Guess the Twins Debut and Win Prizes!

29 Jan


As you may recall, we had a due date prediction contest for Finn, with glorious Egyptian prizes for the winner. Of course, Finn infamously turned up his nose at all of our guesses and came nine days past the last guess (which made Kelly the winner). So we’re going to try this again and hope the twins are more cooperative.

So here it is, the twins’ prediction calendar. Leave a comment with your date. Up to three people can share a date and winner is closest without going over. I’ll update the calendar daily to show names.

And now for the prizes:

  1. A delicious assortment of confections from the South Bend Chocolate Factory
  2. A guest post by you on Dnile.
  3. A batch of famous South Texas handmade tamales, courtesy of Grandma Deleon.

Here are some clues to help you guess:

  • The official due date is March 1. You can guess beyond that date, but you’ll have me to deal with.
  • Twins average gestation is 36 weeks. We’ll hit 36 weeks on 2/1.
  • Only 6% of twins come after 38 weeks. We hit 38 weeks just after Valentine’s Day.
  • Finn was born 3 weeks after his official due date.
  • There are two holidays celebrating historical figures this month. As Patrick is a historian, this may be a nice coincidence.
  • Grandma Luisa would like to be here immediately after the birth but absolutely can’t be here 2/7-2/10
  • If complications arise and we have to schedule an induction or C-section, we promise to do so without looking at the calendar. There will still be a winner.

Predictions will be taken until Tuesday, 2/2, Monday 2/1 at 5pm Eastern. The polls are now open.


29 Responses to “Guess the Twins Debut and Win Prizes!”

  1. Lydia January 29, 2010 at 5:37 pm #

    Okay, put me down for Feb. 12. The 5th seems too soon (i know that’s how i’d feel) aaand, uh, yeah, the 12th. πŸ˜‰

    • Barbara Lockwood January 29, 2010 at 5:44 pm #

      Being hopelessly romantic, I predict Sunday, February 14 (Valentine’s Day), early evening.

  2. Liz January 29, 2010 at 5:42 pm #

    February 5th – Mexican Constitution Day!

    • Liz January 29, 2010 at 5:43 pm #

      Wait, can I change mine? I want to go with February 20th. That’s the day Chris and I started dating. Not the 5th, the 20th.

  3. Heather January 29, 2010 at 6:14 pm #

    After seeing Melissa at the party I have to go with the 4th. She’s ready. Sam and I can’t wait for the twin’s to get here. You have babysitters ready for 24/7 when the baby’s come.

  4. Erin M. January 29, 2010 at 6:27 pm #

    Your clues helped me come up with a complicated equation to decipher the due date.

    February 10th.

    I so hope I win. I love tamales and chocolate!

  5. Kay January 29, 2010 at 7:09 pm #

    In honor of the Super Bowl, I’m going with 2/7 around game time–6:30ish. Oh and don’t call me to take Finn until AFTER the game! Thanks.

  6. Stephen January 29, 2010 at 8:00 pm #

    I used all the objective information given in your clues that is likely to actually influence a due date, and found that your distribution of due dates is a mixture of chi-square distributions. The larger distribution (91%) has 4 degrees of freedom, and the smaller has 4 degrees of freedom with a non-centrality parameter of 1.98. This fulfills the average due date being Feb01 with < 6% probability of arrival after Feb14. To incorporate Finn's late arrival, I used his birth date in the format 25012008 as the random seed to generate 11,000 observations from the mixture of chi square variates described above.

    The result was 4.195031, which basically means Monday, 01Feb10 at about 5am.

    Since I basically just formalized your clues, this really doesn't constitute a guess, but if I win, Jillian won't mind.

    Here's the R code if anyone want to replicate the analysis (I know you're aching to, Cody):

    x1 <- rchisq(10000, df=4, ncp=0);
    x2 <- rchisq(1000, df=4, ncp=1.98);
    x 17])/11000

    • Patrick January 30, 2010 at 7:34 am #

      Classic, Stephen. Didn’t understand a word (or number, or symbol), but it seems authoritative enough. Although some friends told me, in a debate over global warming the other night, that science is just an educated guess, so I’m not sure I can trust you.

      For the record, the babies are coming Feb 4 — that maximizes my time off work, and they’re going to be all cooperative like that.

      • Stephen January 31, 2010 at 2:13 am #

        Better be careful what you say! All I did was formalize Melissa’s clues (assumptions) mathematically and provided a model. To doubt my model is to doubt (my interpretation of) Melissa’s clues! I’m all for doubting models, but doubting your spouse is unwise (and you see parenthetically how science gets confounded with authority and leads debates like global warming).

        As for doubting science, I’m with you. I doubt it more and more each day.

