Birth announcement: Teresa Azelie Jane!

I posted a consultation for Colleen and her husband back in July, and I’m so thrilled to let you know that her green bean turned out to be a wee lady whose been given the gorgeous name … Teresa Azelie Jane!

Colleen writes,

You did a name consultation for us back in July and I am so pleased to announce that we had a girl on August 25 and we named her Teresa Azelie Jane. She was born as the outer rain bands of Hurricane Harvey began to hit where we live in the north Houston suburbs and we made it home from the hospital just before the serious flooding began. Thankfully our neighborhood did not flood and we were able to enjoy the extra time at home cuddling our newborn.

We really struggled with a girl’s name this time around. Early on we settled on Jane as a middle name because I have loved it for years. Also early on my husband had suggested Azelie as he had been reading about Sts. Azelie and Louis Martin and felt a strong connection with the entire Martin family. But, for a number of reasons, it just didn’t work as a first name for us so we set it aside and forgot about it for months while we continued to debate and struggle to find the name that seemed right.

August 12, 9 days before my due date, was the feast of St. Jane de Chantal. I woke that morning and during my prayer time asked St. Jane to please help us settle on a name. If we had a girl, what name would be best for her and what saints should be her patrons along side St. Jane? Later that day my husband said he had an idea. He felt strongly that the name should be Teresa, a name he was not excited about previously, but that we should also include Azelie. As soon as he spoke the name aloud, Teresa Azelie Jane, we knew it was perfect. I had not considered two middle names before! And boy does our girl have some powerful patrons! Teresa is after the three great Teresas: St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Liseaux, and St. Teresa of Calcutta.

I call our little girl Tess. Her brothers call her Teresa and her sisters tend to call her Tessa Jane. My husband loves to call her Azelie or Zelie and I love that it’s his special pet name for her. All of us adore her name and we often call her by all three of her names because we love them all so much.

Thank you for the time you spent on our consultation and for your wonderful blog. Your thoughts and those of your readers over the months really helped us realize what was important to us in a name, gave us the idea of two middle names and the courage to chose an uncommon name like Azelie.”

Isn’t this all so wonderful?! I love love love the full combo, Teresa Azelie Jane, and how everyone has special nicknames for her! And I’m so pleased that we all were able to help Colleen and her hubs bring their favorite names into focus. ❤

Congratulations to Colleen and her husband and big sibs Jonathan, Elizabeth, Augustine, Clara, and Simon (and Catherine Gregory in heaven), and happy birthday Baby Teresa Azelie Jane!!

Teresa Azelie Jane at 5 days old (left) and 2.5 mos (right)


Birth announcement: Caroline Sophia!

A mama I did a private consultation for has let me know her little one has arrived, a sweet little girl with the beautiful name … Caroline Sophia!

She writes,

Sorry this has taken so long, but I wanted to share with you that our little Caroline Sophia was born on September 12! Even though we didn’t actually use any new names you suggested for us, we loved doing the consultation through you! Seeing so many different choices really solidified for us why we loved the name ‘Caroline Sophia.’ 🙂

We decided that it would really mean a lot to my mom to have a child named after her. She is super sentimental, and although we really didn’t love ‘Sophia’ as a first name, somehow it was beautiful for a middle name. It was very providential, because my mom was at the birth for our first child, and not the next three. She was always watching our older kids while I was in labor at the hospital. For Caroline, our fifth child, the other four were all in school during the day, so Grandma got a break. She ended up being born at 9:30am, and after my mom dropped off all the big kids at school at 8am, she was able to come to help and witness my crazy fast and intense labor and birth. We didn’t plan it that way, but since it was my fastest birth, I really did need another person there to help besides my husband. And, when Caroline came out and we told her the name, Grandma just lost it! 👍😂 it was perfect!

