How I Named My Baby: Winnie Jean

How I Named My Baby: Winnie Jean

Kimberly and Josh Harvey live in South Florida with their three daughters: Lux Ann, Liv Hunter, and Winnie Jean.

Winnie was born on February 10, 2023. Here, we speak with Kimberly about how she and Josh named their little girl.

Tell me Winnie’s name story!

Josh found the name. He texted me and said, “What do you think about Winnie?” and I was like “That’s it.” Winnie wasn’t on our original list or a family name — he just came across it on Instagram.

It felt like the name Winnie chose us. It was funny because we didn’t even know that we were having a girl when we picked the name.

We have three daughters, and every time we’ve found out we’re pregnant, Josh and I settled on girl names before finding out their sexes. We’ve never been able to agree on a boy name!

What about her middle name, Jean?

My oldest daughter, Lux, shares a middle name with me, and my second daughter, Liv, shares a middle name with Josh. When it came to Winnie, we didn’t have a pattern for naming her — it could be anything!

Pregnancy dreams are so vivid, and one night I dreamed that her name was Winnie Jean. I woke up, and it felt so real. Jean had to be it! I looked up the meaning of Jean and it came up, “God is gracious”. We’re a Christian family and it felt very fitting with everything we had gone through with the pregnancy.

When we found out she was a girl, we also learned that Winnie has Down Syndrome. One week later, I learned that I had melanoma skin cancer. The middle of my pregnancy was some of the hardest months of our lives.

Eventually, everything was all good again. We accepted her diagnosis and I recovered from the melanoma. It made Jean feel like an even more meaningful name. God is gracious — we went through so much and overcame it.

The others girls have family middle names which gives them meaning, and now Winnie’s middle name has meaning in its own way.

Did you feel pressure to use another L name?

Oh yeah! People were telling us we needed to name her Love. Then we’d have Lux, Liv, and Love. I didn’t want to use another L name because I mix them up all the time! I didn’t want to add more stress.

We did consider some L names, but decided we had to stray from that path.

What other names did you consider?

I really liked the name Lucy for my second daughter, who ended up being Liv. But I did have it in mind for another L name.

Another one we really liked was Lydia. I love that name; it just seems very mature. It’s very elegant, but doesn’t fit our family.

I always had so many boy names that I liked, but I’d throw them at my husband and he never liked any of them. I did kind of convince him on Luke when we were sticking to the L name theme.

The boy name I really love that I recently got Josh on board with is Theo. Before I dreamed that her name was Winnie Jean, I had three separate dreams that she was going to be a boy and that his name was Theo. It will be on our boy name list if we ever have a son in the future.

Did you discuss baby names with anyone besides Josh?

My sister-in-law also has three children — all of her babies were born a few months before mine, so we always go back and forth when trying to name our children.

I talked to my sister as well. She was the one really pushing for Love. I made her a deal: if Winnie was born on Valentine’s Day, Love could be her middle name. But Winnie was born before Valentine’s Day, so I avoided that!

What names did you like when you were younger?

I loved the name Alexa for a girl. I don’t know where I heard it, I just remember loving it! But I dodged a bullet with the Amazon Alexa.

For a boy, I really liked the name Zack, which I probably got from the Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Later I had a boyfriend named Zack, so it’s definitely off the table now!

What are the trendy names in your social circle?

I have a friend with a daughter named Zara, which is pretty cute. Both of my sisters-in-law have three kids — the names that feel the most unique are Emberlin and Lakota, but he goes by Kota. My other sister-in-law has a daughter named Shiloh Grace, which is such a sweet combination.

Did you have any big fears related to baby names?

I don’t think so. We choose pretty unique names, so every time we name a baby, we get both opinions. There are people who love our choices and the ones who tell us it’s okay to change the baby’s name before they’re born — especially my grandma! Every time she’s like, “Are you sure you don’t want to change it?” I always say, “Nope! We’re committed.”

It’s obviously nerve-wracking to give someone a name that they’ll wear for their entire life. But thinking about it like that makes choosing a name more stressful than it already is.

How do you describe your style beyond baby names?

There’s the person I want to be versus the person I actually am. I would love if my house had that neutral, sad beige baby vibe. That’s what it would be if I actually put in the effort!

But more realistically, we have a white house with minimal décor. I guess I’m a minimalist, but not by choice.

Did Winnie receive any special gifts?

I kept all of my older kids’ toys, so a lot has been passed down to her. My mother-in-law gives very meaningful gifts. She sent a rattle with a little rainbow on it since I had a miscarriage before Winnie — she’s my rainbow baby.

I also get her rainbow stuff whenever I see it. I made her a baby blanket with a rainbow pattern and got her a rainbow onesie. I used them to announce our pregnancy.

What are the fun things for parents and kids to do in your area?

The first thing that comes to mind is the beach! It’s such a fun, free thing to do.

There’s a lot of nature in South Florida and tons of splash pads and playgrounds. All the basic stuff you have to do to get the energy out of toddlers!

Thank you so much, Kimberly! See her Instagram and TikTok here.

See the entire How I Named My Baby Collection here.

About the Author

Sophie Kihm

Sophie Kihm

Sophie Kihm has been writing for Nameberry since 2015. She has contributed stories on the top 2020s names, Gen Z names, and cottagecore baby names. Sophie is Nameberry’s resident Name Guru to the Stars, where she suggests names for celebrity babies. She also manages the Nameberry Instagram and Pinterest.

Sophie Kihm's articles on names have run on People, Today, The Huffington Post, and more. She has been quoted as a name expert by The Washington Post, People, The Huffington Post, and more. You can follow her personally on Instagram or Pinterest, or contact her at Sophie lives in Chicago.