they are removed?

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Kelly November 8, 2013 at 9:36 pm

Dear Leah,
She uses mousse I think. She uses the green colored ones from Wal-Mart. Love, Kelly

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Tashia September 3, 2013 at 3:34 pm

I’m so happy for them both! The pictures are amazing! Super neat ideas! What a cute love story! God bless!

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Jessica September 3, 2013 at 4:43 pm

Awwwe! Tears swelled up here! Just beautiful. Honestly…..beautiful. What a special couple and am thankful for their precious testimony of purity and love for our Lord!!! God bless you two! Squeals!!

Love,
Jessica

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Cindi September 3, 2013 at 4:53 pm

How wonderful. I have loved Erin since I first say her on the Duggar’s TV show. Praying for them!! This made my day!!

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Denise September 3, 2013 at 6:30 pm

I think the last time I post it didn’t ask the question right but I meant to say: are any of the Duggar women going to be bride maids?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:59 pm

Dear Denise,
Erin has an abundance of friends and she’d love to use them all, but too many people can look crowded and can be more costly…so she has chosen 5 bridesmaids. The Duggar girls are some of our best friends, but with siblings filling most of her brides maid’s spots, she was quickly out of room! Love, Kelly

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Margaret September 3, 2013 at 6:49 pm

They look so happy and in love! Congratulations and many blessings to both families. If Erin is looking for any wedding tips or inspiration, I’ve been doing a blog series on cost-effective wedding planning at http://www.fauxmenno.blogspot.com and would eagerly share any tips I have with the lovely bride to be

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Natalie September 3, 2013 at 7:37 pm

In the 30th pict. it looks like they are dancing.

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:47 pm

Dear Natalie,
Just crying and hugging…lol! Love, Kelly

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Natalie September 3, 2013 at 8:39 pm

What a sweet couple! Praise the Lord!
Praying for Chad and Erin, all the wedding details and that the Lord would Bless
You all! Thank you for sharing your family to bless and encourage others :)

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Annie Jones September 3, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Hi Mrs. Bates,
This is absolutely beautiful. :) Congratulations to Erin and Chad.

I was also wondering where Zach got the music for It’s Been a Long Journey. I really like that song and would like to play it as well. :)

Thank you so much.
Love,
Annie Jones

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:44 pm

Dear Annie,
We don’t have the music. We just heard it at a church camp meeting and fell in love with it! Love, Kelly

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Annie Jones September 7, 2013 at 5:16 am

Ok thank you very much, Mrs. Bates. So I am assuming that Zach just learned it by ear then?!?!

I just wanted to let you know that I absolutely love your family.
Love,
Annie

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:35 pm

Dear Annie,
Yes, I’m sorry. He plays by ear, but I wish I could help you locate it. Love, Kelly

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Annie Jones September 16, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Thank you so much.
Love,
Annie

Pam A. September 9, 2013 at 11:51 pm

I was curious and “Googled” the lyrics-they are just beautiful. Later I will find a site that performs the music and listen.

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Beanie September 4, 2013 at 1:36 am

I remember when we met you Erin and Michael posed for us to get a picture… y’all are so sweet. :) :) :)

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Gina September 4, 2013 at 8:36 am

Oh these pictures brought tears to my eyes – so sweet! I love Erins outfits, she is so pretty! And Chad is so very handsome! Wow! The pair of them together look absolutely perfect!

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Gina September 4, 2013 at 8:37 am

Hi Kelly, also wondering – What song did he sing to Erin?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Dear Gina,
He sang “When we’re together,” which is on the movie Courageous. Love, Kelly

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Rebekah September 4, 2013 at 11:54 am

Gil and Kelly,

I am so appreciative of the example you have shown to us through your website and TV shows you have been a part of. In the world today it is so refreshing to see people living for the Lord without shame. Right now, it’s just me and my husband, and I cannot fathom having over a dozen children, but I hope to one day grow them up in a Christian environment the way you have. How did you get started/introduced to ATI and IBLP?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Rebekah,
We had been married just a few months when we were invited to a marriage seminar conducted Greg Brazino. We knew we wanted the results they had in their marriage and family, so we asked lots of questions! Love, Kelly

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RG September 4, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Kelly, I love the dresses Erin has on. Where do your girls buy their clothes?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Dear RG,
She bought those at DressBarn, but she also shops at lots of thrift stores! Love, Kelly

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Janet September 4, 2013 at 2:17 pm

Dear Kelly,
These pictures are bringing tears to my eyes! Our daughter got married this past Saturday and it was one of the most precious yet saddening day of our lives! She’s our first daughter so you can imagine just how difficult it was for my husband to “hand her over” to her now husband. He said a speech before handing her over and kept choking up on every word. Not a dry eye was in sight, if you can imagine! I just want to tell you that I commend you and Gil for allowing your children to love their possible future spouse and be a couple. When my daughter came home and told us how her now husband asked her out and how amazing and Godly he is, my husband just sat there and listened. He then asked her “When you see him, does it make your heart jump? When you get a text or phone call from him, can you not help but smile?” My husband’s reasoning behind this is is that if our daughter did not feel that way before marriage than how would she after marriage?! My daughter and her now husband decided to wait until marriage to kiss but we felt it was appropriate to hold hands and hug before that :) . I will say it was pretty hilarious during the ceremony on Saturday when my husband took the mic from the pastor and teased the couple before their first kiss. You could tell how antsy and anxious they were getting but my sweet husband kept “holding it off” by saying things like “Michael…you may….oh hey, look at the sun!” It was so funny but precious at the same time.

I don’t know if Erin and Chad are planning this for their website but what my daughter and husband did was create a “Recipe” section for people to post recipes for my daughter and husband to cook together as a couple. It was so sweet to see all of our friends and family post a bunch of recipes and they’re already putting it to good use! They keep sending us pictures of dishes they have cooked TOGETHER! Oh my word, it ‘s so cute! Just a suggestion :)

God Bless!

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:38 pm

Dear Janet,
Love the recipe idea! And the wedding sounded so sweet and sentimental! Wish I could have been there for ideas! Love, Kelly

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Christina Engleman September 4, 2013 at 3:14 pm

Congratulations Erin and Chad! Prayers that this new chapter in your lives is filled with years of love, happiness and many, many blessings! God bless!

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Denise September 4, 2013 at 7:02 pm

Hi Kelly, don’t know if this was asked yet but do you know if it was awkward for them to hug each other or did they get used to it right away lol?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Dear Denise,
It was actually cute…and sweet! Erin asked her Dad how she should hug so as to not be awkward and she was so excited she reached to grab around his neck while he was still kneeling, before he stood up! It was precious! Love, Kelly

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Katlin September 4, 2013 at 7:15 pm

My mom and I were sitting on the couch watching the “United Bates of America” this morning while eating breakfast and were just wondering what the Bates family was up to- and look at this! How beautiful and exciting. Congratulations to the adorable couple and blessed families!

