Dantea's Baby Names

{March 31, 2012}   Illinois City Names — Girls

Name                       Origin                         Meaning

Alexis                        English                         “Man’s defender” Alexis is currently the most popular feminine form of Alexander. It’s sitting at #16 right now. It’s not my favorite feminine form, but it’s not bad either. It has a spunky sound and still gets the nickname Alex or Lexie.

Anna                          Hebrew                        “Grace” In my opinion, Anna is the prettiest of the 2, Anne and Anna. Anna has been used for centuries all over Europe. Anna is a regal name, simple yet elegant.

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.

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.

Aurora                      Latin                             “Dawn” Aurora, the poetic name of the Roman goddess of sunrise whose tears turned into the morning dew, and of Sleeping Beauty, would be sure to make any little girl feel like a princess. Aurora has consistently been on the popularity list since the 19th century, but is now at its highest point ever– and looks to climb even further.

Ava                             Latin                             “Like a bird” Ava is very popular right now, sitting at #5. It’s very pretty, but so overly poular as to put me off the name.

Bethany                    Hebrew                        “House of figs” I actually really like Bethany. It has a very pretty, lyrical sound with the short nickname Beth. In the bible, Bethany is the name of a village just outside Jerusalem where Jesus stayed during Holy Week.

Bonnie                       Scottish                       “Beautiful and cheerful” Bonnie is a word that is actually used to mean pretty in Scotland. Bonnie had a nice boost when Gone with the Wind used it for the pet name of Rhett and Scarlett’s daughter. I really like it, but it is one of those names that doesn’t seem like it would age well.

Cameron                  Scottish                       “Crooked nose” Cameron is a popular name for boys and girls and it has a nice soft sound. I like it much better for a boy, but I can see the appeal on a girl. It sound strong but Cammie could make a feminine nickname.

Cary                            Irish                            “Dark, black” To me, this looks like an alternate spelling of Carey/Carrie. I find Carey dated, but with all the other -ey names getting attention for girls right now, Carey could probably make a comeback.

Catlin                         Gaelic                          “Pure” I actually like this. I love the nickname Cat, and the name seems much spunkier than the traditional Caitlin. The issue with it is that it’s likely to be misspelled and misheard as Caitlin.

Chana                        Hebrew                       It’s nice, but the CH at the beginning calls for the guttural, back of the throat sound that people who don’t speak the language tend to have a hard time making.

Dana                          English                         “From Denmark” This name found in both Celtic and Scandinavian mythology has gone from all-boy to almost all-girl. I can’t even begin to picture this on a boy. It does have a slightly older sound to it though, as Dana is my grandmother. This is also the birth name of Queen Latifah.

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

Emma                       German                        “Universal” This is mega popular, as it’s sitting at #3. Emma is simple and pretty. It’s also an old royal name used throughout the centuries, but retains it’s beauty no matter how old it gets.

Flora                         Latin                              “Flower” Flora, the Roman Goddess of Flowers and Spring, who enjoyed eternal youth, is one of the gently old-fashioned girls’ flower names that’s due for a comeback. It’s been popular in Scotland for a long time, but isn’t too popular here. I think it’s very soft and pretty and I would love to see it get more use.

Laura                        Latin                              “Bay laurel” Laura seems old to me, but still pretty and very usable. It’s never too popular and never too out there, feminine but not overly frilly.

Loraine                    French                          “From the province of Lorraine” Loraine is a very old name, and it might just be ready to come back around. I like it. Lori is a nice solid nickname, but Raine is spunky.

Marietta                  French                          I actually really like this one. It’s very pretty and still mature. Mary, Marie, Etta, Ettie are all good nicknames.

Marissa                    Latin                              “Of the sea” Pretty and a little frilly, it’s never been nearly as popular as Melissa. Rissa and Mari or even Maris are nice nicknames for it.

Medora                    Greek                             “Mother’s gift” Medora is definitely never been as popular as Melissa and Melanie. It has some literary references, including as the beautiful and passionate heroine of Lord Byron’s poem The Corsair. I like it, and would love to see it get used.

Nora                          Irish                              “Light” Nora is simple and pretty, but has an older sound to me. I think it would be lovely to see Nora could back into style.

Roxana                     Persian                        “dawn: little star” The name of the wife of Alexander the Great, more attractive than the regular Roxanne. Roxana was first used in the English-speaking world in the 1600s and was popularized by Daniel Defoe’s novel Roxana, published in 1724. An underused and attractive possibility. Roxie is such a spunky nickname and Anna is nice and grounded.

Serena                       Latin                            “Tranquil, serene” Serena is a name used since Roman times. It was given a new popularity with Tennis star Serena Williams. It sound soft and calm, like it’s suppose to.

Shannon                   Irish                             “Old and Wise” I like it well enough, but personal things have ruined this name for me. However, I think a little girl named Shannon would be great.

