Right on Time.

Earlier this year, I mentioned that 2017 was going to be my “go out of my comfort zone” type of year. Primarily with photography opportunities, but also just saying yes to new experiences that come my way. When JORD watches reached out to be a partner for their ‘Father’s Day Gift’ campaign featuring their men’s watch: Dover – koa and black watch design, I couldn’t resist!

As I have gotten older, I’ve come to realize that giving a gift is much more rewarding than receiving one. On the flip side, I’ve also noticed that the important people in my life tend to be the most difficult to shop for, especially when it comes to the gents. With Father’s Day around the corner, there couldn’t be anything more perfect than a gift worth giving for their time well spent. (Puns always intended).

I’m the type who loves to gift something that is practical, good quality, and most of all, of sentimental value, hence the name “Sentiments of Sam.” With those key notes in mind, you could never go wrong with a watch. But I’m not speaking of just any watch. I’m talking about a masterpiece on your wrist. A modern touch that stray’s from the typical leather or metal strap. And dare I mention, most models are able to be engraved for that perfect, personalized touch. I myself, being an outdoors lover, can appreciate a wood work of art that can be worn with any outfit and for any event, which is exactly what JORD creates.

And to make this opportunity even more fun…JORD presents a contest that allows for everyone to be a winner! One lucky winner will receive a $100 e-gift code to be used towards one of their unique watches. The best part is that everyone that enters will receive a $25 e-gift code once the contest is over. Be sure to enter by clicking HERE. Simply put your name, email, and the cool watch you’d choose to win. Last day to enter is 5/28/2017. Don’t miss your chance!

Now for my favorite part…below you will find my top chosen photos featuring the Dover – koa and black watch. Be sure to find the time to get the beloved men in your life their Father’s Day prize.

Featured Watch | JORD for Men | JORD for Women

*This post is sponsored by JORD Wood Watches with the exception that all content, opinions, and photos were created by Sentiments of Sam.*

One of Many.

Before you even think it, I will admit it…I didn’t stick to my one post per month goal. However, I did have this post typed out in the month of February, so we can go ahead and give me an “A for effort.”

One of the best things you can do for yourself is to travel. It’s one investment that betters you as a person, not only for your daily, routined sanity but more deeply for your soul, mental health, and gaining life experiences. I’ll be the first to throw it out there that money is a factor but that’s the perfect opportunity for us to start small. Explore your current state while saving spare change for a bigger trip. Incorporate long weekend trips as opposed to weeks at a time.

So with that being said, this past weekend Chris (aka the boyfriend, babe, etc.) and I took a weekend getaway to St. Augustine, Florida. As current Florida residents, we chose a place that gave us a feeling of being away but still commutable (3 hours) without losing “vacay” time and not too harsh on the wallet. Not that anyone needs a reason to travel, but this was a perfect spot for a Valentine weekend. Each state in the US of has a history of course, just like people do, but I’d rate Florida being one with an interesting story. Our main point of attraction was the Castillo de San Marcos fort. A remarkable structure that endured battle after battle, but continued to stand strong. Now this post isn’t going to be a history lesson, however I would certainly recommend visiting this historic landmark at least once in your life especially if you ever 1. live in Florida, 2. vacation in Florida, and 3. if you love learning. From there we explored the nearby town which is conveniently within walking distance of the fort. If you enjoy handmade gems, crafts, and such then this town would be a delight for you. Another hot spot we hit was the San Sebastian Winery which offered a free self-guided tour through the cellar and free wine tastings along the way. Who can say no to that? Not this wino.

Below you will find some of my favorite moments from our little visit to Saint Augustine. If it isn’t already, please add this town to your must-see list.

Their new addition.

My 2017 is off to a great start and I hope yours is too! I’m not much of a “resolutionist,” but I do believe in setting goals & chasing dreams. This year I am going to post AT LEAST once a month and push myself to get out of my comfort zone more. So with that being said, this past Sunday I had the privilege of taking photographs for two of my dear friend’s baby announcement. I haven’t taken on the challenge of this type of photography before, but have been eager to expand my photo horizons. I was more than happy to start with them. For starters, the weather conditions were a tad harsh for us. Don’t get me wrong, because I love cooler weather. Living in Florida seems like paradise, but when your thin skin experiences 40-degree weather with occasional gusts of winds near the water can make for some kind of feelings about being outside.

