Thursday, February 28, 2013

Days 14 and 15: I Barfed...

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Days 14 and 15: Things have been going very well in the “no chewing” department.  I certainly haven’t chewed any real chew and I’m proud to say I haven’t even had any fake chew for the last two days!  However, in all fairness, it could be contributed to the fact that I was up ALL night barfing my guts out because I caught the stomach flu that everyone has been talking about. 
On Tuesday night we finally got to use our quesadilla maker!  They came out great! Auden had her cheese quesadilla, Stacy had her chicken and cheese quesadilla and I had my chicken, cheese, and of course bacon quesadilla.  Why would you NOT add bacon!?  Here comes the part where I probably gross a lot of you out.  I mixed Franks Hot Sauce with sour cream and dipped my quesadilla in it.  It was good!  But, then Stacy busted out the Sweet Baby Rays BBQ sauce and I was hooked!  Great idea Stacy! We also came to realize that all the complaining Stacy and I did about the quesadilla maker being too small was all for not because it was the perfect size.  None of us could even finish our own quesadilla’s, let alone a giant one.
And then it happened…After going for well over a year without having the flu, it came out of nowhere and kicked my ass.  It started coming out the back end and then it was coming out of the front end.  Yup, barfing and diarrhea is a wonderful combination.  Thankfully none of them happened literally at the same time lol.  That has happened to me before when I had a kidney stone though!  Anyway, I am pretty sure I kept Stacy awake all night because every time I’d barf and come back to bed, I’d have to get up again run to the bathroom.  Plus, I had nothing left in me to barf so I was dry heaving most of the night.  We all know how that feels.  My abs are sore, my back hurts, even my thighs are sore!  Remember in college when you had THAT night of drinking too much…….Kool Aid and you said “Please god just let me stop puking and I’ll never drink (Kool Aid) again.”  Yes, you do remember!  Well, I had THAT night and I wasn’t even drinking. On the bright side, it helped me go another day without chew…
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 Ok, time to get serious for a moment.  This is the first time I have been sick since Stacy and I have been together.  We’ve been together for well over a year so I consider myself pretty lucky.  My point is, it’s just ANOTHER reason why I’m so thankful to have her.  I was in severe pain when I was barfing and it hurt so bad that I was actually making myself nervous.  She was there for every second of it comforting me and making sure I was ok.  She didn’t care about herself or how much sleep was or wasn’t getting.  She focused on me and I can’t thank her enough for that!  Thanks momma! 
Oh and one more reason to give her some props….While I was laying in bed about to die, OF COURSE our dog decides it’s a good time for him to barf to.  So, Stacy pulls a Super Man, gets Andy out of bed just quick enough not to barf in our bed and gets him to barf on the floor.  Then it was my turn again lol.  GOD BLESS YOU STACY!  I LOVE YOU!
And that ALL happened on Tuesday night!  Needless to say, I was feeling crappy Wednesday.  Thank god there was no barfing, just a ton of body soreness and exhaustion.  It worked out pretty well though.  Because Stacy was so tried from helping me, she got a nap in.  I slept as well.  Then from about 3pm until bed time last night it was just about survival lol.  A five and seven year old don’t understand the concept that the two adults in the house are sick so please chill out.  But, because we are a good team both of us worked together, kept the kids under control, got dinner done, cleaned up, and got the kids to bed in a timely manner.  Teamwork is GOOD!  So is sleep. Good night all…

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Day 13: Will Power, Quesadilla's, Inspiration!

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Day 13:  I’m slowly but surely creeping my way back to where I was when I failed last time.  As you all know, I failed on day 18 last time.  I can assure you that day is on my mind at least once a day.  I’m using it as motivation, among other things.  You can NEVER have too many sources of motivation!
Today is another day where we have to drive a little ways, meaning it’s “trigger” time!  However, I feel great and haven’t had any cravings, besides the usual.  I haven’t needed any candy, sunflower seeds or fip so far, which is a huge improvement in of itself! 
We couldn’t find the “fat kid” version of the quesadilla maker that we were searching for so we got the “normal” one lol.  I think we’ll live!  It’s pretty cool, it has a red pepper as the handle that you hold onto to open and it close it.  We’re officially using it tomorrow night when we make quesadillas as a family.  It should be fun! I wonder what we’ll add to our own unique quesadillas. 
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Poor Beckett was sick today.  He has a terrible cough and diarrhea, BIG TIME!  He made out like a bandit though.  He got to go down to Grammy Carol’s and get spoiled for about two hours because Stacy and I had things we had to get done.  We also picked up Andy as well.  It was like a sad ending to romantic movie!  When we were pulling away, Andy (our dog) was staring out the window at Grammy Carol while Grammy Carol stared back.  BOTH looked heart broken!  If  I was a dog, I’d be heart broken when I left Grammy Carol’s to, considering he’s fed better food there than most humans are fed on a daily basis!
Besides the sadness lol, it was a nice visit all while we got some business stuff completed.  I think we just might have inspired my brother to try and quit chewing.  We’ll see though.  I know from first hand experience that it takes a lot more than three or four people saying “nicotine is bad” before you TRULY can quit.  I thought on two different occasions that I had it under control.  I didn’t.  I do know that Dan can do it.  I do know that Dan will have the SAME support system that I have, which is the most important resource to have, at least in my opinion. 
Quitting nicotine has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life.  It’s harder than graduating high school, college and graduate school.  It’s harder than playing football, baseball, wrestling, etc.  It’s harder than exercising; it’s harder than being a good father.  It’s harder than being a good brother.  It’s harder than almost everything.  These tobacco companies know that and once they get someone addicted; they have you/us exactly where they want.  With all of that being said, those “evil” tobacco companies never once told me to chew.  They didn’t buy me a can.  They didn’t sneak me a dip.   They didn’t trick me.  I chose to chew and I chose to keep chewing.  Now I choose to QUIT!
Nicotine is VERY addicting, both physically and psychologically, but you CAN choose to quit!  I’m not too proud to say I need help either.  I have the help and I have all the other resources.  The only resources I need on my own are will power and the ability to remain positive.  I’ll be honest, neither one of those are as easy as they seem.  That’s where having sincere support from family and friends come in.  With their support, remaining positive becomes easier and remaining positive keeps my will power at the level it needs to be at.  Oh and by the way, will power has to be HIGH all the time.  It’s like being up to bat in the bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, two outs, down by three runs ALL THE TIME.  I learned this the hard way.  I used a few days in the past like it was only the second inning and I struck out!  Anyway, now that I’m done with my preaching, I’m tired.  Good night all…

