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04.06.12 / What’s in a Name?

Good Friday, everyone! Sorry for the late post. Mabrey and I had our first girls’ morning out this morning. Mabrey is one week old today and that entailed a well check visit at the pediatrician’s office.

The girl is thriving…already a 1/4″ longer and exceeding her birth weight. And can I talk about her hair for a minute? It’s dark and long and wacky. Left au natural, it stands on end. I haven’t even tried to tame it. I love it.

Anyhow, after a successful trip to the pediatrician, I took the long way home to show Mabrey her namesake.

Many people have asked how we came up with the name Mabrey, saying they’ve never heard it before. Well, that’s probably because we didn’t get it out of a book of baby names or know anyone named Mabrey. The name Mabrey actually comes from a quiet country road that runs alongside a local rural airport. We’ve parked there many times with Layne and Everett watching planes take off and land.

The first time we were there the road name caught my attention. I immediately thought it would be a cute name for a girl. Not that I ever thought I’d have a girl to name!

When we found out we were unexpectedly expecting, Mabrey made it onto our girl name list. After the birth and after learning #3 was a girl {we’re still trying to wrap our heads around the whole daughter thing!}, we ended up choosing Mabrey for:

1) its uniqueness – our last name is so common {Miller} that we prefer less common first names for our kiddos to preserve some sense of originality

2) the emotions that we have tied up in it – we always think of watching planes with our boys

3) its alliteration with our last name – that’s mostly me. I like names to flow well

I think it will be fun one summer day when Mabrey is older to grab some ice cream as a family, park out on Mabrey Road and tell her how her name came to be.

Mabrey’s middle name is Larew. It was my great grandmother’s maiden name. I’ve always liked it.

That, my friends, is the story behind our baby girl’s name. As with everything else we’re passionate about, when it comes to naming babies we take inspiration from anywhere and anything…including road signs.

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

74 Comments

06.April.2012

What a mellifluous name! I love it.

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06.April.2012

What a beautiful and meaningful story. Love the name!

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06.April.2012

I love the name. And the story behind it is wonderful. And wow she has great hair!

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06.April.2012

what a sweet picture, she’s a little doll!

love the name choice (and the story behind it.) if I could give any naming advice to other mothers-to-be, it would be not to choose a common name with an uncommon spelling. My nickname in school was Carol with an E ;)

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06.April.2012

I love it! I too just had a baby girl (5 months almost) after having two boys. I can’t explain what having a little girl does to your heart but I feel all warm inside everytime I see her. I’m so excited for you and your family and wish you all the best!

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How exactly is it pronounced? May-bree? Adorable!

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replied on April 6th, 2012

Robin – It’s pronounced MAY-bree luh-ROO. I keep telling people Mabrey is like ‘maybe’ but with an ‘R’ between the ‘b’ & ‘e’.

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06.April.2012

I love her name! It is so unique, yet it doesn’t seem weird or original when you hear it. I also love that hair!!

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06.April.2012

It’s my last name, but with an extra E! :D

Be warned – I’ve gone through my entire life without anyone ever able to spell it or pronounce it properly. My last name is pronounced “May-bree” but I’ve heard every variation imaginable. The most common I get is “Mayberry” like in Andy Griffith. Fortunately for Mabrey, no one in her generation should remember that :)

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06.April.2012

oh, there is so much packed into her wonderful name.
love her hair ~ there’s plenty of time for “taming” things later.

and, to “carole with an e”, i’m “catie with a c” ; )

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06.April.2012

I adore the name! And Larue (spelled differently but pronounced the same) is my great aunt’s first name. So pretty! Congrats!

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06.April.2012

So cute, I love that Mabrey has meaning for all of you, like she was always apart of things. We are having trouble with a boys name. Are you willing to spill your unused name? We have 6 weeks to go, and he’s already 6lb, 3oz, so the obvious name is Goliath, but…

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replied on April 6th, 2012

Amy – Our top pick for a boy’s name was Penn. Again, another ‘made up’ name that paid respect to HH’s home state of Pennsylvania. We were a little disappointed we didn’t get to use it. A few other boy names on our list were Leo, Ike & Anders. Good luck with your new – possibly BIG! – baby boy.

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06.April.2012

I just love it- unique, meaningful, and beautiful!

