Friday, November 18, 2016

Barbie Released A Doll Based On A Plus-Size Model (7 pics)

Ashley Graham is a beautiful plus-size model and Barbie has made a doll that matches her measurements and whose thighs touch... Yup, Barbie has come a long way.

Ashley Graham is one of the most outspoken and gorgeous plus-size supermodels around.
Barbie must think so too, because it just unveiled the Ashley Graham Barbie doll.

Graham was gifted her doll at the Glamour Women Of The Year Summit.

The doll was created with the same proportions as Graham. To make it, Graham sent Mattel a series of full body shots and then discussed proper hair and eye color with a team.

The doll’s most important attribute? “The number one prerequisite … was that her thighs touched. I was like, ‘Guys, we can make this Barbie, but if her thighs don’t touch, she’s not authentic,” she told.

Unfortunately, as of right now, the doll is just a one-off, and not available for purchase.

But customers can purchase dolls from Barbie’s Curvy, Petite, and Tall collection, which it launched back in January.

How the Trucking Industry is Changing


The trucking industry is always on the move, in more ways than one.  Its rapid transitions and adjustments are necessary to stay competitive and stay with the ever-growing consumer demands. There are a few changes coming to trucking that are worth noting.

Even though, these changes are making a huge shift in the industry, trucking seems to be growing at a very rapid rate. Compared to before, you now have more competition, a price war to stay competitive and changing standards, too. Let’s look at those changes and how the industry is adapting to them in the coming years.

New Truck Drivers and Management

When there is such a widening gap of demand in relation to supply, one must expect the possibility of agencies lowering their standards to fill those voids. Truck driving used to carry a certain level of prestige, once upon a time.  We know it hasn’t been that way for quite a long time, but it doesn’t appear to be getting any better.

This is due to several reasons, but probably the biggest contributor, outside of growth in demand and tightening economy, is the exit of a large portion of the work force.  Veteran truck drivers are retiring, taking their mentorship and leadership along with them.

Advancement in Technology

Technology is changing the truck driving industry on multiple fronts.  Advancements have obviously increased efficiency of manufacturing and shipping of items.  You need to look no further than what Amazon has been doing over the years to see how big of an impact technology has made to online commerce.

It is because of this influx of commerce and traffic that the trucking industry has had to finally incorporate a digital system of management and quality controls.  Returning to the previous point made about the aging trucking work force, the older drivers have a much harder time in relearning how they handle their shipments, which is a big reason why the industry has been so late on adopting electronic logs and communication.

This extra level of stress and responsibility also exasperates the rate of retirement for truck drivers, so right now it is really a precarious position for the industry and it will take some time before the transition is complete.

Upgrading of Truck Fleets

The automobile industry is experiencing a transition of their own, due to outside pressures and demands by consumers.  Being called “eco-friendly” or “green” is no longer good enough. Actions must be able to stand on their own, which is why commercial trucks are needing to be replaced with much more efficient and cleaner counterparts.

Emission standards have been tightened on the trucking industry, so many trucking companies around the nation are having to invest in cleaner and more fuel-efficient models.

Emphasis on Training

Another huge shift in the industry is the requirement for enhance training. If you have been in the industry for some time, you know how important the DOT medical examination is before looking for employment. You know how your health correlates with the type of job you’ll get, or even if you’ll be able to find employment. Not only that, but you have to spend more time in truck driving school. Over the years, there’s been all sorts of news about truckers getting charged with DUI, falling asleep behind the wheel, or even engaging in road rage with other truckers. This has all impacted the trucking industry negatively.

The FMCSA requires more behind the wheel training, and even requires higher averages on the CDL examination. But, you don’t have to worry because there is free CDL test prep available online to help you study and get the knowledge required to successfully pass your CDL test.

The importance of having trucks transporting goods around the country is not going to wane any time soon.  The infrastructure relies on quick, high-capacity, and reliable delivery service.  Until they figure out a way to produce drones that can lift hundreds of pounds in a safe and reliable manner, there will be no other reliable form of freight than having a truck driver deliver packages on the road.

