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Immune Boosting Foods

In my last blog post I talked about what I do to stay healthy and boost my immune system. One of the several things, and probably the most natural thing that you can do to boost your immune system is by eating immune boosting foods. Check out this list of the top 10 immune boosting foods that I love!

1. Red Bell Peppers

Red bell peppers are good for your immune system because they contain a lot of Vitamin C and Vitamin A in addition to Vitamin E. Healthline says, “Ounce for ounce, red bell peppers contain twice as much vitamin C as citrus.”

2. Broccoli

Broccoli is “a good source of fibre and protein, and contains iron, potassium, calcium, selenium and magnesium as well as the vitamins A, C, E, K and a good array of B vitamins including folic acid” (BBC, Good Food).

3. Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits are high in vitamin C. Ods.od.nih.gov says, “Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble nutrient found in some foods. In the body, it acts as an antioxidant, helping to protect cells from the damage caused by free radicals.”

4. Garlic

Garlic contains maganese, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, selenium, fiber, and more. It is antibacterial and antiviral. Healthline says, “Early civilizations recognized its value in fighting infections. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative HealthTrusted Source, garlic may also help lower blood pressure and slow down hardening of the arteries. Garlic’s immune-boosting properties seem to come from a heavy concentration of sulfur-containing compounds, such as allicin.”

5. Ginger

Ginger has been known to help with nausea but did you know it’s also beneficial for inflammatory issues? This can help you with a sore throat and decrease inflammation.

6. Spinach

Spinach is full of Vitamin C and amazing antioxidants and beta carotene. This helps to “increase the infection-fighting ability of our immune systems,” (Healthline). Spinach is most powerful when slightly cooked as to release its Vitamin A (and other nutriets). 

7. Turmeric

Turmeric has been used for several years to help naturally treat inflammatory issues. This makes it a great spice to add to your food!

8. Kiwifruit

Kiwifruit, or other known as kiwi, are full of folate, potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin C

9. Cabbage

Cabbage is full of tons of amazing nutrients including Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Folate, Manganese, Vitamin B6, Calcium, Potassium, and Magnesium. Not only is cabbage full of Vitamin C, it also helps with inflammation and digestion. There are so many reasons to love cabbage!

10. Sweet Potatoes

Much like cabbage, sweet potatoes are full of amazing nutrients (Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Manganese, Vitamin B6, Potassium, Pantothenic acid, Copper, Niacin, and antioxidants that help protect your body from free radicals). Sweet potatoes also helpl with your gut health! Sweet potatoes may also help with brain function and eye sight.

If you enjoyed reading this and would like more information on home, lifestyle, advice, tips, tricks, and more, follow me on Instagram @Its.Mary.Taylor and on Facebook at Mary Taylor! I can’t wait to see you there!

 

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

** Resources/references used for this article:

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminC-Consumer/

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-broccoli

https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/foods-that-boost-the-immune-system

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-cabbage

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/sweet-potato-benefits#section1

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Staying Healthy & Boosting Your Immune System

There are so many ways for individuals to stay healthy! I am by no means a health professional so please consult with your doctor if you are feeling ill or if you’re not sure about any of these tips or tricks that I use. Every body is different.

Here are some things that I use to help boost my immune system, stay healthy, and recover quickly.

Some of the links in this blog are commissioned links. This means I may earn a small commission when you use these links. It doesn’t cost you anything and I cannot see who purchases what.

Lypo-spheric Vitamin C

This specific kind of Vitamin C is better than your standard Vitamin C (you know those chewables you might of had as a kid – or even as an adult) because it absorbs better in your body. Often times less than 20% of traditional tablets Vitamin C actually get absorbed into your body unlike Lypo-spheric Vitamin C which has about a 98% absorption rate. You can read more about Lypo-spheric Vitamin C here. Keep in mind that some Lypo-spheric Vitamin C doesn’t taste very pleasant. Don’t say I didn’t warn you! Haha. Here’s a commissioned link to our favorite Lypo-spheric Vitamin C (we have tried three different kinds – this is the easiest to take and definitely the most popular worldwide).

Raw garlic

Growing up my mom teased that I “didn’t even know how to blow [my] nose” because I never got sick. Whenever I would feel something coming on, I was spoon fed pressed garlic and given some Emergen-c to wash it down after holding it on the back of my tongue for as long as I could. It does burn slightly if you’re not used to it, but it’s definitely worth it. We do this two to three times a day at the first sign of sickness and continue until we feel better. Garlic contains maganese, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, selenium, fiber, and more. It is antibacterial and antiviral. If you can’t stand taking raw garlic, they have several options of odorless garlic supplements such as these. We take a supplement that includes garlic, vitamin C, zinc, echinacea, and olive leaf but I can’t find them online. This one and this one are quite similar in the fact that they include a lot of different important immune boosters.

Colloidal silver

Colloidal silver is a liquid which contains pure silver. It is antibacterial and great for a DIY hand or surface spray. You can also take it internally.

You can read more about colloidal silver here and purchase your own here.

Echinacea

Echinacea is a flowering plant that can be taken to strengthen the immune system. Research shows that Echinacea increases the number of white blood cells, which fight infections. When we are feeling sick, we take immune boosting supplements that have Echinacea in them. You can purchase your own here on Amazon!

Zinc

Zinc keeps the immune system strong, helps heal wounds, and supports normal growth. Zinc can help shorten the length of a cold especially when taken within 24 hours of becoming sick. Many natural common cold multi-vitamins have Zinc included! That’s personally what I do but if you would like to purchase zinc on it’s own, you can do so here.

Olive Leaf

Olive leaf naturally supports a healthy immune system. It can also be found in several of the mixed vitamin supplements. Olive leaf extract is known for it’s ability to boost your immune system rather than manipulating your system just to mask your symptoms.

Multi-vitamins

Multivitamins are supplements that contain many different vitamins and minerals. They can help with brain function, eye health, and heart health. These are great for every day health especially for those that may be lacking nutriets. This is the one that both my husband and I take!

Probiotics

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that promote a healthy gut. They help with digestion, immune support, weight loss, and more. You can find probiotics naturally in foods/drinks such as yogurt, kombucha, sauerkraut, miso, pickles, and so much more! Many people believe that all disease begins in the gut so improving your gut health is vital to your overall health and immunity.

To learn more about the health benefits of probiotics click here. To learn more about your gut health click here.

Essential oils:

On Guard, Thieves, oregano, rosemary, cinnamon/clove, and tea tree oils are some that come to mind when talking about immune supporting essential oils. Much like how we use other natural products (garlic, probiotics, olive leaf, echinacea, zinc, and vitamin c) to improve and support our health, we can use essential oils as well. Essential oils are, “a natural oil typically obtained by distillation and having the characteristic odour of the plant or other source from which it is extracted,” (Google seach). It’s important to note that you should be using pure 100% essential oils. Many brands of oils are actually contamined with fillers which are not safe for your skin when applied or your body when taken internally. 

You can use most, if not all, of these oils internally and externally through diffusing, applying to the skin (with a carrier oil), or even used in cooking/drinks/pill capsules. There will be a seperate blog here for how you can use essential oils in your immune support routine. 

Daily exercise

It’s no secret that our bodies are meant to be active. It’s hard to want to be active when sick so keeping up with exercise on the daily is even more important. To learn more about how exercise can help improve your health, check out this article

Eat healthy/immune boosting foods

Just as we talked about above with using oils and other natural medicinal plants for your health, eating healthy food is extremely important. You can check out this blog with some ideas of immune boosting foods (you might be surprised)! If you have an immune boosting recipe you would like to share with us, feel free to come to my Facebook page and let me know!

Little to no alcohol or sugar if possible

Have you ever gotten sick after a big night out? It might have been because drinking excessive alcohol can weaken your immune system. Especially when you’re already sick you should refrain from drinking alcohol and from consuming sugar. You can read more about the affect that alcohol has on your immune system here. You can read a recent article about how sugar weakens your immune system here

Wash and sanitize your hands

This one is quite obvious but of course, I had to include it! Wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap in warm running water for the best clean. Use sanitizer only when you need to and keep in mind that the alcohol in hand saniziter can be very drying for your hands so don’t forget to moisturize. I will be linking a bunch of fun and easy DIY hand sanitizer recipes here

I hope you learned a lot about how to maintain and boost your immune system! If you’d like to contribute more tips and tricks or you learned something and want to keep learning more, join me on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date with new information and blogs! You can also follow me on Pinterest! I can’t wait to see you there. 

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

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Tips for Writing Social Media Posts w/ Topic Ideas

I was speaking to a client a few weeks ago and she says, “Writing and creating social media posts just aren’t my thing. In fact, I HATE it!” I totally get it – we all have aspects of business that we just don’t enjoy. She proceeded to talk about her business – their mission, goals, and the all around idea of what she does. When she finished up I said, “And that right there was four social media posts. That’s what you should share about! Your passions, your goals, what your business is REALLY about!” I could almost hear the buzzer going off in her head, “You’re right! I never thought about it like that!” 

tips for writing social media posts

When you’re writing your social media posts, don’t overthink. You can use how you really feel about what you do to help you create social media posts. You still might not enjoy the act of doing it but at least you know what you want to talk about. Write down those stories, goals, and purpose behind your business.

