But What’s In A Name?

When I first started my blog waaaaayyyy back in March 2010 (can you believe it hasn’t even been a year yet?!), I decided to keep the kids’ names anonymous, and so I called them Tater, Ms. L and Ms. M. You will find that I still regularly refer to them that way, but more and more often, I call them by their real names: Ethan, Lila and Mia.

I don’t know what changed, other than one conversation I started on The Blog Frog. I asked the question of why people do or do not use their children’s real names on their blogs. One mom replied something along the lines of “I use my kids real names in public, so what is the difference?” And that’s when I started to use their real names occasionally.

But what this post is really about is nicknames. You see, our kids have so many of them that we rarely call them by their real names. So I thought I’d share with you some of their nicknames, and how they came about.

Yes, we really do call Ethan Tater most of the time. We also call him E, T, and Tater Magoo. Past nicknames included Little Hitler, Mr. Baron, and Frank Baron.

Let me explain…

Obviously, E is short for Ethan, that one is easy.

T is short for Tater. But where did Tater come from? When Ethan started eating real food, the kid loved french fries (he lovingly referred to them as “ench fries”), and really, really loved tater tots. So we started calling him Tater Tot, and it was shortened over time to Tater.

Tater Magoo came about when I started singing him this goofy little song:
Tater Magoo
Mommy Loves You
Tater Magee
You Love Me
So I guess you can say that Tater Magoo came about because I needed something to rhyme with I love you. I still call him Tater Magoo or T Magoo on a regular basis.

Next we have Little Hitler, which is really self explanatory if you have or ever have been around a toddler. They are demanding little dictators, and it’s really their way or the highway. That one only stuck around for awhile.

Last, Mr. Baron/Frank Baron. If you are an Everybody Loves Raymond fan, then you might recognize Frank Baron as Ray’s dad on the show. Frank’s hair is funny….he has just a ring of hair around the sides of his head, and is bald on top. When Ethan was born, he had the same hair. So Jason and I, as well as our family called him Mr. Baron and Frank Baron. It morphed into Fwank (cute baby-talk for Frank), and Sir.

This is the only picture I have where you can see Tater’s hair. He’s about a week old here. My sister H still calls him Fwank.

We call Lila Drama, Clyde, Tiny McWhiney, Lila Bean, or just Bean.

Lila Bean was the first one that came about. I guess because it sounds similar to lima bean? I don’t know, but we call her Bean or The Bean daily.

We also call her Drama because she is so full of drama and very theatrical…especially with her fits.

Tiny McWhiney started early too because she did lots and lots of whining.

Clyde. Sigh.

She will forever hate this nickname and may be mad when she gets older that I even posted this! Remember Clyde the orangutan from the old 1970’s movie with Clint Eastwood Every Which Way But Loose?

Clyde the monkey’s hair was kinda crazy and always stood up every which way…much like Lila’s…hence, the nickname.


Mia is the baby. She also has lots of nicknames including Onomatopoeia, Mauna, Chun King, the Fat Kid, Silky, and most recently, Chippy.

It all started with Mauna, because Tater couldn’t say “Mia”. So we called her Mauna…and still do.

From that came Onomatopoeia…it’s a fun word to say, but do you know what it means? I did of course, but most family and friends did not. Definition: The use of words (such as hiss or murmur) that imitate the sounds associated with the objects or actions they refer to.

Why Onomatopoeia? Because it’s pronounced on-o-mat-o-pea-ia, and sounds much like Mauna. I guess that’s how I came up with that one.

Then we started calling her Chunky, and although none of my kids are chunky (a relative term, I guess), she’s the chunkiest of the three. Remember those old 80’s commercials for Chun King Chinese food? Try Chun King for a beautiful body…

No? Well, I do. And that’s where Chun King came from.

The Fat Kid is because she’s our fattest kid. And cute. She’s damn cute.

Silky comes from the fact that she has silky, toe head blond hair. And it’s not really silky, it’s always fuzzy and knotty in the back. We call her Silky a lot.

And last but not least, Chippy. Remember when Tater pushed Mia and she chipped her two front teeth? Yeah, well that’s where Jason got Chippy from. I will admit, I’ve never called her that. But he calls her that often.

So there you have it. We never call our kids by their God-given names. Please tell us we’re not the only ones!

Are nicknames popular in your family? What do you call your kids? What’s your nickname?

