Hi Duana!

We are expecting our second baby in late May or early June and we like to wait to find out the sex (although everyone is guessing girl this time, not sure if that's because we already have a boy or not). For reference, our first is Felix and the kids have their dad's last name.

If we do have a girl like everyone seems to think we will, we are pretty set on Zelda for her name. Daphne and Primrose are options, but Zelda is the front runner. BUT if we have a boy, we are a little stuck. We've liked Edwin for a long time and figured we would nickname him Ned (don't like Ed at all). Now we feel like maybe there is something we would like better but don't know what it is. It doesn't make either of us as excited as Zelda or Felix did. Other names we've tossed around are August (but I think that is too calendar-y with his last name), Jasper, Barnaby, Rufus (a family name but the family is kind of fraught). We like names of saints, and apparently things that are vaguely trendy/hipstery but probably won't come across on a daily basis. St. Norbert's feast day is 6/6 and part of me wants to just say 'eff it and call him Norbert/Bert (husband is less into that idea, ha).

Any ideas for boy names we're missing? Should we just go with Edwin? Seriously, anything you come up with would be appreciated!



So have I ever mentioned this thing I read that says you’re slightly more likely to have a child of the same sex with the same partner (i.e. if the two kids have the same parents) and your chances go up with every subsequent child? I read it once and never again, but it theoretically explains why there are lots of families of like, three girls, or four boys, or why that family I knew growing up had seven girls and then a boy, because I assume your inner counter stops counting by then?

I know it doesn’t really work this way, both my parents are from massive families that make a mockery of this assertion. Which brings me to the Chinese Gender Prediction calendar. Ever tried this? If you’re bored one night, plug in the dates of people who have already had children…it’s right every time and it freaks me out!

All this to say, maybe you are having a girl and this is all for moot. I hope so, because I love Zelda very much.  But the issue is not the name we all like together, it’s the one that’s not ringing all your bells. Here’s the way to the name you like best, first of all…

Call your baby Ned. Introduce him as such. Even your email announcement should say “Baby Ned is here!” Later, when name nerds ask, you can tell them the birth certificate says Edwin (or Norbert – why NOT Ned for Norbert?) but it should be much after the fact. Because even though I’m with you and prefer Ned, people will see Edwin and call him Ed, if they nickname him at all. For that matter, when you introduce him as Ned (not as a tiny infant, but later, at like, swimming lessons and stuff), people will hear ‘Ed’, so you’re going to have to clarify for some time. Also, though it’s not my favourite practice, I feel like people sometimes don’t question the offbeat nickname as much if it’s in the middle. I.e. if you send out an announcement as “Jasper Edwin ‘Ned’ LastName”, it sometimes goes over easier.

But I’m bothered that you’re not as excited as you are about Zelda. August doesn’t bother me, even with your (redacted) last name, and I have long sung the praises of Barnaby around here. You could also consider Balthazar or Malachy or Solomon. How about Ezekiel, or Zeke? Hugo, if that’s not happening in your neighbourhood, is a perfect fit, as Gilbert might be?

I’m delighted with your inclusion of Rufus but something tells me it’s not going to live – maybe tuck it into a second spot? Other names that come to mind include Caspian, Fabian, Desmond and Victor – anything there? Are you starting to feel something? Bertram, maybe?

Remember, if he turns out to be Ned, launch your strategy accordingly. If she turns out to be Zelda, as you were. If there’s a surprise en route, I can’t wait to know who it is!