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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Baby Boy Graves, Brother to Lucas Joshua

[I'm out of town this weekend, but really didn't want to her to miss out on the magic of the comments section.]

Kara writes:
I have been reading your blog for awhile now, anxiously awaiting the day we would find out if we were expecting a girl or boy so that I could find a precious name for my child.

Well, the day came and we are expecting our second BOY! I am so excited to have another boy, but finding a name is a challenge- I think girl's names are easier! (we like Lyla, Josie, Cadence, Willow, Eliott, Emmaline, etc)

Our last name is Graves, my first son is Lucas Joshua who is 2, this boy will come in October. There are only three names on our list: (and my husband and I both don't agree on all three).

Finn, Cohen, and Rowan.

I don't like the names on the top 10 lists, they seem to be too popular for me.. I like it to be soft, southern, sweet, but still boy. Older names are fascinating to me as well, but we don't have many interesting names in our family to use.

I would love to think that we would be having at least one more child, but that hasn't been decided yet.

Ok, so your turn! Work your magic!


Susan said...

I like both Finn and Rowan. Rowan Finn makes a great combination! At the risk of opening a debate (which I really don't want to do), I just want to mention that the use of the name Cohen by non-Jewish parents is controversial. If that name moves to the top of your list, you may wish to Google it and make sure you are still comfortable using it.

With Lucas Joshua, I keep thinking of lots of traditional names that I'm going to assume you've already considered and rejected like Nathaniel, Samuel, Thomas or Benjamin. Maybe something like Tobias, Cormac, Eamon, Levi, Conan or Callum would appeal to you?

Anonymous said...

Why not Elliot for a boy? Eliot Finn Graves.

I like the sound of Gideon Graves. I love the repeating G's, but know that some families hate that.

Do you like Alaric? Alaric Cohen Graves.

Perhaps Jedidiah Graves with the nn Jed?

Claire said...

Asa is another Biblical name that feels southern to me.

Larkin is an old time southern name brought in with the Scots Irish.

If you used Cowan in place of Cohen, it would remove any of the Jewish controversy (I haven't googled said controversy yet, but I'm going to in a minute!).

Of your list, I think Finn and Cohen are the strongest with Lucas. Lucas has such a strong sound that a one syllable name or a name with another hard consonant somewhere resonates well for a sibling.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, "Cohen" doesn't exactly sound, uh, Southern to me.

Barb @ getupandplay said...

FWIW, I know a few families of non-Jewish descent who have little Cohens. It may be still controversial but I know it's becoming more common.

How about Atticus? I love that name (from To Kill a Mockingbird) and it seems so Southern to me.

StephLove said...

I like Rowan best from your list, then Finn. A commenter mentioned Thomas and I like that very much with Lucas and Graves.

Patricia said...

Lucas Joshua strikes me as very biblical. I'm not sure it meets your (new?) criteria of "soft, southern and sweet" but it's certainly an all-boy name. For me, none of the three names on your list goes very well with Lucas, and about 40% of the babies named Rowan in 2010 were girls.

Baby Name Wizard suggests Zachary, Noah, Simon, Nathaniel and Gabriel as brother names for Lucas. I think many other biblical names would work well with Lucas too. I especially like Lucas and Thomas together.

If another name beginning with L is all right with you, I think Liam would be an excellent name for your second son: Lucas and Liam.

Some other suggestions: Owen, Miles, Rhys, Drew.

I like the suggestion of Eliot for your son too. Although the name is sometimes given to girls these days, the only Eliot in the 2010 Top 1000 is in the boys' column, ranking at 962, and with that spelling: Lucas and Eliot. Since Eliot is a favorite name of yours, why not use it for this little boy? I think it meets all or your criteria.
Best wishes!

Anonymous said...

Rowan is actually becoming a girls name. I know three little girls named Rowan, and no boys. It is still a great name though!

alexis said...

Use Eliot for a little boy. It's a great name, and it's really nice with your last name, too.

Anonymous said...

Seth! Lucas and Seth. Seth Graves!!!! Love it. Sweet, soft, and southern.

