Kibbaby Saga - Sugar & Spice

In a SHOCKING turn of events, my instincts have been completely wrong and we are welcoming a baby GIRL according to our anatomy scan!!! The first words out of my mouth were “Now I really don’t know what we’ll name it!” as the tech had asked earlier in the scan if we had any names yet!

We’ve had small discussions, I’m not fully sold on any yet and right now our list of First names is sitting at:

Linnea - Crowd pleaser favourite, and has a nod to a favourite Sci-Fi of ours.

Annika (ah-ni-kah) - A valid but not intuitive pronunciation. Maybe easier post Frozen now that people have been saying Ah-na for years.
Also a nod to a favourite sci-fi and something that reminds me of my Dad.

Olena / Olenna - Love the meaning of Olena, love the spelling of Olenna, feels like a strong choice. Maybe my current favourite??? I believe there’s a Lena in his close extended family (deceased, like a great grandmother or something)

Odessa / Odesa - We aesthetically like Odessa, but the Ukrainian spelling is Odesa, the Russian spelling in Odessa, with his Ukrainian heritage it feels maybe iffy to choose the Russian spelling given the state of things currently.

For Middle names, ones we could consider are -

Family names
Philippa - After my Dad, but all the firsts have A endings and it doesn’t sound quite right. Antonia could also honour my Dad, but again, A ending. I don’t care for other Phil/Phyl names for girls.

Irene - My middle, and my Grandmothers name, I’ve considered Irie, as Jamaica is one of the most beautiful places I’ve been, and the culture is something I admire, but the appropriation vs appreciation question is there.

Jane - A variation of my moms name, but feels so filler especially as it’s a popular middle. Would also be a variation of his mothers middle.
Similar “filler” names are also in my family tree, both Anne and Marie are my Great Grandmothers.

Margaret or Ellen - After my other grandmother, (Linnea Ellen is out due to the initials) Not a fan of Margot. Margaux mayyyybe. Pearl could be a choice here too.

Carolyn / Caroline - Or a variation there in, his mothers name (probably not my first choice just because I’m meh on the names)

Kerry - A nod to my family name

Other Considerations

Joy - I’ve long loved the idea of Joy, simply because that’s exactly what this baby is bringing, so so much Joy.

I would love your general impressions and thoughts, ideas on combining some of these firsts and middles! Open to suggestions on middles for sure! Especially variations of family names! Baby’s last name will start with a Z, 3 syllables, with two hard c/k sounds.
We will likely be making a delivery room decision!

I am still pretty stunned we are having a girl and mourning my boys list a tad. But we’ll be keeping Ramsay/Evander/Oberon on the back burner in case there’s a boy in our future!!


ahh, congratulations! i’ve been reading through the ttc thread when i’m not so busy and i’m so glad you’ve finally got your sticky baby <3 i’ve been praying that you would!!

for you I really like [name_f]Annika[/name_f], and ah-ni-kah is the intuitive pronunciation where I am (East [name_u]Coast[/name_u] US) for uh-NEE-kah (but that’s more by people who don’t know). I know two Annika’s and two Anika’s, and they all say it ah-ni-kah. I think the similarity to [name_f]Anya[/name_f] is also helpful!

[name_f]Olena[/name_f] is my runner up for you guys! I think the brightness of the “O” differentiates it from [name_f]Lena[/name_f], while still sounding familiar enough in sound to names like [name_f]Alina[/name_f] and [name_f]Olivia[/name_f] which makes it incredibly usable. And it’s so pretty, as well <3

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is my #3, because it’s just so pretty, and if there are reservations with Odes(s)a to perhaps leave it off for now, but still in the back of your mind, in case you change your thoughts. [name_f]Odessa[/name_f] is more aesthetically pleasing, but I like Odesa more with everything in consideration. In [name_u]America[/name_u] especially, I think [name_f]Odessa[/name_f] would be the more common / intuitive spelling.