Featured photo credit: via

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7 Easy Ways To Boost Your Confidence and Health


Feeling down? Lost the confidence to take on the world? Hey, it happens. You spend a few nights on the couch binging Netflix, and soon you’re feeling stuck in a rut and ready to make a change. The catch? Making big changes right away can feel overwhelming. Instead, smaller changes might be just what you need to boost your confidence and health so you can tackle your biggest goals. Here are seven easy ways to get started!

1. Start Each Morning with Music and Water

If you wake up dreading the day ahead, it may be time for a new routine. Don’t underestimate the power of hydration. Overnight, your body gains no new fluids, and by the time you wake up, it’s hurting for some warm water. Why warm? Physicians note that warm water with lemon has many health benefits, including clearing toxins from the body, regulating the digestive system, and even helping with weight loss.

Music is also a great way to start your day—pick something that puts you in a calm and confident state of mind while you sip your lemon water. Soon, you’ll be ready to take on the day!

2. Join a Book Club or Hobby Group

What’s better than friends? Friends who GET you. Joining a hobby group is a great way to meet like-minded people to connect with. Studies show that joining a group boost confidence and self-esteem even more than having a large group of friends. While connecting with strangers may seem intimidating at first, you’ll soon have a new circle of friends who share your interests and boost your confidence.

3. Join a Health and Wellness Program

Calling in sick all the time? It’s time you took a hard look at your health habits. Most people have trouble sticking to a new routine without someone to hold them accountable, so consider joining a health and wellness program to keep you on track. Participation in these programs can improve your overall health, reduce sick leave by 25%, and cut your monthly healthcare costs by $30. Many offices are beginning to offer these programs, so don’t miss out on the benefits!

4. Try Something New

Do you have the same old routines week after week? Mix it up a little! You don’t have to take up an intensive hobby to try something new—even little changes can make a big difference in your overall health and confidence. Start small and work up: attend a tasting or paint night, the move on to taking a class or attending a networking event. Once you start gaining momentum, you’ll gain the confidence you need to make big changes that can have a major impact on your life.

5. Learn to Play an Instrument

Never picked up an instrument? Tone deaf? Gave up the piano in elementary school? It may be time to give jam sessions another chance. Studies in children have shown that learning to play an instrument can have massive cognitive benefits. Students who learned to play an instrument had improved neural processing and did better academically than their peers. Listening to music is great, but to reap true benefit, you’ll need to start making some yourself.

6. Make a Pact with a Friend to Train for a Marathon

Okay, so maybe you don’t need to go full on marathon, but taking on a new challenge with friends is a great way to build up your health and confidence levels. Got couch potato friends? Sign up for a 5k first, then work your way up. Each time you succeed, you’ll gain more confidence to push you both to new heights.

7. Spend Time in Nature

You may not think of yourself as outdoorsy, but the benefits of spending some time with Mother Nature are undeniable. Scientists have found that spending time outdoors can improve concentration and creativity, boost short term memory, and relieve stress. If you’re a ball of anxiety and stress at work, take a walk. This weekend, take a trip to your local park, or better yet, head out of the city for a day hike. Your mental and physical health will both get a boost when you take the time to reset and restore with the beauty of nature.

Getting Started

Improving your health and confidence is a process full of little steps and little successes. Remember that it can take some time to reap the benefits of your actions, but consistency can go a long way toward a healthier and more fulfilling life. Work on building healthy habits, and don’t be surprised if you end up waking up every day ready to do great things.

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8 Best Online Activities to Pass the Time


The Internet may have various uses for all sorts of people from different parts of the world, but the most excessive use of the internet is usually for passing the time. No one has seen the web entirely, and nobody knows what lies in the depths of this deep ocean. There is a lot to explore on the internet, and no one can get bored with it once connected to the web. No doubt that the internet has made life easier, from hiring a lawyer online to passing your time online, everything now is just a click away from you. Today, we are listing 8 best online activities which you can try anytime when you are bored.

