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AliExpress Gifts for Kids

Last month I wrote a blog about Christmas Gift Ideas for Guys and when continuing my search for Christmas presents, I came across some of the most amazing AliExpress gifts for kids! You’ll want to add these to your cart right away so they arrive in time for Christmas but if you have the time, these are SO worth the wait.

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

These AliExpress kids finds are perfect for Christmas gifts for kids – especially if you’re on a budget! I’ve included everything from kids toys to kids clothes! These are definitely unique kids gifts. Don’t forget to join my free shopping group on Facebook to see more fun finds and shopping inspiration!

If you’re not set of having Lego or you’re on a budget but still want to build, you have to check out these Lego look-alikes from AliExpress! They have several different sets and the reviews are incredible. Check out these cheap Lego alternatives:

Do you love magic?! Have you ever seen gypsies, travelers, or magicians selling fun puzzle games? Here’s where they probably got them. These interactive games are even educational as they get your brain thinking.

 

 

Metal Montessori Puzzle

If you prefer the wood style puzzles, check out these several different options:

You can even build your very own wood plane or ship model using these laser cut out wood kits!

Have you ever played tetris? What about wood tetris? Well, now you can!

The amount of montessori based toys that AliExpress has is SO cool! Check out these large Rainbow Stacker Wooden Toys For Kids

They even have wood baby toys! Check out these high quality baby 3D wooden puzzles!

How cute are these baby’s first Christmas PJ’s on AliExpress?!

If you’re looking for inexpensive, modern children’s clothing on AliExpress, here are some my favorites!

I can’t wait to see what you purchased! Feel free to share your reviews with us in our shopping group and post pictures when your items arrive. Don’t forget to save this post (even better, you can pin it to your Pinterest) so you can come back for more updates! Don’t forget to follow me so you can stay up to date with new blog posts and pins.

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

© Susannah Lynn Photography

Anniversary Weekend (Turned Week) | One Year Anniversary Ideas

What a whirlwind the last week has been! We were supposed to celebrate our first year wedding anniversary the weekend before our anniversary, but something came up and we had to reschedule. Our actual anniversary wasn’t until Monday/Tuesday (depending if you want to count US time – where we got married – or NZ time – where we live but it’s a day ahead).

You can read all about our San Diego wedding and our New Zealand wedding reception. If you’re a current bride or bride-to-be and would like wedding inspiration, check out our FREE wedding Facebook group.

This blog post may contain affiliate links and ads. I may earn a small commission from clicks but they don’t cost you anything to use them and they help support me & my family. Thank you for understanding.

I had been planning my surprise for several weeks though and I couldn’t hold out much longer so I followed through with my plans on the Friday before our wedding anniversary. It was a combination of a few people helping me pull off the ultimate surprise! Thank you to my in-laws for secretly sneaking my wedding dress into our apartment (there’s a funny story about that) and to Suzanne from Stellar Backdrops for the INCREDIBLE wood prints.

I put on my wedding dress, laid out Robbie’s wedding outfit (even his bowtie) for him to put on then I set up the living room with my Stellar prints and a platter board and surprised Robbie! I had our wedding video playing in the background and we re-watched it and listened to our wedding speeches over again (while in tears). You can watch our wedding video here.

When I received my Stellar Backdrops order, I was absolutely speechless at how gorgeous they were. I was worried that like other wood prints I have purchased in the past, that the images would look blown out (too bright) and would lack the detail and color in the original image but they turned out perfectly! We love the 3D wood lettering on the wall hanging image and the shape, size, and stand for the hexagon print. We can’t wait to show these off in our home! You can find Stellar Backdrops on Instagram, Facebook, and even on their website! To receive a 10% discount towards your first purchase of their wooden print range – use code THANKYOU10. Valid until 30 September 2020. If you have anything from Stellar Backdrops already or use purchase from them after seeing this blog, take a photo and tag me on Instagram and/or Facebook, I would love to see what you got!

If you’re looking for anniversary gift ideas, prints are a great way to remember your wedding day and have beautiful home artwork! We’re even going to put the wall hanging print as the centerpiece for an entire photo wall in our hallway (if you want to see more about our home building process and home inspiration blogs, you can find me on Instagram @its.mary.taylor and read home-related blogs here).

On our actual anniversary, a few days later, we weren’t going to do anything but Robbie (my husband) convinced me to get off work and head to dinner! He didn’t need to do much convincing because I love exploring new restaurants. We had been wanting to go to a restaurant in the harbour for years so when he told me we were going there, I was even more excited!

The rest of the week included eating out almost every night, hanging out with friends, and relaxing at home. When the weekend came, it was finally Robbie’s day to plan! Saturday morning I slept in and was greeted with a list of activities for the day. I didn’t realize until later that evening why he had chosen all of these activities in the order that he did. Can you figure it out?

