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I have spent a large percentage of my life thinking about baby names.

At Excel spreadsheet creation, our list had 66 girl's names on it.

We could only use 2: Claire + Naomi.

Seems a waste to sit on the rest, so I will be tweeting one a day, in alphabetical order.

1. Alexandria. This name beckoned me all the way down to the wire. Ultimately, it’s too many syllables without a nickname alternative that I love. We played with it in the middle name spot but it always overpowered the first name. #TheJensen66
2. Amalia (pronounced Ah-muh-lee-uh, not Uh-MALL-ya). For a brief moment during my pregnancy it sat in my Top 5. I even interviewed an Amalia in my firm about her name. In the end, it was too close in look to Amelia, a name I have a lifelong unexplained aversion to. #TheJensen66
3. Anneliese. This is such a great, underused name. It tried to creep into my Top 5, but fell just short. I hope someone sees this and uses it on their baby girl. #TheJensen66
4. Avril. This was in strong contention as a *middle* name, right down to the wire. In addition to just plain liking it, I loved that it’s Jon’s birth month in French (we’re both Francophiles). If *Claire* had been born in April, it would have been a done deal. #TheJensen66
5. Blythe. Top 3 name of mine, but an absolute tongue-twister with Jensen, so it could have only been her middle name. Jon had told me he liked it too, but a few hours before we named her he admitted that he only starred it because he knew how much I loved it. #TheJensen66
6. Britta. Too bad about the water filter. #TheJensen66
7. Bronwyn. I loved this name forever, until actually I looked up the meaning. WHITE BOOBIES, Y’ALL. Plus Jon has a bad personal association with it. #TheJensen66
8. Camille. Claire and Camille are the only two mainstay names that were on my original names list, created when I was 13 or 14. Jon liked this one, too, but a sad family association removed it from serious contention. #TheJensen66
9 and 10. Carolina/Caroline. I starred Caroline, meaning “I like this name a lot and could possibly be convinced, if you love it,” but Jon starred neither so it was a nonstarter. #TheJensen66
11. Cassia. Pronounced Cash-uh. Beautiful...and a complete tongue-twister with Jensen. (It surprised me how deceptively tricky “Jensen” is to pair. It ended up being the undoing of multiple names.) #TheJensen66
12. Charlotte. This is one of the best names as far as I’m concerned, but I couldn’t seriously consider it for MY baby on account of there already being other Charlottes/Charlies in the family. #TheJensen66
13. Chloe. I’ve always had a fondness for this name, but it borders on too cutesy for my taste so it never quite made it into serious contention. #TheJensen66
14. Claire. (Of COURSE she was Claire all along.) #TheJensen66
15. Clara. Despite being so close to Claire and belonging to one of my favorite literary characters of all time (Clara Allen in Lonesome Dove), I never seriously considered this name. Maybe because I have a friend named Cara and a friend named Lara. #TheJensen66
16. Cora. If I had had a baby girl when I was 17 years old, this would have been her name. I was OBSESSED. Then a boyfriend named Corey and a niece named Norah happened. The name’s popularity trajectory raised concerns, too. #TheJensen66
Interjecting with a note on popularity trajectory: here is the file I sent Jon. See the “rules” - I’m not opposed to popular names (Claire is in the top 50), but I wanted to avoid *trendy* names. (This system for naming worked WONDERS, btw.) #TheJensen66
17. Diana. This would have been a favorite except that I have an aunt Diana, but not a CLOSE aunt, and I didn't want a "We-didn't-name-her-after-you...but-we-didn't-NOT-name-her-after-you…you're-great-but-not-like-NAME-MY-KID-AFTER-YOU-great" scenario on my hands. #TheJensen66
18. Edie. I love this name but I love nothing it could be short for (besides Eden, but there’s a close relative named Eden, and besides, they’re the same number of syllables) and I don’t believe in giving nicknamey names that aren’t short for a real name. #TheJensen66
19. Elisabeth. Using this spelling elevates and softens the name, in my opinion, and encourages the nickname Beth over Liz/Lizzie. I REALLY love this name, but since it’s the middle name of multiple nieces (with the Z spelling), it never made it into hot contention. #TheJensen66
20. Evangeline. Eva for short. I dearly, dearly love this name and have for a long time. (My mom told me after we named Claire that she had wondered if this would be the one.) Ultimately, though, it’s just too religousy. #TheJensen66
21. Fay. This name slowly grew on me for about 5 years but never made up enough ground to catch up to the real contenders. (Also, couldn’t kick the “Mm! FAY this is DELICIOUS!” association.) #TheJensen66
22. Flora. The Great British Baking Show may have influenced this late addition to the list. #TheJensen66
23. Gemma. Normally I am of the opinion that potentially ambiguous pronunciation isn’t a deal-breaker — you only have to correct people once — but I could not abide the idea of one single person calling my baby Gemma with a hard G, as in gum. #TheJensen66
24. Greta. I love this name in theory but never could picture it on my own child. I also run into the same issue as with Edie - Greta is the short form of names that I don’t particularly like. #TheJensen66
25. Gwen. Oddly, the exact same commentary from yesterday’s name applies here. (Plus, at one point during my pregnancy, a coworker named his baby Gwendolyn and my very next friend to give birth also named her baby Gwendolyn.) #TheJensen66
26. Gwyneth (Gwynnie). When we lived in the Caribbean there was a local Dutch family with a sweet little girl named Gwynnie. I’ve loved it ever since. When it came down to it though, it was just a bit too cutesy. And Gwyneth Jensen is tongue-twisty. #TheJensen66
27. Helena. (I vastly prefer the Helen-uh pronunciation over Huh-LAYN-uh.) A name that I would admire on another baby but that I could never quite picture on my own. #TheJensen66
Because I missed a day over the weekend and because I have no further commentary on these next names, here are two at once:

