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Congratulations to our April Raffle Winner: Leslie Brooks from The Plains, Ohio

Issue #38 - May 2007

Welcome to the Large In Charge Newsletter


In this Issue of L.I.C


Feature of the Month - SISTAZ Reaching Out Organization


Cover Model of the Month - Indianapolis's Darling Joyce Licorish


CONFESSION - Let it go and Confess!   Get it off your Chest!


Raqui's Spot - Raise them Fatty Arms ~ Raqui


Super Sized Sounds - Featured artist EarthMan ~ Spanishfly Lynx


From the Plus Side - Damaged Goods ~ Emily Smiltneck


Why, OH Why - Acceptance... by any means Necessary? ~ Diabolique


Papi's Peace - Where U At?


Good 4 U Food - Boy Loves Grill ~ Xander


Guest Spot - Be a Guest Writer


Fashion Furious - Fashion Finds with Plus Size style.  Submit a Find!


Product of the Month -  Products for People of Size


Ask Raqui - Get some advice from one Big person to another.


FREE RAFFLE - Autographed books by Naiomi Pitre


Events & Pictures - Events, Parties, Press Releases, Pic's & More.


LargeInChargeDating - Dating for the Large People who are going to be in Charge of their Love Lives!


LargeInCharge Friends - The Place for Big People to make Friends and maybe MUCH MORE!

Feature of the Month

SISTAZ Reaching Out Org.

April Stanley Founder


SISTAZ Reaching Out Organization


     This month I had to feature a very special Organization.  This Org. is near and dear to my heart because I have been a part of it for almost 3 years.


     It has been built on blood, sweat and tears of one very special woman, April Stanley.  April has shared her dream with others to help make her Organization grow.


     This Plus Sized Diva's goal is to help the Community especially women and children.  Right now she is opening applications to join her NYC SISTAZ Support group.  A monthly joining for women of all races, backgrounds, sexual orientation etc. to come together and support each other.


For more information go to:


         Seminar,       Women's Support Group,     Family Day,         Teen Summit,         Youth Support Group

Interview with April Stanley Founder of SISTAZ Reaching Out


April Stanley CEO/Founder What is your name/names?

April Stanley Where are you from and what is your current location?

I was born and raised in the Bronx, NY Do you consider yourself people of Size?

Definitely…………People of size not only in actual size but as well as mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Have you always been a person of Size?

No, not really. What is your background and family life like?

My background extends to me being the type of person that was always so strong minded, a person who has goals and accomplishments in life that need to be met.  Always was independent and worked hard in whatever I was doing in life. Tell us about us about your Organization?

SISTAZ Reaching Out…… Organization dedicated to working with families, mainly women and youth in a variety of fields, from women and youth support, to seminars, to events for the community.  The purpose of the Organization and creating the Organization is reaching out to those whom feel alone, to let them know they are NOT alone and there are others out there.  We reach out to these individuals, not only or solely on an educational level…….BUT LIFE EXPERIENCES. Where is your Organization based?

Well currently we are based in the Bronx, NY, and operating from a time to time in Manhattan.  We would like to expand to the tri-state areas as well as NJ, PA, CT, MD, and DC. Who is the owner/founder of your company?

Myself, April Stanley, CEO and Founder of SISTAZ Reaching Out.
 How did your Organization get its name?

The name stand for itself and what we are about and what we do.  SISTAZ (Sisters in Support and Totally Available Zealously) Reaching Out.  We reach out to others from life experiences and from the heart.
 How did your Organization begin?

I created this organization out of my Women’s Support Group.  I realized that women need support in their lives whether it is negative or positive and that was the reason I created the support group, but then I realized that I can reach out to others rather than just staying in the circle of the support group but expanding outside of the support group.  That is where SRO came into existence.  I wanted to reach out to women of the community and then I realized that our youth need reaching out also, and the family structures was off balance so this is where I really focused on SRO reaching out to our women, youth and families.  I understand that you and your Org. has expanded and moved it different directions.  Can you tell me about the many avenues you have explored?

Well, we are still growing but we have explored the seminars where different individuals has come out to share their life experiences, from abuse, HIV, drug usage, depression and so on.  We have really encountered individuals who are not alone in their lives and realized that so many individuals go through the same thing………..they just need help in speaking out and realize from hearing from someone else that they are not alone.


We have also explored “Family Day” where we had a “Family Day” picnic for the community and different families has come out to share this day.  This is where we all come together and different individuals from all sorts of backgrounds has come out to share this day with us.


Also, we have explored the support and being supportive to one another and our community.  I can truly say SRO has been a very supportive Organization with individuals of the community as well as our SRO family. How long has your Org. been in existence?

Hmmmmm………….I can honestly say we have been in actual existence since 2004. Are you a profit or non profit Org.?

Non-Profit, but not government funded.  Everything that has been done or planned has come out of pockets. Tell us about some of the stepping stones and experiences with your have had?

Everything as I said has been on life experiences, not only my life experience but my volunteers and staff life experiences.  I guess it depends on the individual and what their life is about, this is when the appropriate person can step in.  I am a people person, and I reach out to individuals in what they are going through.  Someone always need someone and if you speak and at least one person hears you, someone is listening. I understand that you hold events at times tell us about them?

As I mentioned, my events can go from “Family Day”, to support groups, meetings for individuals to talk and express their selves and outings for our youth. Do you hold events regularly, and how many people attend?

Recently have not been holding events, but usually I can get a crowd of 50 or less, it depends on the event. What other types of events do you hold?

Bus Trips to a variety of places like AC, amusement parks and in the future it will be out of state picnics and family gatherings. Do you have any major events coming up in the near future?

No, not yet. Tell us about your staff? 

I have a small staff of 3.  Raqui Hernandez, our web designer but also a great speaker at the seminars and a role model to follow.  Her life experiences has brought tears and laughter to many.  A very strong individual whom you talk to and realize that if you had the strength she has had, you can come out of anything.


Then we have Monique Johnson, Assistant Director where her goal is much of my goal, to reach out and touch those that are in need of support.  She comes from a difficult background as well where her life experiences are amazing and a lesson you can learn from.


We then have Morice Stanley, who is our Youth Director, who is great with our youth.  Who knows how to relate and talk to them and get them to open up to him through things of their every day lives. What are your long term goals?

My long term goals is to see SRO expand nationally Do you have any upcoming projects that you would like to tell us about?

Not at the present time What have been some of the disappointments you have gone through?

After the death of my parents, I guess there is no greater disappointment.  However, my disappointment is the fact that SRO is not where it should be based on what we are about.  We still have much growing to accomplished and I guess my patience run short because I know SRO can be so much further. What are the advantages or for those who have an interest in joining your organization?

Helping those of lesser needs or less fortunate, knowing that you have touched or reached at least one person.  That is the greatest advantage. What characteristics do you look for in people who are attempting to join your organization?

To have the same motive and goals and ambitions I have in my Organization. Tell us about your community activities?

Again, my community activities are the Seminars, support groups and Annual Family Day picnics for now. Do you have a  website?

Yes, it is: What type of information does it provide?

Information about the organization and what we are about and what we do.  It has the different programs we are currently offering and that will be implemented in the future.  It also provides our past seminars, our support group and contact information. Who are some of your role models?

Mo’Nique, Patti Labelle, Oprah W., Tyra Banks…………any individual who is about helping others and the community. How do you define success?

Success depends on the individual and how they accomplish or steps they take in their lives to be successful.  You don't have to be witty...or brilliant. You don't have to be good-looking...or charming. You don't even have to be highly educated or trained.
An individual needs to become a "highly effective person"...the kind of person who succeeds where others fail...who instinctively knows how to burst through roadblocks and obstacles that leave others stumped and stalled.
You’ve got to do things other people aren’t willing to do… you’ve got to surround yourself with people who know what it takes to be successful and can point you in the right direction.   To lead and not follow, to have goals and dreams in life and follow through them.  This is success to me. Tell us about the future for your organization? What is the ultimate goal?

The ultimate goal is to be National and reach out to families throughout the states. What is the best thing about what you do?

Meeting others and helping others where they feel all hope is gone or no one cares. What is the response you receive from the community?

Well it is a variety of things that was said, like this is a positive thing we’re doing, to there is no organization out there like ours, to it take strong individuals to be able to do what we do. Do you have any other organization, companies or entrepreneurs that you admire or collaborate with?