Trilla                          ????                               I don’t know the origin or the meaning of this name, but I like it! It sound musical to me. A trill is when you go quickly back and forth between 2 notes, so that’s why Trilla sound musical. I would love to see someone use this.


Ursa                           Greek                           “Little Bear” I like this one too, but not as much as other Greek names. The U is a really neat letter, as you don’t see many names starting with U. I think I mildly prefer the full name Ursula better.

Victoria                    Latin                            “Victory” Victoria, the epitome of gentility and refinement, reflects the image of the long-reigning British queen. I think it sounds lovely and high-end, but Vicky and Tori make the name much more approachable.

Xenia                         Greek                           “hospitable, welcoming” I really like this one. The X makes it so fresh and spunky, but the sounds are all familiar. This is a Greek name that needs a little more popularity. Xen, Xeni, and Nia are great nicknames too.


{March 22, 2012}   Illinois City Names — Boys

Name                       Origin                         Meaning

Adair                         Scottish                        “Oak tree ford” I really like Adair. It has flare and spunk, but it’s not unrecognizable. I love the nickname Dare.

Alden                         English                         “Old wise friend” It’s another -en name, but definitely not as stylish as Aiden or that group. I think it has potential though.

Alton                         English                          “Dweller at the old town” I like it a bit, but I think it sounds and looks like Dalton with the D dropped off. I think it would be fine though.

Alvin                         English                          “Noble friend/friend of elves” Alvin is nice, but it’ll be really hard to escape the little cocky chipmunk.

Arthur                      Celtic                             “Bear” Love Arthur! I think of King Arthur, the head of the Knights of the Round Table. Arthur is also literary beyond the Arthurian Legends. It’s also in The Scarlet Letter and Poe uses it. Arthur is a great old name.

Ashton                     English                          “Ash Tree Place” I think Ashton is pretty good. Ash is a great name and it’s got that popular ending. I’ve heard that it’s been used on girls sometimes, but I think it’s distinctly masculine.

Barry                        Irish                              “Spear” This is a good meaning for this name! However, despite the cool meaning, Barry isn’t very cool. Makes me think of suave Barry White, but I still don’t think it’s ready to come back.

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.

Bowen                      Welsh                           “Son of Owen” I’ve known one person with the last name Bowen, but it’s not too surnamey. I actually like it! Bo makes a great nickname too.

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.

Byron                       English                        “Barn for Cows” For centuries, this name was connected to Lord Byron, the poet, which gave it a sort of romantic feel. Faulkner used it as a character name in 2 of his novels and it’s seen as a name on Arrested Development. I like it much more than Brian, that’s for sure.

Cameron                 Scottish                      “Crooked nose” Cameron is a popular name for boys and girls and it has a nice soft sound. I like it much better for a boy.

Carlyle                     English                        “From the walled city’ This is an alternate spelling of Carlisle. 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.

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!

Christopher           Greek/Latin              “Bearer of Christ” Christopher is an ever popular name. I like Christopher. It’s strong but with a softer sound. It’s sometimes used to honor Saint Christopher, a third century martyr who became the protective saint of travelers, reflecting the legend of the Giant who carried the Christ child over a river. Chris is the most popular nickname but my favorites are Topher and Kit (like Christopher Marlowe).

Dale                          English                         “Valley” This name, while still masculine, seems a little outdated to me. I think it could still work, but he’ll definitely be the only one his age.

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.

Dawson                    Welsh                           “Son of David” I really like Dawson. It feels soft, but still good for a grown man. Despite the popular -son ending, I think this name makes an excellent choice.

Donovan                 Irish                             “Dark” Donovan was one of the first and most popular of the Irish surnames turned first name. I like Donovan, and I think Don and Van are great nicknames.

Dwight                     German/Dutch         “white/blond”  This seems really nerdy. I wish the character on the Office could make it better, but it doesn’t.

Easton                      English                        “East facing place” Easton is just a new take on Weston and at #145 it’s on it’s way up the list. I actually like Easton a little, but mostly for the nickname East.

Eldred                      English                        “Old counsel” So old! And that last syllable…Dred is sort of dreadful…but if you love it, don’t let me get you down.

Ellery                       Welsh                           “Benevolent” This is the Welsh form of Elijah and the Greek Elias and is fairly popular in Wales. I’ve heard of it being used for girls, but I like it much better for a boy. I might even be able to get Rhys/Reese out of this for a nickname.

Elliott                       Hebrew?                     “The Lord is my God” Love Elliott! It’s got several proper spellings and has a lot going for it. It’s uncommon but not weird either, it has literary cred, and just has a lovely sound.

Ferris                       Irish                             “Rock” I actually really like Ferris, but not for my own child. I think it’s strong and cool sounding.

Kent                          English                       “Edge” Kent is nice, but very abrupt and no-nonsense. Makes me think of Clark Kent though.

Lane                          English                       “A small path” I really like Lane for a boy. It’s a recent thing, but its definitely getting attention. It makes me think of narrow country roads.