Photos, art, picnic, earrings (or errands – to go buy earrings), restaurant. I’ll give you a hint. Do you know what the traditional one year anniversary gift is?

It’s paper! We weren’t going to do gifts this year so he spelled out paper with the first letter of each activity! Although we didn’t actually do everything on the list (it was way too cold for a picnic so we got lunch with his parents instead – which was just as good), we had so much fun with each of the things we did!

I loved that he thought about me and really put effort into our day of celebration. I had been wanting photos for a while but we kept putting it off. It was actually so much more fun than I thought it would be! We walked all around looking for amazing street art and murals in Mount Maunganui. If you come here or you live around here and want to see some street art for yourself, check out this amazing map with locations of street art and murals in Tauranga and Mount Maunganui! Here are some of my favorite images!

Love a good (funny) outtake!

To finish off the day, we went to my favorite Italian restaurant in the Mount. They always spoil us and even set up an adorable candle for us at our booth right by the fireplace. We always get the sharing platter – value for money 100/10.

On Sunday, we got to have another relaxing, go with the flow day. We went to the local farmers market, had massages (best of our lives – and again, another local Mount Maunganui place we often go to), and even sat in the sun at our community pool. For dinner I made the most incredible pulled chicken tacos!

If you’re looking for one year wedding anniversary gift ideas (paper related gift ideas), here are some fun options:

💌 Tickets somewhere (a show, amusement park, plane tickets, etc)

💌 Printed pictures, artwork, or a wedding album (technically made out of paper and if you get a Stellar Backdrop wood print, wood makes paper 😉)

💌 Lottery tickets

💌 A new journal or book (here are some really cool marriage journals that could be fun)

💌 DIY coupons

💌 Magazine subscription

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

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DIY Eco-Friendly Products You Can Make At Home

I’ve always been interested in living as eco-friendly as I possibly can but the last few years I have been even more committed to making it part of my lifestyle. This year we ditched single-use paper towels, tissues, baby wipes, makeup removing wipes, and so much more! We are even in the process of getting rid of liquid soaps. Love eco-friendly ideas just as much as me? You can check out my Eco-Friendly Home Swaps blog here!

This blog post contains affiliate links. I may make a small commission from purchases you make from this blog but I cannot see who purchases you what. You are NOT charged anything additional for using my links. It helps me continue to provide you with fun and interesting blog posts, shopping tips, and suggestions. Thank you for your support. 

Not only can you reduce your grocery bill and weekly spending by creating your own products at home, you can also help the planet! Did you know that more than 552 million shampoo bottles could be ending up in landfills every year?

Here are a few simple eco-friendly home recipes you can easily make from home!

Check out my Amazon list for where to buy some of the ingredients and “tools” (spray bottles, jars, etc), you’ll need to make these eco-friendly products at home!

All purpose cleaner: You’re going to be shocked at how easy this recipe is! You can read the full blog with the recipe here.

Conditioner with apple cider vinegar: Did you know that apple cider vinegar stimulates hair growth and prevents hair loss? It also has antibacterial and antifungal properties. You can make your own apple cider vinegar conditioner by adding apple cider vinegar and water to a spray bottle. After shampooing, spray the apple cider vinegar mixture into your hair and wait one minute. Then, rinse it out! If you want to make it smell better, add a few drops of your favorite essential oils. Please make sure you’re using pure essential oils without synthetics – especially when applying to your skin in any way.

Dishwashing tablets: Here’s what you need:

2 cups of baking soda

2 cups of sodium percarbonate or washing soda

½ cup of citric acid

½ cup of white vinegar

20 drops of essential oil

(Optional) ½ cup of salt

Mix your dry ingredients then add your vinegar slowly. Mix well and add essential oils of choice (some great options include: lemon, peppermint, tea tree, cinnamon, and lavender). Place your mix into an ice cube container and let sit for 24 hours until hardened. Be gentle when using them as they won’t be as tough as the ones you buy from the supermarket.

Bug spray: All you need to make your own bug repellent is 30 drops of essential oils, witch hazel, water, and alcohol (rubbing alcohol or vodka)! Some good essential oils for bug spray include: lavender, lemon eucalyptus, citronella, lemongrass, peppermint, and tea tree. Find these oils on Amazon here. If you’re NZ or AUS based and would like help finding where to purchase these products, please reach out to me via Instagram. Please make sure you’re using pure essential oils without synthetics – especially when applying to your skin in any way.

Which of these were your favorite eco-friendly products that you can make at home? I plan to add even more tips and suggestions for DIY eco-friendly products so don’t forget to pin this blog post and come back later to find more ideas and inspiration.

