...because home doesn't happen overnight.
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

09.April.2012

I told my husband about Mabrey’s name story since I thought it was absolutely adorable (we’re having our 4th boy soon so we won’t be able to “steal” the name!). He asked me how Larew was spelled because he expected it to be “LaRue” which means “the road” or “the street” in French: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LaRue. Not sure if you were aware of that connection but I thought it was pretty awesome! Congrats on your beautiful baby girl!

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replied on April 10th, 2012

Kerri – Yes, I did know LaRue meant ‘road’ in French! Was wondering if anyone would pick up on that. Larew is after my great grandmother but it’s pretty cool that it goes along with how we came up with her first name as well!

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09.April.2012

This is a great name! My daughter is four-years-old and her name is Mabry. We named her after my college roommate’s last name. I too wanted something unique and different. Your little girl is only the third person I have ever seen with Mabry/Mabrey as her name. I love all of her hair. She is precious. Congratulations on your new daughter.

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Although it’s spelled differently, I thought Mabrey may like to know about another namesake, tennis great Clarence Mabry:

(from the US Professional Tennis Association Hall of Fame webpage:)

Clarence Mabry, inducted in 2006

Clarence Mabry is both a respected player and tennis-teaching professional. As a player, he was nationally ranked and a state champion, winning the Southwest Conference singles and doubles title while at the University of Texas at Austin in 1946. In 1955 he established the Trinity University’s men’s tennis team and went on to develop a nationally recognized program. He led them to the NCAA championship in 1972, and for 18 of his 19 years as coach, his team ranked in the top four NCAA teams, giving him an impressive win-loss record of 319-36.

As coach of the San Antonio Racquets, he led the team to its first professional national tennis championship in 1986. He is also co-owner of the John Newcombe Tennis Ranch, which opened in 1968.

Mabry’s other honors include induction into the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Men’s Tennis Collegiate Hall of Fame, Texas Tennis Hall of Fame, San Antonio Hall of Fame, Trinity University Hall of Fame and the University of Texas Hall of Honor.

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replied on April 10th, 2012

architect’s daughter – I’ll pass it on to Mabrey ;) I actually played tennis all through high school.

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09.April.2012

Love her name!! She is adorable! My oldest son’s name is Layne..he is 16 and I still love it!

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09.April.2012

She is adorable! Are you enjoying using instagram? I am thinking of getting an iphone.

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replied on April 10th, 2012

Leese – Just started using Instagram. Love it so far!

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10.April.2012

Such a sweet name and a beautiful baby girl! Congratulations!

I, too, used a road name as a name inspiration. My son’s middle name is “Hayes” which is the name of the street we lived on when he was born. It always makes me think of bringing him home for the first time. Enjoy this precious time!

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10.April.2012

I love the origin of your daughter’s name! If we’d had a daughter (we ended up with 2 sons) I was going to lobby for Mairie. I noticed it when we went to Paris — it means ‘city hall’ in French and since hubs is a lifelong public servant (having worked in 4 city halls/govt centers so far in his career), it seemed apropos. Not sure if he’d have gone for it, but I really liked the idea. :)

Congratulations on your lovely daughter!

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11.April.2012

Know a little one named Mabre, pronounced the same. She was named after her Grandma’s, Martha and Brenda. I loved it and your lil sweeties’ name too. She is a doll! Start hunting for the little Pebbles Flintstone barrette we had for our 1 babe with hair. She got lots of comments on it. was sooo cute, and the best way to keep it up till it grew enough. Lil girly is 2, with hair down to her mid back now. Her cousin is 7mos. older and still just a bit of fuzz.

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Congratulations – I’m so happy you had a girl. When we use to sit around the ol’ Theta house, I remember you talking about wanting to have lots of kids…and I thought you were nuts (the whole kids thing didn’t interest me until around age 29) – but I also thought about how beautiful (and brilliant) your future babies would be. Again, congrats – she is a very lucky little lady to have you to look up to.

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12.April.2012

Hello! I love the name because my maiden name is Cabrey. I’ve often thought about naming one of my future daughters Cabrey and as you can see my name was an alliteration and I loved it! Always a good call :)

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16.April.2012

So sweet! Growing up I knew a family with the last name Mabrey. And the hair is killing me – my oldest had the same. I used to say it was like wheat swaying in the breeze. It just got taller and taller and never fell over until she was well into 8 or 9 months. I loved it and let it stay that way!

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17.April.2012

I Love, LOVE her name! Beautiful choice and beautiful story behind it :).

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31.October.2012

My daughter’s name is Mabry and I named her after a road too!!! that is so funny! people ask me all the time, where did you come up with that? now i know i’m not alone!

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replied on October 31st, 2012

Small world! Love her name ;)

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[…] – Blogger Dana of Housetweaking was already mom to boys Layne and Everett when she found out she was having #3 – their first […]

30.September.2014

I’m not pregnant nor do I have any kids yet, but I’ve loved the name Mabrey for a few years now. I honestly have no clue where I’ve ever heard it- but this story is lovely.

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