Hmm... It is Friday night and my fiance has to keep working so instead of going out to South Street City Oven and Grill we'll be dining in with takeout. So what do you think, travelers? Cracklin' Jack's or Pollo Tropical? (My vote was for Fernandez The Bull Cuban Cafe but that was last week's special treat!) Scrumptious southern BBQ ribs, fried chicken, and gator... or Caribbean-inspired fresh grilled chicken with the most amazing sauces ever? Can't I just combine them all!? ...
Wow it is a hot one out there today, travelers! Well, at least down here in Florida. Heard it is freezing up in Connecticut today so I'd gladly trade some of my feels-like-108 weather for yours (maybe we can pool the temps and meet somewhere around 60?). Every time I step out into the garden I have maybe 10-15 minutes to work before feeling like I'm going to pass out and subsequently melt into the ground. Not cool! You know what else isn't cool? Smoking cigarettes, that is what isn't cool!
I have maybe had one entire cigarette my whole life. I honestly would never have touched them at all had it not been for my migraines and the realization that a drag here or there on rare occasions can stop bigger symptoms from happening. I know plenty of people that smoke regularly however and only one can now say they are completely cigarette free. My mom had quit on and off for years but over a decade ago now she went cold turkey and it stuck... but the same can't be said for other loved ones in my life.
Patches, pills, cold turkey... each works differently for different people. Everyone has a different reason they become addicted to cigarettes: the nicotine, the flavor, the feeling of holding something in your hand or putting it in your mouth can all be physical and psychological reasons for continuing to smoke (and they aren't the only reasons either). Unless you're growing your own tobacco (or getting it from a supplier) and then rolling your own cigarettes chances are you are getting lots of other nasty chemicals with every burn, breath, and puff.
A while back my fiance had found himself falling back onto old bad habits and bought himself a pack of cigarettes. Those generally lasted him about two weeks (and most of the cigarette would end up burning up as he held it in the air) but he knew it was time for a change. Patches were overkill for him - he wasn't smoking nearly enough to benefit - and anti-smoking medication only did so much. Already knowing the benefits of vaping vs. smoking he finally decided to grab himself a mod kit as he switched over from the sticks to the e-cig box. The one problem? Hardly anyone seems to carry tobacco-flavored juices! His purchase had come with a free jar of e-juice but the only flavor they had with tobacco taste in it was Vanilla Waffles. While it was awesome to always smell waffles around the house it was not so awesome for his cravings. He found himself breaking down and getting a pack of cigarettes after a month of vaping.
That is where Golden Vape comes in! We popped on in a few weeks ago and met one of the owners - Marc - who said he and his wife saved up to open this place themselves with a mission to not only have their own business but have the business be one that could help others quit their habit. Marc understood that it is harder to quit cigarettes with nothing but apples, oranges, and other flavors and offers custom blends that mimic the taste of everything from Marlboro's to even Black & Milds and menthols! They can customize each blend with nicotine in increments from one drop to twenty-four. He talked with us for a while and we even got to speak with one of their customers who made that transition from cigarettes to nicotine-filled tobacco-flavored vaping to non-nicotine fruit-flavor-only vaping in about six months. (He said he enjoyed the apple if I recall correctly! Hookah fans who only smoke tobacco-free nicotine-free shisha may want to try these similarly flavored e-juices and - while Golden Vape doesn't have one - I have seen e-hookahs online.)
The small bottle we purchased the first time lasted about two weeks so yesterday we popped in for another bottle and met the mom from this mom-and-pop vape shop while dad was home with their almost-two-year-old daughter. Kelly was super friendly and outgoing despite her complete exhaustion after being kept up by the girl and it almost felt like talking to an old friend. The place is relatively new, having barely been open two years, and the sparse nature of the decor may seem unwelcoming at first glance but the people behind the shop is what makes it feel so welcoming in the end. They will discuss the ins and outs of vaping with you and let you try the various flavors they carry. You can see there is a lot of potential in the space and I really look forward to seeing them grow as they help so many others kick the habit. (They do note that there isn't long-term research of vaping the food flavorings used in e-cig juices but most researchers agree that it is safer than the alternative. Always use caution when trying something new and it never hurts to consult with your doctor first!)
If you're looking for a creative Mother's Day gift and mom is a smoker, I highly suggest looking into getting her a vape this year. There are models for every style and taste so it might be something you want to do with mom (especially so she can taste-test flavors), but you can even pick up starter kits for $20-40 to bring as a surprise but can get customizable mods for a variety of prices in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and features. You can always find one online but going into a shop to actually talk to someone is a major plus, and if you're in the Naples/Golden Gate area then Golden Vape is the place to go! They are open 10a - 8pm Monday through Saturday and 11a-7p on Sunday. Most days either Marc or Kelly will be there while the other is home with the baby but other days family members (I believe their niece and nephew) take over. This is truly a mom-and-pop shop and one with a mission at that...
Golden Vape is located at 5555 Golden Gate Parkway, 137, Naples, FL (34116). (Right at the corner of Santa Barbara Blvd. and Golden Gate Parkway - if you see the CVS it is in the shopping plaza right next door.) ...
Last but not least... Rani's Yummy Buttered Oat Shooter in Cinnamon! ... Really refraining from a Doctor Who joke here...! Though the nature of how you eat this product - "tear it, grip it, and shoot it!" - would lend itself well to hectic life on the TARDIS. ;) Even better for my fiance who is always on the go. (side note: there's no law in Florida for workers dictating they get a lunch break (unlike back north) so I know many who can only eat while driving or on a 5 min break... :/ ) . There's no trans fats, artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial preservatives, nor high fructose corn syrup and the butter comes from cows not treated with the growth hormone rBST. This product was made in Michigan and also comes with a 30% off coupon for ranisyummy.com. (Seriously, Doctor Who convention peeps I know... totally get thus stuff for the next con! :-D ) . So buyer beware on your first month of this box if you aren't sure about keeping it month-to-month until seeing products in person (they can't refund you if you don't pause the next month asap) but at least this month was very much worth it in the end. If you only want one organic box with a variety of goods I can definitely say Kloverbox is the way to go basef on what I saw hete.
This next item is a 2oz jar of Real Beauty for a Cause Coffee Scrub. Real Beauty for a Cause is a 100% natural skincare company out of St. Louis, Missouri. 25% of every purchase is donated to "an ever-rotating list of charities". Apparently caffeine is an enemy of cellulite when applied religiously - never knew that! This also has a 15% off coupon for realbeautyforacause.com.