Wednesday, July 3, 2013

My Declaration of Independence and New Directions.....

New Directions

If you would like to continue to follow my work......
My recipes and I can now be found @

I hope to see you there!   

directions on the blog, then I post that I am going to retire the blog.....then a month later I am back to posting!   What kind of crazy am I?

Okay, okay, I have explained before that I have felt so conflicted about which way to take this blog and I have tried new things and not liked the results.....retiring the blog was not right for me, I LOVE sharing my recipes and posting for my readers.   I apologize for my crazy, constant changing of my mind.....that is just me.

I am going to be blunt and for those of you who know me.... honesty is one of my strengths!  I do not beat around the bush, I will tell you exactly like it here goes!

I started this blog in 2008 as many people were requesting my recipes or my nutrition clients were wanting recipes and ideas for starting their new healthy lifestyles.  At the encouragement of many I started this blog.....I had a lot of fun creating recipes and in the beginning I only posted pictures of my creations not wanting to just give away all my hard work for free!

Many people commented and begged for I decided to start posting recipes and my readership shot up quickly!  That was great, but I still was not getting a dime for any of my hard work.  I thought, that is okay, it takes time.........a year later it was still the same...........another year and no change..............

I started creating ebooks:

Summer BBQ Recipes:  Potato salad, Vegan BBQ wings, Grilled veggie burgers, grilled corn on the cob, chocolate peanut butter bars, brownies, sunburger pasta salad.....and more!

Restaurant Style Chinese Recipes: Vegan egg foo yong, fried rice, General Tso's vegan chicken, sweet and sour tempeh or seitan etc.....

Zesty for Life Oil-Free salad dressings:  Honey mustard mango dressing, Ranch, Italian, Tahini miso.........

Fall Recipe Collection I & II:  Tofurkey, stuffing, Wassail, Apple Cider, Pumpkin muffins, chili, International award winning hot chocolate, pumpkin chocolate chip sweet rolls, carmel, scones, pumpkin pancakes, butternut squash risotto, pumpkin creme brulee, candied yams, 

Decadent Desserts: Chocolate swirl cheesecake, chocolate mint chip cookies, cinnamon rolls, apple crumble, chocolate mint pudding, Apple pie, chocolate peanut butter bars, chocolate chip cookies

Healthy Recipes for Kids: macaroni and cheese, pop tarts, doritos, chocolate calcium smoothie etc......

As much as I hate to admit this publicly......this was an abysmal failure.....4 years 2 sales!!!  Yep, it was pathetic.  I started an email newsletter and gained about 300 subscribers in a couple of months.....I offered sales, discounts, contests to win free ebooks etc..... nothing sales!

I got lots of unsubscribes and nasty emails when I would write an article that was controversial.....people accused me of spam even though I had a double opt-in process so as you can see there is no more 'sign up for the newsletter' link anymore.  Honestly, I couldn't handle all the hostility so I closed up shop on the newsletter.....People are MEAN!  There was no sense in having a newsletter when no one was interested in what I had to offer and all I got out of it was mean people...

I took the ebooks off the blog and these recipes are actually enjoyed by NO ONE! 

I am NOT a marketer......honestly I probably couldn't sell a heater to an Eskimo!  It isn't my talent, my talent is creating recipes and teaching nutrition......that is my passion.

I thought, okay I see all these successful bloggers out there and they don't just post recipes, they post health articles....I'll try that.

That did NOT go well......I wasn't expecting to make money doing least initially, but maybe if people started to respect my knowledge and experience and get to know me they might follow my blog.....wrong!  

I don't know if I have perpetual bad luck or what but my first two blog posts generated such hate posts that I decided to quit the health posts!    The internet seems to be FULL of angry people just searching for someone to be angry with for no reason.  If you don't like what I say go find a blogger that tells you what you want to hear and don't post your hater comments!

I am sensitive and I will NOT apologize for it!  I have deep compassion for others and I intensely feel their pain and I think that is a trait that is LONG LOST in our society!   You can call me a baby or whatever you want but my love and compassion runs deep, along with intense sensitivity and I just do not do well with angry people.

So, I went back to posting recipes........I posted a tutorial on How to cook Hashbrowns without oil.

