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Category: Questions of the Week

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What would you rename yourself, and why?

renaming yourself

We’ve asked this question before, but it’s a perennially fascinating one for name lovers: What new name would you give yourself, if you could start fresh with none of the attendant problems of name-changing?

What name do you think reflects the real you, given that you get to pick based on your actual fully-formed self, which is very different from naming a baby?

How does your name taste vary from that of your parents, and how do the changes in current styles and values influence your decision?  Do you want a name that’s more unusual or easier to understand, stronger or softer, cooler or more straightforward than the one you got when you were born?

And is the name you’d choose for yourself the name you like best, or do other factors play into your decision — and if so, what are they?

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confused baby

Basil.

Elisabeth.

Giles.

Those are a few that perennially befuddle us. Even when we know how to pronounce them, we forget, or we encounter someone who pronounces them the other way.

Which name pronunciations are you unsure of? Either because the spellings are confusing, or because they’re pronounced different ways by different people, or because the pronunciations are counterintuitive, or you’re not familiar with their native cultures…..or, whyever.

We’ll try to help identify the correct pronunciations, and if we’re not sure, we can help each other!

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Unusual Baby Names: What’s your favorite?

red-hong-yi-flower-bird-series-designboom-05

I was looking at the names similar to Pixie the other day — y’know, just to pass the time — and I thought: Wow, there’s an unusual collection of names.  From Alala to Kitto, Spartacus to Whimsy, there wasn’t a common name in the bunch.

Which got me thinking about how most people say they like unusual names, but do they really?  Which unusual, unique, rare, uncommon baby names would people say they liked best?

Which led me, of course, to this Question of the Week.

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unisex names

A lot of people complain about unisex names.

Names like Riley and Rory, they say — never mind Maxwell or James — should never be used for girls.  Those are boys’ names, and should stay on the boys’ side of the fence.

And then there are those people who campaign for names such as Ashley and Evelyn to be repossessed by the boys from the girls.

Other says that word names and place names such as Halcyon and Havana have no intrinsic gender and so are equally appropriate for girls and boys.

We’d like to spin this controversy to a more positive place and ask which names you think truly work best for both genders.  Please name names and let us know why you think  your choices go both ways with the most grace.

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When Did You Name Your Baby?

when did you name your baby

We were talking to a new mother the other day who said she waited until her son was born to make a final decision on his name.

Another parent at the table gasped in horror: Just as she’d had the nursery decorated, the layette laid in, and the car seat installed, she’d felt compelled to have the name choice prepared well in advance of the birth.

And then yet another parent confessed that he and his wife had chosen a name only when the hospital demanded that the birth certificate be finalized, well after the birth, while another dad said he’d discussed names with his wife on their first date!

When did you decide on your baby’s name?  Before or after the birth?  Maybe before you were even expecting?

If you’re expecting now or if children are still far in your future, when do you think you’ll make the big decision?

And how did the timing of your name decision play out?  If you waited, do you think that helped clarify things or did it add to the pressure?  If you chose early, did that make you feel more secure during your pregnancy or only lead to too much second-guessing?

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