Sunday, February 11, 2018

My Testimony
Everyone has a story. Each one of us has a past filled with mistakes, lessons and trials. Each of our stories is different and because of this, we each have a unique perspective on life. My story is one filled with peaks and valleys where I have deeply felt sorrow, anger, depression and grief; but I have also felt true joy, love, excitement and contentment. This is my story.

My Background
 I was born in the small city of Diamond Bar in Orange County, California. I was born to Dr. Robert and Robin Bender in early December of 1996. I am the second youngest of 5 kiddos, but I am also the oldest. Confused? Let me clarify. I was born into a mixed family tree of sorts. You see, my parents had a 22-year age difference between them. Both had been married previously and my dad had been blessed with three children during his previous marriage. Therefore, I was blessed with three older siblings. Once my parents were married, they were given the little bundles of mischief that were my younger brother, Spencer, and I. So, I grew up with a lot of “adopted siblings” as my nieces and nephews were older or around the same ages as my brother and me. My family was close. We spent holidays and birthdays together as often as possible and as we grew up, we were left with many amazing memories. My family is my everything and it’s important that I mention and explain my family dynamic as they all play a huge part in my testimony.

My Parent’s Marriage
          My parents were the ultimate example of what a marriage should look like. No, that doesn’t mean that they didn’t make mistakes or argue from time to time; but they adored each other. They were head over heels in love. I saw my parents walk through times of struggle and trial that could have easily overwhelmed them… but they stood steadfast. How? Christ. God was the center of their relationship and so through good times and bad, they relied on/trusted in Him and clung to each other. My parents not only verbally taught me what love, faith, trust, etc. was supposed to look like… they actively lived these things. They lived their lives daily seeking to serve the Lord in the small ways. It is because of my parents that I am who I am today and dang, I’m thankful for them.
My Grandma
            Growing up, I only knew one of my grandparents – my Mimi. She was my mom’s mother and she was one of the biggest Christian influences in my life. All my other grandparents passed away before I turned 5 years old. I have no memories of any of them; but as sad as that sounds, it wasn’t so bad because my Mimi filled any possible void. She was kind, compassionate, funny, intelligent, beautiful and had the biggest heart for people. She loved Christ with her entire being and was able to love others in a way that I had never witnessed before and haven’t witnessed since. I have endless memories of snuggling in her bed with big bowls of ice cream and a movie playing for one of her “bed picnics” or building forts in her living room with a fold out table and a ton of blankets. We rarely ever had a babysitter because Mimi wanted us with her as much as possible. She was a rock in my life and in our family. She made my brother and my childhood’s beautiful and wonderful through her constant pouring into us.

The Change
            Life began to change when my parents decided to move my family to the small town that I know as home - South Lake Tahoe. There were varying reasons and circumstances behind the move, but I don’t think any of us realized just how much of a blessing that decision would turn out to be. My Mimi moved to the same town just short of one year later and lived about 5 minutes away from us. My family enjoyed more time together than we had in a long while. My parents worked from home, home schooled us kids, and got to do just about everything together. We had always been incredibly active as a family, from snow skiing to 15-mile bike rides, we did it all. After settling into Tahoe, everything seemed peaceful for a while; until a day in early January of 2009.
The Diagnosis
            We were skiing as a family that day and my dad, the man who had always been waiting for at least 10 minutes at the bottom of the run for the rest of us, was suddenly unable to keep up. He was experiencing shortness of breath and fatigue. Now keep in mind that my Dad was a doctor for many years, and if that wasn’t enough, he was also the most stubborn person I have ever known. He insisted that it was nothing more than pneumonia and prescribed an antibiotic to solve the problem. However, a few weeks later, there was no improvement. My mom finally put her foot down and forced my Dad to go and have some testing done. Looking back, I wonder if the reason that my Dad projected such confidence into his guess diagnosis of pneumonia was because deep down he knew that there was something more to how he was feeling. Someday, I’ll have to try to remember to ask him. Not long after that, we received the results from the testing… my Dad had cancer.  My best friend, my hero, my person… had cancer. It didn’t seem possible. My family had served the Lord for the entirety of my life – serving in multiple ministries, serving as biblical counselors, leading bible studies and meeting needs in so many other areas. How was it that this is how God was repaying us.
Treatment Begins
            Over the next year, my brother and I stayed with my Mimi quite a bit as my parents were in and out of the hospital while my Dad underwent Chemo treatment. There were a lot of ups and downs in that year, but we held strong, surrounded by a community of believers that we had come to love and cherish. That was where the unexpected blessing of the move to the small town of Tahoe really came into play. We had such a small community, but it was a strong community that loved, supported and cared for my family during an intense time of struggle. Over the summer of 2010, my family lived in a trailer in the parking lot of a Southern California hospital as my Dad received a specialized treatment that could potentially place him in a state of remission. I don’t have many memories from that time of life, and for that, I’m thankful. One afternoon in September, my brother and I were at my Mimi’s house and my parents had just arrived from a follow-up appointment with my Dad’s oncologist. It seemed that the procedure had been somewhat successful as we were told that my Dad was in partial remission. What amazing news! But it all came crashing down around us when my Mimi, my only grandmother, broke the news that three months earlier she had been diagnosed with cancer. She had decided not to tell us as she didn’t want to add to the burden or stress that my family already carried. I was angry and confused. Just as things seemed to get a bit better, it all fell apart once more.

