This or that based on top 100 in the UK (girls’ edition).

   Today I thought we’d do something different instead of question of the day. The UK’s ONS (Office for National Statistics) has released baby name statistics for England and Wales this week, which I always find interesting to look through as a name nerd, regardless of a country really as long as I have some sort of an idea what’s been popular there, and I also like to read what other people who are into it think of any changes in baby naming trends based on such statistics, ‘cause myself being near-dyscalculic I usually won’t notice a lot of stuff that might be going on. And I saw that on one of the larger naming websites – Nameberry – someone put together names from the top 100 for England and Wales together with those for the US so that people could vote which names for each rank they like more.

   So  I thought we could do a similar thing here, except to make it a bit different I decided to put English names against Welsh. In situations where a name ranks the same in both England and Wales, I pick a name of equivalent rank from Scotland, although sometimes names rank the same in all three countries like Olivia is #1 or Isla is #3 everywhere so then I just skip it. The first name in each set is from England and the other from Wales, and if a name ranks the same in both countries I’ll write (SC) after the other to indicate that it ranks on the equivalent position in Scotland. 

   For now I just did it with girls’ names, but I can do the boys’ as well if people end up liking this and/or if I’ll feel like it. Feel free to comment on why you chose one name over the other or what you think of them in as much or little detail as you wish, or not to comment at all and just list them, it’s up to you. 

   Here we go: 

  •    Amelia or Emily (SC)? 
  • Ava or Freya? 
  • Ivy or Ella (SC)? 
  • Florence or Rosie? 
  • Lily or Ava? 
  • Freya or Grace? 
  • Mia or Lily? 
  • Willow or Evie? 
  • Sophia or Mia? 
  • Isabella or Ella? 
  • Rosie or Elsie? 
  • Grace or Willow? 
  • Sienna or Florence? 
  • Daisy or Evie (SC)? 
  • Poppy or Evelyn? 
  • Elsie or Phoebe? 
  • Emily or Millie? 
  • Ella or Erin? 
  • Evelyn or Sophia? 
  • Sofia or Mila? 
  • Charlotte or Isabella? 
  • Phoebe or Poppy? 
  • Evie or Emily? 
  • Harper or Maya (SC)? 
  • Maya or Hallie? 
  • Millie or Lottie? 
  • Matilda or Isabelle? 
  • Sophie or Sofia? 
  • Alice or Sienna? 
  • Emilia or Bonnie? 
  • Ruby or Aurora? 
  • Isabelle or Aria? 
  • Luna or Penelope? 
  • Maisie or Charlotte? 
  • Aria or Maisie? 
  • Penelope or Alys? 
  • Bonnie or Ffion? 
  • Eva or Imogen? 
  • Mila or Ruby? 
  • Eliza or Seren? 
  • Ada or Luna? 
  • Violet or Mali? 
  • Hallie or Violet? 
  • Arabella or Matilda? 
  • Esme or Zara (SC)? 
  • Jessica or Thea? 
  • Delilah or Eira? 
  • Imogen or Nancy? 
  • Chloe or Emilia? 
  • Eleanor or Ada? 
  • Lottie or Layla? 
  • Layla or Mabel? 
  • Margot or Ayla? 
  • Thea or Eva? 
  • Aurora or Alice? 
  • Elizabeth or Eliza? 
  • Mabel or Gracie? 
  • Emma or Nansi? 
  • Scarlett or Lola? 
  • Erin or Sophie? 
  • Harriet or Jessica? 
  • Rose or Lyra? 
  • Lola or Megan? 
  • Orla or Delilah? 
  • Ayla or Efa? 
  • Nancy or Harriet? 
  • Zara or Lilly? 
  • Iris or Mabli? 
  • Bella or Maya? 
  • Robyn or Iona (SC)? 
  • Molly or Scarlett? 
  • Maria or Cadi? 
  • Olive or Molly? 
  • Lyla or Orla? 
  • Maeve or Eleanor? 
  • Ellie or Frankie? 
  • Maryam or Chloe? 
  • Darcie or Myla? 
  • Heidi or Lili? 
  • Edith or Lyla? 
  • Gracie or Nia? 
  • Lyra or Maeve? 
  • Amelie or Martha? 
  • Lucy or Autumn? 
  • Hannah or Eleri? 
  • Myla or Harlow? 
  • Amber or Maddison? 
  • Jasmine or Amber? 
  • Summer or Eden? 
  • Eden or Iris? 
  • Clara or Lucy? 
  • Elodie or Nevaeh? 
  • Holly or Olive? 
  • Anna or Zara? 
  • Lara or Arabella? 
  • Lilly or Bella? 
  • Beatrice or Darcie? 
  • Sara or Elodie? 
  • Esmae or Mollie? 

