Baby girl Smith: what would you advise?

Oh what a dilemma. The baby (first child) is due next week, and still no name has been chosen. The parents just can’t decide. They have 3 possible names and are going to wait till they see their daughter before choosing her name. Each of the three names poses a concern for the mother who will most likely make the final decision.

[name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]: she’s had that name in mind for her daughter for several years. She LOVES the name [name]Jane[/name]. There are other names she likes (not all of them liked by the baby’s daddy), but really, she only LOVES [name]Jane[/name]. Dad likes [name]Jane[/name] too. [name]Both[/name] [name]Jane[/name] and [name]Catherine[/name] are family names for the mom. The concern is [name]Jane[/name] with [name]Smith[/name]: is the combination okay? Any other surname and [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] would be the name for sure; a baby name book would not have been needed.

[name]Chloe[/name] [name]Jane[/name]: for a few months this was the (compromise) name. [name]Both[/name] parents like [name]Chloe[/name] a lot (although the mother was heard to wistfully say, “maybe I’ll call her by her middle name, [name]Jane[/name]…”). Mom knew [name]Chloe[/name] was #10 on the SSA chart, but she didn’t know or know of any little girls called [name]Chloe[/name]. But then she started to hear of little Chloes here and there and concluded that the name IS more popular than what she wants. But [name]Chloe[/name] very recently came back under consideration since both parents like the name and haven’t settled on anything else.

[name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name]: the most recent possibility. Dad suggested [name]Violet[/name], the name of one of his great-grandmothers. Mom told me she’s never liked flower names, but once she came up with a nickname she likes - “[name]Letty[/name]”, she’s okay with [name]Violet[/name]. [name]Violet[/name] is trendy, but no where near as popular as [name]Chloe[/name] – yet. (But if Mom has to use a nn to make [name]Violet[/name] acceptable, would [name]Violet[/name] be a good choice?)

I’m close to this young mother and have enjoyed discussing names with her. Now that the possibilities are set I don’t expect her to ask for any further input from me, but if she did, I don’t know which name I would favor. I think they’re all fine – each with it’s pros and cons.

Which name would you recommend? (The parents don’t want to consider any other names.)

Before the mother gives up on the name she loves, I think she should think very hard about how she will feel if she compromises. I think she should close her eyes and imagine that she is actually looking into her baby’s eyes and calling her “[name]Letty[/name]” with the knowledge that the baby’s name is [name]Violet[/name]. She could do this for [name]Chloe[/name] too. If she can do this and feel a sense of ownership and comfortableness with the name, then - and only then - should she compromise on the name she loves.

Otherwise, I think she will be at high risk for regretting her choice. and feel a sense of loss. If she would delight more in [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name], she should go with that. [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] is not bad. [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] is very pretty!

[name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] - For me, [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] is a bit abrupt, as none of the names have a very melodic, feminine sound (i.e., something like [name]Julia[/name] or [name]Lydia[/name]). I think it is a pretty, traditional name, but [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] does bother me. It reminds me of the [name]Angelina[/name] [name]Jolie[/name]/[name]Brad[/name] [name]Pitt[/name] movie, Mr. and Mrs. [name]Smith[/name], in which [name]Jolie[/name] plays [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name].

SUGGESTION: [name]JANA[/name] [name]CATHERINE[/name] [name]SMITH[/name], NICKNAME “[name]JANE[/name]”

[name]Chloe[/name] [name]Jane[/name] - [name]Chloe[/name] just isn’t one of my favorites, and if mom has said she might call her by her middle name, [name]Jane[/name], then it doesn’t seem like the best fit. [name]Chloe[/name] seems childish and cutesy to me, and I don’t feel like it ever is very grown up. That bothers me. Not to mention, it is very popular. In a world where [name]Smith[/name] is so popular, I wouldn’t pick [name]Chloe[/name], almost equally as popular, as a first name…

SUGGESTION: [name]PHOEBE[/name] [name]JANE[/name] [name]SMITH[/name]

[name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name] - For starters, [name]Violet[/name] is absolutely not a trendy name. Trendy is [name]Addison[/name] or [name]Kailey[/name], not [name]Violet[/name]. [name]Violet[/name] is a vintage classic name that is experiencing a rejuvenation, likely due to [name]Violet[/name] [name]Anne[/name] Affleck, daughter of [name]Ben[/name] and [name]Jen[/name]. I think that [name]Lettie[/name] is a cute nickname, and I’m glad that mom is willing to actually use the child’s first name in this situation. However, I don’t love the flow of [name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] - the name needs a longer middle.

