Category: Guest Bloggers
The fourth month of the year is a pretty busy one. For starters, it’s Autism Awareness Month and National Poetry Month. All in just 30 days, April yields the observances of Passover and Easter, Arbor Day, baseball’s opening day, Earth Day, and we can’t forget April Fool’s Day. April 2nd is even National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day. So before you chalk this month up as just a whole lot of rain, take a look at these twelve baby names inspired by the notable figures and historical happenings of April—some could even make a perfect choice for a springtime baby.
April – Still the most popular month name, up against sister spring months May and June, April is said to be derived from the Latin word Aprilis, from the verb apertus, meaning “to open.” An alternate derivation comes from the goddess Aphrodite, whose festival begins the month.
The other night a friend asked me what happens to kids with really strange names. Not made up names, or names with crazy spellings, he clarified. Names like Apple. Or Bartholomew. Names that make you do a double take when you spot them on the birth announcement. Names that make you say “Really?” when you should be saying “Congratulations!”
Nothing. Nothing happens.
Actually, everything happens – the kids grow up and have the same kinds of adventures and heartaches and triumphs and debacles that we all have from cradle to grave. Their name is part of their story, but even if their name is Clove or Cashel or Cordelia, it is only a part.
Confession: I’ve watched Kid President’s latest YouTube video more than a dozen times. It’s called “Letter to a Person on Their First Day Here,” and even though little Robby Novak (a.k.a. Kid President) never mentions names, it reminds me of the happiest part of talking all things onomastic.
Around 360,000 babies are born every day. That’s 4.2 newborns every second. Even if we limited it to arrivals in the English-speaking world, it would take a lot of berry brainpower to help find names for all of those lovely new people.
It’s worth looking for the right name, isn’t it? All of these new people are going to do some amazing things. At their best, the names we bestow on our children honor that potential.
When anything goes, how do you know if you’re going too far?
Naming a baby in 2014 is mostly about freedom. Gwyneth’s edibly-named daughter Apple regularly tops the list of craziest celebrity baby names, but we’re calling our own kids Clementine and Olive. Zuma Rossdale’s first name doesn’t sound like a name … except it does sound something like popular choice Ezra.
The list goes on. For almost every so-called “crazy” baby name, there’s a case to be made that it fits in with current trends. But that’s not a guarantee that anything goes.
This past week was filled with foreign imports, misspellings, nicknames that might be too casual, and hero names that might go too far. Take your favorite name, travel to another country, and it could become unwearable. Or name your child something that you really want to use, accept that you might spend the first few months explaining your choice, and then laugh when it makes the Top 100 by the time your kiddo starts kindergarten.
Of course, B hasn’t been in the shadows. You probably know kids called Benjamin and Brayden, Brooklyn, Brianna and Bella. They’re all Top 100 choices. Up-and-comers like Beatrix and Beckett are on the favorites list of many a future parent.
Still, it was a surprise to hear four great B choices in the news this week, all of which could catch on. They were mixed in with lots of intriguing names: a vintage romantic, a pair of Hollywood glam surnames, and a handsome Greek god.
Here are the baby names in this week’s news, brought to you by the letter B and beyond: