A blog name is pretty important, wouldn’t you say?
When I decided I wanted to create a blog, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to call it, considering I hadn’t nailed down exactly what my blog’s purpose was going to be – I enjoy writing, and I have many interests… but coming up with some kind of focus area is sort of important to the success of a blog – otherwise you can’t regularly maintain the interest of a core group of readers. (Or, you could look at it the other way – incorporating many themes and post topics may appeal to more readers – but you could lose their interest if you vary your topics too much, too often. Rats.)
I am new to the blogging world, and as I type this post, I haven’t even really shared my blog or its intentions with anyone except my sister. Until I nail down exactly what I want the blog to convey, and until I know I can do this consistently enough to warrant promotion via social media, I have been writing posts just for me… (and my sister). The last thing I want to do is start something, and not finish it! Not my style.
So, when it came to choosing a name, I wanted something ambiguous – I enjoy DIY projects, but wouldn’t call myself an expert, and didn’t want to associate myself with that title. I work full-time in the fitness industry, but am by no means a fitness “expert” and am still learning things about health and fitness every day, so I would call myself more of a “wellness enthusiast” – fitness, healthy eating, and also living in moderation – I don’t take myself too seriously; and I eat cookies and consume things… like alcohol… often. While I am an organization queen, I couldn’t possibly write only about keeping my life organized – not to mention that would probably be boring. I love animals, sports, reading, crochet-ing, and many other things – but am, of course, no expert in either category. So – I thought I would come up with a name that was ambiguous, and in the event that I do focus my “brand” on one specific category, this would simply be known and understood by the tagline (which is currently “Home . Family . Wellness”)
But… the name, I thought, should also be special to me – whether the general readership understands it or not! So, for the purpose of explaining why I chose such an ambiguous and (seemingly) random combination of words for my blog, here’s where ACORN & COCO were born.
Way, way back…
In 2004, my family and I took our first big trip together to an all-inclusive resort. (We had been on many various family trips before, but this was the first to a resort of all-inclusive nature). I was 16, and my sister was 21. I don’t need to bore you with the details of this trip – all you need to know is that we went to Cuba, and I learned very quickly that with the Spanish language translation, it is very difficult for anyone whose first language is Spanish to correctly pronounce the combination of the English T and N sound together. (Case in point, the name “Courtney” is very difficult to say, and comes off more like “Corney”, without the T sound.) We had a good laugh about it, in any case!
Fast forward – 2010
My sister and now brother-in-law got engaged, and planned their wedding to be destination-style in Cuba. This was my first destination wedding, and it was so much fun! We had a blast with 25+ family and friends, and the wedding was perfect. Here’s a snap of us on my sister’s wedding day:
During the trip, because there were so many of us, I guess we felt more inclined than usual to participate in the resort events – it’s always easier to participate when you have friends to be silly with you! We spent most of our time at the beach, and they would often have lunch barbecues, games, competitions (usually with a bottle of rum as the prize), and sports/fitness activities. You know, typical resort activities. (In case you’re wondering… the resort we stayed at was in the Iberostar chain, and I would highly recommend them! We’ve been to many since, and my husband and I also got married at an Iberostar resort in the Dominican Republic).
During our regular activities, we ran into what I would call the “entertainment leader” – he called himself “Roly Poly” and was always the one coordinating the events, and recruiting people to join in. He got to know our group quite well considering we were always agreeing to participate in his games! Here’s a photo of us dancing with Roly Poly on the beach in some kind of beach “dance” competition:
Roly Poly and the others also tried to recruit people via their sound system – they would walk around with the microphone and announce when another activity was starting. They would also announce, as we would soon learn, when there was a winner in a competition. In this particular “beach dance” competition, I ended up being the winner. Hooray! Now I would get a free bottle of rum! Score. True to form, Roly Poly pulled out his trusty microphone, and decided to announce who the glorious winner was. He put his arms around me and asked for my name. I said “Courtney”. He promptly announced into the microphone:
“Everybody, we have winner, here is beach dance winner, Mr. Corny from… [leans over and whispers] Corny, where you from?” “Canada”
“Mr. Corny from Canada!!!!!!”
Our entire family lost their minds. Corny? Hilarious. Mr.? Even better. For the rest of the trip (and, also afterwards…) I was lovingly nicknamed “Mr. Corny from Canada” – which then turned into “Corn” for short, with my immediate family. My sister, brother-in-law, cousins, and then boyfriend/now husband, still, 5 years later, often refer to me as “Corn”. HILARIOUS, guys!
From Corn to Acorn… a Welcomed Change!
Shortly after we returned from my sister’s wedding trip, we were informed that they were newly pregnant! This was very exciting news, as this babe would be the first grandchild on both my parents’ side, as well as my brother-in-law’s side. My sister informed me of her bundle of joy, and we then realized that I would soon be “Auntie Corn” instead of just “Corn”. Somebody, I don’t remember who (…maybe it was me?) suggested I could be called “Acorn”, an in effort to blend both names. SOLD! I would gladly take Acorn over the horrendous Corn nickname! From then on, any time my name was to be signed anywhere, it was “with love, from Acorn” – much cuter!
As time went on, I was referred to as Acorn for the duration of my niece’s arrival – at least for the first 9-10 months of her life! Around that time, she started talking – and I guess nobody ever considered that “Acorn” was a pretty tough word to say for a toddler who is just barely stringing together two simple syllables – “mama” and “dada” were about it for a while! When we started getting a feel for her language and began seeing it progress, we started attempting to get her to say “Courtney” – which was still pretty tough for her to say. She tried a few things, but nothing close to Courtney or even Acorn came out. Then, my sister decided it’d be a great idea to utilize the same one sound, two syllable approach – and “Coco” emerged. COCO! What an adorable name to be called! Even better than Acorn, and a landslide ahead of Corn! To our surprise, the “C” sound did not prove difficult for my niece, and she was almost immediately able to say “Coco” and to distinguish that Coco was me. Hooray! From this point on, and to this day, I go by “Coco” or “Auntie Coco” – with my sister including a nostalgic reference to “Acorn” now and again. I have since acquired another adorable niece, who also knows me as “Coco”. I couldn’t ask for a better handle!
And so, now you know the origin of both Acorn and Coco – and how they mean more to me than just the sum of their definitions. If you haven’t already noticed, I am incredibly close to my sister – and when my niece was born it single-handedly changed my perspective about children, and although I knew it would be later in life for me, I definitely knew I wanted to have kids of my own one day. Prior to this little one coming around, I wasn’t traditionally interested in babies or other peoples children… but this little woman changed me and we bonded right away. Both of my nieces have a special place in my heart, and it makes me even more excited to be expecting myself for the first time.
While my blog may not yet have a specific theme or brand, the name will always be close to my heart – and yet it is ambiguous enough that anyone can relate… at least that’s the plan! Any blog post I do is written with purpose, intention, and love – and I hope the name reflects that on some level. Here’s hoping! I guess only time will tell.