The Hard Road
            On June 22, 2011, my Mimi went home to be with Jesus. It was a very hard time for my family. There was so much that we had already walked through leading up to that point and when the end of her time on earth came, it was a combination of relief and sorrow. Comfort came from knowing exactly where she was going, but that didn’t take away the reality that it was going to be a long while before we got to see her again. At that point, I was too young to truly grasp the reality of what was happening and for the first time, I felt completely emotionless. I didn’t want to feel and so I didn’t. I lived in a state of being completely numb and I was okay with that.
            During my Mimi’s downward spiral, my Dad had been doing well for someone who was so intensely battling cancer. As a doctor, I think that being able to focus on someone other than himself was a big help. But after she passed away, he started declining once more. I have memories of some days where he seemed completely himself – laughing, smiling, his sense of humor and good spirits seemingly restored; and then the next day, he would be weak and unable to hardly stand on his own. My brother and I bounced from friend’s house to friend’s house, living away from home sometimes for a week or two at a time while my parents spent time in and out of hospitals. We missed home, but then we didn’t really want to be home when we had the chance either. I don’t think that either my brother or I wanted to face the reality that we were losing our Dad. He wasn’t the same man that we had known… how could he be? Up to that point in my life, I had never seen my dad cry; yet, during the battle against cancer, I had seen him cry more than once, and that rocked my world more than I wanted to admit. I watched as the strongest man I had ever known withered away to nothing. I watched as he tried to be strong for my family but was reliant upon others for just about everything. He endured more pain and more suffering than I have ever witnessed in my life; and the other person to suffer right alongside him, was my mom. My mom endured so much – trying to raise two kids, work multiple jobs, take care of a household and take care of someone who was battling a life-threatening disease. My mom is my hero in every sense of the word. She was the ultimate spouse, mother and friend in times of incredible hardship. I do not and will not respect or admire anyone as much as I do my mother.
Then in January of 2013, we received devastating news. The diagnosis that my dad had received almost 4 years before had been incorrect. My Dad had what is called plasma cell Leukemia; a kind of cancer that is not curable. It was a miracle that my dad had survived as long as he had… but now he had two options. He could continue treatments that may or may not have any effect and might prolong his life, or he could simply try to enjoy what time he had left. Through many tears, a lot of contemplation and receiving much counsel, he chose the latter. It was probably one of the hardest decisions he ever had to make.  I will never forget watching tears stream down his face as he said, “I’m not ready to say goodbye to my kids”. We all knew how much he loved us, and we knew that it was time for him to stop suffering for our sake, but that certainly didn’t make things any easier. It was a very rapid decline after that decision was made. On March 6, 2013, my dad slipped into a coma. My mom had called my sisters, telling them they needed to get to my dad’s side as quickly as possible. Within 24 hours, my family crowded into my house. We each had a chance to say our goodbyes, and by my dad’s twitching fingers, we knew that he could hear us. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. I held his hand in mine and through tears, tried to express how much I loved and adored him. Those few days were some of the hardest and yet happiest of my life. Even though my family was gathered for a less than joyful reason, there was joy because we were together. People slept on the floors and on the couches; we made enormous meals and we laughed together. Having my family together made such a hard thing, so much easier. Then, on the morning of March 8, at about 4 AM, my dad went to be with Jesus.  My mom had held him in her arms through the night praying with him and assuring him that we, his family, would be okay. He fought with everything he had for so long, and it was finally time for him to go home.

Walking Away
            I felt like I had lost everything that mattered. That wasn’t true, of course, but grief doesn’t exactly push logic and reason. I had watched two people that I deeply loved and cared about suffer to an extreme. I had watched my mom bear unbelievable weight and responsibility on her shoulders. I myself had to grow up much faster than most kids my age to try and help my family in any way that I could. I had seen too much brokenness and shed too many tears, and I was left asking the question, why? Why was this happening to my family? What could we possibly have done to deserve this kind of heartache? We had been faithful servants, giving to the Lord and following His will and this is where we ended up. What the hell was the point? If we served a God who was willing to destroy the lives of the people that he “loved”, then I wanted no part in that sick, twisted dynamic. I was done. At 16 years old, I made the decision to walk away from everything that I had ever known.

Year of Darkness
            After I made the conscious decision to turn my back on God, I entered a year of darkness and depression worse than I know how to put into words. There were countless mornings that I would wake up sobbing, begging whatever being was out there to let me switch places with my dad, or worse, to just end my life. The hurt and heartache that I felt was intense and it seemed that no matter where I was or what I was doing, I could never escape it. I remember thinking that the world deserved and needed my dad, and I considered myself expendable. I also remember thinking and believing that loving people wasn’t worth it if the loss that came after was always this intense. I wanted it to just end. There were many moments that I sat on the floor of the bathroom, looking at a handful of pills, wondering how long it would take for them to take effect. But I hit rock bottom one afternoon in July. No one else was home, and I had a break. I had cried to a point that there were no tears left. I walked into my kitchen, took a knife out of the drawer and sat on the floor of the kitchen. I twirled it in my hands a few times, watching the sunlight glint off it and wondering how much it would hurt. I held the knife to my chest and willed myself to finally just end the pain that I had been feeling for so long. But in the end, not only could I not do it, but I realized how desperate and broken I was. That moment, as horrible as it was, was the moment that everything began to change.

Prodigal Daughter Returns
            After that moment, I slowly began turning back to the Lord. I had still been attending church with my family (because there was no way that I was going to tell my mom that I wasn’t a Christian), but for the first time, I was hearing the messages that the pastor spoke. I had felt betrayed and abandoned when I had lost my dad; he was my whole world. My identity had not been found in Christ, but in my family; and when my family went through a drastic change, my identity was stripped from me and I was left with nothing. Or so I thought. I began to slowly understand that God doesn’t cause pain or grief; but He will allow it. I understood for the first time God’s intense love and perfect plan for me. I recognized that God not only saw my hurt… He understood it. He sympathized with me. He cared.
            Then one Sunday morning, I reached the point of surrender. I can’t tell you what the message was about or what worship songs had been played, but in the middle of worship, my heart broke. I escaped to the bathroom, where I knelt on the tile floor and simply began to weep. I finally saw myself for what I was: a broken sinner with a desperate and constant need for a Savior. I was the prodigal daughter, who had been blessed with so much, only to turn my back on it all and try to run as far as I could go. Little did I know that God had been there, pursuing my heart, awaiting me with open arms and never giving up on me. I surrendered my life to Him that day and for the first time, I felt free. My faith, my relationship with Christ was finally mine. All mine. He had always been willing to claim me as His own, but I was finally claiming Him in return.
“I am my Beloved’s and He is mine.” – Song of Solomon 6:3

The Present
            I love that current time is called the present. We may not always recognize it, but each moment is truly a gift. The Lord has used my story, as hard as it is, to mold me into the woman that I am today. I used to wish to change the past, and now, I am simply thankful that I was able to accept it and move forward in the journey that is life. After surrendering my life to the Lord, He has been faithful in pursuing me and showing me, one step at a time, His plan for my life. He has instilled in me a heart for worship and a deep love for uniting His people and leading them using the beauty of music. He has continued to grow in me a heart of compassion and love for others that I could never have on my own. He is growing my faith daily, reminding me that He is worthy of my trust, my love and my life. I am now serving in worship ministry and going to school to study the His Word with the goal of one day pursuing missionary ministry. I am not sure what my next steps in life are, but I know that if I continue to wait on the Lord’s will and pursue His plan for me, I have no need for worry. He is good.
            I know this has been long, but I have one last thing to share. Recently, I got a tattoo. If you see the picture below, you will see that it is a small word marked on the inside of my wrist. It reads, “His Daughter”. I know that based off of that phrase, many would jump to the conclusion that I chose to get this in honor of my dad... but that is simply not the case. I know how my Dad felt about tattoos (#notafan), and so saying that I got it in his honor would be kind of laughable. And the blunt truth is, it wasn’t for him, it was for me; it is for me. The phrase “His Daughter” carries a double meaning for me personally. 

