Dantea's Baby Names

{February 29, 2012}   Colorado City Names — Boys

Names                      Origin                          Meaning

Bennett                      English                          “Blessed” Bennett is a nice enough name. It give you Ben, like Benjamin, but seems a little less formal. I like it for the nickname Ben mostly.

Boone                         English                         “A blessing” Boone is one of those that gives me a cowboyish feel. It makes me think of a strong, dark and handsome cowboy though. Then I think of Daniel Boone, the frontiersman.

Brandon                     English                        “Broom covered hill” Brandon is a nice name, one I have a soft spot for but wouldn’t use myself. It had a great run in the top 10 from ’92 – ’98 but it’s slipped back down to #43 now. I don’t know why. It’s much more sophisticated than the current Braden.


Clark                            English                        “scribe, secretary, cleric, scholar, clerk” Clark immediately makes me think of Clark Gable or Gone With the Wind Fame, and Clark Kent, Superman’s alias. It’s only in the 600s and that’s great! You could bring it back.


Cory                             Irish                             “From the hollow” I’ve seen that Cory/Corey is becoming unisex recently and I think that’s ridiculous. I like Cory/Corey. I think it has a soft sound but is still boyish enough to work. It’s still in the 300s so I guess there’s still people out there with me.


Craig                            Scottish                       “From the Rocks” Craig is one of those older names that i can only picture on an older uncle or something. It has a nice enough sound, but I think it’s a little dated.

Dillon                          Irish                              “Loyal” I like Dylan a little, but it always seemed like one of those names that wouldn’t age well despite the connotations of Bob Dylan or Dylan Thomas. I think it’s probably the Dylan spelling that bothers me, something about the way it looks, because I like this spelling so much more. It looks mature and I like the look of Dill better than Dyl.

Drake                          English                         “Male Duck” I love Drake. It’s simple yet cool and edgy. I’ll admit that it does sound a little soap operaish but so what? So do lots of great names. If you don’t like Drake on it’s own, there’s always a longer form like Draco.


Foxton                       English?                       I love Fox. It’s such a cool name, but I always felt like it needed a little something to help it not sound so immature. Granted, I know people named Fox, but maybe you also think it needs a little something. Maybe Foxton can help. It’s got that trendy -on ending but the super cool possibility of Fox.

Frederick                  German                        “Peaceful Ruler” Frederick is a super strong name. I like it well enough, but mostly I think Fred is cute nickname. Frederick virtually disappeared for a while there and left parents with only memories of Mr. Rogers and Fred Astaire. It fell off the charts probably because of the military air it gives off, reminiscent of Frederick the Great, the enlightened king of Prussia who laid the foundations of the powerful Prussian empire. There’s also Frederick Douglas, who rose from slavery to power as a political activist. Frederick is also a Shakespearean name. There’s a lot going for Frederick.

Hale                             English                         “someone who lives in a hollow” Hale and Hearty, this name conjure up an image of health and well being. It’s simple and easy but still unusual enough to stand out in a crowd.

Howard                      German                        “brave heart” This is a cool meaning, old name. Howie and Ward make it much more accessible though.  Howard is getting dangerously close to falling off the top 1000, and that’s just wrong. I think Howard is a nice, solid name, and the only one I’ve known was a genius who could do advanced math in his head…it’s a good image!

Hudson                      English                          “Hugh’s Son” Hudson has gotten a real boost here lately for some reason. It’s always been a popular surname, but now people are looking at it as a first name. I think of the Hudson River first, which is a strong image.

Hugo                           Latin                              “Heart, mind, spirit” Hugo, the Latin form of Hugh, is a lot more energetic and cool than the original. Hugo has been sitting comfortably in the middle of the list, 300-500, but thanks to the recent movie Hugo, it will probably get a bit of a popularity boost. Also, in the 7th Harry Potter book, Ron and Hermione have a son named Hugo and that might give it a boost too. I like Hugo. I wish it would get a boost.

Lawson                      English                          “Son of Lawrence” Lawson is sort of a cool name. I love that you can use it as a more up to date way to honor Lawrence, and I love the nickname Law.

Lewis                          English                          “Renowned Warrior” This is a neat name and the phonetic spelling of the French Louis. It’s been #1 or 2 in Scotland since 2000 according to my sources, but parent’s in the USA are just noticing it. Lewis Carroll, of Alice in Wonderland fame, is probably the most famous bearer of the name here in the US. Louis Armstrong pronounced his name like Lewis. It’s got a great nickname, Lew.

Otis                              German                        “Wealthy” I love the O of Otis, but I think of the movie The Adventures of Milo and Otis. I think it could definitely work just like Hugo. It has the same old but still cool sound.

Sterling                      English                         “Of the highest quality” I love Sterling! I think it has a very cool sound and a great image to impart on your son. He’s of the highest quality.

Thatcher                   English                          “rood thatcher” Love it much more than Tyler or Taylor. I think Thatcher has a lovely sound and is a great name right along with Fletcher and Mason and other occupational names getting popular right now. Thatch is a cute nickname.

Victor                        Latin                              “Conqueror” Victor is one of the earliest names of Christian Popes and Saints. It became popular in the English speaking world via Queen Victoria since Victor was the only masculine form of Victoria.

Weston                      English                          “From the Western Town” Weston feels like a cowboy to me. I picture someone breaking horses in a cowboy hat. The best part about this name is the nickname West.