JP2 has always been someone we loved, but I just have really gotten to know him a lot more the past five years. So, after ‘trying’ out other names on the Baby in utero, we just couldn’t go with anything else besides naming Caroline after him. 😁❤️

She is just about two months old now, completely perfect and gorgeous, and smothered by siblings and everyone else constantly. 🙂 “

I love this name story so much!! I love how meaningful both the first and middle name choices are, and I love that “Grandma just lost it” upon hearing that her name is the baby’s middle name. So wonderful!!

Congratulations to the whole family, and happy birthday Baby Caroline!!


Caroline Sophia on her baptism day this past weekend, with her blanket and St. JP2 doll her godparents made for her

Baby name consultation: Chinese (+Catholic?) names

Today’s consultation is a little different — I don’t have permission to post the family’s details, but I wanted to hear your ideas regarding one part of their “dilemma.” One of the parents is Chinese, and while the baby’s name will be an English one, the parent’s Chinese heritage is an important consideration. But the parent who emailed me is the non-Chinese parent and didn’t have a good sense of what names the spouse would like or not like. So I did a little research into Chinese naming customs, and found this article, which included this bit of info that I thought was helpful:

While we might find it strange for so many Chinese to share the same surname, they find it equally odd for so many in the West to share the same forename.

Whereas most of us know a few Janes, Johns, Jameses, Saras, and Andrews, this repetition does not really happen in China. In fact the focus is on creating a unique name for your child, which won’t be shared with others or copied from elsewhere …

The names are also designed to mean something. It could be anything from Xiao-Long (小龍), meaning ‘little dragon’, to Li-Kong (立功), which means something close to ‘worthy of merit’

I took all this to mean that (1) junioring isn’t really done, and (2) the name “definitions” that I usually caution against giving too much weight to are actually really important in Chinese naming. Do you agree? Is there more to know about English names given to babies of Chinese parents?

I also looked up Chinese saints, and found this great listing of the Martyr Saints of China, but then I also found this article about when JP2 canonized the first Chinese saints and wow — I knew that the state-run Chinese Catholic Church is at odds with the [underground] Chinese Catholic Church loyal to Rome, but I didn’t know much beyond that — what a sad article!

Based on that, just from a naming perspective, I didn’t feel as confident about my ability to suggest names that someone emailing a Catholic baby name consultant for name help, who has a Chinese naming tradition to consider, might like.

I know this isn’t a lot to go on, but if any particular names come to mind for either boys or girls, I’d love to hear them! And if you have any more information on Chinese naming, especially with a Catholic sensibility, please share!

Congratulations to the winner of the giveaway!!

We have a winner!! I had Rafflecopter randomly pick a winner of the giveaway, and I’m delighted to announce that Eliese has won the sweet little dress! It’s for her little girl who’s their first girl after three boys — aw! ❤

Congratulations to Eliese, and thank you all for entering! Don’t forget the coupon code CHRISTMAS17 for 15% off in Sharon’s Baby My Love shop, good until Christmas Day, and be sure to follow her on Instagram if you don’t already to see all her updates and new items!

Spotlight on: Balthazar/Balthasar

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway! It’s live until midnight tonight! And happy Veteran’s Day! Thank you to all our veterans for their service!

(I recently activated an ad thing on the blog, which I’ve been meaning to do for a while but was so hung up on how much I hate ads on web sites, and how much I love the clean look of this blog, that I kept putting it off. But with Christmas coming and finances being top of mind, I thought I would go ahead and do it. Oh how I hate it! I hate how the blog looks! But I’m trying to give it a fair chance. I’m so sorry that you all have to deal with it.)

The last name spotlight I posted was for Callixtus, and in the comments Melissa asked if I would do a spotlight on Balthazar (I didn’t forget you Meghan — I’ll do Stanley next!). I love the name Balthazar! It’s unusual but impeccably faith-y, a very cool combination.