Yes………Large in Charge, Stars for Tomorrow’s Youth, Raise him up ministries, Rising Stars Magazine, Who are some of your organizations, companies or influences that you admire?

Large in Charge, Stars for Tomorrow’s Youth, Raise him up ministries, Rising Stars Magazine Give one sentence that best describes your Organization?

We are SISTAZ working together for a cause! How can the readers at help support your company?

Donations to support what we are trying to do is always a blessing.  Also, just getting the word out that we are out here and that we are reaching out to the community. Also, if someone has an office that we can use, a place we can call home where we will meet with people that they would like to donate time usage is also a blessing.  A place where our meetings can be held on a regular basis.


Thank you for Reading The LargeInCharge Feature

Please send thoughts and comments to

Cover Model of the Month

Cover Model of the Month

Joyce Licorish




Interview with Joyce What is your name?
Joyce Licorish Where are you from and what is your current Location?
Born and raised in Indianapolis, this is where I reside primarily, although I do work in NY, LA and Atlanta, GA. Can you give us some information about yourself (Age, Height, Size, Nationality, Marital Status, Children, etc.)?
I am 32 years old, 5’8 inches tall, and I am a considered an African American Female but also am of American Indian and Asian descent. I am divorced with 2 beautiful daughters. Were you a big child, or did you gain weight later in life?
I was born a preemie, but soon picked up my weight and began having struggles with it as a toddler, my weight has yo-yo’d the majority of my life with my heaviest times being after the birth of my children. It is natural to pick up some weight during pregnancy but I gained quite a bit and for a while my size was a downer for me. I came to face the reality that I am a woman who just so happens to be full figured, and that my weight does not make me who I am it is what is inside that truly matters. What made you decide to enter the LargeInCharge model search?
I am always happy to see size positive organizations like Large In Charge, since the industry is so bogged down with negativity towards plus sized individuals, I look at it as an opportunity to show people that big can also be beautiful. Did you find it a hard journey to be accepted for your size?
YES! Especially being in the entertainment/music industry I find it increasingly difficult to break through the barriers put up by society due to my size. Unfortunately, in this industry, sex sells, and to most people who are in the position to make key decisions regarding my career and extending contracts, big is not sexy. So I am constantly trying to prove myself and let my talent shine through and overcome the weight obstacle. It is a constant struggle, although I have many accomplishments to my credit, the journey for me has only just begun. Do you find acceptance among your family and friends?
I do for the most part have loving and encouraging friends, although I have encountered some negativity and people who have made harsh and cruel comments about my weight and who have said that is what is holding me back and that I will never make it at this size. I know now that there will always be people who will try to hold you back and you have to just be strong enough to see past their ignorance and keep trudging towards your goals. What would you say inspires you most in life?
People like Monique, Queen Latifah, Jill Scott, who have set new standards for how plus women are viewed by the world. They inspire me to know that I too can reach my goals, seeing them grace the covers of magazines is motivation and encouragement for me and women just like me all over. It lifts our spirits and lets us know that we too can shine and be beautiful and recognized and admired just as much as a woman half our size. What is your primary job?
I am a singer, actress, plus model by night and IT Consultant by day. Do you find acceptance in the work force?
My size is not a problem with my 9-5 job as a Tech Writer/IT Consultant, but in doing extensive theatre work and being type cast as the fat, loud mouth comedic relief over and over, I do see some issues with truly being accepted in the entertainment industry. What do you think about the fashion industry for big sized clothing?
I think it has come a long way and still has a long way to go. Just because a woman is plus sized doesn’t mean she wants to be seen in public wearing a tent. We want to accentuate our curves and I think more and more the fashion industry is seeing that it is OK for us to be sexy and confident and for our dress to reflect this confidence. What do you wish to see change with the fashion industry?
I really want to see more plus choices, it is disheartening to walk into a shopping mall and only be able to shop at 1 or 2 stores in the entire complex. I would like to see the fashion industry acknowledge a change is needed and put forth an effort to create more suitable fashions for the young and fashionable BBW. What changes do you think will happen if plus sized modeling for men and women were to expand?
I think plus modeling should expand to show women who are larger than a size 14. I think they should go up to larger sizes so that women who are truly PLUS SIZED can see how the clothes will compliment their figure. I think if things were to expand there would be a tremendous increase especially in the online plus fashion market. Seeing a size 10 woman in a dress that goes up to a size 24 doesn’t truly demonstrate how it will look on a true BBW. Tell us some of the places you buy your clothing from.
Lane Bryant, Ashley Stuarts, The Avenue, Dots,, Big on Batik, Tell us one of your secret beauty tips.
Bring a shaper and don’t be afraid to use a little duct tape to get just the right dip in your waist and support where you need it most especially in fitted outfits and for runway shows. Another fashion mistake plus ladies make is wearing a mis-fitted bra, so be sure to have on a bra that accentuates your breasts and isn’t too big or too small. Give us some tips on how to have a successful Photo shoot. What should models be prepared for?

Go the extra mile and have your hair and makeup done by a professional. Bring several outfits that will allow you to show more than one look. Have PROPER UNDERGARMENTS, your face can look amazing but if your body looks a lumpy mess chances are your pics will flop. Be prepared to let your guard down! Be yourself, be playful, enjoy yourself and don’t take yourself too seriously, your pics will be amazing! Tell us about your goals as far as modeling and other interests.

I would love to land more print work in the plus modeling field for some major designers. I also plan to release my first album later this year, and hope to resume my role as the legendary Effie White (made famous by Jennifer Hudson) in a tour of Dreamgirls the Off Broadway Stageplay in a theatre near you. Is there a person in your life that makes you keep going?
Philippians 4:13 --- I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I believe that God has a plan for me and I believe that in order to make it I must have faith that he will clear the obstacles from my path, that faith is what keeps me going. What advice would you give to other people of size who want to model?
Do your homework, use the internet to your advantage, have professional photos taken and then submit them. On the internet there are countless contests you may enter to get a jump start to your modeling career. Be realistic, look at the industry requirements for proportion, height, and weight, and set attainable goals for yourself. What plus size figure do you admire?
Toccorra from Top Model, her figure is amazing she is plus but her curves are in all the right places. Describe yourself with one word.

My favorite quote…Author Unknown:
The road to success is not straight. There is a curve called Failure, a loop called Confusion, speed bumps called Friends, red lights called Enemies, caution lights called Family. You will have flats called Jobs. But, if you have a spare called Determination, an engine called Perseverance, insurance called Faith, a driver called Jesus, you will make it to a place called Success.


Thank you for Finding out more about our Cover Model

Please send thoughts and comments to

Raqui's Spot

     Raqui the Owner and Founder of LargeInCharge Magazine.  This spot is dedicated to her thoughts, vents, and observations of Plus Sized Life.  Raqui's  "Tell it like it is" style of writing has brought hundreds to her blogs and thousands to  There is so much behind the woman who has brought this magazine into existence.  Being Internationally known as a wrestler lead the way to modeling for companies and being featured in magazines and documentaries from all over the world.  She has made a career out of her size and personality.


     For the past 4 years moving into Size Acceptance and Empowerment.  She is a woman who doesn't let things get to her.  Knock her down for the moment but she will rise up stronger and better.  Being a speaker on behalf of many subjects and counseling Plus Sized people online her grace and style has made people love her.   Raqui continues to set an example of a powerful woman who will bend the world to fit her, her way.


Raise them Fatty Arms


     Do you see them?  MY FATTY ARMS!  Goodness with spring here and summer coming I have been frustrated. I have seen so many cute tops that might be in my size or style but one problem. I HATE SHOWING MY ARMS!  I am a confident woman but still for some reason I don't like my Fatty Arms.


     I find it funny that when I am in the street or at a BBW event.  The first thing I see is every woman and their Fatty Arms.  I think it is so cute, reminds me of little girls and their fat arms.  I always lean on my friends arms, and it feels really good.  But I truly dislike my arms.  I feel funny I don't want to put my arms in the air.  I don't wave with my whole arm,  only from the elbow to the hand.  I keep my arm tightly pressed to my body.


     Why do I dislike them?  Because they jiggle?  Because it always looks like I am making muscles even when I am not?  Because my Fatty arms have creases?  Yes maybe I would like my Fatty Arms better if they didn't have that fat crease in them.  Maybe I dislike them because one arm is fatter than the other?  Why oh why my arms are so FAT?   Well it is not like the rest of me is Skinny.


     So why worry?  Why do I not feel comfortable showing my Fatty arms?



