Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Toddler Thursday--Choosing a Baby Name

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Choosing a Baby Name

Everyone is not quite as psycho as I am when it comes to names.  I have a confession to make.  If we are remotely friends...blogging friends...facebook friends....old sorority sisters....childhood friends....I've been stalking your children. Well, not your children but their names.  I just think names are so interesting!  So I started a spreadsheet around November of 2008 and as each friend has a baby I add their name to my list.  I think it is fun to look at the trends although let's be honest...these are babies that are mostly born in KY, Charleston, PA and AF moving babies. So I can't really speak to national trends.

I encourage you to not be quite as psycho as I am.  But here are some things to consider when thinking about baby names.

1. Do YOU Like It?
Honestly it really doesn't matter if you choose a name in the top 10 or one that doesn't make the top 1000 (you can look all of this up on the Social  Security  Administrations website).  It needs to be something that you are going to enjoy calling your baby, child, teenager and adult child!

People are not shy about giving their opinion on your name.  Therefore I would encourage you to keep the name private until YOU  are positive you are going to use it.  We chose to keep the Little Guy's name a secret during our first pregnancy because it was fun.  Other friends tell as soon as they decide.  Either way works, just be almost positive about your name. You don't want to start asking opinions because people will give them!  And you don't want to find out that the name you love is one that your mother-in-law or your sister hates.  They'll love your baby and your baby's name will fit him/her perfectly!

2. History
Use your history to your advantage.  A great starting point for names is your family tree!  Sometimes you'll find unique names here and other times you'll find traditions that you want to continue.

Also consider things in your history that are negative.  Was there a girl named Bridget that was really mean to you in middle school?  Well you might not want your daughter to have that moniker.  College boyfriend?  Probably don't want to use his name on your first-born.  Be honest about the emotions and people names evoke!

3. Associations
In addition to old friend or boyfriends, what are other associations you have with a name?  Was your favorite name a really horrible character in the latest movie or book?  Or does a name make you think of something unsavory?  Look at the monogram as well.  With an "E" as the first initial of our last name we didn't really want to have little Sean Xavier....not exactly the monogram to bestow on a little boy!

4. Have Fun
Enjoy the process.  It's easy to get stressed about naming your baby.  Don't feel obligated to share the name. Sometimes you might even need to "meet" your baby before deciding!  I've had a harder time deciding on a name this go around and I've had to give myself a little break from looking through books and websites.  You want the process to be exciting.

I enjoy the website because the blog is interesting and you can look up the meanings of names as well as post questions about names on their forum.

Some things we look for in a name...

--we like one of the names to have a family association of some sort if possible
--we like one of the names to have a really neat meaning (Little Guy's first name means "given" and is also a name from the Bible which was important to us)
--we like one of the names to have significance...whether this is a biblical association or named after a person that we really respect or was a leader in their faith
--we like the name to be pretty unique

I can't wait until we actually have a name for the Littlest Guy!!

How did you come up with your children's names?  Did you have names picked out since childhood or did you read a name book?  What advice would you give someone when choosing a name?


Boo said...

My husband ever since seeing gladiator wanted a Max so we then had to decide what Max would stand for. Also it is important to my husband that the middle name is of some significance. We went with Antonio which was a three way hit my grandfather's name plus my father in law is named Anthony and Max's godmother is Toni. However, after the unsolicited opinions, especially from family, the first time my husband is very against sharing the picked name except with a few choice people this time around.

alison said...

i LOVE finding out what someone is going to name their baby. sometimes i get a big "huh"??? feeling about it, but i suppose i got to pick my kids' names so they get to pick theirs ;) i am just like you with this whole name thing though. i wanted family ties for my kiddos but i am ALL about the initials. it drives me up the wall that ava's monogram is aSp. i hate snakes with a passion and i canNOT believe that's what i ended up choosing...but the family tie to her middle name was more important that the monogram (i guess). all of our kids' names were a surprise to everyone, except for hannah's first name.

Nessa Bixler said...

We are expecting #2 and we have a boys name but not a girls name. I don't know why we are having so much trouble. We keep it a secret too now... it seems better to tell everyone the name when it official. They dont' try and change your mind then. Great advice.

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