  7. Jillian January 29, 2010 at 8:29 pm #

    Ho-hum. Such good dates. I’m going to go with Feb. 3rd, if for no other reason than Stephen’s guess (guess?) had some good back-up, but my babies always came on Wednesdays, so I’m partial.

  8. Grandma LeAnn January 29, 2010 at 8:59 pm #

    Since neither grandma can be there Feb. 7-10, I’m certain that’s when the darlings will arrive. Put me down for Feb. 7. Also, I’m willing to throw a Utah delicacy in the prize basket, if Patrick chooses his nostalgic favorite.

  9. Karen Heiss January 29, 2010 at 11:28 pm #

    I have to go for February 14 because it’s my birthday. I am the sixth of eight children, and my mother used to tell me that when I was born she was so poor that she didn’t have any money to get my dad a present for Valentine’s Day. So she gave him ME!

  10. Sue January 30, 2010 at 12:09 am #

    I predict the 3rd of February. no particular reason just an intuition.

  11. Aaron January 30, 2010 at 2:38 am #

    As you say, twins are always early. Since this isn’t your first rodeo, I’m going to predict they will stick their heads out on the only natural day for twins to be born in the winter: Groundhog Day, 2/2. Bring on the tamales!

  12. Christian January 30, 2010 at 4:35 am #

    Sign me up for Feb. 4. I will do anything for those tamales.

  13. Sam January 30, 2010 at 9:43 pm #

    the 5th for me πŸ™‚

  14. mom January 31, 2010 at 3:48 am #

    HUGE SIGH. I believe I may speak on behalf of au pair of grandmas who seem to agree that your due date is very inconvenient for us at this time. Can you hold off a few weeks while we clear our schedules? Say March 13?

  15. Kay January 31, 2010 at 3:53 am #

    Jim wants the 9th. No particular reason, just his scientific random guess.

  16. Karen H February 1, 2010 at 12:38 am #

    I guess February 10th, because that’s the best day of all 365 days in the year to have a birthday.

  17. Nathaniel Hollingsworth February 1, 2010 at 1:12 am #

    I think that I’ll guess the 13th. It’s prime (prime number), what can I say more?

  18. Jessica Blomstedt February 1, 2010 at 3:48 am #

    So, John said his guess would be the 13th and I was thinking more like the 6th. What can I say, I’ve been pregnant a few times and the sooner the better! I’m not sure if we can guess different dates. If not, it is your call where to place us! Best of Luck to you!

  19. Javi (not the brother) February 1, 2010 at 5:54 am #

    Give me February 8th. Lots of big birthdays there: Jules Verne, Kate Chopin, Lana Turner, Jack Lemmon, James Dean, John Williams, Ted Koppel, Nick Nolte, CREED BRATTON (!), John Grisham, Alonzo Mourning, Seth Green, Kimbo Slice.

    It was also the day of the death of Mary, Queen of Scots… which is one of my favorite Monty Python bits. And it’s “Nirvana Day” in the Buddhist calendar. I think I’ll have good karma with this pick.

  20. Melissa DM February 1, 2010 at 4:22 pm #

    Lots of great guesses. This calendar is pretty front-loaded. If these babies decide to follow in Finn’s footsteps, Dorothy is going to run away with it. My guess was Saturday because it was a full moon, but shows how much I know.

    Stephan’s guess seems so official that I’m finding myself making sure bags are packed and things are in order this morning. If he’s wrong, I’m considering statistics as a discredited institution.

    LeAnn, rather than a Utah delicacy, can I convince you to throw in a copy of your cookbook? I know of very few things in more demand than that.

  21. Melissa February 1, 2010 at 4:25 pm #

    Also note: I changed the closing of the polls to today at 5pm EST. I figured letting it go longer was probably not fair, since the clock starts ticking today.

  22. Jesse Ormsby February 1, 2010 at 6:10 pm #

    Feb. 5th, 2010 – Jesse

  23. rebecca turner February 2, 2010 at 12:00 am #

    I want in! I’ll take the 17th of February.

  24. Melissa February 2, 2010 at 3:53 am #

    Thanks everyone who made a prediction! The polls are now closed.

    After an OB appointment and ultrasound this afternoon, we have a definite window that we’re now looking at, but things could still change.

    Basically, we’re looking at a c-section for various reasons but the date isn’t definite and it’s still all up in the air. I’ll post more details tomorrow. Right now I have to figure out how to be on bed rest with a toddler.

  25. Grandma LeAnn February 3, 2010 at 7:38 pm #

    Add one “LeAnn Mason’s Greatest Hits” cookbook to the prize basket – I’m thrilled to share in honor of such a glorious event.

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