NameMeIf you follow Appellation Mountain on Instagram or Facebook, you might already know how I spent my Saturday night.

At the Build a Bear workshop in the Mall at Annapolis, making a new BFF for my daughter.

Towards the end of the process – after the fluff has been pumped into the skin (I called it a carcass and was gently corrected by the nice BaB attendant), after the creature has been bathed and outfitted, there’s the best part: The Name Me Station.

I could’ve spent hours generating names, toggling between English and Spanish, debating middles, and pulling the lever to generate more possibilities.

My daughter managed to name her stuffed cat Meowy Kitty in about three minutes, so I had to move on.

I love what Jennie and Rebecca said on Facebook about researching and carefully considering the names they gave to their dolls and stuffed animals. I agree – a lot of us were That Kid, and grew up to be parents intensely interested in what to name our children.

Elsewhere in nameland:

  • An interview with Anna from Waltzing More than Matilda! I loved learning more about Australia’s baby name authority.
  • Nancy’s Names from Africa is a fascinating look at the process of discovering heritage name possibilities – and the names that were newly popular in the 1970s.
  • Some great names on Meagan’s list of underused possibilities – including Gable and Helene.
  • English: Stop sign in Quebec Français : Pannea...In France, a judge required two separate families to rename their daughters.  Nutella is now legally known as Ella; Fraise as Fraisine. I’m particularly charmed by the second case. Fraise is the French word for strawberry, but Fraisine is “an elegant nineteenth century first name.”
  • Fraisine is not in the database at Meilleurs Prenoms, but if you haven’t dropped by lately, you should.  They’ve got a whole new upgraded look – it’s simply grand.
  • Meanwhile in Germany, 400 new names were added to the list of approved appellations. According to the article, about 85% of requests to use names not previously on the official list are approved. That’s a pretty high rate.  There’s also a mention that names invented by the parents were usually approved, if “the name could be recognized by its structure as a first name,” like Suma, Nelvana, and Rionella.
  • Check out the aristocratic names of those boy twins at the bottom of the British Baby Names birth announcements list!  Montague Bertram Kenneth and Rufus Wellington William, little brothers for Archibald Digby Douglas.  Would love to know what they were considering for a girl.
  • Speaking of handsome names for boys, Once Upon a Time Baby Names profiled Soren.  Great name!
  • I’m fascinated by the comments on this question at Swistle: are Double-Mary names like Mary AgnesMary Eliza, etc. too Catholic for general use? I love double Mary names – Mary Claire, nicknamed Macy, once topped my shortlist when I was a teenager.
  • Speaking of double names, did you see the birth announcement for Maria Antonia, daughter of Brazilian actors, at Nomes e mais Nomes? Double-Maria and double-Marie names can be great, too.
  • There is no limit to the potential word names ready to serve as meaningful middles. Names for Real spotted a Lillian Reflection recently, and I remain intrigued by past Baby Names of the Day Solace, Endeavour, and Remember.
  • Don’t you love a good set of baby name predictions?  How long ’til Mother’s Day 2015?
  • Let’s end with my favorite list of the week: baby names, mostly from San Francisco, from a friend who was kind enough to send along a collection of the kids in her super-stylish neighborhood!  I’ve left off the classics and the Top Tens.  Interesting choices for boys: Earl, Sam, Walker, Whittaker, Winslow. Girls: Annie-Cate, Ann Chason, Blake, Bianca, Dylan, Elise, Evie, June, Lyla, Ryland, Sloan.  Both Parker and Spencer were on the boys’ list AND the girls’ list.

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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  1. I was born in 1985 and My baby dolls were Claudia, Kristina, Kayla and Zachary, my stuffed animals were Davis, Elmer, Twins named Timothy and Tamara (timmy and tammy) and Colander (pronounced Co Land Er) My barbies were Elisabeth and Jessica and Kens name was Michael and Everett. I have always been a name nerd, one who was reading baby name books in 2nd grade haha. My favorite assignment ever in school was in 9th grade we had to fill out a Census Form, and there was room to put 10 children. it took me a week to fill out so I could get the names just right. my teacher thought I was nuts haha