First, it is a reminder that I am still Robert Bender’s Daughter. Whether or not he is here on this earth to claim me, I am still his child. It becomes very easy to accept the reality that I have one parent; so easy, in fact, that I begin to forget that I was raised by TWO parents. My Dad was, is, and always will be, a huge piece of my life and of who I am. This tattoo is a reminder that even though I don’t get to see my Dad on earth, I can still claim him as mine and I will always be “His Daughter”. It is a reminder not to forget. 

Second, this is a reminder that ultimately I am my Heavenly Father’s daughter. During the darkest time of my life, I tried my absolute hardest to run as far from the Lord as I possible could... it didn’t work. I was the stubborn child trying to force my Father to let go of me and let me have my way; all the while, He was patient and clung tightly to me. I rejected Him, yet He still claimed me as His. I was angry and bitter; He was loving and forgiving. The Lord has held onto me, despite everything. What a remarkable statement of grace and unending love is His goodness in my life. He is my all. This tattoo reminds me of what He has done in my life everyday. 

Lastly, it reminds me that I belong. I belong to a God who desires and loves me. I belong to a Dad who desired and loved me. I cannot physically see either of them, but I know that I am claimed by them both. I belong to them both. And what a blessing that is.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Hi everyone! So, as I am stuck in bed with swollen cheeks thanks to having my wisdom teeth removed, I will finally tell you all about my adventure in Tennessee. Are you ready?

We left on Wednesday, April 27th at about 4 in the morning. Then we proceeded to drive for 26 hours. Let me tell you, 26 hours in the car really makes you appreciate all of the walking around and stretching you do in a day. However, the drive in and of itself was not that bad. We drove through some beautiful countryside. Example:

This picture was taken at about 6 AM and I am pretty sure we were somewhere in Arkansas.... don't judge me. It was a long drive and when you sleep at random times, it's hard to keep track of where you are. So anyway, we finally made it to Tennessee. The biggest blessing was that when we finally arrived at our destination, I still loved the people I had traveled with. In fact, I think that I even liked them a little more than before. So we spent two nights in Memphis, and tried to just relax and recover after our drive. Besides, there isn't much to do when it's POURING RAIN. But other than the weather, it was a very enjoyable two days. After that, we arrived in Kingsport, Tennessee. It's a gorgeous, lush, green part of east Tennessee. It ended up raining and drizzling most of the time we were there, but we still managed to have some fun adventures. 

This is Cacti. She (or he, I'm not quite sure which) was adorable!

Then we walked around downtown and got to see some pretty cool old places. This old news stand and the old theatre were a few of them. I was told that the theatre was the first one in the area. It was really cool to peek in the windows and see the old fashioned inside. The news stand was also really cool. I mean, ice cream, old fashioned popcorn and the guy behind the counter wearing a tie?! I felt like we had just walked back into the 1950s. SO COOL! 

These pianos were sitting near old abandoned buildings. It was cool. Some were just painted, while others had writings and signatures on them.They played pretty well, and weren't terribly out of tune considering no one knows how long they've been there.

Yes, I did force the boys to play the awesome piano while I took a picture... No shame.

The next picture was from a hike we took, somewhere. The guys took me to this old abandoned cabin by the river. We looked around and it was kind of an eery feeling. It was cloudy and rainy and the house was creaky and super worn down. We found a place of collapsed ceiling with 19050s or 60s wallpaper still attached in a few places. The foundation of the building was visible where places of the floor had rotted away and you know what? The foundation was stacks of rocks. It was a weird old house, but it was cool imagining what the place looked like in it's glory days.

Our last stop was at Precious Nana's house. She has a an adorable little place with some of the most beautiful plants growing in her backyard. The blooms were huge and absolutely breathtaking. They smelled amazing in the warm summer sun and made the evening just that much more enjoyable. But in addition to all of that, they also reminded me of how the Lord turns us into beautiful blooms. We start as little tiny buds, but as we absorb his light and his words, we blossom little by little. Our scent and beauty reaches out and touches others if we let God do His work in us. It's amazing to me how God is constantly reminding us of who he is and how he works through all of his creations.