Creating social media posts is also about repurposing content. Some of your followers might be new so sometimes you might need to re-introduce yourself or your business. You can also repurpose content from your business plan, website, and more. Especially when starting out, it’s important to establish why your company stands out. You should give a general overview of who you are and what you do. Then, you can start to post about other things – quotes that fit your business, stories, testimonials, etc.

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I find it so much easier to sit down and schedule out posts (using Later) instead of having to think of something to post every day. Once you start, you might actually get into the groove of it and soon you’ll find you’re all scheduled out for a week or more. 

If you’re not sure what to post about here’s a list of ideas:

  1. Your mission statement
  2. Descriptions of your services (if applicable)
  3. Photos/descriptions of your products (if applicable)
  4. Behind the scenes
  5. Testimonials
  6. Quotes relating to your business
  7. Tips about something within your industry
  8. Thank your customers
  9. Definitions/teach your audience something new
  10. Repurpose blog content
  11. How-to
  12. Throwback
  13. Real-life customer images
  14. Story time
  15. How you started/background
  16. Why you’re unique/different
  17. Your passions/purpose

If you’re still stuck on what to post, don’t hesitate to book a one-on-one social media coaching session with me or hire me for social media management services. Don’t forget to sign up to my mailing list for more FREE social media tips and tricks and join our FREE social media discussion and engagement group here.

If this blog helped you learn something new or get inspiration, you can follow along with what I am up to on Facebook here or on Instagram here

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

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Fun Board Games

Looking for fun, new board games and card games for yourself and your family? You’ve come to the right place! Here is a selection of games that we have and love! If you have any other suggestions, let me know by contacting me via Facebook or Instagram! If you like what you see here and want to join our shopping group on Facebook, head to Mary Taylor’s Shopping Finds or use the link provided.

As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through my links. I cannot see who purchases what. You will not be charged anything extra for clicking or using the links provided. 

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30+ Things to do at Home While in Isolation

What has isolation looked like for you? People around the world are being forced or encouraged to stay inside – to self-isolate and to quarantine during this virus epidemic. Many people are struggling with what to do with so much time at home. No matter who you are or what you do as a profession, here are some suggestions on what you can do at home with your extra time. Keep in mind that these are great activities for all year round (looking at those that have snowed in winters).

General things you can do to keep busy:

  1. De-clutter: create a box of things that you can donate or sell (clothes, toys, shoes, kitchenware, etc)
  2. Reorganize your leftover items
  3. Go through your emails and delete what you don’t need anymore
  4. Delete and organize the photos on your phone and on your computer
  5. Start or complete a DIY project
  6. Cook or bake something new
  7. Read a book
  8. Start a new TV series
  9. Garden
  10. Meditate
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11. Find a new podcast to listen to
12. Create new Spotify playlists
13. Practice yoga or learn a new workout routine (there are tons of great videos on YouTube for free!)
14. Deep clean your house
15. Learn to sew or knit
16. Learn or practice a new language
17. Learn or practice a new instrument
18. Plan fun, indoor date nights
19. Set the living room up like a movie theater and have a movie night (we use a projector like this one)
20. Have a game night/day (here are some games that we have and love)
21. Rest/take a nap! You deserve it!
22. Call/Facetime/Skype friends and family members you haven’t spoken to you recently – even have a virtual double date
23. Go through everything that you’ve saved on Facebook and remove what you don’t need                        24. Have an at home spa/pamper day

If you’re an entrepreneur or business owner, here are some things that you can do from home:

  1. Update your website with new information and/or pictures
  2. Start a blog on your website or schedule out future blog posts on your current blog
  3. Schedule out social media posts
  4. Create new social accounts that you don’t already have but would like to (Pinterest, Tik Tok, Facebook group, YouTube channel, etc)
  5. Learn something new through an online course or YouTube
  6. Re-organize your office space

7. Interact for a minimum of 60 minutes every day on social media
8. Create a list of goals for the next six months
9. Spruce up your current social media pages with new highlight covers, Facebook covers, etc.
10. Design a new logo
11. Network with and support other professionals
12. Go live on Facebook
13. Give other businesses you’ve worked with reviews online
14. Update all of your accounts including Google
15. Update contact forms, questionnaires, etc.
16. Create another form of income such as listing templates on Etsy

If you’re looking to take on a virtual assistant or social media manager during this time, I would love to help! You can learn more about the services that I provide by going to my services page here.

