Saturday, August 30, 2014

Samantha's School Survival Guide: 5 Things I Wish I Knew

Hey guys! So I know this might be a little bit late.... oops..... but I did a guest post over at Katie, The Babbling Peruser, for Back to School! It's 5 things I wish I knew about school. You can check it out here! Just a few tips of things I wish I had known before going to high school. Although this post is a little late check it out and maybe some of these tips can help you out! :) 

I've been suuuuuper busy recently, lots of traveling and exciting things happening so bear with me as I try and get through them. I have a lot of fun, exciting posts coming up so keep checking back! 


Till next time! 











"education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the 
people who prepare for it today."

Friday, August 22, 2014

Samantha Goes to San Diego: What's in My Suitcase

Hey all! Welcome back to le blog! Today I'm going to be showing you all what I packed for San Diego! I leave for beautiful California in one day (AAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!) and thought it'd be fun to show everything I packed! So let's jump right in!

So this is the suitcase I'm taking! I'm taking a carry-on, meaning I'm not checking a bag. So everything I'm bringing is fitting into this bad boy right here. I also get a 'personal item' which is like a backpack, tote, purse, camera bag, etc. I show you what I'm bringing in my carry on and my makeup, click here and here



Now let's get on to what's inside!


Here's an overview of everything inside!

Here is evvverything that I could pack into that suitcase. There are a few items that I haven't packed yet like my toothbrush, makeup, etc., because well I still need to use them before I go. I'll throw those items in the morning of my flight. 

I am going to San Diego, California for 5 days and 4 nights. We're going to be doing lots of walking so I wanted to be comfortable yet cute. Most of my outfits I can add sweaters or a kimono too if it's chilly in the morning and still not be too hot in the afternoon. 




I'm sticking to neutral based colors so black, white and navy. These are the easiest to mix and match with. For the most part we'll be doing lots of walking during the day so I made sure to pack outfits that were both functional and stylish. Rompers, flowy dresses and comfortable shorts and tees are my definite go tos. I'm also taking two maxi skirts, the blush pink one and then my regular black one. These will be good in the evening when I wanna dress up a little bit. I have about 8 casual outfits and 2 dressier ones. Everything I'm taking can be dressed up or dressed down, depending on what we are doing. Most of the outfits I've packed you've seen before on Instagram. I'm an outfit repeater #sorrynotsorry. 
So I don't really know what else to say other than this is all the clothes, accessories, etc., that I'm bringing.... Go follow me on Instagram to see my outfit of the days for the trip and to keep updated on all things Cali while I'm there! :) 


Till next time loves!







"overpack. that's why suitcases have wheels now"


Monday, August 18, 2014

Samantha's School Survival Guide: Semester Goals

Hey everyone! Welcome back! Today I'm going to be sharing with you all my semester goals as part of my Samantha's School Survival Guide series! Today is my first day of my sophomore year of college so I thought what better way to start my semester off than by making a list of my goals for this semester! I'm a very detail, goal, deadline oriented person, which probably explains why I'm going into event planning. Haha! And I was on my high schools yearbook staff for 2 1/2 years and making deadlines and having goals have been a part of who I am. Making goals is a great way to motivate yourself and stay motivated. It gives you something to work for, to challenge yourself with. And once you accomplish those goals you feel this immense sense of pride knowing that all the hard work you did finally paid off! Now making a goal is easy but sticking with it and seeing it come true is the hard part. Before I tell you my semester goals here are some helpful tips to make a goal and stick with it.

Tip #1: Be realistic
Don't make something that you know realistically you can't do. It's okay to have ambitious goals, but if you make one that's too difficult you'll only get discouraged that you haven't met it yet. Instead make a bunch of little goals leading up to your big one. For example if you're goal is to lose weight and get in shape make little goals to not eat sugary sweets or to workout twice a day. Don't set yourself up for failure and frustration by letting your goals get bigger than your abilities. 