Bibiel’s picks:

This is gonna be so tough, I like so many of these to bits. 😀 

  •    Amelia or Emily (SC)? Amelia. It’s been very popular over here for girls around Sophie’s age and for babies, so I don’t like it nearly as much as I did when I was younger, but Emily seems more boring and overused to me even if  not in my country. Even my liking for Emily Byrd Starr doesn’t make me like Emily more than Amelia. 
  • Ava or Freya? Of course Freya. I love Freya, and I dislike Ava. 
  • Ivy or Ella (SC)?  Ella, even though it’s so popular around the Anglosphere. Not a fan of Ivy. 
  • Florence or Rosie? Both are extremely sweet and I love them. But I think I love the sound of Rosie more. 
  • Lily or Ava? Lily ‘cause I don’t like Ava. Lil- names are extremely overused here so Lily feels boring, but I can’t say I dislike it. 
  • Freya or Grace?  Freya, Grace isn’t overly interesting. 
  • Mia or Lily?  Mia, I like the sound. 
  • Willow or Evie? Willow, I think it could make a sweet nickname for Wilhelmina. 
  • Sophia or Mia? Hm, Sophia I guess…? I like both, but at the same time I seem to see Sophia everywhere so Mia feels more interesting, while on the other hand Mia is so short that it feels incomplete compared with Sophia. But yeah, Sophia, I think. 
  • Isabella or Ella? Isabella, you can call her Ella anyway and have other possibilities included as well, it makes more sense as a full name to me, and I also happen to like it a lot. 
  • Rosie or Elsie? Awww, Elsie. 
  • Grace or Willow? Willow. 
  • Sienna or Florence? Florence, don’t like Sienna. 
  • Daisy or Evie (SC)? Daisy I guess, though feel kind of ambivalent towards both. 
  • Poppy or Evelyn? Oh my flip… … … 🤔 OK, Evelyn. But I love Poppy so so much as well. 
  • Elsie or Phoebe? Elsie, though Phoebe is sweet. 
  • Emily or Millie? Millie, although if I had to choose between those two for a real life child I’d go with Emily because of what I said re Isabella and Ella. 
  • Ella or Erin? I like both, but Erin is more interesting. And Celtic. 
  • Evelyn or Sophia? As much as I love Sophia, Evelyn is far more intriguing. 
  • Sofia or Mila? Hm… Mila I guess? But I really don’t know, ask me in five minutes and I’ll say Sofia. 
  • Charlotte or Isabella? Isabella. I should like Charlotte because I generally like names like that but I just don’t, for some reason. 
  • Phoebe or Poppy? Poppy! 
  • Evie or Emily? Emily ‘cause I just like it more than Evie even if I see fewer Evies. 
  • Harper or Maya (SC)? Maya, not too big on surname/unisex names although Harper isn’t very bad. 
  • Maya or Hallie? Maya again. 
  • Millie or Lottie? Millie for sure. 
  • Matilda or Isabelle? Isabelle for sure, but nothing at all against Matilda. 
  • Sophie or Sofia? Sophie, I think, but I’m very changeable with Sophie names. 
  • Alice or Sienna? Alice. It may be plain but it has something really cool about it. 
  • Emilia or Bonnie? Emilia, don’t like Bonnie. 
  • Ruby or Aurora? Ruby, gem stones are so cool. 
  • Isabelle or Aria? Isabelle. 
  • Luna or Penelope? I like both, but so many pets around the world seem to be called Luna these days, and then there’s Soy Luna that Sofi likes, so I think Penelope wins. It’s really nice as well, feels very sophisticated and you can call her Poppy or Nellie which are both nicknames that I like. Only the name meaning isn’t quite as cool as Luna’s since Penelope means duck. 
  • Maisie or Charlotte? Maisie is lovely. 
  • Aria or Maisie? Maisie, totally neutral about Aria. 
  • Penelope or Alys? Penelope, but Alys is cool too and makes me think of Alys Williams and her voice immediately. 
