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Thank you for your suggestions Zoerhenne. Out of your suggestions I like (and could suggest to my DH):
Josephine, Amelia and Olivia. Unfortunately, Olivia is too common in New Zealand and Amelia has been used by quite a few people who like Emily, but consider it too popular. I was actually thinking of suggesting Josephine the other day. Beatrice and Alice are becoming too popular in the UK. Phoebe, Vivian and Astrid just don't really ring the right bells for me. Cecilia may be a possibility though and not a name that I had thought of. I have always liked Cecily though, which I guess is a variant.
Noah, Finn and Samuel are definitely possibilities. Although I like it Jasper, a friend has recently used that name. Jonah is the name of a really famous former rugby player, so kind of out and the others I can't really see a little boy growing up in New Zealand using. I know that Augustus is popular here, but I can't get over the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory connotations.
Any other suggestions?
Names that are currently on our list:
Jonathan (Jonty) - that is it at the moment, but I would like some alternatives in case we look at him and think that there is no way he looks like a Jonty!
I think our requirements are a name that can be both serious and sporty if needed.
This list is a mishmash...
I would consider Philippa or Felicity, but they are the names of very good friends of ours.
I wonder if it might be a difference in accent regarding the pronunciation of Megan. I think that in New Zealand we would be more likely to say Mee-gan, perhaps in Australia too and would consider May-gan to be an American pronunciation of the name.
I am also in the position to seek naming advice (YAY!). We currently live in England, but at some stage will live back in New Zealand where we are from and there is a good possibility that we will live overseas again at some stage during his/her childhood and as he/she will hold dual citizenship there will be an opportunity to do so during his/her adulthood.
The only restraints are that due to our surname there can be no names beginning with K or a hard C. Also names with a double t don't really fit well, neither do floral girls names. Oh, and the only name my husband has definitely vetoed is Florence.
Also, Charlotte, Sophie, Emily, Ella and Emma are all out due to their popularity in New Zealand.
Middle names will probably be Mary and Albert.
I would love to hear your suggestions!
Louisa to me, for some reason suggests Victorian England...so how about:
and perhaps Mary?
I love the name Charlotte! Unfortunately, it was the number 1 girls name in New Zealand a couple of years ago, so is off the list (grrr).
I also really love Louise. It is the female family name on my mother's side (which I didn't get, but my sister did in the form of Louisa).
Best wishes for the next few weeks.
Names to go with Jack - I agree with Max and Leo mentioned above . I would add:
With all of these names, yes there is a chance that your child will not be the only one in his/her class at school, but I think that there is a chance with almost any name, but as people are naming their children from a wider pool of names there is less chance of this happening.
I was one of 5 Fiona's at my high school in New Plymouth in NZ (a small provincial town!).
Hamish - yep, Ham is the normal nn, and would be used by family and friends, but never in a more formal sense - like at work, even in less formal NZ and Australia where the name has reasonable popularity, your boss probably wouldn't call you Ham. However, if you were named Samuel, Sam would probably be a more acceptable work nn as well as being used at home.
I guess that there are various categories of nn, I went to a boarding school and almost everyone in my class had a nn, but not very many of them came from first names. When my class mates are in touch with one another we still use these nn.
I also think that perhaps it is more of an American pre-occupation or perhaps it is just a NE thing - trying to have two bites of that naming cherry?
Kylie - I presumed that she gained some degree of popularity in the USA, but I presumed that it wasn't to the extent that she was popular in Australia, NZ and to the mania in the UK, where she is still popular today and can sell out concerts many time over. Her star hasn't really faded that much.
I can see though how her popularity in the 80s and early 90s is influencing parents now.
I was also going to say that I know twins named James and Hamish.
Actually, now there is a name that doesn't lend itself to a nn - Hamish.
Prairie Dawn - I don't know. Kylie these days in NZ and perhaps Australia is one of those names that you don't really use because someone so famous has it as a name. Mind you Kylie (and she is known by her first name) is more famous in NZ, Australia and the UK than in the USA.
I would assume that US parents aren't aware of its Australian roots or its star heritage!
If our yet to be conceived child is a boy he will almost certainly be named Jonathan, nn and always called Jonty. For me the fact that it ends in a "ee" sound makes it sound too much like a nn, therefore, the use of Jonathan. Actually, for me that is it, a name ending in an "ee" sounds more like a nn than say Jack or even Kate.
Prairie Dawn - Kylie isn't a made up name, it in fact comes from the Aboriginal word for boomerang. It is reasonably common in Australia and also New Zealand, especially for girls around my age (30) and slightly older - the most famous being Kylie Minogue.
Considering how much thought and time goes into selecting just one name at a time for most people on this board, I can't imagine having to pick 7 names in one go and then find out that you actually need one more!
Fiona is a great name (although I am somewhat biased as it is my own name!)
As a nn, I am always called Fi (Fee) and all the other Fiona's I know also go by that nn. No one has ever called me Fifi with any degree of seriousness.
I also think that with your Scotish/Irish name it will fit as it has its own celtic heritage. I also think that it works better as a first rather than middle name, and I think that Lindsay as a mn works very well with it (mine is Cl@re, and I know other Fiona's with mn - Elizabeth and Mary).
I wouldn't worry about the Shrek connection as Fiona in Shrek is the heroine after all! And the whole point of Shrek is beauty is more than skin deep. Also, in the next couple of years who is to say that Disney wont come up with a ugly or evil or unpopular character called Eva, June or Rosalind?
If anyone is interested the list of what New Zealanders are naming their babies has been released (although I can't locate the full list on the Department of statistics website).
But the top 30 are:
Girls top 30
Boys top 30