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abby--brees2

by Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Congratulations to the Brees family on their latest addition: daughter Rylen Judith.

With just two names, the NFL quarterback and wife Brittany (shown in illustration) managed to capture both extremes in modern baby naming.  The couple chose a first name that’s pure twenty-first century, and paired it with a middle that’s been around since the Old Testament.

Some parents consider names from both sides of the line – innovations like Maddox as well as standards like Robert or Stanley. Most of us probably have a definite preference. Yes to Eleanor, no to Madison. Or maybe it’s the other way around.

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august baby names

By Denise K. Potter

Today, we associate the month of August with sweltering hot weather, vacationers and (gasp) back-to-school shopping commercials. But over the past few centuries, there have been some even more incredible things happening in August. This month is mostly about birthdays: international and national heroes, musicians, poets and explorers all blew out candles in the last month of summer, and their fulfilled wishes were pretty powerful ones. Check out this list of awesome August names and their meanings. And Happy Birthday to all August-born berries and baby-berries!

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posted by: waltzingmorethanmatilda View all posts by this author
australian14

By Anna Otto, WaltzingMoreThanMatilda

The Australian birth data is generally released by each state and territory between New Year and Easter, culminating in the national Top 100. Below are the names which rose the most in 2013, and some possible reasons why they might be doing so well at present. People from other countries may be interested to compare this to their own fastest-rising names, when all the data is in. I have also written an article on my site on those Top 100 names that rose significantly in several states, which has slightly different information.

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posted by: mill1020 View all posts by this author
geekchicc

By Laura Miller Brennan

Everyone loves a freshly hatched word name or a fledgling celebrity baby name, and many of us appreciate names that stem from flowers, trees, and animals.  But for the true biophile, the bug-sketching natural philosopher or the biochemistry disciple who chops thale cress in the lab?  Here are some worthy tribute names for the lovers of the life sciences.

Girls:

Rosalind (Rosalind Elsie Franklin): Rosalind Franklin was an X-ray crystallographer and unsung hero of molecular biology, and her diffraction patterns gave competitor-colleagues James Watson and Francis Crick crucial insight on the three-dimensional structure of DNA.  Her death at age 37 disqualified her for the 1962 Nobel Prize for Medicine.  The meaning of Rosalind is as prepossessing as Dr. Franklin’s acclaimed x-ray photographs—“pretty rose”.

Jane (Valerie Jane Morris Goodall):  Jane is a true classic, not only in the English-speaking world of names but also in conservation biology.  Goodall’s observations on chimpanzee behavior have done much to promote empathy toward animals.  The name of the childhood toy chimpanzee that inspired her enthusiasm for animals was Jubilee, and later, one of her favorite female chimps she dubbed Gremlin.  Gremlin may not be the next great classic for a baby girl, but other renowned conservationists with classic names will inspire: Helen Beatrix Potter and Rachel Carson.

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unusedd

Nameberry 9 by Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Names like Katniss and Rainbow grab headlines.  Will anyone really name their daughter after the Hunger Games heroine?  Will Holly Madison’s little girl grow up loving her colorful name, or will she legally change it to Rachel when she turns eighteen?

Their opposites are the proven classics.  Dependable names, rich with history, like Katherine and Elizabeth, William and James.

Most of us choose something in between.  It’s the baby naming sweet spot: not as unconventional as Pilot or North, but not as limited as, say, Will and Kate’s shortlist for naming a future king.

This week’s baby name news was all about sweet spot names.  They can’t be dismissed as trendy.  The names would have been familiar one hundred years ago.  Odds are strong that they’ll still be in use in another century or two.

And even though they feature in high profile birth announcements or pop culture references, there’s no reason these names wouldn’t wear perfectly well on a child.

This week’s baby names in the news are:

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