SUGGESTION: [name]VIOLET[/name] [name]CATHERINE[/name] [name]SMITH[/name]

I would advise this friend of yours to either give up on [name]Jane[/name] and use [name]Violet[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] or incorporate [name]Jane[/name] as a nickname and use [name]Jana[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]. Personally, I think an ideal name with your friend’s surname is:

[name]AMELIA[/name] [name]CATHERINE[/name] [name]SMITH[/name], CALLED [name]MIA[/name], [name]LIA[/name], OR [name]AMY[/name]

Best of luck!

lemon, I appreciate your suggestions, but I’m afraid none of them will work. The mother wants [name]JANE[/name] as the middle name, if not the first, so [name]JANA[/name] and [name]VIOLET[/name] [name]CATHERINE[/name] are out.

[name]PHOEBE[/name] [name]JANE[/name] is a name the mother likes very much, but Dad doesn’t. So unfortunately, that name is out too.

As for [name]Violet[/name] being “trendy”, I guess it depends on how trendy is defined. I was going by the description of [name]Violet[/name] on BabyNamesPedia.com: “[name]Violet[/name] is popular as a baby name for girls, and it is also regarded as trendy.”

Also, [name]Violet[/name] is characterized as “trendy” in The [name]Baby[/name] Name [name]Wizard[/name] (2009 edition): “[name]Violet[/name] sounds so proper and demure that it’s hard to picture the name making a big splash. It’s on the verge, though, with rising popularity and a rash of Hollywood sightings. Is that “trendy” label scaring you off a name you love? [name]Don[/name]'t let it. [name]Violet[/name] is still not very common…”

[name]Both[/name] Wattenberg ("[name]Wizard[/name]") and Satran/Rosenkrantz (nameberry) have predicted [name]Violet[/name] will be in the top 5 names by 2020.

I would stick with [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]…a very solid, classic name.
One of my best friend’s name is [name]Jane[/name]. She is very intelligent, fun, quirky, energetic, and pretty. so I love the name [name]Jane[/name]! you cant go wrong with it…
[name]Violet[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] is a beautiful name as well…

[quote=“ellen_b”]

lemon, I appreciate your suggestions, but I’m afraid none of them will work. The mother wants [name]JANE[/name] as the middle name, if not the first, so [name]JANA[/name] and [name]VIOLET[/name] [name]CATHERINE[/name] are out.

[name]PHOEBE[/name] [name]JANE[/name] is a name the mother likes very much, but Dad doesn’t. So unfortunately, that name is out too.

As for [name]Violet[/name] being “trendy”, I guess it depends on how trendy is defined. I was going by the description of [name]Violet[/name] on BabyNamesPedia.com: “[name]Violet[/name] is popular as a baby name for girls, and it is also regarded as trendy.”

Also, [name]Violet[/name] is characterized as “trendy” in The [name]Baby[/name] Name [name]Wizard[/name] (2009 edition): “[name]Violet[/name] sounds so proper and demure that it’s hard to picture the name making a big splash. It’s on the verge, though, with rising popularity and a rash of Hollywood sightings. Is that “trendy” label scaring you off a name you love? [name]Don[/name]'t let it. [name]Violet[/name] is still not very common…”

[name]Both[/name] Wattenberg ("[name]Wizard[/name]") and Satran/Rosenkrantz (nameberry) have predicted [name]Violet[/name] will be in the top 5 names by 2020.[/quote]

I don’t doubt that fact that [name]Violet[/name] is rising in popularity. And, I agree with [name]Pam[/name] and [name]Linda[/name]'s predictions. I just have a hard time assigning the term trendy to such a vintage name, that’s all. It doesn’t really matter, though. :wink:

Okay, too bad about [name]Violet[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] or [name]Jana[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]. If mom wants [name]Jane[/name] to be in the middle position if it isn’t the first name, then I would suggest a long - very long - first name. I’m going to suggest some, and you can choose whether or not to pass them onto your friend.

