Teri and Jay Schwandt hoped that the 12th time was the charm. The Schwandts are the proud parents of 11 boys and thought that No. 12 might be their lucky number—and their first daughter.
“We thought maybe, maybe, you know, we're going to have a girl. Number 12 could be the one,” Teri told TODAY.
But girls apparently aren’t in the cards for the Schwandts; they welcomed baby Tucker home this past Tuesday. The Michigan couple, who married at 18 and had their first child while in college, is happy to have another healthy baby at home.
“Having another baby in the house, it's just natural now,” Teri told TODAY. “We are confident that he is going to fit right in and we gave up a long time ago on a little girl showing up in this family.”
Teri, one of 14 children, and Jay believe having a big family is what’s natural for them. But they think that if they had a girl around child No. 10 they might have stopped trying. The couple never learns the baby’s gender before birth, meaning each time is a surprise. Well, kind of.
“We assumed that if we had any more it was just going to be more boys,” Teri told TODAY.
One of Teri’s sisters has 10 sons – so between the two women there are 22 male grandchildren. But it's worth noting that the mothers don’t determine gender; it’s the sperm that determines whether the baby is a boy or a girl. The odds of having a boy are roughly 50-50 each time a couple has a child, but the probability that one family will have a dozen boys in a row is about 4,000 to 1.
Baby Tucker joins brothers Tyler, 21; Zack, 17; Drew, 16; Brandon, 14; Tommy, 11; Vinny, 10; Calvin, 8; Gabe, 6; Wesley, 5; Charlie, 3; and Luke, 19 months.
Thirteen males in the house means a ton of testosterone. The Schwandts buy a lot of tennis shoes, bandage many scraped knees and elbows, and cook as if they are feeding a small army. The older boys help care for the younger boys under the watchful eye of Teri, whose organization skills keep the house running smoothly.
TODAY’s Matt Lauer put the numbers into perspective:
“Well, you have now got three entire golf foursomes. You have a whole baseball team with three in the bull pen, which is great.”
While welcoming another baby into the house feels almost routine, Jay admits he had a moment of shock.
“We were getting ready to leave the hospital and I said 12. Twelve kids, that’s crazy.”