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pop culture baby names ’
Sunday, March 2nd, 2014
Break out the champagne and the fancy hors d’oeuvres—today’s my version of the Superbowl, the Oscars. While the number of nominated films I get to see (at least in the non-animated categories) has fallen exponentially since I had kids, I’m always excited to check out the fashions and start crafting my own imaginary acceptance speech.
But while I love Sandra Bullock and Jennifer Lawrence and all the other nominees, watching the Oscars always makes me nostalgic for my old-school favorite movies, often starring legendary actors who never even scored an Oscar. (Cary Grant only scored an honorary Oscar for all of his years starring in amazing films like His Girl Friday and Philadelphia Story; Marilyn Monroe never scored one either, despite hilarious turns in Some Like It Hot and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.)
If you’re a big movie buff, there are plenty of wonderful names to consider among past (and current) honorees—here are some of my favorites.
You can’t go wrong with Meryl Streep, nominated yet again this year for her role in August: Osage County. She’s scored the most total nominations, with 18—and three wins among them. Her name is a variant of Muriel, which means “of the sea.”
Bette Davis was the first woman to receive 10 nominations—and had five consecutive, along with fellow actress Greer Garson. Bette is a variant of Elizabeth, which means consecrated to God.
Walt Disney won the most Oscars, with 22 victories. His name is short for Walter, a German name that means ruler, and is currently on an upsurge.
The legendary costume designer Edith Head is known as the most-honored woman in Oscar history, with 7 wins, including two for Roman Holiday and Sabrina, where she outfitted the equally legendary Audrey Hepburn. Edith means prosperous in war, and is currently on a bit of an uptick and in the top 800 names.
Katharine Hepburn is the winningest actress with four acting awards—and an inspiration for my daughter’s name. Katharine means pure. Her true love, Spencer Tracy, was among the first to win twice consecutively. His name, Spencer, means steward, and is currently in the top 250 names for boys.
And last but not least, Marlon Brando was a legendary actor who scored the most consecutive nominations with four in a row. His name’s origin is a bit of a mystery, but the name is currently in the top 700 in the U.S. Some more adventurous namers have chosen Brando instead to honor the Oscar winner.
What’s your favorite Oscar-related name? Share it in the comments! (And see what other Oscar-related name I picked for the Cool Name of the Week.)
Find out the meaning of your favorite baby names with our Baby Name Finder, and keep up with the latest in baby name news.
Image: Oscar award by Joe Seer
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baby name advice, boys' baby names, girls baby names, jennifer lawrence, meryl streep, oscar baby names, oscars, oscars 2014, pop culture baby names, popular baby names, sandra bullock | Categories:
Baby Name Stories, In Name Only, Must Read
Monday, February 24th, 2014
The Lego Movie has now replaced Frozen as the movie du jour in my house—and apparently in just about every house in the U.S., as the movie has now grossed $183.2 million in the U.S. (And my girls keep singing the anthem “Everything is Awesome!”)
And while some famous characters made their way into the movie (Batman! Gandalf! Harry Potter!), the heart of the story is Emmet Brickowski, a construction worker who may just be the one to overthrow the evil President Business (voiced by Will Farrell).
While the more common spelling, Emmett, is a top 200 name, Emmet hasn’t been out of the top 1000 since the 1930s. It’s a name that means truth, and is Hebrew in origin. (And it’s more common spelling, Emmett, also rose to the top on the heels of Twilight.)
As for middle names with Emmet, I like it with Miles, Beau, Jude or Reed.
What do you think of the name Emmet? Would you pick it for your son?
If you’re still looking for a great baby name, try our Baby Name Finder. And don’t forget to like In Name Only to keep up with the latest in baby names!
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Monday, February 17th, 2014
The Sochi Olympics have been a little quiet. Sure, there’s the dramas over the unfinished hotel rooms, and Bob Costas’s eye infection. And on Saturday, there was some drama about a post-win interview with multi-medaler Bode Miller, one of the most decorated Alpine skiers of all time—and the oldest medalist ever in alpine skiing. Interviewer Christin Cooper decided to focus her interview on the recent death of Bode’s younger brother, Chelone (nicknamed Chilly), a professional snowboarder who passed away from a seizure. The questions brought Bode to tears—and he broke down mid-interview. Not sure her interview tactic was the best one, but it definitely brought more attention to this top notch skier—and his unique first name.
Bode is based on a German surname, and means “messenger.” It’s actually pronounced like “Bow-dee”—not too far from the Sanskrit name Bodhi.
Bode only hit the top 1000 baby names from 2008-2010—likely thanks to Bode Miller’s prominence in the sport, but hasn’t been in the limelight since then. But it bears resemblance to popular names like Brody and Brady, so it might make a nice choice if you like any of those names but want something a little more unique.