A - [name]Amelia[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Arabella[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Annora[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
B - [name]Bryony[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Bellamy[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
C - [name]Christiana[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Camilla[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Cornelia[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
E - [name]Eleanor[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
F - [name]Fiona[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
G - [name]Gwendolyn[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
H - [name]Helena[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
M - [name]Margaret[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Matilda[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Miranda[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
O - [name]Ophelia[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Olivia[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
P - [name]Penelope[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
R - [name]Rosemary[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Rebecca[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
S - [name]Sophia[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]
V - [name]Vivian[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Vanessa[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], [name]Victoria[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]

It seems like your friend favors names that are more simple and less frilly, but many of the names above have sweet, simple nicknames that might appeal to her (e.g., [name]Harriet[/name] “[name]Hattie[/name]” [name]Smith[/name], [name]Margaret[/name] “[name]Maisie[/name]” [name]Smith[/name], [name]Cornelia[/name] “[name]Nellie[/name]” [name]Smith[/name]).

Good luck!

ellen_b, I wanted to add something that you can tell your friend or not…

I’m not trying to belittle your friend’s favorite name, [name]Jane[/name], nor am I saying that the name is ugly or repulsive in any way - it’s not. But, [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] [name]Smith[/name], or just [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], doesn’t have anything special in my opinion.

Let me just tell a little story. My name is [name]Lauren[/name] [name]Miller[/name]. The last name is a standard one, common in [name]America[/name], where I live. [name]Lauren[/name], too, is a common name, popular on the charts for many years, and extremely common in my generation. I’m not afraid to tell you that there have been times when I have felt a pinch of shame or regret after introducing myself, because, well, my name is forgettable. It has no “wow” factor, and it is common - some may say a bit boring. In fact, in my high school of less than 350 people, there was another girl with the exact same name, first and last, and we even shared the same middle initial. That, obviously, did not add to my confidence in my name.

We can’t help the names we fall in love with - and I certainly don’t regret my parents giving me a name they both loved - but we can work with them and develop them to make our child’s name everything it can be. Names, in my opinion, are like accessories, only more important. A name is everything - its a first impression and a lasting impact. I think a name should sparkle and shine, glisten and glow. It should be spectacular!

With that being said, for me, [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] leaves much to be desired. It isn’t glamorous and frilly, like [name]Arabella[/name] [name]Smith[/name]. It isn’t calm but confident, like [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Smith[/name]. It isn’t sophisticated yet spunky, like [name]Eleanor[/name] [name]Smith[/name]. It just…is.

Again, I don’t at all wish to begrudge your friend the change to use her favorite name, [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name], because in other circumstances, it might be perfect. And, if she decides to go that route, I wouldn’t think she’d made a terrible decision! I only want to give her other options and allow her to explore the boundaries of her naming potential. I wish her the very best of luck in this process!

And, to you, you are a very good friend to see her through this endless debate…

I think the [name]Jane[/name] issue could be solved by using it as a nickname. It’s clearly your favourite but it makes me think of [name]Jane[/name] [name]Doe[/name] (the generic name given to girls whose real name isn’t known for whatever reason)

[name]How[/name] about using [name]Jane[/name] as a nickname for one of these.
[name]Janet[/name]/[name]Janette[/name]
[name]Janae[/name] (Ja-nay)
[name]Janelle[/name]
[name]Janine[/name]
[name]Janica[/name]
[name]Janice[/name]/[name]Janis[/name]

That’s it exactly. The mother’s name is the classic, 4-letter/2-syllable, currently SSA #1 name; she likes it very much and sees [name]Jane[/name] as similar in it’s simplicity. She also was happy while growing up that she was the only one in her (smallish) school with that name.

‘I’ like several of the names you suggested and have especially loved 3-4 syllable names ending in ‘a’, followed by the middle name [name]Jane[/name]. [name]Early[/name] on some names that fit that pattern were mentioned, but the mother generally prefers shorter names. Now she doesn’t seem receptive to considering ANY names other than the three they’re contemplating.

I do appreciate all the thought you put into coming up with some great alternatives.

[name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] gets my vote. Although “[name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]” does sound a bit “generic” to me, remember that [name]Jane[/name] will be quite uncommon for members of her generation. Also, I mentioned in the thread whose URL is below (the applicable post is the fifth one on the second page with 10 posts a page) why in general when the last name is really common I’m the opposite of what many people on here think (I’d be more likely to consider a common FN with a common LN if it’s a girl than if it’s a boy).
https://nameberry.com/nametalk/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=6262

[name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]: [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] would be a really boring name, I think.

[name]Chloe[/name] [name]Jane[/name]: [name]Chloe[/name] [name]Smith[/name] is pretty, but [name]Chloe[/name] is popular, so there would be a lot of [name]Chloe[/name] Smiths in the world. Becomes a problem with paperwork. Hopefully [name]Chloe[/name] [name]Smith[/name] won’t become even more popular.

[name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name]: [name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] nn [name]Lettie[/name] [name]Smith[/name] is the best choice, I think. Hopefully [name]Violet[/name] won’t become super popular, but it might.

I would chose a far less common name to go with the surname [name]Smith[/name].

That’s it exactly. The mother’s name is the classic, 4-letter/2-syllable, currently SSA #1 name; she likes it very much and sees [name]Jane[/name] as similar in it’s simplicity. She also was happy while growing up that she was the only one in her (smallish) school with that name.

‘I’ like several of the names you suggested and have especially loved 3-4 syllable names ending in ‘a’, followed by the middle name [name]Jane[/name]. [name]Early[/name] on some names that fit that pattern were mentioned, but the mother generally prefers shorter names. Now she doesn’t seem receptive to considering ANY names other than the three they’re contemplating.

I do appreciate all the thought you put into coming up with some great alternatives.[/quote]

I see where you are coming from…

From your description, the mother is called [name]Emma[/name]. I agree that [name]Emma[/name] is like [name]Jane[/name] in many respects, mainly because both are classic names - both are used in [name]Jane[/name] [name]Austen[/name] novels, too. However, the images conveyed by [name]Emma[/name] and [name]Jane[/name] are very different. [name]Emma[/name] is flirty and sweet, playful and feminine, cute and confident. [name]Jane[/name] is sophisticated and elegant, shy and reserved, intelligent and focused. [name]Jane[/name] is no-nonsense while [name]Emma[/name] is playful and sassy. This might be why [name]Emma[/name] has risen to the top of the charts - it, like [name]Chloe[/name], [name]Sophie[/name], [name]Ava[/name], and [name]Isabella[/name], conveys an image that parents are looking for in their future daughters. In comparison, [name]Jane[/name] is the shy girl next door, not the outgoing, popular girl. [name]Do[/name] you see what I’m getting at?

I understand that the mother has become very focused on her list, but maybe it would be helpful to send her the suggestions of people on this thread. She can take a look and at least see if any strike her fancy, and maybe, once she considers the feminine simplicity of her own name, she will be more inclined to choose a more feminine, playful name for her child. That isn’t to say she should choose [name]Arabella[/name], a princess, frilly, feminissima name. But, something like [name]Fiona[/name] captures the same image as [name]Emma[/name], whereas [name]Helena[/name] has the same feminine simplicity but also sweet nicknames like [name]Lena[/name] or [name]Leni[/name]. She can always say no, but I think it would be a shame for her to not look at anything else at this point - where she isn’t completely satisfied with any of her options.

Good luck to you, and to her!

lemon, again a very thoughtful and thought-provoking post from you. I appreciate you sharing your story about your own name. I imagine your parents found the name they gave you very satisfactory, and I’m guessing that many of the names you suggested -[name]Arabella[/name], [name]Camilla[/name], [name]Matilda[/name], etc. - would have seemed less appealing than [name]Lauren[/name] [name]Miller[/name] to them and others at the time you were born. [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] [name]Smith[/name] might have ‘fit in’ better at that time than now.

