Tag Archives: name of the week

Names of the Week – Shepherd & Noelle


This weeks names are: Shepherd & Noelle

Happy Hanukkah & Merry almost Christmas!
Here are two names inspired by Christmas holiday.

Shepherd – A surname and an occupational name that relates to “one that rears and tends to sheep”.  Shepherd would make for a cool choice for a baby born on or around Christmas.  Without an obvious tie to the holiday, the term shepherd, and the phrase “the Lord is my shepherd” are often used in Christianity.  The name Shepherd works for any faith or season and lends itself to the nickname, “Shep”.

Patrick Dempsey as Dr. Shepherd on Grey's Anatomy and Actress Noelle Beck

Patrick Dempsey as Dr. Shepherd on Grey’s Anatomy
and Actress Noelle Beck

Noelle – Noelle has a more obvious connection to the holiday as it is a French name meaning, “Christmas”.  What could be more fitting for a little Christmas baby? People are definitely attracted to the “elle” sound in many female names right now.  Noelle could easily be shortened to the popular nicknames Elle or Ellie.  Additionally, Noelle also pairs well with many names and is well suited in the middle name spot.

Learn more about these names and hear middle name ideas for both:

Looking for names inspired by Hanukkah :
More names inspired by Christmas

Wishing you a wonderful holiday season!

Names of the Week – Maverick & Larisa


This weeks names are: Maverick & Larisa

Maverick – Maverick is a car, a roller coaster, and a name on the rise!  From Tom Cruise in Top Gun to Mel Gibson in Maverick, Maverick has a solid place in pop-culture.  A word name used to describe someone unorthodox, Maverick means “independent, nonconformist”.  Up 459 spots past 10 years, Maverick is currently #273 in the U.S.  I wonder if Maverick will loose it’s edgey appeal if it becomes too popular.

Tom Cruise as Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in Top Gun.   Actress Larisa Oleynik

Tom Cruise as Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in Top Gun.
Actress Larisa Oleynik.

Larisa – Larisa is recognizable without being overused.  Most popular in Slovenia and Bosnia, Larisa is a Greek name, meaning “citadel”.  Feminine and familiar, Larisa makes a great alternative and way to honor someone named Alyssa, Melissa, or Marissa. A popular name in Eastern Europe, Larisa reminds me of the actress Larisa Romanovna Oleynik – now that’s a name!

Learn more about these names and hear middle name ideas for both:

Happy Monday!

Names of the Week – Levi & Delaney!


This weeks names are: Levi & Delaney

Levi – when I hear this name I think “cool guy”.  A Hebrew name, meaning “attached”, Levi has been climbing the charts and is currently #50 in the U.S.  Several celebrities have used this name for their cool little dudes.  Here are just a few, I’ll include their middle names too:
* Levi Alves – son of  Matthew McConaughey & Camila Alves McConaughey
* Levi James – son of Sheryl Crow
* Levi Hank – son of Sara Gilbert & Allison Adler
A cool name for a little boy, I picture Levi on a jean-clad cowboy.

Levi Strauss & Delaney Gibson

Levi Strauss & Delaney Gibson

Delaney – is a surname that makes for a likeable first name.  An Irish name meaning “dark challenger”, Delaney is currently #249 in the U.S. Delaney first entered the top 1,000 in 1991. Martina McBride & John McBride’s oldest daughter is named Delaney Katharine.  Singer Delaney Gibson (pictured above) was actually named Jessica Delaney Gibson. I picture the name Delaney on a spunky girl with curly hair and a face gently painted in freckles.

Learn more about these names and hear middle name ideas for both:

Happy December,

Naming is an Art with Kara


One of the most unexpected and rewarding parts of baby name blogging has been connecting with other great women.  I recently got to have a virtual sit down & interview my new name friend, Kara.  Kara is the creative genius behind theartofnaming.com.  Don’t you just love the title of her site? Naming truly is an art form!

What is your name? Do you have any nicknames?

