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Friday, September 3, 2010

Baby Girl T., Sister to Quinlan, Drew, and Margot

Kristen writes:
Finalist names:
Gwen (our favorite)
Audrey (also a fave, but it's my mom's name - sort of feel weird about that)

Other kids:
Quinlan Elise, Drew (boy), Margot Laine

One syllable and starts with a T, so first name shouldn't start with a T. I don't love names ending with a t either (other than the silent "t" in Margot). We liked Bridget but rejected it for that reason.

I lean towards older, traditional names that aren't as popular - like Arwen, Blythe, etc. -- all of which my husband hates. He likes stripper names. Heh. But seriously. They sound like strippers. We like Daria as an alternative for Margot but I wanted everyone to have their own letter, so I'm leaving that out as an option right now.
I love the name Gwen and was thinking Audrey Gwen and just calling her Gwen but I'm not sold on naming someone something as a middle name and then using it as a first name. Like, why not just make it her first name.

And I don't really love Gwen Audrey.

I'd really just like a cool middle name for Gwen. Our kids are not named for anyone in the family, so it doesn't need to be something sentimental. We've been toying with Alexandra and Elizabeth - but I've got Elise already and I'm sort of "meh" about having another derivative of Elise.


I'm with you: I'd rather not call a child by his or her middle name unless I have some super-compelling reason to do it, such as a naming tradition where it's necessary to avoid mix-ups.

So let's look for a good middle name for Gwen. I THINK Quinlan Elise and Gwen Elizabeth are too similar. The "Quin" of Quinlan is already so close to the sounds of Gwen, it seems like adding a similar middle name is too much similarity.

I might look first for names starting with D, M, and Q, since you don't want to use any of those as first names for this or future babies.

Gwen Daria
Gwen Madigan
Gwen Magnolia
Gwen Mallory
Gwen Marissa
Gwen Matilda
Gwen Melina
Gwen Meredith
Gwen Millicent

I find that with the one-syllable first name and one-syllable surname I like the longer middle names: Magnolia is my favorite from this list, and I like the way it has the same rhythm as the name Elizabeth. Others like that:

Gwen Amelia
Gwen Cecelia
Gwen Cordelia
Gwen Felicity
Gwen Livinia
Gwen Olivia
Gwen Veronica
Gwen Victoria

Also Gwen Penelope, but something about that sounds amusing to me.

But before I act as if Gwen is The Choice, I think Audrey is a wonderful name, and I like the two syllables with your one-syllable surname, and I like how it's not similar to any of the other kids' names: Quinlan, Drew, Margot, and Audrey is a very nice assortment. One of my kids is named for my dad and it hasn't been weird---but then, I also didn't mind the idea that it might make my pinehole father-in-law wonder why we didn't use HIS name. Some middle names for Audrey:

Audrey Carissa
Audrey Corinne
Audrey Gwenyth
Audrey Helene
Audrey Isla
Audrey Jean
Audrey Jocasta
Audrey Joella
Audrey Laurel
Audrey Penelope
Audrey Piper

Do the rest of you want to vote? Not with a poll this time, but just say which of the two names is your favorite, and then list some middle names?


Miguelina said...

Gwendolyn Alice - Gwen Alice?

CatrinkaS said...

What do you think of Aubrey? A nod to mom, but not exact name. Aubrey Gwen. Though, if you have heard "Audrey" your whole life your ear might hear it as mispronounced...

Amelia is a beautiful first name. I also know a young Penelope (from... Norway, maybe?) that goes by "Pippa" which I love and suits her beautifully (a very sharp 10 YO)

Aubrey Gwen
Gwendolyn Aubrey
Penelope Gwen

I prefer a multi-syllable first name and single middle, or vice versa - but that's just my opinion.
I also agree that "Gwen" and "Quin" are rhymey-sounding, and you can't always control nicknames.

Erin said...

I really like Gwen Felicity but I agree with Swistle... Gwen and Quinlan are pretty similar so I would lean more towards Audrey, which I LOVE. If you love Gwen, I would go with Audrey Gwen. Good luck!

Christine said...

Oh I vote Audrey! I think it sounds so nice with the rest of the sibs and even though I like Gwen a lot, after Swistle mentioned it, it is very close in sound to the Quin in Quinlan. (Or do you always call her Quinlan?)

In any case: Audrey. Audrey Gwen T--.

beyond said...

I really like Gwen, but to me it would be too similar to Quin, the very likely nn for Quinlan.
A few possible mn for Audrey (or Gwen):
Good luck

Elz said...

I like Gwen. But, something about the Audrey Helene really resonated with me. I think it is a lovely name at 2, 12, 22, 42. I also think it sounds "successfull" the same way "Shellee" Name games are fun!

Beana said...

