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Wonderful Weekend

Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 30, 2018

We headed to South Bend this past Friday morning ,to watch our beloved Irish beat Stanford last night and just got home awhile ago. The weather was beautiful, the campus is beautiful, as always....and NO BODY in our group was a smoker!!! 

In cannot smoke if you want to on ND campus, which was a winner -winner-chicken dinner kinda day


Anyway....what a great weekend and time we had. I am UN-stressed, chilled out, relaxed and headed to go get our pups ( we had to board them) . Its good to be home and back to EX also. You were all on my mind often. 


See......good times still exist without smoking. I never thought they would because I counted on them for EVERY SINGLE THING I DID.  Its amazing when I look back and see how much control they stole from me....and I allowed them too. I would miss out on a lot of things because I needed a smoke break....and if there was not a place to go smoke at I would have been miserable......I find it hard to believe I ever smoked now and THATS a beautiful thing


Have a beautiful rest of the weekend everyone!

Missy 1489 DOF 






Are you Over or Under. Big debate do you put your TP on the roller. Im an over hubby is under, lol. Now worries though....we both have the same goal and Im not gonna let it create a debate with us. So just roll with it.

Don't sweat the small stuff.


Non smoker-Ex smoker. Thats bugged me. I consider myself a non smoker now for 1485.

I don't do that anymore. ( Smoke) I consider my self three things when it comes to the nasty cigs.

I am a Former Smoker

I am a Ex Smoker

I am a Non smoker.


It makes me feel good to say that. I am very happy with my accomplishments and I refuse to acknowledge my hard work and efforts makes me anything less than a Non smoker-Ex Smoker or Former Smoker. Its how I choose to look at it.

I am a former long distant runner-snow skier-Surgical Assistant-blah blah blah....

I don't do those things anymore

I am still a 'former' of all of those things

I am currently a Non runner-Non skier-Non Surgical Asst. and blah blah blah....I did them once...I had the skills but I don't do them anymore. I am not prepared in anyway to go back to any of those because I have moved onto allowing it to be my former life....I loved it when I did them ( I loved being a smoker too...).


I am not trying to make a debate. So I will roll with whatever you all say you are. Just please don't categorize me. I do enough of that for myself.


I am a former smoker~A Ex smoker and a Non smoker. ( I dont do that anymore ) Just please just roll with it. I'm not in denial. Docs are not always right. But I take my quit seriously , so felt I needed to say this to make a point. 


I have seen productive people become Non please. Roll with it. Personally I feel if your visiting any medical professional and you tell them that you quit smoking and that your happy now to be a NON SMOKER, they should be elated for you. If they feel they need to categorize you, well theres just nothing professional about that. Period. They already have it documented that you used to smoke.


Okay, rant over.

I have 1485 DOF Hard earned


Thats who I am

I'm fairly certain you have experienced this.


An unbelievable inner pain thats draws into your soul that sometimes is so over whelming that you wonder if you will ever recover, or feel secure.


I felt this this way when I quit smoking. I assumed, life was forever changing now and I was right. It did. It had forever changed. Now, I see it was a blessing, but I didn't then.


At first, after SEVERAL failed attempts, when  I finally grasped my final quit....the beginning of it felt familiar. Then something happened. I took a right hand turn. I began to relate WHY I had so many failed quits. I started to put 2 and 2 together and REALLY put time into figuring it out.


This is not Rocket Science folks. We are addicts of nicotine. If we keep doing the same thing, we will get the same results.


I know for a fact, I would never stop at one cigarette  if I smoked just one. Because, they travel in packs....I will smoke the whole damn thing. You would too....


I am going through some crappy stuff right now any life. Not wanting to go into detail but one thing I know for sure, it will pass. It will make me stronger and I WILL NOT SMOKE over it. All of us on this site have these moments. Crappy Stuff times. So I challenge you......


Go Right.....

Don't let life throw a curve ball to your left. You may never see them coming

But may you always be armored.