Bryce, Jack, Cole, Cade, and Samuel may work too.

Good luck! :)


Heidi J said...

From those three, I like Finn the best. Other options that might work are Miles, Isaac, Simon, Asher, Shane, and Brady.

The Mrs. said...

Lucas Joshua is a wonderful name!

One commenter above mentioned that she only knows Rowans that are girls... same here. I think it's solidly in the female camp. Sorry.

Finn and Cohen are good, though. I'm unsure of the controversy surrounding Cohen, but I think it sounds nice.

Does Lucas ever go by 'Luke'? I ask because some of the southern gentlemen names that come to mind are rather long. For example, Beauregard (nickname of Bo/Beau).

Another that floats to the surface is Randall (nickname of Rand).

Lawrence (nickname of Law) might be too much with Lucas... but maybe not.

Davis is similar to Lucas without being matchy-matchy.

Wade and Jefferson strike me as southern as well. Winston and Ford, too.

So excited to hear what you pick! All the best to you and your growing family!

Anonymous said...

I had to look up the Cohen controversy. See

I only know girls named Rowan. How about Coen or Callum?

Patricia said...

In my previous comment, I didn't note the other spellings of Eliot, some of which are also in the Top 1000. It seems that there are 4 spellings of Eliot being used for boys and to a much lesser degree for girls. In the SSA 2010 stats that name usage breaks down like this:

Number of baby BOYS named:
Elliot 1068 (ranked #301)
Elliott 1002 (#315)
Eliot 205 (#962)
Eliott 52

TOTAL - 2327 Boys born in 2010 with the name Elliot or similar spellings

Number of baby GIRLS named:
Elliot 211
Elliott 185
Eliot 27
Eliotte 5

TOTAL - 428 Girls born in 2010 with the name Elliot or similar spellings; no single spelling ranked in the Top 1000 names for girls

I like what "A is for Atticus: Baby Names from Great Books" (USA, 2008) says about the name: ELIOT - Rarely in this business are we blown away by names that should be well used, but are somehow rare. Eliot is one... It should be noted, though it should not cause alarm, that Eliot is being used somewhat for girls. Poet T.S. Eliot wrote myriad poems...

"Baby Name Bible" (USA, 2007): ELLIOT has the ideal quality of being neither too common nor weirdly unique; last had a style boost in the early 1980s via the young hero of the movie 'E.T'.

"Penguin Reference Dictionary of First Names" (UK, 2004): ELLIOTT (m) English surname that made appearances among English speakers in the 16th century and has remained in fairly common use ever since. The surname itself came originally from a Norman French variant of Elias. Also encountered as Eliot...

Baby Name Wizard says of the name: "ELLIOTT is one of the steadiest names over time, never really in or out of fashion. It's a charmer in the intellectual rather than brawny vein..."

Through its source name Elijah -> Elias, Eliot has a biblical connection similar to that of Lucas.

Or Elias itself might be a name to consider. Baby Name Wizard: ELIAS is the rarified Greek from of Elijah. It may sound like a time traveler from the 18th century, but this elegant name has made a sudden leap into contemporary style.
And Baby Name Bible baby name authorities Rosenkrants and Satran chose Elias as a recommended "best bet" name: *ELIAS. Greek variation of Elijah. Following the path of family members Elijah and Eli, the strong and charismatic Elias is also moving up.

Elias ranked #141 in 2010. Since Elliot has three spellings in the 2010 Top 1000, it may be helpful to look at that name's rank on a list that combines Top 1000 spellings: Elliot/Elliott/Eliot - #162. Elias comes in at #143 on the same list.

Lucas and Eliot

Lucas and Elias

beyond said...

I like Finn best for you. I think Rowan is slowly but surely going to the girls, but also think that it would make a great mn for Finn.
Finn Rowan Graves. Lucas and Finn. I love it!
I also suggest:
Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Thanks to Anonymous who posted the Cohen controversy link. I've always associated Cohen as a Jewish surname, even though I had no idea of the full significance of the name. Thus I was surprised when I noticed fairly recently that Cohen is becoming a trendy name for non-Jewish boys. As suggested above, maybe the popular character's first name Seth rather than Cohen for those who like the image of Seth Cohen? According to Wikipedia, the fictional character's full name is Sethela Ezekiel Cohen, son of a Jewish father and Christian mother. Anyone know if Sethela is a 'real' name or just something made up for this character? (Not an appealing male name at all!)

vanessa said...

