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Monday, October 17, 2011

Baby Girl Heintz, Sister to Parker Griffin

Erica writes:
We are pregnant with our 2nd baby on February 13, 2012 - a GIRL, and we are so excited! We live in Portland, Oregon, and we have a 22 month old boy, Parker Griffin Heintz, and this will complete our little family. Now, when I tell you that coming up with Parker's name was difficult, that will be an understatement. It took MONTHS. I had lots and lots of names that I loved. Logan, Henry, Oliver, Harrison, Jackson, Quentin, the list goes on.

The problem is that my husband (Jordan Gabriel) is a 5th grade teacher. And as a teacher, he has had hundreds of students pass through his classroom, and now associates certain names with certain traits (both positive and negative) that take that name off of the list. He is also extremely sensitive to tease-able names and nicknames. I was given two family names (Erica Joycelyn) after my dad (Eric John), and we're determined to stay away from family names due to having two sets of divorced/remarried parents and just too many toes to step on there.

We also both agree that we like names that have a positive meaning, and even more so if they are related to nature and/or an actual concrete "thing" that we can put on stationary, stuff like that. So, you see, when I hit on Parker (protector of parks) Griffin (awesome mythical creature), it was perfect. Match that with the fact that miraculously, he had not yet had a Parker in his class... and we have the coolest boy name ever. Whew.

Now we are trying to name our little girl. And so far, things are a little bumpy. We have two names that are close, but something about both of them just isn't quite right for me (husband really likes both of them, but is open to new suggestions). I have exhausted "Beyond Jennifer, Jason, Madison and Montana", the Baby Name Finder on babycenter, and just about every other source. We want something a little unusual (also, this helps when trying to avoid the "classroom conundrum" as I call it). The two names we're looking at:

Claire Finley Heintz
Hadley Grace Heintz

Things I LIKE about them: Finley means sunbeam, and I really love that. I also really like the sound of the "ley" at the end of a name. Hadley starts with an "H" which is something I love love love with our last name (one of my favorite potential names for a boy was Henry Heintz. How CUTE is that??). Grace is just beautiful and I think it is a nice traditional balance with the less common Hadley. I also like that it starts with a "G" like Gabriel (husband's middle name) and Griffin (Parker's middle name). Claire is such a pretty name, and I've always really liked it.

Things that are holding me back on choosing either of them: Claire seems so serious to me. I don't know why, it just does. Maybe its the single syllable. I think I'm wanting something a little more sing-songy and I don't know how else to put it, but friendly. Hadley I really like, but its almost not feminine enough. But its close. So close. And maybe in the end that is what we'll go with, but there is just something niggling at me that its just not HER name.

So, maybe it will help to know what the other names on our list have been:
Caroline (husband thinks its too formal)
Ellie (husband thinks its too silly)
Lily (name of the daughter of one of his coworkers)
Daphne (no specific objections, he just doesn't love it)
Piper (this one is his, and I just can't get on board with it. I think of bagpipers)
Hillary (we both really like this, but feel like its a little too political)
Hailey (this one is close to being a contender)
Elena (husband thinks it sounds too Eastern European, and since we're not, he thinks it sounds phony)
Maya (see issue with Elena. Same kind of thing)

I just want to find that name that just "clicks" the way that Parker Griffin did. I just have this feeling that we're so close, but there is something we're not thinking of. I know you get tons and tons of emails, and I will just cross my fingers that maybe you have some great ideas for us!

Thank you so much!

Name update! Erica writes:
I know this is WAY late, but I wanted to send in my baby name update!  Our sweet girl was born February 18, and we chose to name her Piper Grace.  She is almost 5 months old now, and she is so much fun. We settled on Piper late in the game, after determining that her in-utero energy just wasn't fitting with Claire or Hadley.  She is such a Piper - the name fits her just perfectly - she is full of smiles and energy and she never ever stops moving.

Thank you so much for your help!


Anonymous said...

I LOVE the name Hadley and think it sounds wonderful with Parker as a sibling set. Just one gal's opinion, but I think you should go for it. (In truth, Hadley Grace is a frontrunner for my expected daughter's name, however I live way up in Canada so you don't have to worry that it's really THAT popular!). :)

Anonymous said...

