LargeInCharge Magazine -  10 Year Anniversary!

 Issue#120 - March 2014

Welcome to LargeInCharge Magazine

In this Issue of L.I.C.



Words of Wisdom from the Heart & Mind of Raqui


The Big GB - Angie Bee

Getting my Life Back after Gastric Bypass


From the Desk of NAAFA

National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance


Foodie in You ~ Lucia Roth 


The Observer - Jness 


Curvy Styles - Amy Lucas 


The Skinny on Big Love - Jay Hansen 


Thinking Big - David Edmondson 


The Sacred Fat - Freakie


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!


Catching up with Frannie Zellman
Author of the Fatland Trilogy

LargeInCharge Featured People and Companies - Where are they now?

By: Raqui


Frannie Zellman was recommended to me by Peggy Howell, when I asked about interesting people who are doing great things in the plus sized community.  We were able to feature her and her book Fatland and Fat Poets Speak. Getting to know Frannie over the years has been a slow and nice process.  Since her first interview with LargeInCharge we have interacted through facebook and that has been a great way to share.  Frannie is a passionate person about all her beliefs, yet respectful of others thoughts as well.  Her writing takes you into a special place with that same passion she lives with.  This year we have been honored to have Frannie be a Cover Model of the Year Sponsor, we are so proud of all she has continued to accomplish with her writing and projects.


Check out the Orginal Feature by Clicking the Cover below

Issue #67 - October 2009


LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?

Frannie Zellman here J


LargeInCharge.com: Where are you from and what is your current Location?

From New York (city and suburbs) a long long time ago. But I have been in NJ now for eleven years. Have lived here in Cherry Hill, NJ for five years.


LargeInCharge.com:   When did you first appear in LargeInCharge Magazine?

I seem to remember being in LargeinCharge right around the time that FatLand (1): A Novel was published. That would be in 2009.


LargeInCharge.com: Please tell us why you were featured?

I was featured for writing FatLand: A Novel. FatLand presents a land in which fat people are rightful and proud citizens, a land where dieting/starvation and scales are forbidden.


LargeInCharge.com:  How did you feel when you appeared in LargeInCharge?

It was rather exciting to appear in a place which was fat friendly and positive.


LargeInCharge.com:  How do you feel now about being included in our special Decade editions?

It is just lovely to be able to honor your first ten years, and my first five years as a fat positive novelist.


LargeInCharge.com: How has your life and endeavors changed since your appearance? 

Since the appearance of FatLand, I have written FatLand (2): The Early Days, and have contributed to and edited two volumes of fat-positive poetry:  Fat Poets Speak 1:  Voices of the Fat Poets’ Society and our upcoming book (out in April), Fat Poets Speak 2:  Living and Loving Fatly. (Pearlsong Press, owned and managed by Peggy Elam, Ph.D., is the publisher of all books mentioned, and many many more fat positive books.)   So you could say that my writing and fat-positive goals have expanded since then (pun mostly not intended).

LargeInCharge.com:  What changes have you made to advance your career/business?

I have two blogs now, one for FatLand and one for Fat Poets Speak:  FrannieZellman.blogspot.com and fatpoetsspeak.blogspot.com

LargeInCharge.com: How long have you invested in your venture/career?

I have written poems since I was six. It is only within the last fifteen years that I have finally understood why I was writing and what I was writing about. I guess that my investment has been mostly emotional.

LargeInCharge.com:  Tell us about some of the most exciting events/occasions, you/your business have held/participated in.

I think one of the most exciting occasions had to be the formation of Fat Poets’ Society at the 2006 NAAFA Convention, when Mary Ray Worley decided that the people who were participating in my very first fat-celebratory and liberation Poetry workshop should join together in a society so that we could keep writing and keep in touch. This coming together produced the poems that later went into Fat Poets Speak: Voices of the Fat Poets’ Society in 2009, four months after the publication of my novel, FatLand.

LargeInCharge.com:  Have you been featured in any press, on tv, newspapers etc?

There was a newspaper article about me and about FatLand and Fat Poets Speak  (1) in a North New Jersey local paper in 2009.  That is the only newspaper article one I know about. I know that the NAAFA Newsletter has featured articles about FatLand and Fat Poets Speak, as well as poems by some of the poets in Fat Poets Speak. Some blogs have done so, as well.

LargeInCharge.com: What changes have you seen for plus sized people since your first appearance?

Actually, I think there have been some very exciting changes. We still have a long way to go, but there have been some very encouraging articles about Fat Acceptance and about HAES in places such as The New York Times and Huffington Post. I think people in general are starting to understand that fat is a kind of body, a descriptor, not a curse, and that fat people can be both happy and beautiful without changing their size. Fat Studies is now a respected discipline in universities. More and more people are writing novels and poems from a fat acceptance and fat positive perspective.

LargeInCharge.com: Are there any changes you had to make for your venture/career flourish?

The most important change I had to make was to realize that I had something unique to say and that I had the ability to say it in writing. Anything else –the blogs, the Facebook participation- pales in comparison.


LargeInCharge.com: What are some of the most important things you have learned through the years?

I think of the Jim Croce song, “The Hard Way Every Time.” However, if there is something to be learned here, it is not to put yourself into one particular place or niche, but to keep trying different ones if you don’t feel that a place or position or niche expresses what you want to say to the world. I feel that what one has to say and the way one says it will come together if one is writing what one was meant to write. I am not saying that FatLand and Fat Poets Speak contain the only things I have to write, but they do say what I consider as the most important things I have to say to the world about being fat and proud and not apologizing for it, but celebrating it. And just as importantly, one does not have to put anyone else down to celebrate one’s own shape and writing and talents.


LargeInCharge.com: How is your standing in the Plus Sized Community among the people?  Good feedback, negative feedback, learning lessons?

