We saw last week that our little one has a heart beat so I'm thinking it's safe to post about names. Our last name is Tys0n and our other kids are Paul, Clare, Mark, Katharine, and James. Katharine goes by her full name as well as Kat (in the family). James also uses his full name but is occasionally Jay. If this baby is a boy he'll be Andrew Lawrence.

If it's a girl we have a list of contenders. Mary is my current top pick. It bothers me a bit how visually close to Mark it is and that we are repeating an initial but it would mean a lot personally for me to use Mary. The one thing I'm not certain of is if we want to simply call her Mary or if we want to call her my her first and middle. If we went with the double barrel option we'd use Mary Grace. Hubby doesn't love Mary as he finds it a bit plain but he could come around.

Hubby's top choice is Lucy Caroline. I like that Lucy is a good saint name though it's never been a top choice. I do like that it means "light". With the baby due on Easter Sunday it seems particularly appropriate.

Other names that I and dh like (though I probably like these all a bit more than he does): Sarah, Grace, Theresa, and Caroline. I think Sarah is beautiful but have a hard time getting excited about it. It has been on my short list with many of my pregnancies. Long time readers know that I use to adore Theresa. I'd say my passion has waned some and that dh really only likes it with Tess and I just don't really love Tess with our last name. Caroline briefly felt like the one but I think I'd feel constrained to a C/K theme if we were blessed with a fourth daughter. And even in thinking about the name I found myself blending it with my oldest daughter's name and creating Claroline.

I would love to hear everyone's thoughts.


September 4, 2013 2:22 PM

Congratulations, what wonderful news! I'll be sending praters for a healthy baby and pregnancy :)

I've always like the name Andrew and Andrew Lawrence is very handsome. The only thing that I thought might be a hold up is that Andrew Lawrence is/was an actor in the 1990's/early 2000's of the Lawrence brothers fame (brother to Joey Lawrence - "WHOA!"). However, I don't think he's done much lately and his acting career has seem to become irrelevant. I just thought I'd throw that out there in case you hadn't thought of it but again like I said, shouldn't be a problem. VERY handsome name.

As for the girls, I've always had a soft spot for the name Mary. I believe you've said before that you are Catholic, which I am as well so of course honoring the Blessed Mother is a positive. I do see how it would might seem a bit plain to some but I work at a Catholic school and when I meetin a little Mary and it always freshens the name for me. I think Mary Grace is nice, too.

As for the other names, if you are already getting tripped up by Caroline maybe that one should be nixed. I can definitely see where that would give you some trouble! I literally know more Sarah's than any other name, so that one doesn't excite me, either. However, all of them that I know are in their mid-twenties so it might be nice to see on a little one. Finally, Theresa is a favorite of mine so you'll find my support for that one! I only know one or two and I think it is a classic, beautiful name. I do like Tess as a nickname, as well. Very cute.

September 4, 2013 2:29 PM

Congrats. All of your current kids names go well together.

I am a firm believer of giving children different intials. It gives them their own letter in the family. 

Out of the names you listed Mary and Caroline would repeat intials M and C so therefore to me those names are out.

I like the name Sarah and it would go well with your other kid's names. Lucy is a nice choice too. Grace is a lovely name. Would you consider it for a first name?

Theresa is ok but not my favourite name in the world.

Another thought by looking at your current children's names are that Katherine is significantly longer than her siblings names, so my suggestion would be to give this child a longer name like Katherines.

Other names you may like are...









September 4, 2013 4:33 PM

Since Mary means so much to you, I wonder if you like any of the Marion variations?  Finding something with meaning for you, but perhaps less "plain" for you husband seems like a win/win.

Personally, I do prefer Lucy Caroline.  I grew up around a bunch of Marys & double barrel Marys, so I'm like your husband in that they seem a bit plain/ordinary to me.

I do like Theresa.  Knew a bunch growing up, but for some reason it doesn't strike me as plain as Mary.  Perhaps because Theresa has more nicknames?  I don't see why your husband couldn't use Tess, while you could use the full Theresa.  Kind of like how Katharine & James only use their nicknames occassionally.