This last picture warms my heart. This is Nana. She is one of the most adorable, precious women that I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. This picture captured a precious moment between a grandmother and her grandson, and it also reminds of that life is fleeting and that we should love and cherish moments like these while we can.

This trip changed a lot in my life and afforded me a ton of opportunities to truly seek the Lord's face. It was a much needed break from my everyday patterns and I am beyond thankful for each and every lesson I was taught while I was away. I was able to spend countless hours studying the Word of God and listening to sermons by some favorite teachers. It renewed the hunger within me and gave me a stronger desire than ever to constantly grow close to the Lord. I loved being able to spend time with this family in that beautiful place and I absolutely cannot wait to go back. But more than that, I can't wait to see those awesome people again. I am thankful for them! 

   Sammantha Jean

Friday, April 22, 2016

Hello! Yes, I am still alive and yes, I do feel guilty that I haven't blogged in forever. So, it took me getting sick and being on couch rest to finally put up another blog post. How are you all?! My, I have missed you. Me? I'm doing fabulously! (Except for the whole sick thing. Lol) Oh, oh, oh! Guess what?! My mother is opening a new coffee house! It will be called Revive and will be a coffee shop/wine cafe. The concept came about rather suddenly, but the Lord has blessed my family by opening one door after another. We have been remodeling our building and have already started creating the menu. We hope to be open by June 1, 2016. I am so excited! So, if y'all could be praying for us in this new magical venture, I would really appreciate it! The second surprise is that little old me will be driving across the country to Tennessee this week! I am road tripping out and then flying home in May. We are going to be stopping at the Grand Canyon, somewhere cool in Texas, Mississippi, and a few other places. I am excited to try to take cool pictures on the trip! Pray that I don't die.

Well, that was just a quick little update for now, but as soon as I get back from the trip, I will post tons of pictures! Love you all!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Hi everyone! So this last weekend I had a rather short, but much needed vacation. And where did I go on vacation you ask? Disneyland of course!  Yes, that place where imagination, wait times and small children run wild. Disneyland, as busy and crowded as it can be, holds many precious memories for me. I grew fairly close to the magical kingdom built by Walt Disney. Sometimes, my parents would take my brother and I after school and we would simply go to have dinner or watch the fireworks. Disneyland is a place that has been close to my heart since I was a small child. So, when I was invited to join my best friends family of 17 people for two days in Disneyland, and then my other friend and her school mates for the third day, it was a trip that I couldn't pass up. One of the best parts about going to Disneyland with people that you get along with is that no matter how long the lines are, there is always a way to keep yourself entertained. We played word games, we talked and laughed a lot, and overall we just enjoyed each others company. On top of the fact that I needed the vacation, this trip really made me appreciate how blessed I am to have friends that I enjoy being around. I also am super thankful for the memories that my family has helped me make. So let me share some moments and pictures from the trip. Some of them are definitely blurry, so bare with me, lol.

This is one of the awesome groups I got to go with. Of course, this was in the morning, so we don't look exhausted yet. Lol

This is the two little munchkins with the other group posing with Cinderella's Fairy godmother. Aren't they freakin precious?

The next few are from the amazing Paint the Night Parade. It's kind of the reincarnated version of the electric parade, for those of you who know what I'm referring to. 

These were the coral dancers that danced in front of the Little Mermaid float. They were so cool! 
(Side note: can you imagine how in shape you have to be to dance through the whole parade with the heavy light equipment on? I am still thoroughly impressed.)

The Little Mermaid herself. She was darling and did a fantastic job. Plus, the float she was on was incredible. 

It's Slinky! And Woody! Best Cowboy around.

This picture makes my heart ache a little. When we were very small, my parents used to put me and my brother in our stroller and buy these exact Mickey cookies from the corner bakery to eat while we watched the fireworks. So, right before the parade and fireworks, I got some coffee and a Mickey cookie. It made me tear up, but it also made me smile.

And of course, there was a lot more to the trip, but these were just a few of the memories I was able to capture on camera. And last but not least, my favorite picture.