     Last year I took the step.  Finally I am Raising up my Fatty Arms.  Not everyday, not all the time but yes I did in many ways.  I had this purple top for 2 years.  Only wore it once but last summer I wore it many times.  I had to Raise them Fatty Arms.


     When I did wear my Purple top I noticed I felt free.  It was like I finally didn't care.  I also got squeezed a lot and people tended to lean on my arms.  It became my favorite top.  I cant wait to break it out again.


     I notice that many men who like big women love the Fatty Arms.   I have actually been at a BBW event and had someone rub my arms and go up right under the sleeve of my blouse.  I wish I would have known this before maybe I would have liked my Fatty Arms. 


    The thing is being a big beautiful women I have learned to accept myself in many ways. Slowly... not because I am fat, not because I cant lose weight, not as a last measure.  But because I love me, because I have to love my Fatty Arms.  Because loving and accepting myself as the woman I have become is more important to me than anything else.


     I refuse to hate myself, I refuse to hate my Fatty arms.  Maybe I might still dislike them for a while.  But not hate.  And I am not going to wear long sleeves just because I have Fatty Arms.  So this summer I am going to buy a cute top that will show off my Fatty Arms.  And I am going to get my first Tattoo. Will you?


I hope to see many more Women join me in Raising their Fatty Arms.  Send me your Fatty Arm Pictures!





Raqui's Cool Links

Raqui's Blog-Spot Page 

Raqui's My Space Page

Raqui's Yahoo 360 Page

Raqui's BBWVibe Page


Thank you for Reading Raqui's Spot

Please send thoughts and comments to

Super Sized Sounds



     Super Sized Sounds will be a Music Column that will feature those who are in the industry or up and coming who are size positive. Giving recognition to the plus sized people who are out there and showcasing themselves.  Reviews, Interview, News and more from our new writer Super Sized Spanishfly Lynx.


      Lynx Garcia, also known as "SUPERSIZE SPANISHFLY", is a Latina BBW from Queens NYC.  Lynx is an activist speaking out against size discrimination and began performing back in 1996 at social events for big beautiful women and big handsome males and their admirers. Her special mixture of sound held true as she sang, spat, danced and performed spoken word, soon she was in demand by Big and Beautiful parties nationwide.  Lynx taking her "look" and sound mainstream was rejected because of her size. She did not let this break her spirit, hurt her confidence or minimize her drive. Instead she rose up and started a public access show (LYNX' LAIR) aired in Queens on TIME WARNER QPTV . Combination of comedy and sexy style, she showcased underground artists of all walks of life. The response to her show was less than a year she has showcased many artist, some who moved to bigger and better things.


     Currently Lynx has caught the attention of Joey Mekkah of BLACK SOLARIS ENTERTAINMENT and found herself on the Grandmaster MELLE MEL's SOLO ALBUM "MUSCLES" featured on the hot latin hip-hop track called 'DIMELO", she is the only collaboration on the album. Lynx recently has started her own radio show on EXTRAVAGANGSTARADIO.COM  called Ladies Night. EXTRAVAGANGSTARADIO is #1 on the itunes network.





My people, mi gente…. Our world today is in a sad state of morality and all we have left to show for it are fatalities. It seems that senseless acts of violence are rampant. Who wants to watch the news anymore? Murders, brutal rapes, a mother savagely beaten to death by her own son, children being abducted and abused, babies found in the garbage, the war in Iraq, the NASA killing and the worse school killing in the history of this country…VTECH.  

Oh the humanity...heaven help us.

It seems as though every other story is one of death and sadness. Although these times are trying and difficult ones, we must find things to help us comfort and release our emotions.  Music has long been a source of comfort and release of the many stresses we face in life. This month I would like to review an album like no other. It has had a profound positive affect on me. And I am sure that anyone who invests in this album …will agree.

My people of size, I would like to introduce you to this month’s featured artist                         


Album title: THE BEGINNING

Genre: New Age

Richard Laurent otherwise known as the Earthman has long been an admirer of big beautiful women.  At the young age of 10, Earthman fell in love with his art teacher who was a very large voluptuous woman, he said like to watch her move (nasty little and she also introduced him to his favorite artist PICASSO. “I view big women for what they are, beautiful works of art”. (Let em know!!!)


Earthman believes the age of enlightenment has come for mainstream America. “You will see more plus size and full-figured singers, models and actresses being recognized and respected for their talents despite their size; in my eyes they are just right.” (From your lips to God’s ears my brother)


Earthman is a dedicated musician and voice over artist. You may recognize his voice from various television commercials, Oil of Olay, Chase more notably The History Channel. Or, from the 80’s hot house music group MOONFU, selling 250,000 copies of their hit single “I Say Shut Up”.  


Earthman has studied in Tunisia with a group of healers who believe in healing through vocal tones, frequencies, and sonic vibrations…the theory of ultrasound called BIO SONICS. Earthman has incorporated all of the influences he has come across in his lifetime, along with BIO SONICS and created an album that evokes and promotes healing.


Earthman’s strong manly chanting, at times husky voice and intense raw emotion will take you to the far corners of this earth and “Some Will Rise” to look up at “Clear Skies”

I am sure that you will hear “The Calling” to “Bang For Freedom” just close your eyes and “Let The Spirit” guide you…The rhythmic mesmerizing beats will have you singing, and swaying with “The Rising Drum”  It will have you feeling connected with humanity and the earth. If I could “Put Myself in Heaven”, I’d hope The Beginning, would be playing in the background.


WWW.MYSPACE.COM/EARTHMANMUSIC  link to purchase cd is also on this page.


Enjoy and may God Bless My Big People All over the World

My condolences to the families of the victims of VTECH.


Want to send in your Voice in for review? Are you a singer, rapper, or poet who performs spoken word?  Up and Coming, already established?  Contact Lynx through her Myspace page or email and all information will be forwarded to her (PUT "FOR LYNX" IN THE SUBJECT AREA) 

You must be a Size Positive Artist, If you are chosen for Review you agree to donate your submission for the Non Profit Org Second Skin which is in development.

Thanks for reading

Super Sized Sounds with Lynx


Lynx Cool Links

From the Plus Side


Emily Smiltneck

     From the Plus side will be column dedicated to short stories that deal with all aspects of Plus size Life.  Emily Smiltneck was chosen for this position because of her dedication, and realistic writing style. She captures the emotional and mental rollercoaster those who are Plus Sized go through.


     Emily Susanne Smiltneck lives in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (pretty much dead center in the middle of nowhere). She is a substitute teacher, and has recently started a tutoring business. Emily is currently working on several writing projects, including a historical fiction novel and several collections of poetry.


Damaged Goods

I am damaged goods.  We all are, I suppose, in some ways.  I have just never been good at dealing with that fact.  Other people who are damaged are still able to function normally.  Me, not so much.  I mean, in most ways, I function fine.  I have lots of friends, spend a lot of time laughing, am kind and supportive, and usually manage to pay my bills on time.  Usually.  But when it comes to dealing with the opposite sex, my ability to function completely quits.

            In some ways, I am a slut.  I am a cyberslut, anyway.  I have done lots of cam shows, had cybersex more times than I can count, and have even had the occasional round of phone sex.  I’m not so fond of that, mostly because I’m not very good at it, but I’ve done it nonetheless.  I will have cybersex with anyone, really.  Older men, younger men, fat men, skinny men, ugly men, even a woman, once in a while.  I think I am just seeking validation or something.  I want someone to tell me I am beautiful, or that I am sexy enough to make up for not being beautiful, or that I am at least okay.  Sometimes that happens and sometimes it doesn’t.  When it does, I feel happy and strong and sexy.  When it doesn’t, I cry.

            This is all an issue because of who I am and what I have done.  Or, more correctly, what I haven’t done.  I have had sex exactly once.  With a stranger.  I was twenty-five at the time, and I just wanted to get it over with.  I spent the entire week beforehand in a dead panic.  In fact, when I met the guy in person, I was still in a dead panic.  I could think of nothing except what he was thinking, which is never a good idea.  We, as human beings, tend to be sure that other people’s thoughts are a lot worse than they really are most of the time.  I do, anyway, and I can’t believe I am so different from everyone else on the planet, so it must be a somewhat common trait throughout the human race.

