The Baby Name Game

I’m 29 weeks tomorrow and starting to suddenly feel the pressure of time ticking on and things that must be done. Truth be told, although I am loving being pregnant (apart from the back pain I had early this week and kept me up all night, which has fortunately now disappeared,) I don’t really feel like I am getting much time to think about it or the baby. I’m still working just as hard and long, then when I get home there are a million house decisions to be made. As I type I can hear banging and crashing as the builders knock out the exterior kitchen wall for our bifold doors and I am hiding in the bedroom.

image via

One of the many things that we need to think about are names. It’s like there is a sequence when people ask you about your pregnancy… ‘How far along are you,’ is always first, then ‘Do you know what you are having,’ and the third question is often, ‘Have you got any names picked out?’ Of course I don’t say – made easier by the fact that we still haven’t opened the envelope, and I wouldn’t anyway, I like babies to be announced with their name, as I think it adds to the excitement, but the bottom line is, I don’t really know what we are going to call him or her.

Of course there are contenders, I have a girls name I have loved for years, unfortunately Pete doesn’t feel the same. We also have a possible boys name, which again has been on the cards for a long time, but now I’m not so sure. Boys names I find much easier… I like strong traditional names like William or Thomas, but not too proper like George or Henry. There are still a few more hipster names on the list though and with girls I love traditional old fashioned names. I have less qualms about giving a baby girl a more ‘individual’ name than a boy for some reason. Pete leans much towards the softer side of names for girls, like Emily or Sophie, but I don’t feel they are strong enough, and several of the top 50 for boys.

So what are my criteria? I really don’t have any (I’ve heard people want to incorporate family names, use biblical names, floral names, royal/traditional names,) and it’s really about something I like. I think the problem will be Pete and I agreeing on something and I don’t know how we will ever solve that! There’s is always the will it suit an older person dilemma and what will it be shortened to (- one of my favourites is shortened to a name I don’t love at all.) I also read a NY Times article a while back saying that ‘The once-simple task of coming up with a monogram for the baby blanket has evolved into a high-stakes exercise in personal “branding.” ‘ and whilst I don’t want a name that every other child also has, I wouldn’t be put off a beautiful classic name for that reason. I know plenty of Rebecca‘s but feel no less of an individual as a result.

So today I need your suggestions readers! Please let me know what you or your friends called your babies, the names you have always loved and the secret favourites. I think it’s time to gather some inspiration that I can mull over through the third trimester! I just don’t want to end up jumping at something when he or she is born because we still haven’t decided!

Thanks guys!


PS. Have you heard of Nameberry? It’s a US site where you can see how the popularity of a name fared over the years (amongst other things about it,) and see if you are choosing a name that is suddenly super popular or not.

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102 thoughts on “The Baby Name Game

  1. Ever since we met we joked that we would one day have a little terror called Max… we couldn’t call our baby boy anything else! Other very close contenders though were Albert and Daniel. I loved Milo but T didn’t. And we both adored Theodore (Teddy for short) but a close friend called her baby that a few months before Max was born.

    We had a short list of girls names (we found out at 16 weeks he was a boy), Sophia or Ivy was winning when we stopped discussing it. We also loved Lila and Erin – but again, a friend of mine had an Erin two weeks before Max was born!

    I knew when I saw Max for the first time that he was definitely Max. I think when the moment comes, you’ll have a feeling what’s right.

  2. My daughter is Aurelia (pronounced Or-ray-lia) I love the name & wanted something a little different but something that would age with her well. I recently met a lovely old lady with the same name! High on our name list was Aurora, but this was too R heavy with our surname and also Alba or Isla. I seem to be drawn to A names!! For a little boy she would have been Roman.

        • I love the name Aurelia. Colin Firth’s beloved in Love Actually is called Aurelia. I’ve loved it since I first heard it on that!

          I have a cousin in Italy called Aurora. I was always so jealous of her name, because she was a princess… I was a stuffy old Queen! Ha ha! 🙂

          • We have a Lidia Aurelia and an Isabella Maria – If we had another girl i think i’d have to call her valentina

    • I have this same thing but with ‘M’ names! So funny… We’d call a boy Monty and a girl Maggie or Maeve… I also love Mara and Mila. I must have fallen asleep whilst reading the ‘M’ section of the baby name book?!

      Our daughter is Stella Temperance. I adore it with a passion – it was our girls name before we knew she was a girl or even before we knew there would be a baby, so we weren’t at all bothered about sharing it before she was born. My only regret is that we didn’t have the balls to use Temperance as a first name – it’s my absolute total and utter favourite name EVER!