I absolutely love Claire. I have a friend that has a Claire and it is not too serious at all, in fact it's really cute b/c all of our friends lovingly referred to her as CLA-AIR!!!, adding an extra syllable and excited tone so it became a really fun name with a sing-songy element. Claire is beautiful, it's classic, it's pretty like you mention and it's versatile - I can see an adorable little girl with it but it's also a great name for adults. I also had a college friend name Claire. It's a great name! Finley goes great with it as a middle name too. Good luck!

SM said...

What about Halle? Rhymes with Hadley but is a bit more feminine, in my opinion. And it's close to Hailey, which is also on your list.

Marjorie said...

How about Clara (another form of Claire) or Chloe?

Kaley, Haley, Miley or Kinsley are cute names that end in ley.

Maya makes me think of Mia (meaning "mine").

If you like Ellie you could name her Elliana and call her Ellie for short.

Cara said...

Ooh I was going to suggest Hallie/Halle too!
I think it's right in the middle of Hadley and Hailey.

Erica said...

yay! Thank you so much for posting! And I love some of the suggestions - we've been talking about Clara a lot the last week or so since I sent this in.

Swistle - will you be weighing in? We would love to hear your suggestions too! Thank you thank you!

Hope T. said...

I suggest Holly. It is a object that can be pictorially represented, it is decidedly feminine, it starts with an "H", it is not political (as far as I know), it sounds good with Parker, and it has similar sounds to Hailey and Hadley. Holly Grace - very cute :)

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't worry about Hillary being too political - your child's generation will not have the same association. And if it concerns you that much, drop one "l" to Hilary. I like Hilary Claire a lot.

Karen L said...

Paisley. Paisley Grace or Paisley Claire. Parker and Paisley
Sage. Sage Finley or Sage Hadley. Parker and Sage
Juniper. Juniper Grace or Juniper Claire. Parker and Juniper
Kelsey. Kelsey Grace. Parker and Kelsey

Sage is a one-syllable name but a tad less serious than Claire.

I think Kelsey is a great complement to Parker.

My favourite to say with Parker is Juniper. The repeating P without sharing initials.

Or maybe you would LIKE matching initials. PGH: Parker Griffin Heintz and Paisley Grace Heintz.

If I had to pick, I think I'd choose Paisley.

liz said...

What about Patience or Prudence?

Carolyn said...

Have you considered Sinclair? Then Clair could be a nn for it (spelled any way you like, of course!)

Or McClaren? Although that is a brand name, but also a surname.

StephLove said...

I think Clara, Halle and Holly were good suggestions to address you concerns about Claire and Hadley. (Both of which I like as is, btw). I'd urge you to reconsider Hillary as well, since you indicated you both really like it. I also noticed you had both Elene and Ellie on your list. How about Eleanor (nn Ellie?). Parker & Eleanor. Eleanor Claire? Eleanor Grace?

lifeofadoctorswife said...

I love Karen L's suggestion of Paisley Grace. LOVE.

And I'd like to throw my votes in for Hallie and Clara as well. They seem like great ways to slightly edit your favorites into something you might like better.

Anonymous said...

I like Claire and Hailey (stationary with shooting stars!). I view Hadley as a modern, invented name and therefore very time specific. That's not a negative per se, just something to note. Honestly, my only frame of reference for Hadley is the Sookie Stackhouse series, so that tinges it for me.

I love Paisley. Parker and Paisley are such a cute sib pairing.

- Haven
- Honora

rebecksterw said...

I really like your pick of Hadley Grace - I wanted to name one of our girls Hadley but Hubs wouldn't go for it. I also think Paisley is a great name....another we were thinking of but the two P's Paisley and Parker might be to much.

I think you are right on the money with your first pick for sure!!

Claire Wessel said...