Monday, February 25, 2013

Day 12: Diner Food And My Beautiful Lady!

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Day 12: Good ol’ Sunday!  We’re headed to Palmers, a very small local diner that everyone around here raves about!  I have never been there so Stacy is taking me, she’s THAT romantic.  I want to see what all the buzz is about! 
Ok, now I see what all the buzz is about.  It was fantastic!  It’s an old school type of diner- old photos, a juke box in every booth, etc.  The staff is very friendly and the food is great!  Oh, and the prices are awesome as well!  I had a sausage, egg and cheese sandwich on whole wheat toast with a side of home fries that covered ¾ of the plate and coffee.  Stacy had two eggs, over easy, toast, sausage and tea.  It came out to about $10.00!  I think Palmers is a place we will be going to at least two or three times a month from here on out!
From Palmers we went over to Weis for some groceries then to Wal-Mart for more groceries.  Back to the real world for us after a weekend of fun and relaxation. Keep in mind; these little “trips” to different stores were always triggers for me.  I always made sure I had my can of chew and a fresh spitter ready to go when I could have been doing other things instead.  Then it was more of the usual- hiding my spitter from people, looking for a place to throw a quick dip in, planning the day around chew and so on.  Poor Stacy even did things that she wouldn’t normally do. 
Speaking of Stacy, she’s ALWAYS been supportive!  I can’t even begin to explain to how great she has been.  She has NEVER, not ONE time pressured me in to quitting.  As a matter of fact, she was quite the opposite.  No, she didn’t like when I chewed, but she understood that if I was going to quit chewing, I had to quit for myself first and foremost.  She knew that if I wanted to chew, I was going to chew.  She never added any extra pressure one way or the other.  She was well aware that I added plenty of pressure to myself lol.  But she also knew I had it in me to quit.  To be honest, she knew WELL BEFORE I did!  I’m truly thankful for that.  She has been my confidence booster.  Actually, she’s been more than that.  She has been my only source of confidence many times because I sure as hell didn’t have any confidences in myself!  If I do make it (I will!) to day 100, it’ll be those days that I look back on and give her a big kiss for!  The days when I was down and she refused to let me stay down.  THANK YOU SWEETNESS!
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Grammy Carol kept Andy (our puppy) for one more night so we could enjoy one last night of peace and quiet.  We do miss him and we’re ready to see him tomorrow.  We’re ready to have our whole family back in tact.  Chaos, here we come! Chaos is what we do best; it’s what all parents do best right? 
Alright, time to watch some TV and get some rest.  Good night all…

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Days 10 and 11: Busy Weekend And A Weigh In!

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Days 10 and 11.  What a weekend!  It wasn’t just a great weekend because Stacy and I had a lot of fun; it was a great weekend because I didn’t chew!  Every day I don’t chew, I gain more confidence and the more confidence I gain, the easier this journey will become both mentally and physically. We went all over the place and did a lot of things, most importantly, we enjoyed each others company! 
On Friday we went to State College for an appointment.  Right off the bat, anyone who is or was addicted to nicotine should know what I’m going to say next.  When was the last time you drove for over an hour in your own car and didn’t smoke or chew?  Driving, especially for at least an hour is a HUGE trigger for me, and probably anyone who has/had a nicotine addiction.  I knew this before we drove there so I stocked up on my alternatives- hard candy, fake chew (fip), and sunflower seeds.  Want to hear something funny?  Not only did I leave the fake chew alone, I think I only had ONE piece of hard candy and absolutely no seeds on the way there and on the way home.  Overall, I had ONE piece of candy and that’s it! Never under estimate the power of having good company!  It wasn’t the radio that got me through the trip, it obviously wasn’t the chewing alternatives that got me through it, it was the good company I had!  We had great conversations, made each other laugh, stopped for different snacks, etc.  It was a good time! Then, after we were back, we went on a romantic date to Wal-Mart and walked around lol.  Want to hear the funniest thing of all?  We were excited to get home in our warm bed by 7pm!  We have no shame! We went to Burger King before coming home and half the meal we talked about how good it was going to feel when we get home in our comfy clothes and in our comfy bed!  We are hardcore I tell you!
Today (Saturday) we’re headed down to the mall and other places.  Once again, the drive is about 45-50 minutes so I’m all stocked up with my chew alternatives.  My goal is to not need them just like yesterday. 
Our first stop was Ollies, which to me, is either a hit or miss store.  Sometimes you’ll find some great deals, sometimes you won’t.  Either way, it’s always a good time hunting for that deal at Ollies.  We did find something we liked!  It’s a Sushi book and kit.  The kit comes with a 64 page book, bamboo rice paddle, two pairs of chopsticks, and a bamboo rolling mat.  We both love sushi, it was cheap and we needed the real rolling mat, not one from the Dollar Tree so we couldn’t pass this up! 
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Then we headed to Target where we saw J. Wilt!  What’s up J!?
From the moment we left this morning, we were on the look out for a quesadilla maker.  Through out the day we found a ton of them, but they were all small!  Our country is the fattest country on earth for a reason; we don’t eat small quesadilla’s!  Because of that, we’re still on the hunt for a fat kid version of a quesadilla maker!
Also, while we were at Target, we stopped in at the Starbucks that was inside.  I got regular coffee, which I assume most people don’t get at Starbucks.  I’ll never get regular coffee from Starbucks again.  It was wayyyyyyyyy too strong for me!  I put 5-7 packets of sweet n’ low in it and it was still entirely too strong for me.  I couldn’t take it.  I’m not sure how much it cost but it was the worst cup of coffee I have had since I started drinking coffee.  I don’t consider myself a varsity coffee drinker yet.  I really didn’t even start drinking coffee until I stopped chewing.  The only cup of coffee I had that was worse than Starbucks was the free cup that Ollies was giving out, and it wasn’t by much!  I guess people have it right when they stick to fancy $5.00 drinks. 
I have to mention this real quick.  We went to TJ Maxx and Stacy got a purse that she absolutely loves.  She finally found the “perfect” affordable purse after turning down 1,971,547 other purses.  Today will go down in history as one of the greatest ever, until she wants a new purse……………….Next week….
Then it was off to Applebee’s!  (Thanks for the gift card Mr. and Mrs. Roush!)  Stacy got the three cheese penne and I got the 7oz sirloin and garlic mashed potatoes.  Both meals were great and after about 20 years of eating of steak, I took the advice of a former vegetarian and started ordering my meat at medium-rare instead of medium.  It was a GREAT choice!  No, Applebee’s doesn’t have the greatest steak of all time, but it’s a nice steak made even nicer when it was cooked medium rare!  Thanks Stacy! Then Stacy got the $1.00 dessert.  It was a warmed up brownie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.  The bite I had was absolutely awesome and I couldn’t believe it was only a buck!  Well done Applebee’s!
I always mention triggers, and for those of you who read this blog, know what I mean when I say that word.  There are many big triggers but the all time biggest trigger for was after a meal.  I would ALWAYS, not sometimes, not most of the time, ALWAYS grab for my can of dip after a meal.  Today, after we left Applebee’s I don’t remember thinking about it.  I truly am proud!  However, I know this is no time to get cocky or over confident.  The very next meal I eat could be the one where I was want a dip as bad as I did after day one.  We just never know; which is one of the many reasons why it’s so hard to quit nicotine.
Once we got to the mall we just did some shopping, enjoyed each others company, bought a few things and headed home, well not before a stop at Marlins Subs.  I haven’t eaten there since high school.  It brought back great memories and Marlins has the besy mayo EVER!  It was a GREAT weekend!  We would also like to thank Grammy Carol (my mom) for watching our puppy all weekend while we went to appointments and enjoyed some alone time.  We are very grateful!  We got you a gift but I can’t say what it is on here because you’ll read it on here before you actually get it lol.
Now it’s time for the always interesting and exciting weigh in!  This is my fifth weigh in.  I’ve been weighing in once a week since I quit chewing.  Remember why?  Because one of the BIGGEST excuses out there is “I’ll gain too much weight if I quit!”  My last four weigh-ins were as follows:
Day 1: 189.2 lbs
Day 7: 190.0 lbs
Day 14: 186.6 lbs
Day 21: 182.4 lbs
Today when I weighed in……I was……184.2 lbs! 
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I gained about two lbs. back from last week and I have LOST about 8 lbs. over all.  Most importantly, I am nicotine free for another week!  I know I have chewed since the actual day one, but I have only had one dip in the last 28ish days.  My point is, you don’t HAVE to gain weight when you quit nicotine!  We’ll keep weighing in and we’ll see how I end up after 100 days.  Here’s one thing I am SURE of.  If I make it to 100 days, I don’t care if I gain 50 lbs!  My goal is not to gain 50 lbs, but my BIGGEST goal is to remain nicotine free for 100 days and then for life!
Alright folks, it’s been a VERY enjoyable but long weekend for my old bones.  It’s time for some sleep and cuddle time with my lady! 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Day 9: Ham n' Neutered

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Day 9: Zero sleep last night…Andy, aka the prince dog did not do well on his first night home, at least sleep wise. I ended yesterday’s blog talking about how I hoped we’d get some sleep.  Well, we didn’t lol.  I think he’d be fine if we took his cone collar off but we can’t, especially when we are trying to sleep.  If we fall a sleep and he starts licking at his wound, he’ll have it open and bleeding in no time. I guess we’ll take it day by day just like we are with the chewing tobacco.
Speaking of chewing tobacco, I’m feeling good.  I’m getting great support, I’m feeling positive and I have been acting on it!  Stacy has been keeping me positive and realistic about myself.  She’s been keeping me focused just within things I can control. She’s been helping me learn to not be so hard on myself, which is a HUGE help. For instance, the first time I “failed” I just said to myself, “screw it” you already chewed so you might as well just keep chewing because it doesn’t matter anymore. This time, I had one dip, told Stacy about it and WE, as a team got back on the horse together.  I would NOT have stopped at just one dip if it weren’t for her.  I’ve said it 50 times so far and I’ll say it another 500 before this journey is over, thank you Stacy.
It’s freezing out!  What the hell is your problem Pennsylvania? I went to pick the kids up today and I waited outside for less than five minutes and I thought I was going to die.  Sure, maybe I’m half a wimp, but it’s also very cold!  As soon as the right time comes, we are moving to state with a warmer climate, for sure! Thirty plus years of freezing cold winters is enough! I can assure you, I won’t have to sell this idea to Stacy lol.
Besides sleeping, Andy has been pretty good.  He’s running around, jumping, going up the stairs, etc.  At first I was worried that we shouldn’t let him do that but the Vet told us to let him do what he’s going to do.  The only thing we absolutely can not let him do is lick his wound, hence the sweet bucket helmet. He just started drinking water, which is a good sign and he’s been great at taking his meds.  I was pleasantly surprised at how well he was with taking his meds.
For a quick dinner tonight, Stacy made her AWESOME grilled ham and cheese.  We had some left over swiss and provolone cheese so that’s what I used.  It was good, but I’d still prefer good ol’ American cheese.  Add some chips and bam! A quick and tasty dinner!
Now it’s time to try again with Andy and sleep.  Round one went to Andy! Then again, Andy always wins!  Good night all…

