When you've watched a family on TV for so long, it seems like you know everything about them, from how they run their laundry schedule to big life milestones, like weddings and children. However, there may be some details that fans and followers don't know about the expanding Bates brood. Like, where exactly does the Bates family live? Their 4,000 sq. ft. home is currently in the south.
The Bates family, who star in the reality TV show Bringing Up Bates on UPTV, resides in rural Tennessee, according to ABC News. For those curious about how all 20 of them fit comfortably into one home, during a segment with UPTV.com, Gil and Kelly Bates shared that they've always separated bedrooms by the sex of their kids (one big girls room, one big boys room) but recently expanded to add another addition that included an even bigger girls room, and two boys rooms. "We have a total of 8.5 bathrooms," Kelly shared in the UPTV video. "And it's my job to clean them," Gil joked.
The Bates family, who are Evangelical Christians, do not believe in birth control. In fact, their morals are similar to another famous, large family, the Duggars, with whom they are close friends. According to Christian Today, a lot of their traditions and customs — from courting to child-rearing — are very similar to the Duggar family's.
Now, of course, some of the Bates children have begun moving out as they have gotten married and started their own families, and yet the homestead remains the place they always come back to.
For income, Gil runs a tree cutting business — located in Lake City, Tennessee — while Kelly homeschools all of their children. All in all, it's about pinching pennies, and making it work. "We're a large family that lives in the hills of East Tennessee. God said children are a blessing, and not wanting to miss out on any blessings, our family began to grow. Our precious children have taught us that money is not the only riches in life. In fact, money won't last. Only two things in life will: people and God's Word!" they wrote on their family website.
Between school and work, the Bates have a lot of people to manage each day, and it's clear that they've learned a thing or two along the way. "We have learned so much from our children, to be honest, watching them as their relationships with each person have developed," Gil said in an interview with The He Said She Said Experience.
Kelly added in the same interview, "For me, the biggest piece of advice I can give them is like Gil said, not to let conflicts grow and arise. It’s easy to let something that started out as a little misunderstanding or a tiny conflict grow until it becomes mountain — sized or add to other existing little misunderstandings and grows like the snowball effect. It’s easy to let that happen and it’s easy to let hurt feelings and bitterness creep in. Those types of things will destroy any relationship."
It's clear that the family has a lot figured out, whether it's their personal beliefs, or how to run a house of 20. It's no wonder Bringing Up Bates fans enjoy watching so intently as they grow their family together.