Saturday, October 18, 2008

Baby Names

Holy cow-- I can't believe I'm posting two days in a row...


I LOVE looking for, talking about, trying on, and making lists of, baby names. And it's lucky that I do, since I've had so many babies that needed naming. LOL! I like traditional ones, and very odd ones, and many in between.

When Russell and I became parents, we decided to stick with a "theme" for baby naming. We are going with a Celtic or Gaelic theme. So if it's Scottish, Irish, Welsh, Manx, it's on the "approved" list. I am glad that we chose to do things this way, because I like way too many names to decide on the best one for each baby. The need to stick with a theme narrows down my list significantly, and Russell's happy because he likes pretty much any Gaelic name we find.

As for the middle names, we try to make them something meaningful, not picked randomly, and they are usually a variation on an extended family member's name. (And they don't have to fit in with the first name theme!)

So here's the run-down of our kids names, and why they have their monikers:

Morganne Natalia-- Morganne is a Welsh name that means "where the sand meets the sea" or "seafoam." It really fits her. Natalia means "born on Christmas", and while that's not exactly accurate, she was born on December 27th, which we felt was close enough! (It was either Natalia, or "Daddy's Little Tax Break", so we went with the first choice.)

Brennan Geoffrey-- Brennan is both a Welsh and an Irish name, meaning "raven." He really loves his name's meaning, and uses it a lot for various things as his "symbol" of sorts. The Geoffrey part comes from Russell's older brother, who died only a few days after his birth. (We did change the spelling.)

Lliam Donal-- His name fits him probably better than anyone else in the family! Lliam is an Irish name, though we added an extra "l". It's actually an Irish nickname for "William" which was my paternal grandfather's first name. Donal is also Irish, and is an adaptation of my maternal grandpa's name, "Don."

Bonny Dianne-- Bonny is a Scottish name meaning "beautiful," and it fits our "Bon-Bon" perfectly. Dianne is a variation on Russell's mother's name, "Diana."

Gavin Xavier-- I could go into a long, draw-out story about how this name came into being, but it's enough to say that he got that name after he was 3 or 4 months old. (His original name did NOT fit him.) Gavin is Welsh, and is a variation on "Gawain," as in the knight from Camelot. Xavier is the name of an ancestor waaaay back in the Keppner line. If Russell and I were to further traumatize poor Gavin, we would now change his middle name to "Pike" which is Russell's mother's maiden name.

Dierdre Marie-- This is another name that really fits the child! Dierdre is both an Irish name and legend. I still think it's one of the prettiest names around. Marie came from MANY sources in the family: middle name of a great-grandma, a grandma, two aunts, and my cousin.

Ronan Wainwright-- Ronan is an Irish name that means "little seal" (the animal). Wainwright is a nod to a Keppner family tradition going back the last couple generations. Russell and his father both have the middle name "Wayne," which is Grandpa Keppner's first name. So, even though our first-born son did not have "RWK" initials, at least one of our sons does.

MacKenna Elyse-- If anybody (including MacKenna) would let me change her name, I'd do it in a second! It's not that I don't like it, it's just that I hate how popular it is, especially in Mormon-dom. *rolleyes* I do wish we had gone with something else, but I guess it's a little late, now that she's two. *sigh* MacKenna is a Scottish last name. Elyse is a variation of my great-granmother's name "Lizzie." (Lizzie, Elizabeth, Elyse...) Okay, it's a far stretch, I admit. But we thought they sounded pretty together. Then, after the birth certificate was registered, etc., I realized why they sounded good together-- the movie "Somewhere in Time" had a heroine named... "Elyse MacKenna." POOH!

Grayse Dawn-- Russell found the name Grayse on a list of registered Manx names. My pregnancy with her was a very difficult one for me, and I felt that it was only through the grace of God that she arrived safe and sound. I love the unusual Manx spelling. Dawn is my mother's middle name, and I've been wanting to use it for a long time. Since Grayse looks a lot like my mom, I think it works perfectly.

Baby #10-- Now that we know it's a girl, I can make a tighter list of possibilities. We also decided since this might be our last baby *sniff* to go out with a BANG! I really want this baby to have a very unusual name, like Lliam and Dierdre.

So far, we like Eilonwy Michelle. Eilonwy is not really Welsh, though it's a created name following the rules for Welsh, if that makes any sense. It's the name of the heroine in the "Prydain Chronicles" series. ("The Black Cauldron", etc.) And Michelle is the name of one of my favorite cousins.

I won't make the same mistake I made with Gavin and stick with a pre-chosen name, whether it fits the baby or not, so this is not set in stone!

Another name I just came across, and like VERY much, is Saoirse (pronounced "sear + sha"). It is the Irish word for "freedom" or "liberty." How cool is THAT?!

I guess we'll see what the baby looks like and go from there. :-)

Okay, I gotta go scrub down the house now...


  1. Hi Rachel! I found your blog and its the first time I've seen your beautiful family. Congratulations on your pregnancy! I want another one soon. LOL

  2. I love naming babies! :-) You picked some beautiful names for your kids. My husband and I having been talking about using all names that start with a vowel. Our son starts with an A and our daughter starts with an E. We did not do it on purpose but afterwards realized the next one should start with an I. :-)
    U and Y has me a bit worried though. I have not come across too many that I like yet.


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