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What’s in a Name: Part 2

“Albus Severus Potter, you were named after two headmasters of Hogwarts.  One of them was a Slytherin, and he was the bravest man I ever knew.” – Harry Potter to his son, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Last time I posted, I posted about Disney baby names.  This time, I’ll be posting on Harry Potter baby names.

Are you an uber nerd who likes Harry Potter?  Just looking for a unique name?  Harry Potter names might just have what you’re looking for to give your precious baby something with not only a certain uniqueness, but a really cool story behind their name.

Also, I would like to wish all the mothers, mothers-to-be, grandmothers, aunts, older sisters who have become a mother to younger siblings, step, foster, adopted mothers, and any woman who has stepped into a child’s life and said, “I will take care of them,” a very Happy Mother’s Day.  None of us would be here today without your love, support, guidance, and care.  Keep being the strong women that you are!

10 Harry Potter Boys’ Names

1. James

James

I’ll start the list out with James.  This is a personal favorite of mine (and one that the husband hasn’t vetoed yet!)  This name is a classic.  How cool would it be to tell your son that he was (inadvertently) named after Harry Potter’s dad?!  (I could totally get away with this, because James is a ‘family name’ in my family.)  James is actually an English variation of the Hebrew name Jacob, and means ‘supplanter’.

2. William (Bill)

Bill

William, or Bill, is another classic name.  Even a Prince of England is named William!  Bill is the eldest of the 7 Weasley kids, and he marries Fleur Delacour, and together they eventually have 3 children.  The name William originates from German and means ‘resolute protection’.  (Kind of fitting for Bill, since he was in the Order of the Phoenix and fought in the war against Voldemort.)

3. Remus

Remus

Ah, Remus.  Unfortunately, the hubby nixed this one.  In mythology, Remus was one of the twin boys, Romulus and Remus, who founded Rome, and were raised by a wolf.  Consequently, Remus was the one who died (that doesn’t foreshadow the fate of this Remus at all…).  Although the name has Latin origins, there doesn’t seem to be a definite meaning to it.  It is generally assumed that Remus means ‘werewolf’, as it is tied into the folklore and mythology of werewolves.  (Hilariously enough, the name Lupin means ‘of a wolf’, roughly translating Remus Lupin’s name to, you guessed it: Werewolf McWerewolf.  I am crying at how funny this is.)

4. Harry

Harry

Again, another classic name that also belongs to a British Prince (well, technically his real name is Henry, but we’re going to ignore that).  This name seems to be very popular in the UK, and not solely because of the book series.  But really, this is a great name.  Think about everything Harry’s been through and done; now THAT is a legacy to give a child!  Harry is generally considered to be a nickname for Henry, but it’s a good name all its own.  The name means ‘estate ruler’ (Harry Potter was a rich kid before he even knew it).

5. George

George

Yet ANOTHER name of a British Prince.  (Siriusly, I think the Royal Family has a soft spot for Harry Potter.)  In the books, a reader really feels sorry for George at the end; not only does he lose an ear, but he also loses his identical twin, and is never the same afterward.  The name George actually has Greek origins and means ‘farmer’.

6. Ronald

Ron Weasley

“RONALD WEASLEY!  HOW DARE YOU STEAL THAT CAR!  I AM ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTED!  YOUR FATHER’S NOW FACING AN INQUIRY AT WORK, AND IT’S ENTIRELY YOUR FAULT!  IF YOU PUT ANOTHER TOE OUT OF LINE, WE’LL BRING YOU STRAIGHT HOME!”  So, the name Ronald.  Interestingly, the name has Norse origins and means ‘ruler’s counselor’; that is pretty fitting for Ron Weasley, as he’s Harry Potter’s best friend and right-hand man through the entire series.

7. Arthur

Arthur

I love Arthur Weasley.  He’s such a great father figure to Harry throughout the whole series.  He genuinely cares for Harry’s wellbeing, and looks at him as another son.  The name Arthur is Celtic and means ‘bear’.  I can somewhat see that in Mr. Weasley; when Lucius Malfoy insulted his family in COS, we definitely saw his ‘papa bear’ side come out.

