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LargeInCharge Magazine -  10 Year Anniversary!

 Issue#125 - August 2014

Welcome to LargeInCharge Magazine

In this Issue of L.I.C.

 

Raqui-ism

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 Kathy Edmonson
of BBW Club Catalina

 

LargeInCharge Featured People and Companies - Where are they now?

By: Raqui

 


When LargeInCharge started it was all about what was happening on the East Coast, since I was based out of New York City.  As the years went by I learned more and more about what was happening on the West Coast and all inbetween.  This is when I starting learning about the BBW Club Scene and Club Catalina was at the top of the list of well organized and raved about events.  That is when I started to learn more about Kathy Hernandez (now known as Kathy Edmonson).  I was able to feature BBW Club Catalina in 2008 and was looking forward to meeting one day. 

With us both having the same last name the Hernandez sisters was a little nick name we came up with after we met at the BBW Vegas Bash in 2010.  In my sleepy after party buzzed brain, I called her the wrong name and she gracefully didnt mention it.  UGH RAQUI STRIKES AGAIN, I never remember anyones name and call people by the wrong name often because I cant keep it straight.  She was not offended even though I was utterly shamed.  That only happened once though, we have kept in contact since then and we have worked together when Kathy decided to write a column for LargeInCharge Magazine for 2 years.

 Raqui and Kathy Vegas Bash 2010

When I found out Kathy was getting married I was so excited for her even though my Internet Hernandez sister would have a new name.  Still with a great guy like David Edmonson who would be a good supportive partner in business and an amazing life partner in marriage.  How could I be anything but happen and then utterly over joyed when David also began writing for LargeInCharge Magazine. 

Now BBW Club Catalina is expanding into the Bash Scene with there first Halloween Boo Bash.  I hope to see Club Catalina expand and grow even more.  This amazing woman and her darling husband will continue to make marks in the BBW World.  So you better stay updated and aware.  You will not want to miss a thing.

Kathy and David Edmonson

BBW Club Catalina Halloween Boo Bash:  Check out the event infomation on how to attend. You dont want to miss this one. view below pictures to get taste. Click each thumbnail for a full size image. www.facebook.com/events/662544960471195/?fref=ts

 

 

 

 

Interview

LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?  

Kathy Edmondson

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

 I am originally from a small town in Michigan but I have lived in San Diego County for 29 years.   My husband David and I moved to Temecula California a year and a half ago and we love it here.

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

BBW Club Catalina first appeared as a cover story on Large In Charge Magazine in September of 2008.   BBW Club Catalina was coming up on its 2nd Anniversary Party in November of 2008.   We will be open for 7 years this coming November, 2014. 

Issue #54 - September 2008

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

 I was featured because I had opened BBW Club Catalina for monthly parties in San Diego and we wanted to share this information with people who would like to join us for our club nights, game nights, pool parties, dinners and movie nights.

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

 I couldn’t stop smiling when I saw the cover article on BBW Club Catalina because it was a great source of exposure for the night club and I knew a lot of people would really enjoy spending time with such a friendly and outgoing group.

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

 I am probably more excited being include in the special Decade editions because a lot of BBW Night Clubs come and go and BBW Club Catalina is still having monthly night club events and other activities in San Diego.  We are also having a 3 day Halloween Boo Bash for the first time at the Crowne Plaza Hotel with a full itinerary of fun things to do and we are also having a pre party at our regular club location at The Consulate Hotel the Thursday before the bash starts so it will be 4 days of meeting new people, having fun and partying in San Diego from October 9-12, 2014.   We will have 3 club nights with a special Super Heroes Versus Super Villain Theme night on Saturday, Halloween Costume Contests, Booty Shaking Contest, Bingo, Family Feud, a hospitality room, karaoke, meet and greets, after parties, fashion show, raffles for great prizes, scavenger hunt and a bash bag full of goodies!!

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

 BBW Club Catalina has been advertising heavily in the local newspaper and we have a commercial coming out on July 25th in the movie theatres.  The BBW Club Catalina Halloween Boo Bash commercial will be seen by thousands of movie goers right before the previews start for each movie so I am so excited about this.  I have also changed my name from Kathy Hernandez to Kathy Edmondson!! David and I met a little over 2 and a half years ago and we were married on December 31, 2012.    We have joint custody of David’s beautiful 9 year old daughter Safiyah who is a joy to have in the house.  We have our puppy Sochi who just turned 6 months old and we will be purchasing our first home together in November, 2014!!

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

We are both working in real estate.   David is the realtor and I am the loan officer so together we are Team Edmondson because he handles writing the purchase agreements and showing the homes and I am the Loan Broker.   David helps me with Club Catalina to set up for the night, security, charge cover and host the party with me also when we have our monthly parties.

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

Club Catalina will be open for 7 years in November of 2007 so we are excited about the upcoming Anniversary party.

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

Club Catalina has been a bash club sponsor for many different BBW events such as NAAFA, Las Vegas BBW Bash, San Diego BBW Bash, Well Rounded BBW Bash, Orange County BBW Bash, LA Rock Your Curves BBW Bash, Vegas BBW Winter Weekend and now we are doing our first BBW Bash in October for 3 days with BBW Club Catalina’s 1st Annual Halloween BBW Bash from October 10-12, 2014.

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

Yes I have appeared on the Dr Phil Show and ABC 10 news.   Club Catalina has been in the following newspapers or magazines:  Valley Center Roadrunner, La Prensa Newspaper, San Diego City Beat, Large in Charge Magazine, Solid Woman’s Magazine, Bell Noire Magazine, Celebration of Curves, North County Times Newspaper, Passion for Plus Size Fashion, Thick and Luscious, Tangled Up In Lace and BBW Shrine.

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

I think plus sized people have a better attitude about themselves and their bodies since coming to BBW Club Catalina.  They come to a size acceptance night club where they don’t have to worry about being criticized or humiliated because of their weight.  I have seen many people lose weight just because they are happier, going out more and loving life because they aren’t as unhappy or depressed because society is telling us that being  thin is what is in and anything else is something to be ashamed about.

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

I have decided to spend more money in advertising in newspapers, handing out professional glossy flyers and I have decided that I can’t do this on my own so when people ask me if they can help spread the word by handing out flyers than I accept their help graciously and thank them.   The more people who are out there telling people about BBW Club Catalina than the more people that will join our group. 

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

I have learned that you can’t make everyone happy and you have to follow your heart and do what you think is right.  I listen to what people tell me about what they want for the club and I know that change is happening all the time so to keep going in a business than you need to keep exploring different options and ways of doing things. 

 

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

I have a lot of friends in the Plus Size Community and it’s a good feeling to know when you go to other BBW events so even if I go alone that I won’t be alone for long because over the past 10 years I have met so many friends through these BBW Events. 

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

My husband David and my children inspire me the most in life.   My friends and other family members also inspire me to be a good person and put everything back into the community that I can.

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

I think the Halloween BBW Bash in October is going to be a great start and I will probably do another bash in the spring every year and continue with the Halloween Boo Bash’s every October so San Diego has two large bashes each year in addition to our monthly themed parties.  

LargeInCharge.com: What are your future goals? 

David and I would like to own or rent our own location so we are able to have the décor, furniture that is BBW Friendly and be able to have more control over a venue so we can be open every Saturday instead of having once a month night club parties.  We could also use the venue for game nights, football parties and karaoke.

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

I think having a BBW Night Club in every major city would be great but the person needs to know they have a lot of hard work ahead of them and not to give up if they have a low turn out here or there.   If you keep handing out flyers, putting up ads, asking friends and family to help you than you will be successful.

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

Size-Acceptance

Check out BBW Club Cataline Halloween Boo Bash - Its an event you want to attend!

https://www.facebook.com/events/662544960471195/?fref=ts

 
 
 

Thank you for Reading The LargeInCharge Feature

 

 

Cover Model of the Month

Amy Lucas!

 

 

 

           
 

Interview

 

LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?

Amy Lucas

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

Battle Creek, MI

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

Issue #100 July 2012

  • First Appearance



     

    Issue #100 - July 2012
       
         

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

    It was an opportunity for me to try something new.

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

     I felt very proud and grateful.

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

     I haven’t done much modeling since this cover as I have been working on accomplishing other things. Currently, I am the fashion writer for Large in Charge magazine.

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

     It has allowed me to reach even more people with the message that big can be beautiful.

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

     

    There are a lot of women in the profession now. There are also many different kinds of modeling opportunities available. However, there are still some limitations such as height, size, and location.

     

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

     I see many more people becoming happy with the person they currently are. I am also seeing many new stores and boutiques opening up for the plus size community which means there will be a larger variety of clothing available to us.

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

    Making a difference in someone else’s life and helping others who need it most inspires me to do the same. Not only do I try to do that with most everyone I know, but I am also trying to help plus size women find clothes that make them feel good and look good by writing for Large in Charge.

