This has been quite the banner year for this little blog.
In truth, it does remain “little,” both in the grand scope of the wide ocean of blogs in the world, in the tumultuous sea that is “parenting blogs,” and even in the small (but growing) lake that are “dad blogs.”
But… I feel like I made a nice splash this year.
Its been nice to find a readership beyond just family and friends. To, in fact, make new friends who were readers first! And more than anything, I feel like I’ve been able to add somewhat to the conversation about dads as equally important and competent parents.
By a wide, wide, wide margin, this was by leaps and bounds the most read and shared thing this blog has ever produced.
Yeeeeeah, it was just a meme — and one that many felt got old fast — but I’m happy that my take on it in regards to what a Stay-At-Home Dad does was well received.
One of my more clever moments, this Venn diagram, breaking down the parts of a toddler’s unique makeup, got Reddit’d and spread like wildfire from there.
I did get one comment that felt like it was somehow politically motivated and partisan because of the Ted Kennedy reference. That sort of surprised me. Too soon? A low blow? I dunno. Maybe. But politically motivated? Hardly.
Representatives for the nation’s frat boys and Planet of the Apes aficionados remained unmoved to complain.
In many ways this was the post that really exemplifies this year in my life as a “dad blogger,” because it kicked off a new role in my life as “dad advocate” and “accidental activist.”
I certainly never expected to get the attention this generated, nor ever dream of the outcome, but I’m glad that when that nagging little voice in the back of my head told me “Do you really want to post this? What if people just think you’re being a whiny humorless baby?” I ignored it.
Incidentally, I was still called a whiny, humorless baby (and worse) but you know what they say: Haters gonna hate!
The popularity of this post lies squarely on the shoulders of Pinterest, where people just seem to keep on pinning away this thing every day.
Which is great, because kale chips are easily one of the most delicious super-healthy food you’ll ever meet.
Just don’t burn ’em. They can go from party in your mouth to ashes in your mouth pretty quick.
This one seemed to really strike a chord, and not just among dads.
It was cathartic to get out a few of the snarky replies I generally keep to myself.
And hey, it turns out moms hear a lot of these annoying things too!
It’s a big of a rant, and more than a little bit me laying out some personal hurt feelings over the words of a friend, but my experience and frustrations were, as it turns out, not all that rare.
I’ve come to learn that the more dads are out there speaking openly and honestly about what real parenting looks like, the more people will start including dad in the picture. It doesn’t matter if you’re a working dad, single dad, at-home dad, adoptive dad, step-dad, or some mixture of those, you deserve to be treated as an equal parent, not a helper of dubious necessity.
At first glance you’d think this has nothing to do with being a dad, but you’d be wrong.
Being a good dad who takes an interest in his kids’ interests is what gives me the excuse to enjoy wonderful shows (and books!) like Octonauts.
Being a good dad also means (someday) introducing them to Firefly, and this little mash-up is a great way to plant the seed to one day come to love Mal and his crew as much as they love Captain Barnacles and his crew.
This was one I was so, so happy to get to write, where I shared some of my conversations with the great folks at Huggies/Kimberly-Clark, and outlines the steps they were committing themselves to make in response to our feedback.
What an unexpected and crazy week that was…
… and what a great result!
The big reveal on the significant changes that the people at Huggies made to their campaign, as shown in the first of the revised commercials.
It’s amazing what you can do when the same footage of dads with their babies is used without a voice-over insinuating that these kids are in possible danger because of the gender of the person caring for them.
What a difference!
Some tips I felt worth passing along, to the people who felt like it is time for a new “Mr. Mom” movie, on how they could make the movie more timely, less insulting, and worth doing at all.
Who knows if anyone with any influence actually read them? I hope so!
I suppose we’ll find out eventually.
Thank you so much to everyone who has supported me, challenged me, shared my posts — both the funny, the helpful, the poignant and the ranty — and generally just made 2012 a great year to be a dad who writes about being a dad.
Here’s to an even bigger and better 2013!
I'm a proud full-time caregiver dad, and the new President of the National At-Home Dad Network. I'm also a children's book author and illustrator, blogger, and accidental activist. Canadian-born-and-bred, I now live in Portland, Oregon, with my lovely (and much smarter) wife and our two adorable sons.
Find out more here.
I'm proud to be the newly elected President of the National At-Home Dad Network. Check them out to find out more.