8. Sirius

Sirius

Oh, Sirius.  He is in my top 5 favorite HP characters, if not my favorite.  He’s cheeky, a bit impulsive, and siriusly funny.  I honestly wish we could have seen more from Sirius during the series – he and Harry didn’t get enough time together, and that is the saddest thing to me.  The both needed each other, and they deserved a little happiness after all they’d been through.  The name Sirius (as can be observed with most of the Black family’s names) comes from Greek mythology and is the name of a constellation.  Sirius is the Dog Star; in mythology, Sirius was Orion’s canine companion, and he was so loved by the gods that he was given his own place in the stars.  Sirius is also the only animal in mythology to be placed in the stars.  The name means ‘burning’; any child with this name is certain to have a great sense of humor, and they will always be supplied with sirius puns.  (Unfortunately, my husband turned this down straight away, and I was immensely disappointed.)

9. Draco

Draco

Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus: Never tickle a sleeping dragon.  If you know your mythology, you may already know some information about this name.  Draco Malfoy is named after the constellation, Draco (yes, Malfoy is related to Sirius – they’re second cousins).  According to myth, the dragon, Draco, was defeated by the goddess Minerva and thrown into the sky upon defeat.  The name Draco actually means ‘dragon’.

10. Severus

Severus

Last but not least is Severus.  The formidable Potion’s Master that actually turns out to be good.  Through the books and movies, we all loved to hate him, and he earned himself the nickname ‘Greasy Dungeon Bat’.  Hubby won’t let me use it for a son, but I got to use it for my little black kitten, so I still won.  Severus has Latin roots and means ‘stern’; though some can also interpret it as meaning ‘severe’ or ‘to sever’.

 

10 Harr Potter Girls’ Names

1. Lily

Lily

I thought since I started the boys off with James, I should start the girls off with Lily.  Throughout the Harry Potter books, it is constantly said that Harry was saved and protected by his mother’s love.  Dumbledore himself said that only a love so pure as that of a mother for her child could defeat Voldemort.  Lily was not only a loving mother, but she was a strong, brave woman.  It was also said of her that she was a phenomenal friend, who ‘saw the best in others, sometimes even when they themselves could not see it.’  Lily Potter (Evans) was a beautiful person, inside and out; she even still showed love towards her sister, who treated her terribly, and was extremely kind.  The name Lily can be spelled different ways: Lily, Lillie, Lilly… It can also be a nickname for Lillian or Lilith.  Obviously, the name comes from the lily flower.  It is considered to be a symbol of purity and innocence.  (I’m ecstatic that my husband likes this name, I would love to name one of our future girls this.)

2. Hermione

Hermione Granger

Her-MY-Oh-Knee.  How cool would it be to name a child after the brightest witch of her age?  Personally, I really love this name, it’s very unique, but my husband said no. 😦  The character in the books is not only clever, but she is also kind (some people can be real jerks about their intelligence) and thoughtful; plus, she knows when it’s time to take the nice gloves off and kick some butt.  Hermione is the sole reason Harry and Ron lived past first year.  Hermione’s name comes from Greek mythology, in which she was a messenger of the gods.  Hermione is also the female version of Hermes.  (Note: a good nickname for Hermione that I’ve seen is ‘Mione.  A kid probably wouldn’t want her parents to call her ‘Hermy’ in front of anyone.  Ever.)

3. Ginevra

Ginny

Ah, Ginevra.  The girl who stole the Boy-Who-Lived’s heart.  Yet another awesome name that my husband nixed.  He’s kinda getting in the way of my fantasy of nerdy babies.  Ginny, as she is called in the series, is one of my favorites.  She’s so spunky; I love her cheekiness, and she’s so fiery (kind of like her hair).  She’s good for Harry because she doesn’t let him brood and wallow in self-pity; she’s always there to kick his butt into gear when he needs it.  She’s also the only one who can relate to him about Voldemort; just as Harry had Voldemort messing around in his head, Ginny had also been possessed by Voldemort.  (Btw, I know a lot of people think Harry should have ended up with Hermione, but I am not one of those people.  Please don’t comment & argue this – I honestly don’t care.)  Ginevra is actually the Italian version of Guinevere (as in the Guinevere from the King Arthur legends); the name means ‘white shadow, white wave.’

4. Molly

Molly

I love Molly Weasley.  The name, however, I’m not so fond of. (Although I do think it’s hilarious that Arthur calls her ‘Mollywobbles’ in private.)  Molly Weasley has a big heart, and she automatically claims Harry as just another one of her kids.  Molly is actually a variation on the Hebrew name Mary, and it means ‘bitter.’  Oddly enough, that really doesn’t fit the character at all.

