NEW LOCATION

This blog has moved! Please join us over at http://www.swistle.com/babynames!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Baby Girl or Boy Fink

Heather writes:
I am expecting # three soon. I have a 13 year old Grant Anthony Fink and an 18 month old Brady Tann Fink (family name, Tann is short for Jonathan). I am at a loss for names I think this time around.

My husband likes Savannah and Delaney. I say no to both Jimmy Buffet names. He also loves Delilah which I can do because I love Lilah. I love Grace, Claire, Mary Claire, and Lila/h.

For boys I love Tate and Finn. Finn is out due to our last name. I LOVE Henry but DH says no. I also love Carter and Travis, both used up by friends of ours. My husband likes Liam and John. I could do Liam but not so much with John.

Please help! What other names sound great with Grant and Brady? I am stuck this time when it was so easy they last two times! I want something different but not super trendy (don't we all!). I like classic and different. DH is just different. Please help.

Thank you!!!!


I am just dying for the new edition of The Baby Name Wizard to come out! DYING! Well, we'll use what we've got. The book suggests these sibling names for Grant: Paige, Hope, Elena, Victoria, Claire; Reid, Miles, Bond, Spencer, Preston. And these sibling names for Brady: Avery, Payton, Macy, Brenna, Madelyn; Parker, Riley, Carter, Bryson, Drake. Do any of those (other than Claire and Carter, which were already on your list) seem like candidates?

Elena and Miles and Brenna are all names from my own baby name lists, so of course I'm in favor of those---but I think Brenna is too close to Brady. I'll add Lena, which is similar to Elena. I like Elena best, though: it's similar in sound and rhythm to Delaney, which your husband likes, but is more in line with your choices of Claire and Lila. And I like it with your surname: Elena Fink. Maybe Elena Claire Fink or Elena Grace Fink.

Carter is a name I keep putting on my baby name list but having to scratch out because surname names are bad with my surname, but I think it's great with yours. Friends are different about whether it's okay to use the same name: if you're going with "no," then I suggest Carson. Another surname name I like is Turner. Carson Fink is my favorite, though, if Carter is out of the running. Maybe Carson Travis Fink, or Carson John Fink.

I'm never sure how to do the polls when there are both girl and boy names to choose from. Usually I put all the names in one poll and let people choose one boy name and one girl name---but this time let's try it a different way. I'm going to make TWO polls [polls closed; see below], one for if Baby Fink is a girl, and one for if Baby Fink is a boy. We'll see if that works better.



[Poll results:

Girl names (236 votes total):
Delilah: 39 votes, roughly 17%
Grace: 10 votes, roughly 4%
Claire: 24 votes, roughly 10%
Mary Claire: 18 votes, roughly 8%
Lila/Lilah: 71 votes, roughly 30%
Elena: 63 votes, roughly 27%
Lena: 11 votes, roughly 5%

Boy names (240 votes total):
Tate: 23 votes, roughly 10%
Liam: 55 votes, roughly 22%
Miles: 38 votes, roughly 16%
Carter: 33 votes, roughly 14%
Carson: 83 votes, roughly 35%
Turner: 8 votes, roughly 3%]



Name update 02-17-2009. Heather writes:
We have not had baby boy #3 yet but we have selected his name. My father in law passed away very unexpectedly on January 20th after complications due to a hospital stay for minor out patient surgery. He was only 62 and very healthy so it was a shock to us. My FIL loved Harley motorcycles, riding them and being outdoors. I am not a fan of the name Harley so we decided to go with the name Ryder as our own inside tribute to the great man "Paw Paw" was.

Baby #3 will be named Ryder Donald Fink. First name at tribute to the hobby Paw Paw loved and the middle name Paw Paw's first name. We love it as our personal tribute to him and now our baby will carry on a piece of the grandpa he will not be able to know.

Thank you so much for the name ideas and the polls. Carter had been our choice until we lost Paw Paw.

Thank you again!


