Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Quite possibly the most detailed email ever, but we like that around here

My husband and I have 3 biological children and are now adopting a fourth child, a baby girl from Ethiopia who we have recently been matched with. We want to keep her Ethiopian name, but since we think it will be a bit hard to carry as she grows up in the States, we will use it as her middle name (sorry…we cannot share it with others). So we are considering names as we hope to bring her home in the next few months. There are several limitations to our search.

First of all, our 3 kids are named Tate, Emma and Jack. We want a name that fits well with their names. We did not intend to have a “theme” in naming our kids, but they each have 4 letters and now it is very important to our kids that their sister has a name with 4 letters in it. It wouldn’t have mattered as much to me, but since we are adopting her, it is a way for her to be part of our family identity. There is flexibility as our daughter is Emma, but we call her Emmie. And our son is called Jack, but his given name is Jackson.

Secondly, the meaning of the name is important to us. We wouldn’t want to have the original meaning of the name being “bratty child who wipes snot on others”, for example. We kind of thinking naming a child is pronouncing a blessing on them and so we want their name to represent something significant. That’s why we would like to keep her Ethiopian name as a middle name.

Third, our oldest has an unusual name. I love it. Had I known that the names Emma and Jack would be EVERYWHERE when I named them, I may have chosen ones slightly more unique. We don’t like strange spellings or names that make you go “huh?”, but I have thought it might be nice if our daughter had a name that every 5th child in her class wasn’t named. As far as the kind of names we like, usually more feminine is better than androgynous. Our other names are kind of cute and preppyish. I prefer short vowels to long ones and nicknames that end in the “y” or “ie” sound for some reason.

Finally, we are white people who will be raising an Ethiopian daughter. We will be a blended family and want to embrace her culture and help her find her place as a part of our family. We still have no idea what that will all look like, but my point is that we don’t want her to have a name that seems decidedly “white” as I think Lily might be. We are proud of her heritage and skin color and don’t want to make her something she is not.

My husband is usually easy going, but Luci is the only name he likes. For some reason, though I like the name more than any others we’ve considered, it doesn’t seem perfect to me. I also like Eden, Eliza (Liza), Aubrie or Cambrie(Brie…who wouldn’t want to be named after cheese?), Tess, Iris, Ivey, Lila, Desi(meaning “desired one”) and Quincy (Quin). But none of those fly with him.

Can you help? I know you can’t help convince my husband to be a little less high-maintenance, but can you offer us any others or offer input on the current choices? Thanks!


First off--congratulations on your new daughter!! This must be such a very exciting time in your life. I think adoption is a such a wonderful thing and I think it's great that you are putting so much time and thought into your new child's name.

Secondly, let's talk names. I stuck with shorter names since that made more sense than to look for long names with short nicknames i.e. Samantha 'Sami'. I did put the definition next to them so you wouldn't have to thumb through 30,001 names to look it up. :)

Alia (ascender)
Aria (lion of God)
Cora (maiden)
Dara (compassionate)
Elle (light)
Evie (life)
Gwen (white wave; new moon)
Iola (dawn)
Jane (God is gracious)
June (born in the sixth month)
Kira (light)
Leah (weary) --maybe not the best meaning, but pretty
Lena (illustrious)
Macy (sea of bitterness/it comes from Macia, which comes from Mary)
Nora (light)
Rory (famous brillance)
Rosa (rose)
Ruby (precious stone)
Vera (true)
Wren (songbird)
Zara (dawn)

Any winners? I really like them all, but with Emma, Jack and Tate I think of my names, Alia, Cora and Lena are my favorites. They are short but they sound like full names. Lucia is one of my favorite names right now--Luci for short.

For those of you interested in following Missy's blog and her path to becoming a mother of four, here is the link!


missy said...

ooh, i'm so excited to have some options we haven't considered! thank you so much. we'll be in discussions and let you know. btw, ruby would be a surefire winner but it's our dogs name. never give the dog a name cute and human enough to use for a child.

tracy_a said...

great names and a wonderful story! another that I like: Edith/Edie (treasure)

JWJW2 said...

Wow! These are some great names. Here are some of my favorites from this list:
Alia, Aria, Cora, Evie, Kira, Lena, Rory
Fitting well with your kids names already (Tate, Emma and Jack), I like Alia, Cora, and Evie the best. Good luck picking out a name for the new addition to your family. I also love how much time and effort you're putting into just her name. She is certainly loved already. :)

d e v a n said...

I really like Evie and Macy and Lena. I don't care for the meaning of Macy, but my SIL is Macy and a sweeter person has never been born. :)

jamie said...

what about zoe/zoey, meaning life? i love that!!

jamie said...

i thought of another one...tessa/tess, meaning harvester!

Ellie said...

Oh I have another blog to follow...being adopted I love to follow families journey's to completion with the gift of an adopted child! THANK YOU MISSY for choosing to add another life to your beautiful brood!

I just love love love Zoe. But its missing a letter and it an "e" ending! I also love the name Elizabeth which is quite long but means Gift from God and it was also John the Baptists mother the woman my mom chose to name me after being adopted and feeling that I was a gift from God. My family called me Beth as a kiddo...perhaps Beth would go???? Tate, Emma, Jack and Beth???

missy said...

you guys are my favorites! thanks for being in this with us! i'm writing a post about it right now!

Mindee said...

I like the first three very much with Cora being my favorite.

I think though that Kira and Zara both have more of a unicultural (is to a word) vibe.

However, my bet is on Lucy being the winner. :)

Anonymous said...

ooh-ooh can I play? I love baby naming! (Okay, though the meaning of the name "Leah" is semi-offensive, it has made for some pretty funny ice breakers.) I am super picky and disapprove of most names... that being said I love the name Mya or "Myah"/"Myah" for the four letter thing but kinda popular. Let's move on- I really like "Rory". Cute, sassy and not to popular. Okay, I will give you my absolute fav girls name- one that I would use in a heartbeat if our last name was monosyllabic (I think one syllable first names don't sound feminine with one syllable last names). But it would look great on your family so here it is: "Bryn". I love it. It is everything a name should be and I am actually thinking of changing our last name so that we can use it. One more thing. I want to make a quick comment about your husbands favorite name: Lucy. Love the name, I will say that first, however when I am thinking of a name I try to run every scenario through the course of this little one's life and avoid any awkward situations if possible. So are my thoughts: I have tried to read a bunch of ET history books since we have started on this journey and each one starts the first chapter with the discovery of the "first prehistoric skeleton". This occurred in Ethiopia several decades ago and the anthropologist affectionately named her... Lucy. Not that big a deal but Ethiopia rarely makes it into US history/science books and when it does- in 8th grade science class with the discovery of "Lucy" I think that would be awkward for a student with the same name from Ethiopia.... just something to think about. Okay, sorry for the novel-

Christy. said...

We are adopting from Ethiopia as well and we would LOVE help with a name! We are waiting for a referral and so we don't know what our son's Ethiopian name is yet and, depending on what it is, we may keep it or part of it. But, most likely we will give him a new name.
Here is our dilemma. Our first daughter is Avery, second daughter Karsen and our son is Cohen. All three two syllables. Also, we would love a name that starts with an A and says A, since Karsen and Cohen are both the same sound.
So.... an A name that says A with two syllables that doesn't end with en our that sound, any ideas? Not too strange but not too common. :0)
Great blog!