My husband and I are expecting our first baby in late June. We decided that we'd let our first child remain a surprise but I am having an incredible time planning for a name without knowing the sex. I'm a big planner, so it makes me nervous that my little one could arrive any day and I won't have names picked out.
We have a few on our list. My husband and I have very common first names beginning with J and our last name is Woodward, so we want something a little unique but not crazy. I don't have first OR middle names picked out but here are our favorites:
Boys: Asa, Everett, Ian
Girls: Peri (after my father, Perry), Norah, Iris, Imogen
I'm not 100% on any. I know this is a lot to ask, but HELP ME! Also, we have pets named Cash, Stella and Finn
Thanks a ton!
Well, you are starting out right by having the foresight to have an excellent surname. We discussed another Woodward baby back in February (that post has been updated with the chosen name, BTW!), and one thing we noticed was that practically EVERY first name sounded awesome with it. Let's check your current candidates:
My first picks from your lists are Ian and Imogen. I love both names, and they're great with your surname. (If anyone is unfamiliar with the name Imogen, here's the pronunciation: IH-moe-juhn.)
Really, I don't even feel like finding more name choices: I like what you have. I would pick middle names from your lists, too: Ian Everett Woodward (IEW) and Imogen Norah Woodward (INW). I would like, actually, to choose Ian Perry Woodward or Imogen Perry Woodward (I would spell it your dad's way), but that gives you I. P. for initials. Perhaps Everett Perry Woodward and Norah Perry Woodward. GOSH, Woodward is a great surname!
Let's see what Mairzy thinks!
Ah, you planners. The world runs smoothly because of you, but it is hard to enjoy the adrenaline rush of a deadline, isn't it? Good thing you have Swistle with her spreadsheets and analysis, and Mairzy with her deadline-induced inspiration, to help you!
To begin with, you should use the name Asa if it's a boy. Why? Because August won't let me use it, and I want somebody to. Of course, there is the danger than Asa will be mispronounced as Assa, making it difficult to live through the teen years.
Everett and Ian are both attractive names. Ian is the most common of the three, judging from the SS list and little boys I've met with that name. (I thought I'd discovered the name "Ian" all for myself when I was about thirteen, but that turns out not to have been the case.)
Other suggestions, taken from Cool Names for Babies by Pamela Redmond Satran and Linda Rosenkrantz:
Giles (although the soft G would blend with y'all's names)
As for girls, on principle I'd say no to Peri, because Swistle and I both spend weekends at protest rallies waving signs that say "Hey Girls -- Hands Off Boy Names!" and "RIP Avery (m)." That said, as far as taste goes, I think Peri is a cute little name for a girl. Maybe because it reminds me of Periwinkle, which is feminine. Not that I'm endorsing it, mind you.
My primary association with Imogen is Imogene Herdman from The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, not an image that calls up sophistication. However, according to Cool Names, it's in the Top 100 in England. What could be more sophisticated than European? Also, for what it's worth, Imogen and Iris show up all through the book. Here are some other suggestions:
For our children, we chose middle names that honored family or friends, or names important to our faith. Not knowing that much about your family and beliefs, my suggestion is that you can use one of the standard Middle Names in use these days: Grace, Joy, Rose; James, Michael, Scott, Blake. Or you could use one of the names you've already discussed, and pair it with one from the lists above: Iris Adair, Imogen Frances, Nora Adeline; Ian August, Everett Giles, Asa Bennett.
Maybe this will help your planner's spirit get things all in order. Or it could be your first lesson in parenthood: forget flexible, be fluid! Best wishes!
Thanks, Mairzy! Let's take it to a vote in
SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT RULES: Because we don't know if the baby is a boy or a girl, please choose your favorite boy name AND your favorite girl name.
Asa: 25 votes, roughly 12%
Everett: 54 votes, roughly 26%
Ian: 49 votes, roughly 24%
Isaac: 32 votes, roughly 16%
Bennett: 29 votes, roughly 14%
Elias: 16 votes, roughly 8%
Peri: 21 votes, roughly 10%
Norah: 64 votes, roughly 32%
Iris: 28 votes, roughly 14%
Imogen: 39 votes, roughly 19%
Bryony: 14 votes, roughly 7%
Eliza: 35 votes, roughly 17%]
[Follow-up! Jen writes:
Well, the baby arrived a full 18 days earlier than expected! We're now the proud parents of a beautiful little girl - Nora Perry Woodward. Thanks to everyone for their suggestions and help - we have a great list for the next one!