Mark                         Latin                            “Warlike” After lagging behind other apostle names, it got popular in the 60’s and is now dropping off to the 160s. I still like Mark. It’s strong and manly.

Michael                   Hebrew                       “Who is like God?” Michael is lovely and strong. Michael is likable and sincere. In the Bible, Michael is the archangel who led the other angels to victory in a war against Satan, one of only two archangels (the other is Gabriel) recognized by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike.

Niles                         Scandinavian           “Son of Neil” I liked it on the intellectual Niles from Frasier, but I’ve never heard it in real life. I like the sound and would love to meet a little Niles.

Norris                      French                        “Northerner” Chuck Norris. That was my first thought. I don’t know how long it will take before that’s not the first thought.

Odin                          Norwegian                “Inspiration” Odin was ruler of the Norse Gods. His name is associated with a Norse word meaning “excitation” but could also mean “mind or Poetry” He is associated with war, battle, victory, death, wisdom, magic, poetry, and prophecy.

Orion                       Greek mythology    Orion is a rising star, with both mythical and celestial overtones. The mythical Orion was slain by the Goddess Artemis, and then placed as one of the brightest constellations in the night sky by Zeus. Also, Mark Twain’s brothers name is Orion.

Paxton                     Latin                            “Peace town” OOOH. Love Paxton! It’s one of my guilty pleasure names. Paxton has a lovely peaceful feel to it but the ever popular -ton/-on ending. It’s rising fast on the popularity charts, but it’s still very distinctive. I just love the nickname Pax.

Percy                        French                       Percy is prissy to me. Percy maybe got popular in the first place because of the fame of poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.

Quincy                     French                        “Estate of the fifth son” Quincy is quirky in that it’s a Q name and most Q names tend to be quirky. I kind of like Quincy but it almost feels like the name for stodgy British professor. It wouldn’t if more people would use it! Love Quinn and Quince as a nickname.

Ramsey                   English                        “Low-lying land” I actually like Ramsey on someone else’s kid. I think it has an upper class feel, but is still accessible like Rory.

Roscoe                    Norse                           “deer forest” I think it’s fine, but too much of a nickname for me. It fits in nicely with Remy, Rory, Ray, and other short and spunky R names, with the added benefit of having the very normal Ross.

Russell                    French                         “fox colored” Russell has some of that western sounding charm, which is nice. Russ is a good nickname, but the name is dropping in popularity as far as I’m aware.

(Saint) Augustine    English                    “The exalted one” I don’t like it the most, but I don’t like it the least of the August names. However, Augustine is very sophisticated, but not too sophisticated for a child. You could call him August, Auggie, or Gus.

(Saint) David         Hebrew                       “Beloved” I like David, strong and soft at the same time. Iit has deep biblical roots as the Hebrew name of the Old Testament second king of Israel, who, as a boy, slew the giant Philistine Goliath with his slingshot, then grew up to become a wise and highly cultivated leader who enjoyed music and was a poet, later providing inspiration to such great sculptors as Michaelangelo and Donatello.

(Saint) Joseph      Hebrew                       “Jehovah increases” In the Old Testament, Joseph is the twelfth and favorite son of Jacob and Rachel, in the New Testament it is the name of the carpenter husband of the Virgin Mary, mother of Christ, and Saint Joseph is the protector of working men.

(Saint) Peter          Greek                           “Rock” A classic New Testament name, Peter has actually been losing popularity. That’s great if you want a less common classic. Not only is there Saint Peter, but there’s also some nice childhood associations like Peter Rabbit and Peter Pan.

Sullivan                   Irish                             “Black-eyed one” Sullivan is sort of jaunty sounding, bouncy and fun to say with the adorable nickname Sully.

Vernon                    English                        “Place of Alders” Once aristocratic British surname that now conjures up gas pumps, tractors, and hot blacktop, as does its nickname, Vern.

Winslow                  English                        “Friends hill” Winslow is upper crust to me, interesting with a cool nickname, Win, but a little pretentious sounding.

{March 20, 2012}   Illinois County Names


Name                        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.

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.

Cass                             Nickname                  Cass is a light, if not slightly feminine form of a lot of Cas- names such as Casper, Cassian, Cassander… I like it as a nickname, male or female.

Christian                   Greek                           “Follower of Christ” Christian is a little overly pious to me, but a lot of people see it as a direct statement of their faith. I’m of the opinion that your child isn’t a personal statement about yourself, but to each their own. It’s got Chris, which is nice.

Edgar                          German                      “Prosperous Spearman” I think Edgar sounds very old, and it makes me think of King Lear by Shakespeare and Edgar was a bad guy in there (commonly called Edgar the bastard). I only really like it because of Edgar Allan Poe. I think it could make a comeback with Edward and Edmund though.

Henry                         German                      “estate ruler”  Henry’s been hovering the the Top 100 for a while now, but it’s getting dangerously close to being in the Top 50. Henry has an old feel, but still seems accessible.  Henry has long been a royal name.

