Last year, when we inaugurated our Top 50 Dad Blogs list, we praised dad bloggers for “changing the way we think about fatherhood.” Indeed, a number of our favorite bloggers on this, our second Top 50 list, insist our thinking needs to be changed. They describe themselves as advocates for fathers, taking to their keyboards in order to counter dominant cultural stereotypes of dad-as-incompetent-buffoon. (You don’t believe them? Tune in to most any family sitcom on most any night of the week.) Others on the list aspire simply to entertain us with funny, relatable tales from the trenches. A few write to work through the shattering grief of losing a child or spouse.
This list features straight dads, gay dads, working dads, stay-at-home dads, geek dads, single dads, and more. In a culture where the dominant conversations around fatherhood center simply on whether dads can deign to change their kid's diaper, it's refreshing to see these guys take the public perception of parents into their own hands. We are again struck by the variety of their voices and experiences, which itself puts the lie to the notion of any one “typical dad.” A lot of our favorites from last year are back, while many worthy entrants are making their debuts. We hope you’ll enjoy laughing, crying, nodding, and discovering along with them as much as we have. As dads' online influence grows, this list will only become more and more difficult to curate — and that's a good problem to have. If you think we missed any of your favorite dad bloggers, nominate them here. – Barbara Spindel and the dad blog panel
3 / 50
“We are just two more yuppies raising their kids in the most dangerous city in America,” Jim Griffioen says of life in Detroit with 7-year-old Juniper and 4-year-old Gram. Started in 2005 by Griffioen and his wife, Sweet Juniper has appeared on our list of Top 50 Mom Blogs. But the lion’s share of this perennial favorite is written by Dad, hence, for the second year running, it ranks third on this list.
The content here is less parent blog and more of a parent-themed issue of The New Yorker: it’s smart, witty, and unfailingly interesting. Visiting Sweet Juniper is a must around Halloween. Griffioen is a master at creating handmade costumes for the kids, and he shares his process, as well as plenty of pictures, on the site. This year Juniper asked to be a ring-necked pheasant. Griffioen writes, “I didn’t want her to feel like a kid in a bird costume. I wanted her to feel like an actual pheasant.” Judging from the photos, we’d say he succeeded beautifully.