  3. I remember the discussions that we would have regarding baby names. More often than not we would become distracted with thinking of silly names so actually choosing a name became difficult. We decided not to find out the sex but were both convinced we were having a boy. Eventually we decided on one boys name only to receive a phone call from my friend 5 weeks before my due date telling us she’d called her little boy the name we’d chosen. I hadn’t told anyone our name so I couldn’t even be angry. About a week before I was due we decided on a couple of girls names just in case, this was a struggle as we couldn’t agree on any. When our baby girl was born she didn’t look like either of the names we’d selected the week before so whilst I was getting put back together after labour (nice) we chose her name. Next time I wouldn’t stress myself out before the baby arrives I would wait until they were here to name them.


    • Unless it was a really good friend or close family, I don’t think I’d change our name if someone else picked it. My husband’s cousin’s baby is due two weeks before ours and I was originally petrified they would “steal” our name. However, we barely see them and so I think we’d just go with the original name we’d chosen and avoid them at family parties….

      • I totally agree. I wouldn’t change a name just becauae you know someone else who has had (even just had) another baby of the same name. I think the only exception would be if one of our brothers wives pipped us to the post. We found choosing a name hard enough, settling on one of each that we both liked. Since having Rory we have found another boy’s name we agree on, if we ever have another boy. But I like the girls name we’ve chosen so much that if we don’t have a daughter we’ll have to get a girl dog I think!

  4. Our daughter is called Yulia Alitzel, but we did not decide it until the last moment, when she was actually with us. When I was on bed rest at the hospital, her arrival imminent, we were still undecided. The story of how we found her name is quite magic, I could not believe it happened like that (but I am one to believe in signs and synchronicity and that kind of stuff). We always thought if we had a girl her name would be Lucia, but that could not be. We liked lots of girls’ names, but for boys’ names we had more trouble finding a name that we really, truly liked. I think at some point you’ll just know. I know this sounds crazy, but for us it was like that.

  5. My baby boy is Felix George. Felix means ‘happy and lucky’ which is how we feel about him, and what we hope for him! We decided on this name by before I was 20 weeks and it stuck; every time we discussed other names it felt wrong, our little Felix George was already set (we found out the sex at 19 weeks).

    As for a girl, I liked Beatrice Sophie but my favorite is Romilly Bernadette. I think it’s unusual, memorable and pretty. I wanted our children’s names to be classic yet unusual. I used the ‘Baby Name Wizard’ books which are very similar to the Nameberry website.

  6. I like Evelyn…it’s quite a grown up name so can shorten to Evie which is cute. I also like Lyla but not sure if it’s abit out there.

  7. We have always wanted Lucas for a boy and Charlotte for a girl. But now I look after a little boy called Lucas and I absolutely detest Charlie as a shortened version. So my current favourites are Noah, Jackson and Teddy for a boy and Lilly, Clara and Liesel for a girl.

    Hannah – I adore Aurelia! So beautiful!

  8. We have a Maximillian, usually called Max though. We always suspected we’d have a boy and never argued about his name. We couldn’t choose a girls name, right up until the birth, so it’s possible I just ‘knew’. I would have gone a bit left field with a girl. I liked Quinn (means Queen in Spanish, I think), Riley, Bailey, Cara or Erin.

  9. Firstly, I still can’t believe you haven’t opened the envelope. You have willpower I’ve only dreamed of!

    We have our 20 week scan tomorrow (….Gulp…eekekekekekekkkk) so by this time tomorrow, I could have taken a sneaky peak at the screen and KNOW. Although as time ticks on I’m actually glad we’ve decided not to find out…

    I love name chat. Like you, we would never confirm our exact choices because I love getting the “we had a boy called XXX XXXX” calls on the day but there is no harm in a bit of speculation! We like traditional names too but as we both have large families of which we are younger members, there are already a whole host of relatives comprising Hugo, Joseph, Benjamin, Elizabeth, Sophie, Jack, Emily, Phillip etc.

    We only had one girls name we could agree on so I won’t say what that is but we CANNOT decide on boys. Many of our favourites end in “S” which doesn’t really fit with our surname. Like Fee, we like Miles (Milo for short) but it ends in “S” so I’m not sure. Same for James (plus I think James Jones sounds a bit like a shoe shop). We like William but don’t really like Will or Billy. Thomas is out because we don’t want to name the baby after an old Welsh sex symbol (see surname above). I like Edward but its a husband’s family no no. We like Oliver as its a family name but, as a result, only as a middle name. My favourite is Henry and its a family name on both sides but He thinks its too posh/traditional/royal.

    I am keen to narrow down the list before we go into the hospital. I’d be worried about agreeing something whilst under the influence of drugs or hormones and having a baby named Django Geronimo Einstein Jones…

  10. Ooooh, baby names! Currently my most and least favourite topic. Most because it’s exciting and fun, least because it’s SO HARD. Everyone has an opinion and it’s usually negative (we mentioned to Fin’s granny that we were considering her name, and she said, “Oh, I’ve always hated my name.” Awkward).

    We don’t have set criteria, but we do tend to be more drawn to names that are traditional or Scottish, or both. Our own first names are both good solid Scottish names and I’d like the baby’s name to “fit” with ours, so we sound like we belong together, if that makes sense? I like the idea of the first and/or middle name being a reference to something or someone special, be that a family name, a historical character we admire, or Fin’s favourite saint (what, your husband doesn’t have a favourite saint?). There’s also a certain level of expectation that we will honour my mum somehow in the name, although I wouldn’t give a baby girl her first name – way too much to live up to, and it would just feel a bit weird I think.

    We do have a few girl names we like (one in particular). There are a also a couple of boy names, but while they’re both very old-school, they’re almost *too* old-school and I’m worried they’re a bit out there. Our surname always gets mispelled or mispronounced, so I’m really keen for the baby to have a simple, easy to spell first name.

    Whatever we decide, we won’t be making any final decisions before the baby comes (not least because we don’t know the sex) and I’ve learned my lesson from Fin’s granny not to tell anyone what we’re thinking!

    • My sister was going to be called Florence (instead of Francesca) after my Mum’s mum but she vetoe’d that too – saying it was awful and she would get called Flossie (which she hated!) Now I love Flossie and Florrie!

      • I LOVE Florrie. It’s Gav’s Nana’s name. I wanted Florrie and Marjory (my granny’s name) as middle names but Gav didn’t like them. I’m still campaigning for the next lot… x

  11. I have twins, and I knew one name, Matilda, before she was born- she was always moving, was first born and suits the name. Alice took more thought, but suits her. Flower names are lovely for girls, but can come across as not very serious, which might be a pain in later life. Great for middle names tho, Alice is Alice Daisy. Think about initials, old family names (there was a Matilda Kate in our family before) and google the more unusual ones. You don’t want it to bring up a stripper! With you on the boys names, Thomas, or Corin is unusual. Enjoy your pregnancy!

  12. Like Kirsty, we always wanted a middle name that ‘meant’ something, so we named Freddie after Tom’s Grandpa. Annoyingly Frederick actually came from Tom’s Granny, but it just seemed so right when she mentioned it. For me, the flow of the name has to be right – long first name + short middle, or whatever.

    We’ve had a girls name decided for years, so no choice on that, but I also love Lydia and Olivia. I always wanted to call my son Harry, but it’s so popular now. We loved Toby, Oscar and Noah for other boys’ options.

      • Don’t do it, R!! I used to hate my name, but it’s grown on me… Actually, the main reason not to is because it is becoming more popular. Whenever I meet someone new, they always say ‘my niece/best friend’s daughter/neighbour’s daughter is called Esme, it’s so pretty!’

  13. I love being a Victoria, I always have especially as it has quite a few nicknames, I have been Tory, Vicki & Vics at various stages of my life.
    I am very much into “classic” baby names, I love William, John, Michael and George for a boy and Grace, Evelyn, Elizabeth and Charlotte for a girl (half of these are,also family members though, so I may be biased!)

  14. As you probably know I have no babies, nor intend to, but I’ve always said if I have children they will be either an Emma or a Matthew. I don’t know why, but they just will. Those two names have stuck in my head and whenever anyone asks me about if I’m having future children, I imagine an Emma or Matthew in my future.
    A boy’s middle name will be Christopher (My husbands first name, and my dad’s middle name), though there is tradition in my family to carry on the father’s name. (i.e. my dad is Anthony as his dad is also Anthony.) I’m not sure I appreciate the ‘Jnr’ that comes with that though!
    L x

    • I also forgot to mention…
      I always tell my husband if we have a child they will be called Peter (our last name is Parker). Obviously he doesn’t want Spiderman for a child – whereas I think its awesome – and it is enough to keep him away from any baby talk whatsoever. Hurrah!

