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Name That Blog!

I need your help.  I have this friend.  Let’s call her Gretchen.  Because that’s really her name.  Gretchen is one of the best story tellers I’ve ever known, and I’ve been trying to get her to start a blog since, well, since I figured out what a blog was.

And now she’s finally come to her senses and is ready to start a blog, but alas, has no idea what to call it.  The right name is crucial to blogging success, don’t you know.  Frankly, I’m stumped myself.  But, whenever I’m stumped, I know just where to go.

That’s where you all come in.  Will you help us find the perfect name for Gretchen’s blog?

Let me tell you a little about her.  I’ve known Gretchen for right at 20 years now.  We met when we both lived in Dallas, and then both subsequently moved to Los Angeles.  She was instrumental in my survival in the City of Angels.  We ended up both living on the street that looks like it is going to run into the Hollywood sign.

It didn’t.  But just looked like it did.

Gretchen was the brain child behind “Ladies Night.”  Ladies Night formed as a bunch of us girls, mostly from Texas, who desired to gather together every Sunday night, and talk, laugh, and eat really stupid stuff together.

And there may or may not have been a blender and some Margarita mix involved.  But I’m not sayin’.


(Gretchen baked my 30th birthday cake, circa 1990.)


(From L to R: Kate, Kathy, Robin, Gloria, Julie, me (in back), and Gretchen)


(Ladies Night took a field trip to Las Vegas)

We kept up with this ritual for years.  It wasn’t until we started marrying off, and life pulled us in a hundred directions that our Sunday night tradition ceased.

I miss those women fiercely.  We knew intimate details of one another’s lives, and those conversations were bound in secrecy, never to leave the room.  Life long friendships were forged.

All while bonding over a plate of sausage balls.

Gretchen and I didn’t always see eye to eye on everything.  We still don’t.  But that’s okay, because we love and respect each other enough to leave room for differing opinions.  And she was the kind of friend that would be at my side in an instant if I needed her.

Like the night she held my hair as I yaked all over an innocent Maple tree in front of my apartment.  After only consuming a pomegranate for dinner.  Followed by perhaps a shot of Tequila, when I had forgotten that I really don’t drink.


All the Ladies Night gals have grown up, married, and birthed a bunch of babies.  One such boy baby was allowed to attend Ladies Night meetings, only because he could not repeat what was said.  And men were never allowed into the inner-sanctum of those gatherings.

That boy child is in college now.  Sob.  Sob.

Gretchen, who is still an actress in Los Angeles, married an Italian boy from New York named Jimmy.  And they have a beautiful little boy named Jude.

Gretchen was concerned that her life wasn’t interesting enough to blog about.

Let’s review.  Gretchen is from Texas.  She’s an actress living in Los Angeles.  Married to a New York Italian.  Who is also an actor.  She’s raising a son in Los Angeles.  And she’s Catholic.

That’s the stuff that blog fodder dreams are made of, my friends.

Gretchen wrote a little something for you all, that will kind of give you a glimpse into her journey to motherhood.  And hopefully aid in the blog naming, and all.


“One thing I’ve always known for certain, is that I was going to be a mother. I didn’t have a “need” to be a mother, or a “desire” to be a mother. I had what I felt was an actual knowledge that this would be part of my life. So when I woke up one day and realized that I was 40 years old and had still produced no offspring, I decided that I couldn’t just wait around “knowing” it would happen, but that I had to actually get off my butt and make it happen. So my husband, Jimmy, and I started actively trying. And trying. And trying. Which is difficult when you have a husband who only wants to “try” when it’s wild and spontaneous (something which thrilled me in our earlier days together). I was forced to hide the basal thermometer and feign “spontaneous” enthusiasm for “trying”. My husband never caught on as to why I was oh so very frisky at the exact same time every month. He did, however, enjoy it tremendously.

But alas…no pregnancy.  At 41, I faced the fact that I should probably get some professional help, and went to a fertility doctor. And being the aging Catholic that I am, I started lighting a candle to St. Jude every Sunday. Jude is the patron saint of hopeless causes (and fittingly, actors, which  Jimmy and I both are), and I thought he would certainly be my go-to guy.

