Baby name consultation: New baby in the Huset!

(I’m cracking myself up over the title. 😂)

Yes! Today’s consultation is for Jenna and her hubby Daniel at the blog Wilber Huset! I was SO excited when Jenna asked me for a consultation because they have the BEST taste in names, so interesting and unexpected! In fact, their kiddos’ names are what caught my attention in the beginning! (And then, I always love “meeting” converts and hearing their stories, and my husband’s mom was 100% Norwegian but he doesn’t know much about his Scandi heritage, so I like that Jenna’s into that, and she’s just really fun to read [how we met stories are the best!] and posts gorgeous photos of her gorgeous kids on her blog and Instagram, so — lots of reasons to read/follow!)

Their older kiddos are:

Oliver Henry (Ollie)
Atlas James
Primrose Lucia (Prim; Lucia pronounced the Italian way)

Amazing, right?! (The links go to their naming stories, which I have read many times and never stop loving.)

They’re expecting their fourth baby, a boy! Jenna writes,

We are so so so excited. Only problem is, we had a girl name decided already and can’t seem to land on a boy name but that means that I finally get to have your help, ha!

I think overall I’m hoping to find a name that will balance out how much of an outlier Atlas is in my sibset. I love his name so so so much, but I feel like anything similar to the commonness of Oliver will make it stick out even more so.

We tend to like Scandinavian-ish names for boys, but my husband is on a Spanish name kick that I’m struggling to get behind. I find it hard to name an almost inevitably fair baby boy Mateo, haha, but am open to suggestions!

Here is a list of names we can’t use for one reason or another:

Bradley
Brian
Casimir
Cedric
Christopher
Connor
Dustin
Errol
Eric
Ferris
Francis
Issac
Jayden
Jacob
John
Joseph
Kurt
Kyle
Larry
Logan
Michael
Peter
Robert
Richard
Phillip
Russel
Ryan
Samuel
Stephen
Scott
Toulouse
Wesley
William

Some Saints that are important in our family are:

Saint Anne
Saint James (both)
Our Lady of Guadalupe
Our Lady of Fatima (LOVE JACINTA! Plus Palm Springs is one of our favorite places and it’s at the bottom of the San Jacinto Mountains)
Saint Junipero Serra (our parish is one of the missions he founded)

According to Jenna’s name posts, these are the kinds of names she and her hubs have considered:

Girl
Apoline
Lilja

Boy
Erlend
Jasper

Alrighty, so from Jenna’s email, I really latched onto this: “I think overall I’m hoping to find a name that will balance out how much of an outlier Atlas is in my sibset.” I, too, would gravitate toward doing so — I don’t at all mind having a bunch of different styles at play in a family, but I love finding names that “bridge” the styles in subsequent children, to kind of make sense of it all. Not that it’s necessary at all, of course! I also love when parents’ love the names they’ve chosen for their children, whether they “go” together or not.

All that said, I thought maybe a little explanation of what I see when I look at the older Wilber kids’ names might help. I see a lot of nature and landscape: Oliver makes me think of olives, especially as a brother to Primrose, which is so lovely and flowery. Atlas makes me think of the earth, both because of the depictions of the Titan, and because of maps (and that was before I remembered that Jenna had majored in geography!). Apoline makes me think of apples every time I say it, Lilja certainly fits in with flowery Primrose, and Jasper is a kind of rock. Erlend seems a little bit of an outlier here, and I’d actually never heard of it until I read in Jenna’s Oliver post that he was in Kristin Lavransdatter – doh! I’ve started it at least twice and just cannot get through it! (If you know a better translation than the one I linked to, please let me know!) That said, I get a little bit of an old-man vibe from it, which may be how others perceive it as well if they’re not familiar with the literary reference. Not that that’s a bad thing!

I want to point out also that Oliver and Atlas share a theme of “strength,” with Jenna loving Oliver’s “leader of the elves” and “home ruler” meanings, and Atlas the Titan being strong enough to hold up the sky. Also, Jasper being a kind of rock, fits in with that, and even Apoline connects with that, as it’s related to Apollo, whose name might be derived from the actual word for “strength.” So many connections!

