Happy Halloween! More proof that I truly have a one-track mind: let’s start with two name-related thoughts, prompted by my kids’ costumes:

  1. There will be more little boys named Anakin in the future. Nancy tells us there were 117 in 2009 alone. Despite my insistence that Aly is Luke Skywalker, he keeps correcting me – no, Mommy – ANAKIN Skywalker. “But he’s the bad guy, Aly.” “No he’s not!” A younger generation might very well find Anakin as wearable as Julian.
  2. What name do you use to get to Minnie as a nickname? It’s a great nickname, but much too cutesy to stand on her own – moreso, I think, than Millie or Sadie. The Shopaholic series has recently given Becky a daughter by the name. Minnie Driver was born Amelia. There’s Minerva, too, but that’s a lot of name for a little girl – almost too sharp of a contrast to sweet Minnie. So what’s left? Araminta? Minnesota? Ideas welcome!

Here’s a question for readers with daughters. Did American Girl start sending you catalogs, as if they knew you were having a girl before the ultrasound results were in? My first catalog arrived before Clio could roll over, must less request outrageously expensive doll babies. Still, I do enjoy the names in the catalogs: Kaya, Felicity, Josefina, Addy, Rebecca, Kit, Molly, and Julie are the main Girls of the moment. 2010 Girl of the Year was called Lanie. A number of the Girls have friends – Julie’s BFF is Ivy, and there’s also Emily, Ruthie, and Elizabeth. So much better than Bratz.

And while we’re on pop culture, anyone else notice that the upcoming Nutcracker flick the little girl’s name has reverted to Mary? The original ETA Hoffman story called her Marie, but she’s been Clara in nearly every adaptation since.

Elsewhere online:

  • What a lovely sibset over at Swistle, and you can help them name another daughter! Their current family consists of Ottilie Fflur, called Tilly; Adalia Seren, called Addie; Cecily Roma; Nolia Betsy; and Violet Lucina;
  • New at Nymbler in September:Brynley, Kiptyn, Snow, Galileo, Irelyn, and Posy. One of the contributors to Celebrity Baby Blog, before it was absorbed by People Magazine, had a son named Galileo, but I think they called him Leo. About ten years ago, I knew a couple who used Ireland for their daughter’s middle name. I like it full strength, but find the Irelyn spelling diluted;
  • For Real goes to Texas and you know it is going to be good! She spotted Abel Marcel, Hayes Gentry, Nicholai Luther, Landree Natali, Priscila Bethsabe, and Vierra Nichole. That’s the second time I’ve heard Gentry for a boy this week. I don’t get it.
  • For Real also hit Tennessee where she found Isavela in the middle spot, plus River Gracily, Consuella Eliesa, Annalinne Rachel, and Atom Leegan. Is Gracily a Grace-Lily smoosh or a just an inventive elaboration? It is pretty, even dainty;
  • At Nameberry, Pam raves about ends-in-s names for boys. There are some really great ones. I’ve known little boys called Magnus and Silas, and they wear well. Plus, they can be more subtle than some of the ends-in-o options.

There were a number of celebrity births this week, but first, Jeremy Sisto’s 16 month old daughter is named Charlie Ballerina. How did I miss that?

Back to the newborns:

  • Celine Dion’s twin sons, Eddy and Nelson, got all the press, but another newsworthy set appeared this week: Top Chef alum Brian Malarkey and wife Chantelle Marie welcomed son Miles James and daughter Sailor Elizabeth. The twins join big brother Hunter – Huntingdon O’Neil – at home. I like all of the names just fine, but I don’t expect Hunter and Miles to have a sister named Sailor – Olive, maybe, or Louisa or Felicity;
  • Jessica Capshaw, a starbaby in her own right, welcomed daughter Eve Augusta.

Over on the Facebook page, I think Stanley has officially been declared wearable.

Keep an ear out for interesting names worn by your Trick or Treaters, and 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. There’s an Aamina on younger daughter’s soccer team who’s called Minnie.

    We live in the boonies and rarely get trick-or-treaters, so we went to a friend’s house to hand out candy. For the most part the names were very typical, but I was pleased me a three year old Princess Karen and a Mouse named Eunice. At first I thought misheard her name, but it was clearly embroidered on her treat bag. I was stunned.

    1. Karen is intriguing, but Eunice? I’d have fallen over into the candy dish! That’s great.

  2. In 5th grade I wrote a book report on “Meet Addy”, my teacher insisted that I got her name wrong and must have meant Abby. A lot changes in 15 years, eh?

  3. Hayes Gentry sounds like 2 family surnames to me. I actually knew a girl named Gentry growing up who was named for a family name.

  4. Millicent as another possibility for Minnie.

    RE: Galileo – I’ve played with the idea of naming a girl Magellen and calling her Maggie.

  5. I was going to suggest Clementine as a way to Minnie, but I see Sarah beat me to it!

    And our neighborhood was totally lame with Halloween this year. We gave up waiting 30 minutes between kids and left the bowl out – leaving those kids to their own devices. That’s one guaranteed way to get rid of all the candy! haha

  6. I’ve found more than one site suggesting a number of nns for Imogen, including Minnie. I tried Minnie with my daughter without success, admittedly she was already old enough to know her name is usually shortened to Immy and she made it clear that, at this point, Immy or Imogen were acceptable and *nothing* else!