We got pregnant! And lost it. Hmmm. Okay, let’s try again. Only this time, I realized it was time to marshal the forces. Our health insurance would only pay for one more go with the fertility treatments. This was my Waterloo. My Alamo (we Texans LOVE Alamo analogies!). I needed to bring out the big guns. So…I sent out a plea to all my spiritual-minded friends, and they came through for me in a big way. Catholic friends had novenas going across the country, Christian friends added me to their prayer chains, Buddhist friends had their meditation groups chanting for me, a friend on a trip to Europe lit a candle in every cathedral in France, Japanese friends performed Jorai healing over my womb to get it prepared to welcome the child. And then I decided to play my trump card. I went back to St. Jude, and this time, I promised him that if he’d help us have a baby…I’d name the kid after him. Big, right?

And it worked. It worked! We were blessed with a healthy, thriving pregnancy. My fertility doctor loved me because I was a 41 year old woman who got pregnant TWICE, thus skewing his success rate nicely. And my Italian-American in-laws were overjoyed to learn that it was a masculine child.

Now…how to tell Jimmy that I’d already named the kid by making a vow to a saint. Oh no. Jimmy does not like being told what to do. Oh no. He does not like having decisions made for him. Oh no. And even though he is now a pseudo-Hindu, he is still enough of an old Italian Catholic to know that you don’t screw around with a vow to a saint. Oh no, no, no. A vow to a saint is very serious stuff.

We bounced around a few names. Jimmy wanted Vito (I know. But Jimmy’s an Italian actor and has a Godfather thing, and anyway, Vito means “life”, so…). I suggested Levon, for Levon Helm of The Band, a mutual favorite of ours. All the while, I was getting up the guts to make my confession about the wacky vow-to-a-saint thing.

So one night, when I was about 6 months into my pregnancy, we decided to meet for dinner at a local Italian restaurant. I got there first and was waiting. When Jimmy got there, he was very wound up and excited (people who know him know that he is usually this way, but this time he was particularly so), and as soon as he sat down he announced “I know what we have to name our son!” Oh NO!! It was now or never. I had to make my confession. “I was driving in the car” Jimmy continued, “And ‘Hey Jude’ came on the radio. How many millions of times have I heard this song? But today, I felt like I was hearing it for the first time. And it hit me like a ton of bricks that that’s what we have to name the baby. Jude.”


Armed with all of this information (and this may be my longest blog post I’ve ever published), please submit your ideas for a name for Gretchen’s blog in the comments.  Gretchen knows that I have the best and most witty commenters in the whole blogosphere.

Unfortunately, there are no prizes.

Just the satisfaction that you’ve helped a new blogger begin an obsession a journey that may very well change her life.  Forever.

I thank you.  Gretchen thanks you.  Jimmy, on the other hand, may never forgive me.


42 Responses to Name That Blog!

  • How about “Sausages and Saints”? Or “Hey, Jude!” (or is that too obvious?) Or ” Fugedda Aboudit” or…

  • I love ‘Hey, Jude’, too, unless that’s taken. I’m no good at the naming thing. But, I think Gretchen will be a GREAT blogger – I loved what she wrote for your post!!! 🙂 I’ll keep thinking & check back to see what other people think of. 🙂

  • I loved reading her story!! I like the previous suggestion “hey, jude.” I can’t wait to read her blog once she starts!

  • I too think “Hey Jude” would be a good name.

    I also like “To be or not to be…”
    It incorporates her acting career as well as the trials in conceiving Jude and it is an often asked question in life’s journey.

  • Yep, the first one I thought was Hey Jude. I think that’s perfect!

  • However, if people read just the title “Hey, Jude” and don’t know the rest of the song they’ll have just that line stuck in their heads, get annoyed and never read her again. I don’t have anything better (I couldn’t even come up with something original for my own blog!) but thought I’d throw out a potential little issue with Hey Jude. 🙂

  • How about Blue Bonnet in the City of Angels?

  • “Hey Jude” stuck in my head first…I will have to see if anything else pops into this empty head of mine. LOL

  • How about “Confessions of a Texan living in Hollywood” OR “I’m an actress…no wait…a Mom..well same thing” OR “Wife,actress,Mom….pray for me”.

    that is all I can think of so far.

  • I ‘thought’ of something else, but then I saw someone else already put it: “saints & sausages”…or ‘saints and (something else that starts with s)’. 🙂

  • Love the old photos!!

