The Name Not Taken

Mar 25th 2010

Last week power-blogger Jason Kottke published a list of the names he didn't choose for his baby daughter. In his words, "Since we are so so (SO!) done having kids, I thought I'd share our list in case someone else finds any of them useful."

The list is very consistent in style. The girls are conspicuously but charmingly antique (Beatrix, Coralie), while the boys are quirky, pint-sized traditionals (Hugo, Finn). Milton is a notable outlier. All in all, a stylish group with an upscale urban/artsy feel.

What really fascinated me, though, wasn't the names themselves but the baby-naming psychology that the blog post embodied. The title, while jokey, says a lot: "Baby names for sale, never used." I suspect most parents can relate to this. It's as if our rejected names still in some way belong to us.

Have you ever seen an exchange between the mother of a toddler and another mom with a newborn baby, something like this? "Oh, Felix? Felix was on our short list when Jasper was born!!" Jasper's mom beams, feeling a real link with little Felix. Meanwile baby Felix's mom smiles tightly at the interloper who dares to think she owns some piece of the special name which belongs to HER, darn it!

As we mull over our short lists, we become attached to the names. They each develop personalities, linked to images of our potential future with different possible children. Even after the winning name is chosen and the baby born, the attachment to the runners-up lingers.

Like Mr. Kottke, many of us also view our unused names as a mildly tragic waste. I'm hardly immune to this myself. I was thrilled when a new nephew received a favorite boy's name that had "gone to waste" when my youngest daughter was born. When you stop to think about it, though, it's a little nonsensical to think of names as assets in that way. In my case it was a traditional name, not something I invented. It was an infinitely renewable resource, and not something that would go to the landfill if unused. How can something so abstract and hypothetical ever "go to waste"?

Part of the sense of waste may be about the time and effort we put into assembling our name lists. But more important, I think, is the sense of value being wasted. All of our name lists have something in common: they reflect our own personal tastes. That means they're flat-out gorgeous. They're the best possible names! How can we let such a valuable resource sit mouldering? Shouldn't we share that bounty, "in case someone else finds any of them useful"?

Comments

1
By antipodes (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:04 AM

Ooh, I can identify with this. We're in the process of naming daughter, due in August. We've pretty much got it narrowed down to Penelope and Iris. I love them both, and would be happy to give my child either name. Ultimately, I bet we'll end of going with Penelope, because my husband loves the idea of calling his daughter Penny, and I'm okay with that.

But Iris! I feel this pang at "losing" Iris! And every time I convince myself that, no, okay, we'll call her Iris, I feel the same pang for Penny. I love my names! I don't want to let either one of them go.

Last night, my husband suggested using one for the middle name, but that's even worse. Middle names are fun, but they're not the name used in every day life. I don't want to give up the chance of calling any future daughter Iris (or Penelope!)

2
March 25, 2010 11:11 AM

I remember the day that I realised that I would never use all my favourite names- I was about 10 at the time. Such a sad day. There is definitely a sense of delight though, when I meet a little one with a name on my mental short- or long-list.

Recent sighting in the "delightful" vein- a four-month-old baby Mavis who came into the store. Love that one!

3
By nilatti (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:12 AM

Oh, that's so funny--one of the names my husband and I are thinking about if we have a girl (due Sept) is "Penelope Iris." His name (nickname) is JC, and he thinks it would be cute because she'd be "JC's Penny."

It's sort of our second choice--I was just surprised to see those two names together on this post!

4
March 25, 2010 11:16 AM

Finally, this seems like the right time to post this list.

My husband and I are "keepers". We didn't find out the gender of either of our sons ahead of time, nor did we release our name choices.

I teach high school and this "keeping" drove my students bananas. So as an extra credit point on a quiz last spring, my maternity leave replacement asked "What should Megan W. name the baby?" (I did give them the hint that they would find my choices "boring")

Here were their choices: (These are mostly ninth graders at a private school in PA).