September 4, 2013 5:09 PM

Andrew Lawrence is a great name. Andrew is one of my favorite names. Mary is one of my favorite girl's names and it is my confirmation name. You could use Mary Theresa or Mary Therese. Angela Mary is another good name.

September 4, 2013 9:52 PM

I agree with your husband that Mary is plain, but obviously you aren't looking for exotic or trendy. Plain isn't a bad thing; people choosing Mary are looking for a classic, simple name.  Of your other choices I like Lucy and Sarah.  My cousin is a Sarah and she just turned 19.  Her name fits her: she is a drama major and there is nothing plain about her.  The name sounds very lyrical to me.  I think is a lovely classic name with a fresh contemporary feel.  I know it is popular but it doesn't sound tired like so many other names.

Congratulations!  Andrew is great btw!

By mk
September 5, 2013 1:18 AM

I think Mary as a name is a great option. I don't think it is plain at all, since you really don't hear Mary often anymore. I don't think the closeness to Mark or having the same first initial is a huge deal. Sarah is nice but I know so many Sarahs of all ages (and I work with 4), that to me it is plainer than Mary. I think Theresa is beautiful. That's my favorite of all of them.

You could combine names: Mary Theresa, Theresa Mary. Lucy and Mary don't go too well together but something like Mary Lucia or Lucia Mary works.

September 5, 2013 9:53 AM

Thanks for everyone's feedback.  I'd love to hear more about Mary vs. Mary Grace.  Using Mary Grace has the advantage of distinguishing Mary from Mark on family cards and it would make for another "longer" name to match Katharine.  However we do tend to prefer straightforward names, and I wonder if I'd like the hassel of a double barrel.  Recently I was working with an insurance agent who answered the phone as Beth, signed emails as Mary Beth, signed official letters as Mary Elizabeth, and had a work email account with Mary lastname.  It turned me a bit off double barrels.  Also Mary seems a bit more classic on it's own though I think Mary Grace gives Mary a bit more spunk.

September 5, 2013 11:44 AM

I think it depends on how you do the double barrel name. The only way I've seen it work easily (outside the Southern states) is to smoosh it together without a second capital letter. Ie. Marybeth or in your case: Marygrace and then stick with it. 

The Marybeth I know is only ever Marybeth. Her emails and everything are Marybethlastname, etc. She also has a middle name while Marybeth is her first name. So official documents are signed Marybeth Middle Last.

I like the idea of Marygrace as a way to help with separation from Mark visually and to give a longer name like Katharine has. I have to say MaryGrace looks better in print, but I also visually want to read it May Grace instead (same with Marygrace). I think the two lower case letters together are not as visually appealing as the hanging over the line 'y' with a tall letter (like 'b' or 'k' or 't'). 

Hmmm... I'm not much help at all.


September 5, 2013 12:41 PM

I have a friend who is Mary Jane and I have never, ever heard anyone call her Mary. I can't speak for telemarketers and such, but she is always Mary Jane or MJ. Perhaps providing a short version that she prefers is what makes the difference. Hmmm, maybe there is something to that, since the million or so Marie-Whatevers that I know (Marie-Chantal, Marie-Andrée, Marie-Ève, Marie-Claude, etc. All French Canadian) are all frequently called Marie. Or maybe she was just blessed with exceptionally considerate friends. I just cannot imagine anyone calling her Mary...

September 5, 2013 11:06 PM

I had a friend in high school named Mary Beth and I'm not sure how she spelled it because everything was written as Mary but we all called her Mary Beth.  I agree that Mary seems more classic on its own.

My mom and her sisters went through a double name thing in the 60s and 70s.  My sister is Rosemary and I'm Julianne.  I have a cousin from one aunt named  Maryann and another cousin from another aunt name Kathleen Anne.  Our grandmother was a Mary so I get two of the names, but I'm not sure where the Annes came from.  Maryanne goes by the full name but me and Kathleen usually go by Kathleen and Julie but sometimes the full name.  My sister goes by Rose and Rosemary.

I think it gets confusing for people when it comes to writing the name out.  Even now I'm not sure exactly how my cousins spell their names.

