Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Sun-Star: a Naming Story


In real life, Hedgehog isn't called Hedgehog but rather something much lovelier, much less clumsy silly, and much more graceful. When she was soon-to-be but not quite here, Sarge and I were feeling that strong excitement that not-yet parents feel, and loving books as we do, inspiration came in part from a familiar bookish quarter, our beloved Tolkien's "The Return of the King."

At the end of that book a little girl is born to Sam Gamgee, and Frodo suggests a name: "what about elanor, the sun-star, you remember the little golden flower in the grass of Lothlorien?"

The year of Elanor's conception was known in the Shire as "...a marvelous year. Not only was there wonderful sunshine and delicious rain, in due times and perfect measure, but there seemed something more: an air of richness and growth, and a gleam of a beauty beyond that of mortal summers that flicker and pass upon this Middle-earth. All the children born or begotten in that year, and there were many, were fair to see and strong, and most of them had a rich golden hair that had before been rare among hobbits. The fruit was so plentiful that young hobbits very nearly bathed in strawberries and cream; and later they sat on the lawns under the plum-trees and ate, until they had made piles of stones like small pyramids or the heaped skulls of a conqueror, and then they moved on. And no one was ill, and everyone was pleased, except those who had to mow the grass."

So it is with us. We have always thought of Hedgehog as our sun-star, a beaming little yellow flower. If a person could be known as a color, she would be known as bright yellow, full of warmth, a tiny shiny blossom of happy promise, a sign of the best and luckiest of times.

30 comments:

Mike129 said...

Beautiful.

Princess said...

You can't help but miss her already, thankyou forsharing such a wonderful story Leah...

Ronda Laveen said...

Ah, this story makes my heart smile! I do remember that part of the story. What also strikes me was that she picked a poem to read at school which you posted about several months back. If I remember correctly, it was also from Tolkien and Lothlorien. It's in her blood and DNA.

Jimmy Bastard said...

I look forward to the day when her DNA truly blossoms, and we all get a chance to read the words embedded in her heart by her talented mammy.

nick said...

That's lovely. I like the way you dipped into a favourite story to pick the name, rather than just plucking a name out of nowhere like most parents.

Pat said...

No child could ask for a better provenance.

tony said...

Tis How A Life Should Be.

Mrsupole said...

Ah, truly a wonderful way to pick a name. And when you see the sun each day then you know that she is bringing some sunshine into your lives. What more could one ask for.

Keep enjoying yourself and having fun. She will be back before you know it.

God bless.

Brian Miller said...

what a beautiful story behind her name...love LOTR...does she has hair on her feet like other hobbits? smiles.

savannah said...

lovely story from a lovely woman, sugarpie! xoxoxox from the sovereign state of georgia! ;~D

willow said...

Beautiful, beautiful post, Leah. Yellow makes me think of my daughter, as well. Not only because it's her favorite color, but because she's blond, golden skinned, and is like a ray of sunshine.

California Girl said...

Is "Hedgehog" her nickname?

California Girl said...

Never mind, I looked at the post below and saw the answer to my question. I call my two sons,
"Stinkbug" and "Little Angel". There is no literary reference for either!

Walker said...

Wow, that was a beautiful story on how you picked her name

VE said...

Thanks for the memories of the trilogy from the book. With the movies out, I haven't enjoyed the rich detail of the books in a long time...

Old Knudsen said...

A five pointed star I must say, I'm naming my next child Frodo or maybe Spock. The thing about the movies is they reminded me of the books dead on.
May she grow up strong and fair and be a force for good in the world.

Roy said...

Ah, a fellow Tolkien-cultist! Heh, heh! It's a good thing I don't have any children, or there's be a real Tom Bombadil wandering the streets of Newport. Lovely story, all the same.

BTW, concerning that particularly fruitful year in the book... I've been known to finish a particularly tasty pint with: "Ah! That was a proper 1420, that was!" It confuses the great unwashed but brings a smile and even a laugh to the knowing.

Tina said...

Leah, this is my first theme Thursday but you and I are already friends. This is a typically beautiful post of yours, wonderful, warm, lovely.

My own yellow post is not so sunny!

The Clean White Page

Tom said...

we picked a name from a favorite story also, Gareth, from the Knights of the Round table. Too bad he was beheaded by Lancelot...not a very nice ending.

PattiKen said...

This is a lovely tribute to your "little little yellow flower."

Mine is here.

Baino said...

Sweet way to name a kid and if she's anything like you portray her yellow is perfect, just perfect.

LadyCat said...

Wonderful story of how a name was born. Yellow is such a happy color and it sounds like that describes her perfectly.

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Megan said...

*Like*

:)

Marina said...

beautiful story, beautiful name.

Mr. Shife said...

Where is the like button? Oh wait this isn't Facebook. Very nice and beautiful Leah. I enjoyed it immensely; thank you.

jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com said...

lovely story,
i like hedgehog,
cute post!

jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com said...

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/04/01/lets-double-thursday-fun/

here is my yellow post,
hope that you enjoy it.

cheers,
;)

lettuce said...

this is beautiful leah, so lovely

what a joy

muralimanohar said...

What a beautiful story. I love names that have a history to them like that. My dd is named from the Srimad Bhagavatam, and was not a name that we had even considered, not even close, but when she came, it was suddenly the most perfect name for her, long story why.

Ds, we had no names, and after 3 days, asked dd, and she named him. :p We didn't even know she knew that name, either, lol.