5. Fleur

Fleur

Perhaps it’s because I took French in high school, but I love the name Fleur.  Fleur means ‘flower’, and Fleur Delacour means ‘flower of the court.’  Though the character has such a delicate name, she is not just a pretty face.  I think the moment that most of us really got on Fleur’s bandwagon was in Half-Blood Prince, when Bill was attacked by the werewolf Fenrir Greyback.  His face was scarred, and Mrs. Weasley commented that ‘he would have been married.’  At this, Fleur stood up for them both, saying, “What do I care how he looks?  I am good-looking enough for the both of us, I theenk!  All these scars show is sat my husband is brave!”  Though she is part Veela (a breathtakingly beautiful magical being) Fleur proves that her beauty is not what defines her.

6. Luna

Luna

Loony Luna Lovegood.  I love her personality.  Luna is that little bit of eccentricity that everyone needs in their lives.  She is a great friend to Harry, and she is both brave and smart.  The name Luna is Latin, meaning ‘moon’.

7. Petunia

Petunia

Oh, dear ‘Tuney.  If you are going for flower names, Harry Potter is apparently a good baby name book.  Many people are opposed to using the name Petunia because of the relation to the character.  In the Harry Potter books, Petunia is quite nasty to Harry, because he is a reminder of her sister and everything that she doesn’t understand that scares her, and also everything she never had.  The name Petunia has English origins and means ‘anger, resentment’; very fitting for Petunia Dursley.

8. Lavender

Lavendar

Lavender Brown was Ron’s (very sudden) girlfriend during their sixth year at Hogwarts.  She seemed like a sweet girl, though she was very clingy and demanding.  Unfortunately, during the Battle of Hogwarts, she was viciously attacked by the werewolf Fenrir Greyback.  After the battle, no one knows what happened to her.  The name Lavender has English origins (from the lavender plant), and generally means ‘serenity, grace, and calm’, but can also mean ‘distrust.’

9. Minerva

Minerva

Minerva McGonagall was yet another of my favorite characters.  I love the name, but alas, the husband said no.  I mean, really, Minnie is a great nickname.  Anyway, if you know your mythology, Minerva is the virgin Roman goddess of wisdom, the arts, medicine, martial strength, and magic.  (The Greek version of the goddess Minerva is Athena.)

10. Bellatrix

Bellatrix

And finally, Bellatrix.  She’s evil & crazy, but you have to admire her undying loyalty to her leader.  I guess if you’re really dedicated, naming your little girl Bellatrix is a good option.  Plus, you could always shorten it to Bella.  It’s definitely different; instead of the usual ‘Isabella’, the child would have a really tough-sounding name.  It’s roots are Latin and it means ‘tough warrior.’  See what I said about a tough name?

 

Do you like the names on this list?  Would you (or have you already) use any of them for your child?  What names do you think should have been included?  Let me know what you think!

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What’s in a Name?

If you are like me, you see tons of people that you know either having babies or announcing a pregnancy every other day.  That’s given me some serious baby fever (I’m slowly convincing the husband that we are ‘ready’ to have a baby; hopefully we’ll get some news soon!).  Over the past month or so, I’ve been looking at a lot of baby names.  Luckily, the Social Security Administration released the Top 10 Boys’ & Girls’ Names from 2014 (you can look at that here & here).  Naming a child is not something to be done impulsively – and it really shows you just how many names you can’t use because they belong to someone you aren’t particularly fond of!  So I decided to do a series of posts about baby names.  I’m going to start with Disney baby names!

10 Disney Girl Names

1. Giselle (Enchanted)

Giselle

To me, Giselle is a very pretty, girly-girl name.  It’s fun and whimsical, just like the character herself!  Giselle is actually a French name meaning ‘pledge’.

2. Anna (from Frozen)

Anna

Anna is a very pretty, yet simple name.  It’s also a palindrome.  The character from the movie ‘Frozen’ is a kind, funny, strong-willed, and brave girl. (Hey, it would be rare that someone spelled it wrong!)  Anna is actually a variation on the name Hannah, and means ‘grace’.

3. Ella (from Cinderella)

Cinderella

If you have seen the new Cinderella movie (which was AMAZING, btw), you will know a lot about Cinderella’s backstory.  Her real name is Ella, but her stepmother & sisters rechristened her ‘Cinderella,’ as she spent a lot of time near a fireplace and had cinders on her face, hair, and clothes.  Cinderella is considered one of the ‘classic’ Disney Princesses.  Ella has German origins and means ‘all, completely, or fairy maiden’.