And so it goes…


  1. Midwest Elle says:
    I am struggling with posting M's real name because it is quite unique {in the United States} and everything I post comes up right away in Google if you Google her name. With a VERY nosey family that starts drama and runs with it, I worry. Some day I will just start using it.
  2. Paul and Kerry says:
    that was fun! I have 18 years worth of nicknames for #1 and 7 years for #2. We would be here all night. Our faves are:

    Big baby and little baby
    princess poo poo
    boo boo baby
  3. Sippy Cup Mom says:
    Such sweet and fun nicknames! I wrote a blog post a couple months ago about Hayden's nicknames (Boo Boo Chicken) and haven't published it yet! Now I need to!
  4. Sippy Cup Mom says:
    Just saw your blogoversary button! Too fun, I had to go find out mine! 44 days! We started right around the same time!
  5. Okay, first I am a little jealous that you only started your blog back in March and you already have this many followers while I have been going at it for some 3 years. Secondly, this business of calling kids by strange names on the mommy blogs is very interesting to me. I'm always intrigued by where these nicknames come from.
  6. frazzledmomma says:
    You seriously want all the nicknames? For ALL SEVEN?? How about just for the last four? Ok. We keep them numbered online to keep the Daddy happy, but the nick names won't give them away.



    Cocoa Butter

    #7 ( who is, as everyone knows, really Logan)
    Bogie (as in, Humphrey Bogart)

    and a bonus.. #3? We call him Bus. As in, the big yellow vehicles full of obnoxious screaming children that pass my house several times a day.
  7. Jessica D Torres says:
    I love nicknames for my kids. My oldest is often called bug, monkey, crazy, and princess. My youngest is belle, little monster, baby bin laden, the terrorist, tutu (because she loves wearing tutus) and BBC (baby butt crack because her crack is always hanging out).
  8. From Tracie says:
    I love all the nickname stories.

    We have one daughter, Katarina, and we do shorten that to Katie. Also, we call her Pookie-wah, and One Sock, and Katie-kins.
  9. I use my kids' real names. Mostly because I wouldn't be able to keep track of them otherwise.

    I actually had my blog when I was pregnant with E and so began the great name search. I couldn't leave my readers (all 24 of them) hanging after I gave birth, so I shared.

    Until we had her, I referred to her as Gertie or Gertrude. It almost stuck, but I had a feeling everyone would lynch me.
  10. Too funny. My kids are Owen and Joel, and I'm not creative enough to give them blog nicknames.

    In real life Owen has been: spud, spuddy buddy, spudanopolis, and supdasaurus.

    Joel has been: Joely. Joel-Joels.

    Sigh. We run out of creativity the second time around.
  11. Funky Mama Bird says:
    We never use Gunne Bear's real name, ever. He is always Gunne Bear, Woodgie, Widget, Love Bugs, Squishy, Squishy Magoo, Love Muffins, Muffin Man and when he was little, Gizmo Baby, Lotus Baby and Peanut.

    My family is actually the same way and I may or may not respond to BeeBee, Sarabee, Captain Crunch and Monkey Doodle when at home. ;)
  12. myevil3yearold says:
    I use their real names, Ethan and Emma but I call them Boo and Evil mostly on my blog and in real life. Boo is short for Boo bear. Evil is self explanatory. Ethan is also Easy E (love 80's rap) and Eman (for He-man)

    Emma is aka as Mighty Midget and the Divine Miss Em
  13. Not a Perfect Mom says:
    I use my kids real names...I use my real name so if you google me you'll figure out who my kids are...
    nicknames...mayor mcpoop, super pooper, poopyhead..hmmm...noticing a theme...
  14. JDaniel4's Mom says:
    JDaniel is part of my son's real name. I love calling him by nicknames. I haven't written about them. After your wonderful post, maybe I should.
  15. We are the same way- all my kids have a million nicknames. For example...

    Olivia we call Lili for short, which morphed into
    Lillehammer (where the Olympics were one year)
    Hammer Head
    Also Lilfred (like Wilfred) which turned into just Fred
    and then Frederick, Fredward...
  16. We have a ridiculous set of names for each kid, too. And by "each kid", I'm including the dog. :)

    And a lot of them just evolved like this, in a weird sort of way.
  17. Love the nicknames! I had to laugh at Clyde, b/c my husband called our youngest that for a while, for the same reason!

    I've heard some people say they don't use nicknames for their kids on their blog b/c they would get confused- but we've called my oldest Monkey since he was a tiny thing and held things with his toes and then when he could climb over the furniture at 8 months and run at 10. Middle, we called Little Bear for a very long time, but eventually got rid of "little." Youngest was the fuzziest thing ever, with a full head of hair and even sideburns when he was born. He looked like a bear cub.

