Zoe Eloise - The Origin of Her Name

We’ve received many-a-note saying that people love the name we’ve chosen for baby, to which I say: Thank you! We love it too!

Zoe Eloise. How’d we land there? The short story is that I found both names while scouring lists of baby names, and we narrowed it down to this combination.

The long story - since Sam is writing this and you should know by now that I’m verbose - is this:

I had been accumulating names on a list for many years and once we found out I was pregnant, I started reading lists and lists of baby names online. I eventually compiled enough of my favorites and then began the narrowing down process.

For me, I wanted her first name to have a few components:

  1. A name that people would say, but that could also yield nicknames. For example, nobody ever calls me Samantha; I'm either Sam or Sammi. It'd be weird if somebody called me Samantha. (Steve does it as a joke in a southern accent…but that’s still weird lol.) Anyway, I wanted her to have a full name that people could call her and it wouldn’t be weird.
  2. A name that either ended in the “e” sound or had a nickname that ended in the “e” sound. All of my cousins and I have that aspect, and I thought it’d be cool to carry on.
  3. A name that would encompass who I hope she may become. Somebody bright, kind, a little (a lot?) quirky and fun, with a dash of sweet and a spice.

We tried out a few names by referring to her by a name for some time (as opposed to just “baby”), and seeing how it felt. That tactic eliminated a bunch of the names that, although we liked a lot, just didn’t feel quite right. When we finally tried out “Zoe,” that one stuck.

On to the middle name. When I broached this with Steve he said, “a middle name? Does she need one? We picked the first one!” I did a mini Google search to see why we have middle names, and it does seem that it’s not exactly a requirement. However, I still liked the idea of a middle name, and Steve was (I think) joking about the no middle name thing, so we pressed on.

I didn’t have anything I was looking for in a middle name other than I wanted it to flow nicely. We narrowed it down to a few options - found from internet lists again - and employed our earlier technique of trying them out to see how they felt. When we got to Eloise, it felt right. Nicknames sprouted almost instantly: Zo Zo, baby Zo, Zoe E. When I pointed out that her initials would be ZEL, Steve was basically convinced. “We could call her ‘Zel’ or ‘Zelly’!” he said.

For months we referred to her as Zoe Eloise, and each time we checked in with one another, we both agreed that it still felt right to us.

My mom asked, after she was born, if we knew what her name meant. I didn’t - I hadn’t thought to look up the meanings. When we looked them up I cried. Mostly because of the hormones lol But a little because the meanings were so beautiful and we had no idea, and a little because one meaning is effing hilarious amongst the beauty of the others. I’ll leave you with what the internet says her name means. Hopefully you find the beauty and the humor in it too!