Balthazar, also spelled Balthasar (which is what it’s entered as at and at the DMNES) is the name traditionally given to one of the Three Wise Men. Though Behind the Name doesn’t give it the best meaning, the DMNES one (related but with a key word change) is quite nice. (If the former definition bothers you, this article I wrote on definition vs. meaning might be helpful.) It’s perfect for a baby born on the Feast of the Epiphany, and the Three Kings are also revered as saints, and January 6 is their feast day (Gaspar/Casper/Jasper and Melchior are the other two).

You might also recognize Balthazar from The Neverending Story, where Bastian’s middle name is Balthazar (full name Bastian Balthazar Bux! Wow!); Balthazar is used in several Shakespearean plays, and I just read that there’s a Balthazar in Despicable Me 3; and there’s actor Balthazar Getty, whose given name is actually Paul Balthazar Getty. Such a cool way to jazz up a more “normal” first name.

And I love it as a first name! A good nickname would probably make it easier to deal with. These were included in the comments on the Behind the Name entry as traditional nicknames: Balt(ek), Baly, Tazara, Baltík, Baltazárek, Baltin … I’m not sure what language, but Baltek seems like a good option. Bart could work I think, and even something like Bear or Bo. I wondered if the name Balto is related, and it doesn’t seem to be, but I like that option too — but is the fact that a famous Balto is a dog problematic? (Also be aware that Balthus, which is also a traditional nickname, is tied pretty strongly to an artist that I don’t think many parents would want associated with their child.)

What do you all think of the name Balthazar/Balthasar? Would you give it to a son, or have you? Do you like it better as a first or middle? Do you know anyone with this name, and does he like his name? Does he go by a nickname?

Birth announcement: Claire Rose!

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway! It’s live until midnight tomorrow night!

Many of you might know that Katrina, whose shop formerly known as HatchPrints (I know so many of you are fans!) is now Rose Harrington (Instagramweb site and Etsy), had her fourth baby last month (do you remember the epic May the Fourth be with you post??), a sweet little girl given the gorgeous name … Claire Rose!

Katrina posted Claire’s name story over on her blog, and it’s amazing. Just amazing! Goose-bump inducing! Such a meaningful name, with such great patrons!

Congratulations to Katrina and her hubs and big sibs Ryan, Conor, and Elise (I love that Katrina posts name stories!!), and happy birthday Baby Claire!! (Check out this beautiful mama with her beautiful babies!)

A giveaway because I love you all!

If you follow me on Instagram, then you likely already know that I had the great blessing of attending the Syracuse Catholic Women’s Conference on Saturday, October 28. It was my third year going, and I hope I can go every year for the rest of my life — I love it! It’s always a wonderful day with amazing speakers, unending coffee, loads of bathrooms (it’s held in a convention center, so it already has a lot of bathrooms, PLUS they make all the men’s bathrooms women’s bathrooms for the day! No waiting!), an amazing lunch that’s light enough that I don’t feel like I want to die after (as is often the case, thanks to a once strong-as-steel belly that has turned oh-so-sensitive in recent years) but is always delicious and elegant and leaves me satisfied and includes dessert (!), and the vendors! There are so many vendors of so many amazing things! Books, rosaries, holy cards, statues, pictures — and one very special shop that I’m thrilled to tell you all about today!


Do you all remember the profile I did of Sharon last year? (If not, go check it out! Her kids’ names are ah-MAZ-ing!!) I’d been a follower of her on Instagram for a while, and when I saw her at the Conference last year I shyly introduced myself, and discovered she’s just as lovely in person as she seemed on IG, and I looked forward to seeing her there again this year, which was so fun! I posted this picture of us, and she posted this one — I love them both!

And ohhhh you guys, she makes the most gorgeous things!! I often drool over them on IG (this outfit has caught my interest recently, and this one too — as I told her, I love my boys, and I love having all boys, but little girl outfits are just so darling!), and seeing them in real life was even more amazing. I was standing by her table holding some of her things in my hands, and an older lady walked by and asked me what Sharon sells, so I showed her what I was holding and said, “And it’s all made by hand!” and she scrutinized it in that way that old ladies do and declared, “And it doesn’t even look handmade!” Haha! But it’s so true!

