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My husband's name is Justin, so I don't really associate it with Guarini, Timberlake, or (thankfully) Bieber. I guess it seems a little youthful, but he wears it well!
@Beth the original:
Punky was a nickname for Penelope. Tootie was a nickname for Dorothy. Somehow, I've managed to never see an episode of Blossom, so I have no idea if Sixx and Blossom are given names for these characters, though I'm sure if I was motivated enough I could check IMDB...
@Eo: I am also just discovering The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (and others), and I totally agree--- The names are fantastic! I studied in Denmark for a while back in college, so the style feels familiar, but still new.
@Amy3: Adam Sandler has daughters Sadie and Sunny.
@ Eo -- wow I've been reading this blog too long. I saw the post by "Guest #33" and thought "That really sounds like something Eo would say." Lo and behold....
I've never been a *huge* fan of Samantha the name, though my American Girl doll, Samantha, is still safely tucked away in my parents' attic somewhere...
Re: Mary Jane
In the new book "The Irresistable Henry House," (set circa 1950's/60's) it is a running joke that the character Mary Jane is a huge pothead. That said, it's never a problem for this fictitious person, but I doubt the irony of Mary Jane as a pothead is something you're looking for your daughter!
If you love the name, I don't think a more antiquated reference should dissuade you.
O/T vent: I was totally put off by Wonder Pets while babysitting my friend's three year old. I'm really not a proponent of having cartoon characters lisp in order to appeal to/sound more like children.
@ Mantua: What about Ingrid? That's really been growing on me lately, probably because I love Ingrid Michaelson (singer).
I think Saoirse is amazing---sounds awful with my "Sh" last name, and is a bit politically contentious... But on the upside, with the growing popularity of the young actress Saoirse Ronan, people hopefully will know how to pronounce it!
@Betsy 2: Speaking of Pixar, I always wondered what adorable little Boo's (Monsters Inc) "real" name was.
@lucubratrix: According to a couple of articles I've read, Rupert Grint's non-Harry Potter movie career is really taking off. I also think that the Rupert/Hermione association is tentative, at best. It's definitely possible that in the next few years, that association will be further attentuated as Rupert Grint becomes less synonymous with Harry Potter.
Also-I've been meaning to ask: How does one pronounce Jolyon? It looks so cool typed out!
Annabelle, Annabelle, Annabelle! I love it with Henry, Charlotte, and Lily. I love it, period. Perhaps Annabelle Jane? It may be rising in popularity, but I don't think it's moving so quickly as to offset choosing it.
Eloise is another of my no longer so secret favorite names, but it doesn't work with our last name. I also think Annabelle works better with your other kids' names.
To be honest, I remember knowing an Emily/Lily sister combo growing up, and I always found it way too matchy.
@PennyX - I like Honora with Ursula. I've heard it both huh-NO-rah (which I like better) and on-NO-ra.
I believe that Genevieve was the "if he'd been a girl" name for my husband's little brother. I absolutely love the sound, but don't really love the way it looks written down. Do others have similar issues with any names? I know there are always aesthetic preferences (e.g. Sara versus Sarah and what not; Madison versus Maddysyn, to go super kre8v), but are there any names that you love to hear but you don't love to see?
@HMF; Megan W; emilyrae; etc: Thanks so much for the alternate Olivias. I do like Sylvia, but it was the name of so many of my elderly relatives, that I have trouble seeing it as "fresh" on a child. I can't do Julia because "Julian" is high on my boys' list, and like so many others, I find boys names much more challenging to come up with than girls names. I think Cecilia is lovely, though.
Honestly, I'll likely be the person who gets pregnant, states my undying affinity for Olivia, but asks for countless suggestions due to Olivia's skyrocketing popularity. I will then agonize, re-agonize, and over-analyze. I will then wind up naming my daughter Olivia.
Though, girls are few and far between in my husband's family, so you never know!
Okay, NE's -- what about alternatives for the original name posed: Olivia?
I may still wind up using it someday, regardless of popularity, because though it may sound a bit date stamped at some point, it's never going to sound as trendy as all of those -aiden names, etc.
I have to admit-- Isla is really, really growing on me!
@ KRC: My husband has also been exceptionally amenable to all of my name suggestions. Of course, we aren't actually expecting yet, so hopefully when the time comes, all hell won't break loose!
@ Chimu: My husband (and perhaps, Amy3, you'll appreciate this!) randomly mentioned to me the other day that he thinks Astrid is one of the coolest names ever. A new NE in the making...?
I also love Juliet. Clementine and Cordelia are not so much my style, and I agree with Kimberly on the Buffy reference.
I've been meaning to ask this for a while, but is Phillipa pronounced like PHIL-ih-pah or Phih-LEE-pa or something else entirely?
Pippa is adorable...
@ Miriam: Interesting....For some reason I remember much more press on Amanda Knox, but that's likely because the case is more recent. Of course, the name Amanda would never provide the same immediate assocation as the name Joran would...
@ Miriam: How disturbing. I hope this is a case of people hearing a name, liking it, and then later forgetting the original context....
That, or the fact that the murder took place in Aruba (far, far away from the Netherlands) made the connection between the name "Joran" and van der Sloot himself more tenuous...
@ aras: It's always been my impression that people who frequent this blog dislike seeing their favorite names rise in popularity for the exact reasons you outlined. However, avoiding a name that you absolutely love simply because it's popular (or you think it might get popular) may wind up leading to regrests. As another Sara (common maiden name, frequently in a class with other Sara/hs) I can sympathize.... However, as my absolute favorite girl's name is currently top 10, I have been thinking a lot lately about balancing the desire for a name that will neither be date stamped nor banish the child to years of "one of many" in her class, with the desire to bestow the name I've loved for years.
There was an interesting discussion a while back about the googleability of names. That is, one of the upsides of having a more common name is that people can't easily hunt you down in internetland!
Sol's Mom: I also think "Violet" and "Iris" are a bit too themey. With a monosyllabic last name, I love a 3 syllable middle name with either Violet - (Pronounced like Vi-lett, not like Vi-uh-let)or Iris. I'm partial to Violet myself, and love the suggestion of Violet Elodie!
@ Becky: I'd imagine "Irving as a middle name" is likely named for - like you said - someone's grandfather. A friend is planning on using "Harold" (after her husband's grandfather) as a middle name if her baby (due Jan) turns out to be a boy.
@ MelissaM: I hear you. We have a one syllable last name that rhymes with an unfortunate four letter word. On the bright side, I don't need to agonize over giving my child a first name that has teasing potential, because I'm already screwed with the last name!