  • Bonnie or Ffion? Ffion is so cute. And no, it isn’t Welsh for Fiona, it means foxglove in Welsh. 
  • Eva or Imogen? I don’t like Eva, so Imogen. Imogen has something slightly quirky about it that I like. 
  • Mila or Ruby? Mila. 
  • Eliza or Seren? I love Eliza, but especially pronounced our Polish way – e-LEE-zah. – 
  • Ada or Luna? Luna, don’t like Ada. 
  • Violet or Mali? Mali, but only because of nice associations with this name, as I’m quite neutral about both of them as such. 
  • Hallie or Violet? Hallie. 
  • Arabella or Matilda? I really like Arabella. 
  • Esme or Zara (SC)? Zara I think. Esme and variations on the theme are too Twilight. 
  • Jessica or Thea? Jessica. 
  • Delilah or Eira? Hmmmm… If it was for a real life kid, then definitely Eira. Otherwise Delilah. 
  • Imogen or Nancy? Imogen. 
  • Chloe or Emilia? Chloe is cute. 
  • Eleanor or Ada? I really like Eleanor. 
  • Lottie or Layla? Lottie. 
  • Layla or Mabel? Mabel is pretty cool. 
  • Margot or Ayla? Ayla, though neither feels thrilling. 
  • Thea or Eva? Thea. 
  • Aurora or Alice? Alice. 
  • Elizabeth or Eliza? I love both, but Eliza wins. 
  • Mabel or Gracie? Mabel, though Gracie is nice too. 
  • Emma or Nansi? Nansi, but solely because Emma is so popular in the US so I see it all the time. 
  • Scarlett or Lola? I think Lola, ‘cause for some reason I don’t really like Scarlett that much, but then I don’t particularly love Lola either. 
  • Erin or Sophie? 🤔 Erin…? Yeah Erin. But Sophie is sweet. 
  • Harriet or Jessica? Jessica, though I quite like Harriet too. 
  • Rose or Lyra? Rose. 
  • Lola or Megan? I like the Welsh feel of Megan. 
  • Orla or Delilah? Delilah. 
  • Ayla or Efa? Ayla, but both are meh. 
  • Nancy or Harriet? Harriet. 
  • Zara or Lilly? Lilly. 
  • Iris or Mabli? Iris. 
  • Bella or Maya? Bella I guess… 
  • Robyn or Iona (SC)? Iona. I really like Robin for both genders, but Robyn not really, and Iona is so Scottish. 
  • Molly or Scarlett? Molly. 
  • Maria or Cadi? I have a lot of fun associations with Cadi, but it feels so nickname-y so even though Maria is very common around the world, I choose Maria. It has more of a character than Cadi. 
  • Olive or Molly? I like olives, yay! 😀 If it was Olivia and Molly I’d probably choose Molly, but Olive feels very cool and unusual and not quite so omnipresent as Olivia. 
  • Lyla or Orla? Orla definitely. 
  • Maeve or Eleanor? Eleanor, even though Maeve’s very close. 
  • Ellie or Frankie? Ellie, I don’t like Frankie for either gender while I really like Ellie. 
  • Maryam or Chloe? Chloe. 
  • Darcie or Myla? I guess Myla, but neither is my thing. 
  • Heidi or Lili? Heidi. 
  • Edith or Lyla? Lyla ‘cause I dislike Edith. 
  • Gracie or Nia? Nia. 
  • Lyra or Maeve? Maeve. 
  • Amelie or Martha? Amelie is even better than Amelia. 
  • Lucy or Autumn? I really like Lucy. 
  • Hannah or Eleri? LOVE Eleri. Hannah’s slightly dull. 
  • Myla or Harlow? Myla, ‘cause Harlow is even worse. 
  • Amber or Maddison? Amber. 
  • Jasmine or Amber? Jasmine. 
  • Summer or Eden? Summer, don’t like Eden one bit. 
  • Eden or Iris? Iris, of course. 
  • Clara or Lucy? Lucy, even despite all my liking for Clara. 
  • Elodie or Nevaeh? Lol, it’s like asking a kid whether they prefer their favourite ice cream flavour or cold overcooked brussel sprouts. Of course Elodie! 🙂 
  • Holly or Olive? Olives are yummy. 
  • Anna or Zara? I love Anna. 
  • Lara or Arabella? Arabella. 
  • Lilly or Bella? Bella. 
  • Beatrice or Darcie? Beatrice. 
  • Sara or Elodie? Elodie. 
  • Esmae or Mollie? Mollie. 