Tip #2: Make a motivation or inspiration board.
Make a board with magazine clippings or pictures off the internet and set it somewhere where you can always see it. You can make it your computer or phone background or make a physical board to display in your room. A goal you can actually see is massively more powerful than one you write down or that's in your head. Seeing your goal and what you're working for will help remind you why you're working hard in the first place.

Tip #3: Make a plan.
Making a plan and getting details can help you accomplish your goal than just winging it. Set a deadline for yourself. Write it down on your calendar, make a countdown. By knowing when you have to finish it by will help you work harder to get it done.

Tip #4: Never give up. 
I know that it may seem tough or that you can't overcome it but you can. Nothing worth something is every easy. Focus on why you're doing what you're doing. Look at how far you've come and all the things you've accomplished. Good things come to those who persevere. 


Here are some inspirational quotes that you can save to your phone or print out and put up. I'm a huuuge quote person. I have quotes everywhere in my room and desk to keep me motivated! :) 










So what are my goals for this semester? Well here they are!

Number 1: Create a healthy lifestyle
This goal is two fold. I want to create a healthy lifestyle in both the body and spirit. I want to start working out daily, doing yoga, stretching, running, weights. I also want to start eating healthier. More healthy, natural food and less processed junk. I really wanna start meal planning! I've seen tons of fitness gurus and bloggers have great success with it and I wanna give it a go. I'm not doing this to lose weight but to create a healthier me. We only get one body in life and you can choose to build it up or tear it down. I'm choosing to build it up and create a healthier, happier me.

The second part is the spirit part. I'm a born again Christian, but have fallen out of step with God and His Word. I wanna get back to reading and praying and being in a better relationship with Him. I've found a really awesome daily devotional specially for women that will help me become closer with Christ. 

Number 2: Meet new people
I do all my college online so I don't get a lot of 'interaction' with people my age. I do nanny part time during the week but all my interaction is with kids under the age of 9. Lol. I want to branch out and meet new people, expand my friend horizon! 

Number 3: Budget money better
I love shopping and I'm a spender. I do have a job that brings me a decent amount of income but I spend it quite frequently. I need to start budgeting my money and saving it up. I want to buy myself my own car, I have college to pay for and I want to travel. All of which aren't cheap and cost money, lots of money. So I'm going to find a budget plan and start using it. Wish me luck guys! 

Number four: Blog more
I really want to create better content. I want to increase my quality of my posts. Some of my favorite and role model blogs are College Prepster, Stone Cold Betch, Pink Peonies, Rachel Parcell, Summer Wind, the list goes on. I love their content and their quality is amazing. I want to blog at least 3-4 times a week and have a set schedule that I follow instead of just here and there. I also want to do more fashion posts because I truly love fashion. I want my blog to become something where people look to me for advice. I love helping people and if I know that I've helped just one person then it makes it all worthwhile. 


There you have it friends. My semester goals for this year! What are your goals or things you want to work on and do better at? Lemme know in the comments or by tweeting me! Encouraging each other is the best way to accomplish them! :) 

Till next time! 








"setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible"


Sunday, August 17, 2014

Social Sunday

Hey everyone! I hope you had a fabulous week! Mine was busy, busy, busy! I don't think I could have done more even if I tried! 

My friend Katie over at the Babbling Peruser (you should go check her out she's awesome!) does this post every Sunday called Social Suday, originally from Neely and Ashley at a Complete Waste of Makeup and I thought that I would give it a go! Every Sunday they ask 5 questions that you answer and post to your blog. Simple enough right?! I thought it'd be fun so that you guys can get to know me more and that I can more posts to do that will go up at a specific time. I thought I'd start this today! Here are this week's Social Sunday questions!


1. One item you wish you could splurge on right now?
Ooh this is tough..... it'd either be the J. Crew herringbone vest or a pair of Hunter rain boots. I need these in my fall wardrobe. I may or may not die without them. 

2. If you had an entire weekend of no plans what would you do?
After the week I just had I would do absolutely nothing. Sleep, lay in bed and watch Netflix. I wouldn't move from my bed the entire weekend. 

