Family With 12 Sons Expecting Again: Will Lucky 13 Be a Baby Girl?!

Last summer, a Michigan family captured national attention when it welcomed a 12th son: What are the odds? (No literally — what are they? I’m not a math person. But I figure that’s a pretty wild streak!)

And now the couple, Kateri and Jay Schwandt, are expecting baby number 13 — and while they are sticking to their past protocol to not to learn the baby’s gender before delivery, they aren’t really expecting to need any pink booties.

“If we were to have a girl, I think we would go into shock,” mom Kateri, 39, told the Grand Rapids Press. “It would probably be disbelief.” After being the only woman in the family for so long — her kids range in age from 1 to 22 — she said she’d be comforted by having another boy. She already knows what she’s doing, after all!

But dad Jay told MLive he’d be curious to experience a change in the form of a new baby girl. “The stuff that goes on in this house is all boy – roughhousing and wrestling. If there was a little girl in there, I assume it would be different.”

Some among us who have ever had a pregnancy that didn’t feel like a walk in the park (ahem, me) have trouble imaging carrying so many babies — let alone having that many to care for, of any gender, once they come out. But Kateri is taking it completely in stride. She said she loves being pregnant — and has spent just about half her life in that state!

So take your bets, folks. Boy or girl for the Schwandt family?

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Kim Kardashian: “Pregnancy Style Is Hard!”

When I was around 24 weeks pregnant with twins, my belly was — well, let’s just say it was formidable. I was sitting in my ob-gyn’s waiting room when I encountered another mama-to-be, who was carrying one baby and was much smaller — far from the walking spectacle I’d already become. I complimented her on her dress and she said, “Thanks! It’s not maternity. I just buy one size up.” I almost laughed out loud at the quaint notion such a thing would work for my pregnant bod. It’s a nice idea if you can make it happen, but it sure ain’t for everyone during their vastly different experiences of pregnancy.

Apparently that’s the same lesson Kim Kardashian learned after her first pregnancy with daughter North West.

Speaking to U.K.-based beauty blog Pixiwoo in a YouTube video, the celeb said, “I wore my regular clothes and tried to make it — I would just buy a size up.”

Kim was widely criticized during her pregnancy for her fashion style — often ridiculed to the extent that even non-fans came to her defense in the face of relentless pregnant-body-shaming stories in the media.

Given that she’s open about trying for baby number two with husband Kanye West, she’s learned a thing or two that might serve her in the future. She added, “I don’t know if I would necessarily do that this time around. I would wear…I don’t think… well, at the end, I really needed maternity clothes.”

I feel you, Kim. I needed them too, and I filled my closet with the likes of Old Navy staples, which I accessorized ad nauseum, and Rachel Pally and T Bags Los Angeles bright patterned maxi dresses for a dose of some of my pre-pregnancy individuality. But it’s hard to feel like yourself when people gawk at you on the street if you take a fashion risk — or, if you’re as big as I was while carrying multiples, even when you don’t.

Kardashian, of course, knows quite a bit about being relentlessly in the spotlight. And ultimately, she had this to say about maternity fashion: “Pregnancy style is hard. I’m not gonna lie!”

You’re not kidding, sister.

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Rosie Pope's Style Tips for Mom-to-Be
Rosie Pope's Style Tips for Mom-to-Be
Rosie Pope's Style Tips for Mom-to-Be

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See the Fashion Show With All Lingerie-Clad Pregnant Models!

We’ve seen the occasional pregnant model on a high-fashion runway as a one-off stunt—and that’s pretty cool. But one fashion show this weekend took the pregnant-model casting to a whole new level: Every gorgeous model in the show sported a baby bump!

Part of Lingerie Week, the fashion show hosted by luxury maternity underwear brand You! Lingerie brought a parade of pregnant models to strut their burgeoning bellies on the runway.

“We love to be playful, we don’t take ourselves [too] seriously,” You! founder Uyo Okebie-Eichelberger said at the show in a YouTube video on the VIVEKaterin channel. “It’s just celebrating motherhood. It doesn’t have to be drab; it doesn’t have to be boring colors. I think that we love the bright colors because it’s all part of all uplifting moms’ spirit—expectant moms, breastfeeding moms. That’s what we do.”

Beyond that, she said, “I like to tell people it’s one-part lingerie, two parts ego booster… When you’re pregnant, you’ve just had your baby, you’ve gained some weight, you’re not necessarily feeling your best, not feeling your prettiest. When you’re wearing very pretty lingerie underneath, it gives you that extra oomph.”

We agree!

See footage from the show, as well as comments from Okebie-Eichelberger in the YouTube video.

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5 Maternity Must-Haves
5 Maternity Must-Haves
5 Maternity Must-Haves

Photo courtesy of You! Lingerie

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The Real Reason Women Should Be Wary of Egg-Freezing Job Perks

When Apple and Facebook announced recently that they would pay for their employees to freeze their eggs should they choose the procedure — to the tune of $20,000 — the news was met with plenty of conflict.

Some heralded the move as a positive step for women in the workplace, who’d now be able to have more control over their fertility, especially as it related to their professional trajectories. Others, however, called it just a way to manipulate women into working insane hours indefinitely, with no work-life balance in the cards. Ever.

But diverse philosophies on the matter aside, there’s another issue women considering their eggs should consider,  one that often gets lost in discussions like this — and that’s whether or not it actually works. A Wired piece points to what may be some pretty dismal math for women interested in pursuing this route.

The article points to the fact that neither the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists nor the American Society for Reproductive Medicine endorse the practice of egg freezing to put off childbearing. And more staggeringly, it calls out data showing that 77 percent of egg implantations for 30-year-old women fail. And for 40-year-old women, that figure soars to a bleak 91 percent.

If those stats are to be believed, egg freezing’s long-shot effectiveness ought to play a much bigger role in women’s decision-making than a buzzy new employer benefit.

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Trying to Conceive: 5 Common Fertility Mistakes
Trying to Conceive: 5 Common Fertility Mistakes
Trying to Conceive: 5 Common Fertility Mistakes

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Whew! Viral IVF Couple Still Expecting Quads After Life-Saving Surgery

Remember the couple struggling with infertility whose story went viral after they posted photos of their shocked reaction to finding out they were expecting quadruplets? Who could forget!

If you’ve been following the Gardners’ story — as so many empathetic parents on Facebook now are — you know the family met with a huge challenge this week: Mom-to-be Ashley had to undergo surgery to save her babies after it was discovered that one set of her two sets of twins was suffering from twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome, or TTTS. That means that one twin isn’t getting enough blood, and the other is getting too much by way of the placenta they share.

She underwent the surgery on Wednesday, and after a tense wait to find out the results of the surgery through ultrasound, the couple learned that all four hearts were still beating. Dad Tyson posted a YouTube video to update loved ones — and family fans! — with the results.

The duo also posted this message to their Facebook page, which currently has about 156,000 followers:

“God is GOOD! Prayers have been answered!! Miracles continue to take place. ALL the babies survived the surgery, they heard 4 heartbeats today! We want to thank all of you for being part of our miracle!! We don’t know how to say THANK YOU enough!! xoxo”

Ashley’s now about halfway through her pregnancy and on bedrest for the duration.

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Photo courtesy of Facebook

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