Alright, back to the main topic. I’ve known the momma-to-be, Ashley since we were about 13 years old. To be embarking on this journey alongside her is pretty exciting, considering I haven’t entered this chapter yet and it’ll be the closest scenario for me being an auntie thus far. The daddy-to-be, Jeff, actually has been around since our younger years too and attended the same high school as us. Although we weren’t all connected during that time, it is always fun to see how and where our paths cross later in life to end up at this moment. The two of them are beyond excited to be adding to their family. This baby is going to be one blessed child with humble, hard-working, and most of all, loving parents. I look forward to capturing more of this journey for them when the time comes to find out the gender. Below you’ll find some of my favorite moments announcing “baby Rogers.”

 

Time to Recap.

I know I know, I went missing after only posting a few blogs mid-year. You’ll have an understanding as to why as I explain my recap of how 2016 has been. Now I’m not exactly a business woman, but the experiences of this year for me literally happened in accordance to the four quarters. Whether you like to journal, blog, or even podcast, I think it’s really great to reflect on your experiences. So here we go…oh 2016, what a year you have been.

Quarter One: This year couldn’t have started any better with me experiencing genuine, true happiness. I was inspired, spontaneous, and felt feelings I never have before. It actually kind of started the day before the New Year. I was a support system to others. Explored new parts of town. My photography vision was at a peak. And I didn’t even mind going to work. It was a time where all the puzzle pieces completed the long awaited picture. Sounds like a dream, right? Those first few months were my reality.

Quarter Two: We all know when things are going well and we reach the top of the hill, what has to happen next…and it did. Down the hill I went. You know how I mentioned I had feelings I never felt before? Well, round two of that came into play. My heart was shattered. It was one of those moments where nothing made sense. How did everything feel so right, yet it couldn’t continue on. I wanted to go into my black hole of never dating again…which I did and the guard up went back up. So with that being said, all the other positives slowly diminished. I didn’t really go anywhere. I tried to savor any inspiration I could find but that faded as Spring turned into Summer months.  Thank the Lord for His comforting hands, my family, and best friends. Their effort to make me feel better is forever appreciated. To top off this Q2 sundae with a cherry, I started to feel overworked and underpaid (I know everyone does, but this is about me for once lol) and ended up on a new career search.

Quarter Three: Which leads to the disappearance from my blog. I spent countless amount of time searching for a new job, which if you’ve ever done, it becomes exhausting in addition to your current employment. After a couple solid months, I was able to land not one but two potential positions in two of the leading healthcare organizations in Florida. This is where the saying “follow your intuition” should’ve gone into effect and you’ll see why. I got better vibes from the first offer than the second one but ended up choosing the second position due to a more appealing schedule. I would work four 10-hour days and be off for three, which would mean a three day weekend every weekend. Who would say no to that? Not this gal. In the midst of the job transition, I decided that since it’s been over a few months of staying out of the dating world, I would get online (cause you know meeting people in real life is non-existent anymore and yes even at church) and see what’s going on out there. I signed up and within an hour I wanted to delete my account, but that’s not allowed to happen without being active on it for 24 hours. So I said fine, I’ll give it 3 days, max! The following day I started a conversation with a handsome fellow which transpired to who I now call my boyfriend. July wasn’t too shabby or so it seemed up until I began my new job. In the beginning, it was alright. We all know we have to have patience when adjusting to new places. I was thankful and enjoying the three days off from working those longer days. I was even able to go to Boston with my best friend for a wedding in late August for a weekend. Another week went by and I began to feel like I was in a jail cell (not that I know what that’s like, but we all have an idea). I didn’t ‘click’ with anyone, nor did I really get a chance to interact with co-workers, who were all at least 20 years older. The atmosphere was hostile and was just not meant for me. My depression gene started to seep into my soul and after experiencing it late 2014/early 2015, I refuse to let it fully take over again. I gave myself almost 2 months to adjust and then it was time. I never went back. From the moment I made that decision, a weight instantly was lifted. I was prepared for a temporary unemployment period and really wanted to give myself a chance to breathe. I had been working since I was 16 and only took a couple vacations the past 12 years. Now was my time. After about 3 weeks and a handful of interviews under my belt, I again had two opportunities before me.

