Thursday, May 27, 2010

What's in a name?

A lot if you're like us. We have several naming traditions and it seems to get more complicated with each child. We named our first son after Big D which began the tradition of naming our children after family members. Then when we had our first daughter we decided to name her after my mother. I had always loved the name Hannah so was going to use my mom's name as her middle name, but Mom preferred her name be the first name and Hannah didn't sound nearly as good as a follow-up to my mom's name so we ditched the Hannah and started the awful tradition of calling our kids by their middle names.

It was only natural to name our second daughter after my mother-in-law, but now we had yet another tradition to follow. Our oldest daughter's middle name, that we called her by, also held special spiritual significance for us. We searched and searched and finally settled upon a name for our second daughter that when put together with my mil's actually meant something special. But now we had inadvertantly started a third naming tradition, at least for our girls. Both daughters in addition to being named for family members and having a name of spiritual significance, also had names that began with the letter G.

When we adopted our fourth child, second son we decided to name him after my dad. You've probably noticed by now that we had also started taking turns naming our kids after Big D's side of the family and then mine. Then when our fifth child came along it was my father-in-law's turn to have one of our kids named after him. The only problem was our fifth child turned out to be a girl, so... we went back to my side and named her for my two grandmothers. I'm also named for my grandmothers so her name is similar to mine, as well.

You can imagine how concerned I was about being able to come up with a name for this baby, especially if she had turned out to be a girl. Thank goodness we found out today we're expecting another son! That simplifies things. We know his first name will be after my father-in-law, but what about his middle name that we'll call him by? We have no idea! And now we have a whole house full of little opinions on the matter. Past kid favorites include Firebob, Clifford, and Crack-in-the-eyeball. Needless to say we're taking their suggestions with a grain of salt, but it does rain on my parade when they hate the names I come up with.

Big D and I had some fun today perusing Purtitan names. Our personal favorite was
If-Christ-had-not-died-for-thee-thou-hadst-been-damned, nicknamed Damned for short. That's a little radical even for us. Well, maybe for a middle name:). Seriously, we're having trouble. Big D comes from a big family and we love Bible names, but also want to be somewhat original (and no, I already told Big D we're not naming our son Zebedee!) Not Moses, either. Really, I don't think Big D takes this very seriously. I would love to hear your suggestions. I liked the idea of naming him after a Reformer, but not Luther. I'm sorry. I'm indebted to the guy, but we already have one Lu around our house and isn't that enough, really? We need a cute sounding Bible name or Reformer name that's not terribly over-used. Please help!


  1. Celee, I am so happy for you. Now you will have 3 boys and 3 girls. BTW we made it in safely tonight about 2 hours ago. Had a great time meeting you and your children. I hope that I will also get to meet your newest one.

  2. Congratulations on news of a new son!

    We had similar baby-naming problems, but we used a family name as the middle name, and the first name had to ...
    1) Have a really great meaning. I refuse to name my child something meaningless.
    2) Have the correct number of syllables.
    3) End with the correct consonant. (I like the idea of the childrens' names having something in common, besides their surname, but wasn't comfortable with giving them all names that started with the same letter. So we gave them all a name that ended with the same letter.)

    The only problem with this was that my Mother-in-law got upset that we didn't name one of the girls' middle names after her. We didn't think it was necessary as she already had two granddaughters (my neices, of course) named after both her first and middle names. She still was upset, though.

  3. yay!!! I love boys...and girls...but I LOVE boys! Anyhow, good luck, I can be of no help. My daughter is named after a country and my son after his father. Nothing creative ;)

  4. Congratulations! We named 1st born after dh's grandfather. Then decided to name 2nd born after one of mine... that would Clifford, Chester, Adolph (not Hitler but that name died with him), or Rastus. I had to pull out the family tree and finally found a great x 4 gf with a good name.
    I am still laughing over the Puritan name.
    How about Knox or Calvin (Cal)? Those might be overused, though.

  5. congrats on another boy! ours are all named after family. our first, AJ, is named after my hubby and me. AR is named after a King David's wife in the scriptures, and my mil. CM is named after my gramma and dh's gramma. CG is named after my mom. Miss V is named after my gramma and my best friend.

    never had a boy to worry about. ;)

  6. I really like Calvin and several of the kids approve of it, too. Big D doesn't just love it, though. I like Knox, too. Keep the suggestions coming!

  7. I don't really comment much, but I LOVE talking I'm coming out of the woodwork :) I really like the suggestions of Knox and Calvin! We have two boys so far and it will be interesting to see what we decide to name our next child, whenever God gives us another, it will probably determine how our naming will go from here on out. We have a few naming "rules" as well: meanings are important to us, name should be somewhat uncommon and have 2 or more syllables (we have a one syllable last name). Our sons are Isaiah and Judah. We didn't particularly set out to use Bible names, but we have so far so we could continue with that...or we also have that the names end in the "uh" sound so we could go with that (which would give us freedom to name our daughters non-Bible names because a lot of girl names in the Bible are a little too commonly used for us). Or we could just do whatever we wanted/use a name that God impresses on us (that happened with Judah). You'd think choosing a name would be so easy, but there are SO many things to consider!

    Right now my husband and I are reading through the Bible in 90 days (inspired by you and several other bloggers who took that challenge earlier this year), and just reading through all those names in the Old Testament has given us some ideas. Perhaps that is something you might find helpful when you read through in 90 days again? Here are names I like, if you choose to go the Biblical name route:

    Josiah (really like this one!)

    Oh there are probably others, but it's late and I can't think straight. It's exciting to know you are having a son. We're some of those weirdo people who (sometimes) choose not to find out. We didn't with our first, but I knew he was a boy all along and EVERYONE told me that- complete strangers at the store you name it, everyone said it was a boy (I guess from the way I was carrying him), my husband's family is loaded with boys so I figured there wasn't much of a chance for our first to be something other than a boy :) So it wasn't really very surprising when he was born. With Judah we found out, but didn't tell anyone...hehehe :) They all knew we knew, and it drove some people absolutely crazy. It was really fun! I don't know what we'll do next time, but we lean more towards not finding out. I think it *can* help you save money, especially because then you are forced to buy gender neutral baby gear type stuff, so we won't have to buy all new stuff if we ever have a girl (you know like strollers, car seats, bouncy seats, bedding, blankets, slings, etc.). Although I think either way you can still be very frugal when buying for baby- they really don't need a whole lot!

    I hope that the rest of your pregnancy goes well!


  8. Thanks, Amy. I really like Judah and have also suggested Josiah to my husband:). I'm glad to hear you and your husband are doing the 90 day Bible challenge. I will definitely be on the lookout for name suggestions!

  9. Here are some names that we like, most of which we've used.

    Jackson (Stonewall Jackson )

    We F-I-N-A-L-L-Y picked out a name for our baby, I think.



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I'm an on-the-run mom to 6 kids who studied and taught exercise science in a previous life. I love all things running, nutrition, and health-related. I usually run at zero dark thirty in the morning and am often quite hungry before, during, and after my run, but I live a rich, full, blessed life with my children, family, and friends. My faith in God is my anchor, and looking to Him and His promises allows me to live fully even when life circumstances are difficult. While running gives me an appetite, my desire is to hunger and thirst for righteousness more than for physical food.