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You can't go wrong with Sarah Kate or Clara Jane (or Maggie Jane, either).
I like other posters' suggestion of Mary Claire.
Mary Grace (this also reads as very religious, though possibly not as specifically Catholic), Mary Rose, Mary May (this is repetitious, but i kind of love that), Mary Ruth, Mary Alice, Mary Allison, Mary Charlotte, Mary Celeste, Mary Ellen, Mary Sophia, Anna Mary, Sarah Marie, Katherine Marie (Katie Marie), Jane Marie, Eva Marie, Rachel Marie, Ivy Marie, Chloe Marie, Esther Marie, Leah Marie
Oh, man, those are really cute. (Not to put the pressure on OP to have a third kid. I love kids, and i love names, but zero population growth is important for our poor planet.)
As far as June vs. Simone, i'm Team June all the way.
I understand about Katherine. Too bad.
Of course you aren't eagerly searching for a "just okay" name. And i do like the idea of a subtle connection between siblings' names, and perhaps it feels particularly important because they aren't biologically related; the name similarities can be a special family connection that most bio siblings don't have. The conditions you set out to fulfill in choosing your final daughter's name, based on similarities of her sisters' names, are not inherently unreasonable. But since you've been searching for months without success, it seems like time to consider being more flexible about the exact nature of the connection.
The criteria you chose, based on your older girls' names, were (a) 3 syllables; (b) ending in -ine; and (c) the final i must not be pronounced with a long e sound or a long i sound. These are clear connections, but they're also somewhat arbitrary. Two girls don't form a pattern; the pattern emerges when all of them are named.
Here are some other similarities between the names of your older daughters, along with some samples of other names that would fit. You could use any combination of your original criteria and these suggestions (or other similarities!) to be the special connection amongst all three girls, even if you don't end up following all the rules you had originally come up with.
1 - They have 9 letters. (Esmeralda, Genevieve, Cassandra, Priscilla, Annabelle, Benedicta, Francesca, Henrietta)
2 - They follow the pattern CVCVCCVCV (consonants and vowels). (Seraphina, Celestina, Berendina, Marygrace)
3 - They are saints' names. (Lucia, Helena, Felicity, Regina, Marguerite, Cecily, Matilda, Philomena)
4 - They end in -ne. (Marianne, Daphne, Julianne, Ariadne, Evadne, Irene, Hermione, Persephone)
5 - They contain the letter sequence "ine." (Inès, Ginevra, Antoinette, Minerva, Guinevere, Antinea, Dulcinea)
6 - They end with an n sound preceded by a unique vowel sound. (Vivian, Marian, Imogen, Allison, Caitlin, Avalon, Magdalene, Roxanne)
7 - Their last three letters are e, i, and n. (Stephanie, Léonie, Melanie, Sidonie)
8 - They both contain the vowels e and i, but they each have a unique first vowel. (Juliet, Sylvie, Lucienne, Lucille, Jubilee, Juniper, Justice)
Et cetera, et cetera. The point is that there are lots of possibilities, and it might be easier to make a list of names you really love and then figure out how each one matches with your other daughters' names. At the end of the day, i hope you prioritize choosing the best name for this individual child over the set made by all three girls' names.
Yes, this (second paragraph). Your daughter deserves a name you really love, not just the only name you could come up with that fits rigid criteria. I can imagine feeling pretty hurt if my parents gave me a mediocre name just so it would better match my siblings' awesome names.
Also, you'll probably be able to find similarities between your girls' names no matter what name you end up with--perhaps similarities you hadn't thought of before making a final decision. For example, i don't know why you decided Katherine wouldn't do, but if it's because it only has 2.5 syllables instead of 3, you can just say that all three girls have names ending in -ine with different vowel sounds for the i...and all of their names have 9 letters. You know?
It sounds like you might be feeling more confident that you'll get to keep her--congrats! : )
You know, i went through a phase in middle school in which cows were my favorite hoofed animal. I had an awesome "Cows Are Cool" T-shirt and occasionally even pinned a mini cowbell to my collar.
The point is, it would be unfortunate to give your daughter COW initials on accident, but if you know you're doing it, you can celebrate it instead. Nursery decorating theme? Check! Stuffed friend? Check! You could encourage her to consider the cow something of a spirit animal.
(Of course, if you like Claire Olivia only a little more than other combinations, maybe you'll decide that's too much trouble. But cows don't have to be a negative association. It's not like, say, having the initials ASS or KKK or HIV.)
Alexander, Lysander, Evander, Leander, Xavier, Leonardo, Angelo, Antonio, Orlando, Claudio/Claudius, Augustus, Lazarus, Cassius, Phineas, Demetrius, Octavius, Maximus, Maximilian, Caspian, Adrian, Sebastian, Tristan, Valentin, Donovan, Barnaby, Raphael, Olivier, Devereaux, Cedric, Aidric, Alaric, Ferdinand, Isidore
For middle names, do you want more long names (Emmeline Ophelia), or do you want shorter names to contrast with the first names (Juliette Claire)? Do you care about picking something meaningful, or just something that sounds good?
This is really good advice.
I'm going to give you a few random sounds-good-together thoughts anyway, though. I think that for both Claire and Elise, a middle name with the stress on the second syllable sounds especially nice. Claire Lorraine unfortunately has too many repeating sounds to be a good combination, but Elise Lorraine could be quite lovely. I also think Claire Elise* is very pretty, so unless you feel strongly about wanting to save either Claire or Elise for a potential future daughter, you could just use both of your favorite names.
