It is so hard to find a boy's name! I'm due with a baby boy in mid August. We already have a girl, Rose Helen (Lastname). The last name sounds like "Bemelmans", which is the last name of the author of the Madeline books. Except my baby's last name will have an 'rk' where the first 'm' is, so we're not working with as many 'm' sounds. The middle name will be Scott (that's my last name). We are really stuck for a first name!
I need a name that is common enough to be pronounced right the first time by any English speaker. A name that has an obvious nickname. A name that's not Biblical.
If Rose was a boy, we would have named her William Scott 'Bemelmans'. That's where we are right now. Probably going with William. I'm just not wild about it. It's a family name on my husband's side (his middle name, and his Dad's name translated from Dutch). Last year, my husband's sister had a baby with the middle name William, and I'm a bit cagey on having two tribute babies to the same person (my husband's Dad). Plus, I've just never really loved that name. I really like the idea of each of our children having a name of their own, then one of my names (Helen is my middle name, and my mum's name), and then their Dad's last name.
Names that we've seriously considered and ruled out are:
Alexander (this would be my choice if a friend hadn't just had an Alex)
If we were having another girl, we would have debated:
(Violet is a family name on my side, it's my grandmother and great-grandmother's name)
Help, please! I know that if we go with William, it will grow on me. I just felt that bolt of lightning when we chose Rosie's name, and it suits her perfectly. I want that again!
I, too, get that feeling that once is probably enough for each ancestor to be honored. I think it's FINE if more than one family member wants to use the name (it isn't at ALL that I think they SHOULDN'T), but if you're looking for something different I see what you mean, and my guess is that all the other ancestors agree with us also.
One of my favorite "names that are like William but NOT William" is Wilson. It's easy to pronounce, and it still gets the nickname Will. Wilson Scott Bemelmans.
I feel like I've mentioned this name pretty often recently, but whenever I see Henry and Oliver and Wesley on someone's list I suggest Simon. The names feel similar to me. Simon Scott Bemelmans. And I love the names Rose and Simon together. But I'm not sure Sy meets your request for an obvious nickname.
Maybe Calvin? Calvin Scott Bemelmans, nickname Cal; Rose and Calvin.
Names Alexander makes me think of:
But most of those are biblical. ...In fact, ALL? Are they ALL biblical?
Edward might get too entangled with the Twilight thing, but maybe Edmund (Ed/Ted)?
Joseph (Joe) seems like it would be particularly nice with Rose---or maybe the matching long-O sounds are TOO good together? Oh shoot! Biblical!
I like Warren and think it's underused. Warren Scott Bemelmans.
Spencer? Easy to pronounce, easy nickname, non-biblical. Spencer Scott Bemelmans. Or maybe the repeating "er" sound with your actual surname is too much "er".
I keep thinking of more names that are easy to pronounce and have obvious nicknames, but then they're biblical: Daniel, Philip, Andrew, Samuel. And then I think of non-biblical names, but they don't have an obvious nickname: Elliot, Emmett, Everett, Quinn, Ruben.
This is hard! Help!
Name update 08-17-2010! Philippa writes:
Our baby boy was born 8/10, and we decided in the end to name him William Scott 'Bemelmans'. After about seven months of searching for another name, nothing else felt right, and in fact felt like we would have been using something else just for the sake of it. We call our baby Will, and he is adorable. His name goes very well with his sister Rose: Will and Rosie. Both bright, cheerful, gently old-fashioned names. I don't care that it's popular- number one in my home country of Australia and number five in the US, or that both he and his cousin have names in honor of their grandfather. It suits him perfectly.
Thank you for your help!