It's raining boys, hallelujah! Hollywood saw no shortage of interesting lil boys names this past year, from interpretations of classic boys names to original choices honoring family or cultural heritages. Natalie Portman and her fiancé, Benjamin Millepied, chose the distinctive Aleph — the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet and the Hebrew number one — for their lil boy, while Kate Hudson and Matthew Bellamy went with Bingham, an old family name for their new addition. Bear was the interesting choice Alicia Silverstone and her husband, Christopher Jarecki, chose for their lil boy, and stunning French actress Marion Cotillard and fiancé Guillaume Canet went with the thoroughly French Marcel. Whatever your preference — classic or boldly unique — this year's celebrity parents certainly came up with some creative monikers for their bouncing baby boys.
We're excited to share this post from our partners at BabyCenter! Every week, we will be bringing you the best parenting and lifestyle stories from the experts at BabyCenter, including this post from Lindsay Weiss about the most popular baby names of 2011.
Drum roll please…Babycenter just released the results of its highly anticipated annual Top 100 Baby Names of 2011.
(Note: am I the only one whose heart starts pounding when I read this list? Don’t get me wrong, I love the names but my palms are sweating because I do not want to see my kids names on this list! Sadly, they are. Darn Kate Middleton…it’s all her fault.)
As Carolyn noted, there’s no surprise on the most popular names — Aiden tops the boys’ list for the seventh consecutive year while Sophia holds tight to the lead for girls for the second year in a row. But never fear, 2011 definitely yielded some interesting trends in naming:
The Anderson Cooper Effect
He’s got a new talk show and, apparently, a lot of ‘mini-Coopers’ too. While Cooper rose 3 percent to number 58 on the list, the name Anderson made a meteoric ascent, up more than 100 spots!
Fist Pump…Jersey Style
In addition, this year’s list reflects America’s obsession with the Garden State, as names like Nicole (Jersey Shore) make their way up four spots while Briella (Jerseylicious), Jacqueline and Caroline (The Real Housewives of New Jersey), and Kimberly (Jersey Couture) all experienced hair-raising leaps. And if that’s not enough, the name Jersey itself is up 16 percent!
Keeping Up With…Mason?
Another reality baby name star to take note of is Mason, Kourtney Kardashian’s son, who toddled up eight spots to claim the number three spot for boys. Not to be outdone, the first names of power couple Victoria and David Beckham are both on the rise as well as that of their newborn daughter, Harper, whose name is up an impressive 34 spots.
The Royal and the Political
Keeping the reality show stars in check is the royal duo William and Kate, whose names are both on the rise along with Harry and Pippa, whose name is up a whopping 45 percent. Moms also looked to politics, as evidenced by the rise of inspirational congresswoman Gabby Giffords’ name, as well as the names of the Palin, Obama, and Clinton daughters.
Superheroes…Real and Fictional
Additional inspiration for this year’s crop of top baby names came from superheroes, with names like May (Spider-Girl) swooping up 98 spots and Peter (Spiderman) climbing 22 spots. NASCAR and nature also left their mark on this year’s list, with names like Matt (Kenseth) and Kyle (Busch) on the rise along with Summer and Storm.
Do any of these trends resonate with you?
P.S. full disclosure: I may need to get pregnant (with a girl, please) in 2012 so I can name her Pippa. Who wouldn’t love to squeeze the cheeks on a little Pippa?
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One of the biggest joys and most stressful parts of pregnancy is choosing your unborn child's name. Parents-to-be stress that they won't please family members with their choice, that they'll pick a name that 10 other kids answer to on the playground, or that they'll just grow tired of it in the future. Name trends may come and go, but each year two names — one boy's and one girl's — rise to the top. BabyCenter recently unveiled the most popular names of 2011. Take this quiz to see if you know names landed on the list!Take the Quiz
Ever walk out of a movie and think to yourself that you loved the main character's name? If so, you're not alone! Pop culture influences all areas of life — just think about the fashion — including baby names. Take this quiz to see if you can guess which names rose to the top of the popularity list after appearing in TV, movies, and literature!Take the Quiz
The celeb baby boom is well under way, and with it, we're seeing a lot of new (an unusual) names! Have you been paying attention to the children who've made their debuts over the past few months? Take this quiz and test your knowledge.
Thinking about giving your baby girl a gender-neutral name? There’s no denying the popularity of androgynous names, especially for baby girls. As Krista E. shares in Circle of Moms’ community for parenting debates, when she was pregnant and looking for boys' names, she found that “many of the boys' names that I liked have been co-opted for girls.”
Here are the 10 gender-neutral names that were most commonly given to newborn girls last year (2010) by Circle of Moms members:
8. Peyton, Payton
Several names on this top 10 list — Madison, Addison, and Mackenzie — very clearly originated as boys names. The tip off? All three of the names mean “Son of ___”. Moms like Victoria P. find that practice frustrating: “For my VERY Scottish family, MacKenzie is not only a man's name, but one that is used frequently. It drives me nuts when it's used as a girl's name because the prefix ‘mac’ means ‘son of’ in Gaelic.”
While many of the other names are generally considered unisex (Taylor, Morgan) they’re now used much more often for girls...parents seem to have grown hesitant to christen their son with a name that could be perceived as too feminine.
Still, the boys are holding their ground on one particular name on this list: Riley. It ranked #31 in popularity on the ranked list of names that Circle of Moms members gave their boy babies in 2010, while reaching only #39 on the girls' list.
Are you raising the next Fortune 500 CEO? On the series premier of Pregnant in Heels, maternity concierge Rosie Pope was tasked with helping a couple select a name for a child, a name that would "brand" their child and lead him to a successful future. Perhaps they should have simply logged on to their LinkedIn accounts. The professionals social network just combed through its data to determine the most popular names of CEOs. Take this quiz to see if your tot is destined for the corner office.Take the Quiz
What's in a baby name? Everything. Naming baby is the first big decision a parent makes for their child and there are endless elements to consider. Once you have finally settled on the right signature, you want to sing it from the rooftops and coo it over the cradle. If you can't be with baby every second of the day keep her name close to your heart with a trendy trinket necklace that spells out your favorite letters of the alphabet.
Oh the trials and tribulations of wealthy moms-to-be! Last night's series premiere of Pregnant in Heels introduced us to the world of Rosie Pope – a baby concierge who helps rich New York women design their nurseries, hire nannies, improve relationships with husbands, and, apparently, select baby names. Mitch and Samantha are about to welcome their third child and are seeking help naming their baby-to-be. Rather than pore through books and websites, they have Rosie put together a focus group of academics (a poet, a magazine writer, a linguist, and a branding expert) to aid them in choosing a name that will "scream success." I won't spoil it with the name that is ultimately agreed upon, but let's just say it is – unexpected. The show definitely shines a light on extreme baby planning, but as a "been there, done that" mom, I found it to be a fun indulgence. Did you tune in? Dish with me in the comments below!
Justine Bieber Beckham? If David and Victoria Beckham's kids had their way that might be the newest member of the family's name! Up to this point, it has been all boys in the Beckham household, and the addition of a lil girl is throwing their three sons for a loop. The soccer superstar spoke with Jimmy Kimmel last night about how excited Victoria is to be having their first girl and how their sons helped with some interesting name suggestions for their sister-to-be.