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Have a baby name dilemma?

Ask the Namesage!

Welcome to Nameberry’s newest column, The Name Sage. Every week, nameberry’s Senior Editor, Abby Sandel, will answer one reader’s questions about naming a baby-on-the-way, or general baby name angst. And here’s the best part: we’d love it if you would add your thoughtful suggestions and comments to help expectant parents decide. The world needs more nicely named children, berries! Want to see your question featured? Please email namesage@nameberry.com. Be sure to include your due date.

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Fresh, Modern Girl Names

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Their firstborn’s name came to them without any difficulty. But if this new baby is a girl, she’s nameless! Can we help Everly’s mama find some fresh inspiration?

Laura writes:

We will be welcoming our second child this summer.  Our sweet Everly Reed will be a great big sister … the only problem is that I don’t think I can come up with a good baby name to follow hers!

Everly was our immediate favorite and Reed is my middle name, so the decision was as easy as could be.

We have already agreed upon a boy name: Wells Robert, but there is no girl name that really has the draw for me like Everly.

Our last name is a long German mouthful that starts with M, so very little flows with it.

The only name that has come up for consideration is Perrie Louise (Perry was my grandfather’s name and Louise is my husband’s grandmother). I’m not 100% sold on it, but as of now it is all I have.

My inspiration pool is drying up. Your help would be greatly appreciated!

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Name Sage: Musical Boy Names

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By Abby Sandel

This musical family has named three daughters, all inspired by song. But now that they’re expecting a boy, all the names sound flat! What fits with the theme for a son?

Lisa writes:

I have 3 daughters with musical names: Cadence, Melody, and Aria. I thought for sure we would be having another girl and I was already set on the name Joy Elise. They are a reference to Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” and “Für Elise.”

Anyway … it’s a boy, due in May!  We were thinking Reed, but I don’t love that name.

The name doesn’t necessarily have to be musical, and I don’t want it to be something that is too weird or not really a name. We also don’t want to repeat an initial, so no L, Y, M, C, or A.

We have considered:

-Apollo, for the Greek god of music. But now we have Aria. Plus, everybody laughed at Apollo, and I would prefer to avoid that kind of reaction.

-Nathaniel, for Nat King Cole

-Dorian, but I keep thinking of Finding Dory

-Beckett, but it’s not musical

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Boy Baby Names: Can Remy Be Saved?

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They have the perfect name for their next child – if they can resolve spelling and pronunciation challenges. Can it be done, or should they move on to another choice?

Marie writes:

My husband’s family has a great name that has been passed down (to boys only so far) for many generations: Remy. I love names that aren’t too common, are familiar, pack a good historical punch (either familial or popular history), and feel nice to say.

The only holdup is that the family pronounces it Ray-mee. My husband’s family has been in the US for many generations, originally from Belgium. My mom’s side of the family is very French. To them, this pronunciation sounds like an Anglicized version of the French original (which it likely is). I’m not French enough to feel comfortable committing to the ‘r’ rolling French pronunciation.

So … is there any way we can salvage this name? I think this name could work for either sex and aside from a bit of confusion, no one in my husband’s family would be insulted by a different take on the name.

I think an obvious solution would be to use the “Rem-mee” pronunciation and maybe use the Remi spelling to signal that it is an ode to Remy but a different name. I need some convincing on this though.

Our older son has a name that has two possible pronunciations. I am constantly correcting people. If possible, it would be a bonus to find a name with a straightforward pronunciation and spelling … which might be challenging with this name!

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They’re naming daughter number three, and feeling backed into a corner. Is the pattern they’ve established unbreakable? Or do they have more options than they think?

Hanna writes:

I have a bit of a dilemma. My husband and I have backed ourselves into a corner with our older girls’ names, Emma and Bella – two names that have a double letter and end-in-a. If this baby is a boy we plan to name him after his father, but if it’s a girl, we don’t have a clue.

I’m not a fan of -enna or -anna names as they sound too much like Emma, and any Ella names are obviously out because of Bella.

DH has suggested Netta, which I am not a fan of, and Nessa has already been used by a friend. At this point, I don’t even know that there is a name that fits our criteria, but I don’t want the new baby to feel left out if her name doesn’t match her sisters.

Names we do like outside of our theme include Lily, Meredith, Hazel, Pia, and Kate. The middle name will be Guinevere.

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Bold Boy Names: How about Thor?

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Should they name their son Thor? He’s big on the heroic heritage pick, but she fears it might be too much name for a mere mortal.

Mary writes:

I’m writing with an odd conundrum. My husband is dead set on naming our son Thor.

My husband’s family is Norwegian and very proud of their heritage though they’ve been in the US for several generations. My father-in-law is named Thor. My husband is one of the few men in his family without a clearly Scandinavian name. He’s Kurt, with family members called Lars, Per, Nils, Ole, Bjorn, and even Torbjor.

But he doesn’t want just any Scandinavian name. He wants to name his son after his father.

I shut down the possibility the minute we started talking about marriage and kids. I adore my father-in-law, and he wears his name well. He even loves Thor movie memorabilia.

Therein lies my problem. I fell asleep during the Avengers movie. My favorite names are Henry, Thomas, Jack, August, or Jude. Maybe something from a novel. I don’t want to explain for the rest of my life that he wasn’t named after a superhero. I can’t stop thinking about the looks I’d get from other parents. (I know I shouldn’t care, but I do.) Plus, we plan on having more than one child. What would we possibly name a sibling for Thor?

And yet, since we found out we were having a boy, Thor is starting to grow on me! I love seeing how excited it makes my husband to talk about how much my father-in-law would love it. I know a little boy would probably love to be named Thor, and now a tiny part of my brain is considering it, which I never thought would happen. Am I going crazy? Can I name a child Thor? Should I?

My husband is very stubborn about using it as a middle name, and Henry Thor doesn’t have a great ring to it.

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