What's In a Name? Inigo Montoya Wants To Know.

Sawyer came to me today and told me that from now on he would not be answering to "Sawyer."

And that I was to only call him "Inigo Montoya" from now on.  Not just "Inigo," mind you, but "Inigo Montoya."  The whole thing.  Every time I needed him.

Okie Doke. 

Someone has been watching one too many run-throughs of The Princess Bride.

As I chuckled and pinky promised that I would do my best to remember, I got to thinking about my babies and why in the world I named them what I named them. 

When the husband and I first found out that we were pregnant with our first baby, we started making the baby name list before we even made it to our first doctor's appointment.  We felt like grownups as we paid for our first baby name book at WalMart and laid in bed at night reading through every page multiple times.

We picked out Addison for our girl's name.  And then two people we knew had baby Addisons.  Grrr.  But we couldn't find another name that we liked as well, so we prayed it would be a boy.

And he was.  As soon as the doc confirmed that he was all boy, we realized that we had to find a name.  I picked out LOTS that I liked.  Like 40.  But the husband nixed them all.  Again.  Grrr.

And then we found it.

KEATON.  And we'd spell it like the last name Keaton.  And it would be different.  And it flowed with our last name.  And it meshed with the middle name, ELI, that we had already decided on.  Eli is Kirk's father's name, as well as a Biblical name.  So we were killing two birds with one stone. 

And so he became KEATON ELI. 

Then we found out we were pregnant again.  Again with the perusing of the baby name books and watching the credits roll on movies and tv shows, hoping that names would pop out at us.

We had already cancelled out Addison as a possibility for our potential daughter, so we decided on Emma Kate.  I was coming into the stage of loving the old fashioned names for girls, and Emma Kate sounded lovely in my head.

We hadn't picked a boys' name when we found out that we were having another son.  Hmmmmm.  I was upset.  Surely I was supposed to have a daughter so that she could be Emma Kate.  It only seemed right.

But.  It wasn't happening.  So we searched and looked and looked and searched.  And we stumbled on the name SAWYER.  It seemed manly.  And tough.  And it was different.

And it sounded good with my daddy's name which was to be his middle name.  And so he was SAWYER JAMES.

And I don't think we could have picked a better name for that ornery red-headed ragamuffin.

As far as we knew, our family was complete.  I mourned the loss of my Emma Kate and placed the name up on the shelf.  Maybe I could convince one of my future daughter-in-laws that it is a perfectly beautiful name.

And then surprise, surprise, surprise, I turned up pregnant.  Holy Cow!

Even when the doctor told me that it was a boy, I was convinced SHE was a girl.  I just knew that I was going to get my Emma Kate.  I swore to the existence of that little girl until the day she was born. 

Um....HE was a BOY. 

Luckily, we had picked a boys' name (just in case...because Kirk said that was practical...hurmph).  But I tell you, it was HARD.

We had read the baby name book backwards and forwards.  Nuthin'.  We'd been through the lists on the internet.  Nuthin'.  I had almost given up hope of us finding a name that we both agreed upon, and I was drowning my sorrows in a Friends' marathon.

And as I watched the credits roll on one particular episode, I saw it. 

One of Rachel Green's boyfriends on the show was played by a guest starring actor:  Tate Donovan.

Tate!  That's it!  Tate! 

Now...what about that blasted middle name.  We'd used both grandfathers' names, and didn't want to start in on great-grandfathers, because we had no idea which one to choose.  So we went to the next logical choice.  We'd name this baby after his daddy. 

But we decided that Tate Kirk sounded awful....and relatively like the sounds that come with a nasty stomach virus.

But Kirk's middle name is Matthew...and it fit.  It was a Biblical name, too...which worked out grand.

So on delivery day...there was no Emma Kate, as I was thoroughly convinced about, but we had our sweet baby TATE MATTHEW.

I do think, however, that if by some miracle we have another baby....I think his name (or her name, just for fun) will be Inigo Montoyo.

Just seems like a good conversation starter.  And Lord knows I like to talk.

