Get to know Alexia Mae of Names Daily

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Alexia Mae started the first Instagram name account @NamesDaily and is now delighting us with her new NamesDaily blog. She is witty, innovative, and a dear friend of mine. I thought it would be fun to pick Alexia’s brain on her life as a fellow name enthusiast.

Tell us a little bit about your love of names and your journey as a name enthusiast.

I love names. They’re like poetry, with their sounds and their meanings and their history. How they’re written down and spoken. How they’re passed along, often with a story that stirs the heart. You can’t tell me that names like Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Adele Laurie Blue Adkins, Charlotte Elizabeth Diana, Shania Twain, don’t sound rhythmic.

I started out watching Anastasia Ruby’s videos which spurred me to make my own blog, and my own YouTube. I’ve been doing this for five years now.

What are your hopes and dreams for Names Daily?

I’m blessed to have been at the very start of the name explosion on Instagram. I started out as the only one, and now I look around and there are name account gems all around me. On there is Meagan, who’s account is as sweet and hopeful and lovely as her own personality.

I love being in the community mentality that Instagram fosters. Meeting people from all over the world and getting to know them is amazing. I’ve never seen another social media platform that is the same. It’s been an open door to get to be a part of some of the most exciting times of people’s lives. @NamesDaily has been a passport to blessings, and I don’t take it for granted. My hope and dream for @NamesDaily, for both my blog and my Instagram, is to keep me traveling around the world on the creative platform that is names.

How has being a “Namer” changed/shaped your life?

I’ve had an ear for names since kindergarten. I’ve always been drawn to the ones that stand out, and being in the name community the last five years has only emboldened that. I now am more quick to compliment people, or ask questions. Being official has given me the avenue for people (and myself) to take my name interest seriously.

As a Mom, what name advice would you give expecting parents?

Turn off the noise. It’s one thing to hear what people tell you, whether negatively or positively, but use it like the radio. At the end of the day, turn it off and choose the name you and your partner love. This baby is a part of you. Made by only you. And isn’t that wonderful? Don’t let anyone steal that wonder and sparkle from you. You know what your heart is speaking. Listen to that. You’ll regret it if you don’t. (Now stop listening to me! 😂)

I love a good rename game, so what would you rename yourself using your son’s initials?

Aaawww, my Judah David. I’d rename myself Juniper Della!

Be sure to check out NamesDaily on Instagram and her Blog!

Lovely Names Ending in L

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There’s something feminine and sweet about the letter L.  Lily, Lillian, Layla, and Leah are all currently ranked in the Top 50 for girls.  If you love the luring L sound you may consider one of these great names ending in the letter L.

Nature Names

Coral
A great alternative to the rapidly rising Cora, Coral was only used as a first name by 199 baby girls last year. Disney fans will also recognize Coral as the name of Nemo’s Mom in Finding Nemo.

Hazel
People are really enjoying the vintage vibe of this color and plant name. Hazel currently ranks at Number 63, the highest it has ranked since the late 1920s.

Laurel
A lovely tree name, Laurel is a great way to honor a Laura, Lauren, or even a Laurence.  Laurel currently ranks at Number 772.

Gem Names

Beryl
Beryl peaked in popularity in 1920, falling out of the Top 1,000 in the late 1950s.  Last year this green gemstone name was only used by 9 little girls.

Crystal
Originally a male name, Crystal peaked for girls in the early 1980s.  Today Crystal is Number 550, right in the middle of the charts for popularity.

Jewel
A pretty, sweet, one-syllable name, Jewel is a lovely and fresh way to honor someone with a name beginning in Ju- (Julia, Julian, Juliet, etc..)  Jewel is currently Number 887.

Opal
The birthstone of October, Opal has a strong vintage vibe and hasn’t been in the Top 1,000 since 1960.  Only 229 baby girls were named Opal last year.  Could Opal be the next Ruby?

Pearl
This little vintage name is making a comeback.  Currently ranked at 628, Pearl jumped 331 spots in the last 5 years. Pearl is one of June’s birthstones.

Celebrity Names

Ariel
Modern Family actress Ariel Winter is one of the bearers of this name.  Ariel may also remind you of Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Disney’s Ariel gave this name a huge boost in the early 1990s.  Today Ariel ranks at Number 137

Avril
Singer Avril Lavigne is probably the first person who comes to mind when you hear the name Avril.  A French variation of April, Avril was only used by 129 little girls last year.

Bristol
Bristol Palin, spokesperson and daughter of politician Sarah Palin, helped bring this name to the public eye.  Bristol first entered the Top 1,000 in 2009 and currently ranks at Number 447.

Meryl
Legendary actress Meryl Streep was born Mary Louise Streep. Olympic Ice dancer Meryl Davis also shares this iconic name. Meryl was only given to 50 girls last year.

Traditional Names

You may recognize some of these names from your family tree:

Abigail
Annabel
April
Carol
Ethel
Gail
Rachel

Lovely International Choices

These names would be a great way to honor your heritage and are easily usable in the US:

Amabel
Gretel
Isobel
Liesl
Marisol
Raquel
Soleil

A few more great Names to Consider

These lovely names all rank below 500 in popularity:

Chanel
Mabel
Mehetabel
Muriel
Sybil
Teal
Xochitl

What are your favorite names ending in L?

The Candidate’s Kids & Grandkids

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The United States Presidential election is just around the corner and the race to the White House is heating up. Today let’s put politics aside and look at the names of the two main candidate’s children and grandchildren. Cast your vote for your favorite name from this list!

The Clinton’s

Hillary
Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton is the nominee of the Democratic Party for President of the United States. Hillary comes from the ancient Latin name Hilaris meaning cheerful.  Traditionally a male name spelled Hilary, Hillary took off for girls in the early 1960s.  Hillary peaked in 1992, but fell out of the Top 1,000 in 2009.  You may also associate Hillary with actors Hilary Duff and Hilary Swank.

Chelsea
Chelsea Victoria Clinton is the only child of Hillary Clinton and former US President Bill Clinton. Chelsea is and Old English name as well as a New York and London place name meaning landing place for chalk. Chelsea just entered the Top 1,000 in 1969, peaking in the early 1990s.  Though Chelsea has declined in popularity recently, it is still readily used, currently ranked at Number 305.

Charlotte
Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky is Hillary Clinton’s oldest grandchild. Charlotte is definitely a name on the rise, currently ranked at Number 9.  A French feminine diminutive of Charles, meaning free man, Charlotte peaked in popularity last year.  A timeless name with multiple sweet nicknames, from Charlie to Lottie to Carly, Charlotte is sure to continue to rise in popularity.

Aidan
Aidan Clinton Mezvinsky was just born in June 2016. Aidan is another popular name choice. Aidan is an anglicized Irish name meaning little and fiery.  This spelling of Aidan ranks and number 185, though if you add up all the spellings of Aidan it’s easily one of the most popular names right now. Charlotte and Aidan are both characters from the popular TV series Sex In The City, which makes me wonder if Mom Chelsea is a fan of the show.

The Trump’s

Donald
Donald John Trump is the Republican Party nominee for President of the United States. Donald is a Gaelic name which fittingly for a politician means chief or ruler.  Donald was a Top 10 name from 1923 to 1942, ranked at Number 11 in 1946, the year Trump was born.  Currently Number 441, Donald is a family name passed down by many men, including Donald Trump who used it for his oldest child, son Donald John Trump Jr.  “Don.” Donald Trump Jr continued the tradition, passing his name to his second born and eldest son, Donald John Trump III.

Kai
Kai Madison Trump is Donald Trump’s oldest grandchild.  Kai is the daughter of Donald Trump Jr. and Vanessa Haydon. Kai is a rising unisex name with multiple meanings used multiple places worldwide.  The Hawaiian meaning of Kai is sea.  Kai is currently Number 895 for girls and 145 for boys in popularity and has steadily risen for both sexes in recent years.

Tristan
Tristan Milos Trump is Donald Trump Jr’s third child and second son, born two years after older brother Donald John III. Tristan is a handsome Celtic name that unfortunately means sorrowful.  Modern parents have looked past the given meaning and are definitely taking notice of Tristan which currently ranks at Number 101.  Tristan may remind you of the legendary knight from the story Tristan and Isolde.