As I stood and said farewell to Disneyland, I was left in a state of awe. It amazes me what one man was able to do with an imagination and a mouse. Walt Disney had the heart, spirit and imagination of a child. Because of this, he was able to change the world. I was teary eyed and full of wonder when I thought about the many children, adults, artists and so on that have been inspired by one man's incredible legacy. 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Good almost afternoon! My, what a crazy few days it has been in my world. I have recently started working a new job, on top of all of the other responsibilities I have. I am so thankful for the ability to work and for the awesome people that I have the privilege of working with. However, because my schedule is absolutely insane right now... (two jobs, rehearsals for the play, college classes) the days where I can rest and do things that I want to do are becoming more and more rare. So when my mom left town for a women's conference and my brother went to stay with friends, I kidnapped a dear friend of mine and decided to do what I wanted to do. For the last week or so, I had been feeling very... Pinteresty. I had wanted to go explore out little town and get an awesome picture that had food and coffee in it. So Saturday came, and we did just that; we explored. Well, here were the results of our outing.
It was so much fun!!! We ate way to much and had amazing coffee in a cute little corner booth at a local shop. And, I got a good picture. I felt/feel very accomplished! But the best part of the morning was being able to sit back and relax. I didn't have to constantly check the time or worry about what I needed to do before work. I was able to be in the moment and enjoy the company of a dear sister. It's those moments, the ones where you can sit together and have a meaningful, heart-to-heart conversation, that make life worth while. I am so blessed to lead such a crazy life, but that moment was a reminder that rest is a blessing as well. Thank you Jane for blessing me with a morning filled with food, laughter, great conversation and friendship. To all of you reading this, I encourage you to do something like this. Make time, get together with a friend and enjoy the moment, without worrying about what's coming next. Happy Monday! 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Happy Wednesday everyone! Thanks to the clouds and cold weather, I find myself in a very sentimental mood today. The "lets sit on the couch with hot chocolate and photo albums" kind of mood. So with that in mind, I want to share a little story with you. From the time I can remember, my Mama has done most of the cooking in our house. She was/is responsible for making sure that we all eat a proper, healthy diet; and Lord knows that's a task. But on sunny Saturday morning at my house, it was my Daddy who you would find in the kitchen, getting ready to make his "signature dish" - pancakes! It might not seem like a big deal to you, but I have never in my life been able to get my pancakes to taste or look like my Dad's. Although, that might be because he cheated slightly and used Bisquick in his batter. Yep, that's right; my Dad - Mr. Health himself, used Bisquick. But come on, 80/20 right? (80% = healthy eating, 20% = not so much)... There he was, setting out the griddle and the Bisquick, getting ready to make his kids their favorite breakfast; and let me tell ya, to this day, nothing can beat pancakes and cartoons on a Saturday morning. When I woke up yesterday all I really wanted was to recreate those memories and recapture that childish delight. I miss those Saturday mornings when I would walk into the kitchen, hair all over the place and find my handsome Dad getting ready to let  me "help" flip some pancakes. (Because let's be honest, the flipping is the best part.) So yesterday my brother and I made chocolate chip pancakes with whipped cream and a cold glass of milk. And as I enjoyed every bite of the diabetes-giving meal, it struck me how something from so long ago, something so small, could leave such a lasting impression. It's those memories that I will treasure always. It's those memories that make it easier to go on when you miss someone so much. Thanks Dad for leaving me something to always enjoy, even though they won't ever be as good as when you made them for me.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

My first attempt at joining the blogosphere...

My first official blog post!!! *quiet excited flailing* If I am being honest, I am super nervous and super excited about this. So I guess I should start by introducing myself. My name is Sammantha, but most people call me Sammi. I am 19 years old and I live in the beautiful town of South Lake Tahoe, CA. I love to sing and my dream is to be a worship leader. I guess that my favorite pastimes include reading books, drinking coffee and boxing. Someday I want to travel the world and pretend to be a professional photographer while I take pictures of the scenery with my phone. I lead a super busy life, so keeping up with this is gonna be so much fun! I also want to explain why I wanted to start a blog in the first place. I think it's because many people have told me in the past that I need to write a book. The problem with that is, a book about what?! I have these moments of reflection that I like to share, but they are hardly long enough to write an entire book. Unless I write a book that is supposed to be filled with random thoughts....  but I'm not motivated enough for that. I just am so filled with excitement or awe at things, that I want to take a moment to expand on what I'm thinking. Sometimes they are super deep and inspiring; other times I rant about how beautiful I think the sunset was. So if nothing else, I hope that you find my writings amusing/entertaining! I'm excited talk to y'all and have awesome conversations!

   ~ Sammi Jean ~