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Christy September 4, 2013 at 7:30 pm

What a wonderful couple!! They look so happy and in love!! Prayers and blessings to them and both of their families!!!

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Natalie September 5, 2013 at 12:10 am

W0W! Just like a fairy tale

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Aimee September 5, 2013 at 12:40 am

This is my first time posting and, despite not having any kids of my own, I love watching your family!

I just saw the rerun of the episode where you tease Erin about her lack of cooking skills which was really sweet and funny. So the burning (pardon the pun) question is: Does Chad cook? Or does he like to eat out? Or has Erin been practicing? :)

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Dear Aimee,
Yes to all! Chad does cook and Erin has been practicing…lol! She actually IS a good cook! Love, Kelly

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Daisy Roberts September 5, 2013 at 3:45 am

Awwww!!!! I tell you!!! This is just the sweeest thing I’ve seen in a while! These pictures are so beautiful! Especially the teary eye’d ones ;) Erin you are so cute! Chad sure is gonna be one lucky guy!!! :D so sweet! I am so happy for you Erin! And it was great seeing you all these past couple weeks! I miss you all already! And look forward to seeing you very soon ;)
Thanks so much for posting miss Kelly! i love you and thanks for blessing me with such sweet photos ;) :’) Love and miss, Daisy

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:13 pm

Oh, Daisy, we miss y’all too! You make us feel special and we love you all dearly! Please come back!!!! Love, Kelly

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Sandra Toews September 5, 2013 at 7:08 am

Dear Gil & Kelly,

Congratulations on Chad and Erin’s engagement! What a special day in all of your lives. It is so sweet to see how the Lord has been working in their relationship, and how they kept themselves for each other. We are getting some insight into how courtship can work through the beautiful testimony of your children. I can’t tell you what an encouragement it has been to me.

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Andrea September 5, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Congratulations Chad & Erin! He could certainly give lessons on how to be romantic. ;)

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bethany m September 5, 2013 at 4:08 pm

Hi Gil & Kelly,
God is so good! In everything! Your daughter’s engagement is priceless. May God shower down blessings on Chad & Erin as they walk the walk of faith together. Love, Bethany

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Alexandra September 5, 2013 at 5:27 pm

Congrats – they both look thoroughly happy!

I’m curious, do you register for gifts? How is the new couple’s house set up? Will Erin have to move far from the family?

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Kelly September 5, 2013 at 7:11 pm

Dear Alexandria,
Yes, they did register because so many relatives asked…but Erin really didn’t want anyone to feel obligated to get a gift! They’re perfectly happy! They will be fairly close until Erin finishes her last semester of college! Love, Kelly

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Natalie September 7, 2013 at 9:42 pm

I saw where she was registered at. I LOVE what she wants!

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Alexandra September 10, 2013 at 10:54 am

Any chance you’ll share the registry with us? I’m sure some people here would like to send gifts.

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 5:58 pm

Dear Alexandria,
They are registered at Target and Bed Bath and Beyond, but they certainly don’t expect any gifts! Erin didn’t want to register at all, because she doesn’t want anyone to feel like gifts are expected, but some family and friends insisted. We’re huge thrift store shoppers, so Erin is used to hand-me-downs! But that is very thoughtful of you to even think of them and I’m sure they’d be thrilled just to know people are praying for them. Love, Kelly

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Christy (fl) September 5, 2013 at 11:36 pm

Soooooo sweet!!!!!!! I love the teary eyes ones!! Such a blessing!

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Jana September 6, 2013 at 12:09 am

Congratulations! I’m next lol

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Bobby Hardy September 6, 2013 at 1:28 am

Congratulations Chad & Erin on your November 2nd wedding date May God show all the blessings he has for your

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Mrs. Melinda September 6, 2013 at 2:26 am

I have been following y’all for a long time via the Duggar’s show….these photos
are full of emotion and simply precious.

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jeannine September 6, 2013 at 6:05 am

I am so thrilled for Chad and Erin! Following their beautiful courtship and engagement has meant so much to my teenage daughter and me! Please keep us up-to-date on the wedding plans, Kelly. We would love so much to hear about all the details!
Best wishes and God bless you all.
Jeannine from Indiana

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Leilani September 6, 2013 at 7:59 am

What a beautiful couple! I wish you every happiness in the world as you begin your lives together! Marriage is such a beautiful thing! May God bless you! Leilani

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Kelly September 6, 2013 at 4:16 pm

Where do Erin and Chad plan to live after the wedding?

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 7:58 pm

Dear Kelly,
Since Erin postponed her last semester for a fall wedding, they are renting a house near Knoxville for their first year. Erin will graduate in the spring, and I trust God will direct them after that. Love, Kelly

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Katy September 6, 2013 at 4:17 pm

Hey Mrs. Bates!
Congratulations on the engagement of Chad and Erin! This post was so sweet!
Erin is so naturally beautiful! Does she or any of your other daughters wear make-up?
Praying for you all!
Love, Katy

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:34 pm

Dear Katy,
The oldest girls do wear make up, but we ask for them to use it to enhance…not cover up! My step father used to tell me when a girl can use makeup to her advantage, without looking like she has on any at all then she has applied it correctly. Love, Kelly

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Lisa September 7, 2013 at 1:02 am

First I just wanted to say, I think it is such a testimony to what a caring, down to earth & selfless person you are, to actually take the time out of your busy life & individually answer everyone’s questions being that I am a homeschooling momma of 4 & expecting another on the way & just feel like I am ALWAYS so busy! lol.. So I truly to admire & appreciate your kindness! Infact, it is your family & the Duggars who encouraged my family many yrs ago to take a leap of faith. We started homeschooling, loving & embracing whatever God has brought our way & applying many of your principles that you have shared to our own family for many yrs. now. It hasn’t always been easy but it has really been the greatest blessing ever! I just want to congratulate you, your family and Erin & her fiancé on this special occasion. What a testimony! A Fall wedding is going to be beautiful. I got married in the Fall & was really beautiful! With the bright orange, red & yellow leaves on the ground as the back drop in in my pics, flowers girls had white dress w/burgundy sashes & brides maids in pretty burgundy satin dresses, all my center pieces, brides maid bouquets & groomsmen boutineers were flowers that complemented all the gorgeous deep Fall colors and then I myself had a gorgeous bouquet of white roses & babys breath that matched my husband boutineer! Was SO pretty! Just sharing to give you & Erin some ideas :) Best of luck & have fun planning! Congrats & God bless again!