I figured those who wanted to know would appreciate the post......NOPE!  All I received were a bunch of comments about how potatoes make you fat, they turn to sugar and get stored as fat and I was a complete idiot for posting this!

Seriously people?  If you think potatoes are bad for you....what are you doing reading a post about how to cook them?

I deleted the comments, they were not kind, they were not helpful, they were angry and hateful and not only that they were  full of grammar and spelling errors......Not to mention that they lacked any scientific support for the claims.  

I realize there are studies showing that potatoes contribute to diabetes....what they fail to recognize is these were not 'potatoes'  they were studying french fries and baked potatoes which often contain MORE calories from butter, sour cream, cheese and oils, that it isn't actually a potato they are studying.

You can't say I am going to take X AND Y drug and if I have a side effect it MUST be X drug!  

Anyway, that is not the point of this post.

Enough Rambling Already What is the New Direction???

Okay, I know.....I ramble!  The new direction is that I will not be posting all the recipes.....I have found that it just is NOT worth it!  I work hard and give out recipes for FREE??  Would you want your life's work to be valued at NOTHING????

My recipes are very good, I work hard, I have several degrees and certificates and I'm sorry but what I have to offer is NOT worthless!

So, the new direction is that I will be posting pictures of recipes, I will post some of the recipes but not all of them.....the recipes will be part of ebooks and programs that I will be offering.   If I don't sell a single ebook or program that is fine....but I value my work so I will not be offering it for free.

I Created Ebooks Followers BEGGED for!!!!  What Happened?

On facebook I made some comments about the misconceptions about fat, oils, carbohydrates, protein etc....

All the sudden I had 5 or so followers say they wanted an ebook about this.....they would buy it if I would write one!

Really???  Okay, I will write ebooks based on what my followers want...that will work!


This post had probably 10 I spent hours upon hours writing & editing this ebook....quickly got it up in The Peaceful Kitchen Store and what happened?  NADA, ZIP, ZILCH, NOTHING!

I offered a 10 day discount on the book for my facebook followers.......nothing. purchase.

Hubby and I Discuss My Abysmal Failure!

Hubby and I started discussing this because I wanted another opinion about what I should do.  I told him how many followers I had on Facebook....nearly 400!!!  Yep!

Then I told him when I post a recipe the most likes I have ever gotten is 22!  He said it would be one thing if you had 400 followers and had a product to sell and received 22 sales...but all these people have to do is push a button!!!!  If you are only getting 22 likes, you are wasting your time!

He is right.....he was very kind but also said....I don't want to hurt your feelings but if all they have to do is push a button and they aren't willing to even do that......its pathetic.

Okay, I get it.  I don't know what I am doing wrong...

He told me to stop posting all my recipes and hard work for free.  Post pictures, post a little recipe here or there but ONLY if I continue to enjoy doing it because if it is stressful and I don't enjoy it....I shouldn't be doing it.

I DO enjoy it, so I will continue posting and whoever wants to follow can follow but I won't be posting all the recipes for free.

My Declaration of Independence

What is this all about?  I have been fighting it for years.......fighting the knowledge that I needed to kick my sugar habit!

I LOVE sugar, I CRAVE sugar.....I can't even make it past lunch time without SUGAR!

There I confessed!  I am a sugarholic of the worst kind!

I fooled myself into believing if it was agave, maple syrup, turbinado, succanut, brown rice syrup, coconut palm sugar.......some 'Natural' kind of sugar it was okay!

It isn't!

Do NOT send me hate mail or posts if you don't like my comment....if you want to eat sugar, EAT IT and go find some blog that will tell you all the benefits of eating it but on this blog that isn't what you are going to hear so go somewhere else.....

I made it known in a previous post that I had PCOS....I have made DRASTIC improvements in my health changing to a plant based diet!  NO my PCOS was not caused by soy or a plant based developed at the age of 10 and I ate NO soy as a child EVER!  I drank I guzzled milk like there was no tommorrow!  Milk contains estradiol, estriol and estrone....the bioactive hormones.....and yes it contributed to my high estrogen levels.

Once I removed milk and meat from my diet I had a period within three had been THREE YEARS before that....and they came every 70-90 days getting closer and closer as the years went on so I knew I was on the right track.

However, I couldn't fully recover from my PCOS.....even 9 years later, although I was having regular cycles at 35 wasn't enough.....something was still wrong!

