Our Noble Pursuits

Living the good life. And writing about it.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

What's In a Name?

Recently, one of the mommy bloggers I read – Ilana at Mommy Shorts (if you don’t read it, you simply must.  It’s different than most mommy blogs.  It’s really really funny) had her second baby.  And the day after the blessed arrival of daughter #2, she posted an explanation of the baby’s name.  I’ve seen other people do this – have both read naming stories and listened to them from my friends and acquaintances.  And every single time I do it makes me feel like I should have a better naming story for Annie.  Fact is, Annie is Annie because it was basically the only girl’s name David and I could agree on.  It is a name I have loved for years and it was the only name that came up in our baby naming discussions that didn’t get an “Are you kidding?” stare or scrunched up eyebrow from David.  (Mind you, I gave plenty of stares and eyebrow raises to some of his suggestions too – the name “Jazz” comes to mind…thus the even greater miracle that we both liked the name Annie.)

We arrived at her middle name the same way – just because we liked the sound of it.  I came up with a couple of options and then asked David if he thought we should name our child Annie Claire or Annie Kate, and he responded, “Well, one of them sounds like a dessert.”  Not wanting to saddle our baby girl with that, we went with Annie Kate and never turned back.  And she is such an Annie Kate.  Truly, the name we picked just because we liked it suits her perfectly.  I honestly can’t imagine her being anything else.  She isn’t even an Ann or an Anna.  She is an Annie through and through.  I can’t explain to you the difference really, but the more she comes into her own and shows us that spunky, sweet personality of hers, the happier I am that we didn’t name her some other derivative of Ann and just call her Annie.  She is an Annie, and nothing else would have done her justice.
Annie is a Cool Cat, yes she is.
Is this some Fall fun or what?
But I do sort of wish I would have a better explanation one day when she asks why she is named what she is than “Eh, we just liked the sound of it.”  My mom’s middle name is Annette, so the Ann part of Annie’s name is sort of in my mind a way to honor my mother.   And my niece goes by Kate, so technically her middle name is a family name.  But there is no deep tradition or history behind her name.  And I so love the naming stories I hear, I just sort of wish we would have given Annie one of her own.

Before we knew Annie was a girl, we also had a boy’s name picked out.  We actually had two names and decided on one over the other with a naming story of sorts.  Our boy’s names were either Noah or Jonah, with James as the middle name whichever way we went.  James is David’s middle name and both he and I had uncles we never knew who were very important to our families named James.  So right there was some history and tradition.  We really liked Noah James, but Noah is like one of the top 10 baby boy names in the country or something, and we were looking to be a little more unique than that (although honestly, I think it is still my favorite boy’s name ever).  And then I realized that if we went with Jonah, that first part of the name “Jo” would pay tribute to my dad, whose middle name was Joe.  And the decision was made.  Jonah James.  Obviously, we didn’t end up needing the boy’s name, but we had one – and not just any name, a name rich in heritage and honor.

Maybe that is why I would like Annie to have a naming story…because if she was a boy, she would have.  But you know what? Regardless of how we arrived at her name, she is named perfectly.  And no matter whether there is some deep special meaning behind that name or not, there is deep special meaning about her.  Of that I am sure.
Of course, the item she spotted in the Target check out line that she had to have was a Barbie princess doll.  Uh oh, and so it begins.

Happy weekend!

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