The Formula of a Name

Hands down, the three questions I get the most when I’m pregnant are, in order, as follows:

1) When are you due? (I don’t always like to give a direct answer to this because I don’t like the belly-assessing looks that usually follow it, plus baby is going to come when baby is going to come; 40 weeks is an average, my friends, not an exact science.)

2) Do you know what you’re having? (Yes, a baby, but that’s not what people want to hear – they want to know gender, and since we never find out, I’ve got no secret info to give here; sorry/not sorry!)

3) Do you have a name picked? (Even though the general public has picked up on our naming scheme by this point, we still don’t share; this choice is to avoid feedback because, frankly, who needs that? Again, sorry/not sorry!)

It is the third question that has been on my mind the most lately. While you might think that after being through this three times already and with a fairly limited list from which to choose, naming would be a snap by now, but B and I have come to realize recently that our naming system is multifaceted enough to be considered formulaic. In our struggle to actually decide which two first/middle names Bambino No.4 will have (we always go in with one set for each gender), we discovered that all of the following fits into our layered approach:

First Step: start with only 44 name choices, most of which do not make great first names, and see what you like. Good luck!

Second Step: find a middle name that is family-based.

Third Step: make sure both first name (which is really someone else’s last name) and middle name begin with initials that sound good together and semi-roll off the tongue. Again, good luck!

Fourth Step: inadvertently pick three names in a row that end with “N” – this, for the record, is unlikely to be upheld with the fourth; it’s just too hard!

Fifth Step: take into consideration presidential namesake’s political party. Just kidding! Had I really followed this as a step, I’d have at least one Democrat in the bunch by now. Depending on the boy/girl outcome, however, I might finally get one based on the names we have (finally) picked for this round (and no, still not telling you what the final two are).

IMG_0059How did we decide? No joke, we found ourselves staring at the children’s Presidents of the United States placemat the other night, which is when inspiration struck. A name popped off the laminate at me and it fits all the other criteria of our formula, so we’re going to run with it. Unless we change our minds (again) or I am wrong about gender (again).

Remember that? How I am always, always wrong? IMG_9848At this point, I’m so befuddled that I cannot even begin to guess if we are having a boy or a girl. My MOPS group prediction (drawn blindly by me from a bag) is this:

My gut tells me this is accurate. But I’ve always thought it would be so incredibly awesome to have two-and-two, so I’ve deemed myself an unreliable narrator when it comes to guts and guesses for this baby’s gender. Because I want another girl, I’m thinking it is a boy, so I’ll be wrong and it will turn out to be a girl? See?!?! Unreliable. Our friends who have previously gone before us in the age split/gender match aren’t having a fourth, so that’s no help this time, and it turns out that I was totally wrong last time when I said the only Angry Birds character left was the pink one (there was an orange one, too, and that’s who Linky turned out to be, which now really leaves the pink one, only, I think). So I’ve got nothing for you, I guess, except for this….

If people continue to ask about this baby’s name, I’m totally answering “Ford” just to see how long it takes them if we’re going for a fifth child that we can name “Indy” (or “Han”) or “Mercury” — Sixth Step: honor Harrison Ford/pick the name of a car….at least if it is a boy!

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