What’s In a Name?

When I was expecting Jackson, Curtis and I had a long list of baby girl names and a very, very short list of baby boy names. So short, in fact, that there was only one name on it. “Jackson” was literally the only name we agreed on. The name game is hard when you’ve worked with students because you have associations with just about every name you can come up with. And with one of the most common last names in America, we seemed to already know of someone named “Every-single-name-we-liked Jones.”

I didn’t expect naming our son to be that hard. After all, ever since college I’d planned that if I had a son, he’d be named Levi. (One of my BFF’s in college babysat a little Levi and he was the cutest thing I’d ever seen.) This was my plan right up until we actually had the chance to name a little boy. That was when Curtis enlightened me that Levi Jones sounded a lot like Levi Jeans. Noooooooo! It had never once occurred to me! I should have thought twice before marrying a Jones! So Levi was out. Jackson, the one and only name we could agree on, was it. Knowing and loving Travis and Angela Cottrell’s son Jackson (he goes by Jack now) made me love the name.

Fast forward three years. To our great surprise, we now had a chance to bring out that long list of baby girl names. Somehow we eliminated every single one to the point that we needed a brand new list. It’s crazy how that happens.

I so wanted to honor my mother with our baby girl’s name. I’m sure I don’t even need to tell you why. Honestly, I cannot adequately convey in words what it means to me. My mom is an incredible wife, mother, confidante, encourager, prayer warrior, servant, teacher, writer, and lover of God. I would have been thrilled for our daughter to be connected to her grandmother in that way and for her to carry on the legacy of loving God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. Naming her after my mom would not be hard, as “Elizabeth” sounds beautiful as a middle name with almost anything you can come up with. But I don’t think of my mom as Elizabeth. I think of her as “Beth.” So I started brainstorming names that incorporated Beth. Bethany…Beth Ann…Annabeth! We fell in love with that name. It was not a common name, but still sounded classic in a southern sort of way. We felt it was perfect for our little girl.

Annabeth’s middle name is “Ellen,” which is from Curt’s side of the family. His great-grandmother was the first Ellen. I never had the privilege of meeting her, but I do know and dearly love Curt’s sister, who is named Lindsay Ellen. He also has a precious college-age cousin named Erin Ellen. Both of these young women live lives of wholehearted devotion to Christ. I have been so moved by their purity and also their desire and willingness to serve others. I would be thrilled for my daughter to enjoy a close relationship with and emulate the godly traits of both of these delightful women.

It’s truly a gift that our children can draw from a godly heritage on both sides of our family. I’m very thankful for that. At the same time, I realize that there may be a Siesta reading this blog who is the only one in her family who follows Christ. Sister, if that is you, please be blessed in the knowledge that a godly legacy is beginning with you! I pray that one day you will get to see your physical and spiritual offspring worshipping before the Throne. What great joy! I love the verse in 1 Thessalonians that says, “For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy” (1 Thessalonians 2:19-20).

If anyone would like to share, I’d love to know the story behind your name!


200 Responses to “What’s In a Name?”

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  1. 1
    Ramona says:

    My name, Ramona, comes from my grandmother, who is 101 years old now and as fiesty as ever!! She and Grandpa had six children. Grandma gave birth to a daughter who only lived to be a few days old and then passed away…Constance Ramona. So, my mother and father chose to honor her by giving me the name Ramona. My middle name is Leah, which is a name my mother chose but I do not know why.

    My mother passed away from cancer when I was 17 and never got to meet my four sons, but she would have adored them! I’ve had no girls and cannot now, but look forward to the day when my sons might chose the name of my mother for their own daughters…Marie.

  2. 2
    deborah says:

    My name is Biblical, but nothing really special in the name of naming babies. No family history or rhyme or reason. I imagine it was what my parents could agree on.

    My husband and I got married young and quickly found out that we were expecting right before our 2nd anniversary. I cried when we found out we were having a baby, because I didn’t think I was ready yet. My husband is calm, cool, and collected all the time; and he assured me that we (and I) would be fine.

    We named our first son Jared Matthew. (Jared we just liked, Matthew is my husband’s middle name). After learning we were pregnant with our second son we were talking names again, of course. And instead of just looking at names, we decided to also look at their meanings. We didn’t do this with our first son.

    It was then that we found out that Jared means, descendent…and Matthew means, gift of God.

    Descending, gift of God…..I about fell over! I wasn’t ready; but HE knew I was!

    We have three wonderful boys and thank God for them each day!

