What’s in a name?

Pretty much as soon as we found out we were having a baby girl, we agreed on the name Allegra for her – although she was called Babs when she was in utero (but I’d rather not go into why…).  We did flirt with a few other names, I particularly liked Alexa (great name but too many x-es when paired with our surname, Cox), then of course there were the names that were simply off limits due to the ridiculous of them when paired with our surname – names like Poppy, or Holly, pretty names but ill-advised when partnered with the surname Cox in my view (say them out loud and you’ll see what I mean).

Anyway, Allegra it was and we were/are delighted with our choice.  Funny then, that actually on a day-to-day basis, it is the name I seem to use the least when talking to her or about her; it’s a wonder she’ll ever learn what her actual name is at the rate I’m going!

Sometimes it is a variation on her name, so I’ll call her Legs or Leggy, but more often than not it is something completely different and I have a whole raft of interchangeable monikers I work with…

Most often, I opt for “boogaloo” – I’m not sure where the name came from but it sort of evolved and stuck.  Sometimes it’s shortened to “boo” or “boo-boo”, sometimes it becomes “Princess Boogaloo”, sometimes it’s just plain old “boogaloo”.  Generally it is my go-to name for her and I do wonder whether or not she may eventually introduce herself as boogaloo in the future as her actual name may be somewhat alien to her! Imagine that when she goes into the bank to apply for a mortgage, “hello, yes, princess boogaloo cox here, I have an appointment…” – not good.

When I’m not using “boogaloo”, I tend to go with “pumba” – this is inspired by the warthog from Disney’s The Lion King.  Now allow me to explain myself here – I do not in anyway think my daughter looks like or indeed resembles the rather ugly but endearing warthog in said movie, although she does trump rather like him sometimes (sorry 18-year old Allegra of the future if you’re reading this…), but I’ve always liked the name and how it feels when you say it and how it sounds when you say it and I find it fitting for a chubby little bubba.  Having Googled it and found a definition that says “in Swahili, pumba (v.) means “to be foolish, silly, weakminded, careless, negligent”, I may actually have to have a rethink.  Hmmm, disappointing…

When she’s not boogaloo, boo-boo, Princess boogaloo, pumba, or sometimes even Princess pumba (!), then she might be “chubster”, “chubba-chubba”, “chubby thighs”, (I promise not to continue with any chub-related names past the age of 1, don’t want to risk giving her a complex and in turn an eating disorder!), or “sweetness cheeks”, “beautiful-beautiful” (pronouced “boooo-tiful-booo-tiful, a bit like Bernard Matthews, god rest his soul), or sometimes even “Princess Chubby-Thighs” – oh dear, back to chub related names again, hmmm….

It’s almost like I can’t help myself!  I do of course use her actual name from time to time, usually when I’m registering her for one or other of the baby classes we attend, also when we actually registered her birth, I did use Allegra on that occasion too, so the birth certificate is all in order you’ll be pleased to know.  But my preference is always to defer to one or other of the previously outlined pet names, that is of course when I’m not referring to her as Richmond Baby on here!  Perhaps I should make more effort to call her Allegra more often than not, it’s just it’s not as satisfying on the lips as boogaloo or pumba or princess chubby-thighs… hmm, but then again, I certainly don’t want to set her up for a lifetime of an identity crisis….

I think for now I’ll enjoy the opportunity to call her whatever comes to mind until she gets old enough to refuse to answer to the name princess boogaloo; what a sad day that will be….!

What are your pet names for your little one?

You can see where the inspiration comes for at least one of her pet-names!

6 thoughts on “What’s in a name?

  1. Allegra is such a pretty name – it’s funny isn’t it how we spend so much time choosing just the right name and then rarely use it 🙂

    My children are called Cobbler or Mr Cob and Lollypop – obviously NOT the names on their birth certs!

  2. Zachy is called Nip, Captain Nip or King Nip. When in the womb, we called him the Little Nipper until we decided/agreed a name and it just stuck!
    I like Princess Boogaloo, it suits her.
    Possibly my favourite post of yours yet, love it xx

  3. Well 12 years ago I did the same and called my gorgeous baby by one particular nickname. I don’t use it so much now but it is her password on facebook!

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