We are survivors~Yes?




This could be perhaps one if the most annoying things of all things that can really  rub us wrong as we begin our new life without cigarettes....dealing with our loved ones or friends that continue to smoke. So how to deal with it? 


I made it crystal clear to my loved ones and friends that I was quitting and would not be attending any get togethers where people were smoking until I felt I was at a comfortable stage in my quit. That was in my third month, by the way, at the end of it. Which by then several smoking friends saw I was making it and also jumped on the no smoking bandwagon. YAY!!! Be an example.





 Boundaries are such a sweet thing because they protect me and in protecting me, I protect ( and continue to do so ) my quit by setting them.

Visiting company had to find a place on our back patio to smoke no matter what the weather. I would not even permit it in the garage. 


I didn't indulge in alcohol as I quit so therefore I stayed away from all social events where alcohol was present because the two are good buddies and I didn't want to compromise my quit. Listen, realistically speaking here....if you can't set your booze aside for your quit to gain enough strength and balance then perhaps you have another addiction that needs attention. No drink was worth me losing my quit over, so I totally abstained from all alcohol until I was well into my quit. You will know when that time is for you. We are all different.





 I am not a fan of ferris wheels. Therefore I don't ride them. Ever. I have friends that do. I watch them and they go round and round and round until someone else stops the wheel for them. Not me. I stop it for myself if you follow. Metaphorically speaking here, if you follow.


My husband does not smoke. I have a friend who recently quit ( a year ago ) and her husband was a smoker. She set boundaries. He loves her very much so he respected them. He finally quit himself. But before he quit he was not permitted to smoke in their autos-house or garage. She would not even allow him to wear his stinky clothes in the house.


I know some spouses are not willing to do this for their mate. I also know many have quit and remained quit with spouses that continue to smoke. If you have a mate that smokes perhaps you could add some advise in the replies here?


Anyway, it is doable....quitting and not losing your smoking friends...but I want to add this....How great of friends are they if they cannot respect you boundrie's that are there to protect you and help you reach a healthy goal? I lost ONE friend. One. Thats okay. I had to protect myself. She's a die hard smoker and chain smokes. I can't be around that , at all. Thats just me I don't want her second hand smoke and she's well aware of it. 




Don't waste time trying to find way to make excuses for them. Use that energy and find ways to EXCUSE yourself from them. That is time used wisely.



Have a great weekend.





Happy Endings

Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 19, 2018

Isn't that what we all want? To just be happy...why can't we all just get along.? What does this have to do with smoking, you ask? Well some will relate.


Theres a huge flux of individuals in our personal lives as well as here on Ex and the sooner you realize that you can;t please everyone the better off you will be . Don't take things so personally folks. Not just here but everywhere. It can drive you to smoke.


Take texting for instance ,....I am ready to throw it out. Call me old fashioned, ( I'm 60) I don't give a rip. Really, just call me okay.? I don't mind texting  but some take things out of context , get bent out of shape too and its an negative situation  Does anyone else get this? Maybe it is just me; When this iPhone I have dies, I am going back to simple flip phone and no texting. Period. I love personal letter writing and actually talking to a real person. Thats just me I guess.


Chinese restaurants with a dish called ' Happy Ending". I want one everyday. I look for it and I plan for it....not the food....but the HAPPY ENDING.. My grandad used to say to me ' never go to bed angry'. He was right.


I don't have on clue why I  am sharing this tonight, whatever but I am a person who chooses to look for the lighter side of things. I have learned that I personally , have wasted to many days looking at bad endings thats its much more productive for me to look and even plan for the HAPPY ones. I have much to be grateful for, so I will focus on that.

And with that I leave you with my HAPPY ENDINGS.......................

 I am smoke free for 4 plus years...I have an awesome husband of 38 plus years, I have 5 awesome grandkids...of course our 2 great dogs , numerous loving friends/family and this awesome community. God is Good and Great and is the very reason  for it all..

Happy Ending ?????

Yes, most defiantly

And you are all part of it



Locked and Loaded

Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 19, 2018

Currently we have a bad criminal at large in our area and it is really unsettling. He is deemed armed and dangerous.  This house is locked and loaded as are we, should he decide to knock on our door. Out here in the country we are, most all of us, armed. Coyotes are everywhere....and so is the Nicodemons.


I  am getting ready to leave for Columbus for the day and went to put my two dogs out and at my back door were 2 big pitt bulls. I have never seen them before. I have a mastiff ( very old one) and a big doberman, but these 2 dogs would have taken them out.


Long story short, I called the neighbor over and he hung around as I put out our dogs. I am now getting ready to leave but my house is armed and I am protecting my stuff. I love all animals but  I will shoot a dog that attempts to hurt or mame my dogs or my family members. Warden office has been notified. 


I also will go to whatever extent I need to to protect my quit. If I need to leave a social situation, a conversation or whatever....I will do it. There is NOTHING in this world worth me sacrificing my quit over. I have no intentions of another day one.


Days WON are my future. Protecting my stuff , is part of that!

Have a good day

What you feed becomes stronger


This can apply to anything in your life really. Weight loss, attitudes friendships and yes even smoking. The more effort you put into something the more you will see it develop. Sometimes it can grow into a raging monster and we just don’t recognize it anymore and we wonder  “How did it I ever become this way’?


Quit feeding your Monsters


Recognize who is winning your battle and put a stop to it NOW. Put yourself back in charge of yourself. You do this with wisdom. You acknowledge , being the first step, that ‘Houston, we have a problem’…is brewing within you. Then you make a decision , I am bigger than this problem and since I can now see it, I am going to address it’. You address it with knowledge. You educate yourself on why you have the problem, how the problem works to grow on you and how to stop its growth. Then come Preparedness. You equip yourself with the tools needed to fight this enemy because , see it…it really is beating you right now and until you wise up to it’s antics…you will become its slave. So gather your troops…this is war and its time to take back whats yours!


Quitting Smoking is Simple but not Easy

Commit-Submit and Quit

It all looks good on paper but you have to do the footwork. 


Listen, if quitting smoking was easy, we would not be here. Wars are not commonly won overnight. Neither is nicotine addiction. So gather your troops as though going into battle. Head to your round table of knight's ( EX) and your outside  support and start a battle plan if you haven’t yet.


You can have a great finish even if you didn't have a great start


Loyal troops will always be around to help you out in a crunch. Don’t be afraid to use them…they ( we) are part of your weaponry and your shield.

One last thing….I won my war a bit over 4 years ago. I still keep my guards on standby. I still avoid the enemy campsites and I continue to educate myself against the enemy and I equip myself daily with tools on hand so I never fall behind the enemy line. Its just as important to me now as it was on my first day Won.

I worked  way to hard to lose it.


Thats all I’ve got for now. Make today count. 


Freedom from Nicotine isn't free either ,we all had to fight our own battle to get the sweet freedom we have now....please make sure you don't wait so long that its costs you your life.

Daniela2016 recent blog about using letters of the alphabet for a game was awesome. It made me think of one letter especially . The letter D played a huge role in my quit and so now I have this list of 'D's where I can look on it everyday to lean on with ANYTHING I am struggling in or thought I'd share.  I am still an addict so its good to keep in plain site where I come from and how quickly I can fall if I don't apply these daily. Maybe it will help you too.


THE 13 D's



1.  DECIDE - Made a decision to go through what ever I had to to get the ‘breakthrough’. No hesitation.


2.  DETERMINED- took action to do whatever was needed to make the design happen


3.  DEVOTE- Time in prayer to ask for the help I needed and on this site . I still do this and now another thing I devote…is time ‘giving back on EX’ for what was given to me.


