May 24, 2013

This week, I thought I’d mix things up and blog about something completely non pet related! I wanted to share a few favorite products that you may or may not have heard of, and might enjoy trying for yourself!

Runa Drinks

Runa DrinksRuna is an amazing beverage, that’s made from a Guayusa, a native Amazonian tree leaf that indigenous people in Ecuador have brewed like tea for thousands of years. And these drinks are absolutely delicious! It contains twice the antioxidants of green tea, and the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee. Just as amazing as the drinks themselves, is the brilliant story behind Brooklyn-based Runa, the company, which I absolutely love.

The founder, Tyler, was spending time doing research in Ecuador during college and was struck by the tough choices indigenous families in the region faced, while trying to preserve their heritage and customs, and at the same time feed their families and ‘progress’ in an increasingly globalized world. A fan of the clean energy that the Guayusa drink provided, Tyler set about to find a way to create a Fair Trade business in a culturally valuable way for these Native peoples, and share the taste and benefits of Guayusa with the world. Today, Runa supports more than two thousand farming families and employs forty people. Plus, the drinks are delicious! Ranging from hot teas to lightly carbonated beverages and bottled cold drinks, Runa products are really worth a try. Find where to buy at

Amanda Lacey Miracle Tonic

Amanda Lacey Miracle TonicAnother favorite product is Amanda Lacey’s Miracle Tonic. I first read about it in a magazine review, in which the editors claimed to have become addicted to it! Interesting, I thought. You don’t often hear about an addiction to a skin product. It’s slightly pricey, but I was really intrigued and decided to give it a try. I ordered from the only US vendor, Shen Beauty in NYC.

Amanda Lacey is a British aesthetician who developed her own line of products a few years ago. I have to say, my own addiction to Miracle Tonic developed pretty quickly. I’m not sure if it’s the faintly medicinal scent, that’s neither obtrusive nor overtly floral, or the fresh, tingly sensation that lasts on well after you’ve swiped it over your face. I think it’s the latter; it’s amazing how much grime Miracle Tonic can lift off even after thoroughly washing your face, and it really feels like a detoxification for the skin, allowing it to breathe and take in oxygen. I don’t use it every single day because of the price, but this really has become a product that I can’t do without, three or four times a week!

Jamie Oliver Cookbooks

Jamie Oliver CookbooksI’m still crazy about almost all Jamie Oliver’s cookbooks. My most recent favorite, Jamie’s 30 Minutes Meals – is the most interesting approach to preparing from-scratch weeknight family dinners that I’ve seen. It’s definitely a challenge for someone who works full time to put together a healthy family meal each evening, along with helping with homework, being ‘present’ for children and unwinding from the day. The meals in this book are mostly three courses and I usually only make the main, but they’re uber simple to assemble and the instructions are laid out in true chronological order on precisely what to do and when, if you do make all three courses simultaneously. The dishes are fresh, delicious and easy to adapt (something that’s essential for me as a cook who loves to improvise). Broken down into single steps, there are also lots of tasks that the children can get involved with, too – which I think is ever so important if they’re to grow up to be healthy, self-sufficient adults at a later date. Thoroughly recommend this book!

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