|I shy away from showing portraits of our children but, when writing this story, I could only think of this favorite photo. It was taken on the very Swedish holiday called Midsummer. Our daughter was 6 months old at the time. Would you believe my friend, Leslie, mother of twins who were the same age as our daughter, whipped this little traditional Swedish Midsummer dress up, for our "Swede" in her spare time for us! The photo and the outfit are personal treasures.|
I've been thinking about naming babies and the culture behind them when I recently saw a photo of our Swedish friend's 16 year old daughter, Butterfly. As far as I know, Butterfly has never answered to or used her officially registered name, Emily. She was given the nickname Butterfly from birth and by the time her parents registered her official name, she was walking and talking and would only respond to Butterfly.
Although this may sound a little extreme, this is not an exclusive story here. In Sweden, people generally wait days, weeks and even months before officially registering their new baby's name; leaving enough time for an endearing nickname to stick.
My perception and experience, in the US, with baby names has been the opposite. I have sent presents to prenatal baby showers where the baby has already been named. I would love to hear your experience or thoughts on naming babies. What was your process? Is there a naming tradition in your culture? Had you decided on a name before you delivered or did you wait to see your baby's face? Do you live in a country where it is also common practice to wait in naming?
On that note, I'd like to share the Top 10 Swedish Baby Names of 2012:
The girl names: Sigrid Victoria, Hilma and Rut have all entered the top 100 in 2012; boy names: Tage, Edward, Johannes and Julian have all entered the top 100 in 2012, too.
In addition to these, there are several classic Swedish names that I've heard through the years, either popular or stand out. Girls: Mathilda, Elsa, Siri, Lovisa, and Saga. Boys: Ossian, August, Axel, Gunnar and Kaj.
Did you name your children after family members or follow a family tradition? I'd love to hear from you.
52 Handmade Willowday Projects from 2014 (Click here)
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NESTING BABY SHOWER
WILLOW BABY by Elsa Beskow (Videung)