Our Naming Criteria

We didn’t decide on Violet’s name until a month she was born, compared to five months for Kadence. I think we both felt pressured inspired to find a similarly creative name like Kadence.

Naming Checklist – Level 1

  • No names of previous boyfriends or girlfriends
  • No names of notorious celebrities
  • No funny rhymes or bad name-calling possibilities
  • No friends or family with the name
  • Does not start with “D”, “J”, or “K”
  • Easy to pronounce and spell

Some of those items are obvious, but I also wanted names that didn’t start with any other of our first names, so that we would all have unique initials. It would come in handy some day on score sheets for card games or bowling.

Having the name easy to pronounce and spell is more of a convenience. I hadn’t thought much about it until we had to spell out “Kadence” to people writing it down. So for Baby Lim #2, I hoped for a name that would be easy to say and spell. I think Violet will appreciate her name being easy to pronounce when she goes through years of roll call at school.

Naming Checklist – Level 2

  • Not a common or popular name, but not too weird
  • Meaning is symbolic or spiritual
  • Sounds good with Lim

I remember walking to the principal’s office in middle school wondering what I had done wrong. My art teacher received a call and I was requested. When I arrived, I sat in a comfy chair next to another boy and it looked like neither of us knew what we were there for. The principal looked at the other boy for a moment, then turned to me. Then we were told that we both had the same name. We were both “David Lim.”

I remember feeling depressed that I wasn’t unique. I was sure that the combination of my first and last name would be common, but it was still odd to meet another David Lim. I got over it eventually, and even bumped into him again in college for a video class ironically. So for our kids, I hoped that the names we chose for them would be more unique than my own.

For most things, I’m not particular about details, but with names, the meaning of the name is very important to me. Jenni had a few names that she liked, but I didn’t like them because their meanings was ordinary and plain.

Also, finding names that sound good with my surname “Lim” isn’t as easy as I would like. I joke with Jennilyn that her name sounds better with her maiden name “Hill,” but she rebukes me, and assures me that she prefers “Lim” since it means she’s my wife.

At the End of the Rainbow

Jennilyn was going to lay down for a nap when she popped back downstairs and asked about the name “Violet.” I cocked an eyebrow and started naming off references of “Violet,” such as a daughter character in the movie “The Incredibles”, the inventor in “A Series of Unfortunate Events”, and guest star character in “Peanuts.” I wasn’t excited about the name initially, but when Jennilyn shared her research on Violet, I was impressed by the properties of the color Violet.

Spectral violet is outside the gamut of typical RGB color spaces, and although it can be approximated by that color shown below as electric violet, it cannot be reproduced exactly on a computer screen.

Wikipedia’s entry on Violet (Color)

What Jennilyn and I loved about Violet was that it is a color that cannot be reproduced by technology and can only occur naturally. Despite loving almost anything digital, I found the color property of violet refreshing and we put it at the top of the list.

Within a month of the birth, no other girl names came to mind, so being as decisive as she is, Jennilyn stopped searching and we happily chose the name Violet.

Web Resources for Baby Names

2 replies on “Our Naming Criteria”

As one of a pair of siblings with rhyming names (Trina & Sabrina — my parents claim it was completely accidental), I applaud your thoughtfulness in baby name choice. Then again, it was kind of funny that we would always assume the other sister was being summoned to wash the dishes, but would both come running if we were being called to the phone. :-S

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