  3. 3
    Anonymous says:

    Thank you for sharing that! So beautiful. You got me thinking about spiritual heritage. I presume I am just the 2nd generation of Christ-followers in my family. I'm so thankful for what I learned about spiritual lineage from THE PATRIARCHS study esp for where I was went it found me. (I am so glad to now share this story with you Amanda & Ms. Beth:) Two years ago I had a miscarriage early in my first pregnancy and Praise God, 8 days later found The Patriarchs women's study at church. The 1st night at group we talked about Sarah being barren and her emotional struggle with that and I knew I was in God's hands to carry my grieving heart. After finishing the study 2 months later, I started speaking life (out loud) into my not-yet-conceived child. Part of it went "I am the spiritual seed of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob. Our family line promises ME God's hand of blessing & protection, of multiple generations and a SON (like Sarah & Rebecca.") Last April, God blessed us with that son and he has the unique name in our family. We named him Jeshua. God showed it to me 4 years ago, while on our honeymoon, in the NLT version of Zechariah, and it never left my spirit. At my mid-way ultrasound, I never doubted what the sex of the baby would be. He is napping peacefully now as I type, listening to his breaths on the monitor beside me. Thank you God!
    Heather, Charlotte NC

  4. 4
    Becki Larson says:

    Rebecca Jane: My parents had a “nanny” named Becky when my older sister was little. They told her they would name their next daughter after her, hence the Rebecca. My middle name is a result of my parents trying to get pregnant with me for 4 years before they were successful. Jane means precious gift.

  5. 5
    Jill_in_AL says:

    You are blessed with the gift of words, AJ. My first name (Jill) is after a family friend and my middle name (Marie) was my mother’s middle name.

    Like you I searched to name my children something that connects them to the family. Son #1 is named my maiden name and son #2 is named my mother’s maiden name or my grandparent’s last name. Still LOVE both their names and what they each represent.

  6. 6
    Karla says:

    My maternal grandparents were Carl Creighton and Pearl Elizabeth. I was supposed to be Carla Elizabeth, except that my dad had an aunt Elizabeth that he didn’t care for, so I ended up Karla Kay.

    My husband picked our girl’s name out when he was 12, from the Sound of Music. Her name is Liesl Beth.
    We had twin boys next, and they each got a grandpa’s name: Jesse William and Matthew James. You can probably guess why we didn’t pair Jesse James together!

    One grandaughter has a combination of my middle name and her other grandma’s middle name as a first name: Kay+Lynn = Kaylynn Ruth.

  7. 7
    Laura Smith says:

    Oh I love this post…but it has only increased my crazy anxiety of naming my first baby, a boy due in April. I have been naming my babies (dolls mostly) since I was one myself, but now that the time has come for me to name a real baby I am just at a loss!!! I want his name to be perfect and to have meaning. My sweet husband is mostly agreeable to my ideas, I am just having a hard time committing to one name. Please pray that I make a calm decision! Thanks for sharing!!!

  8. 8
    jerriann says:

    My parents expected a boy right to the moment I was born so, my name is Jerri, after my Dad, thanks Dad. Thankfully, they spelled it with an i. My Mom’s middle name is Ann so, Jerri Ann. I tease them and say that since they thought I would be a boy they didn’t have any girls names picked out so they named me after my Dad, I’m a junior.

  9. 9
    Amy W says:

    When my mom was pregnant with me, my parents had decided on the name Amy Penelope if I was a girl. (If a boy, Mickey after Mickey Mantle.) However, whenever my dad told anyone what my name was to be, they said “what’s a Penelope?” Eventually, they decided to change it to Amy Nicole. That is on my birth certificate. All my life, my dad called me Amy Penelope and when I was in college, I legally changed my name to Amy Nicole Penelope. My parents were touched that I did that and made it legal.

    I have always loved the name Elizabeth and planned to name a daughter that. I ended up having 4 boys and their names are Dakota Daniel, Trevor Steven, Logan Brooks, and Mason Andrew. I guess we’ll have to name a cat that or something!

    Amy =)

  10. 10
    Anonymous says:

    My dad’s full name is Jeremiah and my mom thought it would be cute to call me “Jere.” It’s pronounced Jera. Problem is it looks like “Jerry” which is what they call my dad. Needless to say, I have spent most of my adult life explaining my name.

  11. 11
    jerriann says:

    Oh yea, I have another one, my grand-daughter is named after my grandmother, Sarah. Her middle name is Kate, so we have a Sarah Kate. I love the fact the it is my grandmother and my grand daughter. I feel loved in the middle.