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

     

    Elastic waist belts can do wonders at creating an hourglass figure for those who don’t have one.  Just make sure to wear it at the smallest part of your mid-section.

    LargeInCharge.com: What are your future goals?

    I am looking into starting a blog on plus size fashion and accessories. Also, I am in the process of writing three how- to books that will teach people how to add a little glam to their lives. Lastly, I have been looking into starting a bbw group around here as you have to drive quite a few hours to get to most bbw events around here.

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

     Why not? What do you have to lose? Try it.

    LargeInCharge.com: Give us one word that describes you.

    Ambitious

  •  


  •  

    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

     

     

     

     

    Inspiration

    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, without focusing on what is good in this world.  So this year I dedicate my column to all that is inspirational, positive and helpful.  

     

    Meaningful Music

    Music is an acient art, used for communication, worship, celebration and much more.  It envokes feelings depending on the beat.  It can make you cry, make you feel happiness, it can bring about a memory and it can inspire you. 

    You can travel time and listen to how music has evolved.  You can sing to it or dance with abandon.  No matter where you are in the world, the people who surround you, the tradition that is present, there is a unique feeling to the music of the country and people who you are around.  Music enables you to relate to others on a level that language cant, a deeper level because words are not nessary. 

    I have many gripes about music I hear now.  Yet I enjoy so much of it, then there is a song that seems to talk about serious issues, but is full of feelings, and that is what I wanted to feature this month.  Two songs that I find to be Insirational and meaningful.  They do more than just please the ears, the words are truly something that captured me.  They speak of a inner struggle and a full acceptance of who you are, and that is ok.  In fact you are perfectly wonderful just the way you are.  You can love you and who you see in the mirror.  You dont have to conform to an ideal that doesnt exsist.  You dont have to "Try so Hard", you dont have to see yourself as "Unpretty".  You dont have to change yourself for anyone and you can feel complete.  If you just love the wonder that you are.   I hope you enjoy these songs. 

    Colbie Caillat - Try

    TLC - Unpretty

     

     

    Raqui


     
     
     

    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

    articles@largeincharge.com

     
     

       

    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!

     

    Update with our former writer Sonya Bennett

    with Angie Bee

    Cosmetic or Corrective:

    Post-Gastric Bypass Restoration

     

     

    Hello, Readers!  It’s my pleasure to step in for Angie Bee this month and give her a much needed break.  Don’t worry; she’ll be back here at Large In Charge for September’s Issue.

     

    As some long-time readers of this column may remember, I used to write about my experiences with the “Big G.B. – My Gastric Bypass Memoirs”.  More than a few years have passed and I have lost and kept off more than 170 pounds!  I would recommend surgical weight loss to anyone who has health/pending health issues or just being uncomfortable related to weight.  At the age of 38, I had tried every clinical, medical and traditional weight loss avenue that money, time and energy could buy: the Gastric Bypass was the most viable, realistic and best decision I’ve ever made.

     

    No one really told me about the hanging skin.

     

    After losing the weight that took 30+ years to accumulate in months, exercising and toning helped with some portions of my body, but not all.  Now, at the age of 43, I have turned to what insurance and others deem as ‘cosmetic’ surgery: an abdominoplasty and panniculectomy commonly known as stomach muscle-tightening and a tummy tuck.  The surgeon removed 15 pounds of skin that I had been dragging around adding pain to my back and hips.  I am now three weeks out and still recovering and managing pain, however I am happy with the results.  The drainage tubes have not been fun, however, it’s one of the prices you pay.

     

    The question arises:  When are procedures such as this considered corrective or cosmetic?  Shouldn’t one be rewarded, so-to-speak, for their diligence and hard work after successfully losing this weight that filled up the now-sagging skin?  Most insurance companies do not believe so.  Flabby arms, a ‘waddle’ under the chin, flabby thighs and hanging-sagging breasts are just a few of the reconstructions that often have to be done after weight-loss surgery.  Don’t get me wrong: not every person that loses a significant amount of weight needs skin removal; however, the majority of the surgical-weight-loss population may need these “body-lift” enhancements.  I urge anyone who is considering weight-loss surgery to consult your insurance company about CPT/HCPCS codes 15830 and 15847 as post-op surgeries that should be considered corrective not cosmetic.  I, personally, had to pay $2,200.00 out of pocket for the stomach muscle-tightening that is typically not covered by traditional insurance companies since it is deemed cosmetic.