Second name update 06-06-2009! Heather writes:
I wrote in a few months ago about our name issues. We had decided on Ryder Donald Fink but once our little guy was born (4/29/09) we knew he was a Matthew just like his dad. Matthew Donald joins big brother Grant Anthony and Brady Tann. We are so in love with our new little man. Thank you for your baby naming help. Just goes to show it can all change once you meet the little person :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Baby Girl Muriel

K writes:
Here is my situation: my husband and I are expecting our first child, a baby girl, this fall and we have always wanted to name our first daughter after my deceased grandmother, whose name was Muriel. Here is my problem: our taste in names runs to the highly unusual (not in the top 1000), and while Muriel is currently unusual, it still seems very old lady-ish to me, and I'm not sure if it is ready for a revival like so many other "grandma" names seem to be these days.

So my question is, do you know of any forms/nicknames of the name Muriel that are a bit more modern while still unusual? We are not overly concerned with it matching with our last name or any particular middle, so just whatever you can think of! To give you an idea of our taste in names, our favorite girl names (for future siblings) are Verity, Romilly, Bronte, and Zellie. To clarify, we do not want to use one of these as a first name with Muriel as a middle. It is important for us to use some form of Muriel as a first name...we're just hoping to find something that is more along the lines of the names above!

I think if I were you, I would go ahead and use Muriel as-is. Muriel, by being old-fashioned but unlike the currently-trendy old-lady names, will go along with the others without being as much of a risk for a sudden spike in popularity. It also seems to me like using your grandmother's actual name would be pleasing, and it also gives you something to say if people react to the name with surprise (I've noticed the line "It was my ____'s name" quells many an unwanted opinion.)

If you wanted to modify it to a more modern sound, I'd suggest Mariel or Meriel or Miriel (I'm thinking of Mariel and Meriel with a MARE sound like Mary or Meredith, and Miriel with a MEER sound like Miriam). It's a change of a single vowel, but it makes the name entirely more current.

Let's put a poll over to the right with the various options. [Poll closed; see below.]


[Poll results (244 votes total):
Muriel: 116 votes, roughly 48%
Mariel: 87 votes, roughly 36%
Meriel: 8 votes, roughly 3%
Miriel: 33 votes, roughly 14%]

Friday, November 21, 2008

Celebrity Baby Names: Bronx Mowgli

Ashlee Simpson and Pete Wetz named their baby boy Bronx Mowgli. Discuss.

Name Update!

Update to Baby Girl or Boy, Sibling to Renee! Gina writes: "thanks so much! a little boy, cameron paul was born on 11/13. it was so fun to see what people voted for! thanks!"

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Baby Boy ___ Patrick Carroll

Cara writes:
Okay...after TONS and tons of floundering back and forth between {what we think are cute} names, we need some serious help! We are due to have another sweet little man very soon and we have NO clue what name to choose. Our first son is named Landon. We LOVE his name...very strong & masculine. It goes perfectly perfect with our last name, "Carroll". With that said, we need something just as perfectly perfect for our next son. We want something that sounds good with Landon so when I'm introducing them people don't say, "Poor second kid...he sure got the raw end of the deal on his name." Ya know?!

We know for sure that his middle name will be Patrick...after my dad. SO, baby #2 can't have a name that starts with a "P" {I can barely say my first kid's name without faltering...I definitely don't need a tongue twister with this one!!} EVERYONE seems to have an opinion about baby #2's name. We have about 8 names picked out {and open for more suggestions} and our families aren't really liking any of them! I know we shouldn’t worry about that…after all, it’s OUR baby… but it’s definitely making us second guess our selections!

We’d like something that sounds different than Landon, but nothing too “out there”. We’re also not too big on “traditional” names. Something fun & cute, but not girly cute. My husband is all about the athletics, so having an “athletic” name would be better than something formal. {I know, completely random and irrelevant!!!} I’m also thinking that I don’t know if I want both boys to have names that end with the “on” sound. {I know, I know…super picky!!} We’ve also randomly talked about keeping his name “Irish”. Wow...did ya get all that?!?! SO...without further ado…here are our top choices!