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Day 8: Sleepless In PA

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Day 8: It’s on to week two, as it should be!  I’m still disappointed in myself for failing on day 18 last time.  I think about it daily.  I’m not dwelling on it, but I do remind myself of it at least once a day.  I believe it’ good motivation and there is never too much motivation for the type of journey I’m on.
Cravings wise and state of mind wise, I’m doing ok.  I get daily cravings, as anyone who is/was addicted to nicotine would after only eight days off it.  For lack of a better term, that’s part of the “challenge” of quitting.  Cravings will come and go for a LONG time.  I can’t pin point when they’ll stop, if ever.  Of the people I have spoken to in the past who have quit nicotine, ALL of them say they still get cravings from time to time.  That’s part of the issue for many people.  That’s why MOST people fail up to six times before finally quitting for good or just not ever trying to quit again. 
We just got back from picking up Andy from his “loss of man hood” surgery.  The poor guy is completely out of it and he has to wear the cone thingy.  You all know what I’m talking about.  He keeps looking at us like he hates us for allowing it to happen.  It’s so hard comforting the little guy because he can’t comprehend things like “you’ll be ok soon buddy,” or “we had this surgery done because…”
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Before we picked Andy up, we went as a family to get Chinese buffet take out.  The kids absolutely love doing that!  I’m not sure why, but they do! Auden likes it because she feels like a big kid because she can put her own food in the container.  Beckett loves it because he loves rice and pizza and you can get them at the same time there lol. I love it because I LOVE Chinese food!  Stacy does as well.  As a matter of fact, for a small person, Stacy lays the hammer on the Chinese buffet!  
It’s getting later and later and Andy can NOT get comfy. We put his doggie bed in our bed and he just looks extremely uncomfortable no matter what we try and do to help.  He’s still a little sloppy from the pain meds at the vet to. 
It’s about midnight now, Andy can’t sleep and Stacy and I can’t sleep because of that.  I have a feeling it’s going to go on all night.  If so, we’ll be up with the poor guy. 
Yup, we have been up pretty much the whole night.  Andy has been tossing, turning and trying to lick his wound all night and we’ve been awake trying to help him get comfortable and stop him from licking.  On the bright side, I still haven’t chewed!  This is one of those times when I’d have a dip.  If I got woken up for any amount of time during the night, I’d put in a dip while watching TV, and I’d do it 100% of the time.  It was nice knowing I wasn’t going to chew!  Alright folks, I hope you get a better night sleep than Stacy and I.  Good night all…

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Day 7: Carpet Cleaning Champ, Manhood!

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Day 7: One week! How did we celebrate one week?  We cleaned!  Yup that’s right we cleaned.  I don’t see a need to celebrate one week.  I’ve made it to the one week point three times now.  I SHOULD make it to the one week point! There is absolutely no reason for me not to make it to the one week mark.  I made it to seven days and it’s time to make it to day eight….Then two weeks, three weeks, etc.
One thing I have learned from my failure is to throw my pride out the window.  If I am going somewhere alone and I start to feel as though I may pull into a store to buy chew, I’ll call Stacy.  She’ll talk to me until my cravings go away.  It works!  Also, there are days when I flat out say to her that I would appreciate it if she’d go with me to run certain errands so I don’t run the risk of buying chew.  It all depends on how I’m feeling on a day to day basis.  I’m pretty sure these cravings, whether they are out of no where or cravings that come on over time will get easier as the days go by.  But, like I said yesterday, I’m not going to let my guard down!
I will say this though; I’m the carpet cleaning champion of the world!  For starters, I enjoy vacuuming, which is one of my jobs here at the house.  Using the regular vacuum is a nice way to make a carpet look semi decent without putting in a ton of effort.  However, using a regular vacuum cleaner just cleans up the very tippy top of the carpet.  There are SO MANY things hiding deeper in your carpet.  You don’t believe me?  Try using a carpet cleaner! You can vacuum every single day and you may THINK your carpet is clean but I can assure you it’s NOT.  Once you use an actual carpet cleaner you’ll know what I mean.  I assume many of you already know what I mean, well, if you use a carpet cleaner. Carpet cleaners aren’t cheap and neither are the cleaning liquids that go in them, but they are well worth it, especially if you have children and or pets!  It truly makes our house smell and feel fresher every time we do it.  Our carpet literally looks brand new.

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And for the big day…The day no man EVER wants to come.  The day no man looks forward to.  The day of doom.  Today is that day for Andy, our nine month old wiener dog.  Auden and I are taking him to the vet in a few minutes to get neutered. Poor guy…He’s losing his manhood, his man card, his awesomeness, and his balls!  As Stacy and Stacy’s mom say “he’s cashing in all his coins and he’s only left with a change purse.”
Auden and I just got back form the vet.  Auden was a huge help and I’m very proud of her.  Andy was a trooper and well behaved for the short time Auden and I were there with him.  I already miss the little guy, especially knowing what he’s there for.  He just has no idea what so ever what he’s in for!  Oh man…
 Andy has been at the vet this evening for about three hours and we just got a call saying he’s being an angel!  He’s never an angel!  Either way, it makes me feel good knowing he’s doing ok and we can all get a good night sleep tonight.
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 It’s about that time.  It feels kind of weird not having a puppy in our bed. I think I’ll take advantage of it and cuddle with my gal!  Yeah, that’s right I’m a cuddle-guy and I love to cuddle with my lady! Oh and by the way, this is the second night in a row that I’m not having any fake dip (fip) while lying in bed.  The reason it’s a big deal to me is because lying in bed and watching TV was a huge trigger for me to have chew.  I ALWAYS chewed during this time.  I’m proud of myself! Good night all…

Monday, February 18, 2013

Day 6: Great Food And Will Power!

