To honor our fathers and those who are important to us we have chosen very special names for our boys.
Here are the stories behind each of them and how we chose their names:
Samuel Clifford – Sam was born late into the night Friday (or early morning Saturday) but he didn’t have a name I think until Sunday. I really liked the name Samuel but really liked the name Samantha too and thought I couldn’t have both so I kept trying out names but that one seemed to fit him, along with Clifford. We also liked that Samuel was a biblical and a Book of Mormon name. We wanted him to have a family name as well so we chose Clifford which is Daddy’s middle name and Great Grandpa Marcroft’s name. He had an grumpy old man face that reminded everyone of “grumpa” Clifford. So it fit and he became Samuel Clifford. And it just so happened that as he grew he also grew some strawberry blonde hair just like Grandpa Clifford’s. :)
Nathanael James – Nathan was born on a Friday night as well but he came a little faster and was here by 9 pm or so. After having him lots of people had ideas for names but my sister Cathy was going through a few. One she said was Nathanael James and right away I had the feeling that that was supposed to be his name. I didn’t say anything right away because I wanted to decide with Thaddeus later when everyone else had gone. Later ended up being the morning and when we began to talk about names that is the only one that came up since Thad had had the same feeling about the name as well. Nathanael is a friend and disciple of Jesus in the New Testament, some even say he was an Apostle. And James is Grandpa Marcroft’s middle name so it was perfect! Now, at age 5 he is quite stubborn and tells me that his name is “just Nathan” when I call Nathanael James. Oh well. I know that it is supposed to be his name—hopefully he’ll understand one day why.
Daniel Driggs – Daniel broke traditions a bit by being born a) in the summer instead of October and b) not on Friday, but kept with the tradition of being born on a day that was a multiple of five but I digress. His name is special because his big brothers loved the stories about Daniel in the Bible. We needed a family name for his middle name but my own father had made me promise not to use his names for any of my sons. We still wanted to honor him so we chose Driggs—we almost chose David, my paternal grandfather’s name, but wanted to save that for another boy first name. I think that it sounds nice and is a nice way to honor him! :)
Benjamin Joseph – So many people were amazed each time I was pregnant that I never knew the names of the boys before they were born. All of the older boys’ names were chosen after they were born, but I had an experience before Ben was born that really made me think that Benjamin would be his name but I still wanted to hold him and see if it fit before I told anyone so I only related the story to my husband. I was at a stake baptism (as part of my stake calling) and a family from our ward sang “How Can I Be?” and I was really touched by the lyrics. When they sang about King Benjamin the wise I felt a great love for him and felt that I wanted my boys to grow up to be like these men in the scriptures I was naming them after. When he was born we thought about it again and played around with one other name but came back to Benjamin who was also important in the Bible. Then for a middle name—again, we thought of David, but wanted to keep it for a first name, and then we thought of Joseph. There are a few Josephs in the family--Joseph (his brother that goes by his second name Chris), Joseph (great grandma Marcroft’s brother who died in the war), and Joseph on my side of the family too—it was perfect!
So there you have it. All of their names, why they fit and how they came to be!
Happy Father’s Day to all of the men who have inspired me and continue to inspire me and my family. And lots of love too! :)