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Friday, October 29, 2010

Baby Boy Rose

M. writes:
I came across your blog and I'm hoping that you can help us with our baby boy naming dilema. We are expecting a baby boy this December (the 18th) and for months my husband and I have been going back and forth and cannot agree on anything. Would LOVE some advice and opinions since we have spent months pouring over name books and can't agree. Our last name is Rose.

Before we knew it was going to be a boy, we had NO problem deciding on girls names- we agreed on everything! We both loved Chloe and Lauren, and we both liked Clara too, so that was no problem! However, once we found out it's a boy, we are stuck since we've never agreed on anything and the closer the due date gets the more stressed I am getting about finding a name! I find boys names really hard to pick- I have always liked the name Reid, but our last name is Rose, so that doesn't sound right together (plus my husband doesn't like it anyway). I tend to like preppy-ish names, but my husband vetoes them all saying they don't sound strong enough. We both liked Jake until a friend of ours had a baby and used that name (close friend, so we can't use it), and we both liked Gavin, but a family member had a baby and used that name! My husband likes Wyatt, but I can't get the image of cowboys out of my head, and it just seems too trendy, or trying too hard or something. The hard part is that our last name is feminine, so it really should be a pretty masculine name. We had Jackson on the list originally (but I think it's WAY too popular) and Deacon on our lists (I like Deacon more than my husband- I don't think he can get Wyatt out of his head). I also liked Graham, but husband said no. If we can't agree on anything, I have a feeling my husband is going to get his way and just name him Wyatt Jackson. However, I would love to have a say in at least one of the names, and make that name a little less common or trendy. I would love a name that has a bit of 'soul' in it instead of strength, but not have the name be too soft....we are stuck.

Any advice would be appreciated!
Thank you!

This is one of the many brilliances of The Baby Name Wizard: if you know some girl names you like, you can look up "brother names" and see if any of those are also to your tastes.

For Chloe, The Baby Name Wizard suggests Liam, Gavin, Miles, Carter, Caleb.

For Clara: Louis, Julius, Theo, Porter, Charles.

For Lauren: Brandon, Lucas, Nathan, Zachary, Joshua.

And look, there's Gavin among the choices!

Because Carter's R-ending runs into the R of Rose, I'd suggest Carson instead if you wanted something of that style. But Carson might be too androgynous with Rose.

Caleb may be more popular than you have in mind (or maybe not: it's about the same rank as Gavin, according to The Social Security Administration), but what I like about it is it's very boyish and it has something of the cowboy vibe that might be what draws your husband to the name Wyatt.

Miles definitely has soul, and it's definitely boyish, but is it strong enough? Perhaps not. Would Milo be an improvement? Milo Rose. Hm, it sounds like "my low rose."

Davis might have some soul from Miles Davis. Davis Rose.

I know a family with a similarly feminine-sounding surname, and they went with the first name Derek. Their other finalist was Garrett.

Zachary is definitely masculine, and the nickname Zach is similar to Jake from your list.

Gavin makes me think of:


Grady sounds particularly cowboy to me, but all those names seem strong and masculine.

Name Update!

Update to Baby Girl, Sister to Emma Grace!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Baby Girl Brown, Sister to Ottilie, Adalia, Cecily, Nolia, and Violet

Emily writes:
Sorry for the somewhat last minute email here, but we are in trouble! My husband and I are having our sixth daughter together next week, she is due November 5th. This is the first time we have found out the gender before birth, and I think it has made naming the poor mite even harder. Our main problem is choosing a first name which goes well with her sisters names.

Ottilie Fflur (aged 7 – sometimes goes by Tilly, her middle name is Welsh)

Adalia Seren (aged 6 – sometimes goes by Addie, her middle name is Welsh)

Cecily Roma ( aged 4 – born when we lived in Italy for a year, hence her middle name!)

Nolia Betsy (aged 21 months – Nole-ee-ah, English middle name)

Violet Lucina (aged 21 months – Vi-oh –LETT, English middle name)

Our names are, Logan James Brown and Emily Quinn Brown.

Some names we like, but are out:-

Aleydis – Not sure if I want to reuse initials though (Adalia)
Helena – (niece’s name)
Evangeline (my name is Emily – so I don’t really want to reuse the E)

As each of the girls has an L in the second half of her name I would quite like to do this again, to continue flow. But it is not crucial as long as the name sounds like one of the bunch! But we are quickly running out of names! As we have eliminated - A,B,O,N,C&V names for definite and maybe L and E names too! (B because hubby doesn't like alliteration - so Beatrice/Beatrix is gone)

Middle names:- ( Need to reflect the country of birth, this baby will be born in USA)

???? Really depends on the first name, preferably unusual

One name we are considering is Romilly Quinn Brown.

Sorry – for the long question, it really has become rather complicated naming her! Maybe we should go with Cecily’s suggestion of Bumblebee! Thanks

I think Romilly Quinn takes care of all your requirements. I hesitate only because it adds another "lee" sound, when already four of the five girls (and you) have that sound. Do you pronounce Ottilie as Ah-TILL-ee-ah or AH-till-lee? If the latter, Romilly seems rhymey; if the former, it's a worry only if you might call her Milly and would rather not have a Tilly and a Milly.

Other possibilities:

Juliette (too rhymey with Violet?)

If E isn't out after all, I suggest Elodie. If L isn't out after all, I suggest Lorelei.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Baby Girl Acksum, Sister to Jonathan

Kacie writes:
I am 33 weeks pregnant (the 40-week mark is Dec. 16) with a little girl. My husband and I cannot figure out who she is! I'm thinking we'll probably need to see her before we can truly decide, but in the meantime, I'm desperate for some suggestions we can work with.

Our last name, spelled phonetically, is ACK-sum. To me, this eliminates all first names that begin and end with an "a" sound. That's a LOT of girl names! Also, names that end with an "m" sound too sing-songy to me. I think names that end with a consonant sound best.

My son has a traditional name that is fairly high on the SSA chart. He is Jonathan and goes by Johnny. When we chose it, we thought we picked a name that anyone could spell. Nope -- even our own family has spelled it Johnathan or Jonathon. Oh well.

Names on our "maybe" list:

Vivienne (this is the front-runner for now)
Jocelyn (nickname of Josie is cute, but we think Jocelyn sounds too similar to Jonathan. We liked this one a lot for awhile, but it just has grown out of favor for us)
Evelyn (not sure if I like any of the nicknames for it)
Evangeline (my husband thinks this is too clunky and not that pretty)

Names on our "nope" list:

Caroline (I like it but my SIL has claimed it for her own future daughter, and I'm not about to cause drama by stealing it!)
Madeleine (not liking nickname possibilities)
Marilyn (I always think of Marilyn Monroe)
Clementine (I thought this would be a fantastic middle name but my husband vetoed that one pretty strongly)
Charlotte (it's nice, but it's the name of someone in our family and so that's why we don't want to use it)
any name that ends with an "een" sound

Can you help? First name suggestions would be great, and if you want to throw in some middle name ideas, so much the better!

Jocelyn/Josie makes me think of Josephine. Jonathan and Josephine don't sound too close to me, and Johnny and Josie is too adorbs for words. But it ends in an -een sound.

Evelyn and Evangeline and Clementine make me think of Emmeline. Emmeline Acksum, Jonathan and Emmeline. My mom and I have noticed that "Louise" makes a great middle name (not only for the "fun to say" factor but because as others have mentioned you can shorten it to Lou and use it for an extended nickname with the first name): Emmeline Louise Acksum, and you could call her Emmie Lou sometimes.

Vivienne and Evelyn make me think of Lillian. Lillian Abigail Acksum, Jonathan and Lillian, Johnny and Lilly.

One of my favorites is Celeste. Celeste Olivia Acksum, Jonathan and Celeste.

Margaret sounds similar to Charlotte and has so many nicknames. Margaret Louise Acksum, Jonathan and Margaret, Johnny and Maggie/Meg/Greta/Daisy.

Name update! Kacie writes:
Thank you for your help with narrowing down our baby name choices. I'm happy to announce that our daughter, Vivienne Elise, is here! She was born on Dec. 17.

I think my husband needed extra assurance that Vivienne really is a great name, even though we don't know anyone with that name in our generation. He was worried it would be too uncommon or old-fashioned, but he's grown to really like it. And after we announced her birth, we've had lots of positive feedback.

I suggested Elise way back in the middle of summer, and he vetoed it because he hadn't ever heard of it. And wouldn't you know it, a month or so ago he suggests it for the middle name spot. We like the delicate sound and think it all flows nicely.

Thanks again!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Baby Boy Johnson, Brother to Perry, Parker, Libby, Corban, and Clayt

Erica writes:
We just found out that we are expecting our 5th, yes FIFTH B.O.Y…wowzers! I LOVE playing the name game and thoroughly enjoyed picking out GIRLS names for the first 10 weeks of the pregnancy…but alas, we need another boy name! I am now 33 weeks along and we still have no name! This is especially hard because we usually are great name pickers! We actually picked our #5 child’s name the day our #4 child was born, so with it being this late in the pregnancy is really hard for me. I feel like having a name helps me bond with the baby during pregnancy and without it I’m struggling.

