What’s an Executive Coach?

What’s an Executive Coach?

I had never met an executive coach. I had no idea what they did, but it sounded very intriguing! Alisa found me through a mutual friend who had posted about using Maskcara. We met up so she could try the makeup, and when she told me what she did for a living, I just had to know more! I love all things business and my personality leans towards being a “counselor”–if you’re familiar with Myers Brigg ya know what I mean ; ) So from what I learned from her is she essentially counsels business people (and non-business people in leadership).  I had to find out more. 

Alisa was around 30 when she took courses in executive coaching and became certified as an Executive Coach. At the time, she was getting her Master’s degree in Organizational Management and working for TasteFresno–a local online food magazine–writing blogs and filming videos about local chefs. She felt like she couldn’t jump into her field without first becoming a CEO of a large company, or spending a decade climbing the corporate ladder.  

Even though all of her coaching mentors, peers, and professors told her she could start her business right then and there, with flying colors, she told herself she couldn’t. 

Sad, right?! Familiar, right? She felt like she didn’t know enough and that no one would trust her because of her lack of experience. Like so many of us, she told herself she couldn’t afford to take the risk. She created stories that her potential clients wouldn’t think she was credible, or worth her fee. 

She allowed those stories and her own mind to convince her that she couldn’t do it, and for years her actions reflected those beliefs.

“I coached here and there on the side, sometimes charging, sometimes not, but it was mainly to keep up all my certification hours. I didn’t have any clear goals, which is ironic because my job is to help leaders set goals!” 

“We can’t make up other poeple’s stories in our heads.”

“What’s the difference between then and now? Am I an executive? No. Have I climbed the corporate ladder? Yes, in non-traditional ways. Did it help me? Well, sure, because all life experiences help,” she says, then explains that she still uses the same coaching principles  today that she learned from her courses in the very beginning.

“Nothing massive changed except the stories I tell myself. What did that get me? Seven years of wasted time. Seven years I could have been passionately serving others through coaching…”

She was stopping herself from helping people discover the keys they needed to pursue their dreams. “…Seven years of telling myself I can’t do what I know God has called and equipped me to do. How about this one – seven years I have not been listening to the truth about myself, from God, and instead listening and believing my own lies, and using them as an excuse not to follow His will that He has confirmed over and over for my life. The lies we tell ourselves are dangerous. We can’t make up other peoples’ stories in our heads; we don’t know them! When I coached my first CEO at age 34, he thought I was too old!  When I think about this in terms of listening to myself instead of God, I’m really sad. I can’t believe I did that! I refuse to go another seven years giving myself a million to-dos “before I’m ready” to do anything.”

Isn’t that powerful?! Her story inspires me. 

It’s all too easy for us to measure ourselves against a made-up standard. Creating that standard is far easier than breaking it down is, but I tell you, it’s worth it!!!

I was personally able to benefit from Alisa’s skills and talent in my own business.  We chatted through FaceTime for about an hour and she asked me REALLY good questions to help me clearly define my goals, my desires, my direction with my business, and clarify an action plan to get there.  It was AMAZING! I felt so empowered. It also really helped me let go of some of the things that were hindering me and weighing me down. Hallelujah! She’s talented, friends! I highly suggest that you invest in yourself and seek out the help you need to get where you want to go. 

As Alisa says, “Don’t do it alone. Start by learning how to be a good friend to others. Be kind, be generous with your time and your service to others, and learn to love unconditionally. If you strive to become a safe, healthy person yourself, you’ll 1) be a safe, healthy person for others and 2) learn to quickly recognize the people you need to keep at a distance to stay safe and healthy. From there, you’ll be able to do anything!  And finally: find your support people, seek out mentors, get to know others with similar passions and goals to work with, and always give back along the way.”


Yes and Amen! I love her mentality and I hope her story encourages you to go forward in your own dreams and aspirations! 

