Josh and Mari are expecting their seventh baby, and fifth girl! You might remember this beautiful family from a birth announcement I posted for them last year; to recap, this little lady joins big sibs:
Caleb Daniel (Daniel is Josh’s middle name)
Amelia Clare (“Millie”)
Anne-Catherine Gianna (“Gianna” or “Gigi”)
Charles Michael (“Charlie”)
Such beautiful names, all! As you can see, there’s a clear A.C. theme for the girls, which Josh confirmed that they do, indeed, want to continue with, and that the only names they’ve really thought about so far include:
Angeline (Mari’s middle name)
I love working with themes! And I love the names they’re considering! Anneliese is a favorite of mine; Angeline is so wonderful because of it being Mari’s middle name; and Cecilia and Charity are two beautiful, faith-filled names (as are Anneliese and Angeline, of course). I would hesitate over using Anneliese though, since it’s an Ann- name and they’ve already got Anne-Catherine (and Ariana and Gianna). I really think my favorite idea for them is Angeline—they want an A name, and they’ve already used Josh’s middle name, so using Mari’s A middle name seems perfect. Angeline Cecilia has a beautiful flow, and a really heavenly feel to it. Angie, Lina, Cece, Celia, and Lia could all be nicknames.
That said, of course I have more ideas! 😁 I went through the Baby Name Wizard first, looking up each of the names Josh and Mari have used and those they like/are considering, looking for any A and C names that are similar in style/feel/popularity to their other kiddos’ names, and then I also perused the list of saints’ names in the back of the book for inspiration (it’s a bit more offbeat than the usual lists of saints’ names, which I thought would be helpful here, since so many A+C names have already been used), and of course picked through my own mental files. Based on all that, here are my A ideas:
This is one of the first I thought of for this family. It can be for St. Teresa of Avila or St. John of Avila, and can take the sweet nickname Avvie, or even Ava.
Ava is actually a really good fit for them style-wise, and I know of families who have used it coupled with Maria, as a nod to Mary via the Ave Maria (Hail Mary). I could see Josh and Mari doing something like Ava-Maria C___, but even just Ava could be a nod to Our Lady, as it’s a variant of Eve and Mary is considered the New Eve.
(3) Alice, Alicia, Adelaide, Aleydis
All these names are variants of the same name, which is why I’ve grouped them together. Alice is such a sweet, vintage-y name that is popping up all over; Alicia is so similar in spelling but with a more modern feel; Adelaide has such a beautiful sound and the fun nickname options Addy, Ada, and Laidy; and Aleydis is such an unusual variant (I’ve also seen it spelled Aleidis). You can read about saints with these names here.
(4) Adeline, Adele, Adelia
These, too, are variants of the same name, though different from the grouping above (even though Adelaide and Adeline look similar they are unrelated as far as I know). Like Adelaide, Adeline is beautiful and nickname-rich—Addy, Ada, Della, and Lina. Adele is fairly associated with the singer, but not overly so I don’t think. My cousin recently named her baby Adelia, which I’d never heard of before, but turns out is a variant of Adele, and it opens up the possibility of Delia as a nickname. This St. Adele was German, which is a nice since Josh and Mari have some German in their ancestry.
I’ve been loving the name Aurora ever since I found out how Marian it can be. Aurie and Rory are both sweet nicknames for it.
I originally liked Abigail for this baby because it ties into the biblical-ness of Caleb’s name, but then I found a St. Abigail (her Irish name is Gobnait, which is usually anglicized as Abigail). Abby’s a great nickname!
(7) Amata, Amanda, Amy/Aimee
These names are all related as well—they all mean “beloved,” and can all take Amy as a nickname. Since their Amelia goes by Millie, I think Amy would be okay as a nickname; Amanda could also be Mandy (which is funny because I know a Mary Angeline who goes by Mandy!). Some saints by these names are here and here.
Like Alice, Agnes is an old name that’s coming back into fashion. I love the nickname Aggie, and St. Agnes is one of the best.
Though this is a feminine form of Anthony (and can take St. Anthony as a patron), there are a bunch of Sts. Antonia. Toni, Tia, and Nia are all doable nicknames (I would stay away from Annie because of the other Ann- names they have).
My last A idea is Augusta. I knew an Augusta when I was little—she went by Gussie, and I thought it was the coolest name. The great St. Augustine can be patron, or this St. Augusta.
Now, onto the C names!
(1) Charis (or Carys)
I love love the name Charis! Josh and Mari’s idea of Charity actually gave me the idea, because they’re so similar in spelling, though their meanings are different. Charity stems from the Latin for love, while Charis means grace/favor/gratitude, which is the actual meaning of the “charis” part of Eucharist. I’ve heard of families choosing Charis for their daughters because of the connection to the Eucharist, beautiful! A name that sounds exactly the same but is closer to the meaning of Charity is the Welsh name Carys, which means “love.” Either Charis or Carys could be a really pretty and meaningful middle name.
(2) Cara, Carine/Carina, Caritas
Speaking of names that mean “love,” Cara comes from the same root as Charity and in Italian literally translates as “beloved.” Carine/Carina are elaborations of Cara and might provide the right rhythm for a middle name. If they wanted to be more obviously Catholicky Catholic, Caritas itself (the Latin word Charity comes from) would be a pretty and unusual middle name.
(3) Cora, Corinne
Similar in appearance and sound to Cara and Carine, but different in meaning, Cora and Corinne are technically related to the Greek for “maiden,” which could point back to Our Lady, but a closer connection would be the Latin word “cor,” which means “heart,” and I know of several families that have chosen Cora for their daughters because of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It could also be chosen for the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Either way, how beautiful and meaningful! (I should point out that though Corinne can be said the same as Carine, I’ve mostly heard it said kor-INN).
Josh and Mari had actually had Clement on their list for when they were expecting Charlie, and Mari wasn’t a huge fan, but I wonder if the feminine and fabulous Clementine would make a difference? It means “merciful” and I was pushing it on a lot of families during the Year of Mercy, haha! But a mercy name is always a good idea, even though the Year of Mercy’s over.
I only recently learned about St. Colette, and I’ve been loving her! She’s a patron saint of women hoping to conceive, pregnant women, and sick children.
(6) Carmel, Carmela/Carmella, Carmen
These names all point to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, and could be really beautiful tributes to Mother Mary, especially if Josh and Mari have a Carmelite sensibility.
This might be too unisex for their taste (and they might even like to save it for a future boy!), but Casey can also be used for girls, and I’m thinking specifically of Ven. Solanus Casey, to whom my family has a special devotion.
Like Abigail, I was interested in Chloe for this baby because it’s a biblical name like Caleb, Daniel, Michael, and Anne. It’s got an unusual spelling and rhythm and could be really perfect as a middle name to the right first name.
(9) Christina, Christine, Christiane
Of course the Christ- names are always a beautiful, meaningful choice for a Catholic baby. If they liked this idea, I’d probably choose the one that went the best with the chosen first name, since each of them has a different rhythm and would pair best with different first names.
And those are all my ideas! What do you all think? What A+C ideas can you come up with for this family?