Piera: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 30, 2014

English: Photograph of Pierina Legnani (1863-1...

Most classic masculine names have an obvious feminine form – or three.  But how ’bout Peter?

Thanks to Kiri for suggesting one possibility.  Our Baby Name of the Day is Piera.

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Sienna: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 29, 2014

Saint Catherine of Siena. Fresco in church of ...

Today’s choice is part-color name, part-place name, and very stylish in recent years.

Thanks to Elisabeth for suggesting our Baby Name of the Day: Sienna.

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Rufus: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 28, 2014

English: William II of England Česky: Vilém Rufus

This post was originally published on January 11, 2009.  It was substantially revised and reposted on July 28, 2014.

He’s an ancient appellation with plenty of indie cred.

Our Baby Name of the Day is the red-headed Rufus.

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Sunday Summary: Hello from the Beach!

by appellationmountain on July 27, 2014

Sunday SummaryThere’s a point every summer where it seems completely illogical that I’m not camped out on the beach, reading a book and watching my children cover themselves in saltwater and sand.

We reached that point last week, so hello from Rehoboth Beach, Delaware!

The namespotting isn’t extreme here – the urban parents in the wilds of Washington DC tend to be more daring - but I did hear Maddox and Lucy, and my ears are open …

Happily, when real life fails to provide exciting names to discuss, the internet never fails:

  • Oh, it looks like KM Sheard had a much better time namespotting in France!  Lilou is one of my favorites, and Aglae, Flavie, and Matisse all intrigue …
  • Maybe Ruth was an old lady name when Rachel had her Friends baby back in 2002, but today she’s in the first stare of fashion, isn’t she?
  • Then again, there’s Brunehilde – could you ever?
  • And on the other hand, there’s Nancy and Beverly.  No to Beverly – at least for me – but Nancy is a name I simply adore.
  • I’m on my third or fourth hand, but while we’re talking “old lady” names let’s say this – Dorothy is officially back.
  • Leaving that topic, let’s talk twins.  Nancy’s revised list of boy/girl twin names is so much better than the original.
  • Roses & Cellar Door’s post It’s Big Overseas is genius!  Why don’t we hear Olga, Joachim, Tecla, Emil – or their equivalents? – in the US?
  • Love this sister set: Ottilie and Esme!
  • Duana gives the assist to parents naming baby #2.  Big brother is Diego, and Dario is shortlisted if it’s a boy.  But Duana is right – Diego and Dario are a matched set, without much opportunity for naming baby three.  I’m always curious about situations like these, where the parents like a name, but it potentially sets a pattern that would be difficult to continue with future children – if there are any.
  • Hmmm … what do you call Dardanelles for short?
  • In favor of sharing your baby’s name before birth – very close to the way I feel.

Lastly, thank you for indulging me during my birthday week, while I chose the names, from the handsome Walton to the what-are-you-thinking Veruca.  Looking forward to returning to regularly scheduled programming on Monday!

That’s all for this week.  Thank you for reading, and have a great week!


Veruca: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 25, 2014

VerucaShe’s a reprehensible child who meets a bad end in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Could this ever be the name of a real child?  Our Baby Name of the Day is Veruca.

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Everild: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 24, 2014

EverildLooking for a rare name with a stylish short form?

Today’s Baby Name of the Day fits the bill: Everild.

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Wallis: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 23, 2014

Portrait of Wallis Simpson, 1936

This one has fascinated me since I first read about the Duke and Duchess of Windsor in the 1980s.

Our Baby Name of the Day is Wallis.

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Smith: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 22, 2014

SmithThis is among the most common of the surnames, and yet relatively rare in the first spot.

Our Baby Name of the Day is Smith.

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Walton: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on July 21, 2014

Publicity photo of Ralph Waite (John Walton, S...

Not so long ago, prime time television was all about life in simpler times on a very special mountain.

For my birthday week, I’m choosing the names – and today’s Baby Name of the Day is Walton.


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Sunday Summary: 29th of 2014

by appellationmountain on July 20, 2014

Alex playing ice hockeyMy son went off to ice hockey camp last week, and when I picked him up after the first day, another camper said “See ya, George,” as we walked out the door.

My son – whose name is Alex – explained that over lunch they’d talked about whether the other kids thought their names fit, and if not, what their names should be instead.  Instead of Alex – a name that has been the subject of much discussion between my son and I – they dubbed him George.

And he would make a great George!  It’s a family name on my dad’s side, the name of an uncle and my late great-grandfather.  It never quite made our shortlist, and none of my cousins have used family names.

I’d considered Georgia over the years, but seriously considered never George – and I can’t say why.  Could my positive reaction be part of a delayed Prince George effect?

Elsewhere online:

  • Idaho takes their time releasing name stats, but when they do, they also share unusual names registered.  Worth waiting for Theory, Glacier, Dually, Torque, Truce, and Pearadice.  Really – Pearadice!  What does that mean?
  • I like the names Truman and North, but Truman North together?  Can’t decide if that’s a poetic nod to Canada, or an unintentional punchline.
  • Rumor has it that Keisha Castle-Hughes is in talks to join the Games of Thrones cast for the fifth season as Obara, one of Oberyn’s daughters.  Obara – the next Aria?  Maybe not, but I think she’s more wearable than Khaleesi …
  • These 80s throwback posts at British Baby Names completely make my day.  Mary Petronella!  Ferdinand, Basil, and Beau!  Primrose and Pelham!  Aristocratic, daffy, and totally different than what I was hearing in 1989 in the US.  Too exciting.
  • Not to say that American names are boring.  Zeffy’s list of 1790 finds is intriguing.  I know why we’ve stopped calling our kids Masheck and Nimrod, but Dempsey, Orson, and Collier are great.
  • Farewell, Geraldine.  And lots of other names in Ren’s post at Nameberry.  For now …
  • Just noticed: Marjorie re-entered the US Top 1000 in 2013!
  • Best name mentioned in Facebook conversation this week: Zvezda, which the poster said means star in Macedonian – his grandmother’s name.  No clue how to say it, but it’s intriguing, right?
  • As if choosing first names wasn’t tough enough, there’s also plenty of room in 2013 to choose your kiddo’s last name – a thoughtful look at surname choices, here.

Now, on to the exciting news – my birthday is coming up, which means that this upcoming week is packed with names that I’ve chosen – five straight days of crazy, would-you-really-consider-it choices.

As always, thank you for reading, and have a great week!

More names to explore: