baby name game

Baby Name Game, Clue #4: Old Saint Nickname

Clue #3

The other day, MG came home from school and told some stories on her friends.  She was cracking up because there is a girl in her class named Lillie and ALSO a girl in another class named Lilly.  Whenever they see each other in the hallway, they call each other Silly Lilly.  I thought it was a cute story, but then she continued to say, “Someday, I’ll have another MG in my class and we will do that too!”.  She seemed so hopeful, and yet so naive, that I couldn’t burst her bubble just yet.

The fact is we’ve only met a handful of other MG’s and most of them are white-haired. The only time we met a school-aged one was at a Chick-fil-a in Chattanooga.

For better or worse, we like unique names.  But more so than that, we like to give our girls fairly common or classic full names with a more unique or rare nickname.

Clue #4: Just like her sisters, this baby will be called almost exclusively by her nickname

N and I coincidentally both go by our nicknames and we like the diversity this lends to our girls as well.  Their given names are mostly classic and could read Presidential or CEO, but their nicknames help them wear something cute and frilly while they are young.  If they decide to later go by their legal name or even modify their nickname, then the option is theirs.

Bonus hint: Tired of commonly mixing up our girls’ nicknames, we sought to give this baby a name that DOESN’T end in -a.

Clue #5

Baby Name Game Clue #3: It’s a Girl

Clue #2

With both N and me coming from educational backgrounds, we like and appreciate names that convey gender right off the bat.

That being said, I do realize we are bucking the trend a little bit in this; gender neutral names are very hot right now and names are increasingly becoming even more gender neutral (who would have thought James would be the next hot girl name??).

Clue #3: both her first and middle names will be very feminine

I can’t think of a time in history when either of these names were given to males, (unless you include those strange times back a hundred years ago when 4 males were named Mary and 6 females were named Joseph, inexplicably).  That being said, you never know when the next Caitlyn is going to be the new Jacob.

Bonus hint: we almost changed our traditionally feminine history with one of our vetoed choices: it was given to males more so than females in the span of history.


Clue #4

Baby Name Game, Clue 1: Naming a third is hard

If you haven’t yet, check out my INTRO here.  

N, annoyed as some of you at the fact that I didn’t post a clue last week (even though he obviously knows all the answers) and instead just a teaser, said I should change the name of it from The Baby Name Game to “A Quizzical Way to Introduce a Baby Name”.

As superficial as it sounds, I have anticipated ever since I was a little girl, naming a whole brood of children.  I love picking out baby names, both for fiction and real life.  I’m a self-proclaimed baby name lover and always enjoy hearing the final name selection as my friends have their babies.   Sometimes there is a good story or meaning behind the name, other times they just chose the one that both parties could agree on.  I’ve even had a few friends consult me on their naming choice and it feels both really exciting to be there from the beginning but also a little stressful as I hope that I steer them in the right direction.  Names are forever, after all. And either way, whether I’m in on the baby name talk from the start or find out after birth, I greatly enjoy the process.  When I’m not naming mine (or other people’s babies), I try to keep my finger on the pulse of up and coming baby names to feed my name appetite :).

Before I reveal the clue to start you off today,  I will tell you a little story about how we chose this baby’s name.  If you’ve been following along from the beginning, you know that N and I like to have a “baby name bank” built up with our top name choices well before our next baby arrives. This helps ensure that we have liked a name for a long time and have not chosen something based on impulse (not that impulse is bad, just not our style, we find it too stressful :)). We’ve had our top boy name in the bank for a long time (it has changed a little since my pregnancy with MG, but mostly just by switching the middle name to the first position), and it has been the same since then.

As far as girl names, we have always had our first choice name ready to go as well as a backup, just in case we changed our mind after birth.  Funny enough, we didn’t use our backup name (for MG) when Bea was born and we aren’t using our backup name (for Bea) with this baby either.

Our backup name for Bea stuck with us, however, and I thought for a long time we would use it should we ever have another girl.  It passed the test right away: it fit in our overall style and N loved it.  I landed on it a long time ago, back before a certain celebrity used it, and loved the sound of it with our chosen middle name.  I knew it had the potential of gaining popularity, especially after it was used in Hollywood, but was determined to use it anyway since we liked it so much.

Fast forward a few years, and I feel like I see it everywhere now.  I’ve met a few little girls with the name and I’m pretty sure it is headed right for the top of the Social Security list in a few years.  At first I tried to convince myself I was okay with this because I loved the name (as did N), but ultimately we decided we just couldn’t do it.  It was the trendiness I found off-putting but it was also how different this name would sound next to our more rare girls’ names that changed my mind.

Which brings me to my point: naming a third is hard.  We’ve sort of boxed ourselves in with our similar name formats and to drastically change that now would be odd, especially if this is our last baby.

