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I'm a Hannah and my brothers are Keith, James, and Marcus if that helps;). Any names you even halfw-way like to give a sense of what styles might appeal? Some people like Hannah because it works in multiple languages, others because it can't be nicknamed easily, others because it's Biblical, others because its palindrome etc. What attracted you to it might help find other names.
Thank you for this! We are trying the list thing but he's worried, I think the flashcard method might actually work quite well. Good luck on facilitating all the meetings;).
He has a strong distaste for "names that sound like nouns" ;). But thanks for the idea!
I am a theologian and still had to look up some notes to remember, so be assured almost no one will have any associations with the name Ephraim:). Good news is, nothing bad about the name Biblically I think. Original ephraim was Joseph's younger son, who received his blessing at the end of genesis (After all the business with the amazing technicolor dreamcoat;)). Later he becomes the namesake for half of the house of Joseph, one of the twelve tribes of Israel. when Israel split into two the tribe of ephraim was a strong leader in the northern kingdom, which was destroyed and its history largely lost when Assyria invaded. So if you're concerned about the name not showing up in the NT that's why - not because of anything bad about the name, because of "loss" of all ten tribes that were in the north (although of course their descendants almost certainly continued in the larger Jewish community). There may be stray reference or two to prophecies about ephraim and Judah coming together - that's shorthand for the day when all Jews or all peoples are one again, since they became separate in the 2 kingdoms. Not anything troubling. Mormons may have a different take because I know they have a distinct theology of the tribes, so if you're Mormon find a leader to check in with - but just in the NT by itself I can't think of any place where ephraim would have really negative associations. If there's a particular passage you're thinking of let me know and maybe we can figure it out!
I haven't regularly spoken Japanese in a while but from what I remember Murray would be a hard name to say in a Japanese accent, it's at least counter-intuitive. Penelope and Alexander also both pose challenges. Maybe you should get some ideas from your girlfriend first, and then try combining them for names that are fluid in both languages? Unfortunately Murray doesn't seem to have a meaning (place name) but William means protector or determination, in Japanese the names Mamoru or Katsuo seem to have similar definitions and can be pronounced by English speakers. If preserving family heritage exactly is important to you, can that be done in the last and/or middle name, while making the first name truly bi-cultural? Good luck.
Congratulations! I think 'West Bronx' and 'Sydney Harbour' both have a very literal "name of a place" feel to them, so unless you're purposefully going for that vibe and using both names I'd avoid either. I love the sound of the name Bastian (and it reminds me of Never Ending Story) but be prepared for him to get nicknames you don't plan on since it's long - Seb, Baz, etc. might all enter the picture whether you plan on it or not.
I may be mis-reading, but it sounds like the names you and your husband truly love are Jesper, Billie, and Riley - so go with two of those! Don't worry about what anyone else says, and I think they all sound fine with Daley. Best of luck.
How do you feel about Magdalena, Helena, or Elena? Laney would be a great nickname for any. And I've definitely seen Lena as a nickname for those names or a name on its own, if you were wondering about 'Laina.'