If you’re interested in being coached by Alisa you can reach her by email: hello@alisa.coach.com or follow her on IG: @alisa.coach or on her website: Alisa.coach

Do you even blog bro?

Do you even blog bro?

You might have noticed I’ve been a bit MIA…

It’s funny how when you set something down how it can be so so hard to pick it back up.  After my husband graduated from his CRNA program I took the summer to just ENJOY time with my family.  We traveled, we played, I worked my Maskcara biz a bit, but mostly I just wanted to soak in every minute I could before my husband started working full time and before I had 2 kids to homeschool.  And then the school year started.  And we got pregnant!  Surprise!  Just kidding we applied ourselves to that process if you get what I mean… Anywho!  First trimester kicked my butt along with homeschooling my son who’s educational needs are far different that my oldest daughter’s.

Every week I was struggling with migraines and fatigue.  I felt comfortable taking a step back from work.  It was a huge relief that I had built my business (praise the Lord) to where I could cruise.  And secretly it was a relief to have the excuse to lay down the blog part of my work.  Here’s why:  I was overthinking it.

I had an unattainable standard for my posts to be worthy of posting.  I had drafted SO MANY posts that never got finished.  I’m really good at starting projects hahaha, not so great at finishing.  Can you relate?

I started feeling so much better and work picked up again in January. but blogging… it was this “project” in the back of my head that just seemed impossible to get to.  My last interview was with Alisa Manajarrez, a Leadership and Executive Coach and she gently called me to the carpet.  Through my chat with her I told on myself.  She asked just the right questions for me to realize I just didn’t WANT to.  A few month later I mulled that over and realized I didn’t want to do it the way I had been doing it.  You can only take someone as far as they’re willing to go.  So I didn’t go anywhere for a couple months.

In that time I came to the realization that I really do LOVE to write.  I love to share inspiration.  I’m a perfectionist.  I worry about using the right words.  I have too many ideas and have a hard time focusing on one thing at a time when my creative side starts spiraling – that’s a big problem!  If you’re a creative with this issue PLEASE send me all your tips!  Getting back to the point – I don’t want to be pigeon-holed.  This is my business and since I’m in charge I decided that I can give myself more freedom to write about what I want to write about.  So here I go!

I might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s 100% okay.  I like me.  I think I’m pretty awesome in fact!  And if what I write about doesn’t interest you that’s cool!  Much love to you on your journey and I hope you find inspiration that resonates with you.

Meet Whitney

Meet Whitney

Whitney and I first met in high school youth group.  She was a few years ahead of me, but I remember watching her and seeing the fire she had inside of her for the things of the Lord, for the lost, and the hurting.  We were just acquaintances but she was one of those people that make an impact on your life without saying a word.

Fast forward 13 years later.  We connected through social media, and I found out that she was running a non-profit, City Without Orphans, to bring awareness about fostering and to educate families who are considering foster care and adoption, (and so much more, but we’ll get to that in a bit).

Shortly after becoming a Maskcara Independent Artist, Whitney reached out and asked if I did event makeup.  She and her husband, co-owner of City Without Orphans, were going to be recording their classes for those considering Fostering or Adoption to make the information more easily accessible.  As a mom, I could see how great a need there would be for busy parents who would like to attend the class but don’t have the time in their schedule to make it to an in-person class.  Participating in the making of these videos, in even the smallest way, gave me so much joy.  Through doing her makeup, I was able to reconnect in person with Whitney and hear about their own adoption story and how she got started with City Without Orphans.

When Whitney was around 15 years old she volunteered with her youth group at an emergency shelter for foster youth.  They were doing a pizza and craft night for the children at the center and she was shocked an saddened by their brokeness.  It broke her heart that they were in limbo, without a home to call their own.  That night when she had to peel a crying five year old little girl off of her leg she vowed to serve God through loving and helping kids in these situations.  In 2010 she was working at a foster care agency and seeing the many needs of kids and families in foster care. She began to dream about what it would be like to see a bridge built between governmanet, churches, businesses and families to leverage existing resources for these kids so desperately in need.  The dream began to grow in her to start a non-profit, which she believed would create a community that would be known for serving our most vulnerable children.  

She knew she  wanted to see something done about all the gaps in the system and the lack of collaboration in our community in meeting these needs. Initially, she didn’t think that she wanted to start a non-profit. She told me, “But that feeling didn’t go away. And eventually I got the biggest push when I was laid-off from my job working at the foster care agency. That was the season where I really wrestled with if I could do this. I had a social work degree, not a business one. But I was blessed to have people around me in my family and some friends that did have experience in business and non-profit development who coached me in where to start. They helped me create a strategic plan, pitch it to leaders in the community, and then eventually we incorporated as a 501c3.”

When I asked her, besides the business knowledge, if there were any personal hurdles she had to overcome, she told me, “I Felt so young and unqualified, but I knew that my experiences in my early 20’s and the call from God had set me up to step out in faith and start this organization because no one was meeting these needs. If you see a need, and you have the courage to take a risk- God will meet you there!”  So I asked her where she gained the courage to step out and turn this dream into reality. “I have always been told by my mentors and pastors that ‘God doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called.’ I think remembering that motto that was spoken over me, in addition to not letting people judge you for being young, really did help me take a huge leap of faith,” she told me. 

One of the things that always encouraged her in her journey to starting a nonprofit at twenty-six was the verse, 1 Timothy 4:12. She loved this verse growing up.
“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for believers in speech, love, life, faith and purity.” 
 1 Timothy 4:12  NIV

It’s interesting to me those things that are planted in us somewhere along our journey that we end up building upon to do the hard things.  Whitney shared with me that it hasn’t been easy.  When they first started the organization they thought that partnership and funding would come easier.  But she realized that institutions don’t change on a dime. City Without Orphans has learned to adapt and adjust and work with who they are able to connect with year by year.  Some of their biggest hurdles in continuing with their mission have been in keeping on-going funding streams.  They rely on monthly support, one-time donations, fundraisers, and grants.  In spite of the great effort and hours of fundraising to keep afloat, seeing the growth of their reach to more and more families and children every year has continuously encouraged them.  Hearing the stories of how families and communities have changed through filling these gaps helps them maintain their passion to keep going.  Whitney tells me that more families are fostering and adopting, serving youth, and supporting other families post-placement than they were 10 years ago.  That is work in the right direction!  There is still so much more to be done.  I am grateful to her and her family for being a beacon in our community, to raise awareness and serve selflessly until we are truly a city without orphans.

Whitney’s husband also serves as Executive Pastor at Via Church in Fresno.

Working with Whitney also gave me the opportunity to meet the dynamic couple behind Agape Creative Studios!

“If you see a need, and you have the courage to take a risk – God will meet you there!”

Meet Dr. Ellie

When I started homeschooling I was very interested in supplemental classes so that I wasn’t the only one my children would be taught by.  Science was one subject I felt would be beneficial to learn in a group setting. Thankfully the homeschooling community in my area is very large and there is no lack for direction if you ask around.  A friend of mine suggested InnovED. She told me how the classes were very hands on learning and that the she really liked the owner, Ellie.   Instantly I was so excited that there existed a place that I was hoping for right in my backyard, AND that the owner was a woman! I thought what a great example she would be to my daughter who loves math and science! Heather has been going to InnovED for two semesters now and I have gotten the opportunity to get to know Dr. Ellie.

She truly is an inspiration!  The staff at InnovEd are very and welcoming! Kids are challenged to grow with support and kindness from their peers and mentors. They love going and come home excited to go back for their next class. They are exposed to technology and innovation.  Scientific terms that are not watered down. They collaborate and learn together and from each other.  InnovEd is such a unique space that promotes children creating and exploring ideas all while learning from their mistakes.

introduction to technology and coding – things that have become a part of our every day world and they’re learning from a young age how they work, how to use them, and how to create and manipulate them.

Recently I had the opportunity to do Ellie’s makeup for a night out with her hubby.  I had the chance to ask her some questions to get a glimpse into her awesomeness.  She told me about how she finished her teaching creational within a month of having her son. She worked through her Master’s and Doctoral programs when her son was a teenager.

When I asked her what motivated her to keep going she said two things: the desire to leave a m

ark and the drive to better herself.  Ellie is passionate about education.  She specified not necessarily in schooling, but in conti


ing to learn in life.  She shared with me how she views life as a one way street, there’s no going backwards.  That perspective propelled her forward and helps her keep going forward today.  When she taught in the state school system she saw a need to challenge students in ways the current system was handicapping the learning process. She wanted to be a part of the change she wanted desperately to see in the education system.  Starting her own school had been “dangling out there” while she went through her doctoral program.



Purdy & Thirty Cake Smash Photoshoot

Purdy & Thirty Cake Smash Photoshoot

For years I’ve seen smash cake photos of cute babies turning one.  I’ve always wanted to do them with my kids but with planning their parties it just never got done. Then I came across some adult smash cake pics and I was so very amused!  I made a mental note that it would be fun some day. Well I was coming up on 30 and I just wasn’t interested in planning a party or even a dinner with friends. My husband had been at a clinical site out of town and only home on weekends. I was low on energy, time, and creativity. But I knew if I didn’t do something memorable for my 30th I would look back and be disappointed. It’s usally kind of a busy chaotic week because my birthday comes shortly after Independence Day. Hubby happened to have a two week break in school before leaving OUT OF STATE for his next clinical site.  So when I would think about my birthday and what I wanted to do I keep thinking about doing a smash cake photoshoot and wanted to do something fun with my family that would be out of the norm. It took a little convincing, but my husband came around to the idea of taking me, all three kids, and our beloved babysitter wake boarding and tubing on the lake. Wake boarding is right up there with horsebackriding as my two favorite things!

The photoshoot was further outside of my norm than wake boarding. You have to understand I have been buckled down focused on raising these littles and doing my best to not just survive this CRNA program but thrive through it.  It has been incredibly challenging.  I haven’t always had time for me.  Little luxuries like going to grocery store alone.  Or taking an evening trip Target to stroll the isles when the kids are in bed and hubby is home relaxing had not been options.  My reserve energies were maxed out.  My social energies were critically low.  So goal number one while hubby was on break was just to relax and do nothing.  And after that, you know, once boredom starts to kick in, I knew what I need in life is something fun to spark enjoyment of life!  So even though the idea of doing a shoot for myself – not my kids- was embarrassing I decided to do it and not over think it!

Turning 30 has had a strange affect on me. I feel as though I needed to prove my maturity in my twenties and was careful to be appear childish from the outside – likely because I felt like a teenager half the time. Super weird to have three kids and feel like a kid half the time, just sayin’. But through a lot of counseling, to be honest, and time with Jesus, I have gained a lot more confidence. Rounding the corner to 30 was not depressing or scary to me I was actually really excited to have my age stand for my maturity and not feel like I had to prove myself anymore. I know that isn’t everyone’s experience.

A lot of my people say turning 30 made them feel old. But for me it was the opposite. At 28 I wondered if I would feel like I would match my age by 30.  Now it’s here and I don’t feel like I do exactly, but the difference is I’ve stopped caring. It’s so freeing! So that is why I felt like I could dress like a kid, wear on a crown, throw some confetti and eat my own little cake!

I hadn’t had photos taken of just me since senior pictures so when the time came I was a bit nervous. My sister in law did my hair and I loved it (and the awesome chalkboard pictured)!  I ran out of time do do my makeup super awesome, but that’s the beauty of Maskcara, it’s super quick and easy. It just felt a little vulnerable to be the only subject in the photos. Feeling afraid and doing it anyways has been the theme of the year 2017 in my journey to becoming fearless. So if you’re hesitating to do a shoot like this for yourself I highly recommend it! It’ll be good for you xoxo!