1. Don’t stop the music

There is always some kind of music that everyone likes, no matter where you’re from. The Internet is a huge source of music, and there are numerous websites out there where you can find and come across different music from all over the world. The sites vary from free to premium and provide high-quality music from your favorite artists. If you are into creating music yourself, then even you can record your talent and bring it in front of the world.

2. Try online videos

You are surely familiar with YouTube. If you need to pass your time, then search a video of your liking and get trapped in the loop of playing recommended videos and you wouldn’t know how your hours went by so quickly. With the online videos, you can watch stand-up comedies, tutorials about fashion or hairstyles, motivational speeches, cooking recipes and what not. The Internet can easily make your computers replace your television. There are various premium services that you can use to view your favorite TV shows on the web. There is Hulu, Vudu, iTunes to try out, and of course, the Netflix free trial forever waiting for you to give it a go. By using the free trials, you can check if the service is to your liking or not.

3. Window shopping  online

We don’t have any explanation for this, but window shopping keeps people so interested that they can just spend hours browsing. You can check the lists of the endless products, their prices, and their specifications and put them in your wishlist. It may not sound like it, but it is something that we all do. Skimming through the on-sale product lists, checking out new phones in the market keeps us totally glued.

4. Socialize!

People cannot go a few hours without socializing these days. You can do this through your phones or PCs. Get along with old friends over chats or just make friends with strangers from different corners of the world. Social media isn’t only there for you to meet friends, but it can also bring you trending news and talks and even some rib-tickling memes and jokes. And if you’re an entrepreneur or a businessman, then keeping an eye on your social media stats is a must. There are various tools online that help you keep track of your social media followers, so you don’t have to count anything manually.

5. Learn a language

While you are trying to pass the time, why not learn a new language? Learning a language is interesting and may prove to be productive for you. In some emergency cases, knowing the foreign language is not only important but also could save few lives. Though you could seek help from few medical translation services online, knowing the language lends you a helping hand during emergency situations. Also, you can find various websites which teach you a new language for free, and while you learn it, you can even start chatting with the people of that country. Now, how cool is that?

6. Take up a course

We talked about learning a language, but if you are not into that, you can even find courses on the internet which can teach you whatever you are looking to learn. You can even get certification of learning from these websites. That not only passes your time but also improves your knowledge. Also, if you are not into learning anything formally, you can find informal lectures by creative people over YouTube. Not only on academic subjects, but you can also learn to play guitar, bake, and other DIY stuff.

7. Read comics

Reading comics is never old school. You can find the oldest to the latest kinds of comics on the internet. Again, the comics you read may or may not be paid, depending on where you look for them. Comics can help you spend your free time in reading them and maybe bring back your childhood days back in your mind. There are some internet-only comics published, and quite a few of them are creative, funny and smartly written. Do try to check them out.

8. Play Flash games

And the games shall set you free! Set you free from the claws of boredom apparently. There are all sort of games on the internet, but if you want to play a mini game over your browser then playing flash games is not a bad option. These games are simple, creative and addictive. Regardless of your age, these games are forever interesting and will help you pass the time just fine.

So, these are a few activities that you can try out while you are on the internet. We suggest you try these along with exploring more options from a vast range of offerings provided by the web. And also, remember that there are many the scams you could encounter online (one of the most popular is the Binary Options Scam) and you need to be aware and protect your information from these scammers.

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5 Ways To Improve Your Company Website's Online Visibility


The number one challenge for most business websites is a lack of online visibility and traffic. No matter how great your content is, chances are very unlikely that anyone will accidentally stumble upon your company website. Here are a few actionable tips to help increase your online visibility and ultimately your bottom line.

1. Produce Linkable Assets

Obtaining inbound links is key to improving your website’s online visibility and it’s easier to do so if you have content that is useful, shareable and worth linking too. It’s much more challenging to earn links to your website if you only have sales and service pages.