  12. 12
    ThinkBroad says:

    My name’s history is pretty simple: my parents never expected a girl. I don’t know why, but they just didn’t pick a girl’s name until I was born.

    My pastor father chose Kristen Faith. [Lots of people in the church where I grew up used to pronounce it “Christian”.]

  13. 13
    Jackie says:

    Hi Amanda, The mama in me wants to share the simple story of my children’s names. :O) Our 17 year old daughter is Kathryn Renee. I have always loved Kathryn (or Katie) and Renee is my beloved sister’s middle name. Our 12 year old son is Keaton Joseph. I originally thought to name him Curtis Ethan E. because his daddy’s initials are CEE. But when I saw the name Keaton on a little child’s nametag at the local playland, I fell in love with it! Joseph is a family name and of course a very biblical name. The miracle in all of this is that my husband agreed to both, no questions asked!! Now you have to know that we are both passionate head-strong people, so when I say miracle, I mean it. Some miracles are small, right? The funny sidenote about my name is, I’m the only one in our family without a name that starts with a ‘k’ sound. Thanks for telling us the significance of your sweet baby girl’s name. AnnaBeth is perfect! Hugs to all you precious Moore (Jones) Girls, Jax

    P.S. If you want to join the fun, I’m hosting a special “chick flick” DVD give-away over at my blog. :O)

  14. 14
    Miss Debbie says:

    Amanda – Thank you so much for the encouragement about the spiritual legacy each of us have whether or not we have a natural family that raised us to know and love the Lord. My mother’s name was June Audra and my parents named me Debra June. The Lord has given my husband and I two sons, Mason Lee and Tyler Jay. We didn’t name them after anyone. Our boys came to know the Lord as their Savior as young men and through their testimony, I came to know the Lord in 2000 and so did my husband.
    I don’t know of any Christian hertiage on either side of our families. Living every day with a grateful heart for the mercy and grace that has been lavished upon us. Thanks for sharing your lives with us. I just love the name you gave your daughter. She is such a beautiful baby girl. Thanks for sharing with us how you named her. I have three grandsons and I couldn’t imagine how honored I would be to have a grandchild named after me. Bless your heart. I have a little sister who’s name is Lizbeth Ann. This is getting kind of random 🙂 Love you, Debbie

  15. 15
    Warm in Alaska says:

    I’m named after my Godly grandmothers: Carolyn Elizabeth (now at home with Jesus) and Ruth Josephine (still praying up a storm and loving Jesus at age 87!).

    My children’s names are fun, too. Christian Boaz (he goes by Boaz) is 13. Noah Solomon is 11 and Lily Anna is 9. They all have fun stories to their names (they’re all “temple” names – not that we started out with that in mind. But God knows how much I love Mt. Moriah and the site of the ancient temple in Jerusalem). “Boaz” is one of the two names of the pillars that faced the Mt. of Olives. Solomon, of course, built the temple. Lilies adorned certain pillars in the temple and Anna of Asher “…never left the temple but worshiped night and day…” and “spoke about the Child, Jesus, to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.”

    With Noah’s name – we weren’t sure if Noah was the name God had in mind, but we were “trying it out” during our third trimester. He decided to show up three weeks early. So off we zoom to the hospital in Anchorage. Once there, the nursing staff said they weren’t convinced it was true labor but to walk around the hospital for an hour or so – which my husband and I dutifully did. Then they hooked me back up to the monitoring equipment and still no change. Right before I was going to be sent home, my husband got really close to my stomach and said, rather authoritatively, “Noah, COME OUT!” Within a couple minutes two weird things happened: my water broke with a gush and outside, the clear, sunny day instantly turned dark, it started to thunder, rain and hail. This is Alaska. We don’t get storms like that. This storm came out of absolutely nowhere and soaked Anchorage with rain. I turned to my husband as the rain outside began to pour out of the sky and said, “What in the world is going on out there?” I remember him calmly looking back at me and saying, “Of course it’s raining: we’re having Noah.”

    The newspaper the next day ran a large article with a big headline saying how the storm came out of nowhere – it hadn’t shown up on anyone’s radar (or whatever they use to track the weather).

    The name Noah literally means “rest” and trust me, I haven’t had a day of rest since that darling boy showed up in a shower of rain 11 years ago. I wouldn’t trade him for all the tea in China or even for his namesake’s real live ark.