3. Next place you are visiting outside of your current city?
I feel like these questions were made for me. I'm actually going to San Diego, California next week. I'll be there from the 21- 25!! :)

4. Are you a neat freak or a clutterbug?
Neat freak definitely. Everything has a place and a place for it. I'm like the queen of organization. It's kinda ridiculous actually....

5. Favorite summer purchase?
I don't even know.... I've purchased so many things this summer. #sorrynotsorry #shopaholic But I'm gonna say my vacation to San Diego. Granted it hasn't happened yet but I'm pretty confident it's gonna be amazing. 


That's all the questions for this week! Lemme know in the comments below or by tweeting me your answers! It could be one question or all five! I'd love to know! :) 

Till next time! 


Sunday Social



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"a sunday well spent brings a week of content"

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Samantha Goes to San Diego: What's in my Carry- On

Hey there friends! Today's post is another installment of my 'Samantha Goes to San Diego' series! I have one week (ahhhh!) until I'll be surrounded by beaches and palm trees! Today I'm sharing with you all lovely people what I am taking with me in my carry- on bag. Most airlines allow you to take a 'personal item' like a backpack, tote bag, briefcase, camera bag, etc., with you on your flight. These are all my travel/ "I'm going to be on a plane for 6+ hours so I'm going to be entertained" essentials. So let's go see what I'm taking with me!




Well here it is! Everything I'm taking with me in my carry- on. The bag that I'm using is my Nike backpack that I used for school. It's fairly good sized which is good so that I can put any gifts/souvenirs without taking up space in my suitcase.

First I'm gonna mention the things not pictured:

iPad: This will be my main form of entertainment on the flight. I have a few games downloaded and I plan on getting a book or two to read on the flights via iBooks. I plan on getting If I Stay by Gayle Foreman for sure but I'm not sure another one. Lemme know what you'd recommend!

Chargers: These are boring and don't look neat and tidy in a picture so I left them out. But don't worry I will be taking a plethora of chargers and cords. Cords for days!

Tickets: Since this post is pre-written post I don't have my tickets yet so I can't show them, but know that they will be in my carry-on.

Nikes: They were downstairs and I was too lazy to go down and get them for the picture... #oops but I will be taking them with me because I don't have enough space in my suitcase... I'm an overpacker, what can I say.

Pictured (left to right):

Purse: I'm taking this with me in my backpack because I'm definitely going to be using it when I land in Cali. I'll throw everything I need to in it and we'll be good to go and start our sightseeing! This is just a brown crossbody from Target I got at the beginning of this year. It's really spacious and I can fit quite a lot into it. I love crossbodies for traveling because I like having my purse close to me, especially traveling in a big city.

Backpack: Already mentioned above!

Camera: My camera. I wouldn't travel anywhere without it! I have a Canon Rebel xsi and I'm taking my 28-80 mm lens and my 75-300 mm lens. I love photography and I'm so excited to take some really awesome shots down in San Diego. I really wanna get some amazing sunset beach photos. That's like one of my to-do's while I'm there. I also have tons of memory cards and my charger in there as well.

Wallet and ID case: You might be wondering why I'm taking a wallet and an ID case. My answer: the wallet is for the airport so I can put my tickets, passes, etc., in them without having to fold them up. The ID case is for when I'm out sightseeing. It's small enough not to take up a lot of space and also to hold the necessary things, ID, money, cards, etc.

Waterproof case: I found this on Amazon and it's freaking awesome! Basically it's like a waterproof plastic bag and you put your phone or camera inside and you can put it in the water. How cool is that?! I'm excited to use this at the pool and beach to get some cool underwater shots. I'll let you know how it works!


Phone: Pretty self explatory. Lol.

iPod: Gotta have my music to listen to on my flight! I do need to download some new songs. Any recommendations? I love finding new music!

Case/lenses: I also found this on Amazon (I kinda love Amazon okay) and it's a macro and fisheye lens for my phone. I love taking pictures with my camera but sometimes I wanna use my phone to Instagram or send to my friends. I'm super excited to use the macro to do panorama shots! My inner nerd is freaking out.