{February 26, 2012}   Colorado County Names


Name                        Origin                          Meaning

Crowley                     English                          “Fiddler” this county was named in honor of Colorado state senator John H. Crowley. I actually sort of like this surname. However, I think of the Ozzy Osbourne song “Mr. Crowley” but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Lee is a grounded nick name too.

Douglas                      Scottish                        “Black water” The surname of a powerful Scottish clan but also a little dated. This county was was named for Illinois senator Stephen Arnold Douglas. Even though this name is dated, as the only ones I know are over 40, maybe it’ll start making a comeback. It’s sitting in the 400s now, so there does seem to be a chance.

Logan                         Scottish                         “Small Hollow” Logan is a Scottish surname that originated from a place of the same name in Ayrshire. It’s got a nice sound to it, but is pretty popular at #17 on the list right now. Wolverine, known as Logan, from the X-men comics and movies, gave the name a big boost too.


Name                        Origin                          Meaning

Cheyenne                  Sioux                             “People of a different language” This County was named for the Cheyenne Nation of Native Americans. The name of a courageous tribe, Cheyenne was fairly popular in the 90s. Shy is a cute nickname for this one.

Dolores                      Spanish                         “Lady of Sorrows” Though it’s related to the Virgin Mary, this name was once considered very much a symbol of exotic sensuality. Now, I just think of a grandmother. I don’t know though, Dolly is a cute nickname. It could come back someday.

Kiowa                         Native American      This county was named the for Kiowa Nation of Native Americans. This could make a very pretty girls name. It sounds a little like Kiona, which is a legitimate name, and that might help you if you choose it. Kia (though it’s a car) is an very cute nickname.

{February 25, 2012}   California City Names — Girls

Name                        Origin                        Meaning

Arcadia                      Greek                           “region offering peace and contentment” Arcadia, a name for an unspoiled paradise, makes an attractive alternative to the modern Nevaeh. I love the sound and history of Arcadia. It has a nice nickname of Cady which is so close to Catey that people won’t even blink. It can also have Ari, Aria, or Dia.

Benicia                       Spanish                       “Blessed One” The BEN sound at the beginning might throw you off as its pretty popular in boys names (such as Benjamin), but I like it. Beni/Benny is very cute for a little girl and there’s also Cia or Bia.

Blythe                         English                       “free spirit, happy, carefree” Blythe has an interesting sound, but it’s not really my style. I think it could work on the right girl though.

Ceres                           Roman                        Ceres is the Roman Goddess of the Harvest, the counterpart to Demeter. Most people will say this SEER-ees, some will say CEER-ees. I think it’s pretty and I love mythology, but be prepared for some pronunciation issues.

Cypress                      Nature                       Lovely name. Tree names seem to be getting popular now. Juniper, Willow,and now Cypress. It’s really not any more out there than Willow or Juniper, so go for it! I love Cy as a nickname.

Madera                       Spanish                      “Sweet Wine” I think Madera is a sort of cool name. It’s got a good sound and the ever popular nickname Maddy applies.

Marina                        Latin                           “From the Sea” Marina is very pretty, not my style, but still pretty. Mari is a cute nickname and so is Rina. I think Marina would make a lovely name, especially for parent’s who love the sea.

(Santa) Clarita         Latin                           “bright, famous” Love Claire and Clara and now here’s Clarita. I think I might like this one the most at the moment. Rita is a cute nickname. It’s so old sounding that it’s spunky. And, Claire and Clara are still there as nicknames.

Solana                         Spanish                     “Sunshine” Very pretty and warm. It’s got long, flowing vowel sounds and the pretty nickname of Lana.

{February 25, 2012}   California City Names — Boys

Names                     Origin                           Meaning

Arvin                         German                          “Friend of the people” Nice meaning but the name sounds like the nerdy Marvin. However, Artie and Vin and Vinnie are cute nicknames!

Bishop                       Occupational               I feel like it’s almost like naming a kid Priest, but I like it anyway. It’s a little less pretentious than Priest, in my opinion. Bishop makes me think of the Android from the Aliens movie. He was a hero. Of course, not everyone has seen those movies. Hoppie could be a cool nickname though!

Carson                       Irish/Scottish             “son of the marsh dwellers” Carson sounds a little like a businessman. It’s been in the Top 100 for a long time now but it’s at it’s highest at #80 right now. I think Carson is nice.

Colton                       English                            “From the coal/dark town” Colton is a great name. I don’t generally go for the cowboyish names but this one has always been a favorite. It makes me think of a tall riding cowboy with stubble on his cheeks. Colt as a nickname just makes it better.

Davis                         Hebrew                           “beloved” Davis is a really nice twist on the traditional David. I actually like the surname better, and I usually don’t. Davis feels a little more edgy than David, but you still get the old nickname Dave.

Hawthorne            English                            “lives where Hawthorne hedges grow” The great American novelist sets this above many other surnames. It’s still a pretty bold choice, but it’s far from the worst name I’ve ever seen. Thorne is an awesome nickname.

Lafayette                 French                            “Faith” I love Lafayette! French general Marquis de Lafayette, who fought in the American Revolution, makes a great namesake. It’s a little feminine sounding, but I think it’s very sophisticated.

Ross                           Scottish                          “upland” It’s getting close to the 1000 mark, but I still think Ross is mature but still fun. Of course, people my generation will think of the show Friends and the paleontologist Ross Geller. He was the nerdy one who couldn’t manage to keep a girl. Despite that, Ross has a fun sound and is good for a nerd or a jock but mature enough to grow into as a business man or pro football player. Whatever he wants.

