Change of plans
Names, reservations and furniture, oh my!

ANOTHER weekend post? LUCKY YOU.

So, as I may have mentioned one or two times before, I'm having a hard time picking a name for this baby. We have a just-in-case boy name, but I'm stuck between two girl names and I CAN'T DECIDE.

Last night I rounded on Phillip all, "WHY AREN'T YOU HELPING" because seriously! It's like he has Selective Hearing when I start talking about names. And while I have brought it up a lot in the last day or two, it's not like I've spent the last five months pestering him with names. So suck it up, right? PAY ATTENTION. I said clearly, to give him the benefit of the doubt, "Which name do you like better? Name X or Name Y?" AND HE IGNORED ME.

I know. I know! I took a few deep breaths before I called the lawyer and then I decided to ask him what was up. I said, "DUDE. What is UP?" And, according to Phillip, he likes both names and, you know, one is like this and the other is like this and he likes both and he doesn't know and the subtext was LAY OFF ME, WOMAN.

And so, I come to the internet. Again. What did people do without the internet?

(My mom and I were talking about this the other night, except fill in "cell phones" for "internet". My mother owns a cell phone, but I don't think she ever turns it on. Or takes it out of the car. Which makes me wonder how she manages to find my dad when they split up in the grocery store, because really, how did people find each other before they could just whip out their phone and call the other person? But then we started talking about texting which I have done maybe three times in my entire life and oh dear God how old are we?)


So I am trying to decide between two names. I am not going to tell you what they are because I have already told you that 1) I am pregnant and 2) it's a girl and WHAT ELSE DO I HAVE TO SURPRISE YOU WITH? so you're just going to have to deal. But I will tell you that the first name is a lot like "Annie" in style and feel and the second name is a lot like "Louisa". So just work with me, people.

We like "Annie" because it's cute and simple and while hardly anyone keels over with excitement when I say we're thinking of it, no one thinks it's awful. The general reaction is "Adorable!" Which is fine with us. I think of my own name as being in the Cute section and it's worked out okay for me. What we don't like about "Annie" is that it is just cute. Also, it began life as a nickname for another name, and while it is a full fledged name on it's own now, it's still nicknamey to me. It also doesn't go with the middle name I'd like to use. Neither of those things are huge deals, but they prevent me from saying to my dad (who asks me the most), "We're going to name her "ANNIE", now STOP BUGGING ME." (Confidential to my dad: but you are forgiven because you actually want to TALK about names and you liked Jack's name before we even told you it was going to BE his name and I am definitely going to ask your opinion of my second name!)

"Louisa" is one of those names I've always liked, but is not terribly common and I'm afraid of saying, "I'm thinking about Louisa" for fear of The Face. You know The Face. One of my sisters is particularly good at it (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.) The Face tells you that this person thinks the name you like reeks of Lindburger cheese. But! It's not a MADE UP name. It's an old timey name that hasn't quite risen to modern popularity like a lot of other old timey names. It's prettier and more sophisticated than "Annie" and has two obvious nicknames. However! The full name is a bit matchy matchy with Jack and the nickname I like best is SUPER matchy matchy. I like the other nickname well enough, though, and she would probably go by that name most of the time. We like the idea of a longer more formal name with a quick nickname. And it goes with the middle name I want.

Today I like "Louisa" best, even though someone once told me that she could see me having a girl named "Annie" and I doubt she'd say the same thing about "Louisa". But that's partly why I like "Louisa" today. The only things holding me back are the matchiness and the potential Faces. I know I shouldn't care about the Faces, but have you met me?

So, internet, what would you pick? (Ha. I love that I am asking you to pick between two fake names.)

ALSO! I would like to say that I am not normally so OCD about NAMES. I mean, what is wrong with me? I am plenty OCD about a million other things, but names? Not so much. Popularity is not a big deal to me (I looooove Emma and would totally be considering Super Duper Popular Emma if my grandmother hadn't always had a story about her friend Emma Mae when I was growing up, which is now my connotation for Emma, BOO.) And if you want to name your kid what I'm naming my kid, I don't really care. Although if our kids end up playing together a lot it'd be kind of annoying. But my mom always told me she wanted to have a girl named Maggie and a boy named Alex and guess what, she has both, and I kind of wish there was a name I'd always wanted.

ALL RIGHT. End of super whiny terribly boring post about NOTHING, thank God I'm posting on a Sunday, no one reads this thing on SUNDAYS, and tomorrow's even a holiday, EXCELLENT.

And I'm still not going to Ikea. But I will think of you dim sum cravers as I pop a fourteenth siu mai into my mouth. Mmm.



I vote oldtimey/classic name. Not just because I have one, or because my middle name is Louise but because cute only lasts so long. You could have a cute nickname but the proper name needs to transcend time.


I personally love old timey names. I vote Louisa, or whatever that stands for.

Annie may not be so "cute" when she's thirty.

just my opinion. And that way, Louisa and her two cute nicknames could someday just want to be Louisa and she has that option.

That's why Charlie is really Charles. That way when he's thirty he can decide. I really hope he doesn't want people to call him Chuck... I don't care for that.


Oooooh, I love name talk!