I love Eliot for you, and think it is most decidedly a boys name and should never be used for girls...a few names have to stay in the boys camp! And I would agree that Rowan is more girl now.
The Lucas I know has brothers named Christopher and Nico. I really like the repeating sounds with Chris and Lucas.

Anonymous said...

What about Christian? Lucas and Christian, Luke and Chris?

From your list, Lucas and Finn (Finnegan, Finley, Fintan) is my favorite!


what about:

Lucas and Arlo
Lucas and Julian
Lucas and Hamilton
Lucas and Roscoe
Lucas and Flynn
Lucas and Harlan
Lucas and Mason

Liann said...

Love your sons name!

I like Finn thr best from your list, and the suggestions of Miles, Ronan, and using Eliot for your boy. I'll also add Duncan and Emmett. Good luck!

Melissa E. said...


I say this as Bennett is my first, I'm pregnant again, and strongly considering Lucas if we're having another boy :) We live in the south as well haha! Bennett means Blessed by God, so it has a good meaning without being labeled as biblical. It was in the high 200s last I checked on the social security list too.

Good luck with whatever name you pick!

Anonymous said...

Ronan would be close to Rowan, and I don't think it's gone girl :)

I also heard of a little boy named Bowen, nn Bow. So cute!!!

The Sandersons said...

Yea, how fun to read a post from a friend!!!

Here's my 2 cents :)

From your list, I like Finn. LOVE that name!! Not sure what the controversy w/ Cohen is, but I plan to read that article to find out. I know J has done a lot of research/study w/ Jewish culture/faith, so that may be a reason you have selected it. Again, the "controversy" may rule it out, not sure. You guys are pretty controversial anyway :) Kidding!!

And I too, think of Rowan as a "girl name". I've only heard girls named Rowan, but I know that boys use it too.

My list....

I LOVE the name Levi. I think it sounds great w/ Lucas. I wish it didn't sound so much like Eli b/c I would TOTALLY use it if we had another son someday.

I also LOVE the name Henry for you guys. NN Hank is SO ADORABLE!!! Lucas and Henry!! O my! So sweet!!

Biblical names I LOVE: Ezra, Aaron, Peter (I think the nn Pete is so cute!). You may not want to "go Biblical" but just thought I'd throw those names out there just in case!

Here are some names I've heard that are kinda different but I really like. Parks, Grange, Ford, Sawyer, Wilson.

I like it when surnames are used as first or middle names. Do you have any good ones in your family?

Since Lucas has J's name as a middle are you going to use family names for all your kiddos?

One more thought (sorry this is so long!). I know you are getting a lot of suggestions for Elliot, but I saw that it was on your "girl" name list. If it is a "girl name" to you, I think you should save it and use it for a future dtr. I think it's hard to change genders on a name that you see a certain way. (i.e. Ezra is starting to become a "girl" name. I don't see it that way at all so it would be hard for me to use it as a girl name, even though I love the name. So I would keep Elliot as a girl name if I were you....unless you see it as a gender neutral name.)

Can't wait to hear what you guys decide!!!

Anonymous said...

I agree with your friend's suggestion of Henry with a middle name from one of your families -- maybe from your family this time? Henry is a fab name -- classic, all-boy, stands well on its own without a nn, yet has the -y ending often-used for nicknames . Lucas and Henry -- wonderful together!

Patti said...

Read your post and like everyone else, I thought of Elliot for you.

Of your choices I like Finn the best. I'd prefer Owen to Cohen and Rowan.

LOVE the suggestions of Noah, Simon, Nathaniel and Gabriel for you. Just love the alliteration in Gabriel Graves.

I also like Rhys, Evan, Joseph, Jude, Oliver, Quinn, Xavier, Rhett, Isaac, Gavin, Felix, & Emmett.