   So, how about you? Any thoughts on these in general welcome as well. 🙂 

Question of the day.

What’s one video that never fails to make you laugh?

My answer:

The one I could think of off the top of my head is that about the Scottish guys and the voice recognition-operated lift. I believe it was quite popular at some point as I’ve seen it circulating around the web in many different places and many people from different countries that I know know about it, but all these people have some linguistic interests so maybe that’s just the only reason, so in case you have not seen it I’ll include it below. The first time my friend Jacek from Helsinki showed it to me we were both laughing like crazy. It still makes me giggle after like 5 years. But I also find it interesting because it just shows how people with not so standard accents, not so popular languages are often discriminated when technology like that is created. I’ve heard that Scottish people also have regular problems with Siri when they speak to her in their natural accent. But Apple has made Irish Siri so maybe Scottish will come at some point too, I personally think Scottish is a bit more difficult to understand than Irish accent though so it may be even harder to make an AI stuff that will understand it. But oh my it would be so cool if there were even more accent/language (or maybe even dialect??? well I’m probably asking for too much right now 😀 ) diversity in technology like that.

How about you? 🙂

Question of the day.

What are five things you’re grateful for this week so far?

My answer:

1. A very nice meeting we had on Tuesday that was organised by Zofijka’s friend’s mum, I wrote about it in the coffee share post, would give the link but I’m posting via email so don’t have it at hand. It was a very interesting meeting and a very nice one.

2. My anti-anxiety medication. The meeting wouldn’t be quite as good for me without it, and even with it it was still a bit of a challenge socially.

3. My exquisitely Scottish dreams that I had the night before the last. I just don’t know what happened, but I assume it’s also my anti-anxiety med that I should thank for that, to some degree at least, that it made me sleep so deeply and for so long. When we came back from the meeting, I felt a bit tired, like sleepy, and I thought it was because of the med, as it sometimes works like that for me. So I went to bed really quickly and early and was knocked out in a minute, or not much longer really. And then, I had one absolutely crazy, gloomy, sad and awful dream to do more or less with my past, but then I had loads and loads of Scottish-themed dreams, it was incredible! As if I had some calling from Scotland or whatever! Like I had one dream about being on holidays in Edinburgh, then another about a gig I went to with my Dad, of a harpist and I even remember her name – she was Aileen or Eileen MACHamish – beautiful name (especially that Hamish is one of my recent fastest rising personal boy name favourites, how did my brain know that?!), and she was also a fabulous harpist. But sadly it doesn’t seem like Aileen/Eileen MACHamish even exists! Then I had a dream involving Julie Fowlis (a Scottish singer who sings in Scottish Gaelic, and whose songs I’ve shared here some time ago and am certainly going to share more over time). I remember that there was a BBQ at my gran’s, we were all sitting in her garden, my family that is, and I was sitting on a swing that my gran has in there, with Julie Fowlis, and I remember we were chatting about something and both very absorbed in it and laughing a lot and hugging each other, and we had both crazily heavy Scottish accents, even Julie doesn’t normally have an accent like that, not to mention me! 😀 It was a bit comical. I also watched “Brave” with Zofijka, you know, that Disney movie about Merida and her mum who was transformed into a bear, the only Disney movie I actually care about at all. We did watch it with Zofijka loads of times and by the way Julie Fowlis sang in there. And I even dreamt about my potential boss, or the one I hoped would be my boss. You might remember that I was looking into another job opportunity about two months ago. So that company I so wanted to work with was Scottish, and I dreamt about the guy who’d be my boss there if I’d get that job. 😀 But while in our email exchange he was reasonably nice, in my dream he was very grumpy and not at all likeable. And I had other Scottish-themed dreams too but I don’t remember enough of them to have any very specific recollections. Anyway, that was cool, and funny and I really enjoyed all those dreams. I guess that must be some sort of a sign that I seriously should do Scots as my next language! 😀

4. The fan in my room. And that even though it’s really hot this week again, and I’ve had a lot of headaches thanks to this, I didn’t get another migraine.

5. Audible, Audible credits, and interesting books in ENglish.

What would be your five things? 🙂

Cara Dillon – “Here’s A Health”.

So as I told you guys today I also have for you a song by Cara Dillon. This one is also a traditional Irish song, apparently was particularly popular in Ulster, in modern times it was popularised by the band called The Chieftains. I really like Cara’s version.

Question of the day.

If you could have a vacation home in any place in the world, where would it be?

My answer:

Somewhere in the UK. Somewhere in the country or a small town, I guess. Somewhere close to the nature, where it’s calmly and quietly. I’d like to have a beautiful, big house and live there during vacation with my Mum, she could arrange it as she’d like. I’d love if there was a lot of nice views, so she’d be happy, she loves Britain, she loves nature and she loves beautifying the space around her. She watches all the episodes of that series about people buying new houses for themselves in the UK, I don’t remember how it’s called, I like it a lot too. She says she’d love to live there and I’d love too. Ideally, it would be brilliant if the place where we’d live had some Celtic connections so my fascinations would be quenched. 😀 I’d love to live somewhere in Wales, particularly in the north, we could have both the sea and mountains at our doorstep, and there is so much beautiful things to see, and so much Celtic stuff, and Welsh language, and northern accents – in both Welsh and English – is so fascinating and sexy, I love southern too, but northern a little bit more, probably because of my crush as always in such situations. 😀 Or it would be really cool to live in Cornwall. My pen pal Louisa with whom I don’t write anymore, but we used to a lot, told me a lot about Cornwall, and made me feel like it’s a place for me, it sounds so magically and beautifully, although she says it’s boring and she’d rather live in Spain. 😀 Well most people say it’s boring where they live, as the grass is always greener… for most of people, but somehow I don’t feel it’s boring here where I live, it’s also a very beautiful place. ALthough I’d love to see Cornwall, especially the areas near Falmouth. Then another place I could willingly live in during vacation would be Scotland. Particularly I have some liking for Skye Isle. I love the whole Scotland A LOT, but Skye Island is particular for me for many reasons. Plus my friend Jock lives there. We aren’t in a regular contact now, but he used to teach me some basics of Scottish Gaelic and Scots years ago and we’ve got along very well. Another place I don’t know that well, but am very interested in is Isle Of Man. It is one of my favourite places in the world, but, in comparison to my other favourite places in the world, I know very little about it. Nevertheless I have an inkling that if I could live there for a while, I would love it. How could I not love an isle that was under the influence of both Vikings and Celts and that speaks one of my most favourite languages – Manx? Well, two of my favourite languages, but English is everywhere. So I think it’d be cool to have a vacation home.

Where yours would be?

Question of the day.

Do you have plans to travel? Where do you want to go?

My answer:

We as a family don’t travel that much, our lifestyle or life circumstances or however you want to call it doesn’t really let us travel very often or far, and we are rather homebodies, at least most of us, but still we do like travels, especially my Dad who is a tank driver. Every time summer holidays are coming he tells us he wants to go there and there or tells us this year we’ll go there, but it doesn’t always come true. He even has been romising me for about seven years that this summer we’ll go to Sweden, but it happened just last year. It’s not like he didn’t want to make it true or like I have any claims about that, that’s just how the life goes and I’m glad we finally did it.

So yes, we do have plans to travel. But now it’s more my Mum who started them, not Dad. My Mum is at least as much knackered by this school year as I am, ’cause she has a double trouble, with me and my brother, as we are both finishing this year. Plus Zofijka’s school affairs and dramas aren’t helping. So she (my Mum, not Zofijka) is dreaming that finally when we’re finished, we’ll go somewhere far away, or at least will visit many places. She even suggested to me that we should both go to Wales straight after my exams, just we both, but for various reasons I don’t think this is going to happen this year, although I would love it to happen. Some of our realistic plans include going to some thermal pool. We visited one in Oravica in Slovenia years ago and we were chuffed, it was so brilliant. Then there is festival of minerals somewhere in Silesia where I’d like to go and my Mum proposed it to me. And at the end of August there is a whisky festival somewhere nearby and I’d like to go there too with my Mum, as we both like whisky and for me it is the only kind alcohol I accept, of course not like I don’t accept drinking other kinds of alcohol by other people around me or anything, just this is the only kind of alcohol I drink. 😀 I am not a big big enthusiast and actually now I drink very rarely because even after just a glass of any kind of alcohol drink I’ve ever had I can get nasty side effects and my Mum too so I guess we’re kind of allergic or something. Plus I don’t drink outside of the cosiness of my own home as it makes my anxiety higher. Anyway, the main reason I want to go there is I want to see if they have Welsh Penderyn, I’d love to taste Welsh whisky. My Welsh friend told me he’ll get me a bottle when he comes and visits me, but since sadly we aren’t in touch anymore it’s rather unlikely to happen. :// And I’d love to get some Grand MCNish to have it for some special occassions. Mmmmm… 🙂