            I sat in my hotel room for a couple of hours waiting for him, feeling more and more like throwing up every second.  I was sure he wouldn’t show up, and that thought scared the crap out of me.  It had taken me enough time and strength to get up the courage to meet him in the first place; I was sure that if he rejected me before he even saw me, that I would never have the guts to try again.  I was equally sure that he would show up, which scared me even more.  I pictured him seeing me in person and laughing at me before he turned around and walked away.  I pictured him coming up to my room with me, watching me take off my clothes, and puking in disgust.  I pictured him coming into my hotel room, ready for a night of passion, and then being so turned off by me that he couldn’t make things happen.  And I pictured him being the perfect lover, pictured the two of us having wild, exciting, incredible sex all night long.  That scared me more than anything.

            What really happened was some combination of all my imagined scenarios.  He walked up to me in the hotel lobby, smiled, and hugged me.  I was incredibly glad that he did, because without him to hold onto, my shaking knees probably would have dumped me on the floor.  Then we went up to my room.  I carefully let him lead the way, to be sure he wouldn’t have a chance to get a good look at me.

            This might be a good time to mention something else, something I may have neglected to say.  It is something I don’t like to talk about a lot, unless I am with people I feel very secure with.  It would be a secret, except that the whole world already knows.  At least, the part of the world that I have connected with.  My secret is this: I am fat.  I am not the kind of fat where people just kind of wonder what I would look like if I lost a few pounds and then forget about it.  I am the kind of fat where people wonder how I can even walk, where people stare at me, where people are afraid they will somehow catch my fatness from me.  I am fat with a capital F.  And that also makes me Unattractive with a capital U, at least to most men. 

            My friends all try and tell me that I am not ugly, and I appreciate their efforts, but I know the truth.  I mean, I guess I, myself, do not think that I am ugly; I am just very good at seeing myself through everyone else’s eyes, and the rest of the world most definitely thinks I am ugly.  I know that there are a few people who truly find me attractive, and I accept that.  I really do.  I just find that it is more realistic to align my own opinions with the opinions of the majority of the world.  It is easier to deal with life that way.  Okay, so back to my story now.  I let him lead the way up the stairs so he couldn’t see me waddling and puffing my way up two flights of stairs. 

            When we got to the top, though, I realized my attempts had been futile.  It was up to me to lead the way to the room, since he couldn’t possibly know what room I was in.  I am pretty smart, really, in a bookish kind of way, but when it comes to common sense, I often find myself coming up short.  So, I inhaled, squared my shoulders, and set off down the hallway, making sure there was a bit of a swing in my hips, hoping this would distract him from the size of my hips.  I mean, he had seen pictures of me before and all; he had been one of my cam show audiences more than once, and even one of my few phone sex
partners.  He was familiar with me.  I just wasn’t sure if the reality of my flesh would be too different from what he had already seen.  I was afraid the three-dimensional me wouldn’t quite measure up to the two-dimensional me.  The dude already knew I was fat and claimed to like me that way, so what was my problem?  Just insecurity, I guess.

            Just before I opened the door, I have to admit, I almost panicked and ran.  It seemed easier than walking into the room with him and having to deal with the repercussions of that.  However, my pride (and my desire to not spend the rest of my life a virgin) refused to let me run, so I forced myself to slide the key into the slot and push the door open.  It was one of those moments when I truly wanted nothing more than to just disappear and not have to face what was in front of me, but also one of those things that I knew I just had to do.  So I did.

            Things began to go downhill the moment we were in the room with the door closed firmly behind us.  I don’t mean that he raped me or anything like that.  In some ways, that would have been easier than what actually happened.  Then I could have pretended I wasn’t responsible for anything that happened, and I would have been better able to handle my feelings afterwards.  Instead, he decided that I was going to be a dominatrix.  “Whatever you want to do, tell me.  I’ll do it.,” he said.  Which sounded like a lot of fun.  Unfortunately, since I had barely even ever kissed a guy before, it was asking a little much of me.  So I just didn’t say anything at all.  Eventually, he decided he didn’t want to wait for me to take charge after all, and he made things happen.  I liked it better that way, even though I was still scared to death.  I didn’t have nearly as much fun as I had anticipated.  Afterwards, I learned that first times usually aren’t much fun anyway—I wish I had known that ahead of time.  My expectations may have been a little different.  I may not have been so disappointed. 

            Afterwards, when I talked about the experience with other people, they almost universally thought that the guy was an ass.  The funny thing about me, though, is that I still, after all that, assumed that anything that hadn’t gone well was my fault.  After all, when we talked before we met, it was completely clear that he had had good sex before.  And I had had no sex before, good or bad.  So anything bad about the experience had to be my thing, and not his.  That was how my thought process worked, anyway, and it still does, really.  When I am thinking rationally, I know that with a more sensitive, mature, understanding man, I may not have had those issues.  When I am feeling down and a little sad and depressed, then I am sure that it was all my fault, and that I am no good at sex, and that I will never have an other chance to prove anything different.  At these times, nothing can change my mind.

            Either way, it was not a good experience.  I mean, physically, it was fine.  That part wasn’t bad at all, and was even a little fun.  A little.  Emotionally, on the other hand, it was the equivalent of a train wreck.  The kind of train wreck that devastates everyone involved, that ruins lives, that causes post-traumatic stress.  When we were all finished up (and it didn’t take long—not trying to cut down his abilities, just stating the truth), he went to sleep.  I understand that this is sort of a guy thing, I really do.  I don’t blame him.  I just wish that when he woke up, he would have said something other than, “I gotta get going.  See ya later?”  It would have been nice.  It would have made me feel a little more secure.  It would have made me a lot less afraid of sex now.

            Afterwards, I thought of him a lot.  Just about every day, really.  I never heard from him again, and the more I didn’t hear from him, the more I thought about him.  His absence from my life was much more powerful than his presence had ever been.  I went over and over that night in my mind, wondering if things would have been different if I had just pretended to be someone else.  If I had just jumped right into the dominatrix role, I would have looked incredibly stupid; maybe he would have liked that better anyway, though.  Who knows. 

            Beforehand, I was sure that after I got that one little thing out of the way, after I had done the horizontal mambo that first time, things would automatically be easier for me.  I imagined myself finally feeling like a real adult, finally feeling like life could really happen, finally feeling like a woman.  Instead, I was worse off than I had ever been before.  Instead of feeling sexier, I felt like I was unworthy of any male attention at all.  Instead of feeling more in control of my destiny, I was sure that my fate would forever be in someone, anyone, else’s hands. 
            Instead of being ready for round two, instead of having my own private sexual revolution, I was more afraid than ever.  Instead of wondering if I could provide a man with pleasure, I was entirely convinced that I couldn’t.  I was a mess.

            Didn’t stop me from putting on cam shows, though, or having phone sex.  Instead, it intensified my need for those experiences.  I needed someone to validate me, to prove that I was still a sexual being, an acceptable human being, a woman. 

            What it did do was make those experiences more awkward than ever.  When I first started meeting people online and doing cam shows and things, I always figured it didn’t matter what they thought of me, since I would never meet them anyway.  If someone logged off of my cam window, I could easily pretend they just got booted offline, and if they said rude things to me, it was a cinch to just tell myself they had only accepted my offer in order to torment me afterwards.  There weren’t that many of those, and I didn’t count them as real people anyway.

            After my first real-life experience, though, my whole mindset changed.  The people I met online seemed real to me, and what’s more, their opinions suddenly mattered.  Not by my choice, of course, but something within me had changed.  Instead of firing up the camera whenever someone asked me if I had one, I instead tried to convince them that they didn’t really want to see me anyway.

            Sometimes, it worked.  They believed me and decided they didn’t want to see me after all.  Those occasions threw me into minor depressive episodes where I would spend a day or two crying about how ugly I was.  In my more rational moments, I knew I wasn’t being fair; I was the one who said I was ugly, not them.  Most of the time, though, I refused to blame myself.

            Whenever my little self-destructive game didn’t work and the person I was talking to convinced me that they really did want to see me, I screwed things up anyway.  I was hesitant and shy, scared, not strong and confident. That act gets old really fast.  I know it does.  Had I been any other person dealing with me, instead of being me, I would definitely have given up.  So now, not only was I convinced I wasn’t good enough for sex, but I was also convinced I wasn’t even good enough for fake sex.  Life was not good.  And that is still kind of where I am.

            I mean, deep down inside of me, I know I am a good person.  I know I deserve love as much as anyone else.  I know that there are other people out there who might be willing to love me, too.  But I am afraid that any attempts they may make to convince me of that will fail.  I don’t know if I am even capable of receiving love any more. 

            Ten men could approach me in a single hour to tell me that I am beautiful, and I would not believe any of them.  I would tell myself that they were just being nice, that they were setting me up for humiliation, that they couldn’t possibly be telling the truth.  I get along fine with men, I really do.  I don’t harbor any ill feelings toward men in general.  I can even deal with men fairly successfully most of the time.  But if a man says or does anything to insinuate that he sees me as a woman, especially if he insinuates that he sees me as an attractive woman, it’s over.  I don’t know why, but that is the moment in which I cease to function.

            If I were to go to a restaurant one time and the food was bad, I would give the place a second chance.  If I were to meet someone and decide I did not like him or her, I would meet that person again, just to be sure.  If I were to read a book, even, and not enjoy it, I would probably try to read it one more time, to be certain I hadn’t missed something the first time.  So why am I so hard on myself?  Why can’t I give myself one more chance?  Why have I just given up?

            Somehow, that one experience has damaged me, possibly beyond repair.  That one experience has ruined me for all others.  I don’t understand why.  If any of my friends were to tell me that she was in the same situation, I would tell her that no one else has a right to make her feel inferior, that she has to take control of her own life, and that she is as sexy and beautiful and confident as she wants to be.  But I cannot seem to heed my own words.

            I am strong and I am a survivor, but I am damaged goods.


Thanks for reading

From the Plus Side with Emily Smiltneck


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Why, OH Why


Diabolique Belle

     Why, OH Why will be column dedicated to all the experiences Plus Sized people go through that make you want to say WHY OH WHY does this have to be.  Part vent, part inspiration this column will surely be one that readers will related to. Diabolique Belle was chosen for this position because of her flare for telling it like it is and turning it around for the better. 


     Diabolique Belle originates from Brooklyn, NY. She is a computer specialist who passionately loves making toiletries and designing gift baskets. She is capricious and dynamically outgoing and loves to say what she means and she means what she says. Diabolique is currently working on several entrepreneurial endeavors, including taking her toiletry hobby to a professional level and transitioning her writing hobby into an erotic mystery novel series.


Acceptance… By any means necessary?


Big handsome man, big beautiful woman, super sized big beautiful woman, fat admirer these are the new catch phrases that are plastered everywhere.  Big beautiful women and big handsome men are the admission slips required by the masses. 


Compliments or secret slaps in the face? This terminology at first glance would appear to be cute, trendy and harmless descriptions.  These cute and trendy metaphors when analyzed take on a much uglier and darker connotation.


We’ve been bamboozled.  We’ve been hoodwinked.


They are very passive and subtle apologies. They are passive and subtle excuses. They are passive and subtle insults.  How?


This wording is apologetic, as if being overweight requires an explanation or is expected to be offensive.  As if people considering being intertwined with overweight people require some extra incentive.  As if they are really getting a bum deal but there are perks.  She’s ugly but is nice. He has bad breath but is extremely intelligent. They are fat but attractive. 


In the search to be accepted, certain choices were made.  In the battle be assimilated, certain sacrifices had to be made.  However, what is a reasonable sacrifice? What is an acceptable loss?  When meeting new people, there had to be some giving and some taking.  When do you know when you have given too much? How do you determine what to sacrifice?  How much sacrifice is too much? 


Instead of standing dignified as individuals, we have offered up our identities and respect in, like lambs for slaughter.  We leaped at the opportunity to be a part of… what?  To be “accepted” only to truly be rejected and humiliated. To be ogled at like the latest freak show display?  What other group do you know that allows itself to be belittled on a global scale by being identified by their physical characteristics? 


Why are these atrocities tolerated? Simply because we were obsessed with having a place in the world; however, we were simply too busy to assess what it truly cost us.  Trucks, beds, animals and furniture used to be the only things that were categorized by size.  That is a big truck.  I want a big bed.  That is a huge cow.  That is a big couch.  While people may have called people big in joke and sneers, never before was it how were captioned in openly.  Never before was it a badge that they proudly wore.  There was a time where we refused to be categorized by our size and demanded that people looked deeper.  A time where we knew that our value wasn’t to be wasted on people who could not rise above the physical.  A time where we truly understood what a horror it was to be tagged with a label.  Labels come with biases. Biases come with set thought patterns. Set thought patterns come with ignorance.


Ignorance is something that we can not entertain. 


Ignorance is something that we can not allow.


Is acceptance worth our respect?


Is acceptance worth our dignity?


Is acceptance worth our self worth?


Deeper still, is the illusion of acceptance worth all we have tossed away?



Labels… for cars, food and animals only!



Thanks for reading

Why, OH Why with Diabolique Belle


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Papi's Peace

This month's Article:


     Papi's Peace A column dedicated to the Large man and his mind.  Papi a Chicago native takes the concerns of the Big man and brings it to light, realizing that sometimes his thoughts and feelings are not always so secure.  A how to column that deals with the issues that many men deal with in today's society.  He also hits the many aspects of living life large and putting your best foot forward as a big person.  Papi was chosen because of his dedication to motivate and weekly inspirational emails he sends to many people across the net has helped and captured many.  Papi has a flair for making difficult situations a bit more easier to deal with.  Part motivation, part realism, lots of observation and a big helping of tell it like it is.  Papi has used humor with to deliver every month.


Where U At?

"Ideals are like the stars: we never reach them, but like the mariners of the sea, we chart our course by them." Carl Schurz

"In charting our course to the future, we are mindful of our path from the past." Brad Henry

"Four steps to achievement: Plan purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently." William A. Ward

"Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan." Tom Landry

"Always plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark." Richard C. Cushing

"Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan." Norman Vincent Peale

"Before beginning, plan carefully." Marcus T. Cicero

"It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan." Eleanor Roosevelt

"If you have accomplished all that you have planned for yourself, you have not planned enough." Edward Everett Hale

"Plans are nothing; planning is everything." Dwight D. Eisenhower

"When planning for a year, plant corn. When planning for a decade, plant trees. When planning for life, train and educate people." Chinese Proverb

"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail." Benjamin Franklin

"Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage." Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Map out your future - but do it in pencil. The road ahead is as long as you make it. Make it worth the trip." Jon Bon Jovi

"All you need is the plan, the road map, and the courage to press on to your destination." Earl Nightingale

"Your goals are the road maps that guide you and show you what is possible for your life." Les Brown

"A good plan is like a road map: it shows the final destination and usually the best way to get there." H. Stanley Judd

"Men succeed when they realize that their failures are the preparation for their victories." Ralph Waldo Emerson

"I will prepare and some day my chance will come." Abraham Lincoln

"The most prepared are the most dedicated." Raymond Berry

"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity." Seneca

"In the field of observation, chance favors only the prepared minds." Louis Pasteur

"It is better to be prepared for an opportunity and not have one than to have an opportunity and not be prepared." Whitney Young Jr.

"The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today " Elbert Hubbard

"Spectacular achievement is always preceded by spectacular preparation." Robert H. Schuller

"Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today." Malcolm X

"When you're prepared, you're more confident. When you have a strategy, you're more comfortable." Fred Couples

"For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of our tasks; the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation." Rainer Maria Rilke

"In fair weather prepare for foul." Thomas Fuller


Chart Your Course. It Makes All The Difference by Josh Hinds

Allow me to pose the following question to you. What do you think would happen if a ship set out to sea on a long voyage yet didn't have the proper navigation system in place?

Several things might happen actually . . .

The ship might float aimlessly until the captain decided to give up and come back home. Another thing that might occur is that given enough time it may actually stumble upon its destination.

In each of the examples the end result could have been much different had the crew simply took the time to properly chart their course prior to setting out to sea in the first place.

Proper planning does take time, but the extra effort can make a huge difference with regards to our outcome.

The same rule applies when it comes to our own lives. Charting our course is basically the same thing as keeping a clear list of goals.

My friend, believe me when I tell you that the clearer an idea of where you want to go that you have in place, the better your chances will be of actually reaching your destination. The achievement of your goals and dreams are well worth the effort it will take.


Where U At?

Do you know where you're going to?

Do you like the things that life is showing you?

Where are you going to? do you know?

Do you get what you're hoping for?

When you look behind you there's no open door

What are you hoping for?

Do you know?

