Kerri Walsh’s Blog: Playing the Name Game

08/24/2010 at 01:00 PM ET

Kerri Walsh has taken home two Olympic gold medals in beach volleyball with partner Misty May-Treanor.

But she has two even bigger accomplishments to her name: Sons Joseph Michael, 15 months, and Sundance Thomas, 3 months, with fellow volleyball star Casey Jennings.

In her latest blog, Walsh, 32, explains how she and Casey chose names for their two boys — drawing inspiration from family, friends — and Butch Cassidy!

Courtesy Kerri Walsh

A lot of you have been wondering about the names of our sons. Why did we choose to go with such a traditional name in Joseph Michael and then go the opposite direction with Sundance Thomas? How could we do that to our boys?! They’ll be ruined for life! Well believe it or not, we were very thoughtful when it came to the naming process and we absolutely love the names of our boys.

It was a piece of cake naming Joey. When Casey and I first found out that we were expecting, we settled on Joseph right away. Regardless of whether we were having a boy or a girl, we wanted a “Joey” — it’s a family name for both of us. Casey is the youngest of five boys and the brother closest in age to him and his best friend is Joey. Easy. For me, Joseph is my father’s middle name — which I have always loved — and I love that my son shares that with him.

Joey’s middle name was initially going to be Thomas, just like his Poppa. Sadly a few months before Joey was born, a wonderful man and a dear friend of ours passed away. Michael comes from our beloved friend, Michael John Whitmarsh, and we are so proud to have honored our friend in such a special way. Joey was named after some amazing men — strong, funny, loving, wonderful men — and it most definitely suits him.

Courtesy Kerri Walsh

Now coming up with Sundance Thomas is an entirely different story, as you can imagine. Sundance is a name that I initially said, “No way!” to. How could we do such a thing to our child?! He’ll be ridiculed! πŸ˜‰

Well, I obviously changed my mind and here is the reason why: Initially, Sundance was going to be named Kelly Thomas. We found the name Kelly from a character in a movie we both like. Kelly was the father figure and he was so kind and loving and showed such strength. I loved the name, but Casey never truly did. Kelly remained the chosen name until late in my third trimester, when Casey started to throw out suggestions for another name. Neither of us could find a name that fit the little angel in my belly until…

When Casey threw out the name Sundance his eyes lit up like the sun and he smiled so big and bright. “Baby,” he said. “Can you imagine a little Sundance?! Picture our 5-year-old little boy shaking hands and introducing himself at school. ‘Hello! my name is Sundance,’ in his cute little voice. And then when he’s older, sitting on his porch watching his grandkids run around — ole Sundance!”

What about all the years in between, I thought? That’s a lot of years to have to deal with an unusual name, especially when people can be so unkind and judgmental. Casey and I continued to discuss the name but to tell you the truth, in my heart I settled on that name pretty darn quickly.

The way Casey spoke about the name made me fall in love with it. He spoke of his brothers running around like little cowboys while growing up. Exploring, having so many adventures, learning the ways of the world together. He spoke of our boys doing the same.

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is a favorite movie in our household. Casey introduced it to me and I absolutely love it. I love it for many reasons, but mainly I love the relationship between Butch and Sundance — so much love and respect. Such a good balance between the two and they both would have done anything for each other. That’s what we wanted for our boys. Love, respect, self-confidence and wisdom through experience.

Casey helped me to see the beauty in the name Sundance, and made me realize that our boy deserved such a strong and special name. Sundance Thomas — I absolutely LOVE IT!! Joseph Michael and Sundance Thomas Jennings. Two beautiful names for two wonderful boys. Names chosen out of love, respect and a sense of cowboy adventure.

Courtesy Kerri Walsh

All my best,

— Kerri Walsh

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Avery on

Not a fan of the name Sundance. BUT, he’s a gorgeous little boy anyways. At least no one will forget his name.

Kristen on

Wow, am I really the first one to comment? Probably not, probably just the first I can see. I really love the name Joseph as it my oldest son’s name which we chose because he is our second child and after fertility issues it was surprising we got pregnant so quickly and the name Joseph means “God will give another child.” Also, I have an Italian grandmother so St Joseph is a family favorite (and family name). Sundance is not a name I would choose for my son, but it means something very special to Kerri and Casey, so it is definitely the name for them. We went through something similar when we named our daughter Shelby. My husband’s family could not understand why we would name our daughter that. We had chosen it from Steel Magnolias because we loved the idea of our daughter being strong but still fragile. Our daughter is autistic, so for us that name fits all the more. I know the commenters on this site strongly dislike the name Sundance, but I hope they can understand that this is not their child, not their decision and Kerri isn’t posting to justify the name but to tell the story. Unfortunately I know most commenters are way too self-righteous and judmental to let it go.

Casandra on

Atleast he has Thomas to fall back on. I guess using emotion over reason won out in the younger son’s case.

AC on

Cute names, but in any case if Sundance doesn’t like his name, he can always go by Thomas instead!

Megan on

Hi Kerri,

I am glad you found names that you love.

Ann on

Yeah, your kid is still going to get made fun of and grow up hating that name.

FLH on

Well, if you send your boys to school with celebrity kids, it probably won’t be much of an issue for them. They will already be going to school with kids named Zuma, Apple, Shiloh, etc. It was hard enough being a girl growing up in a school full of Jennifers, Sarahs and Megans with an unusual name, but I didn’t get beat up for it. Your son might. So, just make sure he goes to school with Sparrow Madden and they can watch each others back.

He probably won’t like his name at all growing up. At least he can go by his middle name if he so chooses. I really wish parents would think about the fact that their child is going to be stuck with that name for life (unless the legally change it) and the kind of name they give their kid should be about the KID, not about what the parents think is hip, or cute because they like a certain movie. All through school, I was ridiculed over my name. I would be marked absent because substitutes didn’t know how to pronounce my name so they would skip it during roll call, I’ve been sent a multitude of mailings for boys/men things because my name is traditionally a boys name. I still have to deal with the “What? Huh? How do you spell that?” or people mistaking it for another name that sounds similar but isn’t right. It has affected every aspect of my life, from dating, to making friends, to applying for jobs. I remember being embarrassed introducing myself, waiting for the laughter, or whatever negative reaction was sure to follow it.

When you pick your kids name, think about what they will have to deal with in life already, without having a weird name to be cursed with right off from the bat. Not saying everyone has to be Joe or Mary, but yea, naming your kid Pilot Inspector, or ESPN, or Moses? Please. Every “Angel” I knew in school was anything but, “Chastity” was the school slut, “Charity” was the biggest bizotch EVER. Seriously, I had sisters at my school, whose parent’s named them Hope, Faith, Charity, Chastity and Joy. SERIOUSLY? Also had another parent name their identical twin boys, John! Yes, they were BOTH John. One was John Albert, the other, John David.

I’m sure I’ll be shot down by everyone who has a traditional name about how “boring” their name is and how they wish their parents had been more creative…coming from someone whose parents probably named while smoking a bowl…(born in the 70’s) until you’ve been through it, you have no idea how much it sucks.

Megan on

Hello Kerri! I absolutely love watching you as and athlete and I love reading your blog. I love the story of how you named your kids. There is so much meaning and love behind it. Your boys are adorable! Both of your boys have wonderful, strong names. Thanks for sharing.

Jenni on

I love unusual names for children and think that Sundance is a beautiful name! Maybe he can get together with my daughter, Sullivan!

Lila on

I think it’s great that they love the names, and have good reasons for it. Let’s just hope Sundance loves it too, since he is the one who is now stuck with it.

