Baby Girl Or-lee, Sister to Maya and Benjamin

Dear Swistle,

I’m hoping you can provide me with some much needed baby naming clarity. I’m currently pregnant with my third child and having the most difficult time coming up with a name. My pregnancy has been chaotic- I currently have nearly 3 year old twins and we started trying for our third while we were undergoing a major construction project on our home. Naturally we got pregnant much more quickly than we ever thought possible for us and here I am 9 months pregnant, house in complete disarray and very much discouraged by the fact that I cannot come up with a baby girl name that feels right. It would give me much comfort to feel as though I at least had a plan when it came to naming our newest addition.

Our darling twins are named Maya Elyse and Benjamin Asher. Our last name is pronounced phonetically as Or-lee.

Our third is a girl, and I love girl names that feel feminine but simple with some charm to them.

I originally loved Corinne, however my husband is concerned because acquaintances of ours who happen to live in our neighborhood have a 3 year old by the same name. It doesn’t bother me, but much to my dismay he feels very preoccupied about it.

My runner-up choice has been Isla with a middle name of Rose. I have two concerns, the first being pronunciation issues as it is not terribly well known in our part of the country and the second being whether it mimics the vowel sounds of Maya too closely. Also, maybe it’s too trendy?

Other names we have tossed around:

Abigail (husband loves)
Naomi (both of us are ok with this one)
Chloe (same deal as Naomi)
Ella (before the Clooneys nearly certainly doomed it to be even more ubiquitous than it already is)
Iris (we like it but I worry it’s too stuffy?7

I’m so interested in your input on our name selections and would be equally enthused to see any new suggestions you had to work nicely with our existing children’s names.

Wish me luck! Im scheduled to be induced on July 18th! Thank you very much in advance for any help you might be able to offer!



Maya and Isla do feel very similar to me. They look so different, but when I say them aloud I get an almost-rhyme feeling. Isla Rose brings Lida Rose to mind, which could be a plus or a minus or neither.

I think Corinne is great with Maya. It bothers me a little bit that the ending is similar to Benjamin, but I don’t think that would bother me long-term. The acquaintance thing wouldn’t bother me. It bothers me a little that it repeats the -or- sound in the surname, but for others that would be a plus: Corinne Or-lee.

Would it help the acquaintance issue to use Corinna or Karenna?

Or Celeste is a similar style to Corinne, while being a very different name. Celeste Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Celeste.

Camille is another such option. Camille Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Camille.

From your list, my favorite is Naomi. I find it a little difficult to say with the surname, but not at deal-breaking levels.

I don’t think Iris is stuffy, but I am increasingly aware of the difficulties of your surname. Iris Or-lee blends into Ira Sorely. Not that that’s a big deal, but it bugs me a little.

I wonder if you’d like Eliza. Similar to Ella in sound and Abigail in style, but less common than either. Eliza Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Eliza.

Or Fiona. Fiona Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Fiona.

If you don’t mind repeating initials, I like Bianca. Bianca Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Bianca.

Sabrina. Sabrina Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Sabrina.

Simone. Simone Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Simone.

Linnea. Linnea Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Linnea.

Rose. Rose Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Rose.

Stella. Is that too much L? Stella Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Stella.

Juliet. Juliet Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Juliet.

Claudia. Claudia Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Claudia.

Nadia. Nadia Or-lee; Maya, Benjamin, and Nadia. I really like that.




Name update:

Dear Swistle,

I wanted to express many thanks to you and your readers who really helped me with their contributions! Baby girl was born July 18 and after sleeping on it for a night, we decided on Naomi Rose Or-lee.  She’s happy, healthy and completely living up to the Hebrew meaning of her name (which is “pleasant”).  Maya and Ben are head over heels for her and the last 48 hours has been spent happily refereeing who gets to hold her next.

Thank you again- what a lovely community this is, especially when working through a rather stressful decision!

Very sincerely,

Alison Or-lee

36 thoughts on “Baby Girl Or-lee, Sister to Maya and Benjamin

  1. Reagan

    I know a “Corina” – would that be similar enough to Corrine but enough different to overcome your husbands concerns?

    Isla does sound rhyming with Maya to me. I do love Iris but it is somewhat problematic with your last name. Other names I like with Maya and Benjamin,


  2. TheFirstA

    I find anything with a strong I sound too much with Maya. It’s the dominant sound of maya for me and pairing it with something like Isla or Iris seems too similar when I say them together.
    I like the suggestion of Fiona and thing I’d want to go towards another short and sweet name with a different dominant vowel sound. Leah, Ava, Maeve, Nina, Lena.
    I think husband is over thinking Corrine, but different people have different tolerance levels for repeating names. Cora seems like it should be a nice option, but it doesn’t work with the last name. Perhaps Nola or Lauren instead?