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Rebecca September 7, 2013 at 2:31 pm

Congrats to both Erin and chad! Will the wedding be on tv?

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Dear Rebecca,
I’m not sure, but I think our old producer, Matt Hightower, is planning to film it! Love, Kelly

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Kim September 7, 2013 at 5:32 pm

Hey Kelly,

If fans of your show would like to send a wedding gift for Erin and Chad, do you recommend sending it to your P.O. Box noted on the Contact Us page? I know you mentioned that they were hesitant to even register but as a couple married for 8 years, we would like to do something for a young Christian couple starting out in married life. :-)

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Dear Kim,
That is so sweet. I don’t even know what to say! A package came from Target yesterday from someone we didn’t even know and we were all moved to tears! All I can say is God is good! But please, please know they’d be happy with just a card with warm wishes and prayers! Our address is PO Box 544 Lake City, TN 37769. Thank you and God bless, Kelly

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M&M September 8, 2013 at 1:35 am

Does Whit ever wear pants?

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:19 pm

Dear M&M,
She used to wear pants, but recently chose to wear skirts. However, Zach wanted her to know his love for her was not based on what she wore. Whit is a Godly young lady, and he in no wise wanted her to feel that she had to make any changes for him in order to somehow “measure up.” He told her he was happy with her just like she was. He explained that a person who makes changes for another person, may one day feel resentment if it really wasn’t their heart’s desire. Whit assured Zach the choices she was making were because of her own desire. We think it was wise for them to discuss their beliefs, and to be willing to accept each other “as is” before pursuing a relationship. A lot of prayer, Bible study, and communication caused them both to grow spiritually and to mature in their relationship. We couldn’t be happier with his pick!!!!! Whit meets every expectation we could ever have!! At first I was a little hesitant because I feared that Whit might feel insecure, or feel like she had to change for approval, or feel like she was looked down on. We all shared openly and worked through any fears or insecurities that we all faced. Our love and acceptance of Whit came before she switched to wearing skirts, and is certainly not dependent on that…That would be a shallow love…there’s far more about her to love than just that! She is beautiful inside and out! Love, Kelly

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Melanie September 10, 2013 at 9:57 pm

What a wondeful statement about your love for her. She is very lucky to have you for a future mother in law and I’m sure that you are blessed to have her for a future daughter in law. Zach found a lovely young lady.

Melanie

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mjw September 11, 2013 at 12:35 am

While I don’t doubt the sincerity of your answer and your acceptance of Whit as a future member of your family I can’t help but feel there was some subtle pressure, real or imagined, for her to stop wearing pants. After all her entire future family all adheres to that convention and she almost had to feel “different” even though I am sure you would not want her to change. Hopefully she will not lose “herself” in the attempt to assimilate into her new family. You are quite right that we have to accept our spouses “as is”, along with our childrens choice of a spouse. This is from my perspective as a wife as well as a mother in law and daughter -in -law.

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 8:16 am

Dear MJW,
Well, I guess that is a possibility, since we all feel nervous around our new boyfriend/ girlfriend’s family at first…but I would certainly hope that after we’ve gotten to know each other, that she knows how much we truly adore her!!! I think acceptance and love is something that is seen with time, and Whitney has been patient and accepting of us, for sure! I don’t think its anyone’s place to judge someone’s motives for choices they make. I’ve made decisions for the right motive, because of God’s prompting, but yet people assumed I was just copying someone else or just trying to impress someone. Other times I’ve made decisions for the wrong reasons, but God was able to grow me and show me if I erred. So whether the motive was to follow her heart or to try to show respect to us, I’m not concerned… Whitney has taught me a lot! She has helped me be a better person! I am a blessed woman and mother-in-law to be. If she made that choice to try to please us, it shows what a loving heart she has, and I am confident she’ll see that we accept her and love her (and if you ever meet her, you’ll see that’s easy to do). If she made that choice for God, then we still accept her and love her… Either way, we’re a winner, because of her addition to our lives! So, I guess I’m not as concerned about the motive as I am for her to become a treasured part of our family and to know her great value to all of us! Love, Kelly

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mjw September 17, 2013 at 1:31 am

And with such warm acceptance I am sure you both will have a wonderful relationship…..after all, any young woman who loves our sons has to be pretty special. I have a lovely daughter in law who I have embraced as the daughter I never had. Best wishes to the young couple!

Michelle September 8, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Yay! This is so exciting!!! It’s is like a fairy tale! But more importantly it’s a blessing from God! We love your family, your beliefs, and the love you have for God and one another! May God richly bless the lives of these two along with your family! Hope we get to see the wedding on tv!

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Faith September 8, 2013 at 7:28 pm

I was just wondering if any of you {Chad, Erin, Ms. Kelly, etc.} have any relationship advice for single young women? Any tips or good rules of thumb for ending up as happy as Chad and Erin are?
Thank you SO very much for your time.
In Christ,
Faith

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Kelly September 17, 2013 at 2:51 am

Dear Faith,
1. First and foremost, relax! I know that sounds funny, but what I mean is try to stay busy and focused on serving God rather than finding a boyfriend. We know many antsy girls who are so anxious to grab a guy that they often make rushed decisions to like any guy that pursues them. It should be a matter bathed in prayer and thought. That’s hard to do when emotions are throbbing! So, relax and try to think objectively about what God’s will is for your life.
2. Ask yourself some questions. What is it that you notice in some husbands that makes you say, “Oh he’s a good husband…He really loves her!?” The qualities that stand out to you are the qualities that will still be emphasized in your heart and mind after marriage. We’re all different and we have different attractions. The first thing that attracted me about Gil was when I saw him playing, chasing, and goofing off with all the children because I instantly thought, “He’s gonna be a loving dad and thoughtful, interactive husband.” When Erin was deciding which path to take, she contemplated what qualities are important to her that makes her think a husband is a good husband. She knew those qualities would be significant in her heart…and yes, Chad met all the expectations.
3. Once you’ve made that list, give it to the Lord… meaning don’t expect to change any man into your expectations and don’t expect perfection…But you can note what qualities you want to avoid: anger, lust, lying, unfaithfulness, etc. Be aware of strong points you desire like: honesty, humility, thoughtfulness, gentleness. Now the hard part, know which ones you really can’t budge on, and which ones you need to give some room to grow in. There are no perfect people. We all make mistakes and we all need mercy and room to grow. However, there is balance… know what your attractions are – what strong points you’re looking for, then take a good realistic look at the man that comes your way and before you say “yes,” make sure you can love, forgive, and overlook any weaknesses he has. Men come with both: strong points and weaknesses! We all do! We can’t demand perfection, that would make for a miserable relationship. But we can learn the qualities that really touch our heart and draw us to that someone special. And we can begin to work on qualities that would make us become a better person! I can’t change someone else, but I can change myself! But if you can find a man that is already on that road to spiritual maturity, you can save yourself a lot of heartache from brokenness that comes from some of the undesirable qualities, like selfishness or immorality.
4. Pray pray pray… and stay wrapped up in serving God. Let Him direct your paths. Let Him be your first desire! Love, Kelly

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Lesa October 10, 2013 at 8:42 pm

Kelly:

Thank you for your words of wisdom and insight.
You are truly a servant in Christ!
Your unconditional love and faith is evident in every aspect of your life.
Please say a prayer for your readers and continue to guide and set a STRONG and POSITIVE example, so that we may enjoy a similar relationship with Christ.

