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Nola Belle

Guest blogger Elizabeth Lindsay, aka nameberry’s very own Olivekit, was wracked with indecision over what to name her third baby girl — a dilemma followed closely by all her friends on nameberry’s message boards.  The final name choice surprised everyone, even Olivekit herself.

Baby Ooh La La (what my two-and-a-half-year-old calls her little sister), entered the world on July 23rd, after a quick and almost painless delivery (love the epidural).  My beautiful baby girl debuted with an ear piercing scream that made the doctor laugh and say that Baby Ooh La La was the loudest baby that she had ever delivered.  She gets that from my husband.

After cleaning her up and weighing her, they handed her back to me.  We looked her over and studied her features, she looked a lot like her big sisters Olive and Kit, but with more hair.  She was perfect.

We oohed and awed over her, took a lot of pictures, and then one of the delivery nurses asked, “What’s her name?”

Crap. What followed were endless conversations about what she would not be named.

Me:  How about Phoebe, nickname Bea?

Hubby: Don’t like Phoebe.

Me:  Why not?

Hubby:  It sounds like a mean girl’s name.

Me:  What?!

(After pushing, I found out that he asked out a Phoebe once on a date in Junior High and she said no. Emphatically. Phoebe was out.)

We tried (trust me) to come up with a name. I read every book, made lists, got opinions from the wonderful ladies of Nameberry, and my loving but opinionated husband found fault with every name I came up with.  Plus, having two daughters named Olive and Kit, the pressure was on to find a name that went perfectly with theirs. Not an easy task.

I envy people who can just pick a name for their baby and that’s that.  When I was pregnant with Olive, we had a couple over for dinner and the topic of baby names came up.  Even though they weren’t expecting yet, after ruling out a couple of names, they agreed on William for a boy.    A five minute conversation and sure enough, years later, they welcomed baby William Archer.  It was never that easy for us.

Olive was going to be Courtney or Kendall until I had a dream that I was calling her by a different name and she looked at me and said, “My name is Olive, Mommy.”  I woke up and told my husband, who loved the name.  I didn’t.  I wasn’t going to name my daughter Olive.  The only Olive I had ever heard of was Olive Oyl and I don’t even like olives.   But my husband started calling her Olive toward the end of my pregnancy and when she born, Courtney Olive she became.

At my ultrasound for my second pregnancy, the baby had her back turned to us so the gender was going to be a delivery surprise.  Since I didn’t want to call him or her “it” for the next five months, we nicknamed the baby Kit because that worked for a girl or a boy. I was positive that I was having a boy.  The pregnancy was so much different than with Ollie’s and sadly, I didn’t dream up for a name for this baby, but we had a few names picked out for him.

It’s a girl!”, the doctor proudly announced. My husband looked at me confused for a second, before we laughed and welcomed our second baby girl into our lives.  But what on Earth were we going to name her?

The nurses tried to be helpful (not really) with suggestions like Apple, Strawberry, Peach or Peaches if we wanted to continue the fruit theme, or Oyl, Sweet Pea, Wimbley, or Popeye, and Martini, because everybody likes an Olive with their Martini.    Thankfully, when Olive came in to meet her baby sister for the first time, she reminded us that the baby already had a name.  My husband sat Olive on the bed and I told her to say hi to her baby sister.  “Hi, Kit” she said, leaning down and giving the baby a kiss. And Kit Aurora she became.

At the hospital with this third baby, I went over my list.  Mae, Thea, Mabel, Sunday, Phoebe, Georgia, and Lulu, but my husband wouldn’t agree and the ones he did like didn’t feel right.  We went back to the drawing board and ended up taking home an unnamed baby we called Lala, a nickname from Kit’s Baby Ooh La La until we could come up with a perfect name.

I was becoming desperate.  My husband and I couldn’t agree. No name fit the sweet, loud little girl I was holding with the curled up lip. My brother-in-law suggested Elvis or Presley.  I even asked my daughters what they thought her name should be, and Olive said Jimmy and Kit said Baby Ooh La La or Frog.  Ask a five-year-old and a two-and-a-half-year-old for advice and that’s what you get.

My sister told me I should pick an “N” name for my baby because our initials were K, L, M, and O and an ‘N’ would complete us.  I thought it was worth a try and flip through the baby name book.  Nico, Nicole, Neve, no, no, and no.  Nola?  I asked my husband, who immediately liked it.    Plus, I liked that the nickname Lala would work with Nola. What convinced me is when I did a Google search for Nola and New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA) popped up.  Perfect, because that is where I got pregnant with the baby when we went there for a wedding.  A name and a story.  And that is how Miss Nola Belle got her name. A name that wasn’t on any of our lists or even on our scope before she was born.

Side note:  About a month after we named her, my husband said she doesn’t really look like a Nola.  He’s lucky he’s still alive.  So my lovely Nola is now called Belle, which suits her.  I looked Nola up on Nameberry after we named her (silly us) and saw that Nola means ‘small bell’ so essentially we named her Bell Belle.   As for now, Belle is called Lala, Bell Belle, Bibi and Bea, which was on my original list as a nickname for Phoebe.  Perfect.

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