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 Day 6: I’m creeping up on my next goal, which is one week!  My next goal after that will be to get to day 18.  Why day 18, because day 17 is where I failed miserably last time.  I truly believe that may get me over the hump.  I will NOT let my guard down!  
 As for cravings and my mental and physical well being as of late, I have felt pretty good.  I seem to be going a long quite nicely.  I have headaches and cravings but after day three, things seem to get a little better.  Notice I keep saying the word “seem.”  I SEEM to be doing this and doing that.  Yeah well I thought I was doing this and doing that last time to.  Then BAM!  I chewed…Instead of trying to get to 100 days in two weeks; I know I need to take this journey on by getting through each day, hour and minute.  I’ll have cravings when I least expect them and I’ll have really bad cravings when I do expect them.  I’ll dream about chew right when I think all is clear.  I’ll want chew when I usually don’t want some and I’ll want it even more during my usual “trigger” moments.  I need to expect the unexpected and I need to have and use will power! 
 Today Stacy and I made French onion soup and I don’t care if you call me arrogant or not, it was the BEST French onion soup I have ever eaten!  Ever…I literally can’t wait to wake up tomorrow and get through half the day so I can heat it up at lunch time.  It took several hours to prepare and cook but it was well worth it!

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Right when I think things can’t get much better, Stacy just said to me “Should I make my homemade apple crisp?”  Uhhhh Yes, yes you should!  Yes please! I’m full from eating a giant bowl of French onion soup but I just don’t care, I’m having some of this!  It’s making our entire house smell good!  It should be a candle.  I’m sure there are candles with an “apple crisp” scent, but there are none like this!  It’s making me drool and have problems typing because I just want it out of the oven!  Add some vanilla ice cream and there you go!  This apple crisp is the “Tits McGhee!”  That’s one of my many weird ways to compliment Stacy lol.

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After all that food, which by the way was better than any restaurant French onion soup OR apple crisp that I have ever had, I think it’s time to lie down and let my tummy get fatter while I watch TV.  In other words, I’m being a typical man, well once we get the kids in bed.  Oh and by the way, I am doing well with my cravings.  I’m not even going to have fake chew, aka “Fip” tonight!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Day 5: Red Robin and Candy!

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Day 5: Show’em you’re alive! Yup, I’m alive and well.  As I mentioned yesterday, I’m gaining my confidence back.  Slowly but surely.  Today we’re going to do a few things as a family, nothing major, just some stuff to get the kids out of the house.  And by “kids” I mean Auden, Beckett and myself lol.
We went to Walmart and the Dollar Tree.  We were at Walmart for quite some time and the kids did great!  I did some thinking to.  I know, I know, that’s rare huh?  I realized some great things!  Well, some great things for someone who chewed for the last 16 years.  I didn’t need to make sure I had a spitter with me, I didn’t have to worry about how much chew I had left in my can and then measure it out for the length of time we’d be out.  I didn’t have to time my “spit” just right as to not offend anyone at the store.  I didn’t have to worry about carrying a used spitter around with me once I was done with my first dip.  Have you ever seen a used spitter?  There aren’t many things in life that are more disgusting, especially in a public place! I remember saying before that people who are addicted to nicotine plan their life around it.  That is just ONE small piece of what I mean by that.  Whether or not a smoker will admit it I don’t know, but I can assure you smokers time their exits and breaks around their cravings just like dippers do.  You know who you are…
Tonight for dinner we’re having our version of the Red Robin Chicken Tender Salad.  We love it!  We bake Tyson chicken tenders, chop them up and add them to lettuce, cheese (mozzarella tonight), hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, tortilla strips, and sunflower seeds. I also added a product made of bacon bits and a few types of nuts and it’s called “Salad Toppins.”  I’m not a big fan of the fake bacon bits but I like the mixture of nuts. Our favorite dressing for this particular salad is honey mustard but tonight I used sweet n’ sour. It was a good dinner!

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 Now I’m sitting here all stuffed and this is usually one of the times I put in a dip.  Hard candy, sunflower seeds, a walk, anything to stay busy until the craving goes away.  Tonight, I played “Bingo Bash” on my Iphone.  Yes, It’s exactly what it sounds like, a Bingo App!  Stacy and I love it!  It’s a lot of fun and of course we make it competitive! 
Another major trigger time is when we are laying in bed watching TV before we fall a sleep.  I have my whole night stand filled with hard candy and it has been working wonders!  I just found some seasonal life savers called “Spring Time,” or something like that.  The flavors are Strawberry-Banana, Raspberry, and Watermelon.  I love them.  I got them at the Dollar General.  I also have the assorted fruit flavored hard candies.  I believe there are lime, lemon, orange and cherry.  I got these at the Dollar Tree.  I have of course, the green mint candies (Stacy’s favorite), the hard candy’s with strawberry filling in the middle, their wrapper also looks like a strawberry and the cinnamon (NOT Stacy’s favorite lol).  I got all of these at the Dollar Tree as well.  And last but not least, the kids have these Sponge Bob hard candies and I love them, therefore I steal from the kids and eat them.  I’m having a watermelon life saver right now and it’s hitting the spot.

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 After a few minutes Iron Chef America it’ll be bed time!  Good night all…

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Day 4: Chinese Valentines, Sleep!

