January 24, 2015
The first week of our tour found us in Missouri, Kentucky, + Tennessee. We had eight concerts in eight days, which kept us hopping! 
As usual, it took a little while to get back into the swing of road life. (and some of us still haven’t quite adjusted yet!) 
Our life at home on the farm is pretty much polar-opposite from road life, so making the switch back and forth is usually tough, but especially when we leave for our winter tour, since we’ve just gotten off of our longest stretch at home (3months). 
We had quite a few challenges that first week. Those states were having unusually cold weather and our bus didn’t do so well with that. Thankfully no pipes burst although we did have strings popping on our instruments from the cold. Due to that we had to store all the instruments up in the bus instead of down in the bay (since the bays weren’t staying warm enough for the instruments) and that was definitely character-building because the bus is so tight anyway with all twelve of us, and adding ?? instruments piled all over the place made for quite a bit of tripping and organized chaos. 
The above picture was taken during a meal we had at a home nearby to our first concert of the tour. I felt like that chocolate cake definitely deserved to be photographed. =) That meal was such a treat-we were all exhausted and feeling very unprepared for the concert that night and it was like God just sent us this incredible home cooked Mennonite meal to give us the little extra encouragement we were needing!
In addition to everything else, we were frantically spending every spare minute practicing new music for our upcoming time in the recording studio in February. 
For whatever reason, music practice is usually a pretty stressful experience for us. (maybe its because we often wait til the last minute) There is definitely not jumping up and down with joy whenever Mitchell (commander-in-chief of practice time) announces group practice. 
But as is the way with real life, you can’t always do what you feel like doing! 
I took a few pictures of this practice we had at a little country church in KY. The above picture is typical-instrumentalists are serious + focused…..
…while the female sector of the family are buried in the books during the various instrument licks. Invariably though they get so immersed in their books that they forget to sing at the proper times, which results in mild scoldings from the males. =)
Fellowship with dear friends one night in Tennessee after a concert there.
As always, laundry is a big part of life on the road!! We have more laundromat stories in our book than you can imagine! We’ve been to every kind. 
This particular one was great except that the dryers heat was so high that it literally fried all of our dress pants. We rewashed and ironed and sprayed and rewashed but they still haven’t been the same since. =(
I was thankful for this crew of siblings that came in to help finish the folding + get everything loaded on the bus!
In the hills of KY, we sang at this gorgeous community building. It was definitely my favorite building we have ever sung in. It was so rustic and beautiful and COUNTRY. 
 Just check out that chalkboard above the fireplace! (above)
sound check time
A panoramic view from the back of the building. Isn’t it gorgeous?! 
In the midst of all of those concerts and practice and laundry and everything else,  we still have to make time for lots of physical activities outdoors or else this farm family will go CRAZY! =) 
Above, the boys enjoying a good football game at a park in Tennessee.
We want to extend a special thank-you to all of the churches + dear people in Missouri, Kentucky, & Tennessee, who were so kind in hosting & blessing us in so many ways during our first week on tour for 2015! Thank-you all so much!! May the Lord richly bless y’all as you have blessed & encouraged our family! 
“Be Thou exalted, Lord, in Thine own strength: so will we sing and praise Thy power.”
Psalm 21:13
{posted by chelsy}


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  1. Lov the pics an just wired how u got to get have a great fellowship time with the bates an some of other people to can't wa for week 2 & 3 weeks to be posted I also love ur guys blogs especially the long ones an the ones with pics added to them an I did expect the blog to be up this early when u siad soon thought u meant in while like 2 weeks but I get thou love Ashley Evans hugs lov u guys an God bless u guys=)

  2. And yes that lil cute an very rustic looking cute country building is so beautiful and this thing about the first pic I th that was just cute an funny to it is like oh hey very yummy looking coco cake do u want to be the pic I siad u have to must be in this pic and the cake said yes lol ahhh the things the life gives u ahhh life gotta lov it love Ashley Evans hugs u lov u guys an God bless u guys=)

  3. Thanks for the "on the road" update, Chels! Ok, so I laughed at the part when you had to put all of the instruments INSIDE the bus along with 12 people…I guess you could call it a character building experience, right? And I completely understand what you mean about music practice being stressful… sometimes things are just rough and you have to go through with it! I know how it feels though:)
    And that country building is just so pretty!

  4. Hey B's
    i love your blog!
    i saw the bates family in one of the pics.
    y'all, the bates, and the duggars are some of my FAVORITE families!!! i hope y'all can be in one of the bates episodes on bringing up bates.

    Melinda Clement

  5. Thanks for the update on how your winter tour is going! I am keeping you all in my prayers as you travel and minster to others in music!

    In Christ,
    Sarah F.

  6. I know how difficult transitioning back to life on the road can be, but it's also really great to get back onto the tour schedule after a little bit of down time. You are continually in my prayers. Thank you for the encourament you have been to me and for your testimony and example to a lost and dying world. Keep on serving The Lord. =)
    -Abby Allen

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