Anonymous on

I had a friend growing up whose name was Sundance Banks. He loved having that name because it made him cool and different…especially in high school.

Catherine on

Love the name Sundance! Each child is so special and deserves a special name. I know we did… Ivy Juniper, Skye Daintree, and Orion Loch. Unique names that have a story are fantastic!

JR Jake on

Unusual name ‘Sundance’, but than who am I to speak? I named my eldest Beau-Dean. Maybe you could nick name yours ‘Butch’ otherwise he might have a hard time splaining to his friends. Always loved your game on the tour and happy to see you guys are doing very well. Good luck.

Lisa on

Sundance is certainly an unusual name, but I don’t agree with anyone slamming its choice. My name is very common and “normal” and I never really loved it growing up, so who’s to judge? Furthermore, if kids don’t have a name to make fun of, they will absolutely find something else anyway! Congrats to Kerri and Casey on two beautiful little boys πŸ™‚

(Anyone else dying to know what FLH’s name is?!?!)

Jennifer on

Hearing your explanation for why you chose this name makes me love it although I must admit that when I first heard it I wasn’t a fan. Your “sidekicks” are lucky to have each other.
Seriously ladies, at least it’s a name that spelled correctly – no weird z’s or y’s in weird places and does the world really need another Jacob or Aiden?

jamtx on

Who cares what anyone else thinks. There are plenty of kids with unusual names, it isn’t like it used to be when it was Jim, Nancy, Mary and John. WHO CARES. I think it is so ridiculous that people even put their negative comments as if their opinion should hold water. Live and enjoy life people…..don’t waste it being negative 24 hours a day!

Vicki on

I think if you are confident in the name, and you give your children confidence in themselves…it wont matter what his name is. Every child is ridiculed in some time about their name. Its how you react to it that matters. I am Vicki…there are so many disgusting things that rhyme with my name…but its my name and I am proud of it!! He will be happy and healthy because he has strong parents to back him up.

Teri on

I love the story – that is what matters – the heartfelt place of where it came from. Your boys will always appreciate that.

Sarah on

I love both names and I think “Sunny” is a cute nickname for Sundance. “Sunny Jennings” has a nice ring to it! He sounds like a pro volleyball player!

KC on

Whether or not you like the name it’s ultimately their choice . . . I have a very unusual name and I hated it in elementary school, but by the time I got to middle school it was hard to forget me. Even today people remember me because I’m the only one of me they know, and I’m cool with that. My husband and I chose two girls names very similarly, the first (Banner) being my choice from my favorite book and the second (Montana) after his childhood idol. Truthfully I hated Montana at first but it grew on me, and now I can’t picture NOT having “Montana”. It just fits. I’d much rather be KC than a Jennifer or a Sara any day, because there are a million of those and only one of me. πŸ™‚

Layla on

I love the name Sundance…He could always go by Sonny/Sunny or his middle name. I love unique, meaningful names!

Shaunie on

I like the name Sundance.
Because you child is not born with the ability to speak their mind and tell you what they like, at the end of the day all you can do is go with a mane that YOU (and your partner) like, are comfortable with, and/ or has meaning for you.

You give your child a unique name and they might hate it, or they might LOVE the fact that its different. You go with something traditional and it’s just as likely that a child may also love their name or completely HATE the fact that their name is fairly “ordinary” and common or “not their taste”. You can’t really call how it will be receieved [with the one person who’s opinion matters most]… and by the time they can, it has long since been said & done.

SarahJane on

I’m glad they chose something that means something to them, and if he doesnt like Sundance (I admit, I thought it was a ridiculous name when I first heard it) then he can go by Thomas. At least they didnt spell it Sundayntz b/c they want to make it “unique!” (anyone else think that the “y”s people add to ordinary names make the parents look stupid?)

Roony on

I also can’t say that Sundance is a name I personally would have chosen, but that’s FINE, because it’s not about the rest of us! It’s about you and your family (husband AND sons) and all the wonderful and precious dynamics that take place in that small corner of the world that you call “your own.” Our sons name was chosen for its unique strengths and also some family ties (on both sides), and we couldn’t be happier with it.

I do agree with the other commenter who said at least you spelled the names correctly and didn’t do all the weird “novelty” spellings that so many people do now. I cannot stand when I see someone name their kid “Chastity” but spell it “Chazidy” (yes, I have actually seen this done in my own hometown!)…it’s like, people, have enough decency to look up the word you’re going to name your kid, sheesh!! The fact that you put intelligent thought and consideration into the names you chose for both boys is what matters. They’ll be fine and will grow to appreciate their names more and more as they mature.

kelli on

My daughters name is Sunshine, so I certainly love Sundance as the male version!

Megan on

Hey Lisa — yes, I would love to know what “FLH’s name is!!

Mina on

I like the name Sundance but more for a girl.

FHL, so a parent can’t name a kid what they want?!? When did this happen? So you would prefer a parent name their kid something they think is ugly and boring over something they like that has meaning to it, just because some other kids wont like it?! Ever hear about being individual? Why teach your kids that the mean things other kids say matters? A kid can be made fun of for numerous things…it happens, always has and always will. Teaching your child that true friends will like them no matter what is a way to go instead of fitting in with the mindless zombies who are all the same…none of them very memorable!

Ellea on

At least you can appreciate that Sundance is an out there name. Most likely people will call him “sun” or “dance” only because Sundance is such a mouthful.

jen on

Sundance is different but it has meaning to you and your husband and that is all that matters. Kids will be made fun of no matter what there name is. that is the world we live in now. we named our son after my ob doctor we had a long stuggle getting pregnant and he was with us all the way and kept the faith there. we appreciated him so much and what a great man he is, we thought let’s name him after the doctor. he was pretty impressed and touched. Kerri i love watching you play volleyball what an icon you are for young athletes.

Tee on

Thank you for taking the time to explain how both of your handsome boys got their names! Sundance is more unusual but I love the story behind it!

MC on

My name is Mary (I was named after a deceased grandmother) and I HATED it growing up. I was so tired of being called “Mary Mary quite contrary” and people asking where my little lamb was. I wanted my name to be anything but Mary. Now I work with 3 others whose legal name is Mary and they go by their middle name. It makes me unique in my age group (I’m nearly 30) and I can’t imagine having any other name.

Sundance is a great name and an awesome story to go along with it. I know unusual names usually get a bad rap but when we hear a name from another language it often sounds “wrong” or unusual at first so why should English names be any different. Just because you can give someone a normal name doesn’t mean they’ll have a normal life or not be picked on because of something else.

audra on

Oh that name is nothing compared to what my nephew named his son,…are you sitting down? Juniper sprout..yea you heard it right..

mommytoane on

I love both names! They both have special meaning which makes them even better.
When it comes to names I look at it this way. To other cultures, OUR names are a little odd. Not everyone names their baby Jacob or Emily. I chose a “different” middle name for my daughter, that has special meaning to my family. Here in the US, its completey uncommon, but its not elsewhere. So while your child might go to school with an Emily and a Jacob, in a different country kids are going to school with an Enzo or Nimah.

meghan on

Kerri, Your boys produce some of the cutest baby pics I have ever seen! They show such personality already.

megan on

“but mainly I love the relationship between Butch and Sundance β€” so much love and respect”

I guess she’s okay with all the awful stuff he did

Sarah on

Hey, he could also go by Dan or Danny! (SunDANce)

jill on

Hi Kerri
After reading your story on how you named your second boy Sundance I can see what it means to you and your husband. It’s such a strong sounding name. Congrats and enjoy the boys. They grow up fast. πŸ™‚

LMB on

I would love to know what FLH’s real name is!!!

