Happy 2015!Happy 2015!

I think New Year’s Day is my favorite holiday.  All of that possibility.  Like many of us, I tend to arrive at the last day of the old year wiped out from all the merriment and travel, with a little bit of a sugar cookie hangover.

But on New Year’s Day?  It all starts over.  And this is a joyful thing.

It’s been a while since Alex and Clio made an appearance on the blog, I think – so here they are.  We’re all wishing you glad tidings and good things in the coming year.

Speaking of good things, I’m so pleased to announce that we’ve helped name another baby!  Clover Mildred is here.  Yes, it’s a very different direction than the family was originally considering – but sometimes the right choice for a family isn’t the one that seems like an obvious choice.  It’s kind of lovely when we set out all sorts of rules and then realize that the best name is actually one that doesn’t fit!

Now, on to the name news:

  • My daughter is mad for the Nickelodeon sitcom Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn.  The names are driving me crazy!  The show is about ten year old quadruplets, which means they were born around 2003 or 2004, right?  And yet their names are straight out of the Bobbsey Twins era, or at least the 1960s.  Plus, a Google search suggests that Ricky and Dicky are both named Richard.  I feel like the Nickelodeon writers are good candidates for a Name Help post.
  • While we’re talking about quadruplets, did you hear that the nicely-named Gardner quadruplets are here?  Welcome to Indie, Esme, Scarlett, and Evangeline.  According to their Facebook page, the girls are doing well – though oh my goodness, they’re tiny!
  • While we’re thinking about January arrivals, isn’t Blake Lively due very soon?  I think her lifestyle website is quite gorgeous – surely the baby name she and Ryan Reynolds choose will be equally inspiring, right?  A friend of mine in a very stylish part of San Francisco knows a girl named Blake born in 2014.  While this one is still all-boy, the minority of girls named Blake is growing, thanks to Ms. Lively.
  • If ‘o’ ending names are hot, and we’re into nature names and hero names, too, then doesn’t Thoreau hit all the right notes?  Names for Real found a birth announcement for Thoreau Elliot not too long ago.
  • Great girls’ names starting with the letter P, courtesy of Sophie. I completely agree on Prairie – the logical successor to Meadow.
  • Aderyn – another of my favorite under-the-radar nature names.  Here’s my post on the name.
  • Telegraph birth announcements, all tallied up and with their own popularity list, courtesy of Elea.  It doesn’t get any better than this!
  • The Best New Year Baby Name goes to a couple from Edmonton, and their new daughter, Echo Frejya Grey.  Nancy has the details.
  • Courtesy of Clare, a look at crazy baby names in France.  Two great things about this: first, they’ve been keeping these lists for years, so you can get lost for quite some time.  Second, I have to look at every name and try to gauge if it strikes me as a crazy, as a non-native speaker.  Clearly, Eugene-Batman is going to raise some eyebrows.  But I wouldn’t know if Adève is wildly weird, or the newest Top Ten favorite.
  • Duana makes a good point in this post about potential name reservations within a family.  It’s easy to say “no one gets to reserve a name,” and in theory, I agree.  But if your family believes that reserving names is possible, and a family member of child-bearing age has called dibs on your #1 favorite family name, and therefore, you’re just plain not eligible to use it, well … do you really want to go there?  Which brings me to a quick poll:

That’s all for this week!  As always, thank you for reading – 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. When my sister was pregnant, the only name I asked her not to use was my FIL’s name, as it was significant to my spouse’s family but not to ours. Fortunately, it wasn’t a name on her radar, and she and I have very different naming tastes. And the only one named after my FIL is a great nephew.

  2. My SO was very close to his paternal grandmother where as his older sister was closer to their maternal grandparents. When she was pregnant with her third child (a girl) at the same time we were expecting our first (a boy) she had already used up most of the names on their mother’s side of the family however, she new that our top choice for a girl was after my SO’s grandmother so she decided not to use the name for her girl and leave it for if/when we have a girl. We didn’t ask to reserve the name, she just asked if we still planned to use the name when we have a girl, and since it is very important to my SO that we do, she agreed to leave it for us.

    And I adore the name Prairie and would use it in a heartbeat if 1) I could convince the SO and 2) it worked with our last name, but sadly the last name starts with Cow— so I feel Prairie Cow—– would be too much.

  3. That’s a tough one about calling dibs on family names. Everyone loves Grandma (or Grandpa) so why should only one get to use the name. Is it first come, first served?

    I agree with Djuna. They need to talk to Katie. Katie may be okay with it and still plan on naming her daughter that when the time comes so she needs to ask herself if she would be okay with her child sharing the name as a cousin around the same age?

    I know a lot of my friends have called dibs over the years and you know what? Not one of them has used the name that they called dibs on.

    My best friend has called Ainsley since we were teenagers because it is a family name. It has never changed. Her younger sister became pregnant before her and what was her girl’s name? Ainsley. Thank goodness she had a boy. I was outraged for her. This was her name going back 15+ years. My friend said she wouldn’t mind. She loved the name and she would love to see it used on her daughter, or her niece.

    Long story short is that you can call dibs, but no one has to honor that fact.

    That crazy list from France is fun, but you’re right. Some don’t seem so crazy to me.

    Have a good week!


  4. You can reserve names in a family if they’re not really family names and if they’re weird, IMO. Like, you can’t reserve Grandma’s name – everyone may want to name after Grandma. And you can’t reserve anything in the top 50, because that’s nutty and if it bothers you if there are multiple Sophias maybe don’t name your kid Sophia.

    But if you want to dibs really rare non-family names I feel like anybody else taking them would be weird. Though you probably should have some kind of limit on how many; my sister is a fellow name-nerd and has dibsed 4 girl combos and 3 boy combos. lol.

    (But I didn’t want a few of those names at all anyway, though I do occasionally have gripping name-nerd dread her taste will be seen as better than mine in name-nerd circles…)

    1. This seems very reasonable to me. I once pestered my brother into telling me what he thought he might want to name future children and, to my surprise, the name he gave for a future daughter was Azalea. I would bet he’s forgotten that by now, but Azalea still feels off limits to me. I would feel weird about using it.