28 and 29. Imogen and Ingrid. That I have nothing to say about them demonstrates that maybe they shouldn’t have been on the list at all. #TheJensen66
30. Isla. This name has been on my list since 2005 - before it was even a top 1000 name, let alone a top 100. (Not saying this to be like “I liked it before you did!” ; I’m just sincerely relieved I didn’t name a baby a trendy name 4 years before it skyrocketed.) #TheJensen66
31. Ivory. Sooo pretty, but carries several horrible connotations (elephant poaching, white supremacy...yikes 😬) I maintain that, phonetically, this name is beautiful, especially when you cheat it down to two syllables: Eye-vree. But srsly, don’t name your kid this. #TheJensen66
32. Jane. One of the best names. But I was strongly against using a J name, on account of “Hi, we’re JESSIE AND JON JENSEN.” (Jon wasn’t against it, and whether or not starting with a J was a deal-breaker may have been our biggest naming disagreement.) #TheJensen66
33. Johanna. (Jo-HAHN-uh) I adore this name, but see previous note about J names. #TheJensen66
34. Josephine. (Jo) I have loved this name for as long as I’ve loved Jo March. Disqualified for the J thing, and also because I have a nephew named Joseph. #TheJensen66
35 and 36. Julia and Juliana (pronounced onna, not anna). I’m fond of these but neither were a favorite of mine. (Jon did star “Julia.”) #TheJensen66
37. June. Another nonstarter J name. #TheJensen66
38. Junia. I had a great-grandfather named Junius, and Junia was a female apostle in the Bible (cool!), two very good reasons for this name to make the list. But I couldn’t get past that it sounds like “Junior” spoken in a Boston accent. Plus, y’know, the J thing. #TheJensen66
39. Kit. I’ve harbored a love for this name since I first saw A League of Their Own. But do I like it better for a boy or a girl?? Uncertain. And I would want to use it as a permanent nickname, but don’t love Catherine or Christopher enough as the long form. #TheJensen66
40. Leah. SUCH a beautiful name, but has disappointing meanings (best case scenario: weary. Worst case scenario: cow). Plus a sad Biblical backstory. (Also, I love Leigh, but Lee is a top 5 name for me for boys, and it can’t be on both lists.) #TheJensen66
41. Lila. Best guess is I added this to the list during my Friday Night Lights phase, or maybe it’s one that my husband mentioned liking at some point. It’s a pretty-enough name. That’s about all I have to say about it. #TheJensen66
42. Linnea. I had a friend in 2nd grade named Linnea. Lesser-known flower name. Very pretty. Very sweet. Jon even starred this one on his list, but it never rose high enough for me to put it toward the top of mine. #TheJensen66
43. Maeve. This was a last-minute addition that I discounted almost as soon as I added it, but in the interest of full disclosure, here it is. #TheJensen66
44. Maren. I wasn’t thrilled with how it sounded with Jensen, but I was willing to put that aside to call a little baby girl “Mare” for short 💜 #TheJensen66
45. Mariam. (Miriam is still to come on this list.) For a while I thought I preferred Mariam over Miriam, until I realized it sounds like “Marry ‘im.” #TheJensen66
46. Mila. I have no thoughts, opinions, or analysis on this one. I guess one of us liked it, at some point. #TheJensen66
47. Miriam (Mim). Oh how I delighted in the idea of having a daughter named Miriam-nicknamed-Mim! Jon, however, couldn’t get past the Mad Madame thing so it was never a serious possibility. #TheJensen66
48. Naomi. For a lot of my pregnancy I thought Claire would end up being named Naomi (Nay-omi, not Nye-omi). I’m happy to be wrong though, and using it as her middle name eliminated my hesitations with it (multiple pronunciations and no good nickname) #TheJensen66
49. Natalia. Pretty enough, but ultimately not particularly compelling. #TheJensen66
