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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Baby Girl or Boy Biondini, Sibling to Meadow Alexis

Staci writes:
My husband and I recently found out that we are expecting our second child in January 2012. We had a horrible time agreening on a name for our daugther, but settled on Meadow Alexis. We love the tranquility and playfullness that Meadow conjures. My husband is Italian, and our last name is Biondini (pronounced bee-on-dee-nee). He favors unusual names and Italian names. I tend to like names that have stood the test of time, but that are not super popular. There aren't many Italian names that I like, as I feel like we already have strong Italian last name. Both of us like nature names. Our dog is named Sunny, and the other top contender for Meadow was Daisy. We both still agree on Daisy, but I am afraid it may be too much with Meadow, especially since they will be 14 months apart in age. Also, the middle name will probably be Anne, in honor of my mother.

Here are some girl names that I like, but that my husband does not care for:
- Willow (husband says it is too trendy because of Willow Smith and Willow Palin)
- Eden
- Charlie (as a nickname for Charlotte, or by itself)
- Emmet (nickname Emme)
- Isabel (nickname Bell, but probably would never use now due to the popularity of Isabella)
- Gillian
- Laurel
- Vivian

Names that my husband likes, but that I do not care for:
- Shiloh
- Rain
- Fiore

Could you help please help us come up with a playful, not too popular name for Baby Biondini number 2 that doesn't sound like the hippie cousin of Meadow and Sunny?

I think what we are looking for here is WHIMSY: nothing too hippie, nothing too staid. The Baby Name Wizard recommends sister names Willow, Ember, Harmony, Winter, and Lark.

Lark doesn't quite work for me because of the meadowlark, but I do like the concept of a bird name. Robin is hard to say with the surname, and it's not as current a name as Meadow. Wren is another possibility. Phoebe is subtle: it's a bird, but I don't think of it as a bird. But again, I don't think it's good with the surname. I like Starling: it's highly unusual but I think it would quickly seem familiar and easy. Meadow Alexis and Starling Anne.

Winter works in theory, but the contrast with what I imagine a meadow being like (warm sun, soft breezes, pretty flowers) makes the name Winter feel chilly and grey to me. Summer and Autumn would both work, and I wonder why hardly anyone uses Spring?

I think Story would work well, or Fable, or Haven, or Juniper.

One of my favorite whimsical names is Clover, but I'm not sure if it's good with Meadow. On one hand I love it, but on the other hand clover seems like a subset of meadow---like using the name America for one child and Georgia for the next.

Another of my favorite whimsical names is Marigold. This SHOULD be exactly the same problem as Clover, but this just goes to show how very subjective name impressions are: to me, it's a much smaller problem and maybe no problem at all. Perhaps because I think of clover as growing in meadows, but I don't think of marigolds growing there? perhaps because they both start with M? I can't explain it.

I think the name Serenity would be great with Meadow, but I hesitate to suggest that name: it could be such an ill fit for some personalities.

I like the cheerful sound of the name Brighton, but the -on ending makes it seem masculine to me. Perhaps Brighten? Brightly? But then it looks less like a name. Hm. No, I think Brighton is best. Brighton Anne.

Sierra is a nature name like Meadow: Meadow Alexis and Sierra Anne. For something less common: Vienna.

Or Liberty: Meadow Alexis and Liberty Anne.

Piper would be darling: Meadow Alexis and Piper Anne.

Or Padgett: Meadow Alexis and Padgett Anne.

You only mention girl names---are you also looking for boy names? Those feel less fun to me: there don't seem to be as many whimsical boy names, and the nature names seem more serious: Stone and Flint rather than Marigold and Clover.


Name update! Staci writes:
Our daughter, Aria Fable Biondini was born yesterday Feb. 1, weighing 7 lbs. 13 oz., and 21". We are calling her Fable which is a name that either you or one of the commenters suggested. We think it is the perfect whimsical complement to big sister Meadow Alexis. Thanks for your help!


Anonymous said...

What about


StephLove said...

