Frances Cordell Evelyn


I always knew that if I ever had a girl, her middle name would be Cordell. It was my mother’s middle name and it’s my middle name. My husband agreed and that box was checked. We decided not to find out the gender of our baby so we spent hours going through name choices for boys and girls. My husband and I are both trial attorneys. We are fiercely competitive people. We devised a system for naming the baby that involved no small amount of competition. We narrowed the list down to three boy names (Ezra, Cyrus and Emery) and four girl names (Alice, Frances, Audrey and Olive). Once we had the lists, we added the competitive element. When I was 38 weeks along, we went on a date to the bar where we had our first kiss. There, we held a Paper, Rock, Scissors tournament. Over a beer for my husband and a mocktail for me, we battled it out through the best five out of nine. My husband was victorious – 5 wins to my 3. However, his win didn’t allow him to pick the name. It only gave him a guess at the gender. He guessed girl. If he was right, he could pick the name (from the approved list). If he was wrong and we had a boy, I would choose. In the delivery room, two doctors, four nurses and two doulas all guessed that the baby would be a boy. When she was a girl, my husband was thrilled to be right (and victorious yet again) and was very excited to name her Frances Cordell. Because my husband has four names, we decided to add a fourth for Frances. Evelyn is his grandmother’s name, and we chose it so she has something from my family and something from his. She’s a tiny girl with a big name, but she wears it well!


2 Responses

  • I love that you made bets on Rock, Paper, Scissors to choose the baby’s name. For both of my pregnancies we did something similar. We kept the sex a surprise and made a list of 3 names for both genders. But we just kept it open to choose from our list until we met our baby. My husband probably would’ve appreciated the bet a little more though.

    • I like that too! I love hearing how people come up with their baby’s names. Thanks for sharing B!


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