I wrote about today’s mama in this post of a few months ago, where I wrote about her #5 daughter, who was diagnosed with hydrocephalus in utero, and their journey from no will we absolutely not abort this baby to today, where that baby girl is four years old and a total pip. (Molly blogs about their experiences at Priceless Little Pearl. I LOVE reading the updates.)
That little girl, Meagan, is about to become a big sister! Her parents, Molly and Brian, are expecting their sixth baby, another girl! (Yes, I will have to get my six boys together with their six girls someday! 🙂 ) Their other daughters are:
Meagan Theresa Gianna
I love their style. I would call it Irishy and feminine for the first names, and super saintly/faith-y for the middles. Names that are on their current list are:
“We aren’t “set” on any of those names … I do like Erin and Emma but not sure because of popularity, which is why Emerson was born. We had also liked Kaylee, but WAY too similar to Kaitlin….. we had Morgan on the list but that went away because way too close to Maura and Meagan combined … We are open to any names really but we have such a strong trend of Irish/Celtic it’s going to be really odd to stray from that… we love girl names, unisex names or last names as first…. I’m not a fan of flowery names… etc.. the only reason Josephine came up as a middle was because Brian’s Godfather whom he was very close to, Joseph, died years ago and it sounded flowery enough to tone down Cara or Quinn.”
So their list of names is basically the exact kind of list I’d expect — in fact, before Molly told me what they were considering, I’d already jotted down Bridget and Quinn! Bridget totally seems right because of the Irishy names they love, and Quinn does too, both because it’s Irish and it’s a last name like Reilly. Ven. Edel Quinn has been mentioned a few times here on the blog too (e.g., here, here), so it’s definitely been on my radar as a great name and great patron for a little girl. I also love some of the Bridget variants, especially Briege.
I love Emma and Kelsey for them too, they all seem to exactly fit my impression of their taste. I don’t really love Emma as a sister to Anna (my own personal baggage — over the years my hubs and I have discussed the idea of sisters Anna and Emma and decided they were too similar. But of course my opinion means nothing if Molly and Brian love it!) but Emerson nicely gets around all that — it’s a last name like Reilly, it’s got the Em- sound like Emma, it’s a great option.
Cara Josephine and Emerson Rose are actually new additions to the list since Molly and I first talked about names, and they’re clearly the most “complete” and are current finalists, and I like them both for this baby girl. Quinn is also still quite high on their list but they’re having a hard time coming up with middle name ideas. I quite like Quinn with Josephine, and just sounding out other ideas in my head I also like the rhythm of:
- Quinn Emilia (it gets that Em- sound in there, and it was John Paul’s mom’s name!)
- Quinn Sophia (which reminds me of some of the other girls’ middle names, especially Grace, Clare, and Marie)
- Quinn Caroline (like Cara, but also a nod to JP’s pre-papal name of Karol … or Quinn Karoline?)
When I read that they like Kaylee, I immediately wanted to suggest Ceili, which I’ve seen some parents use — it’s pronounced the same, but it’s an Irish word referring to a social gathering involving dancing and folk music (like an Irish dance party!) — but I guess that doesn’t get away from the issue of it sounding too much like Kaitlin.
I love Cara — it means “friend” in Irish, and it also reminds me that I know a family who named their daughter Caragh (pronounced the same), if that’s at all helpful. And I also found this lovely treat at Baby Names of Ireland: Caireann or Cairenn, pronounced like Karen, meaning “little friend” or “little beloved.” Maybe nice in the middle, if not as a first?
And of course I did come up with some more ideas! I always shoot for three, but I have a couple more than that for this family:
Anna, Maura, and Meagan especially made me think of Lucy, as did Clare and Grace. Lucy is sweet and saintly, I love it.
(2) Cassidy or Casey or Carrigan
Cassidy is one of my favorite suggestions for this baby girl. It’s originally a last name, like Reilly, and it’s Irish, and it has the awesome nicknames of Cass and Cassie. I kind of really like that Reilly wouldn’t be the only one with a lastname name if she were to have a little sister Cassidy. Casey is similar — a last name, a unisex name, an Irishy name, a great name — but is it too like Kaitlin? I guess I wouldn’t cross it off the list, since Kaitlin is #2 and this new baby is #6 so they’re not next to each other.
I really like Carrigan for them too — it’s like a combo of Cara and Erin (or the Cairenn I mentioned above) with a little Irish jig in the middle. Some may not like the hard g of Carrigan closely followed by the hard G of their last name, but I don’t mind it. Carrigan Rose would be gorgeous, or maybe Carrigan Jo for Brian’s godfather, and it could easily take the nickname Cara.
(3) Brynn or Brenna
Brynn begins with Br- like Bridget and rhymes with Quinn! I like Brynn a lot—I knew a family when I was growing up with three girls named Gr33r, Brynn, and T!erney (alt characters used for privacy), and being a name nut even back then I thought they had the most amazing names. Brenna was listed as similar to Maura in style/feel/popularity in the Baby Name Wizard book, and Brynn was listed as similar to Fiona, which I’d looked up thinking it might be kind of Molly and Brian’s style, so I thought they definitely deserved a mention. While I don’t think Brynn has any saintly connections, Brenna could be a form of Brendan, who’s definitely a saint, or Brennan, which could be considered a variant of Brendan (if that was their intention), but actually has it’s own origin, and there aren’t any St. Brennans that I know of.
This one surprised me—I looked up all their names in the BNW as well as names I thought might be the right style, and while there weren’t a whole lot of suggestions that were common to more than one of their names, Allyson was listed as similar to Kaitlin and Allison as similar to both Meagan and Erin (which I had thought might provide some good ideas for you). A friend of a friend recently named her daughter Al!s0n S0ph!a, which was really surprising to me, and also really lovely I thought.
Shea is also an Irishy unisex last name, and I think it’s one of the prettiest sounds. I could see Shea Louise being a really pretty combo for example, or Shea C/Karoline.
So those are my “official” suggestions! There were a few other names that I debated putting on the list, and for one reason or another they didn’t make the final cut, but I thought I’d put them here anyway, just in case: Fiona, Aisling (or Aislinn—which it just occurs to me is actually really similar to Allison/Allyson, at least in appearance), and Sarah. And some others that were listed as similar to more than one of the other girls’ names: Avery, Deirdre, and Delaney. And I really wanted to suggest Nora, and kept having to remind myself that they already have a Maura! But ooh — that just made me think — maybe Nola? (Abbreviated form of the Irishy Irish Fionnuala.)
What do you all think? What other suggestions do you have for Molly and Brian’s sixth little girl?