Thursday, July 31, 2014

Copelynn Eleanor - (Birth Announcements!)

These real baby names were taken from birth announcements listed on the website of a small California hospital from earlier this year! I found this compilation to be quite diverse; from the more proper names like Abigail Virginia and Ronald Richard to the more fun and creative names like Tymberlyn and Bodee.  What do you think of this list? Which is your favorite?


Abigail Virginia
Addyson Marie
Allison Cena
Angelic Grace Milagros
Aspen Lynn
Arielle Alicia
Aubrey Skylar
Braelynn Rene'
Brynn Rose
Chloe Lane
Copelynn Eleanor
Eden Beverly
Ella Marie
Emelia Ava
Emmalynne MacKensie
Evangeline Marie
Harper Joan
Heidi Rose
Isabella Adelina
Jewell Janet Kathlynn
Katelynn Michelle Ann
Kelcie Louise
Makayla Lynn
Maryann Josephine
Paylin Rae
Saige Kimberlee
Sophie Ann Elyse
Tymberlyn Ellie Jean

Aeden Ivan
Anthony Rolla
Arturo Joseph
Austin Paul David
Bodee Wilson
Braydon Charles
Caeden Izaak
Chance Williams-Ray
Chester Landon Lee
David Justus
Dillon Thomas
Hunter Aiden
Hunter Ryan
Ian Martin
Isaac William
Kade Scott
Jace Wayne
John Mathew
Mason Lee
Matthew Isaac
Micah James
Oliver Kayden
Porter James
Riley Scott
Ronald Richard
Rowland Edward Daniel
Samuel Anthony
Victor Alejandro
William Lee

Friday, July 25, 2014


The last piece in this week's World-Wide Wednesday segment on Welsh names is the lovely girl name Carys.

The Art of Naming - welsh names for females

Pronounced ka-RISS or KAH-ris in Wales and sometimes CARE-iss in the US, it comes from the Welsh word caru which means "love". In the stream of time as far as names go, Carys is actually somewhat modern. It has only been in use since the middle of the 20th century in Wales. The most recent stats I can find rank the name at #239 in England/Wales.

Carys has only been used in the US since 1991. It never received more than 16 births in a year until it suddenly got a boost in 2003 with 106 births. The cause of this increase is most likely because of Welsh-born actress Catherine Zeta-Jones and her husband Michael Douglas choosing the name for their daughter in 2003.

Since 2003, the name has consistently continued to receive at least a hundred births per year but it hasn't had more than 200. In 2013, there were 122 girls given the name for a ranking of #1695. This name could also be spelled Cerys but that spelling is even less used, only on record since 1998 and never receiving more than 13 births in one year.

It has probably not gained more popularity in the US since it is a Welsh name with a not-so-common pronunciation. It will probably remain under the radar and dance in the #1000-#1500 range unless something else happens to boost it again. That means its a great, unusual choice if you're looking for something different.

Revision:  Carys ranked at #2788 in the US for a total of 61 births for 2016. Which means my prediction above was off. The name actually declined even more from 2013 to 2016. This still makes it a great option for parents who want a rare name.

What do you think of Carys? Here are some naming pairing ideas I came up with:

Sibling Name Ideas:
Sisters: Anwen, Bronwyn, Imogen, Lydia, Rhiannon, Saoirse, Tegan
Brothers: Dylan, Flynn, Gareth, Graeme, Owen, Rhett, Vaughn

Middle Name Ideas:
Carys Amelia
Carys Elizabeth
Carys Gwendolen
Carys Juniper
Carys Philippa

As a Middle Name:
Alexandra Carys
Evangeline Carys
Genevieve Carys
Madeline Carys
Tabitha Carys

Original post: 7/25/14
Revision: 5/15/17

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

World-Wide Wednesday: Welsh Baby Names

Beaumaris Castle Anglesey Wales United Kingdom
Welsh baby names are very interesting. Traditional names have their own rules that may make the names complicated to pronounce for those who are not familiar with them.