Unfortunately, I can’t tell you this name yet as the one we ended up choosing has a very similar ring to it and because I’ve already spoiled that part to a few friends, I didn’t want them to be able to guess it based on reading that piece of the puzzle here.  But just like last time, after her name is out in the open I will do a follow-up blog post that explains all of the clues and the meaning behind her name and will also share with you our ultimately axed choices.

So without further ado:

Clue #1

Same format: three girls, three names apiece

Probably the most obvious of clues, so we will start here.  Just like her older two sisters (and her parents too!), this baby will have two middle names, giving her a total of four names (including our last name).  It will be the same format as last time, first name, middle name, color name, last name.

One of the extra hints I will give you is that this baby will not have a hyphenated name like MG and she will also not have a double nickname, like we sometimes call Bea.  (Though I have tried to make one work, I just don’t like it as much as the nickname by itself).


Clue #2

Baby Name Game, Introduction

Well I’m just past 31 weeks* so that means it’s time for my highly anticpated/dreaded (depending what category you fall in) Baby Name Game!


I’ve actually done this with all three girls, but the first time (with MG’s name), it was via email to family.  (And you can read all of the clues leading up to Bea’s name reveal starting here.)

The reason I say anticipation/dread is because I already know there are mixed feelings about my little “game”.  I intentionally make the clues hard so that you won’t be able to guess Mayby’s real name.   The purpose is not to lead you on a treasure hunt to the name but just to land you in the right direction with a little bit of a backstory. There are no prizes and no winners.  The clues are vague.  But if you like baby names as much as me, and/or if you want a few hints as to what we will be naming her, feel free to play along!

These clues, I will say, have been the hardest set to write.  I’ll just go ahead and tell you that this name format is going to be very similar to our other two girls’ names. But rather than just repeating the same clues verbatim, I tried to sneak in a few more specific hints.  I actually think a few of you may be able to guess at least one of her names, based on these clues, or at least whittle it down very narrowly…but…that doesn’t mean I will tell you if you are correct!  I still love the anticipation and surprise of the name reveal, as mentioned here, and that’s the main reason we keep it a secret: it adds a touch of drama to our birth announcement that I greatly enjoy.

This time we have chosen not to tell the big girls in advance either.  They are constantly being asked about their little sister, as well as occasional questions about her name.  I don’t want MG to feel the pressure of keeping the secret until May and Bea is too little to know any better.  I will say that MG found one of the embroidered onesies recently and, not knowing what it was for, asked me what it said.  I read it to her and she said, “oh that’s a silly name!  Isn’t that a silly name?” so take that for what it’s worth: MG’s two cents on our chosen name.

I’ll be back with the first clue next week, (Wednesday?)  which should put us ending the game on May 18th, her given due date.  I’m secretly hoping I go early (maybe just a week?), both for the sake of my taxed body but also because I am struggling to finish out these clues without revealing too much but also having enough to say, ha!

Next week I’ll also start by telling you a story of how we landed on her final name; this time it was different than our other two, I will say, as we struggled with the process just a little bit.

All to be revealed in time, my friends,


* you may remember that the dr. and I disagree on my weekly measurements.  I’m going off of when I ovulated, she goes off of the traditional math.  I’m measuring 31.5 weeks and my earliest ultrasound lined up with this, but according to my due date, I’m instead 30.5 weeks. For ease, I am going to use the due date assigned to me but count my weeks as I see them more accurately measuring

Clue #1


My blog was nominated for the Liebster award which is pretty much as awesome as it sounds:

“The Liebster is a blogger-to-blogger award designed to encourage and direct deserved attention to smaller blogs.  “Liebster” is German for “beloved, liked very much” and a bunch of other similarly wonderful words.  You could even say, “lovely”.”

Thank you so much, Sara, for nominating me; I truly am honored! (Sara writes a beautiful blog called Find the Lovely and we found each other through MOPS)

The rules are simple:

1. Post the award on your blog

2. Give a shout out and link-back to the nominating blogger

3. List 5 random facts about yourself

4. Answer the 5 questions the nominating blogger gives you.

5. Nominate 5 other bloggers who deserve some blog love and have less than 200 followers.  Then ask them to answer 5 questions.  Participation is optional 🙂


OK, here are my 5 (completely) random facts

1) I am an onomast, which basically means I am a name enthusiast.  I’ve talked about my love for baby names before and it still holds true.  Sometimes I dream of having a dozen children just so I can name them

2) I have synesthesia, which basically means I often have two senses overlap each other at the same time.  For example, my brain has linked certain “tastes” to different words and certain “images” to others.  This started  when I was very little but I only discovered that it was an actual “thing” in recent years.  To give you a tangible example, whenever I hear or say a day of the week, I immediately picture an object in my mind.  I’m not going to tell you what object because they are all silly and nonsensical, and probably have something to do with my limited brain synapses at age 4 when I was learning these words.  Remember how I have a thing for baby names?  Well there are many names that have a “taste” for me.  Mindy = white chocolate frozen yogurt, Pam =pancakes, George = sharp and silvery, Lucy = slippery and oily.  Some of these make sense (Pam sounds similar to pancakes) and probably have to do with whatever object I associated them with the first time I heard them.

