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Last year, I celebrated one-year tobacco-free with a blog about my personal journey. Today, for the two-year anniversary of coming clean (cigarettes are a drug), I am re-posting that blog here on The Rock Father along with a few alterations and timely updates - particularly that Marlboro (under the Philip Morris or Altria name) is still harassing me...

March 14, 2011 is the day that I officially quit smoking. At some point on the night of March 13, I quietly took the last puff of the last cigarette in the last pack that I ever owned. Upon telling my wife that I was officially ''done,'' she took it upon herself to clean-up some of the ''smoker's mess'' that I'd created. The ashtrays of both cars were scoured. The sand-filled flowerpots that I'd strategically placed on my front porch and near my gardening shed were disposed of, along with a ton of stray butts that had made their way into the surrounding landscape over the winter months. The cleansing had begun.

Published in James' Journal

There was this issue about a week and a half ago... you might've heard about it here on The Rock Father, or on The Good Men Project... or on The Huffington Post... or even from Willie Geist over at The Today Show. It was a problem with a tweet, and if it hadn't been for The Onion having a twitter problem of their own just a few days prior, the folks at PLAYSKOOL might've found themselves the "bigger" twitter scandal of the week. But as I said before, it really wasn't that big a deal.

Published in James' Journal

You just never know what a child will gravitate toward. Despite having countless toys of her own, at some point within the past year, Adalyn grew fond of a plush bear by the name of Poopsie. Created in 2001 by Ty Inc. and released as both a Beanie Baby and Beanie Buddy, Poopsie is essentially A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh, crafted to appear similar in shape to "Classic Pooh," but in a color scheme closer to Disney's more mainstream version. I bought Poopsie for my wife long before we ever considered having kids.

Published in James' Journal

Note: An updated version of this post was published on The Good Men Project on 3/6/2013. This blog has been amended to reflect those slight changes.

On Monday, I found myself front-and-center in a Huffington Post story about an "offensive" (their word - not mine) tweet that came from the Playskool twitter account last Friday. While the tweet in question certainly didn't "offend" me, I found it to be curious and out-of-character coming from a public mouthpiece of a brand beloved by children and parents alike for generations. The public lashing that has followed deserves a little clarity to prevent it from becoming more overblown than it's already become.

Published in James' Journal

Times may change, but over the past sixty years, one constant has been the presence of MATCHBOX cars and toys, both on store shelves (and pegs), and in the homes of families everywhere. While the line has seen some ups-and-downs since it's launch in 1953, six decades of MATCHBOX memories have been created for parents and kids alike.

Parenting books are big business. There's plenty of suckers out there, and as long as they keep buying, there will be plenty of "experts" masquerading as "authors" to sell a few books before the print industry fully collapses. I mean, by now you should all know that there's only one right way to raise your children, and that's The Rock Father way.

Published in James' Journal
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