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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Baby Boy _____son

C. writes:
Our baby boy is due next week and we are starting to panic as we don't have any names we are certain on.  If he had been a girl, we would have had a lot to choose from that we both loved including: Lilliana, Eloise, Charlotte (Lottie), Blythe, and Josephine.

Our surname is a two syllable name that ends in 'son', and unfortunately this cuts out a lot of great boys names.  For example, my husband's second favourite boys name is Harrison.  We would prefer to steer away from any names that end in 'son' or 'vowel-n'

My husband's favourite boys name is Jack however we know a couple, and our friends just named their baby boy Jackson.  We have been calling the 'bump' Jack just for fun from very early on, thinking that we couldn't really use the name officially, but there is a very slim chance that we may end up feeling that it just has to stick, however we would have to have a difficult conversation with our friends.

My favourite boys name is Tate, however my husband isn't thrilled with it.  Other names I would consider are Maxwell and Rafferty, but once again, my husband isn't enamoured with them.  Ezekiel is another consideration, but not sure if it sounds too unique and Biblical (we are Christian though).

There is a Clyde in the family tree and although we don't particularly love the name, we are looking for something similar that is strong, traditional, but not overly common.  I have been a kindergarten teacher for 14 years and this experience has tended to limit some of the great names we also may have considered.

Would love to hear your advice!

If Harrison is out because of the -son, would the name Harris work? A similar name is Davis.

If you end up feeling you must call him Jack, I wonder if it would work more smoothly with your friends if you named him John with the nicknam Jack?

More like Tate and Jack:


There's been a bit of a trend for biblical names, and that's helped bring a number of names into much easier use: instead of sounding like Bible Extreme, a name like Ezekiel just sounds pleasingly and quirkily biblical---more like a name with ancient roots. To tone it down, you could use Ezra---but then you lose the nickname Zeke. Or you could use Isaac with the nicknames Zac or Ike.

Some boy names similar to the girl names on your list (which may in some cases rule out the later use of the girl names): Joseph, Charlie, Elliot, Louis.

Because you have some very different styles on your list, it may help narrow things down to consider future sibling names, if you think you might have more children. A Jack and an Ezekiel don't coordinate as well as, say, a Jack and a Finn, or a Malachi and an Ezekiel. Consider, too, how the names from your girl list coordinate with your finalists.


Moomoo said...

I think Isaac, with nn Zac could work as it is very much like the Jack that you love. Alternatively, I second the Harris _Son, nn maybe Harry, as it gives Dad a very close link to his favourite. Harris Jack __son or Isaac Harris __son are two which definitely get my vote.

If you want older style strong and rarer names :
Ewan/Euan ( you-an)

But my favourites are Harris Jack and Isaac Harris.

Please update us when you decide!!

Michelle said...

I think John is a wonderful suggestion. Ezekiel is one of those names I would use just to get the nickname- Zeke. I like that Isaac means 'laughter'. I like John Isaac, John Harris or Isaac Harris.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, I love Zachary, nn "Zack."

We have a friend (in his 60's) whose name is Isaac, with the nickname "Zick."

We also have a 13 year old friend named Isaac, who goes by Isaac. :-)

Rayne of Terror said...

I'm the Clyde cheerleader. Give me a C, C! Give me an L, L! I love that name SO much and almost no one uses it. I know one 9 year old Clyde and it's SO fresh and western and it's got everything going for it - oh please use it, use it, use it. If I had it in my family tree I would be ALL OVER that name.

Martha said...

After reading your letter I was going to suggest Clay, and Swistle suggested it too. I absolutely love Clay and would use it in a heartbeat but our last name is Davis and Clay Davis was a very memorable character on The Wire. :)

gail said...

Calder is a strong name that mimics the vowel sounds of Maxwell--perhaps your husband would like it.

In addition to the good suggestions that are rolling in, I'd add:


Ezekiel is a really strong name for a first born son, and I don't think it reads too Biblical because it also reads modern/on trend. The nickname Zeke is similar to Jack, but used a lot less. It sounds as if you're wondering if you have the courage to use it, and I'd say go for it--it would go quite well with all your favorites for girls.

Anonymous said...

I like Harris instead of Harrison, and I'll also second the suggestion of Harry. Clyde makes me think of Claude, but that probably reads just as fusty. Do you like Jake instead of Jack? Still pretty similar, but just enough difference that you could avoid the conversations with your friends.
I'll also suggest Zane, Noah, Ross, Reid, Jasper, Gabriel/Gabe & Cole.

Anonymous said...

If not Clyde, what about Clive? It seems to me that it keeps the sound of Clyde but comes with a different set of associations...which you may or may not like.

Heidi J said...

Elias! Miles!

liz said...

What about naming him Ezra after Ezra Jack Keats and then you can still use the nn Jack (though you'll have to explain why to folks).

sarabean said...

You could also use a name like Jack Harris as a double first name. Jack Harris Clyde _son?

Lyly said...

I like jack. But I love Tate. I think for you should keep it at one syllable. I like a lot of the names on swistle one syllable list. I think they also help with the style issue and are more neutral to future style choices. I think you could just use Zack. I don't think it has to be a nn for another name. A name that I think seems new but older is Scott. Other names: Nate Cole Mitch frank George.

Jill said...

I don't know why but I thought of Ford. If you like a strong shorter name (and your husband loves Harrison haha).
Out of your picks I really like Ezekial. Have you run the suggestion by your husband that he could call him Zeke? That seems similar enough to Jack that he might go for it.

Laura said...

I love Swistle's suggestion of Harris. I think it sounds perfect with the girls' names you like...just for future possible sib names. I'm also going to push for own sweet boy is Tate ---sen and it rolls off the tongue easily, sounds nice and strong and is easily pronounced and spelled. And so far, we've only known one other little Tate (who ironically has the same MIDDLE name as our guy as well). Best wishes to you on your new son!