Kane                            Celtic                          “Man of the Eastern Sky” This name has a lot of things going on at once. It sounds like a soap opera name, sounds like the evil brother Cain from the Bible, and I really quite like the Hawaiian pronunciation KAH-neh.

Kendall                       English                       “Valley of the River Kent” The site I was just looking on has Kendall listed as a girl name but I disagree. Kendall is traditionally a male name and I don’t think it sounds very good for a girl.

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.

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.

Mason                         English                       “Worker in stone” Mason, along with other names ending in -on and occupational names, is getting hot right now. It’s sitting at #12 right now, and that’s definitely popular. I’ve heard it on an equal number of girls and boys.

Monroe                      Scottish                     “Mouth of the Roe river” Recently I’ve decided I like the name Monroe on a boy, probably due to an interesting character in a new TV show called Grimm. Monroe is a presidential name, but it’s starting to get popular for girls. I’d just like to say that I find this name handsome and not at all attractive for girls.

Morgan                      Welsh                          “circle, sea” Morgan, which is more female than male here in America, is still a strong boy name in Wales. I actually think I prefer Morgan on a boy.

Schuyler                    Dutch                         “Scholar” This is the traditional Dutch spelling on the name Skyler, still pronounced the same way, but I don’t think it will ever get as popular as the phonetic spelling. Still like Skye as a nickname though.

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.

Wayne                         English                      “Maker of wagons” When I hear Wayne, I think of John Wayne, but even the cowboy feel and the connection to John Wayne can’t make this seem fresh. It’s more of a dad or granddad name.


Name                         Origin                     Meaning

Cass                              Nickname                Cass is a light and spunky nickname for Cas- names such as Cassandra, Cassia, Casey… I like it as a nickname, male or female.

Morgan                       Welsh                         “circle, sea” Morgan, which is more female than male here in America, is still a strong boy name in Wales. I actually think I prefer Morgan on a boy, but I can see the appeal on girls.

Shelby                         English                      “Estate on the ledge” Shelby was trendy 10 years ago, but it’s fallen out of favor for other -y names like Kelby, Bailey, Hailey, Kayley…. I can’t see why it might not get used too.

Vermillion                 Color                         Vermillion is an interesting color choice that I think could make a great name, if a bit out there for some people’s taste. Millie, Mila, Vera are all lovely nicknames.

{March 16, 2012}   Idaho City Names — Girls

Name                       Origin                       Meaning

Avery                        English                       “Ruler of the Elves” Personally, I like it better on a boy. However, it’s being used more and more for girls. Probably it’s being used for girls because of it’s similarity to Ava and Ivory. You know, Ava would be a nice nickname.

Carey                         Irish                            “Dark, black” I find Carey dated, but with all the other -ey names getting attention for girls right now, Carey could probably make a comeback.

Carmen                     Spanish                      “Garden” This is interesting, but I don’t like it as much as Carmel or Cameron. Carey could be a good nickname for it though.

Hailey                        English                       “Hay Field” There are a dozen different variations of this name and it’s enormously popular. I’ve known a bunch of Hailey’s and several Bailey’s and Kailey’s, which are all part of the same phenomenon. Here’s all the variations just so you can see the many different ways there can be a dozen Hailey’s in one classroom: Haeley, Haelie, Haely, Haile, Hailea, Hailee, Hailie, Haily, Halea, Halee, Haleigh, Haley, Halie, Halle, Halleigh, Hallie,  Hally, Haylea, Haylee, Hayley, Haylie, Heyleigh

Kimberly                  English                       Kimberly was fairly popular in the 70s, but it’s fallen to the the #68 since then. With the popular -ly/-ley ending, I imagine it’ll get popular again. I prefer Kimber on it’s own, but love it as a nickname for Kimberly too.

Lenore                       Greek                          “Light” I actually really like Lenore. It makes me think of Edgar Allen Poe, which I love, and has a lovely but strong sound. Lenny or Nora would make great nicknames.

Ola                               Scandinavian          “Ancestor’s Relic” This is the feminine form of Olaf, and I think it has a sweet sound. I think it would take someone with the right heritage to wear this name, but it would be sweet.

Shelley                       English                      “Clearing on a bank” Makes me think of Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein. I’ve only met one girl named Shelley. She was a few years older than me and very smart, but a little stuck up. I think it’s pretty and could make a comeback with that -ey ending.

Viola                           Latin                          “Violet” I love Viola. It has a lot going for it too. It’s got the association with the musical instrument and Viola was a character in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.

{March 15, 2012}   Idaho City Names — Boys

Name                        Origin                       Meaning

Ashton                       English                       “Ash Tree Place” I think Ashton is pretty good. Ash is a great name and it’s got that popular ending. I’ve heard that it’s been used on girls sometimes, but I think it’s distinctly masculine.

