I am pregnant with our fourth little one, due on February 28, and we won't be finding out the sex. We have three girls so far: Philippa Violet (called Pippa more or less exclusively since birth), Romilly Alice (called Ro around the house), and Beatrix Joanna (called both Bea and Trix). If this one is a girl, we are more or less set on Juniper, called June or Junie for short. Our last name is Young, which is pretty easy to work with, but you have to watch the initials (Graham Angus Young might be a bit of a burden!)
If it's a boy, we have issues. My husband is English with a Scottish mother, and we lived in Scotland for a few years, so we definitely want to stick with names that are distinctly British, and maybe less common here in America although that's not a must.
I have had a long standing love for the name Gus, and the name Angus with nickname Gus has been a frontrunner for the last two girls, had they been boys. I love it, but it would definitely be a concession for my husband. Lately, even I'm not loving how Scottish it is compared to our girls' very English names. We've considered every other possible name that can be shortened to Gus, and Angus is really the only one we both like.
My husband's long-time favorite boys' name is Barnaby, and I'm loving it more and more with the nickname Barnes. BUT we've made a conscious effort so far to avoid duplicating initials and now that we have a Beatrix... well, it's no longer ideal. We might be willing to bend the rule for this one, but we'd rather find something that's a perfect fit if it's out there.
Recently we've been talking a lot about Simon. I love it, he just likes it, but I think it could work. It's a lot more common than our girls' names, but maybe that's better for a boy?
Other names we've talked about (and their issues), just to give you a feel for our taste: Thaddeus (but we don't love any of its nicknames), Graham (sounds a little too plain to his Bristish ear), Oliver and Sebastian (both getting too popular for our liking).
We'll use a family middle name, probably one of these: Merit, Hopkins, or Murray; but there are others if none of those fit with the first name we choose.
Can you tell we've thought about this *way* too much? I think having three girls has just made us insecure in our ability to choose a boys' name, and maybe all the ones we used to love have gone a little stale from years of disuse :) Anyway, I would welcome any thoughts on these names or additions to the list.
Just as with Friday's post, I have to beg for reader assistance: Is there a Brit in the house?
I'll tell you how I went about finding out the scraps I DO know, but this is for general knowledge since I'm not sure it's going to be helpful in this situation.
- FIRST, I picked up my copy of The Baby Name Wizard and looked at it bleakly: it lists names that "sound English to American ears," which is great for me because that's what I like. That's no help, though, for people like your husband who are from ACTUAL England. Thus my bleak expression.
- Suddenly inspired, I flipped to the BACK of the book and looked at the Resource List. I found this URL for England/Wales: http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=184.
- I clicked on "Last five years top 100 boys names," but that's all Top 100, of course, and you're looking for something a little less common.
- I looked bleakly at my copy of The Baby Name Wizard again.
- I rallied. I like Top 100 and English-sounding; maybe you will too when I get done pressuring you.
So here is a list of names I think are good possibilities, chosen from the Top 100 U.K. names and/or The Baby Name Wizard's list of English names. None of them are even in the Top 1000 in the U.S., and they sound appealingly British to my U.S. ears, and none of them repeat initials with the other children's names.
Let's try each name with the sibling names:
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Alfie
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Alistair
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Archie
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Callum
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Corin
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Edmund
Philippa, Romilly, Beatrix, and Harvey
One of my two favorites from the list is Edmund. I think it's solid and boyish, and it has a good nickname. I like it with any of your middle name options, but especially with Merit: Edmund Merit Young (EMY).
I'm also drawn to Alistair. Alistair Young is fantastic, and Alistair has the same number of syllables and the same short-i sound as all the girl names. I like Alistair with Merit, too, but then the initials spell AMY. So I think I'd choose Hopkins: Alistair Hopkins Young (AHY). Love. it.
Time for the poll. I'll put your finalists in with mine, and put the whole poll over to the right. [Poll closed; see below.]
Poll results (256 votes total):
Angus (Gus): 18 votes, roughly 7%
Barnaby (Barnes): 24 votes, roughly 9%
Simon: 37 votes, roughly 14%
Alfie: 3 votes, roughly 1%
Alistair: 69 votes, roughly 27%
Archie: 9 votes, roughly 4%
Callum: 51 votes, roughly 20%
Corin: 6 votes, roughly 2%
Edmund: 34 votes, roughly 13%
Harvey: 5 votes, roughly 2%
Name update! Jodi writes:
Thanks so much to you and your readers for all your help with our boys' name situation. In the end, we didn't need it! We welcomed our 4th *daughter*, Juniper Lucy Young, early Wednesday morning, and I guess we will never know what she would have been called had she been a boy :)