So I basically looked for names that I thought could fit with a nature and/or strength meaning or feel for this little guy. You all know I rely heavily on the Baby Name Wizard, with its lists of names that are similar to each other in terms of style/feel/popularity, but I knew it wasn’t going to be too helpful for for Jenna and Daniel, and I was right. I did take a look, but I relied more on my gut (a little risky!) as well as the list of Norwegian names at Behind the Name; I also used the Name Matchmaker and Nymbler as well; and I checked to see about Harry Potter connections with each name (from Jenna’s Oliver post: “In the back of my mind I thought it would be a cute homage to HP if all my kids names somehow came for the HP series…. how old was I!? ANYWAY. I already loved loved loved the name Oliver so it worked with that trend (Oliver Wood! yeow!) and I loved the name Apoline (Fleur Delacour’s mother, duh!)” haha!). I focused pretty heavily on trying to come up with ideas that had a nature feeling, or a “strong” feeling, which may be too narrow a focus, but it helped prevent me from winging all over the place. I hope it’s not overkill! These are my ideas:

(1) Orion
This might be too mythological for them, since Atlas is obviously so, and even though they want to loop Atlas in more I don’t suppose they want to go overboard with his style either, but Orion was my very first idea for Jenna’s baby boy, with the idea of bridging Oliver and Atlas. I like that it’s an O name like Oliver — to me, that links them pretty strongly — and that it’s a mythological name like Atlas. It’s also nature-y because of it being a constellation, and I love that it has a “strong” meaning as well: Orion’s a hunter! Also, while Oliver and Atlas seem very different at first blush (but not so much if you dig a little deeper into meanings), Atlas is not so unusual that it’s unfamiliar, so if their goal is balance (which I take to mean, bridging styles or making sense of how they all fit together, which to me means pulling Atlas closer to Oliver rather than going even farther out with an even more unusual name), I think a name like Orion is a good one, because it’s also not totally unusual or unfamiliar (though certainly on the more uncommon end of the spectrum).

(2) Sirius
Speaking of Orion … Sirius (the star) is referred to as Orion’s dog in Homer’s Iliad — I love that it’s a star name, which fits in with the nature theme, and it’s a Harry Potter name, so I’m thinking this might be a really cool name for this family! Especially since their other kids don’t have *obvious* HP names — I mean, I wouldn’t suggest Sirius to a family who already has a Harry and a Hermione, but as a brother to Oliver, Atlas, and Primrose? I’m kind of loving Sirius!

(3) Rio
I’m really interested to see what they think of Rio. It means “river,” which fits in really well with a nature theme, and it totally ties in to the map/geography feel of Atlas! It’s also Spanish, which is a nod to Daniel’s recent interest in Spanish names, and it also makes me think some faith-y things, specifically the famous statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro and Pope Francis’ visit to Rio as well (especially since watching Pope Francis get elected seems like it was a catalyst for their conversion). And Rio’s just a fun name! One caveat is that I’ve seen it used for girls — there’s the Duran Duran song about a woman named Rio, and 38 girls were named Rio in the U.S. in 2015, but 103 boys were named Rio and the -o ending almost always is masculine.

(4) Ransom
I love love love the name Ransom — I love that it’s got a little bit of a pirate feel, which is so fun for a little boy, but it’s got a Marian connection too, in the title Our Lady of Ransom! That title is tied to Our Lady of Mercy —
in fact, the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy, also known as the Order of Mercy, or the Mercedarians, was originally called the Order of Our Lady of Ransom. Reader skimac told more about them here — they’re pretty amazing, and the title is an awesome inspiration for a boy’s name! It doesn’t have a nature meaning, but Ransom has that characteristic of “strength” to me that I see in Oliver’s and Atlas’ names.

(5) Romero (or Oscar?)
Speaking of interesting, masculine Marian names, I recently discovered that Romero is the Spanish word for the rosemary plant! So of course that makes it Marian to me, and Spanish, so Jenna’s hubs might like it. Also, I love Bl. Oscar Romero, which then made me think of Oscar, and I thought that might be more their speed anyway (and a nice compromise for the two of them because Oscar’s got good Scandinavian use *and* good Spanish use!). Like with Orion, I could see Oscar being a good bridge name between Oliver and Atlas — it’s kind of in the middle of the two unusual-wise I think.

(6) Rune
When I was going through the list of Norwegian names at behindthename, I came across Rune and immediately loved it for them — especially because it made me think of the class Ancient Runes in Harry Potter! I know in Norwegian it’s technically said like ROO-na, but I love the sound of ROON and I think that’s how people would probably say it anyway, so I’m going to say go with ROON. I love its meaning “secret lore,” which is so mysterious and otherworldly — I think for that reason it really fits in well with the mythological association of Atlas.

(7) Sten
I also found Sten when going through that Norwegian list, and not only do I think it has a cool sound, but its meaning is “stone,” which is great for a nature-y and “strong” theme!

