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The story of Annalynn’s name

by Meghann on October 11, 2015

Hi Friends!

I wanted to emerge from “newborn survival mode” (seriously, the first two weeks are all about survival!) to share the story behind Annalynn’s name. Since I’ve had so many questions about her name (and how to pronounce it), I figure a little backstory would be fun.


Ann-a-lynn: favor, grace, beautiful

I’ve always been a fan of unique, original names. “Megan” was in the top 10 list of baby girl names the year I was born and, even though I had a somewhat unique spelling with an “h” and the additional “n” on the end, there was always a number of Megans in all of my classes.  I don’t hate my name, but I always wished I had something a little outside the norm.

As with most anyone, I’d been thinking about baby names since well before Derek and I ever had a serious talk about having kids. Heck, half the fun of having baby dolls or playing Sims as a kid was naming everyone. My dad still jokes about how I always gave my dolls unusual and interesting names that only I could remember or pronounce. What can I say? I was a creative kid.

I wish I had this brilliant story on how I came up with Annalynn’s name, but I don’t. I was at our old townhouse a couple of years ago and it just popped in my head and I immediately loved it. I remember googling it to see if it was a “real name” (aka not something I just made up). Sure enough, there were tons of baby boards discussing Annalynn. By the way, if you find a name you love – don’t ever ask for other people’s opinions on baby boards, they can be brutal.

There was just so many things I loved about Annalynn. I loved that it was unique (the name has never been on the top 1000 list for baby girls), I loved how many “n”s it had (the double “n” on the end pays homage to my name), and I loved how it has “Ann” in it (my mom’s middle name is Anne, as is mine, so Annalynn is carrying the name on from her grandmother and her mother). I also love how feminine the name is and how effortlessly it rolls off of your tongue.


Almost as soon as we found out we were pregnant, I had a gut feeling we were having a girl. I even had a dream that Derek and I had this gorgeous little girl toddler and her name was Annalynn. To me, Annalynn was Annalynn right from the beginning.

Still, I kept the name to myself until we had our gender ultrasound. As soon as we had the ultrasound, Derek and I headed to the waiting room to wait to see the actual doctor for our appointment. In the waiting room I was like, “So… what do you think of the name Annalynn?” I think he was surprised how quickly I had a named picked out, but he loved it from the start.

Of course, we weren’t ready to 100% make a commitment so soon. We spent the next few months researching every baby girl name out there, but none of them felt right. If anything looking at other names just made us love Annalynn more and more. It was her name, there was no use fighting it.

Since the name Annalynn seemed so strongly linked to my side of the family, we wanted her middle name to represent Derek’s side. We considered both of his grandmothers’ name, but neither fit with Annalynn. Eventually I suggested “Olivia,” which is Derek’s mother’s middle name. It was perfect. Annalynn Olivia. We both loved it.

So Annalynn has a piece of both of her grandmothers with her name. The “Ann” for my mom and “Olivia” for Derek’s mom. She is one lucky girl to have two strong, beautiful grandmothers and I know she will wear the honor of being named for both of them proudly.


We never shared the name with anyone the entire pregnancy. Anyone who knows me, knows I can’t keep a secret to save my life, so holding it in for so long was tough. We both wanted to wait until Annalynn arrived to make sure the name was right. It was. Like I said above, she’s always been Annalynn, she just wanted to make her grand entrance first to prove it.

1 Sana October 11, 2015 at 3:49 pm

I love the linkage of both families in a name! It’s beautiful and so is Annalynn 🙂

2 Jess October 11, 2015 at 6:09 pm

I think it is a stunning name! We told people our new before they were born and people can be awful! We ignored negativity and named them that anyway but you never forget. Summer we didn’t name for a few days after but I always knew she was Summer it was just convincing my husband.
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3 Kate @KateMovingForward October 11, 2015 at 6:44 pm

I love reading how people decide on a baby name! Beautiful choice and it seems to suit here well!
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4 Sarah @ Seriously Lovely October 11, 2015 at 6:54 pm

Annalynn is a lovely name and I think it’s wonderful how much meaning there is to both her first and middle names!
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5 polly October 11, 2015 at 7:26 pm

it’s such a pretty name. and i love all letter n’s too. so so lovely!!! Congrats guys! such a sweet family. XOXO

6 Katie @ Live Half Full October 11, 2015 at 7:35 pm

I love how you linked both families to the name! We are doing the same thing- but you’re right, people are BRUTAL with names! I have a super common last name so I wanted something unique, and let’s just say… we’ve had a few rude comments but I could care less! 🙂
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7 Clara October 11, 2015 at 8:24 pm

Beautiful name! I’ve never heard the name Annalynn before. Olivia is one of my favorite girls’ names. And I like that the name links her to both her parents’ family!!! 🙂

8 Michelle Brandon October 11, 2015 at 9:31 pm

Such a lovely story!

