Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Duggar's Gift to The Bates - Tell us More Part II

Ok this has been bothering me since the story arc began. Who, exactly is paying for the extension on the Bates' house? From watching the program, the Bates' were given a gift from the Duggars and the Wilsons. The Bates had no idea it was happening. Also from watching the show, we heard that Zach was in on it, because he had been down to get permits for the construction. So we heard at the beginning of the program that the Bates could have a small room added on to their home, courtesy of the Duggars and the Wilsons--what would they like? More living space or a laundry room? They picked more bedroom space. Now anyone watching this would assume that the Duggars would be footing the bill, afterall, since the Bates seemed to have no clue this was happening, why would they be expected to pay for it?

But the story doesn't end there. The project grew to mammoth proportions. The addition became bigger than their original house. Ok, now who is paying for it? Did the Duggars say during planning, "Ok here's what we'll put in, after that it's your baby?" It seemed like the Bates had some money saved up to put in an addition, they just hadn't done anything to prepare for it, prehaps the Duggars were just there to "get the ball rolling on it." Obviously having Jim Bob there helped and hindered the project--Jim Bob does nothing small--they all said that in their interviews--but he does know where to find bargains and how to negotiate for deals and we saw that when they went shopping for supplies. We also saw people from the community come donate time, supplies, and money when they saw news stories about the project.

So I have to wonder...was this really a gift? Do you consider it a gift? Was it more of a push to get a project started that the Duggars knew the Bates wanted to get started but hadn't had the time to get started? I don't see "gift" because I don't see them staying to see it finished--call me crazy, but that's just rude. Ok, it's a massive project, but then don't call it a gift. Also, if the Duggars aren't then paying for it as the card implied, don't call it a gift. Their labour of course was a gift in the beginning, but after, it's just encouragement. They left a few of their kids there for awhile to help, but not to see the project through. I don't know, that just bothers me. Especially since we heard Michelle say, more than once, "Kelly is pregnant and we want to get this done before the baby comes so she doesn't have to deal with this stress." Obviously that didn't happen and now Kelly is pregant again and from what I've heard rumour-wise, it still isn't finished as the Bates are finishing it as they get the money to do it step by step--again, not a gift.

Opinions anyone?


  1. I think TLC paid for the "gift" and all other expenses related to this project, as well they should!

    The network may or may not determine that there's a market for a Bates family show, but let's be honest, we ALL (or most of us, I'm guessing?)adore the Bates in the same way we initially adored the Duggars when we first "met" them on the TLC specials. The Bates family is (IMO) being courted by the network.

  2. Didn't John and Joseph stay to help finish?? I think Michelle was more stressed than Kelly. With Josie recovering...who knows when they can go back to TN to help. Does anyone know if the Wilsons have been back? There were other families that were helping out as well. I do hope there isn't a whole lot left to finish. Well, they made it through winter. Hope the money made from TLC appearances will help them finish. I'm gonna see if I can track down more info. I'll keep you informed. I know you'll do the same. :)

  3. Angie,

    Thank you for attempting to find out how the Bates family home is coming along.

    I think it was really nice for everyone to pull together (regardless of their reasons) to help this family.

    I hope the house has been completed and is now a home for them.

  4. The reason I posted this was that someone commented recently in one of the other posts that the Bates would be taking a long time to finish as they would be finshing it as they pay as they go...and they kids were filmed playing in sawdust the last time the Bates were shown on film (visitng Josie) so it's not finished yet...and that if TLC hadn't helped finish the Duggar house because of production deadlines the Duggar kids would still be playing in sawdust as well (hahaha) that's what got me thinking--if they are still saving to pay as they go--what on earth made it a 'gift' as the card at the begining said it was...

    yes John David and Joseph stayed for awhile at the begining to help, but not for the duration of the project...but they are back home now...and there were people from the community helping, but who knows for how long and if they are still know how that goes, there is always a rush to help when they see stuff like that on the news, but then the excitement dies down and they are left to fend for themselves...

    and we're left with my original question...what of this was "gift" just the labour? i'm totally confused....seems like a lame gift to me...

  5. Marybeth,

    I love you English English!

    Okay, back to the topic.

    I think/hope that the Bates family has been financially compensated by TLC for their allowing the filming of this, and many other projects they have participated on for TV with the Duggars.

    I remember when the Bates family went grocery shopping and they didn't seem overly-concerned about the total. That gave me hope, maybe false hope, that the network was paying them, in the same way they provided Jon and Kate with free groceries, at the very minimum.

    Do I think the home addition was a gift? Yes and no. It's sort of like someone offering to cook dinner for you but forgetting to bring half of the ingredients, and leaving you to figure out how finish the stew they were cutting vegetables for! I believe the Duggars had good intentions...but we all know where that can lead!

