Sunday, September 7, 2014

What's in a name

I've had this post pending for nearly a year. Since I'm doing my best to catch up I thought this would be a good starting point. Believe it or not we received some grief regarding the name Olive. However, we don't take naming a child lightly and popular names don't appeal to me. Back when Maddie was just 9 months old we took a small trip to Maine during Labor Day weekend to visit the Metcalf Home. It was there that I saw a tombstone for the wife of the man who built the home. Olive Metcalf. It was a powerful experience and I knew if we ever had an opportunity to have another girl- her name would be Olive. Fast forward five months to when we found out we were indeed having another girl (a total shock!) it took me nearly 24 hours to remember this experience in Maine. My mother quickly reminded me that was Grandma Hanks name (my mothers favorite grandma who I just remember as "Grandma Hanks").  Olive's middle name Cora came from my dads grandma- who died when my Daddy Jimmy was just two or three years old. So no, we did not name her after Downtown Abbey's character. We did consider naming her Cora Olive but my experience seeing the tombstone was too powerful to push to the side and we didn't want her initials to me COM. 

Fast forward a few more months after OC was born and I finally had the energy to make her room livable, the painting I had planned to use her in her room (one that my mom has had my entire life and she gave to me when we moved to CT) was painted by Grandma Hanks. The painting has her signature on the back and I never paid much attention to it. Although I can't articulate exactly what my train of thought is- the painting sealed the deal that we had made the right choice. Names are powerful and important. Maddie may not be named after anyone in particular we had just as a spiritual experience naming her as Olive. Her story is here. 

Below are just pictures I had saved in this post from 10 months ago. She has changed so much since....

Olive's First Birthday

I should be ashamed it's taken me over two months to document Olive's birthday... and I am. This girl of ours is perfectly fierce, sweet, squeezable and smart. We are so lucky to have her in our family. We celebrated with our closest friends (minus a few) with a backyard party including sprinklers, baby pools, sand box and ice cream! Although we don't make a huge deal about birthdays we still treasure the opportunity to reflect and celebrate a sacred day.