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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Baby Boy Joseph Michael O. (I've Gone Ahead and Decided)

Kate writes:
We are about to have baby number 4 but are unaware of the gender as yet. We both have Irish heritage and have used Irish middle names for our first 3 children. They are Eliza Bernadette, Thomas Patrick and Charlotte Mary. Our surname is a bit tricky...starts with an O and is a bit like elephant.

My husband and I are having real trouble with a boy's name for this baby, but have managed to agree on Isabelle (although I quite like Maggie) for a girl. My husband only likes 3 boy's names:

1) Henry. I don't like the way this name is said in our country...very nasal and almost a 'HInry'. He says we can name him Henry but call him Harry, an English tradition. I am not so keen on this idea, as I think it will require constant explanations for the child. Think I would prefer the name Harry itself but he is not so keen.

2) Joseph. He would probably be Joe at our place (Thomas is Tom or Tommy unless he is in trouble!), which is okay but I don't love it.

3) James. Every second boy we know is called James and once again i don't particularly like the way it is pronounced here..the 'a' is really dragged out.

Personally, I prefer names like:

Patrick (already used as a second name, but not sure this is a huge issue)
Hamish (Scottish form of James which is fine as my husband's family also originates there).

My father was Michael which we would consider as an Irish middle name but it is not a necessity.

I would love your advice here! Thanks for your time.

Oh, it is so tricky to choose a name with another parent, isn't it? Paul and I would sometimes go almost crazy: he'd choose a name I thought of as "total 1980s" and then I'd choose a name that would make him say, "Is that even a NAME?"

So. The only three boy names your husband will consider are Henry, Joseph, and James. My favorite from the list, given the details you provide, is Joseph: I love the nickname Joe, and wish I could use it (another of our kid's names is too similar). I think the nickname Joe is similar to the names you like, like Sam and Max and Jack: boyish and short and a guy's-guy name. Cute for a little boy, but grown-up enough for a man.

Then I'd use Michael as the middle name: Irish AND grandfather-honoring is perfect. Joseph Michael is a terrific name, solid and manly with a great nickname. I suspect it's the kind of name you might feel a little "meh" about using, but with time would love more and more. I'm getting a little sentimental just thinking about a cute little toddler boy named Joe!

It's also very good with your other children's names: Charlotte and Eliza, Thomas and Joseph. Very, very good. You don't need us at all! Great work!

Anyone have any other comments or suggestions for the upcoming cutie? (Awww, JOE!) (Or Isabelle!)


Maggie said...

I'm a Maggie, so of course I think it would be an awesome choice. But if your husband insists, Isabelle is cute too.
As for boys, I agree with Swistle. Joseph has a nice easy nickname, but also a grown-up sound. And Michael goes well and honours your father, so it's all good. I like James alot myself, but it is so very popular right now.

Banana said...

Joseph Michael is adorable!

Alison said...

What about William? It's in the same style as Henry and James, but the nickname Will matches the style of the shorter names you like. Of course, as others have said, Joseph is a great name and goes very nicely with Michael. Just my 2 cents.

Steph the WonderWorrier said...

Totally love "Isabelle" so good choice there!

I also agree with Swistle on "Joseph Michael". I think it's important here to choose a name you and your husband agree on, so it's good to choose from those three names. Out of those three, I like Joseph ("Joe") the best.

All the best with your new baby!

Luna said...

It's not on your husbands list, but I really like Hamish Joseph or Hamish Michael- any chance he would reconsider?

Aussie Cath said...

Yes Alison, Wiliam is fab and I love Will too.. unfortunately my husband's brother already has one of those (with the same surname of course). The more I see Joseph Michael, written the better I like it, although part of me is really pulling for Hamish (thanks luna). If only husband's didn't want to have a say it would all be so easy! Thanks girls.

Barb said...

Go for Joseph Michael!! It's classic and strong (will bear the test of time) but can be boyish, too!

Bird said...

I'm with you, Swistle.

Alison said...

Aussie Cath,
Ah, I see. Darn relatives! ;) Well, it certainly doesn't seem like you can go wrong with Joseph Michael. It's strong, masculine, and solid; classic but not overly popular right now. Like Swistle said, a winner all-around.

LoriD said...

I like Joseph Michael as well. I also like the name Seamus (SHAYmus), which is an Irish form of James. It's different, but strong. It could give way to the nickname Sam, which you mentioned you like.

Jill said...

Love it! Although, to be fair my husband's name is Joseph Michael so I might be just a leeetle biased. Heh. My husband also comes from a large Irish family, so naturally there are a lot of Pats and Marys.

Tammy said...

Seamus is a great name, as is Liam. I also like the name Charles. It is a strong name and you can have a cute nickname for him when he's younger if you wish.Sebastian is another name I like, also Nigel, Conor, Colin, and Callum

Would you name the girl Margaret and call her Maggie? I quite like Isabelle. You could also go with Isabella.

Good luck and have fun. I remember the baby naming process with my husband well and it was horrible.

Leah said...

But! If there's another Joe in his class, he's going to be Joe O., which sounds kind of silly, doesn't it?

Swistle said...

Or they could be Joe and Joseph, or Joe and Joey, or Joey and Joseph, or Joseph Michael and Joseph David.

Aussie Cath said...

Hmmm...hadn't thought of the Joe O. issue although you do have a point Leah, as our Tom is already Tom O at school. But yes, Swistle, perhaps he could be our Joe at home and Joseph at much to consider it's frying my poor pregnant brain!!! I like some of the other name suggestions, although Charles wouldn't really work (although I love it) as our Charlotte is already Charlie. Hmmm will let you know...

Still Awake Sarah said...

Okay, I'm admittedly biased as one of my favorite little men is named Joseph Michael.

They were going to call him "Joe", but then he came out with a John Wayne stagger and a freckled face full of mischief and has since been dubbed "Joe Man" which really works for him.