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Cameras will follow Tennessee couple Gil and Kelly Jo Bates and their 19 kids in the new UP reality series Bringing Up Bates

By Emily Strohm
Updated December 13, 2014 03:10 PM
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Credit: Courtesy Bates Family

When it comes to the Bates family, bigger is definitely better!

Cameras will follow Tennessee natives Gil and Kelly Jo Bates and their brood of 19 kids in the new UP reality series Bringing Up Bates.

While the proud parents initially had no plans for a big family when they first tied the knot 27 years ago, they now couldn’t imagine life any other way.

And with 19 children ranging in age from 2 to 25, the Bates are all-hands-on-deck when it comes to keeping organized.

Everyone has chores, and there is little to no TV. Gil runs a tree service and depends on sons Lawson, 22, Nathan 21, and Trace, 17, to help him, while Kelly Jo handles all the meals, laundry and home schooling.

And while four of their 19 children have already said “I do,” the Bates have strict rules when it comes to courting.

Side hugs only are permitted until marriage, although front hugs are allowed on special occasions.

Bringing Up Bates premieres on UP on Jan. 1 at 9 p.m. ET.