Good luck, can't wait to hear what you pick :)

kanah said...

I suggest: Hudson, Harris/Harrison, Mason, Eli, and Wyatt.

I've never heard of the "Cohen is a Jewish name," thing... But, the suggestion of switching from Rowan to Ronan is a good one because I also only know of girls named Rowan. Oh or Roan would be good for a boy.

If you truly want a Southern name, maybe take a look at surnames in your family tree. I'm from the South and think that the "best" names for boys are actually surnames. Such as: Bauer, Ladd, Redford, George, Vance, Hampton, West, Reeve, etc.

Maybe you would like Judson, NN Judd? Or Rogan? Or Grant? (that's a lot of GR, but it could be cute!) Or Grayson? Or Campbell?

Kara Graves said...

Hello Commenters :)

It was funny to see my post show up on Swistle Saturday. We had just decided on our name Friday and ordered things with his name on it Saturday morning before the post went live. So it was extra interesting to read. . .and having to remember that they are all opinions;)

We chose. . . . Finn Rowan

There were several reasons for each name. One thing to keep in mind is that I was born in Scotland, so Gaelic heritage is very prominent in my name and important to carry on.

Finn- Huck Finn as a great literary piece, Finn MacCumhail was a legendary Irish hero. It comes from Gaelic, Irish, and Finnish roots meaning "Fair"

The controversial "Rowan"- I have never known a girl with this name, and the one I have heard of is a celebrity child. If you look at the social security site, Rowan peaked as a girl name in 2007 at a lower rate than it did for boys in 2010.

Rowan-Rowan comes from the Gaelic word for red, ruadh, and a Gaelic diminutive suffix.
The other form, from the tree, comes from a Norse word for the European plant. (a tree prominent in Scotland) This word refers to the red leaves and berries of the rowan tree.

Rowan Williams is the current Archbishop of Canterbury (he performed the royal wedding), and Rowan Atkinson is a British comedian, famous for his 'Mr Bean' sketches.

Thank you all for your input, we are so excited to meet our little boy!

Patricia said...

Kara, I always enjoy feedback in the comments section from parents whose post we've been discussing. You hadn't mentioned before that you're from Scotland and interested in finding a name associated with that heritage. I love many Scots names (have some Scottish heritage myself, a few generations back). Just for fun I looked at the official 2010 baby name stats for Scotland to see how your favorites are faring there (you probably have seen these stats, but others most likely aren't aware of them):

Finn ranks #82; 83 boys were given that name in Scotland in 2010. (Similar Finlay was the most popular 'Fin-' name in 2010, ranking 14, with 292 boys given the name.)

Rowan did not place in the Top 100; 23 boys were given that name -- and also 39 girls.

I enjoyed learning a little more about the names Finn and Rowan and why these names have special meaning for you and your family.

Finn Rowan sounds like exactly the right name for your second little boy!

Patricia said...

PS It appears that Finn is associated more with Ireland, as you mentioned, while Finlay, with Scotland. In 2009 Finn ranked 57 in Northern Ireland.

Oxford Dictionary of First Names (UK, 2006) has an interesting write-up on ROWAN: As a boy's name this is a transferred use of the surname, which is of Irish origin, being an Anglicized form of the Gaelic byname 'Ruadhan' 'little red one'. It was borne by a 6th century saint who founded the monastery of Lothra, and is the name of the present Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams (b.1950). As a girl's name it seems to be from the vocabulary word (of Scandinavian origin) denoting the tree, an attractive sight with its clusters of bright red berries.

Penguin Ref. Dict. of First Names (UK, 2004) says that Rowan from Gaelic 'ruadh' (red) means "little red-haired one" and that the popularity of the name in Ireland was boosted by the fact that it was borne by two early Irish saints. This source says the name is sometimes derived instead from the alternative name of the mountain ash, which bears red berries.

Kara Graves said...

Thanks for the added info! Yes, I wasn't specifically searching for anything Gaelic or Irish, but when I found those roots it just made it even more perfect for us!