You mentioned that for you [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Smith[/name] sounds calm but confident. I perceive [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] in much the same way. [name]Harriet[/name] is a longer name, but to me, not any more “exciting” than [name]Jane[/name]. As you may know, there is a [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Smith[/name] in [name]Jane[/name] [name]Austen[/name]'s “[name]Emma[/name]”, and I’ve thought of that name as I’ve pondered [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]. I think most of the people this baby will come in contact with in her early years would feel far more positive about the name [name]Jane[/name] than [name]Harriet[/name].

You wrote: “I think a name should sparkle and shine, glisten and glow. It should be spectacular!” That’s the ideal, perhaps, but a name that “sparkles and shines” for one set of parents may not be seen in the same way by others. For this young mother, [name]Jane[/name] appears to be the ideal name and may “sparkle” enough to shine over [name]Smith[/name] for her.

I’ve given this name dilemma a lot of thought and research, while trying to be supportive of the parents’ preferences. I’ve come across a number of contemporary women named [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], including a NY Times marriage announcement of a well-connected British woman in her late 20s named [name]Jane[/name] [name]Sarah[/name] [name]Smith[/name] who chose to remain [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] after her marriage to a man with a far more unusual and not unappealing surname. That certainly was a ‘point’ in favor of [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] for me and the baby’s mother.

Perhaps at this point I should reveal that I have an extraordinary interest in the naming of this baby – who will be my first great-grandchild. I’ve been hesitant to say that as it makes me sound far more ‘senior’ than I am ;-), having become a [name]Nana[/name] at 41. Along with this baby girl due any day now, I’m looking forward to the birth of our 17th grandchild, 12th grandson, in [name]April[/name], perhaps called [name]Henry[/name]. We’re running out of traditional names for boys! [name]Jane[/name] would fit in well with those names – if that’s what her name turns out to be.

Thanks again!

[name]Susan[/name], you’re right that [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] could be perceived as very boring, but on the other hand, I think it could also be perceived as the ultimate classic name.

As for [name]Chloe[/name], I don’t think the mother is concerned about other girls named [name]Chloe[/name] [name]Smith[/name], but just that there might (likely?) be other girls in her daughter’s class named [name]Chloe[/name] and her [name]Chloe[/name] would be called “[name]Chloe[/name] S.”

I agree with you that objectively [name]Violet[/name] [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] would be the best choice of the three, even with “[name]Letty[/name]” as the nn. [name]Violet[/name] isn’t super popular now like [name]Chloe[/name] (that being the mother’s concern), and most people probably would find [name]Violet[/name] more interesting than [name]Jane[/name] with [name]Smith[/name].

BTW, I notice that in your response and another response [name]Letty[/name] is spelled [name]Lettie[/name]. [name]Do[/name] you have any familiarity with the name? I’ve seen it spelled both ways, but only as [name]Letty[/name] for the 3 young girls called “[name]Violet[/name] ([name]Letty[/name])” whom I’ve come across on the Internet (two of them in the UK). I’ve found references to [name]Lettie[/name] or [name]Letty[/name] as a nickname for [name]Violet[/name] as early as 1750 (VA). (I think that more often [name]Letty[/name]/[name]Lettie[/name] has been a nn for [name]Leticia[/name].) [name]Lettie[/name] as a given name is found in the SSA top 1000 from 1880 to 1945; [name]Letty[/name], only infrequently – 9 times – from 1880-1932. [name]Lettie[/name] ranked as high as 184 in 1881, which happens to be the 2008 rank of [name]Violet[/name], a top 100 name from 1901-1926.

I think [name]Violet[/name] is a fine name with a very positive history – definitely a vintage classic. I just wish my granddaughter loved the name [name]Violet[/name] at least close to her attachment to [name]Jane[/name].

Thanks for your response.

