Let's Brunch

healthy brunch recipes
the perfect avocado + egg toast

First things first, HAPPY FRIDAY!

 A couple of weekends ago, Brianna and I decided to combine our loves of breakfast foods and healthy cooking to put together this photogenic and delicious little brunch at my place! It was basically the cutest little friend date everrrrr πŸ˜‹ Over the past few years I've gone from barely being able to make basic tacos to enjoying cooking and experimenting with my own healthy recipes, so I'm planning to start mixing in some recipes into my blog post lineup! Read on to see what we made...

healthier, clean french toast recipe
healthier cinnamon french toast

We made 3 different recipes that were the perfect mix of savory and sweet. The first was my signature cinnamon french toast!

Healthier French Toast
 (makes 4 servings)
4 slices sprouted or whole wheat bread (I use a sprouted bread from Aldi)
1 egg
1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (although I usually add more!)

Beat the egg in a shallow bowl, then add almond milk, vanilla and cinnamon and mix well. Dip each slice of bread in the mixture and evenly coat both sides. Cook on a skillet over medium heat and make sure to use a non-stick spray (I like to use coconut oil spray for this recipe).

Then simply top with all the fruit your heart desires as well as real maple syrup! It's delicious, clean, fairly low calorie...and such a pretty little dish!     

berry + protein smoothie bowl
berry protein smoothie bowl

I also made my go-to berry + protein smoothie bowl that is my favorite thing to eat after my Saturday morning barre class! It's refreshing, filling, and super nutritious.

Berry + Protein Smoothie Bowl

Handful of spinach
3/4-1 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk (start small & add as-needed)
Handful of frozen berries (I use a mix)
1 frozen banana (I freeze a batch of sliced of bananas every few weeks) 
1/2 scoop vegan chocolate protein powder
  1 tbsp PB2 (can sub peanut or almond butter)
1 tbsp collagen powder (so good for your skin + has protein)

Briefly blend almond milk and spinach first to ensure you don't end up with any chunks of spinach in the end ;) Then add the rest of your ingredients and blend away! You may have to pause your blender a couple of times to push everything down and add more almond milk until you reach your desired consistency. Remember that with a smoothie bowl you'll want a thicker consistency than with a smoothie you'd drink!

There are so many yummy things you can top your smoothie bowl with! Here are some ideas:
sliced bananas
fresh berries
raw cacao 
chia seeds
flax seeds
shredded coconut
chopped almonds
drizzle of honey or agave

healthy brunch recipes

Be sure to head over to Brianna's brunch post to get the recipe for her avocado + egg toast! It was so so delicious and I've already made it a few times since!

Oh...and I can't leave out the other essentials - coffee and mimosas! We made our mimosas with mango orange juice and Chandon rosΓ© (shout to Chandon for some of the best blogger mail ever!), and sweetened our coffees with vanilla almond milk, honey and cinnamon - yum!

I hope you enjoyed this recipe post as much as we enjoyed putting it together (and eating it)! Hopefully you're excited to see recipes and more lifestyle content on here! I already have some healthy summery recipes planned and can't wait to share them with you all!

Also, here are some links to my servingware:
Plates  |  Bowl  |  Mugs  |  Woven Placemats  |  Wooden Board

Greenhouse Vibes

off-the-shoulder top with floral shorts
cute floral shorts with an off-the-shoulder crop top

This post is part two from the shoot I did with my friend Jo of Jo Johnson Photography in Columbia a few weeks ago! For the full story of why we shot in this gorgeous greenhouse check out my first post here.

Gallery Style Boutique sent me this gorgeous little set (top, shorts) for the shoot and I am still so obsessed! I love that this outfit defines the waistline and is so comfortable yet flattering.

bell sleeve crop top with high-waisted shorts
Kendra Scott Amber necklace
cute spring summer outfit | bell sleeve top, high-waisted floral shorts
Kendra Scott Kirsten earrings

We also got to partner with one of my very favorite jewelry brands, Kendra Scott (via their beautiful St. Louis store), to style some of their gorgeous summer collection! I love this necklace that can be adjusted to a wide range of lengths (the choker length is my favorite though), and these stunning statement earrings that totally give off mermaid vibes!

spring/summer outfit idea
Top (c/o)  |  Shorts (c/o)  |  Similar Heeled Sandals (this year's version of mine is the "Jessy")
Bag  |  Earrings (c/o)  |  Necklace (c/o)

Photos by Jo Johnson Photography

I hope you girls are all having a great week! I get to see my sister this weekend for the first time since February, so I'm wanting the rest of my work week to fly by! She moved to Virginia last August for law school and we're super close, so it's been hard on me to only see her a couple of times in a year! 

