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tradition with a twist

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Keira Knightley is expecting, Carrie Underwood is due soon, and we all know that Will and Kate will welcome baby #2 in 2015.

While we look forward to all of next year’s birth announcements, here’s a piece of baby name advice gleaned from this week’s newest arrivals:

Traditional with a twist is a foolproof strategy.

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celebrity baby names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

The stars, they’re just like us.  They shop for groceries.  Run out for coffee.  And celebrity parents love names with vibrant, exciting letters like V, X, and Z – just like the rest of the world.

Names featuring V, X, and Z aren’t novel.  One hundred years ago, parents were naming their daughters Evelyn and Virginia.  Melvin, Marvin, Vernon, and Alvin were all up-and-comers circa 1914.  Max, Felix, and Hazel have had good runs before, and rarities like Zenobia and Zola aren’t quite as rare as you might guess.

Even Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II – there’s that letter ‘z’ again – has a granddaughter named Zara, born all the way back in 1981.

But those letters feel almost epidemic nowadays, from favorites like Zoe and Xavier to nouveau names like Zayden and Everly.

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thanks for baby names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Later this week, the United States celebrates Thanksgiving.  In simplest terms, it’s a feast, one with a very traditional menu, and a good excuse to head over the river and through the woods to see our loved ones.

But Thanksgiving is also a verb – a time to express gratitude for the best things in our lives.

How perfect, then, to read Sarah Baird’s “I Don’t Have Babies But I’m Obsessed With Baby Names” in The Atlantic earlier this week.

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baby boy names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Let’s say you’re naming a son.

You’re a buttoned-up kind of family, and the classics seem like the right route.

The only problem?

Your nephew is James, your favorite cousin is expecting a Henry, and William is your BFF’s #1 choice.  Charles was a frontrunner, except there’s already a little Charlie two doors down – and she’s a girl.

What’s a parent to do?  Go further back, of course.

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Nameberry 9+9

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

With fewer than ten weeks left in 2014, let’s take a look back at the best of the high profile birth announcements so far.

Sure, there have been some outlandish choices. Celebrity babies have been named Bunny and Buzz, Future and Royal Reign.

But there have been some amazing celebrity baby names, stylish choices rich with meaning, unusual names that feel like they’d be wearable in Hollywood or anyone’s hometown.

I couldn’t keep the list to just nine total, so here are my nine favorite celebrity baby names for girls, and nine more for boys – subject, of course, to revision, any time between now and December 31st!

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