Anonymous on

I love the name, I think everyone will call him Kid for short Just like they did to Redford in the movie. I love that movie.

Still Life in Southeast Asia on

I like its originality. He can always go by “Sunny” if he prefers. I have an uncle Sonny.

summer on

I’m American Indian and my brother’s name is Sundance.He was always asked how he got the name and people love it,He has always been proud of his name. I think common names are boring!

Andre on

Well at least it wasn’t John or Michael. I like Sundance in a geeky way, but I wish you had gone with Kelly. That name could use a bumpage to the boys side.

Tara Roddick on

I love the names that you have chosen for your children. Most kids grow up not liking their names at one time or another, regardless of what they are. Joseph and Sundance are both great names!

Amber on

I LOVE the name Sundance. I think it is great to have found a name that is special for your family. Almost all kids go through a time when they want something different for a name but I think he will come to love his name because it is who he is. It’s your child and as long as the two of you like it who cares what everyone else thinks. Good for you and little Sundance.

Karen on

I am Lisa

Beth on

The people on here slamming a kids name are the one’s teaching their children that’s it’s ok to make fun of someone else. Seriously who makes fun of an innocent child’s name. People are just ridiculous sometimes!!

Kerri congrats on your two beautiful boys! Don’t listen to all of the haters. What matters most is that your boys are healthy and beautiful!

Dave on

Beth, I’m sorry, but if you go “normal” on the first name and choose some New Age junk for the second name, you deserve to be made fun of. I’d harbor a little vengeance for Mom if I were the younger child.

It’s like what stand-up comic (and dad) Jim Gaffigan said on naming in a big family: “The first one was my first boyfriend… the seventh was a sandwich that I ate.”

sfmom on

Kerri, I don’t know if you have time to read all these comments but, I just wanted to say how much I have loved your blogs here.

I am generally not a fan of the crazy name trend in Hollywood (not that I think you’re really considered part of “Hollywood” but you sure are a celeb and deservedly so!). But I love the names you’ve chosen for your sons. Not because I’d choose them for myself, but because they have meaning to your family. Despite what people say (and I cannot believe the way some people are talking here!), you’ve imparted a heritage to your sons that is unique to your family. Each of their names signifies something in your history or your husband’s history that you’re passing on to your sons in a very obvious way. I love that! I love that the names you chose for them are like great cords binding them to their family history. And quite honestly, the way you describe how you and your husband came to choose the name Sundance made me love it too. As you impart those stories to your sons (and keep them away from places like this where everyone is free to express whatever asinine opinion they want about everyone else in the world ;-)), I believe they’ll get along just fine with the names you’ve given them.

Your sons are adorable and you seem like you’re doing an amazing job settling into motherhood. Congratulations on your precious family!

Jessica on

You seriously made me laugh…

“How could we do that to our boys?! They’ll be ruined for life!”

I like the reason behind naming both boys. It is special and it shouldn’t matter what other people think about the names. They are your children after all!

FLH on

So Mina, you’re cool then with the parents who named their children after Adolf Hitler and his crew of SS henchmen? I mean, that’s being creative…obviously no one will forget their kids names for sure! Apparently a few people disagreed and that’s why their kids were taken away from them (among other issues). I mean, hey, if parents want to name their kids whatever they want, its cool to name your kid Pizza, because hey, everyone LOVES pizza, it has meaning, so why not? I’m going to name my kid Carcharodon Carcharius because Jaws is my favorite movie! How cool!

As I said, I don’t think parents need to name their kids Mary and Tom, not at all. But to please have some consideration for their child’s future and the ramifications of that name. I’m pretty sure the Bambi’s of the world who don’t want to be on a stripper pole, or the Buffy’s who have a hard time getting anyone to take them seriously might agree.

You are entitled to your opinion on the name issue, as I’m entitled to mine. Yes, its true with all my friends and colleagues that I am the only FLH they know, and all the people I went to school with remember who I am simply from my name. I don’t hate my name now the way I did when I was younger, but has it caused me a LOT of hassle? Yes. It’s not just kids making fun of it, yea, anyone can get over that. It’s having it get misspelled on important documents (like a drivers license or a credit card) that require it to be redone, showing up to job interviews and realizing that HR thought you were a man and really weren’t considering a woman for the position, and dealing with the CONSTANT “What? Huh? Carol? Sarah? Pharoah? What did you say?” before someone gets it right. Yes, my name is unique, and it makes me stand out. But it hasn’t always been a benefit to me.

Shannon on

Lesson: Never let the father pick the baby’s first name! πŸ™‚ Just kidding!

Guest2010 on

Thank GAWD you didn’t name the boys after a piece of fruit!!!!

FLH on

Sundance being unusual for a boy aside, there are definitely some names that parents should be smacked for.

For example:

A friend of mine graduated with a girl named Tera Hyman. Think about that for a minute.

I witnessed one poor girl working a checkout line at a grocery store who were listening to her customers comment and joke about her name Lakeshore. Spelled just like that, Lakeshore. And the customers were banging on about if she was born on a lake, why her parents would name her that, before she responded, “My name is pronounced La-KEY, Shore-AY” I’m sure she gets sick of correcting people as much as I do.

Luella on

@FLH-So that is your name? Not initials? I promise I’m not trying to make fun of you I just really want to know.
@Kerri-♥ your blog and your boys! I think it’s great that you and Casey have names that mean so much to the both of you. Good-Luck with everything and I can’t WAIT to see you back on the sand! πŸ™‚

K on

I gave my son a very traditional name and went with more unique names for my girls. My oldest (Chase) was going to be Shelby (so I love the post about Shelby and Steel Magnolias), but was changed at the last minute. I was surprised at the number of people who thought it okay to remind me that this is a boy’s name. I understood when I named her that Chase had been traditionally a boys name. With my middle daughter, we are one of those evil couples that add a “y” (Zoey) because my husband didn’t want to deal with accents or other characters. And our youngest, she was the most difficult to name and Addyson was born three years before the Grey’s Anatomy rush on the name, still making her the only one in our area of her age group, although now the name is very popular. I have also been informed that Addison or Addyson is a boys name (yes, yes I know), but it suits her perfectly. In fact, all four of my children fit their names with their personalities :). Sometimes mom and dad really do know best!

meghan on

Kids find ways to make fun of ALL names. “Michael Michael Motorcycle” anyone? My name was made fun of and you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a Meghan. It’s not just names like Sundance that get made fun of. Besides Sundance is light years apart from Adolph Hitler. I can’t believe you even made that argument, FLH!

Lis on

Lesson: Never let the father pick the baby’s first name! Just kidding!

– Shannon on August 24th, 2010

LOL!!!!!!!!! Agreed!!!!! πŸ™‚ Tee hee

FLH – just give it up already! Now we’re all just curious!!!!

FLH on

Nope, those are my initials. My name is Farrell. Rhymes with barrel, not Fah-relle like its constantly mispronounced. A very common Irish last name. I’m pretty sure my mother only chose that name to piss off her mother, who wanted me to be named Holly since I was born three days before Christmas. It worked, my grandmother called me Holly for the first year of my life out of spite.

Yes, of course parents can name their kids what they want… but it would be nice if they consider the ramifications on the kid. Obviously the blogger felt the need to explain/justify it, and she states she has her own fears about what her son will face because of it. Hopefully with the surge of non-traditional names out there these days, it won’t be an issue for him at all. For me, it was a nightmare, but I grew up in different times.

brit on

As someone who has a VERY COMMON NAME – Sundance is awesome!