A few years earlier I tended to be impatient at times with people who are/were at different, mostly earlier stages of their fat acceptance journey. Tracey L. Thompson’s book Fatropolis (also published by Pearlsong Press) showed me that many people experience their fat shapes as victims, not only of hate and stigmatizing, but also of their own negative internalized images, before they become empowered. I appreciate her perspective more than I can say, and it has taught me that it is very necessary to be gentle and encouraging with people who are taking their first steps in Fat Acceptance and positivity. Rome was not built in a day! Fat pride must often be nurtured and constructed slowly, forgivingly, lovingly.


LargeInCharge.com: What would you say inspires you most in life?

The memory of my grandparents. They were people who were passionate about what they believed and fought hard for it. They fought for the rights of workers to have things like an eight hour day, weekends, paid time off, pensions, non-discrimination policies for women and minorities in hiring and on the job. When I think of them, I say, “The fight will go on.” Although some of their work and that of people like them has been eroded in the last thirty years because of psychopathically greedy wealth-worship(p)ers, I still cherish what they were and stood for, and their memory keeps me working  for Fat Acceptance and Fat Pride.


LargeInCharge.com:  Any new ventures you have planned for the future?

Not new, but I am greatly looking forward to finishing the third volume of the FatLand Trilogy.  However, I must say that there seem to be other books about FatLand and the Other Side/USA that want to be written. I don’t know if I would consider those books a venture, but they may start to comprise one if and when they are written.


LargeInCharge.com: What are your future goals?

I have wishes. I don’t know if they could be considered goals. I have this vision of a series of “safe houses” for fat people where they can go if they feel that they are being harassed and stigmatized by people in their own neighborhoods or locales.

Another wish:  A website devoted to FatLand. That may happen sooner than the first one J


LargeInCharge.com: What advice would you give to other people of size who might be interested in doing something simlar?

Don’t stop writing and don’t stop believing in what you write. And…read, read, read. Read Fat Acceptance books of all kinds, fiction and poetry and non-fiction, but just keep reading anything that interests you.  This will feed your dreams and visions, which in turn will feed your writing.


LargeInCharge.com: Describe yourself/ your company/org with one word.

Me:  Visionary

Fat Poets Speak (people and books):  Inspirational


Thank you for Reading The LargeInCharge Feature


Cover Model of the Month!

Tally Anderson







LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?

Talisa but everyone calls me Tally!

LargeInCharge.com: Where are you from and what is your current Location?  

I was born In Savannah Georgia, raised in Chicago and I reside in Indiana currently.

LargeInCharge.com:   When did you first appear in LargeInCharge Magazine as a Model? 

April 2008

Issue #49 - April 2008

LargeInCharge.com: What made you decide to apply that first time?

I thought that it would be exciting to do. I wanted to be a part of the “movement”. I met Raqui at a party and I instantly loved her so I figured if she is involved then it must be okay to do. J

LargeInCharge.com:  How did you feel when you appeared as a LargeInCharge Cover Model?  

I was both nervous and excited. I was trying to find my place in the full figured “world” and being on the cover was a great stepping stone.

LargeInCharge.com:  Has your modeling career grown since your appearance?

Shortly after I got invited to do a few shows here and there as well as participate in various photo-shoots. Actually my career as a MUA took off more. I began to book and continue booking clients to this day.

LargeInCharge.com: Have your life and endeavors changed since your appearance? 

I was a newlywed then and I am still married to my husband of almost 7 years. I have gotten a degree a few certifications and I am currently getting my BA in Psychology. I have so many friends and buddies in the industry who have done some major things, I tend to glean from them and follow their footsteps. One thing I have learned over the years is that this industry is small and the ladies in it (most of them) are willing to share their knowledge. I appreciate that.

LargeInCharge.com:  What changes do you see in Plus Sized Modeling?

We are getting a (little) more diverse. We are growing and changing daily and that is exciting.

LargeInCharge.com: What changes do you see for Plus Sized People?

There is so much more acceptance of self among the people of size. I like the fact that I now see so many of “us” taking care of their bodies. It is perfectly fine to be Plus Size but we want to be in good health as well. #CuteCURVES

LargeInCharge.com: What would you say inspires you most in life?

The things and the people around me inspire me. I draw inspiration from everything from music, nature, my friends & family and even the people I look of too!

LargeInCharge.com:  Any new modeling tips and tricks to share?

Be true to you and who you are. Many women try to be the people that the look up to. It is fine to have someone that you admire but take what you like about them and make it your own.

LargeInCharge.com: What are your future goals?

My goals are to open up a Women’s Wellness Center.  I am working on a T-Shirt line. I would like to do makeup for awards shows and celebrities one day so I plan on taking my business there.

LargeInCharge.com: What advice would you give to other people of size who want to model?

Do your research and avoid scammers. I would also tell them to “plug in” to the industry. PLUS Model Magazine is a great source of information.

LargeInCharge.com: Describe yourself with one word.

P.R.E.T.T.Y. (Positive Radiant Educated Talented Tenacious Youthful)


Thanks for reading about our

Cover Model of the Month



     Raqui the Owner and Founder of LargeInCharge.com, Raqui's  "Tell it like it is" style of writing has brought thousands to her blogs and millions to LargeInCharge.com.  There is so much behind the woman who has brought this magazine into existence.  Being Internationally known as a wrestler/squasher 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. Born and Raised in the Bronx NYC. This city girl is taking the world by storm.


     For almost a decade Raqui officially moved into Size Acceptance and Empowerment.  With the creation of LargeInCharge she took what she said to individuals to a higher level and made it public to the internet world. 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.


     Raqui's appearances include, Uk Television, German TV, Japan, Europe, Sweden and the Spanish circuit.  Her many magazines appearances have been world wide.  She has hit American Television in 2006 with Good Morning American and since has appeared on The Cristina Show,  The Maury Show and The Tyra Banks Show.

To view her Online portfolio visit www.Raqui.com

Raqui's Blog titled Raqui-ism "Soulfully Speaking! - http://raqui-ism.blogspot.com/

go to www.Raqui.com Portfolio Section

Raqui-ism - Make 2014 a Inspirational Year

Written By: Raqui






In this world we live in, it can be hard at times to see anything but the horror and insanity around us.  News Reports, Crime Shows, Newspapers, Online Sites and blogs are way more interested in what is sensational and wrong with this world, with out focusing on what is good in this world.  So this year I dedicate my comlumn to all that is inspirational, postive and helpful. 


Believing in your Talent

This is something that I have struggled with personally.  I have been told I have many talents and I believe that to be true because I am interested in so many things. But the truth is there was a time in my life where I didnt feel that anything I did was really good enough.   I loved to write but who would read it?  I love to draw and paint, but who would want to see it?  I was good at speaking, but who would want to listen?  I had great ideas and thought in depth about things, but who would actually think my thoughts were valueable.  I never got a formal education,  I never got to college, or to have a job I liked, never got to think about my life at all.  It seems my life was directed by what was happening around me and who needed me, not what I wanted to do with my life.


I know many of you feel the same,  we didnt have choices, life just happened to us.  What changed me was when someone believed in me, that didnt happen until I was in my mid twenties,  that person was my husband and then he died.  The only person who believed in me, but that belief started me believing that maybe I could do something valueable.  With time and taking some chances, I have done some great things,  one of which is create LargeInCharge.

I know many people who believe that their talent is worthless because of their body.  They firmly know in their mind that no one will give them a chance because of size and weight. 

That is why this month I find this one little boy named Akshat from all the way on the other size of the world so important.  To me he is Inspirational because he has a talent, he knows it, he is on the chubby side in a country (India) where size acceptance is not abundent, yet he finds a way to use his weight, talent and character to win people over.  He went on India's got Talent Show (the same as our America's Got Talent) and the crowd roared when they saw him.

You cant help but smile when you see Akshat's perform and I was even more happy to find out he was invited on The Ellen Show.   I am a person who watches Bollywood movies and you can see this young man is playing the part of that Macho guy, who is supposed to be oh so irresistable to the ladies, and has some slick moves.  But usually that heart throb is not a chubby guy (they use the chubby people for comedy, something us americas know about) but that doesnt matter to this young man he is showing that he got lots of moves and if you think a big guy cant dance you got it wrong here.  He has a great outlook in life at such a young tender age of eight years old. I think I see Bollywood in his future!

Watch the Below Videos of Akshat

Straight from "India's Got Talent," this talented young dancer had some moves to show Ellen you just won't believe. The cute little boy Akshat Singh is one of the participants of the Indian television popular reality dance show India's Got Talent.

This 8 years old kid, who hails from Kolkata has mesmerized the audience with his amazing dance moves. Apart from his bubbly personality he has performed difficult steps very easily. His flexible body and deep love over dance made him to stand in peak. The chubby dancer likes actor Salman's dance very much and calls himself as "Sallu bhai ka chhota bhai".

The sweet boy Akshat Singh has showcased all his dancing talent in the show India's Got Talent. Now he has became the an overnight internet sensation and hot property online. His dance moves not only impressed the Indians, but also one of the producers on Ellen's show, US. They have invited the kid to Los Angeles and to perform in their show. Akshat admitted that he he hadn't heard of Ellen. He is very happy to fly to Us along his father participate in an interview.

Akshat on India's got Talent

My Favorite Moments: When Askat dances to the judges and at the end.  He does a split and rubs his belly at the end,  I found through the video comment feed Akshat was saying.  You didnt know fatty can dance.  I wa blown over and clapped with appreciation at that comment.  What confience he must have.


Akshat on The Ellen Show

My Favorite Moments: Seeing some more of his dances moves that was cut from the India's got talent video.  When Akshat speaks to Ellen about his dancing practices.  Akshat says he  has been dancing since he was 4 years old (he is now 8) he dances 3 hours everyday and then he eats more.  There is a laugh in the audience and then Akshat uses his translater to say.  "If there is no petrol in the car, how will it run."  I loved it he eats to have the energy to dance and that is wonderful.  He sure has a way with words.





LargeInCharge Radio - Weekly Radio show discussing Plus Sized Issues.  Friday's 9-11 pm EST - Call in & Chat in our Chat Room.


Thank you for Reading Raqui-ism

Please send thoughts and comments to




Angie BEE grew-up a standard-sized young woman, educated in communications, promotions and planning.  She became a wife, mother and ministry support member while building businesses and her faith.

Through stress, age and a poor diet and while suffering from major depression and attempted suicide, Angie BEE's weight climbed from 180 pounds to 360 pounds.  She was diagnosed with high blood pressure, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, an overactive bladder and poor leg circulation.  At the age of 40 an anxiety attack and the decline in her mental health forced her to stop work and look at improving her declining health.  It was during this time that Angie BEE became inspired by her younger sister Sonya Bennett during her process towards Gastric Bypass Surgery.  Sonya launched this column and will return occasionally to contribute to it, but now that she is three years-post surgery... her life is focused on something new!

Now, celebrating her first year of a new life since having the procedure herself, Angie BEE is healthier than she has been in over a decade.  Losing the first 100 pounds was just the bonus!  She is now diabetes-free.  She has normal blood pressure.  The circulation in her legs is normal.  She sleeps without a c-pap machine and more!  The joy that she feels is documented each day in her syndicated radio show, a brand new weekly  TV show documentary and each month in this article.  The Big GB stands for The BIG Gastric Bypass and it also stands for "Getting (my life) Back".  This article reflects how Angie BEE's life has improved... by the grace of God and as the result of having Gastric Bypass surgery on Feb 28, 2011.  This is now her life!


