After time spent everywhere from the Toronto Islands and Lake Simcoe all the way to Mexico, the juggling act between the #BloggerLife, the family, and a pile of paperwork that’s multiplying faster than a herd of rabbits has been an intense one.
So much so that I’ve been negligent in doing all I can to share news about the brand with the audience I’ve worked so hard to build!
For Father’s Day, our national paper The Globe and Mail got in touch to ask me some questions on fatherhood as a Canadian who writes about what it’s like as a Dad today. In the answers below, you’ll see I took the task very seriously, as the way I’m raising my boys is super-intentional, and I want them wanting for nothing in their lives—whether physically, mentally or emotionally—by the time they’re my age.
I enjoyed writing the responses below, and I hope you find a little of yourself in them, too!
Casey Palmer — Toronto-based blogger at CaseyPalmer.com
With Father’s Day on the approach, I’ve found myself thinking about fatherhood and everything I’ve learned about this lifestyle so far. It’s far different now than it’s ever been before—when writing this post, I’d been thinking on what it must’ve been like to raise kids in 1916, and the colour of my skin notwithstanding, I’m pretty sure I much rather be the über-involved Dad expected of me today than the unemotional and detached fathers who were the norm of generations past.
It’s still something the world needs to get used to—the modern Dad’s been given the opportunity to rewrite the rule book and give everyone entirely new insights into what fathers can be. Now that we’re doing things like sharing parental leaves with our maternal counterparts and forming our own groups to discuss fatherhood and the emotional perils that come with it, it’s a new day as we strive to raise kids who’ll redefine parenthood for their generation.
But you don’t have to take my word for it—this Wednesday, June 15th, you can join me and a number of Dads across North America for Pampers’ #ThanksBaby Twitter Party for Father’s Day, where we can reflect on the laughs, challenges and incredible feelings that come with being a Dad! (And hey—with plenty of prizes available, including a $250 Visa gift card as the top takeaway, why would you want to miss it???)
The Pampers #ThanksBaby Twitter Party — Let’s Change the Conversation One Tweet at a Time!
Changing how the world sees Dads won’t happen overnight. The stories we know best all started as mere ideas and took root as people kept talking about them. You may see a Twitter Party with prizes—I see the opportunity to start shifting our expectations for the men we call Dads, and give them not only an equal share of the work needed to raise the kids of this world—but the awareness that they too play instrumental roles in developing the generation that’ll rock tomorrow.
I hope to see you there—I promise I’ll behave.
Until the next,
Disclaimer: I’m helping moderate this Twitter Party as a member of the Pampers Baby Panel, sharing news and information that’s been covering behinds (ha, ha) for over 50 years! You can hit Pampers up at their site for more information, such as their Rewards Program, and on social media over at Twitter, YouTube and Facebook.
Tell your wife, tell your kids, tell your husbands:
Growing up, my parents always stressed how important it was to have the right footwear for the occasion, so over the years I’ve learned to invest in kicks that help me be my best no matter what life’s throwing at me.
I’d like to think I fare better at my shoe game than most dudes—among my collection of kicks are some black leathers for various formal occasions; some brown leathers when I feel like switching it up; a pair of casuals when I’m out on weekend jaunts with the fam… no matter what the situation, there’s probably a pair in my house to do the trick.
Or so I thought, that is, before I became a Dad.
There’s plenty you don’t really think about before you have kids—the little things we take for granted, because frankly, as adults we just know better. Like how one might find playing around in puddles an unwise idea, since water would wreck most shoes. Or that we adults often stick to marked paths wherever we go, because the roads less travelled often have many a thing we rather not find on the bottom of our shoes.
After enough adventuring around with my mobile Mini-Me, I’ve been lucky enough to dodge permanent damage to whatever I manage to grab every time we dash outside, but it was becoming clear I was in dire need of shoes that could keep up not just with whatever life threw at me, but with whatever my 2½-year old would manage to get himself into.
As if answering my unspoken pleas, Mark’s reconnected with me, helping me pick out some shoes that’d keep me one step ahead of every toddler terror I’d come across!