(San) Gabriel          Hebrew                          “God is my strength” Gabriel, the name of the archangel who heralded the news of Jesus’ birth, appears in Christian, Jewish, and Muslim texts. He’s the angel of mercy, life, joy, judgment, truth, and dreams, who presides over Paradise and it’s quickly becoming a biblical favorite. In addition to all his other responsibilities, Gabriel is the patron saint of broadcasters and diplomats, and governs Mondays and the month of January. Gabriel is even starting to get more popular than Michael, who has been the long reigning archangel. I like it and Gabe is such a friendly nickname.

(San) Rafael            Spanish Variation      “God has healed” Rafael is one of those stereotypical sexy Spanish names, and the stereotype fits. It does have a sexy sound to it. Raphael is the original Hebrew spelling. Raphael is another archangel who appears in Jewish and Christian traditions. He does all manners of healing.

Tiburon                    Spanish                           “Shark” I really think Tiburon has a cool sound to it. It had the same beginning sound as Tibault and the same ending as Auboron, which are both Shakespearean and cool names. Tibs or Burr are cute nicknames but Ron balances it out.

{February 23, 2012}   California County Names



Name                         Origin                          Meaning

(San) Benito              Spanish                         Benito is the Spanish diminutive of Benedicto. The county was named for Saint Benedicto, who was the patron saint of Europe and Students. I think Benito is cute and sturdy with the nice nickname of Ben, but not really my style.

(San) Bernardino    Spanish                         This county was named for Saint Bernardino of Siena who was an Italian priest, Franciscan monk, and Catholic saint. He’s the patron saint of advertising, communications, compulsive gambling, and respiratory problems. That’s a weird list. Bernard would be a cute shortening or just the whole name. Bernadino seems a little much to me.

(San) Diego                Spanish                         “Supplanter” The county was named for Saint Didacus of Alcala. Saint Didacus was a lay brother of the Order of Friars Minor. Saint Didacus is the saint to whom the Franciscan mission that developed into San Diego, Californiawas dedicated. I like Diego. It’s ethnic, so beware that it might not sound too good if you don’t have a last name that goes with it, but I think Diego sounds feisty.

Glenn                           Scottish                         “A narrow valley” It’s seen as mostly a girl’s name nowadays, but I would love to see Glenn go back to the boy side. This county is located to the north of the state and was named for Dr. Hugh J. Glenn, a California businessman and politician.

(San) Joaquin           Spanish                         “God will judge” Pronounced wah-keen. The county was named for Saint Joachim who was the husband of Saint Anne and the mother of Mary mother of Jesus in the Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Anglican traditions. The person who really made this name popular was Joaquin Phoenix, the actor. I think it’s got a cool sound, but a ton of people will probably try to pornounce it Joe-ah-quinn. I’ve known people who did.

(San) Luis                   Spanish                         “Renowned Warrior” The county was named for Saint Louis of Toulouse, The Bishop, who was a cadet of the royal French house of Anjou who was made a Catholic Bishop. Luis is a fairly popular Hispanic name in America. It’s easy and familiar while adding an exotic twist to Louis. I like it.

(San) Mateo              Spanish                          “gift of God” This county was named for Saint Matthew who was one of the 12 apostles of Jesus and one of the 4 Evangelists. I find Mateo cool like Diego. It’s easy to say but familiar and has a much better sound that the traditional Matthew.


Name                         Origin                          Meaning

Glenn                           Scottish                         “A narrow valley” It was originally a boy’s name but Actress Glenn Close gave it over to the girls. This county is located to the north of the state and was named for Dr. Hugh J. Glenn, a California businessman and politician.

Madera                       Spanish                          “Wood” This county was named to represent the forested landscape. I think it has a lovely sound actually. If you’re looking for a way to get to the nickname Maddy without using Madison, this could be a viable option.

Marin                          Place                               It’s disputed, but my sources tell me that it might be a corrupted abbreviation of Bahía de Nuestra Señora del Rosario la Marina, the Spanish name for area headlands along San Francisco Bay. It’s got a nice sound. It could be said ma-RIN or MAR-in. It’s on the rise though.

Mariposa                   Spanish                          “Butterfly” It’s a rare and romantic choice for a little girl. The sound is gorgeous and it comes with the nicknames Mary, Posy, Marie…Lovely. What little girl wouldn’t want to be named Butterfly?

(Santa) Barbara      Spanish                          “Foreign woman” This county is named for Saint Barbara who was a Christian martyr. She’s best known as the patron saint of artillerymen, military engineers, miners and others who work with explosives because of her legends association with lightning. Barbara has a weird feeling in my mouth when I say it aloud, but it’s a nice enough name. Barb is an edgy sort of nickname. Maybe it can be revived?

(Santa) Clara            Spanish                          “Bright, Clear” This county is named for Saint Clare of Assisi who founded the Order of Poor Ladies for women in the Franciscan tradition and wrote the Rule of Life, the first monastic rule to have been written by a woman. Clara hasn’t been very popular until recently it started rising with Claire. I prefer Clara of the 2. It has a prettier sound.

Sierra                          Spanish                          “mountain or saw” The county was named to represent the Mountains in the area. It’s got a good sound, invoking cowboys and a western landscape. That’s not for me, but for you, go for it!

Trinity                        Latin                               “Triad” The county was named for the Trinity River which was named for the town of Trinidad. It’s a pretty name with a lot of spiritual meaning, but it’s not the most creative religious name.


