Baby name consultant: Green bean #4 needs a name that fits with older sibs

Krystin and her husband are expecting their fourth baby, a little green bean. 🙂 She writes,

[We] have a difficult time coming up with names we like because we have both worked with kids much of our lives and have run across many names that are either already used or have negative (to us) connotations, if you know what I mean! We both work in schools …”

Working with kids so often presents difficulty when baby naming! Their other kiddos are:

Luke Earl (“We always loved the name “Luke” due to the religious significance and his middle name is named after my husband and my husband’s father“)
Bennett Paul (“Love the meaning of Bennett (“little blessed one) and Paul is my dad’s name“)
Tessa Marie (“We always loved the name “Tessa” because of Mother Teresa and because it’s just plain cute, and her middle name is the same as mine, my mom’s name is Ann Marie, and we have several other Marys in the family“)

And the names they “can semi-agree on” are:

Grant Matthew (“in total, the name means “great gift from God”“)
Evangeline Rose (“with the nickname Lina because Earl does not like Evie, and Rose is my confirmation name“)

Krystin’s specific questions are:

What do you think of those name choices? Do they flow with our other kids’ names? I don’t love that Grant doesn’t have a built-in nickname (our kids don’t have “real” nicknames, but I do find that we call them by Lukey, Benny, Tess, etc at times just for fun) – but not sure if that really matters. I love the name Evangeline but worry it is a mouthful and that people won’t think that Lina works as a nickname. We both like that we don’t know of anyone else with those names and that they can “grow” with the child without sounding too kid-ish … I would love to hear your thoughts on those names as well as to hear other ideas that you might have as well for both girl and boy names!!”

I love Krystin and her husband’s name style!

First off, my thoughts about their current ideas are: Grant Matthew seems just perfect! I think it absolutely matches the feel of the other kids’ names, nice job Mom and Dad! I do understand about it not having a natural nickname (as you all know, I’m a big nicknamer!), so I wondered what they’d think about Gray as a nick for it? Even though Grant and Gray are both one syllable, Gray seems just the tiniest bit easier to say, like you started to say Grant but didn’t have to pull your tongue to the front of your mouth to finish it. So I could definitely see Gray seeming like a short version of Grant. I’ve seen Gray used as a nick for Graham, which is similar to Grant in sound/length. So Graham’s a possibility? Also, I know a little Gabriel who mostly goes by Gabriel or Gabe, but ever since he was tiny his dad has also called him “G.” Just G, like the letter, and it’s so cute and affectionate and it could definitely work for Grant too.

Evangeline Rose nicked Lina is beautiful! I would say, if they love it, I would definitely go for it! And yes, I think Lina definitely works as a nickname for Evangeline, and I actually know another mama who’s planning to name a daughter Evangeline with the nickname Lina. However, since Krystin said she “kind of like[s]” it rather than “totally adores it,” I will offer that it strikes me as a little different in style than their other kids. Not totally! I could see it pairing really nicely with Luke, and it would be a pretty exact style match with Benedict, and Bennett is a medieval form of Benedict, so it’s all definitely swirling around the same place. But the other kids’ names are short-middle-ish in length, and Evangeline’s one of those looonnngg names, like Seraphina or Alexandria or Genevieve, all of which are gorgeous — I love them, I do — but I was thinking, for this family, maybe just Lina would be a better fit? I know a Lina in real life who’s just Lina, and Lena Horne’s given name at birth was just Lena – it definitely feels to me more like a formal name that could also work as a nickname for a longer name, instead of a nickname-used-as-a-first-name (though, full disclosure, I do think that’s how it started). Lina Rose? I think that’s lovely, and it works so well as a sister to Tessa Marie (as well of course as a sister to the boys, but I like Lina Rose and Tessa Marie as sisters, they go together nicely!).

Also, Krystin mentioned that she and her hubs like that they don’t know anyone with the names Evangeline/Lina and Grant … I do think it’s important to be aware that Evangeline seems to be shooting up the Catholic baby name charts, as far as the names I hear being considered and used by all of you readers and the families that email me (they usually hope to use the nickname Evie). Both Lina and Grant fit that “not used by many parents” criteria, though – neither one is very familiar to me for babies these days, which is really cool that they’ve “discovered” them!

Krystin also asked for other ideas for boys and girls, which I was delighted to do. (I can always come up with suggestions! Haha!) 🙂 I always shoot for three for each gender, and I did so here for boys, but came up with four for girls:

(1) Molly
Luke, Bennett, and Tessa/ Lukey, Benny, and Tess all made me think of Molly. It’s got that sweet, spunky feel that Tessa has to me, and I think it pairs really well with Luke and Bennett too. Molly Rose is one of those swoony names to me, so sweet! I also love that Molly is Marian (it started out ages ago as a nickname for Mary).