Sandals: So I'm wearing flipflops to the airport and plan on changing into these sandals once I get through security. They have buckles and I know they're gonna be a pain to undo and redo going through the line. So I made it easy!

Point and Shoot camera: You might be wondering, "Sam why are you taking your big camera and this one?" My answer is simple, some places like museums don't allow to take big cameras in and only allow point and shoots. I don't wanna miss out on capturing the cool things inside so that's why I take two. I'm also letting my brother use this to take pictures as well. Aren't I good big sister? ;)

Sunglasses and case: I'm going to California so I think sunglasses are kinda necessary. Lol.

Advil: I always take Advil with me because sometimes I get headaches on the plane from the varying altitudes. So I always keep some with me.

Chapstick: I never leave anywhere without some. This kind is the mango Burt's Bees kind and I love it.

Headphones: Airplanes can be kinda noisy from the engines and just the people so I always take my headphones. These are Beats and they're awesome because they do help cancel out sound. Which is always nice when you're trying to sleep or don't wanna hear a little kid crying.

Gum: I'm a compulsive gum chewer so gum is an essential item I have to have with me at all times. It also helps to chew when you're flying to help relieve the pressure changes in your ears. Personally I just chew it because you never know when you could be seated to a cute guy.

Travel bag: This is just a nylon bag that I got from Old Navy. I love it because I can put all my little things inside and  be able to find them quickly and not have them rolling around in my bag. It has sailboats on it so naturally I had to buy it.

Sweater: It's always a bit chilly on airplanes so it's good to bring a sweater or sweatshirt with you. This is my favorite one I got from H&M last year and I'm obsessed. I also am taking it with me in my backpack because it's my bulkiest item and I can't fit it into my suitcase.


So that's everything that's in my carry-on bag that I'm taking with me to Cali! I'm suuper excited and it's almost here! I feel like a kid at Christmas!

Let me know in the comments or by tweeting me what your carry- on essentials are or what you take with you when you travel? I love seeing what other people pack because A) I'm nosy and B) it gives me ideas on things I should bring with me.

Till next time!







"i enjoy the preparatory elements of travel - packing my bags and choosing my outfits- but my favorite part is getting there"


Monday, August 11, 2014

Samantha Goes to San Diego: Packing Tips and Tricks

Hello all! Today is the first post of my Travel series to San Diego! I'm super pumped to be going back to palm trees and salty seas!  In today's post I'm going to give you some of my packing tips and tricks. Things I've learned along the way of traveling! :)




First off the basic details of the trip:
Where: San Diego, CA
When: Aug. 21- 25 (5 days, 4 nights)
Weather: High 70's to Low 80s daytime, 50s-60s at night
Activities: Museums, beach, zoo ie: lots of walking

So now that we've got the details out of the way let's move on to the tips and tricks I have for packing and traveling!



Tip #1: GET THE PROPER SUITCASE!

Find out how big of a suitcase you can take. Airlines are very particular about the size of bags you can take with you. If they exceed the size allotted then you will have to check it and pay $25+. No one want's to do that so go to the airlines website and find out their dimensions. 

I'm flying Delta Airlines and they allow for 1 carry- on and 1 Personal Item. A carry- on is a small suitcase that can fit in the overhead bin and a PI is a backpack, camera bag, tote bag, etc., something small enough to fit under the seat in front of you. So everything I'm taking must fit into the suitcase and backpack. 


Tip #2: CHECK THE WEATHER BEFORE YOU GO

I've learned this the hard way and have learned from my mistakes. The first time I flew to Cali I was in NorCal, by San Francisco. I packed for SoCal temperatures and had to buy sweatshirts and pants. Check the weather before you go and pack for temperatures in the middle. You do not want to pack for warm temperatures and it be cold or vice- versa. 

Tip #3: PLAN YOUR OUTFITS!

This tip I can't stress enough. I'm an overpacker and I've learned that packing for 2 weeks for really a 5 day trip is a bit overkill. 