Other ideas:Claire Victoria (LOVE this)Elise VictoriaClaire Elizabeth (love this, too--seconding suzannembrown)Elise NoëlleClaire ElenaClaire AmeliaElise CamillaClaire SimoneElise MarinaMore of suzannembrown's suggestions that i like a lot: Claire Olivia, Elise Rebecca, Claire Miranda, Elise Miranda, Elise Natalia, Claire Vanessa, Elise Naomi, Claire Matilda.
* It sounds like "Für Elise," Beethoven's piano piece, which is a positive association for me.
I like this idea.
I also feel reasonably strongly that both parents should love their kids' names (or at least like them a lot). It's nice that your husband is willing to humor you, i guess, but it would be so much better to find a first name you're both really enthusiastic about.
The phoenix rises from its own ashes; it's a very strong association. I was going to say that it wouldn't bother me if two of the kids "matched" and one didn't, especially if the matching ones weren't sequential (that is, if Emory is the middle child), but actually, with such a strong connection, it would bother me for Emme to be left out. If she's still quite young and usually goes by Emme, would you consider changing one letter of her name to make her more of a match with Ashe and Phoenix? (I'm mostly--but not completely--kidding about Embry.)
Of the other names you've been mulling, Lennox has a very similar sound to Phoenix, but without the matching quandary. That gets my vote.
Sasha is, as you say, too close to Asha; Nelle would inevitably be called Nellie; Teddy is too cutesy as a full name (although my association is with the stuffed bear, rather than French underwear). I think Eliza is too feminine compared to your older girls' names. Juniper or Josephine would be okay. If you like Josie and Joey, would you consider the unis3x Jody as a full name?
Other suggestions: Quinn, Reese, Rowan, Cameron, Bailey, Alexis, Larkin, Leighton, Avery, Darby, Morgan, Peyton, Devon, Drew, Harper, Jordan, Riley, Hollis, Parker, Finley, Aubrey, Logan, Kendall, Taylor, Skyler
I think Eve is the best stylistic match for Ivy and Charlie, but it's too similar-sounding to Ivy. I like Cleo a lot.
Other ideas:Maggie, Kate, Phoebe, Ruby, Lucy, Annie, Jane, Zoë, Luna, Laura, Nora, Tess, Alice, Leah, Amy, Sadie, Rose, Betsy, Hazel, Penny
Felix, Jack, Andy, Henry, Benjamin (Ben, Benji), Danny, George (Geordie), Leo, Theo, Ned, Adam, Thomas, Sam, Forrest, Jasper, Archie, Owen, William (Will, Liam), Max, Emmett
This should maybe be a whole new thread. But--
Is your dog still alive? If not, it won't be confusing for you to have the same name, and people would get over the humorous aspect. Even if she is still alive, i've heard of people (more than one family) giving the dog their favorite name, then getting pregnant and changing the dog's name so they can give the favorite name to their human child. If Tallulah (which i love!) feels like you, i think you should claim it.
If Tallulah seems like a good fit but not necessarily The One, do any of these appeal? They're a bit of a mix; it's a little hard to decide what to suggest based on a single name, so i made the list long, and some of them may be utterly wrong for you. But I hope something might strike a chord.
Isadora, Aida, Desdemona, Rowena, Ariadne, Phaedra, Scarlett, Beatrix, Genevieve, Geneva, Hermione, Phyllida, Philomena, Lucille, Colette, Twyla, Winona, Aletheia, Clementine, Susannah, Willa, Allegra, Delilah, Leocadia, Linnea, Cleo, Lorelei, Octavia, Ophelia, Xenia, Zilla, Imogen, Cressida, Zelda, Zora, Electra, Cosette, Juno, Rosalind, Calliope, Portia, Astoria, Isolde, Viveca, Persephone, Francesca, Lysandra, Cassia, Zinnia, Viola, Lavender, Ilaria, Nova, Jessamine, Roxana, Daphne
Do you not like Luke? It seems very much in the style of Jude, but different enough not to be mixed up. Other 4-letter Biblical names that seem like especially good matches are Joel, Levi, and Noah.
I appreciated it. Any insight about the Esmé spelling for girls?
I think it would be worth the hassle of changing all your accounts and records. "Newname James Lastname" seems like a good route to take, unless you'd rather be free of "James" entirely. Come consult us about it when you're ready. <3
Ooh, i love the compromise of Aurelia!
Some more suggestions...
Roger, Byron, Arthur, Philip, Harold (Hal), Pierce, Paul, Lewis (with this spelling, to differentiate from the explorer), Ross, Frank, Roy, Troy, Neil, Vance, Trent, Brent, Scott
That sounds terrible! I'm especially sorry about the passport incident. : ( Have your parents ever apologized?
Do you go by "James," or do you use your middle name or a nickname? It wouldn't help for legal documents, but for things like resumes and sports leagues, it might be smoother to just write "Jamie"--or, if your middle name is unmistakably feminine, "James Elizabeth Lastname."
Sisters: Leah, Ava, Mia, Abigail, Ivy, Phoebe, Emma, MollyBrothers: Noah, Levi, Ethan, Jonas, Seth, Owen, Luke, Asher
Also try the Name Matchmaker: http://www.babynamewizard.com/name-matchmaker
Max! : )
I'm with Miriam--Simone is French, and anyone should feel welcome to use it.
Other ideas: Celeste, Phoebe, Marian, Dalia/Dahlia, Delia, Daphne, Sonia, Nadia, Giselle, Iris, Margo/Margot/Margaux, Leslie, Amy, Ivy, Clara, Ruby.
Elise Victoria sounds great to me. Or...Elise Marina (or Mariah or Moriah)Elise EmiliaElise NataliaElise Noelle (or Danielle or Michelle)Elise Naomi