9 Rachel October 12, 2015 at 8:24 am

Our daughter just turned 3 months old! Herfirst name is Anna and her middle name is Lynn. Needless to say, I love your name choice! I also love the double “n’s” ?? Hope you’re all doing well, the first 5-6 weeks is a learning curve for everyone, but after that it truly does get SO much easier ??? All the best!!!

10 Morgan @ Morgan Manages Mommyhood October 12, 2015 at 9:58 am

We kept our son’s name a secret as well. But to be honest, we couldn’t decide until a week before he was born. I love that you paid homage to both families – we gave our son the same middle name as his paternal grandfather who passed 10 years ago and his first name is the middle name of both my husband and my brother.
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11 Jamie October 12, 2015 at 1:26 pm

Love the name. I have heard it before a few times.

My husband gets upset when he discovers another child with our kid’s names. They are Kinely and Tanner. Kinely is getting very popular, much to his displeasure and Tanner has been around a long time.

12 Valerie @ Geaux Momma October 12, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Beautiful name and a great story!
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13 heather October 12, 2015 at 3:31 pm

I love that name. I am going to be 100% honest I named my first son after Michael Jordan….My oldest sons name is Jordan Michael. I was young and not making great decisions at that time.

14 Jenn October 12, 2015 at 4:36 pm

I love her name! My daughters name is Solin… pronounced SO-Lynn. We were going to name her after my cousin in France Solenne. But Solin fit her perfectly!
Naming a baby is hard by the way… Our daughter was nameless for over 24 hours.

15 Pam October 12, 2015 at 6:36 pm

I love this story how you came up with her name, so special!!
I chose our baby girl’s name before she was even conceived as well – I made a small vision board and wrote her name with a heart around it and characteristics.
I was nervous to tell my husband but he liked it. We are sharing with a few close family members and that’s it until she arrives in January.
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16 Katie October 12, 2015 at 9:22 pm

What a beautiful name! I love it!
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17 Carol October 13, 2015 at 9:24 am

This is a beautiful name . I loved it the day I read of your sweet daughter’s birth . Congratulations to Mom , Dad and baby Annalynn !

18 Kelly @ Noodle to the Rescue October 13, 2015 at 10:50 am

Thinking about baby names is one of my favorite things about pregnancy. We decided on Baby #2’s name a while ago but I still find myself checking what’s new on Nameberry every now and then. Annalynn Olivia is a lovely and unique name. I love how it honors both sides of your family.
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19 Diana October 13, 2015 at 1:07 pm

Thanks for sharing, her name is beautiful. I love that you waited until her birth to announce her name. I’m 15 weeks and my husband and I are planning to do the same. We want to meet the baby first before we make the name official, plus it adds another element of excitement for family and friends that already know the gender.

20 Anna October 13, 2015 at 1:21 pm

I love how you linked her name to her grandmothers. I am the same way! My one grandmother’s middle name is Ann and the other grandmother’s middle name is Rose. So I became Anna Rose. I love my name because it is a bit unusual and I did not know many Annas as I was growing up.

21 Stacey October 13, 2015 at 2:54 pm

I love the name. I’m surprised, though, that people are questioning how to pronounce it… seems pretty obvious 🙂 She is adorable, and I love the homage to her grandmas (and her mama!). Congratulations, again.
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22 Sarah October 13, 2015 at 2:55 pm

Love the meaning and the uniqueness!

23 Sheena @ Paws and Pavement October 13, 2015 at 3:30 pm

Thanks for sharing. My name is unique and I love not having to share it (with many) although there were 2 other Sheena’s in my high school. I always wished to have a name that could have a nickname. We always want something else I guess. Ha!

24 Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner October 14, 2015 at 10:16 pm

Such a pretty name! I love hearing how people choose baby names, and I especially love linking family names (if you are close to family). Hope everything is going well!
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25 Brooke D October 18, 2015 at 9:50 pm

Our daughter’s name was Annaleigh, so I know where you’re coming from. Annalynn is beautiful!
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