So the question has come up: how’d we transport all the goodies from Broad Summit? A good question. Which leads nicely into my final summit report (no really, this is my last post about it, I promise). There are two answers to the question: Totebags. And Toyotas.

Each attendee was given a personalized totebag from Lands’ End so they could haul their lovely gifties home. The bags are ginormous. And I totally have a thing for ginormous totebags — you know, roomy enough for beach towels or blankets, plus food, plus a camera bag, plus all the things your children are likely to collect on any given outing. So I lurve my new bag. I used mine as my carry-on during the flight home. I was wearing navy and stripes and the red looked totally awesome with my outfit. (Because red + navy is yummy.)

To haul the peoples around, Toyota lent us a fleet of their prettiest cars. I did most of my driving in a Highlander and a Sienna (with Laurie and Jordan and Megan and Dorothy). Both cars are very roomy. And extra-nice for me, I was able to see some of the friends I’d made at the Toyota Studio Tour last year — including Jean Aw of NotCot. Whom I adore. At one point, Jean, who attends far more techy-ish events (and far fewer girly events like the summit) said something like: Geez. I can’t believe all the camera equipment attendees brought to the summit — the tech companies should be targeting this crowd…

Question inspired by the initials on my totebag: How many of you weren’t given a middle name when you were born? And related question: How many of you have not given middle names to your own children?

I’m so curious. I didn’t have a middle name while growing up. I was Gabrielle Stanley. And then when I married, I (conveniently) took Stanley as my middle name. I didn’t think not having a middle name was that unusual, but at the summit, the topic came up and I was the only one out of 30 that didn’t have a middle name as a child.

68 thoughts on “Initials”

  1. My sisters and I all have middle names and my sister who is married and I both dropped our maiden names and kept the middle names.

    My husband and his brother have middle names, but his sister doesn't. You better believe there will not be such sexism in my family. All children shall have middle names no matter the gender.

  2. I didn't have one and you can bet your bottom dollar that every single one of my children will get a middle name.

    (Little childhood issue there? Maybe.)

    Yes, I took my maiden name as my middle name.

  3. I was the same as you, no middle name. My mom hated having four names when she got married, so she didn't give her girls one. As a child I hated it, and made up the name "Elizabeth" as my middle name. I actually have Girl Scout certificates and other things made out to "Brooke Elizabeth".

    I just like the sound of a middle name. And the history it adds. We gave our son the name of my grandfather and my daughter has my mother's name as her middle name.

  4. i wasn't given a middle name by my parents but i now use my maiden name. i have a daughter and i did give her a middle name. partly because i always wanted one when i was growing up; partly because we wanted her named after 2 grandmothers. sometimes i'm still up in the air about it-but i guess it's too late now. ;)

  5. I am loving all these comments! I never had a middle name and kept my maiden name. But my husband thinks that is totally weird and so we used family names as middle names for our 2 girls. It is a nice way to honor our moms, and McKissick would be a hefty future middle name!

  6. I don't have a middle name. I had never heard of converting ones maiden name to a middle name (I'm Canadian & not Mormon) or maybe I would have done that.

    Somehow the bank that issued my Visa card decided that my middle initial was "H" so I get quite a kick out of that. Hilary? Heidi? Hester? Hilda? Henrietta? Harriet? Haven? Hannah?…

  7. I had no middle name, and always felt cheated because my eight siblings (yes, eight) all had middle names, and I thought – what, when they got to me they got lazy? Or they forgot? Now my last name is hyphenated, so technically I still don't have a middle name. But my daughter does.

  8. Me too! My maiden name was Castillo and my dad always wanted us to remember our heritage (despite my freckled, red head appearance) so he didn't give middle names for the girls in our family with the intention for us to take it as a middle name.

  9. I have a middle name and I prefer it to my given name but hardly anyone ever gets to hear it. :(

    My kids all have a middle name. My daughter goes by both her first and given name-interchangeably depending on the crowd she's in which I think is fun. She loves both her names.

    I am South African and had never heard of using your maiden name as a middle name before I met my American (Mormon) MIL who did. Since then I noticed many LDS women doing it. Is it more prevalent in LDS circles(particularly in the West?)

    My husband's middle name is an *initial* which is so bizarre to me that it used to actually infuriate me. His parents could never come up with a logical enough explanation about that for me and it made me mental! They thought it was hilarious.

    I asked them if they did it just so that he could qualify to be a GA one day ;) They deny it but I remain unconvinced :)

    My sons' middle names are all after family members. I only regret one of them ;)

    Finally, my sister chose her own middle name (and had it legally added) when she was about nine.

  10. I love naming children – I have to restrain myself to only give them a first, middle and last name! Both of my daughters actually go by their middle names and my son (who is a third) goes by a nick name used by his great grandfather and unrelated to his first and middle names! I miss my middle name as I use my maiden name. I love LandsEnd totes – and each member of my family has a different color for theirs (except for me – of course!) and we have a family color for our beach/picnic bag!!! All with a monogram, of course!

  11. we just had our first girl after 3 boys. I am embarrased to say that after struggling and stuggling with the middle name my husband got up to bless her and gave her two! HA! My family was dying. We couldnt disappoint my father or his mom.

  12. What a fun question for discussion! My husband doesn't have a middle name. He thought about taking his mom's maiden name as his middle name when we got married but ultimately just stayed with no middle name. (I guess the topic came up then because I was deciding if I would use my maiden name as my middle name or keep my middle name, I chose the latter.)

    Personally, I love middle names and have enjoyed thinking of them for my 4yo son and soon-to-arrive #2. For our older son we used my mom's maiden name and for #2 we're strongly considering my MIL's maiden name.

  13. My nickname is from my middle name-a popular thing in the south, but not in Huntsville, AL, where I grew up-so that caused all kinds of trauma for me on the first day of school. I always hated that I couldn't just answer "here" like everyone else but had to say "actually, it's not Mary, I go by Katie." It became more annoying when I moved out of the south to Chicago and couldn't cash a check because it was made out to Katie Bowman, not Mary K Bowman as was on my license. To be fair, it was a currency exchange right next to Cabrini Green so I'm sure lots of crackheads came in with stolen checks. Great to be lumped in with THAT crowd. so I guess the moral is be glad you don't have a middle name?

  14. Gabi- I never had a middle name either. When I was little, my parents told me my first name (Joanna) was beautiful enough to stand alone so they didn't give me a middle name. When I got married, I kept my maiden name, so I still just had two initials. Monogrammed items have always been tough- it just doesn't look the same with 2 instead of 3 initials!

    I love the ginormous canvas totes, too, though I prefer LL Bean's version b/c you can get them with extra long handles, too. I give these as baby gifts all the time.

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