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The Best Names in Your Family Tree

family names

Let’s face it: We all have embarrassing names in our family trees. Great Aunt Hortense and Uncle Myron, Grandma Gladys and Dad Brad. They’re the family names we hope we won’t be expected to pass down to our children.

But hey, today we’re here to celebrate the wonderful names, and we all have those too. Searching through the family archives, you discover that your great-great-grandmother was named Marguerite or Flora, or that you have a handsome Henry or Nathaniel among your forebears. Or it might be a surname or a middle name you discover that’s worth polishing up and passing down: Callahan or Keene or Caruso.

So what’s the best name or names in your family tree? The names you’re actually excited about passing on to a child? And who and where did they come from?

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Twin Names: Seven Ways to Link

twin names

There are lots of ways to link twin names, from the obvious — sharing a first initial — to the so-subtle-it’s-nearly-invisible.  Here, we look at the seven major ways to link names for twins, with examples of specific names that work…..and a few that don’t.  Even if you’re not expecting twins but want to link your children’s names in some way, this is a good general guide to the possibilities.

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December babies

By Linda Rosenkrantz

Congratulations and welcome to all the beautifully named babyberries born in December, and thanks to their parents for posting and sharing their name stories.

More boys than girls this month and just one set of multiples, who carry on the family tradition of double first names (two of the more unusual names reported):

Penny-Lane Brenda and Priscilla-Lorraine Joy

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Ethnic baby names

By Alicia Chon

I recently watched a documentary titled The Grace Lee Project, where a Korean-American filmmaker named Grace Lee from Missouri investigated why people assume that most Grace Lees are ‘reserved, dutiful, piano-playing overachievers.’ The film explored the importance of a name and the stereotypes that are correspondingly cast as a result.

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Christmas names

Once again, Whitepages, that huge storehouse of the names of people residing in the U.S., continues its practice of putting together interesting—and often humorous– statistical reports on the popularity of names, particularly focused on holidays.

And Christmas is no exception. This current list is of the twelve most festive first and last names in the country, released just in time for the holiday season. Carol (first name) and Bell (last name) were at the top, with 1,148,024 and 385,651 people sharing the names, respectively.

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