(8) Viggo
The more I think about it, the more surprised I am that they don’t have Viggo on their list! It’s Scandinavian and is related to the meaning “war,” which isn’t great from a violence and killing perspective but does fit in with a theme of “strength” I think (and they could totally intend for it to refer to “spiritual warfare” or similar). Natalie Hanson (married to MMMBop Taylor Hanson) is an incredible namer, and a name nut like us, as well as a devout Christian, and she named one of their boys Viggo, which is a plus in my book.

(9) Campion
Speaking again of strength, Campion means “champion,” and is also of course the last name of St. Edmund Campion. Ancestry.com even says it originated as a “status name for a professional champion,” which seems right up Atlas’ alley!

(10) Everest
I love that Everest immediately calls to mind Mt. Everest, which is such a great thing for the Wilbers, since it’s nature-y, geologic (geological?), and strong. It’s also familiar without being familiar, if that makes sense — a great bridge between Oliver and Atlas I think.

(11) Fox
At first I had Fennec here instead — a type of fox — I thought an animal name might be a fun way to have a nature-y name in a new category, and Fennec feels really name-y to me … and then I remembered why it feels namey, which is the reason I crossed it off the list: Finnick from Hunger Games (on its own, I love it, but as a brother to Prim, probably too much!). But then I thought, maybe just Fox? I know a guy named Fox (it’s not his given name — I don’t actually know what his given name is) and I love it — it’s like an outdoorsy Felix, and strikes me as both kind of hippie and also tough. Also, and this is a bit of a stretch, I say Fox almost the same way I say Fawkes, and while I don’t think Fawkes is workable for the same reason I wouldn’t recommend Faulkner or similar-sounding F- names, Fox is fine, and if it makes them think of Fawkes they could sort of count it as an HP name? Maybe?

(12) Caspian
Ooh I love this idea for them. The Caspian Sea provides all the nature-ness they could want, and Prince Caspian adds strength, chivalry, royalty, and Narnia!

So those are all my first-name ideas for Jenna and Daniel (or they could be middle name contenders of course, if they prefer)! Unfortunately I couldn’t come up with any HP connections for any names but Sirius and Rune and possibly Fox, but that’s what middle names are for, right?

I also wanted to address their special saints:

— St. Anne: I’ve known a couple of parents wanting to honor St. Anne in their sons’ names, and the ideas they and I have had have revolved mostly around the “Ann” sound — Anselm, Anthony, Anton, Anson, Ansel. If their intention is to honor her, I think all of these ideas are great! And in fact, Anne, that spelling (but pronounced like Anna), has use in the Frisian language as a male name — a short form of names beginning with Arn- (e.g., Arnold, Arnulf, and the Norwegian Arnt). Anne or Arnt could be interesting possibilities? Another is to use St Anne’s husband’s name, which could be really great for them anyway, even as a first name, since it’s got good use in Scandinavian countries: Joachim or Joakim. In English it’s said JO-ah-kim, so Joe is a natural nickname (though I’d use Jake, and I’ve tried to convince my husband of Joachim for ages). It’s probably even better as a middle name, where they don’t have to worry about pronunciation as much.

— St. James: I know they’ve already used James, but this might be the perfect example of when it’s okay to use a variant form of a name they’ve already used. James is the Latin form of Jacob, so Jacob could be great, OR, since Jenna’s hubby is loving Spanish names and they love OL of Guadalupe, perhaps Diego? I’ve seen some academic disagreement over whether it’s actually a variant of James (via Santiago=St. James) or not, but I do believe it’s usually translated that way, and the impeccably researched Dictionary of Medieval Names from European Sources has Diego listed as “a contraction of Santiago.” I can see Jenna’s point about naming a blondie with a Spanish name, but I love putting names like that in the middle. Diego would be a super cool middle name!

— OL of Fatima and Jacinta: I’m so with them on this! I went on a pilgrimage to Fatima the summer I turned 13, and it was *the* turning point for me faith-wise; I also chose Jacinta as my Confirmation name because of my connection with Fatima. I love her and I’m so excited for her canonization IN TWO DAYS! I could see Jacinta being an awesome name for a future daughter or, more immediately, they could do the Spanish Jacinto for a boy, which would be kind of great because the baby’s being born in the year Jacinta is canonized. Either way, the name totally works with a nature theme because they’re the Spanish masculine and feminine versions of Hyacinth. You might be familiar with the Pioneer Woman’s best friend Hyacinth (a woman), whom she refers to on the show often as Hy; there are also a bunch of holy Hyacinths who are all male — not sure which one San Jacinto refers to, but it’s a pretty cool connection!

