What’s in a name?

One of the things I loved doing when I was pregnant with my children was curling up with my collection of baby name books and searching for inspiration.

I know some people are certain before they even fall pregnant what their children’s names will be, but I really had no idea.

And there are so many things to consider when you choose a name.

  • Does it sound ‘right’ with your surname?
  • Do the initials spell out anything dodgy?!
  • Is it the name of someone you love, that you want to name your child after?
  • Does it have a particular meaning that you love?

That last point was quite a big one for me.

Quite a few names were ruled out because the meaning wasn’t right.

In the end with our first child we narrowed it down to three choices by the time he was born – Morgan, Benjamin and Rhys.

As soon as I saw him I knew his name wasn’t Morgan.  So we were left with two options.  Benjamin, which is a family name on my husband’s side, and Rhys.

It took about a week of getting to know him, and of trying out the two names before we finally settled on Rhys.  It felt right.

And now 5 years later I’m certain we made the right choice as his name suits him perfectly, right down to its meaning – enthusiasm and ardour.


Those two words describe our son perfectly.

In fact, his reception class teacher used the word ‘enthusiastic’ to describe him again and again last year!

He is full of life, passionate about so many things, and has almost boundless energy.

I wonder, would he be the same child had we named him Morgan?!

When I was pregnant the second time round we thought things might be a bit easier.

We knew we were having a girl, and having given Rhys a Welsh name we knew we wanted to do the same for our daughter.

And a lot of names were ruled out because pronunciation would be an issue, for both me and my family – Blodeuwedd anyone?!

Then quite early on in the pregnancy I saw the name Bethan in one of the baby name books and fell in love with it.  It sounded good with our surname, and it went well with Rhys.

As the weeks went on though, I think I said it to myself too much, and that combined with a meaning that didn’t quite ‘speak’ to me (the name is derived from Elizabeth, meaning pledged to God), meant that by the end of the pregnancy I really felt that Bethan wasn’t her name.

So, we were left a bit stumped.  Until I went into the hospital to have her, and the midwife came in and said, “Hi, my name’s Nerys”


We just hadn’t considered that name at all.  But by the time baby girl was a few hours old I was certain she was a Nerys.  And, like her brother, the older she gets the more she suits her name.

It’s derived from the Welsh word for lady, and while she isn’t a delicate little thing (bless her!), she is already so much more of a girly girl than I expected!  She is drawn to shoes, and handbags, jewellery and sparkly things, and she loves having her hair put up in hairbands and clips.


My little lady.

I really do love how well our children’s names suit them, and how they seem to fit them more and more as they get older.  I hope they like them as they grow up too, we really did take care making sure we picked the right names!

Did you factor in the meaning of your child’s name when you chose it?  Did you always know what name you would pick, or did it take a while for the right name to come to you?

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday


  1. Mammy
    27/08/2016 / 3:26 pm

    Well, you three all know about your names! You really did choose brilliantly for Rhys and Nerys? If you had been a boy,you would have been Morgan or Max….but I think Madeline suits you better.

    • This glorious life
      28/08/2016 / 1:49 pm

      Yes I’m not sure I’m much of a Max or a Morgan! x

  2. What beautiful kids! Love the names as well. We had a hard time figuring out our son’s name – we had a few choices but wanted to wait until we met him to make the final choice and we’re glad we did. #KCACOLS

    • This glorious life
      18/09/2016 / 2:49 pm

      Thank you so much! I really think that’s key, waiting to get to know the baby’s face a bit before making a firm decision! x

  3. 18/09/2016 / 10:37 am

    We’re currently in the process of choosing a name for baby number three – we have a boys name sorted but not a girls. So far we have a Bluebell – my husband’s favourite flower – and a Maximilian. Both suit their names! #KCACOLS

    • This glorious life
      18/09/2016 / 2:48 pm

      I’m sure it gets harder the more children you have! Love the names you’ve already used though! x

  4. Rainbowsaretoobeautiful
    18/09/2016 / 6:31 pm

    Had a short list and a favourite and then waited till they popped out to decide. Thought about meanings and odd acronyms too. There seems little else to help identify with your little one prior to their birth so I think we put a lot of weight on three names as something we can do. #KCACOLS

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:29 pm

      Thats’s a really good point, thinking of names is quite a concrete thing we can focus on! x

  5. 18/09/2016 / 11:35 pm

    My children’s names do not match them, my son’s name means dark and he is fair as can be. 🙂 my daughter’s name doesn’t exist. but I do love the ideas you present here:) Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:30 pm

      Haha, brilliant! Maybe I read too much into these things, haha! x

  6. 20/09/2016 / 12:46 am

    All my kids had names before they were born. Except for my youngest’s middle name – that was decided in the chair in front of the registration office. hehe
    Partly because my husband couldn’t just tell me what he wanted. :p It was between two names. So I decided and his middle name is the same as my husband’s first name. 🙂

    My oldest has the Greek version of the hebrew name Zechariah – which we find funny (really gave it no thought I just liked the name) because we do not believe in God and are not religious in any way hehe.
    It’s not a common name where I’m originally from and especially with it’s current spelling – it’s not a common name in England either in the form we use.

    My daughter has two names – first and middle and both are used but in general we just call her Caitiebelle. 🙂
    She was named before she was born. Her name is Celtic – Gaelic origin and means ‘pure’. 🙂 Her middle name is Scottish/Latin and means ‘lovable’. 🙂

    My youngest has a simple name really – but it’s a name I’ve loved since I was a young girl and watched the Prince and the Popper for the first time hehe. He shares the name of William the Conqueror’s own son and it was a very popular kings name in England for many many years. It means “ruler of the home” hehe.
    He’s middle name is Greek and means ‘garland crown’. Again a name that is apparently is in the bible. lol


    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:19 pm

      Love this! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. We’re not religious at all either, and did actually factor that in when we were looking at names and their meanings. I love the meanings of your daughter’s names, so nice! x

  7. 22/09/2016 / 1:11 pm

    My husband chose both our children’s names and the meanings do uncannily really suit them both. To the point where someone described my daughter to me in one word and I said, that’s what her name means! Lol. Great idea for a post:) #KCACOLS

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:31 pm

      Oh that’s brilliant, how funny that she suits her name so well! x

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:41 pm

      Ahh, thank you so much! x

  8. 22/09/2016 / 8:03 pm

    A very interesting post – I really enjoyed reading that. I think we chose well with our children’s names too, but you’re right – it is such a difficult decision, one that you agonise over!
    Your photos are beautiful
    x Alice

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 6:42 pm

      Thank you so much Alice. And it really is such a difficult decision! x

  9. 23/09/2016 / 8:34 pm

    A lovely post.. I’m 31 weeks pregnant with a baby boy and really struggling to narrow down the name! Calling my daughter Taormina was a bold decision but I can’t imagine her having any other name now despite very few people being able to pronounce it. I love the story of how you named Nerys, I bet the midwife was chuffed with that! x #KCACOLS

    • This glorious life
      23/09/2016 / 9:24 pm

      I’ve not heard that name before, but a quick google suggests I pronounced it right in my head! I really like it! But yes, you’ve set the bar quite high now in unusual names, you’ll have to come up with something special for your son! Or go the other way and call him Dave! x

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