God bless and thank you.

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Faith November 6, 2013 at 12:29 am

Thank you SO, SO much, Ms. Kelly! This was so helpful, and so very kind of you to share! Thank you for taking time out of what I am sure is a busy schedule to counsel my heart in Truth. May our God bless you richly.

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Teresa September 8, 2013 at 10:04 pm

Honestly, don’t they look like royalty? Very beautiful!

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Angela K September 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

This gave me chills. How wonderful for them and for all of you. I am so happy for you, and I don’t even know you. And I would like to add that reruns of your show have been airing and I am watching them once again. I just love your family and all that you are. You are such a HUGE inspiration to me. Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing of yourselves to benefit others. God Bless you all.

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Karli September 9, 2013 at 7:12 pm

This is so sweet! Congratulations!

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Astrid September 9, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Kelly,
Thank you for posting this sweet post! I loved it!
How are Alyssa and John doing? Are they in the process of considering courtship anytime soon? :)
Hope you and your family are doing well!
Love,
Astrid

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:04 pm

Dear Astrid,
Thanks for asking…yes, they are! Love, Kelly

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Amélie September 12, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Looking forward for an update on Zach and Whit + on Alyssa and John!

Amelie from France!

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Jen September 10, 2013 at 2:11 am

Congrats to Chad and Erin!!!!=) I’m so happy for them!!
Who’s all going to be in the wedding? Has it been decided yet?

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:03 pm

Dear Jen,
Erin is having 5 bridesmaids. Three are sisters, plus Callie as flower girl. Love, Kelly

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Jen September 10, 2013 at 3:09 am

Oh yea I meant to ask also , did the engagement get filmed?!? Thank you=)

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:02 pm

Dear Jen,
Yes, it did! Love, Kelly

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Jen September 10, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Dear Kelly,
Thank you for replying!!=) One more question if you don’t mind… Will United Bates of America be back on TLC? Thanks=)

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 7:55 pm

Dear Jen,
Not that I know of…someone said they’re replaying old ones?? Our old producer has asked to film some things, but I’m not sure where they will appear? Love, Kelly

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Jen September 10, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Dear Kelly,
Thank you I will check it out and see if there are reruns. God bless Chad , Erin , both Bates and Paine family in getting ready for the wedding!!=)

Melissa September 10, 2013 at 5:53 pm

It’s as it should be. A time for celebrating a forever commitment. The spiritual aspects of this engagement and upcoming nuptials is a blessing to their faith and a testimony as to how dating and courtship should be handled with God’s expectations as their binding cord.

It’s a reflection of how both sets of parents were/are great role models. I think the world of you all.

Missy

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K'Lani September 10, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Are they planning on taking a honeymoon?

My husband and I have been married for a little over 2 years. We honeymooned in Jamaica, and it was a beautiful setting for a special time together :)

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Kelly September 11, 2013 at 12:57 am

Dear K’Lani,
Oh that sounds special. They are checking on places now. They’ve looked at Hawaii, Bahamas, but are currently studying Ireland as prices are very reasonable this time of year for VRBO’s and plane tickets. Love, Kelly

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Kirsty Morley September 11, 2013 at 8:46 am

Dear Mrs Bates,

The Republic of Ireland is a beautiful country. My husband’s family are from Co. Mayo and my brother’s wife is from Co. Cork. I’m sure you all know this already but in November Ireland will be quite cold. But cold weather doesn’t need to be a problem. I love wrapping up in my woollies, pulling on a hat and trekking out into the country.

If I can be of any help with information on the UK and R of I please don’t hesitate to ask. I am very much at your disposal.

God Bless,

Kirsty Morley (Cheshire, England).

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 7:54 am

Dear Kristy,
I’m sure you’d be a wealth of information if they decide to go there. So far, they haven’t talked to any locals. Could you send a phone number or address (I will not post it) in case they would like to ask some questions? Thank you! Love, Kelly

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Lynsey September 18, 2013 at 7:46 pm

Oh, how exciting! Chad and Erin are more than welcome to visit me in County Donegal :) I do hope they pick Ireland, it’s absolutely beautiful here. Wishing you all much love for the big day xx

Aine September 18, 2013 at 8:14 pm

Dear Kelly

I’m from Cork, Ireland. I would be glad to give Chad and Erin some sussestions on where to go and see, should they end up coming. I will gladly send my number if it would be of any help to them

Lynsey September 19, 2013 at 2:12 pm

We could organise the whole thing for them Aine lol :) I think that’s a brilliant idea, a fan-planned honeymoon. Obviously, the same goes for me too. Please feel free to get in touch if you’d like any information on the north of the country xx

Mandy September 27, 2013 at 5:23 pm

I visited Ireland for the first time this summer as part of my first ever trip to Europe. It’s a stunningly beautiful country. I’ve decided that I would love to honeymoon in Ireland someday, assuming my future husband likes the idea as well. ;)
Dublin is one of the cheapest cities to fly into in Europe and Ireland can be very affordable! I’d highly recommend it.

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Rebekah September 10, 2013 at 9:30 pm

Hello! I wanted to offer my congratulations on their up coming wedding! I couldn’t remember if I wrote a post or not earlier, and thought I would just write one :) November is a great month to get married in! On November 10th, my husband and I will be celebrating 6 years!! I look forward to hearing about the plans, and maybe even seeing pictures. Are you going to live stream the wedding? Just curious :)
You will be in my thoughts and prayers during this exciting time!!
Rebekah Abdullah

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Kelly September 11, 2013 at 12:55 am

Dear Rebekah,
I haven’t heard them say if it will be live streamed, but I’ll ask them! Love, Kelly

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serenity September 11, 2013 at 12:32 am

Congratulations!! It is so exciting to see other young people following God’s plan for their lives!!!
Oh, a question, I love all your dresses do you make them or buy them?