Being unique is awesome. Do what you love. πŸ™‚ xoxo

casey on

Wow some cranky people out there huh?;) Hey Kerri most of these people are bored insecure and are not mad at the name you gave that little pistol but they are simply mad at who knows what. Their own lives?) I love that movie and Yeah I am sure your boy will get many people to make fun of his name just as joey, mike or Harry will get just the same! Hey lets keep it plain Jane like the negative people on this post will do for the rest of their dusty lives. maybe you should keep your boys locked in the house all day and not let them out in the real world to live life at its fullest. There are much bigger problems awaiting your boys“` than what you will call them. Hey and if their teeth are crooked and they have blemishes make sure you cover them up or get them veneers because we wouldnt want anyone to make fun of them. Thats part of life!
Poor souls. Maybe Elvis should have been named Clarence?!!
I love you alabama worthy
Always have always will!

FLH on

@meghan, my comment was addressing Mina’s assertion that parent’s should be able to name their children “whatever they want: and its a sign of creativity. I challenged that statement because yes, there are parents out there that have named their kids truly offensive things. In the case of the skinhead parents, they wanted to indoctrinate their kids and raise them on hate. Of course I’m not comparing Sundance to something that extreme. Just questioning the validity of stating that parents should be able to name their kids whatever they want, without any consideration for the child who must bear that name for life.

Oh, and for the tenth time, its not just about being made fun of by kids that is a problem with an unusual name…that will happen to anyone, but I can guarantee Michael didn’t get picked on as much as I did because of his name alone. It gets old having to constantly correct people on the pronunciation, spelling, then having to explain all the time where the name came from.

I was making a point coming from the perspective of someone who grew up with an unusual name. Of course the parents who choose these names for their kids think they are “perfect” and suit their kids, etc. But, it would be interesting to hear how the kid felt about it. Sure there are some who love it…and there are those who don’t.

Sky on

It’s nice that Sundance’s name has meaning but I still don’t think he’s gonna appreciate it on his first day of high school.

Jeanne on

All parents have to choose a name for their child, good or bad to anyone else, and Kerri and Casey chose names that meant something to them, therefore both Joey and Sundance are perfect. My guess in the mystery FLH sweepstakes – her name is Farrell.

andilea on

Flh- you go on and on about your name, but you never say what it is. My name is andilea (and a lee) but no one has ever pronounced it right. Does it bother me? Not at all. I love my name. If anything I wish my middle name wasn’t as traditional. It is elaine. Andilea elaine.

Selene on

I have a run of the mill, very common name (It’s not Selene fyi) and I was bullied relentlessly from the age of 5 until I left school. I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t have been worse if my name was Jehovah or Tinkerbell.
I like unusual names, and Sundance is a lovely name. It’s not ridiculous but is still unique and memorable.

People, including children are always going to have trouble with others names. I have a friend name Suzanne and she has to spell it all the time for people.
There are lots of names that have different spellings, Katelyn/Caitlin, Mark/Marc, Niamh/Nieve/Neve, Lyndsey/Lindsay, Ashley/Aisleigh/Ashleigh/Ashlee, Shaun/Sean/Shawn and plenty more. I’m sure even Kerri had to correct the spelling of her name.
It’s not the worst thing in the world to have to spell out your name of correct the pronunciation every once in a while.

Mina on

My son goes to school with 2 boys named Parth and Shersh (pronounced how they are spelled). They are Hindu. Now, if you didn’t know that, you would think they were weird names. But those are common names for Hindu’s, and nobody questions it. If Sundance was say Native American, it would be all good. Why is it because this child is not of a certain religion, culture, background, heritage, or other country that he cannot have the name Sundance!? Blonde hair and blue eyed kids cant have that name? Parents can name a kid what they want as long as its legal, yes! If a skinhead has a kid, I feel bad for the kid’s upbringing more than its name.

Mother of Two on

I love the story and the name — SUNDANCE! How right Casey is to think that others will look at his son with respect when he introduces himself, “Hello, my name is Sundance” — WOW! Besides, would you rather him be stuck with the name Avocado?! Yep, my ten year old came home from school the other day asking me what kind of name is Avocado…there’s a boy is his class that goes by that name. Now that’s one to laugh at!

Sarah M. on

Selene – I actually know a Marque (pronounced like Mark/Marc). My name is pretty average, and yet I have to constantly answer the question ‘With or without the h?’ My sister’s name is Krystofer. (Yes, my sister! She goes by Krysti.) And it’s not even spelled like the name is usually spelled. Ironically there can be a good thing from differently spelled names, though. Her wallet was stolen and the person wound up getting caught because he couldn’t spell her name correctly. Now, I’m not condoning thievery, but if I were to actually steal someone’s card, I think I might want to make sure I knew how to spell the name on it before I used it. πŸ™‚ I also knew a Saraha (pronounced like Sarah/Sara).

The point I’m trying to make is that no matter what the name, or how it’s spelled, EVERYONE has to wind up spelling and pronouncing their name for many people at some point in life. As to kids getting teased for their name, kids will get teased for ANYTHING at ANYTIME. It could be their name, their figure, their clothes, their hair, their voice, etc. As long as the name isn’t offensive to a ton of people (Adolf Hitler, a STD, something that offends many people of many religions. etc.), parents should just name their kids what they want to name them and if others don’t like it then it’s the other peoples problem!!!

heather on

I love her boys’ names. I had a feeling she had a great reason behind the choices, and it makes me like them even more. All kids will get made fun of sor something, so who cares if they get teased for a long as it’s a silly kind of teasing, kids know the difference; getting teased for being named Sundance is a lot different than getting teased for your name being Adolph Hitler, for example.

Besides, he could go by Sunny or Dan if he wanted to, both perfectly normal names…I think it’s fantastic, but then our opinions shouldn’t really matter anyway…she’s not going to pick our kids names for us :o)

Suzanne on

A name needs to be chosen carefully. I agree with FLH 100%. Even though my name is not strange it is unusual. I was the only Suzanne in my school growing up and I am the only one at my employer and we employee about 15000 people. No one ever gets my name right. If I had a dime for everytime I have been called Susan I would be a billonaire. I actually introduce myself as Suzanne and 95% say, “nice to meet you Susan.” Then to top it off Suzanne is my middle name. I have never, ever been called my first name but everyone from the government to my employer wants to call me my first name. I of course am constantly correcting people first that my first name is not what you call me and then that my name is not Susan. Perhaps others don’t mind constantly correcting but I hate it. I feel bad for this child. being stuck with that name. I know what he is in for. Poor kid.

J on

Kerri you don’t need to keep explaining your kids names. People need to just get over it if they don’t like your kids names.

Mina on

Suzanne…lucky for Sundance, it is easy to spell. Also, you know what the poor kid is in for? I am sure abused neglected kids of crack addicts would love to have the name Sundance so long as they have a loving home, like these boys do. I grew up with a very odd name (its not Mina) and I never had a problem with spelling it or correcting it. If someone has a problem with saying a few extra words in correcting someone, then that is just laziness. Does it waste your breath to take 1 second and 1 breath to prounounce and spell your name? If something like that is sooo bothersome to you then you need a chill pill and a wake up call….look at the world around you, there are far worse things than spelling your name!!

Robin M. on

Great story, and who are we to judge what anyone else decides is the perfect name for their little ones?