"Don't Tell Me What To Eat!"

with Angie Bee

How many times have you been with a friend or family member dining out at a restaurant enjoying your meal, when you open your mouth to take a bite and someone says to you "You don't need to eat that!"


What is your response to that statement?  Do you become hostile and snap back?  Are you apologetic?  Do you stuff more in your mouth just to spite them for their comments or do you lose your appetite like I recently did? Yep, that's exactly what happened to me:   I was having dinner with someone and I reached to the grab a biscuit and I heard some words that hurt initially; "Now, Angie you know that you don't need to be eating bread!  You just spent all that money on your tummy tuck (where they removed 8 pounds of skin and over 2 liters of fat) and you are working on losing more weight you don't want to start gaining all that weight back".  Well what did I do?  I looked at him and said "But it's a Red Lobster Biscuit!!!"  Then, I defiantly popped a half of the moist, delicious biscuit in my mouth, chewed and swallowed.


I know that I almost died after having my Abdominoplasty last November.  The Surgeon did nothing wrong, but there was a problem with my blood and it did not clot properly; I bled internally and needed a second surgical procedure to stop the bleeding.  Since then, my healing has been slow and complications resulting in a challenged immune system have been many:  the incision was slow to heal and a bad cough quickly turned into pneumonia just last month.  Yep, I went through a lot but if I had it to do all over again I would do so in a minute and recommend it to others.  My lower back pain and shoulder/neck pain is GONE since I'm not carrying around all that extra weight. 


Why would I want to put my Gastric Bypass and Abdominoplasty surgery results in jeopardy by eating Red Lobster biscuits?  Overall, my weight loss from both procedures is right at 200 pounds and I'm wearing a size 12 dress.  Why would someone return to smoking or drinking after realizing an improvement in their health from ceasing?  I recently saw a Facebook post written by Dr. Steve Mariboli and it said "The Healthy Life:  It's not about losing the weight; it's about losing the mindset that got you there".  I understand that: it's not just so significant that I lost the weight, what it significant is that I maintain the lifestyle change that led me to where I am right now.


On her TV show, Joyce Meyer recently preached on the power that we each possess internally to stand against sinful actions and distractions that take us off our path.  I set a goal to lose 200 of the 387 pounds that threatened my life and I have reached that goal.  Now, am I going to let a Red Lobster biscuit set me back on the path where I had no control over my health or my life?  NO!  The Lord blessed me last August to marry a man that treats me like I am a precious Child of the King and am I going to mess up my glorious relationship over a Red Lobster biscuit?  NO!  Why was I so quick to snap at my loving husband over a simple statement of correction?  Why was he so willing to try and correct me?  Why did I humbly apologize to him afterwards and why did I pray to God for correction of my attitude on that day and well into the future?  I love my husband and I am grateful for his correction and care.  I really am grateful.


I am in control of my life and over every piece of food that passes my lips.  If I need a reminder or a helper and my husband steps up to that plate (no pun intended) then I need to appreciate him for that.  He doesn't need to do that and I certainly don't need to snap at him for taking care of me.  Not only do we need to recognize that we are in control of our lives and our goals, but we need to be grateful for the helpers that travel these roads with us as we strive towards our goals.


It is a blessing to be Large and In Charge but we need to also be shining lights and examples of how to reach a goal with joy on our lips.  Think about the act of fasting: you don't need to pout or complain about the hunger pains.  You don't need to complain about the withdrawal symptoms as nicotine escapes your body.  You need to rejoice that you are becoming a better person and invite others to join you in becoming better!  Nobody is gonna want to be around a grouchy, complaining, ultra-sensitive person and nobody is gonna want to be around you!


BE in charge and appreciate those around you as you travel through life.  It's just that easy... tell yourself what to eat and what to do and who to be each and every day.


Angie BEE


Author, Magazine Publisher, Producer, Promoter &

The Host of The Hottest Home Hotspot WORLDWIDE

Syndicated Holy Hip Hop Radio Show

Last Week I wanted to Die!




Thanks for reading

The Big GB - Getting My Life back after Gastric Bypass

with Angie Bee

     Founded in 1969, NAAFA is a non-profit civil rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people. NAAFA works to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.


     This Column is dedicated to the tremendous work NAAFA has been doing for over four decades.  LargeInCharge wishes to support NAAFA in spreading the word of its work, and give the public more information into issues we as plus sized people should be aware of.  The fight for equality for people of all sizes is one we support.


     This Column will include News Releases and Calls to Action from NAAFA Directors.


This Column has been Approved by NAAFA.org


Fat People Don’t Wear Seatbelts?

from: NAAFA.org - by: Peggy Howell



As the Public Relations Director for NAAFA, I was contacted to comment on a recent study that concluded that seatbelt use is significantly less likely in obese individuals compared to their normal weight counterparts. As a result, obese individuals are more likely to suffer fatal injuries.  My first response was to wonder about the motivation for conducting such a study. Are “they” trying to prove that fat people break the law more than thin people?  Or will the next step be to charge fat people more for our insurance because we don't wear our seatbelts and have more catastrophic or fatal injuries...or be profiled by police to pull us over to see if we are wearing seatbelts.  I don't get the motivation for this study.