— St. Junipero Serra: As with Diego and Jacinto, I think a meaningful Spanish name would be smashing in the middle name spot, and I could see Junipero working perfectly. Or just Juniper, which has traditional use for boys. Also: nature name!

And those are all my thoughts for the new little Wilber man! What do you all think? What name(s) would you suggest for the little brother of Oliver, Atlas, and Primrose?

74 thoughts on “Baby name consultation: New baby in the Huset!

  1. I love Campion for this family and I also suggest Magnus. It’s a Norwegian name and, because of its meaning (the Great), it fits the strength theme and can work for various saints: St. John Paul II, St. Greagory…
    But I wouldn’t worry about using a saint name for a first name, because the other children have obvious saints’ names for the middles (Henry, James and Lucia), so they could do the same for this little one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a sweet family! I read all of three birth stories; they are great! While I love Henry from their oldest son’s name, I do wish they were able to use Henrik! Your suggestions as always are so intentional and well-thought out, Kate! A few others that come to mind would be Anders, Soren, and Kai. I don’t know if they have any religious connections off the top of my head, but I think they would fit in well with all of their kids, and bridge the gap between Oliver and Atlas (even if Atlas and Anders are a little similar, I think they are different enough!). I do agree that keeping with a saintly middle name is perfect!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The suggestions of Everest and Fox sound great to me!

    The first idea that I had when reading about the patron saints that this family likes is Francisco. It could be a first name (in honor of Fatima/Francisco Marto and Junipero Serra/Franciscans). Or Everest Francisco sounds pretty neat.

    Another idea would be Maximus. For some reason, it sounds like a good bridge name to me. It means “greatest”, so it sounds strong and could be after any of the “great” saints – even St. James the Greater.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love love love Viggo! I think it’s a fabulous name, but I don’t think I could ever convince my husband to use it.

    I also like the idea of Jacinto to honor her devotion and the canonization. Perhaps as a middle name if she didn’t love the Spanish flair for a first name?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Totally digging Roch (where we get Rocco from and pronounced like rock) as well as Tutus . . . .
    I honestly don’t think Atlas is an outlier in their names. It seems trendy just like Oliver. Primrose seems to be the rarest name but the rose part normalizes it.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. for some reason nazareth pops into my mind for this baby… comes from the hebrew for ‘branch,’ so it’s a little nature-y. and the holy family could be his patron? hm.
    whatever he’s named, praise god for his life!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. It’s interesting that she feels like Atlas is the outlier in her sibset when I think Oliver is the one that sticks out as being different than the others! I would actually suggest a more traditional name for the new baby, but maybe one that isn’t as popular as Oliver. Jasper seems like it hits the sweet spot in that regard. Some other ideas:

    Victor/Viktor – A winner conveys strength, and there’s Viktor Krum for a Harry Potter connection. Also, spelling it Viktor gives it more of a Scandinavian vibe.

    Frederick/Frederik – No literal “strength” connection, but it feels like a strong name anyway, and also has HP connection (Fred Weasley). Again, Frederik has more of a Scandinavian feel and feels similar to Henrik.

    Leopold (nn Leo) – While Leopold in full doesn’t have a lion meaning, the nickname Leo does, giving both a nature connection and conveying strength. I also like that while Leopold is bold like Atlas, Leo is familiar and popular like Oliver.

    Blaise – Sounds like Blaze, which makes me think of fire (so nature connection). Fire gives off the feeling of being strong and powerful. (There’s also Blaise Zabini from HP, but I’m not sure about that connection… He wasn’t a villain, but I wouldn’t call him a good guy either.)

    Conrad/Konrad – Means “brave counsel”, which seems strong enough to me. Another name that could be spelled with a K to look more Scandinavian.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I love your suggestions of Orion, Campion, and Fox (!), and the suggestion from Mary-Agnes (above) of Magnus. But my favorite of all is their idea, Jasper!!!!

    Also, as I mentioned on IG, I hate Kristin Lavransdatter. It’s not just you, and it’s not the translation (the other English translation is supposed to be worse). I just always feel like there’s nothing to get. She spends her whole life suffering because she chose a crappy husband. The end.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I love this sibset! (and jenna’s instagram/blog, hi jenna!). First of all, there is an instagram mom who has an atlas, an everest and a zephyr, so those are good ideas! I love Jasper but maybe not Jasper Wilber? And I do like Erlend but then all the boys will have vowels for initials which might be hard to keep up for future children (I know, not a real problem). I also think Magnus is totally up their alley.