3) I have moved every six years of my life.  There was no intention to adhere to this 6 year rule, it just sort of worked out for me.  I was born in NC, moved to MS at age six, STL at age 12, college at age 18, and then we lived in our house for 6 years before moving to our schoolhouse.  Not surprisingly, I start to get the itch to do something drastic as we near each 6 year mark.

4) I missed being a Leap Day baby by this much and I’m kind of sentimental about it

5) I did not inherit any sort of “jewelry gene”.  I am terrible about remembering to put on jewelry every morning.  In fact, if it’s not something I can sleep, shower, and work out in, I just plain don’t wear it…unless it is a fancy occasion like a wedding or a date.  People that change their earrings everyday to match their outfits or coordinate their necklace to their three bracelets I am in awe of.  I honestly never even think about adding jewelry to my outfit.

And here are the questions Sara has asked of me:

1. What super power would you have and why? In all fairness, I’ve thought about this question a lot.  Probably more than most people.  Why?  Well that’s what us introverts do when we stare off into space. 🙂

My first answer that always comes is “to read people’s minds”.  But then I think I’m already pretty good at it, being an intuitive introvert and all, and maybe I really don’t want to know what I’m missing out on. 

My second answer would be that I could re-live moments of my life.  I am terribly sentimental and often will mourn something ending before it is even over.  But I have an inkling that I will be able to do some of that in Heaven.  So I’m going to save that hope for then.

So my final answer is, “to be able to portal travel”.  I actually think about this quite a bit too.  How nice would it be to snap your fingers and be instantly transported to the place you were thinking of.  I HATE to travel.  HATE to drive.  I find myself very impatient with the process of packing (think about it, you’d never have to pack if you had this ability.  Believe me, I’ve thought about this), getting in and out of the car, etc.  But I love to be places.  I would love to have the ability to go here and there without having to put any effort into it otherwise.  To be able to travel yet still sleep in your bed every night?  Oh the possibilities…

2. If you could relive one year of your life, which year would it be and why? Actually, I’ve thought about this question quite a bit too.  As of late, I’ve almost obsessed over it.  How I wish I could go back to my days, pre-baby and open up my Etsy store and also begin writing then.  How I frittered away my free time then and have very little to show for it.   If I had to choose only one of those pre-baby years, I suppose I would go with the year that we found out we were expecting MG.  That was one of the sweetest times in my life, and one that is hard to capture on an emotional level again.  Something about knowing your life is going to change and all of the new emotions you find filling up your heart. 

Plus, I would write my heart out during night insomnia. 

And sew.  Sew to my heart’s content during all of those days of summer break….

3. What is God teaching you through your blog?  I care way too much about how people perceive me.  (I suppose that’s why I want to read minds so I can manipulate that!)   Writing a blog has forced me to let go of that…a little bit.  I put my best foot out there, but knowing that my writing isn’t always up to its best.  And I put my heart on my virtual sleeve knowing that others may completely reject it.  I’m learning to be okay with that and it has changed me in “real life” as well.

4. What is the last brave thing you did, big or small?   This year has tested the throes of my bravery.  In the past calender year, I’ve moved twice, tried to nurture a  house I really didn’t care for all that much, had to deal with a lot of things going wrong in that house, taken my girls in the middle of the night to live in a different state for 8 weeks (this is what I call bravery motivated by fear), moved again, weathered some scary health changes with my eldest daughter,  rode the waves of a volatile job with my husband, and opened up a shop to sell handmade things.  Any one of these things placed in a different year could have broken me…I really do believe that.  But though I felt at times very afraid during these trials, I also felt confident in the LORD’s will that I was doing the right thing.  So I guess that can be considered bravery.

5. The biggie: PC or Mac?  Defend your answer.  I’ll be honest, I’m not a big fan of either.  Technology is just a means to an end for me.  Really I guess I would choose both because I use them both for different reasons.  Both infuriate me at times and make me want to throw them through a window.  It’s all love hate and I really don’t think I could side with either. 

That was fun (and hopefully not to boring to be on the receiving end).  Thanks for nominating me, Sara!

Now I would like to nominate:

-Abby Clark at To Form a More Perfect Union (a mama of four who writes about life, recipes, and her muses…I’m always inspired)

-Holly Brown at The Brown Tribe   ( a fellow MOPS mama adding her beautiful voice to the Internet)

-Lisa Brown at Me Too Moments for Mom (another MOPS mama who wrote about fear recently)

-Tricia at Going Homemade (I just featured this very talented mama recently)

Ladies, here are your questions:

1) What is your earliest childhood memory?

