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What's in a Name?

Being the ones to choose your child's moniker is daunting. It has to be flexible enough to follow your baby into adulthood, but distinctive enough to make him or her stand out from the crowd. It has to be able to morph along with your baby into whomever he or she becomes, whether that's a doctor, a mayor, a teacher or a scientist.

That's a lot to ask of two to four syllables.

I've long loved names. I always want to know how an author names his or her characters for each text. I'm that annoying kid who finds it frustrating to the point of distraction when parents-to-be won't share their name choice. I know many people keep their choices to themselves for fear of negative reponses, but those responses won't be coming from me. Even if the names someone else has chosen aren't ones that I would necessarily use, I still love hearing about the selection process and the meaning behind the final choices.

Landon and I are finding out whether Tadpole is a boy or a girl in two weeks. I could wait until then to tell you what we're naming him/ her.

But what's the fun in that?!

The baby will not have a hypenated last name like me (I lost that battle), so whatever first name we bestowed upon Tadpole had to be different enough to counter Landon's and the baby's very common last name. Regardless of the sex, the baby will have my maiden name as the middle name (a family tradition), so that was easy to decide, too. We also like names with personal meaning behind them, so we looked to our family trees and our interests to find the perfect name.

The winners?

If we have a daughter, her name will be Britton. It sounds familiar enough with its closeness to Brittany. Yet, it's completely different, and I've never known someone with that name. Plus, it's a not-so-hidden fact that I am an Anglophile through and through, and I love the sound association with Britain. Landon and I went on a trip of a lifetime to Scotland and England in 2011, and we both love that Britton will be so closely tied to our memories of that trip. Yes, it sounds like a place name, and it's unisex, both of which might turn some people off, but it works completely for us.

If we have a son, his name will be Gibson. It's my middle name, and my mom's maiden name, so it has a lot of personal significance to me. I love that my son will be able to carry a piece of his family around with him in his name! Plus, the name is Scottish in origin (we're part of the Buchanan clan), which completely appeals to my British loving ways. When he's little, we'll probably call him Gibb or Gibby for short, and then he can transition into Gibson when he's ready. It's not a traditional boy name at all, but I'm not a traditional kind of person.

I love both of our name choices so much that I think I'll be a little sad no matter what we have since one of my beloved names won't get used. But one positive to finding out in two weeks is that the monogramming and personalization can get underway!

How did you determine the names of your kids/ pets/ stuffed animals?