Congratulations on quitting smoking!
As far as losing and maintaining. It's a lifestyle, NOT a diet.
Loss and maintaining is done in the kitchen, fitness is done through exercise.
We need to find balance in both.
Just for myself, I have found Weight Watchers to be my personal choice. The plan, gives you a daily allowance, but also has weekly flex point/calories, built into the plan for life's unexpected situations or to help you plan for things like weddings, graduations, holiday dinners, drinks with friends and so on.
For the record, I do eat a lot of salad, and other veggies, because I like them! However, you do not need to live on salad and chicken!
Want a taco? 93/7 hamburger, mix in one grated/shredded Zuchinni. (spelling). Adds a veggie, and allows for bulk without a ton of added calories. There are lots of healthy options now for tortillas, add lettuce, tomato, salsa and fat free sour cream!
Like hotwings? Cut skinless chicken breast into chunks. One packet of dry buffalo seasoning, add 1/4 cup of flour, toss chicken in it and bake! Fat free Ranch or blue cheese! Yum!
Friendly Ranch dip! Fage fat free plain yogurt, add ranch seasoning, dip your veggies! Add a little skim milk and you have awesome dressing!
Losing and maintaining, does not have to be painful, you just need to track/journal and be willing to be creative!
Exercise! Find something you like. I strength and stability train. It's what I like and it is functional fitness for my job.
Walking/jogging/biking, free! Pilates, Yoga, whatever!
As far as your picky hubby! Mine used to be that way too. I just started sneaking stuff in here and there. Lo and behold, he thought brussel sprouts were not to bad.
He is still picky, so the meat is done MY way, I do still make him hash browns, I nuke a baked potato, and we have 2 choices of veggies.
Breakfast is the one thing, he does not want to compromise on, so,,,,,,, he gets regular sausage or bacon and eggs. I do turkey sausage or turkey bacon and egg beaters. Some days, I just have a tuna sandwich for breakfast. Some days, I do a turkey bacon, lettuce, tomato sand!
In the end, it takes commitment and creativity and flexibility, and most of all PATIENCE!