May 27, 2014

Momma's Got Baby Name Drama

By Amy

Man, baby names are hard.  I mean, not for me--I've had a list of baby names since 1963.  Ok...just since Jr. High.  But I really have had a list since then.  A whole list of adorable names that I love.  So I figured the future of my babies' names were in the bag, easy-peesy.  I was so prepared. 

But, I have three older sisters.  (And a big and little bro...big family. :)  

And, one of my sisters who will go unnamed (hint: her name rhymes with fairy and starts with a "Sh") used FOUR of my names on THE LIST or close variations of.  

I mean, it's ok.  It's cool.  It's not like a 16 year old has much right to call dibs on names for her future babies, when she has three grown sisters actually having kids.

And, all of my nieces and nephews are super cool, and all of their names fit them perfectly, so it really is fine. :)

And, I still had plenty of awesome names left on list, so I wasn't panicking yet.  Then, the rough reality hit when I got married to Patrick, my bald knight in, head... and two years later, we were expected a baby--then I realised.  OH crap.  What if he doesn't like MY NAMES?!?!?!  I wasn't excited to compromise on this issue.

So, one day, I shared the list with him.  It was a disaster.  My dreams were crumbling down around me with every "Nope," every snort of disgust, outright laugh, and shocked silence.  Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating, but he did not like many.  *sob*  Not even Clover or Hazel for a girl or Maxwell or Harrison for a boy!

Apparently, both parents need to agree on a child's name.  Can't going through labor gave me the sole right and privilege of naming the baby?  Ha, nope.

Baby names are tricky, cause...sheesh, everybody has an opinion.  What if everyone hates and secretly mocks your child's name their whole life?  Sad!  Or, what if your favorite name was JUST used by your cousin or sibling or friend?  (Has happened to me like three times.) Would you still use it?  What if you find the perfect name and then realise the initials of the full name spells out a swear word?  How could you do that to a kid??  Also, if you happen to love a name, but it sounds really dumb with your last name, then it's no good.  Or if it rhymes or is too matchy-matchy with the previous child's name, that can sound really silly.  Oh, and what if EVERY name you can think of reminds your husband of some weird kid he knew in elementary school?  Haha...seriously, though.  And, there's the issue of disappointing family who may want you to use a specific family name.  My mom had like 4 generations of Williams before my could she deny that!?  So, my bro's name is Billy, and my dad's name is Bill and it was SO confusing growing up, since anyone calling on the phone who knew my dad growing up called him "Billy". 

Names are such a big choice on the behalf of another person's life.  

With my toddler's name, both my husband and I liked Hayden.  I liked that it sounded modern, even though it's actually an older name, since there's a lake and a town called, "Hayden" in Idaho.  I loved Oliver and lobbied for Oliver as a middle name, and Patrick was good with it, but then I started thinking of how cool it is to have a family name for a middle name...I love the idea of the heritage and identity it carries.  Plus, I LOVE my husband's name: Patrick.  (It was one of the names on my list!)  But, he thought it was conceited or something to call your kid after yourself.  I kept bugging him about it, then...lo and behold, in the hospital right before signing the birth certificate, he gave in!  :)  So my son is Hayden Patrick Graham.  

I think he's pretty freakin cute.
Right after finding out that we were expecting another boy, (oh and of course we have TWO adorable girl baby names that we both agree on and love!) I started loving the name Stuart.  I was SO excited for that name.  But, then a few days later, Patrick finally fessed up and told me that he thinks the name is nerdy.  And it reminds him of a white mouse.   

*Sigh...another cute name bites the dust.

Now, Patrick doesn't even want to discuss names, cause I was all broken-hearted after the Stuart disappointment.  Except he will say that he likes Thor.  .....Oh my crap: Thor?  OH, I know, how about Hulk?!!  

One name that we both like: Theo.  However, Theo is commonly a nickname for Theodore.  And, another variation of Theodore?  Teddy.  What if people start calling our child Teddy Graham?!  What a joke!  Why don't we just have two daughters and name them Golden and Honey?  So no one will ever take any of my children seriously.  Actually, I like the first name Graham a lot...which is a very common first name in the UK.  But, there's an obvious problem with that.  

So, let's hear it friends!  Give me some cute names!  And, what do you think of Theo?  Is it worth risking the possibility he could end up being called Teddy Graham?  Hmmm, I like Jack, too, but does it sound too choppy, since our last name is also one syllable?  Jack Graham?  We still have three months to choose, but it's a comin!

Have you heard any crazy stories about couples choosing names?  I have a friend who takes turns with her husband.  The other spouse can veto, but for the most part, their pick goes.  