The study's lead author is Dr. Dietrich Jehle, director of emergency services at Erie County Medical Center and vice chairman of Emergency Medicine at the State University of New York at Buffalo.   Jehle said he would like the study to prompt car manufacturers to make longer belts (our own Elizabeth Fisher has worked on this project: http://ifisher.com/honda.asp ) and for safety regulators to use larger dummies in crash tests.  http://www.ajemjournal.com/article/S0735-6757(14)00016-3/abstract

I decided to consult NAAFA Advisory Board Member, Dr. Deb Burgard who sees this study as problematic, "...we are taking a highly specialized set of events here where there was an accident, where there was a death, and then looking at how likely the driver was to be wearing a seatbelt based on their BMI...This study shows that in the specific situation of a crash where someone has died (not necessarily the driver), there was a statistically significant higher chance that the highest-weight drivers were not as likely to be wearing a seatbelt as were drivers with lower BMIs.  But that is a very specific situation, not everyday life."


 "We can't really say that a driver in this situation is representative of all the people who have their same BMI, which is what the authors are trying to do.  There are obvious factors that could skew this specific situation, for example, income.  Financial resources make it more likely that you will have a newer car that has more safety features, and therefore less likely that you or your passengers will die if you are in an accident. Because income is inversely related to BMI, people with less safe cars (and perhaps even cars that are older with fewer functional seatbelts) are going to be more likely to have a higher BMI.  The authors did not have data about income and so it is understandable that they did not control for this factor; however it would be an obvious explanation for the data: Safety is more related to having economic resources than to BMI. 


It is also certainly the case that people at the highest weights have fewer options in terms of access to a working seatbelt that fits, as well as to airbags that are calibrated to deploy effectively for a higher-weight person.  It is good that the authors call for more attention to auto design for a diversity of weights, but they also try to blame higher weight drivers for this lack of equipment and ‘obesity’ for the understandably worse health outcomes of a medical system that is suffused with weight bias and discrimination.  They commit the all-too-common error of blaming higher-weight people for the outcomes that are really traceable to stigma and discrimination."



Founded in 1969, NAAFA is a non-profit human rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people. NAAFA works to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.




Thanks for reading

From the Desk of NAAFA




Some of you make know me as web girl/Lulu from Fashion Find. Well… I’ve move on to another one of my favorite’s pastime which is cooking. To get you all up to date on what’s going on. I’m currently pursuing a graduate degree at Ashford University I have a B.A. degree in Organizational Communication from Southeastern Louisiana University.


I am most passionate about cooking. I believe with cooking you can always grow… I fried my first egg when I was 2 and baked my first cake at 5. Cooking is an easy and dynamic experience if you have a passion for a good tasting meal.


Motto: Cook with your heart not with your head.


If you have a favorite dish you would like to share please forward with recipe and photo to




Happiness Kitchen
with Lucia Roth

I love lasagna but I don’t really like all the work that goes into making this classic dish. So, I found this awesome recipe that is easy and without all the fuss. 

Quick Lasagna Toss is perfect when you've got a craving but don't want all the annoyance.


There's nothing like a crispy, crunchy Caesar Salad to compliment a pasta dish!

Quick Lasagna Toss

What you’ll need:

Cooking Time: 25 min

What You'll Need:
  • 12 lasagna noodles, broken into large pieces
  • 1 pound hot Italian sausage, casing removed
  • 1 (26-ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
What To Do:
  1. Cook noodles according to package directions; drain.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large pot over medium-high heat, cook sausage 6 to 8 minutes, or until no pink remains, stirring to crumble sausage; drain. Add noodles and remaining ingredients; mix well.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese has melted. Serve immediately.
  • Add a sprinkle of chopped parsley before serving and this will look extra-fancy and fresh-looking.
  • There's nothing like a crispy, crunchy Caesar Salad to compliment a pasta dish

Bon Appetite!




Celebrating almost two decades as a Graphic Designer/Published Illustrator, Jean Nerestant Jr (Jness) got his start as a graphic artist in 1994, Still working as a graphic designer by day/ Jness devotes time to his hip hop Culture, comic book art and Plus size/BBW Art.




with Jness

This month’s feature is inspired by a few factors. First of all we have last month’s article which started me on a thread about romance.


LargeInCharge.com Editor-in-Chief, Raqui and I have a weekly drawing challenge, where we choose a random word to illustrate. Once the word is chosen we take a week to create our rendition of that word. It is a fun exercise that pushes our ability to communicate with art to new heights. The most current WORD OF THE WEEK is the word -CHERISH- the artwork featured here is the result of that challenge.


Now the main inspiration for this piece also comes from a very special place. My wife and I are celebrating our 22nd Wedding Anniversary this week. 22 years of love, support, friendship, ups and downs. I have learned a lot about her, child rearing, and about myself in that time. I am grateful for her patience and her ability to push the very best out of me. It’s been a wonderful journey, and I am happy to have her to share it with.


This JNESS illustration represents the time two people share with each other, stealing moments that allow them to forget about the stresses that the challenges of life will bring. The man is holding his big girl as close as he can while leaving the world behind. It’s amazing what an embrace can do. It was created using alcohol based markers for colors and blends, ink for outlines and definition, and color pencils for highlights and tones.





Hello there all my fashion loving friends. My name is Amy Lucas and in this column I hope to bring you some new outfits that will make you feel great and be Large and In Charge. My whole life has not been devoted to fashion as my background is in teaching Spanish, Math, and Science. I also have a master’s degree in Central Office Administration.


With that said, I have been wearing plus sizes for as long as I can remember so I do know the struggles we all face to find cute clothes. I come from a smaller town in Michigan, which means I have an even harder time finding plus size clothing in my area since the choices are so limited; as well as, the sizes and styles each store carries. 


Out of necessity, I started looking online instead of just settling for the places here and have found that other women could use the help too. I run a fashion group on Facebook called BBW Fashion where I post something fabulous each day hoping to help all those to find what they want in their size.


In my career, I've helped plus size students and their parents to find fashion in their sizes that would help them with their self-esteem and make them feel good about themselves. I have also dabbled in fashion before this modeling for three different stores, winning a cover model spot in July of 2012 in Large in Charge magazine, and I was Ms. LBC 2008 for Linda's Big Connections in Chicago. I look forward to showing you what is available in plus size fashion and help you to look even more beautiful and chic.



22 Spring Trends for 2014
with Amy Lucas

Ever look at the new fashion trends and only like a few items? This spring happens to be one of those seasons for me. Let’s look at the many styles that are popular this spring.


Faux leather and moto jackets are all the rage so why not combine them together to get a jacket or a vest that covers both trends. Prints of all kinds will be seen everywhere this spring so you can easily add a few of these pieces to update your current wardrobe. Wrap dresses and skirts are also in and tend to be very flattering on curvy girls. Neutrals, nudes, and the color orchid purple will be popular color choices.

Luckily, these colors also tend to be easy to fit into your current wardrobe. Lastly, peplums, cold shoulder tops, maxi dresses and skirts, high-low dresses, and lace are all still going strong this season.


After looking at the styles for spring, here are some of my hot picks within these trends.



22 Spring Trends for 2014  
Number 1.  


Plus Size Moto Jacket

with Zipper Detail

in White,

sizes 0x(14)-4x(28),





Belted Chiffon High-Low Plus Size

Tank Dress in Surf the Web Blue,

sizes 0x(14)-4x(28),






Number 2.  


Jordan Plus Size Maxi Dress,

sizes 12-30/32,





Number 3.  

JIBRI Plus Size Swing Dress

(Floral Burnout) in White,

sizes 0x(10/12)-4x(10/12-26/28),







Number 4.  

Denim Wrap Dress in Navy,

sizes 14-24,




Number 5.  

Pintuck Paisley Woven Cami in Deep Peacock Blue, sizes 1-3x (14/16-22/24), $26.90, www.wetseal.com

Lace Sleeve Peplum Hoodie in White, sizes 0x(12)-5x(30/32), $42.50, www.torrid.com


Women’s Plus Tummy-Trimmer Boot-Cut Jeans in Dark Wash, sizes 16-30, $42, www.oldnavy.com


Number 6.  

Lace Hi-Lo Dress,

sizes 12-26,





Number 7.  


Plus Size Bandage Dress

in Black/Nude,

sizes 1-3x





Number 8.  


Floral Drape Top in Blanc,

sizes 14-24,




Sleeveless Hi-Lo Peplum Top

in Black,

sizes 12-22/24,




Women’s Plus Perfect Khaki Shorts

 in Bright White,

sizes 16-30,




Number 9.  



Tiffany Plus Size Dress in Orchid,

sizes 12-30/32,




Number 10.  


Molly Color Block Top (Sherbet)

in Peaches,

sizes 1x(14/16)-6x(34/36),




Butter Denim® Skinny Ankle Jean

in Black,

sizes 14-32,



Number 11.  


“Tricia” Crop Zip Dress

in Blue Leopard,

sizes 1x(14/16)-3x(22/24),





Number 12.  

ASOS CURVE Exclusive Festival Tank

with Fringing in Black/Blue,

sizes 14-24,





Short-Sleeved Cropped Shrug

in Blue Crush,

sizes 12-26,





Ellie Dark Wash Plus Size Jeans,

sizes 14-26,




Number 13.  

Eternity Convertible Maxi Dress

(Chic Duo)

in Green/Navy,

sizes 1-3x and 4-6x,






Number 14.  


Ruffled Chiffon Top in White,

sizes 0x(12)-4x(26/28),




Sateen Shark Bite Trench Coat

in Bougainvillea,

sizes 12-26,




Lane Collection Faux Wrap Skirt

in Black,

sizes 14-28,





Number 15.  


Belted Plus Kabuki Dress

in Blue Grass Combo,

sizes 0x(14)-4x(28),





Number 16.  


Plus Faux Leather Moto Peplum Vest

in White,

sizes 1x(16/18)-3x(24/26),




Shayla Lace Skirt in Mulberry,

sizes 0x(10-12)-5x(30-32),





Number 17.  


Careless Thought Wrap Dress

in Camel/Animal Print,

sizes 8-24,




Number 18.  


Corset Style Peplum Top

in Navy Blue,

sizes XS(0-2)-6x (36),




Shawl Collar Shrug in White,

sizes 0x(12)-5x(30/32),




California Maxi Skirt (Sherbet)

in Aqua,

sizes 1x(14/16)-6x(34/36),




Number 19.  


Lace Trimmed Floral Empire Top,

sizes 0x(12)-4x(26/28),



High Waist Pencil Skirt

in Black,

sizes 12-24,




Number 20.  


Emma Maxi Dress in Jade Print,

sizes 1x(14/16)-6x(34/36),





Number 21.  

Stripe Print Cowl Neck Dress

in Red/Black/Olive/Gray/White,

sizes XS(0-2)-6x(36),






Number 22.  


Stacy Cold Shoulder Top (Seaside)

in Midnight Blue,

sizes 1x(14/16)-6x(34/36),




Jewel Embellished Plus Size Stretch Belt

in Silver Sconce,

sizes 14/16-22/24,




Women’s Plus Slim Boyfriend Jeans

in Medium,

sizes 16-30,






Jay Hansen and Heidi Davis are size-acceptance advocates from Oklahoma and co-own Oklahoma's only social size-acceptance group, Oklahoma BBW, BHM, and their Admirers. Heidi was born in 1969 and has been a large woman her whole life, just as Jay has been an admirer of such plus-sized women all of his.


