Posted by: Kate | November 6, 2009

Because He’ll Need Something to Write on his Homework Assignments

Written sometime earlier in the week:

So, the pregnancy is still going smoothly, blah blah, with a Level II ultrasound scheduled for Friday.  (This is not one of those fancy, 3D, set-to-music type affairs; it’s just a longer, more detailed ultrasound than what I can get in the regular-doctor’s office.  I qualify because I have an ancient, long-extinct history of kidney infection – back in 1996, and no recurrences since – and back problems, and a conservative OB-GYN.)

We’re sticking with the plan from before: I’ll be watching through the whole scan, but I’ll ask them not to tell me their official determination of gender, assuming they can make one.  Which means I’ll get a glimpse and likely end up with a strong suspicion one way or the other, but I won’t know for sure until we’re in the delivery room.

Which, in turn, means we need to come up with names for both genders.

We’re all set on a girl’s name, no problems there.  I’m not posting it just yet only because I don’t want to influence the responses to this post, but I’ll share it relatively soon.  But a boy’s name… we’re still floundering a bit on that one.

It’s a tough call, because the outcome has to follow several rules:

  1. It needs to fit well with the other kids’ names.  Emily and Jacob happen to be wildly overpopular among their birth year, which was not at all intentional, and the overall ranking of this kid’s name doesn’t matter a bit to me.  But it does need to be somewhat old-fashioned, and something that lends itself to a nickname but which we can use the full version of, too.  (Emily now regularly goes by Em, and sometimes Mimi… Jacob is still Jacob 99% of the time, but my mother has taken to calling him Jake.  I’ve always, always been Kate, to the point that it seems kind of pointless to have a different given name, Katherine.  And Willem is Willem, not ever Will or Bill or Billy or… you get the idea.)
  2. We would prefer that it have its own initial, since the rest of us don’t have any overlaps among first names.  So W,  K, E and J names are out.
  3. The middle name will be Norman.  So it needs to flow well with that, and by and large that means that names ending in “n” are off the list.
  4. Our last name starts with W.  Names ending in a soft vowel sound or “w” are no good with it, they flow too easily, turning it into a single word.

See what I mean?  Rules.

And if you’re someone who likes to play for the bonus round, we have noticed some things about our previous kids’ names:

  1. Both have five letters.
  2. There are no repeated letters within their names.
  3. There are no overlaps between the two names.

So, the challenge is  – and we’re kidding here, but still it’s a fun game to play – is to come up with a five-letter name that does not contain any of the letters E-M-I-L-Y-J-A-C-O-B.

Or, for the goofier bonus round version:

  1. Both kids have five letters each in their first and middle names: Emily Sarah and Jacob David.
  2. We need two five-letter names or words to apply to our next child.

Willem’s favorites, so far, are Radio Shack and Oscar Mayer.  Emily likes Magic Rocks.  I’m partial to Froot Loops.

So, come on, you members of the audience, play along!  What should we name our son?  Honest, goes-with-Norman suggestions will be accepted, as well as submissions to the Bonus Rounds.  If we end up choosing your name – or just pretending that we came up with it ourselves, in the case of the Bonus Rounds – then I’ll knit you something.  (Note: we do have a leading contender in mind, and a short list of possibilities, but I’ll hang onto those until we gather a few new ideas.)

Written Friday afternoon:

Mission accomplished.  The ultrasound was very smooth and successful, all of the measurements were spot-on (perhaps even a few days older than the kid should actually be), no issues or problems or concerns.  I’ll have to go back for two subsequent ultrasounds, one in three weeks because there was one head angle they couldn’t quite see, and another in about 9-10 weeks to see if the placenta is still lying lower than they’d like.

I think it’s a boy.  I’m not 100% certain, or even 90%, because I know I saw… something, right when she said that this was the genital shot, but I could also be convinced that it’s a girl and the angle was just comparatively steep or something.  Still.  I’d consider it a 75/25 push toward boy now, which only makes it that much more necessary that we figure out a name…



  1. My new fave boy name is QUINN.

    Does that meet all the criteria?!

  2. Yey for good ultrasounds and possible boys!

    I have to vote for Myron (which has a good nickname of Mike) only because Norman was my grandfather’s middle name- and then last due to wanting a less Jewish last name so that he could get a job- and his first name was… you guessed it, Myron. His company was Myron Norman Imports and used to be on the back of all the Freixenet bottles as he used to be the importer for them.

    I’m sure it’s doesn’t work in the bonus rounds though.

  3. David, Dylan, Grant, Skylr, Heath, Henry

    All sound good with Norman, but it is pretty much impossible to find a name that does not include the letters in Emily or Jacob..considering those names use every single vowel and y, except for the U. Not many names use U as the only vowel. All of the above are fairly old fashioned, five letters, with their own initial being different from K, W, E, and J. There are overlaps..but good luck with that one.
    David Norman
    Dylan Norman
    Grant Norman
    Skylar Norman
    Heath Norman
    Henry Norman

    I also love

    Asher Norman

    But I do wonder why the middle name is Norman, only because it is 6 letters long. Good luck.

  4. It doesn’t fit the 5 letters, but I like Samuel.

    Colin? Kevin? Derek? Geoff?

  5. I love Dylan. But, I always have.

    And, so long as it’s a healthy baby and mommy, I don’t care which sex it is!

  6. It’s not 5 letters, and there is a repeated letter, but added together with Norman it makes 10, and it doesn’t have EMILYJACOB in it, Hugh (as in Hugh Jackman).

