Relative Nicknames

My husband has a sister with the same name as me, so when I joined the family things got confusing. The family members quickly began referring to me as Rachel Sparkle, obviously taken from my Twitter handle/online screen name, which in turn is a play on my maiden name. Now that we have 3.5 sweet nieces (one is still cooking), they call me Aunt Sparkle, a nickname that makes me so happy!

So I got curious about grandma/grandpa and aunt/uncle nn's that are a variation on the person's actual name. In my own family we have:

Margaret-->Maggie (grandma)

and Danny--> Big D (grandfather)

What fun relative nicknames do you know? Any that are related to the person's name?


July 22, 2015 1:20 PM

My son since childhood has called his father Dab (rhyming with mob, not tab).  This came from Goldilocks when Daddy Bear became DaBear (like the Chicago Bears), and then Dab.  When my son dedicated his first book to his parents, he called his father Dab, and some busybody know-it-all reader complained publicly about the "typo."  Funny how random strangers always seem to know better...

July 25, 2015 7:52 PM

This reminds of of the "Unpleasant 'helpful' people" thread! I could understand how someone might write to the publisher about it -- because there are some glaring typos out there -- complaining publicly is just in bad taste IMO; especially assuming a "typo" in a dedication!

July 25, 2015 9:03 PM

My son IS the publisher--that way he gets to keep all the money for himself :-).

July 22, 2015 1:31 PM

Aunt Sparkles is adorable!

My SIL goes by Super Kelly, instead of Auntie Kelly. When I was pregnant (first grandkids), I saw Little Bill for some reason, and the grandmother there went by Alice the Great. I thought it was fun, and Kelly was so helpful that I suggested she be Super Kelly. She liked the idea, and the idea stuck. Now even her nieces and nephews on her husband's side call her this, even though some of them were tweens when she joined the family.

My mom and dad are Barbara and Herbert. When my dad was growing up, he was called Herbie, but his mom called him Hoobie (I told that story elsewhere), and I always thought that would be a cute Grandpa nickname. My mom tells a story of a little girl who couldn't say her name and called her Babu instead, which I thought would be a good pair with Hoobie. She didn't like it, though, and was adamant that the first grandkids get to name the grandparents. So when they came along, I called my parents "Grandma Barbara" and "Granddad Herbie" in the hopes that the twins would settle on Babu and Hoobie themselves.

I was close--they're now ßɑƅɑ & Ηεεƅȋɛ, instead. I'd still prefer Hoobie to Ηεεƅȋɛ, because of the Jeebies thing, but to my kids that's just his name. My mom loves ßɑƅɑ, since it is occasionally used in Japan as a short form of Obachan (Grandmother). I think it's grandmother in some Eastern European languages, too, as in ßɑƅɑ Yaga. It's somewhat confusing for my nephews, though, since their other grandparents speak Cantonese, and ßɑƅɑ means Daddy to them.

P.S. Now I'm curious...why Sparkles? (You don't have to answer if you don't want to!)

July 22, 2015 2:50 PM

I love those stories! Super Kelly is an awesome name. It reminds me of a friend who called her grandmother Greatmama because she was better than grand. :D 

I don't mind sharing! My maiden name is Sparkman. When I got on Twitter (before I was married) I was looking for a new handle using my name in a creative way, and RachSparkles came to mind. My friends say it fits my personality. :)

July 24, 2015 12:26 PM

A friend of mine has a mother named Judy, and Judy's grandkids call her Juju; another friend's mother is named Agnes, and Agnes's grandkids call her Aggie.  Both of those are super-cute, I think.

July 26, 2015 11:07 AM

They are super cute, thanks for sharing!

July 24, 2015 6:23 PM

We actually nicknamed my sister after my cousin's dog, just like in Indiana Jones. (It's not Indiana.) 20+ years later, and my cousin and I still call her by the dog's name.

July 26, 2015 11:11 AM

Cute! I always loved the scene in Indiana Jones where Indy's dad revealed he took the name of his childhood dog!

July 25, 2015 10:41 AM

I have an Aunt Suzanne and an Uncle Jon. When my sister was little, she pronounced their names Ann Dudan (rhymes with Sudan), and Juncle On. Whenever we see them, we still greet them by these names. My cousins used to call our grandparents Baba and Juju (for Ira and Judy), but they stopped around the time they were 11 and 13. Now they just say Grandma and Grandpa like the rest of us.

On the other side of the family, my Nana is also named Judy. Also, my Papa's brother married a woman named Judy. Since my grandparents were married first, the family took to calling her Judy 1, and calling my aunt Judy 2. It's been nearly 50 years, and that's still how we differentiate.

July 26, 2015 11:10 AM

Those are great nicknames. Juncle On is right up my alley; so funny! It reminds me of my mom's cousins, named Janan and Johnny. Those names didnt flow well to their ears, so they have always called them Janan and Janonny. 

July 26, 2015 11:14 AM

Not exactly family, but when I worked in the one year old class at a daycare I had lots of nicknames. As each child developed their speech, they had a different way of saying Rachel. I was Daychel, Day-shoe, Ray-juice, and Dodo. Unfortunately, one of them stuck. Years later, a whole family still calls me Dodo whenever I see them! 

July 30, 2015 9:33 AM

When my oldest was learning to talk, he pronounced "Grandma" as "Doona".  I really wish that had stuck, because it was adorable and Doona Choan (Joan) and Doona Wawa (Laura) loved it, too. 

August 7, 2015 1:09 AM

My BIL and sister are Christopher and Stephanie. DS nn'd him Uncle Ferfer, but refused to give my sister her name until he was about 21 months. She went by Steffi, so I was rooting for Aunt Fifi, but she was dubbed Aunt Mimi. He's almost 14, and she's still Aunt Mimi.

August 9, 2015 8:22 AM

Me and my sisters all have "normal/boring" nicknames that are not really uncommon for our names... Lorena -> Lori, Francesca -> Frankie, Arianna -> Aria and I'm Giulia -> Giugiu or Giu. Me and my sisters call our brother Matteo just Matt, but all of his friends call him "The Warrior" or just "Warrior". Our last name (well my maiden name actually) is W@rren and my brother has a black belt in Karate, so that's how people came up with his name.

My uncle is Paul, but everybody in our family calls him Papa Bear, because he looks like a big teddy bear and he's so cuddly, he always hugs everyone. Sometimes we call my aunt Christine (his wife) Mama Bear, just because she's his wife ;)

I have a little cousin Isobel who always ran around telling people her name was Lebosi (Isobel spelt backwards) and it kind of stuck, so now she's just Lebosi to us.