1. Brody—Our favorite by far. We’ve had this one picked out since before I found out I was pregnant. I love, love, LOVE this name & think it would fit so perfectly perfect with our little family! However, our families don’t think it’s as “strong” as Landon, but I love the way “Landon & Brody” sound together!!
2. Reese --- My husband's pick. Don't get me wrong...LOVE it, but I’m afraid it’s more on the feminine side.
3. Hayden --- We like this one too, but I’m hearing it a lot for girls names these days!
4. Ayden --- Right…we’re not venturing too far from Hayden on this one, but we’ve always liked this name.
5. Miles ---I love this name! Not my husband’s favorite, but it made the list.
6. Gage --- Love this one too...definitely not the typical name, and if there's any name our families don't like as much as Brody, this one is it!!
7. Grayson or Hudson ---I put these together because we like them a lot, but the "on" endings might be too close to the ending in Landon.

Thanks for all the help!!!


I'm leafing through my copy of The Baby Name Wizard. It suggests these brother names for Landon: Dawson, Easton, Colby, Parker, Brennan. From that list I'm going to take Dawson: Dawson Patrick Carroll, Landon and Dawson. There will be differences of opinion on this, but to my ear the "son" ending of Dawson is different enough from the "don" ending of Landon---though the "ton" of Easton isn't.

I looked up some of the names on your list, to see if I could get more suggestions. Interestingly, the name Landon is listed under brother names for Gage. Another brother name for Gage is Grant, and I'm adding that one too: Grant Patrick Carroll, Landon and Grant.

I'll also add Gavin, listed as a brother name for Aidan: Gavin Patrick Carroll, Landon and Gavin.

Brother names for Miles included Simon, Malcolm, and Davis, all three of which I'm adding as possibilities. Simon Patrick Carroll, Landon and Simon. Malcolm Patrick Carroll, Landon and Malcolm. David Patrick Carroll, Landon and Davis.

Okay, and let's add one more name: Sawyer. Sawyer Patrick Carroll. Landon and Sawyer.

This gives us a mighty long list, but I think we can manage it. Let's put a poll over to the right. [Poll closed; see below.]


[Poll results (395 votes total):
Brody: 123 votes, roughly 31%
Reese: 9 votes, roughly 2%
Hayden: 3 votes, roughly 1%
Ayden: 7 votes, roughly 2%
Miles: 37 votes, roughly 9%
Gage: 17 votes, roughly 4%
Grayson: 9 votes, roughly 2%
Hudson: 8 votes, roughly 2%
Dawson: 17 votes, roughly 4%
Grant: 69 votes, roughly 17%
Gavin: 28 votes, roughly 7%
Simon: 6 votes, roughly 2%
Malcolm: 11 votes, roughly 3%
Davis: 9 votes, roughly 2%
Sayer: 42 votes, roughly 11%]

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Name Update!

Update to Baby Naming Issue: Felony Fever Vice. Jane writes:
Dear Swistle, thank you so much!

After gently suggesting some of the names you listed to my SIL she fell in love a pair of them, therefore putting the much celebrated kibosh on Felony Fever! (and yes, that REALLY WAS the name they had picked out for the daughter, no joke. 2 years ago my brother's best friend named his little girl Lethal Cashmere, nickname Cash. My Bro thought it was, quote, "genius" & I think he wanted to match his friend in the crazy/weird name category)

Anyway, SIL gave birth yesterday to a perfectly healthy, beautiful baby girl. Her name? Thanks to Swistle it's Verity Clarity Vice (Bro wouldn't give up the Vice part even though SIL finally put her foot down about the first two names)! While still not my cup of tea when it comes to baby names, it's a million trillion times better than Felony Fever!

So thank you Swistle, you saved my poor sweet niece from a real horror of a name!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Baby Name to Discuss: Kaler

Katie writes:
I just found a name I like. Kaler (or you could do Caler or Kalor or Calor). It is different but sounds enough like Taylor to not be totally out there. I was thinking of it as a boy name, but is it too girly? I wish I had heard this name when naming my boy!
It reminds me too of the name Kyler, a Tyler/Kyle combination. And of the name Cale.