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Kelly September 11, 2013 at 12:53 am

Dear Serenity,
Michael makes some for Carlin, Josie, Katie, Addee, Ellie, and Callie. We also shop at thrift stores, Penneys, Dress Barn, etc. Love, Kelly

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Elana September 11, 2013 at 3:28 am

Their wedding date is so special! My inlaws will be celebrating 50 years of marriage that day! My husband and I will celebrate our 15th anniversary on the 7th and my parents will celebrate their 45th anniversary on the 30th! November is a beautiful month to get married!!

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Jen September 11, 2013 at 4:15 am

Is it true that you keep cameras in the house to monitor who is going in and out of the house? Is this for security or to keep track of your older kids? Or perhaps both?

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 8:02 am

Dear Jen,
Both! John Duggar installed them. At the time, I was pregnant with Callie, so it was a great relief to know I’d be able to nurse the baby while checking on other children. It is also a help monitoring visitors and busy activities. Love, Kelly

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Aleksandra September 11, 2013 at 7:54 am

That is such a lovely love story and awesome pictures! What a nice surprise to read about it after my holiday trip!

I got engaged on September 3 and it was a big surprise and it will be even more exciting to follow a wedding of another young couple. :)

How do you manage to plan a wedding in just 2 months?

Well, we live in Germany, and pretty much all good locations are booked out between 9 to 12 months before and I don’t want to get married in a warehouse. ;)

We hope to manage putting together the wedding by May, earlier would be not possible. Even the dress needs to be chosen 6 months early, otherwise I will have not a lot to choose from.

Is it easier in the US to put a wedding together in such a short time?

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 7:58 am

Dear Aleksandra,
I think everything we do is last minute in our family…lol! I had only 2 months to plan my wedding too! Erin began with 12 weeks planning time, but the time is passing fast and she’s got a list of to do’s! She has a great coordinator that is keeping the schedule running smoother! Some people in the US plan weddings 6 months to a year in advance, but its certainly possible to plan one in a much shorter time frame…It just keeps mom hopping!! Love, Kelly

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Amanda September 11, 2013 at 1:16 pm

Well done, Chad! That has to be the sweetest proposal ever.

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Amy September 11, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Where will Erin and Chad move to once Erin graduates from college in the spring?
Or will they stay in TN?

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 8:27 am

Dear Amy,
I guess Chad will make that decision when the time comes! They know they have our blessing and we trust Chad’s leadership! Love, Kelly

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justafriend September 11, 2013 at 5:02 pm

In a courtship, is there always an accountability partner with them everywhere? I’m not just wondering about your family, but other courtships as well.

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 7:45 am

Dear justafriend,
Well, that would be like asking a family if all parents have the same rules for dating, I guess. There are a lot of varied opinions about courtship. Some families have more guidelines than others. Some choose to not hold hands, or kiss, or show much emotion. Some feel that holding hands and showing emotions are healthy. Some might have accountability partners, some might think that’s not necessary. There’s a wide spectrum of ideas involved. i like to learn from others. I like to learn from my mistakes. I like to re-evaluate ever so often to see if what we’re doing is working or if we need to back up and try some changes. I like to pray and see if my ideas are based on Scripture, opinion, good advice, bad advice. I like to ask, “What is the fruit of this choice in the lives of others?” Some families are headstrong on their ideas and are intolerant of others. I feel that it is a personal decision between the individuals, the families, and God… I have an opinion, obviously, but I don’t feel that I should judge those who don’t share my opinion. I offer advice when asked, but I’m quick to remind, I am capable of being wrong…too capable. My ideas change when I see I’ve made a bad choice. God is unchangeable, infallible…So, He’s a much better, much more reliable source for info and direction on the matter! “Courtship” is not mentioned in the Bible, but the idea of purity is, and that is the motivation behind most parent’s desire to try a new approach. Love, Kelly

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Natalie September 17, 2013 at 7:42 pm

That amazing post just taught me some things
that I will carry with me forever. Thank you, Kelly.
God bless you.

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Liza Jane September 11, 2013 at 5:57 pm

My husband and I honeymooned in Canada and it was so gorgeous, with lots of fun activities such as hiking and canoeing. Not sure if Erin and Chad are interested in outdoorsy stuff but it was the most gorgeous place I have ever been!!
If you don’t mind my asking which sisters are bridesmaids, what colors did she pick, does she have her dress, will siblings play music, read Scripture?? I love wedding stuff.
I also wanted to comment on Whitney’s decision to wear skirts. I have also recently been convicted to wear skirts and be more modest as a young lady, and it is a brave decision to be different from friends or family so I am excited for her, and don’t let anyone tell you different! Zach loves her for who she is not what she is!
Much Love

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 8:25 am

Dear Liza,
Well, they haven’t bought any tickets yet so I’m sure they’d be open to suggestions. They both love outdoor stuff like biking, hiking, and canoeing! They love scenic settings. They especially love affordable, off season places…lol!
She is using shades of blues. So far, Michael humbly bowed out of the opportunity to be a bridesmaid, since she isn’t one that enjoys being in the forefront. So, the remaining sisters include Alyssa, Tori, and Carlin. Love, Kelly

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Julia September 11, 2013 at 8:32 pm

That is so sweet! I hope we get to see it filmed…? I love your guys show!
Does Erin want to have kids??? Just curious :-)
Julia

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 8:19 am

Dear Julia,
Yes…haha, but the though is scary to her…lol! Love, Kelly

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Leah September 12, 2013 at 3:12 am

I enjoyed reading the last two posts of Erin & Chad’s engagement proposal and loved looking at every single pictures! What a special memories they will always have and that you & you husband get to watch it! I can’t wait to hear all about their wedding and to see the pictures. I sure hope it will be filmed for us to watch on TLC!

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Iliana Salazar September 13, 2013 at 2:38 am

Congratulations to all of you! I really love your family and your awesome work for the Lord kingdom. Many blessings in this new chapter of your lives.Thank you for sharing this with all the people that was blessed with your testimony and family. A big hug from my Puertorican/Peruvian family!

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Sara September 13, 2013 at 8:51 am

I wanted to see if the wedding is open to the public. My daughter and I wanted to attend. We are huge Bates fans!!!

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Kelly September 17, 2013 at 2:24 am

Dear Sara,
I’m sure Erin would be thrilled for you to come. Send me your address (I won’t post it for your privacy, but I can have Erin stick an invitation in the mail!) Love, Kelly

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Tonya B September 14, 2013 at 6:48 am

My husband and I and my 2 daughters will be visiting Gatlinburg the first of November. We would like to attend the wedding and bring a generous gift. I wanted to see if you are allowing the public to attend this BIG EVENT. We are huge BATES fans. I also wanted to see if any new announcements on Alysa and John… We enjoy all your updates!!!