Can I just beg you NOT to use the name Hadley?? It's the new Madison. If you want uncommon, that is not the name to use. I live in the sparsely populated South Dakota...and I know three girls named Hadley who are born within the last year or two. I have no clue why everyone and their momma is into that name all the sudden, but it might be from the character of same name on True Blood. Who knows!! All I know is...there's gonna be a lot of them!

Anonymous said...

I don't agree that Hadley is the new Madison. It is rising in popularity, but I have NEVER met one in person, nor do I know anyone who has ever even seriously considered it as a contender for one of their children (that I know of, at least). It's definitely part of the "in" trend right now, but I don't think it will ever be an "Oh no, THIS name again?!" situation, like it's gotten to be with Madison.

Having said all that, I really, really think Hadley Grace fits perfectly with Parker Griffin as a sib set. The name itself (Hadley) is not QUITE my personal style, but I think it is a wonderful fit with yours. Claire is lovely, but I feel sort of "eh" about it after hearing all about your preferred styles.

What about Ainsley? Ainsley Grace is a cool, spunky name, yet the only Ainsley I've ever heard of is the character from the TV show The West Wing-- and she was a hot shot White House staffer, and the name totally seemed like it fit in the professional, political world she was in.

Slim said...

If your husband isn't on board with Elena, how about Elaine?

I love the name Hallie.

Beyond that, what Anonymous at 4:37 said.

Swistle said...

Erica- I found myself stumped, but the question was too good not to answer so I turned it over to the commenters!

Claire and Anonymous- I just looked up Hadley and it certainly is rising much faster than I'd realized (I don't know any Hadleys, either). It wasn't even in the Top 1000 up to 1997, but since then it's risen to #216. It's hard to say what it will do next, but certainly there is the potential for a rapid rise to the top---or for settling down soon and never making it close. Very hard to predict these things.

Lise said...

I've only known children and young adults named Claire, so it doesn't seem serious to me. But I think a multi-syllabic first name sounds better with your last name. Claire Heintz doesn't flow as well as Hadley Heintz does.

If Elena is too Eastern European for your husband, how about Alaina instead? It's pronounced the same but is less recognizably European

Erica said...

I am LOVING these suggestions! So, this is a little late, but since last week, we've also been talking about the name Lucy Grace Heintz. Does anyone have thoughts about that? Swistle? Does Lucy Grace Heintz hit you differently than the other? Husband has NEVER had a Lucy in class, and we feel like it is kinda sassy in a good way. but is it too much of that "c" sound repeating?

Anonymous said...

What about Henley? Henley Grace. Or Harley. Or Heidi. Huxley. Hollis. Holland. Hatley. Haddie. Hattie. Harriet. Hope. Hildy. Henriette. Hendersyn.

Anonymous said...

I forgot to add Hartley! Love it! Hartley Grace.

sarah said...

I like Hillary or Hailey for you. Another suggestion is Halsey, there is a little girl in my son's preschool with that name. They all work well with Grace as a middle name.
I don't love Hadley, and I don't love the way Claire sounds with Heintz.
Lucy is ok, but I like the H names better!

vanessa steck said...

I know several Lucy Graces, for what it's worth.
I agree that Hilary is not super poltical, especially not spelled that way--and anyway, I don;t know about you, but I'd LOVE for a daughter of mine to be like Ms. Clinton!
Would you consider Finley as a first name? It has the same androgynous feel as Parker. Finley Grace, Finley Clare are both terrific. That's my top pick!

Laura said...

I just read through the commentsand got to the last one so far before someone already suggested my thoughts--Finley as a first name. Finley Claire, Finley Grace. Not nearly as popular as Hadley (I know 4...count em 4...Hadley's). Parker and Finley. What about Emory/Emery? I love that for a girl, reminds me of Emily with a new feel. Parker and Emery. What about Phoebe? Decidedly female, cute with Parker--two P names without the same sound from the P. Phoebe Grace, Phoebe Claire. Parker and Phoebe. Yep, that's my vote! Best wishes!

Another Erin from the 80s said...

From your own post, you seemed to really "talk up" Finley even though it is only a middle name contender. As above suggested, what about using it is as a first name? I also like Lucy... What about Lucy Claire Heintz?

The Mrs. said...