4.  DENY- Held up a firm hand and denied and excuse to rule my quit…then and now.


5.  DARING- I was bold about my final quit and proclaimed it to everyone, included myself every day


6.  DISCIPLINED- I renewed my determination sometimes many times a day


7.  DESTINED-i held onto the truth that so long as I did my part I was destined to stay quit


8.  DEFIANT- I challenged my strength to walk away from anyone who didn’t respect my quit 


9.  DELIBERATE- I knew the consequences of I took deliberate actions daily and still do, to protect my quit


10.  DESIRE- I had plenty of desire to be a non-smoker. My main focus, I had to be very selfish for awhile and take care of MY needs.


11.  DIFFERENT-I had to come to accept I was not like my smoking friends anymore and although most all of them are still in my life, there are a few I bid so long too. I learned people come and go in our lives…some are a blessin and other’s are a lesson. Nothing wrong with that. it’s called growth.


12.  DILIGENT- I was on a mission. and intently focused on the prize.


13.  DIVINE- About 3 months maybe 4. ALL of the above hard work pain off and I felt DIVINE. Still do


Where were you~911~?

Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 10, 2018

I am posting this now because I have an extra early day tomorrow and will be on the road.



I was almost at my friends house that morning as the radio gave an emergency alert broadcast to say a plane had hit the one two twin towers. I was in shock. Seconds later I was at my friends house and she and I watched together horrified as the second planed plowed into the other tower.

This hurts my heart taking about it. 


God Bless all those who lost loved ones and friends and all of the emergency professionals ( Firefights, Law enforcement,  Medical responders )who died and those who survived…and especially all those in the and around the towers who lost their lives in the calamity. I will never forget you.

And if any of beloved EX family was involved in anyway~lost a loved one or friend~my heart goes out to you and I will be lifting many prayers for you and several others. GodBless


You Matter to me

Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 7, 2018

I thought hard about this...I have already done this for several peeps on Ex but I feel I am not extending it enough and it is something I want to do, free of charge, no strings...ever.


I have done this mostly for peeps who have reached a year...some less than a year. I think a year is best though. 

It's called a 'Quit Token'. I make it from vintage Silver plate and thats ALL I am saying  It will have your Quit Date on it and your Ex-Handle.

( name that you use, like mine is 'Mandolinerain')


So...if you don't have one yet (quit token) and you have at least one year quit. OR.......You would like to have one when you reach a year. PM me and let me know. It is 100% free to you, no shipping charges and I don't care what country your in. You owe me zero. Period. And to those who manage and make this site possible Markyour also included even though I know you don't smoke. Its wonderful what you all do to make this community available to help all of us. God Bless you all. Yours would just have Ex community on it and your name.


This offer is good so long as supplies last and I have a boatload right now, lol. If I would run out I have other ways to make quit tokens for you, so no worries. I just enjoy doing this and it gives my heart joy to know I can help you believe in and keep your quit. I just don't want to leave anyone out.

Have a wonderful weekend and know..... YOU ALL matter to me.

didn't see it coming. It came fast and cracked the windshield about a week ago when I was on the Highway coming home from our sons house.


At first it was just maybe 4 inches long but now...its nearly to the top.

Tomorrow I have an appointment to have it repaired. I was so bummed. We just got this truck this year.


Quits can crack too.


You may never see it coming. Like the rock or stone that came out of nowhere and cracked my windshield, life can hit you at any given time and throw you a curveball that you never expected.


Just be prepared. You know what your triggers are and if you don't you better find out and make a list. Decide what you will do when your faced with life and curveballs...or in my case...a rock on the highway.


Smoking won't fix my windshield

But it WILL destroy my quit.

Don't let it destroy yours.



Posted by Mandolinrain Sep 2, 2018

I first came to this site way back in 2008. It was then I started playing with the idea that maybe i could quit. I lurked. I read……was not ready to submit. I did this for the next few years, coming and going. Not blogging….just watching and thinking maybe…Then came the yea 2012. 


