Piper, Bristol, Willow……


Jan 3, 2011

In these first few days of the New Year we are again finding ourselves looking to name a new little one that will be joining this household. We did not expect this but will be happy when the arrival does happen.

Many Alaskan choose names based on our great state. We tend to choose an area that is special to us, or some aspect that is unique to how we feel about our great state. It is not uncommon.

Although we have flown/owned Piper airplanes, live in Bristol Bay and are surrounded by ‘scrub’ Willow bushes right now these are not names we plan to consider. If we were pushed some  to divulge more about ourselves you could say that both of us have ‘ran track’ in our earlier school years, but that isn’t really an Alaskan theme, at least in our opinion.

When choosing an Alaska themed name  we know we want a name that  is connected to something we have seen or live nearby that has special meaning to us. A name that when people get to know the recipient know why we would choose to put that special name with that special loved one.

When considering the last little one that joined our family we thought of all sorts of things. We felt this little guy would probably grow up to be well-traveled, hopefully able to garner respect, and in a long run ‘live up to’ his majestic name. We considering doing a play on a theme, spelled it backwards,  twist it around some …but overall we wanted it to be something our little guy could live with.

Never did we want him, or this new little one, to be embarrassed by having the Alaska themed name we chose.

This time we are hoping, actually planning, for a girl. We have found it harder to choose something that is feminine but strong. Something she might have to grow into. We want her to be able to hold her head up high and never worry about someone or something embarrassing being connected to that name.

We did consider giving up the Alaska theme and being like so many and choosing a ‘normal’ name for those we love, but heck. If it were not for one loud mouth in the last couple of years out there embarrassing the heck out of most us good Alaskans we would not even be worried about this issue.

So in the end we are going to put our thinking hats on and come up with something special. We will stay away from those names already associated with embarrassing actions cause we love our animals too darn much. Besides something tells me that the 15 minutes of fame that seems to have come to this group of fame and money seeking wanna-bes might well be going away. Of course we can all only continue to hope!!


13 Responses to “Piper, Bristol, Willow……”

  1. InterestedPerson Says:

    It has taken many years to ‘grow up’ or ‘grow into’
    my name, but I would offer it to consider that it
    becomes Alaska as well as anywhere”:


    [you could take it that I have grown to appreciate
    it well enough to overcome shyness to write this]

    And great joy to mom, dad, and big brother

  2. jim Says:

    I looked in one of my favorite books, (Dictionary of Alaska Place Names, Geological Survey Professional Paper 567, published 1967), but didn’t get much help there– Helpmejack, Gumboot, Gopher, Codfish, Boidarken, Myrtle, Mosquito, Pirate, Ublutuoch, Williwaw . . . (although Nora might be o.k.).


    I like Aurora Jane but I’m biased.

  3. anon Says:

    I hate to say this but I gave my favorite name to my firstborn daughter, a lovely, gracious, generous scientist and teacher named Sarah. The name still makes me think first of my beauty.

  4. jim Says:

    With Sarah, it’s the first name that matters, not the last. Sarah is a beautiful name.

  5. Icvillages Says:

    Congratulations! I’m all for family planning, the thought of a planned one makes me tired, an unexpected one would make me exhausted! : )

    But I did make sure to give my children Alaska
    names. Bristol, Willow and even Piper are actually pretty and interesting – if you hadn’t been turned off by the brood that shoves those names down your throats every day that is.

    Good luck with your name hunt, feel good throughout your pregnancy and god bless!

  6. alaskapi Says:

    How about Niklliq !!!! ?


  7. alaskapi Says:

    Jim’s list including Codfish and Boidarken cracked me up…
    We have some pretty wacky place names !! :-)

  8. C/nm Says:

    They will name the next one….ammo.


  9. Man_from_Unk Says:

    A good solid common name is best like Laura or William. Give a name that nobody can say right sets up a child to be constently telling people how to say his/her name. Then it opens up put-downs and name calling or being called What’s His Name. A good common name like Jane or Craig is best.

  10. poddys Says:

    I think that’s a good name, like it.

  11. jim Says:

    Man from Unk:

    I’m a fan of Jane too– she’s my mom.

  12. Man_from_Unk Says:

    I like to study all kinds of stuff – it helps keep me focused out here in Rural Alaska where many of my peers take it one day at a time. Not much variety but local gossip – keeping an eye on everybody elses business. Boring to say the least.

    Once I read about names and how important they are to a person’s self identity and the development of self esteem. It’s been about 30 years since the cultural revival started where Native people started giving their children Native names. I guess that’s okay if the kids are going to remain in their community with their tribe who’s members speak the language the name comes from. That would seem to limit the possibilities for the child’s future. Give a child a name that would fit anywhere in the world and it will open the world to the child.

  13. InJuneau Says:

    Um…I think they’re looking for a name for a new puppy, not a kid. ;)

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