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Day 4:  I’m nicotine free!  Again…I feel good today and I’m getting my confidence back, thanks to Stacy and making it through the three day detox.  I’ve had only minor cravings today, but I know from experience those cravings are not gone just because I’ve made it through the 72 hour detox.  It just means there will be less physical cravings.  However, the psychological addiction to nicotine is just as bad as the physical addiction.  I’m sick and tired of this “phase.”  You’d think I’d learn my lesson after failing twice huh?  We’ll see!  That’s the plan! I’m serious to; this phase literally does exhaust me physically and mentally.  It beats me up inside and out.  I feel like I’m sleeping while I’m in the middle of a boxing match with a boxer who is better than me.
Today was a good and busy day.  Remember yesterday’s blog?  Busy = good!  We went to two different grocery stores, the kids had a half day at school and we plan on falling a sleep nice and early tonight.  If that happened, it’ll feel great!
Perhaps it’s not AS good as the same day, but leftover Chinese food is fantastic! That’s what we had today.  On Valentines Day, Stacy and I took the kids to get Chinese Buffet take out, their choice.  They love it and they have a blast filling up the container with whatever food they like.  It was also a nice and affordable thing to do as a family for Valentines Day.  We had a great time as a family and I can’t think of anything better. 
Speaking of food, that’s what I want to talk about next.  Not recipes or anything like that, those are coming soon enough though!  Keep on the look out for Stacy’s blogs…  I have noticed that pretty much all food I eat, tastes better when I don’t have any nicotine in my body.  I’m not really sure if it’s a coincidence or not.  Maybe it’s just psychological, maybe nicotine really does affect taste buds.  I’m sure I could research it and find out for sure.  All I know is that the simplest foods seems to satisfy me.  It doesn’t hurt that Stacy is a FANTASTIC cook/baker!
Next up, grocery shopping!  I don’t understand how Weis Markets stays in business in this area.  Our Super Walmart has 95% of the stuff that Weis Markets has and it’s cheaper 100% of the time!  And when I say cheaper, I mean noticeably cheaper!  I do think some people just like to stay loyal, some people want to avoid the crowds at Walmart and some people find Weis Markets more convenient, but the price difference is almost always a big difference.   
Well folks, are you ready for this one?  It’s 9:45pm on a Friday night and we’re heading to bed!  No, not to bed to get on the lap tops or watch TV, we are actually going to sleep!  Wow!  This has to be some kind of record!  Just two years ago, if someone told me I’d be doing this, I’d be laughing at them.  Now, I’m happy to!  I think we’re getting old…..Good night all…

Friday, February 15, 2013

Day 3: Updated Weigh-In, Regained Confidence?

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Day 3: Today is supposed to be my last day with any nicotine in my body. I know I’ve told you this 75 times already. After 72 hours, the body is nicotine free. I feel pretty good today, although the fake chew is helping. There are MANY questions yet to be answered when it comes to quitting nicotine. However, one answer I do have is that I know staying busy HELPS me a ton! Staying busy doesn’t mean I have to be saving babies from bear attacks, curing cancer, etc. It just means I need to keep my body and brain moving forward. That also means two things: If I keep my body and brain moving forward, it means I’m staying busy and it means I’m staying positive. Stacy’s theory for me and this journey is simple. I have wonderful family support and she’d never let me go without any of the needed resources for quitting, no matter the cost. With that being said, I just need to believe in myself like everyone else does.
According to Stacy, believing in myself can go a long way. I’m not sure that I ever fully believed in myself. I believe in everyone else, and I relied on everyone else, but at the end of the day, no one can stop me from chewing tobacco except for me.
Although today is only Day 3, for the second time, It’s weigh in time again! My first two weigh-ins went as follows:
Day 1: 189.2 lbs
Day 7: 190.0 lbs
  Day 14: 186.6 lbs
The moral of the story, or the point of my weigh-ins was to prove to everyone that “gaining weight” was NOT a good excuse to continue smoking/chewing. However, I’ve been honest the whole entire time and I won’t stop now. I assumed I’d gain weight. I assumed I’d gain a few pounds per week. Once I “peaked” I was going to tell everyone that I feel GREAT for not chewing and I could care less about the few pounds lol. But, I’ve been losing weight so I have been super lucky right? Either way, the “weight gain excuse” is an excuse! You can not quit nicotine if you have ANY doubts. Hell, I have failed twice so far and I didn’t have any doubts that I knew of! Imagine how hard it’d be if you knew going into it that you had doubts.
Ok folks, are you ready? Today when I weighed myself, I weighed 182.6 lbs! I HAVE NO IDEA how I continue to lose weight! Ask Stacy, I am eating! I’m eating at all hours of the day/night and I haven’t watched my food intake in the least!
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My only explanation for all of that is that I am very active. No, I don’t have a personal trainer and I don’t schedule a work out time (not yet), but I am active for pretty much the whole entire day. Raising two children is absolutely a work out! It’s also a work out that you have no choice but to complete every day. You can blow off the gym and you can “dog” it at the gym. You can’t blow off the kids and you can’t take short cuts with the kids, assuming you care about them lol.
Ok everyone, I’m tired….For the exact reasons I just mentioned. Day three has been successful! Good night all…

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Day 2: Motherly Advice and Chantix.