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06.April.2012

I think it’s a lovely name even without explanation but the story behind it so sweet! Not overly sentimental (like a honeymoon location) but not totally random either (as seen on TV). Our friends had that name on their list for their second child, who ended up being a Matteo instead. I think they were going to spell is Maebrey as a combination of Mae and Aubrey. I’ve loved the names Mae (it’s my daughter’s middle name—after her great-grandma) and Maeby, so I’m a fan of Mabrey, is what I’m trying to say. Good choice.

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06.April.2012

I forgot to say: Her hair is AHHMAZING! Precious girl.

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I think it’s a beautiful name for a beautiful girl! And I love the special meaning it holds. Congrats to your family!

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06.April.2012

Mabrey is RIDICULOUSLY cute…like so cute I can’t take it anymore adorable…I don’t know how you can get anything done!

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06.April.2012

What a precious story behind Mabrey’s name! I absolutely love it and who knows, it might just pop up in a “baby name” book someday. :)

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06.April.2012

Awww. My daughter, Ellery, was named after a street, too. And we have a road sign photo just like that hanging in her room. Mabrey is adorable, and I predict you are going to LOVE having a daughter!

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06.April.2012

My great great Grandmother is named Mabrey. I love it. I believe her name was German or Polish. I really don’t know it’s orgin though I thought you might like to know it was once a common name. I have 3 daughters, all named after older relatives. My youngest is Ada. Not AVA but Ada. My great grandma’s name is Ada. It is her mother that was Mabrey. That name was on our list too! Beautiful name and maybe as unique and carefree as her hair. Wonderful.

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06.April.2012

I’ve been busier than usual this week with a new shift (and 20 hours of overtime) so i havent been able to keep up lately… but I have been thinking of you… “Gee she ought to have had that darn thing by now!” :o

LOVE LOVE LOVE the name. I met one girl named Mabrey and fell in love with it. Unfortunately, when i do have children, I’ve already decided it doesnt flow well with Nolazco… although not much does ;)

enjoy her <3

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06.April.2012

That name is precious and beautiful and will make some really great airplane-watching memories :) Glad you are soaking up every minute

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06.April.2012

I adore the name and sweet, little Mabrey is so darn cute. I have two little boys myself so you must be relishing the chance to buy girly things. I never thought I’d even care about having a girl, but 7 years spent playing army and trains has me longing for a tea party! Mabrey’s brothers must love her so much : ) Please post a picture soon of the three of them!

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replied on April 6th, 2012

Michele – Would you believe I’ve yet to buy one single girlie thing?! Luckily, we have friends and neighbors who have given us infant girl hand-me-downs over the past few days. I’m sure I’ll cave soon though…

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06.April.2012

such a beautiful name for your girl. I have a similar story of a girls name I like, (I’m not married nor do I have kids, yet) I was driving from Chicago to Panama City, FL with girlfriends for Spring break back in 2002. Late in evening (or early morning…) we were driving through rural Alabama and I saw a sign for a town called “Jemison” (in my head it would be pronounced “Gem-mah-sen”) and immediately thought how cute that would be for a girls name. I hope I have a girl one day to throw that name in the picking mix!!

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06.April.2012

What a fun story for your little girl later on in life! I’m having a boy this summer (#3) and have zero names thus far…I’ll start looking at street names and maybe something will inspire us :)

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06.April.2012

What a great story, so glad Mabrey’s doing well!

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06.April.2012

I actually grew up in Mabry Road. Spelled differently and located outside Atlanta haha. Your little Mabrey is adorable!

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06.April.2012

Gorgeous name, and what a wonderful meaning behind it!

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06.April.2012

Well I just adore the name! So sweet! And even sweeter are her pics. She is such a little cutie!

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06.April.2012

I started following your blog for the decor (you have talent and quite the eye, Dana) and keep reading for the design and the family and the writing and the genuine-ness. It’s like being a peeping Thomasina :)–without any of the ickiness, because you choose to let us in. What a beautiful little girl! Looking forward to seeing more of her, your boys, HH, you, and the Underdog as its transformation continues. As always, thanks for sharing.

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06.April.2012

love names that have personal meaning. All our kids names derived from something very special to us. And Beckett is a street as well. Beckett Ridge Blvd, is the main street leading to our first house (in Becket Ridge subdivision) where we brought Beckett home from the hospital. Of course we were to close in 2 short months on our new house, so it wasn’t so weird after we moved :) Love the name and Congrats again!