Spencer
Spencer Frederick Trump is Donald Trump Jr’s fourth child and third son. Spencer is an English surname and occupational name meaning dispenser for provisions. Spencer has ranked in the 200’s the last several years, currently at Number 252, making it familiar but not extremely popular.  Spencer has a distinguished sound and still carries the cool Spencer Tracy association.

Chloe
Chloe Sophia Trump is the youngest of Donald Trump Jr. and Vanessa Haydon’s five children. Chloe peaked in 2010 when it was the Number 9 name.  Today Chloe is still very loved and used coming in at Number 17.  A lovely Greek name meaning young green shoot, it’s very fitting for a baby born in the spring. Chloe spelled Khloe, like TV personality Khloe Kardashian, comes in at Number 100.

Ivanka
Ivanka Marie Trump is Donald Trump’s second child and eldest daughter. Ivanka is a diminutive of Ivana, which also happens to be her mother’s name and stems from Ivan meaning God is Gracious.  A rarely used name in the United States, Ivanka has become a name easily identifiable with Ivanka Trump.

Arabella
Arabella Rose Kushner is the eldest daughter of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. Arabella is a beautiful Latin name meaning yielding to prayer. Arabella just entered the Top 1,000 in 2005 and is currently Number 194 in popularity.  Arabella makes for a less popular alternative to Isabella which ranks at Number 5. TV’s Doctor Oz also has a daughter named Arabella.

Joseph
Joseph Frederick Kushner is the second son of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. Joseph is a timeless Hebrew name meaning Jehovah increases. Currently Ranked at Number 21, Joseph has never dipped below spot Number 22 in popularity. In the Old Testament Joseph was the beloved eleventh son of Jacob.

Theodore
Theodore James Kushner was just born this May.  He’s the youngest of Trump’s grandchildren and the second son of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. Theodore is a handsome Greek name meaning gift of God.  Currently ranked at Number 99, Theodore is climbing the charts, up 200 spots in the last 10 years. Theodore has a very distinguished sound and comes with the adorable nickname options Ted, Teddy, and Theo.

Eric
Eric Frederick Trump is Donald Trump’s third child and second son. Eric comes from an Old Norse name meaning eternal ruler. Eric peaked in 1976 at Number 13.  Eric gained popularity in the mid-nineteenth century as it was the name of a popular Viking explorer, Erik the Red, and a name in a popular children’s book, Eric.

Tiffany
Tiffany Ariana Trump is Donald Trump’s fourth child and second daughter. Tiffany is derived from the Greek name Theophania, meaning God’s appearance. Tiffany was all the rage in the late 1980’s peaking at Number 13 in 1988. Tiffany majorly dropped in popularity in the late 1990s and currently ranks at Number 494.  Tiffany may also remind you of the popular jewelry company Tiffany & Co.

Barron
Barron William is Donald Trump’s fifth and youngest child. Barron is a variant of the word name Baron, referring to a rank in British nobility. Baron was briefly in the Top 1,000 from the mid-1950s to the early 1970s, peaking in 1966 at Number 750. You may also recognize Barron as the name of businessman William Barren Hilton “Barron.”

Which of these names gets your vote?

Wholesome Names for Girls

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Sugar and spice and everything nice, that’s what these names are made of.  From Bonnie to Nora, these names are perfect for sweet little girls with pigtails that make daisy chains on warm summer days.

Sadie
Sadie is a sweet name full of old-timey charm.  It may surprise you to know that Sadie actually peaked in 2014 when it reached spot Number 46.  Sadie is still high ranking, currently coming in at Number 52.  Sadie began as a nickname for Sarah, but now outranks Sarah by 6 spots. The Beatles have a song called Sexy Sadie and Barbra Streisand sang “Sadie, Sadie” in Funny Girl.

Rosemary
Rosemary is a great nature name for the rosemary plant.  Rosemary gets its name from the Latin ros marinus which means the dew of the sea.  One of the most recognizable namesakes is singer and actress Rosemary Clooney. Rosemary peaked in 1946 and currently ranks at Number 518.  A great way to honor a Rose or a Mary, Rosemary also lends itself to the wholesome nicknames Rosie and Romy.