For me, this seems to be the heart of the matter. I AM concerned that my granddaughter would regret not naming her daughter [name]Jane[/name], while I don’t think she’d regret not choosing either of the other names.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this.

jenevieve, I appreciate your input and your description of your most exceptional friend [name]Jane[/name].

Congratulations on the upcoming birth of your GREAT granddaughter!!

To put [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] into perspective: In the likely event that she marries someday, she would not be [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] forever. She could spend the majority of her lifetime with a more colorful last name unless she specifically chooses to keep [name]Smith[/name] (as was the case in the marriage announcement you found).

lemon, again a very thoughtful and thought-provoking post from you. I appreciate you sharing your story about your own name. I imagine your parents found the name they gave you very satisfactory, and I’m guessing that many of the names you suggested -[name]Arabella[/name], [name]Camilla[/name], [name]Matilda[/name], etc. - would have seemed less appealing than [name]Lauren[/name] [name]Miller[/name] to them and others at the time you were born. [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] [name]Smith[/name] might have ‘fit in’ better at that time than now.

You mentioned that for you [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Smith[/name] sounds calm but confident. I perceive [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] in much the same way. [name]Harriet[/name] is a longer name, but to me, not any more “exciting” than [name]Jane[/name]. As you may know, there is a [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Smith[/name] in [name]Jane[/name] [name]Austen[/name]'s “[name]Emma[/name]”, and I’ve thought of that name as I’ve pondered [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]. I think most of the people this baby will come in contact with in her early years would feel far more positive about the name [name]Jane[/name] than [name]Harriet[/name].

You wrote: “I think a name should sparkle and shine, glisten and glow. It should be spectacular!” That’s the ideal, perhaps, but a name that “sparkles and shines” for one set of parents may not be seen in the same way by others. For this young mother, [name]Jane[/name] appears to be the ideal name and may “sparkle” enough to shine over [name]Smith[/name] for her.

I’ve given this name dilemma a lot of thought and research, while trying to be supportive of the parents’ preferences. I’ve come across a number of contemporary women named [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name], including a NY Times marriage announcement of a well-connected British woman in her late 20s named [name]Jane[/name] [name]Sarah[/name] [name]Smith[/name] who chose to remain [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] after her marriage to a man with a far more unusual and not unappealing surname. That certainly was a ‘point’ in favor of [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] for me and the baby’s mother.

Perhaps at this point I should reveal that I have an extraordinary interest in the naming of this baby – who will be my first great-grandchild. I’ve been hesitant to say that as it makes me sound far more ‘senior’ than I am ;-), having become a [name]Nana[/name] at 41. Along with this baby girl due any day now, I’m looking forward to the birth of our 17th grandchild, 12th grandson, in [name]April[/name], perhaps called [name]Henry[/name]. We’re running out of traditional names for boys! [name]Jane[/name] would fit in well with those names – if that’s what her name turns out to be.

Thanks again![/quote]