  • Stick with a neutral color scheme, browns, blacks, greys, whites. If you wanna jazz it up bring scarves or jewelry that can add pops of color.
  • Take layering pieces ie: a dress that can have a cardigan layered over top.
  • Take pieces that can be mixed and matched and worn different ways. For example, a black romper that can be worn with converse and a kimono during the day and strappy sandals and a statement necklace at night. 
  • Pack outfits that you've worn before that are comfortable. Rompers, leggings and light dresses are cute, stylish and super comfy.
Tip #4: WEAR COMFORTABLE FLIGHT CLOTHES
I know we all wanna look our cutest at the airport for those attractive pilots or a random passerbyer but wearing a dress, heels and jewelry on a 6 hour flight isn't the best idea. Wear comfortable clothes for your flight. Running shorts, leggings, rompers, maxi skirts/dresses or even a comfortable pair of denim shorts are all good options. Throw on a comfy t-shirt and sweater/cardigan/jacket and you got yourself a cute and comfy outfit! 

Wear shoes you can slip on and off. You'll be walking through security and probably don't want to spend 5 minutes unbuckling those sandals or un-tieing your laces.

Another thing don't wear tons of metal. If you can avoid wearing a belt, jewelry, etc., do so. Don't be that person who holds up the line. 

Tip #5: WEAR BULKIEST ITEMS ON FLIGHT
If you're only taking a carry- on maximizing suitcase space is essential. Wear your bulkiest items, sweaters/sweatshirts, walking shoes, sweats, etc., on the flight to save space for other things in your suitcase. Fortunately, I have enough room in my PI that I can pack my Nikes there instead of wearing them. 

Tip #6: DON'T TAKE YOUR ENTIRE SHOE CLOSET

If you're like me and love shoes then this might be a challenge. Take 3 pairs of shoes. One walking pair, one sandal and one dressy/nighttime pair. Your shoes should be able to go with any outfit. Also don't take your brand new heels for a night out. You'll save yourself the pain of having blisters and a limp. 

TIP #7:  TAKE ONLY ESSENTIAL MAKEUP

Don't take your entire makeup collection with you. If you're a beauty buff then this might be a challenge. Take your essentials, ie: you don't need 6 blushes and 10 lipsticks. Pack a shade that looks flattering during the day and night. 

Another tip if you don't wanna put on your makeup at the crack of dawn before you leave throw your makeup bag in your PI and apply your makeup before you land! You'll have a fresh face!


TIP #8:  TRAVEL SIZE 

Make sure your are within the 3 oz. limit for liquids. TSA is very strict about it. You can either get empty bottles and fill them up with your own products or you can get cute little travel size ones. Places like Target, Walmart, CVS and Walgreens sell both.

If you don't want to take up precious space in your bag you can always buy travel sized items once you land to wherever you're going!


TIP #9:  BRING AN UNDERGARMENT BAG

This is probably the most forgotten thing packed. Bring a plastic grocery bag to put your dirty underwear, socks and swimsuits in. There's nothing more gross than having them mingle with your clean clothes! 

TIP #10: MAKE A LIST

Make a list of everything your bringing. This will help you pack so you don't forget anything at home or at your hotel. It would be a shame to leave your new top you just bought at the hotel. 

Tip #11:  BRING ONLY WHAT YOU NEED

This might be the most important. Bring only the essentials. You can always buy things at your destination. Don't pack 10 pairs of jeans or bring 6 lipsticks. Pack on the lighter side because more times than not you'll do a little bit of shopping and be needing the extra room. 

Tip #12: MAKE A SCHEDULE

Make a rough schedule of the things you will be doing during your trip. This will help a bunch so that you know what you're doing and can spread out your activities. 

Here's a rough schedule of mine:

Thursday: Land at airport, lunch, USS Midway museum
Friday: Balboa Park- museums and botanical gardens
Saturday: Beach and free day
Sunday: Zoo day
Monday: Free day, flight leaves at 4:30p

Tip #13:  ASK FOR DISCOUNTS

If you're a student most attractions offer a student discount. Just ask. It takes 10 seconds to ask and can save you a few bucks. Also some stores offer discounts as well. Just make sure to have your school ID with you.

