Almost everyone in the country knows who the Pioneer Woman is: She has a television show on Food Network and has a recipe book published every once in awhile. If you know nothing else about her, you've at least seen her brand of dishes, plates, and pots and pans at Walmart.
Years ago some online group decided to have people vote for the best blog in various categories. Her blog, "Confessions of a Pioneer Woman" won the "Best Kept Secret" award in 2007, and that is how I found her blog. I was hooked from the very first time I surfed my way to her stories. Sometimes I'd do a search of her blog trying to find a particularly funny story I remembered reading earlier. I read many of them to Cliff, and he'd laugh along with me. Her blog was always G-rated, although she had fun with focusing on her hatred of the word "panties" once. She put a recorded sound-bite of her youngest child, perhaps three years old at the time, saying "juice-bag"; but it sounded like he was saying "douche-bag". Just silly little things, really, but she was funny. There were delightful tales about her relationship with her "retarded brother" (her words). The stories about him were among the best. He liked to hang out at the fire station, and those men took good care of him. For awhile he was getting drunk fairly often, but Ree told him she'd pay him a small amount each week... $5, I think... for not drinking. Then he gladly stopped.
She and I emailed one another a handful of times, I guess because I shared the link to her blog on my blog; but her readership was growing fast. When she was publishing her first cookbook, she emailed me asking for my address. Before long, I received a box containing five of those books. I gave one to my daughter and one to my daughter-in-law. Then I had a giveaway on my blog, and of course, I kept one that she autographed especially for me. She gave me signed copies of her first three books, and by then she was on her new career in television.
As she became more popular, some women started "I hate Pioneer Woman" blogs; they're still there if you want to do a search. They didn't like her recipes, they thought she looked horrible, she didn't dress to suit them; and oh, yeah... she was a millionaire, because the Drummond Ranch is a huge corporation. Did I mention that the nay-sayers said her kids were ugly? I'm surprised they didn't call her the antichrist. I think they are just jealous that she had a wealthy doctor for a dad, then had the nerve to marry a millionaire. I love the woman, and always will. I don't like cooking shows, so I don't watch her on television. Her blog isn't fun any more, so I don't read it. But I love the person that she is.
When Ree got the TV show, and sold her name to various companies, she became a product, and anything she might have said in the past could be brought up; then Food Network would look bad. After she got so famous, I went one day to her blog to search for a particularly funny story about her brother, but it wasn't there. So many of her funniest blog posts disappeared. I do understand why sponsors would want the word "retarded" taken out; it's politically incorrect. But so many of the hilarious stories are gone, or have been changed.
A couple weeks ago I used the Libby app on the iPad to "go" to the library from my easy chair and find a book to read. I was surprised to see a new book by Ree Drummond, "Frontier Follies: Adventures in Marriage and Motherhood in the Middle of Nowhere". I wondered if the stories in the book were anything like her blog used to be, and put it on the "hold" list.
Hallelujah! Some of those familiar, treasured stories are there, and the Pioneer Woman is funny again. This is a book I might actually buy just for the memories. I'm only 14% through the book (it will be a quick, easy read) but I know she won't be using the "r" word. That's OK, and it's no doubt for the best; but there are so many other wonderful stories that can be told.
You'll find the book in the public library, or you can buy it on Amazon HERE, Or wait a year and get a used one on Abebooks.com really cheap. I pity Kindle users, since most Kindles won't allow anyone to check out library books. They want your money.
I intend to have a good day, and my hope is that my readers have one too.