Hope I can help a little, I realize there are a few different and popularized ways to view wordpress.
To create a new post or page, I have never preferred to use the 'quick' method, from drop down or straight onto the smaller one on dashboard. I am simply letting you guys no that nothing has changed via the left hand sidebar to add new post / page.. etc all cats and tag suggestions are all in place..
Just thought I would post this as a way for you to bypass the other method and get to publishing whatever you all need to..
As for the reader, cannot help you there. As I rarely use it.. I merely click through to people that I follow individually.
I just checked recently having posted a few blogs that were special to me to ensure that my own showed up in the reader ~ but alas no.. And that is being sorted by a lovely Staff member...
Hope this helps some.. :)