    My first thought was “Hey, Jude”, too.

  • This is so exciting!!! Thank you all SO much for the encouragement and ideas. Please keep them coming. I’m just checking in to add a couple of thoughts/questions.

    But first, I have to get something out of my system after seeing the pictures DeeDee posted. LOOK AT OUR HAIRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Weren’t we fabulous! That said…

    I too have been thinking of Hey Jude, but I have some concerns that you can help either confirm or assuage.
    1. People will think I’m a blog about The Beatles.
    2. People will think that I’m going to only talk about my son. I’m just as likely to ramble on about my obsessive desire for/terrible fear of Botox, or my passionate love of my new Hoover Steam Cleaner.
    3. When he gets a little older, Jude will find it embarrassing that I named my blog after him.

    What do ya think?


    Oh, and for all you DeeDeeophiles, I was there when she played poker with Brad Pitt. She. Was. Not. Kidding.

  • What about something like 1 Texan + 1 New Yorker = A life in California. I’m at a loss now, need to think a bit more!

  • She is a great writer. I’m not surprised she’s DeeDee’s friend. DeeDee has the best blog going. I thought the same thing for a name Hey Jude. Not very original.

  • What about…

    “…take the cannoli”

    As kind of an homage to Girl’s Night and food (and fun, cannolis are full of fun…or is that fat…I never remember!) and it also ties in acting, AND the hubby. And keeps Jude’s name out of it!

    (Although, my FIRST thought, before I read all the way through was Hey! Jude!)

  • I like “I’m an actress…no wait…a Mom..well same thing” or “Wife, actress, Mom….pray for me”. from Jenna.

  • “Meet Me at the Alamo”

  • Congratulations to Gretchen on starting a blog! How about “This Saint Texas?” or “Auditions, Bibs, and Callbacks – the ABCs of Motherhood in Hollywood” or “Take 40: Action” … I don’t know, just a few that came to mind. Have fun blogging!

  • How about using a phrase from “Hey Jude” but not the song title…

    Like “Making it better” or “Let him into your heart” (I know it’s let her into your heart but “him” could be a reference to your son)

    Or since Jude is the Patron Saint of Lost Causes you could do something with that….

  • How about something simple and to the point….

    Lady Gretchen

  • oh and she could put …

    Wife, Actress, Mom or something like that as her tag line?

  • Maybe “Hey, Jude and other Revelations” It can be about revelations in her life.

    “Confessions of a Hollywood, Italian, Mothering, Catholic, Texan” (adjust to priorities)

    “Fetching Gretchen” and I mean that in the actual definition fetch·ing adj
    1. pleasant, stylish, or becoming in appearance
    2. having a charming or captivating quality

    sorry they’re not good ideas, but ideas none the less.

    Can’t wait to read it, whatever it is named. Keep us updated!

  • “No Lost Cause”


    “Lost Cause”

    or just


    can’t stop….trying to avoid my children for a few minutes (:

  • Here are my idears (besides the “Hey Jude” theme…):

    “Gretchen’s Catchin”

    “Vito di Gretchen”

    “Gretchen Vivo”
    (I don’t know if this is proper Italian or not, but you get the idea.)

    “Mama Wants a Callback”

    For what it’s worth, I loved the “post” you wrote. 🙂 I hope lightening strikes with a great idea for your title! I’m sure it will come.

  • lights, camera, and a WHOLE LOTTA action!

  • How about “Life in the Diamond Lane” ? You’re traveling along with your husband and son. Enjoyed your story Gretchen!

  • don’t care what she names it…just make sure you post a link…..sounds like it will be a doooze…lol….

  • Okay, so I’m happy to hear a new blog is being born. Mine is tragically neglected…

    I really like a couple that were already mentioned: (in no particular order)
    “Take the Cannoli”
    “Mama Wants a Callback”
    “Auditions, Bibs, and Callbacks – the ABCs of Motherhood in Hollywood” (You could call this the ABC’s of Motherhood in Hollywood and use the words as a tag line)
    “This Saint Texas” is pretty good, too.
    I agree that your son might not love his name being your blog name. (I have a 17 year old son, and they can be very private)
    Blessings on your blog!


  • “Take the cannoli” wins my vote, for what it’s worth 🙂

    Don’t know where she’s from in TX or which part of NYC her hubby is from, but maybe something along the lines of “Dallas meets Manhattan and moves to Hollywood” and a smallish subtitle like “With a little help from the patron saint of hopeless causes and actors”

  • Hmmm…

    Almost a Vito
    My Go-To Guy
    Vow to a Saint
    My Personal Patron Saint
    Acting Saintly

  • I like Hey Jude as well initially but dont know if there might wind up legal issues as well as the fact your son might not like it…

    The ABCs of motherhood in hollywood was good…

    but had to laugh in reading the description
    a texan transplanted to hollywood and mrried to a new your italian AND a MOM
    and actress….
    all i kept thinking was multi tasking at its finest…LOL

  • What about “Late to the Party”? It seems everyone and their mother has a blog these days, so it could be a reference to that as well as having a child after age 40…

  • Ooh! I love thinkin’ on namings. I like the suggestion of Momma Wants a Callback.

    Maybe this will inspire?…
    Gretchen means pearl; Jude means praised; Jimmy means supplanter.

    How about one of these?…
    Calling on the Pearly Gates
    Saints Be Praised
    Hey, Praised (It’ll keep Y. Ono from suing ya’.)
    Praises, Pearls and Puke…Keepin’ It Real

    Looking forward to hearing what you decide.

  • I really like “Take the cannoli” and “Late to the Party.”

    “Lady Gretchen and Company” is my suggeston tagged onto another’s!

    Good luck – I know you will enjoy blogging and the blog community!


  • I like “Take the Cannoli”, think “Hey Jude” is too Beatles but would love to see it include “Spontaneous Enthusiasm” somehow. I love that word combination and think it applies to the acting in the form of a direction, your inferitility trials in the “trying”, and just a well rounded life in general. Best of luck!

  • Has to be “Hey Jude”! Clearly! Love it and can’t wait to read it!

  • As an errant member of Ladies Night back in the day, (luckily I wasn’t in any of the photos, probably out of town, but I was at the Las Vegas getaway!) (also unfortunately I don’t think my hairdo has changed one iota), I have to agree that Gretchen is a superb storyteller. During a very trying time in her life she had us rolling on the floor with her stories. Those Sunday nights were like the best and funniest soap opera. So, I can’t wait to read what has obviously become a very fulfilling life for her. I also remember at DeeDee’s wedding, when my two-year-old son was being hyperactive and jumping, running, climbing all over these three steps that circled part of the reception hall that Gretchen very earnestly asked if she could help, I don’t know with what, calm him down, make him stop, whatever. I could feel the single girls/non-Mommys shooting daggers in my back. So, it’ll be interesting to see if some of Gretchen’s stories pertain to the shocking realization that sometimes you can’t control your toddler’s will to exercise at inopportune times. So my bid for a blog name, but probably too long, is Life is what happens when Ladies Night turns into Mommy Alone Time. Good luck, Gretchen! Can’t wait to start reading!

  • As a take on the Italian connection—-a Blog you can’t refuse…….

    Or a take on the Texas connection——Eyes on….A blog with a Texas take on a California world

    To take on the actress angle——Waiting for my closeup….

  • It’s funny, the first thing I thought of was “Fetchin’Gretchen” too, only I made it texas-ey by taking off the G.

  • Gretchen and DeeDee’s abilities to tell fabulous, funny stories used to make me laugh ’til I cried – over and over again. I can’t wait ’til Gretchen blogs about her road trips as a child. I’m laughing now just thinking about it! As far as suggestions for blog names, I’m at a loss. Jude is of course the center of her world, but Gretchen’s passion for everything is what will surely make this blog so enthralling. The name Gretchen is a variation of the name Margaret, which means pearl, or little pearl. I’ve no idea where to go with it – Pearls of Wisdom seems so cliche. Pearls of Life, Pearls of Comedy, Pearls of Laughter, Peals of Laughter. Well, you can see why I don’t write a blog! Whatever the name, I’ll read it and remember some of the best Sunday nights of my life!

  • LOVE that story. My first thought for a blog title was “As luck would have it.” But that’s been taken on wordpress & blogger. Maybe something with the word “serendipity” if the story of Jude is a reflection on much of Gretchen’s life? or Gretchendipity? 🙂