I've found a website that studies Welsh names from medieval times and breaks down specific elements within the names. It was actually a bit over my head but I definitely want to share those links if you're interested in more of the etymology:  Link #1 | Link #2  | Link #3

Let's start with a bit of information about surnames in Wales. From the 15th century onward, families adopted a fixed family name. Before that, they used a patronymic naming system in which a "surname" was derived from the child's father's name. This kind of naming was especially telling for the male line throughout the generations. Typically, a person's baptismal name would be linked to their father's baptismal name by the letters ap or ab (son of) for a boy, and ferch (daughter of) for a girl. As an example, Evan son of Thomas would be known as Evan ap Thomas.

This naming method gave rise to boys whose surnames could be extremely long to incorporate the names of their fathers and grandfathers for several generations. For example, it was common to have a name that looked like this: Llewelyn ap Dafydd ab Ieuan ap Griffith ap Meredith. This was in place by Welsh law so that it was obvious to see how people descended from which ancestors. Later, these laws were abolished in the Middle Ages and replaced by a fixed family surname system that was easier to keep track of. However, there was still an element of patronymic names being used in varous forms until the early 19th century and especially in rural areas. Areas with strong English influence and wealth were the first the drop the patronymics system.

As this surname transition occurred, the new fixed surnames were morphed from the old system. For example, the surname Powell came from ap Hywel and Bowen came from ab Owen. Price comes from ap Rhys and Pritchard comes from ap Richard. The ap and ab were eventually dropped altogether in favor of simply adding an S to the end of a name like Jones, Roberts or Edwards. This was influenced by the English. It is also common that people with the same surname in an area are completely unrelated, having simply chosen the same surname. Jones, Williams and Thomas are among the most prevalent surnames. A survey estimated that about 9/10ths of the Welsh population have a total of just one hundred surnames.  Source.

As for Welsh first names, they are on their own level. If you were to look up Welsh names and browse a list of them, you'll noticed that most of then end with -yn, -on, -en, or -in. There are many that have Y's and W's in them as well.  Here are some examples of traditional Welsh boy names that may be unfamiliar to the non-Welsh:

Dafydd (David)
Emrys (Ambrose)
Gwillym (William)
Gwythyr (Victor)
Iago (Jacob)
Ieuan (John)
Macsen (Maximus)
Maredudd (Meredith)
Meurig (Maurice)
Neifion (Neptune)
Owain (Eugene)
Padrig (Patrick)
Pedr (Peter)
Rheinallt (Reynold)
Rhisiart (Richard)
Sawyl (Samuel)
Siarl (Charles)
Sieffre (Geoffrey)
Siorus (George)
Tomos (Thomas)
And here are some examples of girl names with a Welsh origin:

Alis (Alice)
Bethan (Elizabeth)
Betrys (Beatrice)
Catrin (Katherine)
Crystin (Christine)
Efa (Eva)
Elin (Helen)
Esyllt (Isolde)
Ffraid (Bridget)
Lleucu (Lucia)
Lowri (Laura)
Mair (Mary)
Marged (Margaret)
Nesta (Agnes)
Nia (Niamh)
Sian (Jeanne)
Sioned (Janet)
Siwan (Joan)
Tiwlip (Tulip)
What do you think of these Welsh names? Have you ever known someone with a name like this? Source. 

Of course, in modern day Wales, the most popular baby names tend to match up more with English tastes than with old tradition. In fact, most of the time, England/Wales are categorized together just like that. This means that most of the names being given to Welsh babies are English favorites like Harry and Amelia. 

Let me know what your thoughts are about Welsh baby names! If you're from Wales, feel free to offer some insight or more information regarding names. Note: I am not Welsh nor have I ever been to Wales, so if any of the above information is incorrect or lacking, please let me know!  Thanks for reading!

