Naming Babies

It’s hard to name a baby. I didn’t think it would be that hard…I mean, it took us less than a day to name our cats, and there are TWO of them…but I guess the pending consciousness of a baby makes the stakes higher. A cat can’t begrudge you forever for picking a stupid name and/or naming him after a video game enemy, but a baby can. You have to take that seriously.

We tried to be methodical about it…

  • Skimming baby name books…boring while simultaneously overwhelming
  • Brainstorming names each night, focusing on one letter of the alphabet at a time…we kind of gave up after M
  • Making individual Top 10(ish) lists…my list was somewhat weighted toward pre-M names. Jonathan might have scrapped all our previous research while developing his list.

Ultimately, we presented our four mutual top choices for a vote at our Labor Day party (which, to avoid any confusion, was related to the real Labor Day, not my personal labor day):

Our four top choices…which would you pick?

You probably can’t read my superb instructions, but we asked people to write their favorite of these four names as well as one alternative. We may have had a higher participation rate than in a presidential election.

Later in the evening, all these people wanted to know which name won:

Listening to Jonathan tally votes

And the winner was…(ignore the circles)…

I repeat, ignore the circles

So, Sophia was most popular, but we were glad to find that none of the names were complete outcasts. Also, from the suggestion list, we liked (and hadn’t previously considered) Ariana…and X will be a perennial favorite as a middle initial (<some name> X-Mendez…awesome, right?). Maybe for a boy someday.

Anyway, after this exercise, we felt confident enough to stop procrastinating, so assuming that we don’t start second-guessing this during these final three weeks, we will dub our baby…

Talia Marie Mendez

Talia (TAHL-yah) was Jonathan’s original favorite because he thought it was pretty, and I liked the sentiment behind a daddy picking a beautiful name for his little girl. And no one thought it was too weird, so we all lived happily ever after. The end.

About Sarah

10 years ago, I was a computer science student. 5 years ago, I taught kindergarten. 2 years ago, I trained teachers. Now, I'm a technical writer. I have thoughts about most of these things, but most likely I'll just write about neuroses and why I love Mr. Gatti's pizza. Which might be a neurosis.
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9 Responses to Naming Babies

  1. Greg says:

    I like it! Glad the process is over :-)

  2. Kirstin says:

    So great to have a decision made! Talia is sweet. :)
    Elena is what we would have named Sebastian if he had been a girl. However, it’s not our girl name this time around because Camilo’s brother just gave birth (this morning!) to Eliana Sofia, and we feel Elena and Eliana are a bit close for cousins.

  3. Sherrry Sniderman says:

    Like it! Hope everything goes will and can’t wait to see pictures of the whole family in a few weeks!

  4. Laura says:

    Beautiful! That is a lovely name!

    Drake picked Amity’s name, which I also think is sweet. :)

  5. Laura says:

    PS – How did you pick her middle name? We eventually gave up on picking a real middle name. I liked Amity Wren but Drake wasn’t a big fan of that and we couldn’t come up with anything else. So she just ended up with Matzen as a middle name.

    • Sarah says:

      I think it came down to being exhausted trying to pick a first name…we picked the first middle name that sounded pretty. Marie was my idea, so that gave me the added bonus of feeling like I’d contributed something. I wish I could say it was a family name or even that it had a nice meaning, but no…we just liked the sound of Talia Marie :)

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