{February 21, 2012}   Arkansas City Names — Girls

Name                       Origin                         Meaning

Alma                          Latin                             “nurturing, soul” Alma is a soft, pretty name that’s only #850 on the list right now. It’s a name rarely heard any more, but we do hear the it in the term alma mater. Maybe it will make a comeback with Ella and Ada?

Amity                        Latin                             “friendship” It’s a lovely name signifying friendship and harmony, but I really think of the Amityville horror. Don’t think everyone will though and don’t let that stop you. It’s definitely got a lot going for it. It’s pretty and rhythmic and sounds much better than some of the other, one syllable, virtue names.

Augusta                    Latin                             “exalted one” It has an old fashioned kind of feel to it, but with August coming into style for the boys, I can definitely see this coming into style too. It’s got the August part in there and I prefer Auggie as a nickname for a girl for sure.

Bella                           Italian                          “Beautiful” Names with the “ella” sound in them are mega popular right now. Isabella is #1 right now, and Bella is very high up too, sitting at #48, but it’s still very pretty. With Twilight so popular, and Bella being the main character, you can imagine that Bella will keep climbing just like Isabella. If that doesn’t bother you, go for it! Bella is very pretty!

Clover                       Flower                          Rose and Lily are very popular, but not Clover. Clover is fun and quirky and very charming. I would love to see Clover get some attention and push Rose and Lily down a little bit.

Daisy                         Flower                           Daisy hasn’t been very popular lately, but it is cute and energetic. Originally, Daisy was the nickname for Margaret as the flower was the symbol for Saint Margherita. Daisy comes from the phrase “day’s eye” because it opens its petals at dawn.

Elizabeth                 Hebrew                         “Pledged to God” Elizabeth is popular, has always been popular, and will always be popular. Elizabeth has a rich history as a name for queens and therefore, a timeless sort of style. Elizabeth has a ton of nickname possibility: Liz, Lizzy, Beth, Eliza, Libby, Bess, Ellie, Liza

Ethel                         English                          “noble maiden” Ethel is very old. It makes me think of grandmothers. However, other old names, Agnes, Esther, and others like it, are coming up in name forums. If a name like Agnes can come back in style, I see no reason why Ethel can’t.

Eudora                     Greek                             “Generous gift” Eudora as a nice sound to it, with the cute nickname Dora or maybe Euni (you-nee). It also has a little recent attention because in Disney’s The Princess and the Frog, “Princess” Tiana’s mother was named Eudora.

Harriet                     English                          “Estate Ruler” In England, this is kind of a popular name, but here, it’s still an old lady name. However, if you love the name and you are one of those parent’s who loves and are brave enough to revive old classics, this could be a good name.

Helena                      Greek                             “Bright, shining one” Helena has a soft spot in me. It has some Shakespeare cred, he used it in All’s Well that Ends Well and Midsummer’s night Dream, Helena was historically the mother of Constantine the Great, and Helena Bonham Carter is a great actress. The only real issue with this name is that people tend to pronounce it differently. I like HELL – en-uh and other people like hell-AY-nuh and still others like hell-EEN-uh.

Holly                         Nature                           Holly is very nice, but not very popular. It’s only #412. It’s still in the Top 25 in the UK, but not here. A lot of parent’s are finding it unsubstantial for some reason. I think it’s pretty and underused.

Jordan                      Hebrew                         “Flowing Down” Jordan became a popular unisex name in the heyday of Michael Jordan, and now it’s 46 for boys and 150 for girls. Obviously, more boys wear the name now. First used by Crusaders recently returned from the river Jordan, it’s always been used for both genders and especially for children baptized in the River Jordan.

Leslie                         Scottish                        “Garden by the pool” Leslie has a really pleasant sound. It’s not the freshest name, but it has a lovely feel to it. The town though, it’s a teeny little thing that has a nice, country feel and friendly people.

Marianna                 Spanish                        Beautiful name. I like Mary and I like Anna but I LOVE them together. It has a wonderful sound and it just lilts when you say it. However, it does have a Spanish vibe to it, so you might want to think about that, but that’s okay. It’s lovely.

Mena                         Spanish                        This is usually a diminutive of Philomena or Wilhelmina or other names with -mena in them. I usually don’t like nickname names to stand alone, but I actually prefer Mena on it’s own. It’s short and sweet and sassy.

Portia                        Latin                              “pig,hog, or doorway” Awful meaning. Pretty name. Portia is a good name, it’s a Shakespearean name from The Merchant of Venice and in the modern times, it’s in the Hunger Games. The downside to this name is that people are going to think you named your daughter Porsche like the car.

Shirley                      English                          “bright meadow” Shirley is very pretty, but most of them will be very old. They probably were born in the 30s when Shirley Temple was so overly popular. Shirley was a great name for the time. She was right after the Depression and everyone loved her. If you choose Shirley, she’ll most definitely be the only one in her class. Shirley as a name has a lot of energy and a bouncy feeling, just like Shirley Temple.

Story                         Word                              Very cute. I don’t think it would work very well as first name but as a middle it’s awesome! It’s absolutely perfect for the child of a writer.

Theodosia               Greek                             “giving to God” This feminine form of Theodosius is buried deep in the attic, but might be a good discovery for the parent who feels Theodora is too cute. I think it has a really cool, vintage sound with the cute nicknames Thea or Sia or Cici

Viola                         Latin                               “Violet” Viola has several positive elements going for it: the rhythm of the musical instrument, the association with the flower, and its leading role in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. I love Viola. It’s beautiful and has the lovely nickname Vivi.