     

    "One dress size in weight loss is the equivalent of losing 10 pounds.  I have lost 15 dress sizes and still had 17 pounds of skin sagging and pulling around my mid-section!  I guess I truly need a new wardrobe; belts and loose-hanging dresses won’t cut it anymore lol.   It has been difficult for me to revel in my success when I was still wearing pantie girdles and the same-size panties that I was wearing when I was a size 30/32 and I’m now a size 12/14.  I put on a pair of jeans today and they slid right down my hips!  Cosmetic or corrective surgery after gastric bypass or any means of significant weight loss: for the majority of us, it is a necessity and will fulfill/reward the work you’ve done.  I met a patient whom had just had a tummy tuck two weeks prior and was there for a breast reduction/lift after having the gastric bypass two years ago; she was well over 60 years old.  Her adult children and husband were stating that they “didn’t understand why” she needed to have these procedures done: she’d been married to her husband for over 30 years and he loved her just the way she was. She had lost 116 pounds and was saying that the next thing she wanted worked on was the skin hanging on her thighs.  I asked her did she think her surgeries are becoming addictive since she’s having them so close together; did she have a time constraint or goal as to when she wanted to have the total package?  She smiled and told me, “No, it’s just time”.

     

    There is not one of us that doesn’t look in the mirror and think, “If only I could have ______” and sometimes it’s something that is unattainable; something that isn’t in the make-up God gave us. SOMEtimes, though, there are doctors that can help you with that “if only…” and my surgeon is thrilled with the results of his patients who come to him with, “Yes, I’ve tried to restore/tighten up that belly, those breasts, that buttocks or even those thighs, but I can’t” and he says, “It’s not vanity, it’s necessity”.  Dr. D. complimented me constantly on doing an ‘excellent job’ with my weight loss and sustaining it.  Sure, there are people who would say I ‘coulda just…’ exercised/walked/joined a gym.  I did all of that; for YEARS and some things just need surgical intervention.  After an almost 200 pound weight loss and after having a child, some skin will just be stretched out and age and gravity won’t permit it to retract.  Cosmetic or corrective: Corrective/Reconstructive all the way and I’m not done yet!  If you are in need of a few nips and tucks, I recommend Dr. Vincent DiNick and his staff at www.brooksideplasticsurgery.com !  Their patience and attention to detail expanded beyond the hospital room even down to the surgeon, himself, preparing me in pre-op!  Not everyone believes in “voluntary” surgical procedures, however, I thank God I’ve had some amazing medical professionals who have changed my life.

    Keep believing in yourself!  J

    Sonya Bennett

    Angie BEE

    www.daqueenbee.com

    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!

    NOW AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE!


     

       
     

    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

     

    A Letter to the President

    from: NAAFA.org

     

    Letter to President Obama re. Dr. Cosgrove

     

    Mr. President,

     

    NAAFA, a civil right organization working for Equality at Every Size, opposes the proposed appointment of Dr. Delos ‘Toby’ Cosgrove as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

     

    Our opposition is based on Dr. Cosgrove’s openly discriminatory ideation and bias toward people based on their body size, as exhibited by his statement in an interview with a New York Times reporter.  Cosgrove stated that “if it were up to him, if there weren’t legal issues, he would not only stop hiring smokers. He would also stop hiring obese people.” He then took a moralistic view, blaming people for their body size. “People’s weight is a reflection of how much they eat and how active they are.”

     

    Our veterans deserve the absolute best possible care offered. We believe Dr. Cosgrove’s open hostility and bias against people of larger body size will bleed into the recommendations for policies and practices of the care of our veterans.

     

    Studies have shown that the clear dislike and bias of healthcare providers toward people of larger body size leads to problems in the delivery of that much needed healthcare.

     

    • "…although weight bias may originate in the belief that overweight individuals have weak character and could lose weight if they simply tried, the results of the current study indicate that weight bias goes beyond such stigmatization to clear dislike and negativity toward the overweight, leading to support for discrimination.” [Weight Prejudice and Medical Policy: Support for an Ambiguously Discriminatory Policy Is Influenced by Prejudice-Colored Glasses, Brochu and Esses, 2009]
    • Higher patient BMI was associated with lower physician respect. [Physician Respect for Patients with Obesity, Huizinga, et al., 2009]
    • Research shows that providers spend less time during appointments and provide less health education with obese patients compared with thinner patients. Obese patients frequently report experiences of weight bias in healthcare, and being disrespected by providers. [The stigma of obesity: a review and update., Puhl and Heuer, 2009]
    • Research from 2013 demonstrates that, in addition to poorer mental health outcomes, weight discrimination has implications for obesity. Rather than motivating individuals to lose weight, weight discrimination increases risk for obesity." [Perceived Weight Discrimination and Obesity, Sutin and Terracciano, 2013]

     

    After having served our country, being exposed to chemicals that result in long term health problems, loss of limb(s), physical as well as mental trauma and so much more, our nation’s veterans deserve the best possible healthcare as they age. People typically gain weight as they age increasing the possibility of experiencing bias and discrimination from their healthcare providers.