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Day 2:  Not a great day.  I learned that it only takes ONE dip to truly send you back to day one.  I thought that since I had 17 days in with absolutely no nicotine, only one dip wouldn’t put me all the way back to the beginning.  Guess what?  It did! What makes it worse is the fact that it was my own fault.  It was my lack of will power that put me back at day one. 
For the most of the day I’ve been ok.  Stacy and I stayed busy….Until early afternoon.  The moment we got our things done, it seemed like my mood changed.  It’s almost like the very second I took time to think about quitting chew, I became a grouch.  I became the guy that I don’t like, the guy no one would like, and the guy that’s inside anyone who quits their nicotine addiction.  Yes, everyone becomes irritable when they quit nicotine cold turkey.  That doesn’t make it right or ok!
With some great advice from Momma Roush (and Jason B.), Stacy and I are going to look into Chantix. Chantix is prescription medicine specially developed to help people beat nicotine.  It’s nicotine free and often not needed as long as it’s prescribed for.  I like the idea of it based on several things.  I have heard two success stories just from people I know.  I also love that it’s nicotine free, unlike the gum and patch.  Stacy and I decided that if I’m still having issues with my cravings on 2/21, we will make an appointment to see a doctor, that’s one week. We’d consider it before then, but it’s very expensive.  However, if I’m still having issues a week from now, we’ll be more than happy to pay the money lol.   Until then, we’re going to try other remedies and I’m going to use the will power that I haven’t used. There are different herbal remedies but I never know if those will work.  I don’t care what you say, you don’t know if the herbal remedies will work either lol. Hell, we don’t know what those remedies could do! Maybe they will work, maybe not, maybe they’ll do something different all together lol.

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 I’m hoping tomorrow (day three) will be much better than day one and two.  History says it will be.  Facts say it’ll be my third day and therefore I’m very close to being nicotine free. 
I’m an idiot…I’m reading what I have already typed and I just realized I continue to PUT MYSELF THROUGH THIS PAIN.  I’ve been through all of this before!  Hey Brian, you’re an idiot, STOP it!  I’m getting sick of myself and I’m sick of going through these days three times lol. 
Today, Stacy read that most smokers/chewers fail six or more times before they finally quit. I’ve failed twice.  That in NO WAY makes me feel any better.  I’m mad and disappointed in myself that I failed twice, let alone six times!  Hmmm, only 98 days away from success lol. 
Good night all…

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Day1: Man Up!

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Day 1:  I felt weird, depressed and angry when I just typed “Day 1.”  I also felt happy, powerful and honest.  Either way, it’s the right thing to do.  There are about 65 billion metaphors for this type of stuff, but I can’t thank you enough: Momma Roush, Stacy, J. Wilt, my Aunt Carrie, my cousins Scott, Shannon and Jennifer, R. Hautmann, and the rest of you who stood behind me in their own way.  I can’t thank you enough! 
When I woke up this morning, I felt like a failure.  I felt like I wasted everyone’s time for the last two weeks, which is probably true.  However, I believe I can make up for that if I get back on track and stay on track. It’s not easy, as you all now know.  It’s not fun at times, well it’s rarely ever fun.  I know I have to put myself through the “beginning” stages all over again.  I also know I’m willing to do this because I know it’s going to be good for me and my family.  The very same family that I’m extremely lucky to have in the first place.
Welp, I now have to go three days.  That’s my first goal.  Why three days?  Well, after three days, or 72 hours, the body is nicotine free.  Granted, I only had one dip so maybe it’s only two days, one day, etc.  However, I’m assuming the worst and I’m going to say I need three full days to get all of the nicotine out of my body. I have beaten this stage before and I’ll beat it again.  The family and friend support is HUGE (it’s always huge) at this stage.  I’m already thanking all of you! Now’s your chance to get out though lol.
Most people would usually make some big changes after failing to reach the same goal twice.  Sure, I have changes to make, but big changes?  I can’t.  I have a family and I have things I NEED to do for and with my family.  The biggest change I need to make is my will power.  I need to have more of it!  It’s that simple.  As my mom said the other day, I need to “man up!”  Yup, my mother said that.  It was hilarious, but she was serious at the same time.  Believe me, when mothers speak, you better listen!  I learned this from Stacy, Stacy’s mom and my mom.  They kind of have a way of getting their message across lol. 
When I wake up tomorrow, I’ll be back on track to my original goal: 100 days.  I’m really damn far away but I know I need to take it one day at a time.  Hell, one hour at a time.  Hell, one minute at a time!
Only god knows who will be there at the end of my journey, but I know I’ll be there, dip free for 100 days.  That I KNOW! Here goes nothin’….
Good night all…

Monday, February 11, 2013

Day 17: Failure, Failure...

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Day 17:  I chewed today.  I bought a can, took a dip out of it and threw the can away.  I failed.  Again.  I hate this.  I feel like a jerk and wish I could turn back the time of day.  I didn’t plan it, hell, I didn’t even realize I wanted it so badly until I got near the store on the way to pick up the kids from school.

 I had my usual cravings today, the same cravings I had several times since I began this journey, the same cravings I was beating.  Then, out of nowhere, BAM! I pulled into the store, bought chew and took a dip.  Besides the fact that I failed, what sucks so much is that dip did absolutely nothing.  It didn’t give me a sigh of relief; it didn’t make me say “ahhhh that’s what I’ve been missing.”  It wasn’t enjoyable and it wasn’t like the “olden days.”  Maybe that’s what will help keep me motivated when I start over tomorrow?  I had a dip, the dip I’ve been craving for a few weeks now.  When I gave in, I didn’t like what I was doing.  Before, if I went even a few hours without dip, that next dip was great.  This time I went two weeks and a few days without it and when I had a dip, I flat out hated it.  I hated myself for doing it. 

 If you’re wondering what I’m going to do now, I’ll tell you.  It’s simple.  I start tomorrow at Day 1.  There is no other option.  I chewed and that’s that. I’m going to get to the 100 day goal and I’m going to do it with no ifs, ands, or buts about it.  No questions, no what ifs, no nothing.  100 days without dip. If I just kept going from here, I couldn’t HONESTLY say I went 100 days without dip.  Case closed!

 Having to type this blog is flat out humiliating, I admit that.  I also told all of you that I’d be honest with you.  This is me being honest. I hope you all stick around and keep supporting me.  If not, I’ll understand.  But at least stick around for the other things we’ll be doing on the blog/vlog.  

 I’m not making excuses.  No one let me down, it wasn’t from the pressure of life, it wasn’t a bad day at the office, etc.  I have no excuses for what I did.  I just had a dip, I’m telling all of you and starting fresh. 
Oh, and Thank ALL of you for sticking by me to this point.  Especially my gal Stacy, Momma Roush and Momma Thomas.  Brother Dan has been pretty cool to.  I'm going to beat this, I promise.

 It’s back to Day 1, are you coming with us?  I hope so…

 Goodnight all…

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Day 16: Haters, Deep Thoughts and Deep Fried!

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Day 16:  So far, it’s been a pretty good Saturday!  Ok fine, we just woke up but it has been nice because we slept until 8am!  I don’t remember the last time we slept that late!  It was great, but different.  I assume the rest of the day will be good to, but I imagine it’ll be a little off because Stacy and I just don’t know what to do without the kids, especially on a Saturday!
I bet a lot of you think we’re nuts because we aren’t completely enjoying our alone time.  Let me be clear.  WE ARE ENJOYING IT!  But, we talk the talk about how we are going to fully utilize our rare alone time and do this, that and the other thing, but in reality, all we do is feel off and complain that we miss the kids.  We really do miss the kids.  We miss the little things; the sights and sounds they make and the cute things they do when they don’t think we’re watching.  It’s UNBELIEVABLY cute seeing Auden and Beckett sing a long to a You Tube video.  It’s super cute when Beckett’s five year old imagination runs wild and he tells us stories about absolutely nothing. It’s super cute when seven year old Auden dances in the middle of the living room.  Those things are priceless, literally priceless.
Here comes the part where we ENJOYED our alone time. For most of the day, Stacy and I sat on the couch and watched TV, surfed the internet and played with the dog.  Not very exciting to most of you, well to those of you with no children.  To Stacy and me, doing nothing is doing something and loving it!
As for my Dip Quit Journey, things are going well.  Last time (you all know by now) I made it to six weeks before failing.  Although I’m only on day 16, things are smoother and I have more confidence.  I’m not sure why or what it is, but I do know I feel pretty damn good.  Perhaps it’s my support system?  Stacy, Stacy’s mom, my mom and many of you REALLLLLLY help!  Sunflower seeds help, hell, I think even our regime of vitamins are helping.  I feel as though I have a lot of energy.  Maybe that’s it!  Maybe I’m using my newly found energy in a more positive and efficient way. 
No, it hasn’t been all cart wheels and roses.  Thanks to Mrs. Sherry Roush and Mrs. Carol Thomas and their “moms know best” experience, I have found the REAL, TRUE, DEEP love for my lady and my family.  I knew I loved them and I always have.  I’m not a bad guy by any means; I just didn’t have the confidence in myself to love them the way a soon to be husband is supposed to and needs to do.  Now, through out this Dip Quit Journey, I’ve learned to listen better and talk less.  I’ve learned to love more and take the love as it comes.  I’ve learned sincerely enjoy the small things.  If we have a lot of small things that makes us happy, it’s better than having a few big things.  We have family, a warm home, healthy children who make us laugh every single day, food on the table, the ability to prepare it, modern conveniences, and most importantly…GENUINE LOVE.  A lot of people claim to have genuine love, but deep inside not everyone is lucky enough to have it.  I am lucky enough to have that genuine love all around me.  I need to and WILL be forever grateful.  I’m not saying I wasn’t thankful for that before, but I don’t think I truly appreciated it the way I do now.  I think many people have that issue.  I guess the old cliché is correct:  You don’t know what you have until it’s gone.  I’m one of the lucky people who was able to learn that “lesson” before it actually happened.  That alone makes me luckier than a millionaire.  And if I haven’t absolutely, positively, FULLY, 100% learned all of the things I just mentioned, I do know I am learning and every new day is a day I can learn more.  I can take those words and make them become actions.  As well all know, actions are clearly more important than words.
As for the haters out there, keep on hating, it’s what you do.  We haven’t really experienced a whole of lot of hating, but I’m sure we will as we try to continually grow our blogging and vlogging experiences. Currently, we live in a small town, and I also grew up in a small town.  After college I lived in an area for 7ish years that wasn’t huge, but it was much bigger than Central PA.  I noticed there wasn’t as much hate/jealousy in that area.  I guess gossip and rumors are easy to come by in small towns because it’s all people have to do.  Also, we ALL know just by looking at Facebook that people love other people’s misery!  For instance, I guarantee more people would read this blog if I failed this Dip Quit Journey.  It’s a sad fact that people enjoy watching other people fail.  If other people fail, those “haters” feel better about themselves.  We all know a hater or two and all know a hater never admits to being a hater.  Here’s my final say on haters.  Please keep hating if that’s all you know, you have to deal with yourself each day and you have to look in the mirror.  It will eat you up inside, assuming you do have a heart in there somewhere.  If you don’t, you’ll always be a hater in denial.  If you do have a heart, one day you’ll be happy for someone when they take a chance, do something well, or succeed at something and it might, just MIGHT make you smile. That’s all for now on that subject!
Stacy and I just got done making cheese stuffed burgers and homemade fresh cut french fries.  We weren’t very confident about the outcome of the stuffed burgers but they came out well!  They tasted good, that I know!  They were HUGE because you have to make two patties and stuff the cheese in the middle, at least the way we did it.  I’m sure there are other ways to do it.  We used a thing-a-ma-bobber that we got at Walmart that helps you press and stuff the patties.  Stacy will go into more detail about in her blog TONIGHT!  Be on the look out for her blog TONIGHT! Here’s a small peek at our meal. Yummy!
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Goodnight all…