{February 18, 2012}   Arkansas City Names — Boys


Names                      Origin                        Meaning

Alexander                 Greek                           “Defending Warrior” Alexander is a strong and extremely popular name with tons of nicknames possibilities and variations. Alexander the Great (or Alexander III) conquered a good chunk of Asia, and is perhaps the most well known of the Alexanders. There are a ton of other great Alexanders though including Alexander Hamilton, Alexander Graham Bell, and Alexander Fleming. Variations Include: Al, Alec, Alecsander, Alex, Alexandar, Alexsander, Alexsandor, Alexxander, Alexzander, Alix, Alixander, Lex, Xan, Xander, Zan, Zander

Blaine                          Irish                             “Slender” Attractive surname name of a seventh-century Scottish saint, but it does sound a tad soap operaish. I still find it strong and underused though. Variations Include: Blain, Blane, Blayne

Bruno                          German                       “Brown” Bruno is not very popular here in America at all, sitting in the mid 700s, despite the fact that there are several Bruno’s in the spotlight, including Bruno Mars, the popular singer. St. Bruno of Cologne was a nobleman who founded the Cartusian order of monks in 1084.

Carlisle                       English                         “From the walled city’ This is definitely a stuffy name. I think it has a nice sound, but it’s not even on the top 1000. However, it might gain some unexpected popularity because of the character in Twilight, Carlisle Cullen. Variations include: Carlyle.

Chester                       Latin                             “Fortress, Walled Town” Chester is a nice enough name. it has sort of a weird, cuddly feel to it. It does have a lot of namesakes though including Admiral Chester Nimitz (a WW2 hero), Chester Gould (creator of Dick Tracy), and Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park. It has the cool nickname Chess too!

Colt                              Word                             Colt is a sort of unconventionally masculine name because of it’s association with horses and guns. Samuel Colt was the inventor and industrialist credited with popularizing the revolver.  Colt is also a fairly popular nickname for Colton.

Dalton                         English                         “The Settlement in the Valley’ Dalton gives me kind of a western vibe. I think it’s a nice name, and it’s only in the mid 200s so it’s not too popular. Plus, it sounds just like a bunch of other names like Colton, Holden, and others like that. Variations include: Dallton, Daltan, Dalten, Daltun

Gilbert                        German                        “Shining Pledge” Cool meaning, nerdy name. When I hear Gilbert, the first thing I think of is “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?” However, like Alfred, Albert, Walter, and Frank, this name may be ready to try and make a comeback. It was actually a pretty common name in the middle ages in England and the name of a 12th century English saint.

Grady                          Irish                              “Noble” Grady, along with Brady, is another Irish surname that is starting to get some attention. O’Grady is almost the stereotypical Irish surname. The most well known of the O’Grady’s was Muhammed Ali, born  Cassius O’Grady Clay, whose ancestor married an African-American woman who was so proud of her O’Grady name she passed it on to her children.

Griffith                        Welsh                            “Strong fighter” It’s a cool, classic Welsh name that comes off a little softer than Griffin but has the TH sound at the end that might make it a little harder for some people to say. I love it though.


Harrison                    English                          “Son of Harry” It’s another surname name made popular by Harrison Ford. It’s perfect for parent’s looking for an H name that’s not the tired Harry or Hank, but isn’t too much like Huntington. It also has the cute nn of Harris.

Harvey                       French                          “Battle Worthy’ Love the meaning but the name is a little immature to me.  Makes me think of Sabrina the Teenage Witch and the bumbling boy she has a crush on. Actually though, this name is getting fairly popular in England. It’s in the top 50 over there. It also has some worthy namesakes too. There’s the blind 6th century saint who was said to be a monk and minstrel able to talk to animals. There was the industrialist Harvey Firestone. There’s a lot of history here. Maybe I’m wrong?

Hector                        Greek                             “holding fast'” Hector is a very nice name. It’s the name of the hero of the Trojan War and the name of the knight who raised King Arthur as his own. It’s sitting at 226, so it is starting to get some recognition.

Jasper                         Persian                         “One who brings treasure” This is also a gemstone and a pinkish orange color. Jasper is getting very popular right now, due to it’s connection with Twilight. It is a type of quartz and one of the few gem names for boys. Variations include: Casper, Gasper, Jas, Jaspar, Jaz, Jazper, Jespar, Jesper

Jerome                       Greek                            “Sacred Name” Jerome is a name connected with a brilliant scholar of a saint. St. Jerome is the patron saint of students, librarians and archeologists. Jerome is the birth name is Jerry Seinfeld and J.D. Salinger. Variations Include: Gerrie, Gerry, Hierome, Hieronun, Jairo, Jairome, Jere, Jerom, Jeromo, Jeromy, Jeron, Jerrome, Jerromy, Jerron, Jerrone, Jerry

Jordan                        Hebrew                        “Flowing Down” Jordan became a popular unisex name in the heyday of Michael Jordan, and now it’s 46 for boys and 150 for girls. Obviously, more boys wear the name now. First used by Crusaders recently returned from the river Jordan, it’s always been used for both genders and especially for children baptized in the River Jordan.


Keo                               Hebrew                        “He will Enlarge” This meaning might not be right, but in all my searching, this is what I found. I think it’s a cool name. Sounds a bit like Neo, as in The Matrix, but that movie hasn’t been popular in a while now and I don’t think people of the kids generation will get the reference.