I really wanted to share her talent with all of you! So I’m thrilled to tell you that I have a gorgeous dress from her shop that I’m giving away to one of you very lucky ladies! (Or gents, as the case may be!) (Am I million years old for saying “gents”??) It’s got ROSES on it! And it’s pink! And it’s shorter in the front than in the back — I LOVE that feature!


This is 12-18 month size, and I can see it being perfect for Easter (with a little white sweater maybe? And with or without one of the darling bonnets that Sharon also sells in her shop? 😉 ) and certainly for the summer! Leggings would be perfect under it (which Sharon also makes! I die over these Star Wars ones) or tights … am I getting a little carried away picturing how I would dress a little girl in this dress??

The giveaway is open now, and will run until midnight Friday night, and I’ll announce the winner on Saturday — the day of Our Lady! To enter, just click here … but wait! There’s more! If the winner is also a follower of Baby My Love on Instagram, Sharon will add in one of these gorgeous skirts of your choice (here or here)! So be sure to go follow her!!

And for all of you, she’s offering the coupon code CHRISTMAS17 for 15% off in the shop, good until Christmas day!

You guys. This is such an amazing opportunity! If I could buy every single thing in Sharon’s shop, I totally would! And not only the clothes/bibs/moccasins, but there this Nativity set too. Love love love!

Many many thanks to Sharon for being so generous with her beautiful wares, and many many thanks to all of you for being such wonderful readers and making this little community such a blessing for me! ❤

Birth announcement: George Curtis!

Kendra from Catholic All Year‘s been on my list to hound about posting a birth announcement for her littlest guy, but then last week she posted his birth story! So it’s a perfect time to post his birth announcement! 😀 I did a birth announcement for her no. 8 two years ago, and I’m delighted to do so for no. 9!

I probably could have posted it back when he was born — on the 4th of July no less! — since Kendra grammed it all, but it works out better this way because birth story! I love birth stories!

Little man’s name is George Curtis, and as she explained in that initial IG post,

George is a family name on both sides, and the boys all love St. George and the dragon, plus with the July 4th bonus of George Washington and Bl. Pier Georgio Frassati, it seemed perfect! The only thing missing is a nickname, all the other brothers have one. 🤔”

So of course I had to offer some ideas:

I love the traditional George nickname Geordie, and I’ve seen Geo a few times, which is also cool. Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

And then Charlotte jumped in — she is the QUEEN of nickname ideas!

I like George on its own, as well as the usual Georgie. (I also think @sanctanomina ‘s suggestion of Geordie is pretty cool!) If neither of those feel right, though, I think a really neat possibility for your George is the nickname Jet. It’s got the same beginning sound of George immediately followed by a T for Tierney, and what would make it really special and fun is the connection to his namesake – if I remember correctly from your blog, wasn’t your dad a pilot?! I’m sorta loving the idea of “jet” as a nickname for a baby named after a pilot!!! :)”

To which Kendra responded,

yes! He’s named after a fighter pilot. 😎”

If I remember correctly, I’ve seen Georgie a time or two in some of Kendra’s posts? But in his birth story he’s firmly George, and there’s also this, which I’m dying over:

“… we had two different names picked for a girl, one if she was born on July 4th, one for if she was born on other than July 4th, so I needed two different blankets. A boy baby was going to be George either way

Two different names picked for a girl — a 4th of July name and a non-4th of July name. Is anyone else DYING to know what they were? Will we ever know?? I totally respect parents’ right to keep their name ideas secret. No one will die over the not knowing. Not literally anyway. #offeritup 😉

Congratulations to Kendra and her hubs and all of his big sibs, and happy birthday Baby George!!