With Bode, I’d consider an equally cool middle name, like Snow, Jet or Cruz—though if you’re worried Bode’s going to sound too out-there for a more conservative child, you could pick something a bit more conservative, like Miles, Theodore, or Julian.
What do you think of the name Bode? Is it something you’d consider?
Find your dream name with our Baby Name Finder, and don’t forget to like In Name Only to keep up up with the latest in baby names!
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baby name, baby name ideas, baby name meaning, boy baby names, boys' baby names, boys' names, celebrity names, cool name of the week, pop culture baby names, unique baby names | Categories:
In Name Only, Must Read
Tuesday, February 11th, 2014
How I Met Your Mother is finally wrapping after 9 years of the exploits of Ted, Barney, Robin, Lily and Marshall—all in the pursuit of Ted’s legen-(wait for it)-DARY true love. And we’ve finally met her—but we still don’t even know her name. In fact, the name is apparently being kept as some sort of state secret—even the actress who plays her, Cristin Milioti, still doesn’t know what her character’s name is. (Or she’s a pretty good liar.)
So what kind of name is worth this kind of wait? Odds are, her name isn’t shared by one of Ted’s cavalcade of exes. So that rules out: Robin, Karen, Victoria, Stella, Zoey, Jeanette, Cathy, Stacey, Natalie, Becky, Naomi, Carly, Mary, Vicky, Holli, Amanda, Jen, Amy, Cindy, Natali, Cassie, Trudy, or Rachel. And I don’t think it’s Lily, either.
I’m going to throw a few names out there. According to the How I Met Your Mother wiki, the Mother was born in 1984, the year when Jessica was poised to start dominating the girls’ names chart for the rest of the decade. Jessica would be a very fair assumption. But I’m thinking that they might go with something a little less “80s”—so no Tiffany or Amber, either. They’d want something timeless and classic. Something that sounds right with Ted.
Here are my guesses:
Lauren (#21 back in 1984)
What do you think the Mother’s name is? Share your guesses in the comments.
And if you’re looking for a fabulous name for your baby (or for the Mother or the character in your Great American Novel), check out our Baby Name Finder for great suggestions.
Image: Courtesy of CBS/How I Met Your Mother
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Baby Name News, Baby Name Stories, Must Read
Thursday, January 23rd, 2014
On paper, Downton Abbey should be a must watch for me—so I don’t know why I’m coming so late to the game. British + Maggie Smith + drama + history = perfect show in my book. Plus, as a name nerd, there’s lots of names to love on the female side of the cast. (Alas, they stuck with some pretty standard and popular fare for the boys, like Thomas and Robert.)
Granted some names, like Violet and Rose, started on the road to popularity before the show aired. But there are still some names that are under the radar—and they’re names that could fit into the current passion for old-fashioned names. Try these on for size:
Cora is the mother of the three Crawley daughters, an American woman who married into British nobility. Her name means “maiden,” and was already launching a comeback before the show aired—it’s currently the 155th most popular baby name for girls.
Mary was the most popular name for girls for centuries, but in recent decades it’s been on the decline. Maybe Lady Mary Crawley, the eldest daughter in the wealthy family who lords over Downton Abbey, can help restore its luster.
Edith is probably my favorite of the sisters’ names—it means prosperous, and after a sharp decline over the past 50 years, it started climbing back up the charts as soon as the show started airing.
Sybil is the youngest and most modern Crawley daughter, who ends up marrying one of her family’s staff members. Her name means prophetess, and hasn’t been in the top 1000 in decades. Perhaps it’s ready for a comeback now?
Daisy and Ivy are a pair of servants, each with a lovely botanical name. They’re both currently top 200 names in the U.S., and top 100 in England.
Isobel is the Scottish variant spelling of the ever popular Isabella, which means pledged to God. And unlike the #3 name Isabella, Isobel hasn’t been in the top 1000 in nearly a century.
Anna has been a top 100 baby name for over a century—and it’s the name for one of the stalwarts of the Downton Abbey staff. It means grace—and is a perfect choice for the kind and honorable lady’s maid Anna.
What’s your favorite Downton Abbey name? Share it in the comments.
If you’re still looking for baby names, try our Baby Name Finder!
Image: Downton Abbey by Dutourdumonde Photography/Shutterstock.com
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baby name ideas, baby name inspiration, baby name meaning, baby names, British baby names, classic baby names, downton abbey, downtown abbey baby names, girl baby names, girls' names, old-fashioned names, pop culture baby names, popular baby names | Categories:
Baby Name News, In Name Only, Must Read, Top Baby Names