If Kate Middleton and Prince William thought the media spotlight on them might dim as their first wedding anniversary approached, think again.
Instead, days before their April 29th anniversary, the rumor mill is rampant with speculation that Middleton, 30, might be pregnant with a royal heir.
People magazine devoted the cover of its latest issue to the topic, citing palace sources in reporting that the couple has put plans for an upcoming trip to Africa on hold – the vaccinations Middleton would need are dangerous for a fetus, the magazine reports – and have “babies on the brain.”
“Continuity of the monarchy depends on William producing an heir,” royal watcher Judy Wade told the magazine. “And a baby would put a seal on William and Kate’s happiness.”
People also cited a “family insider” as saying the couple are affected by the same phenomenon known to spark a baby boom among even commoners, watching their friends have kids.
Further confirmation that the U.S. media are obsessed with the duchess’s growing, or shrinking, waistline is a Star Magazine report alleging that she is taking prenatal vitamins, trying to gain weight in order to conceive and has begun in vitro fertilization treatments to speed up the process.
A source tells the magazine that Prince William, 30, and Middleton are in a hurry to have kids because “Queen Elizabeth wants this to happen as soon as possible. She’s well into her 80s, and Prince Philip is even older and just had a heart attack at Christmastime. She’s already splashed out on $200,000 nursery at Kensington Palace as a not-so-subtle hint to get Kate moving.”
Faster than one can rush to famous British department store Harrods, however, to see what’s on Middleton’s registry is another report from a U.S. magazine that Middleton is nowhere near pregnant.
“Kate is not pregnant or about to make a pregnancy announcement,” a source close to Middleton told Us Weekly magazine.
The magazine points out that all evidence is to the contrary of pregnancy rumors, noting the Duchess of Cambridge sipped sherry, a pregnancy no-no, at a St. Patrick’s Day celebration last month, and is enjoying a ski vacation with her husband, not exactly a pregnancy-friendly sport.
Even if there is no baby news to report, the couple have reason to celebrate before their one-year anniversary next month. William just returned home from a six-week deployment to the Falkland Islands in his duties as a Royal Air Force helicopter rescue pilot.
The couple also have a four-legged baby to keep them busy while the wait for a royal heir continues, a black cocker spaniel puppy they named Lupo, after the Latin word for wolf.