My name is Kara Yvonne. I don’t have any nicknames that are relevant to my name. These days I’m mostly known as Mama.

Do you know how your name was chosen? Do you feel that your name fits you?

My parents were going to name me Kevin if I were a boy (and that ended up being my younger brother’s name). Mom originally suggested Jenna Rae but Dad didn’t like it. They somehow just decided they liked Kara but took a while to find a middle name. Yvonne suddenly came to my mom while waiting in line at a Wendy’s drive thru (random! haha!) I think my name does fit me; I’ve never had a problem with it but I’ve never truly loved it either. I think I would change it if I found something that I connected better with.

What would you rename yourself if you had to?

This has been a big dilemma for me. I don’t know. However, since I gave my daughter Juliet as a middle name, I feel like I want to have a Jul- name too. I’m leaning toward Julia Caroline. My grandpa used to call me Karolina (with a Spanish accent) so that’d still connect me to Kara in my mind. Not sure if I’d make a good Julia Caroline but that’s what’s repeating in my head these days.

When did you first become interested in names?

I feel like I was always good at it. As a kid, I’d always know everyone’s name in every class when most of them didn’t know or care who I was. Then when The Sims 1 game came out, I started browsing baby names so I could name my characters well. Then I’d make A-Z name lists in my high school computer class when I was bored. Then my obsession grew when I was engaged to my husband and the prospect of actually having kids to name became real.

What were some of the first names you remember loving? Do you still love them?

As a teen, I liked names like Lainey, Lexi, Kady, Claire, Hailey, Riley, Bailey and Juliah. Clearly I still enjoy the Jul- names. I like Claire but the others aren’t my style anymore. For boys, Evan, Joshua, Tavey, Caden, Ian, Davey, Braden, Kyle, Gavin, Charley, Eli, Seth, Andrew and Jake. Not really fond of any of the boy names now. These are all on a list I made in 2005 when I was 18.

When did you begin blogging? Tell me a bit about your website.

I started The Art of Naming on May 30th, 2013. So nearly a year and a half ago. My website has evolved over time, but I’ve always tried to feature interesting names and lists of themed names, as well as helping parents find the perfect name.

How would you describe your naming style?

My general taste is that of strong names with a history behind them and good meanings. For boys, I like big Greek and Latin names like Benedict, Cyrus, Constantine, Augustus, etc. For girls, I like the very girly but very strong names like Freya, Aveline, Margot, Susannah.

What are your children’s names?

Our son is Maximus Alexander. It means “greatest defender of the people” and we loved everything about it. It was always our top pick. Girl names were harder. We originally had Ava Genevieve, then Avalina Juliet, then Juliet Cordelia. We ended up naming our daughter Audrey Juliet Sophia. It’s different than my general style but we love it. I’ve almost always wanted a Jul- name so that was an easy one. Sophia is after my husband’s sister. And we just fell in love with Audrey, partially because I’m a Hepburn fan.

What are some other names you love?

Besides the ones I already mentioned, Vincent Leonidas and Alice Magnolia. I also like quirky middle name ideas like Snow, Fable, Sonnet, Marvel, Frost, Stone etc.

What are some great names that you feel are underused?

My go-to’s for this kind of question are Amabel and Caius. Also, Leopold, Benedict, Rafferty, Caspian… Lavinia, Calliope…

What are some of your favorite literary/character names?

I don’t read much so I’m not sure I can answer this. I watch a lot of TV but hardly anything worth naming a kid after. But looking at a list of classic literary names, I like Atticus, Edmund, Sebastian ; Briony, Eloise and Rosamond.

Do you have a favorite name book and/or website?

I own exactly one baby name book that I bought when I was 18: “The Very Best Baby Name Book in the whole wide world” by Bruce Lansky, 2004 edition, so its super old. I have lots of sites I use frequently for coming up with names for my blog and for parents. Behind the Name is my favorite. Baby Name Wizard and Nameberry too among others. There’s lots of lovely bloggers out there.

Please share any naming tips or words of wisdom.