I like Ivy and Rosemary for a girl and maybe Cedar or Fox for a boy.

Anonymous said...

I like Story a lot! I also want to suggest Esme (I know there's a Twilight connection but that is the only famous Esme I can think of!). It seems so natural and free-flowing, and Meadow and Esme are lovely together.

For boys, I'm having a hard time deciding if I like Shepherd or Sawyer more! I think Sawyer, as Shepherd seems a bit kitchy with a sister Meadow... But, then again, Shep Biondini is SO NICE!

vanessa steck said...


Anonymous said...

Honestly, if you're trying to avoid hippie, I would skip most of the nature names, given that your first child is Meadow. If I heard of two children named Meadow and Rain or Meadow and Clover, I would automatically assume hippie counterculture parents. *But* if you pair Meadow with an unusual but not-obviously-nature name, I don't have the same reaction---it just seems like a pair of creative names. You could pull off some of the borderline nature names that don't immediately bring nature to mind unless you start to think about their roots/meaning: Phoebe, Violet, Hazel, Sierra, Laurel, Rosemary, Ivy, Juniper etc. I also like Meadow with Story or Eden.

From your list, Charlie, Vivian, and Isabel seem too traditional to combine with Meadow (and Charlotte and Isabel are very popular right now, if that matters). I'm left wondering if maybe Meadow is a nickname for a similarly traditional name. Emmett is a traditional boys' name and I'm not sure it's ready to go to the girls, so I'd save that for a son---if you love Emme, you can get it from other fun girls' names like Emmeline or Emilia, or the unisex Emerson or Emery. I'd also skip Shiloh just because of the Brangelina connection---though maybe that will fade with time. (Piper still brings the Palins to mind, too.) I like the others, though. Seems like you have a lot to work with--good luck!

Anonymous said...

i agree with anonymous -- to avoid a "hippy family" image, I'd NOT choose another nature name, but instead something unusual but not a noun. I'd second the suggestion of Esme -- love it!

StephLove said...

Seeing Sawyer and Thatcher on Swistle's list made me think of Mason and Sailor. A lot of occupation names could work, actually. It turns Meadow into more of a noun-name than a nature-name.

Nicole J. said...

If you both like Daisy but are unsure about the combination with Meadow, you might like Paisley. Meadow and Paisley.

I also like Blythe for you, because it has the same tranquil feeling you liked about Meadow. Meadow and Blythe.

If you decide to go the nature route, I like Sea with your last name, though it might make naming any additional children more difficult. Meadow and Sea.

For boys, I think Haven would work just as well on a boy. Meadow and Haven.

Or Zephyr. It isn't a name that has "stood the test of time," but I think the sounds in Zephyr make it feel more familiar that you'd think (because it sounds a bit like Ephraim, maybe?. Meadow and Zephyr.

All of the best to you and your family! I hope you let us know what you end up choosing.

Brenda said...

Since you like vivann. What about vivianna to make it more italian sounding? Or Gianna?

Joanne said...

I think Story is really pretty. I have to say that one of my daughter's best friends is from Italy and her name is Carlotta, but she goes by Charlie. It's so nice because Carlotta is a beautiful name and a little girl named Charlie is the cutest thing ever! Also, Carlotta means 'free man', which is nice and nature-y.

Megz said...

My pick for you would be Melody. It still has that whimsical feel, without being naturey or too matchy with Meadow. If you don't mind matching initials that is. And it has stood the test of time - it's been hovering around the 2-300s in popularity since the 50s, not really moving much. But not overly popular either.

Amber said...

Swizzle I was gong to suggest Fable and Lark as welll! I think Fable, Storey and Haven are my favorites so far... Lovely suggestions from everyone! I agree that the names on your list, Isabel Charlotte etc sound a bit mainstream to be little Meadows baby sister. My suggestions would be Rosabel.

All the best and can't wait to hear what beautiful whimsical name you will choose. Actually maybe have a look at This link it has some gorgeous naturey names

I hope it is ok to link through. Swistle please please remove
this if it isn't and I'm terrible sorry.


kimma said...

