Fun Ways to Predict the Gender of Your Baby

I’m pregnant. After my miscarriage last summer, it feels so great to be able to say those words again. While there are a million emotions that go along with this journey, and the past few months are sort of a blur of nausea, fatigue, anxiety and denial, I can honestly say that I woke up a few weeks ago in full-on nesting mode. That isn’t to say that I’m experiencing this pregnancy with the same light-heartedness that I did with my first child, but I feel ready (finally) to enjoy this pregnancy, and want to prepare to be a mother again. Yes, I realize there is no guarantee of a healthy baby in June. I realize I will never relax until the moment I am able to hold my child, and that there will be nights I don’t sleep because of all the worries running through my head. But today I am pregnant, and today I want to enjoy being pregnant.

That being said, once I reached the second trimester, we began to announce our news to family and friends. It wasn’t long before questions about the baby’s sex began popping up – did I have any feelings one way or the other? When would I find out? WOULD I find out? Did I have a preference? And what about all those old wives’ tales, the one’s that seem to pop up just for occasions like pregnancy? While learning the baby’s sex is pretty low on my list of concerns this pregnancy, I can’t help but get swept into the excitement of it all. Thinking about my baby in terms of boy or girl makes me feel so connected to the person inside me – one of many reasons that I cannot wait until birth to find out what I’m having (the number one reason being that I am horribly impatient).

I will find out in just over a week (hopefully) and until then, old wives’ tales are all I have to go on.  There are so many it would be impossible to talk about them all, but I thought it would be fun (and a nice escape from the anxiety I am often feeling this time around) to talk about some of those “theories”, what they are, and what they “predict” for my baby. In the comments, let me know if you have tried any of these (or others) and whether they were right for your kids. Here we go!

The Pencil Test:

For whatever reason, this is the famous test in my husband’s family. It has been right for 5 out of 5 nieces and nephews now. It sounds ridiculous, and I thought it was ridiculous, but I have to say, it was right with my son!

How to:

  1. Stick a needle into the top of a pencil eraser
  2. Place a thread within the needle
  3. Place the mother’s wrist on the table, palm up
  4. Hold the string over the women’s wrist and watch which way it swings: side to side is a GIRL. Swaying from hand to elbow is a BOY.

My result: GIRL!

The Baking Soda Test:

This was a new one for me. I hadn’t heard of it until this pregnancy, and then as soon as I did, I couldn’t rest until I tried it. My husband probably thought I was losing my mind when I escaped to the bathroom with a paper cup and a box of baking soda, but he’s just a chemist…what does he know? : )

How to: Pee in a cup. Pour 2 tablespoons of baking soda into the urine and see what happens. If it fizzes like soda it’s a boy. No fizz = girl.

My result: GIRL!

The Chinese Gender Calendar:

This seems to be a pretty common little test these days, and while it was wrong for me with my son, I want to give it another chance this time around.

How to: Plug in your age (apparently it needs to be your Chinese age, so consult the chart for accuracy) and the month you conceived, and it tells you what you will be having.

My result: BOY!

Heart Rate:

This theory has been around for a long time. One of the first things my father in law said when we told him we were pregnant (after the usual congratulations, of course) was “what was the heartbeat?” He said the heartbeat test worked with all of his kids.

How to:

Supposedly girl’s heart rates are higher than boys. A heart rate in the 140+ range is supposed to suggest girl, while a heart rate lower than 140 is supposedly a boy.

My result: GIRL!

Ramzi Method:

This method was based on a study done on pregnant women and the location of their placentas in relation to the baby. While I thought it sounded pretty interesting when I read about it online, my ultrasound technician burst my bubble and told me she’d never heard of it and that she couldn’t tell for sure which side my placenta was going to be on (this was at 10 weeks).

How to:

This is complicated, because it depends on the type of ultrasound the mother receives. For trans-vaginal, the image is as is, but for abdominal, the image is mirrored. Also, because the ultrasound techs are moving so quickly, it can be hard to determine where your placenta is just based on a picture. It’s best to ask the technician directly.

My result: INCONCLUSIVE (but probably on the right, so BOY!)


With my son, I ate 2 or 3 apples a day. I craved anything sour – apples, orange juice, salt & vinegar chips (which I normally don’t like) and sour candy. I was convinced (and was right!) that I was having a boy because I always imagined my cravings being intense versions of things I already like (cake, doughnuts, sweets, for example).