Avery                         English                       “Ruler of the Elves” Love Avery for a boy. It’s being used more and more for girls, though, which is sad as I think it’s a great name for a boy. Probably it’s being used for girls because of it’s similarity to Ava and Ivory, but I wish more people would use it for boys.

Clifton                        English                       “Place on a cliff” Clifton is nice, but it seems a little upscale to me. Cliff is a great nickname though, and I think that grounds it.

Donnelly                   Irish                            “Dark, brave one” I kind of like it. I think, with time, it could really grow on me. Don and Donny are cute. I think it has the same spunk as Donovan.

Ellis                             Welsh                          “Benevolent” This is the Welsh form of Elijah and the Greek Elias and is fairly popular in Wales. A good note on Ellis; Ellis Bell was the male pseudonym of Emily Bronte. I like it. It has a masculine sound.

Emmett                     Hebrew/English     “True/Universal” Emmett is definitely on the rise. It’s got a laid back feel and it’s on the rise as a male competitor for Emily and Emma. Also, Emmett is a name from the Twilight books and those names are all getting more attention right now.

Kendrick                   English/Scottish    “Royal ruler, champion” It has a strong sound with some harsh consonant, but I think I like it. It’s very manly. It still gets a soft name like Kenny too.

Murphy                     Irish                            “Sea warrior” This is the most common family name in Ireland and a perfectly fine choice for a first name. It has a jaunty feel.

Murray                      Scottish                     “Settlement by the sea” I think Murray has the same sort of feel as Murphy, jaunty and fun. This one has a nickname though, Ray, which is a pretty grounded.

Parker                        English                       “Park keeper” Parker is one of the oldest used surname/occupational names. The problem with it is that I’ve been hearing a lot lately that it’s being used on girls. I can’t see the appeal. I think it sounds fine on a boy.

Paul                             Latin                           “Paul” Paul was a popular name in the Roman and Medieval times so that shows how ancient it is. It’s not very fashionable nowadays, but that doesn’t mean anything. It’s scarce right now, but that’s nice. There’s also Paul Revere as a name sake.

Rigby                          English                       “Ridge farm” Rigby is a British surname which might bring to mind the Beatles song “Eleanor Rigby”. I actually really like Rigby. I think it has a cool sound and would make a great first or middle name. The issue I can see with it though is it’s similarity to the word “rigid”.

Spencer                     English                       “house steward, dispenser of provisions” This is a nice name, but its one of those that always feels like it won’t grow up well. I don’t know why that is, but there you go. I do like that it sounds fun and friendly though.

Stanley                      English                       “Near the stoney meadow” Stanley really seems nerdy to me. I don’t think it’s ready for “Geek Chic” yet, but it would be a great middle name.

Thatcher                   English                       “Roof thatcher” Friendly and interesting. 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.

Wallace                     English/French       “A Welshman/Celt” It’s so far away from being popular that it could conceivably make a comeback. Wally is adorable.

{March 14, 2012}   Idaho County Names


Name                        Origin                           Meaning

Blaine                         Irish                                 “Slender, angular” Blaine is the surname of a seventh century Scottish saint but it tends to come off sounding a little soap-operaish. I, however, quite like Blaine. I think it sounds cool and adventurous, but still grounded enough to work on a grown man.

Clark                           English                            “scribe, secretary, cleric, scholar, clerk” When I think of Clark, I think of Gone With the Wind, Clark Gable, and Superman. Clark is pretty low on the popularity list so it’s familiar but still uncommon.

Elmore                       English                            “Moor with Elm Trees” Elmore is old. Old man sitting on the porch drinking his tea and watching the world go by. I don’t think it’s quite ready for a comeback yet.

Franklin                     English                           “Free landowner” 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.

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.


Name                        Origin                          Meaning

Ada                              German                         “Noble, Nobility” Ada has started to come back in the last few years. It sounds like the popular Ava fits in with the trend of short, classic names coming back into style. However, Ada is likely to get popular like Ava. I think it’s very pretty.

Cassia                         Greek                              “Cinnamon” Cassia is just gorgeous. It’s unusual but stylish. Cass and Cash names are getting popular for boys, so I think Cassia is likely to get noticed soon too. I like it pronounced CAH-shuh but I’ve also heard it pronounced CASS-ee-uh.

{March 12, 2012}   Hawaii City Names — Girls

Name                        Origin                           Meaning

Hana                           Hawaiian                        “Happiness; Flower; Work” This name can also be listed as Japanese, Slavic, Arabic, and Spanish. It’s pronounced hah-nuh. I think it’s pretty.

Hanalei                      Hawaiian                        Some sites I’ve found said this name means “Crescent Bay”. It would be pronounced hah-nuh-lee and I think it’s very pretty! I actually really like it and Hana or Lee are sweet nicknames.

Kealia                         Hawaiian/Irish            I’ve found some sites that list this as meaning “Beautiful or Slender” I think it has a lot of vowel sounds and rolls of the tongue easily, but it might be too much.

