Caitlin: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 9, 2014

Once upon a time, this name was a footnote to the classic Katherine.

Thanks to Virginia for suggesting Caitlin as our Baby Name of the Day.

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Maeve: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 8, 2014

Queen Meave and the Druid

This post was originally published on June 6, 2008.  It was substantially revised and re-posted on December 8. 2014.

This modern-sounding name belongs to a legendary warrior queen.

Thanks to Kayt for suggesting today’s Baby Name of the Day: Maeve.

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Sunday Summary: 49th of 2014

by appellationmountain on December 7, 2014

English: Infant wearing a onesie

Conventional wisdom is that it’s best to keep the baby name quiet until the baby is actually in your arms.

There are so many reasons – mostly the burden of unsolicited opinions, and, of course, the potential for name theft.

Other parents really haven’t quite narrowed it down, and are counting on looking at their baby to settle on a name.  I guess it could help – a shock of red hair might point to Rory rather than Riley.

Or maybe you’re 99% certain, but it just doesn’t feel right to embroider it on a receiving blanket before you’ve inked it on the birth certificate.

Two people in our lives have recently welcomed babies.  In one case, the couple announced the name shortly after they knew it was a girl.  In another case, I don’t have a clue what they’re naming the baby.  Even though we’ve talked about baby names for ages and – well, it goes without saying that I’m interested.

My husband and I have always fallen into the announce-immediately club.  With our son, I sort of wish we hadn’t, because his middle name could have used some more mulling.  But I’ve never had a moment’s regret about sharing our daughter’s name.  Even though, yes, we did get all sorts of comments, and a handful of criticisms, too.

As with most things in naming – and parenting in general! – I don’t think there are any rules.  It’s a question of doing what feels right for you and your family at that very moment.

And yet there are some strong opinions out there.  So I’m curious: did you share your children’s names before they were born?

There’s a poll in this post – and I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Elsewhere online:

  • Speaking of voting, wasn’t Round #1 of Name Madness at NameFreak! incredibly difficult!  How can I choose between Greer and June?
  • And Happy Birthday Britney Spears!  Time for the Pop Culture Baby Name Game.  I’m entering Peter, as in Pan, as in both the live action version from NBC, as well as the prequel – titled just Pan - due in theaters Summer 2015, and already in heavy rotation in the coming attractions.
  • A boy named Jazz, spotted by Names for Real.  At first, it seems like a lot of name, but then again, we’ve been naming girls Jazzmyn and Jazlene lately.  I like Jazz so much more than any of those Jasmine-inspired choices.
  • All of the great November Babyberries – including our own Clementine Beatrice!  Also, Bastian, Edie, and two Elowens.  I think Elowen is really going places
  • Big in Japan.
  • Things that I’m naturally pretty darn good at: spelling.  And yet we all have words that we just plain flub.  But because I’m so confident in my spelling, I can get a really big blind spot about these words.  Which is a (really) long way of wondering if everybody else misspells poinsettia, and if that makes Poinsettia more or less wearable as a Christmas baby name?
  • Does Friends really get credit for the uptick in baby girls named Emma?  This article says yes.  Ross and Rachel welcomed baby Emma in May 2002.  Emma was #17 in 2000, #13 in 2001, #4 in 2002, and #2 in 2003.  There’s definitely an impact, but it’s hard to separate the Friends-related rise from Emma’s already strong upward trend.
  • Would you ever name your kiddo after a star athlete?  Here’s a rundown of the most influential NBA players in terms of namesakes.
  • I’ve never spent much time on The Name Garden, but I find this smoosh name rather charming: Bellafaye.  Maybe not for a real, actual child.  But as a middle name or fictional character?  Kind of love it.
  • A nice, reasoned perspective on choosing your child’s last name.  Though I think it overlooks the realities of longer and more complicated last names.  Stella Cruz Smith and Asa Edwards Allen sound great.  But what if you’re working with surnames like Kukowski and Morgenstern?  Mia Morgenstern Kukowski is somewhat less tempting.
  • This sibset: Yaden, Arrow, Wilder, Scout, and Grove.  Swoon!
  • I wrote a list of reasons to ditch the family names.  Now Meagan has a great post on reasons to embrace honor names!  Can I add one more?  It narrows down your shortlist beautifully.

That’s all for this week.  As always, thank you for reading – and have a great week!



Name Help: A Brother for Rafi & Naima

by appellationmountain on December 6, 2014

Name HelpName Help is a series at Appellation Mountain. Every Saturday, one reader’s name questions will be discussed.

We’re relying on thoughtful comments from the community to help expectant parents narrow down their name decisions. Thank you in advance for sharing your insight!

Ashleigh and her husband are the parents of Rafael, called Rafi, and Naima.  They’re expecting baby #3 and could use our help.

She writes:

We aren’t finding out the gender, but are settled on Liora for a girl.

For a boy we are stumped.

We want to find something sophisticated, with a cute and unexpected nickname. Our son, for example is Rafael NN Rafi.

Meaning is important to us, we don’t want anything with a negative meaning. Our surname ends in -son.

Middle name will be either Louis or Daniel.

So far Ashleigh’s shortlist for a boy consists of Luca and Desmond – but they’re not sure if either is the right name.

Read on for my answer – and please leave your thoughts in the comments!

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Best of Celebrity Baby Names 2014

by appellationmountain on December 5, 2014

We’ve been talking Celebrity Baby Names 2014 all week.  Now it’s time to bring it all together, with a look back at the last twelve months.

In years past, I’ve done round-ups of my favorites and best-ofs.  (You can read 2013’s post here.) This year, let’s try something a little different.

I’ve chosen fourteen – oops, make that fifteen! – of the most notable names high profile parents gave to their new arrivals, the ones most deserving of recognition.  Sometimes the names are noteworthy for their tremendous style.  Other names … it’s a little harder to say what makes them so very interesting.

What we do know is that a high profile birth announcement can really boost a name.  Think of the Jolie-Pitt family, with their trend-setting x ending boy names.  Or Everly, the latest overnight sensation, given a mighty boost by leading man Channing Tatum when he and Jenna Dewar chose the name for their daughter.

Let’s take a look at the most exciting Celebrity Baby Names 2014!

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Monroe: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 4, 2014

Hollywood surname names are huge, and this could be one of the fastest-rising choices for girls.

Celebrity Baby Name Week 2014 continues with Monroe as our Baby Name of the Day.

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Frankie: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 3, 2014

English: Drew Barrymore at the premiere for He...

Celebrity baby names week 2014 continues with a boyish, retro name that could be all the rage.

Drew Barrymore’s new baby girl is the reason our Baby Name of the Day is Frankie.

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Saint: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 2, 2014

The sign of The Saint, which appears on virtua...

As a middle name, it feels quirky and cool.  But one high profile coupled promoted this spiritual name to the first place in 2014.

Thanks to Pete Wentz and Meagan Camper, our Celebrity Baby Name of the Day is Saint.

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Esmeralda: Baby Name of the Day

by appellationmountain on December 1, 2014

English: Carlotta Brianza as Esmeralda

Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling didn’t release their daughter’s name for weeks, but it was worth the wait!

Celebrity Baby Name Week 2014 kicks off with Esmeralda as our Baby Name of the Day.

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Sunday Summary: 48th of 2014

by appellationmountain on November 30, 2014

The year is drawing to a close!  To borrow a line from The Waitresses:

Now the calendar’s just one page, and, of course, I am excited.

For the holidays, yes.  But also for the end of year name extravaganza: round-ups, wrap-ups, predictions!  Glorious predictions!

Last week, I reviewed my 2014 predictions to see what had come to pass.

This week, it’s all about Celebrity Baby Names.  We’re delving into four of the most interesting appellations bestowed by the famous this year.  And then, on Friday, I’ll do a year’s end wrap up of celebrity baby names.  If you can’t wait, I’ve already delved into the subject at Nameberry a few weeks ago.

Looking for even more? Read the Best Celebrity Baby Names 2013 post.

Or just stand by, because the naming community will surely come up with plenty of end-of-year posts soon!

Elsewhere online:

That’s all for this week!  As always, thank you for reading – and have a great week!