Kate and her husband are expecting their fourth baby, a little green bean (=gender unknown)! 🌱😄
Their older kiddos are:
Dominic Gregory (nicked Dommie)
Magdalen Philippa (“I love Philippa, but [hubs] did not like it as a first name“)
Faaaabulous names, right?? I love how heavy hitting each one is — serious saintliness going on with each one! I also love how they’re all similar length — longish first names, longish middle names.
“[Regarding Dominic’s name] I basically had my heart set on this name … In order to reach a compromise on this name, I had to promise my husband that if there is another Thomas/Tomas would be somewhere in the name … As you can see, we have a bit of a 3-syllable pattern … I am at a loss for names for this baby. I really love our kids’ names and nothing is sticking out for me.”
Names her husband likes that she doesn’t care for include:
Name that Kate likes (but is alliterative with their last name, so she’s not sure about it):
Names that they can’t use for one reason or another:
Okay, before I get to my ideas/suggestions, I just want to say that since they have a Dominic nicked Dommie, I’d be careful of using T(h)omas as a first name (unless they don’t mind brothers Dommie and Tommy) (I love the nickname Dommie btw, so cute!). I do love T(h)omas as a middle name for them, very handsome and goes with so many names!
Re: Rita R___, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. Some people really like alliteration, and it’s certainly memorable, while others worry that it sounds too comic bookish, but in both instances I think it’s the parents that worry — I don’t think others would bat an eyelash at it. I really wanted to suggest to Margaret with Rita as a nickname, since Rita is originally a diminutive of Margaret/Margarita, but I think Margaret and Magdalen are too similar.
Okay! So I came up with a few ideas for each gender, using my trusty Baby Name Wizard (as you all know it lists, for each entry, boy and girl names that are similar in terms of style/feel/popularity) and my own mental files:
Zita was originally inspired by the fact that Kate likes Rita but isn’t sure about the alliteration of Rita R___ (I scribbled it down for her when I was first reading her email), and then I discovered that it’s a style match for Philippa! Zita rhymes with Rita but has the spunky Z for an initial. I’ve long been familiar with St. Zita of Lucca, who’s a great patron for a little girl, but I’ve more recently learned about Servant of God, Empress Zita, who was an amazing lady! She was recent enough that there are photos of her (I posted one on IG not too long ago), and her husband is Bl. Karl, Emperor. So cool!
Caroline is a style match for Nicholas, and I love it for this family. It can call to mind loads of saints (my favorite is St. John Paul II; I also love St. Charles Borromeo and Bl. Karl above; others here), and it’s got all sorts of feminine sophistication.
I was really interested by how Kate said she loves Philippa (I do too) but her hubs wouldn’t go for it for a first name (mine wouldn’t either), so I paid a lot of attention to the names that were listed as similar to it (Philippa’s not actually included in the BNW so I went to Nymbler — you plug in up to six names and it offers boy and girl names that are similar; it’s by the same lady who wrote the BNW). Gemma was one of them, and I think it’s a great option for this family — St. Gemma Galgani is a beautiful saint!
Veronica is a style match for Nicholas, Magdalen, and Philippa — how great is that?! I love that it’s got biblical ties like Magdalen, and is similarly long and feminine, such a gorgeous name.
(5) Seraphina or Serafina et al.
Isidora on Kate’s hubby’s list struck me as so different from the other names he likes, and when I looked it up I discovered Isadora is listed as a match for Magdalen! Another match they share is Seraphina/Serafina, which is a personal favorite of mine. It refers to the angels, so it can be an angelic name (which is great) or I think it can also be considered a Marian name (after Our Lady Queen of the Angels).
I have “et al.” after Serafina because there are a few names that are really similar in style to Magdalen and Seraph/fina that Kate and her hubs might like … I chose Seraph/fina because it was explicitly listed as also similar to Isidora (and I love finding names both husband and wife can agree on), but these are also names I think they might like: Christiana, Evangeline, Genevieve, Vivienne, Philomena.
(1) Matthew, Matthias, or Mat(t)eo
Matthew is a style match for Nicholas and Jennifer, and Matthias is a match for Magdalen and Philippa, so I love the idea of a Matthew name for them. Mat(t)eo’s another great one.
Benjamin! Such a great name! It’s a match for Nicholas, Nathaniel, Philippa, and Matthew, and it’s biblical like Magdalen, I loooove Benjamin! And can you beat the amazing nickname Ben?
Sebastian is totally the style of Augustine, Dominic, Gregory, and Magdalen — super heavy hitting, ultra Catholicky Catholic. It’s got great nickname options (Seb/Sebby, Bash, Baz) and every boy I know loves the image of him with the arrows sticking out of him! Haha! He’s also the patron saint of athletes, and my athlete brothers love him for that.
I love the name Christian — I love how explicit it is, but also how normal at the same time … Christian’s also always struck me as a cool guy name, in a good way! I love the Spanish spelling Cristian as well. I personally think of it as different enough from Christopher that even though Christopher is on the “no list” I wouldn’t consider C(h)ristian off limits, but I’d understand if Kate disagrees.
Finally, the big daddy of them all: Alexander. It’s saintly and papal, and a style match for Nicholas, Dominic, Gregory, Thomas and Tomas both, Nathaniel, Benjamin, Matthew and Matthias both, Christian, Sebastian, Magdalen, Caroline, Veronica, Seraphina, Evangeline, Genevieve … wow. Wow! It has some great nickname options too: Alex, Xander, Sander, among others. A great name!
And those are all my ideas for Kate and her husband! What do you all think? What would you suggest for a little brother or sister to Nicholas, Dominic, and Magdalen? I think Kate and her hubs might be particularly interested in more three-syllable names, as I didn’t focus on that as much.