For some reason I see a Gwen joining your family, not an Audrey-although I do like that name too. My first two daughters have similar sounding syllables in their names and I don't think it's the end of the world. Also, I apparently have a thing with "L" because all 3 of my daughters have that letter in their names.

Anyhow, I think Gwen Amelia is a beautiful name!

Guinevere said...

I think if Quinlan ever gets "Quin" as a nickname, then that would be way too close to Gwen with my pronunciation. I know a Gwen and I misheard her name as "Quinn" the first time her mother said it. I think to me that's a far bigger issue than sharing an initial. Even if Quinlan is only Quinlan now, and never Quin(n), I wouldn't do it because you don't know what she'll end up nicknaming herself when she gets older.

I do like Audrey for you - I think it bridges any style gap between Quinlan and Margot. If the exact same name as family member is problematic, I like the previous poster's suggestion of Aubrey... which also makes it a bit less similar to Drew. I think it works well with just about any middle name, but if you do like Gwen I'd pop it in the middle, perhaps as Audrey Gwendolyn or Audrey Guinevere.

Life of a Doctor's Wife said...

I love Audrey, and loved Catrinka's suggestion to consider Aubrey as an alternative.

What about other similar-but-different alternatives like Audra or Audrene? (There's always Audrina, as well, but that makes me think of The Hills, which may or may not be a negative association.)

I too love Helene as a middle name for Audrey (or one of the Audrey-esque alternatives).

But both Audrey and Gwen are lovely options!

Amelia Sprout said...

Amelia, totally. It won't even be weird since as you know that isn't really my name. ;)
I also like Audrey.

My cousin Lisa's mom Margaret (Maggie) told her she would kill her if she ever named a cat or a kid after her, so she did both. Maggie cat lived to be ancient, and Maggie the now 15 yearold is a great kid. Use the name if you like it.

suziejd said...

I think that Audrey Helene sounds very pretty.

Suzanne said...

Yah, Kristen wrote in! I'm glad she took the internet's advice, and that your advice is excellent as usual.

My favorite is Audrey Corinne - Corinne is my middle name and it's an excellent middle name. I also like Audrey Louise and Audrey Jean.

lauren said...

perhaps 'audra' where you would put 'audrey'?
just a thought. good luck! :)

Dawn said...

Audrey Corinne is my fave. Gwen and Quinlan are too close for my taste and Audrey is...well, lovely and goes nicely with your other girl names, I think. Gwen is not as pretty as Quinlan or Margot, I think.

And of the mn suggestions for Audrey, Corinne just flows the best.

Good luck! I'm so jealous you get to name, not just one girl, but three!

agirlandaboy said...

I was 100% on board with Gwen, but then I realized the Quin/Gwen similarity, and now I'm nervous for you. Do you ever call Quinlan "Quin"?

I think Lauren's suggestion of Audra is LOVELY.

p.s. The word verification thing just asked me to type "sperming" to prove I'm a real person. :)

Erica @ on the move said...

I think our naming tastes are waaaay too alike. My first daughter's middle name is Laine, my second daughter's first name is Margaret (though we call her Meg), and my third daughter is Blythe. If we'd had a boy, we were considering Andrew.

So you said your husband doesn't like it, but I put in a vote for Blythe.

That being said, I'd go for Audrey. Quin and Gwen sound awfully similar, though they're both pretty names. I like Audrey Laurel or Audrey Helene. (BTW Audrey was also a name we'd considered, though we were thinking Audrey Eliza)

Fairly Odd Mother said...

I like Audrey a lot, and I do think Gwen and Quin are a lot alike. Just don't name her a middle name that starts with N or she'll be ANT.

I like Audrey Jean but I like Audrey Jane better. I have a huge soft spot for Jane and can't believe it didn't factor into either of my girls' names. Jane Says and Sweet Jane are two of my favorite songs.

Fairly Odd Mother said...

One other thing: My oldest is named after BOTH grandmothers and it's not weird at all, nor is it confusing. She loves having a name that she shares with her grandmothers and they, of course, ADORE having a child named for them. . .of course, will you have to give her your MIL's name as her middle? ; ) j/k

Melissa C said...

I love the idea of Audra instead of Audrey. Still a nod to your mom, if that's what you're going for, without being the exact same name. Audra Gwen?

The Mrs. said...

If you combine 'Audrey' and 'Daria', you have the nice option of 'Aria'.

You've already got the short 'i' sound, the 'oo' sound, and the long 'o' sound in your kids' names. What about picking a different vowel for this one, so when you yell from downstairs, they know just who you're calling?

For example:
'ay' in Reagan
'ee' in Brie
'a' in Adeline
'eh' in Estelle or Gwen (LOVE that name)

Best wishes to all of your family!

mayberry said...

OK, not to be self-serving, but I really do like Gwen Catherine. Or Gwen Charlotte (my MIL's name that we never got to use). Or Cecilia or Veronica from Swistle's list. GL!