Heidi graduated High School in 1987, which is the same year Jay was born. The two met online in 2005 and quickly developed a friendship. In 2009, Jay graduated the University of Central Oklahoma with a Bachelor’s in English Education, and the following year he and Heidi started dating and quickly fell deeply in love.


Heidi is experienced, blunt, pragmatic, down-to-earth, and strong in every sense of the word, while Jay is intellectual, articulate, ideological, contemplative, and gentle. Heidi is eighteen years Jay's senior and nearly three times his weight, while Jay is 140 pounds soaking wet with a brick in his pocket. He's a king amongst nerds and all things geeky; she's a tattooed, rough-and-tumble, hard rocker to her core. Together, they are a beautiful personification of the old adage opposites attract.


"The Skinny on Big Love with Jay Hansen" was started in 2013 with Jay as the primary writer and Heidi as his muse and endless source of ideas and inspiration. Together, the two hope to provide people with a new frame of mind on love and relationships, promote open-mindedness and acceptance, ask intriguing questions, foster conversations, and prove to the world that titles such as weight and age, amongst countless others, should never stand in the way of one's pursuit of happiness.

Being Selfie-Conscious
with Jay Hansen


Back in January, Dove released a new project called "Redefining Beauty."


This project sought to create more healthy beauty standards for young girls and promote self-love by reminding everyone that even the things we perceive as flaws in our appearance are part of us and contribute to our uniqueness, and it is our uniqueness and individuality that makes us all special and beautiful. Therefore, our self-perceived flaws make us beautiful. They did this by way of something all young girls are very familiar with: selfies. As administrators to a successful social media-based community, Heidi and I have a lot of experiences with selfies, and our experiences have mostly soured our already less-than-positive disposition on them.


Let me back up a minute by first outlining what constitutes a selfie. A selfie is a photograph or video that one has taken of oneself and uploaded to a social media website for little to no substantive purposes. This is especially true of selfie videos, a relatively new trend, wherein the subject shoots a very short video of only a few seconds doing or saying the most irrelevant things like reading their grocery list or brushing their teeth. This is actually a thing now. The Young Turks recently reported on a story that Dr. Panpimol Wipulakorn, an official from Thailand's Department of Mental Health, believes that selfies could be destroying the country (watch it by clicking here). A tad hyperbolic, but as the show hosts Ana and Cenk pointed out, the reason people are obsessed with sharing selfies is because we crave attention and validation, even if that validation is as simple as another "like" on Facebook.


Social media has enabled people to get as much validation as they want, but at a cost. People can get addicted to this validation and attention, turning them into selfie addicts that post endless streams of pictures of themselves. We all know this person; the one you either have to stop following or unfriend entirely because they're clogging up your timeline with pictures of themselves. Selfie addiction drives people to be more self-focused, which narrows their worldview. The more we focus on ourselves, the more attention and shallow validation we try to get for ourselves, making us self-absorbed. The more self-absorbed we are, the less compassionate and sympathetic towards others we also become. There's even a fad called "funeral selfies" now where people take selfies at other people's funerals. It's hard to articulate the disgust I hold for this level of narcissism, so just click here to learn more.


If you think I sound too hyperbolic myself, allow me to explain what's happened to our group. Oklahoma BBW, BHM, and their Admirers is primarily based in a Facebook group right now. Our primary mission with Oklahoma BBW is to promote the idea of loving your own body and self-confidence, foster a size-positive community and size-friendly events, and to appreciate the beauty in all people, ourselves included. This year, we began experiencing a large influx of selfies in our group. Despite our numbers nearly doubling to well over 600 in the past three months, a vast majority of the selfies were coming from just four or five people. Some were literally sharing a dozen selfies a day on our group's wall.


This became a problem. Posts containing important group information, social outing invitations, funny videos, meaningful conversation, or the less confident, infrequent selfie posters were being bumped off the front page minutes if not seconds after posting. When a selfie addict posts so many selfies a day in a community group, whether they realize it or not they're effectively saying they believe their need for validation is more important than any of these things; conversations, group event information, even the self confidence of other group members. Not only that, but it's entirely counter-productive to the main purpose of our group's existence. We can't foster a community because they keep pushing out information about group events and conversations between members. We can't build self confidence because the self-conscious don't even bother posting pictures of themselves since it'll just be bumped out by someone else's ten selfies, and in the rare event we can convince someone to come out of their shell and share their beauty with all of us selfie addicts immediately take the spotlight away from them to shine it back on themselves (again, whether they realize it or not).


That's why after being inspired by the Redefining Beauty project, Heidi created Selfie Sunday for our group.



We now do this every Sunday. It prevents any one person from hogging the spotlight, it creates a safe environment for people to post selfies without feeling self-conscious, and it even promotes compassion for others by encouraging everyone to find something beautiful in every member of our group - the exact opposite of the problems selfies create. We've taken a weapon that undermines self confidence, chips away at realistic beauty standards, and destroys compassion for others and turned it into a tool to rebuild these exact qualities.


Aristotle believed that for every virtue there are two opposing vices at each extreme end of a spectrum. Courage, for instance, is the virtue caught between cowardice at one end and recklessness at the other. The "opposite" of self-confidence and loving yourself, then, is not self-consciousness or self-hatred alone, but rather self-confidence is a delicate balance that lies between self-consciousness and self-absorption. Narcissism and selfie addiction are just as toxic and counter-productive to the size community and its goals as self-hatred and fat-bashing. Perhaps, then, we should remind others that in addition to fostering self-confidence, teaching a little bit of humility every now and then wouldn't be such a bad idea.  



I was born in San Diego, California on August 30, 1972.br>
Grew up in San Jose, San Francisco, and San Diego California. I Graduated from San Diego State University in 1996 with a Bachelors Degree in Journalism (Radio-TV News) and a Bachelors Degree in Political Science.

