Vote Now for Iowa City Moms Blog’s “Super Dad”

Today is the day, everyone!  You sent in your nominations (20 of them!), and with the help of our lovely team of contributing writers, we have narrowed it down to the top 7 finalists for our Super Dad Contest!  And let us just say, this was NO easy task. All the dads that you nominated are amazing, and as you vote this week let’s remember that all the dads in our lives are super in some way!

**In case you missed it, the awesome dad who is named Iowa City Moms Blog’s “Super Dad” will win this amazing prize package:  A 1-hour relaxing massage (plus his choice of revitalizing foot scrub or hot stone therapy) from the wonderful ladies at Massage Heights at Iowa River Landing, a dad-friendly gift basket from Sport Clips in Coralville (including men’s hair products and 3 FREE haircuts!), and a $100 GIFT CARD to Running Wild Iowa City!**

And so, without further ado, we present to you the top 7 finalists for the Iowa City Moms Blog’s Super Dad Contest (in alphabetical order, to remain unbiased!)….drumroll please….


Nominated by his daughter, Maria

Armando 1I am nominating my “step dad,”(who really is more like my dad) Mando. He took me in as his own daughter when I was just four years old. Two years later, they had my brother and I’ve never felt that he treated my brother any better than me. Although my dad has always been in my life, Mando is the one I have lived with the longest and has been the one who has helped shape the person I am today. I’ve always felt like I was his biological daughter. In fact, there were times where we would be out and people would tell him how much we looked alike. He could have easily said I was his step daughter, but he didn’t. He would just smile, thank them, and say he also thought the same! Now I have my own children and to see the bond he has with them is incredible. My oldest is 5 and is on the autism spectrum. He has some challenges that include obsessions with wanting to be in Mando’s red car all the time, wanting to open and close his garage door 15 times or more, watching the same episode over and over again or being chased around the house for hours. Mando is kind, patient, and understanding, and anyone who is lucky to know him would say the same. He is the best father to my brother and I and best grandfather to my two kids. I couldn’t think of a more deserving person for this. He truly deserves the world and I’m so thankful for him and my mom and I don’t know what I would do without them.



Nominated by his wife, Rachel

brennanIt’s hard to know where to begin in explaining why Brennan deserves the Super Dad award, but I think it needs to be back before we even had kids. Brennan didn’t start college until after we were married. It was a late start, but while knowing we wouldn’t want to delay starting our family under after he was done we also knew college was important and he wanted to do it. So two and half years later we had our first child, with Brennan a little over halfway through his undergrad. We had decided before we got married that I would stay home after we had kids, raising them. But after we had Tatum we tossed around the idea of me going back part-time for some extra income and possibly allowing Brennan to work a little less and concentrate more on school. Knowing it would mean more work for him, Brennan encouraged me to stay home as we had planned. This meant that Brennan was a husband, a father, a full time student, and a part time employee (25+ hours/week). It was no small feat and to be honest I really don’t know how he did it, but he did. The really incredible part was that he wasn’t an absent husband or father. Somehow between work and classes and homework, he always found time to help me out when I needed it and to spend time as a family.  We had our second child about 7 months ago, right in the middle of Brennan’s graduate program. In fact, he came just a few weeks before finals and Brennan still managed to pull a 4.0 that semester. Adjusting to two children was not exactly a breeze and Brennan has always been there to help out, sacrificing sleep and/or study time in the process. Sometimes he even tries to multitask, by doing homework while watching Tatum. You can see in the top right picture how well that works out. t sleep through the night and Brennan gets up with him every time. Often he has to bring him to me to feed him, but he still gets up and tries to get him to sleep first. That is 7 months of being a full time student and part time employee while not once getting an uninterrupted night of sleep!

So far I feel like I have probably managed to convince you that he is a pretty darn good husband, which he is. As a husband he is as helpful and supportive as they come and I am lucky to have him. But this is a Super Dad award and Brennan deserves it. First and foremost Brennan is FUN. Tatum is 2.5 and would much rather play with dad than boring old mom. He wrestles, he chases, he tickles, he reads books in fun voices, he plays hide and seek, he builds fun things with legos, and he hides and scares her (which she loves). She loves him so much. But he isn’t just in it for the fun times. He is there for the mundane, the trying, and the important times. He is there for the diaper changes, the potty training fiascos, the tantrums, and the sleepless nights. He disciplines with love, he fights the important battles, he helps to teach right from wrong, he helps with bath time and bed time, he lets her sleep on him all night long when she is throwing up. My kids are lucky to have him as a daddy. Brennan is, without a doubt, a super dad and deserves to be celebrated.


Nominated by his wife, Andrea

ChrisChris has taken on not only loving me, but my two boys from my first marriage. Then we had our daughter. He went back to school and took her full time between classes.  He was so hands on. He was always willing to forgo something so that we could do something for the family. Fast forward 5 years and Chris was working nights and we were expecting another girl. He changed his hours at work to go to days so we could afford the child care, with him providing  child care half the week. The week after she was born he was fixing the sewer back up while we stayed at my moms. But then the news came: our baby was diagnosed with Biliary Atresia. He worked and I met with doctors. Through doctor appointments and surgery and re-admissions he was a rock. He took care of everything else so I could take care of her. Even with all the stress and craziness of 4 kids, endless doctor appointments, and unknown curve balls; he is a silent, steady rock. Chris is so easy going and laid back. Nothing ruffles his dander. He is so thoughtful and considerate. He puts everyone before himself without a word.



Nominated by his wife, Liz

KeithMy husband, Keith, is a great father to our 3 kids. He loves them more than anything and works very hard to make sure they have the things they need and to show them that hard work is very important! He is a special education teacher and works with kids with behavior disorders. This means he works all day long with other people’s challenging kids and comes home to our young children and still has the patience to spend time with them and show them that he really cares about what is going on with them each day.  My husband unfortunately lost his sister to cancer recently. For the last 10 years that she has been battling cancer as a single mom, he has really stepped up to give her two sons a strong, positive male father figure in their lives. Now that their mom is gone, they will live with my husbands parents and he and I will be more involved with them than ever. These guys really need a father in their lives now more than ever and he is determined to be there for them.

My husband is awesome. He works Monday through Friday while I stay home with the kids and then he is on his own with all 3 for the weekend while I work two 12 hour shifts at the hospital EVERY weekend! Not many dads would take on this challenge and to be honest, he gets more done on the weekends than I do all week long sometimes! (AND he still wants to have another kid!)  Keith is such a loyal son, friend, brother, father, teacher, and husband. He is the first to go help his parents on their farm, usually without even being asked. He has taken it upon himself to really step up and help out with our nephews, and he really cares about his students at school as well. He cares so much about others and often loses sleep over worrying about others. I may not tell him often enough, but I think he’s amazing!


Nominated by his wife, Sarah

KevinSuper Dad feels like an inadequate title to describe my husband Kevin. Our baby turned one today, and for every day of the past year Kevin has been an even more enthusiastic and amazing Dad than I already knew he would be. Because he had a teaching job and because of the timing of when our son was born, Kevin was so fortunate to be able to stay home with us for the first three months, but even since then he has been my more than equal partner in raising our son. While I have friends whose husbands can hardly bring themselves to change a single disposable diaper, Kevin has been not only supportive but eager about cloth diapers and breastfeeding and being incredibly involved in every aspect of parenting. Kevin was truly my rock those first few incredibly magical but incredibly difficult weeks. From day one when I had trouble breastfeeding and for weeks thereafter, he helped supplement my feedings with finger-feeding baby the milk I had pumped. He changed almost every diaper while I was busy nursing, pumping, stressing, sleeping, recovering. He washed loads of diapers, washed bottles, washed dishes. He sat up into the wee hours of the morning rocking and holding baby upright when he was having reflux, watching Westerns while baby finally slept. He wrapped our son in a baby carrier and sang to him while he played the ukulele, so he could feel the ukulele on one side of him, and Daddy’s voice on the other side. Kevin has been in grad school since the fall, getting his master’s in Choral Conducting, but that hasn’t stopped him from being Super Dad. Since we’re both Iowa alums, we’re raising our son to be a diehard Iowa Hawkeye fan, and Kevin has taken enormous pride in dressing him up in Hawkeye gear on football gamedays and watching the game with him… and in true Super Dad style, he even manages to mute his anger for baby’s sake when the game doesn’t go our way. Which, let’s face it, happens quite often. He rushes home from class, or even comes home over his short lunch, to get in extra play time with baby or help me out with things around the house, even when it means staying up til 3 to get his homework done. He helps cook, he helps clean, he walks to the store with us, he does so much, even with his ridiculously busy school schedule. He still gets up and changes diapers in the middle of the night, and when baby won’t sleep, Kevin is even better at shushing and rocking him to sleep than I am. He gives our son his bath most of the time, and has a whole system for getting our squirmy little boy to cooperate. And every night at bedtime, after we’re done reading a story, Kevin sings him a lullaby while my precious baby rests his head on Daddy’s shoulder. I get choked up watching them almost every time. It’s no wonder he’s babbling “Dada” way more often than he’s babbling “Mama” so far. And Kevin has done all this while being a Super Student, getting basically straight A’s in an incredibly rigorous and intense graduate program, and while being a Super Husband, somehow making me feel like the most beautiful thing he’s ever seen, even when I haven’t showered or changed out of my yoga pants in days. Last year for his first Father’s Day, I was still recovering from giving birth and couldn’t manage to give him the special celebration and recognition he deserved. He takes almost no time to do anything for himself and I would love for him to be recognized and have a chance to treat himself a little for Father’s Day. He’s truly my hero and a Super Dad. I love you, Kevin.


Nominated by his wife, Lydia

NathanWhat makes a dad a “Super Dad”? I can’t answer that question for everyone, but for my family, I can.

A Super Dad:

–       Is someone who gets so upset when his baby girl is sad that he can’t stand being in the room when she gets her shots

–       Volunteers to take a shot of saline in his backside, just to show his daughter that it’s not scary

–       Plans all his out-of-town trips so he can always have 20 minutes of “morning snuggle time” with his toddler, over a sippy cup of lovingly prepared warm milk

–       Spends 9 hours hand-sanding his daughter’s hand-me-down toddler bed, so all the teeth marks on it will be hers and hers alone

–       Buys his daughter Tshirts featuring Batman and Abby-from-Sesame-Street, so she can develop her own tastes, whether they be tomboy or fairy princess –       Does the stay-at-home-dad gig two days a week, and gets upset if he’s forced to give up one of his Daddy/Daughter days because of his work schedule

–       Drives 13 hours home, overnight, so he can get back to his baby girl faster

–       Encourages Mommy’s breastfeeding, even when it’s really hard, because he wants his daughter to have all the health benefits of breast milk for her first year

–       Spends the night on the floor in his infant daughter’s room the first night she sleeps in her crib, so she won’t be lonely

–       Insists on sunscreen every single day to protect his daughter from the dangers of UV rays

–       Splurges on organic milk and farm-fresh eggs, so his little girl can grow up eating and drinking food that’s (hopefully) better for her in the long run

–       Takes his little girl to Tot Time every Tuesday morning, despite being the only Daddy there, because a love for books is important to him

–       Works hard at his job to provide a better life for his baby girl – better daycare, a bigger swingset, and a nicer tricycle

–       Reads the world’s most boring Elmo book over and over, because his toddler can’t get enough of the cute little red monster

–       Sits on the floor of Target with his little girl, shaking bottles of vitamins and showing her how each one makes a different sound – schedule be damned

But most of all, a Super Dad is someone who does all of these things (and more) despite never wanting to be a father. Some husbands think about children and get all giddy and emotional. Mine never did. He was a reluctant father right up until the moment our daughter entered the world. And once she did, just like the cliché says, everything changed. His world became about her. And in a scant few weeks, my reluctant husband-turned-father-of-one will become a father of two. I know he’ll be just as head-over-heels in love with this child as he is with our daughter. And I love him all the more for it. He is our Super Dad.


Nominated by his wife, Hayley

TimothyMy husband Tim is an incredible father to our two beautiful daughters (age 3 and 8 months)! As a third- year medical student Tim is a busy guy! Training to become a physician takes a lot of time and energy! His hours vary but are often very early, long, and tiresome. But regardless of how long he has been at the hospital, what time he woke up (4am to go prep for surgery cases), or no matter how much he needs to study, he always makes time for our family and being Dad is Tim’s #1 priority! He takes his responsibility as a father very seriously and not only helps with the everyday tasks of parenthood like diapers, bath time, and bed time but also goes out of his way to make it fun! Tim loves being a dad and his enthusiasm is apparent by how he turns every chore into a game, how he makes up the silliest songs, or even how willingly he done a tiara and belt out “Let It Go.” It would be so easy for Tim to use his many school responsibilities as an excuse but Tim willingly sacrifices grades, school involvement, and personal interests to be around and play with his girls. He repeatedly tells me when I apologize for asking for his help or when he is at home spending time with us, that “there is nothing more important than spending time with my family. Everything else can wait. And if it can’t then it’s not important.” I have been particularly impressed with the creative ways Tim gets tasks completed around the house and his ability to continue some of his personal hobbies now that he is a dad…Whether that be pulling our daughters in a bike trailer so he can still road bike and exercise, planting the garden or having a clumsy and energetic assistant (aka a 2 year old) hand him tools while he fixes our car or his motor scooter. Although it takes twice….if not more…as long to get things done Tim loves having our 3 year old participate. There are few things I love more than looking out the window and watching Tim interact and care for our daughters. Tim is the world’s best swing pusher, make-believe prince, and fort-builder. And we are SO lucky to call him our daddy!

Ready to vote? Use the form below! Voting will be open until 11:59 pm. on Wednesday, June 11th.  The winner will be announced on Thursday, June 12th on our Facebook page!


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Iowa City Moms Blog
At Iowa City Moms Blog we’re a group of local moms who are passionate about connecting other moms to one another and to our community! Whether you’re an experienced mom, a newbie, expecting, or aspiring to be a mom someday, this blog is for you! Join us as we navigate this journey that is motherhood in the Iowa City area!



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