Theme from Mahogany - Diana Ross

     Papi likes to travel. I am not afraid to fly, and I love to do so, but I do a LOT of driving. I was recently called a human GPS and I had to laugh. (If you don’t know what GPS is, I suggest you "google" global positioning system) I have gotten a lot of grief for being willing to go anywhere and knowing how to get everywhere. I just happen to be blessed with a great sense of direction. A few times a month my little brother, who is a club head, calls me to get directions to some new spot. I usually can hook him up with no problems. It has become fairly routine. I often get calls from lost friends asking me how to get home from where they are, or keeping me on the phone as they venture off to a new destination. What can I say? I am often a walking atlas.

     Even with this directional skill I have, I also own a 6-County Chicagoland atlas that is detailed to the street and address. I actually have a "map folder" in my car that has handy city street atlases for many Midwest cities such as Rockford, South Bend, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Madison, and etc. Why? I refuse to be lost, and like any normal man, I am NOT going to ask ANYONE for directions. When I am going somewhere new and someone starts giving me directions, I stop them and tell them I just need an address, and in some cases a city. This is bcuz if I do not know how to get there already, I am going to find out on my own. I am a diligent user of Mapquest, but I NEVER use it to get DIRECTIONS. I know some of you are saying, "What!?" Well, I don’t use Mapquest to get directions. What I do is map out the actual address. Once I get the exact address, I zoom into the highest street level. I print that page for reference. I then zoom out by each individual level and print each subsequent page until I have zoomed out to approximately "city" view. Why do you do that Papi? Bcuz I don’t want to follow someone else’s directions. I don’t want to place MY destiny in someone else’s hands. I do not want someone else leading me while I blindly follow. I do not want to place that much faith in someone that is not necessarily looking out for my best interest. Using my method, I can see the individual streets and highways I wanna take to my destination. If I know the area, I also know shortcuts, traffic areas, scenic views, and things like that. The directions that a lot of websites give take you out of the way or get you there indirectly or simply just wrong. Using my method, I see all cross streets, it shows me street direction and everything else. Now when I hit the street I am prepared and confident. I have NO DOUBT that I am going to reach my destination. Not only that, but I am prolly going to enjoy the ride as well.

     Have you ever taken a trip without knowing where you were going? I mean you had NO map. NO instructions. NO guidance. Nothing. Someone just said get here and you were expected to get there. Is there a scarier thought or situation? Do you enjoy being lost and not know where you were going or how you are going to get there?

Hopefully you said no.

So then why do we allow this SAME thing to happen in our lives?

Why do we start a project or have an idea, dream, or goal and go about reaching it with no directions, no guidance, and no plan.

You are only setting yourself up for failure.

And frustration.

And fear.

Isn't that how you feel when you become lost?

It can be a terrifying feeling.

And it is a feeling that you NEVER have to experience.

     When you are trying to reach a goal, plot out your plan of attack. Do research. Write out your directions. Know where your obstacles lie. Understand where you can take shortcuts. Find out how long your journey MAY take. Be prepared before you even set out to reach your destination.

     Also, do this planning yourself. Do not rely on someone else showing you the right direction or steering you towards your goal. No one else can chase your dreams but you. Do not rely on someone that may not even have your best interests at heart to lead you towards your ultimate destination. Chart your own course.

Now watch how much smoother your ride is.

So, the next time someone asks "Where you at?"

You can tell them.

And you can tell them where you are going to!

I hope you have a good month.

Papi loves you!



Thank you for Reading Papi's Peace

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Good 4 U Food

Recipes for Good... Healthy Food

By: Xander - The Food Dude


Boy Loves Grill

God, I love the Spring and Summer.  All that grillin’ that can…, no I say MUST be done.  Grilling is the things that really got me into seasoning of foods.  This month we’ll go over some grilling that can be done and how it can be done to perfection.  After all knowledge is power.  Did I mention I LOVE TO GRILL !!!!

Let's Get Started!

Whether you use charcoal or gas grills, there are steps to take before you start cooking.

  • Grill should be on a heatproof surface well away from buildings, brush and overhanging trees. Never grill inside your home.
  • Inspect your grill before you start, making sure the racks are clean, the cover fits snugly, and there are no cracks or holes in the grill pan.
  • Start with a clean grill, especially if it's the first time you are grilling this season. Ash left over from cooking creates lye when mixed with water, which can rust the grill pan. You do need an ash layer for the best heat retention, but old ash isn't doing your grill any good.
  • Follow manufacturer's instructions for lighting gas or charcoal grills.
  • A charcoal fire takes 30-45 minutes to reach the proper cooking heat after you light it. You can tell the coals are heating up because ash will form on the outside. To see the correct briquette color for different cooking temperatures, click here.

Charcoal Grills

  • Charcoal grilling presents quite a challenge to the grillmaster. (That's you!) But learning about the type of charcoal to purchase, how many briquettes to light, the arrangement and cooking times is fun! The number of briquettes you use depends on the size of your gill, the amount of food you will be cooking, weather conditions and cooking time.
  • As a general rule, plan on using about 30 briquettes to cook 1 pound of meat. A five-pound bag contains 75 to 90 briquettes. Make sure you have enough briquettes to cover the grill pan in a single layer, extending about 2" beyond the area of the food on the grill. First place the briquettes in the grill pan to check for quantity, then stack them for lighting or remove to place in a chimney starter.
  • When the weather is cold or windy, you will need more briquettes to reach an ideal cooking temperature. More about that later.
  • To light charcoal with the pyramid method, stack the charcoal into a rough pyramid shape. Soak the charcoal with at least 1/2 cup of lighter fluid (NEVER use gasoline!!!). Wait a few minutes to let the chemicals soak into the briquettes, then light the charcoal with a long handled match or fire starter. As the coals begin to burn and ash forms, arrange them with long handled tons into a single layer. Don't squirt lighter fluid onto hot coals, since the fluid could catch on fire and burn back up to your hand.
  • I really like using a chimney starter. It looks like a coffee can with a handle, divided into two compartments by a metal disc. It lets you get a really good fire going with no chemicals. Place crumpled newspapers in he bottom portion of the starter. Remove the rack from the grill and place the chimney starter in the bottom. Fill the top half of the starter with charcoal. Then light the newsletter through holes in the bottom of the starter. The fire will draw up through the starter, lighting the charcoal. Leave the chimney starter where it is, and in about 20-30 minutes the coals will be ready. With a heavy, long-sleeved oven mitt, carefully empty the coals into the grill pan. Arrange the coals iinto a single layer with long tongs.
  • Electric starters are fun and easy to use. They are plug-in heating elements that also start the fire with no chemicals. Place the electric starter in the grill pan and stack the charcoal briquettes over it in a pyramid shape. Plug in the starter, making sure you are using a heavy-duty extension cord. Ash will begin to form on the coals after 8-10 minutes. Then unplug the starter, pull it out with tongs and set aside on a heatproof surface. Then arrange the briquettes with tongs into a single layer.

Gas Grills

  • Gas grills use lava rocks, which come with the grill. The rocks are heated by the gas flame and cook like charcoal. Keeping the rocks clean is about the only task you'll have with a gas grill. If there is a buildup of grease on the rocks you will have flare-ups during cooking which can burn the food. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning or replacing the lava rocks.
  • A good habit to develop is to turn the burner to high for five minutes after you're finished cooking to help burn off grease and other drippings.
  • Occasionally rearrange and turn the lava rocks so heating and cleaning is more even.
  • Replace the lava rocks when they don't look clean, and start to break apart. Do not stack lava racks. They should be only one layer deep on the grate.

Grilling uses two different cooking methods: indirect and direct heat. In direct heat cooking, food is placed on the cooking rack directly over hot coals. Indirect heat is used for more delicate foods and for longer cooking times needed for larger cuts of meat, as when you're barbecuing a turkey. The grill is always covered when cooking with indirect heat.