      • I won’t make any secret of loving names that alliterate with the surname. Like Edward Woodward. So if I were choosing your baby name I’d have to go for something like Nora for a girl (I can already imagine her as a conceptual artist or fashion designer) and Nicholas for a boy (Nick N sounds like a dude. Maybe an architect?). FYI The Stendall naming service is available free to all FF readers.

        Sadly I couldn’t get any of the suitable S names past Tom. Stanley Stendall anyone? Tom’s friends still call Rory, Wendal Stendall. One of his friends mums still thinks thats what we called him.

        Nicknames are also an important consideration. In private we call Rory, The Stendallator, Danger Mouse or Roar (said whilst actually roaring which is part of the fun).

  15. We found out we were having a girl at our 20 week scan – the scan was on Christmas Eve so we found out as an early Christmas present! It was such a relief as i have ALWAYS said if i had a girl, she would be called Ruby after my Nan, and luckily my husband didn’t argue. I did let him pick the middle name though which was a bit nerve wracking, but i love what he came up with – Elise (a beautiful name inspired by his fav car which is a Lotus Elise!). So, we have Ruby Elise. Haven’t got a clue where we will go next with names, i am a bit traditional in the sense that i would like to find a name from within the family, but my husband and i really disagreed over boys names so fingers crossed for more girls!

  16. It’s one of my favourite conversations – but probably mainly cos it is very much theoretical at this stage…
    I like names that are classic, not too made up or crazy, but am also put off by really common names so that’s helpful.
    Having Brownies puts me off names easily also – teachers must get that really badly!
    We have lots of great girls names we both like – boys are a lot harder to find that gap between boring and too crazy different!
    Not quite sure what you mean by a “strong” girls name??

  17. My twins are called Leo and Toby. It was tricky finding a name we both liked, then finding another name we both liked, and then finding 2 names that we both liked that went together!!

    We struggled for girls names but I think my 2 favourites were Phoebe and Paige.

  18. Mine little girl is Tessa Elin. She was always going to be Tessa even before there was a baby in the offing. Not really sure why… However, I love it as its uncommon but not unusual if you get what I mean. I would also class it as a strong name like you were saying in your post, but Tess is also nice and sweet.
    The Elin bit was straight out the baby names book, Mark is Welsh and wanted something Welsh in there. I wanted a name I could pronounce without having to think about it. Elin, just jumped out as a beautiful way of achieving that.

    Would have no idea if we have another girl in the future.

  19. We really struggled with names, took ages to agree. My husband suggested Phoebe- which I didn’t want to like but did as it had references to my classics degree. We then looked at the family tree my mum was compiling and my great great grandmother was called Phoebe( whose inherited wedding ring was the only jewellery I could fit on my fat swollen fingers – thought the ring belonged to her daughter Ethel but it started with Phoebe!) then saw another great great grandmother was Matilda which I would also have loved as a first name. So she became Phoebe Matilda.
    The 1901 census also gave us ideas too. We also did the shout test with the name- could we comfortably shout it out in the park in the future. ( that’s how I convinced my husband Hercules was not for us if Phoebe had been a boy! ) xxx

  20. Baby names…….don’t get me started! We have the name for our baby boy but have tried to keep it a secret as much as posisble. We eventually gave in and told imidiate family, as I am useless at keeping a secret, everyone likes the name so far apart from my mum.
    It has been nice to have the name to call him at home between me and Nik and it feels as if he has more of a personality, but to everyone else he is baby Hood.

    The main reasn we havn’t told people is that there will alwasy be someone who pulls a face and dosn’t like your choice, then you get doubts in your mind.

    I would give you suggestions, expect we have our names sorted out for the next baby (if we are that lucky) for both the boy and the girl so need to keep those for next time.
    As we have been trying since 2009 we have had plenty fo time to come up with them.

    Good luck with your choice.

  21. I’m due in two days time; our names are (first and middle) Ralph James, William James, Violet Sienna or Isabelle Rose


  22. I love name chat. If you like proper names, what about Alexander? Xander is a nice posh short form, Alex is more down to earth. I tried to imagine our child fitting in with people from all backgrounds, so nothing too pretentious. We are not posh enough for example to have a Barnaby or a Bertram. But on the other hand I think you need to have a boardroom name, just in case they end up being someone very important, which ruled out a lot of trendy hipster names for us, whether male or female. For a girl you might like Beatrice? It’s traditional in the same vein as Florence I suppose 😉

    • Ah Lucy, Alexander is our absolute favourite! Hoping we are lucky enough to use it one day. It is one of those lovely long names that also has nice short forms and seems appropriate for all ages! For a girl I love Audrey. So classic!