  6. Which part was the gift? Well they did the design work, the got an amazing amount of work done - i'm sure it was watertight at least when we left them and provide a big amount of free labour.
    On the other hand it would have stood a much better chance of being finished if the design had been kept smaller! Jim Bob was right to want the best for his friends but I think he over did it.
    I'm betting that the materials we saw being bought and used were paid for by either the Duggars or tlc - and perhaps the Duggars used some of their tlc money to pay for it - who knows.
    I think that the finishing was probably left for the Bates to do - as we saw in the catch up program that they were using wood offcuts to floor one room.
    The trouble is with most building projects, I believe, that using reclaimed stuff saves money but takes longer. I can see the Bates choosing to do it that way though.
    I too thought when the Bates were shopping that they didn't baulk at the price, and that they must be doing ok - one way or another.

  7. Well actually when they went shopping, I remember Gil being very budget conscious--when asking about cabinets, he was asking which set were cheaper not which set Kelly liked best.

    I guess where I'm going with this whole blog post was...the gift from the card went from being a free room addition to an out of control almost new house that the Bates now seem to be paying for...or are they? That's what I don't understand and I wish someone would explain it.

  8. Marybeth,

    The shopping I was referring to was at the grocery store.

    At the cabinet store? Yes, Gil seemed very cost-conscious. But I think that was more a matter of not wanting to have anyone spend too much money on his family. It's probably a combination of learned behavior (you CAN'T be frivolous when you're bringing up a family that size on poverty level wages) and a sense of humility. I've said it before, I know. The Bates family reminds me of the Duggars during their first TLC specials.

  9. Maybe the Duggars paid what they had saved up for the project etc. Then as the project grew, TLC maybe stepped up and offered to do some updates on them, have them on the show occasionally to give them the money to finish it out?

    I DO hope TLC helped out with food expenses etc when all those people were visiting! That was nearly triple their normal meal size, which pretty much means triple the groceries!

    Mrs P

  10. It was interesting watching them grocery shop (the Bates) wasn't it? Sometimes they were very price conscious--Gil would have them put one kind of tomatoes back and get other tomatoes because they were 1.20/lb cheaper...and we saw Kelly getting OJ by the carton not by concentrate (are you KIDDING me???) that's always the more expensive way to buy it unless it's SERIOUSLY on sale...then at the check out we see them getting name brand bags of potato chips, bottles of soda and 12 packs of I know they pre-planned for this visit, so they budgeted for it, but still, the dichotomy of their grocery list was bizarre for a family so budget-conscious, but on the other hand, it was a special occasion and i get that too. However, i will point out one thing a lot of people may not know...those stamps at the end...i've used those before and if you spend the time to glue them to the "book" you can spend them on items advertised (different each week) for things as low as 9 cents it could be that's why they bought bags of chips and bottles of soda and jugs of OJ...because they were cashing in their books of stamps, and judging from their shopping they probably have a ton of books to cash in...

  11. I respect the fact that they refuse food stamps even though they qualify. It's very noble--they chose to have a large family and struggle to support it on their own. But as a mother, I find it hard to accept that they don't use them. I've used them and I'm not embarassed to admit it. When you have a child to feed you do what you have to do, they are only good for food and if you budget well and buy quality foods and nutritious foods and shop sales and buy in bulk you can not only feed your family on them completely but often times have some left over at the end of the month, but if you waste them on junk foods and expensive stores and don't plan well, yes they become what they were meant to be, a supplement to your budget, not your entire food budget. For the Bates I can see it as a catch-22...they could use that 2k a month they spend on food for so much more for their family if they used food stamps, but then they would look bad to the rest of the world, however food stamps are a private matter, not a public one. Again as a mother, I do what I need to to feed my child. If they can make it on their own, more power to them, but if they are truly struggling, I would take the food stamps, afterall they do pay taxes.

  12. Ouch, this is a tough one.

    I'll think about it before posting a reply.

  13. I'm guessing the American benefits system is very different from the UK one. What are food stamps?

  14.'s a benefit where you get money that goes to food only (or seeds and plants that grow food)....when we were in the UK we got child credit that went towards our child, but there was no specific demand that we had to spend it on food. They don't actually use "stamps" anymore, it's put on a debit card now with a PIN number--easier to prevent fraud and preserve dignity--you aren't embarassed to pull out your stamps in front of everyone and you can't give your stamps away for things "on the black market" since they rarely ask for ID when you use them.

  15. Chris...I don't think we've been properly introduced, I do get the impression that you're from the UK :) ....I gave birth to my daughter in London and my husband was born and raised there and both he and my daughter are citizens. I would prefer to live there and am hoping by the time she's school-age we'll be living back there :)

  16. i think the mindset on food stamps is an interesting one. they chose a lifestyle with lots of kids and should not use them.. but on the same note as a parent you have to provide food for your kids... its a tough situation to be in. the only problem i see, is that there are people abusing the system. who have more kids to get more from the government. and then people might think the bates are doing this... especially since they have been on tv and are a recognizaable family