Recently, I went to this year’s Natural Products Expo here in Anaheim. It’s the largest gathering of natural and organic products of all kinds.
Companies and people from around the world come to see it and there are new and exciting products every year. Everything from grass fed beef jerky to herbal sleep aids and everything in between. It a 5-day event with around 6,000 vendors.
I always get a boat-load (literally…you could fill a kayak with what I got!) of samples to try out. This photo was from ONE DAY! And yes, I did share with many of my friends.

Anyway, I’m pretty picky. I’ve started taste testing and using the creams and health aids and have dismissed many of them. I’m still going through them little by little and will be sharing my favorites with you. If you choose to purchase any of them, just tell them where you heard about it. Maybe they’ll send me MORE samples—because who doesn’t need another kayak full of protein bars and lentil chips?

I will, of course, add other items I think are of interest that I DIDN’T get here as I come across them. Let me know if you try any and what you think!

Talk soon,

Ugly By Nature
My dad was a dentist growing up. He was always getting samples of various toothpastes and brushes. They were all pretty much the same, minty with fluoride. I started using non-fluoride toothpaste when I read about how too much fluoride can damage bones and joints and in young people can cause white streaks and specks in teeth.

The issue I found was finding a non-fluoride toothpaste I like. Until now! Ugly by Nature has a bunch of flavors and they taste fantastic! Both kids and adults will love them. They taste like candy (without all that nasty sugar and calories). Plus, they’re vegan…which evidently means something to some people. Actually, I didn’t know there were toothpastes that WEREN’T vegan. I mean, what would they put in it that’s not vegan? Yogurt?!

Here’s the link. And if you have questions, ask my friend, Adriana. She’s the owner and is happy to answer any of your questions. Tell her Rona sent you! And email me after you’ve tried a fun flavor. I personally like the berry and the banana flavors.






When I saw this brand, I knew it right away, but hadn’t seen it for a while.  They had little shot samples at the booth, so I tried one.  Wow!  It was fantastic!  Not too sweet and it didn’t feel like I was drinking a heavy juice with a ton of sugar in it.

When I spoke with the owner of the parent company, Squish’n Squeeze, she explained that they had remixed and rebranded the product because many people thought the same thing I did.  The original product had about 70% juice and was too heavy and caloric a drink. 

These are different. With only 8-16% juice in a 16.9 oz bottle, it’s low calorie, low sugar, tasty and refreshing.  It had just enough flavor for high enjoyment.  Studies have shown people drink more when water has a flavor to it.  These are wonderful combinations.  The one I tried, Peach and Mango, was so good, I swiped a whole bottle to drink while I visited other product booths.  This is one of my favorite picks of the show.  Try some!





Vermont Village Apple Cider Vinegar

Every day I put a tablespoon or two of apple cider vinegar in my water bottle. Besides giving the water a little taste (studies have shown people drink more liquid when it has a flavor), apple cider vinegar helps with a few bodily functions: it helps keep blood sugar levels even (good for those with type 2 diabetes), it can help increase your good cholesterol, it has pre and pro-biotics, it helps detoxify your liver…and more.

The problem with it is that it can wear your teeth down if yo do shots. Plus, many people don’t like the taste. It’s too bitter and can be “biting.” Pun intended. THIS brand of acv, however, is fantastic! They gave out 1 ounce samples, like the one pictured. Most of their flavors have a touch of honey to offset the bite, but it’s very little. I put it in a huge bottle of water and it was delicious!

They had samples of all their flavors and all were wonderful! You’ll see a bunch more products from them on their site, but I only tried their apple cider vinegar. I’m getting more.




Lemi Shine Detergent and Disposal Cleanser

If you read the intro blog, you read that I went to the Natural Products Expo (my 4th year in a row) for 3 of the 5 days. One of the samples I got was of Lemi Shine’s Sink Disposal Cleanser. As a woman who cooks, this can get pretty icky and putting the occasional lemon rind down there never did much to keep it clean and smelling nice. So, when the nice woman at the booth said, “Oh, you use your disposal a lot? Try this.”

I did, as soon as I got home. Not only did it suds up nicely, it seemed to clear some of the gunk out and it smelled lovely! Of course, I RAN over to the booth the next day and said that I had to try a sample of their dish detergent pacs next. It cleaned just as well as any of the name brands, but without any of the harsh chemicals that are so bad for the environment.

Both products clean with biodegradable ingredients and 100% citric extracts. I really like these!


Sleep Fixes

I have always had trouble sleeping. When I was younger, I was able to fall asleep almost anywhere….and promptly wake up at the slightest noise….and not be able to fall back to sleep. My big brother, Mark, is the same way. We’re both lucky if we sleep more than 4 hours at a shot.

So, you can imagine my excitement when I saw quite a few products that touted a good night’s sleep without drugs or feeling wonky the next day. I can feel hung-over with ONE Advil PM. I’m very sensitive to drugs and don’t weigh very much, so it’s always been tough to find products that don’t leave me zombie-like in the morning.

I took a bunch of them home and tried one every few nights. There were only TWO that helped me get a full night’ sleep and I recommend either one.

The first is called ‘snooze,’ and it’s a 4 ½ oz drink. It’s all natural, with botanical extracts like valerian and linden flower. It helped me get to sleep easily and stay asleep. Made in Austria, it comes in Regular and Strong. I went right for the Strong. No pussy-footing around for me!

You can get these on Amazon.

The second product is called U-Dream. It’s a capsule herbal supplement that also comes in 2 strengths. When I spoke to the owner, Ken, who is from Canada, he promised me they would work as promised, after telling him of my sleep history. Their lite formula gives you 4-5 hours of rest and if you find you CAN’T get to sleep, you can take one of these to help you get there.

Their full-night formula was a miracle for me. The marketing material states 7-8 hours of sleep. Mark was REALLY excited about this one. The day after I used it, I emailed Ken, telling him he was right! I was rested, awake and not groggy at all. Holy cow! What a discovery! I also appreciate the fact that their ingredients are organic, non-GMO and for those who need it, gluten free. I’m sending some to Mark ASAP.

There are a few different products on their website and if they work as well as this stuff does, they’ll be everywhere very soon! Here’s their website and their Amazon info: (there’s a video here about the product) or if you’re in Canada, eh? (Sorry)


“Rona was so much fun and incredibly informative. My clients needed someone to speak to who they could trust that would help get their bodies strong again and whom they could discuss their fears without sacrificing their self-esteem and Rona did just that!”
Amy Gibson

President, CreatedHair

The Playful Way

When was the last time you PLAYED?

Like really played?

We all need a little fun in our lives, especially when working 9-5 jobs, under TONS of corporate pressure, it’s good to let loose and really enjoy the simple pleasures in life.

I am one who truly knows what this means, I have built my business under a FUN atmosphere.

And I want to share this with you…

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