I personally lean in favor of Louisa, but since my daughter is Camilla which falls into pretty much the same old-fashioned, pretty but not yet too popular category, you probably would have guessed I'd go that way. A cute name can be wonderful (and who doesn't love a two-year-old named Annie?) but it can also be limiting in other circumstances. You could, however, name her Anne and call her Annie, which solves that. (Assuming there is actually a way to do that with the name you like, which there isn't always. I mean, you *can* name someone Mary and call her Molly, but hardly anyone does that anymore and most people would just find it confusing.)

Now I'm going to waiting impatiently until September when you finally HAVE YOUR BABY! And hey, no matter which name you choose, will you tell us what the other possibility was? It only seems fair.


I vote for Annie, even though it is a fake name in this case. I think the cute names have melded to the person's personality by the time they are an adult so it all works out. Just like how little babies with super old names seem to fit them so quickly too.

In the end, the child will reinvent her name and be called what she wants as an adult if she considers necessary (both my sister and husband did despite having totally mainstream names), but the family will continue to call them whatever they fondly know them as. So everyone wins.

Mary Catherine

Name her Gillian. Then you can have Jack and Jill.


Oh Mary Catherine beat me to it! I was thinking Jillian though, with the J. And if that's it, I love it and vote for that, although Annie-ish names are always lovely and have their own old-timeyness about them.


I'd vote for "Louisa" as well, given the limited amount of info, for the reasons that others have stated re: "cute" names being a frustration to some adults. With a name with several options, she has more options.
I agree on hearing what option B is once she is born (because we are your demanding public, after all).


I like the idea of old-timey names (My son's named Moses), but I think I'm stuck on the fake names. I can't get past Louisa.

Have you thought about waiting till the baby arrives to decide? That's what we did. We were pretty sure it would be Moses, but we wanted to wait till he showed his face before we committed ourselves. You can decide if she looks like an Annie, Louisa, or - surprise - Alfred!


Ok, so this is totally YOUR FAULT for asking me for advice because here I go: I ALSO love the nickname Annie (don't worry it's not my girl name) but if you feel it's too nicknamey, you could do something like Anna? Annalise? Annabell? And then call her Annie for fun?
Just a thought. Sorry for the ass-vice. This is exactly why we refuse to discuss names with anyone outside our marriage (but I guess your husband just ain't playing that! Get it together Phil!! SHEESH!).


Louisa!! I have this idea I might know what "Louisa" is and it is lovely! I was going to suggest it but I thought you might make the face. If it is what I'm thinking, it is matchy with Jack, but SO WHAT? Ok, it does matter but Louisa has A LOT going for it. I'm not really into "Annie" b/c I have a hard time with once-nicknames that are now names. Why not just name her the name and call her by the nickname? That's just my two cents and since you asked. . . Louisa!! She'll thank you for it. Of course Annie would be nice too. . . you can tell I DON"t want to step on toes b/c names are so very very subjective, except the outliers of course.


Oh and please don't worry about the face. Unless you sense the face is actually what is keeping you from giving your child a name purely out of silly self indulgence. That face is good. But Louisa and names like it are not silly and self indulgent.


Oh, sorry . . . that was rude of me to suggest I might know the name I think. I was just excited b/c the Louisa I was thinking of was one of the first names I thought of when you asked about little miss Cheung. I'm sure it's not the same. There are a lot of Louisas out there after all! And most of them quite lovely. ;)

Megan Elizabeth

Although I can't say for sure based on fake names (the real names could have some bizarre association that would cause me to reject them, like how I tell my boyfriend we can't name any of our hypothetical sons George because I would think of George Harrison every day, not St. George, because I am weird like that.)I vote "Louisa". I am not a big fan of "cutesy" sort of names. I am much more a fan of old, flowery, possibly Face-inducing names. Like, Boyfriend and I both like Philomena for a hypothetical future daughter. Yes, our poor children. Anyway, I would go for flowery myself and if people make a face then that's their problem.
P. S. I could be prejudiced in favor of more unusual names because mine is so common I've learned not to turn my head too fast if I hear it because the person probably isn't even talking to me. So I'll subject my children to the Face rather than the "We'll call you Johnny Q. to distinguish you from the 5 other Johnnys in the class."

Good grief, do I ramble.


I got the face a couple of times when I was pregnant with my daughter whom I named Alice. I didn't care. I love the name and it is from our family so it has meaning. Now we get compliments and there is one other Alice in her school so it's not totally unused. So my vote is for Louisa.
Although I do love some cutesy names. Maisy is one of my faves, but I don't know if I could actually name a child that!


I tend to favor old timey names . . . especially if they aren't real common. There were always a billion Katies in my classes growing up. My future daughter will have a very old-timey old family name.

Also, re: beginning life as a nickname for another name . . . I have that problem. It's no big deal until people start insisting that my name is really Katherine and I just don't know what's on my own birth certificate. Seriously, I don't know how many times I've had someone ask me my name, I tell them Katie, and then they look at me with a very.patient.look and say "no, your full legal name. . ." Sometimes after that exchange they still don't think I understand the question. Makes me want to scream.


Oh, and also? Ignore The Face. My aunt named my cousin a VERY old fashioned name and we all thought she was a little nuts from the hormones, but nine years later we couldn't imagine him with any other name. Fits him perfectly. They'll all get over their objections.


So I know you're not personally crazy about the name Margaret, but I've loved having an old-timey name. My older sisters tried to do the Maggie thing when I was a baby, but now it's just Margaret. I would go with "Louisa" also- the old names are generally just cooler than the newer trendy ones.

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