Baby #2: An even longer list! (girls' edition)
Hello again, everybody! Thanks so much for all your feedback on my boys' list, it's really helped me refine my thinking. I'm back now with my girls' list, which is an embarrassment of riches—there are so many girls' names that I love, I'm going to have to restrain myself from giving six middles to get them all in. Again, the objective at this point is to come up with a curated list of about 10–20 names to show husband, not to narrow it down to one perfect name. First names only for now, though some of these may be in contention for middles down the road. Last name is a familiar, one-syllable Anglo-Saxon name starting with R. Rhys is a good stand-in. Older brother is Thomas Elliott. For a girl, I'm even less concerned with sibset matching than for a boy, as I think Thomas will pair just fine with any girls' name in my preferred style. I have described it here previously as "Swordfighting Princess," which I'm pleased to see has caught on :) Other descriptors that I like are Regal Romantic and Shakespeare & Co. I would ideally like something that dresses up our very ordinary last name a little bit. I just had a brief chat with husband about how we're going to do the naming this time, and he agreed that we will settle on about 3 names that are acceptable to both of us and make the final decision in the hospital; also that I will produce a list of about 20 names for him to exercise his veto power, and if he can't come up with three that he likes, he will come up with his own list of 20 for me to veto. We'll see how it plays out in real life :)
Juliet: Husband was under the impression that we had already settled on this as a girls' name last time (we did not, it was just the only one he was on board with after a brief run through the top 1000 list). So it's pretty much guaranteed to be one of the three. We were previously living in a real Juliet pocket and some of the luster has worn off for me, but we've moved cross-country and I haven't met any Juliets here yet, so I think I can get over that. I'll probably be happy with it, but I want to consider other options as well. This one also has some personal meaning to my mother, though it's a bit indirect. My mother-in-law also has a J name, so we could also spin it as a nod to her, if we wanted to.
Amalia: This is a one-time favorite and still in the top cut. It was the name of one of my great-great-grandmothers, so the family connection is a plus, as well as the connection to the German side of my heritage and its general pan-European appeal. I like the potential of Molly as a nickname. I'm less enthusiastic about the similarity to the much more popular and trendy Amelia, and the fact that it will probably get misheard/misspelled/mispronounced a lot--although having dealt with this problem all my life, I don't consider it big enough problem to be a dealbreaker. Husband will likely veto, as he knew an obnoxious Amalia in middle school and apparently can't get over that.
Aurelia: This one is a nod to the Italian side of my heritage, as well as my love of the Roman Empire. I would use the pronunciation oh-RAY-lee-uh. The many variant pronunciations are a downside here as well, and somewhat more problematic than for Amalia, but again, not a dealbreaker. I'm not sure we would use a nickname (we don't for Thomas), but if we did, it would probably be Aura or Aurie. I like Lia as well, but with a cousin Leo four months older, that would probably get too confusing.
Felicity: Another favorite. I'm not overly fussed about meanings, but considering that this one is an actual English vocabulary word, the meaning is a plus. I can't remember why husband didn't like this one (maybe just too long and flouncy?), but I remember he didn't.
Genevieve: This one has personal meaning to me as it's the name of the main character of my favorite novel. I'm also a sucker for the letter v. This is one that I think husband might be persuaded to consider, though I won't hold out hope.
Marigold: This is one of the more recent additions to my list. I first warmed up to it as a middle name, and I've been loving it more and more. I love that it's a botanical, I love that it's highly unusual, I love that it was classy enough for Winston Churchill to use for one of his daughters and I love the natural nickname Mari (which, being Mary-Marry-Merry unmerged, I pronounce like Marry, and hallelujah, we now live in a place where most other people are unmerged, so it would be pronounced correctly most of the time). I'm sure husband will veto it, though. Our last name is also a botanical, though it's so familiar as a surname that I don't think the double botanical is a problem... thoughts? (We would definitely avoid another botanical in the middle).
Mariel: This was a favorite at one point, but it was supplanted by Marigold. I would happily consider it, though, if Marigold is vetoed and Mariel isn't.
Mara: I really love a lot of the Mar- names. This name belongs a former colleague of my husband's whom he really respects, so you'd think it would be a contender, but he probably will say that makes it awkward and weird and therefore veto. It's not my favorite in combo with our surname, as my tongue kind of trips over the "-ra ree-," but not a dealbreaker--my sister-in-law has the same ending and has lived with it fine all her life.