A linkable asset may include an interesting infographic, a list of resources or perhaps the result of a unique study. The most effective linkable assets are interactive, relatable and have an emotional impact. If it’s not something you would feel proud sharing on your personal Facebook account, then it’s probably not a good linkable asset.

2. Optimize On-Page Elements

In order for your website to rank, you’ll need to focus on on-page as well as off-page elements. On-page elements include optimizing your site’s title tag, H1 tag, internal linking structure and meta description. Meta descriptions no longer have an impact on direct rankings but they are visible in the search results and should be crafted to be compelling and descriptive. Your on-page text should be optimized around your primary keyword and its synonyms without sounding unnatural or engaging in keyword stuffing.

3. Optimize For Speed

A site’s load speed affects search engine rankings as well as your bounce rate. According to a study conducted at Umas Amherst, subjects were willing to wait just 2 seconds for a page to load before leaving. After 5 seconds 25% of subjects had left. Having a website that loads instantly is crucial if you want to maximize your search engine rankings and keep visitors on your website.

One of the main ways to ensure fast loading times is to pick a reliable web host with a history of excellent uptime, a fast load time and timely customer support. Stick with established brands and avoid super affordable fly-by-night hosting companies with prices that seem too good to be true. Reading hosting reviews can provide you with more insight in regards to which companies provide the best uptime and service.

4. Build Relationships

Paid links are frowned upon by Google and sites who participate in link schemes may be blacklisted at any time. Outreach will allow you to connect with social media influencers and other websites without stepping on Google’s toes. A study conducted by Twitter shows that consumers trust influencers more than their own friends. Influencers can include bloggers, Youtube personalities and contributing authors at well known online publications.

Influencers already have an established reputation and are better at reaching core demographics. As a result, influencers are more trusted by their peers compared to company advertisements. Pairing with an influencer can boost online visibility by exposing your brand to all of their followers.

5. Get Mobile

Nearly 60% of internet access is mobile which means that you are losing out on tons of traffic if your site isn’t tailored to mobile users. In addition to using a responsive WordPress theme, you can also make your site more mobile friendly by adding a search box. This will allow users to search for information faster since mobile sites tend to have fewer navigational options. Since the content will be condensed on a smaller screen, you’ll also want to make your content more scannable and readable by using headers and shorter paragraphs.


The online marketing space is a competitive arena where every second counts and every relationship you build can impact your bottom line. In order to be competitive, online business will need to master technical elements in addition to searching for new link building opportunities.

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Why Difficult Situations Help You Manifest Your Desires

Why Difficult Situations Actually Help You Manifest Your Desires

Difficult situations are actually a call to go deeper into your truth and determine what you desire. The reason difficult situations are presented is to help you align with more of what you want from life.

By using your difficult situations to refine your desires, the Law of Attraction can then help bring your desires directly to you.

 Using “Contrast” To Manifest Your Desires

 You may have heard the word “contrast” in the personal development world. The word contrast is a a buzz term for situations that aren’t aligned with what we desire.

The secret to manifesting when facing contrast is to simply acknowledge the contrast. The other secret is to not get caught up in feelings of unworthiness.  And also to not take responsibility for what the situation means about you as a person.

So often when we manifest something undesired, we feel it’s reflecting back to us something bad about ourselves. This leads to getting caught up in a cycle of blaming ourselves or wondering how we need to fix ourselves.

The truth is contrast is simply a directional tool to push you towards more of what you want. When you are able to realize this and align with this truth you can create a more aligned and fulfilling life.

Watch this video to learn how to use contrast as a directional tool and not as something that keeps you stuck in feelings of unworthiness and keeps you from attracting your desires.

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24 Things to Look for in Relationships We Know as Kids


What Makes Good Relationships?

What are things to look for in relationships? It’s kind of personal. We all have certain things we look for in relationships over other things, like football fan or movie buff, but what about the deeper things that make love last?