My husband and I are Eric and Erica Johnson and we are a blended family with “our” 3rd on the way. The older 3 children are from my previous marriage, but they all live with us. The children’s names are

Perry Thomas B. (13)

Parker Logan B. (12)

Libby McClairen B. (9½)

Corban Joseph J. (2½)

Clayt Daniel J. (18m)

Baby boy J. due 12/15/10

All but one child (Parker Logan) has a family name, or a family inspired name (meaning we have a really long story how I got from my dad’s name Clayton to McClairen for my daughter’s middle name….but to me it is the inspiration more than the exact name that matters)

It is important to me that the meaning of the names have no negative meanings and its important to me that we find the closest meaning based on etymology rather than “baby-naming” websites that like to flower up some of the less desirable meanings. We are word of faith Christians, and its really important to me that we are speaking nothing negative about our child every time we call his name! I would really like this baby’s name to reflect that he is appointed, a gift, a reward or something with that kind of meaning. I’ve been dealing with a bit of disappointment (as much as I don’t want to be but I was so hopeful for a girl this time around)

Our 2 youngest children’s middle names are family names but we are pretty much out of male names…we are a family surrounded with females! Hubby’s father is Joseph Daniel (hubby is Eric Joseph) It really bugs me to not have a family name, but to “force” the issue seems to be no good either.

Possible Middle names:

Eric- haven’t run it by hubby but with the right first name he might go for it

Ray- I don’t like it much for the sound of the name, but it is a family name (my dad’s middle name, and my DH great grandpa’s first name) Coming from the name Raymond, it means Advice protector…Downside….my sister used the name for her daughter (who is 2 years old) and we are close…So maybe another name with the name “ray” with in it….though Raymond doesn’t really ring my bell either! UGH…

Since we are running low on family names, a known biblical name might be an easier route (I’ve looked through nearly all of them by meaning and picked out a nice long list of instant vetos…

I like Eli or Elijah for a middle name, because I felt God used a baby named Eli to help prepare my heart for this son. DH hasn’t vetoed or approved the name

The few first names that we have on the still considering list…but none really feel like they fit….

Names I’ve suggested (all have meanings that “pass”)

Ramsey – my favorite but DH doesn’t like names that end with and “ey” sound.
Gentry Foster
Foster Eli

Names DH has suggested

Wyatt – DH current like, but “meh”…if you ask me and I don’t like the meaning.

Thanks for your help!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Name Update!

Update to Baby Girl or Boy, Sibling to Alexandra and Luke!

Middle Name Challenge: Nathaniel ______ Murrah

Mathilda writes:
I'm due to have a c-section this Thursday (Oct. 28) and my husband and I are still looking for ideas for a middle name. I thought we could manage, but my due date is coming up quickly, and I'm at a complete loss. My sister referred me to youcantcallitit, which led me to Appellation Mountain, which led me to you. I've been reading past posts for nearly an hour now. It seems to me that you all have great naming insights, and I was wondering if you or your readers could give us any ideas.

We've chosen Nathaniel as a first name, but don't even have one solid middle name option. We like older, underused boys' names that are out of the mainstream. Nathaniel is more popular than we'd like, so we were hoping to find a more uncommon middle name.

Our other children are Emma-Grace Iselin Murrah
Branson Levi Murrah
Chandler Jacoby (jack-o-bee) Murrah

We'd be immensely grateful for any suggestions!

Name update! Mathilda writes:
Thanks for putting up the post so quickly. I wanted to let you know we decided to name him Nathaniel Justice. There were so many great suggestions, but I felt like this name really clicked with my husband and I. Thanks so much for your help!


PS: I've attached a picture of him as well.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Baby Naming Issue: Nicknames for Jonathan

Pamela writes:
I need help with nicknames.

My husband really wants to name our baby Jonathan Elias Orellano. I also like Jonathan, but don't like the common nicknames that people shorten it to. I hate Jonny and Jon and don't like Nathan either. I'm not sure I would like using Elias for a first name. I've also checked out all the international versions of Jonathan and John and none of them seems just right. I would like to come up with a unique catchy nickname maybe from letters or parts of his name or names.

Thanks so much for any help or advice you can give!

I suggest Jay. I knew a lot of nice guys named Jay in high school, and Jay can be a nickname for anyone whose name starts with J.

You could also go with Jeo (pronounced gee-oh), his initials.

My mom knows a child who goes by "Thanny."

Or, call him Jonathan. This is one of the best times to live in for calling a child by his or her full name: Jameses and Elizabeths abound, free of Jim and Beth. But of course this doesn't keep him from choosing a nickname for himself later on.

Name update! Pamela writes:
Thanks so much for all your comments. We have finally decided to stick with the full name Jonathan. I was encouraged to hear that many parents are choosing to call their children by full names and not nicknames. I did like some of the suggestions though, Jonjee and Jonty are cute.

Baby Girl Ho, Sister to Clare Elizabeth

Rebecca writes:
One of my dearest friends has been following you for years and I've definitely become a loyal reader these past few months. My husband and I are expecting our 2nd daughter and we just can't seem to agree on a name. Not really, anyway. We practically chose our daughter's name when we were on our honeymoon (after a character in a book we were reading at the time, and loved) - a full 3 years in advance of her arrival! But apparently, that's all the inspiration we have. Now that we're dreaming up names for a second girl, we're stuck. It seems to be the classic problem.. I come up with a long list of lovely names and my husband vetos almost all of them.

We're due the first week of December and our first daughter is Clare Elizabeth. Our last name sounds like "Ho" (all jokes about Heidi, Thali, Randie, and Harry/Harriet have been made, I promise). My husband and his family are Chinese-Canadian.

We shy away from names that are trendy. For example, Avery was on our list until we discovered that there are 4 at our daughter's daycare centre. We seem drawn to fairly traditional names. Our top 5 so far are:

Charlotte (Charlie)
Madeline (Maddy)
Margaret (Maggie)
Catherine/Katherine (Cate/Kate)

The predicament is that I love Julia and my husband dramatically prefers Kate. Julia's at the bottom of his favs and Cate is at the bottom of mine.

The other predicament is that we have almost no plan for a middle name. My family tradition would be to choose something from the family but there are some slim pickings (Joan, Evelyn, Dorothy, Louise, Kathleen, Eva, Theresa, Cynthia for example). I would love to choose a middle name that leant itself to an initial-based nickname .. like Charlotte Joan (CJ) or AJ, JJ, JD, etc. My husband "refuses, under any circumstances to call (his) daughter by her initials." Ideally the middle name would come from the list above but feel free to offer some new suggestions for a middle name. We may just have to break with tradition this time.

Finally, I don't like aliteration and I'm not sure that I like both daughters having a hard 'C' sound at the front of their names. Hence my reservation with Cate.

Thanks so much to you and your readers!

Let's see what happens when we get rid of both Julia and Cate. That leaves Charlotte, Madeline, and Margaret. And you have GREAT family names for the middle name! Joan, Evelyn, Louise, and Eva are my favorites.

My own favorite of the three remaining names is Margaret, and I like it with any of those middle names. I particularly like it with the shorter middle names, since that gives a balanced feeling with your first daughter's name: one longer name and one shorter. Clare Elizabeth and Margaret Joan, or Clare Elizabeth and Margaret Eva.

But Madeline and Charlotte also work well with the middle names: Madeline Joan, Madeline Louise, Charlotte Joan, Charlotte Louse.

I think we'd better have a poll. I'll include all five of your finalists. [Poll closed; see results below.]

Name update! Rebecca writes:
Our baby girl arrived a little bit ahead of schedule - November 28th, 2010. Your comments really helped us come to a decision on her name. In fact, your suggestion of removing both Julia and Cate from our short list helped us realize that we really didn't want Julia eliminated from contention. Sometimes being told that you can't have something only makes you want it more, doesn't it? So, that's all it took! Our 2nd daughter is Julia Louise Ho and she's truly lovely. We couldn't be happier. Thanks for all your help.

Baby Boy Schaff, Brother to Noah Wilfred

Faith writes:
I have enjoyed reading your posts over the past few months! I have been looking for a sign - anything - to tell me that "this is the name" of our second son. So far, nothing.

I will have a scheduled c-section on December 8th.
His brother is 3 1/2 year Noah Wilfred (Noah b/c we loved it and thought it was so original at the time + Wilfred my father's name)

Our last name is Schaff (short A sound SHAFF)

Dad is Russell Eugene Schaff III

We have both agreed that baby #2 should have Russell as his middle name (each boy will have a grandfather's name for the middle)
We don't have other male family names to draw from. :(

My husband has had one name offering from the very beginning. Only one. Miles. (He's a big fan of Miles Davis)
I'm not sure how I feel about Miles Russell Schaff. Too many sss sounds. And Schaff sounds so close to "shaft" which tends to pull in the possibility of names that sound like porn stars. (Harry Schaff.....

We aren't tied down to biblical names, but they do sound right with Noah. I'd like a name that doesn't skyrocket to the top 10 like Noah did. A classic, traditional name.
Some on my list have been

Eli Russell/Noah and Eli
Caleb Russell/Caleb and Eli
Jeremiah Russell (husband says there are too many syllables in Jeremiah)/
Wilson Russell Schaff (I love the name Will/Wil but William is so popular./Noah and WIl
Quinn (was on my list and now off b/c it looks like there are so many girl Quinns out there)

I love the name Silas (but Silas Schaff is too many ss sounds)

Thank you for your help!

The first thing I notice is that you guys broke a three-generation naming tradition. I'll bet I'm not the only one hungry for details. My mother-in-law and father-in-law broke a many-generations naming tradition when they named my husband Paul, and it caused...issues. (And I'm so grateful to them for weathering those issues so I wouldn't have to do it a generation later.)

Anyway! On with business! Since you like Silas but it's too much S, I wonder if Simon would work better. Simon Schaff, Simon Russell Schaff, Noah and Simon. I like it.

It's too bad Miles Davis's surname also ends in S, or that would be a good option. But maybe it's a good option anyway? Davis Schaff, Davis Russell Schaff, Noah and Davis.

(I was going to suggest Milo, but then thought of your porn caution and "Mile O'Schaff" and changed my mind. Ahem.)

I think I might avoid M-names anyway, because of the MRS initials. And I-names, because of IRS.

I like the sound of Benjamin Schaff. Benjamin Russell Schaff, Noah and Ben.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Baby Name to Discuss: Junuh

Melissa writes:
I'm having a bit of a name dilemma & am wondering if you and/or your readers might be able to help. I found a name that I really like, but I'm wondering if giving a baby a rare name is almost worse than a popular name in a way? I like the name Junuh really well for a boy (pronounced exactly like Judah, but with an "n"), but the only place I've ever heard the name was in a movie that I saw again recently. It is actually the character's last name, but that's what he goes by in the movie & the more everyone says it throughout the movie the more I like the name. Fortunately (for me), the movie wasn't all that popular (or that good for that matter), so I don't think people would automatically make the leap. I know we're all in the search of the happy balance between 'uncommon' but still 'familiar'. Is this name too far out of bounds? I feel like it sounds a bit familiar, because it is close to both Jonah & Judah, but I like it better than both of those. These are my biggest concerns:

1. Does it sound like something I just made up? (for the record my husband hates what he calls 'makey-up' names & for the most part I actually agree with him)

2. Does it sound like a girls name? because I really don't like boy names that could possibly be mistaken for girls, which is really difficult since all boy names seem to go to the dark side these days, leaving us with VERY few original options. (since people aren't familiar with it, will he go through his whole life with people thinking he's a girl on paper?)

3. Will he always get, "you mean Jonah?" ... "No, Junuh". .... "Oh, like the month, but with an 'a' on the end?"

Anyways, sorry for the saga, but I would appreciate it you have a chance to give me some feedback. I love your website & am absolutely addicted to finding the perfect baby name, & find it a huge relief that I'm not the only one. For the record, my husband & I are starting to try for babies, so if you have more pressing naming issues, I completely understand! Thanks Swistle!

To me, it sounds like a girl name and/or a made-up name. Not only is the "-a" ending typically feminine, but June is an established girl name and Juno is a major goddess. The movie Juno only reinforced the feminine connection. Another problem is that Junuh looks like it could be pronounced Junnuh.

The only boyish connection I can think of is to "Junior." I think I would either use Judah or think of another name.

Baby Girl Pepper O'______?

J. writes:
We do not have a due date because we're in the adoption process, which is unpredictable. Our last name is an Irish O'____ name. We now have a Grady, Scarlett, and Vivien. If we adopt a girl, my wife wants Pepper. I'm okay with that, but may be more comfortable with it as a nickname (I'm trying to picture "Judge Pepper O'____"). I'm also worried about the Iron Man issue (Pepper Potts). Thus, we need help with girl P names for which Pepper could be a nickname (Penelope? Persephone?), and/or feedback on Pepper as the real first name, not nickname. Many thanks!

I think Penelope is the best name for a Pepper nickname because it fits best with your other names: Grady, Scarlett, Vivien, and Penelope. Philippa would be another good option. I don't think of Iron Man at all. On its own, I think Pepper is not enough. What does everyone else think? Names, nicknames, on its own?

Baby Lee

Laura writes:
My husband and I are currently in the waiting process of adopting our first child; which means we could have a baby anytime from tomorrow to a year from now...
We have a list of names we like for both boys and girls, and aren't really looking to narrow down the list so much as to get feedback as to whether or not any of the names work well with our surname - Lee.
I find that our last name is difficult to work with as any name ending in -ly is out, and it can make a lot of names sound like adverbs.
The list of boy names we like are:

The list of girl names we like are:
Tessa (But not Theresa or Contessa)
Maggie (But not Margaret)
Elizabeth (LOVE the nn Elle)
Ariana (AH-riana NOT AIR-iana)
Holly (I know about the -ly ending, but I still like it - am I over thinking the -ly ending thing?)

If there are any warnings or red flags that strike you on any of these names, input would be ever-so-much appreciated!

The only one that catches my attention is Asher Lee, which to me sounds to much like Ashley. What does everyone else think?

Baby Boy Church, Brother to Piper Iliana

Tiffany writes:
Our second child, a boy, is due on November 30. We were all set on a girl’s name, Ava Rose. We already have a little girl named Piper Iliana. I always loved the name Piper and we had decided on that name for our first girl before we were even married. Now that we are having a little boy, we are stuck. We like a lot of names with different styles, but can’t seem to agree! Everyone has their opinion in our large family! The middle name will be “Reece.” That is my husband and father-in-law’s middle name, so at least that part was easy! I will list the names we like and the problems we have with them. We don’t like names that are really common (except obviously Ava), we have a very large, close family, so lots of interesting names are already taken (Abram, Joah, Evan, etc.)!


We really liked this name, but it doesn’t sound well with our last name, Church.


Everyone either doesn’t like this name, or pronounces it like “limb” which I can’t stand.


Everyone brings up the sound of “ride-her” which bugs me! This is one of our favorites.


I love this name, but am afraid everyone will associate it with Twilight.


I like this name, but am afraid it is a little too unusual.


I like this name, but am not sure if I want to go with just Finn or as a nn for something else!

* Everett

This is one that we both kind of like, but don't love.

Please help us with our naming dilemma! We thought it would be so easy to pick out a name for this baby! I am the kind of person that likes to know my baby’s name early so I can get used to calling him by name! Thanks so much in advance!!!

I do associate the name Edward with Twilight, but only partly---and I definitely don't think the association with Emmett is strong enough to throw it out, and I think Piper and Emmett is wonderful. Let's have a poll over to the right! [Poll closed; see results below.]

Name update! Tiffany writes:
Thank you for all your suggestions and the poll! In the end, we decided on a name that wasn't on our list at all. Gabriel Reece Church arrived happy and healthy on November 26, 2010! In the end, we both made a list of ten names and Gabriel was on my husband's list and we fell in love with it! We also decided to keep it a secret since we have such opinionated families and called him "Pinto" the whole pregnancy!

Thanks again!

Baby Wilson, Sibling to Griffin Kenneth

Keryn writes:
We are due with our second baby (gender unknown) November 26. This baby will be younger sibling to our son, 3-year-old Griffin Kenneth Wilson. I’m having the most trouble with girl names, and I could use some help. We have decided for sure that we will use my grandmother’s name, Angela, as a middle name. For this reason, and also because we aren’t really drawn to the “girlie girl” names, we don’t want a name that ends in “a.” I like the surname for first name trend, and I also like names that are a little unisex. That being said, I don’t want a “trendy” name, if that makes sense. Here is our current list:

Emery Angela Wilson – I love this name but my husband doesn’t really care for it.
Berkeley Angela Wilson – I actually came up with this one and my husband loves it, but I’ve read some posts online where people hate the name Berkeley for a girl! I think it’s cool. I’d like some feedback on this name in particular.
Keaton Angela Wilson – Both my husband and myself have names that begin in “Ke” (Ken and Keryn) so I’m afraid this would be weird for Griffin to have the rest of us have matchy “K” names (am I overthinking this?)

We’re really stuck here and I would LOVE some additional suggestions. Don’t even get me started on boy names (although if anyone has some cool boy’s name suggestions that would go with the middle name “Strummer” I’d love to hear them. We’ve picked that middle name in honor of Joe Strummer, who we both love.)

Thanks a million!

If you and your husband both love Berkeley Angela Wilson, I think you should ignore the element of "some people hate it." The thing is, there are some people to hate EVERY name.

For boys, I like Otto Strummer Wilson and Harris Strummer Wilson and Emmett Strummer Wilson.

Name update! Keryn writes:
I wanted to let you know that Griffin got a baby sister on November 23 and we named her Harper Angela Wilson. She's an angel.

Thanks for all the advice!


Are you a parent who has sent in a naming question? Has the baby been born and named, but you haven't updated us yet? Do you know how much our hearts leap up to see those updates? LOTS, that's how much! Update us! We're dying to know if/how our hard work paid off!

Name Update!

Update to Baby Girl Bruna, Sister to Charlotte Sunny Louise!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Baby Girl Malmberg

Raechel writes:
We're quickly approaching our due date, Nov. 14th, with no name that we can agree upon. My husband initially wanted to use a family name, either Caroline or Katherine. I don't care much for either - they are beautiful names but I don't want our girl to be named either.

Half way through the pregnancy, his mother tells us that each first born daughter on her side has had the first or middle name of Elizabeth. "No pressure", though, but also no real alternative. Baby Girl's middle name will be Elizabeth. Though we should name her what we want (versus what she feels appropriate), Elizabeth as a middle name is 99.9% non-negotiable.

This left me wanting to use a family name from my side for her first name. My initial idea was Violet but my heart isn't set on it. The other family name is Barbara but we won't be using that.

We both liked Mari for awhile -- we liked it was a name seen in different cultures, such as Scandanavian and Japanese. We live on a Japanese island so we felt it'd be a neat tie for her when we returned to the States. Recently, though, we decided against it because of the alliteration and similarity to his mom's name, Mary.

I like 'old' names (antique if you will) but would like something bordering on uncommon. A name I recently stumbled upon was Genevie, a variant of Genevive. Vivienne is also pretty, as is Charlotte - for examples - though the names haven't reached out and said, "This may be the one."

Our last name is Malmberg, pronounced Mall-m-berg. Can you think of any names that are on the traditional side that have an antique feel? I am open for any other suggestions you think may fit as well.

The tricky part of what The Baby Name Wizard calls "Antique Charm" names is that the entire category is in style. Vivienne, Charlotte, Genevieve---all getting more popular each year, and with the potential to get VERY popular. This doesn't bother me very much because any name that's a "revival" is a name that's likely to wax and wane over the years but always be a good solid choice. I'm mentioning it only because you'd like something bordering on uncommon, in which case I'm worried this category will lead to later disappointment if a name continues to get more common. I recommend using the Social Security Administration's baby name site to track the recent progress of each name: is it making huge startling leaps, or just a slow gradual increase reflecting the increasing popularity of its category?

It's too bad the name Elizabeth means Eliza is out, because I love it with your surname: Eliza Malmberg.

I also like Stella, but it's what I consider a "startling leaps" name:

(screenshot from the Social Security Administration)
(click picture to see it bigger)
("a" = "not in the top 1000 names for that year")

Clara is rising, too, but not as startlingly. Clara Malmberg, Clara Elizabeth Malmberg.

Cecily is a name I'd EXPECT to see rising, but instead it's fallen completely out of the Top 1000. Cecily Malmberg, Cecily Elizabeth Malmberg.

Fiona isn't quite what you've asked for, but I wonder if you'd like it? Fiona Malmberg.

But here is my #1 choice for you: Felicity. I don't know why this name isn't increasing with the other sweeties like Emma and Madeline and Abigail, but it just ISN'T. Felicity Elizabeth Malmberg.

Name update! Raechel writes:
Thank you so very much for your suggestions -- and thank you to those who commented with suggestions as well!

Evelyn Elizabeth was born on November 18th at 13:41 at 20" long and weighing 6lbs 12oz. She didn't have a name until Friday afternoon as we couldn't decide but we are happy with our choice now.

Thank you again!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Baby Boy Perez, Brother to Maggie Suzanne

Joy writes:
I have been looking at your blog and I love all of the advice and options you provide for your followers. My husband and I are expecting our second baby around November 22, 2010. We have a 14 month old daughter whose name is Maggie Suzanne. Our family is blended in that I am Caucasian and my husband is Hispanic so we have beautiful dark headed babies with big brown eyes and the best tan. So we are almost decided on the first name for our baby boy being Oscar, but we are stuck on a middle name. The other first name that was a major contender was Oliver, but I feel like it is becoming very popular. I have always had an original name that no one else had and I loved it. I would like my kids to have the same kind of name. Some middle names we like are Alexander (me) and Mateo ( my husband). Other names we have discussed are Andy, Sammy, Felix, Max. I guess my only thoughts are the first name needs to be 2 syllables and I want to name him what I will call him. I am not a big fan of relying on nicknames.
I am looking forward to reading your thoughts!

Ooo, I like Oscar Mateo Perez AND Oscar Alexander Perez---I can't decide! I also like the way the names Andy and Sammy go with the name Maggie, but overall I prefer Oscar. My top favorite from all your contenders is Felix, and I like it with either Mateo or Alexander.

Another I like for you is Hugo. Like Oscar and Felix, it's uncommon but not difficult. I like Hugo Alexander Perez.

Another is Aidric, maybe Aidric Mateo.

Another is Rufus. I like either Rufus Mateo or Rufus Alexander, maybe a slight preference for Rufus Alexander.

If you're flexible on the number of syllables, I also like Gideon.

Name update! Joy writes:
I am a little behind, but I wanted to send an update on our precious baby boy. He was born October 28th and weighed 7lbs 11oz. He was a little early, but was perfect! Everyone is so in love with him including his big sister Maggie. We really appreciated everyone's advice and yours as well. We were able to add to our list and come up with name combinations we hadn't thought of. In the end when we met our little man we both knew Oscar Alexander just fit him perfectly. He is just over two months now and every day I love his name (and him of course) a little more than the day before.
Thanks again for all of the name help! We will save them in case we have another boy in the future.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Baby Girl or Boy Hockey

Jannel writes:
We are due with our first child on November 17, 2010. We are not sure of the sex of the baby. Our last name is Hockey. My husbands middle name is Travis ( which I really like), and mine is Lillian Rose (after both my grandmas). Other possible middle names for girls might be Lynn (his mothers and sisters middle name) or Jean(my mothers middle name). Possibilites for Boys Daniel (my Dad's name) or Laverne (his Dad's name) I find that I like more unique names or old fashioned names such as Olivia and Jake and my husband like the VERY POPULAR modern names like Jasmine and Carson.

I have a baby girl name I have loved forever. I can't picture it any other way, BUT my husband hates it! I think the first name is perfect and the middle name is my middle name and also my grandma's. My mom also loves this name. I have told others and have gotten mixed feelings so let me know what you think.

Ireland/Irelynn Rose

The names I like:


I could do his choice but spelt Karsen

Names he likes:



Besides Irelynn, none of the above names just out at me. Maybe its because he never really Loves anything I suggest. Can you give me any suggestions?

Thanks! xx

I think we need to start by tidying up some terminology. The names Olivia and Jake are much more popular than Carson and Jasmine: Jacob has been the most popular boy name in the U.S. since 1999, and Olivia has been in the Top Ten for ten years and was #3 in 2009 (source: Social Security Administration). Looking at your lists, it looks to me as if you and your husband have very similar tastes: for the most part, you both like modern names.

The trouble with Irelynn is it's ALMOST Ireland but NOT Ireland, which I suspect will lead to confusion. But the biggest trouble of all is that your husband hates it. I too have felt this despair (in my case over the name Millicent), but there is no way around it: if he hates it, it doesn't matter if you love it and your mom loves it and all the commenters on this blog love it: it's OUT.

Would he prefer the name Eidolyn/Idolynn? We know an Eidolyn who also goes by Eidie, and it's very cute and we've found it fun to say.

You both have the name Kate on your lists. Would he agree to Kate Irelynn? The rhythm isn't perfect, but it gives you the name you love in a position where he might hate it less. There are plenty of names I'd never consider in the first-name slot but would be willing to use in the middle-name slot---especially if there was something in it for me, like getting more say on the first name. Perhaps he would agree to it as a way to have the name-discussing done with. And you could then legitimately call her Irelynn sometimes, maybe as an affectionate nickname only you use.

One exercise I recommend for first-time namers is to imagine names for future siblings. This, right now, is the moment to decide if your family will be more likely to include girls with names like Lachlan or girls with names like Olivia: the route you choose now doesn't HAVE to dictate your later choices, but it's likely to at least be of influence.

If you decide to go for boyish names for girls, a name that comes to mind from your Layton and his Haylee is Hayden.

If you want more girlish names for girls, Leyton can become Layla, or Lila, or Leta, or Laney.

If he likes Jasmine, might he like Jessamyn? It has more of the rhythm of Irelynn.

Avelyn is another name with a similar sound to Irelynn.

I think Iris would be a beautiful choice. If you pair it with Lynn for his mother and sister, you have Iris Lynn---which you needn't point out to him is very similar to Irelynn.

For boys I see you both have Rylan. Is that a name you can agree on? Rylan Travis, maybe?

Or I wonder if you would like Corbin?

Leyton and Jaxon make me think of Lennox.

Would you like Xavier? It's an old name but recent usage makes it feel modern.

I think Kiefer is a great name for a boy. Kiefer Travis Hockey.

Jake and Jace make me think of Jude. Jude Travis Hockey.

Or would you want to use Travis as a first name? Travis Daniel Hockey---or if you want just one namesake name, maybe Travis Carson Hockey or Travis Rylan Hockey.

(I recommend not spelling Carson "Karson" for a boy: changing a C to a K is a common way to make androgynous name more feminine, as in Kamryn, Kori, Kodi, etc.)

I think my favorites are Travis Carson Hockey and Iris Lynn Hockey, with runners-up of Kiefer Travis Hockey and Kate Irelynn Hockey.

Baby Boy, Brother to Jack, Sam, Charlie, and Luke

Leigh writes:
So I am expecting my 5th boy. His brothers' names are:

Jack Bennett
Sam McQueen
Charlie Merrill
Luke Whitney

Our last name is two syllables and ends in an -en sound.

Each of the middle names are family names, but I kind of feel like I have exhausted the family names at this point. (Tonight I just went through them again and didn't find much.) I would be okay not using a family name for the middle name, if I felt like it sounded great with the first name. I am also not really into naming the child a long name, only to shorten it. If I'm going to call them the nickname, I'd rather just name him the nickname.

My main problem is that I love 1 syllable names. And I think that usually a 1 syllable first name doesn't go so well with a 1 syllable middle name. Or maybe it's just the names that I like that don't go together so well. I'm also not sure why I'm having such a hard time picking a name. But most things I think of just sound okay and not like THE name. I also would like to use a 2 syllable name for baby #5, just so Charlie isn't the only 2 syllable name. But then again, if it was the perfect name, I'd be okay with 1 syllable.

For first names I like:

Henry and/or Hank
Max (some days I like it, some days I don't)

I also love the names Jude and Grey, but I'm not sure if I'm brave enough to use them as first names. I could use one of them as a middle name if I found the perfect first name to go. We also could use the middle name Briggs (which is a family name) as a middle name, though I'm not sold on it and I don't like it at all for a first name. I also really like the name Louie,

For a while I thought I could name this baby Max Elliott. But I don't like it, for some reason. I'm not sure why. I think I don't really love Elliott, or it doesn't feel like it fits with my names. Other combinations I've thought of are: James Grey (even thought it is 2 1 syllable names, I think it sounds good), Henry Briggs, Henry Jude, Henry Grey.

So my questions for you are:

1. Do you have any suggestions of 2 or more syllable first names that fit my names?
2. Do you have any suggestions of middle names that sound great with the possible first names I listed?
3. What are your suggestions for some combinations?

Thanks for your consideration. And if you have any questions, I'd be happy to answer them.

Two syllable names that seem to me to go well with your sons' names:

Casey (repeats an initial)
Leo (repeats an initial)

I also like Ian, and in fact it would be my favorite of these, but it seems like most names ending in N would be only so-so with your surname.

But I prefer your idea of Henry. I also like all your one-syllable choices better than my short list of two-syllable choices. If Charlie is the middlest middle child he might like having something special about his name.

For a middle name I like names that sound like more family names. Henry Walker. James Shepard. Joe Sawyer. Milo Connery. Casey Lennox. James Maguire. Joe Campbell. James Ellis. Milo Redford. James Murphy. Joe Evans.

I think Henry is my favorite of your options---because despite just saying three seconds ago that it might be nice for Charlie's name to be special, I also see the appeal of making things more even. I like Henry Briggs and also Henry Grey from your list, and Henry Shepard and Henry Ellis from mine. I also love your James Grey idea.

I think I'd favor Henry because it has two syllables and doesn't repeat an initial, and Henry Briggs because I like the family name thing you've got going.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Baby Girl Patterson, Sister to Grady Owen

Terra writes:
A friend told me about your blog, and I have really enjoyed reading through the posts. I am having an extremely difficult time deciding on a name for our baby girl, due in a month! I am Terra, husband is Josh, surname is Patterson. Siblings name is Grady Owen (call him Gray). He is named after my husband's grandfather (and my husband and his father also have middle name Owen). We both tend to like older, more traditional names. We don't want anything too common, but also don't like very odd names. I would like to use something from my side of the family this time since we don't plan on having anymore children. Basically the only family names I have to work with are Hazel (great-grandmother), Jacqueline (grandmother), or Harper (mother's maiden name). My favorite name of these options is Hazel, simply because I like the name.

Our finalist list:

Catherine Hazel (call her Cate) - This is probably my number one pick. Have always loved the name Cate (with a C), but my concerns are that it is too plain and common (especially with Gray). Also not sure if the "ate" sound and fact that it is one syllable bothers me after saying it over and over.

Lucy Sutton (call her Lucy) - Sutton is a family name of my husband's that we love, but then I won't be using anything from my family. My other concern is I'm not sure I see Lucy growing with her. Is it too little girl sounding?

Charlotte (not sure about middle name) - We both like Charlotte well enough. Worry about it becoming too popular, and it is also fairly new on our list so not sure if I'm in love with it yet.

Others that we both like: Eliza, Annabel, Carly.

Names that got ruled out either because a friend has used it or because it is a color (don't want them both to have color names since we call our son Gray): Olive, Violet, Ruby, Pearl, Caroline. Love several of these but can't get past the color thing...Didn't realize when we named him that we would have this issue!

So, I need your help and feedback on our final list and other potentials. I keep coming back to Cate, but then I start to wonder if it just isn't right since I can't commit.

HELP! :)

Since you have always loved Catherine/Cate, I think this indecision is likely to be normal baby-naming jitters. Baby-naming is a big deal, and we only get so many babies to name---it's normal to feel uncertain. I do wonder if you might call her Catie, and might call your son Grady? Then you'd have a rhyme, which would be fine if it didn't bother you, and maybe even fun since it would be an optional, avoidable rhyme.

Lucy Sutton is super cute, but it does seem unfair to have tons of family names from your husband's side (not to mention the surname) and none from yours. I like Lucy Harper. I think all the other Lucys will help to make Lucy seem like a grown-up name when they all ARE grown-ups (just as the name Jennifer now seems like a woman in her late 30s), but there's also Lucille or Lucia or Luciana or Lucienne or Lucinda.

I like Charlotte with Harper (I like the repeating "ar" sound).

Baby Boy Hagin, Brother to Natalie Keenan

Meredith writes:
We are expecting baby #2, a boy. Our daughter is Natalie Keenan LastName. We agreed immediately on her first name and Keenan is a family name on my side. Our last named is similar to Hagin. My name is Meredith and my husband is Daniel.

We need your help. It appears that we have very different naming styles when it comes to boys. The one name we agreed on is Nathan (nn Nate), which can't be used for obvious reasons. The middle name will be Robert, after my father. Husband does not like it for a first name. We also would like to avoid top 10 names or trendy names so Ethan, Evan and Owen are out. (Yes, I know Nathan is also popular). Husband does not love names ending with N with our last name, but has not vetoed them. Also, no strong biblical names.

My husband's list: Keith, Derek, Christopher, Travis, Trevor
My list: Seth, Shane, Logan, Kyle

Names we can't use but love: Michael, Eric, Ryan, Matthew, Jason, James, Alexander, Jeremy, John, Jack, Liam, Tyler, Aaron, Jeffrey, Adam, Scott, Cole
Names you like that we do not love: Oliver, Elias, Simon, Henry, Milo, Max, Graham, Grant,


If you take away Oliver, Simon, Henry, and Milo, I'm all out of ideas! Commenters?

Name update! Meredith writes: "Kyle Robert born 11/16/10. Thanks!"

Name Update!

Update to Baby Girl D., Sister to Beckett Finn!

Baby Twins Deein

A. writes:
I've been reading your blog for a long time now and thought I could come up with some names for our twins myself but we're getting closer to my due date (Nov 15 but probably delivering around Halloween) and haven't agreed on girl names! We don't know the genders so we could be having 2 boys, 2 girls or one of each. Our last name is pronounced Dee-in. I have no idea what our name styles would be described as but hopefully some of the names that we like can help you out.

We've definitely decided on Coulter (a family name) as our main boy name and will call him Cole. Our other boy name is most likely Everett. Husband is okay with this name if we call him Evan. Does that nickname even work for Everett? I'm not convinced....

Other boy names I like:

Other boy names Husband likes:
Evan (by itself)

For girls, we're at a loss. I have been IN LOVE with the name Nora since high school and am trying my hardest to get my husband on board with this.

Other girl names I like:
Ruth (Ruthie)
Ireland (Family Surname)
Quinn (Husband thinks it's too boyish)

Girl names husband likes:
Caroline (I love too but it's my only sister's name!! He thinks that doesn't matter, I highly disagree)
Casey (kass-ee) I guess this is how you would spell it? He thinks this is how it should be spelled. I think she'll be mistaken as a K.C. her whole life...

Any suggestions of girl names that might fit in both of our styles?

Middle name wise, they are already picked out, no matter the gender: Hill and Gregory. They are family names.

Help us please!!!!

Twin names are already harder to choose than a name for a singleton baby, but when the sexes are unknown it makes it an Herculean task: THREE twinsets, one for each possible combination.

In my opinion, Evan is too much of a reach as a nickname for Everett: Evan is its own name already, and not connected to the name Everett in any way except that they share the first two letters. To me it's like using Jessica as a nickname for Jennifer.

I would suggest just using the name Evan, but it doesn't seem to me like a very good fit with Coulter OR with your surname. West Deein seems like it blends too much; Christian Deein seems rhymey. With Coulter, Mauer seems like the best match. Or do you have another family name you could use? Perhaps Coulter and Gregory (Cole and Greg), and find a different middle name? I like Coulter with other surname names, and with your surname I like to avoid N-endings:

Coulter and Bennett
Coulter and Brody
Coulter and Elliot
Coulter and Fletcher
Coulter and Frasier
Coulter and Garrett
Coulter and Gregory
Coulter and Jagger
Coulter and Lennox
Coulter and Maguire
Coulter and Marshall
Coulter and Mercer
Coulter and Miller
Coulter and Ranger
Coulter and Redford
Coulter and Sawyer
Coulter and Thatcher
Coulter and Turner
Coulter and Yeardley

I like Coulter with Archer, but wonder if "Archer Deein" sounds too much like "archdeacon." I also took Baxter off the list because when I said it too many times it started sounding like "bastard." And I wondered about Brody (or Grady, or Brady) Deein---is the repeating "dee" sound too much? And Redford I love, but does the D-ending blend in with Deein too much?

For girl names---are you saying you don't want to name a daughter after your sister? In that case, DEFINITELY Caroline is off the list. But I do think it's a charming idea, if you both love the name and if you like your sister. ...Although, does your husband have any sisters? If so, things could get dicey.

If you want the pronunciation "kass-ee," with a short A, it's spelled Cassie (or possibly Kassie or Cassey). Casey would be like Casey-at-the-bat: KAY-see. I suggest using a longer name such as Cassandra or Cassidy and using Cassie as a nickname. Cassandra and Caroline would be a pretty combination. Cassandra and Cassidy are both nice with Coulter, too.

Other pairings for girl twins:

Caroline and Ruth
Anna and Ruth
Anna and Caroline
Anna and Cora

For boy-girl twins:

Coulter and Cassidy
Coulter and Caroline
Coulter and Cassandra

I like Coulter and Keelin, but Keelin Deein seems too rhymey to me. I'm not sure if Cassidy Deein works or if the repeating Dee sound is too much.

I was looking for some options that don't repeat the initial sound, but it's hard to find: Coulter and Anna are so different in style; Coulter and Caroline might be just as different, but the repeating hard-C sound ties them together.

For boy-girl twins, I'd definitely give the middle name Gregory to the boy twin: Coulter Gregory and Caroline Hill. For boy-boy twins, it doesn't much matter, so I'd probably give Gregory to whichever name seemed less obviously boyish. For girl-girl twins, it's hard to decide who should take Gregory. Anna Gregory and Ruth Hill? Cassidy Hill and Keelin Gregory? I feel like they're both going to agree Hill is the better middle name.

My favorites:

Coulter ____ and Gregory Hill
Coulter Hill and Sawyer Gregory
Coulter Gregory and Lennox Hill

Coulter Gregory and Cassidy Hill
Coulter Gregory and Caroline Hill

Anna Gregory and Ruth Hill
Anna Gregory and Cora Hill

Name update 10-23-2010! A. writes:
Thanks for all your help! Your comments helped put a few things in perspective for us both and gave us some great ideas. Our b/g twins were born 10/20 and we named them Coulter Hill and Annora Ireland. The name Annora never occurred to us! We read it and both instantly fell in love with it. We BOTH love their names which is a miracle! And using Ireland instead of Gregory as a mn was perfect. The tradition in both of our families is to use family surnames for middle names (mine growing up was Johnson! yuck!) so using a more feminine surname was a great idea. I guess we never thought of it because I thought it would be a great first name, but it definitely works perfectly as her middle name. Mom, Dad, Cole and Nora are doing great. Thanks again!

Annora and Coulter

Baby Girl Pollack

Patti writes:
Hoping you (and your readers) could help me name my little girl who is due to arrive in early November. This will be our second child (and last!!) who is a sibling to Benjamin Ray. I chose the middle name Ray which was my maiden name (Rae) as well as my grandfather and aunt's middle name. This time it's a little harder. I would like to honor my grandmother whose name was Esther (no middle name), however, she hated her name! I stumbled across the name Estelle and discovered it has the same meaning as Esther, "star". So I'd love to use that in the middle name slot. I've considered it as a first name but a close friend just named her daughter Stella and I'm afraid it's too similar. If Estelle doesn't work in the middle name slot, I've also considered using the initials EJ, as that was my grandmothers maiden name initials. Other possibilities to consider in choosing our daughter's name is that my husbands background is Scandinavian (I'm a bit of a mutt) and my husband LOVES aviation.

Thought so far:

Audrey Estelle
Anna Estelle
Avery Estelle
Lilah Estelle
Eliza Johanne
Juliet Estelle
Olivia Estelle

Other names we haven't ruled out: Freya, Helena, Amelia. Names my husband (shockingly) suggested: Matilda, Imogen (too similar sounding IMO to Benjamin), and Ingrid.

Thank you for your thoughts... We are open to new suggestions that you think might suit our style!!!

Sometimes a namesake is difficult or even impossible to achieve. You'd like to honor your grandmother, but her first name won't work and she didn't have a middle name. By the time you're as far into it as using not even her maiden name but her maiden INITIALS, or using a name with the same MEANING and putting it in the middle name slot, I'm not sure we have a namesake at all. On the other hand, it may still remind you pleasantly of your grandmother, and restricting your choices may make it easier to choose a name.

I do think, though, that her first name DOES work, even if she hated it. I'm assuming from your verb tenses that she has died, and even if she hated her name it was still HERS. The name represents HER---which is why namesakes are considered an honor: our names become a stand-in for our SELVES. You wouldn't be naming your daughter "after the name my grandmother hated," you'd be naming her "after my grandmother." Your grandmother's feelings about her name are unconnected to your feelings about your grandmother, and unconnected to what it means to use her name.

So my suggestion is that you name your daughter Esther. It's a beautiful name, and it's perfect with Benjamin. I like Esther Rae if you want to use your maiden name again, or practically any one-syllable name: Esther Jane, Esther Rose, Esther Mae, etc. I also like Esther Matilda and Esther Imogen and Esther Eliza. Or to give her even more flexibility, Esther Olivia or Esther Avery.

From your list I find it hard to choose favorites because I think they're all such good options. If you twist my arm, I'd choose Audrey Estelle and Eliza Joanne.

Name update! Patti writes:
Happy to say this week we welcomed Eliza Rae into our family! Thanks for your input!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Baby Girl Redrow

Megan writes:
I’m due on November 7th with my first child, a baby girl. I have 3 stepchildren from my husband’s first marriage, and they all live with us full time. Their names are Gabriella Elizabeth (Gabby), Samarah Michelle (Sammi), and Finnegan Francis Xavier (Finn.) Our last name is Redrow—and sounds just like its spelled, Red (the color) and Row (a boat.)

When we first found out we were expecting, we had no problem picking out a boys name, Connor James. Connor hit me one day, and James is a family name on my side. We still plan to use it in the future, if we should have a boy. Girls names, however, have been difficult. We have a list, but we go back & forth with pros and cons, and nothing seems “just right.”

Right now, our list consists of…

Caroline (which is only on my list...)

I love Audrey, but my husband isn’t a fan of Audrey (but I’m keeping up hope.)

We both love Fiona, but my husband’s stepmother’s nickname is Fee (her name is Charlotte, a nephew couldn’t pronounce it as a baby, and she became "Fee") so my husband is very hesitant to use Fiona.

We both really like Celia a lot, but we have a lot of C’s and K’s in my family (all of my female cousins but me, actually), so I’d like to stay away from C, especially if we’re going to use Connor James in the future.

Moira/Maura has been a great debate in our house. I love Maura, pronounced More-ah. My husband likes Moira, pronounced Moy-rah. I think naming the baby Moira is setting her up to spend her life correcting people who call her More-ah. My husband thinks I’m thinking too much into it.

And we have Marion. Marion was my choice as a middle name, and my husband whole-heartedly agreed. My great-aunt, who was very near & dear to me, passed away right before my wedding. Her name was Marion, and I’d love to honor her, along with the rest of my family (mother Maryanne, grandmothers Mary & Margaret, stepmother Margaret, etc.), since they are all derived from Mary. My only issue is—when I think Marion, I think older woman. Maybe because my great-aunt was a grandmotherly type, I just don’t see it as a child’s name. The more we discuss it, the more my husband loves Marion. I’ve wracked my brain to come up with what I think of as a kid-friendly nickname, and I’m coming up blank. I have Mimi, Minnie, etc., but nothing really grabs me. I just can’t see my daughter, at 6 years old, walking into dance class saying, Hi, my name is Marion. If I can come up with a good nickname, then I’d have no problem naming the baby Marion (middle name Renee.)

Also, on MY list is Caroline Marion. I LOVE THIS NAME, but my husband doesn’t. This is another name that I’m trying to keep in the running.

My only criteria is that the name be classic & different, but not weird & made up. I don’t want the name to be too popular either, she shouldn't be another Grace or Ava (not that I don’t like those names, I just think they’re too popular to me, I don't want her to be Grace R.) We’re also trying to stay away from the C/K craze that my aunts created in my family, and we’re also trying to stay away from R’s, since our last name has a double R.

This is causing quite a bit of tension in my house, so I hope you can help. I’m hormonal & indecisive, and I’m afraid that my husband is running out of patience. I tried to discuss it again last night and he said he didn’t want to talk about it, probably because I just keep re-hashing the same pros & cons, and we never really get anywhere (and I can’t really blame him either.)

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!!

Thank you so much in advance!

I think you need a fresh list to work with: the "going round and round" feeling can come from a list on which none of the names are The Name. Let's take Caroline off: your husband doesn't like it, and it's a C name which you're trying to avoid. Let's take Celia off, too, since it's a C name. Let's take off Maura/Moira, because it sounds like the debate my husband and I had about Elliot/Eliot: neither of us would bend on the spelling, so finally it had to come off the list. Let's take off Audrey because your husband doesn't like it. Let's take Fiona off the list because Fee is a natural nickname for it.

This leaves Marion, which you both like and is a family name. I think the cutest, least-old-ladyish nickname is Mari. Well, all right, yes, it sounds like Mary, and Mary is also a little old-ladyish---but I'm not sure it sounds that way to children, who are steeped in Mary Had a Little Lamb and Mary Mary Quite Contrary. Also, it was very recently that names like Ava and Emma and Grace sounded impossibly old-ladyish, so my guess is that soon Marion/Marian will sound just as revived. (I have hopes for Florence and Millicent!)

New suggestions, keeping in mind the siblings Gabriella, Samara and Finnegan:

Adriana Redrow
Anastasia Redrow
Annabel Redrow
Beatrix Redrow
Bianca Redrow
Elena Redrow
Eliza Redrow
Emmeline Redrow
Felicity Redrow
Francesca Redrow
Genevieve Redrow
Josephine Redrow
Marilena Redrow
Penelope Redrow
Stella Redrow

My pick is Bianca: it's similar to Fiona, which you both love except for the Fee problem; it doesn't repeat any of the other children's initials; and it's good with your surname.

Name update! Megan writes:
Sorry its been so long, but I just wanted to let you know that on November 1, 2010, I delivered a beautiful baby girl named Juliette Elyse. Her name-which wasn't even on "the list"-hit me out of the blue, after a long day of nesting & organizing. When I said it out loud, my husband & I fell in love with it. Its classic, not overly popular, and very feminine. Thanks for all your advice & thoughts (and for those of your readers too.)

Baby Girl, Sister to Greyson and Weston

Kate writes:
Hi Swistle! I wrote to you for our last baby (baby boy #2 - we were trying to decide between Weston and Wesley - we went with Weston). Your advice and the commets were helpful, so I thought I'd consult again! Anyway, we're expecting our third baby on November 6 and this time they tell me it's a GIRL. So exciting! Anyway, we have a Greyson, a Weston, and now considering girl names. We're strongly considering Miriam Kathleen. Kathleen is a family name. We like names that are a little differnt, but not crazy. Our last name starts with "s" and is two syllables and goes well with just about anything. I don't hear much about the name Miriam and would appreciate your comments. We were thinking Mira as a nickname. Thanks!

My comment is: I think it's wonderful! Miriam is one of the steadiest names I have ever seen: it hasn't left the 200s/300s of popularity in DECADES. In fact, the last time it was below #200 was NINETEEN THIRTY-THREE! (Source: Social Security Administration.) And Miriam Kathleen is lovely.

Ah Ha!

I had a flash of insight about why it is I can never, never catch up enough to be the ideal "two to three months before due date": it's because even if I were to catch up right now and be working on January due dates, questions would continue to come in for October, November, and December. Since I go in due date order, I would tackle the new questions--and by the time I was once again caught up to January, it would be back to "two to three WEEKS before due date."

So possibly what I need to do is CLOSE months: I've finished October due dates, so perhaps now I could say "no more October due dates." Then when I finish the November questions, "no more November due dates." The problem with this---and it's a big problem---is that many questioners NEED help at the last minute.

Well. Still without a solution, aren't we? I'll continue to mull. I found your suggestions on this post very good mulling fodder.

Baby Boy/Girl Twins Hoffman

Markie writes:
I am due with twins, boy and girl, November 9th. The last name is Hoffman.
The boy name is where I need some help. We have Hazel Clover picked for our girl. For the boy Drake is the middle name, this is a family name.
I am interested in h names for the boy as well and have had Heath and Hudson on my list. We are also considering Arrow. I don't want a too common name, too trendy or too weird name.
My concerns have been that Heath may be too hard to say with the last name, Hudson too trendy and Arrow too unusual.
What are your recommendations?

I think Hazel and Hudson Hoffman is a lot to say. I think the same about Hazel and Heath Hoffman, and Heath Drake seems too choppy. So of your choices, I think I'd lean most toward Hazel and Arrow Hoffman, except I think you're right that Arrow crosses the line into too unusual.

I recommend Forest. Forest Drake Hoffman is unusual enough to balance Hazel Clover, but not unheard-of.

I also recommend one of my friend Mairzy's favorites: Sterling. Same as Forest: Sterling Drake Hoffman balances Hazel Clover, but isn't an unheard-of name.

I love the sound of Ezra with Hazel: Ezra Drake and Hazel Clover. It's perhaps a little trendy, but on par with the trendiness level of Hazel.

Name update! Markie writes:
This is very belated update sorry! The kids actually came in September, 8 weeks early and before your post. They are healthy and wonderful. We did go with Hazel Clover and Arrow Drake. My husband loves the name Arrow and I loved that he was so passionate about it. A friend later suggested that we should have named our girl Beau. Get it? Bow and arrow! Thanks so much for the help anyway. I love hearing about baby names and the blog is so much fun. Keep up the good work!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Middle Name Challenge: Sawyer ______ W.

Jennifer writes:
I'm due October 27, 2010. It is a girl. I am pretty set on her first name of Sawyer and want to pair it w/a feminine middle name. I am a single Mom & do not have family that I'd like to name her after.
My top middle names:
Ophelia, Fiona, Audrina, Violet

Ophelia is my favorite, but I'm not crazy about the initials SOW.

I went thru IVF 10 times & consider her nothing short of a miracle!
Can you make some suggestions?
Thanks much!

I agree: no SOW. I would also avoid SAW and SEW, but I am more picky than average about avoiding initials that spell things. (I might be okay with SEW, but SAW makes me think of the horror movie series.)

Sawyer Beatrix
Sawyer Bianca
Sawyer Camellia
Sawyer Cordelia
Sawyer Felicity
Sawyer Helena
Sawyer Jane
Sawyer Mirabelle
Sawyer Patience

I especially like Felicity for its meaning of luck and happiness. And Patience seems a fitting commemoration of how difficult she was to achieve.

Name update! Jennifer writes: "Sawyer Grace."

Baby Boy or Girl Nadeau, Sibling to Finley Frances

Taryn writes:
We are due at the end of October and are finding ourselves further and further away from a name that we like, boy or girl. Our last name is Nadeau (rhymes with play-doh) and we have a 2-year-old daughter named Finley Frances. We love her name and can not come up with a name, either gender that we love equally. We recently created lists with the thought that we need to have some names in mind when we get to the hospital, none that we are truly married to.

For boys we have:
Andrew (after my father and would be called Drew)

For girls we have:
Louisa (have not gotten a great response when floated this name with friends and fam but can't help but be drawn to Lou-lou for n.n.)

There have been other names we like but for certain reasons can't use them. We love Francesca, but 1. Fin's middle name is Frances and 2. I do not want to use the same letter to start Fin's sibling's name. Also, any name that ends with an o sounds funny with Nadeau. I also like a lot of names with a similar ending to Finley, but it sounds funny to me when I say the names together. It is important to us that the name have a good n.n. and that it is somewhat different without being outlandish. (although our boys list does not necessary reflect that)

We would love to hear some suggestions, as we have searched every list around and have yet to be inspired by anything!

Thank you!!

Because Finley is an androgynous name, I'd use this rule of thumb (which I'm pretty sure I got from Beyond Jennifer and Jason): similarly androgynous for a sister (or at least not distinctly frilly), clearly masculine for a brother. And with your surname, I find I don't like the sound of first names ending in N, which cuts out a ton of options.

Darby Alice
Ellery Estelle
Ellis Ruby
Emory Eleanor
Hollis Harriet
Quincy Margaret (Fin and Quinn too much?)

(I included a number of names that don't have nicknames, because I would have thought of Finley as nicknameless, too.)

I LOVE Louisa. I think it's non-frilly enough to go okay with Finley, though it's quite a different style. Louisa is the sort of name people might be "meh" about when you tell them about it, but then later it will grow on them so much they won't be able to believe they ever felt that way. And the right middle name will make it fit better with Finley: Louisa Ruby is better with Finley Frances than, say, Louisa Elizabeth. Maybe: Louisa Hazel, Louisa Matilda, Louisa Harper, Louisa Ivy, Louisa Violet.

For boys, I find Owen too much O with Nadeau--and because it ends in N, it runs together. Owenado.

My favorite from your boy name list is Andrew, and I like that it's a family name.

Name update 11-05-2010! Taryn writes:
We had a baby boy on October 29th! After he was born we took out our list and reviewed our names, and like many before us have stated, one name just seemed to stick out... We named him Kelton Terry (after my older brother) Nadeau. Although Kelton was a name not suggested for us, I did find it on your blog suggested as a boy's name on a different post! Thank you for your ideas and inspirations :)

Name Updates!

Update on Baby Girl Jackson!
Update on Help Make a Finalist List!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Baby Boy Roshcold

Taylor writes:
I am expecting baby #3, a boy, in late October. The hubs and I are having a hard time with naming the little fella...its more challenging each time I think. My son is William Jack, who we call Will, and my daughter is Annabel Karen, Annie. Will is named after my FIL, my grandfather (both Williams/Bills) and my father, whose mn is Jack. Annie is named for my MIL (whose mn is Anne), me (also mn of Ann) and my mother, whose first name is Karen. To keep with our naming pattern, ideally I would like a traditional first name with a nickname, and a namesake (one will do this time, haha). But there's the rub... we covered almost all our bases with our first two kiddos...with all 4 of our parents accounted for, we don't have many special namesakes left for this little guy! I don't want him to see his sibling's meaningful names and feel left out... but out of necessity we decided to branch out to first names without family ties and use a family name for the middle name.

My list of first names right now are:

Henry, nn Hank
-This is our frontrunner. I love how Henry sounds with William and Annabel and how Hank sounds with Will and they could fit in at Buckingham Palace or in the cast of "OKLAHOMA!" depending on whether they go by their given name or nickname. BUT, Henry seems to really be gaining in popularity. When we named our first son, I knew William was a popular name. Since the name has so much family significance, I don't mind. But since there's no tribute involved with this baby's name, I'd rather not pick a popular name. What is your take on Hank?? Is it rising too or are the majority of Henry-namers calling their boys by the full name?

Calvin, nn Cal
- I like this one much more than my husband does. I immediately think "Calvin and Hobbes" but hubby worries it sounds a little wimpy. I'm also not sure Calvin fits with our other names.

Charles, nn Charlie
- we love it but have pretty much eliminated it b/c of popularity, and my husband is scared to death someone might call him Chuck or Chaz, names he really dislikes.

- This actually is my husband's middle name, so it is a namesake. I love it--seems carefree and masculine to me, but I have some reservations. One is no nickname, which is a change from my other kids. Also, I worry little Jay might get lumped in with a slew of Jaydens and Jalens his age...and those names are not really my taste, so its a negative connotation for me. Also, it sounds just like the letter "J", obviously, and sometimes that sounds funny when you say the whole name, like he goes by his mn and uses the initial in front of it...does that make sense?