50. Nina. Such a sweet name and so on-trend-sounding that I’m surprised it hasn’t enjoyed its moment in the spotlight yet. The most popular it’s ever been in the US was number 145 in 1902. This is a top 5 girl’s name for me. #TheJensen66
51. Olivia (Liv). I remember being *amazed* by this name when I heard it for the first time as a child. Its skyrocket up the popularity charts and staying power at the top has eliminated a lot of that wonder, though. #TheJensen66
52. Petra. I really like this name. Do I love this name? No. But do I LOVE the idea of “Pet” as her family nickname? YES. #TheJensen66
53. Pippa. I’ve long loved this name, but it’s another that crosses into too cutesy territory for me. #TheJensen66
55. Saffron. This is the closest thing to a “guilty pleasure” name that I have on this list. #TheJensen66
56. Saskia. I guess I liked how this sounded at some point, but have no other emotional connection to it. (Also, it means ‘Saxon’ so it’s sorta like saying “I’M WHITE!!!”) #TheJensen66
57. Shay. I love this name. So much so that I kept trying to overlook the fact that it doesn’t really mean anything (it’s a misspelling of an alternate transcription of the Hebrew word for gift...*maybe*) and that it’s tongue-twisty with Jensen. #TheJensen66
58. Shoshana. Could only have been considered as a middle name due to its being a bit of a mouthful. I do love it though. #TheJensen66
59. Susannah (Susie). Earlier in our marriage we both quite liked Susie. 10+ years later, it never made it into consideration. #TheJensen66
60. Sweet. This is my maiden name, and I always planned to use it as my first daughter’s middle name. But I didn’t like it with our top two (Claire or Naomi), plus once we knew we would be having an only child, it didn’t seem fair to favor one side over the other. #TheJensen66
61. Thomasin. I have an extreme soft spot for girl versions of boy names. (And yes, I loved The Witch THAT much.) #TheJensen66
62. Twyla. I kept thinking, “Twyla could be fresh-sounding under the right circumstances, no?” No. #TheJensen66
63. Una. I’ve loved this name ever since I first read the Anne of Green Gables series. Plus it means lamb! It was THISCLOSE to cracking my top 5, (and Jon loves it too) but ultimately it’s so far out of my usual style that I was worried about regretting it later. #TheJensen66
64. Victoria. Such a wonderfully lovely name (and my mom’s name!) which I’ve long considered for the middle spot. Ultimately passed up because it’s a bit ostentatious (which is why my mom hates her name) and because of the whole aforementioned “only child” thing. #TheJensen66
65. Vienne. Briefly considered as a middle name, but Viennne Jennnsennn is no good. #TheJensen66
66. Violet. This is ALMOST a perfect name (seriously — flowery but not cutesy, great nickname potential with Vi, easy to spell and pronounce), except that I can’t move past it being one letter short of “violent.” #TheJensen66
THE END. Just kidding! I left a spot on our spreadsheets for us to add more names for the others’ consideration as we thought of them. I added three and Jon added one, so #TheJensen66 technically became The Jensen 70:
My add-ons:
Neve (in fact, this so immediately struck me that it broke into my coveted Top 5)
Simone (we heavily considered this in the middle name spot. Two syllable names with the emphasis on the second syllable make GREAT middle names)

Jon’s add-on:

Also, if she, our November baby, had been born with obviously red hair (Jon’s cousins are all cranking out a BONKERS amount of red heads, so I clung to hope), we were 100% in agreement that her middle name would have been Autumn. #TheJensen66
Her NICU nurses announced that she had red hair but I wasn’t convinced. And I was right!

This concludes #TheJensen66.

(She looks like Claire Naomi, doesn’t she?)
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