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Let's Talk Babies!

Baby Names

I feel like I’m neglecting this here little blog. Finding the time to write has been challenging to say the least. One day things will calm down around here (right!?) and I’ll be able to get back to some sort of regular posting routine again. Until then, I’ve got one sweet, adorable little baby and two awesome big girls filling up my days so you’ll have to settle for the occasionally post.

The name we are given. The name chosen for us by our parents is a big part of who we are. Sometimes we love our name, sometimes not so much. When I set out, each time, to name my girls I put a lot of thought into it. Choosing the perfect name for each girl was important to me and a job I didn’t take lightly nor.

As I mentioned several times during my pregnancy with Nora, naming here was a challenge. We didn’t agree on a name until a few weeks before she was born. The name we finally agreed on, Nora Viviann, pure perfection (if you ask me).

Early on in my pregnancy I made two lists. A list of girl names I liked and a list of boy names I liked. Both lists were relatively short. I’m picky about names. A few names on each list quickly became favorites. Once we found out we were having another girl the boy list was discarded and I focused on the girl names. I knew I wanted a name that went well with Maya and Anna, and ideally was a 2 syllable name that ended with an ‘a’. I made my short list and let those names float around in my head for a while. The list evolved. Some names stayed some were cast aside. I eventually got down to 2 names I liked and I was not willing to give up on those names unless something else came up that I liked better.

I admit I’m stubborn, especially about names. With Maya there wasn’t one particular first name I really wanted, with her it was the middle name I was stubborn about. Finding a compromise that worked for both of us was fairly easy that time. With Anna I knew I wanted that to be her name and I wasn’t willing to budge unless Lorne could come up with something I liked more, which he obviously didn’t. It took awhile but eventually he came around and we agreed on her name. With Nora it was very similar. I had 2 names I liked a lot. We spent months go over names, usually him suggesting something and me shooting it down. Like I said before, I’m extremely picky about names and not willing to settle for a name I don’t love. Each name he suggested was quickly compared to the names on my list and I didn’t like it better it was shot down. Eventually he gave up suggesting random names and came around to my side.

Nora’s middle name is Viviann. We were mulling over middle names with neither of us having any name in particular we just loved when Lorne suggested Viviann. Viviann is the name of Lorne’s aunt who passed away earlier this year after a long batter with cancer. She was an amazing woman and we both loved her dearly. I was sold, honoring her seemed perfect. So, it was settled, Nora Viviann would be the name of our 3rd little princess.

I’m very happy with the name we chose for her. I’m glad I was stubborn and didn’t settle for anything less than the perfect name. Nora Viviann.

Naming a child is a big responsibility. The name we give them, they carry for the rest of their lives. Finding the perfect name is sometimes a daunting task. The responsibility, to me at least, seems huge. You don’t want to saddle your child with a name they are going to hate, or that causes them a ton of grief as they grow up. You want to pick a name that suites them and is one they will be proud to utter, one they can grow up with and not every think twice about. I hope I have accomplished that for both my girls.

Very early on in this pregnancy I had a pretty strong feeling I was carrying another girl. The same thing had happened when I was pregnant with Maya so I pretty much trusted my instincts. Even though everyone else seemed to think the baby was going to be a boy I quietly trusted my instincts and started thinking about what girl names I liked and I would add to my short list for future name discussions with Lorne. I had a small list ready to go the day we had our ultrasound and it was confirmed that my instincts were indeed correct again and we were having another little girl.

One of the very first names I thought of was the name Anna. My very favorite fictional character from my very favorite book is Anne from Anne of Green Gables. I thought it would be neat to honor that love but I didn’t really like the name Anne so I thought, why not do a spin on the name and go with Anna. It is a beautiful, simple, classic name and goes well with our last name. It was a beautiful name that would also always hold special meaning for me. I added it to the top of my list and kept my fingers crossed that Lorne would agree to it.

We discussed names for a while, tossed around a few suggestions, but I always came back to my favorite, Anna. Finally, Lorne agreed that he liked that name too and it was settled. Lorne chose the middle name of Lily. It is actually one of our cat’s names and a name I have always loved. We really liked the way the name flowed with Anna.

Anna Lily, our beautiful, sweet, amazing bundle of joy. Anna means grace and so far that describes her perfectly.

The popularity of baby names changes over the years.  What is super popular one year will completely drop off the list a few years later.  That is, when it comes to names for girls anyway.  Turns out that not much has changed over the years when it comes to boys names.  What was popular 100 years ago is still fairly popular today.  Over the last 100 years the same boys names have dominated the list, names like William, James, Michael and Joshua.  Whereas with girls names the names that dominated the list 100 years ago are completely gone from the list now.

The name that has sat in the top spot for girls most frequently over the last 100 years is Mary (although it hasn’t even been on the list since 1967).  For boys the name that has dominated the top spot most often is Michael.  Michael was last the number one name back in 1998, but is still in the top five today.

Last year the top five girls names were:

  1. Isabella
  2. Emma
  3. Olivia
  4. Sophia
  5. Ava

100 years ago, in 1909 the list looked very different with the top 5 girls names being:

  1. Mary
  2. Helen
  3. Margaret
  4. Dorothy
  5. Ruth

Last year the top 5 boys names were:

  1. Jacob
  2. Ethan
  3. Michael
  4. Alexander
  5. William

100 years ago the list looked different, but not entirely:

  1. John
  2. James
  3. William
  4. Robert
  5. George

Why do you think popular girls names are always changing while the top boys names seem to hang around?

With 2009 now in full swing I thought it would be a good time to bring to your the list of last year’s most popular baby names. Not many changes to the list, a lot of the names that have topped the list in recent years are still safely on the list.

Girls

  1. Emma
  2. Sophia
  3. Madison
  4. Isabella
  5. Olivia
  6. Ava
  7. Madeline
  8. Addison
  9. Hailey
  10. Lily

Boys

  1. Aiden
  2. Jayden
  3. Ethan
  4. Jacob
  5. Caden
  6. Jackson
  7. Noah
  8. Jack
  9. Logan
  10. Matthew

As always I will be anxious to see what names make the big list this year.

Did you have a baby last year? What name did you give your child, was it in the top 10?

The Social Security Administration has released the list of the most popular names of 2007.  No surprises, Emily topped the girls list again and Jacob topped the boys list.  Emily has been the reigning champion on the girl’s list since 1996 so you shouldn’t be surprised when you child ends up with several Emily’s in their class in school!!  Jacob has been long reigning as well, not as long as Emily, but it has been on top since 1999.

And the top ten are……

GIRLS

1.  Emily

2.  Isabella

3.  Emma

4.  Ava

5.  Madison

6.  Sophia

7.  Olivia

8.  Abigail

9.  Hannah

10. Elizabeth

BOYS

1.  Jacob

2.  Michael

3.  Ethan

4.  Joshua

5.  Daniel

6.  Christopher

7.  Anthony

8.  William

9.  Matthew

10. Andrew

I wonder when the lists will get their next big change and new recurring champions.  When I was little it was Jennifer and Michael.  Michael is of course a main stay on the boys list, but Jennifer has disappeared from the girls list.  Some of the names you see on the list will always be there, but others will come and go.  I think it is fun to see what makes the cut every year.

Did your child’s name end up in the top ten?  What were the major influences on what names you came up with?