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By Abby Sandel

Congratulations to Molly Sims on the arrival of Scarlett May, a little sister for Brooks. We were pleased as punch when Molly – and Maya Rudolphtalked about their love for Nameberry on Late Night with Seth Meyers earlier this year.

Scarlett is a great, stylish choice, and May is one of the middle names of the moment. But this week was brought to you by the letter P.

And not just any P names. The two biggest celebrity baby name announcements featured P names for girls, and both of those names are pretty unusual in the US.

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This week, Appellation Mountain‘s Abby Sandel considers the subject of naming style as reflected in current newsy choices

Baby name style is a highly personal thing, and I’m always surprised by the names on birth announcements. Sure, I can guess with sometimes frightening accuracy what parents will have shortlisted for baby #2 or #3, but they’ve already showed their hand by then. Until they’ve hinted at what they’re thinking of for their firstborn, baby name style is surprisingly tough to guess.

Over the summer, I met three siblings, all living in the same area, each with a daughter about the same age. The three girls’ names could have easily belonged to sisters, even triplets: Annabelle, Georgia, and Phoebe. The women of the family clearly share the same general style – so much that I’d guess there must have been some consternation when they found out they were all expecting daughters within the same year.

For every situation where two former roommates both want to use Ethan James for their sons, there are plenty of cases where, no matter how much sisters or friends have in common, name style is simply not one of them. You roll your eyes when your BFF suggests Kestrel, only to hear your sis describe Eleanor as too old-fashioned.

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This week, Appellation Mountain‘s Abby Sandel looks beyond the Top 1000 most popular baby names list to find some still undiscovered goodies.

Wasn’t yesterday a little bit like a birthday/Fourth of July/belated Mother’s Day celebration all rolled into one?  I’ll admit it: I hung up on my own mother to watch The Today Show announcement.

Most of us – whether we’re due next month or many years away from starting a family – immediately search a few key names.  If you were hoping to keep your favorite all to yourself, there might have been disappointing news on May 14.  Adele and Olive both rose.  So did Willow and Beatrice, Declan and Archer, Nico and EnzoPenelope was up, and Ezra, too.  Berries tend to be ahead of the curve, but the wider world does eventually catch on.

But fear not – there is a silver lining.  Search for stylish, appealing appellations that remain unranked and outside of the spotlight, and there are plenty to choose from.

I spent yesterday looking for what isn’t on the much-awaited list.

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11 Most Notable Names of 2011

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What were the names that most commanded our attention this year?  Our notable names of 2011 are inspired by heroes and heroines real and imagined, contemporary and historic, all grown up and newborn.  Their names are zooming into focus and disappearing from view, newly-minted and freshly revived.

The most notable names of 2011, one of them perhaps right for your brand new baby, are:

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Happy 3rd Birthday to Nameberry!

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You know you’ve been around a while when you forget your birthday.  The third anniversary of Nameberry’s launch, earlier in October, came and went without any of us realizing it.  But now that we have, we want to pause and take stock of how far we’ve come with the help of all you wonderful berries over the past three years:

Number of visitors: Nearly 12 million

Number of page views: Almost 90 million

Number of countries populated by berries: All of them.  Even you, Chad!

Most-read blog: Baby Names 2011: The Hottest Trends, with nearly a million readers.

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