Halfway there! Jen updates us on the search for the perfect name.

A couple of weeks ago at our diagnostic ultrasound, we learned that we are definitely having another boy. This fact was not "discovered" during the ultrasound. Rather, our son displayed certain body parts prominently at every opportunity. We have an in utero exhibitionist.

With this thrilling news, we begin the task of searching in earnest for a boys name. This was an arduous task before our older son was born, and I fear it will be again. We have no trouble with a girls name; we chose a name over a decade ago! But this boys name thing. Another game, indeed.

Three plus years ago when I was pregnant for the first time, both my husband and I had favorite boys names. Trouble was that neither of us really liked the other's favorite well enough to actually allow that name to be given to our child - although, ironically, I first suggested the name that was my husband's favorite, and visa versa. All other names either of us suggested were met with sideways looks from the others. Nothing was sticking. Compounding this was that my husband was quite confident that we were having a girl, and so what was the point of getting too into boys names? But I did not know this part until later.

Finally, with lots of pleading from me, we had a name pow wow three weeks before my due date. We were spending a last weekend away at his grandmother's house (the house where he spent many summers growing up, and where we were married) and a spring snow storm was turning the coastal community white. With the ground rule that we could not get up until the task was accomplished, we sat down to hash out boys names.

With a given that all our children will have both of our family names, we revisited family names and finally came upon a combination we liked well enough. My late uncle's first name, and, as sort of a nod to the house we were sitting in, my husband's mother's family name. My husband was sure we wouldn't need it. But sure enough, we did. It turned out to be just the right name for our little guy, and we can't imagine him with any other name. Funny how that works.

Part of the reason I wanted to learn this child's gender in advance was so that I could have as much time as possible to sort out a name. If possible, I'd like to pick a name early so that we can refer to the baby by name and hopefully help our older son adjust. But mostly, we need this time because we have a fairly long list of requirements.

One of my major requirements is no more alliteration! My husband and older son have names beginning with the same letter (A), and that is quite enough. My nephews are all C names. My cousins on one side are all C names. My neighbors growing up had all J names. A woman I worked with years ago had four siblings who not only had first names beginning with the same letter, but middle names, too. There's nothing wrong with it - I just don't want to do it. And wouldn't you know, one of my husband's favorite names begins with A.

My husband doesn't like names that can be shortened. A number of my favorite names can be. Nicholas, for example. Oh well.

I don't want a name that begins with C or K, for reasons similar to the alliteration reason. Our last name begins with K. I don't want a name that sounds too harsh. Even though there are some great names out there that begin with C and K. I am also leaning against B names. I don't think want there to be even the appearance of a trend of children being named following the alphabet.

My husband wants something unusual, but not, at the risk of insulting someone, yuppie. And not too popular. Okay, I can live with that. No Hunters in our future.

I'm leaning toward J names. But my favorite in that category reminds my husband too much of a movie character. Of a movie I don't think he has seen in seven years, and he only saw it once at that. Huh.

So that leads us to the no names in the media requirement. Particularly television and films. My husband recently rejected a name because it's a character in the series, "Party of Five." Which had me asking, "When and where do you watch 'Party of Five?'" I didn't even know that!

Another requirement I have is that we be able to pronounce the name. My husband found a name in a book on telemark skiing that appears to be a Swedish variation on Fridolf. But he doesn't know how to pronounce it, and can't spell it off the top of his head. A big veto from me!

Of course, we're also looking at the initials the name would create, and trying to think of the cruel nicknames preteens could possibly associate with the name. A name not too young and not too old. One without negative connotations from both our lives. One with a strong meaning.

Our latest efforts in finding a name have focused on European names. And there's one I just love. It meets all of our requirements, I think, and it rolls off my tongue easily. When I first brought I up, my husband's response was a definitive, "Maybe." Which means there is hope! I hope. As much as I like this name, I am try to keep my mind open to other possibilities, though none have presented themselves. When I bring up the topic for discussion, my husband just says we have plenty of time.

I'm glad we have another four months to sort this out, personally. I think we'll need every minute of it. In the meantime, the baby has a new nickname drawn from our name search: Thor.PregnancyAndBaby.com


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