Cecily: Last time, husband didn't like that this sounds like the masculine name Cecil with an ee tacked on. Sigh.
Rosamund/Rosamond: I could be swayed to either spelling. I like the potential for Rosie as a nickname, which is also a family name on husband's side. Husband won't like the alliteration with our surname, though.
Mirabel: Love the meaning and Latin origin, love Mira as a nickname.
Eveline/Aveline: More pronunciation ambiguities here, but I like them as EV-uh-line and AV-uh-line. Would probably lean toward the E variant, but I like them both.
Elodie: Like the Germanic roots and the Ellie nickname potential (I know, it's everywhere, but at least it's just a nickname). When I last mentioned it to husband, he was very perturbed by the fact that it sounded like Melody without the M and therefore made up.
Gaia: Husband will never go for this because he thinks it sounds like GUY-ah, but I particularly love it for the ancient Roman connection. The less-likelies:
Ariadne: I'm not sure which pronunciation I prefer... I default to Arry-Adny (with unmerged vowel like in "marry"), but it seems like others say ahh-ree-AHHD-nee (with the vowels as in father). I could be persuaded to switch. Most likely doesn't matter either way, as husband will veto--last time he said it sounds like "Harry had me" in a Cockney accent.
Rosaline: See Rosamund above. I would pronounce it ROSE-a-line, though I know this is not the Shakespearean way. Not sure if that would turn out to be a huge annoyance? Husband will probably veto anyway. I do like Rosalind, too, though I prefer Rosaline.
Chrysanthe: Ok, husband will NEVER go for this, but I'm kind of in love with it. My fantasy twins are Chrysanthe and Marigold (Chrysanthe means "golden flower"). Not that it's relevant here, as this is a singleton pregnancy
Charlotte: This is an old favorite that I had taken off my list because a) popularity, and b) my sister claimed it. But I'm not sure I'm as concerned about popularity as I once was, and my sister has switched to Sophie for a future daughter (because she said Charlotte has gotten too popular... I tried to gently warn her about Sophie, but it seems she's in more of a Charlotte pocket. She's having a boy, so the conversation is tabled for now). So I'm tentatively adding Charlotte back to the list for now, though I may take it off again. I think husband may be ok with this, though it was also used by the same friends who used Oliver.
Claire: Not sure that I will keep in on the list--I love it to bits, but I'm not enamored of the combo with our last name; two one-syllable names in succession often sound choppy to me, and while I can overlook that with more stretched-out one-syllables like James and Graham, this is exacerbated by the -re R- blending together.
Liesel: This was my favorite at one time, but husband hated it--said it reminded him of "diesel" and "weasel." This is particularly unfortunate, as it would be really meaningful for an Elizabeth on his side of the family who once used it as a nickname.
Elowen: This is another recent name crush, but I'm particularly attracted to the Cornish origin, as we have a Cornish connection in the family. Not sure that I would choose it over Elodie, and I think it's a bit more modern than my style in general, but it hasn't been run by husband yet, so I'm adding it to the list.
Violet: Like it a lot, but maybe not the best choice with our last name (I have more issue with Violet than Marigold, because Marigold R. is only a double botanical, not also an adjective describing a noun like Violet R. Anyone want to talk me into it?)
Beatrix: I love it in theory, but I'm just not sure its The One. May be a stronger contender for a middle name. I do love the Latin roots and the meaning via Viatrix (which I would consider for a middle as well if I could persuade my husband, but I think it's too out there for him).
Guinevere: I love this, but have downgraded it in favor of Genevieve, which I think is easier to wear and carries less baggage.
Victoria: My middle name. I'm a little put off by the current popularity (we were previously in a bit of a pocket--I knew two my son's age--though I haven't met any since we moved), and it's long and heavy enough that I would want a nickname. I love Vixie, but husband didn't care for it, and I don't like any of the other options (Vicky, Tori, Vita... anything else?)
Phoebe: I like the classical associations, the meaning and the versatility--it's a name that manages to be both serious and cute at the same time, remarkably successfully. Husband associates it with the batty character from Friends (which he despises) and the word "feeble," so I'm pretty sure it will be vetoed.
Noelle: I'm including this because I used to really love it, but I've cooled on it a bit. I don't usually put a lot of stock in meanings, but I speak French and this one is very overt to me, and I'm not sure it feels right for a May baby born to a very secular family.
It's a long list, so I will definitely make cuts before the final version that I show husband. Any thoughts or suggestions would be much appreciated!
Thu, 09/29/2016 - 6:36pm