  23. We never did agree on a boys name! I liked Milo, Rory and Dexter but the hubs wasn’t keen on any of these. We ditched the boys name chat when we found out she was a girl! I always liked Elsa for a girl but the hubs thought it sounded harsh (no idea why!) Other girls names we liked were Scarlett (which is her middle name) Ruby (after my grandma but we thought it had become a bit common) Anya, Mia, Maya and I liked Pearl too. I also liked jasmine until the mil half way through my pregnancy said. Just don’t call her something like jasmine!! I banned all name chat after that!!!

    We settled on Annie by about 30 weeks and I can’t imagine her called anything else now. At first I was worried it was a bit cutesy but then I thought of Annie Lennox who is one strong lady and I don’t associate that with cutesy at all. I like how everyone knows it but it’s still quite unusual for babies…


    Ps : nameberry was my fave site!!!

  24. My dream name for a little girl is Margot, I’m not sure why I love it so much but I just think it’s an adorable name which would still be lovely for when she’s a grown woman.

    For a boy I would definitely go for something more traditional such as Reuben or Noah.

  25. It took us over a week to name our daughter. We were convinced we were having a boy and so had one of those, but for girls just a list. When she popped out she didn’t “look like” any of the names on the list and then we simply couldn’t agree. He argued my names were too “strong”, I said his were far too weak! In the end we compromised. I rather liked Emmeline, to be called Emmi, and while he hated Emmeline, he liked Emmi, so we went with Emilia and she’s Emmi to all. Of course we both love both Emilia and Emmi now. My favourite name was Beatrice, Bea on a daily basis. He said it was too stern but I think I may be able to persuade him if we have another girl.

    I was given the following by someone to try out for all names:

    Can X come out to play?
    X I love you
    X is the man/woman for the job.

    If your chosen name works well for all three you’re on to a winner!

    • Good tips! I remember reading that Cup of Jo’s test for her boys’ names was the blind date test, as in, imagine a friend asking you, “Would you like to go on a blind date with my friend X?” In other words, did the name sound like a good guy?

      I also think it’s really important to say the name out loud – some names that looked lovely on paper really didn’t roll off my tongue.

      Also, I’ve been practising writing and saying just first name and last name, since that’s what they will be 99% of the time. Middle names are lovely and complete the name, but they’re kind of ornamental in practice. I couldn’t tell you the middle names of most of the people I know, unless they’ve sent me a wedding invitation recently.

  26. My son is 4wks old and called Dexter.
    I absolutely love the name and still am so happy and giddy about telling people his name. And I was fit to burst by the time he was born as I couldn’t wait to tell people!
    My criteria was unusual but not weird. And I hope I achieved that. The other name we had in the offing was Blake but I can’t imagine him being a Blake now at all.
    My husband kept discounting names by saying that he couldn’t imagine a baby with that name but I had to keep reminding him that he would only be a baby for a very short time!

  27. Littles currently in my family are Joseph, Isaac, Grace, Nancy, Megan.
    Nancy was a bit of a surprise to all, but has ended up suiting the name down to the ground!
    Names I like for girls are classic, but have the potential for more modern, but nice, nicknames. Elizabeth and Katherine are currently favourites.
    I like Sophia, but dislike Sophie. To me Sophie is a bit wet, but Sophia has a bit more “spunk” to it!

    Unfortunately, I’m a teacher, and that ruins names for me quite a bit! For instance, I could never ever have a Bradley! I’ve taught 3 of them, and they’ve all been awful! Conversely though, I’ve never had a Harriet I didn’t really like!

  28. My twin girls are Jenna Lily (my choice) and Natasha Beth (my husbands choice) we found it the fairest way to decide. We had a list each and both got to strike off ones we didn’t like. To be honest i liked none of my husbands choices but i didn’t detest Natasha as much as the rest of his choices so agreed and it suits her so much now. I did say he could only have that name as long as she was never shortened to Tasha! I wanted Jenna to be Lily but silly man said it rhymed with willy and she would get teased (only a man hey) but i’m glad now as it is such as popular name. My other girl favourites were Elouise, Charlotte and Summer but i think Summer was the pregnancy hormones! i struggled with boy names the only ones i liked were Tomas and Benjamin. Such a fun time, happy name picking!