I knew more about dating when I was 10 than when I started dating years later. I was a nerdy kid: I loved reading more than playing dodge ball, wrote reports about whales and Abraham Lincoln for fun after school at a little table in my bedroom. And when I had my first neighborhood-boy crush at age 10, I made up a questionnaire for him to fill out to determine our compatibility. He was older than me, all of 11.

I can’t recall if he passed or even filled it in. We did have a brief, awkward sort of half-kiss on my front porch. It ended shortly after that. It wasn’t him, it was me. I just wasn’t ready.

I’d like to see that nifty survey-document – hand written on lined 3-ring notebook paper. It’d be fun to see exactly what I considered important in a man as a 10-year old girl. It couldn’t have been about career paths or income, or good credit or investments or pension funds or even political affiliation – because I didn’t know much about those things. And surely retirement or old age seemed like eons away when I hadn’t even entered middle school.

I can only assume the issues I cared about were things like trustworthiness and whether or not he liked books. Character traits of 10-year old loyalty, honor and respect. I wanted a man who knew I was equal to him inherently. Not identical, but equal. I wanted someone respectworthy and true. I knew I was loyal and faithful – I wasn’t going to toss that away on a 12-year old cad. Where was this caution and level-headed deliberation 10 years later? And 20 years later?

What to Look For in the Man We Date

All I can say – with a sigh of one who’s had some life experience – is at least I’ve come full circle. After a few not so-nice times with men who were far worse than not-nice – and some good times with a few who were incredibly good. I’m fully back to making up a compatibility test that covers what I knew was important way back in grade school from a grown-up point of view. Here’s what I’d be looking for:

  1. Someone magnanimous and with a sense of humor.
  2. Someone who likes that I’m smart and funny.
  3. Someone who can cook, because I can too, but I don’t want to do it every day.
  4. A man who can do laundry, take out garbage, run a vacuum cleaner. Or is open to hiring a housekeeper.
  5. Someone who carries things for me and opens doors.
  6. A strong man who can cry or be sad and show it.
  7. One who can get the oil changed in the car.
  8. Someone who likes it – a lot – when I bake a pie or make cookies.
  9. One who is genuinely happy for other people’s success and accomplishments.
  10. A man who wants to see me reach all my goals and supports my efforts.
  11. A guy who puts the toilet seat down.
  12. A man who admires women from the bottom of his heart.
  13. Someone who loves his family.
  14. A man who is kind.
  15. A man who likes a lot of the same kinds of movies I do, but shows me others I don’t know about.
  16. A guy who doesn’t spend hours watching sports. Really, let’s go on a bike ride instead.
  17. Someone who takes me places. I sit at home if left to myself.
  18. A very honest man.
  19. Someone who truly values relationships for all the right reasons.
  20. A guy I love to kiss.
  21. Someone who likes to stay home and just be there with each other.
  22. A guy who likes to be among our friends.
  23. Someone who knows how to smile and laugh every day.
  24. A man who likes books.

And now that I’m older and a little wiser:

25. I’d want a man who can bring home the bacon and save for the future. Because I can too and we’re in it together.

The way I’d find this out isn’t by his answers to yes or no questions on a pencil-smudged piece of paper, or even with an Internet background check – it would be time. Time. Time spent together. Time spent with friends. But not too much time in any one week. I’d take time for myself too. And we’d talk in person, instead of texts or by phone. I’d meet his family and spend time with them. I’d have my sister give her stamp of approval. I’d take time. And after a year, maybe two years… then I’d think about a life together.

Here’s to REAL True Love and Happiness!

Featured photo credit: Pixabay via

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5 Simple Ways to Crush Hypothyroidism


I grew up often feeling tired and being slightly overweight, despite the fact that I barely ate and was very active as a kid. Years later I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and realized that there were a few more things that I needed to do to be healthy than just eating right and exercising.

