A Letter To My Readers

(Dear Donna in Delaware, it’s me, Maria!)

Dear Reader,

Perhaps you’ve been wondering where I’ve been. 

Perhaps you haven’t.

I stopped blogging in late 2016 for a few reasons…

  1. Free content online takes work and time and I was running out of it.
  2. The business model for blogging doesn’t work. Period.
  3. I realized publishing wasn’t going to get any better and decided, along with my family, that it was time to sell the third generation publishing company we owned together.
  4. Selling a company takes time and energy.
  5. I needed a break. 

Almost three years later I am waking up on the other side of it all.

  1. We sold our company to Hearst and they sold our books to Penguin Random House.
  2. I kept my blog.
  3. The clean up of three generations of history, storage, random shit is complete.
  4. I’ve had a nice break (and actually am still taking it).
  5. I’m incredibly grateful that we got out when we did. Because publishing has only gotten worse.

Now I find myself in a bit of a dilemma. In order to keep my trademark for Maria’s Farm Country Kitchen, I have to post a blog. I’m not sure I want to keep blogging. I’m not even sure I want to keep the trademark. But my kids want me to keep it. I no longer have a “staff” to manage all my stuff. There are no copy editors, no Corporate Communications people to make sure I’m not saying anything dangerous or that could be misconstrued by employees or “the media.”  I don’t have a tech or analytics team. 

It’s just me (and my daughter who knows how to post blogs). 

Just me sitting here in my yoga clothes wondering what to do next.

Here is what I do know:

I need to write.

I love the idea of writing without a filter, without overthinking things.

I love to cook.

I still test and keep track of new recipes.

I am not interested in building a brand or a business.

I am interested in sharing ideas.

So, dear readers, by posting this blog I get to maintain my trademark. But I also get to check in with you, if there are any of you left out there, and see if you have any opinions or thoughts you want me to know about. 

What do you think?

I’m genuinely curious.

If you are here reading this, thank you. I appreciate you.



Related Posts:

51 Responses to A Letter To My Readers

  1. Lynn July 21, 2019 at 3:49 pm #

    Woo hoo!! Welcome back…you were missed.

  2. l July 21, 2019 at 3:50 pm #

    love hearing from you, got so much from your books and columns, help with gardening etc,

  3. Hazel Stewart July 21, 2019 at 3:51 pm #

    Welcome back. You were missed, but I’m glad you took the time to makes some personal choices. Thank you for everything you have done and may do in the future.

  4. Carol chamberlain July 21, 2019 at 4:15 pm #

    Thanks Maria. Long time supporter of all things Rodale, so glad to hear the update. I would love to see posts from you. I view blogger posts as the electronic equivalent of flipping through a magazine. Sometimes there are things you are interested in, other times not so much. But, I do realize a quick read on my part is a great amount of time on your side. Supportive of what works best for you at this stage of your life.

  5. Bill Nunes July 21, 2019 at 4:28 pm #

    It’s great to hear from you again!
    Things change and each of us needs to decide whether we will change or not. My family has given up most of our family farm business. I’ve stubbornly held on to a bit of land, but turned farming it in a different direction. Despite what we let go of… past generations continue in our hearts and in our lives.

  6. Nancy July 21, 2019 at 4:33 pm #

    Welcome back!

  7. Liz July 21, 2019 at 4:41 pm #

    Just write about what interests you and maybe share a recipe or two. It will be great for your family going forward, and in the grand scheme of things they’re the people who ready matter.

  8. Robin July 21, 2019 at 4:45 pm #

    Delighted you are back, Maria! Wishing you all that is best for you and yours going forward! 😊

  9. Barb July 21, 2019 at 4:57 pm #

    Hi Maria,

    Would love to keep hearing from you as we make our way through this adventure of life. Hard to believe it has been more than 30 years since you let me keep Kate with Yulara at your house. 💗 Barb

  10. Vickiy July 21, 2019 at 4:59 pm #

    I have missed you!!! Write about anything – cooking, gardening, family, travels – just stay with us!

  11. Helen Nelson July 21, 2019 at 5:10 pm #

    So glad you are doing this again. Don’t stop, you are too good at it.

  12. Rosalba July 21, 2019 at 5:18 pm #

    Soooo glad to hear from you on your blog!! And so thrilled you made some hard choices when you did for you and your family. It would be great to hear from you through your blog in any way you want to share; experiences, more on organic farming and cooking, recipes. Whatever makes you feel good. I for one will be here.

  13. David July 21, 2019 at 5:23 pm #

    Great to hear from you. Would love to know about what you are seeing in the culture and our country and also how you continue to learn and grow.