  3. Rachel

    I like the above recommendations from Swistle and the other commenters (Nina or Lena!). I’d add:

  4. sbc

    I think of these as being biblical/Israeli names that are also fairly common in the US. Abigail (which I love, and you could do Avigail if you prefer) is a good option and I prefer that to Naomi, though that fits well with the grouping too. Some more that might fit:

    Miriam (if it doesn’t bother you to have two M names…to me this is different enough from Maya to be ok)
    Ruth (I looooove Ruth!)
    Sara[h] (classic and underused, imo)
    Danielle (not used much this decade)
    Ahava (means love!)

    Kveller has a much longer list of names that might be useful to you.

  5. StephLove

    How about Cora or Coral instead of Corinne?

    I like all the names on your list, but Ella best with the siblings.

    From Swistle’s list I like Celeste, Rose, Simone, and Stella best.

    And Simone brought Nina to mind. I don’t hear that much and it’s nice with the siblings.

  6. Andrea

    I love several suggestions: Fiona, Miriam, Juliet. All of those have a lot of charm and spunk. I love the name Iris and would not hesitate to use it despite the last name thing because you aren’t going to be calling her by first and last name in your house. One name that I think has a LOT of spunk is Nolie–it usually is a nn for Magnolia, but I love it as a stand-alone.

    Maya, Benjamin, and Nolie.

    Good luck!

  7. Issa

    We’ll see if I can get this to post. Third try! I have a Maya Elise, so your daughters name made me smile.

    For some reason Emelia came to me. Off your list, I think Iris is my favorite.

  8. Nicki

    I have a Ben and a Maia too, and they have a cousin named Isla, so this may be my favourite post ever! I agree that Maya and Isla are very similar for siblings, but I wouldn’t let it stop you if you love it best. Other options might be: Violet, Ivy, Ava, Eva, Alma, Katrina, Karina, Marina, Nina, Rosalie, Grace, Ruby, Sadie…
    All the best!!

  9. laura

    I love the idea of Simone from Swistle’s list, Abigail from your list, and Miriam from the commenters. I just wanted to ask if you liked the idea of Pearl? It would fit so nicely into your group and is such a pretty name.

  10. Stephanie

    I second the suggestions of Violet, Juliet and Ruth. Beautiful names! I especially like Violet for you.

    Other suggestions:

  11. Kanah

    You could always spell is Ilah, to help with pronouncing Jon issues. But it is very close to Maya…would you like the name Linley/Lynley? I also suggest Ellis or Hollis for you. Good luck!

  12. liz

    My niece and nephew are Ella and Benjamin, and I have a couple of cousins named Maia. So…

    What about Karen or Koren or Carenne?
    Others have suggested Ruth, which I love. What about Sylvia?

    The suggestions of Miranda are lovely. What about Devorah? Deborah? Sarah?

    Maya in Hebrew means spring or brook. What if you named your other daughter Lynne, which also means spring or brook?

    1. Vanessa

      I was going to write Karenne – however, I’ve only known it spent Karin. Or Karine. Both are easy to confuse with Karen, but once the initial confusion is over those spellings are easy to remember and phonetic. I vote for Karine!!

  13. Kelsey D

    What about Esme. Love Esme, but there may be pronunciation issues As with Isla.

    I second Ruth. I just met a little Ruth a few months back and instantly feel in love, was so fresh sounding.

    Or Beth?

    I love Swistles suggestion of Fiona.

    What about Thea??? Love this name!

  14. beep

    I agree with Swistle that the sounds in Orlee are tough for many first names, although Orlee is very pretty as part of a name. To my ear, Iris is unfortunately out because it soes sound like Ira Sorely. To me, also out are names ending in -ee like Emily becaise it sounds too singsong woth Orlee. For the same reason, I don’t love Chloe or Naomi in this case. I like the repeating OR sound of Corinne Orlee, but find Cora Orlee (as mentioned previously) to be too much OR. I also find Ella Orlee something of a tongue-twister. I like Abigail, but would probably not use it myself because Abby is the most likely posible nickname and I don’t like the rhyming-ness with Orlee.

    Since Corinne is problematic, what about Caroline or Carolyn? Or Adrienne, Vivienne, Brienne, or Miriam for similar endings? What about Ellen, Elaine, or Helen instead of Ella? All are fresher to my ear and flow better with Orlee. I also love Swistle’s suggestions of Celeste and Simone. Other ideas: Adele, Louise, Claire, Denise, Rachel.

