4 simple steps to choose the best baby name

Choosing your baby’s name is one of the most important things you’ll ever do in your life. The name should symbolize all your love, all their potential, the joy you feel, and the honor of your family. Or sometimes you choose a name because you saw it in US Weekly. Here are some name trends you might consider when choosing your child’s moniker. 

1. Archaic blue collar professions

When I was pregnant with my first child, I passed a playground and heard mothers calling to their children:

Baker!” called one mother. “Stop swinging those sticks!”

Mason!” called another. “Give Taylor a turn!”

“Cobbler! Get your shoes back on!”

Of course! Tanner. Sawyer. Miller. Cooper. Little blacksmiths and wood workers and leather punchers. Those names mean something. They give off that classic Chaucerian/child labor vibe.

“We’re going about this naming all wrong,” I told my husband when he got home from work. “What were we thinking with Lauren, Caitlin, Henry, Michael…? I want my kids to represent something greater than ourselves. I’m feeling turn of the century. I’m feeling Rumpelstiltskin. How about Weaver?”

“Weaver?”

“Yes. Or how about Falconer?”

“I didn’t know our kid was planning on being a soap opera character,” he said.

“What about Cinder Wench? Or Fustian Loom Jobber?”

“You’re crazy,” my husband said.

“Crazy like a Haberdasher!” I shot back. That’s another good one…

2. Cinderella revisited

Right now, it’s cool to have –ett at the end of names for boys and –ella at the end for girls. Everett. Bennett. Mirabella. Arabella.

Apparently the prefix is irrelevant when following this trend. It’s all about the ending. When my friend told me she was naming her baby Georgett, I cried, “A girl! How exciting!”

“I’m having a boy,” she snapped.

“Than why are you naming it Georgette?”

“Georgett. Get it? George.”

“Then why not name him George?”

“Because any baby boy that hopes to have any future at all has ‘ett’ on the end. Do you think a literary masterpiece like Beckett’s Waiting for Godot would have been dreamed up by some ordinary lame-o like ‘Bob’ or ‘Sam’?”

“His name actually was Sam….” I whispered.

“You so don’t get it,” she sighed.

3. Defining labels

Many parents are using names that symbolize one’s personality: the names will tell you what you’re supposed to think of their kids before you even meet them. This is optimistically presumptuous. For example, what if their Scarlett is a weak-willed doormat? Titan is diminutive? Willow is fat? Blaze has social anxiety? Every time he writes his name on his homework, an alopecia-ridden Samson will be reminded of how he failed to bear the crushing weight of his parents’ expectations.

4. Vegetable names

Fruits and cheeses have had their day in the sun (Clementine; Apple; Brie), so it’s only fair that vegetables get a turn. The names “Kale” and “Romaine” are on the rise. Once this trend catches fire, we can look forward to nursing homes rife with “Gourds” “Turnips” and “Cabbages” 80 years from now. “Peas” and “Leek,” however, are two vegetable names that promise to be equally as unfortunate on the playground as they are in nursing homes.

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About Erica June Ford, Bundoo Blogger

Erica Ford is a writer, editor, and host of the Boston radio show South Shore Live.  Her humorous essays about parenthood have been featured in The Huffington Post, the New York Times, and her popular blog Mommy Klatch. She is the author of Scotch Tape is Cheaper Than Botox.

Erica completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan, received her law degree from Boston College, and practiced law in Boston for several years. Aside from her three daughters, the highlight of Erica’s life was when Oprah Winfrey asked her to read her writing onstage at the Life You Want conference in 2014.

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