Ahhh.... the customary "year-in-review..." post is here. I'll just come right out and say it: 2012 was a good year for me, and it started pretty early on. The decision to ditch my old writing/editing gig in favor of building The Rock Father™ into it's own "Empire" was the catalyst for many adventures for which I'm grateful. As many of you have just discovered the site in the past few months, there's certainly some good stuff that you might've missed, and thus the "year-end wrap-up" is a prime opportunity to check out some highlights. I always feel like these year-end posts are just self-appreciative horn-tooting sessions, and maybe they are, so I've assembled some "Greatest Hits" from the past twelve months, while mixing it up with some Rock Father adventures from other sites and beyond...
Fifteen Top Parenting Stories from The Daddy Blog:
- Sandy Hook Elementary School
- Back in the News Again: Gender-Neutral Toys - the debate rages...
- Parents: Don't Call Your Child's Pacifier a "Binky" Unless, of course, it's a BINKY
- Stuff You Don't Need: The Gerber Life College Plan and Gerber Grow-up Plan
- Does Co-Sleeping Lower a Dad's Testosterone Level?
- Addie's 3rd Birthday: A Weekend with Caillou, Friends, and Patch 22
- The Newest Member of The Rock Father Family has Arrived!
- The Easter Blog: Non-Religious Celebration of a Religious Holiday
- Father. Daughter. Big Wheel. Ruling the Neighborhood on Three Wheels
- The Great Baby Furniture Swindle: Buying a Crib is a Scam
- Revisiting 1988's BIG (Tom Hanks) as a Parent
- Thomas and Friends are No Friends of Mine (Something Foul in the Aisle of Sodor)
- I See My Work Not in Dollars and Hours, but in Boxes of Diapers.
- MILLIE COW: Harmless Children's Book or Terrifying Bovine Demon?
- STAR WARS: Teaching The Force The Rock Father Way...
The Rock Father™ featured on other sites:
2012 was certainly the year that The Rock Father™ began to infiltrate the mainstream a little bit more. While Babble did not choose me to be one of their "Top 50 Dad Blogs of 2012" (my wife nominated me, anyway), there's plenty of other sites that know what's up. The folks over at Rockabye Baby! asked me to do some guest blogging for them, and while I turned in five articles, only one - about NIRVANA - ran on their site back in May. In June, Silber Media asked me to do an interview for their "Musician Dad" series on QRD, and I did. On October 17, Naps Happen featured my daughter Addie as "Guest Napper #130: Gardening Goes to ELEVEN." In November, New York's Time to Play Magazine asked me to contribute to their Play Forum as a guest blogger, and I provided them with a piece about my daughter entitled "Time To Play: An Octane-Obsessed Little Girl." In December, my daughter Addie popped up in two high-profile slots online... a Facebook post by Macy's promoting their Letters to Santa benefiting Make-a-Wish, and on the official website for Anderson Cooper's ANDERSON LIVE in a 2010 "bad Santa" photo. Where will we end up in 2013? I have some ideas.
- Bloggers: The words "review" and "giveaway" should never be used together...
- Rock Father Adventure: The Mattel Toy Store, Wilmot, Wisconsin
- Report: Record Store Day 2012 - A Personal Tale of Record Stores Past
- One Year Smoke-Free: F.U. Philip Morris and RJ Reynolds - You Owe Me.
- Modern Retro: BIG TRAK returns as BIGTRAK XTR
- Becoming a Judge for the Fids and Kamily Music Awards celebrating the best in Kids and Family Music.
- Getting banned from the Thomas & Friends Facebook page for stating that Sir Topham Hatt is meant to mold children into following a stereotypical authority figure. More on that here.
Yes, 2012 was a fine year... and in addition to all the fun here on The Rock Father, I've also managed to do some work while continuing to raise my two daughters as an at-home-Dad. Some of the bands I worked with in 2012 included Product of Hate, Dirge Within, Fear Factory, and Arcanium. As for some creative projects for the next year, I have some thoughts but haven't committed to anything just yet.
Thanks for reading, and I hope to speak with many of you in the comments section of the site, on twitter, and on Facebook in 2013!
About James: A work-from-home Dad with a pair of daughters (Released in 2009 and 2012) - James Zahn is THE ROCK FATHER™.
Bringing over two decades of experience in the entertainment industry into the family realm, Zahn is an Illinois-based Entertainment Writer, Media Personality and Commentator.
He serves as a PBS KIDS VIP (Very Involved Parent) Blogger, has made guest appearances as a member of the Sprout Kindness Crew, was featured in the Father's Day issue of Lake County Magazine, and is a former contributor to Chicago Parent.
Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for the likes of FEAR FACTORY, DIRGE WITHIN, PRODUCT OF HATE, ARCANIUM and others, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands.
James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Blogcritics, Fangoria, Starlog, The River Cities' Reader. Slowfish, Oil, and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360, and in 2013 he's been quoted on CNN, Babble, The Huffington Post, and The Good Men Project, in addition to making appearances on ABC News and WGN.
Learn more here.