Thanks for reading!

On Wearing What You Want, and Owning What You've Got

I truly try to live my life without regret, but one thing I catch myself regretting from time to time is not wearing whatever I wanted when I was younger and being prouder of my body! In today's post I'm wearing a crop top and booty-accentuating shorts, and you wouldn't have caught me in that even in college. Looking back I had such a good body and no thought of cellulite, but barely took advantage of that - such a shame!

Since I "filled out" through college I've been soooo self conscious about the fact that my upper half and lower half seem to be on different pages size-wise. If I slim down and lose weight, it shows in my stomach, ribs, boobs and arms. Not a lot I can control for the half I would change if I could 😲 

But why am I so self conscious about having a booty and muscular legs? I guess partly because I don't have the boobs to "balance" them out and don't have the stick skinny fashion physique I've envied since high school. I'm working hard to get over this though! Instead I want to be proud of having muscle that shows off my hard work, proud of my flat stomach, and proud to have some curves. I know that in 10, 20, 30+ years I'll look back on this season of life and think about how good and young and healthy I looked and wish that I had appreciated my body more...like I already do about the past 8-10 years.

crop top, cutoff shorts, slide sandals
crop top + high-waisted shorts
summer vacay outfit idea

So, one of my mindset goals for this year and moving forward is to wear what I want, and to just own and be proud of what I've got. It would be a shame to never show the ab definition and flat stomach I've been working really hard on just because I don't have the exact butt or thighs I want.

summer outfit with a crop top
Quay "high key" sunglasses, crop top, denim shorts
crop top + high-waisted cutoff shorts
cute summer outfit inspowrap crop top
summer vacation outfit idea
Top (c/o | matching shorts here)  |  Shorts  |  Slides  |  Sunglasses (more Quay here)  |  Lipstick ('velvet teddy')

 I hope this post ended up making at least a little bit of sense. I feel like I had a lot of pent-up thoughts to spill out here so I very well may have rambled without making much sense πŸ˜‰

Also, please know that I truly find all women beautiful. My friends and family represent a variety shapes and sizes and 'looks' and I find them to all be the most beautiful and healthy and inspiring women in the world! I just thought I would open up to you a bit about things I've struggled with mentally for many years in hopes that you will [in your own time] start to better accept your own body [if that's a goal of yours] and to just wear what you want to wear! I'm also not looking for attention or compliments or anything like that by writing this post. I'm just actively working on my body confidence, and thought it might be a relatable topic :) 

I recently updated my About Me page to say "The purpose behind Love, Lenore is to not only share my love of all things fashion + lifestyle, but to also help you and other women discover your own personal style and beautiful life that you love regardless of your budget or where you live or what you look like." I want to live that out more on this space, and I hope you're up for taking that journey with me.


5 Places I Want to Travel in the US

quay sunglasses, bandana scarf, white off-the-shoulder top, cutoff shorts
white off-the-shoulder top + cutoff denim shorts

Trey and I try to travel as much as we possibly can (especially before starting a family), and are constantly talking about places we want to visit! We have a couple of trips planned for this summer, so travel has been on my mind daily as I prepare for those trips. Trey and I have never traveled internationally together, and it will definitely happen someday (our list is growing!), but for now we're trying to utilize vacation days and what money we can set aside to travel a lot within the US. There are soooo many incredible places to see around the world, but I think that we sometimes take our own [gigantic] country for granted and forget about all of the amazing places to see here too. 