  7. Stephen is nice (she said, completely disregarding the rules).


    I also like Micah, though.

    As for Bonus Round part II, what about:

    Grade Level
    Track Shoes
    Quick Books
    Cross Roads


    Basic Cable?

  8. Remember our neighbors named their boys Rebar and Torque. Hard to beat those, but Rope is very nice as is Michael, which I read somewhere is the favorite name of boys themselves. You could call him El when he’s a teenager so it would be edgy. People wouldn’t quite know how to spell his name.
    But really, I’ve always been fond of Spike.

  9. Darth?


  10. Steven? It has that overlap thing, but a nice name. Also, Adam.

    It not, David suggests Darth Vader — 5 letter each, some overlap

  11. I’m not going to try not to repeat any of the letters in Emily and Jacob because unless you want to name the kid Zuzu, Wuss, Studs, Skum, Turk, Tuts, Tru or Tufu, you’re pretty much out of luck.

    You could do Lloyd (Dobbler) Norman (okay, not the traditional nickname for Lloyd, but there isn’t one and Dobbler does nicely).

    Also, none of the below have five letters, but since Norman has six letters and several of the suggestions have 6, at least first and middle would be the same.

    There’s Curtis (Curt) Norman,
    Sidney (Sid) Norman,
    Rudolph (Rudy) Norman,
    Randolph (Randy) Norman,
    Reginald (Reggie) Norman
    August (Augie) Norman
    George (Georgie) Norman
    Marshall (Marsh) Norman,
    Albert (Albie) Norman,
    Oliver (Ollie) Norman

    Give me time and I can probably come up with some more. 🙂

  12. I vote with Beth. I also like Samuel.

  13. James Norman
    Henry Norman
    Brent Norman
    Brett Norman
    Cyrus Norman
    Jared Norman

  14. Keep ’em coming!! And it doesn’t need to be a 5-letter name, that’s part of the jokey-challenge bit. It needs to go well with Norman, and with our last name, and be on the old-fashioned not-terribly-imaginative side.

    As for the challenge questions, BASIC CABLE is a pretty good one, I have to admit…

  15. Zachary – awesome name (goes very well with Norman)

    Love Quinn and Finn, or even Flynn but none go well with Norman.


    Owen or Ewan? Both nice and a little old fashioned and the rhythm of the W in the middle to go with the surname, and the n at the end followed by Norman actually sounds nice to my ears 🙂

  16. Going with syllable count (a name concern for me), you’ve gone from 3 to 2, so the third child qualifies for a one syllable name.

    I vote for Grant Norman W.

    For the bonus round, I like Fresh Salad or Mixed Drink.

  17. I know Lucas has been thrown around – I like just plain Luke. Luke Norman W…with the added bonus that your kids’ names will each have one less syllable than the one before (Emily=3, Jacob=2, Luke=1).

    As for goofy names, I’m publicizing my love for “A Christmas Memory” (the movie where the kid wants the Red Ryder beebee gun), but…


  18. Henry was our boy pick, so I’m partial to that. It also sounds good with Emily and Jacob, and fits all other criteria.

  19. I also like the name Holden (my great-great-grandfather’s name), but it ends in “n.” It was my middle name pick if we had a boy

  20. Robin Clive or Cive Robin

  21. Robert Norman W.

    Very old fashioned and has lots of nicknames

    Andrew Norman W.

    Nickolas (I know it is an N, but I think Nick Norman sounds cute.)

    Matthew Norman W. (I LIKE this one.)

    James Norman

    Alexander Norman

    Thomas Norman (Remember Thomas J from My Girl?)

    Adam Norman

    Ben Norman

    Ok..I think I have given you just about every single old fashioned boys name out there.

    Oh, just thought of a good one

    Bradley Norman (VERY CUTE)

    I also really like Steven Norman. When are you going to tell us what you are thinking? Can you tell I am excited? Oh and I am pretty sure you are going to end up having a girl simply because you are leaning towards the other way. hehe

  22. Linus Norman.

    Maybe not….back to the drawing board…………

  23. Miles Norman?

    Wrong letters in there tho…

  24. I’m a fan of:


    Good luck! I loved the whole naming process with my kids.

  25. Oh, and I kind of like Frank Norman!

  26. I’m late to the game, but here goes:

    Caleb (Cale)
    Russell <– almost meets the no dupes with other names
    Lewis or Louis
    Uther (just kidding)

    check out this site to see how popular the name is (if that matters to you one way or the other)or select criteria to have it find one for you.

    and the bonus II round:
    I like Basic Cable, but…
    Sweet Treat
    Motor Bikes
    Ready Robot

    I'll stop now.

  27. BTW – my oldest (now 26 yrs.) son’s name is Christopher. We always called him Christopher. Then he went to Kindergarten and decided 11 letters was too many to write on his school papers. He then nicknamed himself “Christ” which he pronounced like “krist”. We convinced him that if he wanted a nickname, “Chris” was the better choice – he agreed and has been “Chris” ever since.

    He actually isn’t very happy about his name. We have a moderately common last name and a quick Google finds waaaay too many exact dupes for his taste. That and there always were multiple “Chris”es in his classes. Oh well.

  28. And as difficult as it may be, you should think about what other kids can do to the name, not that you can ever make it childproof, but some names cause more issues than others. My other son doesn’t like his name (Daniel) because it’s too common and he was always called Danielle to tease him.

    And I confess for years I called my brother Douglas “Dougly Ugly” until my mother heard me say it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: