By Kristin van Ogtrop
Updated March 17, 2015
Martyn Thompson

Happy 15th anniversary to us! But first let's talk about you.

As you might imagine, Real Simple receives correspondence from readers every month. Sometimes it comes by mail, sometimes by e-mail, sometimes through social media. Many of the messages begin with "I have been a subscriber since the beginning…" and then there is usually a complaint. The magazine isn't "simple." We don't understand how "real" people live. And your kids definitely don't eat chard.

You, dear reader, are tough to please. Which is why we love you. Sometimes I am tempted to stop reading after "I have been a subscriber since the beginning," because I know what follows will probably be bad. But I keep reading—all of us on staff do. You see, by taking the time to write—even when we have made you mad—you are showing that you care. (Sorry.)

You are a giant audience of discerning people who live all over the place, with various tastes and life-styles, incomes, ages, and interests. With each story we run, each item of clothing or furniture or recipe we publish, we're trying to cast our net as wide as we possibly can. "Would they actually buy/do/make that?" we always ask. Because we endeavor to please 100 percent of you. Of course, we will never get it right 100 percent of the time. But hope springs eternal.

So now, on the month of our 15th anniversary, I want to say "thank you." Thank you to our longtime subscribers, occasional readers, and everybody in between. Thank you for continuing to read, even after we disappoint you. Especially after we disappoint you. Thank you for understanding that Real Simple is smart and unique and beautiful, just as you are.

And that we will continue to be here for you—to make every day of your life just a little bit better—just as you are here for us. Without you, we would be nothing. Does that sound overly dramatic? Maybe. But you know it's true.