2) What person/place do you miss most?

3) What is the best book you’ve read this year?

4) What is your favorite source of inspiration?

5) How did you decide on the names of your children (<<had to :))?

Looking forward to reading your answers!



Baby Name Game: Clue #10

This is the tenth and final clue!!

Clue #10

Sisters, in name only

We’ve spent the past 9 weeks comparing the girls’ names and showing you how they will be similar.  Now here are some of the distinguishing differences:

1) Mayby’s first name will NOT be hyphenated like MG’s

2) Their color names will NOT be from the same color family

3) As much as we like to “keep things in the family”, the girls will NOT share a common first initial


Can’t wait to finally reveal her name!  I also have been working on a post that will explain all of the clues and how they tie in.  Thanks for playing along–it’s been a fun ride!



Baby Name Game: Clue #9

{Wow–we are already on the next to last clue!  In case you missed them, here are the previous ones: 

Intro,#1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8 }


I still remember the exact place  we were when Mayby’s name was spoken for the first time.

It was a nice day in the spring or early summer of 2011 (quite possibly exactly two years ago).  We were out walking in the neighborhood which was a daily (sometimes twice daily) occurrence for us because MG was so content in her stroller and the weather was so nice.

I had been mulling over names in my head for quite some time but this name, her name, had recently struck me.

On these walks, I loved talking names with N, it was one of my favorite pastimes.  But when it came to this name, a name that I felt I was truly falling in love with, I was nervous to bring it up to him.  When it comes to baby names, he tends to be the “thumbs up or thumbs down” guy in the conversation.  He never suggests them, only listens to my wild ideas and then gives me his honest opinion.  I really wanted to see his initial reaction.  I felt that this all important sign would be a clue as to what most others would think if this was the name.

So I dropped it on him.  And waited.

I remember the exact spot we were in the walk, the evening hour, the comfortable temperature.

He repeated it back to me, once, to make sure he got it.  And I remember liking it even better after hearing him say it.

I explained to him the meaning behind it and how it would honor some of the women in our family.

He asked what we would call her and I told him the nickname I was thinking.

“I love it.” he said.  And that was it.  He wouldn’t let me consider any other names because he loved it so much.  And I loved that he loved it too.  Ever since then, that has been her name.

Clue #9

The longer the name, the better the Mama (or something like that)

You already know that we saddled MG with a long name (In fact it is 9 syllables in total, not including our last name).

This next little lady will have an equally long-syllabled name, topping out at 10.  Quite the mouthful, but remember we will call her by her nickname, so few will ever hear all ten syllables in a row.


Last clue coming your way in one more week.  After that, please join me in a collective mean-mugging of my belly until she decides to come out.

Stay tuned,

last clue

Baby Name Game: Clue #8

When it comes to our firstborn, MG has a very traditional first name, a conventional second name, and a very uncommon second middle name (color name).  Her nickname is rare and old-fashioned, and we changed the spelling (from the most common) to make it more phonetic in today’s society.

For our little Mayby:

Clue #8

We debated the form/spelling of her name.

There are several different ways to spell her name and we debated over them all before we settled on the one we liked best to suit how we pictured her.  Her middle name is common enough to be spelled one way only and her color name is spelled traditionally as well.

For her nickname, once again there are multiple ways of spelling it, but we went with the most familiar version.

Only 2 clues remain!  I hope you’re still playing, but I secretly hope you haven’t figured it out yet 😉

clue #9

Baby Name Game: Clue #7

By now, you can probably guess where this is headed….especially since I’ve mentioned that the name is old-fashioned, feminine, and a little off-the-grid.  If you haven’t noticed, we’re theme-y people.  These qualities are all shared by MG’s name–and almost all by our own as well.

Along those lines, both N’s and my parents gave us names that honored special people in their lives.  One of N’s middle names is a tribute to a close family friend.

My given middle name is after my great-aunt.  She was also the inspiration behind the G in MG’s name.  The M follows after both my sister and N’s grandma.

It should come as no surprise that Mayby’s name will follow suit.

Clue #7

We are family.

Two of Mayby’s names can be found on our family tree.  The other one is a “tribute” name of sorts.

I realize that this isn’t a very helpful clue, so I will give you another bonus hint: three of our inspirational females are still alive. 

(and now for some cute pictures):

afterlight(3) copy afterlight(4) copy afterlight(5)

Seven clues down, three more clues remain.   Any guesses?

P.S. this day, April 26, is always a sad day for Taylor students and alumni.  Last year I wrote out my thoughts on that tragedy here.

clue #8

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