I think Kaler is risky for boys because of being SO CLOSE to Kayla. (In fact, Kayler would be a cute Kayla variation.) The C spelling helps dull the connection, but I find I then accidentally pronounce Cal as in Calum or Calvin (so that the name rhymes with valor instead of with tailor).

Opinions? What do you think of Kaler/Caler/Kalor/Calor? Would you use it for a boy or for a girl or for either or for neither? How would you spell it? There's a poll over to the right. [Poll closed; see below.]


[Poll results (243 votes total):
Like it! I'd use it for a boy: 17 votes, roughly 7%
Like it! I'd use it for a girl: 6 votes, roughly 2%
Like it for someone else's baby: 19 votes, roughly 8%
Neutral / no opinion: 10 votes, roughly 4%
Mild dislike: 67 votes, roughly 28%
Strong dislike: 124 votes, roughly 51%]

Friday, November 14, 2008

Baby Name to Discuss: Analeigh

Lara writes:
I LOVE the name Analeigh (soft "a" like ah-na), but I realized the other day how close it is to...anally. I am terrified that if I name my daughter Analeigh that she'll be relentlessly teased throughout grade school and middle school. I can't think of another way to spell it that takes out the "anal" part of it that isn't obnoxiously adding extra letters.

Do you the the name is too close to the, ahem, naughty word? Can you think of a way around it?

I am afraid it was the very first thing that came to my mind when I saw the name---but then, this is an issue I'm on the lookout for.

I think adding a second N would help a little without being obnoxious, since Anna is spelled with two Ns. Annaleigh is already an improvement over Analeigh.

You could also divide it: Anna Leigh.

And I recently saw the name Andrea spelled Ondrea in order the get the preferred vowel pronunciation, so I suppose you could go with Onnaleigh although to me that kind of...ruins it.

What about this: Do you like the name Avaleigh, pronounced like your way of pronouncing Analeigh except with a V-sound instead of an N-sound? It completely removes the problem while leaving the essence of the name intact.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What to Do If You Can't Agree on a Baby Name

I have a post up over at Work It, Mom! about what to do if you can't agree on a baby name. I was limited to 250 words but you're not---so go leave your suggestions/experiences in the comment section!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Revisit: Baby ___ Earl Van Brimmer

The last post I did (Baby Boy ___ Earl Van Brimmer) is not sitting well with me. As Erin noticed in the comment section, the names I suggested were not ideal with the middle name Earl.

Here was my struggle: with the rhythm set by a one-syllable middle name and a three-syllable surname, my preferred number of syllables for the first name would be three or four syllables. Furthermore, with the middle name Earl, it seemed like it was better if the first name didn't end with an R or a vowel. But jeeks! Trying to find a 3- or 4-syllable boy name that didn't end in R, didn't end in a vowel, was a good fit with names such as Logan and Noah, and wasn't too common? PANIC.

So then I started making excuses: Rhythm preferences are so subjective. We don't usually say the entire name anyway. A 2-syllable first name sounds great with a 3-syllable last name. The two sample choices are 2-syllable. The middle name is a family name, and so probably the sentimental value trumps the negligible problem of the entire name not sounding perfect all together.

Excuses, excuses. I came up with a list of names that do indeed sound good with Van Brimmer. Isaac Van Brimmer is GREAT, isn't it? And I hoped no one would notice that Isaac Earl Van Brimmer is...less great. The rhythm is okay if not perfect, but the hard-C in Isaac blends poorly with the name Earl, giving a sound almost like "girl."

Owen Van Brimmer is another good choice. But "Owen Earl"? Not ideal, is it? Sounds almost like, "Oh! An earl!" Sigh.

These things bothered me, and so we're going to try again. Here are some 3- and 4-syllable boy names. A couple of them DO end in R. Some of them are probably too common. But I think they're all better names than the first list.

Alexander Earl Van Brimmer
Nicholas Earl Van Brimmer
Benjamin Earl Van Brimmer
Christopher Earl Van Brimmer
Anderson Earl Van Brimmer
Elliot Earl Van Brimmer
Gideon Earl Van Brimmer
Harrison Earl Van Brimmer
Jefferson Earl Van Brimmer
Sebastian Earl Van Brimmer
Sullivan Earl Van Brimmer
Jonathan Earl Van Brimmer

There. I feel better. Let's have a new poll over to the right---and I'll leave the original poll up as well, for interest's sake. [Poll closed; see below.]



[Poll results (207 votes total):
Alexander: 11 votes, roughly 5%
Nicholas: 30 votes, roughly 14%
Benjamin: 21 votes, roughly 10%
Christopher: 8 votes, roughly 4%
Anderson: 26 votes, roughly 13%
Elliot: 29 votes, roughly 14%
Gideon: 12 votes, roughly 6%
Harrison: 16 votes, roughly 8%
Jefferson: 5 votes, roughly 2%
Sebastian: 20 votes, roughly 10%
Sullivan: 15 votes, roughly 7%
Jonathan: 14 votes, roughly 7%]


Name update! Sarah writes:
I finally won out with the name choice of Logan. I only had to watch an entire marathon of Star Wars and agree that the husband could have the final say on Baby #2. Thanks for helping us out!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Baby Boy ___ Earl Van Brimmer

Sarah writes:
I'm writing because my husband and I are desperately trying to find a name for our baby boy, due in December. We're both teachers and this has infinitely complicated the naming process. Every name we've come up with reminds us of some student we've had or heard about.

We know that we want to use my father's middle name (Earl) as our baby's middle name.

Our last name is Van Brimmer, pronouned van (like the automobile) - BRIM (like on a hat)- er.

The names that I like are Logan and Noah. We also considered Brennan, but nixed that because of too many "B" sounds. I'm not quite sure exactly what my husband wants -- except to disagree with me...We do know that we want something that is unique. But, we don't want him to be made fun of, either. We would really appreciate your help! Thanks!

I think teaching must be just about the HARDEST profession for baby-naming! My son's teacher just had a baby and I wondered what on earth she would name it. (She chose a name that was in style in the '80s, before she started teaching.)

The name Logan is on its way up in popularity: it was the 17th most popular boy name given to babies in 2007. The name Noah, too, continues to rise: it was the 14th most popular boy name given to babies in 2007. (Source for both rankings: Social Security Administration.)

Let's see if we can find some more possibilities to choose from. I'll follow each one with its 2007 popularity ranking according to the Social Security Administration.

Isaac Van Brimmer (#41)
Owen Van Brimmer (#56)
Adrian Van Brimmer (#61)
Henry Van Brimmer (#91)
Marcus Van Brimmer (#118)
Jeremy Van Brimmer (#122)
Oliver Van Brimmer (#140)
Elias Van Brimmer (#173)
Collin Van Brimmer (#185)

Do any of those sound like names you might be interested in?

Let's have a poll to see what everyone else thinks. Vote for your favorite of the list, but also leave your suggestions in the comment section. [Poll closed; see below.]



[Poll results (249 votes total):
Logan: 23 votes, roughly 9%
Noah: 13 votes, roughly 5%
Isaac: 47 votes, roughly 19%
Owen: 23 votes, roughly 9%
Adrian: 18 votes, roughly 7%
Henry: 29 votes, roughly 12%
Marcus: 25 votes, roughly 10%
Jeremy: 12 votes, roughly 5%
Oliver: 17 votes, roughly 7%
Elias: 18 votes, roughly 7%
Collin: 24 votes, roughly 10%]


(Also see the revisit of this question, with new answers.)



Name update! Sarah writes:
I finally won out with the name choice of Logan. I only had to watch an entire marathon of Star Wars and agree that the husband could have the final say on Baby #2. Thanks for helping us out!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Baby Boy Eaton

Ryley writes:
My sister says I should email you. We are due with a baby boy on 12/13/08.
We are set on our girl names but boy names are a WHOLE nother story.. we can't think of anything.. okay, I lied, we can think of things but nothing jumps out at us as "Our babies name."

