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Saturday, May 3, 2008

Baby Girl Thalia/Lena D.

Lindsay writes:
I just found this blog, and it is just what I need at the moment! Immediate moment. I'm due in less than a week with our second baby girl, and we need naming advice. My husband is Greek, and in fact we live in Greece at the moment. I'm American. Our first daughter is named Audrey Victoriana. Her middle name covers all honoring of relatives that we were obliged to do, so we are free to name the second as we wish - as long as the first name is Greek (this is my husband's wish since Audrey is not Greek at all). Our last name starts with a D, ends with a S and is 2 syllables, 6 letters.

While there are a ton of beautiful Greek girl names, we don't want anything too common here or anywhere. So we have settled on either Lena (my pick) or Thalia (his pick). The first bit of advice needed is what do you think of Thalia? Originally I didn't like it all all - mostly because of the beginning "Th" sound. It has definitely grown on me, but I'm still not totally in love with it. My husband loves it because even living in Athens most of his life, he has never met a Thalia.

My second issue is the middle name. My favorite girl name is Scarlett. If we had a third girl sometime in the future, I could finally use this name....but chances are, we're done with babies, and I want to use the name. But Lena Scarlett D _____ has the initials LSD...should I care about this? I don't want to scar her for life, but is it really that important? While Lena Scarlett is nice, I think that there are other names that sound better with Lena - Lena Rose, Lena Mae, Lena Josephine, etc. Thalia Scarlett poses no problem intial-wise, and I'm quite happy with the flow.

So there are my issues. Advice, opinions, thoughts are all welcome!

The first question is, What do we think of the name Thalia? I looked up the Greek pronunciation of it, and it looks like the first half is pronounced somewhere between "TAL" and "t'HAL" (rhymes with Hal and shall), and the second half is pronounced somewhere between "yuh" and "ee-uh." The emphasis is on the first half. I think it's beautiful name.

Lena is also a beautiful name. I do think Lena is a better international choice, not that I know Thing One about international names---but Lena has fewer tricky sounds. Still, I think both names are great. Let's make the first poll a simple choice between the two names. [Poll closed; see below.]

Now. Initials, and whether it's okay for them to spell something. When I choose my babies' names, my answer to that is no. I don't even like the initials to spell something good. But that's purely a matter of personal taste, not of universally-agreed-upon okayness or not-okayness. So let's make the second poll a question of what people think of the initials LSD. [Poll closed; see below.]

If you're not entirely pleased with the rhythm of the names that spell LSD, it may be a moot issue. Perhaps you could make the first name the deciding factor on that: if you use your choice for first name, you could save the name Scarlett just in case; if your husband gets his choice for first name, you could use the name you love as the middle name.

Weigh in, everyone!

[Poll results:

Thalia: 54 votes
Lena: 48 votes

LSD is fine: 40 votes
LSD is not fine: 58 votes]

14 comments:

Barb said...

I love Lena and also love Thalia (it's like a 60/40 split for me).

I think you should save Scarlett and use another middle name (I really like Rose with both Lena and Thalia!)

Erica said...

I really like the name Thalia, however, I think Lena goes better with Audrey. I think Audrey and Thalia are very different types of names and don't compliment each other well. But, what do I know? I'm not the one with the baby name website : )

Swistle said...

Erica- Good point about sibling-name compatibility---I didn't even consider that!

Lindsay said...

Thanks so much for putting this out here for me! I'm very interested to hear what everyone thinks!
Just a note about the pronunciation of Thalia. The first half does have the accent, but the Thal is pronounced like the word HALL. So it's: THAL-ya.
I'm with Erica as well - I think Lena and Audrey are cute together.

LoriD said...

I voted for Thalia. I knew a Thalia and she was so beautiful and strong and proud of her Greek heritage. Lena is also beautiful, but I personally wouldn't do the LSD thing (I went to school with a HEN and swore I would never do that to a kid!)

d e v a n said...

I LOVE Lena, and like Thalia as well. I think Lena and Audrey sound very nice together. LSD are fine initials, no biggie.

alienbea said...

My pick is for Thalia -- I love the sound and rhythm of THAL-ya.

BTW, have you seen this week's Postsecret (May 4th - 10th)? The first secret reminded me of you, Swistle! :)

Lara said...

I don't have time to read through the other comments, but I think Thalia is "too Greek" to be Audrey's sister. Lena sounds better, I think, despite the unbecoming initials.

And I honestly, honestly don't mean any offense toward you, Lindsay, but this is precisely why we shouldn't get into patterns or themes when naming our babies. I realize you want to honor the little lady's heritage, and I completely applaud you for that, I just think you -- or your husband, since this is important to him -- should've kept this in mind when you were choosing Audrey's name.

Best of luck with your babe!

Leticia said...

I love, love Thalia. There's actually a very famous Latin American Pop Star named that (a singer..I believe actually married to tommy Motola). But she pronounces it THAL EE Ah.

I still prefer that name with Scarlett. Thalia Scarlett sounds beautiful and is a good compromise (his favorite and your favorite).

M D said...

I like both names, but I prefer Lena and I agree with Erica - I think it goes better with Audrey. However, if you pick Thalia I think it would go fine - I wouldn't worry about that too much. About initials...I think if they spell something it can be bad, but I doubt she'll get teased if she's LSD. My maiden name gave me the initials MF and no one ever noticed - (including me) until I was much older.

heather said...

I've known a Thalia (yes, she was greek!) but as I'm reading most of these pronunciations... it seems they're thinking of THalia, where my friend had always pronounced it Tall-eeyuh, with a silent H. I LOVE Thalia, pronounced with the silent H. The TH sound puts it a little less likable for me, but I do like it better than Lena. And I LOVE Thalia Scarlett.
Don't much care for Lena Scarlett, but that might just be because I don't care for Lena.

I think Thalia Scarlett is the perfect name, as another commenter said, because that's using the father's favorite AND the mom's favorite together.

Maggie said...

My husband is also greek, and our daughter is Thalia. We pronounce is Thal-ee-ah, though, (so it's actually a three syllable name not two syllable Thal-ya) but the emphasis is still on the first part. I wanted a greek name that would be easy for us english speakers to say, and Thalia has been pretty good in that regard. I do have to correct people now and then.
I like Thalia with Scarlett as a middle name; we chose a one syllable middle name as our last name is multi-syllable and very confusing. Good luck!

Steph the WonderWorrier said...

I voted for Thalia. I think Thalia Scarlett is great, and I'm not a huge fan of the name Lena (so it's mostly personal choice in this one).

I don't see Audrey and Thalia as names that don't match. I think first of all, in written form they look beautiful beside each other; very feminine and classic.

Then, if the pronounciation is to be "THAL-ya" like, "HALL-ya" with a "thhhh" sound at the beginning; the "AU" of "Audrey" and the "THAL" of "Thalia" both have that same prounciation (say it out loud slowly, you drop your tongue and say that "aw" sound for both names).

LOL. Sort of a tricky explanation, but I just don't agree that Audrey and Thalia don't work as sibling names. I think they're beautiful together.

The only person I've met with a name similar to "Thalia" is a girl named "Talia", pronounced Tal-ee-ya. I think it's a beautiful name.

Melissa H said...

I do think with a Thalia in America you'll constantly be doing pronunciation corrections. I know a Thalia and now, after reading the comments, I'm not sure I'm even saying her name right (I don't know her that well). So, I say go with the easier to pronounce Lena. But skip the LSD and choose an alternate middle name, perhaps Lena Thalia D? too many "uh" sounds at the end?