     

    Physician bias leads to avoidance of seeing a physician when attention is needed and can result in adverse effects and greater numbers of hospitalizations.

     

    We ask that Dr. Cosgrove’s name be withdrawn from consideration as Secretary of Veterans Affairs for the good of those that have selflessly and heroically served our country.  We ask that all future potential candidates be vetted for their attitudes toward higher weight people before being seriously considered for appointment.

     

    Your consideration in this matter is gratefully appreciated.

     

    Respectfully,

    The NAAFA Board of Directors

     

     

     

    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

    Link

    www.NAAFA.org

        

    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

    Web_girl1999@yahoo.com

     

     

     
    Happiness Kitchen
    with Lucia Roth
     

    Summer Salad

     

    It’s a long hot summer and the last thing anyone wants to do is cook!   Who wants to be in the kitchen when you can be enjoying the lazy days of summer. If you’re a working parent again the last thing you have on your mind is cooking. One of my favorite summer dishes is a huge summer salad.

    Make a salad as an alternative to heating up your kitchen. A summer salad is easy and lite and can be a fun family activity and this works well for the single person on the go also.  

     




    Summer Ambrosia

    What you’ll Need:

    • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed (not evaporated) milk
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 cup lime juice
    • 1 (20-ounce) can pineapple chunks, well drained
    • 1 (11-ounce) can mandarin orange segments, well drained
    • 1 1/2 cup grape halves
    • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
    • 1 cup mini marshmallows
    • 1/2 cup maraschino cherry halves, well drained

    What To Do:

    1. In a large bowl, combine sweetened condensed milk, sour cream, and lime juice; mix well. Stir in remaining ingredients; mix until well combined.
       
    2. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours before serving.

     Note

    To prevent the cherries from "bleeding," I suggest stirring them into the mixture just before serving. And for a really refreshing dessert treat, try serving this frozen.

    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.

     

     

    Defining Your Personal Plus Sized Fashion

    with Jness

     

    Since the days when I attended the High School of Fashion Industries and majored in Fashion Illustration under the tutelage of my favorite teacher Ms. Sweet, I had a love for fashion. Oddly it was never a desire to design but more of a passion for its representation. I have always been a person who recognizes and respects the individual’s sense of style. I believe that your sense of style is what fits you and what feels right to you. I know there are many licensed and registered fashion police officers who dispute my position. But I say what good is the implementation of fashion attributes if they don’t help define who you say you are?

     

    Even though there have been great advances in the area of plus-size fashion there is still a size range that is left greatly unattended. Many women in larger sizes know what it is to go to a plus size boutique and discover the popular styles become limited and unavailable once you get to 4X and up. You end up shopping online or having things made custom fit by a seamstress. Very frustrating I’m sure. So as you develop your own sense of style while working around these limitations, let your confidence blossom, be secure in who you are and in the style you have developed. You define who you are, remember that the opinions of others are just that. It’s what they think based on their own experience. Your position is defined by your thoughts and your experience. What you think and say about you is what’s important. Take positive suggestions into consideration but you have the last say so.

     

    This month’s illustration was inspired by a woman I’ve known online for years. She is a true advocate for size acceptance. She is a wife and a mother, and a shining example of living womanhood to its fullest. She is a great light to young women of size. Her voice speaks in volumes on behalf of the campaign for being who you are and refusing the negative voice of others defines you by their venomous words. Her name is Mikel.

     

    The illustration I submit this month is entitled, “Bigger Fashion”. This piece started as a pencil sketch loosely referencing a photo of her. Once the sketch was complete, I inked the lines using a medium Paper Mate Flair felt tip marker. This marker gives me a clean line with a thickness that allows for nice clean scanning.

     

    Hope you like and Share your thoughts, send your e-mails to jness4bbws@gmail.com.

    I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

    JNESS

     

     

     

    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.

     

     

     
    21 Unique Skirts
    with Amy Lucas
     

    Everyone has that plain black skirt in their wardrobe they rarely wear, but would you wear a skirt more if it was something unique? There are plenty of plus size skirts that are unusual either because of their style, fabric, print, or color. Here are just some of the fun and special skirts out there to add to your wardrobe.