    Thanks for the fun question, Amanda – and sorry to write you a novella sized response,

    Warm (and wet that day) in Alaska.

  16. 16
    Anonymous says:

    I love the name Annabeth and what a wonderful story. My father decided to name me Doak after Doak Walker, a football player of the ’50s. If a girl my grandmother decided I was to be named after an aunt, Margaret Elizabeth. God in His great grace and wisdom saw fit to put the name Doak on hold. However, when I was born my mother (behind my father’s back) named me Denise after no one. It just came to her in her drug induced haze following childbirth.

  17. 17
    Prairie Rose says:

    My father’s middle name is Lee; my aunt’s is Anne. My mother decided to combine the names to bestow upon me the middle name LeeAnne. Exactly like that. No space, all one word, capital A. The folks at the hospital told her she couldn’t do that. They wouldn’t put it like that on my birth certificate. It would have to be Leeanne. She said I can name my baby anything I want to, and her middle name is LeeAnne. Sure enough, when the birth certificate came, it was spelled Leeanne. She sent it back along with a note demanding that they correct it.

    My birth certificate? It reads LeeAnne. 🙂

  18. 18
    Heather in CA says:

    I don’t know my name story….but my daighter is Peyton Beth…..my dear, wonderful Grammy passed away when I was 6 months pregnant with my daughter. My darling Grammy was BERTHA!!! We felt “Beth” was the majority of the letters…and it just happens to be one of my other FAVORITE person’s name, too! My maiden name is Collins….so we named our son “Collin”…..

    and thank you for the verse….I am a first generation Christ follower….thank you for the encouraging word!

    Heather SMITH….the other most popular last name! 🙂

  19. 19
    Michelle Bentham says:

    I don’t why my parents named me Michelle Renae, but they are both French and about every third girl in my generation is named Michelle Renae in some form or other…

    My names mean:

    Michelle – French, Female “Who is like God” — the femine version of Michael, as in the Archangel… Never been lost on me.

    Renae – also French, “Reborn”

    My name means “Who is like God, Reborn.” Has saved written all over it?

    My children’s names are bit more interesting:

    I had the privilege naming my son all to myself. Never picked out a girls name – knew HE was a boy without a sonogram. I chose Justin – cause that was my favorite brand of boots. I wanted my boy to be a straight up, salt of the earth, rough and ridin’ cowboy – hands down. It means Justice. His middle name is Brant which means branded. My son was named Justice Branded. I’m not sure but that sounds a bit like trouble to me… My father dubbed him “Just-A-Brat” at birth.

    Brittany Ann – I had planned to name her Callie, which was my grandmother’s name but her father “nixed” that name. And offered up Kyranina Kyrie and pair that with a last name that is polish a few miles long and well – AHHHH No. So When I offered up Brittany, He landed on it with all his might. The day she was born he spoke to his mother by phone and when he told her the name – Brittany ANNE – she said, “Are you going to spell it like mine?”

    He put her on hold and asked… I said, “NO! If we can’t name her afte Grandma then NO!” Drugs are so uninhibiting.

    He filled out the Birth Certificate Application and wrote “ANN.” No Lie, I never called her that name until recently. Then one day I heard her spelling Anna on the phone to a friend. When she was trouble I would do the double name summons: “Brittany AnnA!” She thought her middle name was Anna. Much to my chagrin I had to burst her bubble and deny the final “a.”

    Taylor came along child number three. I wanted name her Bethany Laine… I just thought that would be so stinking cute to have a Brittany and Bethany. Their dad… not so much but when I threw out the boy name he had his full on veto face ready and waiting – Shelby Taylor. He said, NO, NO, NO.

    I said, FINE! It will be Taylor Lane if it is a boy and Taylor Laine if it is a girl. DONE… No further discussion and I filled out the birth certificate application this time around! Her initials are TLT — Brittany’s are BAT, because one of her email ids was Batgirl… Okay that is really funny. It was my idea. She agreed – she was like 12… now she thinks – why did I listen to my mother? And why did she allow my initials to spell BAT? To tell the truth, I never even thought about it.

    Annabeth Ellen is a beautiful name. I love it. Thanks for sharing.


  20. 20
    Marion says:

    I am 8 mo. pregnant with my fourth child and deciding on a name has always been so hard for my husband and I. I want so much for it to have meaning and not just be “some name we liked”.I never realized the pressures of naming a child!