Tip #14: BRING A CROSSBODY BAG

If you're going to be doing a lot of walking and sightseeing you probably shouldn't bring you $400 Kate Spade purse. Instead bring a small crossbody bag. I love crossbodies for traveling because you have everything on your person, right beside you. Big cities that are tourist places attract pickpockets and thieves, that's the last thing you want to happen. Most stores sell crossbodies in a variey of shapes, sizes and colors. Target is a great place to find one that won't break the bank. 

Tip #15: DON'T BRING A LOT OF MONEY

Please, please, please don't bring with you $500 in cash. That's just asking for trouble. If you need cash bring $50 in a variety of bills. Or if you have a debit card go to an ATM throughout your trip and draw out money. 

If you're using a credit card/debit card make sure you have enough money in your account. Especially if you plan on doing a lot of shopping. Nothing would be worse than running out of money on your trip. 

Tip #16: GET EVERYTHING READY THE NIGHT BEFORE

No one wants to wake up the day of your trip all stressed and frazzled. Pack everything the night before and leave out your makeup/toiletries. You can always throw them into your PI bag. Make sure you have all the proper documentation, especially if you are going out of the country. Some airlines let's you print out your tickets from home so print them out the night before. Have your outfit laid out and ready to go. This allows for a stress free travel day and a few extra minutes of shut eye. 


Well that's all my travel tips and tricks! I know there are tons more out there but these are just the things that I've learned and have used before. If you want to see more you can search Pinterest for some or go check out my friend Lilly's blog for her travel tips and tricks when she went to Europe! 


Keep checking back for more posts in my travel series! Next up is actually what's in my suitcase! :)


Till next time lovelies!








"when preparing to travel lay out all your clothes and all your money. then take half your clothes and twice the money"

Samantha Goes to San Diego! ☀✈

Hello Internet friends! So I have some pretty exciting news! If you follow me on Twitter and Instagram then you would know this and if you don't go follow right now to be in the loop in my life, I'm going to, drum roll please,......... SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA! Yes I'm going to be back in beautiful Cali at the end of August! Only 10 days away!!! Eeeep! I'm beyond excited! I'm going with my dad and brother for a little vacation. We're going Aug. 21 to the 25th, so 5 days, 4 nights. I've decided to do an entire travel series for you all because I love making lists and I love packing. I'm going to be doing 4 or 5 posts all about what I'm taking with me and travel/packing tips! So keep checking back for these posts in addition to my Back to School series as well! :) 

Till next time!







"california is always a good idea"

Friday, August 8, 2014

Samantha Goes to San Diego: What's in my Makeup Bag

Hello Internet friends! Hope you're all doing fabulous today! So in honor of my trip to San Diego being next week I thought I would share with you guys what's in my make-up bag. So essentially what products I'm taking with me! I'm pretty simple when it comes to makeup so there's nothing too crazy packed. Still I thought it'd be fun! So let's get to it! 

From top left: Rimmel Stay Matte foundation, Maybelline Fit Me concealer, NYC bronzer, Rimmel Stay Matte powder, Urban Decay Primer Potion, Benefit They're Real mascara, Maybelline Falsies mascara, NYX blush, Cynthia Rowley eyeliner, Rimmel Exaggerate eyeliner, Jordana eyeliner and my Maybelline Nudes palette. 

I know not a lot of makeup but I'm a pretty simple girl when it comes to makeup. I'm trying to branch out though, I mean I use to not wear blush regularly and now I do. Baby steps.

Except for the bronzer this is my everyday, basic makeup. I add bronzer to make it more dramatic for the evenings. As you can tell most of these products are mattefying. I have oilier skin and if I'm going to be walking around a lot I want my makeup to not slide off my face from the heat and oils. These products keep it from doing just that! 

I recently bought this new eye shadow palette and have been LOVING it! The shadows are great neutral colors, have good pigmentation and are really pretty. I love that I can do a simple everyday look then jazz it up for the evening by adding a smokier effect. This palette has every neutral color you could ever need. Add a winged liner and some dramatic lashes and you're good to go. 

