Monday, February 4, 2013

Dad 2.0-- Great (er) Expectations... Fulfilled!

I had a blast in Houston hanging out with dad bloggers of all sorts, chatting about blogs and sponsors and vulnerability and the Superbowl and our kids.  As mentioned previously, I was at the second annual Dad 2.0 Summit (I was also at the first with my wife and son.  This time I was flying solo)

 In case you don't know, Dad 2.0 is an annual conference that is an open conversation between dads and brands.  Some of the best and most influential Dad bloggers descended on Houston to talk about their work, meet with brands, talk about the changing perception of Fatherhood.)  The conference is not a "Best practice for being a dad" conference. (although tips were exchanged)  It was about being a better dad blogger, and being more vulnerable.

One of the founders, Doug French, said in the opening remarks was that this was where the Expectations get a little lofty.  I think the conference really did a great job of connecting and inspiring all of its participants.  I had a few moments that I thought were great, and I'd like to share them.

I'm not going to go over the program (you can get that at the Dad 2.0 Website   (and if that doesn't work-- I've saved it for posterity here )

And if you want to find out what other people thought about the conference, look below:

Paul Easter of Dear Mister Man:

Dave Taylor (Go Fatherhood):

Liz Gumbinner of Mom 101:

Jason Avant of Pet Cobra:

Amy Spreitzer Windsor of Bitchin' Wives Club:

Chris Read of Canadian Dad:

Mike Moebes of Father Muskrat:

Christopher Lewis of Dad of Divas:

Mark Vander Lay of Parenting Boys, Raising Men:

Jay Sokol of Dude of the House:

The Gents of Dadcentric:

David Vienna of The Daddy Complex:

Kevin McKeever of Always Home And Uncool:

Pedro Veloso of Limetr.ee

The Jason Greene:

(I'm sure there are others that we can add to this list (and if you add them in the comments, I'll add them up here!)

Before I talk about the event itself, I want to say a personal thank you to the sponsors.
The NYC Dads Group guys get a little famous (with some
Photoshop trickery from Dove Men+Care)
There was lots of events from some of the amazing sponsors (including more Dove Men Care product than I know what to do with.)  Some of this stuff, I didn't even realize I was supposed to know about!) And Dove, as the title sponsor, also gave away free shaves and haircuts, shoe shines, and a chance to play foosball.    If you've never been shaved by a professional barber-- I highly recommend it.

Food and snacks were sponsored by ConAgra and Kraft Cheese, there were special smoothies by Jamba Juice, and a whiskey/bourbon tasting and craft beer tasting. Honda test drives, a trunk organizer from Sears,  a free smoke alarm from Kidde, and free turtle wax from Turtle wax.  Oh yes, and smoothies from Jamba Juice!

Thanks for all the schwag.  But more importantly, thanks for being in the dad space.  Lots of companies probably should be, but are not.  I can tell you, I personally respect and think more highly of your brand partially because of your involvement in events like this.  (And yes, I like free stuff too.  But more importantly, the personal connection.)

Getting a haircut/shave.
For me, there were several highlights to the event.  I loved all of the panels and Keynotes that I attended, and thought there was a lot of valuable information floating around the air of the Four Seasons Hotel.

Hanging Out.  As a dad and dadblogger, I don't interact with other dads as much as I would like.  I make efforts, but am not always as successful as I would like. This was a good chance to make some strong connections with guys both local and not so local.  Having a shave, having a dinner, having a late night conversation-- all of it was great.

Brene Brown, speaking about vulnerability, and the need to dare greatly.
She's a funny, amazing speaker, and everything she says has the ring of authenticity about it.  I saw her at the Mom 2.0 conference, and was moved and amazed by her then.

You can get her book Daring Greatly from Amazon, or you can just view her TED talk.  After you view it, you are going to want to buy the book!

Here's one of her TED talks. It will blow you away.

Whit Honea, reading one of the posts he wrote about his son confusing the word Dump Truck with Dumb Fuck, and the honest love of his child and the great writing that he put into it.  "Look at that Dumb Fuck. How come he's so dirty?"  It was hilarious and moving and wonderful to hear.
Follow Whit's blog:
Read Whit's very funny post:

• Jeff Pulver, founder of Vonage and a few other companies, talking about how his loneliness as a child led him to seek out other people around the world as a HAM operator.  As he explained it in his keynote, it became clear to me that HAM RADIO was the twitter of the 1970's.  Jeff had lots of bon mots, and he was a great speaker and made lots of great connections.
Find Jeff online: and

Gerome Sapp.  Former Professional Football Player.  I talked to Gerome for some time about his work and about the NFL, and how hard it is for many players to hold onto their wealth.  He's now the founder of, a company that rewards influencers and gives them  the perks that celebrities and athletes used to have all by themselves.  Gerome was really smart and on top of it.

I'm looking forward to attending Dad 2.014 when it happens next year!


Dave Taylor said...

Great writeup, and some good pics too. I am sorry I didn't sign up for a shave and haircut in time, but I did get my shoes shined. For the first time since I bought them. Years ago. :-)

Whit said...

The best part about my reading (thanks for that, btw) is that I got to do it before Brene. I feel like I opened for the Stones.

I'm sorry we didn't get a chance to hang out this time around, but it was great sharing the space!


Thanks Dave and Whit.
It was great to share the space, although I couldn't hang out with everyone. Maybe next time around!

And I brought the wrong kind of shoes to be shined. Shame on me!

Mom101 said...

So nice to meet you Adam (even if you don't remember my name, ha) - I love hearing your perspective. It really was a beautifully done weekend. Even if it ended with us all half-asleep in the Houston airport with stale croissants.