Sunday SummaryMy name-spotting antennae are always up, pretty much no matter what I’m doing.  I met a guy at a volunteer event on Saturday.  “Hi Abby, I’m Apollo.”

“Hi.  Awesome name!’

I kind of think he knew it, too.

Just hours later, I came across an amazing blog post from Aela Mass about her friend’s home birth.  (And seriously, Kathy seemed calmer while giving birth than I am on the average Tuesday.)  The photos are gorgeous, but I’m especially drawn to the names – big brother Arlo and new addition Kinder.  I love the sound of Kinder, and Kin feels like a super cool short form.

Elsewhere in baby name news:

  • Oh, how I love the name Maeve.
  • Coolest papal name ever = Lando.
  • Nancy goes myth-busting, proving that porn stars have names just like us.
  • Multiple middle names seem to be on the rise according to Angela’s poll at Upswing Baby Names.  I’m a fan.
  • Okay, Irish Central calls Cara an Irish name.  I stand corrected.
  • Have you voted in March Madness?  The girls’ round has Elodie with the slightest of leads, while Archer is definitely pulling ahead in the boys’ match-up.
  • What a great list from Blue Juniper!  We’ve definitely seen some of these in birth announcements.  Jareth is probably my favorite.
  • Piper is such a great name!  But I agree that it is a little bit of a challenge to match.  I like Swistle’s suggestion of Piper and Paisley, but Paisley feels flimsy to me.  I’m not sure why – she has as much history as many a surname, and I’m completely fine with Bailey and Riley and company.
  • Funny how your opinion changes the very second someone you like uses a name.  A (distant) family member by marriage just welcomed a son called Madden.   No sooner did the newborn pics appear on Facebook than I found myself liking the sound of the name, nevermind the football references.
  • Wow, remember the family with the kids named Alex, Axel, Xela, and Lexa?  They’ve welcomed baby #5, a girl named XealMaarten listed the remaining possible combinations the couple could consider for future children.  While they’re definitely running afoul of some of my How Close is Too Close? guidelines, I think they chose four great letters to work with.  Is there any other set of letters that yields as many reasonable names?

That’s all for this week, but tell me: have you spotted any great names?  Unusual finds?  Knock-your-socks off cool combinations?

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

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. Kinder is my last name! How strange, never would have thought it would be a contender for the surname trend… But I suppose it does have the ‘right’ sounds now I think of it.

  2. Kinder’s parents can be forgiven for not being fluent in German, but the word is right there in kindergarten, and of course Kinder Eggs. 😉 I can’t say I’m a fan of this name.

    I absolutely agree that it only takes meeting one person with a particular name for it to become suddenly more appealing, which is why I’ve grown somewhat weary of advice threads on naming forums. It’s all too easy to pick apart a name in the abstract, but when someone is actually using it, many of the perceived problems seem to melt away. There are some names that I continue to dislike, of course, but I’m trying to be more open-minded than I was in the past. (Reading your blog is part of that effort!)

  3. I see what you’re saying about names becoming great once someone picks them. I feel very sad that some of the prettiest names I can think of are “taken” by my friends or close family. But if I’m completely honest with myself, I should admit that I never recognized how nice these names were before I knew these kids.

  4. Xeal is actually the AELX family’s sixth child; you missed Xael. I bet that sort of thing happens to them a lot through their lives.

    1. Oh my goodness! Yes, I think that must happen often … thanks for the correction, SilentOne!

  5. I wonder what the reaction to Kinder would be should she visit a German speaking country, especially as an adult. It does have a nice sound in an English speaking context, though, and Arlo is fabulous.

    1. My thoughts exactly.

      Being German, Kinder is extremely bizarre to me, it just means “children”!
      Although, the English (kind) “kinder” (kindest) is not much more of a name either.

      1. Interesting … I thought about the sound more than the meaning. I can see that it would be challenging in German class …