     

    21 Unique Skirts  
    Number 1.  

    Plus Size Red Double Layer Peplum Pencil Skirt,

    sizes 12-32, $86,

    www.elizabethcustomskirts.com

    Number 2.  

    Betsy Skirt,

    sizes 0-36, $59.95,

    www.eshakti.com

    Number 3.  

    Plus Size Studio Matte Sequin Full Skirt

    by Eloquii,

    sizes 14-22, $73.50,

    www.amazon.com

    Number 4.  

    Pieced Stripe Maxi Skirt,

    size 14/16-26/28, $37.80,

    www.avenue.com

    Number 5.  
    MYNT 1792 Celine Maxi Skirt,
    sizes 12-26, $148,

    www.mynt1792.com
    Number 6.  

    Plus Size Metallic Snake Tan Skirt,

    sizes 1-3x, $25.99,

    www.plussizefix.com

    Number 7.  

    Flare Skirt in White,
    sizes 0-4x (10/12-26/28), $120,
    www.etsy.com/shop/jibrionline
    Number 8.  

    Lane Collection Asymmetric Pencil Skirt,

    sizes 14-28, $39.99,

    www.lanebryant.com

    Number 9.  

    Lulu Chiffon Skirt in Sugar Coral,

    sizes 1-6x (14/16/-34/36), $39.99, www.swakdesigns.com

    Number 10.  


    Striped Bubble Skirt in Navy/White,

    sizes 1-3x, $99,

    www.kristinmiles.com

    Number 11.  

    Leopard Print Lace Skater Skirt,

    sizes 1-3x, $21.90,

    www.wetseal.com

    Number 12.  

    Black Medallion Print Skirt,

    sizes 1-3x, $39.99,

    www.curvaceousboutique.com

    Number 13.  
    Mounted Lace Pencil &Tulle Skirts
    in black/cream, sizes 12-24, $120.88,
    www.annascholz.com
    Number 14.  


    Double Split Red Skirt, sizes L-9x, $35, www.bghsclothing.com
    Number 15.  

    Sash Waist Satin Stripe Skirt,

    sizes 0-36, $74.95,

    www.eshakti.com

    Number 16.  

    Plus Size High Waist Bow Skirt in Black,

    sizes 18-28, $45.95,

    www.chicstar.com

    Number 17.  

    MYNT1792 Gigi Skirt,

    sizes 12-26, $108,

    www.mynt1792.com

    Number 18.  

    ASOS CURVE Exclusive Scuba Skirt

    with Zip Front in Green,

    sizes 14-24, $57.16,

    www.us.asos.com

    Number 19.  

    Sexy Quilted Skirt,

    sizes 14-24, $79.95,

    www.citychiconline.com

    Number 20.  

    Blue Chevron Print Skirt,
    sizes L-9x, $30,

    www.bghsclothing.com
    Number 21.  




    Hip Hugger Pencil Tribal Skirt,

    sizes L-3x, $60,

    www.christianomeshun.com

     
     
     

    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.


     
    Four Years of Loving Large
    with Jay Hansen
     

     

    August is a very special month for me and Heidi. Our anniversary is the twelfth, and this year we will be celebrating four years of a very happy romantic relationship. Most people reading this already know our story, but probably not to this detail. Those that do know it only think they know it, because for the sake of brevity, we normally just tell others that we meet in Oklahoma BBW, but that's not quite the full truth (though we did meet because of Oklahoma BBW). So to celebrate this year, here is the story of Jay and Heidi.

     

    It all started in 2005. I had just turned 18, and my entire life I had always known I was very attracted to very large women, so I was eager to join as many online communities for size acceptance, fat admiration, and big, beautiful women as I could. Upon discovering just how big the online community was I was blinded with excitement and basically just clicked "apply" or "join" on as many Yahoo! Groups that I could find that were even remotely related to the community. At the same time, Heidi had just become owner of Oklahoma BBW, and the group was primarily based out of Yahoo. She frequently visited other pages in the community to recruit new members from Oklahoma or the surrounding area to her own, and really, in my exuberant discovery of this new world and Heidi's recruitment efforts, we just eventually bumped into each other (which I have since learned just causes me to bounce right off her).

     

    Heidi was the first to make contact via e-mail. She introduced and added me to the Oklahoma group even though I was still too young to attend the parties (alcohol is present, so members must be at least 21, and I was still 18). So for several years, Heidi and I were mostly just online friends. Being the gorgeous and indescribably attractive big, beautiful woman that she is, Heidi was used to significant attention from men online back then, as she is now. A large majority of that attention, of course, was hardly desirable or warranted, but Heidi once told me that from the very beginning I was different. She said nothing I ever said or did was even remotely sexual; from what she could tell, I actually was a guy interested in just a friendship, which she had almost never seen before from a fat admirer online. We would just talk about things like work, my college, family, and other ordinary topics. She also talked about her tattoos, and sometimes showed them off, while one of the most memorable conversations we had was about family lineage when I was doing a genealogy essay for a class. Still, it was going to be a long three years before I was 21 and old enough to go to parties. We even tried to get me established as a security guard when I was only 19 so that I could attend (security isn't allowed to drink), but it sadly ended up not working out. Over time, our conversations became less frequent, and our friendship tapered off.

     

    Eventually I found a girlfriend, while Heidi continued her own relationship pursuits and busy life. We still chatted from time to time, and always considered each other friends, but rarely did we communicate. That is, until one day in March 2010. I was trying to track down a very specific digital camera and had to go all the way to Midwest City to purchase it, the town where Heidi lived. Afterward, I got to have lunch at an excellent Midwest City restaurant called Golden Palace. It just so happened that Heidi was there for lunch as well. I saw her from across the restaurant, and with a crinkle of my forehead thought "wait, is that...?" while apparently Heidi thought the exact same thing when she looked back at me. We later bumped into each other at the buffet line (no, this was not when I learned that I bounce off her) and were both super excited to finally meet face-to-face. We hugged, exchanged new contact information, and were very happy, but it was just a tiny taste of the happiness that was to come.

     

    To this day Golden Palace is our favorite restaurant.

     

    Three months later both me and Heidi were single. By this point I was 23, and Oklahoma BBW was about to have their annual Luau. Finally free to attend, I managed to hitch a ride there and hung out for a few hours (I had to be up for work the next morning). I met and chatted with many people that I now consider friends, but most of all I got time to sit and chat face-to-face with Heidi for the first time. I don't remember all we discussed, but I do remember her smiling and saying "I can't believe you're actually here." We had so much fun being together again we decided to start hanging out more regularly, starting with a dinner at Golden Palace (though a separate location from the one we met at). At the time we had no idea that this dinner would be "our first date."

     

    So much had happened to both of us; I had graduated college and was trying to figure out what to do with my life, while Heidi had renounced dating and romance altogether after being cheated on for the umpteenth time and contracting HPV from said cheating scumbag. We shared personal stories and information as if we had known each other our whole lives, almost without a second thought. By time we were done with dinner, we still weren't done talking and just wanted to be around each other. That's when I suggested we go see the movie Inception, which was still in theaters. Heidi hadn't seen it yet, and you don't have to be around her long to know she loves badass action movies.

     

    After the movie, it was late, and we were standing in a nearly vacant parking lot right outside the theater. In the silence, something she had said at dinner kept rattling around in my head. She had told me she was disappointed we didn't get to kiss goodbye at the Luau. So, I kissed her. And never stopped kissing her.

     

    The funny thing was, less than a week later we met up again with what we thought were cooler heads. We both agreed we were moving way too fast and neither of us were interested in a serious relationship at the time on account of her HPV and me having just ended a three year relationship. Plus, we had to discuss the elephant in the room that was our age. I was so young and inexperienced about relationships, yet this one would essentially be my first as an emotionally mature adult. Heidi made it a point to say she genuinely didn't know how she would respond if her own son, who is just two years younger than me, dated someone her age. We made up all sorts of excuses to not pursue a relationship, but by the end of that night the deal was sealed.  I don't even recall exactly what we did that evening, only where we ended up. By the end of the night we were just sitting in her car, chatting, as we had been for hours, getting closer and closer to each other both emotionally and physically with each sentence. Eventually, we were so close I was almost in her lap. I put my head on her shoulder and told her that I'd never been this close to anyone before.

     

    And it was done. Age didn't matter, experience didn't matter, size didn't matter, our personal life circumstances didn't matter, the fact that I'm a colossal dork and she's a heavy metal girl didn't matter. We were in love.

     

    Normally, I like to take pages at a time to explain myself and the meaning behind my words, but lately my free time has been very short, so I'm going to go spend what precious little of it I do have with my wonderful wife of four fantastic years. Take from this story what you will.

     

     

     

     

     

    I was born in San Diego, California on August 30, 1972.
    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.
     