Important points. I have a unique name, Ryley. My husband is Aaron and our last name is Eaton. (so names that end with an N sound funny for the most part)
We like names that are unique, but not weird. (Doesnt everyone say that lately??) Something that is a fairly normal name but not used much...

Oh, It might be helpfull to know what we like for a girl. Our girl names of choice are:
Ellie (this is a must for my husband, but he will settle for this as a nickname)
Elliot (call her ellie)
Eliza
and my Favorite Alivia.

and now..Without further adu here is the list we have come up with : (disclaimer: Again, none of these jump out at us)
  1. Elijah - We would call him Eli. This is my dad's favorite. One of ours also, but we really want a little girl named Ellie one day. Eli and Ellie are too close in name.. for kids that aren't twins..
  2. Luke - good fall back name... but a little boring..
  3. Joel - also a little boring..
  4. Kyle - I don't really know why I like this name, but I kinda do. Again.. not love..
  5. River - When his sister in law was pregnant this was the name we were all pulling for. I LOVE this name.. but just don't know if I actually could..
  6. Joey - Boring.. but cute. Even before we knew what we were having his grandparents told us that they would really like a Joseph in the family. I was already thinking Joey at that point, but it made it a little more special.
  7. Aiden - ehhh. I like it... but its a little trendy. Plus my cousin has a little boy named Brayden.. and it just sounds to close..but it would be cute to name him Aaden so it is similar to my husband's name of Aaron.
  8. Miles - OUR FAVORITE! but no one else likes it.. :( Which I hate.. If this baby was born today, his name would be Miles. We are totally in love with it. It still will probably be one of the top contenders.. but it makes me really sad that no one in my family likes it... Is Myles too femine? It would make it more like my name (Ryley) and I like that.. but too girly???
  9. Milo - This got vetoed faster than Miles. But also one of our favorites. I just don't feel like its a very grown up name.
  10. Oliver - We like Oliver. Not love.. but strong like..
  11. Preston - Aaron has a really good friend named Preston. But he's a great guy..and we like this name too..
  12. Elliot - MY FAVORITE! This was my first favorite. (Before Miles) it was actually one of my top contenders for a girls name (then call her Ellie) But I really like it for a boy also. BUT.. if we use this now, we loose our chance to use Ellie later. Since we'll probably call him El.. or even Elli sometimes..
  13. Mason - I really like Mason. It's my sisters middle name. Which I really like. But sounds a little silly with Eaton.
  14. Dylan or Dilan - Like this name.. but we've never given it a lot of thought. Just threw it out there one day and we both liked it, so it made it to the list.
  15. Cooper - I just want to call him Coop! I like Cooper.. but we've never really seriously discussed it either..
  16. Carter - Same with Carter. Like it.. just never thought much about it.

What do you think?

I think that after we remove the names that would interfere with a future daughter named Ellie, your favorite name on the list is Miles. The only downside of it is that other family members don't like it---but they will come around. Miles Joseph Eaton (MJE) would be a terrific name.

Let's put a poll over to the right to see what everyone else thinks. [poll closed; see below]


[Poll results (254 votes total):
Elijah: 2 votes, roughly 1%
Luke: 7 votes, roughly 3%
Joel: 3 votes, roughly 1%
Kyle: 2 votes, roughly 1%
River: 7 votes, roughly 3%
Joey/Joseph: 10 votes, roughly 4%
Aiden/Aaden: 2 votes, roughly 1%
Miles/Myles: 182 votes, roughly 72%
Milo: 9 votes, roughly 4%
Oliver: 9 votes, roughly 4%
Preston: 2 votes, roughly 1%
Elliot: 3 votes, roughly 1%
Mason: 3 votes, roughly 1%
Dylan/Dilan: 2 votes, roughly 1%
Cooper: 5 votes, roughly 2%
Carter: 6 votes, roughly 2%]

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Baby Naming Issue: Okay to Reuse a Middle Name?

Simmone writes:
We are about to have our 3rd child and 2nd daughter. My husband and I have chosen Grace for the first name, but we are having a difficult time with the middle. We both like the feel of Grace Elizabeth, but this is where our question comes in. How do you feel about having 2 children with the same middle name? Is that ok? Or should we decide on something else to give the 2 girls different names? Do you have any other middle name suggestions?