Obviously I'm taking my makeup brushes but they're boring and you probably don't wanna see my dirty brushes anyways. Ooh another item to add to my to- do list before I leave: clean makeup brushes. But I'm just taking the brushes that I use everyday. Powder, blush, bronzer and then various eye shadow brushes. Nothing too special. 

In addition to my makeup I also have my toiletries bag but that's also pretty boring, basic stuff. Shampoo, condition, body wash, contact solution, you know the essential stuff. I bought most of it from Target from their 'travel size' section because I only have a quart size bag to use and space is extremely limited. It's proving a challenge. I like having products okay.... 

Well guys that's it! That's everything in my makeup bag. I know not too exciting but when you have limited space you really can't take your whole makeup collection. So this will just have to do. It will at least make me A) look human, B) presentable to the public and C) sorta, kinda, maybe cute/decent looking. Haha! 

I'll be posting more in my 'Samantha Goes to San Diego' series so be on the look out for more posts! Lemme know what's in your makeup bag when you travel. What's one product no matter what you have to take with you? Comment below or tweet me! :) 

Till next time!




"the more mascara the better"

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Samantha's School Survival Guide: Back to School Must Haves

Hey everyone! Well it's that time of year again.... back to school. I know that it's the last thing you wanna think about. School. Homework. Tests. College applications. But all good things must come to an end. Although summer isn't quite over yet I thought I'd get a jump on my 'Back to School' series, cleverly titled, 'Sam's School Survival Guide', and today I decided to share with you my must haves to going to school! All the things mentioned can be used in middle school, high school or college! So let us get on with the lesson! 




First up is having a good school bag! You're going to be toting around books, binders, pens, homework and tons of other stuff in your bag so it's necessary you have one that is both cute and functional. I personally like backpacks, as they offer support and stability for your back and arms and you can cram a TON of stuff into them. They're practical and there are a bunch of cute ones out there. And if you are super busy, like I was in school, that's exactly what you need! 



#1: Lilly Pulitzer agenda // #2: Target striped planner // #3 Kate Spade polka dot agenda // #4 Kate Spade bookcase agenda // #5 Kate Spade striped agenda // 


Next is having a planner or agenda. If you're school doesn't provide one I would HIGHLY, HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend getting one. My planner was my life in high school. Literally my entire day was planned out in it. Everything was in there and god forbid that I lost it I would probably curl up and die. It was everything to me. But when you're in 7+ activities, taking college classes, filling out scholarship applications, balancing family and still managing a social life a planner is a necessity to life. I wish that I got a cute planner when I was in school. My favorite are the Kate Spade ones! I think they're so cute and definitely will keep you organized! I actually have #2 and I'm super excited to use it this fall! Plus, it's striped and who doesn't love a good stripe! 





How cute are these pencils?! If I had these adorable pencils in school I'm sure I would have loved to do my homework! If you're gonna do homework, might as well do it in style! And these pens are my faaavorite pens ever! They are super fine point, come in a bunch of different colors and are perfect for color coding notes or your planner. These beauties were my best friends in school. 


Technology is quite possibly the most important must have for school. In the world of selfies, apps and writing papers having your phone, iPad or computer with you is a requirement. I mean having a cute laptop case does make writing that 6 page paper a bit easier. Or that iPhone case can jazz up any outfit. Cases are accessories too.  Gotta protect in style!


#1: Kate Spade tumbler // #2: Camelbak with monogram sticker (sticker not included) // #3: Vera Bradley tumbler // 

Keeping hydrated is soo important! I always carried a water bottle with me during school. I used the double walled Camelbak one so that I didn't get my papers/notebooks/textbooks wet from the condensation. There are tons of cute water bottles to choose from. If you already have one and want to jazz it up you can buy a monogram decal from Etsy and stick it on it. If it doesn't move monogram it! This is good if you do sports and you don't want other people using your bottle. You'll always know which is yours! 




