Choosing Baby’s Name

As a child, you probably dreamed about what your own children would be like someday, how many you’d have and, perhaps, even their genders. You even may have thought up some great names for them. But that was then, and this is, well, now. Now you’re all grown up, pregnant and struggling to find the perfect name for your little one. Just remember, though, there are about as many ways to pick a name as there are names themselves. Here are just a few examples to get you started:

  • A favorite book or movie character. Many parents out there choose names based on a favorite character in a movie or book they’ve read.
  • Grandparents’ or parents’ names. Perhaps you’d like to pass down the names of important people in your life.
  • A geographical location. Some babies are named after special places on the map or simply unique geographical names, such as Dakota, Dallas and Sydney.
  • Last names as first names. Johnson, Jackson, Coleman, Bentley, Piper…the possibilities are endless.
  • A name from an advertisement or sign. A lot of babies have been named after their parents saw the name they loved on an advertisement or a sign on a vehicle or building.
  • Vintage names. Maybe you’d like to name your baby Pearl, Eleanor or Gertrude. More and more parents are bringing back names from the past.
  • Calling out nature. If you’re a nature lover, perhaps you’d like to name your baby something like River, Skye or Starr.

Whatever you choose to name your baby, here are some great things to consider before your baby’s name is final:

  • How does the full name you’re considering roll off your tongue? Is it a tongue twister? Could the combination turn your child’s name into a joke? (e.g., Terri Anna could become Terry Anna Banana).
  • Think about how you spell the name you choose for your baby. Although choosing a unique spelling can be fun, consider whether that choice will turn into a lifetime of correcting people who will spell it notoriously incorrectly. Also, will people be able to pronounce it?
  • What nicknames might be created from the name over time? Will you be happy with the long and short versions of your baby’s name? (e.g., Nicholas/Nick/Nicky, Katherine/Kate/Katie, Matthew/Matt/Matty, Elizabeth/Liz/Beth)
  • Pay attention to initials and be sure they don’t spell out disaster for your child (Asher Samuel Smith or Beth Opal Olson).

However you choose to name your new little one, make it special in the way you feel is appropriate for your family. The name game can be a nerve-wracking process, but it also can be a lot of fun!


Need a little extra help finding that perfect baby name? Look no further than your cell phone! Numerous baby-naming apps are available. But beware—they can become addictive. Here are just a few:

  • Baby Names Genius by Health and Parenting Ltd. (Free, Google Play)
  • Baby Names/First Names 2017 by Charlies Names (Free, Google Play)
  • USA Baby Names by App Hero (Free, Google Play)
  • Baby Names by Schatzisoft (Free, iTunes)
  • Baby Names by Nametrix (Free, iTunes)


Kansas City mom and author Gina Klein learned years ago that the day her parents saw the name Gina on a pizza truck, they knew it was “the one.”

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