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 7:02 am

Dear Tonya,
if you’ll send a letter to our PO Box,it’ll be much easier for me to keep in touch with you about your plans! We’d love to help you find reasonable hotels and sightseeing in this area. Tennessee is beautiful! Love, Kelly

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Alice September 14, 2013 at 11:36 am

Really touched by these photos. My daughter’s 3rd bday is Nov. 2nd, and there is quite a story regarding my daughter… from losing my mother at a young age, to desiring a daughter so badly, failed adoption attempts, 2 autistic sons and finally giving it all over to the Lord to realize the next day (after years of trying) that I was pregnant again!!! Suffice it to say, Nov. 2nd is a VERY special day in my book ;) She was my only late baby (due Oct. 28) and I prayed to NOT have a Halloween baby and hoped to have a November baby ;)

Congrats to the happy couple!

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Tami September 14, 2013 at 5:59 pm

Congratulations to you all! What an exciting time it must be for all of you! I
Also want to thank you for sharing your lives with all of us and taking the time to answer all of our questions. You and your family are such a inspiration of a wonderful family that loves The Lord and loves each other. Is Chad going to continue working in construction in Tennessee or is he finding a different career path? Has Erin picked out her dress and the bridesmaids dresses yet? Is Michael making them?

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Kelly September 16, 2013 at 6:35 am

Dear Tami,
Yes, she picked her dresses online to order, because she didn’t want to overwhelm Michael with a huge to do list. Chad found work through a fellow church member while they are living here in Tennessee. Love, Kelly

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Donna September 15, 2013 at 4:41 pm

I love how the clothing color scheme worked out. Before Chad’s proposal, Erin was wearing the white dress with the little blue sweater, and the blue matched the blue her parents were wearing. Almost like a symbol that she was part of that group. Then she changed her clothing, and her and Chad then matched together with their white and black, a symbol that they were creating their own group. Looked very stunningly symbolic. Congrats to Erin and Chad.

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AAA September 15, 2013 at 6:28 pm

Congratulations to not just Erin and Chad but to everyone in both families! When God brings together a married couple- He doesn’t just unite Husband and Wife. He also unites both families into one! Many blessings to everyone!!

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Kimberly September 16, 2013 at 8:22 am

What a blessing that these two have decided to wed. God is blessing this union. I know yinz’s will all be so busy getting ready for the wedding but know I pray for this family daily.

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Caryn September 16, 2013 at 5:09 pm

Dear Kelly,
If you get a post that is not completed from me just delete it! My husband bought me a new lap top & I am so not a computer person!!! Somehow I was typing and my note just disappeared! Not sure if it sent, I’m not really sure where it went! Oh my!

I was saying that Target did not allow me to attach a note with Erin & Chad’s gift. I want to wish them many years of happiness and love! It has been so much fun to watch their love story unfold. It is awfully sweet of them to share their lives with all of us!

Thank you so much for your lovely blog! You are truly inspiring to lots of woman/moms out here in the world. For me with just 3 kids it is so fun to watch what life would be like if I had 16 more :) Hopefully in the near future I can travel back to Tennessee and visit your Church. My husband travels back to that part of the country often because of our business and hopefully I can tag along, he invites me all the time but with 2 in school & sports it is hard to imagine leaving them home.

Wishing you all lots of love from the sunny beaches of Southern California! Caryn

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Kelly September 17, 2013 at 2:23 am

Dear Caryn,
It was so thoughtful of you to send a gift. Chad moved into his new house today and we carried over some of the gifts that were sent to them. They were like two kids jumping up and down with excitement opening the packages! We are overwhelmed by the love we have felt from the handful of people that have sent gifts to them, even though we’ve never met face to face! We’ll look forward to that visit and we can give you a hug in person! Love, Kelly

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Caryn September 18, 2013 at 4:02 pm

Dear Kelly,
I’m so glad that they received the package & are so excited!!! It was must be crazy busy around your home with wedding planning! It was fun to see your beautiful family on TV last night. Your home is lovely, you must be a great organizer! I’m curious what you served for your meal, it looked delicious, but couldn’t figure out what your son pulled out of the oven. When we have all of my husbands family over & mine, along with friends we can have 25-26 people, I’d love some ideas on what to make to feed the entire group. Usually I have dinner catered when I have that big of a group, unless my husband grills, but it would be a FUN challenge to cook for everyone. Love, Caryn

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Kelly October 13, 2013 at 4:27 am

Dear Caryn,
I’m so sorry, i don’t remember. If I saw the show it might jog my memory. could it have been quesadillas? Sorry! Love, Kelly

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Krissi September 16, 2013 at 6:05 pm

HI!
Congratulations to them. They make a beautiful couple. Will Erin be staying in TN to continue going to collage and teaching piano?

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Kelly September 17, 2013 at 2:10 am

Dear Krissi,
Yes, at least until Erin graduates next spring. Love, Kelly

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Joanna September 17, 2013 at 5:39 am

I just want to say congratulations to Chad and Erin and I wish them all the very best for their up and coming wedding that everything goes to plan and that they have a very special day, a special day that is just magical and everything that Erin wants :) xx

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Rebekah Shashaguay September 17, 2013 at 9:48 pm

So beautiful!!! I can’t wait to see her dress! Any plans? Are one of you going to make it? ~Rebekah P.S.
It couldn’t have been any more perfect from the looks of it! I love the photo of Chad tearing up… :-)

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Kelly September 19, 2013 at 5:46 am

Dear Rebekah,
No, she actually found her dress at David’s Bridals. The seamstress there is doing extensive work to heighten the top and back and add sleeves. She seems to be amazingly skilled at what she does! Love, Kelly

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Cynthia Varnum September 18, 2013 at 7:35 pm

Thank you for sharing such a beautiful story. I believe God loves them more than we do!! God bless and you keep you all the days of your lives!

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Allison DeBartolis September 19, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Kelly

When we got married someone suggested we send an invitation to the President & First Lady. Of course they could not attend but recieving the R.S.V.P. on White House stationary was very exciting to put in a little frame as a keepsake. Perhaps Erin & Chad might be interested in doing that??!!
Fondly
Allison

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Aoife September 19, 2013 at 5:37 pm

Dear Kelly,

I really enjoy reading about your family! I also live in Ireland and if Chad and Erin choose to come here then these websites would be very helpful – discoverireland.ie, gokerry.ie, cork.ie and visitdublin.com. The south west of the country is the most beautiful with lots to do and the best way to see it is to rent a car. Dublin is also lovely. Feel free to email me if they have any questions.