Lewis                           English                         “Renowned Warrior” This is a neat name and the phonetic spelling of the French Louis. It’s been #1 or 2 in Scotland since 2000 according to my sources, but parent’s in the USA are just noticing it. Lewis Carroll, of Alice in Wonderland fame, is probably the most famous bearer of the name here in the US. Louis Armstrong pronounced his name like Lewis. It’s got a great nickname, Lew.


Norman                      English                         “Norseman” Norman is nice enough, but it just sounds like Normal to me so I see a normal guy, nothing too special. but the meaning, Norseman, makes me think of vikings. It’s a weird, conflicting image. Despite that, Norman actually has several interesting namesakes from artist Norman Rockwell, to feisty novelist Norman Mailer and the creepy mama’s boy Norman Bates.

Oden                            Norwegian                  “Inspiration” Now I live in Arkansas and I was pleasantly surprised to find an Oden, Arkansas. Now, it’s not spelled right but all my sources say it’s a variation on Odin, and Odin was ruler of the Norse Gods. His name is associated with a norse world meaning “excitation” but could also mean “mind or Poetry” He is associated with war, battle, victory, death, wisdom, magic, poetry, and prophecy.

Perry                           English                         “Dweller near a pear tree” Perry is a nice enough name. It’s easy and has a nice sound, but it’s also dated. I prefer it as a nickname for the more adventurous name Peregrine.

Roland                        German                        “Famous throughout the land” This sounds like a name from the old days of England. it sounds chivalrous and sort of knightly. I love this name. Rollo is a super cute nickname.

Sage                             Latin                              “Wise and Knowing” Fits many criteria sought by modern parents: it’s short and strong, with intimations of wisdom as well as fragrant herbal properties. It’s only in the 800s so it’s not popular, but be aware that I’ve been hearing it thrown around as a girls name.

Salem                          Place name                 Personally, I love Salem. I think it’s handsome and strong, but it might not be too wearable as a first name. Lots of people will think of Salem the cat from Sabrina the Teenage Witch or the Salem Witch Trails, probably the latter the most. Kids won’t, but when they get to high school and learn about them, they will. Sadly, this is better in the middle.

Truman                      English                         “Loyal one” This name has a lot going for it. It’s a presidential name and also associated with a great writer, Truman Capote. Without even knowing the meaning it feels like a name for someone you can trust. Maybe it’s that word True right there at the beginning. Speaking of, Tru is a great nickname.

Warren                       French                         “Park Keeper” This was on my own list at one time. Just like Truman, it’s also a presidential name. It sounds strong and handsome, old fashioned but not too old fashioned. I think Warren is ready for a come back.

Watson                       English                         “Son of Wat” I love Sherlocke Holmes, and that’s what I think of first when I hear this name. That’s not so bad though. Watson keeps Sherlocke grounded. It sounds British and sort of rich, but not stuck up.

Wilson                        English                         “Son of Will” Again, a presidential name and a nice way to get to Will. I don’t think it will get past William, but it certainly could gain in popularity with William.

{February 11, 2012}   Arkansas County Names


Name                          Origin                        Meaning

Baxter                          English                        “baker” I think Baxter is a cool name and Bax is just as neat as Max and Jax, but I think of a dog when I hear this name. Don’t let that deter you, most people probably won’t. Singer Ian Dury named his now-grown son Baxter and Dr. Baxter Stockman was a scientist in the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” Series

Boone                           English                        “A blessing” Boone is one of those that gives me a cowboyish feel. It makes me think of a strong, dark and handsome cowboy though. Then I think of Daniel Boone, the frontiersman.

Bradley                        English                        “Wide meadow” This name is still sitting in the back end of the 100s on the popularity list, though I haven’t met a Bradley who wasn’t my mom’s age. I think Brad is a nice, sporty nickname, but be aware it’s a little dated. However, I work with a baby whose middle name is Bradley.

Clark                             English                         “scribe, secretary, cleric, scholar, clerk” Clark immediately makes me think of Clark Gable or Gone With the Wind Fame, and Clark Kent, Superman’s alias. It’s only in the 600s and that’s great! You could bring it back.

Clay                               English                         Short form of Clayton. Clay is another of those cowboy feeling names, but it doesn’t give me the same feeling or image as Boone. Clay makes me think of the sidekick who stays in the background. It’s a name used on soap operas and reality TV and whose popularity is starting to go up. I prefer it in a longer form.

Drew                             Diminutive                 “Manly” This is typically a diminutive of Andrew, but really, it’s getting to be its own name now. It’s in the mid 200s, so not all that popular. Drew gives off a sort of polished feel to it, which is nice. There’s, of course, Drew Carey, the comedian and Drew Lachey, the singer-song writer, for real life credit. Of course, there’s also Drew Barrymore, so be aware that it is a little unisex, but it’s never been too popular for the girls. Variations include: Dru, Drue

Franklin                      English                          “Free landholder” Frank is okay, Franklin reminds me of a green turtle from children’s cartoons and Franklin Roosevelt. The latter isn’t that bad of a name sake in my opinion. Variations include: Francklin, Francklyn, Frank, Franklinn, Franklyn, Franklynn

Grant                            Scottish                        “Large” I’ve only known one Grant, and he was a little know-it-all. I find Grant to be no nonsense, like Brent, and strong. Variations Include: Grantland, Grantlen, Grantley

Howard                       German                         “brave heart” This is a cool meaning, old name. Howie and Ward make it much more accessible though.  Howard is getting dangerously close to falling off the top 1000, and that’s just wrong. I think Howard is a nice, solid name, and the only one I’ve known was a genius who could do advanced math in his head…it’s a good image!