  29. Our little girl is called Amelia and her second name is Rose. Both ridiculously popular but I don’t care. It’s the name that I chose for our longed for daughter some 10 years ago and it really suits her. I love its old fashioned and timeless quality but there are some great , strong Amelia’s out there. Amelia Earhart for one and being a Dr Who fan, Amelia Pond too 🙂
    If we ever have another girl, we’ve chosen Chloe Elise…
    And for a boy, Joshua Atticus! Because we’re both huge To Kill a Mockingbird fans..,
    Good luck with the decision! Xx

  30. We have an Ava Frances. We found names really difficult, all the names Andy liked, I disliked, and vice versa. Also lots of nice names had strong associations, from people we’d met. As we didn’t know any Ava’s, we had no associations. We were both aware it was very popular, but as there was only one name, we both liked, it had to be Ava.

    I wanted a classic name, as the middle name, to make up for the trendy first name. Frances is after my much adored Great-Great Aunt. I got to meet my Granny’s auntie, who lived to 102. She was a wonderful lady.

    Rebecca, I agree on the classic names. What about Juliet or Samuel?

    Good luck. We never agreed on our complete boys and girls names, till about 37 weeks, and Ava arrived at 38 weeks.

  31. Our boy’s name is Eric Buddy. It was agreed straight away without hesitation however we debated over the spelling, Mr wanted the Scandinavian spelling ending in K, I argued though as our surname is uncommon and has to be spelt out every time spelling out both names is just a hassle.

    Future girl’s names run a theme and include Alma, Alba, Ada, Ena and Enid
    I tend to be drawn to names that can’t be shortened even though I shorten mine (Johanne) and that mean nicknames/rhymes can’t be attached to.

    I like that they’re different enough not to be run of the mill but not too out there to cause issues.

    It’s such a big decision. Good Luck.

  32. Funnily enough Rebecca, William, Thomas and Henry were all on my top fav list. There were a few others I loved too including Hugo (although my friend’s little one is Hugo) and Theo.

    I was convinced I was having a boy and was hugely surprised when the midwife told us it was a girl. We too, really struggled for a girls name that we agreed on. My husband liked Charlotte and I do too but not enough. I liked Harriet but this is our cats name!! Boo! Late in my pregnancy I discovered the name Freya. We both liked it and it’s meaning (lady and Friday)so added it to the list. It was my fav. When our little lady was born, we decided to wait to name her till the next day since I was quite high on gas and air. Anyway, next day we both agreed she was def a Freya and I’m thrilled with it! She was born on a Friday too so it was meant to be!

    Good luck with your list! It’s such a tough decision! X

  33. Our son is Holden Cooper.

    Having a fairly unusual or not common name myself I wanted to give my son the same; there was only one other Holden in Scotland in 2012. It took us ages to choose his name, one of the reasons we found out the sex beforehand as finding two names would have been hard, but once we found Holden we knew it was right.

    Cooper is my maiden name which is why he was given that as his middle name but I do also love that name. I have my mums maiden name as a middle name so we wanted to do the same and have a family connection included somewhere. As our surname is Ross, all of Holden’s names ended up being ones that could be either first names or surnames.

    We didn’t tell anyone beforehand either, we waited until he was born. I’ve no idea what we choose if we have another boy or a girl although I do think it’s easier to find an unusual name for a girl.

  34. My seven month old daughter is Lydia Erin. I always loved girls names ending in A, Lydia is classic, simple but still sweet and my husband picked Erin which is a strong name I think. It took us 4weeks after she arrived to decide!

    • Our daughter is Lydia, too! I haven’t come across any other Lydias so far… She’s Lydia Charlotte though, and also has my surname as a middle name, though people seem to presume that means we’ve double-barrelled her surname.

  35. We know what we’re having and I think it’s made the task of deciding a name so much harder.

    We have an Ethan (8) and an Ysella (nearly 7) (pronounced ee-ZELL-ah) and finding a name we both love as much as this has been a huge challenge. Especially as my brother stole my very favourite name just before Christmas.

    My favourite names that I can’t use are (girls) Indigo, India, Effie, Elfie, Cora/Coralie/ clemency, India/Indigo, Keeva, and Posy. Favourite boys names are Joshua, Josiah, Seth, Zachary, Nathaniel, and Hugo.

  36. My baby names are all theoretical but it’s so lovely thinking about it.
    For a boy I think we would be definite on William James. William for my Father-in-law and James for my Dad. It’s a good strong boys name which I like and I do like the shortened version of Will.
    Girls are a bit trickier. Although I love my name (Alexandra) I’ve always been Alex and this has caused problems with people assuming I’m a boy. So if we had a girl I would want her to have a girlie name. I love old fashioned names, but lots of them don’t work with our surname, Ava Hayler for example.
    My best friend gave her daughter Phoebe my name as her middle name, so I’m keen to have her name in my daughter’s. I also love a shortened version of her name, Kitty. But it could mean I end up with a William and Katherine and whilst I like the Royal couple, I don’t want people to think I’m obsessed with them!
    Good luck choosing Rebecca! Can’t wait to find out what you’ve picked.

