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Baby Names!

March 11, 2008

If you’re “new” to the blog and stopped by for the party visit my Ultimate Blog Party Post! I’ve found so many great blogs at this party. I think my Blogroll might explode. I make it a point to visit everyone who comments and now I’m trying to go down the list one by one. I started at 500 (because the fun people always show up fashionably late). It’s up to 1000+ bloggers so this could take a while!

As of 11am, I became the proud Aunt to little baby My SIL wanted to be completely surprised and I’ve been dying to know if it would be a boy or a girl. Not that I cared either way, it’s just I can’t stand waiting. Besides, surprises don’t go so well for me. I was talking to her last week about baby names and she said that she wasn’t telling anyone the girl names she liked anymore because it’s hard when people say negative things about it. But they wouldn’t say negative things after the child is already named. I was excited about the name because I think it’s pretty AND it kind of goes well with my kids names.

Oh, right. You don’t know their names. Okay, I’ve been dying to post this ever since Swistle wrote about Namer’s Remorse and Mommy Daisy followed up with her own Baby Naming post. Plus, I really want to hear how all of you arrived at your own baby’s names! (Don’t feel obligated to reveal their actual names but I really would love to know how you picked.)

My story…. An embarassingly long time before DH and I were even engaged we talked about baby names. I said that if I ever had a little girl I would like to name her after my mother who died when I was 10. My mother’s family has had this name in it since they came to the US. It’s also my grandmother’s name. DH thought this was great and we said that a baby girl would have my mother’s first name and his mother’s first name as her middle name. DH’s name is a traditional first name for the oldest son so we also said that a boy would have his first name and my favorite Uncle’s name as the middle name. Having settled baby names, we eventually worked out the other details involved in a “til death do us part” agreement.

Fast forward a few years to the approach of our first wedding anniversary. I was 3 months pregnant and we were patting ourselves on the back for not having to fight over baby names. Silly us. Just five weeks later we had the aforementioned surprise! and learned we were having not one but two. At that point we didn’t know the genders (we had really wanted to be surprised!) so we had to talk about TWO sets of boys names and TWO sets of girls names. Since we liked our boy name we figured we would split the name into two first names and pick new middle names.

The problem? Our girl name was A.lice R.ita. I still liked both names even if they had hit their peak 60+ years ago. I had moments during my pregnancy where I wondered if we should change R.ita to something more popular/less old lady. But could you imagine that conversation with your MIL? We gave them middle names that are in the top 50 so that if they decide their parents were smoking somthing they could always use their middle name. Plus, I was in the top 50 growing up and it was always annoying to be FirstName LastNameInitial. I wanted them to have names that are different. At any rate, R.ita she was named and I can’t imagine her as any other name. Even who got which name just ended up fitting their personalities.

Which brings me back to my original point. I’m really glad that SIL picked a more traditional name because A.lice, R.ita, and B.ernadette all seem to go together whereas a more “modern” Madison would sound kind of odd. And I’m glad she got to use the name she wanted without being pressured by negative reactions.

So those are my babies’ names. They aren’t rhyming or “matching” or whatever preconception people have about twin names. Now, it’s your turn. I’d love to hear how you picked the names of your children!

18 Comments leave one →
  1. BeachMama permalink
    March 11, 2008 7:19 pm

    It is funny about how our children got their names. Our four year old, “J” got his name from a dream I had. When I told Hubby he loved it to, so that was how he got his name. Our little girl “Apple” got her name from our paternal grandparents. Her first name is my Dad’s Mom and her second name is Hubby’s great grandmother. It just worked out perfectly. Now she will either have to keep her last name for a match or marry someone with a similar name :).

  2. Goddess in Progress permalink
    March 11, 2008 7:37 pm

    I love naming stories! I posted mine a few months ago (

    I refused to tell anyone the names before they were born.

  3. saly permalink
    March 11, 2008 7:53 pm

    I love all 3 names and I love naming stories!! I’m in the middle of a naming crisis now, so this comes at a good time.

  4. Swistle permalink
    March 11, 2008 8:06 pm

    1) I am re-reading Maeve Binchy’s book Circle of Friends, so for the last week I have been thinking that is an AWESOME and underused name.

    2) I love Mairzy and I were just discussing that the other day. We especially like Alice Ann.

    3) I think Ri.ta is super-sassy, and really good with Alice. I like it!

    My first son is named after a mutual friend of mine and Paul’s. The friend is laid-back and sunshiney, so it’s funny that our son is broody and crabby. That used up ALL our boy names, because we only had one we really liked.

    For the second boy, I made a list of a dozen boy names I liked, and Paul picked one. We picked it really early on, then researched it and found it was Very Common. We kept it anyway.

    For the twins, I made a bizillion lists. A bizillion! I’d find a name I loved, but it didn’t “go with” the other name we loved, and I was hoping for a TEENSE of matchiness (like same starting initial, or even just a similar TYPE of name—not like rhymes, but like names from the same style category). Finally we gave up and just named them as if they were singleborns: the boy has a family name, and the girl has a name I suddenly fell in love with in the 11th hour, after we’d planned on two entirely different possible names for her.

