birthday letterboard with confetti

Turning 36? Here Are 9 Essential Items For an Easier Year

I’m turning 36 in just a few short days. As I write this article there are only 3 days left until my next birthday. The older I get, the faster the days seem to go by. It feels like just yesterday that I was writing about my must-haves for turning 35. And while things haven’t changed that much for me from last year to this year, there are quite a few things I can’t imagine going through year 36 without them in my arsenal.

Here are the 9 essential items that, I think, make life easier when turning 36!

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I will receive commission for any purchase made through those links. Prices subject to change at any time.

Start Each Day With Espresso

Turning 36? Here are 9 Essential Items for an Easier Year- Espresso
Making my own espresso at home.

I love a good cup of coffee or espresso from a local coffee shop. But with rising prices and the need to save money, making my own espresso at home has been life-changing.

For Christmas of 2022 my husband spoiled me with the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine. I have a fairly extensive history with coffee and espresso machines, so using this machine has been a breeze. If you haven’t been a barista like I have, it is super easy to use! My husband now uses it to make his own espresso, too.

Now that I’m turning 36, I can’t imagine life without being able to make my own espresso drinks at home. I don’t often have time to stop at a coffee shop. And when I do, I feel a bit of guilt for spending the $6+ on something I could make at home. Lavazza’s Super Crema Whole Bean Espresso (Light-Medium Roast) is one of my absolute favorites. I can guarantee you that this treat will be in my kitchen throughout my 36th year. And while it may seem pricey upfront, it is way cheaper to make this at home than it is to go out and buy a cup of jo’.

While not completely on my list this year, this is still a must-have!

No espresso machine? No worries! You can still brew espresso just like you would with coffee. There are articles and instructions all over the web that can show you how to get the best results with a coffee machine.

Collagens Make Turning 36 A Bit Easier

Turning 36? Here are 9 Essential Items for an Easier Year
One scoop of this in my coffee every morning!

Collagen peptides are a fairly new thing for me. But they will definitely continue to be part of my morning routine as I go into my 36th year. I’ve tried a few different kinds, but Purely Inspired Collagen Peptides are my favorite so far.

Every morning I add one scoop to my coffee. So far, my nails seem to be benefiting from this supplement more than anything else. They are stronger and longer than they have ever been. My hair grows pretty fast and healthy, too!

But there’s one other thing that I love about this particular supplement. Vitamin C and Zinc are also part of this formula. It’s no secret that Vitamin C and Zinc are awesome for immune health. But did you know that Zinc is also good for depression? Many studies over the last ten years have shown that zinc in combination with antidepressants can reduce depression symptoms. I can’t say for sure, but I can tell a difference in my mood if I skip the collagen for numerous days in a row. This is just another reason why I love this particular brand!

Quick, Cute Nails for My 36th Year

Turning 36? Here are 9 Essential Items for an Easier Year- Nails
My current nail set.

Speaking of strong nails, I have vowed to have pretty nails now that I’m turning 36! As I get older it is more and more apparent that self-care needs to be a priority. I don’t go out and get manicures…as much as I would love to, I just don’t have the time or money. But healthy hands and nails are important for me.

I haven’t always had the best nails. I used to bite them habitually. Sometimes it was so bad that they would split or peel, and so I just never painted them. But things have changed. I take care of my hands (I kind of have to now that I have a macrame business!). My two little girls see my nails and hands, and they’re now learning to take care of theirs, too.

Dashing Diva has so many cute options!

Even though I don’t do manicures, I do love the gel nail strips that Dashing Diva makes. They have so many different colors and prints, including holiday prints. The strips are super easy to put on…I can do mine in less than 30 minutes! And the best part? They’re affordable. You can find them at Target, CVS and their own website. I suggest checking out their website because that’s where you’ll find the most options.

Going Into 36 With Fun T-Shirts

Who else can relate? Get this shirt here.

No matter how old I’m turning, I almost always seem to have music in my head. My husband, kids or anyone else that I’m talking to can say a word and immediately there’s a new song stuck in my head.

The funniest part about these songs? Regardless of how old I am, it’s usually a song from the ’90s or 2000s.

Recently I saw this shirt on Amazon and knew I had to have it. Let me tell you…it is so soft! I’m often skeptical of the quality of certain items, and clothing is definitely one of them. But this shirt defied all odds, and has quickly become one of my favorites.