Girl Names:

Abby, Adalyne, Adrienne, Ashley, Audrey, Ava, Avery,(Blank), Cammille, Clair, Dana, Elaine, Elizabeth, Emily x2, Emma, Erin, Heather, Isabella, Jordan, Joy x2, Lauren x2, Lydia x2, MacKenzie, Meg, Megan, Jr., Nancy, Penny, Selena, Trisha, Ulgitha

Boy Names:

Adam, Alexander, Andrew x2, Anthony,(Blank), Bob, Chris, Duncan, Eggburt, Einstein, Emmannuel, Evan, Gabe, Gabriel, Grey, Ian, James, Jordan, Mark, Oliver x2, Paul, Peter, Raphael, Robert, Ryan, Scott, Sid, Slade, Stephan, Tom, Travis, Willie, Zoltan

The Winner: Mark
The Name-Not-Taken: Jane

5
By Bridget (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:20 AM

I wrote a post like Mr. Kottke's not too long ago. But my list was of baby name castoffs that we couldn't use, no matter how many more kids we had. They clashed with our last name or were "stolen" by other family members. So I would love to see other people use them so I can enjoy them vicariously :).

6
By Guest (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:22 AM

I'm laughing because my son's name is Jasper and his little brother was going to be Felix. Except he looked nothing like a Felix, so he's Milo, which suits him perfectly. Penelope was my husband's ex-girlfriend's name, so that unfortunately never made the list for girls.

7
March 25, 2010 11:25 AM

Laura-thought provoking. I think it goes to a bit of namers remorse. You can't ever choose ALL the names you love (unless you are the Duggar's I suppose). But I don't feel that with my DS's name. I'm actually a bit thankful we didn't burden him with such a long name. Zachary Alexander was the original name of choice. The name we ultimately chose suits him much better. Girl's names are a different story though. DD is 6 now and I still wonder-what if?

8
March 25, 2010 11:27 AM

Interesting post. I have a different situation, in that our baby James didn't survive, and we were unable to have any more children. I haven't met a baby James yet, but may be meeting one shortly, as a friend in Oz has a toddler, James, and we'll be meeting up when I go out there on a visit in May (to meet my new nephew Fergus). I'm feeling nervous about meeting a baby James, although that might sound crazy. And I know it's a pretty common name, so this will probably happen a lot over time...

Another strange thing that happened is that my sister's in-laws had a baby boy about a year after us and called him James Fr@ser. I actually felt like they were being a bit insensitive. Luckily, he has always been known by his middle name. And he lives abroad so we haven't met him.

9
March 25, 2010 11:29 AM

On a lighter note, here's a little name quiz from the BBC:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8586994.stm

10
By Jan (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:58 AM

On two separate occasions I've met women who exclaimed they would have used my daughter's name if they had had a girl. It made me feel like, "Hey, maybe we could be friends!" since they had such great taste, too. :)

11
March 25, 2010 12:05 PM

Valerie, the quiz was fun - thanks for posting it! This blog (and comments) has definitely made me pay more attention to name stories in the news.

12
March 25, 2010 12:11 PM

Jasper Felix was the name that Elizabeth George's characters Helen and Thomas Lynley gave their unborn son in the novel "With No One as Witness."

Megan W., Love the suggestions of Eggbert and Ulgitha! What great names for fantasy twins! :)

13
By Crystal (not verified)
March 25, 2010 12:18 PM

Oh antipodes!
How I know exactly what you are going through. We both adored the name Penelope... but with our last name meaning "Penny" itself, Penny Pence was just too much (sad, sad). So we named our daughter Iris. So of course we wanteed our neice to be named Penelope... no such luck.