  15. Jennie

    I love your children’s names! I think Naomi fits especially beautifully with them.

    I have a daughter Maya and some of our top choices if we had a second daughter are: Adele, Tamar, Shira, Amalia, Dalia, and Leila.

  16. Erin Beth

    I LOVE the sibset of Maya, Benjamin, and Naomi!!! I couldn’t resist using it. Adding in “Rose” smooths the transition to the last name and Naomi Rose is so lovely!

    Adele, Fiona, Miriam, and Stella fit very nicely as well.

  17. AlexiswithaG

    Crazy how name lovers think alike… my LO is Corinne Ellis and most of my front runners have already been named above. The lot of my top 10 were:
    Auden, Ava, Blythe, Eden, Eva/Eve, Fiona, Greer, Isla, Maeve, Paige, Siena, Sloane, Tessa
    *Paige being the name that could have been…
    *And Rose was our backup middle name.

  18. sandra

    With “or-lee” as the surname I wouldn’t use any name ending with the “ee” sound…i just fnd it too sing dingy.

    My first thought was Lydia. ..Lydia Rose…
    Maya,Ben and Lydia ☺

  19. JD

    Delia Orlee is different, short, charming, sweet and feminine. Delia Rose, Delia, Maya and Ben.
    I think of Ben and Maya as being international names, easily pronounced in many languages, so maybe you’d like names like Lucia, Linnea, Stella, Vera. I really like Lucia Orlee. Lucia, Maya and Ben.

  20. Christine

    I love Iris, and am still bummed that my husband vetoed it. I also love the names Maya and Benjamin (we considered Maya, but then he changed his mind because a friend of ours has a Mia). We ended up with a Julian and an Eleanor

    Other names we had (or I had) on our list that might appeal – Lena (Love but sounded rhymey with our last name), Evelyn, Simone. I also know a Charlotte with a brother named Benjamin. Good luck!

  21. Alison O.

    Hi ladies,

    It’s me (original poster) just checking in to update and gather some more opinions. Currently my husband is receptive to the idea of Corinna- what are your thoughts on that? I also am open to suggestions for middle names. As much as I adore Rose, it’s more than a little bit overused.

    Also, Naomi is also in the race still! I just can’t seem to overlook the love I have for Corinne (maybe enough to settle for a derivative of it)

    All of your feedback has been incredibly insightful and much appreciated- it certainly helps to have a little community to bounce ideas off of!

    1. Reagan

      I think Corinna is a great choice. Maya, Ben, and Corinna.

      For middle names I like:

      Corinna Eve
      Corinna Mae
      Corinna Grace
      Corinna Jade
      Corinna Beth

      Naomi is also a good option.

      1. Elisabeth

        Beth has been floating through my mind since I started reading this post, like the Beth in Little Women.

  22. Jean C.

    I love the name Nadia. There’s a little Nadia at my daughter’s daycare and it feels so on point without being overly trendy. That’s by far and wide my favorite suggestion. My second favorite is the reader suggestion of Lydia, which also sounds so lovely with Maya and Benjamin.
    I think Jane could work as well. Or Elizabeth.
    Maybe Francesca?
    Congratulations! I can’t wait for an update :)

  23. Meg

    I love Celia, maybe that would work for your husband instead of Corinne? I find it flows better with your last name and is feminine but strong!

    One thing to think about with Corinna is pronunciation (is it Core-reena or Core-Ryna)?

    1. Reagan

      I am guessing if the original poster loves the name Corinne then she would likely pronounce the name Cor inn ah.
      The Corina i know pronounces it Core- reena.

  24. Kim C

    What about Katia/Katya or Julia?

    For that French feel, like Corinne, Fleur comes to mind. Maya, Benjamin and Fleur. Lovely!

    Josephine or Clementine?

    Love the suggestions of Grace, Lydia and Nadia.

    Good luck!

  25. Maree

    I love Naomi, it ticks so many boxes. I do find it tricky with the surname and that would be part of the package.

    Do you like Tabitha?

  26. PennyUp

    I love Celeste! And Naomi. Both were top on my girl list (which I never got to use). And I love the suggestion of Delia from the comments, too.

  27. Celeste

    I am a Celeste, and as much as I have to grown to love it, I wouldn’t pick it here. I sometimes got teased as Lester, and I feel like that possibility is stronger with your last name.

    I adore Camille or Camilla, and Claudia.


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