Dear MaryJane ...
I recently received the Dec 09/Jan 10 issue and just had to write. I have an 8-year-old son who has autism. I was overjoyed to read “Simple Gifts” by Susan C. At times I felt like she was talking about my son. Unlike many other stories, Susan shares the frustrations teachers face without asking for pity. Yet she also celebrates these great kids for who they are, not what they can or cannot do. The world has been blessed by caring professionals like Susan. She and others like her truly make a difference.
Two weeks ago, serendipity led me to several copies of your magazine from 2008. I loved reading them, and have suggested them to several others. I grew up in the country, but after college, never lived away from sidewalks and streetlights. And, considering that I am 80 years of age now, I am not likely to move, except perhaps to a care facility in the distant future. But I am a greenie, wear bluejeans, and like to dig in the dirt.
I received the Dec 09/Jan 10 issue of MaryJanesFarm and was as excited as I always am when it comes in the mail. Your magazine and the wisdom it brings are so welcomed! In the letters section, someone mentioned how much they enjoyed the magazine and likened it to Martha Stewart but without a criminal record. How judgmental and offensive. I was surprised to see it printed in a magazine with the class yours has. A true farmgirl would never have stooped that low. Ms. Stewart has conducted herself like a lady and continued life with her head high. She is a standard to be met, just as MaryJanesFarm is. Looking forward to the next issue of both magazines.
Thanks for writing to us, Beth, and also for enjoying our magazine. The quote you mention was from a short book review in our “Here for Life” section. You’re absolutely right—we should never have published that quote. I can only say that I was concentrating on the part of the quote that mentioned our magazine in a book that the Wall Street Journal called “One of the five best books on consumer culture,” and it simply didn’t register that the comparison, while flattering to us, was insulting to Martha. Like you, we are great admirers and supporters of Martha, and I agree with you that she conducted herself admirably throughout her ordeal. We should all be so gracious. I sincerely apologize and hope that you can continue to enjoy our magazine.
Here is my little farmgirl, “Bee,” and her carrot. She planted it, I picked it, she ate it, then she cried because she “loved it so.” It was the most fulfilling moment to watch her pure excitement as we plucked this golden organic beauty from the earth—every child deserves a dirty carrot! She’s always saying, “Hey Mama, MaryJane would love this, huh?!” Thanks for giving her time each and every time we meet ... it has left a magical impact on her.