So we have a baby naming dilemma - so much so that my dear husband keeps saying, "well, we have 10 days after the baby is born..."and
Our last name is pronounced Shafer. We have one daughter, Lily Grayce. We used Grayce with a 'y' in honor of good friends, and the mum happens to be British, so the "y" version is the popular spelling. We're not too concerned about popularity, and prefer that over odd spellings and unheard-of names. Where we live "Lily" is not all that popular, despite it sitting high on the charts, we know one other Lily who is about 5 years older than ours.
My husband's name is Eric and my name is Jess(ica) but as I usually go by the shorter, we all end up with four letter names with distinct letters - this makes it easy and neat, and we like it, but we're not stuck on 4 letters. We do prefer to have different initials at least between siblings and preferably the whole family. We'd love to have 4 kids at least if life allows, so we're trying not to get into too much of a pattern - hence we're not wanting to go with another "L" name for fear of having either all "L" names (tricky) or changing after kid 1&2 which feels odd. We also don't want to get into a pattern of "y" or "ie" endings. It seems like "er" ending names clash with our last name, so we're not having luck there either - between the "y"/"ie" and the "er" that knocks out a lot of names!
We're not finding out what we're having this time, but we already have our options fairly settled for boy names, it's girls we need help with!
We do tend to favor shorter names, and if we were to chose a longer name we would likely use a 1-2 syllable nickname on a daily basis. We even cut Lily down to "Lils.." a lot, so we're pretty lazy..!
We love Ruby, but it keeps us in the "y" ending... also considering Claire/Clara, Pearl, Olive (but not Olivia), and Sage.
I like Stella, Astrid, and Hazel, but my husband was not convinced. He has no ideas of his own. Our 2.5 year old would like to call the baby "Baby Poptart."
We like Jade, but don't like the meaning. We have also avoided short R girl names due to a close in age girl cousin named a variation of Ryan and a close friend named Roma, tho we are willing to bend on that for the perfect name! We've discarded flower names as well due to not wanting an obvious garden... but we're ok with plant and nature names.
If it helps, our top boy names are Milo, Jude, and Rowan, which would likely be paired with the middle name of Ellis, tho we're not decided by any means...
Can you save our 2nd kiddo from being "Baby Poptart" forever?
4-8 weeks to go (depending on who you ask and how long this one likes to bake) but still no settling on a name! We have some updates and changes tho, so perhaps you'll be up for helping - pretty pretty please? :D
We're down to boy's names Milo or West, which obviously have very different feels to them. We did favor the middle name "Maxin" (spelled with an 'o' not an 'i') which is my husband's grandmother's maiden name, however we're not sure about it with our last name (pronounced Shafer). My good friend and name lover greatly dislikes West (not a breaking point) and recommends Weston, but it reminds me of both the TV show Burn Notice and the Weston Price Foundation... maybe neither are an issue - thoughts? We have considered playing of my maiden name somehow to make a middle name for West or Weston - my maiden name is said Ree-mal-ee (spelled simply) so we considered using something like "Remington" but are afraid this might sound a bit NRA :) That's where we sit with the boys.
For girl names, we've added a new favorite to the top spot: Gwen. We keep debating different "Gwen-" names but keep coming back to Gwen because we're certain to shorten it to that for daily use anyway. Finding a middle name here again poses a bit of an issue. My husband suggested Pearl, but then we have GPS.. again, maybe not an issue. I'm not certain it's a great match tho, seems like we need a longer middle to make things flow better and we just can't seem to find one that fits.
Backups to Gwen we're still considering are Ella, Elle, Claire, and Ruby (tho we're still not fond of adding to the "-y / -ie" collection.
Will you give us a much needed hand?
The name Gwen seems great to me: four letters, but new initial, new ending, new sound. I agree with you: I'd want a middle name with more than one syllable. I'd go through the list of names that you liked but didn't want to use in the first name slot because they started with L or R or had an -ie/-y ending. Gwen Ruby Shafer is very nice.
If you like Claire/Clara but would prefer four letters, I suggest Cora. Cora Shafer; Lily and Cora.
Or Cleo. Cleo Shafer; Lily and Cleo. This wouldn't allow for Milo later, though.
If you like Ruby, you might like Ruth. Ruth Shafer; Lily and Ruth.
Or June. June Shafer; Lily and June.
Elle and Ella make me think of Anna. Anna Shafer; Lily and Anna.
I think Gwen is the best one, though.
If the baby is a boy, I favor Milo---not only because that was one of our finalist names for Henry, and I still have a soft spot for it, but also because it seems to have fewer issues than the name West. I prefer the name West to the name Weston, but the name West has the unfortunate issue of making names sound like towns: West Shafer. I also find the transition between -st and Sh- a little difficult to say: I end up with something like Wes Chafer.
I like Westley best as a longer form: that would still give you the four-letter nickname West, while also impressing fans of The Princess Bride AND removing associations with foundations and towns. It does give you another -ly name, but I think two in a row is a surmountable pattern, especially since one is a boy and one is a girl. (It's three in a row where I think it's nearly impossible to resist the pressure.)
But Milo avoids all these issues, so that's what I'd go with. Milo Shafer is wonderful; Lily and Milo is wonderful. I like Maxin fine with your surname, or I like the idea of using your maiden name as-is: Milo Maxin Shafer or Milo Reemalee Shafer. I prefer Maxin, because I'd prefer to avoid the initials MRS. If the actual spelling of your maiden name looks feminine, it would be nice for a girl: Gwen Reemalee Shafer.