    My name, Marion comes from my mother’s twin sister. My middle name is “Rowe” which as a teenager was always so embarrassing.It was my sweet Gramma who passed away four years ago, middle name. Now as an adult, I cherish being named after her. I cannot think of anyone else I’d rather be named after. One day as a child, I came home to my mother and said, “Guess what mom-they sang my song at school today-Rowe, Rowe, Rowe your boat, gently down the stream…Marion, Marion, Marion, Marion, life is but a dream!”

  21. 21
    Alisha says:

    My name is Alisha. When my Mom was expecting her first child she had a dream. And in the dream she was having a little girl and she was to name her Alisha (pronounced -Alicia). Well that had to wait because my Mom gave birth to my big brother. So 4 years later I came along and she got the chance to use the name she had dreamt about. Unfortunately back in the very early 70’s there were not alot of girls by the name Alisha and so they misspelled the name. (FYI – Alicia is the correct spelling) I never have been able to buy the school pencil with my name on it, or the refrigerator magnet, etc. I’ve worked in my office 13 years and my boss has pronounced my name wrong for 13 years. I just don’t have the heart to correct her. I know…awwww 🙁 LOL. I’m heading to 40 yrs old now. I think I’m over it…..or am I? LOL.
    I love the name Annabeth!!! So happy for your family!!! God Bless!

  22. 22
    Mom2McKenna says:

    My Mom (stenogal2) comments more often than I do on here, but I felt compelled to come out of my lurking state to tell about my son’s name.

    We were scheduled to find out the sex of our baby the day after Alyssa’s accident, but were forced to go the day after the funeral. She desperately wanted for us to have a boy. Much to our surprise, that’s what the doctor confirmed. We had tossed around names before she died and we all like the name Callum, but I couldn’t recall what the meaning was. After we left the doctor’s office, I looked it up. Callum means “like a dove, bringing peace”. When I saw that, I knew it HAD to be his name. Cal is now 6 mos. old and has truly been sent by the Lord to bring us peace in a time of much pain.

  23. 23
    Heather says:

    I love the name Annabeth!!! My husband is a teacher/coach and I am a former teacher who also worked in youth ministry…we had the same problem with choosing names for our kids!!!! Hope you guys are doing well!

  24. 24
    Anonymous says:

    I don’t have a story but my children do. If I may elude. Our daughter is 11 now and she is the most precious thing to us. All my life I had always wanted to name my daughter after my “granny” who was so much a Godly woman in every since. I loved that dear lady so much and miss her terribly each day. She has been gone for some twenty years now. When we were expecting our daughter my husband knew what her first name would be without a doubt, Kathryn, but what about a middle name. That one took a while. But one day as I was sitting in our living room praying for my unborn baby girl I looked up at my granny’s picture hanging on the wall and I thought what in the world will be her middle name???? Then it came to me. Hanging next to granny’s picture was a shadow box of a pink rose that came from the blanket on granny’s casket…..that was it, Rose and she will be called Katey Rose. That name suits her so and she has a lot of my granny’s ways. Such a blessing God gave us and so much more than we ever imagined. Our son bears his daddy’s middle name which is Brian. His first name was the hard one. I had made a LONG list of boy names that were so cute and my husband announced that our sons first name would be from the Bible. Oh, ok I thought. So, here we go with another list. End result Joshua Brian. He is such a “Joshie man” as he is called sometimes.

    I love Annabeth. It is a very pretty name.

    Thanks for letting us share.

    Blessings to you and the family.

  25. 25
    Natasha Vaughn, Cake Designer says:

    My mother got my first name from the movie, From Russia with Love, Natasha. And my middle name Lue is after my grandmother Lue Autry and my great grandmother Luella.

    My daughter is names Elizabeth Grace after my great grandmother who I lost when I was 15 and always said I would name my daughter after her. Her name was Mary Elizabeth and they called her Lizzie. I considered calling my daughter Lizzie but we went will Ellie for her.

    We chose grace because after 8 Looooonnnnngggg years of trying it was ONLY by the Grace of God that we have our precious Ellie.

  26. 26
    Kathy W says:

    I could spend hours reading these stories about names. My mom just liked the name Kathy, and claimed she didn’t know anyone by that name or with children by that name. My middle name is Sue, after my dad’s favorite aunt. So his family always called me “KathySue”, like all one word. I always hated it!! My mom tells the story that when the nurse came by to get the birth certificate information, she tried to argue with my mom, telling her “no, honey, you want to name her Katherine and call her Kathy.” My mom was adament, “No, I want to name her Kathy and call her Kathy.” I think since my mom was barely 18, the nurse thought she could influence her! Then when I started 1st grade in the late
    1960’s, there were 6 Kathy’s in my class!! So much for not knowing anyone by that name!

  27. 27
    Georgia Jan says:

    Amanda: I dearly love Annabeth Ellen’s name, and I know your Mom is thrilled with having a namesake granddaughter! Oh the joy!

    I don’t know my name’s history except that my maternal grandmother named me – Pamela Jan, and I’ve always gone by my middle name, and sometimes as “PJ.” (Your Mom nicknamed me “GJ” when we were in Atlanta last month, which stands for Georgia Jan.)

    But I would like to share about why my grandson is named Ezekiel. It means “God strengthens,” and after 3 years of infertility, God bless my son and his wife with a little boy. He is now 6 months old and I am smitten with him. His middle name is Timothy, which is my husband, Zeke’s grandfather’s middle name.

    Ezekiel Timothy! God certainly has shown Himself strong and we are so thankful.

    My husband and I were praying last night that our sons would be blessed with children as obedient and joyful as our boys have been to us. We talked about generational blessings and pray that Ezekiel will be a mighty warrior for Jesus.

    Much Love,
    Georgia Jan

    PS: I love my NEW name…Gran Jan!!!

  28. 28
    Anonymous says:

    When we knew we needed a girl’s name, we looked in a concordance. We didn’t get far…Abigail.

  29. 29
    Anonymous says:

    I sometimes get amazed that if I showed up at Heaven today, with everyone on the Earth, God would know MY name!
    My name is Kim, and my nickname is Kimbo – after my Dad’s nickname. He died when I was 6 months old, but my mom continued to call me that. She has dementia now and doesn’t always know who I am, but on my 40th birthday I called her. After she was handed the phone (by an aide who doesn’t know me) she said, “Happy Birthday Kimbo.” That still brings tears to my eyes. My mom remembers my name, too.
    When my husband and I found out we were pregnant we were never able to pick out a girl name, but had a boy name within 5 minutes. My husband and I were new Christians, and he had just studied out Elijah in the OT. My Dad’s first name is Everett. So our son is Elijah Everett. This also fits with my family tradition that the first and second initials are the same. My sisters are MM, VV, SS, and I’m KK. KK married FF, and we were blessed with EE. How awesome is that!
    Kim Feth
    Apex, NC

  30. 30
    Anonymous says:

    Well my name is Penny and here is how I got that name. My mom was pregnant with me in 1958. She had undergone open-heart surgery which was experimental at that time just a year before while she was 5 months pregnant with my older brother. The docs told her to abort the baby but she refused. To the glory of God she had a perfect baby boy on Easter Sunday 1957. Then I was her Christmas surprise the next year. A nurse had joked with her about naming a girl Penny after all the penicillin she took due to her heart illness. And she did – she named me Penny. Later on I said “Mom, you named me after a fungus!” But she smiled and said that fungus kept me alive and you are here. Amen! I love my name. Thanks Mom.

  31. 31
    Anonymous says:

    Here’s a great way to name your son after someone in the mom’s family without upsetting any of the daddy’s relatives:

    Explain that since a boy will always be a JONES, giving him a first or middle name from her relatives allows him to carry on BOTH family names ; )

  32. 32
    Carlos and Jamie says:

    Well my name is Jamie after my dad James. I was their last attempt at having a boy (I am #5) and they didn’t have any luck. So I was named after him. I named my son Payton after my great great grandfather. I have always loved the name but had always wanted Joshua. My husband said no but he did agree on Payton. Then we argued over how to spell it. He won in the end. Oh well I guess.

  33. 33
    Megdalen says:

    I was almost a MOONBEAM. Luckily, my mom got it out of her system with a couple of braless days and a few innocuous sit-ins. She picked “Megan” since there weren’t many Megans in the seventies, and my dad picked “Alyse” because he liked it. And now I have a niece named after me! I’m sure she’s also thanking the Lord I wasn’t named Moonbeam.

  34. 34
    Anonymous says:

    My husbanc and I have 4 kids; all w/ 4 letter names and biblical.
    1st William “Luke”, goes by his middle name. William is after both our grandfathers. BUT the cool thing is he was born on March 16, so if you look up Luke 3:16…it is the perfect verse. “John answered them all, “I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, thongs of whose sandals I’m not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and w/ fire.”
    2nd, Rebekah “Hope”, because I miscarried b/f she was conceived and Hope from scripture is to anticipate w/pleasure…
    3rd, “Noah” James, I have always love this name combo, both biblical and I imagine Noah from the bible was super sweet and kind and patient…just like my Noah.
    4th, Nathanael “NATE” Lee, we wanted to stay w/ bible names and we are big sport fans as well, the year we were pregnant there was a really good basketball player named Nate James…my husband said, lets name him Nathanael and call him NATE DOG!!! I said no way! When I finally gave in I said, you better promise me you won’t use Nate Dog….long story short, Nate, Nate Dog is 7 1/2 years old and is a great basketball player!!! He prefers that nickname on the court!
    Children truly are a gift from the Lord…
    Thanks for letting me share, its been a long day and this made me smile!

  35. 35
    Anonymous says:

    My first name is Susan. Because I have a very long German last name. My middle name is Rae – after my grandpa. My cousin Dana, on the other hand, got her name from a little girl in my preschool class who gnawed on crayons. Dana’s middle name also is Raye, but she spells it with a ‘ye’

  36. 36
    bethany says:

    Oh my my my…this post was so fun to read Amanda! I totally read ALL the responses! And I loved reading how you decided on Annabeth’s name.

    I was so excited when I saw that you named your little one Annabeth because it was close to my name which is Bethany. I am a first generation Christian so it was always interesting to me that I was named Bethany (which I found out early on is a biblical name). The story that I’ve been told is that when I was born my dad told my mom that my name was going to be Bethany Suzanne. There was no discussion about it…he just named me with no explanation. She agreed to the name but that she was concerned that my grandma was not going to be able to pronounce it (she is mexican). So for my growing up years I was called Bethany, Bethie, or Bethania (pronounced Beth-ah-nia). After I became a Christian I fell in love with my name in a new way because I learned that Bethany was the town that Jesus went to to spend time with Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. He so loved them that it just makes the name special to me now.
    I’ve seen the meaning to be “house of God” or “house of figs”…I claim “house of God”!!!

  37. 37
    Anonymous says:

    I found out a few years ago that my first and middle names are both greek and that, when translated together, they mean “dark sea of bitterness.” It explained a lot. 🙂

  38. 38
    Dana N says:

    I don’t have any good story about my name. I didn’t have a particular reason for choosing my children’s names either, but I did like the meaning of their names–Amy means “beloved” and Justin means “man of justice”. May I say, God be praised, that they have lived up to those names.

    Thanks for sharing your stories! Hugs!

  39. 39
    Megan says:

    I was named Megan because my family is Irish and my middle name is Kathleen after my aunt.

  40. 40
    Angela says:

    My middle name (Marie)is after my grandmother and mother. When I got married we had 4 miscarriages within 2 years. I was SO angry at God. We were doing a Bible study on women of the Old Testament and came to Hannah. I was weeping by the time class was over, it was like God whispering to me, “I hear your cry”. I told my husband, and we both agreed, Hannah Marie. When Hannah was 2 we miscarried again. We told Hannah we would have to ask Jesus for another baby, He needed this one in Heaven. So about 6 months later she told my mom I was getting her a baby brother. I was not pregnant at the time and when we tried to explain this she cried, “but Jesus told me I was getting a bwother” I found out 3 months later we were expecting. Six months into my pregnancy I was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer. I was sent to a high risk doctor to make sure the baby would be ok during surgery. When he asked if we knew what we were having and if we wanted to know, I told him we didn’t know and would love to. Hannah placed her hands on her hips and proclaimed, “I told you Jesus said it was a bwother!” So we named him Jonathon- Gift from God. Morgan is his middle name after my husbands grandfather. He came December 7th 2001 healthy and screaming! And I am cancer free! God is so good. He is my healer, my friend, my father….
    Sorry for the long post, but I just had to share!

  41. 41
    Lynnette says:

    I love these stories! I had thought perhaps Jackson was named after Jackson Hole. My parents agreed on my first name after they mistakenly told people their first choice and got too many “helpful” comments. Don’t ever tell people your name choice before it’s on the birth certificate! Both choices incorporated Lynn to honor my paternal great grandfather, Leonard. My mom is Mary Louise, taken from the middle names of each of her grandmothers, so my middle name is the second half of her name. I love genealogy.

    I got a funny nickname that stuck after the pastor who baptized me as an infant made it up. Apparently, he always liked to create these informalized versions based on the given names as he presented the babies to the congregation. He kind of “hick-a-fied” them and upped our Southernness. I think it’s hilarious and wish I could have heard more of these. So, every so often, I’m Lynnie Lou!

