Kendrick and I started keeping a running list of our favorite names for both boys and girls in my phone from the moment we found out that we were expecting. Now that I know we’re having a girl, I thought I’d share my Boy List (in no particular order, although I left my absolute favorite for last).
Mostly because talking about baby names is, for some reason, the most fun thing in the entire world.
Gabriel: I just love this; it’s classic and romantic and sophisticated. And instead of “Gabe”, how about “Rel” for a nickname? Kendrick did a music video once directed by a guy named Rel (short for Ariel, in that case), and the name has stuck in my head ever since.
Christian: Kendrick and I had a lot of back-and-forth about this one, because we both kind of feel that the name has transcended its religious connotations and just become a straight-up wonderful name that makes me think of both Robin Hood (the Kevin Costner version) and Christian Slater, which makes it sort of the best ever. Except…it’s still “Christian.” So it’s kind of hard to get away from the fact that you’re technically naming your child after a religion, which might make the name not an ideal pick if the mother is, say, Jewish. As I am. Anyway, I love it.
Kendrick: Sure, I’m biased…but I’ve thought “Kendrick” was the coolest name ever from the moment I first heard it. I’ve never come across anyone else with that name (except for Anna Kendrick and Kendrick Lamar), and I love how it’s masculine (with that strong “K” sound at the end) without being “traditional” at all.
Oliver: Simple and sweet (it references the olive branch and means “peaceful” in Latin), it’s the kind of name that pretty much everyone loves, and has lots of great Shakespearean undertones.
Gideon: It’s a strong name with lots of history behind it (it means “Great Warrior” and references the Biblical hero who questioned his faith and went on to be a leader of men), and is a great compromise if you’re looking for an “unusual” (ish) name that won’t get too many double-takes. Also, Neil Patrick Harris named his son Gideon, and anything that Neil Patrick Harris does is probably a good idea.
Henry: This is our son’s middle name for two reasons: for my grandfather on my dad’s side, who was named Henry…and because Henry is Indiana Jones’ real name (Henry Jones Junior, a.k.a. “Junior”). Enough said.
Milo: This name has gotten so popular in recent years that I was hesitant to put it on our list, but I was won over by the fact that Milo is the protagonist of one of my all-time favorite books, The Phantom Tollbooth. “So many things are possible just as long as you don’t know they’re impossible.” Best moral ever.
Reid: Another one towards which I’m obviously biased. “Reid” is technically my middle name, and when I was growing up I always thought I’d name a child “Reid” – I love it for both a boy and a girl – but since I now use it for my professional last name it ended up being off the table, just because I don’t want my child to constantly have to answer the question “So is your name Reid…Reid?” Sigh.
Patrick: If you like traditional names (Michael, John, Paul, etc)…how about Patrick? Bonus points if you’re Irish, but you certainly don’t need to be. It’s a never-goes-out-of-style classic, but it’s not especially popular right this very minute, so there probably won’t be a ton of Patricks in your son’s class.
Indigo: If your tastes lead towards the super-unconventional…how about this one?! It’s kind of weird, yes…and could potentially be confused with Inigo from Princess Bride (“My name is Inigo Montoya et cetera et cetera”), but to me that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I bet we’ll see a lot more of it in the years to come.
Reese: Like it for a girl, love it for a boy. John Connor’s dad in Terminator (whose full name was Kyle Reese)! Come on! It’s so cool.
Want to hear my absolute number-one favorite? Drumroll.
Sebastian. I think it’s perfect. (Honorable mention goes to the very similar “Bastian”, after the hero of The NeverEnding Story.)
Tell me your favorites!