For those ladies who've had kids, how have you chosen your kids' names?  Do you like to wait till you see the baby to make the final decision?  Do you have problems choosing names with your hub?  Are you guys on the same page it a debate?  I'd love to hear. :)

P.S. I'm linking this post to the Be.YOU.tiful Link Party....check it out! :)


  1. Wait! Stuart is nerdy while Thor is not?

    1. Haha...he thinks Stuart sounds like a skinny little nerdy kid who gets picked on, and Thor sounds like a manly, muscled stud. I know, I know...I need to break it to him that naming your kid after a comic super hero is actually quite nerdy. Plus, we'll name him Thor and watch: he'll end up scrawny and short...poor kid would be tortured!!!

  2. Theo is a solid name. I don't think you'd have the issue of ppl calling him Teddy these days. Just because Theo is used as it's own name more and more. However, I think Teddy, Honey & Golden are all fantastic choices. Just like Tyler Brown needs to name his children Charlie, Hash & -- Golden.

    1. Hahaha...Hash is stretching it, but Charlie and Golden Brown are awesome, I agree! :)

  3. I like Theo. I think if you call him Theo, the probability of other people calling him Theo will be high. We had our baby's name picked out years before she was even in the picture. When we found out she was a girl, it just felt so right. Although I am still in love with our baby's name, I kind of feel like I missed out on the whole excitement of narrowing down a long list of names we like so when we have another one, we'll probably wait until closer to the end to decide on a name. Unless it's a boy… if it's a boy, his name has also been picked out for years.

    1. Hey, I don't think you're missing out on much not to argue for 9 months! :) Thanks for the comment!

  4. I actually know someone named Thor, but they use his first and middle initial to call him TJ. :) I think it's cool if used that way.

    As for our baby names, Tim NEVER likes any of the ones I like. Before we knew J was a boy, the only girl name he ever liked was Kenadee, and he immediately picked out the middle name too. So when we find out K was a girl, there wasn't ever really a question as to what her name would be.

    Since we are on our 3rd now, (though we don't know what we are having yet) he has chosen a boy name that I absolutely hate and refuses to even think of other names until we find out. Its very frustrating. Good thing I love that man! :)

    1. haha, awesome! There really is a Thor out there! :) (Shhhh, Don't tell my husband! haha) Stick to your guns...I think compromise is good, but I don't think either spouse should have to go with a name they absolutely hate. Cause you will hear and say that name MANY times every day! Haha...good luck, Amber!

  5. With our first few, I thought too much about what people might think and all of the weird things that people MIGHT come up with.... some names might be asking for a little teasing, but if you like it - I say go for it. If it is one syllable like your last name, but you like it - do it. If it rhymes with your last daughter and the second sound is the same as the first sound in your son's name (this has been pointed out to me.... SERIOUSLY???) - but you like it - use it. If it has the same first letter as your last name, which you're not a big fan of, but you like it - WHO CARES??? 90% of the time, it will be YOU saying the first name to your adorable child, and if you like saying it - that's what matters. But since you asking, not a fan of Thor :) :).

    1. So true. And, hahaha....I will definitely be telling Patrick there's another vote against Thor! :) Your kids have great names, so good work!

  6. Oh my gosh, Amy! This made me laugh so much, I had to read it out loud to Zach.

    Zach dosen't like to talk about names until the last few months or so, because in his words, "Once we start talking about names, that is ALL we will talk about." :)

    In the past we have used a baby name book along with my OCD excel spreadsheet keeping track of various lists. Zach went though all the names first and highlighted the ones he liked in blue, then I went through and highlighted all the ones I liked in red. Then I compiled a list of each with cross references of names we both liked.

    When we were first picking names for Lucy I really liked Emma and Scarlett, but Emma was WAY too popular and Zach wasn't feeling it anyway. Scarlett was the front contender for a long time, but I knew someone else who had used it, and also didn't like any of the nick name variants I could think of. The final mark on Scarlett was that almost every middle name I loved was a noun, and I couldn't name my daughter Scarlett Valentine, or Scarlett Rose. So, I picked the middle name I wanted most and went from there matching first names until we found the one we loved and went best.

    The thing I love about her name, Lucy Valentine Davis, is that the names have family history, and literary/historical/symbolic meaning. Winning!

    We went through a similar system and pattern for Peter and Clara's names as well. I will say that I think naming boys is a lot harder than girls!

    PS. I like to save the "weird" or unusual names for the middle name. So, Thor might be the perfect middle name for you guys! :D Patrick picked the middle name, so you can pick the first name that goes with it and Graham! ;)

  7. We decided to narrow our lists drastically by cutting out all of the popular -en, -on, and -an suffixed names. since our last name ends with the same sound... I don't like all the repetition and sounding so sing-songy... We also decided to go with the family tradition that girls take their maiden name for their middle name when they get married so that also made it less complicated. We often think of names when we chat while traveling and I used to keep a list in my wallet of the ones we both really like. Looking through names in your family trees is a great way to revive some awesome names.

  8. The whole birth experience persuaded Jordan to hand over the naming rights completely to me. Which was awesome, until about a month later when he told me, "I just really wish we had saved Quinn so we could name another baby that." Well pal.. Should have spoken up before we signed for Harper Quinn!

  9. Ugh. It is such a debate every time. I think about it A LOT when I am pregnant, but my husband never likes to talk about it, never has any input, likes to wait until the baby comes out, etc. etc. By the time our 3rd was on the way, we had a pretty good system: I would think and think and read lists and make lists, then I'd periodically make him listen to me and he could like, dislike, or maybe the names. Often, it got a little on the testy side as he nixed my faves, but in the end we would end up with a list of about 3 names we liked and then waited until we were holding the baby to pick. :)

  10. On my third my husband flat out refused my favorite name. REFUSED. Well, then on number four we had the hardest time coming up with a name and low and behold he finally found out how awesome that name was. So it only took one more kid to win. HA! Good thing because I really didn't want to have more to make him cave! HA!

  11. I know you probably remember this but... My dad's name is Thor. He hated it growing up because everything rhymes with Thor. That's why all my siblings and I have very normal names.
    Also... Layne and I have learned to keep the name to ourselves until we have the baby. We had too many people telling us their opinions and it would change the way we looked at a name we loved. So we had our second sons name picked out for months and never told anyone until he was born... Then they had to accept it!! ;) it made things so much easier!!

  12. My daughters have my middle name, as does my grand daughter. My son has my husband's name. My grandsons each have at least a part of someone's name in our family. It is super hard to decide though. For my youngest daughter, my husband said he was calling her Kassie, no matter what we names her, so I came up with a full name for her - Kassandra - and we changed the spelling of Kassie to Kassye to be a little different.
    I say, don't worry about anyone else's opinion but your own. Well, your husband's too. My son was going to be Joshua Perry until I saw his feet and figured our he needed to be named after his dad. They look so similar and have so many of the same mannerisms that it worked out perfectly.
    Good luck with that name thing.

  13. I told Angel pretty much first thing in our relationship that I believe the Mom gets last-call on the baby name. I also told him that I was not willing to name any of my children Angel (he's a Jr. but I just really would not want a kid and a husband with the same name), and I also said that I wanted to give our children English first names, though I'll consider Spanish middle names--this is because my entire family already can't pronounce our would be pretty sad if they couldn't pronounce the first names, too. You add a whole new level of complexity when you and your spouse come from different languages/cultures!

  14. Barry and I used to watch the credits at the movies just to find interesting names! I was adamant (growing up with my name, Marjanna) that whatever names we picked had to be easy to pronounce--at first glance. But I really DID love having an unusual name--still do. But everyone blanches when they first see it.

    So Cedar--he was easy. We both loved the name, and it fit him when he was born. But Colter? We could NOT agree. We had a list of the final 10 names or so, and then he was born and NONE of those names worked. Not a one. We held him and looked at him and Barry said, "he isn't any of those names." And I have no idea how we knew, but he just wasn't. I was too drugged up (C-section) to do any R&D, but Barry came back and said, "I think his name is Colter" and I looked at the sweet thing and it FIT! Awesome!

    We had a long list of great, unusual girl names for Kestrel. Cedar was 5 and in kindergarten, and he lobbied pretty hard for Daisy, but I couldn't imagine a grown adult with that name--although it would be an adorable little girl name. I kind of liked Timberly, and to call her Timmie, but that seemed too contrived. When Barry suggested Kestrel, I loved it. Simple, unusual, has a cute nickname: Kes. Plus she'd be named after a small, beautiful hawk--which is a great sort of animal to name a girl after.

    She was a real screamer, too, so it fit. And Cedar even agreed that she really didn't seem very Daisy-like as she screamed her head off as a newborn. Although we do use the nickname Daisy now and then....

  15. Amy, you are so funny! I think the risk of "Teddy Graham" isn't worth it, and there are plenty of other good names that won't carry with it the possibility of naming your kid after a popular cracker. Good luck! Thanks for linking up to the Be.YOU.Tiful link party.


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