So.....I know that some of you are very private about your children's real names here in blogworld, and that is totally cool.  But I do have a couple of questions.  (And if you don't have children yet....just tell me the names on your list...you know you have one.  EVERY girl has a list!)

1)  Why'd you name your kids what you did?  If you don't want to list specific names, just tell me if they are named after family or an actor or if their names came from the good ole' baby book.

2)  Do you think you would have chosen the same names had your family started tomorrow instead of ______ months/years ago?  I think I would have chosen different names now. 


Alison said...

Hmm...let's see. My first, Zoe Grace. Well, we chose Zoe because Darin told me years and years ago that he loved the name Zoe for a girl, and if for some reason (in our family of 10 nephews and 1 neice), God chose to give us a girl, he wanted Zoe. I loved it. So it stuck. We'd also tossed around and prayed over the names Michiah (female version of Micah) and Hannah. But Zoe stuck. Grace was a just so happened to be browsing through a baby name site and it fit. Zoe means life, Grace means, well, Grace. She is definitely full of life!

Our second is Ethan Glenn. We again prayed about names. Probably old fashioned, but had to create a compromise for my husband who would have probably preferred to name the kid on the 8th day of life. :) We had a few boy names...Matthew, Andrew, Samuel, Ethan, Isaiah, and Joshua. Samuel Glenn was going to be our first baby's name if it happened to be a boy. Samuel oddly enough didn't fit this baby...even in the womb. Weird, I know. Ethan means "strong". We decided on that one...he lives up to that every day. Glenn is Darin's middle name.

And I don't know if we'd have had different names. We prayed about both. Ethan and Zoe were what we both mutually decided on, with not a lot of deliberation. God thing? Maybe. So I don't know about that one.

Wow..that was like a blog entry by itself. Sorry! :)

Emily said...

We actually had an easy time picking for my son. If it had been a girl, I think it would have been harder.

We both liked Miles, Patrick knew a runner in high school by that name, and I read a book once with a "Miles" and loved it.

His middle name is Joseph, which is my granddaddy's name.

We even have another boy's name picked out: Silas. But no girls.... maybe it's a sign?

Jessica said...

My little girl was always going to be Lillian May. Lillian after my grandmother and May, my mother's middle name. It was still going to be Lillian May throughout my pregnancy. Well, now, Ave has a cousin 6 weeks older than her, her name is Lillian. grrr.But at least my Granny is being honored. I came across Avery in a baby name book while looking for boy names, just in case. And Billy had no say so in the naming cause she was a girl =) and our deal was that if she would have been a boy, he would have named him. Sooo glad she was a girl! it helped that he loved the name Avery May too. I can't see her as anything else!

Gretchen said...

We did the whole "we're-down-to-2-and-can't-decide-so-it's-up-to-the-hair-color" scheme. Worked for us. I loved John and David equally well, so John was our brunette, and David was our blonde. We were going to use James for the middle name, b/c that was Big's middle name. But then...we could foresee jealousy issues in the family, so Christopher came to us both, and we lurved it. So: David Christopher.

I hated my name growing up. It was never on those fun mugs. But I had a lot of friends named Jennifer. And I lurved that name. Wanted a Jenny. Or a Caroline. A Carrie. Middle name issues, again, so instead of using Jane (my mom's name), we used Kate. Jenny was our blonde, and CArrie was our brunette, so again, blonde won.

I'm loving all the old names sounding new again. Today, one of my friends' daughters had a baby, and she named her Ruby, after Ruby's greatgrandma. Isn't that precious?

Marla Taviano said...

Olivia Joy. The only name we agreed on. Needed a short middle name. My sister's middle name is Joy.

Ava Marie. Fell in love with the name Ava somehow. Gabe's mom and grandma both have Marie as a middle name, plus lots of people in my fam.

Nina Gabriel. Have no idea where I saw the name Nina. Pottery Barn Kids catalog maybe? Gabriel is my hubby's name and the middle name we had picked for a boy every time. We're done now, so I was determined that #3 would get Daddy's name either way.

I didn't know any Olivias and Avas when we named them that. Now I know many. But still no Ninas. Not to play favorites, but I think Nina Gabriel is the most darling name ever. :)

Marla Taviano said...

