How to choose baby names

So you’re having a baby. And you need that perfect name that will let him stand out from the crowd, will proclaim to all and sundry that this is an important and person of special circumstances.

What shall it be, then, Mr. and Mrs Potter?’ I warn you, if you decide to name your son Harry, expect to hear “Where’s your wand, Potter?” or “Hogwarts toss you out again, Harry?”

Not quite so simple, is it? Lets face it, folks, there really are some very important things you should consider before you stamp that precious bundle of joy with some whimsical and enchanting title. Cute might be your first instinct, but just how cute is that going to be over time because, realistically, your child’s name is something that he will have to live with for the rest of his life, or until she marries. It should be chosen with care, consideration and all the love you have for your little darling and the man or woman this child will become.

Be smart. Take some time to think carefully. Say the name you’re considering, not just once, but several times, so its not the first blush you’re hearing but the true ring. The name you arrive at, first and last, should flow smoothly to the ear.

Another thing, the name you choose should most certainly not not not ever form a phrase that might come back to haunt you and more importantly that babbling bundle in your arms who is looking up at you so trustingly.

You ask why? Well, let me tell you, I know of a person who works as an operator in a call center. One day she answered a call from a client who said his name was Private Richard Parts. He went on to add that he preferred to be called Dick. That’s right, gentle readers, this operator found herself talking to Dick Parts, or Private Dick.

This is what can happen when parents don’t consider how the first and last name will sound together. Listen carefully to the sound of the name you are considering. Does it lend itself to being the butt of a cruel joke, because if there is even the smallest chance of it, someone is going to pounce on it and use it to torment your child as he steps out into the social world.

While your considering how your child’s name will sound, also be aware of what his initials might spell out. Scott Allen Pollander might sound perfectly safe. S.A.P. Really want your child coming home in tears because the school bully has begun calling him sap?

So, you think, how about Honey? Flower? Spring? Very seventies, and very dangerous. That bully will have a field day with these. The same with Bambi, Muffy and the typical stereotype preppy names.

Okay, you think, how about something old fashioned and majestic sounding…Perhaps a family name like great great grandfather Delbert or great great aunt Mertile. Perfectly good names. Dignified. Antique.

You might be able to get away from dangerous ground by shortening these to Bert and Merri.

Popular and common names are usually the safest way to go when its all said and done. But not too common. No one wants to be the fifth Tony in the class. That’s just too common for anyone to bear well. But not to fear, you can check a baby names book or website and very likely find a variation for a common name that sounds right and is just that bit to the side of ordinary. One example is my very own daughter, Valene, whose name was derived from Valerie.

Now, proud parents, go forth and choose your child’s name armed with the knowledge of a few possible pitfalls. Just keep in mind if it all goes wrong and the name you decide on fails to please, you have your entire lifetime to make amends, and children do love unconditionally….Just not always their name.

Original post: Sunday, August 2, 2009


How to earn rewards at


I’ve been a member of Memolinks for a month or so now, just one of a couple dozen “Make money online” sites I’ve joined to blow time since I don’t care for the gaming scene and you can only do so many rounds of computer solitaire before your brains start to seep out your ears and make pretty little grey matter pictures on your pillow.

Although there are several ways to get your rewards, Memolinks “cashes out” primarily in the form of gift cards.

But before you can cash out you need to build up points because each reward requires a specific amount of points to redeem..kind of like those “Green Stamps” our grandmom’s used to spend hours licking to fill books the would then redeem for gifts.

So how do you earn those points, you ask. Up until today I’ve only responded to the email offers, but now seems like a good time to report on why Memolinks is a site of interest. Browsing over the site, I can see that I’ve been overlooking some decent opportunities to get points, because they really do have more to offer than just the emails.

1. Emails
Like the email for cash boards, some of the emails memolinks send out are simply advertisements, worth no points, others can earn points by clicking on them.

2. On-line Store Ads
By clicking on the various stores and restaurants listed in Memolink’ directory of on-line shops you can find out what each site requires to earn points. I clicked on one store that asked that you sign up to receive an ebook book. Easy enough, although I did have to skip through several other offers to get to the ebook. Fairly common on these sort of sites and only takes a couple minutes to flip through the various ads.

The ebook really does have some very good tips for ‘soon to be parents’. FYI, I’m planning to print off a copy of this ebook for each of my children, design an attractive cover page and include it with the next gift I give them.

So in less than five minutes I’ve earned 440 points towards a gift card, a cute whimsical gift for my children and some nice tips to baby proof grandmom’s house as well as the grandchild’s. All for the grand total of absolutely no dollars. Not bad.

Mind you each online store has its own requirements and not all of these are free.

3. Coupons and Deals
Clicking on “coupons and deals” brings up a variety of different on-line stores that offer a ‘points per dollar’ opportunity. Each store has its own point value, so check out a variety of stores that might have what you are looking for and buy through the better

deal offered. If you shop on-line regularly, clicking through to your favorite on-line stores through Memolinks is a sweet cash back option.

4. Surveys
Folks who enjoy taking surveys can earn points on Memolinks as well. The surveys offer various point values and are only paid if you complete the survey.

5. Refer A Friend
Momolinks offers 100 points for each friend you refer who joins.

Keep in mind that new offers and ways to add up the points are added all the time.

Now that you know how to make the points, you might be interested in learning how to redeem those points? Well, there are several ways to cash out. Each of these methods are different depending on the on-line store or if you choose another method to cash out, the method you choose to use.

1. Online Gift Cards
Cash out at several levels (cash value), depending on each store you are requesting a gift card from. Each level requires a specific number of points redeemed

2. Pay Pal
Memolinks does offer its Memogold members the option of cashing out through Pay Pal instead of getting a gft card. This option is not offered to the members who have a basic membership.

3. Cash
Memolinks does offer the option of payment by check, but you would do well to check your banking institution first because they only send something called a memolink checks that are made out to CASH.

4. Charity
Memolink does have several links to charities where you can cash out as a donation. These are offered in several cash value levels for specific points.

One word of warning. Memolinks isn’t for the get rich quick crowd. It can take a couple weeks to get your points recorded after you complete the offer, but if you go into it looking at it as another way to save a few pennies in these financially dangerous days, and keep your expectations real, you should find this site a nice place to blow a few minutes.

Originally posted to previous blog: Saturday, August 1, 2009