Monday, July 21, 2014


In this month's World-Wide Wednesday, we'll be visiting Wales and examining their baby naming traditions! To kick things off, let's take a look at a Welsh boy name: Rhys.

Rhys is pronounced like Reese and is the name that Reese and Reece spring from. Many girls are given these variations but it is originally a masculine name. In fact, there have been several Welsh rulers named Rhys.

In Welsh, the name is said to mean "enthusiasm" or "ardor" which is a great, positive meaning to have in a name! In Wales, the name has quite a bit of history as well as modern usage. It ranks in the Top 100 in England/Wales, Ireland, Northern Ireland and Scotland making it a popular choice for boys!

However, in the US, Rhys isn't quite as popular. It has definitely been gaining some attention though. Rhys was first used in 1929, then 1941. It wasn't until 1946 that it gained some more regular usage. Very slowly it began to gain favor with parents. In 2004, Rhys made its debut appearance on the US Top 1000 chart at #940. Now it has inched its way upward to #489 in 2013 which accounts for 555 male births.  There were also 26 female births for a ranking of #5245.

This new popularity that Rhys has been experiencing could have been partially influenced by three actors, one named Jonathan Rhys Meyers, another named John Rhys-Davies, as well as a Welsh-born actor named Rhys Ifans. The name has also been used on a celebrity baby in 2009: Rhys Edward, son of Joey McIntyre of New Kids on the Block.

I think Rhys is a name that will continue to gain popularity with this spelling for boys. The Reese spelling is massively more popular for girls, ranking at #156 and only ranking at #602 for boys. I think the genders can share this same sound but use their own spellings. That would make it kind of unisex and kind of not and I think that's cool!

What do you think of Rhys? Or do you prefer Reese/Reece?  Here are some ideas that I came up with for potential siblings for Rhys as well as some middle name ideas:

Sibling Name Ideas:
Sisters: Avalon, Brynn, Eleri, Gwyneth, Megan, Seren, Tegan
Brothers: Dylan, Evan, Gareth, Keane, Morgan, Owen, Trevor

Middle Name Ideas:
Rhys Broderick
Rhys Donovan
Rhys Finlay
Rhys Kennedy

As a Middle Name:
Caden Rhys
Finnegan Rhys
Griffith Rhys
Sullivan Rhys

What might you pair with Rhys?

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Baby Naming Challenge - Unisex Edition

This game will follow a "name bank" format. You will be given a set of names to choose from. Create a first and middle name combination for three children. These children will all have a unisex first name based on the list of unisex names that I posted earlier this week!

1A. Your first child is a boy. Choose from one of the following unisex names for his first name:

Alexis, Armani, Carter, Dakota, Drew, Elliot, Ellison, Finley, Haven, Jamie, Jordan, Kendall, Lyric, Morgan, Payton, Quinn, Remy, Rory, Sage, Skyler, Taylor

1B. Choose from the following vintage names for his middle name:

Arthur, Barnaby, Chester, Edmund, Franklin, George, Howard, Irving, Jasper, Louis, Milton, Oscar, Percy, Raymond, Samuel, Theodore, Virgil, Walter

And baby boy number one's name is.....?

2A. Your second child is a boy. Choose from one of the following unisex names for his first name:

Amari, Avery, Casey, Dallas, Dylan, Elliott, Emerson, Harley, Hayden, Jaylin, Justice, Lennon, Marley, Oakley, Peyton, Reagan, Riley, Rowan, Sawyer, Spencer, Teagan

2B. Choose from the following occupational names for his middle name:

Archer, Brenner, Clark, Dexter, Foster, Gage, Hayward, Jagger, Kiefer, Marshall, Parker, Reeve, Ryder, Steele, Shepherd, Thatcher, Tolliver, Wayne

And baby boy number two's name is.....?

3A. Your third child is a girl. Choose from one of the following unisex names for her first name: 

Angel, Cameron, Charlie, Devon, Eden, Ellis, Emery, Harper, Hunter, Jessie, Kai, London, Milan, Parker, Phoenix, Reese, River, Ryan, Skylar, Tatum, Zion

3B. Choose from the following quirky and unusual names for her middle name:

Avalon, Bluebell, Coraline, Dove, Eulalie, Fable, Hypatia, Isis, Juniper, Kismet, Lilac, Meadow, Plum, Raven, Sable, Temperance, Velvet, Wintress

And baby girl number one's name is....?

Here are the names that I chose:

Finley Theodore
Lennon Tolliver
Reese Coraline 

Well, which names did you choose?  Share them here in the comment section or on Facebook! 

Thursday, July 17, 2014


I came up with a short list of unisex names to potentially feature and it was hard for me to decide between them, so I took the question to the wonderful people on Instagram! The first poll narrowed the list to three names, but the voting was very close on the final three. It came down to Finley, Lennon or Phoenix. In the end, I tallied all of the votes from both polls together and Lennon was the winner!

Upon hearing the name Lennon, the first thought that may come to many peoples' minds is that of the late John Lennon of super rock group The Beatles. Beyond the musical connection, which is probably a huge reason parents choose the name, Lennon actually comes from an Irish surname. It has been anglicized from Ó Leannáin which is basically a patronymic name meaning "descendant of Leannán". Leannán itself is said to mean "lover" in Gaelic.

Lennon is now considered a unisex name. Originally, it was only given to boys from 1913 to 1980 in the US. Girls were slowly given the name starting in 1981 and it has quickly caught up to the same ranks as the boys. In 2013, there were 273 girls named Lennon and 289 boys which makes this name nearly even for both genders because of its 51/49 split.

It has only gained this boost of popularity for girls in the past year. The birth split for 2012 was 33% girl and 67% boy. Before that, the difference was even greater.  If you're wondering, as of 2013, the boy Lennon ranks at #769 and the girl Lennon ranks at #923, joining the Top 1000 for the first time ever. It will be interesting to see if this iconic surname of a male rock star will eventually be turned into a name that's favored by females.

As a baby name choice, like I mentioned, Lennon is a musical honor name. It joins the ranks of others such as Hendrix, Jagger, Marley and Presley. As far as nicknames go, the most obvious would be Len or Lenny. However, nicknames aren't very necessary when the name's only 2 syllables long.

What do you think of the name Lennon? What sort of middle names or sibling names would you pair with it? Names of other celebrities? Other surnames? Other unisex names? There's plenty of routes to take. Here are a few ideas I came up with:

Sibling Name Ideas:
Sisters: Auden, Hadley, Lucy, Marlow, Monroe, Rowan, Tatum
Brothers: Arlo, Harrison, Jude, Madden, Parker, Rowan, Sawyer

Male Middle Name Ideas:
Lennon Alexander
Lennon James
Lennon Oliver
Lennon Theodore

As a Middle Name:
Charles Lennon
Michael Lennon
Seth Lennon
Zachary Lennon

Female Middle Name Ideas:
Lennon Charlotte
Lennon Isabella
Lennon Kate
Lennon Victoria

As a Middle Name:
Audrey Lennon
Ivy Lennon
Maisie Lennon
Tabitha Lennon

Share your name pairing ideas in the comment section below or on Facebook!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Boy to Girl Ratios of Unisex Names in 2013

I went through the US Top 1000 baby names for 2013 and pulled out as many unisex names as I could. At least one name had to be in the Top 1000, but most of the names are on the list for both a boy and a girl. If you can think of any names that I missed --and I'm sure there are a few-- let me know so that I can include them.

Seeing information like this is helpful for those who are considering a unisex name but are unsure of how popular it really is for each gender. For example, Harper has really skyrocketed up the charts for girls lately. If you have always pictured it on a boy, it may be handy to know that only 4% of all Harpers are boys. Perhaps that matters to you, perhaps it doesn't. Either way, that kind of information can be found here.  You may even come across a name or two that you had no idea was somewhat unisex.

Alexis: 20% boy / 80% girl
Boy:  1,182 births (#294)
Girl: 4,741 births (#46)

Amari: 62% boy / 38% girl
Boy: 951 births (#337)
Girl: 576 births (#512)

Angel: 84% boy / 16% girl
Boy: 6,320 births (#67)
Girl: 1,204 births (#266)

Armani: 58% boy / 42% girl
Boy: 559 births (#486)
Girl: 409 births (#683)

Ashton: 93% boy / 7% girl
Boy: 2,597 births  (#152)
Girl: 188 births (#1252)

Avery: 18% boy / 82% girl
Boy: 2,036 births (#196)
Girl: 9,121 birth (#12)

Cameron: 93% boy / 7% girl
Boy: 6,809 births (#59)
Girl: 508 births (#566)

Carter: 97% boy / 3% girl
Boy: 9,512 births (#32)
Girl: 298 births (#859)

Casey: 60% boy / 40% girl
Boy: 553 births (#490)
Girl: 373 births (#726)

Charlie: 54% boy / 46% girl
Boy: 1,551 births (#233)
Girl: 1,315 births (#240)

Dakota: 45% boy / 55% girl
Boy: 890 births (#353)
Girl: 1,074 births (#293)

Dallas: 72% boy / 28% girl
Boy: 1,149 births (#302)
Girl: 454 births (#610)

Devon: 88% boy / 12% girl
Boy: 635 births (#446)
Girl: 83 births (#2226)

Drew: 84% boy / 16% girl
Boy: 1,170 births (#297)
Girl: 223 births (#1092)

Dylan: 94% boy / 6% girl
Boy: 10,058 births (#28)
Girl: 610 births (#489)

Eden: 16% boy / 84% girl
Boy: 377 births (#643)
Girl: 2,022 births (#158)

Elliot: 83% boy / 17% girl
Boy: 1,486 births (#241)
Girl: 308 births (#842)

Friday, July 11, 2014


The last post in our Summer Names segment is this lovely girl name. Pearl is considered a rather old-fashioned name but it is coming back into style today!

I chose this name because it is the birthstone for June, a summer month. Historically, pearls were a favorite gem during the Roman Empire. Tudor England was even nicknamed "the pearl age" during the 1500s. They were probably so popular because they are said to give wisdom and bring wealth, protection and luck. They symbolize purity, generosity, integrity and loyalty as well. That's quite a lot for a baby girl to live up to if she's named Pearl!

Pearls are also unique in that they're the only gems that come from living sea creatures. This means that they have a natural beauty that is not made or altered by man or machine. However, cultured pearls dominate the market in place of natural pearls and have since the 1920s.

As a baby name, the English word pearl refers to the concretions formed in mollusk shells, like I mentioned, but it ultimately comes from the Late Latin word perla. It has been used as a name since the 19th century because of its lasting popularity as a gemstone. Today, many celebrities have already used Pearl for their daughters' firsts and middle names.

At first thought, Pearl may seem like the name of someone's great-grandmother and you wouldn't be incorrect in that association. Pearl was very popular from 1880 to around 1940. Pearl peaked in popularity in 1918 with 4,521 births and a ranking of #56.

Slowly, Pearl lost her fashionability. She dropped out of the Top 1000 in 1977-1978, from 1987-2006, and 2008. However, she's climbing back up the charts now and is ranking higher than she has in years! In 2013, 416 baby girls were named Pearl for a ranking of #677. She has a long way to go to hit the kind of numbers she saw in 1918 but it could happen again, especially since she fits the 100 year rule.

What do you think of the sweet, vintage Pearl? Do you think she'll make a bit of a comeback in the next 5-10 years? Also, what names would you pair with it? Here are some ideas I came up with:

Sibling Name Ideas:
Sisters: Alice, Clementine, Daisy, Hazel, Iris, June, Lucy, Opal, Ruby, Sadie, Violet
Brothers: Conrad, Emmett, Graham, Henry, Jude, Oliver, Roman, William

Middle Name Ideas:
Pearl Adelaide
Pearl Eleanora
Pearl Josephine
Pearl Serenity

As a Middle Name:
Beatrice Pearl
Clara Pearl
Juliana Pearl
Rosalind Pearl

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Summer Names for Girls

Summer is officially in full swing! That means it's the time of shorts and sunscreen, swimming pools and barbecues, sunshine and tan lines.  If you also happen to be baring a baby belly instead of a bikini, you may be in need of a wonderful summertime name!  I've composed a list of timely names that will suit any baby girl born in the summer heat! I'll be using one of these myself next month! Which of these names could you see yourself using for your little sunshine?


If you can think of more lovely summer names to add, let me know in the comment section below! Don't forget to also check out the list of Summer Names for Boys!   There's also a list for Autumn Girl Names and Autumn Boy Names too!  Winter and Spring coming soon!

Friday, July 4, 2014


When you think of warm weather and outdoor activities, perhaps a body of water comes to mind. Whether you enjoy the pool or the ocean, water is a huge part of summertime. Since we're discussing summer names this week and next, I thought I'd feature the name River for my boy name choice even though I'm aware of how unisex it is.

Of course, River comes from the English word that refers to a flowing body of water. Many people enjoy rafting down a river during the summer or camping near one. Ultimately, the word river is derived from the Latin ripa meaning "riverbank". As a name, River was considered masculine first but the girls staked their claim on it fairly quickly. It is still more popular for boys though.

As a nature name, River offers a great tranquil vibe, but also one of adventure. Pluralizing it as Rivers is also an option but it doesn't receive as many births per year as the singular River. There have been a few celebrities who have used this name for their children in recent years. There's also pop-culture ties to the late River Phoenix; and Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo.  For the females, there was a character on Doctor Who named River Song; and singer Kelly Clarkson recently gave her daughter the name River Rose.

River first appeared on the baby name record in 1971. It wasn't used regularly each year until 1986 for boys. It increased in usage around 1994 and has slowly been climbing upward since then. There were 815 males named River in 2013 for a ranking of #372.

The girls jumped on the bandwagon in 1988 but didn't have as much of an increase in births per year as the boys. They began catching up around 2006. As of 2013, there were 480 females named River, ranking the name at #588 on the girl side of the US Top 1000 chart.

What sort of name would you pair with River? Would you stick to the nature path? Would you find another 5 letter name? Perhaps another name with a V in it? Maybe something else entirely! Here's a few ideas that I came up with to help you out:

Sibling Name Ideas:
Sisters: Aurora, Brooke, Hazel, Ivy, Lotus, Olivia, Summer, Willow
Brothers: Archer, Forest, Hunter, Jasper, Miles, Sawyer, Talon, Tyler

Boy Middle Name Ideas:
River Campbell
River James
River Sinclair
River William

As a Middle Name:
Florian River
Paxton River
Sebastian River
Vincent River

Girl Middle Name Ideas:
River Clementine
River Emilia
River Katherine
River Sophia

As a Middle Name:
Audrey River
Hannah River
Penelope River
Stella River

Do you like River more for a boy or a girl? What names would you choose to pair it with? Share your thoughts in the comment section or on Facebook!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Summer Names for Boys

Summertime officially began at the end of June! Next, we'll get to watch the fireworks light up the summer sky! After that, it's time to start pondering more about that baby name you're looking for. Your summer baby will be arriving soon! If you're having trouble narrowing down the right name for your little guy, perhaps one of these timely choices will best suit him! Take some of that warmth and sunshine and happiness associated with summer and apply it directly to naming and you'll have yourself the perfect moniker! Check out this list for ideas:


Which of these names could you see yourself using for your baby boy? Don't forget to take a look at the list of Summer Names for Girls too! Also, Autumn Names for Boys and Autumn Names for Girls.


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