Friday, June 25, 2010

FAQ Friday

How did you come up with your kids' names?

Ok, seriously LOVE this question. Next to telling you my birth stories this is a favorite thing to write about and one that I haven't! Thanks for asking!

I'll start with Samuel since he is the oldest. Oh little Samuel Edward...

When Jeff and I started praying for a baby we had no idea our journey would last almost 3 years. By the time I finally got pregnant I didn't care what we had but deep down I wanted a boy. I had always seen myself as a mother of 2 boys and really couldn't imagine mothering girls.

At our 20 week ultrasound when the tech announced it was a boy, I was thrilled and we started discussing names. I had loved the name Samuel forever and felt a connection to the story of Hannah praying for a son.

On the other hand, Jeff's dad's name is Herbert James (called Jim) and I also loved the idea of naming our son Herbert James and calling him Jack, another long time favorite name of mine.

In the end, we just fell in love with the tune of "Samuel Edward". Edward is Jeff's late grandfather's name; Grandpa Ed was Jeff's biggest fan, fishing buddy and the sweetest man you would have ever met. He died in 2003 and naming Samuel after him in 2006 seemed like a tender way to honor the man who would have adored Jeff's son.

Samuel has ended up being the perfect name for our precious boy. In February, I was even more convinced it was the perfect name when God called Samuel in his bedroom late at night. You may remember the spine tingling answer Samuel gave me the day after he asked Jesus in to his heart when I asked him how he knew Jesus didn't already live in his heart, "God told me", he simply stated.

And finally, in most recent months I have gotten really into the genealogy of the Niles side and have found out that "Samuel" is a Niles family name that was given to many of the men in my line and was the middle name of my grandfather's favorite uncle. How perfect and cool is that?

And now for little Roo...

Emily May Irene Henderson joined us in 2008 and we knew from the moment we heard she was a girl what we would name her. I have known since I was an adult that if I had a daughter I would name her after my Grandma Emily. To read more about Gigi, which you should because she is awesome, click on the label "Gigi". You'll be glad you did.

May is a family name: Gigi's mom was Beryl May, Gigi is Emily May, my Mom is Della May and I'm Jennifer May. When I was a kid I didn't like the name, mostly because I was a kid and kids are difficult and one way they are difficult is to gripe about their names. I was pretty typical. Also, there was a boy in my 4th grade class named Jonathan May and the kids would tease me and say I was going to marry Jonathan and my name would be Jennifer May May. Kids are so stupid.

So up until about a month before I delivered Emily we were just going to call her Emily Irene, the Irene being after Jeff's grandma (Ed's wife). One night Jeff and I were feeling her move and groove in my belly and he said that he thought we should name her Emily May Irene so she could be named after me and carry on the May tradition. It seemed so sentimental and sweet to me that I was surprised it hadn't been more obvious to me before. My Mom was ELATED!

Here's a picture of Emily and Emily when Roo was 2 months old and we took her to Montana the first time. I will never forget the look on Gig's face when she met her namesake for the first time at the Montana was magical.

Now just for fun I will tell you why we call her Roo...

When she was born Samuel was only 22 months old and couldn't say "Emily" so he called her "Emmy"; we all started calling her that and in a sing-songy nick-namey way I called her "Emmy Roo" one day and it sort of stuck. A few days of calling her Emmy Roo and Hot Jeff shortened it to "Roo" and that REALLY stuck. Now, 2 and half years later if you ask her what her name is, 85% of the time she will tell you "Roo". It makes me smile every time. It also makes me smile when I hear Samaria and Caleb Brown call her Roo (I'm not even sure they know her real name) and when my friends call her Roo. There is something really endearing about it; like they know and love her.

How did you come up with your kids' names? Did you call them their names before they were born or did you have a pet name for them before they were born/a part of you family?


jana said...

Love it. It's so fun to hear how people choose their names. In fact, you've inspired me to do a blog post of my own about Finn.

Traci Piltz said...

Jennifer May May ... oh, man, I forgot about that. Funny stuff.

Christy said...

My kids are named after surprise there. Reagan's middle name is Tara after Tim's sister that died 3 days after she was born and Lincoln's middle name is David after his Dad that died suddenly at age 52.
Our baby on the way.....well, it will be a President name but we are not finding out the gender until the baby is born.

ehoff said...

Love it.
Grayson Edward has mine and Brent's middle names (almost, Emily Grace and Brent Edward. Also Edward is the middle name of my grandpa, brother, and father-in-law), and Kendrick Michael is named after my late sis-in-law Kendra Leigh, Brent's sis who died in '08 from cancer. When we have a girl her middle name will be Leigh! Michael isn't anything significant, just sounded good!

Vanessa said...

We went to England and Scotland the summer before we adopted our 1st baby and while in a gift shop spotted the name "Ian" which means God is Gracious. We thought how perfect it would be if our baby was a boy because it so reflected our journey. When we found out we had been chosen to adopt a son, we asked his birthmother what names she liked and she said Daniel. We then found out that Daniel means God is my judge. We could not more accurately convey the bittersweet experience of adoption than to give our son the name Ian Daniel. Lauren came along 4 years later and honestly, we have just always loved the name Lauren. Her birthmother loved the name Elizabeth so Lauren Elizabeth Hunt it was! :-)

Christy said...

You have a blog and you haven't told me yet!!! Okay well its not really a blog yet but its a start my friend :)

Mia White said...

Okay, just tonight I stopped myself from calling Emily "Roo" because I thought it was just your thing. ;)

Anonymous said...

Anne Ranae - seriously just a name that we both liked. Although we have many dear people we love whose names are Anne (or their middle names are Anne). We tell all of them they are all Annie's Namesakes...good thing they all don't konw each other. Ranae just seemed to fit. I like this spelling of Ranae better than the traditional Renee. I had a co-worker at WOU who spelled her name like this...she is an amazing woman who loves the Lord and works for Youth for Christ.

Nathan KunWoo - Nathan means "A Gift from God." His life, his birth mother's sacrifice and his placement with our family is truly a GIFT from God! KunWoo was Nathan's given Korean name. We wanted to give him the gift of holding on to his Korean keeping his given name.