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Thank you so much for the update! It's great to hear such a happy outcome.
I think this is probably right; my guess for the spikes is a whole batch that get entered wrong, e.g. one county's Williams all entered as female instead of male one year.
If you look at any really popular name you'll find some cross-gender names in the statistics for the most popular years, generally in proportion to the name's overall popularity. A handful of these might be genuine, but since it works for feminine names as well as masculine I'm guessing most are data entry artefacts.
Good catch! I had totally forgotten about that character. My kids had an Indiana Jones marathon this weekend, and I will say that if the dog is especially yappy this would be a highly appropriate namesake. (I was mostly overhearing the films, and OMG I had forgotten just how annoying that character was, on several levels.)
Rhys, the original Welsh spelling, is still solidly masculine; when you combine its numbers with the male Reeses the name is much closer to unisex than "gone girl" (in 2016, about 0.05% of boys were named either Rhys or Reese, which is just over half as many as the 0.095% of girls who were named Reese).
Hmm, and in my American accent both the last two vowels become more or less schwas, with the middle vowel sounding a lot like "uh" and the last syllable somewhere between jin and jen and jun. I would put primary stress on the first syllable and secondary on the last, probably, so it can't really sound like imagine (primary stress on the second syllable) to me no matter the vowels. Closest near-rhyme I can think of is something like hydrogen or nitrogen, but with a short-i in the first syllable.
Maybe she could be Alexis Ohanian fille? Père and fils got some traction in the media for describing the presidents George H.W. and George W. Bush, since they weren't quite a senior and junior.
I also have to say, I can't help but wonder whether Alexis fille will like her middle name if she turns out to be bookish or otherwise not athletically inclined. Your mother is arguably the greatest tennis player who ever lived, AND you're named after the Olympic games—in which, by the way, said mother has won four gold medals? Talk about pressure! (OK, maybe she was named after Olympia Dukakis or the region in Greece, but it doesn't look that way.)
Although, come to think of it, maybe this was their way of getting Serena in there? It is clearly a nod in her direction, in the middle of a name that is otherwise all dad. Naming after Mom's accomplishments, rather than directly after her. Maybe the next little one can be Serena Reddita Williams :).
Leela is the beautiful cyclops female lead from Futurama; I would go with that spelling to eliminate ambiguity, and be prepared for the occasional Futurama reference.
First of all, I love Beryl, and I'm so glad to hear of someone who used it!
How do the two of you feel about etymology-based names? If they interest you, perhaps one of the names that means something like noble, as in noble gases and noble metals? Behind The Name has a bunch of names in this category; some that I like include Adara, Adela, Adelaide, and Arwen (there are also names from later in the alphabet!). There are also quite a few that have derivations related to gold or silver; some that I like include Silver itself, Oriana, Paz, Chryses, and Aurelia.
Another way to approach it would be to find names that you like and see if you can spell them with element abbreviations. For example, Laura could be Lanthanium, Uranium, and Radium: LaURa. Oxygen, Lithium, Vanadium, and Iodine get you almost to Olivia (OLiVI); if you wanted to use it, perhaps you could claim the final A is for the mythical element Adamant (or the Marvel alloy Adamantium).
Looking through elements, I also like Selena or Selene, though I know next to nothing about the element selenium. Curie (for Madame Curie and also for the eponymous Curium) also just made it into the SS list this year; maybe that would be of interest?
I do associate Audrey with Ashley, but I don't see that as a reason not to use it (I don't see anything wrong with Ashley, either, other than its slight datedness).
That said, maybe Alma, Maude, or Birdie? They have similar sounds to Audrey, and are vintage revivals with some of the sweet, down-to-Earth feel of several names on your list. In the slightly more elaborate mold of Gwendolyn and Lucinda, maybe something like Coretta?
Have you talked about using Lula as the given name? It has a lot of sounds in common with some of the names your husband likes, and I think it stands alone as a name just fine (in fact, it was a top-50 name in the US in the 1880s and 1890s).
We actually gave my oldest son two middles...and his twin sister only one. Baby A got a very short first name and two medium-length middles, one of which is my husband's bachelor name (and a traditional male given name); Baby B got a medium-length first name and a long middle, which combines several family references (not a mash-up name, just a long name that works in different directions). It has never been an issue.
Several years down the line, all three of our sons have double middles (only the first has my husband's bachelor name). Our second son's second middle is unofficial, because at the time that we named him we, for some reason, thought that would be easier. He now wants us to make it legal, because he has always grown up knowing it as part of his name. We offered to let our daughter pick a second middle at the same time, just in case she felt left out somehow (and because I'm a name enthusiast, and can't help but feel that everyone must want more naming opportunities), but she seems uninterested. It's probably worth noting that her three names still have one more syllable than her twin's four (but one less letter), and the same number of syllables as her two younger brothers'.
So TL; DR: If it's what you really want to do, go for it; no one will be traumatized.
Since this is a third party asking basically a hypothetical question, not the actual parents, I was treating the question as a thought experiment. Of course if this were a serious question my advice would be "first pick a name that you love, without considering sibling names." Which it seems is what the parents did the last time around. (I'm not at all a personal fan of given name themes beyond "names we love/that work for us", or even a hard requirement that sibling names "go together".)
Along these lines, perhaps:
Sienna—the color is very close to a non-metallic copper, and the word comes from an Italian placename.
Sage—this name can come from either the herb or its homophone meaning a wise person. The original collective plural of penny is pence, which is a homophone for the French word pense which means think (as in pensive and Harry Potter's pense-sieve), and of course Lincoln was known as a wise thinker.
Sophia—sticking with the wisdom/thoughtful theme, Sophia is a Greek name (like Penelope) that means wisdom. They could go for Sophie, instead, for a nickname-y take on the Greek original, à la Penny. There are numerous other wise/thoughtful names available, too.
Lucky—as in lucky penny, but with a lot of the sounds of Lincoln. Actually, even without a third child they could double down on their theme by using Lucky as a nickname for Lincoln.
Nimue/Vivien etc.—OK, bear with me in this one. We throw pennies into wishing wells and fountains for luck or wishes, a practice that apparently dates back to the time when spirits or deities were believed to inhabit bodies of water. Lincoln was a legendary ruler whose Welsh/English name derives in part from "lake". Where do the two intersect? With the Lady of the Lake, of Arthurian legend! She luckily has many names, to suit various tastes and circumstances. Evianne might make the water connection more explicit, and Ninian can be a male name. Lancelot (du Lac) or Arthur (who had a very important chunk of metal tossed into the lake) might work, too, though the connection seems more attenuated with those.
Liberty would get my vote for the most perfectly "on-theme" option (though I probably really would vote for something off-theme). The Goddess Liberty was a frequent figure on early US coins, including one iteration of the penny, and Lincoln is, of course, closely associated with the concept.
Is there anything specific you're looking for in a name? For example, do you want something that might have been chosen around the time you were born, a name that's never been very popular, a name to reflect any part of your heritage or personal interests? Do you want to keep any part of your birth name, or honor anyone who's special to you?
I think we're probably better at coming up with names based on criteria like that than just your appearance, and a name that is more about the "inner" you is more likely to still feel like you in ten, twenty, fifty years.
Did you mean you would NOT use a D name? DED seem like slightly inauspicious initials...
Thanks for the update, and congrats on the new name!
I grew up with a Jada, pronounced the way I think Jayda would be, and I always liked it. It is definitely more unexpected than Sophia.
On the nickname front I'd say they're about equal; with Sophia you have the obvious options of Sophie and Fia, and with Jayda you have Jay and Jade.
You also have similar levels of ease of pronunciation and spelling; I think both are fairly intuitive to pronounce, and both are going to occasionally need clarification of spelling ("Sophia-with-a-ph" vs "Jayda-with-a-y").
One other thing to consider is that Jada Pinkett-Smith is probably the best-known namesake, at least in the US; I don't think she's a bad association at all, just that you should probably be prepared for "oh, like Will Smith's wife?"-type questions/comments from time to time.
I have been wanting someone to use Venezia for a while, so that's my suggestion. It's the Italian/actual name for Venice. If you've been there, or if it's a dream vacation destination, that might help give the name a bit of a personal connection. For any of the names on the list, I would look for some sentimental or other personal connection to help you connect to the name. It could be someone important to you with the name, or something like you're a history buff so you pick Geneva for the Geneva Convention.
I like many of the other suggestions; I will add that if you're worried about losing the "nickname" along the way, there's nothing wrong with having the longer version be the "nickname". That is, if you like one or more of these, use it/them occasionally; then if people ask her name, you can say "her name is Vinnie, but sometimes we call her X".
You could also think of all the things you love about the name and use that as part of your explanation, e.g. "Her full name is Vinnie. She was named for my best friend Lavinia and my beloved Great Aunt Vinessa" or "Her name is Vinnie, named because her other parent and I met at a winery." etc. In my experience, an unusual name becomes much easier for people to relate to if they know the story behind it.
That is...odd. And disappointing. What a remarkably generic name overall. I thought they did a good job back with Voyager of picking a surname that signalled femininity, since surnames are most often used for captains. But Michael Burnham sounds fairly standard-alpha-hero: angelic first name with a single-syllable nickname (bonus: it has a hard-c), and a last name that sounds like "burn 'em". Very Duke Nukem.
Maybe the producers were sitting around talking about the lead, and one of them said "we need an actress like Michael Michele" and the name stuck?