Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The Name Game

One of the first questions we get about our boy when people talk to us about the adoption is, "What is his name?" Like those who wait until their baby is born before revealing the name, we too are waiting until he is officially part of our family to share the name we have chosen for him.

But in the meanwhile, we can play a fun game called "Guess Shamrock's Real Name." I will send an awesome prize (probably something cool from Kyrgyzstan along with some Kyrgyz chocolate!) to the person who correctly guesses his name. I'm betting that nobody will be able to figure it out, but it will be amusing to see the guesses, and you never know! 

I will give you some hints based on my rules for naming. Keep in mind, these are my own personal "rules" for choosing names. If your name doesn't follow these or you have a kid and didn't follow these when naming your child, I'm totally not dissing you. I just have a weird thing about names! So, leave a comment with your guess as to his name, given that it follows these rules:

1. It must be easy to pronounce. If you see it on paper, you would have no question as to how to say it.
2. It must be easy to spell. You should be able to say it to someone, and there will be no question as to how it's spelled.
3. It must be clearly only a boy's name. No girls would have this name.
4. It must not be "trendy." It definitely wouldn't be in the Top 100 names in this country. When he goes to school, there will probably be no other boys in his class with this name.
5. It must not be an invented or strange name. People will have heard of it and know that it's a name (versus a fruit or a color or whatever).
6. It wouldn't have an obvious nickname associated with it. I'm a fan of naming the kid what you want him to be called (otherwise my thought is that you should just name him what you're going to call him!). Yes, I am fully aware that my own husband's name doesn't follow this "rule," and I realize that nicknames (like "Shamrock") may be used anyway.
7. Meaning is huge. The name's got to have a "meaningful" meaning.
8. Some sort of Biblical and/or saint connection is cool.
9. Some other sort of personal connection or significance to the name is important.
10. I typically would want to avoid names that belong to students I've taught, so I don't have any preconceived notions of what someone with this name looks or acts like (for better or worse!). Though I've taught hundreds of students over the years, none of them has ever had the name we've chosen for our boy!
11. Similarly, I wouldn't pick a name that belongs to a friend, family member, or someone I already know, because then his name wouldn't seem like his own (at least in my mind). I wouldn't follow this rule if we were naming him after someone, but we didn't do that in this case.
11. It must not rhyme with anything bad or lend itself easily to teasing.
12. His initials must not spell or stand for anything weird/bad.  
13. It wouldn't be a super long or a super short name.
14. It's not Bruce or Dawn. If you don't understand this rule/joke, say those names real fast along with our last name, Keys. :)

I'm not particular or anything, right? Ha. But seriously, names are a huge deal to me. I'm looking forward to sharing Shamrock's real name with everyone soon, along with the reasons why we chose it. In the meanwhile, let's hear your guesses!


  1. I did not read anywhere that you could not have more than one guess so I guess Isaac and Aaron.

  2. I am apparently not good at picking unique names.....but I will guess anyway!

    Elliott or Milo

  3. My guess is Tabor as in Mt Tabor the site of the transfiguration of Jesus.

  4. Saul - means prayed for
    Owen - means wanted
    Roy - a good man's name

  5. This is fun! Nobody's right yet, but I'm getting a kick out of hearing the guesses. So far, the best guesses are Isaac, Elliott, and Owen. "Best" meaning that they follow all the rules, and I like them. Keep 'em coming!

  6. My guess is SAMUEL from the book of Samuel. His mother, Hannah, could not have children. She went up to the House of the Lord each year and wept, pouring out her heart to the Lord. The Lord remembered her and in due time she bore a son. This could be Aubree's story.
    Samuel means - asked of God
    David - beloved

  7. Round two of guesses:
    Gabe and Isaiah
    I do like Roy an awful lot or Carl is good too :)

  8. Round two for me:
    John, Ethan, Ivan, Levi

    P.S. You sure can tell you're a teacher (teachers have the hardest time picking names because they don't want to be reminded of kids they have had in their classes).

  9. My cousin Rose guesses that his name will be Paul.

  10. Eileen's guesses (she couldn't get them to post): Eli, Jonah, Seth, Xavier

  11. Rose is having trouble posting as well - so here is her input.
    I have another name guess. "Joseph" nickname "Joey" for Australia!

  12. Aunt Jean cannot log on either - her guesses are Andrew, Anthony, Jonah, Jacob and Roy

  13. Luke, Noah or Caleb.

    This is Katie. I couldn't comment!

  14. Hey Eileen, I love, love love the name Seth!!

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  16. Instead of blurting out a name, I will narrow it down. Here is my thought process.
    1) You don't want a super long or super short name. Therefore his name will be two or three syllables long.
    2) You say none of the kids you have taught have had this name, and in #4, you say that it would not be in the top #100 in "this" country. Therefore it is a more popular name in a different country.
    3) You say 'meaning' in a name is very important. I don't think you necessarily mean what a name means in a definition sort of way. I think you mean the things or story surrounding the name.
    3) I think you like how you are an 'A' and Zack is a 'Z.' You will play off this by picking a name in the middle of the alphabet. His name will begin with the letter 'M.'
    4) So after narrowing it down this way, and taking into account your other guidelines, Shamrock's name would have to be 'Melbourne.'

    1. Ha! And this fits Rules #1, 3, and 5 how?

    2. Rules were made to be broken? You don't like prime numbers? Okay then.... Benedict.

  17. I've got it. You are going to call him Matthew which means -
    GIFT OF GOD. And that totally describes Shamrock.

  18. My guess is Isaiah or Issac... Modified spelling from my guess at the shower which I suppose goes against rule number 2, but I am not the best speller in the world :)