Monday, August 5, 2013

mama confessions : baby namin'

I knew when I chose my babies' names I would have some 'splainin' to do.  

I chose names that *most* people have never heard of, so when the question of "What did you name her?" comes up when I am out with the baby and a stranger starts oohing and ahhing over my babe, I always mentally prepare myself for the followup question of, "Where did you come up with that???"

Or, as my dear Gram Margaret asked when she heard my mom {her daughter} had named me 'Greta': "Where'd ya dig that one up?" (Nice, Gram!)

No, I did not "make up" the names Cormac and Finola.  They are pre-existing, real names that others have been named in the past.  You can Google them. :)

But why did we choose these names? (Well, I came up with them, and Hubby agreed to them. There were various others he did not agree to.)

Well, here is where we "dug them up..."  

Cormac comes from the author Cormac McCarthy.   A couple years before getting pregnant the first time an English teacher friend of mine turned me on to the book All the Pretty Horses (also a movie with Matt Damon) and I fell in love with the writing style.  Very masculine, yet romantic.  And I loved the name Cormac.  I had never heard it, and I thought it sounded very strong.  I also liked that it could be shortened to Mac, which I think is really cute for a boy.   I ran it by Hubby and he loved it, too...and it was more original than our backup boy name.  So...we had our name.

Finola comes from an actress named Finola Hughes.  That is where I originally heard it.  She was on my mom's favorite soap, General Hospital, back in the eighties.  Now, I never ever thought I would use the name Finola.  Actually, I had picked out another girl name since I was eleven-years-old that I thought I would use FOR SURE if I ever had a baby girl.  Then we got pregnant again and I started thinking I would really love a girl name that started with "F" since our last name is Ford.  After nixing "Fiona" because it reminded me too much of the movie Shrek, I remembered Finola.  I loved the fact that I have never met or heard of anyone else with that name.  I personally loved having a name that no one else had when I was growing made me feel special/unique.  I thought Finola Ford sounded like a beautiful, strong name.   I also liked that it could be shortened to Fin or Nola - both of which I find cute.  (Ya know, if she prefers "cute" to "strong/distinctive.")  Then we added the middle name Wilder because I like having a little "literary flair" to my names.  This is, of course, after Laura Ingalls Wilder, whose books I devoured many times as a little girl.

So there you have it.  Of course, I only explain all this if someone asks.  Usually people just try to hide a strange look and and say politely, though not very convincingly, "Ohhhhh...I love it...."  and I just laugh inwardly because I think it is funny how people are uncomfortable with things they don't "get" or understand.  Or they think the name is ugly.  Which is okay by me.

Names are totally personal!  It doesn't hurt my feelings if people don't like mine.  I am pretty particular and only would consider really unique names.  There are lots of trendy names I think are super cute, but would never use just because of their popularity.   And there are trendy names that so many people use that I think are blah/not cute.  But who cares what other people think???

If you love it for your babe, that is what matters. :D  Plus,  your baby will grow up and make it their own - and you won't be able to imagine them named anything else.

So how did you pick the names for your little ones?  Any regrets?  Did you ever wish you had been named something else?


  1. I love reading this. I had wondered about Finola and when I read this I thought oh yeah I remember that actress.

  2. Well, it's not Venola (bahahahaha), but I think we'll keep her! LOL. Love you bunches. Kiss that beautiful Godbaby of mine for me. And lay one on her cutie pie brother while you're at it. Love ya! Dinner soon?

  3. Awesome! Love having special meaning to a name :) Honestly I picked Ethan Avery because I liked how it sounded... then all these Ethan's came out from everywhere and it's a really popular name! I don't picture anyone else suiting it as well as my Ethan does :) Gabriel William was because he was a Christmas baby and also it being Irish my husband liked, his middle name is a family name. Kieran Patrick because I just loved it, Kieran means little dark one which I thought he would be but he's super blue eyed and bright... maybe it's his personality lol and Patrick I really loved but refused to name as his first name because I can't stand the shortening of calling someone PAT.. just NO.

  4. I was just gonna email you and tell you that there is Finola the Farmer on The Cat in The Hat! :) And I did think of Finola Hughes as soon as I heard it. And Shrek. ;) But then I remember that was Fiona. Hahahaha. Funny. I think Finola goes very well with Cormac.

    I want another boy and another girl cuz I have 2 more names I wanna use. ;) Is that a good enough reason for more babies? Hahahahaha. just kiddin.

    And who cares what people think. You probably don't like their kids' names either. :)

  5. this is great!! nick & i have ongoing/changing lists of names we like, but no front-runners yet! ;)

    GQ posted an awesome article about baby naming that had me cracking up!

    and do you know the irish myth, "the children of lir?" i had a book of celtic tales i read as a kid, & one of the characters names was fionnuala! very similar to finola. :)

  6. My first son is Axel Edwin- my husbands great grandpa's name. One of the first Rapp's to come over on the boat! Loved it. Abel Martin- well abel that one came from the bible. Adam and Eves second son, which I thought was fitting since he was my secons son. Martin is another grandpa's name from my hubbies side. Now if I could only have a girl to use My grandma's name....

  7. I googled the name finials when you announced her birth because I'd never heard it before and was interested in origins. That's how weird I am. Anyway, I think it's a really cool name, and totally unique!


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