I know a Hadley myself... she is eight and complains of "all the other Hadleys". Therefore, I assume it is already feeling too popular to her. *shrug*

Since you like nature names with plenty of meaning, may I humbly suggest Halcyon Phoenix Heintz? Halcy is a practically unheard of nickname that reminds me strongly of Hillary (which, I agree, is WAY too political) and Hailey. Phoenix seems like the ideal match to Griffin, too. (Great meaning: one who rises from defeat).

All the best to you and your growing family. Excited to hear what you and your husband choose!

Kas said...

I agree with Laura, Finley as a first name sounds perfect! I love Finley Claire!

Lucy is sweet but were i live it is becoming very common!

I think Hadley is also lovely and i am yet to meet a little hadley!

Good luck and congrats!

Frazzled Mom said...

Can I just say: I think Juniper is a brilliant suggestion! It is modern like Parker, has the nature meaning, but is more feminine sounding than Hadley. It also had the u like Lucy.

But Lucy is a great name too, and is similar to Claire. You seem to have two very distinct styles: modern and meaningful like Parker, Hadley, Piper, and classic like Claire and Lucy.

When I read your original letter, I was stumped too. What stumped me was when you said you had already exhausted every baby name resource. This made me think any suggestion I made you probably considered before.

I was going to suggest, which helps you find names of a similar style to other names. You could enter Parker, and choose girl names, and find names of a similar style.

Here's some of the suggestions (but not all) from nymbler:

Piper - already on your list

Philippa - classic (Philip) yet modern and up-and-coming, especially with the nickname Pippa

Porche - some people are turned off by the car

Pollie - look at that - the ly ending, like Hadley, and the other suggestion of Holly. I prefer the more common Polly spelling.

Poppy - not from nymbler, but inspired by Lily on your list and Pollie/Polly above.

FYI - Lily - if you want to avoid popular, I would avoid this one. Between all the girls named Lillian, Lilliana, and even Elizabeth who go by Lily plus all the girls given the name Lily, this one is huge.

Petunia - (nymbler didn't used to limit suggestions to those with the same first letter as the inspiration name, in this case Parker. I don't know what's up with that) Nevertheless, if you are intrepid enough (and if you really want to give your kid a different name, in this day and age, being a little intrepid helps) this may be a good match for you. It is a nature name, and has the u in it like Lucy. However, if you think the only thing going for Petunia is it's uniqueness I would avoid it. (I have mixed feelings about Petunia myself, but I'm trying to be objective and put my personal tastes aside.)

Good luck.

Frazzled Mom said...

Ooooo. I just had another thought:

Tori Spelling just named her daughter Hattie.

You could name your daughter Hattie, which would be in line with your style OR you could use Hattie as a nickname for Henrietta, or Harriet.

You get the H alliteration with your last name that you said you love. Hattie is similar to Hailey, and Hadley, but a little different. Henrietta is the feminine of Henry which you were considering for your son. If you use Henrietta or Harriet, you are using more classic name, which are in line with Claire and Lucy, yet Hattie sounds like the modern names on your list.

I hope the fact the name was used by a celebrity isn't off-putting to you. I actually feel Tori Spelling is just slightly ahead of the current trends here (recently another Swistle poster had a daughter named Hattie and was looking for a son name) and is not setting a trend herself. And personally, I don't feel Tori Spelling is influential enough that Hattie will suddenly soar because of her.

Personally I feel Hattie, as a given name or nickname for Henrietta is just perfect for you and I'm going to push hard for it.

Goooo Hattie!!!

Excuse my dorky-ness.

Pick Hattie!

Mary said...

What about naming her Claire, and calling her Clary, or naming her Clary? Clary is not made up it is just less common. Clary Grace?

from your list

Caroline - so nice, so classic. It reminds me of Callie (Calliope), Carly. Caroline Finley, nn Callie or Carly or Caro would be gorgeous!

Ellie- I do agree with your husband on this, but it is a cute nickname for say Eleanor or Elena, or Alice.

Lily - love it. Lily, Lillie, Lillian are all gorgeous. Coworkers come and go, I wouldn't not use it because of that.