I had been learning but not applying things . Not super serious about it. I wanted to quit, but no….I didn’t . I loved to smoke…or at least I thought I did. Yet…I began the quit that year. I used the meds, the gums, the patches …the fake cigarettes you buy at health food stores….I used everything BUT my brain I was looking for an easy way out due to my low pain tolerance. Eh…I know better now. It was not so much a low pain tolerance as it was I had allowed cigarets to ‘feel’ everything for me for so many years, I needed to learn how to feel again. Yet...seeds were planted, even though I didn't know it.


First…there is nothing wrong with using an aide to help you quit smoking. But you still have to ‘go through

No aide will do it for you. It may help the initial sting, but the craves and uncomfortable times will still come. None of the aides worked for me because I did not apply the areas of quitting to my quit. I have not opposed to people to use these methods to help them quit. The ones who were successful with them though, were the ones who actually APPLIED the knowledge and discipline along with these aides. Do not think using the aides will quit for you. Ask any of them who have had success using them. They still had to work. Still had to 'go through to get through'.


Then there were some ‘issues’ on this site also happening during 2012 that were at a bad time for me. Now I have seen some fighting on this site, but this was very bad. And it went on to long. I don’t see any of those folks on this site anymore and I am thankful for that, but it was disturbing to my quit. i had finally started to reach out and ask for help.


In early 2013 I also got some real tuff love here and took high offense to it. They hurt my feelings after all, my purdy lil feelings…how dare they tell me I needed to get serious about my quit and my many failed attempts. I was here wasn’t I? Grow up Missy. Well that was it….I was done with Ex. Done with all the nasty people fighting on Ex, done being told I needed to start learning the whys and hows and applying this to my quit.


I was like a bowl of mixed fruit gone bad. I walked the walk but was not talking the talk…so I may have looked good but, there was bad fruit in my bowl, if you follow..


I decided , I just could not do this anymore. I left the site. I was still curious though. Still wanted to quit. Health issues began mounting in me, from smoking. It was time.  I finally got serious and gave it to God. I told Him I would do whatever it took, just please take this addiction from me. I got Carrs book and read it till it fell apart. Over and over and over. I highlighted the crap out of it. I am not an uneducated woman. I retired from being a surgical Assistant, I worked with horses, trained and taught . I had my own mural business...but it took this long to get my '45$^%&$ together. Then it happened.

Something stuck. 

When I gave up and reached my lowest point.

I knew I could not do this alone, nor did I want to.


The things I had been reading on EX. started to fall into place. I made lists and  lists of lists, I prepared a toolbox. I stayed away from people-places-things that would tempt me. I failed again. I started up right away and quit again….this went on and on until September 2014. On the second day ( 4 years ago), well actually the first day of September but I always call the second full day my quit day….I quit cold turkey and have not had a puff since.


It just clicked for me. I never forgot Ex and all that was taught to me but I still drug out Carrs book and used it…a lot. Then came the day I came back to EX. I had been ashamed to come back because I had failed so much before here. I didn’t want to come back until I had a quality number of days quit. But I came back. I wanted to help encourage others, like I was encouraged. I lurked again for awhile to make sure it was all peaceful here and then got active again..Here I am. Today I am 4 years free of the nicotine.


Why then do I hang around? Because of people like Nancy, Giulia, Dale, Sky. Michwoman,, Jackie, Indingrl, Jennifer,Ellen,Thomas, Tommy,Strudel, Mike-n-Atlanta… name a few…who were here for me when I started. Because had they not been here to do that for me, even though I failed so many times….I know I would be still among the active smokers. I also owe it to myself to stay here to help me remain humble of my quit, vigilant of my quit, maintain my quit and maybe be the stepping stone for another person to find their way


For me Ex was a Godsend. The people here are a Godsend. MY ELDERS were a Godsend. I truly believe My God has me right where HE wants me now, We are all here for each other, fighting the same fight. 

Love to you all, old and new here. You have helped shape me to be the non smoker I am today. I am grateful and blessed. Thank you