4. Belle (from Beauty and the Beast)

Belle

Belle is one of my personal favorite Disney Princesses.  I love to read, and so does Belle, so she was a favorite from the start.  She is smart, kind, but also determined.  Like the movie says, “It’s no wonder that her name means beauty…”  Belle is a French name, which is why there is a widely popular French version of the movie, titled “La Belle et La Bête”.

5. Jasmine (from Aladdin)

Jasmine

Just look at the sass in that picture!  Jasmine is yet another favorite of mine.  She’s so sassy and bold, and has a strong will.  The name Jasmine originates from Persia, and is the name of the jasmine flower.

6. Tiana (from The Princess and the Frog)

Tiana

I know several girls named Tiana.  I have never actually gotten around to watching The Princess and the Frog (I know, shame on me), but I’ve heard it’s excellent.  The name Tiana actually has Slavic origins, and means ‘fairy queen’.

7. Merida (from Brave)

Merida

Merida is very spunky and, as the title of the movie says, brave.  I really enjoyed this particular movie.  (Fun fact: Brave is the only Disney Princess movie in which there are no songs & the Princess does not sing.) The origins of this name are Latin, the name meaning ‘one who has achieved a high place of honor’.

8. Wendy (from Peter Pan)

Wendy

Wendy is a somewhat old-fashioned name.  I like this name, as I always associate it with wind, and the character has a great sense of child-like wonder.  Surprisingly, the name itself comes from the book ‘Peter Pan’.

9. Aurora (from Sleeping Beauty)

Aurora

Aurora is one of my best friends’ favorite princesses.  Interestingly enough, Princess Aurora only has 18 minutes of screen time in her own movie, and about half of that she doesn’t speak!  The name Aurora has Latin roots and means ‘dawn’.  If this name doesn’t quite suit your fancy, Aurora’s real name (from the original fairy tale) is Briar Rose.

10. Elinor (from Brave)

Elinor

Elinor, Eleanor, Eleanore.  This name has several different spellings.  Again, Elinor is an old-fashioned name (those are coming back into style).  More famously, the name name belongs to Eleanor Roosevelt.  The name has French origins, but is a variation of the name Alienor.

 

10 Disney Boys Names

1. Eric (from The Little Mermaid)

Eric

Eric can be spelled several ways: Eric, Erick, Erik…  The name Eric has Old Norse origins, and means ‘eternal ruler’.

2. Adam (from Beauty and the Beast)

Adam

 

Many people don’t actually know this, but Adam is really the Beast’s name.  The name Adam originates from Hebrew and means ‘son of the red earth’.

3. Christopher (from Winnie the Pooh)

Christopher Robin

My husband and I really like the name Christopher.  It’s definitely in the running for one of our future sons!  We both like the sound of the nickname Chris, so it’s definitely going to take some thought.  This name has both Greek and Latin roots, and means ‘bearer of Christ’.

4. John (from Pocahontas)

John Smith

I chose John Smith because he is who most people recognize.  However, in reality, Pocahontas did not marry John Smith.  She married a man named John Rolfe (as is implied by the second Pocahontas movie), converted to Christianity and changed her name to Rebecca, and they had a son named Thomas.  The real John Smith did meet her, though she was no more than 12 when they met.  John has Hebrew origins and means ‘God is gracious’.

5. Peter (from Peter Pan)

Peter Pan

Personally, I wouldn’t choose the name Peter for my child, but it’s really because of people I know.  Peter is a Greek name, meaning ‘rock’.

6. Kristoff (from Frozen)

Kristoff

Again, I really like the name Kristoff.  It’s different.  And having Kris as a nickname is pretty cool too.  Kristoff has Slavic origins, is a variation of the name Christopher, and means ‘bearer of Christ’.

7. Flynn (from Tangled)

Flynn

Even though his real name in the movie is Eugene, Flynn is becoming more popular. (Personally, I like Flynn better too.) Flynn has Irish roots and means ‘son of the red-haired one’.

8. Phillip (from Sleeping Beauty)

Phillip

Philip is a variation on the name ‘Philip’.  As a nickname, it can be shortened to ‘Phil’.  Queen Elizabeth of England’s husband is Prince Philip.  Phillip has Greek origins and means ‘lover of horses’.

9. Edward (from Enchanted)

Edward

If I ever named a child Edward, it would be because of a real life Edward or this movie.  Definitely not to be confused with Twilight’s Edward Cullen.  The name Edward has English roots and means ‘wealthy guardian’.