Daphne - what about Daveney? or Dabney?

Piper - love it! nn Pip?

Hillary - the political association is strong but not over the top. If you love it use it.

Hailey - Halle, Hayley, Hailey are all cute and go well with Parker. Kaley would work too.

Elena - not at all too Eastern European, I think this will become more popular with the Vampire Diaries now. LOVE it. Elaina or Alaina would also be nice.

Maya - Love it. Could also be a cute middle name, or Mae. Caroline Mae?

Some additional ideas:


Anonymous said...

Claire is a terrific name!

Also: I'm a Caroline and I love my name -- I don't know why more people don't use it. Yes, it's a little formal, but people often find their way to a shortened version (C, Care, Caro...)

Anonymous said...

Since one of your fav name ideas for a boy was Henry, I second the idea of the name Henrietta, nn Hattie or even Hetta.

Liz said...

A good barometer is to pick up a Pottery Barn Kids catalog and see their bedding collection names, and what names they use on their embroidered items. I always laughed at that, saying that they used trendy names.....until they recently came out with a line of bedding "Clara", which is my daughters name.

My 1-year old daughter, Clara Jane, is named after my great grandmother. I just love, love, love that name, and any variation of Claire.

I know a Clary who is in her early 30's and the name just fits her so well. It's unique, a bit uncommon, but beautiful.

Good luck!

Sarah said...

I have always really loved the name Hadley. I believe one of Ernest Hemingway's wives was named Hadley. Not that that is of ANY significance or importance, but it's where I first heard the name and have loved it since then. To me it's always sounded sophisticated and timeless.

I am always surprised at how many people like the name Paisley. I've heard of people talking about it where I live, too. I don't even like to wear paisley... ;)

I heard someone recently say they named their daughter Ellery. I think that's a cute, unique name that kind of twists Hillary, Elle, Eleanor, etc. Ellery Grace, Ellery Kate. Evidently, it means "cheerful".

AirLand said...

Well, you said you wanted something a bit unusual... I'm not sure Lucy or Claire really fit that, although they are lovely names. I think Clara fits that the best. Maybe Clara Hadley?

I don't think I'd use Finley as a first name... there are a ton of Fin___ names for boys that are popular right now, so I would think her name would be mistaken for a boy's.

I like the suggestion of Ellery!

Nicole Trager said...

I think some alternatives could be Holly and Clara.

Mrs S said...

I really like Hadley and Claire. Lucy Claire is a great suggestion. From you list and comments listed. I think Hadley Grace
Claire Finley
Lucy Claire
Finley/Finlay ( I met a very sweet australian girl named
Finlay. Finlay Ella was her name.)

Other names you might like: Ruby, Ivy, Elise, Molly or Elsa.

Hope everyones suggestions are helping and not causing more confusion!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone mentioned yet that Finley doesn't mean sunbeam? I've found "fair-haired hero" and "white stranger," but nothing about sun or beams. But the name Claire means "bright," and that seems like a good meaning-name too. I love the name Claire and think it could go either serious or sunshiney: I can picture it on a studious shy girl or on a bouncy social one.

Mere Mere said...

You have some good choices. Hadley is cute (although the popularity warning may be an accurate prophecy), Lucy is sweet and spunky, and Claire is a classic that I will always love.

Can I suggest Helena (pronounced to rhyme with Elena)? It has the "H" and it has a nickname Laney with the "ey" sound of Hadley and a nickname "Lane" which has the short, one-syllable cuteness of Claire. And I don't think of it as overly ethnic. The funny thing about that name is that there is a variant in so many cultures and the variants are used across cultures. (All that and you get another nickname--Lena--to boot.)

Anonymous said...

i would suggest adelaide for you with the nickname addie/addy. to me it has the same feeling as some of the others on your list, but less common. addie claire or addie grace would be very cute!

Katy said...

The very first thing that popped into my head while reading your email was Willow! It's clearly nature based and would look gorgeous on stationary, it has some of the lilt of Ellie without the silliness, and it sound fantastic with Parker. Love it!

