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How Do I Pick My Baby’s Name?

by Bob and Sue Hunter

As one of nation’s leading birth announcement companies, we’ve helped more than 1 million moms and dads share the great news! Of the many thousands of delightful conversations all of us at Stork Avenue have had with new moms and dads, how they chose a name for their baby is one of the most popular. From those conversations, we’ve come up with a few ideas…

how-do-i-pick-my-babys-name.jpgChoosing your baby’s name can be a very emotional experience. Sometimes it’s easy. Usually, it’s not. There’s so much to consider, but the most important thing to remember is to love the name. Here are five tips to help you make the right decision:

1. Don’t rush!
It’s a good idea to have one or more names in mind, but try not to decide until you hold your baby in your arms. When you look into those beautiful eyes, you’ll know for sure.

2. Talk about it
Other than, “Is it a boy or a girl,” the question you’ll be asked most is: “What will you name your baby?” You’ve probably already heard that one a hundred times. Of course, the big day won’t wait, so you’ll need to make the decision. Talking with your spouse, family and friends makes it a team effort and it’s fun, too. You might even have a baby naming party. Check out your family tree. Call relatives, especially those you haven’t talked with in a while. Of course, don’t expect a unanimous decision, but everyone will feel like they helped play a role in an important family decision.

3. Say it out loud
How does it sound? Whisper is softly and then loudly. How about when it’s said with a middle name or your last name? Does it rhyme? If it does, does it sound good? Think about associated nicknames and say them out loud too. Does the name pass the “playground test?” Kids can be pretty tough. Would you say it loudly at a mall? If not, don’t give it to your child. Do you have another child with the same sounding name or even the same first letter? Sometimes, that can be confusing when said aloud.

4. Spell it out
It’s amazing how creative parents can be. Unfortunately, that’s not always best for their child. Creative spellings or pronunciations of popular names will have your child constantly correcting those who mistake it with its more popular version. You can’t forget the initials, either. What do they spell or represent? And, if you plan to call your child by a pet name, it’s probably best to register the full version at birth, so your child has the option to later use a more formal version.

5. Make it meaningful
Your baby’s name should evoke happiness and pleasant feelings. It should reflect qualities and traits that you hope your child will possess. Family names are great and give your baby a rich heritage, but if you don’t like the name, it probably won’t feel right, even if it pleases relatives. A unique name may make your child stand out and feel extra special. But, if it’s too unusual, it could cause problems. It’s also very important that your child has a name with clear gender identification. And finally, it’s always tempting to pick today’s most popular name, but will it be popular 10 or 20 years from now? And, do you really want your first-grader with the same name as four others in the same class?

We know this is not an easy decision, so we’ve developed a few “babynamer” tools to help. You can review lists of popular and unique names, search our databases for the origins and meanings of names and search by the name’s first letter. These databases are updated every day and we are always looking for more handy tools to help you make the best decision. CLICK HERE to go to our BabyNamer web pages.

Good Luck and Congratulations!

About the Author:
Bob and Sue Hunter are the founders of Stork Avenue.

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