And I TOTALLY meant to say that Keaton, Sawyer and Tate might possibly be the COOLEST BOY NAMES EVER. Seriously.

Jessica said...

Luke has always liked the name Justus. No, it's not a family name, and no, it's not spelled with an "ice" and it's definitely not JustIN (the questions we get ALL THE TIME). Justus was one of the two dudes up for Judas's job in Acts 1. I liked it because it was unusual, but not weird. And I'd never taught (or even heard of) a Justus. You know how hard it is as a teacher to find a name that doesn't remind you of a student! And his middle name, Samuel, came about when we decided to try for a baby and Luke was fasting and praying Hannah's prayer from 1 Samuel that if the Lord would give us a child, we would give him back. I know, I know. My kid's probably going to end up as a missionary in Africa. We'll cross that road when we come to it.

We were NEVER able to agree on a girl's name, so (as my mom pointed out as I shed a few tears following our ultrasound) it's probably best that we had a boy. Though I really liked Annelise Kathryn. Annelise means "graceful light" which combines the meaning of my middle name (Anne=grace) and the meaning of Luke's first name (bearer of light). Kathryn was my grandmother's name. We also liked Emery Kate (my Grandpa's name is Emory).

Jessica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tiffani said...

Fun post! Connor just wanted me to change his name to "Aviator" and asked tonight if I would PleaSE call him that!

I knew that family names would show up in both of my kids. Knew either Christopher or Avery would be in our son's name (after my Daddy) and wanted a strong boy name that wasn't overused and found Connor in a baby book!

I knew if we had a girl she would have a very southern belle name...we found Julia in the baby book and chose Caroline for Adam's Mom (Carol).

I know I've said this a bazillion times but your boys truly do have the greatest names!!

theelizabethhighsmith said...

eli, elias, elijah, eliza, ellie, elliot, elle, you know anything that tag's them to their mother ship the greatness that is the elizabeth......
honey i could name babies all day, i love me some names miz amber!

Jennifer said...

Even before we knew Hesley was a boy, we knew what his name would be!!

He is named after his great-grandfather (who passed away 3 months before Danny and I were married), his grandfather, and his daddy!! I chose his name because it was different and unique, and I knew the chances of there being another Hesley were slim!!

The choosing of the middle name is a WHOLE other story!! I originally chose Jaxson!! I loved the name "Jackson", but particularly liked the other spelling!! We ran into a big ole "snag" (aka family) with Jaxon, so at the last minute(the night before he was born "last minute") we chose Christian!!

So Hesley Christian it is!!

If we had had a baby girl, we would probably still be calling her "Baby Girl Forthman"!! We could NOT agree on a girl name!!

I've always loved your Rascals names!! They fit them perfectly!!

Mich said...

You already know about my kid's names, but I will play along...

I first heard the name Kayla, when I was 16 and watching Days of Our Lives with Granny. Loved the name and scribbled it all over my journals.

Jordan was named after a precious little brother and his middle name, Andrew, he shares with his dad.

Fun post, sis! Love ya!

Beam Me Up Scotty said...

Since the very first day I met Todd he said that when he had a child, he would name him/her Alexander/Alexandria. He even tried to get Jana to name her son Alex, lol.
So, when we got pregnant for the first time he said, if it's a boy, I name him. If it's a girl you name her. I went back and forth for months. I had several picked out but then someone would tell me some horrendous story about someone they knew with name and I would be left searching again. One evening my mom was telling me about a friend who just had a baby and she named her Lily. I knew IMMEDIATELY that, that was the name. Lily Ann. Ann is Barb's, my mom's and my middle name.

Second child, Alexander Todd Thomas! There was just no talking about it! That's what you get when you let the man pick the entire name, by himself :).

And third, Nathanael. My precious Nathanael. Nathanael means "God has given". And ain't that the truth about that child :). Middle name Kenneth after my dad.

I have always loved your boy's names. Very original strong!!


New Every Morning said...

What a fun post!
Inigo has my vote: "prepare to die"

We chose names that we a little different but not weird. Unfortunately I didn't learn from my own childhood woes when it came to our 2nd daughter. We thought it would be fun to spell it a little differently. Okay, truth be told, I wanted her to have a Y in it. I always wanted a curly Y in my name. But now she is our only child that NEVER finds her name on pencils, ornaments etc...
We went with family names for the middle names.
Would I change any? Maybe the daughter I just mentioned... I really like the name Caroline, but then there would be no curly Y.

imnotned said...

I'm still upset my wife wouldn't go for my first choice for our son. Chingachgook has such a lovely ring to it.

Becca~TimeWellSpent said...

Mark and I both loved the name Ashley while we were seriously dating in college. Even though back then is was over used we still loved the feminine sound. Fast forward 6+ years and we found out we were having a girl. I kept tossing other names out to him just to make absolutely sure we still like Ashley. He kept looking at me and saying "I thought this was already decided". We chose Renee as her middle name. It's my sisters middle name and Mark has no sisters so that made it easy.

Boys names were HARD for us. We found Colton off the internet. We both loved it and had already chosen his middle name of Henry. My Grandpa and Dad's middle name is Henry and my Grandpa went by that name. Mark's Grandpa and Dad's middle name was Henry so we knew if we had a boy his middle name would be Henry!

My2Gs said...

I want to follow you on twitter, but you blocked me :-(


Jim said...

As you perhaps well know, JANELL with no E, your name just had a nice ring with Amber, which was also chosen because no one else on earth had it at that time. We have thought it through and what we tried to do with you was make you completely one of a kind, and we did it! We cannot help that after you were named, the whole world began to think your names were the bestest ever. And your sister, MIKE, OR MICH, OR MICHAEL, as she was called on 3679 occasions by last count, was named MICHELE with one L because she, too, is one of a kind. Lo and behold, her name with one L was only used once before by the actress Michele Lee of Herbie fame, but with your sister's entrance the world saw again an opportunity to duplicate our choice and now there seems to be a gazillion of them. (I borrow your number system.) DAWN, her middle name, just "dawned" on us out of the morning sky! HA! Again, we just tried to be different but everyone decided to want to be like us and now we're not different no more!

One note from your aunt's experience must be 'splained. She was a great deal of trouble with her initials - J. A. B. - we were determined in your names not to have you be subject to such abuse as she. I guess I was somewhat of a problem early on when I used that moniker with an accompanying poke.

Anywho, that's the story!


Kris said...

Girls names have always been hard for my husband and I to choose. Everytime we discovered we were pregnant, we'd have a boy name wihtin days. So of course, it was only fitting that all we'd have was girls.

We fought for months over a girls name with our first daughter. Everything I liked got shot down. But he could never tell me what he liked. Finally one day, out of the blue, I said Caitlyn. Dh agreed. Then it was a search for a middle name. We came to an agreement on Elizabeth. Yes. Caitlyn Elizabeth had a nice ring to it. We chose the spelling we did because of my irish/gaelic heritage.

Baby #2 -- whom I knew as soon as we couldn't agree on a boys name again was destined to be a girl. It took a little less time to find her name. Isabella. Then I wanted to give her hte irish nod as well, so we decided on Ryann for a middle name.

Baby #3 -- Yet ANOTHER girl was the easiest yet. Calleigh Nicole.

If we'd ever been blessed with a boy, he would have been Caden William, Jason William or Jason Michael.

Michele said...

Love this post!!! Alec is James Alec. James after Jon's Dad. Alec. . . well, we just liked the name.

Ash is Ashley Faye. Faye was my grandmother who has passed away. I wanted to keep her memory alive. Ashley is Jon's middle name.

Hanna is Hanna Abigail, but started out as Hanna Payden. I wanted her to be Anna Lea. . Anna after me (my first name). Lea after my mom which is Leathia. Jon said we could NOT have triple As!!! I was devastated. So we named Hanna, Hanna (got my Anna in her name) and Payden to begin with. I have NO idea where we came up with Payden. So we changed her name to Hanna Abigail. . . I loved the name Hanna b/c of Hannah in the Bible. I had a hard pregnancy with Hanna and miscarried before her. Honestly I prayed more for Hanna while in the womb than I did any of my other children. . .