No matter how old you are, I think it’s fun to show a little bit of your personality in your wardrobe. While I won’t wear this t-shirt to an interview, there’s a good chance you’ll spot me at Costco getting groceries while wearing it!

A Massage Gun for the Mid-Thirties Aches

A 30s-something must-have!

I’ll be honest: I have A LOT of exercise and physical therapy gadgets at home. With a history of back and hip issues, and now neck/nerve issues, I have several pieces of equipment that I can use to help stretch and strengthen daily. But hands-down one of my favorite gadgets that I can’t live without this year is my massage gun!

There are many times when I can’t afford a massage or no one is around to help me work the knots out of my hips and shoulders. This little massage gun has become a lifesaver in those moments. Equipped with several attachments and many levels of pressure, it is sure to come in handy for many different aches and pains.

While these massage guns have become popular over the last few years, they can also be kind of expensive. But not the one that I have! It is very affordable and works great. It also has plenty of great reviews to back up my own sentiments. Definitely go check it out!

Turning 36 Doesn’t Mean You’re Too Old for a New Hobby

My new hobby is now my new business!

Let me say this louder for those that need to hear it: A hobby is so important for your mental health, and especially as you get older! I’ve had hobbies off and on throughout the years, but none of them really seem to stick. I think the only thing I’ve consistently done in the last ten years is cooking for fun. But here I am turning 36, and I’ve finally found the one that I want to stick.

Macrame has been a blessing for my soul and my inner-peace. For once I have found a hobby that brings me joy, that allows me to make beautiful things, and that has the potential to be something greater for me. It is an amazing feeling! I think my husband can tell I’m serious about this one, too. He’s been invested in me this Christmas by gifting me the fabric scissors that I’ve been wanting. And he got me a cutting mat. It’s been great for me, and it allows me to show my children that hobbies can be healthy.

Another crafting must-have for year 36.

Your hobby does not need to become a business. In fact, I highly suggest against it unless you know that you won’t end up resenting that hobby later. I didn’t even know I wanted to do macrame until I randomly bought a macrame starter kit one day. Try a few different hobbies, and eventually you’ll find at least one that you love and that brings you joy.

Budgeting My Way Through 36

Turning 36? Here are 9 Essential Items for an Easier Year- Budget Planner
New business or not, budgeting is always a good idea.

I have vowed to make year 36 the year of disciplined budgeting. This is in no ways a New Year’s resolution. It is, in fact, a smart move on my part since I have decided to start my own business.

When I first started thinking about hardcore budgeting I was considering apps and websites. But I hate being on my phone or computer unless I absolutely have to. So I bought this budget book instead! It has all of the features that I need, plus it allows me to actually see my budgeting plan written out in front of me. Did I mention it’s got a pretty cover, too?

Sweet Sleep in Year 36

white bedspread beside nightstand with white and copper table lamp
Photo by Burst on

Sleep is so important! I’ve realized that on my own, but not everyone gets to that point of realization. As I get older I find myself getting sleepier faster. I go to bed way earlier than I used to. Sometimes I even take naps during the day…imagine that!

But two of the key factors that have contributed to better sleep for me over the past two years: our Purple weighted blanket and Purple pillows. Sure, Purple is nothing new to the world of mattresses and comfort supplies. But as I get older I start to appreciate their products more and more.

So if you’re turning 36 this year…get more sleep, and better sleep at that! It’s good for you.

Keep Drinking That Water After Turning 36

No matter what age you are turning, water should be a key component of your day. But now that I’m turning 36, I’ve realized that hydration is even more important that before.

Sure, Stanley cups are all the rage right now. I have one myself. But I’m telling you, there are plenty of other great insulated cups out there. My husband recently gifted me that Beast 30z Insulated Tumbler. I don’t like cold water, but it does a great job at keeping my water temp right where I want it. And it’s perfect for keeping my coffee hot, too.

Get yourself a good cup this year, no matter the brand, and make sure that you stay hydrated in year 36. Your body will thank you for it!

What’s On Your List for 36?

While year 36 isn’t a milestone year, it is another year closer to middle-aged life. While most of the things on my list are wants and convenience items, I have seen an increase in things that I need in order to make life easier and healthier as I grow older.

What would you put on your list of essential things to make life easier in year 36? I would love to hear about them in the comments below!

Before I end this one, happy birthday to all of my January people! I might be biased, but what a great month to have a birthday 😊

Until next time…