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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Baby Naming Issue: Choosing a Middle Name for a Toddler

R. writes:
I've been reading your blog for months now and just got up the courage to e-mail you about our daughter's name. We don't so much have a baby naming problem as a toddler naming problem at the moment (she is currently 13 months). My husband and I couldn't agree on a baby name before she was born, and it took us almost 48 hours (and the extreme kindness of the hospital discharge nurse in 'misplacing' our paperwork for a few hours) to come up with her first name: Talia (like TALL-yah). Her last name is a very common Chinese last name, think something like Lee.

So we're looking for a good middle name for: Talia ____ Lee

We'd like to avoid any name which is really popular at the moment, and anything which ends in a vowel.

Names we have considered and discarded: Adele, Miriam, Kestrell.

We'd love your help! Thanks.

I found it useful when naming my children to look at the family tree. It's a handy way to narrow down the field of possibilities when you don't have a strong opinion about a middle name. Also, it's been such a pleasing thing to have those family names used again: I find I think of it often, and gladly. Of course I don't have access to your family tree, but are there any siblings or parents or grandparents you'd like to honor? Any family surnames---perhaps maiden names that have been lost? Anyone, er, DIE recently?

I know you said you don't want any popular names, but another good use for the middle name slot is any name that you really liked but was too popular/trendy for you to want to use it for a first name.

Would your own first name make a good middle name? It's common for children to have a middle name after their fathers, less common for it to be after their mothers.

Do the two of you have an author you both love, or a place you both love? Sometimes those can make nice middle names.

Some other possibilities:

Talia Arabelle Lee
Talia Avril Lee
Talia Beatrix Lee
Talia Emerin Lee
Talia Gretchen Lee
Talia Haven Lee
Talia Irene Lee
Talia Isadore Lee
Talia Jassamine Lee
Talia Juniper Lee
Talia Maribel Lee
Talia Olive Lee
Talia Patience Lee
Talia Rosabel Lee
Talia Tamsin Lee


mayberry said...

Oh, Beatrix! That is outstanding!

beyond said...

From Swistle's list I really like Talia Irene.
some other possibilities:
Talia Camille
Talia Celeste
Talia Eloise
Talia Elisabeth
Talia Elise
Talia Estelle
Talia Mariel
Talia Nadine
I love some of these! Those ending in L might not work if your last name starts with L, but maybe it doesn't...
Good Luck!

Erin said...

It does start with L. Its Lee (see entire post)

I like Talia Juniper Lee a lot, but I second swistle's suggestion of using a family tree name.

may said...

My favorites are Gretchen, which makes it kind of funky, or Juniper, which makes it exotic. What about Maren/Marin? I find that name to be surprisingly pleasing, even though it's pretty unusual.

Good luck!

Swistle said...

It's probably not Lee: the question says "Her last name is a very common Chinese last name, think something like Lee."

Steph the WonderWorrier said...

I too love the suggestion of choosing a family member's name. In my family, all of our middle names are family names. To me, it makes the middle name have a purpose.

StephLove said...

I know a little girl named Talia. Her middle name is Yvette. Here are some more ideas (a lot of these end with silent e, technically a vowel, but not a vowel sound):

Talia Annabelle
Talia Claire
Talia Diane
Talia Evelyn
Talia Gabrielle
Talia Jane
Talia Margaret
Talia Michelle
Talia Rhiannon
Talia Simone
Talia Zanthe

Melody said...

I have what may seem like a crazy suggestion--what about letting Talia choose her own middle name when she's older?

My parents did not give me a middle name when I was born, because they were going through a hippie phase at the time, and they thought middle names were a little too "establishment." When I was around 7, I decided that I wanted my middle name to be Katherine, and it's been Katherine ever since. I loved having ownership over my name.

My sister, on the other hand, has never really felt the need for a middle name, and has gone along happily without one.

Stephanie said...

I love Talia Beatrix!

Barb @ getupandplay said...

I love Melody's suggestion of letting her choose her own middle name, maybe as a right of passage? When she's 8 or 10 or some other age?