    We have other nicknames for them, too, but this comment is already really long!
  18. Mrs. MidAtlantic says:
    It took me a while to start using Laura's name on my blog. I called her Lulu on the blog, which I never call her in real life! In real life, I call her Chick, Chickie, Chicken, or Chickadee (because she looks like a hungry baby bird a lot of the time). Hubby calls her Minchkin (because she's a mini munchkin).
  19. Hi! This is my first time stopping by! Nicknames are funny things, I find myself calling my daughter something new every day. Ranging from, Pooky to K-Beezy, to Breezy, to B. I'm not sure what she'll tell her Kindergarten teacher her name is...
  20. We have an obscene amount of nicknames for our kids. My daughter has collected almost all of them. She is Cheeks, Mr. James, Steve, FFG, little J & more. Although, Cheeks & Steve are what she's called most.
  21. cornflakegirl74 says:
    Awwww, what a beautiful family you have. And the nicknames are too cute (love tater, personally). The pic of your hubby holding him is just beautiful :)

    My nickname for years was Lala (that's how my younger brother pronounced Charlotte) and that eventually became Lalabean. It was all good and fine until my dad once decided to call me that in the middle of a girl scout meeting. As you can imagine, a tantrum and much crying ensued :p
  22. I call D2 Beyonce because she's bootylicious. Seriously. Her hips don't lie.
  23. Sometimes I worry that Alex will never learn his actual name because I use it so infrequently.
  24. MommaKiss says:
    Oh lord do we have nicknames! The 3yo was born with red hair so he's Lil Red. Or K-Finny fo shizzle. Or #2. The 5 yo is #1, paul joseph (not his name), sweet cheeks, thunder or big thick. Yah. Rarely do we use their names.
  25. ModernMom says:
    Oh your nick names are so so sweet! My two girls are referred to as BlueEyes and SweetGirl on my blog. Have not broken out the real name or their pictures. Hmm Food for thought!
  26. I don't post my sons name mostly because I worry about privacy...ok because I don't want people to love his name so much that they'll steal it :)
    His nickname is Chunky Monkey...he had a monkey that he was attached to thus dubbed Chunky ;)
    He also goes by pimp.
  27. The mad woman behind the blog says:
    OMG, your post and the comments are killing me!
    I usually call Madeleine Jane Mad on my blog but at home DH calls her Bobo (and no, I have no idea why) she's AKA Maddy Bo Baddy, Little Miss Potty pants, Super Bunny, and now Sister. The boy in my belly is The Dude (LOVE me some Big Lebowski) real name to be decided.
  28. We would get along well! My kids all have strange nicknames and I make up songs too. I'm glad I'm not the only one!! LOL
  29. Semi-Slacker Mom says:
    I use their nicknames because that's basically what we call them. Imagine the shock when my littlest started playschool & learned her name wasn't Baby Girl! Just Kidding. maybe. I love Clyde & Tiny McWhiney & I totally see Frank Baron.
  30. I have to say, I loved this post. It seems like I know so little about your kids and now I know them so much more.

    Oh, we have nicknames for 2 of our kids. Hayden is Bubby Gubby. Claire is Miss-E-Claire. Jake and Quinn, well Jake is already a nickname b/c his name is Jacob. and Quinn is usually called Quinn or Quinny.
  31. Sluiter Nation says:
    We call Eddie a MILLION things.

    ONCE I called him Prince Edward, but that didn't seem right...so he became my Eddie Bear or Mr. Bear or Edward Bear (like in Winnie the Pooh).

    For some reason we call him Mumford from time to time (like on Sesame Street...the Magnificent Mumford).

    Cort calls him Short Stack a lot. I called him that once and Cort thought it was hilarious and it stuck.

    I also say from time to time..."hey. you. YOU WITH THE FACE!" and then insert what I want him to stop doing.
  32. Little Hitler *snort* Love it.

    Our eldest (4) is Juice Box. His build is like a little juice box. :)

    Our baby is Jelly Bean. When my husband first saw him, he couldn't believe how tiny he was (in comparison to when my eldest was born) and gave him the nickname.

    To me, it sounds like the making of a new crime show on ABC 'Juice Box and The Jelly Bean'.
  33. Wow, so many cool nicknames in such a short time!

    We don't have many, but my son has been pumpkin head and my daughter's been sweet pea for as long as I can remember.

    But not in public!

    I don't think I've used my kids real names in my blog, I guess just to keep them from being embarrassed? But I suppose that doesn't make sense, since I only have one of each and it's obvious which one I'm talking about!
  34. Yes, I use pseudo-names for my cherubs...heck, I don't even use their *real* nicknames in my blog! I like to think I'm granting them anonymity. I don't show their faces, either...just fuzzy, distant shots, caricatures and back-of-head shots. Am I truly giving them privacy with these maneuvers? Idunno.