As for where I want to go in general, like in some more distant future, there are countries speaking my favourite languages. Or dialects, or accents, whatever. I’d love to go to the UK. I like Britain very much in general as well as the British people and British accents and lots of other things about this country, I have quite a few pen pals from England and would love to meet with at least some of them. Then there is so many Celtic stuff in Great Britain. And there is Wales. So I could practice Welsh language, hear more of Welsh accents, and see how it is in the north, pick up some Wenglish. My Mum loves Great Britain and Wales too, because it’s beautiful, so she could see some of the views and castles and all. And there is my current crush, Gwilym Bowen Rhys. Don’t think I’d meet him, but anyway, he lives there, you know…

Then there is Scotland and all that Scottish stuff, Scottish whisky, Scottish accents (maybe I’d finally learn how to at least imitate it a bit more convincingly, I am an accent freak and like to mimick different accents and pick up the differences pretty quickly, but I feel like my Scottish accent is particularly poor). And oh gosh I’d love to go to the highlands, hear Scottish Gaelic, my Mum could see some more views. And there is Scots language as well. It’s funny, well I consider it funny for some reason, but it’s beautiful. And then there is Northern Ireland and all those Northern Irish accents and Ulster Scots language (I’m curious whether actually there is anyone using it there in Ulster) and Irish Gaelic and everything Celtic. Oh, I almost forgot! The Isle of Man. I’ve heard so little about it. People say it’s boring, but I think if it was under the influence of both Vikings and Celts… how can it be boring!? I definitely need to hear more Manx, get to know more Manx music. I don’t know much of it sadly. I want someone kind and competent to tell me what does the word “mish” mean in this mysterious language…

The next country I’d like to go to is Ireland. I love it too, for all the Celtic things they have there, and for Enya, who was my first crush, etc…

Another country I’d like to see are the Netherlands. This is the home to my last crush Cornelis Vreeswijk, I’d like to hear more of this fantastic language, to see the areas where Cornelis grew up. And there is Friesland and their underestimated, beautiful language.

Then I’d like to visit Finland. Their language is so fabulous. They are so fabulous people. I like their way of being and can relate to it at least as much as to Brits’. Swedish Finnish accent is so cute and funny, yes, that’s how I perceive it, 😀 if Finnish wasn’t so beautiful, I could talk to them only in Swedish, but as Finnish is so great, I’d at least try to use my poor Finnish skills and grab some more Finnish expressions, plus not everyone talks Swedish there, so English would be necessary as well. They have Lappland, I wan’t to see it too. And hear more of the Sami language. I’m sure it would be so exciting. Also I’d love to see how that Finnish harp – kantele – looks like. It sounds so different from “normal” harp, or Celtic harp(s), that I have an impression it must look very different.

And Faroe Islands. I wanna know, is it true what my uncle says, that actually there are so few people there that they are all family or know each other through their family members? My uncle is a saylor, his chief is Faroese and he often sails to Faroe Islands, but I don’t believe it. What a pity he isn’t more eloquent and more curious about the world so he could tell me more about this country. 😦 And Faroese language obviously. Plus, I love their singer, Eivor Palsdóttir. If everyone knows each other there at least through their family members, maybe I could meet her? 😀

And last, but not least. Sweden, again! I want to see more of Sweden, not only Stockholm and its neighbourhood. I wanna see Luleå. More of the places associated with Cornelis Vreeswijk (he migrated from Netherlands and lived in Sweden). I want to see more of their fabulous nature. There’s so much to see there!

So that’s the end of my list, I suppose.

How about your plans, for near or more distant future? 🙂