Naming is hard. Use the name that you and your partner mutually love the most. Don’t give in to pressures from friends and family. Do what YOU want! And if you need help, ask me! 😉

artofnamingCheck out Kara at http://www.theartofnaming.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheArtOfNaming
Instagram: @theartofnaming

Be sure to check http://www.theartofnaming.com later this week were Kara will be interviewing me!

A special thanks to Kara ❤

Naming truly is an art and a joy,

Names of the Week – Ronan & Hadley


This weeks names are: Ronan & Hadley

Ronan Farrow

Ronan Farrow

Ronan is a handsome Irish name  with a rich legend and strong sound.  The meaning of Ronan is “little seal”, you can hear more about the legend around the meaning in my video below. Ronan is currently #434 in popularity in the United States.

If you like the name Ronan, you might also like some of these delightful Irish names –

Rafferty, Reilly, Ruari (Rory), Riordan, Rowan, Regan, Rooney, Redmond, and Rian (Ryan).

Dr. Remy Hadley from House

Dr. Remy Hadley
from House

Hadley is an English unisex name meaning “heather field”.  Hadley has leaped in popularity recently, it is currently dominated by the girls at spot #111 while not in the top 1,000 for boys in the U.S.

If you like the name Hadley, you might also like some of  these spunky names –

Hattie, Bailey, Avery, Sadie, Everly, Malley, Hailey, Kaley, Aubrey, or Lacey.

Hear more about these names in the video below:

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving! ~Meagan

Announcement + Names of The Week – Cassius & Vanessa


Special Announcement!!

I’m very excited to share that I’m now a
Berry Juice Contributor on Nameberry.com!

You can read my first article about Butterfly Baby Names here:

This weeks names are:
Cassius & Vanessa

Cassius and Vanessa are both types of butterflies! Click the link above to read more about their butterfly connection as well as other butterfly baby names!

The band Cassius

The band Cassius

Cassius is Latin, an old Roman family name meaning “hollow”. Cassius is currently #760 in popularity here in the United States. I’ve never met a Cassius, but it is a name I see buzzing around a lot on baby name forums and blogs. I think of Cassius as a baby-name-lover’s name. The most common pronunciations are KAS-ee-əs and KASH-əs.


Vanessa Huxtable

Vanessa Huxtable

Vanessa is a literary name invented by Jonathan Swift. Swift’s inspiration for this name came from Esther Vanhomrigh. He combined “Van”, from Vanhomrigh, with “Essa” from Esther to create Vanessa. Vanessa is fairly popular in the U.S. at #150. There are many actresses and characters that bear this name. As an 80’s baby, I always think of The Cosby Show character Vanessa Huxtable when I hear this name.

You can hear more about these names, as well as middle name ideas for them in the video below:

Special thanks to Nameberry.com
And huge thanks to my wonderful Mom & my sweet boyfriend for their encouragement and support this week as I embark on new name adventures!

Names of The Week – Milo & Clementine


This weeks names are:
Milo & Clementine

Milo Ventimiglia

Milo Ventimiglia

Milo a sweet little name with Old German roots meaning “merciful”.  Milo has a gentle sound that is softened by the “o” ending.  A favorite of celebrities, there are several celebrity babies by the name of Milo. If you like Milo you might also like Arlo or Miles.  When I picture a Milo I usually think of a young Huckleberry Finn type – freckles, shaggy hair, and a big moon face.  There is the cat and pup duo of Milo and Otis as well as the dashing actor Milo Ventimiglia, pictured to the right.

Kate Winslet as Clementine

Kate Winslet
as Clementine

Clementine .. oh my darling! A French form of Clement meaning “merciful, gentle”.  Both names this week having meanings that mean merciful.  In addition to being part of a song, Clementine has a sweet, country vibe.  I picture it on a spunky farm-girl wearing overalls and ribbons in her hair. A different picture than that of the character Clementine in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind played by Kate Winslet, picture to the right.

Hear more about these names in the video below:

Here’s to a wonderful week!