This blog has moved! Please join us over at!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Baby Girl Marasco

Marc writes:
Hi. We are expecting our first baby girl in July and we need some help with names. There are several names on our list that seem ok, but nothing is jumping out at us. When we named our little tan cockapoo puppy Karma, we knew it was perfect. Karma the cockapoo! But the baby names are much more difficult. My name is Marc Marasco and I am of Japanese and Italian descent. My wife's name is Rebecca.

We want a name that is not too trendy, not to hipster or elitist and that can have a shorter nickname. We like Sophia and Mia, but every girl in California is Sophia or Mia or Bella. Names I like include: Katina, Fiona, Zoey, Michela, and Chloe. Names my wife likes include: Myla and Kaia. We both like Seneca because we both have connections to Cornell / Ithaca and it is both a native american and greek name -- but it just doesn't sound exactly right. Help!

I think probably Zoey/Zoe, Michela/Mikayla, and Chloe are all more popular than what you're looking for; Myla and Kaia are much less common but have trendy sounds (various arrangements such as Kayla, Kyla, Kaylee, Lila, Lia, Maya, Mya, Mia, etc.) that make make them seem more common than they are. Katina and Fiona seem like good choices: not common, not hipster, not elitist. If you want something even more unusual, Ithaca would be a pretty name---the rhythm and end-sound of Jessica help keep it familiar and name-ish.

More possibilities: Anastasia, Annika, Bianca, Dalia, Phoebe, Sabrina, Samira, Sylvie.

Name update 09-20-2010! Marc writes:
I can't remember if I updated the Swistle site, but we went with the name Malia Aiko Marasco.  Thanks so much for the advice.


Linda said...

I can only offer this - I know a Seneca and all I can ever think of is Senokot: a very strong stool softener/laxative. But I'm a nurse, so maybe that's just me.

StephLove said...

Funny you should mention Seneca. I'd never heard it as a girl's name before until a friend of mine had a baby in March and they named her Seneca. It's growing on me. I'd consider it. It sounds like it would be meaningful for you.

I do love Mia and don't know too many here on the East Coast. Fiona, Zoe and Chloe are nice, too.

How about Aurelia, Claire, Dahlia, Margaret or Susannah?

Emily S. said...

My vote is for Fiona. It is absolutely beautiful and under-used.

Anonymous said...

I really like Mia as well, but I agree on the popularity issue. Have you considered Mira instead? (Like Mira Sorvino) or even Mena (like Mena Suvari).

I love, love, love Mira, and you could even do Mirabel/Mirabelle if you wanted to have a longer name and shorter nickname. Mira/Mirabel also sounds fantastic with your last name!

I also LOVE the suggestion of Aurelia above, with either Auri or Lia as a nickname.

Good luck finding "the one"!

Anonymous said...

I see that Swistle suggested Sabrina. I'm thinking Serena/Sarina would be another good suggestion. You could use either Rena/Rina or Seri/Sari as a nickname. Serena gets you a little further off the beaten path but still sounds fairly mainstream (e.g., tennis player Serena Williams).

Anonymous said...

I also thought of Serena; how about Nina, Mila, I love Lila, maybe Sienna. Rya? good luck!

Christine said...

My vote is for Fiona personally, but I love the name. If you like Seneca, maybe Siena? Sofia is popular in my neck of the woods, but I haven't heard many people naming their babies Sonia. (And Sonia is a classic, plus you can use the nn "Soni" or "Sunny".)

The Mrs. said...

Since Seneca is a place, what about somewhere else with the same soft sound? The Seychelles are a group of tropical isands off of Africa. 'Seychelle' has a comfortable sound (like Michelle), but it still seems exotic, warm, and breezy.
Easy nicknames would be 'Shelly' or 'Sadie'.
You have such an international ancestory, a travel name may be a nice homage to it.
All the best the three of you!

Jess said...