14
By Guest (not verified)
March 25, 2010 12:22 PM

Im sure you've been told this already, but maybe keep both in mind and see what she pops out as. It might be a very easy decision when you get to see her. Iris and Penelope were both on my short list so i feel either of these would be an absolutely beautiful name. In the end though, i think that you should be the one who has the final say. My husband didnt like my first choice of name so i came up with others. At the nine month mark i said i couldnt honestly think of a name i like better than my first choice (Hazel), so would it be ok if i used it? For the second name we used his mother's so all worked out fine :-). And another thing, you might have two girls in the end....

15
By hyz
March 25, 2010 12:47 PM

I definitely agree with this. All those beautiful wasted names make me want to have more kids, seriously! Although I do recognize that that's not a good reason to bring another life into the world, lol.... I think a huge part of the reason why it's so hard to pick a name is because most people get to pick so few, and there are so many good ones left behind. I know that, upon picking Ivy, I mourned the loss of a bunch of names. Holly--one of my early frontrunners and very beloved names--is now definitely out for good. Maybe other botanicals are too, although I haven't committed to that yet. And what about similar sounds? Iris and Isla are gone. And maybe Everett and Averil--both out? Sigh.

16
March 25, 2010 1:08 PM

I have a long-running internet crush on Jason Kottke. How amusing to find his name mentioned here. Two very interesting things (to me, at least) about his post: (1) He’s a man, who actually knew all the names in contention. In my experience the majority (certainly not all) men seem to only hold veto power, but very little bay naming passion. (2) His list of boy names was much longer than his list of girls. Most people seem to struggle with boy names, but have no trouble rattling off dozens of girl names that they like and can’t decide between.

(BTW, love his title reference to Hemingway and Laura’s to Frost. The geek shall inherit the earth.)

17
By hyz
March 25, 2010 1:45 PM

Hey, I just clicked on the Kottke link and noticed the name they DID use was Minna! Wow. I'm sure I'm the only one excited about this, but that's our DD's FN, and I don't think I've ever heard it on anyone who isn't (a) Korean or (b) born in the 1900s or earlier. Neat--I guess they really DO have good taste. lol. :)

I also really like his "intrinsic correctness" of Minna statement, and it made me laugh. This was a main difference between DH and I in naming, and it drove us both crazy--I feel strongly that some names are just clearly much better than others (at least where our own offspring is concerned), and that the perfect (or nearly perfect, or best possible) name was out there, while he took the annoyingly equitable position that it was all a matter of taste, and there was no right or wrong answer, so it did no good to debate or discuss names. Grrrr....

18
By Amy3 (nli) (not verified)
March 25, 2010 1:55 PM

@hyz, I thought of you immediately when I read the name they did choose for their daughter! (Hard to believe your Ivy's a toddler now. How is that possible???)

I do have all sorts of names I crush on, but I almost feel my experience of selecting a name for a *real* person was such that I didn't like any of them *enough*. My husband and I had a really difficult time finding names we a) agreed on or b) even liked enough to bestow. We both adore our daughter Astrid's name, and I'm glad our family is complete with her because I'm not sure I could go through the stress of choosing another!

Am I the only NE who suffers this problem when it comes to naming a kid? (I don't have any trouble naming pets, etc.)

19
March 25, 2010 2:03 PM

Fun post! I thought Kottke's list was very interesting, particularly the boys list (Emory, Milton, Maximillian and Ford stuck out to me). The idea of "claiming" or "casting off" names is really interesting to me, coming from a large family where my siblings and I are relatively close in age. We've all been having babies within months of each-other and my sister is pregnant along with my dh's brother and his wife (I'm due in May, my sister in August and my brother-in-law's wife is due in September). It's kind of a game, naming our children, because you have to be very careful when and how you reveal the names you like. On the one hand you don't want to keep them secret just in case the other person also likes that name but you don't want to announce a list too early. With our first DS we were between Judah and Jacob and went with Judah because it was less popular. Then, five months later my brother named his son Yaakov, nn Kovi, which is Jacob in hebrew. With our second son we were between Levi and Gideon. We never revealed we liked Gideon though just in case we ever have a third boy :)

20
March 25, 2010 2:22 PM

When I'm trying to discern my favorite name I try to imagine my feelings if an in-law would use a baby name I'm considering. That's how Katharine beat out Sarah for my last daughter. It's also why I keep Grace on my list even though I feel like it's too popular to use I'd be crushed if one of my sister-in-laws used it. I find it a helpful exercise.