To help you stay motivated and on top of it, every day I will be posting on my Facebook page at least one task! If you have done the task or that will be your task for the day, comment and let me know! Let’s hold each other accountable while having fun. If you have any other ideas of what people can do to make their time at home more interesting, productive, or fun, let us know on Facebook or Instagram! To find good recipes, fun activities, and interesting articles, follow me on Pinterest here.

I hope this blog helped you to think of some fun and productive ideas! If it did and you would like to stay updated with more blogs and posts, you can find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

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10 Cheap Date Ideas

Robbie and I love having date night! Whether it’s going out for a movie, finding a new happy hour spot, or eating at a sit down restaurant, it’s always fun! But, since we are saving for our new home, we often want to go on dates without the added expenses. We have learned to turn almost every night into a date night (even if that means watching trashy reality TV in bed)!

Here are some of the cheap (or free) date nights we recommend:

  1. A DIY art project! We went to a dollar store (you can also shop online at the Dollar Tree and have things delivered) and picked out a bunch of things to create a sign with our last name! We don’t often get creative with crafts so this was a new and fun way to connect. We brainstormed where it would go and what colors to use before we sat down to execute it together.
  2. A walk through the neighborhood. This is a great way to get exercise and connect with your partner. Whether you want to walk through your neighborhood or go somewhere else for a hike this is a perfect date night/day activity! You can even find a new place to watch the sunset.
  3. Window shopping! We like to get out as much as we can so even when we don’t have to buy anything, we like to walk around the mall and window shop. Even if we don’t leave with anything, we still get to talk, explore, and get some easy exercise. This is a great winter date night activity for when it’s raining or snowing (as long as the mall is indoors)! 
  4. Happy hour – but just go for one drink! We love trying new places and new drinks but sometimes don’t have the funds to go for a full dinner. Find a place during the week that has daily specials or happy hour. Super easy, super fun, and way cheaper than a full priced date night.
  5. Game night! We love playing games and if you already own them, it’s free to play! 
  6. Gardening! For some this might be a chore but we had fun going shopping for and planting our own garden. It was not only cheap but it also provides us food for more date nights.
  7. Beer or wine tasting at home. Go to your local grocery store and pick out a few wines or beers to try at home. You can cover the labels or put the bottles in brown bottle bags and guess which one was the most/least expensive, the oldest, or the best!
  8. Go on a picnic. You need to eat dinner anyways so why not pack it up and take it to a park you’ve never been to before? This is super fun and really easy! 
  9. YouTube dance lessons. We did this when we were practicing for our wedding dance and it was a blast! We laughed the whole time! We also found a local restaurant that offered free dance lessons once a week. If you look you might something similar in your area! 
  10. Read a book together. Find a book that both of you have never read and read it outloud together. Robbie and I are currently reading The Power of Now and it’s super fascinating! Neither of us are big readers but it’s been fun to read together.

BONUS: If you have an animal shelter close by, see if you can volunteer! You can even go in just to pet and play with the animals. This is a great way to help the community, serve others, and spend time with your partner.

If this blog helped you to learn something new or get inspiration and you want to stay up to date with what we are doing, follow me on Instagram or Facebook! I’d love to hear about what you do for date nights too! 

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3 

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Welcome

I’ve always known I loved writing. Even as a child I would spend my free time writing stories, researching book ideas, and journaling. Honestly, I had tried to start a blog several times – especially when traveling throughout Europe. Maybe I can even archive some of my old posts and share them with you! It wasn’t until I pursued my love of weddings and started Mary Taylor Weddings that I truly started blogging. 

If this is your first time on my website and you haven’t read about me, here’s some things you should know:

I am originally from the US but moved to New Zealand in September 2018 to join my [now] husband, Robbie! In my free time you’ll see me cooking, camping, adventuring, and creating. I love a good DIY project, playing in my garden, and binge watching reality tv. #SoGuilty. On my blog you’ll read about everything under the sun! From business and marketing to weekend getaways and home projects! I can’t wait to share snippets of my life with you!

Now, when it comes to business, I’m a New Zealand based blogger, professional photographer/retoucher, and social media manager who works with companies from around the world. If it has to do with business, I want to talk about it! I love helping other entrepreneurs to learn more about networking and social media. With degrees in photography and marketing, I excel in my roles as a social media manager, retoucher, and content creator!

I can’t wait to begin to share some of very own recipes (if you can even call them that), social media tips, trips around the world, fashion deals, and so much more. You’ll even get the behind-the-scenes as we build our brand new home! 

If you’d like to join my emailing list so you can stay up to date on blogs, please fill out this form.

I would love to connect with you on social media! You can find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest by clicking the icons below! 

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3