Which is how I found a pair of size 10½ Helly Hansen Pace Trail Waterproof Shoes on my feet, with features that make them ideal for playing with my kids in all sorts of weather! Anatomically designed uppers to fit the foot’s natural shape. Durable Helly Grip™ outsoles providing solid traction on wet rocks and trails. C-Zone™ technology absorbing shocks on impact. They may look like your ordinary everyday runners, but I assure you—they’ve got what it takes to make running after kids a heckuva lot more comfortable.
Happy Father’s Day from Mark’s — Keeping You Outfitted for the Adventures with Your Kids… One Step at a Time.
But my story is just one Dad’s story. Mark’s wants us to remember our Dads this Father’s Day for everything they’ve done in our lives, and chasing after children to keep them out of trouble is but the tip of the iceberg with fatherhood.
My own experiences with my kids have given me new perspective on everything my father did for my brothers and I, and his tireless efforts over the decades to keep us on the right track may have seemed harsh at times, but I now understand that life could’ve turned out far differently without strong parents in our corners to guide us along the way.
In their Father’s Day video, Mark’s shows the broad spectrum of emotion that Dads bring forth from their children, and that those of us fortunate enough to still have them around should take advantage of that while we can—you never know which day will be the last until it’s behind you… but why wait until it’s too late?
In any case, a very happy Father’s Day from myself and Mark’s—whether you’re receiving or giving the well wishes this June 19th, I hope you make some excellent memories!
Be well and until the next, I remain,
DISCLAIMER: Mark’s was generous enough to compensate me for this post, and now I can chase after my boisterous toddler without worrying about uncomfortably damp socks afterward! You can check them out online, and through their social media profiles on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram!
Tell your wife, tell your kids, tell your husbands:
In my world, June’s all about the Dads. Unlike Canadian Moms, unfortunate enough to celebrate Mother’s Day under the shadow of May 24’s looming promise (aka the first Canadian long weekend that isn’t cold, wet, or having anything else fall from the sky), June’s sorely lacking in anything distracting us from celebrating our fathers. And that’s a good thing too, because the very notion of fatherhood is changing — or should I say evolving — as we continue our way through the 21st century.
In the vicious wild of the blogosphere in a creature mighty impressive, but rarely seen. He’s ferociously protective of his young, carving out territory to tell their tales without overexposing them to the dangers of the world. He creates for his peers that may never see his craft, more likely to follow sports teams and tech trends than they are tales of families and minivans. The Dad Blogger is very real, very vocal, and though small in number, are a group of bloggers you’d better keep eyes on for the future!
The Rare Beast of the Blogosphere: The Dad Blogger
The Mom Bloggers are a reckoning force, hundreds if not thousands in number here in Canada alone, having built solid distribution channels through sites like Parent Tested Parent Approved, Mom Central Canada and the Yummy Mummy Club. Many other breeds of blogger love to hate on them, seeing their success with Brand Ambassadorships, Twitter parties and vast social media metrics, wondering why they can’t have a piece of what the Mom Bloggers have cultivated for themselves. And not only have Moms collectively formed a blogging ecosystem unto their own, the mother as the classic parental figure also lends itself well to the medium. They have so many opportunities to share on similar experiences, whether they’re birth stories, breastfeeding or the barrage of emotions that come when children hit their milestones like their first steps or that fateful morning where you first drop them off at daycare.
But Moms aren’t the only parents — Dad Bloggersdo exist, even if there’re only a handful of them.
What Does a Dad Blogger Even Look Like?
Most male bloggers I’ve met aren’t fathers and the ones who are don’t often don’t blog about their fatherhood experiences. The guys I know blog food, they blog tech, they blog on all these things that society deems “masculine”, but the joys, trials and lessons that come from fatherhood aren’t a topic often discussed around the digital water cooler.
So far, I’ve tracked down just over 30 Canadian Dad Bloggers (aka “Daddy Bloggers”, or my personal favourite, “Father Bloggers”). 30. Thirty’s a mid-scale blogger event in Toronto. It’s an average attendee number at a popular Twitter chat. Thirty’s a group, but it’s shockingly small for the size of a niche that spans a nation!
A quick look at the 2011 Canadian census would have us expect 2,054,645 fathers across Canada, yet 99.99853989% of them are oddly silent with their stories.
Where are the fathers? If they’re not sharing their stories online, where are they sharing them?