Koloa                          Hawaiian/Tongan      The sites I’ve found say it means “Wealth” I think it’s pretty and Loa is a gorgeous nickname. The issue is that it looksl ike Koala.

Lanai                           Hawaiian                       “Porch” That’s a weird meaning. I like this one a lot too. It’s very pretty and I think it could work really well.


{March 11, 2012}   Georgia City Names — Girls

Name                         Origin                       Meaning

Alma                            Latin                            “nurturing, soul” Alma has a sort of somber sound to it, but still pretty. It’s mostly heard in the term alma mater now. It’s fairly popular in Hispanic families and could just be ready to make a comeback along with other similar names Ella, Ada, Ava…

Augusta                      Latin                            “The exalted one” Augusta has a very mature, sophisticated sound that may sound a little too stuffy for most people. However, with August getting popular for boys, Augusta just might see a rise in popularity. Besides, I always thought Auggie would be cuter on a girl.

Blakely                        English                       “Dark woodland clearing” I’ve seen Blake on girls a lot and I really dislike it. However, Blakely is a compromise I’m willing to make. It doesn’t sound good on a boy, and the -ly ending makes it sound pretty feminine. I think it could work.

Blythe                          English                       “free spirit, happy, carefree” I like it okay. It has the feeling of a carefree little girl and is looking to be the next Brooke.

Camilla                        Latin                           “young ceremonial attendant” Camilla is an ancient Roman name. In the myth, Camilla was a swift-footed huntress so fast she could run over a field without bending a blade of grass.  Camy, Milla, and Millie make great nicknames.

Daisy                            Flower                       Daisy is a flower name bursting onto the seen. It’s fresher than Rose and very energetic. Daisy comes from the phrase “day’s eye,” because it opens its petals at daybreak. I always found Daisy a little too cutesy, but I think it’s nice.

Helen                           Greek                          “Bright, shining one” Helen has always been a name that evoked beauty (think Helen of Troy). It’s been out of favor for a while, but soon now, it might be coming back. It’s one of those unadorned classic people are starting to be attracted to again. It’s about time too! However, if you want something a little more frilly…

Helena                         Greek                          “Bright, shining one” Helena is the daintier version of Helen. Shakespeare used it in All’s Well that Ends Well and A Midsummer’s Night Dream. Historically, Helena was the mother of Constantine the Great and supposedly the daughter of Old King Cole. Helena Bonham Carter, a favorite actress in Tim Burton movies, might be able to give this name a boost. I like the pronunciation HEL-en-uh but other people pronounce it hel-AY-nuh and hel-LEEN.

Juliette                        French                       “youthful” This is the French version of Juliet. The difference is that Juliet is pronounced JOO-lee-et and Juliette is pronounced joo-lee-ET. I go back and forth on this one. I prefer Juliette with a short last name but Juliet with a longer last name.Either way, it’s a pretty name.

Lizella                             ????                           This just looks like a smoosh between Elizabeth and Ella. It’s not the worst smoosh I’ve ever encountered, so maybe it could work.

Marietta                      French                       I actually really like this one. It’s very pretty and still mature. Mary, Marie, Etta, Ettie are all good nicknames.

Rebecca                      Hebrew                      “Servant of God” I never liked this name until I met an adorable little girl who forced herself into my heart. I can’t think of this name without seeing her big blue eyes and brown ringlets. So now, I love it for the classic, timeless name it is. It represented beauty in the bible. Becca is adorable for a nickname.

Roberta                       English                       “Bright Fame” Roberta is an older name, but a perfect way to honor a Robert in the family. It also gives you the nickname Bobbie.

Savannah                    Spanish                      “Flat, tropical grass land” The only Savannah’s I’ve known were athletes, so this might be good for a sporty girl.

Shannon                      Irish                            “Old and Wise” I like it well enough, but personal things have ruined this name for me. However, I think a little girl named Shannon would be great.

Sharon                         Hebrew                      “A Plain” It’s definitely dated. I think it’s not quite ready for a comeback, but I think the nickname Share is great.

Shiloh                           Hebrew                      “He who is to be sent” Haunting biblical and Civil War place-name; now unisex — especially after the mega-high-profile Brangelina couple picked it for their daughter. I like Shiloh better on a boy, but have come to accept that it’s been used more on girls. Shy is just as cute for a girl.

Sylvania                      Latin                            “Of the forest” I like it, but it’s a little too frilly for my taste. However, there are some people who think Sylvia isn’t dainty enough. Sylvania could fix that. I think it’s gorgeous and could work on the right girl. Sylvie, Sylvia, Vanie, Vania, Lia, and Via could all work as nicknames.

{March 11, 2012}   Georgia City Names — Boys

Name                       Origin                          Meaning

Adrian                       Latin                              “Man of Adria” I actually really like Adrian. It’s in the 50s on the popularity list, so it has been slowly making its way to the top. Adrian was the name of a pope and several saints, so it has that going for it.