  37. Lovely reading everyone’s thoughts. So we have Alice Emmeline. We wanted the middle name to be after a strong woman, so Emmeline Pankhurst. Some friends have just used that thought & their son’s middle name is Bevan, maybe a bit too NHS link for two doctors?
    If she’s been a boy Barnaby Abraham or Arthur Abraham. Abraham was what would have been my mother’s maiden name if it hadn’t been changed due to the war. We really liked Edward but the initials would have been EAT…..

  38. I could be here for DAYS telling you all the names I love so I’ll stick with family names… My two are Charlotte and Heather and I have 9 nieces and nephews who are Grace, Rose, Alexandra, Samuel, Charlie, Edward, Harri, Emily & Verity.

    None of their names are ever shortened either (well, Charlie is Charles on his birth certificate but he’s always been called Charlie).

    We didn’t think about having a family connection in our names (we actually tried to avoid it – see above comment RE grannies) but inadvertently called C after my dad and his mum (he’s Charles and she was Elizabeth) which is rather annoying given that my dad is a complete plonk and we’ve not seen him for over 5 years now. Sigh. We also didn’t think about how close it was to Charlie but hey ho, she wouldn’t suit any other name now!

    Choosing names was so much fun, I can’t wait to start the Hamish campaign all over again* 🙂

    *not a sneaky announcement

  39. It’s just as well we’re not having children as my husband thinks my names are so awful that any child given one of ‘my’ names would be taken away from us and put in care! It’s the boys’ names he objects to. I like Jago, Jonty or Rowan for boys. For girls I’m less sure since Matilda and Tabitha – two old favourites – seem quite popular these days. I like Ava and Ysolda too.

  40. I had several criteria a name had to meet: traditional, not trendy, not popular (not in the top 50 and preferably not in the top 100), at least three syllables with a proper nickname so that he/she could choose what to be called when he/she is a high court judge… I then wanted one middle name that was still traditional and one short middle name. Basically the same as my parents’ criteria when they named me and my siblings!

    Before the 20 week scan we were convinced we were having a boy so spent ages discussing boys names but got nowhere. It was almost a relief when we were told she was a girl! We came to a short list really quickly – Alexandra, Eleanor and Eloise (other names I love like Clara and Clementine didn’t meet my criteria). I always planned to wait until she was born before picking a name but when playing with middle names we ended up with Eleanor Cecily Grace and it stuck! She’s currently 17 days old and asleep (bliss) on my lap.

    • Clara is a beautiful name! Sort of Thomas Hardy-esque heroine.

      I love my own name, Lucy, which was pretty rare when I was growing up. My mum told me my middle name, Elizabeth, was chosen just in case ‘Lucy’ went out of fashion!

      I’ve no idea what I’d called a baby, none at all. But I like some of my family names, like Muriel and Robert. My husband likes all sorts of odd names, so I can just imagine the ‘discussions’ we’d have!

      • I have loved being a Lucy. I also love how well it goes with Tom. Something I’m sure you can appreciate Mrs G!

        • I like being a Lucy too- it’s relatively unusual and hard to shorten except to Luce, which I hate!!

          I love thinking of baby names, as thoughts of little folks are now on the horizon- and I love hearing everyone else’s choices. We have a boy’s name and girl’s name picked out- both traditional with a nod to who we are- a bit of Cornwall and Ireland for where we come from and Italy for where I’ve worked for years. I’m still sad we can’t call a girlie Siena, but with Bennett it’s a no no, too many ns.

          Hope to keep reading all these lovely happy posts ladies xx

  41. Other sites I like include: and

    I find boys names much easier than girls names. Had a long list of boys names, found out we’re having a girl and still haven’t decided and I’m now 29 weeks too.

    Fave boys names include Raphael, Caleb and Xander.

    Girls names for us can’t be too feminine which knocks out flowery or pretty names. We like stronger names like Erin, which is a name that has become just too popular to consider. Oh well…

  42. I absolutely love longer, traditional names but with a ‘known as’ part. For example, my two absolute favourite girls names are;

    Alexandra ‘Lexie’ or Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Mark hates Betty but I think he could be moved on Lexie when the time comes! I think having the longer name on the birth certificate gives them a choice as they get older too.