If you take your lunch then you're going to need something to carry it all in. I wish I had taken my lunch more in school. I love Bento boxes because if you're like me and don't want to use tons of plastic bags or your food to touch it's perfect. Each item has it's own little compartment and you can reuse it. When I did take my lunch I always took an insulated lunch bag and freezer packs to keep everything cool. There are tons of cute ones out there for every price range. 


Last thing, you can buy monogram decals off of Etsy in various sizes and colors and designs for pretty cheap and use it to monogram your planners, notebooks, folders, phones, water bottles and whatever else your heart desires! I'm getting one and putting it on the cover of my planner! 

There you have it guys! All my Back to School Must Haves! These things are definitely my must haves for a cute and stylish school year. Lemme know in the comments or by tweeting me what your back to school must haves are! Are they things from my list or something new? I'd love to know! :) 

Keep checking back for more in my 'Schooling with Sam' series! I have a few more posts I want to put up! 

Till next time lovelies! 







"what we learn becomes a part of who we are" 








Friday, August 1, 2014

Things I'm Loving: July!

Well hello all! Fancy seeing you again at this time of the month! And no I don't mean that time of the month. Once again another month has come and gone. July was a really good month for me. I'm sad to see it leave because that means August is next and August is school. BUT August is also my One Direction concert so I'm not too sad. Today I will be sharing with you the things I loved in July. Compared to my previous months this one is pretty short. I only have a handful of things to share. July for me was more about memories and summer nights than it was products or new things. I made a lot of memories this month. July you've been good to me. Well then, let's hop right in!

1) As I said this month was the month of memories and summer nights spent with family and friends. From 4th of July with family, exploring historic downtown, seeing various musicals and plays with friends, going to a party and spending time with awesome people, the drive- in, grabbing coffee and dinner with an old friend and going to see a new movie, my month was one with lots of good times and great memories!

2) Despite my socially busy month I actually watched a ridiculous amount of Netflix...... again. #sorrynotsorry This month was the month for three new TV shows which I have gotten addicted to.

First is the BBC America show Copper. The main character, Kevin 'Corky' Corcorcan plays and immigrant Irish detective, or 'copper' in New York City in the 1860s.



 He and his two best friends and fellow coppers patrol the area making sure to keep trouble at bay. It's such an interesting plot, there's so many quirky characters and character development, the sets are mind blowing, it's just an amazing series. Unfortunately, there is only 2 seasons, insert crying profusely emoji here, but they are the best 2 seasons you'll spend your time watching. It's got action, comedy, romance, suspense, it's got it all! Definitely go check it out!

Next is, Desperate Housewives. Go ahead and judge. I'd judge too if you told me to watch it but in all actuality it's a really good series. It details the lives of 5 women living in the perfect little Suburbia neighborhood as they figure out their lives and also try and solve the mysterious death of one of their friends. They uncover dirty, deep, dark secrets about themselves and their neighbors.



I've only watched a couple of episodes but it will definitely have you hooked. It's like a grown- up version of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars. If you like drama, suspense and gossip then this show is for you. 

Last is ABC Family's series Baby Daddy. This show is adorably funny and cute!



 It's centered around Ben Wheeler, a 20 something care-free, flirtatious bartender who get's the surprise of his life dropped off on his doorstep. He soon learns that he is a father and with the help of his friends and family raises his daughter. It's so cute and funny and just a feel good TV show. If you're looking for a 'light' TV series to start watch this one. 

3) Last but not least is this new song/artist which I've been OBSESSED with is the song 'Leave the Night On' by Sam Hunt. 



Oh my god this has been my jam this month. He's a pop/country artist from Georgia and boy oh boy can he sing! I love the way his voice sounds. You can just hear the southern come through. It's perfection. He's perfection. Plus, he's pretty damn good looking too so I mean I can't complain. Like go check him out on Spotify right now! 


Ok guys well that's it for my July favorites... Short I know. Haha! A nice change from my longer posts. I really didn't have too many 'thing's this month but more 'people' and 'events'. Next month will hopefully be more things! 

Till next time lovelies! 





"these are a few of my favorite things"