Our other children are named:
Pearl Elizabeth
William (Liam) Luke

I think it's fine to repeat a middle name, but I think it's more FUN to find something different. And so let's see if we can find some other middle names to throw into the idea pool:

Grace Amelia
Grace Angelica
Grace Cordelia
Grace Felicity
Grace Lavinia
Grace Olivia
Grace Veronica
Grace Victoria
Grace Virginia

And let's take a poll, just to see the relatively popularity of these ideas. The poll is over to the right. [poll closed; see below]


[Poll results (256 votes total):
Elizabeth: 15 votes, roughly 6%
Amelia: 59 votes, roughly 23%
Angelica: 10 votes, roughly 4%
Cordelia: 18 votes, roughly 7%
Felicity: 7 votes, roughly 3%
Lavinia: 15 votes, roughly 6%
Olivia: 86 votes, roughly 33%
Veronica: 10 votes, roughly 4%
Victoria: 30 votes, roughly 12%
Virginia: 6 votes, roughly 2%]

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Baby Naming Issue: Felony Fever Vice

Jane writes:
Please help! My brother & his wife are expecting their first baby, a girl, in mid November and while I couldn't be happier for them or more excited to be an aunt again I...Well, I don't even know how to describe how I feel about the name they've settled on.

Felony Fever Vice. 3 bad things, all of which are not names. Why...How...and OH GOD WHY?

I really wish I could tell you it's all a joke, but no.

Any suggestions on a NICE way I can try to talk them out of this travesty? Any suggestions for names with a similar sound to Felony, but without the bad connotations? When I asked my SIL why Felony, she said she "just really likes the sound and flow". Please help my help them find something with the same "sound & flow", preferably something that wont scar the kid for life!

There are two questions here: (1) Is there a way to talk them out of it? (2) Are there any other names that have the sound and flow of Felony?

The answer to the first question is "Probably not." If two English-speaking people, presumably of sound minds, are considering the name Felony Fever Vice for their baby, we have to assume that they understand the meanings of those words and that they are nevertheless willing to go ahead with it. No matter how nicely or gently you bring it up, it's unlikely they're going to smack their foreheads and say, "OMG, we never THOUGHT of that! You're RIGHT! Those names DO sound kind of negative!" What would happen instead is that you'd get in trouble for criticizing their name choices, and they'd remember it forever.

But let's move on to the second question anyway: Are there any other names that have the sound and flow of Felony? The name that springs immediately to mind is Melanie, which has almost exactly the same sound and flow. Stephanie, Bethany, Natalie, and Tiffany are other examples of the same flow---but my guess is that they'd prefer something more unusual. Perhaps they would like Amity or Briarley or Clarity or Liberty or Verity.

Amity
Aveleigh
Avery
Bethany
Briarley
Cassidy
Cecily
Charity
Clarity
Ellery
Elodie
Harmony
Kennedy
Kimberly
Liberty
Mallory
Melanie
Melody
Natalie
Rosalie
Stephanie
Tiffany
Trinity
Verity



[Update! 11-17-2008 Jane writes:
Dear Swistle, thank you so much!

After gently suggesting some of the names you listed to my SIL she fell in love a pair of them, therefore putting the much celebrated kibosh on Felony Fever! (and yes, that REALLY WAS the name they had picked out for the daughter, no joke. 2 years ago my brother's best friend named his little girl Lethal Cashmere, nickname Cash. My Bro thought it was, quote, "genius" & I think he wanted to match his friend in the crazy/weird name category)

Anyway, SIL gave birth yesterday to a perfectly healthy, beautiful baby girl. Her name? Thanks to Swistle it's Verity Clarity Vice (Bro wouldn't give up the Vice part even though SIL finally put her foot down about the first two names)! While still not my cup of tea when it comes to baby names, it's a million trillion times better than Felony Fever!

So thank you Swistle, you saved my poor sweet niece from a real horror of a name!]