As far as middle names go, my husband and I both have brothers, but we don't want to choose one brother over the other for a namesake. We don't like any of their names, first or middle, enough to give a first name spot to one, and we do not want to use two middle names, so unless I am having a surprise twin I can't think of a way to honor both with one pregnancy. Our other grandfathers aren't options for various reasons. So we are left with some family surnames and my husband's name, Andrew Jay (nn Andy). We thought about doing a junior, but since we already have the confusion of an Andy and an Annie so Andrew junior seems like too many "An"s for one family! SOO....Our best middle name options are Andrew, Jay, and Patton (my husband's grandmother's maiden name, which holds significance to my mother in law).

Our last name is similar to "Roshcold".

Here are my favorite combos: Henry Patton "Roshcold", Henry Jay "Roshcold", Calvin Jay "Roshcold", Jay Patton "Roshcold". I would love more opinions and suggestions!


I do think it's okay if the first boy and the first girl have family names, and then the next children don't. But I also do love family names, so if you'd like to use them you've got me on your side!

I've definitely been hearing of Hank as a nickname for Henry on baby name questions---and yet I THINK all the actual Henrys I've encountered have gone by Henry. (Chime in, everyone: do you know Henrys who go by Hank?)

The nice thing about the name Charles is that although it's popular, its popularity is falling. Henry is rising and it's hard to predict how high it will go, but Charles has already gone as high as it's going. And it's wonderful with the others: Will, Annie, and Charlie is so perfect. You can probably keep him from being called Chuck or Chaz while he's young...but it's true he might choose one of those nicknames himself later on.

I know what you mean about Jay sounding like an initial, and I don't know how to get past that problem either. Well, one thing is that it's uncommon for someone to refer to himself by all three names: like, he'll say, "Hi, I'm Jay" or "Hi, I'm Jay Roshcold" WAY more often than he'll say "Hi, I'm Jay Patten Roshcold."

One option is to give him another name and nickname him Jay: that would give him a nickname like the other children. James would be so nice with your surname---but I realize that's probably more common than you want, and also it's a lot of fuss to go a roundabout route to make Jay a nickname if you really love Jay. But if you DID love James, or Jameson.

Or, I do like your Jr. idea for him. If you nicknamed him Drew, it gives you the nickname AND prevents you from adding to the Andy/Annie confusion. In fact, I think that's my favorite option. Or, you could make him a double namesake (like the other two kids) but not a Jr. by naming him Andrew Patton and calling him Drew.

Baby Boy Williams, Brother to Luke Andrew

Jacqui writes:
So with just 2 weeks until baby boy #2's awaited arrival I am desperately reaching out for last minute help! Normally I am not a last minute kind of person, so our predicament is that much more anxiety provoking. We have managed to narrow our list down, but more or less by ignoring the need for a list with the hope that the ones on it will eventually feel right. The problem is they just don't!!
So here is our top picks: Drew Marshall (after my husband Andrew Marshall (goes by Andy)), and
Marshall Scott (Marshall and Scott are both very prevelant family names, Scott is my Dad and Andy's uncle was named Marshall Scott but went by Scott, Marshall is both Andy's, his Dad's, and maternal Granddad's middle name).
Lastly, we have mutually but less seriously considered names like Baron, Ryan, Blake, and Logan. Some that I like but Andy does not are Ryder, Everett, and Carson. Our last name doesn't seem to pose an issue with any as Williams. However, the problem seems to be the combination with our 1st son's name: Luke Andrew. Although, on its own I like the short and brisk sound of Drew when said together as Luke and Drew, it is too close to Luke Andrew. Which is unavoidable, and something my ears have a hard time not hearing. I have asked others and they hear it too, Andy however doesn't seem to and is holding on to Drew as his name of choice, although really I think he is flexible. Marshall however, I really like especially with its strong significance, my only concern is that it doesn't fit well with Luke in terms of style and sound, and that Andy isn't all that fond of it as a first name. And what about with a nickname like Mack? Scott as a first name is out because I think of my Dad.
Opinions on the sounds of these names and any other suggestions would be most greatly appreciated.

I do think "Luke and Drew" sounds somewhat like "Luke Andrew," except that when I say the first one I put the emphasis on DREW, and when I say the second one I put the emphasis on AN, so to me they sound different enough to be okay---UNLESS you frequently call Luke "Luke Andrew." If not, I'd say it's fine.

I still prefer Marshall Scott, since Drew and Andrew are so similar and are both namesakes for the same person. BUT: if your husband isn't crazy about Marshall as a first name (and I think Mack is too much of a reach as a nickname), AND if you don't call your first son "Luke Andrew," probably Drew Marshall is the better choice, and perhaps both boys would enjoy being named for their dad. And I agree with you that Luke and Drew is a slightly better sibling set than Luke and Marshall---although I think both are good.

Let's have a poll over to the right: Drew Marshall, Marshall Scott, or "other" (if "other," put the name you'd pick in the comments section). [Poll closed; see results below.]

Baby Boy/Girl Twins Winters

Abigail writes:
'Ello, my dear life/marriage saver. You really have no idea how much we need your help. If I was a producer for FOX, I would make you a show called "Baby Naming 911".

I'm Abby, he's James, and our surname is Winters.

My husband and I are expecting our second and third on October 24--yup, we're having fraternal twins, a boy and a girl. I'm freaking out, because I'm HUGE and my three-year-old son, Leo Sebastian, just poked my stomach asked if he's "getting hippos" (his favorite animal) for his baby brother and sister. Yeah. Insert very irrational run/waddle to the mirror while scaring the you know what out of my son and husband with a crazy, pregnant with twins, hormonal woman sobbing fit here.

And worse is that my dear, dear husband and I can't agree on any names, which is stressful and a bit disorienting because we decided on Leo's name literally right when we found out we were having a boy.

We have very similar taste (kind of a vintage, British-quirky kind of thing) which I think is making it difficult because we both have our own favorites and while we like each other's names we like our own better. Having twins just makes it worse, because while the ideal situation is where I pick one twin's name, he picks the other's, or where he picks a name from my list, I pick a name from his, we really want to absolutely love both of their names.

We do NOT want their names to be matchy, but it would be nice if they were complementary style-wise.

My favorites (not in order):

Elsa (Elsie)

Maxwell (Max)
Edward (Teddy)

His favorites (not in order):
Penelope (Nellie)

Dashiell (Dash). Yes. He only likes one boy name. Sigh. Husbands.

I'm pushing for Ivy and Jasper, he's pushing for Penelope and Dashiell. He thinks mine are slightly boring, I think his are a tad too flamboyant. We both want a name that's not popular, though that might be the destiny of most of the names on my list.

We're thinking that maybe the best thing to do is scrap both of our lists and try to find two names that we both love. That's where you come in.

Could you suggest some names that we could both adore?

And if worse comes to worse, could you pick and pair some names from both our favorites?

Thank god you exist. Thank your parents for us.

I think you should come around to his idea of Felicity, and he should come around to your idea of Oliver. Oliver and Felicity Winters! Or he could come around to Henry and you could come around to Penelope: Henry and Penelope Winters! I love the repeating vowel sounds: the i-as-in-igloo of the first set (especially with the same sound in your surname), and the e-as-in-elephant of the second set. (I'd love to suggest HE come around to some of YOUR great girl names, but I don't like Dashiell with anything.)

No, no, actually I agree with you: it would be even better if neither of you had to come around to a name. Fresh meat, then:

Boy names:

Hugo (maybe too much O with Leo)
Louis (maybe too much L with Leo)
Milo (maybe too much O with Leo)

Girl names:

Lorelei (maybe too much with Leo)

And this is the challenge of twin names: heaven help us, now we have to COMBINE. There is just no way to do a thorough job of this without having it be a two-step process where FIRST you guys chop those lists down and THEN we combine what remains. But alas. And so I will just assemble some SAMPLE combinations, and perhaps others would also like to assemble some sample combinations.

Aidric and Bianca
Elliot and Camilla
Everett and Anastasia
Felix and Minerva
Hugo and Elodie
Milo and Emmeline
Phillip and Cecily
Rufus and Imogen
Simon and Clara

And may I say, I SO ENVY you your surname. It is wonderful with almost everything. Clara Winters! Minerva Winters! Reid Winters! George Winters! It makes almost every name sound MORE wonderful than alone.

Name update 10-23-2010! Abigail writes:
The twins were born last week, which was totally awesome because they almost went full term. It was such a HAPPY experience and both James and I feel extremely LUCKY to have had such healthy babies.

So yeah. Hint hint...

We chose Felicity Iris for the girl, and right now we call her Fliss (but when she's not so baby-like we'll start calling her by her full name). I actually ADORE her name, so much. I don't know why I didn't love it before, but your email [note from Swistle: I sent an email pushing for my top choice. Yes, that is cheating. No, I'm not sorry.] cemented the name into my head and my heart (yay for cheesiness) and I swear that the moment after I finished reading the post and your email I turned to my husband and told him we were going to name our daughter Felicity.

He was like, "cool," and then since he got the name that he wanted he told me that he relinquished all naming powers and that I was in charge of finding the boy name.

And so I got a list of names that I really, really liked and took them with me to the hospital, because I couldn't narrow it down to just one before the birth. When the whole caesarean thing was finally done and I was stitched up, I took a moment to call our son each name on the list, and only one fit. He ended up being named Oliver August, and we're calling him Ollie at the moment.

It's funny, actually, because that's one of the twin sets you suggested. Thanks again!

So our wonderful children are now Leo, Oliver, and Felicity. We did worry that there was too much "L" floating around in their names, but we decided that we rather like the connecting "L" sound in each of their name.