Suzanne on

Mina, you missed the whole point. The point was how difficult it can be to for child growing up with a difficult or very odd name. Also I fail to see what a child’s name has to do with neglected kids of crack addicts, but whatever. You obviously have no idea what it is like to have to correct people every day and they still get your name wrong. I don’t like the name and I know he will get teased with it, but it was his parents decision to give it to him and, yes, it could have been worse. Maybe you should take the chill pill since a true life story about the affects of a name gets you so riled up that you need to be so insulting.

Amy on

cute kids Kerri – congrats! The commentors that have a problem with it and say he will be made fun of are probably the ones that made fun of other kids out of their own insecurities. We named our son Griffey after my husbands favorite athelete. We get asked all the time what it is short for and then looked at strangely when we say nothing. I’m just glad my husbands favorite athlete has so far not turned out to be scandalous – I’d hate to have a Clemmens or a Tiger LOL!

mommytoane on

Hate to break it to you FLH, but actually Farrell is a very common name of the 30’s. Not uncommon, I actually have 4 uncles with that name. So while you may THINK your name isn’t popular, it just isn’t popular for these times. Perhaps your parents weren’t as gone as you think they were when they named you. But, in reality, your name was very common back in the earlier 1900’s, just not in the mid-later when you were born.
In all honesty tho, it all comes back to people will name their child what is special to them. And while to US, in the USA might see it as different, odd or unique. Remember, to someplace else common names like Kathy, Kristy, Kevin or Kyle are odd.

Samantha on

I can see where FLH is coming from on the name issue. I also have spent my life with a weird name (not “Samantha,” and interestingly, my initials are FPH), and I have never liked it. Also, similar to FLH, the choice of my name was not done in the best possible way. My mom was bullied into naming me after her own mother, with the threat of disownment. I knew this story my entire life, and also knew that my first name was supposed to be “Samantha,” before my grandmother threw a fit. My own father refused to call me by my given name for several years, and only referred to me as “Buddy.” In fact, I grew up thinking “Buddy” was my name, and when someone would call me by my real name, I would not respond. Perhaps for people whose parents chose a name with love and true consideration, it doesn’t matter if it’s unusual, but I know that I hated my name, and I still don’t like it. In fact, there is still a strong chance I will legally change my name before I return to work (I’m a stay at home mom right now).

As for my own child, she is named “Lily.” We get a lot of compliments on it, and where I live, it is not the super-popular name that it seems to be elsewhere. Even though we chose the traditional, standard spelling, her name has been misspelled many times already, and she’s only 17-months old. We’re constantly getting stuff from relatives addressed to “Lilly” and “Lillie.” If there are multiple ways to spell a name, you will likely be spelling it out for your whole life. That’s just how it goes.

Bethan on

Kerri, congratulations on your two beautiful boys! Personally, I love Sundance and the story that it has behind it. Sunny, Dan, Danny are all perfectly suitable nicknames and Sundance is cool on it’s own.

I think some people these days forget that we live in 2010 and that there are stranger names out there. Even in the past, people over-exaggerate on thing like this. My parents were ‘hippies’, you could say. My sisters, brothers and I have (what you could call) unusual names. And, you know what, we love them! I loved being different, I loved not being another Sarah or Catherine or Emily, I love being unique. I loved that the teacher always remembered me, and as for bullying, a lot of my friends admired my name.

At the end of the day, little Sundance probably won’t be going to school with just Jack’s or Ryan’s or William’s. Names are becoming way more varied these days. And, if kids are going to tease and torment, they will. A lot of normal names are easy to twist anyway; eg. ‘Hannah Spanner’, ‘Insane Jane’, ‘Smelly Ellie”.

Finally, Kerri, you have the right to name your son what you want. The name will have meaning to you, and I’m sure your little boy will appreciate what you chose to name him.

PS. My brothers are Colver Ian and Sylver Jace, my sisters are Estee Rayne and Tobyn Amelle and I’m Soleil Estelle. My brothers go by Colver/Col and Sylver and my sisters go by Estee and Toby. None of us have ever considered changing our names.

Kerri, your boy will love his name! πŸ˜€

Maritan on

There is no need to explain why you named your child the way you did. It is not offensive and while it is not something I would do, I like that it has some significance for you. Your boys are adorable.
Just to chime in on having to correct people all the time: I live in a very culturally diverse city, where I meet people with all kinds of names. My name is Maria and even I have to correct people. The funny thing is that it’s usually not people from a different ethnicity who need correcting, but the Canadians and Americans I work with who keep calling me Marie or Mariah (?!).

kmb on

While I’m personally not a fan of the name Sundance, it doesn’t really matter and I’m sure Kerri could care less what I think. To each her own.
What boggles me is the super common names. For example, I have 14 “Megan/Meghan/Meagan”s in my phone. 14.
I honestly am curious as to why people choose to name their child something they clearly know every other child that age is going to have. I’m not bashing common names, because I do think a lot of them are nice, I just wonder what motivates someone to, say, name their child “Aiden” or “Emily” knowing they’re such popular names right now? Is it a popularity thing? For the child to fit in better? I’m curious.
My name’s Kathleen, and although it’s not a crazy name, it’s also not terribly common for my age (22). I love my name because I don’t meet Kathleens everyday, especially those that actually go by the full name (not Kathy or Katie). I’m thankful that my parents chose a name that wasn’t super popular. I’m also thankful that I’m not named Banana or Moonbeam.

Kelly on

Farrell – love your name! Sorry you got grief for it as a kid and that it still causes you administrative headaches. I have probably set my daughter up for the same fate. We wanted Irish and I wish I was daring enough to name her Ailish. We wanted her to have something unusual, so she wouldn’t be one of 5 Madisons or Caitlins or Charlottes in her class. I ADORED that name, but it was just too un-mainstream for me. So we chose her name and kept it to ourselves until she arrived. Announcements of her name were met with a great deal of grumbling from our families and friends. I have to admit, i spent many hours staring at the letters on the wall in her room, wondering, “what did we do??” I’m afraid she’s going to spend the rest of her life pronouncing/spelling her name for people. In the end, I hope she agrees that it’s worth it. To us, she’s beautiful and special and brilliant and so is her name, Caebre Ellen (kay-bree).

Jen DC on

@ Mina: You’re projecting about the race thing. No comment I’ve seen since this Sundance’s birth has referenced race – only the fact that people feel that it’s a horrible name for anyone, but particularly for a boy.

I personally don’t like it. Not because he’ll undoubtedly be mocked, but just because I don’t find it that great a name. I would have chosen Butch over Sundance, but he’s not my kid and I won’t have to teach him how to make a fist or turn the other cheek or tell him it’ll get better once his peers mature. Of course, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” and maybe he’ll be a better person for it. Or maybe he’ll be cool enough that he grows into it. We’ll probably never know.

On a positive note, a lot of you guys are right: He could go by a wealth of other names. Sun is a good one; Dan an inspired idea and Thomas, Tom or Tommy very nice. I don’t like Sunny – even more effeminate than Sundance.

As far as expressing negative opinions – they are as valid as the positive ones. The point is to have constructive, responsible, mature conversation and if we can’t agree, agree to disagree. Otherwise, no opinion is valid. And Casey, just because I don’t like the name “Sundance” doesn’t make me angry or dissatisfied with my life or my exceedingly common name. Actually, I have such a common name that many people have met more than one of me. I’m proud of how common both my names are – in this day and age, few people can count on anonymity, but by being named Jennifer Johnson, I totally can. And that’s pretty awesome.

Sarah M. on

I agree with your last point, Jen DC. People with negative opinions have just as much right to express them as people with positive opinions. I think there is a good way and a bad way to express said opinions, though. Some on here do a great job of disagreeing with grace and without offending people, others seem to go out of their way to see how badly they can offend people with their opinions (whether negative or positive). This site in particular seems to lead toward the latter of lately, imo. People all around appear to be having perpetually bad years, or something, though and are ultra sensitive on both sides.

camilla on

We named our daughter Briseis (BRISS ee iss) like in The Iliad. EVERYONE mispronounces it horribly but we don’t care ’cause we think it is so beautiful. We call her Bree for short.

Nancy on

Even though I wouldn’t personally name my kid Sundance I think it’s a wonderful name with an even greater meaning to your family. My name is sooo boring. I don’t hate it but I’d rather have a different name. My dad wanted to name me Selena, after the Mexican singer. My mom decided to name me Nancy. I would much rather have the name Selena! Even though there is now a Selena Gomez. I would feel unique to have that name! I have met so many Nancy’s it’s not even funny! Also my name is like an old woman’s name. When I have a baby girl I would name her Alyssa Faith. I think that name is gorgeous! Alyssa might be a common name in some places but where I live it isn’t so I would love for her to feel unique, while still having a semi-common name.

Nancy on

I love the name Sundance! At least his name is easy to pronounce! My name is weird! Everyone is always misspelling it and mispronouncing it. My name is pronounced like the word lucks. People always think that’s how you spell it! People think that my parents just made my name up. When I tell them I’m like noo it’s an actual name it means light. I sometimes wish that my name was Ashley or Jennifer! But then I realize I have never ever met a person with my name which makes me feel special. They now have a show named, “Life Unexpected” and the main character’s name is Lux!!! Which makes me feel even better about my name!

CMC on

Geez, I feel like I need to apologize for all the ridiculous comments. Sundance is a very cool name in my opinion. And he looks like a spunky little Sundance!
Congrats and YAY for you guys!

Luella on

FLH- I too like your name. It’s a nice name. Not weird @ all. Thanks for sharing that with us! πŸ™‚

Aidan on

As a girl with a boy’s name, I can see where FLH is coming from, but really, it isn’t always as bad as you’re saying. πŸ˜› When I was a kid, Aidan was not really around as a boy’s name, let alone a girl’s name. (Nowadays I think it’s universally everywhere.. ugh.) And as a second generation Italian family, my whole extended family was horrified it wasn’t an italian name. Blah blah blah.

I didn’t really hate my name growing up, but I was way more of a tomboy than a girly girl and partially I think it was maybe easier on me because most of my friends were boys. It is kind of irritating (in an amusing way) to show up for jobs now and know they assume I am male, worse still because I can look pretty androgynous. I think I have used the sentence “My name is Aidan but I’m a girl” over a zillion times. I’ve been called Eden, and Adrian, and Adriana, even though people are staring right at my name on a paper. Correcting is like second-nature. Especially “Aiden.”

But I’ve also gotten over a zillion compliments for it. I think it just depends. I really like my name. I like that it made me feel more unique than the other kids in school when I was little (I know that’s a stupid reason but it’s true). Maybe I’m glorifying having a semi-unique name, but Sundance could grow up loving his name and the attention it gets him. It might make him more confident, instead of stripping it from him, like FLH had happen to her. You never know. I hope it DOES! I think it’s a fitting name. πŸ™‚

Mina on

Those who don’t like Sundance for “social” reasons need to get over it. It only goes to prove just how shallow the human race has become…that we must hide what we like because society deems it unfit. Gag me!

Its easy to make fun of any name…I am guilty of it myself in my youth lol. I didn’t like this one boy…his name was Mark. So I used to chant “Mark left a fart” in the schoolyard. My one friends name was Melissa and on the day we read about the militia in history, every head turned to her. I can go through my whole 6th grade class. Lets see..Susie the floozy, flimzy Lindsey, Richard was just Dick, knarley Charley, Bob the slob (sometimes he was Blob), Job-Johnny, etc…..see even normal names can be made fun of. I felt super sorry for Matt and Sam who were chubby. Fat Matt and hammy Sammy. I cant really think of anything to make fun of Sundance, except maybe Sundancefloor, but thats pretty dang lame. Bottom line is, he will endure teasing no matter what. If an adult has a problem with someones name then they arent a true adult (at least not mentally). As an adult you should be accepting and understanding. Soooo everyone just needs to get over it!

jessicad on

I didn’t even read more than 20 comments, and I say this every time people slam names, kids will make fun of names when their parents teach them to do so. They learn behavior by watching you guys judge, if you type negative things like this I’d bet money on you saying it as well, and they will pick up on that. Don’t teach your kids to be so hateful, please. I gave my 3 year old daughter a name that my family and friends didn’t like and I hated the rude comments.

I love the story of how his name came to be and it sounds like Kerri has prepared herself to be judged and not care, good job:)

miameows on

Growing up in the 70’s/80’s my name was considered “weird” (it’s Mia) and for some reason no one could pronounce it. Now that I am in my 30’s I LOVE my name (and really now it’s much more common). A normal name would never have fit my personality. So, I am grateful for my parents naming me Mia (especially since my siblings are Michael, Carole & Douglas!) And FLH, I love your name, too! I would call Sundance “Sunny” as a nickname. Love it!

Bree on

FHL – I like your name…

Mina – I dont think its Shallow at all be concerned that a child be mocked for thier name. But like my grandmom used to tell me all the time…Kids will be kids, and sadly though not always intentional kids can be mean. And sadly not all parents teach thier children to be accepting, and non-judgemental

My mom named me Aubree. She got it from a song, It is now becoming more common, and I am ok with it now, but growing up…FORGET IT…Much like Farrell said, I spent my life correcting people who can’t say or spell it…the name is actually really simple sounds exactly as its spelled, but i have been called, Amber, Avery, Autumn, Auburn, and my personal favorite, the common one – Audrey. And can I even tell you how many times I have heard, “you know, in the South – its a boys name”

I am all for different names, I named my daughter Kennedy, but some people just take it to far, and if it is a cultural name thats one thing, but again like FHL said naming your child Pilot Inspektor or just completely off the wall names…is a bit much. Personally, I am not a fan of the name Sundance – its not the worst I have heard, but who am I to judge, people choose what they want to name their children and both the parents and children are the ones who have to live with that decision…

When I named my daughter, originally I was in love with the name Kailynn, but everytime someone asked me what I was going to name the baby and I said I really like the name Kailynn – everyone would say “oh, KaiTlyn is such a pretty name”…then I realized that my daughter would spend her life correcting people, and I wasnt a fan of doing it myself, so since I also like Kennedy, I went with Kennedy.

All I can really say is – to each his own, and the decisions we make today effect us the rest of our lives…depending on how we choose to focus the energy of them.

Mia on

After reading this + seeing the name more, I think Sundance is a really cute name + he can always go by Sunny or Danny for short!

Janet on

Good grief, people! I do not care for unusual names either, but I LOVE the name Sundance! (I also love the movie!)

Let’s face it people, celebrities’ kids will NOT have as hard of a time as we did in school! They are already “unique” because their parents are celebrities. Just a fact!

I think it’s far worse to name a kid a made-up name (yes, I knew someone who just “created” a name. It was horrible…) or, as others have said, spell it ridiculously. I still remember working a front desk position and the the guy making the appointment was Michael. The real spelling? Mykle. Are you kidding me?! My cousin works as a labor/delivery RN and says she constantly has to suggest to parents to keep the spellings of their kids names simple.

Anyway, my name is Janet (child of the 70s!) and I never cared for it. Now I just go by Jan and it’s fine. For the Farrell out there; I’m sorry you had to endure such a hard time with your name!! Kids will find a way to make fun of your name no matter what. They couldn’t really find a way to make fun of Janet, so they picked on my last name. Just a part of life, I guess?

Faye on

I think the most important thing to consider when naming your child, is whether in all stages of your life you would like to be called that name. Will you have to continuously correct people, or spell it out loud for them, or are people going to laugh at your expense. It is also important not to go with ‘trendy’ names. Whatever is trendy now will be anything but in 5, 10 20 years time. Although the name Sundance has a very special story to the parents, it is the child who has to live with it throughout his life and he wont be able to give the explanation of his name to every person he meets for them to understand the meaning, reasoning and background which is a shame.

Mina on

Bree…who is to say what is out there and what isnt? I think Kennedy is more strange than Sundance. You think opposite. Everyone has their own opinion. Kennedy is a last name AND an assasinated presidents name so the meaning of it for ME is depressing. The meaning of it for YOU might be wonderful.

You will ALWAYS come across strange names…whether it be (as I said before) someone of a certain religious or cultural background or just run of the mill kids who had parents that picked a name with meaning. Kids will tease and then get over it, that is life. If an adult laughs at another adults expence over their name, then that alone tells you what kind of person you are dealing with.

Megan on

I have to say to FLH — I really like your name!
I am a 50yr. old Megan and I hated my name as a kid….teachers always pronounced the wrong way, I always had to repeat it for people…..Thank Goodness for the book & mini- series “The Thornbirds”! LOL

Anonymous on

I agree with FLH on “weird” names that nobody pronounces right and you spend your lifetime correcting. Even when you like your name it’s just a hassle to have to spell it all the time, see people’s eyes widen when you introduce yourself, hear an embarrassed silence in the phone when they need your name, and so on. It happens everywhere, everyday, all the time.

That said, it’s not the case for Sundance at all. It’s not someting with a weird spelling, it’s pretty straightforward to write, say and remember. It’s original, but that’s it. The only possible problem is other people’s opinion and reaction but I don’t think that should stop you from choosing a name that has meaning for you. The mockeries are something most kids go through whatever their name is anyway.

what of it? on

The story of how you named your children is beautiful and so are the boys. All the best to you.

Katie on

I personally wouldn’t name my kid Sundance, but to each their own. I think you will get flack from someone for anything you name your kids. I love my fourth kids name, but we got a lot of bad comments when we told people what we were naming him. His name is Hayden James and we of course love it, but my sis-in-law thinks it’s a girl name. Oh well, can’t please everyone. Her boys are adorable and that picture of Sundance with his chubby legs is precious.

Erin M on

I love the story, not so much the name! I wonder what Joey will call him, because I bet he’ll have trouble pronouncing Sundance when he starts talking! Sometimes nicknames given by older siblings stick around, and instead of explaining your crazy name, you get to talk about your siblings’ troubles with pronunciation!

Either way, congrats to Kerri and Casey on two beautiful boys!

Lori on

KC, your kids are seriously Banner and Montana. Say it fast. Ha ha. Banner n’ Montana. Lets hope you are a Miley Cyrus fan!!

Lyoness on

I like his name. It has a vibrant energy like he’ll be an upbeat happy little guy. Seriously, you can’t be a Debbie Downer in life with a name like Sundance. Anyone just think that when they get older Joey may be a little jealous that his name isn’t a little unique? Everyone will remember Sundance but they’ll say, “what’s his older brother’s name? Johnathan? James?…”

They already sound like Olympic athletes. Have fun. They look like they love each other very much already.

Mina on

Lyoness I agree.

I love that the names have meaning behind them and arent just names that would help him fit in. That is all that matters. Everyone has their own opinions on what names they like or don’t like, so if there is meaning behind a name then that is the way to go! My sons name is Damien Edward. His father and I both liked the name and agreed on it (we didn’t agree on anything else lol). I also thought it was a strong name that was cute for a little boy, but something he could grow into as a man…a very handsome name. Its not too childish, like say Tyler. I cannot picture a 50 year old lawyer named Tyler or Connor lol. Anyway, I can’t tell you how much crap I got for naming my kid “after the devil” because of a popular movie made in the 1970’s. The name actually has meaning for me, but others look down on it. That is they way life is. You get over it.

Amanda on

Sundance is not the worst name I’ve seen for a child, but it certainly isn’t something that I would choose. I am a fan of classic and traditional names that have fallen out of favor – my SO and I plan to use the names Alton (boy) and Georgia (girl). Both names were extremely popular in the early 20th century, although Georgia has been gaining popularity in the last few years.

I used to be a huge critic of names that people had difficulty pronouncing – I thought it was cruel to name a child something that people continually mispronounce. However, since telling close friends and family members that we like the name Alton, I’m constantly bombarded by people asking how you pronounce it – is it ALL-ton or Al-ton or All-tune, etc. I know I’ll constantly be correcting people, but it will be worth it because we both love the name and love that we’re honoring a family member.

Laura on

While I’m in the camp that wouldn’t have named my kid Sundance, it’s definitely not the end of the world to pick an unusual first name. Once he starts going to school the teacher’s will ask him what name he wants to use. He can choose Sundance, Thomas, Tommy, ST, TJ or he can be like Shiloh Pitt and want to be called Peter Pan! Unusual names are nothing new and I think most kids will be fine with it if they don’t hear their parents going on and on about what a ridiculous name it is. Teach your children to be accepting and they will be fine with it.

Kerri, I doubt you’re bothered too much by this. You and your husband chose the name that fit your child and did it with love. That’s all that matters.

Chelle on

I find it amazing how quickly people criticize other peoples choices. If Kerri Walsh is happy with her children’s names who’s place is it to say any different. They aren’t your children.

Kerri – Congrats on your two handsome sons. πŸ™‚

Sneville on

I am not a celebrity however I too have an unusual name. Growing up with an unusual name was difficult because of many people like the ones below who have posted negative comments. Americans could use a little more tolerance of things that are different from the norm. I thought that was what made our country great, our β€˜uniqueness’. As a child, I would get upset because I could never find my name on those cute little key chains and souvenirs you find in stores. Eventually I began to appreciate the unique name my mother had given to me. Now I am proud to be one of a kind and actually was a little upset the one time I met someone with the same name. I had gotten kind of used to being the β€˜only one’. I hope one day your son will feel the same pride and respect for the name both you and his father have chosen for him. Hopefully he will understand it’s worth the ridicule of narrow-minded people to be unique.

Karalin on

Sneville, I totally agree with you. My given name is slightly old-fashioned AND spelled differently, but I love it. I always have. And I was the “only one” for YEARS, but now with the advent of Facebook, I’ve found more and it was a little disappointing. πŸ™‚

People used to try calling me a nickname, but I am NOT a “Kari” or a “Kara” which was usually what they would try.

To add to the trouble, my maiden name is German and spelled oddly (to Americans) so I went through my entire childhood having to spell and pronounce both of my names for everybody I came in contact with. It never bothered me though. I would rather explain and correct than be called the wrong thing! I love my name!

Jessica on

My parents named us similarly- my name was very common, my little sister’s wasn’t at all. I was given the name Jessica in the middle of its heyday, and I can tell you that having the most normal name around is no picnic either. There were four Jessicas in my class! Plenty of confusion and explanation to go around. To compensate people have always made up absurd nicknames for me- and I’ve spent most of my life being called “Mimi” and “Scorpion”! Meanwhile my sister Aubrey had a rare name when she was born. Plenty of “AuDrey? No, AuBrey.”, assumptions that she was a boy, and so on. These days everyone thinks it’s beautiful and individual. There are drawbacks and benefits to both naming styles, but in the end you grow into your name and make it your own, so I wouldn’t worry too much about either boy’s name.