I’d rank them personally [name_f]Annika[/name_f] → [name_f]Odessa[/name_f] → [name_f]Olena[/name_f] → Odesa → [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] → [name_f]Olenna[/name_f]
and I’d rank them for you guys : [name_f]Annika[/name_f] → [name_f]Olena[/name_f] → [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] → Odesa → [name_f]Odessa[/name_f]

For middle names, I think [name_f]Joy[/name_f] would be gorgeous in the middle! [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] is a name I’ve always associated with you, and [name_f]Irene[/name_f] is so very attractive. I would stay away from [name_u]Irie[/name_u] if you worry about it. [name_f]Jane[/name_f], [name_u]Anne[/name_u], and [name_u]Marie[/name_u] do feel very common, but still attractive.

Some combos ~

[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Margaret[/name_f]
[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Caroline[/name_f]
[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Charlotte[/name_f] (from Caroline)
[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f]

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Margaret[/name_f]
[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f]
[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_u]Anne[/name_u]
[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Jane[/name_f]

[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Irene[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Margaret[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Ellen[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Margaux[/name_f]

Odes(s)a [name_f]Irene[/name_f]
Odes(s)a [name_f]Joy[/name_f]
Odes(s)a [name_f]Caroline[/name_f]
Odes(s)a [name_u]Marie[/name_u]

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[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Margaret[/name_f] or [name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] would be my first picks :purple_heart:



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I really love the soft sound of Olenna/Olena.

[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Jane[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Caroline[/name_f]

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such a name-nerdy thing :grin:

My thoughts:

Linnea → elegant and floral in vibe, strong and pretty, feels familiar but never actually seen it used

Annika → I prefer other pronunciations, maybe as this one reminds me of a bruise cream (arnica?) however, that might be an exclusively UK thing, and not be an issue at all. Still, it’s kind of sparky, rugged and lively and it’s sweet that it reminds you of your dad

Olenna → I like this one, especially since there’s a Lena (possibly) in the family. It’s warm and gorgeous, distinctive and lovely, but familiar too some how. I think the fact you say you believe there’s a Lena in the family suggests you don’t see them too often?? and Olenna has a different feel anyway?

Odesa/Odessa → I think given that you feel iffy on the Odessa spelling, I’d go with Odesa - it’s still clear to me how to say it/what it is and it’s got a strong, powerful vibe.

Phillipa is a charming name - not sure if it would work for you but Rosamund/Rosamond have a similar meaning to Philip/a

Irene is strong but peaceful - Iris has a similar sound, and cheerful meaning?

Jane is sweet and solid

Anne and Marie are charming too (Annemarie/Annmarie/Marianne to give it more distinctiveness?)

Ellen and Margaret are warm and strong. Olenna could technically honour Ellen, Nell could be a twist? Rita, Magdalene/a, Garnet (end sounds?), Marnie as alternatives to Margaret?

Pearl is lovely, and initial wise, could be a nod to your dad too

Carolyn/Caroline is nice enough, but doesn’t seem to wow you. Coralie, Coral, Cornelia (anagram of Caroline), Carina (love) could be nods to it too

Kerry is quite nice. Kerrianne is another I like and would combine honours?

Joy is sweet, lovely and simple and fits with a lot of names

For combos, some favourites would be:

Linnea Pearl
Annika Joy
Olenna Jane
Odesa Marianne
Linnea Rosamond
Annika Irene
Olenna Pearl
Odesa Garnet

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:heartpulse: :heartpulse: :heartpulse:Congrats on baby girl!!! :heartpulse: :heartpulse: :heartpulse:

[name_f]My[/name_f] favorite of your list is [name_f]Olenna[/name_f]. It’s bright, unique, and special just like she will be and I don’t think you should be dissuaded!

I think [name_f]Olenna[/name_f] [name_f]Irene[/name_f] or [name_f]Olenna[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] best captures your all’s journey (or, the snippet I’ve been present for from the threads) and flows so lovely together!

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is the runner up for the first, I think.

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[name_f]My[/name_f] thoughts on your list:

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] - I’d use this name, so pretty.

[name_f]Annika[/name_f] - I love this name, and the connection both to your interests and to family makes it really meaningful. You may have to explain the pronunciation - but also maybe not, the only [name_f]Annika[/name_f] I know uses that pronunciation and I don’t remember anyone ever saying it wrong.

[name_f]Olena[/name_f] / [name_f]Olenna[/name_f] - I prefer the [name_f]Olena[/name_f] spelling personally. I don’t think you lose the meaning of the name by spelling it [name_f]Olenna[/name_f] if that’s what you guys prefer. Maybe a bad choice if you and your partner don’t get along with [name_f]Lena[/name_f], otherwise I see no problem with it.