Quarter Four: So you’re probably thinking how I was, here we go again. Another chance at deciding which position to choose. Make the right decision, Samantha. Well, I took the position that felt home-like when I went in for my interview and honestly, I needed income to start flowing again. There is actually more in-depth details to this story but I’ll spare you, after two months the second position was still being considered (long on-boarding process) until the time came for me to make the final choice. After careful consideration and tons of support from my family, closest friends, boyfriend, and even both employers, I chose to stay where I had started. And that is when I took a look back a quarter 3 and finally understood why it happened the way it did. So I could end up right here. Happy in my work life again. I’m in a new & creative field, surrounded by a great team, wearing what I choose, and whole-heartedly being myself. To add to the positivity going on, this quarter consisted of two enjoyable trips. The first was in October to Gatlinburg, Tennessee with the best friend and her family. Note: I will forever be a mountain lover. And the second was going to Texas for the first time with my family for Christmas. And to confirm, a lot of things are bigger in Texas. Although I’m always desiring snow fall…I am grateful to have gotten out of Florida a few times this year.

So with all of that being said, to conclude 2016, I have experienced a wide range of emotions. From one of the happiest starts to a year, to heartbreak, a career roller coaster, and finally ending the year with a content heart. If you’ve come to know me, you’ve gathered that my life motto is “Nothing is Random.” What we go through, the things we experience, the places we see/end up leads us to exactly who we are and where we’re meant to be. This moment is what is important. Don’t think of the “what-ifs.” If it’s for you, it will come around. Embrace the chaos and remind yourself that it’s all temporary. Everything is temporary. Like I mentioned in the beginning, taking notes of what you go through is a great way to see how you have changed, gained wisdom, and ultimately grown. 2016 may have kicked my butt a good portion of the year, but I wouldn’t change it because that’s how God intended it to be and I trust him. I have no idea what is to come in 2017, but I know I can always find the light.

God bless, You are Loved, and Happy New Year, y’all!

Make your mark.

Do you ever have so much to say and as soon as you go to express it, it vanishes? That is a common occurrence I’ve been encountering with starting my blog. I’m pretty sure it’s because I’m full of excitement and thoughts, but I need to remain steady and (fairly) tamed because there are a plethora of topics I want to share with you. Here it goes.

First off, I want to say thank you if you take a moment of your time to read this and even more so if you come back again. I really appreciate it! To dive head first into this whole thing, a thought that has peaked my interest lately and coincides with the beginning of this adventure is “what will you be remembered by when you’re no longer ‘here’?” That’s a really great question that I feel a majority of us don’t quite process. Will people think of how attractive you were? Or the person who owned all the luxurious things? Or will you be remembered for your heart and the lives you touched? I don’t know about you, but my goal is the last one. And maybe, just maybe, someone somewhere will come across this page and see that my feelings and experiences are a mirror image of theirs and they can encounter peace. Do you know that we all feel the same? Of course in different ways, for different reasons, from different experiences, but they’re all relatable. Back to the main question though; I’ve pondered the thought of starting a blog for many, many years now and some of the ideas I’ve conceptualized were: I wanted a safe place for people who were bullied to go, a place for those who bottled their feelings (like myself through my childhood) to be able to speak, or even those who needed a friend to feel some love. After all this time I feel like right now, in my life, is the perfect moment to make a place where stories can be shared, hope can be given, and friendships can be made.

So with that being said, welcome to my blog! It’s a dual-action site that is not only going to showcase my love for writing real life experiences, but also photography. The blog will enlighten you in many aspects of life, especially living life in today’s chaotic society. Not a big blog reader? No problem! Stick to just stopping by to see photos I capture along the way.

Thank you again and can’t wait to share this chapter with you!