Julianne on

I named my now 3 week old daughter Ayla. I notice that the younger generation loves it and the older generation hates it. You can’t please everyone. She is named after her dad and I happen to love both of them. Whatever the reason for naming your child it is going to upset someone somewhere.

Sarah M. on

Regarding not being able to get souvenirs with an uncommon or oddly spelled name, I don’t think that really an issue most of the time anymore. I would be willing to bet that the majority of places have it possible to order said items online, where you can spell your child’s name for them to make sure it’s spelled correctly. Then the child gets a double bonus, they get a souvenir AND they get some special mail of their own to open. And all kids love when they get mail just for them!

tomfool on

he could always go by Sunny if all else fails and he doesn’t like Thomas. xD

CTBmom on

I actually love the name Sundance….and I love that both the boys names have special meanings.

Megan on

I love the name sundance!! butch cassidy and the sundance kid is one of my favorite movies too. my thoughts on all the people commenting on the names…they are YOUR kids, you can name them whatever you want and the people with all the “opinions”, have you own kids and name them what you want. then let us know what they are and we’ll give you our opinions of the names πŸ™‚ kerry i think you’re awesome!

Sarah on

Unfortunately my thoughts are on the in between years from 5- elderly man. Can you imagine the teasing that will occur in grade school and high school especially and spelling and no my name is sunance that he will have to put up with as well. Now I have never have really particularly enjoyed my first name Sarah… But hearing names like Sundance and Apple and things like that makes me grateful for the name that my parents gave me. my question is that will Sundance be grateful for the name his parents gave him when he is in high school or going for job interviews we think that things like names don’t count for job interviews…just some thoughts

Shelli on

I personally LOVE the name sundance…. I get that it is not to some people’s taste, but that is the beauty thing about a forum like this, we can express opinions without judging (at least, that’s how I see it.;)

as for the unique name/spelling phenomenom… been there done that. My name is Shelli. Strange spelling indeed, but the fact that my full name is Shelli has caused issue. I had a teacher who insisted on ‘full names only’ in her classroom, and thus she assumed that my full name was Michelle, and called me that until I brought my birth cert. in to PROVE my name is Shelli (incedently, my sister’s name is Michelle, so this was upsetting to me at such a young age to be called my sister’s name)… but then I grew up and the story cracks me up now! and if the biggest problem in life I had is correcting people’s assumption that my name is Michelle, or the spelling? face it, I’ve had a good life!

btw, I tried to find a unique sounding name for my daughter when I had her…. named her Samantha (in 1996)… beautifull name, but certainly not unique (at least that year, it was the number 5 most popular girls name… epic fail for creativity I guess!) But my kid has my grandpa’s initials and my grandma’s middle name (ruth) so her name is very meaningful…


shelli on

First, I love the namne Sundance…. but I get that it is not to everyone’s taste… the beauty thing about a forum like this is we can express opinions, without attacking (at least thats how I see it)

I have had issues with my own name, which is Shelli. First, my full name is Shelli, and I can’t tell you how many times I have had to correct people who naturally want to call me ‘Michelle” (Shelli addmitidly is a shortened Michelle..) this was problamatic for me though as my sister’s name is Michelle…. no kid wants to be called their sister’s name! There was even an incident in 2nd grade where I had a teacher who insisted on ‘full names only’ in her classroom… long story short I had to bring my birth certificate in to get her to STOP calling me my sister’s name!!

Plus, there’s the spelling of my name, it’s not a ‘usual’ spelling… My grandma once got personalized stationary for me and my sister’s as a gift, and she famously spelled my name wrong (the more common “Shelley”…)

but I did not grow up twisted or damaged because of name issues…. and while it did cause annoyance at times, let’s face it… if those instances are the worst thing I can complain about, I’ve had a pretty darn good life!!! (as far as I’m concerend) in fact, as an adult, I enjoy the ‘unique-ness’ of my name, and those ‘annoying’ stories I’ve told you actually amuse me now! πŸ™‚ I have even forgiven my sister Michelle for naming me Shelli (yes, my parents let my five year old sister name me… she foisted Shelli on me because everyone used to call her that, and she hated it!!!!)

I get that people have apposing views on this, as well as EVERY other issue in the world. as a parent though, we have the right to name our kids WHAT EVER we would like… there are many things expectant parents have to decide, it’s part of the joy that is parenthood!


shelli on

the name game is a joy that all parents get to play… I personally love the name Sundance! but if someone doesn’t.. DON”T USE IT!!!

My name has caused issues in my life (full name is Shelli….) had to spend a lot of time telling people NOT to call me Michelle (which is my sister’s name!!!) and while it was annoying, I didn’t turn out twisted because of it! if the biggest problem I had in childhood was issues of my name, I think I had a pretty good life then! in fact things that annoyed me as a kid, make me laugh now!! it makes a good story at least!

shelli on

get over it if you don’t like it!

Mandi on

I don’t think it matters what your name is, kids are gonna make fun of it regardless. My legal name is Amanda, & kids still found a way to make fun of it. I also got tired of being one of multiple Amanda’s in class, so I started going by Mandi when I was 14. I used to get mad at my mother for giving my 2 sisters such unusual names, but manages to find the most common name of my generation to name me. I’m 26 now & still go by Mandi & have thought about changing it legally, but I don’t want to go through the hassle.
When it came to naming my daughter, I wanted a name that had a meaning behind it. I had several “normal” names picked out but non of them seemed to fit. I came across Genesis & loved that it meant “The Beginning”. She is my first child, so for me & my husband it fit. I don’t think it’s so off the wall that people will think, “What the hell?” & really the only person who had an issue with it was my mother. But it was my choice, she could fallback on her nickname Genna, or her middle name Olivia. My hope is that she’ll be proud & love her name as she gets older.
Point is, it doesn’t matter what you name your kid. If they’re going to get made fun of, they’re going to get made fun of. That’s just how kids are. Doesn’t matter how normal or off the wall the name is.

anna on

There’s so much negativity towards Kerri’s naming choices! I think her blog is thoughtful and interesting, and that her boys’ names are sweet. People should be a little more considerate – I for one appreciate that the baby blog has included a full time athlete and that she’s putting herself out there for fellow moms to learn from. Keep it up, Kerri!

baby lover! on

There will always be mean and judgmental people no matter how “traditional” the names are. I like the name πŸ™‚ I think it’s cute but I personally would never name my child that. I have other names in mind I want to name my future children and I know for a fact it’s going to be different and meaningful to me and my husband and I think that’s all that really matters!

Mindy on

Seriously people? Just because you name your kid after some CHARACTER in a movie does NOT mean they are going to have the same characteristics, morals, feelings, etc. In the article she says what she wants for her boys is “Love, respect, self-confidence and wisdom through experience.” So raise them that way… don’t expect his relationships to mimic that of Butch and Sundance just because you named him after that fictional person. I really think that parents should think before they choose a name… someday this child will (hopefully) put their name on a college application and a job resume… Makes me cringe to think of the embarrassment that that could cause because the parent gave their baby a name chosen with themselves in mind… and not their child.

Elizabeth on

Keep it up and on new year’s eve : ]

Sundance on

My name is Sundance and I think it’s great. Growing up I never really had an issue with it and it’s always been a great way to break the ice. I’ve had many nicknames throughout my life but most people just call me by my name. Hopefully he’ll enjoy being Sundance as much as I do!