Hypothyroidism is a common endocrine disorder that results from deficiency of thyroid hormone. The thyroid is a small butterfly shaped gland that controls the way the body uses energy. This means that it control almost every organ in your body including the way your heart beats. The American Thyroid Association has stated that roughly 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease.

The study also pointed out that women are 5 to 8 times more likely to suffer from this condition than men. The signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism usually vary from person to person, depending on the severity of the hormone deficiency. Common symptoms that most patients suffering from this condition usually show include: constipation, weight gain, muscle weakness, a puffy face, an increased sensitivity to the cold, fatigue, impaired memory, a slower heart rate, thinning hair and depression, among any others.

The good news is that hypothyroidism can be treated naturally by following a few simple steps. In this article we are going to give you tips to help treat hypothyroidism naturally.

1. Increase your protein intake

Various clinical studies have shown that protein helps boost thyroid function. According to experts, it does so by encouraging the release of the thyroid hormone, a factor that helps treat hypothyroidism.

In addition to green leafy vegetables and meat, including more potatoes, nuts, beans and cheese in your diet is a good idea to supplement your protein intake. If you decide to go via the route of using a protein powder, be very careful of many supplement companies that do not offer quality products. Use online educational resources to find the best protein powder that is fit to suit your dietary needs.

2. Avoid gluten

Gluten is a protein found in wheat and grain and is usually not well digested. It is estimated that approximately 90% of all patients suffering from hypothyroidism in the United States also suffer from an autoimmune condition.

An autoimmune condition, commonly known as Hashimoto, is usually caused by antibodies attacking the thyroid and resulting in thyroid destruction. Various clinical research studies conducted by independent institutions have proven that gluten plays a huge role in driving the antibody attack against your body.

When you consume gluten, the protein portion of the gluten known as gliadin normally enters the bloodstream via the gut. Your body will then trigger a self-defense mechanism by creating antibodies to counter gliadin in a process known as the molecular mimicry. This is what usually results in antibodies damaging the thyroid gland.

With this in mind, know that every time you consume gluten, you are actually triggering your body to produce antibodies that can end up damaging your thyroid’s ability to function properly.

3. Increase iodine intake

Iodine is an essential trace element that is crucial to the body. Your thyroid glands actually require iodine in order to produce thyroid hormones. This means that if you have deficiency in iodine, then the chances of suffering from hypothyroidism are high.

Your body does not have the ability to make iodine so you need to ensure you are getting enough from your diet to enable your body to make enough thyroid hormone. In the early 1990s, iodine deficiency was the leading cause of hypothyroidism. The introduction of iodized salt virtually eliminated this problem.

4. Eat natural diet

Did you know that the food that you include in your diet plays a critical role in treating hypothyroidism? By eliminating foods such as gluten and including food that have been scientifically proven to help boost the production of thyroid hormone, you can help treat this condition naturally.

A diet that is low in nutrient-rich foods increases the risk for thyroid disorders. Some of foods that are highly recommend include: fresh fruits, vegetables, foods that are rich in omega-3, foods that are rich in healthy protein as well as high-fiber foods.

A few great examples include spinach, fish, nuts, fortified dairy products, whole grains, seaweed and beans. Including these foods in your diet can definitely play a key role in supercharging your thyroid function.

5. Watch your oils

Not all oils are good for you if you are suffering from hypothyroidism. There are some oils that you need to avoid while there are a few that you need to boost the production of the thyroid hormone.

Most of the oils that we use to cook foods can have a negative effect on the thyroid and can even cause thyroid disease. A good type of oil to use as a substitute is coconut oil. Coconut oil has the ability to help people with low thyroid function because it can raise your basal body temperatures while stimulating your metabolism and also boosting energy.

Hypothyroidism is a serious health condition that need to be treated as soon as possible. It can leave you feeling sluggish and also slow your ability to maintain a healthy weight if you do not learn how to manage it. The good news is that this condition can also be treated naturally by following the simple tips mentioned above.

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