Ambrose                  Latin                              “Immortal one” I really want to like Ambrose, but I don’t like it for a first name. I do think it has a lovely sound and a slightly upper class feel to it. It comes from the same Greek root as ‘ambrosia’, the food of the gods, literally ‘belonging to the immortals.’ That makes me like it a bit more, as I love Greek things. St. Ambrose was also a doctor of the early Christian church. It also belonged to one of the four great Latin teachers of Christianity, who also developed the use of music in church.

Baxley                       English                          “Baker’s Meadow” I sort of like this. It seems like a more masculine version of Bailey. Since Bailey’s been taken by the girls, why not come up with a new version. It even has the cool nickname Bax.

Byron                        English                          “Barn for Cows” For centuries, this name was connected to Lord Byron, the poet, which gave it a sort of romantic feel. Faulkner used it as a character name in 2 of his novels and it’s seen as a name on Arrested Development. I like it much more than Brian, that’s for sure.

Chauncey                Latin                               “Chancellor” It sounds sort of like it wants to be upper class, but can’t manage it. I sort like it in the same way I like the Irish name Rory. It’s fun and has a cool sound.

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!

Colton                       English                          “From the coal or dark town” Colton is a one of my favorite cowboy names and it has that trendy-ton/-on ending. I think it has a sort of rugged feel to it and Colt is a nice nickname.

Dalton                       English                          “Settlement in the valley” It’s another nice cowboyish name with the -ton ending. I don’t like it as much as Colton, but it’s still pretty nice.

Darien                       Greek                             “Gift” Darien is a variation of Darian. I really like it. The -on/-en/-an ending is super popular right now and Darius (the name Darien comes from)  is an old name, which seems popular right now. Darien combines the current trends of “old names becoming new again” with the popular ending to make it super appealing. I love the sound and the nickname Dare is awesome.

Dexter                       Latin                              “Dyer, right handed” Dexter, with that popular X, has a lot of appeal right now. To me, Dexter is one of those names with “Geek Chic” and I really love it! Dex is a pretty cool nickname too.

Edison                       English                          “son of Edward” I love the way it sounds and of course there’s the connection to the inventor Thomas Edison. I think it would be an interesting way to get to the traditional Ed- beginning and the nickname Eddy.

Emerson                   German                        “son of Emery” When used as a boys name, I immediately think of Ralph Waldo Emerson. I definitely prefer this name on a boy, but be aware, it’s getting sort of popular for girls.

Grayson                    English                         “Son of the Bailiff” Grayson is getting popular right along with Jackson and other names ending in -son. I like it more than the other -son names, for sure. I prefer the spelling Greyson and the nickname Gray/Grey is nice. Be aware, some parents are using it on girls as a unisex version of Grace, but I don’t think it’s going to go far there.

Griffin                        Welsh                            “Strong lord” I love Griffin and would use it on a baby if I could find a way to. Griffin is one of the more popular Welsh surnames, and it’s also a mythological creature, half eagle, half lion. I would use it in full, but Griff and Finn are nice nicknames.

Homer                      Greek                             “Security, Pledge” Homer has gone from being the name of a wonderful ancient Greek scribe to the name of Bart Simpson’s idiotic dad. It’s also been the pick of such celebrities as Richard Gere, Bill Murray, Anne Heche, and Matt Groening, Simpson’s creator, whose father and sons name is Homer. Because of the epic scope of The Odyssey and The Iliad, the term ‘homeric’implies work on an enormous scale, while ‘homeric laughter’ references the unrestrained laughter of the Greek gods. With all this going for it, Homer might just make a comeback.

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!

Monroe                    Scottish                        “Mouth of the Roe river” Recently I’ve decided I like the name Monroe on a boy, probably due to an interesting character in a new TV show called Grimm. Monroe is a presidential name, but it’s starting to get popular for girls. I’d just like to say that I find this name handsome and not at all attractive for girls.

Nelson                      English                          “Son of Neil” Nelson is a little bit dated, but sometimes still used to honor Nelson Mandela. Nelson mostly makes me think of the bully from the Simpson’s. The one that always yells “Ha Ha!” I think it could manage a comeback though.

Oliver                        Latin                              “Olive tree” Oliver is number 1 in England right now for the second year in a row, and it’s reached number 88 here. Why? It’s energetic and good natured and stylish all at once. Not to mention that the olive tree is a symbol for peace. I really like it and Ollie is a cute nickname for a child.

Rex                             Latin                              “King” Love Rex. It’s sleek and attractive and similar to the ever popular Max. It fits right in with other X names that are getting attention such as Max, Pax, Jax, Lux…Love it.

Rupert                       German                        “Bright Fame” I find Rupert charming but a little…eh. It has always been sort of popular in Britain but it never really peaked here. I think if I met a little Rupert, I might like it better.