  42. 42
    Anonymous says:

    My name is Paula Louise and I was named after my father, who was Louis Paul ( and went by Paul). It always disturbed me when I was younger that I’m a female named after a male! So, I came up with the nickname “Bonnie”, and go by both it and Paula!
    Thanks for the story, Amanda.

  43. 43
    Anonymous says:

    My name is Donova. My father’s name was Don and my mother’s Nova. They were both very godly people and left my brother and I with a wonderful godly legacy!

  44. 44
    Kristib says:

    My name is Kristi Caroline. My mother found my first name in a magazine which had a story about a little girl named Kristi from Norway.

    My middle name Caroline comes from my maternal grandmother who was named Amanda Caroline.

    Interestingly, I am a lot like my grandmother whom I never met because she died before I was born. I am teacher, just as she was. I like to write, just as she did. I like to take things apart and put them back together, just like her. I sing soprano and so did she. But most importantly she was a strong Christian women and so am I!

    There is a lot in a name!

    Much love!

  45. 45
    Victoria says:

    Our oldest daughter is named “Allison Christen”. We spelled Christen differently from most because we hoped that Christ would be the center of her life. She is 23 now and accepted Christ at the age of 6. She loves the Lord and seeks to follow Him. The name Allison means truthful one. And she has definitely lived up to that name. She has been one that always came back and told us the truth even if at times she told a little white lie. So names are pretty important…Our youngest is named “Kaitlyn Hope”. We call her Katie…she is full of life…She always see the good in things and people and is very adventuresome. She is always Hopeful…so she has the right name for her also…It is very interesting to read about all the names…and Annabeth is precious!!!

  46. 46
    Lynn says:

    Annabeth is a beautiful name – you hit the right combo of classic, southern, and still not very common! I love it!

    My name is Lynn Marie. Lynn because my mom thought Lynn sounded nice with Lisa which is my older sister’s name. Marie is partly to honor Mary the Mother of God and also in honor of my father’s mother, Mary.

  47. 47
    Kali says:

    My first name Kali my mom found in a romance novel when she was in the 10th grade. She loved the name so much that it stuck in her head until she had me much later. My middle name is Morgan and that came from my cousin Ashley’s middle name because she used to read to me and sing to me while I was in mom’s stomach so my mom and dad decided to give me her middle name to honor her.

  48. 48
    Arianne says:

    My parents named me after hearing a song on The Johnny Carson Show titled “Arianne”.
    For the daughter we’ve never had, we had the same name picked out. I tease my husband maybe God didn’t like it and we should change it and He would’ve blessed us with a girl. (Her name would’ve been Harlianne Hope.) My boys names are not family except two of their middle names. We had a goofy thing with initials. The middle initial had to be the same as the letter of their first name.
    Arianne Amee
    Corey Carl
    Colton Carl
    Levi Lowell
    Wylie Weston
    Grady Griffin

    Thanks for sharing your post, you have a beautiful baby girl!!

  49. 49
    Nancy Hamilton says:

    I was named after a fancy dress store in Knoxville TN! My mama has never been a materialistic woman but she says she would window shop at this store on the way to her doctors appointments, and dream about the days she would be able to fit in one of those beautiful dresses on the model!

    Funny thing is -when I went to my first high school prom, we bought my prom dress there and got my picture made with the owner!

    It’s not real spiritual but sure is fun! Love Annabeth’s name!

  50. 50
    Becky says:

    My older brother, Todd, and I were adopted. When my parents found out they were getting a girl my mother announced I was going to be named Taber as my mother liked the ring of Todd and Taber when introducing her children. The woman at the adoption agency told my mother it was too unusual. My brother picked out the name Becky in the car on the way to pick me up. My middle name is Lee after my dad’s middle name. I wish my mother wouldn’t have listened to that woman as I love the name Taber. I had a prenup agreement with my hubby that our first born son, if we had one, would be Rocco Giovanni. This was suppose to be my husband’s name but my mother in law changed her mind literally the second he was born so he is now John Michael. The Lord blessed us with Rocco Giovanni, Kelly Ann (whom He took to heaven shortly after she was born) and then Amy Lee named after my Nana Amy and me. I am thrilled that our kids are all named relating to a family tie. All though the girls don’t have very Italian names I wouldn’t change if given the chance to do over. Thanks for the fun post.

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