I interned with U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein from 1995-1996.

I interned with CBS News during the 1996 Republican National Convention.

Currently I'm a Licensed Sales Representative with Pacific Shores Real Estate, Inc. in Solana Beach, California

I'm Co-Owner of Club Catalina BBW Night Club in San Diego, CA.

And a newlywed, married to Kathy Edmondson as of December 31, 2012.

I am the father of one daughter - Safiyah Edmondson (8) and stepfather to two young men, Alexander Hernandez (22) and John Rhakman Macklin (21).

I enjoy bowling, basketball, tennis, football. I play 12 musical instruments. I also design a web page for a real estate company.

Active Listening

with David Edmondson

My last article was dedicated to men because of the Super bowl, so this time I thought I would turn the tables, seeing as how Valentine’s Day has past (at the time of publication). Every year, men go out of their way, spending money on flowers, candy and dinner, in the hopes of either cementing their relationship or achieving a one night stand. Still, some of your fellow brethren, whom treat women with less than respect, will actually call the same person they broke up with months before, back for the Valentine’s Day holiday, because they do not wish to be alone. My goal is not to stop this outright, but to help alleviate this in some way, by giving you tips that you can use year-round. While each woman is different in unique in her own way, there are similarities that they share. All you have to do is listen to them.

By listening, I mean actually pay attention to women. Do not dismiss them, like you usually do during football season, with the occasional nod and smile. Football season has ended and that excuse will get you physically hurt and even worse, reserve your permanent sleeping arrangement on the couch. Remember, despite what people tell you, Valentine’s Day IS a holiday…..It is HER HOLIDAY. Forgetting that fact, is just like forgetting an anniversary, which could be the kiss of death.  If you are married, you cannot afford to rest on your laurels, as you must use Valentine’s Day to remind her, why she said yes to you in the first place. This means, you will actually have to put some work in to Valentine’s Day, but it doesn’t have to be work if you pay attention.

All women will give you clues as to what they like and what they do not like. If you are still struggling as to what to get her for Valentine’s Day, just days before the holiday, you weren’t paying attention to her, which probably means your relationship is on shaky ground. If you are alone with her and she mentions, I like this a lot……..the radar should be going off in your head to consider this as something she would like. If you still do not know what to get her………FOR GOD’s SAKE ask her. The last thing you want to do is get nothing or get her something she does not want. I was lucky this year as my wife told me exactly what she wanted this year.

Remember, Valentine’s Day is pretty much like your wedding, it’s all about HER and not you. So do not try to inflate your ego, by expensive chocolates that she may not want or buying a giant stuffed animal (Vermont Teddy Bear) at the last minute. Unless you are in the military and cannot physically be with her on Valentine’s Day, the stuffed animal is a waste of time. I personally do not know a Woman that would be content with a 4 foot stuffed teddy bear. Then again, she may like teddy bears in which case you will have scored major points. Again, that can only happen by actually listening to her likes and dislikes.

Valentine’s Day does not have to be difficult for men. Just remember that this holiday and yes it is a holiday, is all about rekindling that connection with your loved one and not about what you wish for it to be. If you can leave your ego at the door and listen actively, you can be the one shooting the arrow into their heart and not get hit where the sun doesn’t shine.





Freakie has been a member of the BBW community for over 20 years. She lives in Washington State with her two cats Boo Boo & Maxie, and has also resided in California and New York. Besides advocating for Big Beautiful Women she is a lifelong child advocate and is a strong believer in Size Acceptance (ALL sizes). She dreams of travelling the world and being an ambassador for the fat community. Her personal motto is, “FAT CHICKS RULE!”


Shame Is Not the Business

with Freakie

Fat people are constantly bombarded with shame; from within, from our families, from our friends, from the media, from the medical profession, from society in general.  We become so used to it that it becomes a part of our daily lives.  It is an inner-dialogue that we carry around in our heads without realizing it.  We constantly reaffirm that our bodies are a source of shame that makes us less worthy of respect and happiness.

The first step to changing this dynamic is recognizing when it happens.  You have to make a point to notice when you shame yourself in thoughts or actions.  Every time you have a negative thought or make a negative statement about yourself you need to follow it up with a positive one.  If you think to yourself, “I am so stupid”, you need to follow it up with, “I am a smart person”.  What you think about yourself is what you portray. You can’t change how society perceives you if you don’t think well of yourself.  You can’t think in terms of what you could be if only you made some changes.  You have to love yourself where you are at right now.

You have to rise above your perceived imperfections and learn to love and be grateful for who you are, as you are.  Nobody is perfect.  Being thin or thinner doesn’t bring you happiness just as being fat doesn’t mean you are destined to be miserable.  Fat is just a state of being.  If you want to make changes then make them.  Be empowered!   If you are happy where you are at then allow yourself to be happy and don’t let anyone else dictate what makes you happy.  Life is short and this is your life to live your way.

It is also important to remember that if your happiness is coming at the expense of someone else’s self-esteem then you aren’t fooling anyone.  A person filled with love and self-acceptance does not feel the need to project shame and hurt on to others.  A fat person shaming someone for being too skinny has missed the point entirely and needs to work on their own issues and body image.  If you feel the need to exclude, deride, and shame others then you are just projecting your insecurities on to others and have far more self-work to do than the people you are attempting to ostracize. 

The day I decided to accept myself where I was at and accepted that this might be the best it ever got was the best day of my life.   I no longer had to worry about what anyone else thought.  It doesn’t mean I never have insecurity or self-doubt.   Of course I do!  But I don’t accept it as right.  I recognize that I need to work a little harder at self-love.  By encouraging others I encourage myself and so I hope that you recognize how wonderful you are right now.



      Return to Back Issues of LargeInCharge Magazine    Return to the Front