Shiloh                        Hebrew                         “he who is to be sent” Haunting biblical and Civil War place-name; now unisex — especially after the mega-high-profile Brangelina couple picked it for their daughter. I love this name on a boy and Shy is a great nickname.

Sylvester                  Latin                              “From the forest” I really wish this name would shake off its image of a cartoon cat. It was the name of 3 popes and Sylvester Stallone makes it a little more wearable, but I find it unlikely anyone will use it right now. Shame, it’s such a nice name.

Tate                            English from Norse      “Cheerful” I actually really like Tate as far as one-syllable names go. It’s got a lively sound and a nice meaning.

Tucker                       English                          “Fabric pleater” Tucker has a lot more spunk than many of the other -er names out there right now (Parker, Walker, etc). I also love the nickname Tuck.

Weston                      English                          “From the Western town” I like Weston a bit, but it feel almost like a stereotypical cowboy name. the best part, in my opinion, is the nickname West.

Zebulon                       Hebrew                       “To give honor to” An old testament name. I’ve actually known a Zebulon, he was a football player and very popular. He went by Zeb. I think it could work on the right boy.

{March 10, 2012}   Georgia County Names

There are really only boys names for this states counties.

Name                        Origin                          Meaning

Bryan                          Irish                               “Strong, Virtuous, and Honorable” Brian is one of the most popular of the Irish names, and this spelling is interesting and slightly more popular than the original. To me though, the Y just makes it look trendy.

Cherokee                   Native American      Cherokee seems like it’s a little too feminine, but I happen to know a very sporty boy who sports this name, and I think it works perfectly fine on him!

Clarke                         English                          “Scribe,scholar” Clarke has been out of popularity for a while now, but it’s starting to get more and more popular with parent’s seeking a short, strong name. Variation is Clark.

Clay                             English                          Clay is a short, southern charm kind of name. It could make a comeback, but I foresee it being a short from of Clayton and Clayborne for a long time yet.

Clayton                      English                          “Place with good clay” It almost fits in with the Aiden/Jaden etc trend but is much more traditional. I think of it as more of a western name.

Dawson                      Welsh                            “Son of David” I really like Dawson. It feels soft, but still good for a grown man. Despite the popular -son ending, I think this name makes an excellent choice.

Douglas                      Scottish                        “Black water” The surname of a powerful Scottish Clan. This name seems very dated, as the only ones I know are over 40, but maybe it’ll start making a comeback. It’s sitting in the 400s now, so there does seem to be a chance.

Franklin                     English                          “Free landowner” 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.

Gordon                       Scottish                        “Great Hill” Originally a surname, it was used in honor of 19th century general Charles George Gordon, killed defending the city of Khartoum. I immediately think of Gordon Ramsey, the celebrated Scottish Chef.

Harris                          English                         “Son of Harry” Harris is nice. I think it has a manish sound but it isn’t over the top. It isn’t too surnamey like Harrison but it’s newer than Harry.

Henry                          German                        “Estate Ruler” Henry is rapidly gaining in popularity. I like Henry well enough. It has a great sound and it’s soft but still a classic boys name. My problem with it is more that it stills seems old to me.

Irwin                            English                         “Boar Friend” It’s okay, but it mostly reminds me of the late Steve Irwin, the Australian who was very fond of poking dangerous animals with sticks. Might be a nice name for a boy you hope to be adventurous, but it does have a nerdy sort of feel.

Jackson                       English                         “Son of Jack” Jackson is getting mega popular. I’ve known several under the age of 10 and I can’t see it losing steam in the near future. The best part about this name is the nickname Jack or Jacks.

Jasper                          Persian                         “bringer of treasure” Distinct and masculine, Jasper is a type of Quartz, and is one of the only gem names for boys. The only real problem with it is it’s strong connection to Twilight. Because of that, it might get very popular. Jasper was also thought to be the name of one of the 3 wise men.

Mitchell                       English                         “Who is like God?” Mitchell has gone up and down in popularity. Sometimes people like it, sometimes they don’t. Personally, I’d like to meet a little Mitchell instead of another Michael. Mitch is nice too.

Pierce                           English                         “Son of Piers” Pierce is one of those names that seems to manly for me. Pierce, as in to pierce something? It feels the same as Tripp or Jett, but I know most people will see it as more of an roughly handsome name.

Randolph                    English                         “Shield Wolf” I actually quite like this, much more than Randell in any case. Randy is cute for a kid and Dolph is neat for a grown man.

Thomas                        Aramaic                      “Twin” Thomas is still one of the most popular and well loved classic boys names, and a fairly common surname too. It’s the name of several saints and apostles. There’s Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Edison. Thomas came about because there were too many apostles named Judas so Jesus renamed one Thomas to distinguish him from Judas Iscariot.

Wayne                          English                         “Maker of Wagons” Because of John Wayne, this name feels like a cowboy name to me. However, it’s not one of the cool cowboy names anymore, more like a dad name.

et cetera