  14. Kathie Lou July 21, 2019 at 5:29 pm #

    Do what comes naturally. There will be people who will help with the edginess. They will come. Thanks to your family, kids like me became aware of the earth around us…what our ancestors didn’t have time to teach us.

  15. Randy July 21, 2019 at 5:31 pm #

    Must be my lucky day. Just happened onto your site for the first time today…the day of your return.
    I’ve looked through some of the recipes so far, most of which I find quite appealing, but there seems to be much that will interest me as I look though the rest of your site.
    So, even though I didn’t know that you had been gone, I join others who have welcomed your return.

  16. Rob Sayre July 21, 2019 at 5:45 pm #

    I think you got out at a good time. As a former Rodale employee, I loved my time there and have noted that the brand, of organic pioneer is alive and well at the Rodale Institute. And so many people had careers or their careers enhanced by their time at Rodale. Mine surely did. Kudos to you and your family!

  17. Susan July 21, 2019 at 6:20 pm #

    I’m happy to see you back! I loved reading your blog.

  18. Dondo July 21, 2019 at 6:32 pm #

    I knew you had a mountain to move. Nice work. Welcome to the next chapter. Try having some fun.

  19. Heather July 21, 2019 at 7:53 pm #

    Oooo! Uncensored Maria! I’m here for that! 😉 cheers to you!

  20. Ann Van Doren July 21, 2019 at 8:05 pm #

    So glad to hear from you. Please keep it coming. Love your ethics, your recipes, just your SENSE.

  21. Erin B July 21, 2019 at 10:34 pm #

    Maria, you have such a beautiful heart and soul. I like the way you look at life and I enjoy hearing your thoughts about how you’re navigating through it. I always loved your recipes (2 in particular come to mind, your blanched bright green basil pesto recipe and your easy olive oil crackers – I make them both frequently!) I’m so glad you’re exploring the possibility of blogging again, and on your own terms no less! Why not just take it a baby step at a time and sit with it to see how it feels? And If you ever need an extra set of willing hands to test recipes with you, give a shout! XO

  22. Mary July 21, 2019 at 10:34 pm #

    Welcome back, I always enjoyed your posts, and such.

  23. Dana B July 21, 2019 at 10:47 pm #

    Maria, I’m THRILLED to see a new post from you! I’ve been thinking about your blog a lot lately for some reason, and missing it and your honest voice. I hope you are inspired to come back and write in whatever capacity feels right for you. You have a brilliant voice and I love hearing it.

  24. Marie July 21, 2019 at 11:50 pm #

    Hello Maria,
    It is wonderful to look into the window of the last few years in your world. Your presence, through your writing , gives us a moment to pause and reflect on ourselves as well as the observations and reflections you have shared with us. We are hungry for real life posts… so be easy on yourself and let it flow with no parameters or preconceived topics. The words come from the energy of your heart and soul, history and knowledge and we love having you back… hope to see you soon .

  25. Jeff Cox July 22, 2019 at 12:00 am #

    Hi Maria–Although the publishing company is gone, the genius of your grandfather grows ever stronger. The spirit of Rodale that we all shared only continues to expand in the world in beautiful and beneficial ways. Your dad, you, Bob Teufel, and hundreds of us who had our shoulders to the organic wheel over the decades were taking part in something more magnificent than most of us realized. It wasn’t only about gardening, farming, exercising, eating properly, and helping to establish environmentalism, it was a revolution in the way we saw the world, and that new vision touches everything. And changes everything for the better. I think we were all lucky to have been a part of Rodale Press, and Rodale. I know I was.

  26. Beth July 22, 2019 at 8:55 am #

    I wondered where you were. Glad you are back!

  27. John Grogan July 22, 2019 at 10:43 am #

    Good to see you back, Maria. Keep writing and we will keep reading.

  28. Michell Basler July 23, 2019 at 1:37 am #

    Just write anything
    even if it’s what you made for kids, grandkids, anybody that day.
    If you made chocolate pancakes, talk about that.
    I would say, not just the food or recipes,
    talk about the experience.
    Laughter. Funny moments. Memories made that day.
    Talk about old memories.
    If you read an article online and it annoys you, talk about that,
    if you love the article, talk about that.
    show us you. 🙂
    Because you’re the only you, and we need you to be there, so we can know you. 🙂

  29. Liz July 24, 2019 at 6:21 pm #

    Rock on! 🙂 – Liz

  30. Darleen Malkames July 26, 2019 at 7:27 am #

    I always loved your recipes and made quite a few of them. Would love to have more.

  31. Becky July 30, 2019 at 10:05 am #

    You have just given me permission to start the blog I’ve been wanting to start for so long. I too, simply need to write, without a filter, without overthinking. I don’t want to build a brand, I just want to have a creative outlet for me, even if no one ever finds it. I just found your blog today for the first time. I look forward to checking back in.