21
By hyz
March 25, 2010 2:37 PM

another Laura, I must be way more selfish than you are--I'd be crushed if a near relative used ANY of the names on my short lists, assuming they were still in the running at all for possible future babies. I wouldn't want to have the choice of using that name taken away from me, even if I was unlikely to pick it! I'm still a little annoyed that my SIL named her cat Forrest (like, 5 years before I ever met her, so there's no reasonable cause at *all* to be annoyed with her)--I don't think I could even use it because of Forrest Gump, but I still love it, and I wish it were an option! lol. How's that for possessive?

22
March 25, 2010 2:43 PM

Hubs and I are expecting our first in August. We've ended up in a pretty strange naming situation from a lot of angles, and I only just realized it!

We've got two names picked out: James Vincent for a boy and Elizabeth Ruth for a girl. We feel like we've ended up selecting names that are really flexible: they have a multitude of nicknames (especially Elizabeth) that would suit several personalities. So we aren't taking a list to the hospital.

We also know that among our circle of family and friends, our choices sound stylistically old or out of date. We've got loads of the 'can't throw a pebble without hitting 20 Emmas or Jacobs'. And it seems to us that our choices are right on the outskirts of that. They sound enough alike, but are not the same.

I suppose that last one is why we don't feel like we own the names. Also, of the four individual names, I've only ever not met a Vincent. I suppose that by selecting these super-traditional names we've just known that our James or Elizabeth simply could never be a one-of-a-kind in the name department so we haven't bothered to try to test ownership. :D

23
March 25, 2010 4:11 PM

thegrimtuesday- I love the names you've picked out! Elizabeth and James are both so classic, I don't they will ever go out of style. Plus I think the middle names distinguish the names in that they are less common, especially Vincent.

A friend is looking for some name advice so I told her I'd run her situation by you all. She has an older daughter, Ariadne Jane (she sometimes goes by Ari). Ariadne was named after my friends late grandfather, Arthur. She and her DH like interesting, uncommon names (hence Ariadne). They are expecting another girl and cannot decide on a name. They want to name the baby after my friends dh's grandmother Sondra (prn. SAHN-dra) (nn was Sandy). They aren't huge fans of the nickname Sandy but are mulling over the name Cassandra. Do you think Ariadne and Cassandra are too matchy in their Greek connection? Is Cassandra too run of the mill next to Ariadne? Any nickname suggestions other than Sandy? Any other suggestions that could honor Sondra/Sandy and go well with Ariadne?

24
By knp
March 25, 2010 4:44 PM

Becky: I like this one.. I don't find Cassandra too matchy with Ariadne but I agree it feels run of the mill compared to Ari or Ariadne. But not in a way that would stop me from using it it I liked it enough.
Here are other suggestions to honor Sondra:
Lysandra*
Melisande*
Rosana
Shoshanna*
Alessandra
Sanne/Sanna (could work as a nn for any of these too)
Sanchia*
Santana
Sonja

Ari & Sanne would be great sisters!

25
March 25, 2010 4:45 PM

Becky-I like the cobo of Ariadne and Cassandra. I think they match but in a just right amount. Other ideas to honor Sondra:
Ondrea (too close to Ariadne perhaps)
Ondrine ??
Sandrine nn Andi (Are Ari and Andi too matchy?)
Alessandra (many nn's here I like Alex)

thegrimtuesday-I like your names also. I agree they are classic yet stand out a bit with the mn's you've chosen.

hyz-I also thought of you when I read Kottke's DD's name. I think their style is totally in sync with yours. Save his list for the future. He said his names were "for sale" but I'm not sure he charges very much LOL!