Instead of Seneca, how about ((Sakura))? It means cherry blossom in Japanese. It was popular in Japan when I was there. It's too bad that NY's state flower is the rose. It could have been a great tie in.

I agree with ANON above that ((Nina)) is a great name. Also easy to pronounce for your Japanese relatives.

I like ((Naomi)) too. Also could be easily written in Kanji characters.

I aso think ((Miriam)) is such a pretty name. You could use the the nickname ((Mimi)).

((Caroline)) is a city near Ithaca that seems more reasonable than ((Senaca)). Perhaps there's special meaning for you there.

Also Nabokov wrote the book ((Lolita)) at Cornell. It's a pretty name.

Good luck. All of your names are nice.

Hannah said...

Fiona is my favorite from your list! Other possibilities:


Any you like?

Tracy said...

I love Fiona from your list the best.

Freya (I love this name)

Carolyn said...

Cornelia nn Cori or Cor could be a tribute to Cornell.

Katina is unique and pretty. I also like Katerina.

But I'd say Seneca is my favorite. Very cute!

Frazzled Mom said...

On the one hand, I'm flattered so many people like my daughter's name (Fiona); on the other hand, I'm possessive of it. I know...I know... no name is truly original. The downside to being so name-obsessed is that NO NAME seems different to me, and I realize being unique can be overrated. So don't mind me...

For what its worth, in the UK Fiona is like Jennifer and may not be the next Jennifer in the US (no name is used that extensively anymore), but I can see it becoming the next Sophia, Olivia, Chloe, take your pick.

Seneca is neat. I love Greek names. If you want something Greek and more unusual, maybe you would like:

Xanthe (Zan-they or zan-thee, I prefer zan-thee)


Deniselle said...

How about Senya? It'd be a nice mix between Seneca and Sophia. It's used in Finland (spelled Senja) but seems very unusual in the US.

Sonya is also a nice alternative, perhaps not overly common.

Some M-l names:
Milana, Milena, Melina, Melinda, Melanie, Malina, Mallory, Melissa, Melody, Millat, Milla.
(or why not Millicent or Mildred if you want more old-fashioned?)

And some more M names without the L:
Mimi, Mimosa, Miriam, Mira, Minna, Magdalena

Devika said...

Your name choices are all very nice. Here are my ideas:
-Calla (like the lily)
-Ria (it's a popular name here in India)
-Celia (classic and underused)
-Noemie (great alternative to Naomi)
-Della ( I see Swistle suggested Delia and Della is pretty too)
-Sameena (so pretty but unusual...I also think it means "precious" in Persian or Arabic)
-Keya (Kay-ya)
For some reason I couldn't think of any nice M names to go with your last name. Anything ending with 'ca' or 'ka' would be cute with Rebecca as the mother's name. How about Danica?

Susan said...

How about Emerin? Besides being possibly the best girl name in the world, it's also not trendy, not hipster, and not elitist. It has in fact a nice, almost plain sound to it, while still having the currently popular letter blends. It doesn't at ALL cause that shuddering recoil reaction one feels when those same, over-used, teen-age-trendy names are trotted out. AND it has great nickname potential. Em. Emmie. And more. I think it's even BETTER (if this is possible) than the name Karma for a cockapoo (though I agree that name is perfect). Please tell me I put my finger on the perfect name for your darling girl!

Karen L said...

I also thought of Naomi because it fits most of your criteria except nickname and it is also a Japanese name and also because it matches some of the sounds that appear in your lists (EYE on your wife's list, EE on your list.) But the other EYE and EE names I think of just don't seem right, e.g., Aileen, Irene, Kylie, Rylie. maybe Aileen. Iona or Ione, perhaps?

Daphne has a lot of the same sounds as Fiona.

Can't wait to hear what you choose.

Patricia said...

I love the name you chose: Malia is a lovely name and very special as the name of a presidential daughter and adding a Japanese middle name is perfect for your baby girl. Congratulations on the birth of
Malia Aiko!