The Girl: Leighann

About MeIn case we haven’t met yet, my name is Leighann (lee-ann).

I’m so glad you stopped by!

Maybe the first thing you should know bout me is that I’m a twenty-something professional day-dreamer, born & raised in the Bay Area. I started writing when I was about 8 or 9 years old & I haven’t stopped since. From short stories to oddly-rhymed poems, I’ve always had an interest in writing creatively & sharing my thoughts with the world. I’m also a certified goofball who tends to take herself a bit too seriously at times.

I hate too-warm weather and socks that fall into your shoes when you walk.

I love writing fiction, blogging (obvi), reading cheesy YA romance novels in the summer, baking my award-winning (okay, 2nd place) chocolate chip cookies, singing loudly to terrible 90’s & 2000’s pop with my friends on long road trips, mini-golfing, practicing yoga at the gym, asking strangers to pet their dogs and learning new things.

Basically, I’m a homebody with a socialite mindset…an intro-extrovert who loves God, people (even in traffic), dogs and living life one day at a time.


The Blog: Learning to Smile & Grow

(est. 2012)

Unbeknownst to many, Learning to Smile & Grow officially started in 2014. However, this blog’s journey began in 2012, during my junior year in college. My first experience with “blogging” I credit to the infamous, where I wrote under the disneyisforlovers username (clever, no?) and then eventually, under the smartkindspecialpeople username – what can I say?

I’m a fan of changing things up!

I wanted to keep writing, but because my Tumblr was quickly turning into a purely GIF and photos blog, I decided to start an actual writing blog on

I used Blogger for about a year or so and then decided that I needed a change in 2013 – so I switched over to

And that’s really where the story began.

I discovered a true passion for blogging and loved the idea of creating my own space in a tiny corner of the inter webs where I could write about my faith, adventures, dreams and life as a millennial in general. I also loved the idea of having published work out there for the world to see and relate to! Because, who doesn’t need that reassurance every once in a while that you’re not alone in this thing called life? The coolest thing about creating a blog has been the freedom that comes with it. I can share anything and everything that I want – and no one can tell me how to do it! Nowadays, Learning to Smile & Grow is a lifestyle-esque blog. I say -esque because I hate labels.

But to put it in a nutshell, LS&G is a blog about my unique, silly, sometimes dog-obsessed, adventurous, love-filled life. My faith in Jesus Christ is interwoven into every aspect of my life, so you can expect to see highlights (and to be real, lowlights) of my faith journey on here, as well as musings about single girl struggles, lessons I learn about life as a millennial Christian, ways to cope with mental health issues, tips on yoga and self care practice, and much more!

Thanks again for stopping by – stay a while and make yourself at home!