26
By Alizarin (not verified)
March 25, 2010 4:53 PM

I love that Penelope has come up several times in this conversation, because it's TOTALLY my personal "name not taken". I have adored it for years and years, but as luck would have it, I married into a last name beginning with the letter "P", and the overall effect of the full name was just a bit too cartoony. (I actually could have lived with it, but my husband exercised his veto power. *sigh*) Even though I absolutely adore the names we've chosen, I don't think I will ever be able to think of the Penelope-that-never-was without a wistful little twinge of regret.

Then again, who knows what might happen if we somehow end up with TWO girls somewhere down the line. Perhaps the stresses of parenthood could weaken my husband's resolve and allow me to sneak the name back in for consideration! ;o)

27
By Eo (not verified)
March 25, 2010 5:08 PM

zoerhenne and knp-- Alessandra-- great suggestion! Ditto the very romantic Melisande. I keep forgetting about these names, which I really like, despite not generally being a fan of "frilly" ones...

Valerie-- I'm very sorry about your son James. It is a beautiful name, and one that instantly seemed congruent with your personality and style...

thegrimtuesday-- I also love James and Elizabeth for so many reasons-- their timelessness, their intrinsic beauty, the wonderfully versatile historical associations, the flexible nickname options. What is important to me is the fact that they will not be pigeonholed or dated as so many of the currently hipnik ones will. Good job....

28
By EVie
March 25, 2010 6:24 PM

Becky - I really like Ariadne and Cassandra, and I don't think Cassandra is very run-of-the-mill at all--it has a very romantic sound and I've only ever known about two in my life. I think the pairing with Ariadne actually helps to emphasize the more exotic side of Cassandra, and I don't think they are too matchy (though I love names from Greek mythology, so I'm biased). I know a young Ariadne actually, with a sister Miranda--same rhythm and similar sound to Cassandra. Out of curiosity, how is your friend pronouncing the two As in Ariadne--like in father, or apple, or air?

29
By Kanadiana (not verified)
March 25, 2010 7:21 PM

Help!

Friends of mine had a beautiful baby boy yesterday and are having trouble naming him... they need something that sounds good in english and french. I think they would also like something meaningful as well.....

They've asked for suggestions.... anybody have any good ideas? (they need a name picked and agreed on by tomorrow...)

(Mom likes Pierre and Dad like Joel but they don't agree on those two....)

30
By Kristen R. (not verified)
March 25, 2010 7:22 PM

For me it's part of the heartbreak of how choosing one name means forfeiting the others---so when someone else uses a name I love, it feels less forfeited!

31
By Riot Delilah (not verified)
March 25, 2010 7:24 PM

Becky - the daughters in Turtle Fever by Russell Hoban are named Ariadne and Cynthia. Cynthia is also Greek and Cindy is not to far off from Sandy...

32
March 25, 2010 7:48 PM

Thanks Eo-knp and I must have been posting the same time.

EVie-I'm not Becky's friend but if it were me I would pronounce Ariadne (Are-ee-odd-nee) and Cassandra (Cah-sahn-dra) since she wants the Sondra nn rather than Cassie. I think the 2 different pronunciations of Cassandra give it 2 distinct feelings. Anyone else feel this way? Cah-sahn-dra seems a bit more frilly and formal than the Cah-san-dra version.

33
March 25, 2010 8:01 PM

My neighbors are French (mom) and American (dad). Their sons are named Felix and Victor. I think Sebastian could also work.

34
March 25, 2010 8:08 PM

Kanadiana-The only thing I can think of is Phillip. Nymbler makes suggestions of the following when Joel and Pierre are input:
Julian; Gabriel; Adrien
Leo; James; Lorenzo
Vincent; Marcel; Nicholas
Raphael; Jacques; Daniel

Best wishes to your friends.