  • Direct heat cooking is very straightforward. Learning the temperature of the coals is the only trick. If you use a gas grill, just pay attention to the heat settings. The coals should be ready when 3/4 of them are coated with ash. On a charcoal grill, if you are very careful, one way to check the temperature is by holding your hand, palm down, over the coals at the cooking height and count the number of seconds you can hold your hand there before you have to pull it away.
    • 5 seconds = Low
    • 4 seconds = Medium
    • 3 seconds = Medium-High
    • 2 seconds = High
  • Use the following descriptions to check cooking temperature by observing the coals:
    • Ash coating thickens, red glow less visible = Low
    • Coals covered with light gray ash = Medium
    • Red glow visible through the ash coating = High
  • For indirect heat cooking on a charcoal grill, place an equal number of briquettes on each side of the grill pan, leaving a space in the center. Then light the briquettes and let them come to cooking temperature. When you're ready to cook, place a drip pan between the coals and add water to the pan to a level of 1/2". Place the food over the drip pan and cover the grill. You will need to add 5-6 briquettes to each side of the pan as needed to maintain even heat. Generally briquettes should be added every 45 minutes.
  • For indirect heat cooking on a dual burner gas grill, set the drip pan on the lava rocks on one side of the grill and add water to 1/2". Preheat the other burner on high for 5-10 minutes. Turn the temperature down to medium, then put the food on the rack over the drip pan and cover the grill.
  • For indirect heat cooking on a single burner gas grill, preheat the grill on high for 5-10 minutes. Turn the temperature down to low, and place a large foil baking pan on the rack. You can also line half of the cooking rack with a double thickness of heavy duty foil. Place food in the pan or on the foil, cover and cook.

Cooking The Food

  • Never leave the grill alone when you are cooking food. Flare ups can quickly become a fire, and it's very easy to overcook or burn food on the grill. Once you start, stay there and pay attention!
  • Adding wood chips and chunks can add marvelous flavor to your food. Soak mesquite, alder, hickory and pecan chips for one hour before scattering over the hot coals.
  • Wooden skewers should be soaked in water for an hour before use. They are best used for very quickly cooked foods, like veggies and fruits.
  • Metal skewers should be flat, with long handles. Round skewers cause the food to roll when turned, so foods won't cook evenly. Use metal skewers when cooking meat kabobs.
  • Follow the recipe cooking times carefully, and make sure to cover the grill if the recipe calls for it.
  • Sauces containing sugar and fat will cause flareups and the food may burn. Unless the recipe instructions are different, apply sauces and glazes only during the last 10 minutes of cooking time.
  • Grilling times are affected by the weather, and how long the food is being cooked. Maintaining cooking temps is an art, but there are some rules to follow.


    • When you want to lower the cooking temperature, raise the cooking rack, spread the coals apart, or close the vents on the outside of the grill pan halfway.
    • To raise the temperature, lower the cooking rack, tap ash from the coals, move the coals more closely together, or open the vents. You can also gradually add more charcoal to the outer edges of the coals.
    • If the weather is cold, you will need more briquettes to reach an ideal cooking temperature. Grilling will take longer.
    • Wind will make the fire hotter.
    • On a humid day, the coals will burn slower.
    • The temperature and thickness of the food when it's placed on the grill will affect the cooking time. Cold and thicker foods will take longer to cook.
    • The closer the cooking rack is to the coals, the faster the food will cook.
    • Hardwood fires will burn hotter than charcoal briquettes.
    • The most reliable way to test when food is done is by using a thermometer. There are many types available on the market, from instant read disposables to complicated thermometer forks.
    • Follow the recipe instructions for doneness tests. See food safety for more safety and doneness tests.
    • You'll need to move the food around on the grill for the most even cooking results. Don't turn food too often, and use tongs to handle the food instead of a fork. Piercing the food with a fork will release juices that you want in the food, and can cause flareups.   God I hate flareups.




Marinate if desired. Steak should be 1/2 - 1" thick. Grill for 8 - 14 minutes for medium rare, 12 - 18 minutes for medium, turning once.


Marinate if desired. Steak should be 1/2 - 1" thick. Grill for 7 - 14 minutes for medium rare, 11 - 18 minutes for medium, turning once.


Boneless products cook more evenly. Chicken breasts can be cooked as is, or pounded thin for quicker cooking time. Grill until thoroughly done and juices run clear, about 8 - 12 minutes, turning once.


Cook until fillets flake easily when tested with a fork. Grill for 4 - 6 minutes per 1/2" of thickness, turning once.


Tuna, salmon, halibut, swordfish steaks should be 1/2 - 1" thick. Marinate before cooking if desired. Grill for 4 - 6 minutes for each 1/2" thickness.


Patties should be 1/2 - 3/4" thick. Grill until thoroughly cooked. Cook for 10 - 16 minutes, turning once.


Precooked ham steaks should be grilled until heated through, 6 - 10 minutes, turning once.


For precooked products, cook until heated through, 4 - 6 minutes. For raw products, first precook in skillet until almost done, then finish cooking on grill 8 - 12 minutes until thoroughly cooked, turning frequently.


Chops can be bone-in or boneless, 1/2 - 1" thick. Grill for 12 - 16 minutes, turning once.


Chops can be bone-in or boneless, 1/2 - 3/4" thick. Grill until only slightly pink in center, about 12 - 16 minutes.


Cut boneless tenderloin in half lengthwise. Cook for 12 - 18 minutes, turning several times.


Grill until shrimp turn pink and are springy to the touch. Cook for 5 - 7 minutes.


Xander - The Food Dude

Xander's Recipe of the Month

Grilling In Style


What follows is a collection of my favorite grilling dishes… I hope you enjoy them.  Don’t Lose this article, we’ll revisit it in July with more more great principles of gilling, smoking, and others.  Until the next time God Bless You.


Crock 2 Grill Ribs


  • 4 lbs. country style pork ribs
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 3 cups apple juice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1/4 cup apple jelly


In 3 quart crockpot, place ribs and onion. Bring apple juice and water to a boil in a saucepan or microwave oven and pour over ribs. Cover crockpot and cook on low for 7-8 hours. Drain well. Prepare and heat grill. Combine barbecue sauce and apple jelly in small saucepan and heat until jelly melts, stirring frequently. Place ribs on grill 4-6" from heat and brush with sauce mixture. Grill for 20 minutes until ribs are browned, turning often and brushing frequently with sauce.

Calories: 700
Fat: 54 grams
Sodium: 200 mg
Carbs: 4 grams
Thiamine: 50% DV


Pizza a’la Grill’e


  • 1 can refrigerated pizza crust
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup pizza sauce
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped


Prepare and heat grill. Tear off 18" x 12" piece of heavy duty aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place dough on foil and press to form 13" x 9" rectangle. Brush with oil. Invert dough onto grill and peel foil off the back of the dough. Cook over medium heat, 4-6" from coals for 3-5 minutes until dough is golden brown.

Turn down over, using large spatula. Spread pizza sauce, tomatoes, and cheese over browned dough. Grill 4-5 minutes longer until bottom of crust is well browned and cheese is melted. 4 servings


Steaks of the Summer



  • 1/4 cup honey dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 boneless top sirloin steaks


Prepare and heat grill. In small bowl, combine all ingredients except steak and mix well. Spread this mixture on both sides of steaks and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Grill beef on uncovered grill 4-6" above medium coals for 1 minute on each side to sear.

Cover grill and cook 8-9 minutes longer for medium steaks, turning once during grilling. 4 servings

Calories: 130
Fat: 4 grams
Carbs: 2 grams


Pork Kabbqbobs

Think about using other vegetables in these easy kabobs. Other colors of bell pepper and more exotic mushrooms make a nice change.


  • 1 pound boneless pork loin
  • 8 small whole button mushrooms
  • 2 green onions, cut into 2" pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1/3 cup barbecue sauce


Cut pork loin into 1-1/2" pieces. Prepare and heat grill. Thread all ingredients except barbecue sauce on 10" metal skewers. Place kabobs on grill 4-6" from medium heat and brush with sauce. Cook for 11-14 minutes until pork is thoroughly cooked, turning often and brushing with sauce. Discard any unused barbecue sauce. 4 servings

Calories: 200
Fat: 9 grams
Sodium: 130 mg
Carbs: 5 grams


CB El’ Grande

This giant cheeseburger is a fun way to entertain; plus, this is a low carb recipe. Garnish this huge burger with traditional toppings.


  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 cup shredded Colby cheese
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped green onion
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped red bell pepper
  • 3 Tbsp. mustard mayonnaise blend


Prepare and heat grill. In medium bowl, combine ground beef with salt and pepper and mix gently. Shape ground beef into a 7" circle. In small bowl, combine remaining ingredients and set aside.

Place ground beef on grill 4-6" from medium high heat.  Grill for 7 minutes, then carefully turn burger over with large spatulas. Grill for 3-4 minutes longer, then top with cheese mixture. Cook 3-5 minutes longer until cheese is melted and beef is thoroughly cooked in the center of the burger. 4 servings

Calories: 330
Fat: 26 grams
Sodium: 480 mg
Carbs: 1 gram


Grilled ChiNachos

Just five ingredients combine on your grill for a super easy and delicious appetizer recipe. Try flavored tortilla chips for a new taste.


  • 8 cups tortilla chips
  • 1-1/2 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 3/4 cup spicy barbecue sauce
  • 3 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 3 cups shredded Cojack cheese


Prepare and heat grill. Tear off 2 30" x 18" rectangles of heavy duty foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Spread atortilla chips down center of foil. In small bowl, combine chicken and barbecue sauce and spoon over tortillas. Sprinkle with tomatoes and Cojack cheese.

Seal packages with double fold. Place on grill, cover, and cook 4-6" from medium coals for 8-10 minutes until hot and cheese is melted. 8 servings

Even with these we’re only getting started.  Stay tuned for more Love of grilling in the July issue of Large In Charge.  Try variations to find the one you love the most.


Thank you for Reading Good Food 4U

By Xander the Food Dude

Please send thoughts and comments to



Time to tell it like it is!


     This is an experiment in Confession, you can anonymously confess, or let everyone know something that you feel.  Every Month we will post all the confessions and you can come and view them and be inspired to make your own.


     You can send in a picture,  You can make a graphic,  You can just send in your written words.  You can do it anonymously and get something off your chest.  You can let everyone know who you are and liberate yourself.


     Hope you enjoy Confession!  Send in your own check the bottom of this page!




  I have always hated my Fatty Arms.  Now I want to Tattoo them so I love them!  - Raqui






I will always hate the fact that I am fat even though my husband loves my body.  I am only staying fat for him!






Loving you is something that is so deep inside me I cant let it go.  But letting you go was something I had to do.  Sometimes I still dream that we are together.  And it hurts to know that it will never be reality.






I want to do this to a man one day, but he has to look like The Rock!






For the First time I let a man have oral sex with me and didn't care that I was so Fat!




Send in your own Confession,  Use the email to the Right and send in a your confession, weather it is a graphic you made (NO BIGGER THAN 5x7 92 DPI) or a picture you saw.  You can also just send in text words.  Your Confession can be Anonymous or you can tell everyone who you are.

Send in your Confession NOW!

Thanks for reading Confession

Send in your Confession to


Large In Charge Guest Spot

We want to hear and see your talents!


One of our favorite parts of the newsletter.  The Guest Spot is for our readers to submit there talents to be viewed.  We want to see all you wonderful supporters making moves of your own.  If you write poetry, short stories, commentaries, or just thoughts in general, please submit them to us.  If your a designer we want to see pictures of your clothing.   We would love to include your talents in our newsletter.  We hope you take an active part in the L.I.C. newsletter. Send in your article, poetry, comments to -

NOTE: The Opinion of the writer is not always the opinion of The Large in Charge Staff.  We support the Right to all views.  We do not Condemn or Approve writing based on our personal thoughts.  We approve writing based on if the subject is a concern for the BBW / SSBBW / BHM Community.  Thank you for your writing and please send in those articles!  - The Large in Charge Staff











We love our guest writers, they help us to make LargeInCharge  more personal and reader friendly place.  We bring the people words from there own peers.  If you always wanted to write but never knew what to do with your thoughts and opinions.  Send them in to us we love to feature you in our guest spot.


What type of entries do we accept?

  • Original Articles that have not been placed in publication.

  • Size Empowerment Stories

  • Discovery of Size Acceptance

  • Romance of Large Size

  • Poetry - at least 25 lines in length

  • Complaints about Society

  • Complaints about what is provided for Big People

  • Complaints about Health Care

  • Weight Loss Surgery Experiences

  • Dealing with Doctors

  • The Joy of being Big

  • Learning to Love yourself

  • etc.

How to Submit my Article for review?

  • Check your article for spelling and correct format, We do not edit articles.
  • Attach your article either in Word, Text Format, or in the Body of your email.
  • In your email send your Real Name, E-mail and Address (state, location).
  • Under your Name and Address include date, and the line. "I give and there owners, permission to use my written article. I am submitting it for there use at their discretion."
  • Include a picture if you so wish in .jpg or .gif format and a brief description of yourself.

Send in your stories, poems, etc. to



Ask Raqui

Ask your Questions and We will answer!

Send your question to Raqui -

NOTE: The Opinion of Raqui  is just that. I do not claim to be professional or to solve your problems.  I can however give you a real answer that may help you out.

Ask Raqui

Q: Hey Raqui,  so i noticed that beneath my breasts and folds, i got skin breakdown and its really hurting now, what can I do?


Raqui:  Ok now what i want you to do is make sure you wash and pat dry. Then air dry. Let all the moisture dissolve and let your skin get some air.

If you can get to the dr. ask for this type of cream

Fluocinonide Ointment USP, 0.05%

This can be used for all types of breakdowns all over the body.

after you are healed up use Vagisil powder in those areas and crease's it really protects the skin and helps to keep you dry with out drying out your skin. Make sure to let your body air dry as often as possible. This really helps.

In the mean time before you get to the dr. use some of the palmers cocoa butter the solid one in the jar. This will help but to prevent and really heal it up right get the ointment I stated above.

Q:   Dear Raqui, tell me with all the attention being focused on full-figured women these days, why big men are not getting much love. Are full-figured women still attracted to big men?


Raqui: I think everything comes in turns. Big men were the thing for many years seen at powerful and rich.  Now big women are getting there turn.


I still think full figured women are attracted to big men.  I know I am I am a big Micheal Clark Dunchan fan.  His Armageddon days not his now smaller days.  Many women love big ole teddy bears.

Q:   What is the stupidest question someone ever asked you on your size?


Raqui:  I was asked if I was pregnant. I told them no i am just fat.  But if they wanted to they could pretend and rub my belly LOL.

Q:   Tell me a secret of your Raqui on your beautiful skin.



Raqui:  I wash with plain water sometimes and I use Queen Hellene Juniper Facial scrub.



Thank you for Reading Ask Raqui

Please send thoughts, comments and questions to

Large In Charge

Fashion Furious

BBW/BHM Fashion of the Month

     We all hate how the Fashion Industry is just scratching the surface when it comes to Large Sized Fashion.  But I have found out that many clothing stores and online companies are beginning to take up the slack.  Creative BBW, SSBBW and BHM's are making there own clothing or mix matching and finding basic everyday wear and night club wear. 

     Making it affordable is what can be hard so showcase your wonderful finds here.  If your a regular shopper, sew your own clothing or a designer showcase your clothing here by submitting a picture for Fashion Furious of the month.


Fashion Furious of the Month

How to send in your Fashion Find. Send a Clear Picture as an attachment

and use the Format Below to describe your Fashion Furious picture.

Email to Raqui:

Fashion Find by: Raqui    Fashion Type: Bra

Fashion Breakdown: I am going to buy this bra because it is just like my little sisters. There are a few versions with and with out under wire and now they are on sale.  The sizes go up to 50G!

Sizes:  See above


Description: See above


Colors: See above

Roman's -




Send in your Fashion Furious Picture and Details to

Large In Charge

Product of the Month!

What is good for Big Sized Bodies


    A very important and necessary part of LargeInCharge.  Find out what is helpful for big bodies.  Keep your self straight with some of our tips and tricks. Find out what other Big Sized people use to keep themselves smelling, feeling, looking, and living a proper life.  What kind of products are allowed. Anything that deal with the body. From cleaning aids to soap, lotions, powder, healing aids etc.  anything that can help a big body!

NOTE: The Opinion of those who submit items are not professional.  They are everyday people who found something that worked for them.  We are not held responsible for there opinion - The Large in Charge Staff

Send your favorite Item to be Product of the Month - Follow format below, include a picture of product (most can be found online) and Send to

Product of the Month


About the Product

Recommender: Papi

Name of Product:
SuperSize Towel™ Bath Towels

Type of Product:
Large Sized Bath Towels

Cost of Product:

Where Product can be found:

Features of the SuperSize Towels™ include:
Sturdy construction - plush terry cloth made from 100% long fiber American cotton for long life and easy cleaning.

Large size - 70" x 35" unfolded size is larger than standard bath towels and standard bath sheets.   One of the largest bath towels we know of being sold today. Colors: White, Natural, Aqua, Seafoam, Pineapple, Royal, Hunter, Navy, Red, Black

Why I like this Product:
A BIG towel for a BIG man. I get tired of skimpy towels, so this product is an affordable solution.



Send in your Product recommendation to

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