Baby name consultation: Sophisticated and saintly for baby no. 3

Allison and her husband are expecting their third baby, a little green bean! (=gender unknown) This little one joins big sibs:

Caroline Constance, called Cece (“We loved the name Caroline and it happened to be my great great grandmother’s name. Constance was my husband’s grandmother”)

Gerard Patrick (“My husband calls him Jerry, but pretty much everyone just uses Gerard. Patrick is my husband’s middle name and we liked how they sounded together”)

I love these names! Sophisticated and homey at the same time, if that makes any sense.

Allison writes,

I feel like we have a French sounding first name thing going on, but aren’t tied to it. Matt would really like an easy to pronounce and recognize name. Gerard gets a lot of ‘Jarod’ and ‘Gerald’ and it can be frustrating … We do like the names that have some type of meaning or family tie. We also like heritage. Matt is Irish. I’m mostly Greek and Italian. We also like some family last names as middle names. Also nice to have at least one saint in there! All that said—we are open to new names, too!

The names they’re currently considering for this baby include:

Maria Elisa (“too many vowels?”)
Marie Elisa
Mary Elisa (“Mariel nickname?”)
Mary Teresa (“Tess?”)

John Finelli (“Finn?”)

Family names that might be inspiring include:

John (“My dad is John George, and his dad was George John, and his dad was John George. We’ve heavily considered both John and George over the years. I’m one of 2 girls, so no boys got to carry it on”)
Kevin (“Kevin definitely could be a strong contender in the middle name spot”)
Carrie (Calliope)
Severino (Sam)
Deserina (Des)

So! Many! Great! Names!

I love the names Allison and her hubs are considering for this baby—you all know I’m a huge fan of the Mary+ names, so Maria Elisa, Marie Elisa, Mary Elisa, and Mary Teresa are all up my alley! I do love Allison’s idea of Mariel as a nickname for Mary Elisa—really, it can work for any of those combos. Those combos also remind me of an idea reader skimac left in a comment once: Marielise, as a mashup of Mary/Marie/Maria and Elise. Or Marielisa/Marelisa, to use Allison’s family member Elisa’s name. So pretty! The Marelisa idea might especially help with Allison’s worry that Maria Elisa is too many vowels.

Teresa and Mary Teresa are both great, and I love the nickname Tess. Really, I think all of these ideas are great for a little sister of Caroline/Cece and Gerard. I wonder, though, what they’d think of Therese? You all know that I always start a consultation by looking up the names that the parents have used and like/are considering in the Baby Name Wizard as it lists, for each entry, boy and girl names that are similar in terms of style/feel/popularity, and Therese is a style match for Gerard! St. Therese’s given name was Marie-Therese, so pairing Therese with a Mary name can be a pretty great nod to her as well.

And just like I love the Mary+ names, I love John+ names! Using a family surname in the middle, with John as the first name, and an everyday nickname from the middle name is SO my style! John Finelli is so handsome, and I love the nickname Finn!

That said, though, I do have to make a case for John George! I don’t think I’d suggest George John, since Gerard and George share so many of the same sounds AND letters, but John George would be so meaningful to Allison’s dad, I’m sure! They could even consider something like John George Finelli with the nickname Finn, if they didn’t want to lose that.