    Some more ideas: Espen, Stellan, Peregrine (nature+ catholic, v cool name), Samson (strong like Atlas!), Gunner ( a bit intense), Percival (I kind of love it). I especially love Peregrine and Samson, but I’ll try to think up some more!

    Liked by 3 people

  10. ERLEND! *fans self*

    I have also attempted to read Kristin Lavransdatter several times. The translation you link to is the better, more up-to-date one; the other one is unreadable. I WANT to like it, I just don’t…but I really love Sigrid Undset’s other stuff! Gunnar’s Daughter in particular was great. Speaking of…what about Gunnar? It’s super duper Scandinavian and just “out there” enough that I feel like it bridges a gap between Atlas and Oliver.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Caspian! Makes me think of Casper, which fits with Jasper. Also from Narnia: Cor/Corin.

    I also love the suggestion of Fox. I know someone with this name – grown up adult man – who is just great.The name definitely suits him. 10/10 – would encourage use of this name.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I second the suggestions of Ransom, Viggo, Campion, Everest, Fox, Caspian, Magnus, Soren, Stellan, and Samson!

    My suggestions would be Blaise, Becket, Finnian/Finn, Rex, Apollo, Jonas, Declan, Shepherd, Bodhi,Silas, Dashiell, Cruz, Balthazar, Fulton, August, Jude, Raphael, Roman, Felix, Remi/Remy, and Thiago.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Not sure if it’s Scandinavian but I feel like the name Silas would go great with the other kids names. Also loving Caspian/Casper & Ransom, although I’m not sure if Ransom sounds as good with the other kids names.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. This was a great naming post-who am I kidding they all are!! For some reason your suggestion of Romero made be think of Carlo. The Italian version of Carlos. I have a friend that names their son Carlo and I think it’s very handsome yet unexpected.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Suggestions to bridge Oliver & Atlas

    Tobin : from the name Tobiah, Tobias
    Noble
    Roman : referring to Rome (residence of the Pope)
    Niven : meaning ‘little saint’ (Irish)

    Liked by 2 people

  16. ALL the votes for Caspian!!!
    Oliver, Atlas, Primrose, Caspian. 😍
    It seems so so perfect for this family!
    I don’t often post my picks for consultations, but I was thinking about much I loved Caspian for them all day!
    Excellent suggestion Kate! I never would have thought of it!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I love all of the suggested names, Kate. Everest and Ransom are my favorites for this family. Ransom may be eyebrow raising, but it is so faithy.

    For a sibling to Oliver, Atlas, and Primrose, I can also see these names being a good fit.

    — Arrow. This keeps with the strength theme. An arrow on a map signifies north, so there’s the geography connection. Plus there are so MANY great biblical quotes about arrows. “He has made My mouth like a sharp sword, In the shadow of His hand He has concealed Me; And He has also made Me a select arrow, He has hidden Me in His quiver.” or “How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They will not be ashamed When they speak with their enemies in the gate.”

    — Cedar. This names keeps with both their strength and nature themes. The cedars of Lebanon grow tall and straight. There are just so many great Bible verses that reference them. “The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree, He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon.”

    — Talon. I like all of the imagery of eagles in the Bible and an eagle’s talon conveys an image of strength.

    — Lance.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Apollo, Tobias, Christian, Ivo

    Elias/Eli, Hugo – both work as Norwegian or Spanish names I think

    Linus – Pope; son of Apollo; meaning – flax

    I love the suggestions of Magnus and Joachim – both are names of current scandinavian princes. I think Felix is also a great option

    Middle names so far have been very traditional, but if you wanted to put names that were a little too Spanish/Norwegian there, like Henrik or Mateo, my suggestions are – Amadeo, Cruz, Iker (visitation in Basque) Pio, Sander, Leif

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Pretty obsessed with the names in this family and Kate’s observation of the subtle landscape/nature associations! I love love love Apoline, too–I’ve always loved Apollonia, but the French version seems a little easier to wear. The names that popped up for me are Rainier (I live in Seattle, so that has a strong nature association with the mountain to me!) and Laszlo (which I just love and find so fun to say, which is one of my main requirements in a child’s name). Also Rasmus, which is the Scandinavian form of Erasmus, meaning “beloved.” It shares sounds with Jasper without having that ending that rhymes with Wilber. So excited to learn what this little guy’s name will be!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great ideas! Rasmus is particularly appealing to me — we considered it as a middle because my mother-in-law’s maiden name was Rasmussen — I should have thought to suggest it to Jenna!

      Like

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