Nicknames: Baby Name of the Day

Amy Keyishian

Cute Baby
Photo by OctoberXmom
Of course, we all come up with fun nicknames for our little sprogs, whether in utero or out and just too adorable for a normal name. But there's another phenomenon I'm talking about here, one that Katherine Heigl's babe Naleigh Kelly knows all about: babies given a nickname from birth, with a fall-back option as their real name.

Naleigh Kelley is really named Nancy Leigh, but Heigl created a portmanteau moniker that she uses as her everyday name. Lourdes Ciccone was called Lola until, I assume, she got old enough to state a preference -- Lourdes is unusual, but gorgeous, IMO. On a less dramatic front, I have a friend who named her daughter Caroline, but has called her Carly from birth. My nephew Harry is technically a Harrison, but nobody has ever called him that -- not even my sister, and not even when she's really, really mad.

The flip side is, of course, kids given nicknames as real names. My mother-in-law was Patty Lou. Not Patricia Louise. Patty Lou. On her birth certificate. When we decided to name our first daughter after her, my husband said, "Just use the first letter. We can't name the baby Patty Lou. Patty Lou didn't even like being called Patty Lou." I went to college with a Bill (not William). Of course, these days, most people people don't even know Sally was originally a nickname for Sarah, or that Peggy's derived from Margaret.

Coco Arquette was given Courtney Cox's old nickname. And Dweezil Zappa's parents (Frank and Gail Zappa) were told they wouldn't be able to leave the hospital with such a weird name on the birth certificate, so they actually put Ian Donald Calvin Euclid Zappa. (According to Frank's autobiography, when Dweezil found this out, he changed his name legally -- and yes, I read the damn thing. I'm a nerd like that.)

Did you pick your kid's nickname from birth? Or did you just go ahead and give a nicknamey-name? Tell us in the comments! 

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