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CHOOSING A NAME FOR YOUR BABY

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According to Child magazine, Ashley is the most popular name for girls and Michael is the most popular name for boys among today's parents.

Other popular names, according to the magazine: Jessica, Amanda, Brittany, Sarah, Samantha, Megan, Emily, Kayla and Elizabeth, for girls; Christopher, Joshua, Matthew, Andrew, Ryan, Jacob, Nicholas, Tyler and James, for boys.Albert Mehrabian of Los Angeles, author of "The Name Game," and Dr. H. David Stein, an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, offer these points for a winning name:

- Steer clear of names with ugly or sexual connotations.

- Try not to choose names that rhyme.

- Be wary of names with strange or difficult spellings.

- Test each name by saying it aloud or using different permutations to make sure it's not problematic, such as Kristal Chandelier.

- If you must use a name because it is a family tradition but it seems a bit outdated or burdensome, allow your child to choose a middle name or a nickname to use every day.

- Seek names that can be a source of pride or that sound friendly, outgoing, savvy or intelligent.

Avoid traveler's backache

CHICAGO (AP) - An overnight plane ride or a long train trip often can cause lower back and neck discomfort.

Since most seats are designed for space needs, it is up to the passenger to modify the chair for comfortable seating, say travel consultants.

Try placing a small pillow, a rolled-up towel, or a blanket in the hollow of your back to keep it from flattening out. A modified pelvic tilt - putting your hands on your hips and pushing your pelvis forward - will also help.

Then, place a smaller pillow or towel behind your neck and recline your chair to help alleviate neck discomfort. Finally, get up at least once every hour and move around.