    If you'd like to know their "real" nicknames:

    Twin A - Boogsie, Boogie-woogs
    Twin B - Manly, Mr. Man
    6 y.o. - Bunny, Bun-Bun, and most recently: Super-dee-doop. Don't ask.
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  36. Life Without Pink says:
    I dont use my kids' real names either. I started with using nicknames that I dont call them in real life, I know weird. Right now I say my "4 yr old" and my "2 yr old"....I do have lots of cute nicknames for them so maybe I'll have to reconsider!
  37. Hello! I'm Kate. says:
    I used to call my son by his real name on my blog. Now I call him Lboy. We call him that in real life anyways. But I just still don't feel comfortable using his real name.

    Those nicknames are pretty cute! I love "Little Hitler"--it's so true that toddlers definitely rule your life!
  38. My brother is JT (a nickname he created for himself, which I thought was super lame at the time), Jas (Jace), Jay, and names I call him sometimes which aren't nice or worth repeating.

    My sister is Steph, Stephie, Steph-cha, Fire Starter (after the Stephen King book - she's kinda crazy) and Mafia Princess (my best friend and I named her that when she was very small - she was always so threatening and mean and making you think she'd break your kneecaps).]

    My baby brother is Steve, Stevie-Weevie, Steve-o, and Baby. He also gets called by his full name in anger so often it's practically a nickname.
  39. We have nicknames too..they sound normal to us, but I bet someone from the outside thinks we are CRAZY!!!
  40. Blake is aka Banch (short for Banshee, short for Milk Banshee), Mr. Miserable Life, Crankasaurus, and Dude.
    Everything around here has a nickname. The horses are "the bitches", the chickens are "the bakacks" and the dogs are "brown dog" and "that stupid dog".
  41. That was cute. I love learning how children get their names and nick names. It will be a wonder if Lucas ever learns his name. We call him everything but Lucas. He's Buddy, Boo Boo, LP, Little Piggy, Stinkapotamus, Stinky, Sneaker, Monkey, Peanut, Pumpkin, Crazy--often coupled with Larry for some strange reason, Giggle Box, Lovey, Doodles, Pikachu, etc., etc., etc.
  42. The Schweitzers says:
    Here's the age of technology for you. Since both my kids' names start with "K", when texting my mom (and to shorten the text message) I would refer to my oldest, Kaiden, as Big K. My youngest, Kamrin, ended up in a day care where there was another, older, Cameron. To keep them straight, the caregiver called one Big Cam and my son, Little Kam, which evolved into Little Man. Kaiden always calls him that. I can see him as a big football player whom everyone calls, "Little Man."
  43. Dysfunctional Mom says:
    My kids have nicknames too, and it's funny how one morphs into another. Did you have to think back to remember how any of the nicknames came to be? I do!
    Let's see, my oldest son is most often called Fat Boy, because he was a chunky baby (although he's almost 18 now). My oldest daughter is called Chicken, and I have no idea where it came from.
    Andrew is mostly just called Drew. Elayna my youngest daughter has the most nicknames, Mosquito is one of them, Drama Queen is another....
  44. Dysfunctional Mom says:
    Forgot to say - we have a dog named Tater Tot! But we mostly call him Tater or Tate. =)
  45. Booyah's Momma says:
    I have a Chippy, too! And we actually call him that in real life. But not because he has a chipped tooth. That would make a much better story, though.
  46. Sally and Mike says:
    So cute! It is really funny the nicknames we come up with that you can never plan. We call Wesley, Wes, W, dubs, dub-a-doo, little buddy...that;s it so far but I'm sure many more will come out of his name!
  47. Funny thing about nicknames. They find you even when you try to avoid them. Thing One's real name is Eric. We chose it because we thought it was "un-nickname-able" - but I call him, "E" at home all the time. And his friends tried to nickname him "Ric" and a few call him "Nubby"

    Thing Two is Jason who more than made up for the lack of nicknames for his brother: Jay, JP, Jase, Boo, Boo Bear, and Punkin (Oh, God...don't tell anyone that I told you about Punkin).
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  1. [...] year, I told you all of the kids’ nicknames, and how they came about. Most of them are still in rotation, and there are some new ones now, [...]
  2. [...] told you before that we rarely call our kids by their names and that we always call our kids by their nicknames – and they have a lot of them! The one that has stuck around longest for Mia (and that all of [...]
  3. […] I’ve talked about nicknames before. In my very large family, we rarely call each other by our God-given […]