    My last boy was similar to my girl: we planned on one of two names, and I ended up thinking of a name all of a sudden toward the end, and we used that instead.

  5. Don Mills Diva permalink
    March 11, 2008 8:37 pm

    It was all so easy for me. My maiden name is Graham so I named my son Graham…now his first and last name is my hyphenated last name and he has my husband’s first name as his middle name.

    Confused yet?

  6. carrie permalink
    March 11, 2008 9:16 pm

    EEEEEEE!! I don’t know if you have ever posted A. and R.’s real names or not – not since I started reading – and I’ve ALWAYS been curious. I love it! And they really do seem to fit the girls perfectly!

    Our naming…
    With our first, if it was a girl, I got to name her, a boy – J. got to name him. And well, I won.

    I always loved the names Emily, Emma and Grace – somewhat old English names. I have wanted a little girl named Emily since I fell in love with Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte) in High School. But it was #1 girl’s name the year Em was born. So then I was sold on Grace, except somewhere along the way we had a couple of crazy Aunt Graces and every time I said the name, I got scowls from certain family members (who shall remain nameless) – but J. really loved the name Grace. So we did Emma Grace. (I realize that she will have to always be Emma Grace, since Emma is now if not #1, very close up there.) We usually do call her Emma Grace or Gracie Girl, or Emmy Gracie. So we kinda all got our own way on that one.

    When #2 came along, J. said he got to name the baby – no matter what. This made me more than a little anxious, believe me. He came home from a Cubs game one day and said, if we have a boy I really like the name Addison. Hmmm…I kinda liked it for a girl (Addie!) but I’m not sure for a boy…hey, wait a minute! Did you come up with that at the game?? (Wrigley Field sits on Clark St/Waveland/Sheffield and Addison Streets!) He sheepishly admitted that is where he “found” the name.

    So she came out a girl, I held him to the name Addison (I really did love it) and we used Rose as her middle name – her Grandma’s middle name and the middle name of my favorite aunt as well. I would have liked to have used Ann (my middle) but it didn’t go with either of the girls’ names.

    Whew…probably shoulda posted that instead of filling up your comments, huh?

  7. Kristin.... permalink
    March 11, 2008 11:39 pm

    Ok, I’ve got lots of kids, so here goes:

    Megan is named after no one in particular for her first name (I just love it) but her middle name (Lucretia) is after my grandmother.

    Andrew (we call him Drew) is actually named after a young man my husband used to coach in hockey. He is just the epitome of what a young man should be. His middle name (Patrick) is for Patrick Roy, best ever hockey goalie in the NHL. I chose that.

    The twins….well, because we knew we were having girls, that made things quite a bit harder. 4 girls names!?!? YIKES. But Doug has a great aunt named Annabelle, and we really liked that name. So, Annabelle it was, with my MIL’s first name (Evelyn) as her middle name. And yes, we wanted something that sounded nice with Annabelle, so we chose Isabelle and gave her MY mom’s first name (Sarah) as her middle name. We call the twins Annie and Izzie, because two Belles would be too hard. As it is, there are days when I go thru the list of kids’ names before I get to the one I’m talking to.

    There! Phew.

  8. Nowheymama permalink
    March 12, 2008 1:12 am

    Great names! Ours are all family names.

  9. oh amanda permalink
    March 12, 2008 1:33 am

    Fun post! My daughter is Lydia. I wanted a Bible name but let’s face it most of them are lame or so overused. In the Bible Lydia was the seller of purple cloth and well…purple is my favorite color. So, there you go. 🙂

    (There was a little more involved than that…but now when I think of why I chose it, that’s what I think! lol!)

  10. Mommy Daisy permalink
    March 12, 2008 2:18 am

    Well, you already linked to my naming post. Thanks, BTW. And you already know that I LOVE your girls’ names.

    I was pretty secretive about names I liked. Matt was not. 😛 That made me mad, because it forced me to talk about names with our mothers. SO, my answer to that was I wouldn’t chose a name until the baby was born. We had a list of possibilities that we both agreed on. I actually told Matt he could name him when he was born, because I could see immediately my son was not going to fit the name I liked best. Matt refused to name hime, so I chose Zachariah and we’d already decided on Matthew as a middle name.

    I think I will have a hard time talking Matt out of his favorite girl’s name. And I think you know what my favorite is/was. I’m so fickle, I’m sure I will change a list over and over when I’m expecting again.

    And I will still keep my names quiet…maybe even more so next time (assuming I can keep Matt’s mouth shut). And I still won’t decide on a name until I meet the baby.

  11. a Tonggu Momma permalink
    March 12, 2008 7:42 pm

    I just wanted to share that my sister gave birth yesterday as well. 🙂 Yesterday I posted a picture of our newest family member – one of the few face shots on my blog since my sis says all newborns look pretty much alike.

    Our daughter’s name is Biblical, and we chose it because the Bible specifically states that this-woman-with-my-daughter’s-name has a character trait that we really admire and wish for our daughter.

