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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Baby Boy, Brother to Naomi

Naomi's mom writes:
I'm hoping you might be able to help us out before the arrival of our son (due date: April 5).

Our daughter is named Naomi, a name we picked because it sounded equally fit for a cute little girl and a wise old woman. Also, we are Jewish, and we liked the way it spoke to our heritage without being obviously/exclusively Jewish. Now we are pregnant with a boy, and we're thinking of naming him Leo, which is another one of those names that could either belong on a cute little kid or a distinguished grandparent. My husband likes the way "Naomi & Leo" sound together, but I'm having doubts. First of all, even though I love our heritage and would like to represent it, the combination somehow feels TOO Jewish. Second of all, somehow when I hear them both together I just think of an elderly couple. Is this just an idiosyncrasy of mine, or will other people likely get this impression too? Other names we're considering are Theodore (but we'd call him Ted / Teddy), Dylan, and Sebastian. On it's own, I'm most drawn to Leo (love it, love it, love it), but as a sibling set with Naomi, I'm most drawn to Teddy or Dylan. What do you think?

(By the way, our son's middle name will most likely be James. Our daughter is Naomi Leigh.)

Thank you so much!

I LOVE the combination of Naomi and Leo. LOVE IT. It's my favorite of all of them. To me it's like "Emma and Max": a sibling set that sounds perfectly modern in an appealingly vintage way. Theodore and Sebastian are tied as my second choice. Dylan is by far my least favorite with Naomi: I think of Dylan as purely modern (no vintage feel) and a surname name, while Naomi is ancient and traditional.

16 comments:

Barb @ getupandplay said...

I like Leo the best, too!

Melissa said...

Oh yes...Leo is my favorite too. I love the sibling set-just perfect!

Anonymous said...

I think it's great too!
How would you feel about Naomi and Theo?

StephLove said...

I know Leo is considered a stand-alone name, but to me it has a nicknamy feel, so I'd like it better as a nn for Leonard or Leonardo. (I feel the same way about Max incidentally.) But chances are you don't feel that way, so it might not be a relevant consideration.

I do like the rest of the names (all three) and Theodore could give you the nn Theo, as someone already mentioned. It sounds a lot like Leo. I think that's my top choice. Sebastian would be second for me.

Have you considered Jacob? It hardly seems to need a recommendation since it's so popular but I think it might fit that Jewish but not exclusively so feel you like in Naomi. There are a lot of other names that fit that bill, too. Noah, for instance, if you don't mind the repeating first initial. Joshua's a favorite of mine, too.

Patricia said...

If there were a poll, I'd vote for Theodore James nn Teddy. I LOVE Teddy, especially for a young boy, and with the more grown-up-sounding option of Ted. And I think Naomi and Teddy sound darling together.

But I find Naomi and Leo very appealing too and don't hear that combination as "too Jewish" or the names of an elderly couple. Naomi and Leo sound very "today" to me, in a vintage sort of way. Both names are moderately popular, Naomi currently ranking at 107, Leo at 209, with Leonardo -- probably most are actually called "Leo" -- at 164. Naomi Leigh and Leo James -- Naomi and Leo -- sound like a 'winning' combination to me.

Or, as suggested above, Theodore "Theo" might be the best choice of all, eliminating your concerns about Naomi and Leo as a sibling set and giving your son the very strong-sounding name Theodore with Theo as his nn.

I hope you'll let us know what you decide!

Carolyn said...

I think of Leo as being Italian, but I love it with Naomi. I love the repeating long "o" sound in the names.

beyond said...

I love Leo and Naomi! (No elderly couple association here.) You love it, go with it!

Christine said...

I like Naomi and Leo! I also like your other options, especially Theodore (Theo, Ted, or Teddy). But I think Leo is my favorite.


Best wishes!

The Mrs. said...

Naomi and Leo sound marvelous!!

You have a knack with names. Both seem fashionable without being trendy.

Leo feels like a stand-alone name to me. If you want a longer name, Leonard is a classic option... but my vote goes straight to Leo on its own.

Best wishes to your growing family!

Adey said...

Leo was my favourite as well!

And I admit I didn't associate it with a Jewish feeling even after you mentioned it!

So yes, if you love Leo then use it! Sounds great :)

Anonymous said...

LOVE the combo of Leo and Naomi!!! Was also going to suggest Leonard as a full name.

Anonymous said...

I know a sibset of Naomi and Leo (they're both adults now). Seems to be a good set.

Lynnette said...

Love the set of Naomi and Leo. And my 80-year-old grandpa is named Leo, not as a nickname, so I don't see it as too short or diminutive.

I have a friend with a daughter named Naomi and she just named her newborn son Owen. They LOOK different in style to me, but the names said together have a pleasing symmetry.

Susan said...

I didn't know Leo was a Jewish name. I think it sounds wonderful with Naomi, and it's by far my favorite on your list. Then again, it would be my favorite of almost any list! I think it's a great name.

Anonymous said...

Everyone -

Thank you SO much for your comments!! In the few weeks since we sent our question to Swistle, we've been leaning more and more toward Leo, and now the encouragement from all of you has confirmed it for us. It was a relief to hear that nobody had quite the same old-people association I did, and we trust the collective wisdom of this community, since so many of the people who read this blog have great taste in names. Thank you all so much for weighing in!

-Mom of Naomi and soon-to-be Leo

Patricia said...

I'm glad we helped you decide to go with the name you wanted most of all. Naomi and Leo sound great together (I just noticed the strong, repeating O) -- classic names, both somewhat popular right now, and yet a surprising combination. Your naming skills are excellent!