The story behind my name isn't terribly interesting so you get to hear about mine and Clay's names. Lucky you :)
Where it came from: It was the 80s and this was the most popular name that year. My parents got real creative I tell ya. (You can go to the social security page here to see the top 5 names for each year.)
What it means: I've seen three different meanings: Grace of God, rich, and "to see."
Verdict: I like it. For it to be to most popular name the year I was born, I've personally only known a few Jessicas. For the most part it only gets shortened to Jess when I'm in Charlotte because that's how my friend Liz introduced me to everyone. In Tennessee it's occasionally Jessi (which I don't hate but I don't love at all).
Where it came from: Lou was my grandma's (Linda Lou) and my mom's (Penny Lou) middle name so it was just a logical choice.
What it means: Renowned warrior (umm, ok?).
Verdict: I love it! I like that I have a name that's been passed down and I think it goes great with Jessica, even as Jessi Lou :)
Where it came from: My grandfather. He's Arlie Clay and if Clay had been a girl, the name Arleigh was on the table.
What it means: Mortal
Verdict: Of course I like it- I picked it out! I have gotten lots of compliments though and I love that it's not a trendy name.
Sidenote: I found this on Nameberry about Clay: "Clay is a rich, earthy one-syllable name with a southern-inflected handsome-rogue image, featured on soap operas and reality TV..."
Where it came from: Full confession time: I watched too much One Tree Hill while I was pregnant (maybe the name Peyton was on the table too (for OTH & Manning)). I don't love the character Lucas but I do love his name! Fun fact- there's also a character named Clay on One Tree Hill!
What it means: From Luciana
Verdict: Love it- duh, I picked it! Although Clay was originally supposed to be called Clay Lucas all the time, he's now just Clay unless he's in trouble.