This week, DadCAMP turns 8.

I started this dad blog to archive diaries about adventures with my sons and as a way to meet other dads. I had just lost my job and with a toddler at home and another on the way, I thought it would be a great place to network and meet other guys with a similar life experience.

Everyone talks about work/life balance, but there’s not much talk about personal/family balance. Parents can sometimes feel very anchored to their duties with the family and feel guilt about breaking out and doing something social for themselves.

Networking with other dads has helped me meet people who understand my struggle / excuses / situation and we have similar life experiences to share and lean on.

The Canadian contingent at Dad 2.016 in Washington, DC

Because of this little .com, I’ve shared beers with dads I wouldn’t have met without it in Sydney, Edmonton, Vancouver, Coeur D’Alene, Banff, Calgary, Detroit, Washington, San Francisco, San Diego, New Orleans, and beyond.

Because of Oren Miller, I discovered a group of Dad Bloggers who inspired, encouraged, and supported my writing. Toss in 4 years of hugging it out at Dad 2.0 Summits, and having a blog has given me so much more than I ever could have hoped.

Back in January, I was asked to tell my DadCAMP story for Garnier. This spot sums up everything I believe about being a dad and what this blog has brought me.

This blog has made a world of difference in my life.

While in the back of my head I also thought starting a dad blog would be a way to build a small business (Dooce was big on the mom blog side back in 2009), I never expected for it to grow the way it has. The branded content I post on my sites is a way for me to fund raise for Diabetes Canada and this summer I passed $75,000 raised since I started blogging. I’m just so grateful for the support brands and readers have given this site.

Thanks to all whose parenting paths have crossed mine.

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