Lafayette                    French                           “faith” This is a such a guilty pleasure name for me. It’s got a nice sound and a distinguished namesake, Marquis de Lafayette who fought in the American Revolution. Lafaiete, Lafayett, Lafette, Laffyette

Lawrence                   Latin                               “From Laurentium’ This name has survived a long time, from back in ancient Roman times when Laurentium was still a city with it’s prized laurel trees. It’s sitting at the middle of the Top 1000 and has the cool nickname Law. Variations Include: Lanny, Lanty, Larance, Laranz, Laren, Larenz, Larian, Larien, Laris, Larrance, Larrence, Larrens, Larrey, Larry, Lary, Laurance, Laurence, Laurentios, Laurentius, Laurenz, Laurie, Laurits, Lavrans, Lavrens, Lavrenti, Law, Lawerence, Lawrance, Lawren, Lawrey, Lawrie, Lawron, Lawry, Lencho, Lon, Lonnie, Lonny, Loran, Loreca, Loren, Lorence, Lorentz, Lorenzen, Lorin, Loritz, Lorn, Lorne, Lorrence, Lorrenz, Lorrie, Lorry, Lowrance

Lee                                English                           “pasture, meadow” It’s a fine name, but just doesn’t seem very substantial. I guess I just like it in the middle better. It’s also a fairly popular middle name for girls. Although, I guess Robert E. Lee is there as a sort of namesake.

Logan                           Scottish                         “Small Hollow” Logan is a Scottish surname that originated from a place of the same name in Ayrshire. It’s got a nice sound to it, but is pretty popular at #17 on the list right now. Wolverine, known as Logan, from the X-men comics and movies, gave the name a big boost too. Variations Include: Llogen, Loagan, Loagen, Loagon, Logann, Logen, Loggan, Loghan, Logn, Logon, Logun, Logunn, Logyn

Scott                             English                          “from Scotland” Scott is one of those short and strong names that I don’t see why it’s not more popular. I like it well enough and even work with a little boy whose middle name is Scott. Like Logan, Scott is another name from the X-Men franchise that deserves a good boost.

Sebastian                    Latin from Greek      “person from ancient city of Sebasta” I see this name around the forums a lot lately and since it’s sitting at #68, I’m sure it’s bond to get popular. Sebastian is an ancient martyr name and also a disney name. Sebastian is a name with a substantial history, first as the third-century martyr whose sufferings were a favorite of medieval artists, then as the name of memorable characters in such varied works as Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and The Tempest and Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited. It’s got a lot of great nicknames too like Seb, baz, and Bastien (though my mother recently told me this is too close to Bastard).


Name                           Origin                        Meaning

Ashley                           English                        “dweller near the ash tree meadow” Ashley was mega-popular in the 80s and 90s but now it’s starting to go back down while still managing to stay in the top 30. It’s pretty but I like the nickname Asha much more. Variations include: Ahshlee, Aishlee, Ashala, Ashalee, Ashalei, Ashaley, Ashely, Ashien, Ashla, Ashlan, Ashlay, Ashlea, Ashleay, Ashlee, Ashleigh, Ashleye, Ashli, Ashlie, Ashly, Ashlye

Carroll                           English                        “Free man” It’s pretty enough, but the spelling makes it more of a surname. Carol is mostly used on the older generation, the moms, but I do know one my own age. Variations Include: Caral, Carel, Carey, Cari, Cariel, Carla, Carleen, Carlene, Carley, Carlin, Carlina, Carline, Carlita, Carlota, Carlotta, Carly, Carlyn, Carlynn, Carlynne, Carola, Carole, Carolee, Carolena, Carolenia, Carolin, Carolina, Carolinda, Caroline, Caroll, Caroly, Carolyn, Carolynn, Carolynne, Carri, Carrie, Carrol, Carroll, Carrolyn, Carry, Cary, Caryl, Caryle, Caryll, Carylle, Charyl, Cherlyn, Cheryl, Karel, Kari, Karinka, Karla, Karleen, Karli, Karlie, Karlina, Karlote, Karlotta, Karole, Karolina, Karrole, Karryl, Karryll, Karyl, Karyll, Kerril, Kerryl, Keryl

Desha                              English?                     I couldn’t find a meaning for this, but it has a pretty sound. DEH-shuh… I think it would make a pretty name with an exotic sound.

Madison                         English                       “son of Maud” Historically a boy name and extremely popular, #8, for girls. I don’t like this name too much, but I understand that most parent’s like it for it’s upscale kind of feel, or as a way to get to Maddy. Variations Include: Maddison, Madisen, Madisson, Madisyn, Madsen, Madyson, Mattison

{February 9, 2012}   Arizona City Names — Girls

Name                         Origin                      Meaning

Catalina                      Spanish                      “Pure” Pretty and stylish sounding variation on Catherine. It still has all the nicknames, Cat, Cate, Kit, with the added bonus of Lina. It’s in the 600s so it’s not really all that popular. Variations Include: Cataleen, Catalena, Catalene, Catalia, Catalin, Catalyn, Catalyna, Cateline

Eden                            Hebrew                      “Place of Pleasure” Eden is an attractive alternative to the trendy Nevaeh (heaven spelled backwards). Eden is the mythical garden where Adam and Eve lived. Variations include: Eaden, Eadin, Ede, Edena, Edene, Edenia, Edin, Edyn


Florence                    Latin                           “flourishing, prosperous” Florence has been neglected for a long while now. I don’t know why, it has a nice sound and few things going for it. It has a floral feel (which seems to be popular right now) and is a place name of a beautiful Italian city. The band Florence and the Machine is probably helping bring it back to life too. Variations Include: Flo, Florance, Florella, Florentina, Florentine, Florentyna, Florian, Florice, Florie, Florina, Florinda, Florine, Floris, Florrance, Florrie, Florry, Florynce, Floss, Flossey, Flossie, Flossy

Fredonia                    Spanish?                   The sources I’ve found say that it means “place of freedom” which is nice. It can be pronounced Free-DOHN-yuh or Free-DOHN-ee-uh. This is a little town in Arizona where the the Anasazi, or Basket Makers, settled. Their presence is marked by ancient ruins in the cliffs. It’s also the entrance to the north rim of the Grand Canyon. I think it has an interesting sound with the cute nicknames of Free, Donna, Nia or even maybe Fria.