I really like the earlier suggestions of Melody and Paisley. They take it from being a "theme" pair to being a unique and pretty pair.

Instead of Serenity from Swistle's list how about Serena?

I would avoid anything as mainstream as Charlotte or Isabel. They contrast too strongly with Meadow.

kimma said...

Oh, thinking about Melody just brought to mind Lyra for a girl or Lyric for a boy.

Superjules said...

Oh! I didn't realize THIS was the category of names I fancy. But it is! I love all of these names. Juniper! Marigold! Clover! I think that Starling is my favorite with Meadow.

Anonymous said...


The Mrs. said...

How do you like Magnolia? It comes with some nice nicknames: Maggie, Nola, Lia. Meadow and Magnolia.

Not into the repeating initials? Emerald has the nicknames of Emmy and Rilla. Meadow and Emerald.

Calla has the same feel as Bella, but it's no where near popular. Meadow and Calla.

I really like Swistle's suggestion of Wren, too. A whole generation of Jens have made Wren sound almost mainstream. Meadow and Wren.

Eden is a GORGEOUS name, but if I were Meadow, I'm not sure I would want my little sister to have the name of paradise on Earth, you know?

Amaryllis is lovely but seems overdressed next to Meadow. Haven has potential (nickname of Ava). Serenade isn't as nature-y, but it comes with the nicknames of Wren or Sadie. Solace has the nickname of Lacey, but it too isn't as nature-y. This may be really going the wrong direction (I can't decide if I like it with your surname), but how does Jubilee strike you? Jules or Bea for short.

Laurel seems so right in this circumstance! It's an established name, uncommon, great for a child or adult, and goes very well with Anne as a middle name. Laurel Anne Biondini. She could even have the nickname of Rella (which is a lot like Bella). Meadow and Laurel.

As for a boy, Nicole J.'s suggestion of Zephyr is excellent. I would throw Cord onto the same pile.

Whatever you choose, I (for one) will be eagerly waiting to hear your decision. All the best to you and your growing family!

Biondini said...

Thank you Swistle and commenters! I love Piper (it was on my long list as was Wren), like Story (had never considered it and actually just thought of Magnolia today with those same nicknames of Maggie and Nola. I hadn't asked for boy names because like Swistle, I don't think it is as much fun, but we may have to go there.

Carolyn said...

I like Harmony, and knew a little girl with this name. Her sister was Audrey. Meadow and Audrey would be a really cute sibling set.

liz said...

Selena, Serena, Silvina?

Heather, Dale, Grove, Glen?


And I like the suggestion of Ivy.

Anonymous said...

____ Anne Biondini is a combo where you have to look at the initials carefully. Laurel would give her the initials LAB, Daisy results in DAB, etc. It's probably best to avoid names starting with: C, D, G, J, K, L, N, or T. Your first daughter's initials are great, because MAB is the name of the queen of the fairies. I'd go with Marigold to duplicate those initials.

Anonymous said...

I'd suggest Daphne. With the story of the Greek nymph turning into a laurel tree, this name is some nature overtones, but it not too in-your-face when paired with Meadow. This name is currently ranked #536. It still sounds whimsical like Meadow to me.

Perhaps Celeste?

For a boy, I like Basil.

Anonymous said...

What about Acadia? Or Fuchsia?

Anonymous said...

Silvestre is an under used nature name for boy. the cartoon cat might have turned people off but it's s great name.

Nicole J. said...

Anonymous at 10:00's recommendation of Silvestre made me think of Sylvan, which has the same root and means "of the forest or woods."

In the U.S., you do have a chain of learning centers called Sylvan, which might turn some people off, but I still think it's a great whimsical name for a boy.

Meadow and Sylvan.

Rebecca is fabulous said...

As mother to a Violet, I highly recommend is time-worn and largely unused. In the five years she has been alive, I have only met about three other Violets. Also, Aurora is a great nature name that lends itself to everyday use...if you don't mind the alliteration of Aurora Anne.

Anonymous said...