I have a confession: I am unbearably, pathologically, compulsively nosy. I am the sort of person who reads those magazine articles about what's in a celebrity's fridge, or who Jennifer Aniston is dating these days. I just find other people fascinating.
Perhaps that's why I love reading parenting blogs so much. The great thing about blogging is that while some bloggers are just like me, many more are living completely different lives, perhaps in entirely different parts of the world. And there's never a bad time to get a glimpse inside a Dad's head – like at Blog up North!
The MAD Blog Awards, an annual awards programme for Mum and Dad bloggers held in association with Parentdish, celebrates the best in British parent blogging, and many of the finalists in this year's awards offer a fascinating insight into how other Mums and Dads raise their families.
If you're interested in the idea of 'natural parenting', then Diary of a First Child is a fascinating insight into the issues around natural and ethical parenting, with loads of research, articles and information. Mummy from the Heart shares how modern parenting and Christianity can work together. Or maybe you would like to know how a regular Mum copes with moving from a regular family home in Rochdale to the middle of Lapland? You can read about what happened to Heather and her young family, over at Note from Lapland.
The MAD Blog Awards also celebrate the amazing talent that bloggers demonstrate – some of the best writing in the UK today isn't being created by professional writers or published authors, but by parents who are sharing powerful words and images through their blogs. We love the opinionated and topical posts on blogs like Scribbling Mum, Typecast and 20 Something Mum, while Slummy Single Mummy, Northern Mum and Babylon Lane Tales regularly reduce us to tears of laughter with their riotous stories of parenting and family life. Sometimes blogs like Metal Mummy can inspire you to think about issues in a new way, just by the power of their words.
Of course, blogs aren't just about words – the MAD Blog Awards also celebrates images, and there are some amazingly talented photographers in the parent blogging world, including Housewife Confidential, Squidgyboo and Clinically Fed Up.
Then there are bloggers who are using blogs to help drive their new businesses, often building new careers that allow parents to spend more time with their children, or to work from home. If you're interested in how blogging might lead to a new career then check out The Mummy Whisperer Geek Mummy, All About the Boys, Baby Budgeting and Queen of Easy Green.