Love, Aoife

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Symphony September 19, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Did they decide before the engagement to hold hands on that day? I love the photos! Wish there was someway I could attend hope they put the engagement and wedding videos here…:)

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Kelly September 20, 2013 at 2:49 am

Dear Symphony,
Yes, they did! Love, Kelly

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Paty D. September 20, 2013 at 5:09 am

Congratulations Erin..!!! So happy for you..!!

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Paty D. September 20, 2013 at 5:12 am

Dear Kelly and Gill..

Congratulations on your daughters engagement. I have been following you since The Duggars came onto television..!! We live in San Jose, Ca love your family..!!

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Jen September 21, 2013 at 1:06 am

Dear Kelly,
I have a question.. What does Chad do for work?
Thanks ,Jen=)

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Kelly September 21, 2013 at 2:47 am

Dear Jen,
Chad’s past jobs have all been in the line of construction, but since he relocated to Tennessee for Erin to finish her school, he got a job with a man from our church working with metals. Love, Kelly

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Aine Mc Sweeney September 22, 2013 at 4:04 pm

Dear Kelly,
I have just seen and replied to your email. I apologise for the delay and I hope the information helps Erin and Chad :)

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Kelly September 24, 2013 at 3:04 pm

Dear Aine,
Thank you! I’ll let them know! Love, Kelly

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Christine September 24, 2013 at 4:35 am

Congrats to the happy couple! They look so excited and in love. Please tell them to enjoy this time of being engaged. Despite the hustle and bustle of planning a wedding, it is important to take a moment and reflect on the joy of being together. Blessings and best wishes,
Christine
P.S. From personal experience, I recommended trying to get a picture of Chad’s reaction the moment he sees Erin start down the aisle. One click can capture the moment she took his breath away!

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Caroline September 25, 2013 at 8:09 am

My husband and I have 2 young daughters 10yr and 14yr. They are both homeschooled. I have been inspired by your family. My girls watch very little TV but were allowed to watch your shows!! Your love for God and kindness is uplifting. We will be coming to Gatlinburg the 1st of November. I wanted to see if we could attend the wedding.

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Kelly October 1, 2013 at 5:39 am

Dear Caroline,
If you mail me your address, I’ll be glad to mail you an invitation. Love, Kelly

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Caroline October 2, 2013 at 10:23 am

I sent you my address to your email. Thanks!!

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Kelly October 11, 2013 at 2:13 am

Dear Caroline,
I’m so behind in emails that I often don’t get to read them until they aare 8 months old or even longer, so please send time sensitive mail to our PO Box. Love, Kelly

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Ashley September 25, 2013 at 9:12 pm

Awe, congrats to the happy couple! I hope they really enjoy this time being engaged and planning their lives together! Now you have two children getting married and moving out of the family home before the end of the year. It must be a lot of fun helping plan two weddings at the same time! How did Erin and Chad first meet? He must be a good man to get Gill’s approval! :)

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Kelly September 26, 2013 at 11:45 pm

Dear Ashley,
We attended a ministry banquet and met the Paine family. They later invited us to dinner and our friendships blossomed. They continued to see each other at home school conferences. Love, Kelly

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Donna September 26, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Hello Kelly
I was thinking perhaps with all the hustle and bustle of the wedding, that perhaps Erin and Chad would like an evening off just prior to their big day. Since you said they both enjoy Celtic music, I happen to know the Celtic Thunder show is in Knoxville on Oct. 29th.
Congratulations to them both and may they have many many wonderful years of marriage.

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Kelly September 26, 2013 at 11:22 pm

Dear Donna,
I’ll certainly tell them about it! Thank you for thinking of them. Love, Kelly

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Monica September 30, 2013 at 3:10 pm

Dear Bates family I love all of you and was very disappointed when your show did not continue your family it’s a wonderful example of the human spirit. Congratulations to all your family and especially to Zach and Erin who will be starting their new lives with people they love. I look forward to seeing any news from you. I hope one day I have the pleasure of meeting you all.

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Caryn October 3, 2013 at 4:22 am

Dear Kelly, I received the most thoughtful note from Erin. You have raised such a lovely daughter. I pray that my sweet girl continues on her path and grows into the kind of young woman Erin is. You and Gil have done parenting right!!!! I love how you are flexible yet always faithful and your guidance shines in Erin’s writing. Thinking of you all as the wedding nears! Please give Erin a hug from me. Love, Caryn

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Jennifer Thompson October 11, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Oh so hard to believe that sweet “little” Erin is preparing to marry! I can’t wait to see this beautiful and blessed union! We love you all!!
Jennifer Thompson and Family

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Amy Faulkner October 12, 2013 at 10:25 pm

I just watched Josh and Anna’s wedding, and realized that Erin caught the bouquet. And if I’m not mistaken, between your family and the Duggars, she is the next one getting married! How fun of a coincidence!!

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jenn v October 17, 2013 at 2:27 am

Such a sweet story. My husband & I will celebrate our 5 year anniversary on November 1st (5 yrs married, 11 yrs together) so I happen to think November is a great month to get married! Congrats Erin & Chad!

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Christina Lieb October 17, 2013 at 2:33 am

Eeeeek…..I can’t stand how cute they are , I’m so excited , can’t wait for wedding and babies, oh my goodness babies ahhhhhh! Think of how cute they will be with such a good looking couple. Congratulations Erin and Chad! God bless

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Jen October 17, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Dear Kelly,
Is Chad’s name actually Chad or is that a nickname for him….sorry I’m being nosey ! Thanks, Jen:)

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Kelly October 17, 2013 at 8:22 pm

Dear Jen,
Chad is short for Charles. He’s a third! Love, Kelly

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Kelly A October 17, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Mrs. Bates,
I just watched the Duggars’ episode where they showed part of Erin and Chad’s engagement. Any chance that the wedding will be filmed for the United Bates of America series or for a special? I know you said last year that they stopped filming your family’s show, but I think they should bring it back just for Erin & Chad’s wedding and for Zach & Whitney’s wedding. :)

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Kelly October 17, 2013 at 8:21 pm

Dear Kelly A,
It will be on the Duggar’s show. :) Love, Kelly

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Anke October 28, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Will there be a livestream of the wedding?

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Kelly November 26, 2013 at 5:57 am

Dear Anke,
Since I’m just now reading many of these messages, I’m assuming you were asking about Erin’s wedding, which has already passed….so very sorry. Love, Kelly

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Laura October 18, 2013 at 6:38 am

I just watched this week’s episode of 19 kids and counting Engaging Announcement! I can tell that Erin is very happy and can’t wait to start her life with Chad. I was very touching to see every one cry a little when she told the engagement story. I hope your family is doing good.
xoxo

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Narcisa Lupescu October 22, 2013 at 12:12 am

What color is there wedding going to be?

