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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Baby Girl or Boy S. (Rhymes With Brand)

Jayme writes:
I’ve been reading your blog daily since I found out I was pregnant and I’ve found it to be great inspiration for names. I really did not think that my husband and I would be in the situation of having the hardest time with names but here we are less than a month away from my due date (May 10th). So, now I’m turning to you for help!

My name is Jayme, my husband’s name is Shane and our last name starts with an S and rhymes with Brand (like a _trand of hair). This is our first child and we have not found out the gender. We feel pretty good about the girls names we have narrowed down which would be either Makena Leighton or Ashton Makena.

Our issues are with picking Boy’s names. We just can’t seem to find something that we both LOVE. We like names that aren’t too popular or too plain. Below is a list of names that have been on the list at some point or another.

Holden (top contender at this point but still not sure about it)

Parker (just not sure about it as a first name)


Leyton (like the name but not the spelling and the Leighton spelling seems feminine to me)

Mason (too popular)

Cooper (hubby does not like and I really don’t like the nickname Cooooooop which I think he would be called all the time!)

Hudson (hubby does not like)

If we chose Holden as the first name we like Parker with it as the middle name. As for all the other names we just have no idea.

I’m sure I’m way over thinking this now and making it way more complicated than needed.....please help us!

Looking at your name list, I suggest making your future naming decisions easier by deciding now (if you can---it may be hard to think this far ahead and this theoretically) how you'd like the sibling set to go. If this baby is a girl named Ashton, it might seem like future girl names need to be equally boyish, and/or that future boy names needed to be unequivocally boyish to avoid making Ashton seem like a brother, or that you can't use Leyton because now it's even harder to tell who's a boy and who's a girl. I talked about this issue at more length in this post: Baby Naming Issue: What to Name the Siblings of a Child With a Gender-Neutral Name or With a Name Traditionally Given to the Opposite Sex (that title just SINGS, doesn't it?).

So, if I were you, and this is only if _I_ were you, because this sort of thing is sooooo regional (in some areas, for example, Parker is perfectly androgynous; in others, it's almost exclusively boy), I'd eliminate Parker and Leyton except as middle names---and if you use Ashton, either use it for a boy (220 girls were named Ashton in 2009, but 3519 boys were named Ashton the same year, so it's still 1:16 in boy-name territory), or else spell it Ashtyn to lean it toward girl territory.

Are you pronouncing Makena mah-KAY-nah or mah-KEN-nah? If the latter, I suggest putting the second N back in to aid pronunciation and spelling. (If the former: never mind.)

And you're not asking for girl name suggestions, but I'll mention Padgett anyway. I heard that recently and thought it was just about the cutest name ever.

But you asked about boy names. So, as I said, I'd take Parker and Leyton off the list of first-name candidates to start with. And your husband doesn't like Cooper or Hudson, so that leaves Holden and Ryker. Of those two, Holden is my favorite.

More possibilities (I'm avoiding B names, to avoid initials B.S.; I wasn't sure about M.S. and P.S. and S.S., but left them in):



StephLove said...

I like Holden, Parker and Mason from your list.

Archer, Grady and Wilson are good suggestions.

Kas said...

I dont mind Holden, but im from Australia and nearly every second person here drives a holden (not sure what its like over there) so Holden Parker when i read it i instantly thought of park your holden (park your car) not sure if that is a problem but it may be something he could be teased about later in life!

I love Mason, Parker (as a first name) and im going to throw in Lincoln as its my sons name and i think its along the same lines as Mason and Cooper! I also love Cooper and think Coop is a cool nickname!

Love the name Makena for a girl, but maybe you could use a more feminine middle name though like Makena Grace, Makena Rose etc also love the name Mckenzie for a girl! all the best x

Christine said...

I think you might also like the names Emmett and Langston. Good luck!

Clarabella said...

I think Padgett works just as well as a boy's name. Maybe this is because I know a family with a little boy named Padgett, but...along those same lines Dash(i)ell (I'm not sure how I would spell it) and Satchel (I KNOW it's a noun, but I like it A LOT; you could spell it Satchell to avoid the "small bag" meaning, I suppose.) Anyhow, good luck!

The Mrs. said...

Ryker Holden _trand sounds like a BOY. No doubt about it. It gives him the nickname of Ry, which is convenient if you live in a part of the country where all names must be shortened into one syllable nicknames.

If you're open to other suggestions, may I humbly offer 'Ruston'? It reminds me of Mason and Ashton, but it's not popular. You get the nicknames Russ and Rusty out of the deal, too. Ruston Parker _trand.

All the best to your growing family!

caycecol said...

I love Swistle's suggestions of Miller and Archer. Holden is lovely, though, too!

Anonymous said...

From your list, I like Parker and Holden the best.

How about these names:
- Landon (perhaps too popular at #44)
- Dalton (218)

Anonymous said...

How about Lennon it gives the same feal as your the ones on your list. I also like parker

kimma said...

Other boy name suggestions:

I know you said you were happy with girls names, but I can't help myself... Ashlyn is so close to Ashton, but way more feminine. Hope you don't mind me saying.

changelivlife said...

If Holden is not quite right, I'd suggest Holton, which then gives the nn Holt. Very boyish, subtle change from Holden.

AirLand said...

I really like Holden for a boy. Holden Parker sounds great.

I think Leighton/Leyton sounds definitely girl to me, and will probably continue to go that way because of Leighton Meester (Gossip Girl). I agree that if you like Makena and it is pronounced Mah-ken-ah, it would be easier to know how to pronounce it with another "n."

Katie said...

I LOVE Archer and Grady - Grady was my top choice for the little boy we are expecting in September, but hubby nixed it.

Also love Parker for a boy - in my region, I've never heard it on a girl.