Georgia
Georgia peaked in 1900, but its climbing the charts, up almost 100 spots in the last 5 years.  Georgia is a feminine form of Georgia meaning farmer and currently ranks at Number 230. Harry Connick Jr., Zac Brown, Mick Jagger, and Kenan Thompson are just a few of the many celebrities with daughters named Georgia.  Other feminine forms of George include Georgina, Georgiana, Georgine, and Georgette.

Molly
Molly began as a diminutive of Mary, but is now commonly used as a standalone name, currently ranked at Number 144. Molly is often thought of as an Irish name and is more popular in Ireland where it ranks at Number 29. The famous song Molly Malone is set in Dublin, Ireland.  Molly may also remind you of 80s teen movie star Molly Ringwald.

Annabelle
Annabelle may come from the name Amabel meaning lovable or be a name smush of Anna and Belle.  Annabelle entered the Top 100 for the first time in 2012 and is currently ranked at spot Number 92. Annabelle had been steadily rising in the charts but dropped last year after the release of the horror film Annabelle about a possessed doll. The spelling Annabel is a lot less popular at Number 621.

Bonnie
Bonnie is a Scottish word name meaning pretty. Bonnie peaked in in the 1940s and 50s following the release of Gone With the Wind in which Scarlett and Rhett’s daughter is affectionately nicknamed Bonnie. Currently Number 871, Bonnie is still a well-loved character name.  You may recognize the name Bonnie from the TV series How to Get Away with Murder, The Walking Dead, and The Vampire Diaries.

Nora
Nora is derived from the name Honora and may mean light or honor. Nora peaked in popularity last year reaching spot Number 41. Two well-known namesakes are writer Nora Ephron and musician Norah Jones.  The spelling Norah is just behind Nora, ranking at Number 159 and also peaking last year.  Perhaps Nora and Norah are the next generations Sara and Sarah.

Hannah
Hannah  gets extra cool points for being a palindrome name. A Hebrew name meaning grace, Hannah was a Top 10 name from 1995-2007.  Today Hannah is Number 28 in popularity. In the Old Testament Hannah is the mother of the prophet Samuel.  Actor Elijah Wood has a younger sister named Hannah.

Caroline
We can’t talk about wholesome names without mentioning sweet Caroline. Neil Diamond’s song Sweet Caroline, inspired by Caroline Kennedy, was released in 1969.  Currently ranked at Number 62, Caroline is more popular now than ever. Caroline is a feminine form of Charles meaning free man.  Caroline is the name of the Princess of Monaco as well as former First Lady Caroline Harrison.

What are your favorite wholesome names for girls?

Going for Gold

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The 2016 U.S. Women’s Olympic Gymnastics team was announced late Sunday evening.  Since childhood I’ve been fascinated with the mental and physical strength of these remarkable athletes. Let’s look at the names of the talented young women that will represent the U.S. in Rio de Janeiro this summer.

The U.S. Women’s Olympic Team

Simone Bilessimone
Simone Biles is the reigning three-time world all-around champion.  Biles is dynamic to watch and is favored to win the individual all-around gold medal.  Simone is a French feminine form of the name Simon meaning he has heard. Simone peaked in popularity in 1988 and has steadily declined ever since. Currently ranked at Number 821, I’m curious to see if Biles’ presence will help revive the name Simone. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson used the name Simone Alexandra for his daughter born in 2001.

Gabby Douglasgabbyd
Gabrielle Christina Victoria “Gabby” Douglas made Olympic history in 2012 as the first African American woman to become the individual all-around champion.  Gabrielle is a French feminine form of the name Gabriel meaning God is my strength. Renowned designer Coco Chanel’s given name was Gabrielle. Gabrielle peaked in the late 1990s climbing up to spot Number 46 and today ranks at Number 205. Gabriella has soared in recent years, coming in ahead of Gabrielle at Number 54.

Aly Raismanalyrais
Alexandra Rose “Aly” Raisman was the captain of the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics team in the 2012 Summer Olympics.  Alexandra is a Greek feminine form of the name Alexander, meaning defender of man. Alexandra was in the Top 100 from 1984 to 2014 and just fell to Number 101 last year.  Alexandra has many attractive nicknames including Aly, Alex, Alexa, Alexia, Andy, Lex, and Lexi. Actors Sean Astin and Daniel Baldwin each have daughters named Alexandra.

Madison Kocianmadisonc
Madison Taylor Kocian was the 2015 world champion on the uneven bars. Madison is an English surname meaning son of Maud. Madison first entered the Top 1,000 in 1985 following the release of film Splash, in which the main character is named Madison.  A Top 10 name from 1997 to 2014, Madison just fell out of the Top 10, currently ranked at Number 11.  Musician Melanie Brown and actor Johnny Knoxville each have daughters named Madison.

Laurie Hernandezlaurieh
Lauren “Laurie” Hernandez preformed two nights of nearly-flawless beam routines during the Olympic trials. Lauren was the 11th most popular girls name in 2000 when Laurie Hernandez was born.  Today Lauren ranks at Number 119. Lauren is a variation of Laura meaning bay laurel. Lauren first entered the charts in 1945, the year after Lauren Becall’s first film appearance.

The Replacement Gymnasts

MyKayla Skinnermykayla
Mykayla Brooke “Mikki” Skinner competed in the 2014 World Championships, helping the U.S. team win a gold medal. Mykayla is one of the many spelling variations of Michaela, meaning who is like the Lord. Mykayla is not currently ranked however, Makayla, Mikaela, Mikayla and Michaela are all in the Top 1,000. Last year 42 baby girls were given the name Mykayla with this spelling.

Ragan Smithragan
Ragan Elisabeth Smith is one of the youngest members of the team and is expected to compete again in the 2020 Tokoyo Olympics. Ragan is a spelling variation of the Irish Reagan, meaning little king. While Ragan is not in the Top 1,000, Reagan is currently Number 99 and rising in the charts. The name Reagan may also remind you of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

Ashton Locklearashtons
Ashton Locklear is the 2014 US Champion on the uneven bars. Ashton is currently Number 141 for boys and isn’t in the Top 1,000 for girls. An English name meaning ash tree hill, 189 girls were named Ashton last year. Ashton is often associated with actor Ashton Kutcher.

Which of these athletes’ names do you enjoy?

Surf’s Up – Beachy Baby Names

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Summer is officially here! Warmer weather lends itself to some pretty cool names.  Check out these beachy names for your little dude or dudette!

Ripley
A sweet surfer name that works on a boy or a girl, Ripley may remind beach-lovin’ parents of rippling waves. Ripley is an Old English surname meaning strip clearing. A cool alternative to the much more popular Riley, Ripley was only used by 97 little girls and 29 little boys last year.

Marina
Marina is a beautiful, melodic choice for your little water baby. A Latin name meaning from the sea, Marina is currently Number 656 in popularity. Former Friends star Matt LeBlanc gave his daughter the enchanting name Marina Pearl.

Sailor
Sailor is an occupational nautical name that may take off in the years to come. In the last year Bristol Palin used the name Sailor Grace for her daughter and Liv Tyler selected Sailor Gene for her son.  Kristin Cavallari chose the alternative spelling Saylor for her daughter, Saylor James, who was also born last year.  There were 234 girls and 42 boys named Sailor last year. Saylor is actually more popular, ranking at Number 608 for girls.

Coral
In addition to being a pretty summertime color, coral is a word name for underwater skeletal deposits which often form beautiful reefs. You may recognize Coral as the name of Nemo’s Mom in Finding Nemo. Last year 199 baby girls were given the first name Coral.

Morgan
Morgan is derived from a Welsh name meaning sea and circle, the perfect meaning for a little beach babe.  Traditionally a male name, Morgan currently ranks at Number 674 for boys and 120 for girls. Morgan le Fay was a powerful enchantress in Arthurian legend.

Reef
Reef not only has a cool sound, it’s also a great beach baby name for a bar of rock, sand, or coral beneath the water. Only 51 little boys were given this aquatic name last year. Reef is also the name of a popular sandal and clothing company that sells beach gear and active wear.

Ocean
If you’re a fan of the water and of word names, why not consider Ocean? A cool sound that brings to mind a lovely image, Ocean can easily work on either sex.  Last year 80 boys and 65 girls were given the first name Ocean. Other great similar names include Oceanus, Oceana, and Oceane.

Waverly
Waverly is one of my favorite names to say with its easy-breezy flow. Waverly has the word wave in it and has a smooth, laid-back sound. An English surname, Waverly means meadow of quivering aspens. Waverly hasn’t broken into the Top 1,000 yet. It was used by 120 girls and 6 boys last year.