KCMDinSC said...

Audrey Helene or perhaps

Audrey Isla

Just wanted to throw in my two cents.
--Long time reader

StephLove said...

I saw someone suggested Gwendolyn and I wanted to second it. It has a nicer rhythm with Audrey and Elizabeth is lovely with it, too. I actually know an 8 y/o Gwendolyn Elizabeth and I've always liked her name. She goes by Gwen and it suits her perfectly. Plus, she's the only child I know by that name.

Tracy H. said...

To address Kristen's first issue of I just want a cool middle name to go with Gwen, here are my suggestions:
Gwen Adele
Gwen Harper
Gwen Camille
Gwen Sabine
Gwen Vivienne
Gwen Beatrix
Gwen Elodie
Gwen Juniper
Gwen Thalia
But, did all of these comments of Gwen and Quin being to close ruin Gwen for you? I like some of these middle name suggestions as first names for you. Particularly Adele & Beatrix.

Now to address Audrey being your mother's name. You are either a "namer after" or you aren't. I am not a "namer after" but many people are. I think only you can decide if you are comfortable with that or not. It's important to you that each kid has their own initial, will sharing a name with your mother make it any less hers? You haven't used family names for the others, do you want to start that now? That's for you to decide. I do like the suggestion of using Audra as an alternative.
Just for the heck of it I'll throw out some other suggestions. I tried picking names that I thought were similar to Gwen & Audrey and sounds good with you other childrens names:
Gillian (hard g)
Lena (a little stripperish, your hubby might like, LOL)
Oh, maybe don't give up on Blythe. Sometimes husbands come around! Maybe Blythe with a stripperish middle name? Haha. I'm only half kidding.
Okay, think I've taken up enough space. Good Luck choosing. Can't wait to hear what you pick!

Felicia said...

I clicked through to suggest the name Aubrey, although I see lots of others beat me to it.

Of the choices, I like Gwen Victoria or Audrey Corinne, but I do also like the comment suggestion of Gwen Harper.

If you ever call Quinlan just Quin then I do see the issue with Gwen being too match-y, but if you only ever call her Quinlan, then I think it's a non-issue.

Anonymous said...

How about-
Hannah Gwen
Emerson Gwen
Gwen Camille
Camille Gwen
Audrey Camille
Audrey Laine
Claire Audrey
Riley Gwen
Kind of off track but names I liked if I had another baby :) Good Luck! We had to see our second before we decided on a name. For some reason after we met her it was easier to name her!

Melissa H said...

Gwen Magnolia.

Oh, just to mix things up, I know a little girl who is Gywnne (or some such spelling--i'm not actually sure--but it's pronounced a bit different than Gwen, more emphasis on the Gw at the beginning and less on the en at the end.) Maybe that would be slightly less rhymey with Quin and would be a bit of a more modern/interesting take on Gwen like Margot is on Margo.

bettyg said...

After reading the comments, I agree that Qwen & Quin are very similar. I also like that if you chose Audrey all your girls have the common 2 syllable names while your son is one...So my vote is Audrey Corinne - I'm partial to Corinne as it's a family name in my family.

Melissa Beth said...

My boss' name is Gwendolyn, and her entire family grew up calling her Wendy. I am quite sure you would not let that happen if you didn't want it to... but I thought it was interesting.

That said, I like Gwennyth Adele.

Patricia said...

Gwen Sophia
Gwen Victoria

Patricia said...

PS I read through your letter rather quickly and hadn't looked at the other responses when I voted for Gwen. Then I realized that Quin and Gwen probably sound too similar for sisters' names: even if Quinlan is called by the complete name most of the time, her friends most likely will call her "Quin", as will family members, some of the time.

So I'm changing my vote to Audrey of the two names you're considering. But perhaps there's another name that would work even better for your third daughter. Lots of good suggestions above.

eatmisery said...

What about Genevieve?

Anonymous said...

How about Gwen Maru? Or...

Gwen Madelaine
Gwen Eloise
Gwen Caroline
Gwen Beatrice
Gwen Angeline
Gwen Clarice

Have nothing for Audrey.

Anonymous said...

My best friend since preschool is Gwendolyn Paige, and goes by Gwen.

K said...

For new options...

For already mentioned...
Gwen Sophia
Gwenyth Sophia (I'd give her the option if it were me...just my 2 cents)

Audrey Mae

I'm sure you'll arrive at a lovely choice!

beanski said...

We named our daughter after my mom and my MIL FLIPPED OUT about it. While I love her name (Renee) and I LOVED honoring my mom I don't know that I would do it again just to avoid the three year fall out I had to endure because of it. Sort of depends on what type of MIL you have though.

For the record, I don't think Gwen and Quinlan are too similar to use at all...and I really like Gwen. Gwen Mallory if I had to choose.

Karen L said...