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Kelly October 22, 2013 at 3:39 am

Dear Narcisa,
Their colors are blue. love, Kelly

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Sarah October 22, 2013 at 7:32 pm

My husband and I were married at Whitestone. I remember having our wedding pictures taken in the same spot of their engagement. It holds such tender memories there!! Congratulations to your family. Thank you for being an encouragement to us as we grow our family and raise our children to love Jesus!
-Sarah of Chattanooga, TN

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Missy October 26, 2013 at 4:13 am

They make the most beautiful couple and what a beautiful place for a proposal!! I can’t wait to see what beautiful and talented children they have!! All I can think about it how “beautiful” this union will be!!

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Anne October 26, 2013 at 7:12 pm

How exciting!! I watched the episode of 19 Kids & Counting that featured Erin’s proposal and it was just so sweet and loving. :) I think in the episode there was mention that the wedding date was in early November and that is next week! How is the bride? Is she nervous?

All the best! :)

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Kelly October 27, 2013 at 9:16 pm

Dear Anne,
Yes…and still much left to do!!! lol!!! But we’re all excited….even though she’s had several teary nights about leaving siblings! Love, Kelly

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Anne November 3, 2013 at 8:28 pm

Dear Kelly,

I completely sympathize with her. Even though my immediate family is relatively small in comparison with yours (most of my extended family is down near Chattanooga and in Alabama), it was still a big change knowing that I was joining a new family, even though I was not leaving my family at all. Actually, I don’t think I slept at all the night before my wedding last year! :) Probably by the time you read this the wedding will have past but please give this advice to Erin for me: There is a learning curve the first year. Just keep your faith in God before you. He will take care of everything.

Much love to the newlyweds and congrats on gaining a new son!! :)

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Angela November 2, 2013 at 2:23 am

Kelly,
I imagine that tonight (11/1) will be bittersweet for you all as it will be Erin’s last night living at home. But how exciting that tomorrow you will gain a wonderful son-in-law! May God bless all of you and congrats to the bride and groom.
-Angela

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Stephanie November 2, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Congratulations Chad and Erin! I am so happy for this new chapter in both your lives and am excited to see what God has in store for you together.

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Jenny November 4, 2013 at 10:26 am

Dear Kelly and Gil
I hope Erin and Chad’s wedding went well and that you all had a lovely time. I may not share your religious beliefs but it is wonderful to see a young couple in love.

Jenny

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Kimberly November 5, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Blessing and congrat to Erin on her wedding. Hope to see some pictures posted soon. May God bless your union with many children, laughter and love alway.

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Sara November 7, 2013 at 12:18 am

I prayed especially for Erin and Chad this weekend and hope their special day went well. I check the blog daily in hopes of an update. While I know that couples in love that hold such strict purity guidelines are, well let’s just say eager to enjoy all the wonderful blessings marriage brings, I can’t imagine planning a wedding in such a short time frame on a budget, much less two as your family will have. Zach’s wedding, I think you should write a blog post about how to plan two beautiful weddings in a short time and on a budget. I bet lots of families would be interested in your tips.

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Kelly November 8, 2013 at 9:32 pm

Dear Sara,
Many people pooled together and helped! I can’t wait to do a post, especially to express our gratitude! Love, Kelly

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Beth L. November 12, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Will you be posting any wedding pictures? I am anxiously awaiting to see them. Also, do you know when the wedding will be aired on TLC?

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Kelly November 13, 2013 at 3:54 pm

Dear Beth,
Yes, I’ll post pictures as soon as I can. Erin just got back from her honeymoon two days ago, so I’m hoping I’ll have pics soon! I don’t have any idea when it will be aired on TLC. Love, Kelly

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Kristine November 19, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Dear Kelly,

Congratulations to Erin on her engagement and her marriage! She has a very unique hairstyle, and I was wondering if she had any tips on how to recreate her style. I hope you and your family continue to be blessed and enjoy a wonderful year!

Sincerely,

Kristine

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Kelly November 26, 2013 at 1:36 am

Dear Kristine,
She has a lot of body, so her hair holds curl well. She puts a little mousse on her dry hair, then rolls it with sponge rollers. She fluffs the curls with her fingers, instead of brushing through, or makes ringlet curls by twisting strands around her finger. Love, kelly

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JC December 31, 2013 at 10:20 pm

Soooo beautiful!! I am so happy for Erin!! Maybe she will finally be able to wear a pair of jeans and finish college!!! She is free!!!! May God Bless Her!!

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Kelly January 1, 2014 at 11:00 pm

Dear JC,
She is finishing college this semester. She’s so excited. I don’t think she has any desire to wear the jeans, though lol! She is certainly enjoying married life! Love, Kelly

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Kelly January 1, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Dear JC,
LOL! Yes, she’s gonna finish this semester and is so excited. I don’t think she wants to wear jeans, though. But she is enjoying married life! Love, Kelly

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Jeslyn April 10, 2014 at 7:11 pm

Erin is such a good role model for young girls. She is beautiful! I love everything your family stands for :)

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Kelly September 10, 2013 at 6:29 pm

Dear Alexis,
We are overwhelmed by the thoughtfulness! Chad is moving into the house this Saturday. Erin can’t wait to make day trips while he’s at work to begin setting the house up! May God bless you and please know how very moved we are by your gesture of love! Love, Kelly

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Alexis September 11, 2013 at 2:51 am

Dear Kelly,

The pleasure has been all ours (and I am glad you saw my message). If any of you ever need anything in Northern California please let us know!!!!

Thank you for your love, ministry, example, and hope.

Love,
Alexis
PS There is still 1 package in route to be delivered on the 16th.

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Alexis September 29, 2013 at 3:36 am

Dear Kelly,

I pray that my child (hopefully more) grows up to be like your daughter. I just received the most beautiful, and thoughtful note in the mail from her (and Chad). It was utterly unexpected but it has really made my day! You should feel proud as a Mama to know your children are so kind, polite, educated, upright, faithful, humble people.

We would have adored to join you but it will not be possible. Alas, I hope to see the blessed event via streaming, on TV or just in your pictures (depending on what y’all decide).

I am praying for you, Gil, and your entire family in this exciting, stressful, hectic, and life-chaning time.

Love,
Alexis

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Kelly September 19, 2013 at 5:37 am

Dear Aine,
That would be a tremendous help, and I won’t post your number if you send it. They are hoping to finalize their plans in the next 2 days :) Love, Kelly

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Kelly September 19, 2013 at 5:39 am

Dear Lynsey,
You’ll have to send them a list of suggested sights :) That’d be wonderful! They both love celtic music too! Love, Kelly

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