Congratulations are in order for the amazing Giuliana and Bill Rancic, who welcomed their first child, Edward Duke, via surrogate on Wednesday.
The couple, who wed in 2007, bravely documented their fertility struggle and her breast cancer ordeal on their Style Network reality show Giuliana and Bill.
Unlike Tori Spelling and Melissa Joan Hart, both due in September, who haven’t yet decided on names for their babies, Giuliana, 37, is unchanged in her thinking since 2010, when I asked her what name she would give her baby-to-be.
Hint: She wasn’t inspired by the hero in the Twilight series!
“My dad’s name is Eduardo, and Bill’s dad’s name was Edward,” the E! hostess tells me while promoting ChapStick Fresh Effects. “We’re thinking maybe Edward, and we’d call him Eddie. We’re thinking about that, because Bill’s father passed away ten years ago, and they were best friends. There’s a very special connection there still, and my dad and I are very close.”
She adds, “Definitely nothing too weird and Hollywoodish. Something more classic, for sure.”
Why does she prefer the traditional name?
“Even though we work in Hollywood, Bill and I are very traditional at the core, and that started even when I changed my last name. A lot of people were telling me ‘you shouldn’t change your last name, you should keep your name, you’re on TV.’ I thought ‘I’m not gonna let Hollywood dictate that.’ That’s what I believe in. I always thought when I got married, I would change my name to my husband’s name, and so just because I work here – if I were a nurse or a secretary, I would change my name, so just because I work in Hollywood, I didn’t want that to dictate anything.”
She adds, “That goes for all of our values, and that includes kids’ names. Just because everyone names their kids a wacky name in Hollywood, doesn’t mean I’m going to be doing that, too. I won’t be calling it Blue Coffee Table, or something odd like that.”
Ooh, hear that, Beyoncé and Jay-Z? Their daughter, Blue Ivy, was born in January. (Take no offense, though — Giuliana whipped up that name two years in advance!)
Little Edward is a lucky guy, who will have present parents.
“I’m definitely going to be a hands-on dad,” Bill tells me in 2010 during HP’s Big Payback event. “One of the reasons we’re working so hard now is so when we do expand our family, we’re going to be able to spend time with them like our parents did for us.”
He adds, “Our parents were very involved in our lives. I’d like to be the coach of the teams. I want our house to be the house where all the kids come over, hang out and have fun. That’s the place where they’ll spend their time. I want to be as active and as involved in their lives as much as I possibly can. Hopefully as much as my dad was with me.”
“Even the closer we get to the reality of a baby, and having to juggle career and motherhood, the more I think — ‘wow, this is gonna be tough,’” she says. “You want to be with your baby. You don’t want to miss out on special moments, like when your baby takes its first steps, you don’t want it to be with a nanny, while you’re off in New York, interviewing George Clooney. As fabulous as it is to interview George Clooney, there are more important things in life. That’s where it gets a little tricky, but I know he’s going to be an amazing dad. I’m sure the baby will be just fine.”
While Edward is their first child, Giuliana hopes to have a brood of 3-4 kids.
"Bill is the youngest of four,” she tells me in March while promoting Glade Expressions. “He has three older sisters, and I have two siblings — we’re three. Growing up, I moved here from Italy when I was little, and my father and mother are each one of six, so I have over 40 first cousins, so I grew up with a lot of cousins, very crazy households on the weekends, just a ton of people around, and I loved my cousins, and I’m so close to my cousins today. “
She continues, “I love the idea of having a big family, because I grew up with a big family, and a big extended family. My sister has four kids. She just had her fourth. She has three little girls and a boy, like Bill’s family, so I’d love a few kids to be able to play with my nieces and nephews, and Bill also — together, we have 14 nieces and nephews.”
Still, they feel grateful for their only child.
“One would be great, too,” she says. “Just being able to experience it and have that blessing. When you go through something like we’ve been through, and it’s been a bit of a struggle — one would be a blessing.”
It’s so exciting that their son has finally arrived.
Looking back, Bill told me, “I’m feeling very optimistic that 2010 is our year to expand our family.”
It’s two years later — and that moment is finally here!
Wondering what kind of baby gift she prefers?
“Something monogrammed,” Giuliana says. “I think that’s the best gift you can get a new mom.”