Going through their family names, there were a few others that I thought might do well for them as well, including:
Margaret: Margaret seems like a slam dunk with big sibs Caroline and Gerard! Not only did Margaret show up as a strong style match for them in the BNW, but so did Margo(t), which would be a great nickname. I love nicknames Maggie, Meg, Maisie, and Daisy as well.
Marian: Marianne was another strong style match for this family, per the BNW, and since Marian’s a family name, I wondered if they might consider either Marian itself or tweak it to be Marianne?
Kathleen: Caroline always makes me think of Catherine, like these sisters, and my sister-in-law’s nieces are Kathleen and Caroline, so I thought Kathleen might be a good name to consider! Kate is also a style match for Tess, so Kathleen called Kate seems extra perfect here.
Rosemarie: I totally had Rosemary on my list for this family before I even saw that they have a Rosemarie family member! I love Rosemarie, I think it’s a great option.
Virgi(nia): Virgie’s such a sweet name—I assume it’s a nickname for Virginia? I rolled Virginia around in my mind a few times and thought it might work here nicely.
Thomas: Thomas is solid, saintly, and serious, just like Gerard. It would definitely be a good fit for this sib set.
Stephen: Stephen was another style match according to my research, and having it also be a family name is such a bonus!
(Sam): Samuel showed up a few times for them in the BNW as well, and I could totally see a little Samuel/Sam being a nod to Severino (Sam) … or even Severino nicknamed Sam itself? So cool!

I really don’t think Allison and her hubs have to look any farther than their family tree, with all those amazing names! But of course I came up with a bunch of other ideas that I thought might appeal to them. 😊 Based on my research and my own namey head, perhaps they’d like:

(1) Bernadette
Bernadette was actually the first name I scribbled down for them while reading Allison’s email (Rosemary second)! I absolutely love it with Caroline and Gerard, and it’s got some fun nicknames like Benny, Betty, Netty, and Birdie, all of which are great sisters to Cece imo.

(2) Julia
This is 100% based on the BNW—it has Julia listed as a style match for Caroline, Maria, and John, which I thought was pretty solid! I did a spotlight on Juliet(te) a while ago, which included all the saintly connections for Julia—there are loads!

(3) Victoria
Victoria was a style match for both Caroline and Maria, and I feel like it has the same sophistication I get from Caroline and Gerard. Certainly Vicky/i and Tori are well-known nicknames, but they could also get creative like they did with Caroline Constance/Cece and consider nicknames like Cora, Via, and Ria.

(4) Holly
Holly surprised me! It’s a style match for Rosemary and Margo, which I’d already thought would be a good fit for Allison and her hubs, and then I was thinking that since this baby is due in January, maybe they’d like the Christmas connection?

(5) Monica
Finally, what about Monica? The more I think about it, the more I think it’s spot-on for this family! Caroline, Gerard, and Monica are such a smart, saintly bunch!

(1) Lawrence
I actually felt like I had a bit of a hard time with girl names, but there were so many boy names that jumped out at me that I thought would hit the right notes! Lawrence is one—it’s a style match for Gerard and Therese as well as Constance (Cece’s middle name) and Marianne (which I mentioned above). My 7yo had a Lawrence in his preschool class—he was always and only Lawrence, and it was so unexpected, I loved it.

(2) Paul
Paul was a pretty great match for them, being listed as similar to Mary, Teresa, John, and Carolyn (similar enough to Caroline for this purpose, I thought). It certainly fits Allison’s hubs’ desire for “an easy to pronounce and recognize name”!

(3) Russell
Russell was another name that surprised me—it’s a style match for Carolyn, Theresa, Constance, Rosemary, and Lawrence (and by extension Gerard and Therese)—wow! Russell is such a solid name, and I love the nickname Russ. I’ve also seen Sully considered as a nickname for it!

(4) Louis
I’m listing Louis here simply because it *feels* like it would be a good fit imo. Do you agree? Easy to spell/pronounce, solid and saintly—love it!

(5) Martin
Finally, Martin has just the same feel to me as Gerard. They seem like perfectly matched brothers to me! And Marty is such a cute nickname!

There were a bunch of other boy names I considered including that didn’t make the final cut for one reason or another, but I thought I’d list them here just in case they’re helpful: William/Liam, Robert, Oliver, Leo, Jasper (could be great for a baby born on the Epiphany!), Francis, Gregory, and Raymond.

And those are all my ideas! What do you all think? What name(s) would you suggest for the little brother or sister of Caroline/Cece and Gerard?