Today is my name day so I decided to write a short post and tell you what a name day is. If you were hoping for advice on naming your characters, then no, this isn’t that kind of post (I suppose it might inspire you though). I’ve already written about that and I’ll include the links to those tips at the bottom of this post.
So. Name days.
As you might’ve guessed it, a name day is the day on which you celebrate your given name. The celebration is similar to a birthday, in that people gather together to wish you well and give you presents and flowers. We have a saying in Bulgaria that one does not invite guests to their name day, but you have to treat everyone who comes over. Even so, most people prefer to plan their name days, especially if they intend to take their friends and family out for drinks and/or dinner.
When is a person’s name day?
Well, that depends on their name, actually.
For example, if you are named after a saint, then your name day is on the date on which that saint is celebrated; if your name contains “snow”, then you celebrate in winter, on the first day the snow falls; if, like me, you are named after a flower, then you celebrate on “Flowers Day” (called “Cvetnica/Cvetnitsa” in Bulgaria; it’s the Sunday before Easter Sunday).
How do I celebrate my name day?
My grandmother and one of my cousins are also named after flowers so it’s a family tradition for all of us to meet at grandma’s place and stuff ourselves silly with grandma and grandpa’s delicious cooking (it pays off to have a grandpa who used to be a professor in a culinary institute) while catching up on who’s been up to what.
My cousin and I receive presents (my parents buy her something and her parents buy something for me) and money from our grandparents; grandma insist on not getting her anything but flowers, so we usually stick to that, although this year I got her a little something:
She really loves this color which is why I also bought her a rose in the same one.
So, the family reunion and mouthwatering food are what I had to look forward to on Sunday.
I promised you to tell you where “catmint” – the name I identify myself with on the mighty internet, comes from. Here’s the story.
It started with Wattpad. A shock, I know!
I’d been reading on that site for a while and I was thinking about making an account, so, naturally, I wondered about a user name. I planned to post my own stories there, but didn’t want anyone I knew to stumble on them (although no one I knew used Wattpad) so I wasn’t going to go with “Dilyana”.
On one of the days I was wondering about a user name, I was checking a word in the English-Bulgarian dictionary (don’t even remember which word it was) and as my eyes scanned for the unknown word, they landed on “catmint”. I liked that one (hey, it has “cat” in it!) so I read what it meant and thought “Perfect! This is the name for me!”
For those of you who don’t know: catmint is a plant that has a similar effect on cats as valerian. But what does that have to do with me?
My pet name is Dilyanka which is the common name for valerian in my country. I’d even thought about having “Valeria” or “Vallery” as a user name, but somehow neither seem appealing for that (although I have a character on Wattpad whose name is Vallery).
So when I found the word “catmint”, I thought “The plant has a similar effect as that of the plant I’m named after, and hey, it has “cat” in it; CatMint it is!”
“5” was suggested by Wattpad when I tried to register as “CatMint” – that was already taken – and I ended up as CatMint5.
So that’s the story behind my user name and now you know why I have a name day. Also, you learned when Snow White’s name day is. What about you?
Do you celebrate name days?
What do you usually do or what would you do, if you had a name day?
If you were writing a story, would you include some sort of name day celebration in it?
Now, as promised, the links to the tips about naming your characters:
And, in case you need tips for naming your stories/books:
Happy Flowers Day, kittens! Hope you have a lovely day!