35
By RachelM (not verified)
March 25, 2010 8:22 PM

My solution for baby names I can't use (either because my husband doesn't like them, or for other reasons) is to name my computer hard drive and flash drives those names! Totally silly, but it actually gives me a little bit of pleasure to back up my computer, Penelope, to the back up drive, Coby.

36
March 25, 2010 8:30 PM

My name not taken, now available for free, is Eleanor Tuckwood--Eleanor being my mother's middle name and Tuckwood being my MIL's maiden name. This name was "not taken" 30 years ago, before all the assorted little Ellies started running around. Lagniappe was the nickname Ellie for Eleanor which would recall my father's family nickname, Ellie for Eliyahu.

Bridget, I'm pleased to see that you named your daughter Miriam. When I was a little girl, and all the other little girls were named Barbara, Carol, Judith, etc., I hatehatehated my name. Now I think it is dignified, elegant, and mellifluous. I have rather wondered why Sarah was resurrected, but not Miriam. Miriam has been ranked around 300 give or take in the US for decades. OTOH Miriam (spelled Mirjam) has been massively popular in the Netherlands, to the point that I was repeatedly asked how I came to have a Dutch name. LOL OTOH I once had an eye exam administered by a tech from Egypt, and he complimented me on my Egyptian name. In that case, he was almost certainly right.

37
By C, C & B's Mom (not verified)
March 25, 2010 8:53 PM

I agree - it is very sad when you have to discard names. I still really like the name that we had chosen for our third had he turned out to be a girl. I don't actively encourage other people to use it though - I still sort of think of it as mine!

38
By C, C & B's Mom (not verified)
March 25, 2010 8:54 PM

Miriam - I love this name! I have always thought that Miriam would be a lovely name and I like Mimi as a nn!

39
March 25, 2010 8:55 PM

Penelope is already our "name not chosen" -- and we haven't even had a baby yet! :) We settled on Eleanor, and I already have faint regrets for Penelope since who knows if we'll ever have another girl...

40
By Amy3
March 25, 2010 9:17 PM

@Kanadiana, my cousin is American and his partner French (they live in France). Their sons are Maxim (nn Max) and Thomas (nn Tom).

@Valerie, I'd like to echo Eo's condolences for your son James. And I agree with her that the name seems a perfect choice for you.

@thegrimtuesday, I love James and Elizabeth. Absolutely timeless classics with lots of nn possibilities for both.

@Becky, I like Ariadne and Cassandra together. I suspect my pronunciation of Ariadne is the worst possible American mangling of it -- air-ee-add-nee. I do know someone with the name, and I believe she pronounces it air-ee-odd-nee. But I could be wrong. I know she has a different pronunciation for each A though. And I understood that your friend might be looking for a non-Sandy nn if Cassandra is chosen, right? How about Cass? Cass and Ari sound cute to me.

41
March 25, 2010 9:21 PM

CC&B's Mom--

I have been Mimi from the moment of my birth until this very day. Miriam was not unheard of where I grew up in PA Dutch country. There the common nickname was Mim. The nn I hear now for Miriam is Miri, as in Zach and Miri Make a Porno, or whatever that movie was called.

42
By C, C & B's Mom (not verified)
March 25, 2010 9:40 PM

oh - Mim is quite interesting. I wouldn't have thought of it, but I like it!

43
By Lilliputian (not verified)
March 25, 2010 9:46 PM

I've been intending to post for days now to say a huge thank you to all who commented about a month ago when I was looking for advice about a name for our surprise/miracle fourth child (girl after three boys and 2 years after her father's vasectomy). Our situation is definitely a cautionary tale about "donating" those unused baby names too soon when you've decided you are "so so (SO!) done having kids", as Kottke says!

