Saturday, 5 October 2013

What's in a name?

  Names have meanings. Some cultures wait a length of time before naming a new child, in order to match the name to the child. I, on the other hand, knew long before I had children what I wanted to name them. 

Though I've never watched a lot of TV, as a teen I had a crush on Roger Moore's, Simon Templar, "The Saint." Thus I determined that if I ever had a son, his name would be Simon.
Roger Moore in "The Saint"
Originally I wanted my son's second name to be James, just because I like the name, but my husband wasn't so keen on it. Together we decided to call him Simon Nathaniel, because Nathaniel means, "A gift from God," and that is what our baby boy was (and is)!

One day in the early seventies I watched just a snippet of a movie in which the mother was an alien from outer space. The woman's name was Petrina, and I thought it the most beautiful name I'd ever heard. Thus did my daughter acquire her name. 
Simon and Petrina, 2010
Many children are named for someone who went before. I am named for my two grandmothers: Barbara for my mother's mother and Ann for my father's mother. These two women were very different, but I loved them both!
Grandma Barbara Roth with my sisters, 1973
Grandma Annie Gingerich with my Dad, 1971
Some years before she died, Grandma Roth showed me a plate in her china cabinet and told me that she wanted me to have that plate when she was gone because she got it from her Grandmother who was also named Barbara. It is one of my treasured possessions! I, too, will pass this plate on to a granddaughter.
The "Barbara" plate
My daughter has named both her children for their grandfather -- her dad died when Trina was seven years old. Her newborn son was named Volker directly after his grandpa. Wilhelmina's name is also in honour of him -- read that story here: In addition, both children carry their same sex parent's middle name.
Trina with her father, 1985
How about you? Is there a story behind your name? The name(s) you gave your child(ren)? Telling these stories helps our kids to know who they are and where they've come from.
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