P.S. My hubby secretly planned a surprise birthday party for me that was really awesome!!!

My Maskcara Story

My Maskcara Story

Around 3 year ago I stumbled upon a pin on Pinterest of Cara Brooks.  She has this viral post on her blog on how to get the best fake tan. As a fellow pastie girl I was drawn to her biog. It was late one night that my husband was working a night shift and I was having trouble going to sleep without him. I watched video after video on her youtube channel and I started following her instructions on how to highlight and contour with drug store makeup. What really stood out to me, and I remember telling my husband about her, was how confident she was without makeup on.  She could be completely bare faced for all the world to see and was completely confident that she was beautiful and that she just enjoyed enhancing her look with makeup.  I was using a direct sales company makeup at the time and was doing my best to get the look I wanted with her techniques. I really like the direction my look was going.  AND THEN she came out with her line of makeup! I was so excited and I wanted it so badly. But just like every other frugal mom on a budget I didn’t want to buy something new and feel disappointed if I didn’t like it or stress over returning it if it wasn’t the right color.  Any mom’s out there that can relate to that?  It stresses me out to return things… ugh.  But I kept going back and looking at the site and watching her talk about the makeup and why she created it. It all made sense to me. I needed to bite the bullet and try it. So I saved my birthday money and was all ready to purchase, but the colors I needed were out of stock! I had to wait another couple months for them to get my colors back but the great news was I got in on a great deal that got me the brush too! My first colors were: White Peach, Walnut, Pink Grapefruit, and Pearl.

When it came I was really excited and really nervous! It sat on my bathroom counter for a week before I tried it!  When I finally got the nerve put to try it out I was amazed at how well if covered by dark circles, how well it blended, and how easy it was to follow the directions in no time at all!  There was no going back.  I’ve been using Maskcara exclusively since!


It was no surprise to me when people started complementing my skin

I have porcelain skin, but my complexion isn’t perfect. It was no surprise to me when people started complementing my skin.  I knew it was my makeup that looked so natural and flawless – like I’m not even wearing anything, but I didn’t always have the chance to tell people that.  In the back of my head I was secretly hoping that Cara would decide to grow her business through women like me instead of taking it to makeup stores.  Come January 2017 she did! She created the artist program and even though I follow her on social media, somehow I missed the announcements! It wasn’t until March 2017 that Amy Twitty did a Insta-story talking about how she was now a Maskcara Artist that I found out about it.  My heart started racing! Like that kind of excitement you get when you’re nervous and thrilled all at the same time.  I went straight to Maskcara’s social media sites and sure enough there were tons of posts that I had missed.  I wanted to jump in right then and there! But I thought I should pump the breaks a bit and wait to talk to my husband.

We talked it over and he was supportive of my doing something for me and investing in my own business as long as I had a plan and could reassure him I wouldn’t quit before I earned back my investment.  With him on board I made the decision to sign up under Amy.  I didn’t know her personally.  When she had done a fundraiser for her second adoption I had started following her on Instagram.  She mentioned that she was saving for a third adoption and I loved the fact that my being under her would help make that dream a reality! She has been a great mentor in this business. She’s a constant support and cheerleader! You really can’t help but love her!

Since I was already experienced with the makeup the only thing I really had to learn was how to color match.  I quickly found out how easy that was to do and have enjoyed spending time with each and every client I meet.  It was the perfect fit for me.  Had I found out in January I might not have been ready to sign up.  March rolled around and I had room in my life for this little adventure.  What it has done for me is far beyond monetary value.  I love leading my team, meeting women and hearing their stories, getting mom-breaks, and having a creative outlet.  On so many levels this business is more rewarding to me than I could have imagined.  If you knew me a few years ago it might surprise you that I’m doing something like this, but I’m loving it!