How to:

When pregnant with a girl, supposedly the mother will crave sweet things. With a boy, sour or salty.

My result: GIRL! (I could eat cookies, cake or doughnuts this entire pregnancy, I swear)

So while most of the theories seem to be predicting a girl for me this time around, my mother’s intuition is still undecided. I was convinced I was having a boy when I was pregnant with my son, and wasn’t surprised at all when we found out for sure. This time around, I am still leaning towards a boy, but that could be because I can’t imagine anything else! I will update my post after my ultrasound at the end of the month. Until then, keep me busy with more theories to investigate.


8 Responses to Fun Ways to Predict the Gender of Your Baby

  1. Jordy January 21, 2014 at 11:37 am #

    Betsy, I absolutely love this post! As I am almost 22 weeks along with our first baby! A very very long, emotional journey of infertility and after round 2 of ICSI, we were pregnant at last. It took me a while to believe it. I still can’t believe it, but every time I feel a kick (which seems like ALL the time now) I just smile in amazement that we created a little being of our own.
    For the very reason of going through infertility, we are NOT going to find out the gender. I can’t imagine ever NOT finding out, but after what we went through, we are so eagerly anticipating the surprise at delivery! I want to see it! I don’t want anyone to say what It is, haha!!!!! Will be difficult, but that is the first thing I want to look at, lol! I am completely convinced it’s a boy but I have done so many of the gender prediction tests cuz I find it so much fun!
    A girlfriend was texting me one day asking me all these questions….which way does my pillow face, north(girl). Look at my hands….did I look at my palms or back of my hand…I looked at my palms, which said girl! Added up my age and the month we conceived, odd number, girl! Chinese gender chart has been the most upsetting because I’ve gotten both boy and girl…using two different Chinese gender calendars…..we did a few more, but it’s just been so fun!
    Have you heard of the draino test?! Supposedly like the baking soda test I think…that one would be fun! I can’t WAIT to hear what you are having! Please please update us on the blog!!!
    Also….the craving thing I can’t tell either cuz I love any type of fruit and I love desserts at night….I’m not really craving anything in particular except sourdough bread with honey peanut butter, lol!
    Sorry this is such a long post! I’m so so happy for you!!!!!!! What a blessing you have! Enjoy it! Hope you’re feeling great now, too! I didn’t think my pregnancy would be this easy, but it’s been so nice not being sick at all! Just tired in the beginning. I think we had the emotional battle for 2.5 years and were maybe due for an easy pregnancy…who knows!
    Were you sick with your son?
    Thanks for listening to my blabber mouth, sorry!! Haha!

    • Betsy January 29, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

      Hi Jordy! Thanks for your note, and congratulations on your pregnancy! Now that I know it’s a girl, I think I should try the drano test to see if it works! 😉 I admire anyone able to wait to find out the sex until birth–my husband wanted to wait but I just don’t have it in me. I hope the rest of your pregnancy is happy, healthy and full of wonderful surprises!

  2. Tara
    Tara January 21, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    Congrats Betsy!! Great post! If I remember correctly most of the predictors I did were right with my first but wrong with my second. My intuition wasn’t so great though because both times I thought I was having a boy:)

  3. Jessie January 28, 2014 at 9:19 pm #

    Congratulations Betsy! This is a fun post! I remember being confused for a bit when I found out I was having a girl with #2. I just assumed it would be another boy, for some reason. It took me a few days to wrap my head around the idea.

  4. Andrea
    Andrea January 29, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    YAY!!!! Congrats Betsy!!!!

  5. Jill January 29, 2014 at 1:12 pm #

    Congrats on your exciting news! It’s so wonderful to hear that you became pregnant again after a miscarriage. I had a miscarriage this past year over Thanksgiving. My husband and I were devastated. I feel like we are still healing but are hopeful to become pregnant again. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. It’s so helpful to know that I’m not alone!

    • Betsy January 29, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

      Hi Jill! Thank you so much! We are thrilled to be pregnant again after our loss last summer. While the anxiety will probably not go away until I am holding my little girl in my arms, I am still feeling so grateful and excited to be experiencing this journey again.

      I am so sorry for your loss. I know the loss of any child, at any stage, can be devastating. I have learned since my own miscarriage that we are definitely not alone, but hearing positive stories of people who had healthy pregnancies after loss really comforts me. It is possible! Good luck and please send me a message if you ever have any questions!

  6. Lindsey January 29, 2014 at 1:27 pm #

    Sooooooooooo happy for you! congrats!

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