10. Robert (from Enchanted)

Robert

Robert has several cool nicknames: Rob, Robbie, Bob, Bobbie… That’s something to keep in mind when naming a kid.  Robert is originally a German name meaning ‘bright fame’.

 

Did you like these lists?  What other lists would you like to see in the future?  Would you use any of these Disney names for your kids?  What Disney names weren’t listed that you like and would or have used for your own kids?

Family is Forever

My older brother’s birthday passed at the end of January, and I just wanted to take a few minutes to talk about him, our relationship, our heritage, and what he means to me.

I’m really glad to have my older brother in my life.  Personally, I think a lot of people take their families for granted, but I know I never will.  My brother is the best, most supportive, accepting, loving brother anyone could ever ask for, and I’m glad he’s mine.  I’m grateful to even have a relationship with him, because for most of my life, I never thought I’d meet him.

We didn’t grow up like normal siblings, in the same house, with both of our parents – for one, he’s 13 years older than me.  For another thing, we have different mothers.  I always knew he was my brother though.  I never knew where he was, but I knew he was out there somewhere, and I hoped that maybe someday we’d get to meet.  But he didn’t know anything about his biological father’s family, or that he had siblings, until he was much older.

Just as my brother found out the truth, it seemed it was too late.  Our father was dying.  By the time he found out, he had no time to meet him, no time to say goodbye.  I barely got there in time.  So now, my brother is getting to know who our dad was through me.  And that helps us both.

My dad was an amazing dad.  And one thing he never forgot was his kids’ birthdays.  Every year, on each of my sibling’s birthdays, he would ask me, “You know what today is, right? It’s your brother/sister’s birthday.”  And he would tell me how old they were.  A few times, he even took me out for ice cream on my siblings’ birthdays, like we would have celebrated the day with them if we were all together.  I think that was one of his dreams, for all of his kids to be reunited as a family and to know he loved them.

Anyway, I really love being able to share everything with my brother.  Sometimes, especially since our dad died, it feels like he’s the only one who can understand.  I can be completely open and honest with him.  A lot of people don’t understand our Muscogee heritage, or they don’t care to take the time to, and that’s kind of hard.  Sometimes, like when I’m with my mom’s family or my in-laws, I feel like talking about my culture is wrong, and that they wish I could hide it, only, you can’t do much about the color of your skin.  I never felt like that before my dad died, and no one really said anything to me about it before he died, either.  But they have since.  I’ve never blended in with them, and my brother is in kind of the same situation.

My brother is learning as much as he can from me about our heritage, and we’re learning a lot together too.  I try to tell him as much as I can remember about family stories our dad told us, but there’s so much he told me that I couldn’t remember.  It’s good that I can share things with my brother, because it helps me remember our dad and the that way he was.  Most of our dad’s family is gone, and we’re just remembering them through pictures; it’s really only us and a few cousins that we don’t know very well.

Meeting my brother was a slow process.  After his mom got in contact with us, we eventually became friends on Facebook.  I think I may have written him an actual letter or two and sent it through the mail.  We talked for a while there, and then we exchanged phone numbers and we eventually started talking over the phone regularly.  Now, we mostly text.  About a month after our first phone conversation, I became engaged.  I invited my brother and his family to the wedding, and they made plans to come.  I ‘officially’ met him two days before the wedding, and it was definitely what I needed.

Since then I’ve seen him one other time, and that was about two months ago when I spent a week with him, my sister-in-law, and their boys shortly before Christmas.  That was the best week.  I went ice skating and had a snow ball fight with my nephews.  We had so much fun.

What I love about our relationship is that we both grew up as an only child, but even if we had’ve been around each other before, it still would have been basically that way because of our age difference.  We’re so alike.  But even though we didn’t grow up together, we know each other so well it’s like we were never apart.  And I love that.

But I really love and appreciate my brother.  He’s hoping to get to come to Florida this summer because his mom and dad (the guy he’s always called ‘Dad’) are retiring to Florida and moving back.  So I’m pretty excited, because that means I get to see all of them again.

We’ve also been tentatively talking about a family vacation later in the year, so I’m really hoping for that to happen.

Take from this whatever you want.  But coming from someone that never really had a ‘nuclear sibling’, I can assure you, you’ll never value your siblings until you know that you have them, but you may never get to meet them.  We may not get to talk and see each other as often as we’d like, but I’ll never take my family for granted.