Hi, friends! Welcome to the very first podcast of Social With Lisa. I finally went for it and decided to start this new journey that has been a dream of mine for over a year. I’m so excited you are here!
Quarantine has given me lots of time for self-reflection as I’m sure it has with you, too. So I figured if it’s the end of the world, Lisa, what do you want to do if you could do anything? Well, there are a few bucket list dreams I have, including traveling the world, living in Hawaii, and cruising around to places I’ve always wanted to go. To sum it up: traveling is my dream. However, COVID has put that dream on hold for now, so I asked myself, what is one thing in your business that has been something that you’ve always wanted to do? The answer for me was to start my own podcast where I could share what I’ve learned about being a social media influencer over the years. I also wanted an easy platform where I could interview all my talented decor friends!
My dream of recording a podcast was put on the back burner when we moved from Texas and started our 11 months remodel. Now that the renovation projects are complete, now is the time! I am so excited and anxious all wrapped into one. Luckily my daughter Karissa and her friend Nicole already have a podcast called The Good, The Bad, and The Hair so I’m learning from them. Also, I am a big believer in online courses and education, so I purchased Jenna Kutcher’s Podcast Lab and went through the entire course and now I was ready!
Let me tell you a little bit about my story and what started my love for all things home decor and interior design. It started when I was 17 years old. Yes, we’re going way back! On several occasions, my Mom had hired an interior designer to help to decorate our home in California. When I turned 17, it was finally time for me to have a more “grown-up” bedroom room. It was my turn to work with the interior designer! I would spend hours going through all of the books of fabrics and wallpaper. I would sit with the designer pouring over all the different options as we finally created the room of my dreams! Once my room was done, I didn’t wanna leave it. I was so proud of that room and even kept it spotless. Impressive for a teenage girl, right? I loved everything about it – green carpet and all! Ahhh, the 90’s.
Once I got married and had my own home, my love for home decor grew tremendously. I was able to decorate everything with my own personal inspiration! Steve and I were young parents and purchased our first home at 23. Fun fact: we actually moved in the day after we got married! It was a new build and 1200 square feet with all white everything. But oh, how I hated those tiles in the kitchen! I also repainted the interior of that home 3 or 4 times from tan, to red, to yellow, to olive. Don’t even get me started with how many times I painted and redecorated the kid’s bedrooms! Our first home was always evolving, and luckily, Steve supported my DIY and painting adventures. I have to say he has always been my biggest cheerleader! We’re both homebodies and really enjoy making our home beautiful. I have so many fond memories of that home because it’s where we raised our three young children and turned our 3-car garage into a carpeted playroom! So much joy there.
In 2002, I started taking interior design classes at UC Riverside. Steve was teaching there at the time, and I was able to take one class a semester for free. I was so excited as a young mother to get out of the house and explore interior design. I also started selling Partylight candles – who remembers those? Over the span of 2 years selling these candles, I grew a team of 20 amazing women and learned how to run a small business! Steve and I even earned a free cruise through the Caribbean. Also during that time, Carrie (a friend of my moms), owned the most beautiful custom floral boutique. I would sit and watch her work for hours on end; she is truly an artist! She even hired me to work part-time during the holiday season! Every time I walked into her boutique, it was like heaven to me! She had so many beautiful home decor pieces, and I would work so hard just to bring things home.
Moving on to 2005 during the boom – we sold our house for top dollar in California and decided to move to Phoenix Arizona to start a business. We spent a couple of years doing this, but unfortunately, we lost our business AND our home! We had to rebuild our lives. So, I went back to school for interior design only this time, I was determined to get my design degree. However, things didn’t work out as planned, and I re-routed my degree to real estate. I worked so hard in my real estate classes. By hard, I mean it took me eight times to pass that school test! When I finally passed, I got my license and joined a team! My Brokerage mostly sold short sales and foreclosures, so I spent my early real estate days showing buyers beat-up foreclosures in 120-degree heat – doesn’t that sound fun?! I have to say I earned every one of my paychecks! It was not easy, but it was a valuable experience that taught me determination and good work ethic! After 2 years of learning, it was time to branch out on my own.