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06.April.2012

Isn’t it fun having a girl??? It’s like you wouldn’t know what you were missing if you didn’t have a girl child, but getting to have that relationship is just so special. I love my daughter so much (and my son, too, of course). Each bring parts of my halves to a whole.

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06.April.2012

I love it Dana! She is beautiful! And I love the name! You are so unique! And the story is even better! Take care and thanks for all the great posts and pics!

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07.April.2012

I love her name and the story behind it! I, also, love that you guys go to watch airplanes with your boys – we go to watch trains with ours! ;) I have to add that I think we have similar tastes :) I have a Leo, an Everett (you are the only other person with one of those that I know!) and just added our little Audrey in January. Enjoy her & them all together :)

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07.April.2012

So precious ! The baby, her name, the story behind her name … and her hair !! You might just want to learn how to make french braids very soon !! Take care !

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07.April.2012

Your little girl looks so much like my little girl did. That little girl is now 13 but at birth she had the exact same hair as Mabrey. By age 3 her hair was so long and so think that I would clip it up with one of those jaw clips with the teeth- you know grab the hair into a ponytail, twist the hair, pulling it up toward the sky as you go and grab the completed twisty bun-y mass with the hair clamp….an adult sized hair clamp. It was sooo cute and got lots of attention because nobody has hair that thick at age 3. Thick and ringlet curls. She literally (I am not even exaggerating at all) cried every single day for 8 years when I had to brush those curls. So fun to have that gores hair to play with and after 2 boys I am sure you will enjoy every moment.

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07.April.2012

What a lovely story! And I’m laughing because isn’t there a Miller Road nearby??

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awwwwww how sweet. She is gorgeous!!! Congrats on your new arrival. I need to catch up on your blog. ;)

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07.April.2012

Love it! My sister just named her daughter Sutton after the street we grew up on:)

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07.April.2012

beautiful, dana. simply beautiful.

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07.April.2012

She is so cute!! I have a huge thing for babies with hair. My babies had tons of hair, especially my son who was born with a full gorgeous head of hair. Mabrey is so, so sweet. Congratulations!

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I love the name, and congrats!!!

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07.April.2012

The more I see your pictures of the baby, the more I think that Mabrey looks a lot like Everett. Do you agree ? Take care !

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replied on April 9th, 2012

Ariane – Yes! Mabrey looks a lot like Everett did as a newborn. It’ll be fun to see how she changes and if she continues to take after Everett.

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07.April.2012

It’s beautiful! Congrats on the baby girl. You are a very lucky mama!

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07.April.2012

Congratulations! Beautiful name for a beautiful baby girl:)

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08.April.2012

Hi Carol with an “e”, I’m Ann with an “e”!
Gorgeous name, story and hair! My youngest, Emma (I’m not very adventurous when it comes to names) has a double cowlick, I’m having great fun trying to decide which way to part it – either way and it hits the cowlick and wants to go the other way. She’s going to have fun with that as she gets older.
Hope you’re enjoying these lovely early days. Thank you for sharing them with us.
Anne x

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09.April.2012

Congratulations! So is so beautiful and delicious!

BTW-what kind of camera do you use? You take amazing pictures!

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replied on April 9th, 2012

Mandi – If you like the pics from this post, they were taken with my iPhone using the Instagram app. It’s a great FREE app!

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09.April.2012

She is soooo pretty! And the hair! LOVE IT!

It is funny but with every little one I’ve thought, omg, how am I going to fit this new person in my life/house/schedule?? And each time they just manage to fit perfectly, like it was meant to be. I could totally feel that in the tone of your XX! post, even before I reached the end. Doesn’t it feel like she’s been a part of your family forever? I can already envision her in the Underdog, chasing her big brothers around. :)

Congratulations again, and thank you for sharing! She is beautiful!

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09.April.2012

I love the double M! I myself have a double MM name and like the way it flows. My children will have the opposite last name problem. My last name is VERY uncommon so I’ve tried to think of names that more common, but also original. My daughters name will be Maggie (after my great grandmother) and my sons name will be Lawrence (my MIL’s maiden name!). Common, but original for us!

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09.April.2012

That is such a wonderful story, and I LOVE the name. She is a beautiful baby, and I love the hair. My second had hair like that when he was a baby, and I loved how it seemed to grow straight up! Seeing that picture made me miss my babies! :)

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09.April.2012

beautiful baby with a beautiful name. congrats!

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