Bonnie said...

My son is named Jackson and has a Jack in his class at school, 2 other Jack/Jackson's on his football team and a Jack in Boy Scouts. I think it is a common enough name that you don't have to have that conversation with your friends. When 20,000 other people are naming their babies Jack, you would hardly be a name stealer. I think you only need to talk it over with a friend if it is an extremely unique name.

Laura said...

I have a hard time feeling that a friend has the right to a name as popular in this generation as Jack. Since their friend's son is Jackson I think the claim on Jack is even weaker. They should use Jack if that's what you want and it sounds like they are already using Jack. I do like the suggestion of John nn Jack but that's because I'm a traditionalist.

Bree said...

I love Clark for you. LOVE. It's my best friend from college's name, and it would be on my short list for boys if my husband didn't have jealousy issues... shh! It's so fitting for a sweet little boy or a big powerful man. It's "strong, traditional, but not overly common." :) Plus it's not a far leap from the sound of Jack.

I also love Jack. (which is a completely different name from Jackson) And Davis. And Harris.

You can't go wrong!

StephLove said...

I don't think Ezekiel is too strange. I also liked the suggestions of Ezra, Isaac or Harris.

How about Zachary or Zachariah?

Kiri said...

I would try to not use jack, if at all possible. Even though it is a common name, If I were your friends, I wouldnt want you to use a name so similar. I think there are lots of even better short and sweet names to choose from. Love the suggestions of Davis...really love this one. Also Ford, Reid, Finn, Flynn, Archer, Ridge. Good luck!

Trudee said...

I think it depends on whether your friends call their son only Jackson or if they commonly call him Jack. If they do call him Jack then, personally, I would probably avoid using it although (depending on what name you choose) it could be the middle name.

I like the suggestions of Jake or (for a closer sound) Issac or Zachary nn Zac. I also love Max for that same sound. I love Rafferty just because but I actually think Ezekiel is quite the outlier here. It doesn't seem to go with the others on your shortlist, even for girls (except maybe Josephine, which I could kind of see). Looking forward to hearing what you decide.

Abby@AppMtn said...

Would you consider using just Zeke? It sounds like Jack, but is definitely different. And by sidestepping Ezekiel, you avoid that heavy Pilgrim vibe. (So you don't have to name a future daughter Patience or Mercy - unless you want to!)

Nedra said...

What about Jake? That was the first name that came to mind, given your interest in Jack. The name Jacob would sound good with your last name and Jake is a great, classic name. I know a few Jacobs, some of whom go by Jacob and some by Jake. I think it works very well.

Myra said...


Lashley said...

What about Cal? I love it for you based on your list. I'm guessing you wouldn't want it to be short for Calvin because of the -n ending, but maybe Callahan, Caleb, or Callum? You could lean toward surname-y or biblical or on-trend with the full name, but still have that strong, simple traditional feeling of Clyde and Jack.

Or Hank? Short for Henry or for Harris.

Can't wait for an update!

Tonni said...

My girl names are similar to yours- I have a Blythe, and we considered Eloise (still on the list!)... my son is Felix, and I also love Kemuel (Kem), and Amos, and Tobin.
Looking forward to hearing the update!

Anonymous said...

Wow, your girl choices fit into a certain "family" of names to me (don't ask me to define it!) but your boy choices are all over the place to me! An interesting challenge. My favourite suggestions so far are Harris, Jasper, Miles, Ezra, Isaac, and Zachariah or Zachary. Send an update!

Patricia said...

It sounds to me like your baby boy already has a name -- and a very solid one at that: Jack! I'm concerned that if you name him something else, he'll always seem like "Jack whose name is _____." I agree that Jack and Jackson come across as very different names, and I wouldn't not use Jack just because friends called their son Jackson. The surname name Jackson comes with all those other spellings, including the popular Jaxon, while Jack is just Jack -- traditional, longtime nn for John which more recently has become widely used as a given name. Jack was the top name in England/Wales and Northern Ireland for at least the years 2003-2007 and has been the #1 name in Australia. Jack is very much a distinct name and style from Jackson. I'd stick with the name you love and have been calling your baby: JACK!

Patricia said...

PS It might have been best to mention to your friends right away when you heard their baby's name, "What a coincidence, we've been calling our son "Jack"! We've come up with two similar yet distinct names. We can't wait until your little Jackson and our little Jack are old enough to play together!"

That little 'speech' could be altered to work after your son Jack is born and his name is announced. Or you could take a different approach: "We've been calling our baby Jack for months and thought about changing the name when you named your baby Jackson. But we think the names are different enough and we love the name Jack so much that we decided to go ahead with it. We can't wait until your little Jackson and our little Jack are old enough to play together!"

The two babies will have different, though similar sounding, names and be sons of friends, not cousins (though in my opinion, Jackson and Jack would be fine for cousins too). I don't see any reason for you to give up the name Jack if that's the name you really want.

nieke said...

A friend has an adorable son named Claude, I think it's so handsome. Ezekiel is great, and the nickname Zeke makes it pretty easy to live with.

Eva.G said...

I so love Jack! We're in a very similar situation as you, actually. My husband l-o-v-e-s the name Jack and it's a family name, and yet my husband's cousin has a son named Jackson who will be 10+ years old if we end up with a Jack. We've decided it's not a problem, because 1) they are completely different names 2) Jackson is called either Jackson or Jax...not just Jack 3) Jack and Jackson would be 2nd cousins & not too close in age.

I think it's a great choice. I also want to suggest Cord (or Chord) or Hayes for you. And Henry too!