We are expecting a boy and are at a loss with names. We want to avoid anything too popular (i.e., a lot of the 2 syllable names ending in “n”) but then again, my husband won’t go for anything too unusual either.

We already have a 2.5 yr old little girl named Vivienne (middle name Margot after my mother). Other factors – my husband is Brazilian, family speaks Portuguese, and his last name (which the baby will use) is 3 syllables ending in “o”.  The middle name will likely be Antonio after my husband’s grandfather.

Names we have tossed around are Pierce, Rhys, Elias and Julian (feels too close phonetically to Vivienne) but nothing is grabbing us. What are your thoughts?


I hate letters where everyone is right, because there’s little to start from, as in ‘well at least don’t do THIS’. There’s none of that here, I mean, you know what you’re up against because Julian is awesome but way too close to Vivienne.

So instead of telling you not to do something, I’m going to suggest something I say not to do. I know how you and I alike have talked about the two-syllable names ending in N, but I think we all agree they’re of a certain type and vintage. You wouldn’t be going for Colton or Logan or Jaden to begin with, right?

But when I read that the middle name might be Antonio, I thought – what about Anton? Anton and Vivienne. It’s classic but unusual, it’s not typical, and while I understand that it’s two syllables ending in N, it’s not like it’s following a trend. Plus, honoring the grandfather! (I mean this instead of the middle name, of course, not in addition.)

Is it a little too International Coffees for you? Then what about going longer?  Bartholomew, Emmanuel, Thaddeus? Or something two-syllable that doesn’t feel trendy, along the lines of your Pierce and Rhys – Baxter, Hector, Deacon, or even single-syllable Clyde?

But to be frank, I think I hit it with Anton, not to pat me on the back, which I just did.   Let me know!