SO...I thought I would share 5 places in the US that are high up on my list of where I want to travel! These are all places I haven't been but really really want to see (among a lonngg list of others).

off-shoulder top with cutoff shortswhite off the shoulder top

1 | Charleston, SC
I'll have to double check with my mom, but I think I may have spent a day in Charleston with my family as a kid. However, I don't remember a thing, so I'm not counting it ;) Charleston looks so charming and beautiful, and I love all of the colorful buildings and flowers. When Julia of Gal Meets Glam moved there I was sold on it being somewhere I had to visit. 

2 | National Parks in Utah
I love that there are 5 huge national parks in Utah (watch this video), and want to road trip out there so badly! We are not people who hike or spend a great deal of time outdoors, but I really want to do a hiking trip out there. Arches National Park has been in my top 5 destinations for a long time. I think it looks breathtaking. 

3 | Phoenix/Scottsdale
Trey has been to this area and loved it, so I'm dying to go! I think desert scenery is so beautiful, and they sound like such fun cities too! I just love the architecture/aesthetic vibe out there (from stalking pictures and real estate for years), so I know I would find it an inspiring place to travel. 

4 | Pacific Northwest
We have heard such good things about both Seattle and Portland, and observed how beautiful the scenery is in that part of the country, so this is somewhere we really want to go! I'm definitely drawn to the mixture of coastal scenery and nearby mountains (and all of the fresh seafood).

5 | Miami
I'm not a party gal and I think that's what a lot of people think of when referencing Miami, but I just think it looks gorgeous down there! I've barely been to Florida (Jacksonville for a few days), so I need to see more of it! I think Miami looks like a great time, and I'm always down for some white stucco, palm trees, and a view of the beach :)

How to style an off-the-shoulder top & shortsRebecca Minkoff "darling" cross-body bag
off-the-shoulder top wtih a bandana scarf
Similar tops here & here  |  Shorts  |  Sandals  |  Bag
Sunglasses (these sold out, but there are lots of similar!)  |  Phone Case  |  Similar Bandanas 

What places in the US are at the top of your list to visit?? Or what are some of your favorite places you've already visited? Leave a comment and let me know so I can add more places to my own list! 

The Show Must Go On

off-the-shoulder floral dress for spring/summer
floral, off-the-shoulder dress | cupcakes and cashmere brand
Blogging friends // Jacy of Love, Lenore and Brianna of Gingham & Glam

You may remember that a couple of weekends ago I went up to Columbia (home of my alma mater, Mizzou!) with my friend Jo to do an engagement shoot, and visit my friends Ashley and Brianna. 

Jo, Brianna, and I had been planning a photoshoot for months! We collaborated with a few different brands for this shoot, and I had even made an inspiration board. Naturally, out of all the beautiful weather this spring, Missouri (and surrounding states) got hit with the most intense rain that weekend and had record flooding in many places around the region. 

The show [photoshoot] had to go on, so thank sweet baby Jesus that Brianna found this amazing oasis called Helmi's Gardens in Columbia.   

spring floral dress
floral print
floral, off-the-shoulder dress

Helmi's was the best greenhouse I've ever been to and we got to shoot in this gorgeous jungle of a place while it was monsooning away outside. They had cats, bunnies and birds, and the most beautiful selection of plants.

You may have seen on Instagram and my IG story that I brought home the perfect fiddle leaf fig from there! Shoutout to Jo for sacrificing the cleanliness of her car for me to lug that little guy home! 😜

cute spring outfits, Kendra Scott jewelry
greenhouse vibes
off-the-shoulder floral dress
Dress c/o Gallery Style  |  Bag  |  Heeled Sandals  |  Earrings (c/o)  |  Necklace (c/o)

Photos by Jo Johnson Photography

The cutest boutique, Gallery Style, was kind enough to send Brianna and I these outfits to style for the shoot! I'd actually been eyeing this dress for a few months because you all know how much I love black, florals, and off-the-shoulder stuff :) It's so comfortable, and can easily be dressed up or down!

Long story short, Jo is such a boss and wasn't even stressed that it was pouring down rain. We shot a couple of other looks that I'll be blogging soon! For those of you who don't know, Jo helped me start my blog waaayyyy back in the day, and I seriously wouldn't be doing this without her! So I owe her forever and ever :)