Kai
Kai is a short and sweet name that is on the rise.  Kai not only has a cool sound, it’s also a name used in many cultures.  The Hawaiian meaning of Kai is sea, perfect for a sweet little swimmer.  Kai is currently Number 145 for boys and Number 895 for girls.

Finn
Finn is a great choice for your little fishy. Finn is derived from an Irish name meaning white or fair. Fin is currently Number 209 for boys. Several celebrities including Tori Spelling and Christy Turlington have used the name Finn for their sons.

Dylan
Dylan is a popular Welsh name meaning tide, flow, or son of the wave. A less obvious beach baby name, Dylan currently ranks at Number 27 for boys and Number 397 for girls. Dylan has many great namesakes including writer Dylan Thomas and singer-songwriter Bob Dylan (born Robert Zimmerman).

Cove
If you’re looking for a smooth, underused nature name, than Cove may be it. A cove is a small bay or coastal inlet.  Only 53 little boys and 5 little girls were named Cove last year.  I can definitely picture this name on a little sun-kissed tike.

What are your favorite beachy baby names?

Best Names for Boys from the bottom of the charts

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Last week we explored some gorgeous girl’s names ranging between 900 and 1,000 in the charts. This week let’s find some inspiring choices for the fellas at the bottom of the Social Security Administration’s Top 1,000 chart.

Thatcher
Thatcher is an English surname and occupational name meaning a roof thatcher. Thatcher just entered the US Top 1,000 in 2013 and currently ranks at Number 902. Thatcher makes for a fresh choice and alternative to similar sounding occupational surnames like Carter or Sawyer. Thatcher always reminds me of Becky Thatcher, the leading lady in Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

Grey
Any fans of Grey’s Anatomy out there? Grey is a smooth color name that just entered the Top 1,000 in 2013.  Currently Number 916, Grey is one of my favorite middle names, and sounds good with many longer first names. Grey is also being used as a nickname for Greyson, which currently ranks at Number 111.

Keenan
Keenan may remind you of comedians Keenan Ivory Wayans and Kenan Thompson. An Irish name meaning ancient, Keenan currently ranks at Number 931. Keenan peaked in 1997 when it reached Number 354, but has steadily declined every year since.

Boone
Boone first entered the Top 1,000 last year and is currently the highest it has ever ranked at Number 940. Boone is an English surname derived from a French name meaning a blessing.  Boone has a cool cowboy feel and may conjure up images of frontiersman Daniel Boone.

Cairo
Cairo gets double cool points for being a place name and ending in the smooth letter o. Cairo is the capital city of Egypt and means victorious in Arabic.  Cairo first entered the Top 1,000 last year, when it peaked at Number 941.

Seamus
There are many high-ranking handsome Irish names.  If you’d love to honor your Irish heritage, but want something a bit less used, you may consider Seamus.  Seamus is an Irish form of James meaning supplanter that currently ranks at Number 948. Seamus is the name of a Pink Floyd song and a character from Harry Potter.

Anton
Anton is a German and Scandinavian form of Anthony, meaning priceless.  Anton is Number 960, much less popular than Antony at Number 25. Anton may remind you of Olympian Apolo Anton Ohno or writer Anton Chekhov.

Wilder
People are wild about Wilder! Wilder was one of the fastest rising names last year, jumping 360 spots and making its debut in the Top 1,000 at Number 964.  Wilder is a surname and a word name that could be associated with the lovable namesakes Laura Ingalls Wilder or Gene Wilder.

Truman
Truman is an English surname meaning loyal or trusty man.  Truman peaked in 1945, the year Harry S. Truman, the 33rd US President took term.  Currently Number 981 in popularity, Truman has been declining in popularity.  The hip nickname True may make Truman feel fresh to modern parents.

Gilbert
My love of the name Gilbert stems from my love of the character Gilbert Blythe in Lucy Maud Montgomery’s beloved Anne of Green Gables book series. Gilbert is a German name meaning shining pledged, currently ranked at Number 983. Gilbert peaked in 1930, but has dropped several spots in recent years.

What are your favorite names ranking from 900 to 1,000?