I'm not normally one to particularly favour the spring month traditionally (it tends to consist of endless last-minute exam prepping), however this year it's a very special month for royal watchers as it will mark the arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's second child.
Excitement is building in the media too, with the Mail Online claiming to have an exclusive on the due date:
'Sources have now told the Mail that William and Kate have been given April 25 as the expected date for the birth of their second child.
If born on April 25, the new royal will share their birthday with stars including Renée Zellweger and Al Pacino. He or she will be born under the sign of Taurus the bull. Taureans are known for being resolute, dependable and faithful but also proud, obstinate and with a liking for the finer things in life.'
Whether or not this is specifically accurate, we do know the Duchess herself confirmed the baby is due "mid-late April". As with her first child, Kate is due to give birth at the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital in Paddington.
Prince George will be twenty-one months old when his brother or sister arrives - it will be wonderful for them to be so close in age and no doubt the boisterous toddler will revel in having a partner in crime :)
For now, with Kate officially on maternity leave, it's an incredibly exciting time in the Cambridge household. Yesterday Prince William started work as an employee of Bond Air Services, and over the coming months he will undertake job-specific training before he begins piloting missions for East Anglian Air Ambulance during the summer.
We know William's role will see the family primarily based in their newly renovated country home Anmer Hall in Norfolk. A Katie Nicholl story suggested the family are residing at Wood Farm, a shooting lodge because renovations are ongoing. We know the Cambridges enjoyed Christmas at Anmer with the Middletons who stayed for a couple of weeks, and one presumes work was postponed for the festive period. At present, no other reporters have confirmed this story.
Whether Kate decides to spend the first weeks with baby at Anmer Hall or enjoy time in Bucklebury, it is certain her family will be close at hand providing support. The Duchess is incredibly close to her family and will want her mother Carole by her side once again. Mrs Middleton, who is a regular presence at Anmer, has been decorating a nursery in recent months. With two under two, it will be wonderful for William and Kate to have a close family support system, and of course Nanny Maria Teresa who has become an integral part of the team.
Unlike her first pregnancy, Kate appears to be feeling much better, with a string of engagements in recent months, and has been seen shopping on King's Road in London or taking a stroll around Burnham Market, close to Anmer Hall, to buy treats according to locals.
Kate's been craving sweet treats and both she and William have been spotted popping into the Humble Pie Bakery. Their favourites include a £7.25 chocolate biscuit cake and a sticky fruit loaf. Of course, there's an old wives tale, if a pregnant woman is craving chocolate and biscuits, it's a sure sign it's a girl. At home, she's enjoying baking with Prince George and making last minute preparations for the new arrival.
Many of you have expressed an interest in voting on the baby's gender and name, and today we're doing just that. Do you think the Duchess is expecting a boy or a girl? Kate said during her first pregnancy: "I would like to have a boy and William would like a girl". I'm sure they would love to have one of each, however, all that matters is a healthy baby.
What do you think? Do you have a preference?
As for names, there's more scope in terms of choice for the second child, as they are not the heir to the throne. In many ways, William and Kate are quite traditional and I believe they'll honour family names with their choices. It would be nice to see a Middleton family name incorporated this time too.
According to bookies, the favoured name at present is Alice.
'Since the mid 19th century a number of royal women have been called Alice, with Queen Victoria calling her second daughter Princess Alice and the wife of the late Duke of Gloucester - the Queen's uncle - also had the same name.
After Alice, which is also Paddy Power's favourite, the next most popular name with punters is Elizabeth at odds of 9-2, followed by Charlotte at 11-2, Victoria at 12-1, Alexandra at 14-1 and Diana at 16-1.'
For a boy, people are betting on Arthur, Henry and James.
'For boys names Arthur, Henry and James are all currently at 20-1. Odds on the gender of the baby are now evens for a boy and 8-11 for a girl.'
For the purposes of a poll, I've selected fifteen possible names for each gender looking to the family's history, popular possibilities, strong and recurring names from the Windsor and Middleton/Goldsmith family tree. You can vote for more than one name (if you'd like to vote for your choices for middle names too) and if the name you like is not on the list simply vote for 'other' and leave a comment letting us know your choices.
There are so many beautiful name possibilities for the royal baby; I personally like Peter Arthur Francis (Kate's grandfather was named Peter Francis Middleton) and for a girl Alice Elizabeth Charlotte (ahem :)) rolls off the tongue nicely. If the baby is a girl, many will be hoping to see the late Princess Diana honoured, again her middle name was Frances, and we may see that name incorporated in some way. Kate's late grandmothers' names Dorothy and Valerie are both worth considering too.
In the meantime, are you all ready for the Great Kate Wait 2? :)
Very excited to see your votes and hear choices not mentioned on the list in your comments!