5 Months, 8 Days, 14 Hours……….

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since I lit up and smoked my last¬†cigarette, according to my handy-dandy¬†QuitIt app.¬†If you’re a former smoker, you understand what the last few months of my life have been like.

It’s hard to believe as a 12-year-old, I thought smoking was oh-so-cool. Now, as a woman turning 45 this year, I regret lighting up that first cigarette. Let me clarify: I DID NOT smoke from 12 until 44. I didn’t ¬†join in as a ‘real smoker’ until I was around 15 or 16. My friends did it. My parents were chain smokers. It was a part of my world for as long as I can remember.

Another thing I remember is getting car sick on long road trips with my parents as they smoked. Looking back, I don’t know why they didn’t crack or roll down the windows during those endless miles. My complaints weren’t met with the obvious reaction. Instead, we’d pull into the nearest rest area so I could get somewhat of a break, as they continued to smoke.

I also remember learning in school, ¬†cigarettes would kill my parents. I rectified that situation by throwing away newly purchased cartons of cigarettes. Problem solved, right? Uh no! More like I ended up in trouble. I was worried about my parents but it was still a time where the Marlboro man was cool and smoking was just the thing to do. My parents weren’t concerned with the years worth of damage ¬†smoking was doing to their health. In fact, my mom ended up on an oxygen machine during the last few years of her life. Ironically, the first time I went over to see her and the new oxygen machine, she was sitting in bed smoking!

I will admit, I was the adult smoker, puffing away, warning the younger generation of the perils of the nicotine addiction. One of my most ironic and sad memories relating to smoking is: A good friend of mine, who use to babysit my daughter, was outside, you guessed it, smoking, when I arrived. I did what any good smoker does and lit up a cigarette to join her. Tears streamed down her face as she delivered the bad news: her grandmother had been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. My heart sank and clenched with pain for my friend and her family, even as we both puffed and puffed away. Despite the news, neither one of us thought, it’s time to quit smoking.

Fast forward a few years. My daughter is in elementary school and has asked me to accompany her class on a field trip to one of our state parks. Sure, why not, I think. It’s Spring, the weather is perfect and I’d never been to this particular park. Yeah, lemme tell you. Little did I know her teacher and the teacher she partnered up with were evidently in training for an¬†Olympic¬†type of marathon! Initially, I did give it a good-hearted attempt to keep up with the teachers-determined-to-whip-me-into-shape. I even made sure to keep the stragglers caught up with us. That’s right, I was the BEAST! For the first five minutes.

Then my smoker’s lungs started kicking in. Sweat glands I didn’t know existed made their presence known. Luckily, I’d established with the teachers from hell ¬†I was in charge of the stragglers, so it became easy to slow it on down and walk their pace. No longer was I encouraging them to keep up, I was begging THEM to s-l-o-w down! I can remember at one point where they gave up on me trying to catch up with them. Not only did we finish the walk in 2.5 miliseconds, we also had to wait another 20 something hours for the other classes to arrive at the meeting point. Okay, okay, so I’m exaggerating just a little.

It was at that point I knew I had to quit smoking. There was no reason for me to be in my 30’s and ready to keel over from what should have been an invigorating walk. My mind was made up and I quit. For over 2 years. At least, in the sense that I didn’t buy cigarettes. I didn’t smoke cigarettes. But I never stopped feigning for cigarettes. It was oh-so easy to start back up. I’ll just smoke when: fill-in-the-blank. And then as I became more comfortable with the different allowances to smoke, I was a full-time smoker again.

Now, I am back into the world of not smoking. Again. After another attempt back in August of last year. I went three weeks before I just had to smoke again. I have been wanting to post about ¬†my non-smoking journey that began a few months ago but honestly, I was afraid that I would have given in again. I am trying, no not trying, I am succeeding at being a non-smoker. The first month really didn’t bother me. It’s been the second month going into the third that had me going absolutely bonkers! It was through a newsletter for people who have quit smoking that I read once you get to the third month and haven’t smoked, your chances for remaining a non-smoker increase tremendously. That is what I held onto for dear life as the days from 2 months into 3 months slowed down drastically.

I’m still struggling with the addiction part at times but not so much that I am willing to taint my non-smoking lips and lungs! The app does tell me how much money I’ve saved as well as how my body is healing. Like most smokers who quit, ¬†I have packed on the pounds. ¬†I can’t even say it’s because food tastes so much better. It’s because I want to SMOKE! The next phase of kicking the habit is to turn my eating habits around. I knew I would gain weight and gave myself a time period to substitute one oral fixation for another. Temporarily, that is! ¬†And so the determination continues into another day I can add to my time of kicking the habit. I’m off into the next journey of kicking the jiggly off my belly!

Any addictions you quit? How many times did it take you? What are some words of advice and encouragement you can give the rest of us?

