I just met a new friend, and her name is Lynlea. Obviously the first thing I asked her was... Where oh where did you get your name from? Here's the sweet story she gave me:

Her mom made up the name -- something that usually makes me shudder, but in this case it works. Lynlea comes from her mom's name, Carolyn Lea. Get it? Carolyn Lea.

There are a few reasons I don't mind the whole "made-up" thing. First, Lynlea is 22 -- much older than most kids with made-up names, and not part of the current (abhorrent) trend. There's also meaning to the name, which gives it another positive mark. And finally, the result is a very pretty name -- at least, it is to me.

Since it's a made-up name there isn't much we can do in the way of meaning, but if I break it up into the original two names, there's a start. "Lyn" could become Lynne, which means house or cascade. And then there's "Lea" which could become Lee. (I know, Leah works too, but since it's pronounced like Lee I'm going to go in that direction.) Lee means meadow. Nice! Cascading meadow, or house on a meadow.

I'm not so lucky as Lynlea -- if my mom did the same with her name, I'd be something like Ithfin. You know what, consider me incredibly lucky. It could've been a lot worse than Paula.