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labeling with love

we've been puzzling over names for weeks now. the girl thing has kind of thrown us for a loop. girl names are just not coming to us. amusingly enough, we've had a boy name (first name only) ready for a long, long time. cooper -- after the one we dubbed "the unloved oldest manning brother." we were just joking around one day. "no, not peyton. no, not eli... i know... cooper!" and that was it. we were all set to have paul and coop running around our house.

but now here we are, thinking about girl names. it's been difficult.

for a while, we were set on either gemma (my choice) or fiona (cam's choice). but then one day in the shower it occurred to me that gemma was a little too close to [aunt] jemima, and i sadly gave it up. as much as i liked fiona (after gabrielle anwar's character in "burn notice"), i kept thinking of it in terms of shrek and cameron diaz, and how could cam have a child named after a princess (ugh) voiced by a cam?

once upon a time, i loved sofia, but then paul found himself with a little blond classmate named sophia.

i liked annabel, annaliese, zora, jane. cam liked zoe, kenna, corinne, anne. we agreed teagan was a cool name, but with its popularity on the upswing, i was a bit concerned.

our 2003 boy/girl shortlists were from a different place in our lives. boys -- liam peyton and declan finn (and paul ryo, obviously). girls -- nola thessaly, ella nozomi and quinlan paige. (funny note about "thessaly" -- originally we agreed (somewhat drunkenly, as we had come up with names a few weeks prior to trying to conceive) on nola eblis, eblis being a name we had taken from sandman. then we went home and discovered eblis was another name for the devil. well then. hardly an appropriate name for a little girl. we replaced eblis with thessaly, another sandman name. sure, thessaly was a witch, but at least she wasn't satan.) since we have a ryo, we can hardly have a nozomi. that would be like naming your kids romeo and juliet. (well, not quite, but you get my drift.) quinlan? no. nola was our big discovery/revelation name back then and we adored it (nola, the girl who can't sing), but i sighed and packed it away when joel and his wife named their son nolan.

so what do we do? any suggestions?

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