    Domestic Violence is NOT a Sport

    with David Edmondson

    Let’s face it, we as men use sports to escape the stresses that life gives us. Whether we choose to play them in a recreational sense or whether we live vicariously through other athletes, chances are ESPN or Fox Sports have become a staple in your home. Yet the key word, which should not be underscored, is ESCAPE.  When life imitates art or when sports starts to paint a picture that is cruel and demeaning, it is up to us as men, to take notice and act responsibility. I am speaking about the recent rash of domestic violence, involving athletes, that have been for the most part swept under the rug, especially in the past year and sadly, one can look no further than the National Football League, this nation’s perennial favorite sport as an example.

     

    Ray Rice, running back and Super bowl Champion for the Baltimore Ravens, was caught hitting his then fiancée Janel Palmer, with an open fist on camera, in a hotel elevator. When the couple emerged from the elevator, Ray Rice was seen dragging Palmer’s body across the floor. Even more troubling, Palmer not only married Rice the next day, but during their press conference, held at team headquarters two weeks later, Palmer apologized for her role in the scandal, but there was no public apology given by Rice to Palmer. The NFL’s response was…….wait for it, two game suspensions for Rice. If you or I had done something like this, we would be put under the jail. Two games is virtually no punishment at all. Yet, it doesn’t stop in the NFL.

     

    Consider the case of former New York Knick now Dallas Mavericks guard Raymond Felton. His soon to be ex-wife, had threatened to leave him for his adultery. Felton’s response was to buy a gun and threaten his wife with her life. Should we be thankful he didn’t pistol whip her? He was able to plead to a misdemeanor and face no jail time, without missing a beat in his career. Hopefully, the NBA will act with more force and issue a suspension that is more meaningful than the one Rice received from the NFL.

     I’m not trying to point the blame on athletes here. Men in general should NEVER (let me repeat myself) NEVER EVER, put their hands on a woman. I don’t care if she is threatening you. You need to be man enough to walk away. It’s not about being arrested if you hit her, it’s not about maintaining your reputation or pride;  It’s all about respecting yourself and the sex whom provided you with life and or the lives of your children.  Just because we may idolize athletes, doesn’t mean we should imitate them. Real men are confident within themselves and certainly do not act like children by putting their hands on women.

     

     

     
     

    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!”

     

    The Word Fat

    with Freakie
     

     

    It took me over thirty years to understand that the word fat is not a bad word. Someone would call me fat and I would be so hurt and devastated.  Being fat was shameful, wrong, and a one-way trip to Loserville.  I vividly remember being 11 years old and my aunt coming to visit from Norway.  I was so excited to see her; it had been at least four years.  When she arrived at the house I waited for her at the top of the stairs with my arms open and a big smile on my face.  She came up the stairs, leaned down to hug me and whispered in my ear, “You are too fat”, with a smile on her face.  I was devastated and my relationship with her was never the same after that.

    Now I know that fat is just…fat.  It’s just a description, like tall, short, skinny, etc.  It’s a state of being that has nothing to do with my worth as a person.  Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of people in the world who would like us all to believe that your body weight should determine your worth.  Those types of people are controlled by insecurity and self-doubt and want the rest of us to feel the same way.  We all know misery loves company.  Think about it, if a perfect stranger publically insults you or ridicules you for being fat they are actually demonstrating a fight-or-flight reaction to you.  They are like scared dogs who are deciding whether to bite or bark.  Why they are scared is not your problem, it’s theirs!

    The truth is that nobody can make you feel bad about yourself unless allow it. Once you learn to love and accept yourself where you are at negative people lose their power over you.  What matters is how YOU feel about your body.  If you are fat, be fat and move on to more important things in life.  If you want to makes changes, inside or outside, make sure you are doing it for yourself and then do it.  If you feel hurt when someone remarks on your weight then you need to ask yourself why you are giving that person so much power in your life.  Just because someone is trying to hurt your feelings doesn’t mean you have to buy into it.  Other people are not responsible for your feelings, you are.  Especially when to comes to hurt feelings; your emotional response belongs to you and you alone.  That is a hard thing to take ownership of but it is life changing when you do

    .

    Life is short.  We don’t have time to sit around feeling bad about ourselves!  If you want to change something about yourself, and have the power to do so, then do it!  It’s also okay to look at yourself in the mirror and like what you see, whatever you see.  Maybe you need to start with just accepting what you see and then working towards liking it.  We all have to start somewhere.  That goes for every person on the planet.  We are all different and we have to stop trying to box each other in and just enjoy the diversity of life.  Take the first step and learn to see your own beauty.  It’s there.

     

     

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