[name_f]Odessa[/name_f] - this is a name I love, but I worry people will just think of the Ukraine war.

As for the middle names:
To me, a filler middle name is one that didn’t have a lot of thought put into it and was chosen purely to connect the first and last names. If [name_f]Jane[/name_f], [name_u]Anne[/name_u], and [name_u]Marie[/name_u] are family names, they’re honor names, not fillers.

[name_f]My[/name_f] favorite combos with these are:
[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f], [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Margaret[/name_f], [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Pearl[/name_f]
[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f], [name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Ellen[/name_f], [name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Jane[/name_f]
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Caroline[/name_f], [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Ellen[/name_f], [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f]
[name_f]Odessa[/name_f] [name_f]Irene[/name_f], [name_f]Odessa[/name_f] [name_f]Pearl[/name_f], [name_f]Odessa[/name_f] [name_f]Jane[/name_f]

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some combos if it helps! (linnea & philippa are my favs!)
linnea jane
odessa jane
odessa ellen
odessa margaret
philippa jane
philippa joy
linnea joy :pleading_face:

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Ohhh I appreciate all the well thought out responses so far!!!

A few things, [name_f]Olena[/name_f] - [name_f]Lena[/name_f] - I edited my original post to reflect that the [name_f]Lena[/name_f] in his family isn’t someone that’s currently living. She was in his mothers, or grandmother’s generation, not someone we’d have to actively worry about with a little [name_f]Olena[/name_f]! It would be an honour name with this, not a problem!
Another consideration with [name_f]Olena[/name_f], is there are two ways to pronounce it I’ve learned, the [name_u]North[/name_u] Americanized way, like Oh-Len-uh, and the Ukrainian way which is closer to Oh-lay-nah. Both of which I find incredibly pretty! I may make a poll on this shortly!
I also agree with @Greyblue that [name_f]Olena[/name_f] is close to [name_f]Ellen[/name_f] in a lot of great ways!
Overall I’m really pleased that [name_f]Olena[/name_f] has gotten such a nice reception, it always seems to be the outlier and not one that people seem to enjoy nearly as much as I do.

[name_f]Annika[/name_f] - It makes me so much more confident that several of you have said you are more familiar with the Ah-nika pronunciation over the [name_f]Ann[/name_f]! I’ve only known an [name_f]Anika[/name_f] once in my life, and she was an Ann-ika, but the character we’ve pulled the name from was pronounced Ahn-nika.

I also want to thank those of you that validated and discussed my concerns surrounding Odesa/Odessa, it’s a name I’ve loved many years but now just might not be the time for it. I think if any were to be scratched off the list today, it would be [name_f]Odessa[/name_f].

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is still such a strong contender too, and it’s staying on the list for sure. [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] as a combo especially is just one of those names that makes my heart happy.

I’m also now considering doing something like

[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] Z
[name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] Z
[name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] Z

It would make for a lot of name, but [name_f]Joy[/name_f] seems to smooth out the double -ah endings making it possible to use it.


I like the idea of [name_f]Joy[/name_f] as a second middle - it feels special, but it rounds off the names nicely and they have a good ‘ring’ to them

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[name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is one of my own favourite names. It is very beautiful.

I also love [name_f]Annika[/name_f] and I think it’s a great option for you.

[name_f]Olena[/name_f] is wonderful. It is a name that positively stands out. [name_f]Olenna[/name_f] is also fine but I personally prefer [name_f]Olena[/name_f],

[name_f]Odessa[/name_f] / Odesa is a wonderful name but it might be tough to decide on a spelling you feel satisfied with.

From the middle name options I prefer [name_f]Philippa[/name_f], [name_f]Irene[/name_f] ot [name_f]Joy[/name_f] for you. I don’t mind the double A ending in combinations with [name_f]Philippa[/name_f]. I like the idea of two middle names with [name_f]Joy[/name_f] as the second middle.

I would really like [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f], [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f], [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] or [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f].

I don’t think hypothetical sibsets really matter but I had to point out that [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] and [name_m]Evander[/name_m] would be a perfect pair.