September 5, 2013 12:51 PM

There are a lot of Mary Blank's in the school I work for. From what I can gather, their friends and teachers completely get it after just one correction (if any correction at all), but on any forms, student ID's, etc. they are Mary Lastname. So I would think that the only trouble would be more formal occasions when databases are involved. In social cases I haven't see it as a problem for these girls. A lot of schools are even asking "name child goes by" on forms so as to ensure the child is being called the correct name and to avoid any confusion.

I like either one, but for some reason I lean toward just Mary. I really didn't notice the difference of only one letter between Mark and Mary, probably because they sound so different when said. I don't think you can go wrong wither way.

September 5, 2013 12:50 PM

Congratulations! This is terrific news. I am still a big fan of Theresa, but as mom to a Sarah, I obviously love that name as well. And you can't go wrong with Mary. For some reason I've never warmed to Lucy, but I love Caroline and think that Lucy Caroline is a nice combination.

I carpool with a second grader named Mary Grace. She is full of giggles and spunk and I get a big kick out of her. She takes everything I say literally with this wide-eyed expression--really a charming child. 

The only other young Marys I know are Mary Margaret (third grade) and Mary (sixth grade). Of those three names, I like Mary Grace the most.

September 5, 2013 10:33 PM

I love the name Mary Grace. I think it's simple and classic yet still sounds fresh.

I also like Marie Grace, but it's the name of an American Girl doll which might be a turn off.

As for double-barrelled first names:

My niece is named Ann Marie and I have a good friend named Mary Jane and they each approached it different ways. (Well, their parents did but you know what I mean.)

My niece is Ann Marie LN and on official paperwork and such her name shows up as Anne LN. This has never seemed to cause a problem as her parents just correct people and move on.

My friend is Maryjane Middle Name LN and so on paperwork her name shows up as Maryjane LN. Like the previous poster, her friends call her MJ for short. 

I think there is lots of room for flexibility but also that you can pick an approach as a family and stick with it. People will adapt. 

September 7, 2013 9:49 AM

Congratulations!! Wonderful news!!

I love love the combo Lucy Caroline -- just lovely!

I know a little Mary (4 years old), and my cousin is only and always Mary Grace (10 years old), so I think either one is fine and sweet for a little girl. I think with the double-barrel names, a lot depends on the person with the name -- the woman you said who introduced herself on the phone as one thing, signed her emails as something else, etc. causes confusion for herself because she's not consistent. If the person with the name and her parents -- like with my cousin Mary Grace -- only and always say the full two names and don't give anyone the option of using something different, I think you have a better chance of success.

I also know a little Mary Elizabeth (3 years old) who goes by M.E., which I think is great because it sounds like a *real* name rather than initials (Emmy). I also know a woman in her sixties who goes by the double barrel Mary Caroline -- you might like that as an option as well?

Andrew Lawrence is very handsome!

September 7, 2013 9:52 AM

Another suggestion which I'm sure you've thought of is using Maria instead of Mary. Same namesake, same classic-ness, but moves away from the Mark/Mary similarity. I really like both Maria Grace and Maria Caroline.

September 7, 2013 12:55 PM

I've tried to warm to Maria and other Mary variants but I haven't. 

September 7, 2013 2:28 PM

My latest favorite of the Mary variants is Mariah (mah-RIY-ə).

((hugs)) That's hard when you love one name, but it doesn't quite work.

September 7, 2013 9:54 AM

P.S. I'm due the week before you with our #6 too!

September 7, 2013 12:58 PM

I think it's going to be nearly impossible to move my hubby off Lucy Caroline.  He really loves it.  Both Lucy and Caroline were his top picks for girls. 

September 7, 2013 2:30 PM

Hmmm... Well, if it helps, Lucy Caroline is a lovely name, and it does fit well with the siblings. Maybe a compromise of each promoting one name? Maybe you need to sit down and do the March Madness of baby girl names. I think that's what we're going to have to do if we're blessed with another girl. Boy is pretty much already named. (I'm not pg yet)

By ozy
September 8, 2013 12:30 AM

Perhaps you would consider a reversed double name, like Rosemary or Rose Mary. She could still go by Mary if wanted, but it would give her a different initial from Mark and also the option of Rose if she did think Mary was too plain at some point. 

September 8, 2013 8:05 AM

That's a good idea and I've considred it.   My husband has bad associations with Rosemary and Rose is my daughter's middle name so it seems a bit redundant.