  12. jenn permalink
    March 12, 2008 9:45 pm

    My sister had a little girl on the 4th of march.

    I have 3 kids. I named my son, the only boys name I ever liked, ryan. Kasandra came next. That’s just a name I loved, and her middle name is barbara, after my grandmother. The baby was named by hubby. Brandi. I picked her middle name, rose.

  13. Carol Van Rooy permalink
    March 16, 2008 4:42 am

    We anmed our daughter Dakota. Both our parents and John’s grnadfather had a dodge Dakota truck at the time. It was weird and we had many outlandish comments about that. I merely liked the name.

    Today she gets many comments like: “are you North Dakota or South Dakota?.

    She shruggs it all off in stride.

    As for our son, Dalton. We picked the name out of a baby book. My husband liked it and despite wanting to name him Bailey… we couldn’t think of an appropriate middle name and so instead that became his middle name.

    I love the name Bernadette. I have an Aunt and a cousin with the name.

  14. The four little penguins say: permalink
    March 16, 2008 9:16 pm

    Oooh, how fun! I loved this post and all the comments because I simply love names. I have a shelf full of baby name books that DH rolls his eyes at ALL the time! lol
    We discussed names for our kids at the beginning of our relationship, too. But I think that was mainly because at that point, we had been friends for years and we “knew” that we were going to wind up married!
    Anyway, our kids all have 3 names, because we had so many names to use that we knew we would run out of kids first, and we did!
    Our kids are all named after someone. Our girls are named after grandmas, great-grandmas, and “adoptive” grandmas. The boys are named after grandpas and spiritual mentors. (Nate is named after Nate Saint. The pilot who was martyred with Jim Elliot) But we also kept in mind the meaning of their names. Paraphrased, they go something like this…
    Pure, brave and full of grace
    God remembers His gift of a young warrior
    God’s judge is a free ruler
    My father’s bittersweet joy of faith
    The girls each have a “twist”. My MIL’s middle name was Kay, which we felt rather 50s-small-townish (no offence) so we “twisted” it to Kaytlin. And my grandmother’s name was Faye, which she hated, loathed, and dispised! So we “twisted” it to Faith.

  15. Reluctant Housewife permalink
    March 17, 2008 12:17 pm

    I love your baby names – very pretty, all 3 of them.

    We named our 1st car after a character in Guys and Dolls. We liked the name so much that we ended using it for our 1st born too. Luckily the car had long since been retired. We used our second favourite boys’ name as a middle name. When baby #2 came along and was also a boy we were at a bit of a loss because we’d already used our favourite boys’ names for baby #1. So we poured over the baby name book and chose one we liked. We used my father’s (a fairly unusal & very old fashioned name) name as the middle name.

    I love my boys’ bloggy names too, Buddy and Monkey. These names suit their personalities perfectly. Also, they’re nicknames that I’ve been using for the boys since long before I started the blog.

    Baby names as fun, are they not?

  16. Stephanie permalink
    March 17, 2008 7:03 pm

    Well, I’m glad we didn’t have a boy, because I hated DH’s choice for a boy’s name.

    We decided on her middle name right away, since it would be a feminine version of DH’s middle name. But we couldn’t agree on first names. I wanted Julie, DH wanted something else.

    Then we were the first Lamaze couple at our hospital (okay this was MANY years ago), and my husband was so impressed by my “performance” at our daughter’s birth, he told me to name her anything I wanted and he would agree. This was my chance! Only, she was redheaded, and I picture Julies as blondes or brownettes. So DH’s name won out after all.

    She is Dawn, and I can’t picture her as anything else.

  17. MightyMom permalink
    March 18, 2008 11:40 am

    we had 2 requirements for our kids’ names. 1) they would be family names 2) at least one of the names would be Biblical.

    Sonshine’s first name was Subvet’s Dad’s name, his middle is my dad’s name….the first name is Biblical.

    Gator’s first name goes back to Biblical times and was the name of one of my namesake’s children, his middle name is his Daddy’s middle name. (which is also Biblical)

    Sugars first name was my Dad’s-mother’s name, her middle was my Mom’s-mother’s name (and is Biblical).

    So there you have it!

    And they are all “old-fashioned” names. With a name like “Sarah” I hated being in a class with 7 other Sarah’s (or Sara’s) (Earth Science, 8th Grade)

  18. Milk Mama permalink
    March 25, 2008 8:02 pm

    I love your daughters names! I’m glad that you decided to share. That kind of mystery really gets me stuck on the same issue hehehe! My daughter’s name is somewhat old… Her first name is Anna and her middle name is Daisy. I love her name. I try not to write them together online, though. I know what you mean about the first name lastname initial through school. I was always “Sarah T.” grrr I hated that! I figure if Anna’s name is too popular (although it isn’t too popular, but in a community with a lot of Hispanics, Ana is pretty popular) she could simply go by Daisy which is unique and beautiful.
    Nice to hear from you again! I’m bookmarking you now. 🙂

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