If you make this recipe, please tag me on Facebook or Instagram so I can see your creations!

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

What questions do you have for a wedding

Where to Find Essential Oil Stock Images

Essential oil stock images images can be hard to find but look no further because I have suggestions on where to download doTERRA stock images!

First off, did you know that I create and sell doTERRA images and graphics? You can purchase them directly from me through my Instagram account @oilyimages or contact me if you’d like me to create something specific or see more images and graphics that I have ready to go.

I not only sell images but also essential oil Instagram stories or other engagement graphics and even essential oil recipe graphics!

If you’re looking at hosting a week long virtual event, we can customize a package of graphics just for you. Ask me what classes I suggest you run to get your audience involved!

If you’re looking to purchase several graphics and images and want to incorporate many different styles, you can sign up for a One Drop subscription here. By using this link, you will get an additional 10% off your first purchase (that means you can save up to $22.20 on their Unlimited Yearly plan)! You can check out my vault of images and graphics here. If you see any images here that you would like to purchase separately (without a subscription), please contact me

The FREE option: The last place I recommend looking into is Pexels. It’s one of my favorite stock sites. However, you won’t find as many options here!

I hope you found this blog helpful! Don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest to find more essential oil tips, tricks, and recipes.

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

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Christmas Gift Ideas for Guys

“Christmas gift ideas?! Really, Mary? It’s not even September yet!” Yes, really! My mother in law starts Christmas shopping for the next year on December 26th so I think in her book, I would be late to the game! Seriously, look it up on google, it’s a thing! Did you know that in the Philippines they start decorating and prepping for Christmas on September 1st? They even start playing Christmas music! They call it “ber months” which means it’s the start of the year where months end in “ber” (SeptemBER, OctoBER, NovemBER, DecemBER). 

This blog post contains affiliate links. I may make a small commission from purchases you make from this blog but I cannot see who purchases you what. You are NOT charged anything additional for using my links. It helps me continue to provide you with fun and interesting blog posts, shopping tips, and suggestions. Thank you for your support. 

Shopping for guys has always been the hardest part about Christmas shopping – even shopping for my own husband! I’ve attached my favorite Amazon gift ideas and AliExpress gift ideas but of course if you can find something locally, that’s even better! Amazon even has it’s very own “find a gift” section on their website to make it easy for you. Check it out here. You can find more of my fun finds and gift ideas on my lists here and even join our FREE shopping group on Facebook! 

Home Brewing Kit on Amazon

Money Clip Multi-Tool on Amazon

Ice Ball Glass on Amazon

Nintendo Switch on Amazon

I asked my husband what he would want as a gift and he said, “Anything for a smart home!”

Smart homes are the new “thing” and since we are building our first home, I thought I would throw in some fun smart home gift suggestions. Learn more about our home inspiration here.

Smart Plug on Amazon

Fingerprint Electronic Lock on AliExpress

Google Nest Home Thermostat on Amazon

Wifi Plug on AliExpress

Robot Vacuum on Amazon

We have a robot vacuum and LOVE it!!

I would love to see what you get your partner, dad, and/or brother for Christmas this year! As always, feel free to tag me in posts relating to this blog post so I can share and see too! You can also share and see more shopping suggestions in our FREE shopping group on Facebook! 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

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It’s Mary Taylor’s Instagram Course | Learn How to Use Instagram

For those that don’t know me yet, I’m Mary! I am a social media manager and social media coach specializing in Instagram. I love to help other business owners and curious clients learn more about how to utilize Instagram to build like, know and trust as well as credibility and brand awareness within their community of current and potential followers.

Like with most things, there are general questions that I get asked a lot when it comes to Instagram. It can be anything from what is an Instagram story all the way to how do I view and record my analytics and insights.

In order to help answer my most asked questions and provide a baseline of knowledge for those interested in getting to know Instagram, I created an Instagram course

What’s This Instagram Course All About?

You’ll learn everything from creating & maintaining your brand and how to create an Instagram story to growing your account organically and learning more about hashtags! There are real-life screen recorded videos, screenshots, images, and written content to help you get started.

It’s Mary Taylor’s Instagram course includes:

📱Your access code and link to the Instagram Course (45 pages of Instagram knowledge & Goodness)

📱Your analytics template (excel file) with an example

📱Instagram Course Worksheets for Hashtags, etc. (PDF)

If you’re new to Instagram or you just want a little extra guidance, this is the course for you. I also offer one-on-one Instagram coaching which you can learn more about by contacting me here or finding me on social media. You’re always welcome to reach out to me!

Let me know what you think and don’t forget to tag me while taking your course if you take pictures along the way. I would love to see what you’re working on and connect with you on Instagram. You can find me @its.mary.taylor!

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