Hey everyone. My name is Jon Dixon. I'm 25 years old, I've been married for 3 years and have 2 children, Liam, two and a half years old, and Clara, 3 months old. Right now I'm getting my Master's degree in Marriage & Family Therapy and working part-time to pay the bills. I've known Craig since I was a teenager. Back then he was known as Camera Craig because he was always filming us skateboarding around town so we could try to get sponsored. After going to college, getting married and having two kids I have finally given up that dream, haha! When I found out Craig was starting a dad blog I was stoked because I think involved dads need to be in the spotlight to take away from the “deadbeat dad” stereotype. Contrary to our cultural assumptions, recent research has shown that children benefit incredibly from equal exposure to moms and dads.
Much to Craig's dislike, I have been trying to write this post since The Hipster Dad went up, to no avail. Part of the reason for this is that I think too much (downside of a degree in Philosophy!) and I am crazy busy with school, work and my internship. The bigger reason is that whenever I get free time, I spend it with my family. Soooo...what does being a “hip dad” mean to me. This post might just be me rambling on about my ideas but to me, being a “hip dad” is not being afraid to challenge stereotypes in order to pave the way for future generations to have a better family life. Sounds like a lot, right? To me, it's as simple as having fun with my kids and having an equal share in parenting.
Becoming a dad has been the most challenging and rewarding thing that has ever happened to me (although I would say marriage is equally challenging and rewarding). Juggling school, work, marriage and kids isn’t easy but somehow it just happens. Actually, being asked how I do it is probably the dad-question I get the most. I always give the same answer: my wife and I try our best, have fun and trust God will help us out when we need it. The things I love the most are taking the kids to the store with me and having an adventure, waking up early to hang with the kids and cook breakfast for my wife and going on family outings. Most recently, we went down to Rappahannock Cellars in Huntly, VA for a lunch date with Liam’s godmother. The weather was perfect (mid-60s) and the winery is family friendly so bringing the kids was a must. We sat outside, drank some wine and watched Liam run around and play in the grass. I couldn’t help but join him and we ran around and performed for all the other guests! My wife threw Clara in the Ergo and walked around, letting the sun shine gently on her face. After a few hours of grazing and sipping we watched the sun start to set and headed home. A fun trip turned into one of the best family afternoons we’ve ever had.
I love being a dad. I want all dads to be able to be proud of their title. This could be as simple as not being afraid to throw on the Ergo or BabyBjorn, taking the kids to the park for some fun or just goofing around with them at home. I guess what I’m trying to say is that parenthood is all about bringing who you are into your role as “dad”; kids just want us to be ourselves and spend time with them. #OccupyFatherhood