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I like all the options you have here! While [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is my personal favorite, [name_f]Annika[/name_f] is nice and I would not be surprised at all with that pronunciation! It is one of those names that I wouldn’t assume either way (and I like Ah-nika better!)

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All three names are great. I like [name_f]Olena[/name_f] best for you though because of the Ukrainian connection, it’s meaning and the balance of softness and strength. I like the distinctive ‘O’ beginning too as ‘A’ names are very common and ‘L’ names are moderately so. Nickname options are plentiful in every direction - [name_f]Lena[/name_f], [name_f]Leni[/name_f], [name_f]Olya[/name_f], [name_f]Olenka[/name_f], [name_u]Ollie[/name_u] and more I’m sure.

I like your thinking with [name_f]Joy[/name_f] as a second middle. I prefer single middle names myself because in my mind the significance of a single middle name choice feels stronger whereas multiple middles dilute the significance of the other choice(s). However, I understand the desire to reflect multiple family connections or not having to choose between a family name and a name with other personal significance.

I think [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] and [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] work really well as is but [name_f]Annika[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] is very kicky. [name_f]Joy[/name_f] is lovely with all three names. I look forward to hearing whatever you decide.

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I love the idea of using [name_f]Olena[/name_f] [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f]. I agree with you that [name_f]Joy[/name_f] smooths out the flow of the first two names.

I adore the name [name_f]Olena[/name_f] (and definitely prefer this spelling) and how it connects to baby’s Ukrainian heritage. [name_f]Olena[/name_f] feels strong and timeless and suitable for a wide range of personalities and ages: cute on a baby, spirited on a girl, cool on a teenager, elegant on an adult. I sometimes hear the phrase “‘little black dress’ name” and that’s what I think of with Olena—classically beautiful, complementary to lots of different styles, yet still distinctive on its own.

I live in the US and pronounce it sort of in between your two pronunciations: oh-leh-na. If I look up a recording of the Ukrainian pronunciation, it sounds like how I say it.

pronunciation ramble

I wrote the second vowel sound as “eh” because while I do pronounce it somewhat like “ay,” it’s not as strong of “ay” as the vowel sound in “Grace,” for example. The “n” sound is definitely part of the third syllable when I say it; there’s a significant difference between “eh-nah” and “en-ah” to me, but not sure if this is because of my accent / because I have been repeating “Olena, Olena” to try to nail down how I write it out :grin:

I love Olena’s meaning “torch” and the imagery of baby being a light guiding through darkness—and also that [name_f]Olena[/name_f] and [name_f]Ellen[/name_f] are variations of the same name! And if you don’t mind stretchy connections, [name_f]Olena[/name_f] feels reminiscent of Caroline to me.

[name_f]Annika[/name_f] would be my second choice, and I would pronounce it like you do (and I grew up with a lot of Annikas who all used that pronunciation, too). [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] is lovely and floral but doesn’t excite me as much as your other options. And I’m inclined to agree with you about Odesa/Odessa.

Many congratulations!!


I’m seriously so thankful for all your well thought out replies, it means a ton to have suggest great input and suggestions. [name_f]My[/name_f] midwife agreed with me today that girls names are harder because there’s too many beautiful choices, but said when she met her kids it became a lot more clear which name was their name, so I’m hoping we have that kind of clarity later on. I’m still not sold on any particular combination yet, and I can picture each of the names on a child of mine. The baby has a chance of either having light brown to blonde hair or dark dark black brown hair like his. In my minds eye, [name_f]Linnea[/name_f] has my lighter features, the green eyes and light hair. [name_f]Annika[/name_f] has his dark hair and green eyes. [name_f]Olena[/name_f] has either hair colour and either eyes!
Another thought occurred to me last night, as there’s less of a need to worry about an “adult” sounding name if it’s in the middle, that I could also just use [name_f]Pippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f], instead of [name_f]Philippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f], as she wouldn’t need the more formal option. [name_f]My[/name_f] Dad went by the nickname [name_u]Pip[/name_u] as a boy so even just [name_f]Pippa[/name_f] would be a nod to him in my eyes. This is definitely something I’m going to mull over as [name_f]Pippa[/name_f] [name_f]Joy[/name_f] in the middle seems so spunky and fun!