Tuesday, April 6, 2010


One of the biggest challenges of life is naming someone.

Names have so much meaning. And we only get to choose one, I guess we could string together several but in our culture that is not common.

How did we name our children?

We start with lots of prayer. Then Nancy and I have lots of discussion, reading names in the credits of TV shows and movies, blurting out names, perusing websites, books and listening to friends and strangers. Then we keep praying. And we start comparing names. For example Anna vs Emily, no Em wont work because that is a cousins name... Anna vs Dutch, no we are not naming our child after the cat. Not the cat, Ronald Regan one of the greatest presidents this nation has had. ... this goes on for nine months or more. Yes we are looking for names that tie back to our surname and could reasonably be given to someone born in Netherlands but Dutch is just not going to work.

If there is a name we like we will research it on the internet... learning that the majority of girl names out there mean grace. And most baby name websites are more about the adds on the side than the quality of the information about the names. They all give the same limited information. And for some reason think I want my child's name to be associated with some Hollywood starlet of questionable values.

With Anna we prayed, and Nancy had a dream that that is what the name of our child is. The Biblical reference of Anna in the temple greeting baby Jesus with celebration is a comforting added touch.

Lillian was much harder, no dreams or visions of what to name her. The choice was on us. And while we can give a child any nickname the real name should be solid and good. Contrary to what we say when you ask us what we are going to name our next child, we like traditional names. We want a name that could be in the Freakonomics 2015 list. So why Lillian? 1) We enjoy garden ponds. 2) It is old fashion, yet somewhat popular. 3) It has variations, Lil, Lilly, Le-an. 4) we could not think of anything better. Most websites state that Lillian is a variation of Lilly and Ann. or Flower and Grace. Graceful Flower. One website said the name came from Elizabeth. Ellie. Lilly. My God is an oath.

My God is an oath is a much better biblical reference than consider the Lillies. When I pray while holding Lilly I know that she is and will be my comfort.

The neat thing about our culture is we also have middle names so we have some method of emphasizing our disappointment in our children. Or if the unfortunate event they are one of the few sick souls that have attacked a US president. A common theme in our family is that the middle names start with a K. Anna has Kathryn, an unused spelling of a very common name up both family trees. The ryn is a play on my name. But Lillian, her middle names starts with K, ends with K and is only one character long. Yes Lilly I hate to break it to you but you do not have a middle name you have a middle initial. This is just like your mom, she has a K. Your mom is adamant that it is K. K PERIOD. So technically you do have a two character middle name.

What does the K. stand for? Well we like ponds, it could be Koi. It could be so many other things. But no Lilly K. does not mean anything. In math K means 1000 which is pretty close to infinity which is pretty close to everything. So my little Lilly when people ask you tell them that K. means everything.