So how does real estate and home decor go together you ask? Well, I’ve been in hundreds of homes, including million-dollar mansions and the smaller one stories. I have been all over the Phoenix Valley, in and out of properties day in and day out during my 7-year career! I have also viewed thousands of homes online, helping my buyers find their dream homes. I have seen every style of decor from southwest, to contemporary, to farmhouse, to traditional, to just straight-up man cave. I have shown and walked into townhomes, mobile homes, and even apartments. One of the specialties that I would offer was giving tips on how to de-clutter in order to sell their home for top dollar. If they were buyers, I would help them envision their furniture placement or favorite pieces of furniture they wouldn’t get rid of. In certain scenarios, I would help them to envision those pieces of their new space, so I was able to incorporate my love of design with real estate all those years. This really kept me satisfied!
Fast forward to 2016 when I moved to Texas for Steve’s new job. I was all on board with the move and excited about a new adventure. I had this fantasy that all my kids would move with me, but Dylan was the only one who moved with us. Within the first few weeks in Texas, my excitement wore off. The reality of moving away from my daughters, moving away from all of my friends, and the life I had built for 14 years in Arizona really started to kick in and I got really depressed. Dylan stayed for about seven months in Texas, and then realized he didn’t want to be there either, so we had him moved him back to Phoenix. With Dylan moving out and me being an empty nester for the first time, I was so sad! I have never felt so alone. Steve was gone during the day, and I was alone in a new state with no friends, no kids, no career!
After about a month of crippling depression, my friend Cher told me that I had to do something about this! She suggested that I take a look at my YouTube channel and maybe start channeling some of my depression into crafting and making more videos. So with her encouragement, I looked at my YouTube channel that had not been touched for a year and a half. To my surprise, my very first post from over a year ago had 50,000 views on it. “Oh my God I’m going to be YouTube famous,” I thought to myself! Though I didn’t become Youtube famous, I slowly started to grow my YouTube channel over the last couple of years! Every day, I tried to come up with a craft or a project as a distraction. Then, Cher suggested I check out Instagram since they have a lot of home decor accounts that would keep me preoccupied. At the time, my IG was on private and I had 132 followers. That same day, I did a search for home decor, and my mind was blown! I had the biggest oh my God/aha moment! This was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen! I want to do this! I started channeling all of my anxiety and sadness and depression into building my Instagram page. I literally had no idea where to start; I only knew how to shoot a few videos and put them on YouTube. I wanted to learn more about Instagram – how to use it, what is a hashtag, how to add music, how to edit, it went on and on! I had nothing but time on my hands! My very first video is still on my Instagram page now. I left it there as a reminder of the day I went all-in on Instagram and design and sharing my passion with others.
This is my design story. All of these life adventures have contributed to who I am and where I am now. As I was writing this, I realized that I have been so blessed and fortunate to have some amazing women in my life who have been role models and supporters of me. Thank you to my Mom who introduced me to interior design and crafting! Thank you to my friend Carrie for letting me watch her work and be inspired by her boutique! Thank you to my best friend Cher, who encouraged me to start my Youtube channel and who encouraged me to go all-in on Instagram. Thank you to my other best friend Danica, who held my hand through the last year and was the biggest fan and supporter of my Real Estate career! To Jessica who introduced me to Real Estate and was my Partylite partner! To my children Karissa, Amanda, and Dylan, who helped me hold it together all the time as a mom! You are the most important people in my life, and I couldn’t have come this far without you. Thank you to Steve, who is now by my side, supporting me like never before. Our relationship is stronger than ever and I have the partner I always wanted! And lastly, thank you to all the people who have given me support over the last two years and followed along on my journey! Your sweet DM’s, your comments on my posts, and your continued encouragement have kept my page going even when I wanted to quit! I now have a new perspective and a new chapter I am starting! Thank you, everyone!