Spectrum releases list of top baby names for 2019
BIG RAPIDS — Ciara Laramore thought she was picking a unique name for her newborn baby girl when she chose Payton Kenna Miller. Instead, she chose one of the most popular baby names of the year.
Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital released its list of the top baby names of 2019 this week. The top boys name was Jaxon and its variants, including Jaxson, Jaxton, Jackson and Jack. The top girls name was Grace and its variants, such as Gracie, Gracelyn, Gracelynn and Gracylin.
To the surprise of Laramore, 20, of Chase, Payton — along with its variants, Paityn, Peighton and Peyton — ranked fifth for girls.
"I didn't know any girls named Payton, which is kind of why I picked it," Laramore said. "I've always liked the name for girls, ever since I was little. I named my dolls Payton. But I had only known it as a boys name."
Following Grace, for girls, the most popular names were, in order: Adeline (along with Adalyn, Adalynn and Adeline), Emma (Emmalynn), Olivia, Amelia, Evelyn, Everleigh (Everly), Harper and Natalie.
After Jaxon, for boys, the most popular names were Ethan, Grayson, Alexander, Asher, Caleb, Dakota, Johnathan (Jonathan), Levi and Liam.
Grace and its variants didn't make the list in 2018. Jaxon was No. 1 for the third straight year.
Payton Kenna, who is now a happy and healthy 4-month-old, was born at Spectrum Aug. 15 to Laramore and her boyfriend, Shawn Miller.
Their child's name was a "very mutual decision," said Laramore, adding that Shawn Miller liked it in large part because it rhymed with their chosen name if Payton had been a boy — Clayton.
Kenna, which is not on the list of the top baby names, comes from a little game of alphabet soup, according to Laramore. In choosing Kenna, she flipped part of her own middle name, Brianne, and added a K, in honor of her mother, Katherine.
As of Dec. 18, there were 493 babies born at the Big Rapids hospital in 2019, down from 545 in 2018.