Kayenta                     Navajo                       “Where the water is coming out fast” This city is a part of the Navajo Nation. I think this name has an interesting sound. I’m saying it Kay-yentuh. It provides a cute nickname of Kay and I think Yen could even be sort of cute.

Maricopa                  Spanish                      This is a variation on the Spanish word Mariposa which means “butterfly”. This is a very pretty name for any little girl of Spanish decent. Mari, Marie, Rica are all cute nicknames.

Sedona                       Place                           This is a city known for it’s natural beauty and tranquility. It sounds a little like Sierra or Sienna and provides the the nicknames Dona and Sese (see-see). Variations include: Sadona, Sedonah, Sedonia

Sierra                          Spanish                      “Saw” Sierra is a name borrowed from the western mountain range. It has a pleasing sound and a certain cowboyish charm. Sisi is a cute nickname. This name isn’t very popular, so maybe it’ll sound fresh to anyone using it ^_^ Variations Include: Ciera, Cierra, Seara, Searria, Seera, Seirra, Siara, Siearra, Siera, Sierrah, Sierre, Sierrea, Sierriah, Syerra

Willow                        English                       “Willow Tree” The name has transcended its one-time hippie aura to move into the realm of reappraised and appreciated nature names. Among the most graceful of trees, the willow is believed by Gypsies to possess magical powers to heal the sick and rejuvenate the aged.

{February 7, 2012}   Arizona City Names — Boys

Name                         Origin                        Meaning

Benson                        English                        “Son of Ben” This name is definitely not very popular as it’s sitting in the 800s. I think it’s cute and a good way to get to Ben if you don’t like Benjamin. It conjures up a different image  to me, more of the sporty, preppy type. Variations Include: Bensen, Benssen, Bensson

Chandler                    French                         “Candle Maker” Chandler got popular with Friend’s on air, but since Friends has faded away into reruns, Chandler hasn’t seen too much attention. It’s getting close to the 500s so it’s safely off the map, and I like that. I think Chandler sounds sporty and fun, but I can also picture a dark haired, mischievous boy.

Duncan                       Scottish                       “Dark Warrior” Duncan is not very popular, it’s sitting in the 700s, despite it’s literary history. Duncan is charming and has a nice sound. It’s a Scottish royal name that’s neither too popular or too strange. This was the name of a Scottish saint and two early Kings of the Scots. Duncan 1 was who Shakespeare used in his play Macbeth. Major Duncan is one of the main characters in The Last of the Mohicans. There’s Duncan Idaho from the Dune novels. Duncan MacLeod was the immortal protagonist in the Highlander. Variations Include: Dun, Dunc, Dune, Dunkan, Dunn

Hayden                       English                        “Heather Grown Hill” Though Hayden is one of the better of the bunch, it gets lost in the crowd of Jaidens, Bradens, Aidans, and endless variations, and is being used increasingly for girls. I find it way too popular right now (There are 3 babies with this name in my daycare), but other people might be okay with that. Variations Include: Hadan, Haden, Hadin, Hadon, Hadun, Hadyn, Haidan, Haiden, Haidin, Haidon, Haidun, Haidyn, Haydan, Haydin, Haydn, Haydon, Haydun, Haydyn

Jerome                       Greek                           “Sacred Name” Jerome is a name connected with a brilliant scholar of a saint. St. Jerome is the patron saint of students, librarians and archeologists. Jerome is the birth name is Jerry Seinfeld and J.D. Salinger. Variations Include: Gerrie, Gerry, Hierome, Hieronun, Jairo, Jairome, Jere, Jerom, Jeromo, Jeromy, Jeron, Jerrome, Jerromy, Jerron, Jerrone, Jerry

Parker                         English                        “Park keeper” I’ve known a Parker and he was the preppy type. Parker is one of the more popular occupational names, but you should be careful, it’s becoming unisex now (for some reason).

Phoenix                      Greek                           “dark red” Phoenix is very cool! It’s a place name, but it’s also a mythological name. Since the mythic bird rose from the ashes of death into life again, it’s a symbol of immortality. It’s also the surname of the brother Joaquin and River. It has the very cool nickname Nix.

Prescott                      English                        “Priest’s Cottage” The scott part makes it more approachable than other upper-crusty surname names. Scott makes a good, accessible nickname. The name in general has a sophisticated but pretentious sound to it, but it could definitely work. Variations Include: Prescot, Prestcot, Prestcott

Thatcher                     English                        “Roof thatcher”Friendly and interesting. I like Fletcher and this seems like and upbeat new version. Thatch seems like a cool nickname too.

Winslow                      English                        “Friends hill” Winslow is like Prescott, interesting with a cool nickname, Win, but a little pretentious sounding.

et cetera