  32. Maria Rodale July 31, 2019 at 7:06 pm #

    Thank you everyone for your comments. You have inspired me to keep going! Just for fun!!!

  33. Debbie August 2, 2019 at 7:47 am #

    Wow! By chance, I found you again, just as you are reappearing! All the best for a new chapter!

  34. Brian August 13, 2019 at 4:58 pm #

    Glad to see you are back. I was thinking of your recipes and hope you continue with the blog. Don’t push yourself. Your family did so much for the valley. Lots of find memories. Best wishes.

  35. Amanda K-E August 26, 2019 at 2:59 pm #

    Well, look what I just stumbled across. And I thought MFCK was long gone! Hope you keep writing even if it’s “just for fun”…I’ll keep reading. Now, where is that Donna from Delaware? I miss her.

  36. Lisa September 23, 2019 at 9:08 am #

    I’ve just discovered you and want to read more. Please keep posting.

  37. Emily R S November 4, 2019 at 1:27 am #

    I came across you when reading the ‘ how to overcome sadness ‘ post today, and I would just like to say, thank you for putting in the time and effort to do that. It turned up on the very top when I searched for ‘how to let out sadness’ and I really thank you.

  38. Melanie Fausch November 6, 2019 at 9:47 pm #

    I just discovered your blog reading the sadness post as well. I am thankful for your honesty, openness and humor. I would def. keep reading your writing. Take care.

  39. toys.shop November 7, 2019 at 3:18 am #

    ___123___A Letter To My Readers | Maria’s Farm Country Kitchen___123___

  40. Dave Garland November 14, 2019 at 3:23 pm #

    Wow. Can’t wait to see what happens next!…

  41. Marianna Soots November 25, 2019 at 3:34 pm #

    Just discovered your blog and look forward to more inspiration from you. How often can we expect to hear something new.

  42. Reinhild Niebuhr December 13, 2019 at 4:51 am #

    Hello Maria,
    I am a publisher and a social entrepreneur from South Africa. I have a business proposition for you. Could you kindly let me have your email so that I may write to you directly?
    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Kind regards,

  43. Kathryn December 14, 2019 at 1:57 pm #

    Rodale Press helped guide me through my transition years from suburban upbringing to homesteader…so much learned about organic food, animal husbandry, building, preserving…shaping who I am today, 40+ years later. The Rodale name is synonymous with truth and trust, in my mind. These days, truth can be elusive and deceptive, trust, difficult to earn. I sincerely hope you will continue this family tradition through your own writing. You are a treasure. In particular, as an unpublished writer after almost 70 years, I am interested in your thoughts about publishing. And, as others have mentioned, in your thoughts about our world in general. Blessed be.

  44. Pauline January 10, 2020 at 5:45 pm #

    I just saw this, a little late to the party as usual, lol. Good to see you!!! Glad you’re going to continue to blog for now. Ultimately you must do what’s best for you & yours!
    I have Scratch & it’s one of the few books in my huge (really huge, no joke) cookbook collection I come back to time after time!!! Thank you for writing it! I still look for Rodale books 😊

  45. greenbergVet March 22, 2020 at 7:32 pm #

    We are a private company that gives loans. No credit needed. Could you be interested?

  46. Nan Grambo May 2, 2020 at 7:40 am #

    It’s interesting to hear your wistful hope for being able to share ideas without a filter. The Rodale name comes with high expectations–the deep history, appreciation, and trust expressed by many others who have commented is real. It will be difficult for you to escape the brand.
    That said, it is a brand you can be proud of. With every sale like this (to large publishers who often have different priorities), I trust the brand a little less. What you’re describing is a bit of a rebellion.
    If your children want you to maintain your blog and your presence, maybe it’s something they aspire to. Maybe it’s a legacy you can start to pass on to them.
    I’ll be curious to watch and see where you go. I wish you the best in this next stage of your life.

  47. You May 17, 2020 at 12:38 am #

    You are a bitch!

  48. Bridget May 18, 2020 at 4:13 am #

    Hi, I just found you looking for more information on magnesium. I’ve only read two posts, but I will be exploring more since they were both food reads about nutrition. Thank you.

  49. sylvia Camacho Ebio December 18, 2020 at 1:23 am #

    Read a post from a ln fb friend saying “Exercise your soul” so I ended up Googling soul exercises, then saw your post and read them.All of those things you wrote resonated with my soul and and si I clicked your website link. Pls keep on writing, I felt an instant connection with your post and would love to read more of your soulful blogs ❤️ Namaste ❤️

  50. Garminzzdx January 6, 2021 at 4:57 am #

    consists of the book itself

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *