Tuesday, July 17, 2012


My Grandma Beth was always very interested in naming trends and patterns. In her later years, she had a practice of looking up the birth announcements in the local daily paper and memorizing the list of baby names for that day. It was also an exercise to keep her mind active.

I thought about her as I saw a wave of birth announcements come through on Facebook the past two weeks - SEVEN babies born within 11 days, to my friends and relatives! I thought it might be interesting to my readers to see the babies' first names. They are all girls except one. I think Grandma would have been tickled in recent years to see a resurgence of "old-fashioned" and classic names especially for girls.

July 1: Emi Sofia
July 5: Mira Joanna
July 9: Penelope Jane,
           Samuel Li-Wen,
           Elsa Amy (big day!)
July 10: Nola Jean
July 11: Pandora Bella-Rain

I've observed that Old Testament names for boys are currently popular, especially Samuel and Daniel right now. I've never been able to get on board with the OT names ending in -ah though; to me it sounds like a feminine ending. Maybe because the first "Micah" I ever met was a girl? And the -a ending in Spanish is feminine. This is babycenter's top 100 for 2011.

During my college freshmen orientation, we were told that there were 16 Jennifers in our class of about 500, and 15 Amys. Elizabeth is a perennially popular name - there are three Elizabeths at our church here, which is not that big - my, a Lizzy, and a Beth. It's kind of nice that there are so many possible nicknames and variants of Elizabeth. Lots to choose from.

I've heard parents of girls under 10 right now named Olivia and Sofia that when they chose those names they had no idea how popular they were going to be, lamenting a bit being part of a big trend. It's hard to predict. It seems to me that naming trends reflect something in the zeitgeist.

I love my name. I hope our kids like and enjoy their names for the rest of their lives.

1 comment:

Anita said...

Lotus has never let us call her Lotus until a couple weeks ago. I think the shift happened after Solana showed her pictures of lotus blossoms and then drew a picture of her with the flower next to it and her name above. Thank you Solana!
Picking a baby name is challenging, granted, but I still wonder sometimes at people's choices. There was an electronic billboard in Savannah that would display the names of babies born that day at the local hospital (advertising for the hospital.) It was fun to try to read them all while driving by, because some of them were so outrageous. Good entertainment. What I don't get is when parents give their two kids similar names, for instance, Jordan and Gordon. Ok, that is made up, but I've heard worse actually. Sometimes you read old names from the 1800's or whatever that seem very odd. I wonder if those names were normal in their day but have died out, or if people back then liked giving their kids outrageous names same as nowadays.