I have no idea where the nicknames and words of endearment I use with the horses come from. It goes beyond the horses. I also use sweet, silly, often made up words for Mija, my sister Jane’s Yorkie Poos, and now my wonderful, adorable grandson.

My parents didn’t use nicknames. One of my best summer memories is choosing a nickname when my sister and I visited our cousin. We often created elaborate make believe scenarios, that usually involved cowboys and horses.

Hmm? Some things haven’t changed much, have they?

Okay, back to nicknames. We always chose something with a “y” on the end. With names like Jean and Jane, you can see why we longed to break out and walk on the wild side, as far as names go. We yearned to be known as Candy or Bobbie. At least those are the two nicknames I still remember.

When my husband and I were in the “getting to know each other” stage, he once asked if I ever used the words honey or sweetheart. The tone in his voice told me it wasn’t a good thing. He also grew up in a family that didn’t use nicknames. Of course, my answer was no. It was the truth!

These days, however, I am a nickname fool. I have little terms of endearment for all of my animals. The words just pop out of my mouth and become part of the norm before I even know it.

At the risk of embarrassing myself beyond repair, I’m taking the leap. Here are a few of my favorites:

For Bud:

Buddy, Bud Man, Budder, Budenator, Budliness, Dad, and Handsome,

For Pepper:

Pep, Miss Pepper, Pimienta, Girly, Girl-io, Missy, Sweetie, and Sweet old Thing

For Mija:

Mimi, Meemers, Meepster, Meemenator, Girly, Girl-io.

As for Rick, I sometimes call him Sweetie, and he seems to like it just fine.

How about you? What do you call the people and animals you love?

Nicknames or not?

By the way, for some reason some of my friends call me Jeannie Beanie. I have no idea where that came from. But I like it, because I know it comes from people who love me.