Maud Ailsa was born on March 4th, and her brothers T@dhg, Ni@ll, and Tu!!y could not be any more doting. They did, however, have mixed reactions to her name after we told them! The oldest was obviously dismayed, and asked, "Can't we call her something else?" He's given her some sweet nicknames like Miss Maudie, but her actual name appears to have grown on him, too.

Other people's reactions are equally mixed. Friends and family are, for the most part, supportive or even thrilled, but more distant acquaintances are often clearly stunned. We have no regrets, however, and feel like it's a great fit with our family.

44
March 25, 2010 10:03 PM

@lilliputian - congratulations on the birth of Maud! I'm sure she is beautiful, and I think her name goes well with your other 3 children's names.

I already feel torn about all my favourite names and I haven't even started having kids yet. My problem is that I know I'll probably only get to name 2 children and there are so many more names I love and won't get to use. I guess I can tell if I really love a name if I feel upset about the thought of not getting to use it. I also have a lot of names on my list that I'm not too worried about if I don't get to use them.

I am happy to recommend my favourite names to people on here, as I know they probably don't live near me and they won't be associating with my 'future' child. In real life, I don't recommend my absolute favourite names because I don't want them taken, yet! When I'm finished having children I'll probably be happy to see my favourites on other children.

45
By Amy3
March 25, 2010 10:22 PM

@Lilliputian, congratulations to you and your family! I *LOVE* Maud (particularly this spelling) so I'm thrilled you used it. (I also think your sons' have super fantastic names.) I did love your son's comment about calling her something else. Very cute!

46
By Laura V (not verified)
March 25, 2010 10:39 PM

I admit to still feeling possessive of the names we had on our "girl" list, because we plan on more children and all those names are intensely personal (for example, the names of my favorite aunt and my husband's late sister). At least, I feel possessive of them around family -- someone else could use them and it wouldn't be a problem.

The boy name we didn't use for our son, though, we fully expect at least half my siblings to use on their own sons at some point, and there's already a second cousin in this generation with it -- my maternal grandfather's name. He was well-loved by his many grandchildren, and so many of us intend to pass his name on. Not a problem, and none of us care that we might end up having to specify just which Stephen we mean! If we have a second son, we'll end up using it. If we don't, I'm sure my sibs & cousins will take care of it for us.

47
March 25, 2010 10:58 PM

Lilliputian- congrats on Maud! Such a great name.

Thanks for the replies in reference to Cassandra. They pronounce it Ah-ree-odd-nee, and nickname Ari is Ah-ree. I definitely agree that the pronunciation of Cassandra as Ca-SAHN-dra is more appealing than Ca-SAN-dra. I think they prefer the first as well and are trying to stay away from Sandy as a nickname but like that it still relates back to the original name. I quite like it with Ariadne and agree that Cass and Ari is very cute. I will pass along all your advice, recommendations and wisdom and inform you when a decision is made!

48
By linusthelemur (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:01 PM

I have so many names that I love, but I am only planning on having one or two kids...so I use the other names in my writing. That way I don't feel like they've gone to waste; I still get to enjoy their value, and I can get away with names I like but wouldn't give to my own kid. After all, a fictional character probably can handle a little bit of teasing over their name.

49
By Kanadiana (not verified)
March 25, 2010 11:23 PM

Thanks for the suggestions:
Some of them I have already suggested, but I will pick some that I think they might be interested in....

Any other suggestions would still be welcome...

50
March 26, 2010 12:06 AM

Lilliputian-Congrats on your new addition. I'm sure her name was the right decision for you and your family. Your oldest boy's comment was cute. I'm glad things are going well for you.

Since the last thread with someone mentioning all the "Lala" and "Eah" names, and this one with names you'd love to use but can't/didn't, I keep thinking of making up names. Names that COULD work because of the sounds, but don't because they are made-up and/or words that aren't that pleasing. We did this once last year if I remember right. Here goes (spellings are purposeful btw):
Viranda
Shalaleigh/Shilayleigh
Calorie
Faiden
Sayten/Sayton/Saytin
Haiten