(2) Lily
You all know that I rely heavily on the Baby Name Wizard book as a starting point when doing consultations, as it lists, for each entry, boy and girl names that are similar in style/feel/popularity … Lily popped up as similar in style to Luke, Tessa, and Lina, and I think it’s an awesome suggestion for this family. And Lily is Marian, which is always a big seller for me.

(3) Claire or Clara
This is another one that did quite well for this family in the BNW book, as it’s similar to Luke, Bennett, and Lina. A one syllable name like Claire would please me aesthetically, because then they’d have two kids with one-syllable names and two kids with two-syllable names. (I know this matters zero! But it’s how my crazy mind works. 😛 ) Clara’s so sweet too though … it would be a hard choice for me!

(4) Juliet
Juliet is a total bonus here – three is my preferred number of suggestions, and I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have thought of Juliet for this family on my own, but the BNW says Juliet is similar to both Bennett and Grant, and I thought that was too much awesome to not suggest! Juliet’s one of my personal favorites, so I’m actually really excited to tell you about it. Juliet Rose? Oh my!


(1) Samuel
I really like Samuel with Krystin’s other kids, and especially Sam/Sammy. Sam and Ben are two of those nicknames that just really seem like brothers to me, and Luke and Tess totally fit into that too.

(2) Miles
Bennett, Tessa, and Grant are all style matches for Miles – ding ding ding! I never really gave two thoughts to Miles until I read that in Ireland it’s used as the anglicized form of an Irish Gaelic name that means “devotee of Mary” — I just love that Marian connection for a boy! And I also read that, while linguists/name experts aren’t totally sure of its origin, one theory is that it started as a nickname for Michael, and I think that is soooo cool! Miles is kind of similar to Grant, with no built-in nicknames, but I could see Milo very easily being a fun nick for it.

(3) Colin or Ian
These two just felt like they fit to me. They have that same literary and dashing feel that Bennett and Luke and Grant have to me, and they absolutely seem like brothers to Tessa as well.

Those are my ideas! What do you all think? What other names would you suggest for a little brother or sister to Luke, Bennett, and Tessa?

I love to do name consultations! If you’d like me to give your name dilemma a go, check out my Baby name consultant tab.

11 thoughts on “Baby name consultant: Green bean #4 needs a name that fits with older sibs

  1. I think Grant works great! “Evangeline” surprised me. I love the name! It’s just longer, is all – I agree that Lina/Lena works as a nickname, and I think it’d be great as just “Lina Rose” too, and fits in length-wise with the others. I think Colin fits in really well with their other kids’ names! Of the girl suggestions, I like Molly a lot with the other names.

    If I had to pick favorites I’d probably choose Grant and Molly.

    I’d never given thought to Tess/Tessa until reading this blog and now it’s growing on me, haha!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Evangeline feels slightly too long for me with this set too! What about just Eva? I know the cutest little girls named Tessa and Eva! Eva Rose is adorable as well. (The Eve I know goes by just E as a nickname)

    What about Rose as a first name? Rose Evangeline maybe instead of Evangeline Rose? Rosie would be adorable, and I think it 100% goes with their other children’s names. AND it’s Marian so I 100% using it no matter what because both girls would have Marian related names, that weren’t exactly Mary, and we talked about repeating Mary last week, and I’m totally on board with that.

    I also thought maybe of Sophie for them. Luke, Bennett, Tessa and Sophie would be so cute!

    I LOVE the suggestion of Claire, I fully support any use of the name Claire.

    As for boys, I think Grant goes 100%. Grant also made me think of Graham, which could also have the nickname Gray.

    I think my favorite of your suggestions is Ian. I’ve been loving the name Ian lately for some reason. (Okay, actually I know the reason, the Tiger’s player Ian Kinsler is awesome, lol).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the Miles connection! So neat! But I personally love “Gray” (we have one in our family – so dashing on a boy, and Grant is such a strong name). Juliet is stunning, and Molly Rose is just sooo sweet. I also adore Tessa Marie… Basically, I think that no matter what they choose, they are going to have a great sibset.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love their names, and how careful they are about meanings, too!

    Both their finalists are great! But I love Lina, Molly, and Rose for them, too. I’d add Lucy, Adele, and Beth.

    Your Miles suggestion, Kate, made me think of another post of yours (wasn’t it you?) where you suggested Michael, nn Miles.

    Simon, Emmett, one of the Ed- names, or Damien come to mind.

    Liked by 1 person

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