    Boys names?! No idea, I used to love Luca but I married a North and for anyone living in Yorkshire I don’t want my child sharing a very similar name to the local news!

    Happy choosing X

  43. We found out the gender at 18 weeks partly because we had a lot of girls names but were struggling for boys and we needed to know if it was going to get serious.

    Our surname is French-Spanish and British names didn’t really go very well, but we knew we wanted a name everyone could pronounce so that limited us a bit. In the end we got it down to three and then I started testing them by cycling to work imagining (and sometimes actually) shouting them out in the street (this came to be known as the Playground Test – how comfortable would I be yelling it out in a playground?!). It immediately ruled out Enzo which I’d loved before but didn’t feel right. Luckily there was one I didn’t just liked saying but felt proud saying, and when we heard it used on the radio a few days later and it sounded so nice, that was it! Now I can’t wait to start using it.

    For a middle name I wanted something British so his name had some of his British identity in it, and as my grandad and dad both have the same name we went for that so we could weave a bit of our family into his name too. When we told my dad we were doing this he was stunned but so happy, so that was very much the right choice too. I’m really glad we’re doing that.

    Names I would have loved if we were having a girl: Aurelie, Florence, Lyra, Eleanor, Orla, Theo (traditionally for a boy, I think, but I know two women called Theo and it’s so pretty but strong, I love it!)

    Boys names I also love: Josh, Thomas, Will, Luca.

    Good luck!

  44. I used to think it was important to have an unusual name because I was one of four Sarahs in my year at school (three of us had the same middle name too). And there were tonnes of Emmas, Rachels and Kayleighs. Every other boy was Dave, James, Andrew or Rob (my husband is Andrew James). Although growing up it doesn’t feel special having a common name, now I’m in the ‘adult’ world it’s less frequent that i meet other Sarahs and I really like my name – especially because it can’t be shortened and nothing rhymes. Although i guess a lot of guys with popular names were known by their surnames so that’s something to consider. Despite this, I wouldn’t discount a name just because it’s popular. (I would if a close friend or relative used it though).

  45. As a local primary school teacher I can tell you we don’t need more: George’s, Charlie’s or Amelia’s!!!! Traditional names are definitely coming back, on my waiting list for September I have a Hetty, Percy and Betsy!! It so funny seeing the cycles of names that come through! I always wanted Luca (after my uncle) and then last year we had 2 in a class!!! From experiment don’t tell anyone your names as their opinion may sway you and then there is also the dreaded baby-name stealer!!

  46. For a girl: Mabel or Zosia (family names, Mum’s side is Polish), Ivy, Berry or Halcyon – these are just names I like.
    For a boy: Jack, Gustaw, or Viggo (also family names, my Dad’s side is Danish).
    Just hypothetical for me but a few friends are pregnant currently so it gets discussed a lot! I think my Polish and Danish names are probably ‘safe’!

  47. I am finding names tricksy!! We found out at the 20 week scan that we are having a boy – extremely happy about this in all but the naming… We had loads of great girls’ names ready to go – Coralie (nn Coco) was my favourite – but boys are proving difficult to get agreement on.

    My husband has set himself strict criteria and seems to want a one syllable name, or if we have to have two syllables, not ending in a constanant, to the exclusion of a lot of perfectly reasonable names. I like names ending in -n which sound bad with our surname and longer names that can be shortened. My current favourites are Leo and Alister (nn Ally/Albie). My husband’s favourite is Josh. He also keeps suggesting 1990’s school register names… Mark, Luke, James, anyone?!

  48. We aren’t finding out what the sex of our baby is until birth. My husband and I have been together 11 years, married 4, and this will be our first child. We are having the hardest time deciding on a name. Heck, it took us 3 days just to name our dog Frodo after we adopted him, at least we have until December to choose. We made the mistake of letting my mom know our favorite girl name, Thistle, and she told everyone and they all refuse to use it and make fun of it every time they see us, despite knowing we love the sound of it and it has a special meaning to us. On our Call the Baby Name List, girls are: Allura, Arwen/Arwyn, Blossom, Cypress, Delta, Elliza, Journey, Khaleesi, Lin, Luna, River, Starla, Thistle, Winifred (Freddie/Winnie), and Wisdom; boys are: Archer, Dash, Journey, Leupold/Leopold, Leonidas, Remington, River Sparrow, Thatcher Thorne, Tripp, and Weatherby. We have a completely different list of secondary names such as Aries, Bloom, Edom, Emerson, Lennox, Artemis, Meadow, Tollie, and Phoenix. Whatever we choose, we are keeping it a secret until birth.

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