I think I may copy and paste this into a post of my own since it was so stinkin' long. . . ha!ha!

Kay @ Off the Beaten Path said...

You're darling and I love all the names you chose, even Emma Kate.

We chose Daniel because we wanted our son to be a lion tamer. NO NOT REALLY. We did, however, and still do love Daniel from the Bible. Such a good solid man of God. My husband did not like my choice for a middle name, Winton, which is my maiden name and would have been a perfectly distinguished and southern thing to go with, so my son's middle name is Daniel (but that's the name he goes by) and his first name is my husband's, James. Hmmph!

For my daughter we chose Abigail because I love the old fashioned sound of it and I love the story of Abigail in the Bible. She's described as being beautiful and she showed such discernment and grace. And that leads me to Abigail's middle name, Grace. Just a lovely old-fashioned name that happens to also be the reason we have any hope at all - by God's grace. Ummm.

What fun! Haven't thought about that in a long time!

Cathy said...

Even though we've talked about this before, I'll still play along!

William (but we call him Will) Conner. William after his daddy and Conner from some random guy who gave us a business card at the mall!

Emma Grace. Emma we liked LONG before it became so popular because we, too, like the old fashioned names. Grace was just because we liked it.

Lincoln James. We could not agree on a boy name this time around. We wanted it to be unique and not overused but not too weird. You already know that Sawyer was also at the top of our "like list" as well as Jackson, but we settled on Lincoln and we LOVE it. James is after my dad.:)

I don't know if I would choose different names now or if I would just have more kids to use the other names that I love...maybe I should consider more pets instead...;)

Carpool Queen said...

My girl name was going to be Katherine Mason, but it's on the shelf now for the granddaughter.

We chose family names for our boys. The firstborn is named for Mr. CPQ's first ancestor who landed in Virginia.

Since that's where we met and married, we thought it was a fitting choice.

Terry Lewallen said...

Okay- So I'm a bit behind on my blog reading and am just now getting to read this post. LOVE it! Fun to hear your name story and everyone else's. I think naming children is one of the hardest things in the world...for us we kept saying we don't want our kid to run to the courthouse when he/she turns 18 to change the name we gave him/her because he/she hates it.
Boy #1- Kade Daniel
Picked out the middle name first because we knew we liked Daniel. Kyle was preaching through the book of Daniel at the time...what an amazing man of God. Kyle's great-grandfather's middle name was Daniel and we had heard some cool stories about him and what a prayer warrior he was. But we didn't want a Dan or Danny as a first name. I always like William as a first name and call him Will. My maiden name was Williams so that worked well as a family name. As it so happened Kyle's great-grandfathers first name was William. William Daniel was known to all as Willie Dan!! Everytime we talked about the possibility of the name combination, Kyle would say "Willie Dan". I COULD NOT do that to our son. So we headed for the name book and came across Kade and both liked it.
I required that we pick out a girl's name just in case. We agreed on Macy for a little girl.
Boy #2 Ryne William
I pulled for Will to be the first name but Kyle vetoed it as a first name because Will Lewallen was just too many lllll's running together. So again we picked the middle name first and headed to the Baby name book. After quite a bit of looking and conferring we settled on Ryne because we didn't know any and liked the different name.
Macy is still a backup name for a little girl. If we have a boy not sure what will happen because we accidentally gave Kade the K and E from Kyle and Ryne the Y and E from Kyle and so another boy would feel left out if he didn't get the L and E from Kyle.
Guess we hope for a girl if there is another!

I totally love Keaton, Sawyer and Tate! You guys are good at the name game!

Jennifer said...

Oh so very fun. I'm going to use my "comment" as a blog post. Thanks for filling a day!

Anonymous said...

I still have my journal with all the names I loved that I made when I was in maybe high school. I loved the name Trevor. But K has a red-neck cousin who was arrested for growing marijuana at his trailer. Thanks a lot.

We easily agreed on our oldest's name. And our youngest son's name wasn't that difficult to decide. But A? She didn't have a name until she was 4 days old. I narrowed it down to three and then I agonized between two names. Now I can't imagine ever having named her anything else.

I love names and naming stories.