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A Super Sweet Blogging Award! :)

Why hello! It tis I! Yep, I’m still alive and around. I’ve posted a million times! In my mind. Things have been crazy busy and ultra life-changing on soooo many levels. It’s amazing what life can and will hand you when you least ¬†expect it. That being said, I was very surprised when Lisa nominated me for a bloggy award. ¬†I’d almost forgotten about awards until Lisa nudged a well-hidden memory.

Check out Lisa’s blog,¬† Road to Nowhere…

This is probably one of the more yummy awards! Ah, if only these were real!

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1. Cookies or Cake? This is an easy one for me. Although I love cookies, especially homemade chocolate chip cookies with walnuts, I will pick cake any day. Especially a chocolate cake dripping with ooeey, gooeey chocolate frosting. A close second, is a vanilla cake with ooeey, gooeey chocolate frosting. THE BEST CAKE EVER: My Oma use to make it for me, especially around my birthday. It was a three-layer cake, close to sponge cake, homemade whipped cream, and sliced bananas and mandarin oranges. Oh yes, my little snout and curly tail would appear each and every time Oma made this cake.

2. Chocolate or Vanilla? Picture it, if you will, *in my best Sophia Petrillo voice.* I am dancing,  head thrown back,  arms to the sides, flopping with each bounce of my feet tap dancing away. I resemble Snoopy doing his happy dance. And I owe it all to: CHOCOLATE! That is all there is to say on that one.

3.What is your favorite sweet treat: Cheesecake or  frozen Yogurt? Cheesecake. New York Style Cheesecake. Cheesecake with strawberries. Homemade cheesecake. Frozen cheesecake. Jello made cheesecake.

4.When do you crave sweet things the most? From the time my eyes¬†reluctantly¬†open in the too soon arriving morning until they close again for a night of slumber. It’s been 2 months since I’ve quit smoking and sweets have become my new addiction. Yes, the poundage does show I’ve switched addictions but hey, one thing at a time, right?

5. If you had a sweet nickname, what would it be? Quite honestly, if it was in the here and now, I would have to go with Jelly Belly. Cuz this girl has got a belly on her these days. No, better yet: Jello Jelly Belly. Cuz this girl’s belly got the jiggly that would put Jello to shame!

Those were fun questions to answer. Now I’m off to do my Baker’s dozen. No pressure to anyone I list. I thought this was fun and it’s been a good while since my last bloggy award.¬†

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RIP Whitney

I’m a big fan of Ozzy Osborne. Have been for years; since I was about 17 to be exact. The first time I saw the Osborne’s show, I thought it was some kind of comedy but to my amazement, I found out later it wasn’t. Through watching the show, I came to like Sharon, as well. She’s a little spitfire, to say the least. So it’s no surprise that I have liked Sharon Osborne’s page on Facebook.

My daughter is the one who told me Whitney Houston died. I don’t know why, but I was really shocked to find this out. I’ve looked around a bit to see what happened and at the time of writing this, I still don’t know. My daughter heard she’d drowned in her bath tub after taking pills but we’re not sure if that’s the real story.

Later, when I went on to Facebook, this was at the top of my feed: 

Sharon Osbourne‘s¬†status.
“Amy Winehouse, Michael Jackson and now Whitney Houston. We‚Äôre all just hypocrites because we are all guilty of mocking them and being cruel
while they were alive and it always takes for them to die before we shower them with praise and adulation. They were addicts and there are many addicts still alive. Don‚Äôt mock them, just help them.”


When I read Sharon’s status, it really did make me take a step back and think about the various artists we have lost over the years to addiction.¬†


I’d never heard of Amy Winehouse until her “Rehab” song and even then, I wasn’t aware of her struggle with addiction at the time I looked her up. However, as her addiction became more publicized, I ¬†always hoped she’d find a way to beat her addiction.¬†


Michael Jackson, of course I’ve heard about since my childhood, but I wasn’t aware of his struggle with addiction. Although, looking back, it would make sense considering his life as a pop sensation and the constant accusations of being a child molester.


Whitney Houston’s addiction was something I was aware of. I’d seen the pictures of her when she was beyond thin or the clips where she was apparently on something, trying to perform. I always felt a sense of sadness for her. For all of the artists who struggle with their addiction, scrutinized in the public eye.


I think Sharon made an excellent point in her post. The public is quick to snatch up the dirt on famous people when they’re facing trying times in their lives.¬†


It brings to mind all of the people who suffer from addictions, who aren’t thrust into the spotlight. Most of us know someone who is addicted to¬†alcohol¬†or drugs. It is a sad and painful road for addicts as well as the people who love and care about them. So why do we add on to the burden of someone’s addiction¬†because¬†they’re famous? Why aren’t we more supportive and less¬†judgmental?

Whatever Whitney’s demons were, she struggled. She left behind a beautiful daughter, loving fans, and a family who will miss her dearly.

RIP Whitney.

RIP in peace to all of our loved ones and friends, who have struggled against their addictions. 
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