Congratulations! [name]How[/name] very exciting to be a great-grandmother…

I agree with you. Among the younger sect, which honestly I am a part of at nearly 20, [name]Harriet[/name] isn’t that appealing. I, too, would pick [name]Jane[/name] over [name]Harriet[/name], as [name]Harriet[/name] seems old and stuffy whereas [name]Jane[/name] is more normal. Being a classics girl myself, I think it is wonderful that a young mother is considering such lovely, traditional names rather than cutesy, trendy ones, a la [name]Kailey[/name] and Mackynzie. Classic names have staying power, and that’s what I think counts. I like [name]Jane[/name] - I do - it’s just that [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name] feels so ordinary and boring, as someone else said, not to mention the movie connection! You are indeed correct - what sparkles and shines for one person is very different for another person. Perhaps [name]Jane[/name] is the only name that truly sparkles for your granddaughter, whereas, for me, [name]Lydia[/name], [name]Caroline[/name], [name]Charlotte[/name], [name]Eliza[/name], [name]Genevieve[/name], [name]Emmeline[/name], and [name]Clara[/name] all sparkle. I believe that naming must be approached from a holistic perspective, which means considering the last name. I disagree with other people, and another poster, who argue that surnames don’t carry as much weight in naming a girl considering they might change their name with marriage. Well, a girl lives for a while with her maiden name, and that has to count for something, right? I don’t have any children right now, but I do know that if for some reason my favorite name - [name]Lydia[/name] [name]Caroline[/name] - didn’t work with my baby’s last name, I would be upset. In this way, I sympathize with your granddaughter’s dilemma. However, I don’t know if I necessarily believe that there is only one name in the world that can sparkle and shine for parents - clearly, my own list proves this, at least for me. I’m sorry that your granddaughter has found just one name that she loves, but I just think that, considering the fact that the problem with the surname [name]Smith[/name] was even mentioned, maybe it is worth the effort to at least see if another name appeals to her as much as [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]. If not, then so be it. [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] shall be the baby’s name. But, maybe - just maybe - [name]Emma[/name] will discover a diamond in the rough, a name she hadn’t considered before that sparkles and shines and is so perfect that [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name] just doesn’t do it for her anymore. If I were her, I’d be willing to take a chance on falling in love with a different name, even if the initial sting of letting go of [name]Lydia[/name] - for me - would be disheartening.

Please keep us posted, and please pass on our well wishes and, hopefully, suggestions to the mommy-to-be. :slight_smile:

PS I adore [name]Henry[/name]! [name]Henry[/name], second only to [name]Nathaniel[/name], is one of my favorites for a future boy…

[name]Lauren[/name]/lemon, you and my granddaughter are contemporaries: she’s just a little bit older than you. And yes, I’ve been very pleased with the names she has considered, which are more like those her mother and I like than the kind of names you mentioned ([name]Kailey[/name] and Mackynzie…). She started out with [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name], which temporarily went out of consideration because of [name]Smith[/name], and a list of perhaps 12 other names she liked to some degree ([name]Lydia[/name] was among them). But it’s one thing to have a list of possibilities and another to pick just one from that list to be THE name. And remember, there is always the baby’s father’s opinion involved too. The list was soon whittled down to just a very few possibilities, while all the while [name]Emma[/name] continued to [name]LOVE[/name] the name [name]Jane[/name].

I can understand that because I too liked a number of names, but loved only one for our first daughter, [name]Catherine[/name] – which fortunately my husband had chosen too before we met ([name]Katherine[/name], but the C-spelling was fine with him too) and went very well with our surname. Years later [name]Catherine[/name] and I were discussing a name for her second daughter, and I suggested [name]Jane[/name] as the middle name, which she loved. And now here we are with [name]Emma[/name] loving [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]. Perhaps this name is ‘meant to be’, no matter what the surname is.

I recently asked [name]Emma[/name]'s sister with [name]Jane[/name] as her middle name, who is just 19 months older than [name]Emma[/name] and very close to her, what she thinks of the name [name]Jane[/name] [name]Catherine[/name]: “[name]Love[/name] it!” And [name]Jane[/name] [name]Smith[/name]? “It is what it is.”

I can understand your objective reasons for urging that [name]Emma[/name] consider some other names, but she has gone through name books several times and is most likely not going to consider any names other than those three that are on their list. And subjectively, as baby naming is when you’re about to have a baby, she does have a very strong preference for [name]Jane[/name]. (She did come up with two other possibilities, but the baby’s dad vetoed them.) I’m concerned that if she follows a more objective approach and goes with [name]Violet[/name] ([name]Letty[/name]), she may have huge questions about her baby’s name, just as another new mother described in “New baby is home, but her name doesn’t feel right!” (who just happened to name her daughter [name]Violet[/name]). But it’s the parents’ decision to make. For my part, I think any of the three names under consideration would be a good name for this very special baby – the first of a new generation.

As you can imagine, I’m anxiously awaiting the birth of this baby and on pins and needles waiting to hear what her name is.

Could it be a possibility to have the baby’s last name be the mother’s last name, instead of the father’s? That way she could use the name she loves and not be worried about how uninteresting it is with the last name. I have my mother’s last name, and it’s worked out fine for me…