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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 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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Remember Riggins? His family is back for another boy name! Because if it’s difficult to decide whether or not to use an out-there name for a son, imagine what it’s like to name his brother!

Jocelyn writes:

I’m back for more advice! I previously questioned you on my family and friends’ reaction to naming our son Riggins Blaine, which we did.

Now I am pregnant again and it’s another boy. We struggled so much coming up with a name for Riggins, we are both clueless now.

Our daughters are named Kylee Jo and Adrian Reece. We have discussed using the name William Owen (William after my father).

But I don’t want Riggins to feel like his name sticks out like a sore thumb. I love his name and it suits him. The girls have family-inspired names, and Riggins’ middle is a family name, too.

My husband’s only suggestion for naming this boy has been Hardy and I’m not a fan.

I guess I’m trying to ask if we should stick to the traditional family names, or should I find something unique to go with Riggins?

Our last name is very common so unique isn’t such a bad idea to me.

The Name Sage replies:

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These veteran parents know their style, but that doesn’t always make it easier to choose a favorite.

Christina writes:

I need some help coming up with a name for our FIFTH baby.  Our oldest is a boy and the rest are girls. New baby is another girl, which makes it harder – we already have three!  My husband and I struggle finding a baby name we both like – two of our children were nameless five days after they were born. We both like longer names that can be easily nicknamed. We also like older names, but not “popular” older names (no Hazel). Our children’s names and nicknames are:

Richard Malcolm (Richard was hubby’s idea – third generation Richard – we refer to him as Malcolm or Mac for short)

Louisa Kathryn (Lucy for short)

Marguerite Virginia (Margo)

Rosalie Clare (Rosie)

Thanks for the help!

The Name Sage replies:

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They’d love to honor grandma Jacqueline … but a cousin has already used their first choice! Time to ask the Name Sage for some fresh alternatives.

Sandra writes:

My husband and I are expecting our first child and we just found out it’s a boy!

Baby is due September 28th so I’m just starting to seriously consider names. We know for sure that we would like to name him after my husband’s mother who passed away four years ago. Her name was Jacqueline.

We love Jackson but my cousin already used that name for her son. Jonathon (nickname Jack) was vetoed and just Jack doesn’t feel quite finished to us. Jackie and Clair (after her middle name) are too feminine for my husband’s preference.

We’re open to creative ways to honor my mother-in-law to sidestep the name stealing possibility, but it seems like options are limited. The guilt I’m feeling from both sides is making this challenging, too.

I’d appreciate any advice you may have, or creative name suggestions that we may have bypassed! I just read the article on “9 creative ways to honor loved ones with your child’s name” which has me seeking alternative solutions, too.

The Name Sage replies:

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Fall-Inspired Girl Names Needed Now!

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A double challenge: getting dad more involved in the naming process AND finding a girls’ name both parents love for their new daughter. But does that mean mom has to give up her favorites?

Amber writes:

Thank you in advance for helping us name our daughter, due at the end of September/early October.

This baby will have two sisters, Emily and Haven Grace. Emily is from a prior relationship, thus the huge difference in names.

I chose Haven Grace and her dad agreed, so this go-round, I would like him to play a bigger part.

Harlow is my favorite, but it has been vetoed. My runner-up loves are October and Sage (go figure, Name Sage!) but Dad is not impressed with October, even though it’s the month we were married.

He likes Autumn, Serenity, and Faith. I’m not a huge fan, though I might like Autumn Rain or Autumn Reign.

I’m looking to capture the fall season with the beautiful colors of the season being highlighted in the name. Her baby color theme is orange. That beautiful, New England, fall sunset type of orange that can be yellow or pink. We very much enjoy Biblical names and terms. Jesus is our homeboy. We aren’t afraid of Halloween themes, as our wedding was just that.

One more wrench in the works: our last name. Kids are vicious, and our last name sounds like Please without the ‘L’ sound.

The Name Sage responds:

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They’ve got a long list of maybe-names for their baby girl, but how to narrow it down to just one? Maybe the answer comes from their family tree.

Laura writes:

We’re expecting a little girl in October, our second. We already have a son, Frederick James, called Freddy. It’s the perfect name for us – Frederick is the name of a street that we love, and we both love his nickname. It’s not too popular, but instantly recognizable.

We’ve felt we’ve found THE name for quite a few girls’ names so far. The first we loved was Kennedy, a long time ago. Then we both got sick of it, and my wife decided she hated “presidential” names!

We fell in love with Elliott. Then my sister used it for her dog!

Next up was Annie for a while, and it’s sentimental because my mom, who we both adore, is named Ann. But we have two close friends named Annie, plus other women named Annie that are always going to be in our lives. Too many Annies.

After that, we came to Calla. We worried it was too close to too many popular names (Kayla, Callie, Kylie, Kaylie), so we got sick of it.

Right now, we really like Hazel and ElizaEliza happened after we saw Hamilton! Other names we’ve liked are Francesca called Francie (but I hate Franny), Clancy, and Collins. We like gender neutral names a lot.

The name we choose must sound good with our one-syllable last name starting with a hard C sound, which means two or three syllables. We’d prefer something outside of the Top 100, but still recognizable. We don’t want her to have to spell her name her whole life!

Her middle name will be June, after my wife’s grandmother. We don’t like it as a first name because of our short last name.

Any great names jump out at you? Have we TOTALLY overthought this?

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