I saw that an above poster suggested Ellery, and I just can never resist chiming in when I see it. My 2-year-old is Ellery, and it is just perfect on her. We obviously love it, but maybe it's too androgynous next to Parker? Love it anyway.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness, so many great suggestions already!

I too was going to suggest Finley as a first name. It seems to fit your style & go with the type of name you're looking for.

I know one little Hadley but I too think it may be on the rise. The other Hadleys I know are from literature (a character in a novel I just read [named after an English grandmother]& Hemmingway's wife) & the name means "field of Heather" so I have great connotations with it. Why I think it may be on the rise - it has that "ad" sound that people seem to like (e.g. Madeleine, Madison, Addison, Maddie, Addie, etc.)

I'm so-so on Lucy & think either Finley, Hadley or one of the below suggestions from other readers seems a better choice (see below!)

I really like the suggestions of Phoebe, Ellery & Helena - esp. Helena! Phoebe Grace & you get two kids with the same initials, which is sweet. Helena echoes Elena without being *too Eastern European* (very English, I think?) gives you that HH combo & provides such nickname options as Lena & Laney - the latter of which is somewhat like Lucy, maybe? (And it can be pronounced either Hellena or Heleena to suit your taste!)

As you can tell, you've a bunch of people eager to know what you'll name your girl!

Trudee said...

If I were in your shoes, I would probably want a "girlier" name to contrast with Parker. So I probably wouldn't use Hadley. I think Lucy is great. Classic and pretty. I really like Ellery, and it gives you the nn Ellie. I loved the the suggestion of Helena nn Laney, but I think Helena might be too serious for you, given your concern about Claire. So I'm wondering what you think about Delaney. It gives you that sing-song quality from the full name, not just the nn. It's still not too common (it's stayed around the 200 mark for last ten years according to social security online) and the nn Laney or Lane are fantastic.

I also wanted to mention that, I may have misread, but it seemed like you were waiting for that "lightening bolt" for this baby's name. Back in August, Swistle did a post about naming advice, and one of the points was that "there is no One Perfect Fated Name ... Lack of lightning bolt doesn't mean it's the wrong choice." I think all the names you're considering would be wonderful. Good luck!

Megan said...

I have a great name for you! Since you like Hadley, but think maybe it is not feminine enough, how about Havely? Pronounced Have-uh-lee. I grew up next door to a woman with this name and I have always thought it was so pretty.

Anonymous said...

Honey Grace Heintz.

Becca said...

First of all, Congratulations on the upcoming arrival of your little girl. I LOVE the names you are considering.....most notably Hadley. I may be biased because I have a Hadley (she is almost 1) but I think it perfectly suits your style, would be a great sister to Parker and I too love the HH alliteration. Yes, it is rising in popularity but if you used it, yours would be.the first you knew and so it would always give you positive feelings. FYI: When naming our daughter I consideted Finley as well because our last name starts with an F.

Like others have mentioned I would suggest Finley Claire.

Other names I like that I think fit your style and would compliment Parker(a great name too)

Aspen (tree)
Henley (i like how this one is similar to Henry which you liked)
Harper (maybe getting too popular though?)
Laken/Laikyn ( from the lake)

Good luck....You will find the right name!!


Madelyn said...

I like Hattie.
But I really like Hadley as well, and the suggestion of Holly

Becca said...

I like Ellery!

We had real problems naming our daughter (who is now almost 2 months old). It took forever. We had a list, but it was short and nothing on it seemed right. I did some asking, and it seems that second children often have this problem (from my very small sampling). We finally chose a name, which I loved, but it didn't feel like it was her name until she was born and wore it around a little bit. Whatever you choose will be her name, and it will be beautiful. You have some wonderful names to choose from!

Claire said...

I like the combination of Claire Finley or your more recent consideration of Lucy, but I'm not so keen on the pairing of Hadley with Parker - they both fall into the androgynous spectrum of names that can go either way, so I think it might be nice to have something more definitively girly - personally I wouldn't worry about political associations with Hillary if you love it as a name - I think it's a great choice for you. I also really like the option of Hailey.