(This is the post I would have done on Friday if my computer hadn't been kidnapped.)
As most of you know, I use my real name here, and also my husband's name, but except for Arwen, who uses her real name at her blog -- which I think is how most of you got here-- I've been using pseudonyms for the rest of my family. Since Arwen has been using real names on her blog bit by bit, and all my kids are active online, in the interests of simplicity I'm going to give you "The Name Post."
In order of appearance my children are:
Arwen Elizabeth (you knew that ;-) ) ,
Branwen Elanor ("Rosie" -- Rose is her confirmation name, and her husband "Anthony" is really Larry),
Miriel Margaret ("Maggie"),
Brandon Ransom ("George" -- confirmation name again),
Tirienne Anne ("Katie" -- confirmation name Catherine) and
Kelson Reuel ("Tommy" -- our last name is Thomas.)
I actually have been using our grandchildren's real names, so Daniel, Camilla, Matthew and Blaise they remain.
The names are mostly all from Tolkien and Lewis. "Arwen Elizabeth" scans the same as "Arwen Undomiel". (And if you're not a total Lord of the Rings geek and don't know this already, "ennorath" in Arwen's blog URL is Quenya (Elvish) for "Middle Earth".)
The name Branwen is used a lot in the Brother Cadfael novels of Ellis Peters, and is the name of a major character in the Wrinkle in Time books. Elanor is both Samwise and Rose's daughter in LOTR and a tiny white flower of Middle Earth.
Miriel was both an Elf (the mother of Feanor - Silmarillion)) and the last ruling queen of Numenor (read the appendices of LOTR). Margaret just sounded good with that, AND we were trying to give the kids one "normal-sounding" sorta-kinda-saint's name to use if desired. (Elanor sounds like Eleanor).
Brandon's name snuck in there when we weren't looking -- we wanted something that sounded good with "Ransom" (Elwin Ransom is the main character in Lewis' Space Trilogy. The name became popular about 17 seconds after we picked it!
Tirienne is named for Tirian, the last King of Narnia. We loved it, but didn't think you could do that to a boy, so we feminized it. It's pronounced "Tee-ree-ENNE". (Or, as we told my dad when he struggled with it, think of a letter N crying -- a "teary N".)
Kelson is the main character in the first-written trilogy of Chronicles of the Deryni by Katherine Kurtz. And Reuel is for John Ronald REUEL Tolkien. I guess we'd given up on the "normal" by then, although Reuel is a Biblical name meaning "Servant of God."
I realize this is a lot of information packed into a small post, but I thought I'd head off the most obvious questions in advance. Feel free to comment, and be aware that I'll be using real names from now on!