It is no big secret......I just REFUSED to accept it

I needed to kick the sugar habit.....I fought it, I tried to find any other way.....but the reality is...there is no other way!

The addiction worsened as I battled the idea of not eating sugar can I live without chocolate chip cookies?  Life isn't worth living without my chocolate chip cookies!

It dawned on me, I ask people to make HUGE dietary changes can I refuse to make the one last change I need to make?

I went through years of going off sugar, then BINGING and eventually it went from dessert twice a week to every single day....sometimes twice a twice a day, everyday.  This battle of trying to remove sugar from my diet actually led to a greater addiction than I ever thought possible!

It seemed that I would never be able to kick sugar for good....trying actually made the problem worse!

What did sugar do to me?

Let me start by saying that I DO NOT buy white sugar!  I was using maple syrup, turbinado, succanut, coconut palm sugar, brown rice syrup etc.....

What did it do?  Well......nothing at first.

Slowly I started having stiffness in the mornings and increasing sugar cravings.  When I would eat a particularly sugary rich dessert with coconut oil and sugar a yeast infection would set in.....
I would take herbs and the yeast infection would go away.

I would eat sugar and my teeth would ache.....I would put herbs on them, rinse with essential oils and it would go away.

Eventually the stiffness got worse.....I injured myself doing kettlebell swings pretty severely to where I could not even bend over and I never fully still hurts and is stiff.

My cycles started becoming farther and farther apart......45 days.....60 days.....75 days.....90 days...... eventually 6 months and  counting!!!!

Not only that my PCOS symptoms were increasing.....increased belly fat.....dark spots on my skin and others I won't discuss.....

I am not going to into all the details because as I said before people are mean and have their opinions.....but I KNOW for a fact.......sugar was slowly killing me!

Eventually I developed a systemic yeast problem!!!  When I would avoid any concentrated sweetener it would ease up....then I would eat even a low sugar dessert and BAM....symptoms return with a vengeance.

I am publicly declaring my independence from sugar!!!

It is time!  I am giving it up.......

I have decided that what will work best for me is to use dried fruit, stevia, lakanto and a few others to help me transition....

That may not be others approach but the cold turkey approach is what got me here....two desserts a day.

I know many people say you can't have fruit with yeast....but interestinly...I do just fine with it.  I think there is another dietary issue in combination with fruit that causes the issue but I'm not going to discuss it because I am not in the mood for mean people or arguing.  Do what you want, I'll do what I want.

I will be posting pictures and descriptions of my new recipe creations.....these recipes will be included in my thyroid & PCOS healing program!

You can watch my progress..........see what I am eating.........and follow my sugar detox....

I will be posting my Raw, Uncensored, experience of detoxing from sugar addiction..........Stay Tuned!

You will see details of my journey, pictures of what I am eating, and my progress.......


Julie said...

Have you tried putting ads on your blog to make money? That's how most people make money fromtheir blog. good luck

Tandi Hartle said...

Julie - Yes, there are ads on the blog, I do make about $100 from ads every 3-4 months. I'm looking for more responsive readership though as well. Thanks for the tip.

Melanie said...

I just found your blog about a week ago and I love your recipes! And I love your straightforwardness in this post! You go girl!! If you don't mind me saying, I would suggest doing a re-design of this site to give it a more professional look. In your navigation menu you have a link to a 4 week nutrition course that you no longer offer. I come from a marketing/design background and your overall presentation makes a world of difference in readers overall perception of you and especially whether or not they will buy from you. Good luck with the new changes! Looking forward to it!

Tandi Hartle said...

Melanie - I totally agree about redesigning my blog, I would love to do it and I hate to admit that my web design skills are probably worse than my marketing skills but its true. Unfortunately money is more than tight right now so I have had to work with my extremely limited resources but someday if I ever have the money to pay someone that will be the first thing I do. Thanks.

Melanie said...

Hey Tandi! Uou don't need skills at all. There are tons of awesome free templates and website builder services. And I don't use blogger but I'm pretty sure there are lots of free templates for it. I use for my hosting...its only $2.75 a month and they have a free website content management system with tons and tons of awesome templates. Anyways, if you leave things as they are I would at least clean up your navigation menu and include an about me page that highlights your education and background so people are confident to take your nutrition advise and buy your products. Good luck! :)