December 2020 - Merry Christmas!

We don't know about you, but we can't wait for 2020 to be over and done with!

The year started off well enough with Joseph's spring semester of teaching and Helene's seminar and coaching business off to a great start. She flew to L.A. to visit her dad for his 83rd birthday.

And then the Coronavirus pandemic spread worldwide and life as we know it became COVID-centered.

Joseph's spring break turned into an additional week off for the students as teachers scrambled to set up remote learning. This was a huge learning curve for everyone involved.

Most of Helene's onsite events were delayed or cancelled. A few understood back then about remote learning, so a couple of those took place. No new business inquiries came in for nearly four months.

To top that off, we each experienced medical setbacks this year. Joseph contended with urinary issues that landed him in doctors offices, urgent care and the ER. Helene was diagnosed with the same lung disease as her mom and started a year-long heavy duty drug therapy. We learned more about health insurance, deductibles and out-of-pocket than we'd ever care to.

And then there's travel. This was the first summer we haven't traveled since...maybe 2004?? We had to cancel our recon trip to Italy in June for next year's big group trip we're leading. Boo! But we're still in contact with our "mom and pop" vendors over there, and we all hope that our 2021 trip will happen.

But there were some bright moments this year. During our downtime/sheltering in place in the spring, we completed house projects we've been putting off since they weren't priorities. We cooked and paired wines up to five days a week instead of just once or twice. We had quiet, socially-distanced dinners with two friends at a time. Helene's brother and his family travelled to Austin to visit his wife's sister's family, so met all of them up there for a day of hiking and lounging.

Our fur babies, Freddie and Levi, are now 7 1/2 years old. They're getting greyer and sleep more, but they still chase down rabbits, squirrels and deer.

We count our blessings that despite the number of times we've been in medical facilities this year, we are overall in good health, have a roof above our heads, and enjoy plenty of food on our table.

We with you peace, love and happiness!

And here's to being free to move about the cabin - and world - in 2021!

December 2017 – Happy Holidays!
Thanks for stopping by for an update on the Seguras!
 Joseph started his 23rd year of teaching. He teaches seven classes of English II and AP English IV students. There's a great deal of grading involved, which is why he enjoys his days off to the max. He continues to plan and cook gourmet meals which just so happen to go oh-so-well with wine.
Helene continues to operate LivingOrderSA and loves it because each day is different. She has in-person consulting clients in San Antonio, phone clients around the country and gets to travel to different places to deliver keynotes and trainings on time management. One of those far off places this year was London. We decided to extend that work trip into a vacation since Joseph's spring break landed the week before the London conference. We reserved a VRBO apartment in Amboise, France, and a hotel in Paris. From there, Joseph would fly home and Helene would head to London.
But it didn't quite work out that way. We found out that Joseph needed hernia surgery, and the surgeon advised that he not travel. So Helene's dad took his place. The photo on the bottom right of our postcard is a picture of us in front of the Chenonceau Chateau in the Loire Valley. (Joseph's surgery was successful, by the way, and he seems to be back at 100%.)
We're grateful that we were able to spend fun times with family and friends throughout the year. The photo on the top left was taken at the sit-down dinner for 40, hosted by Cheryl and Marvin Jones for their 30th wedding anniversary. In June, Helene's cousin, Irene, and her husband, Jon, visited us from L.A., so we played tourist in San Antonio. (bottom left photo) In August, Helene was able to spend a long weekend with her family in L.A. We were even able to take in a Dodger game just like the old days. (top right photo)
Other adventures included:
Helene's Dad's 80th birthday - photo
The Davidsons and Seguras spent a weekend with the Krienkes at Lake LBJ. - photo
 The best man from our wedding, Marc Luevano, visited us from Portland in April and September. - photo 
Joseph's oldest brother, Mike, visited us from VA in May. In September, he and his wife, Emilia, stayed with us. - photo
We attended Ron and Andrea White's 22nd annual Columbus Day Party in October. - photo
Helene extended a biz trip to Denver in November and visited her aunt and cousins. - photo (There was snow already!)
For Thanksgiving, thanks to Face Time, Joseph was able to see all of his brothers and sing Happy 83rd Birthday to their dad. - photo
In November we lost our Hildy to canine lymphoma. You can read our tribute to her here. We miss seeing her smile and hearing her squeaks. Freddie, who's now four years old, seems to be very happy, so we're not in a rush to find her a companion. Freddie plays more with us than she did before, but she's also like a cat and wants to be off on her own for a good bit of time.
On December 7th, South Texas received a dusting of snow! That's probably the closest we'll get to a White Christmas in these parts! - photo
Our big project that we're working on is a group journey to walk the Camino de Santiago in Portugal and Spain. If you'd like details about that, you can read about it here.
We hope that you have a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy 2018!
Helene and Joseph
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December 2016 - Happy Holidays!
Thanks for stopping by our website for an update on the Seguras! The links in the update will take you to pictures of our adventures.
This year has been one of extreme highs and lows.
In January, Joseph's oldest brother Mike and his wife Emilia came to visit San Antonio. It was nice to have the whole Segura family together.
[caption id="attachment_2186" align="alignleft" width="146"]time-management-books-the-inefficiency-assassin published by New World Library[/caption]In April, my third book was released by publisher New World Library. NWL's publicist had me on a whirlwind tour of radio shows in April, May and June. I was able to swing a trip to L.A. to meet with book store managers. While there, I helped celebrate my mom's 77th birthday
The photo on the bottom left of our card was taken in June on the Santa Monica Pier. I had a client session in L.A., which allowed me to visit my family again.
I was asked to deliver a keynote in London in June, so Joseph came along as my tech / PR guy / photographer / overall assistant. We extended our stay there and visited with the UK Seguras and Walkers, then headed to France to eat our way through the Burgundy and Alsace regions. The photo on the bottom right of the card was taken in front of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. The tiny photo above it is of Chateau du Haut-Koenigsbourg in the Alsace region of France.
Also in June, Fredericka Gorgonzola Brasilia (our black dog, pictured on the left of the card) turned three years old. She still acts like a puppy, but has thankfully stopped chewing. Her older sister, Hildy Svetlana, turned 12 in October and finds Freddie slightly less annoying now.
My brother and his wife, Jill, invited us to join their family for a vacation on Oahu in July. We decided not to pass up this opportunity because Jill's family hosted us in their homes and also provided fantastic home-cooked meals. I was able to arrange a quick book signing in Waikiki at the beginning of our trip, and the rest of the time it was pure relaxation. The photo on the top right of the card is of Joseph and me with my brother, sister-in-law, and their kids after our hike to the top of Hanauma Bay. Joseph and I stayed with my parents for one night on the way there and on the way back to break up the flight time and squeeze in another visit.
In August, Joseph started his 22nd year of teaching! This year, in addition to seniors in English IV, he's also teaching sophomores in Pre-AP English II. He has a whopping 167 students this year. Needless to say, he spends a heck of a lot of time grading essays.
On August 22, 2016, my mom passed away unexpectedly. I posted a tribute to her here shortly after it happened. An extremely difficult time was made somewhat bearable because of the outpouring of love from family and friends, and we are truly grateful for that. We hosted a very small memorial in Los Angeles for my mom on the 40th day after her death (a custom in her family), and my sister-in-law, Emilia Segura, arranged for a mass in San Antonio in my mom's honor for all of the Seguras to attend.
The holidays are different this year, for obvious reasons. We went back to L.A. for Thanksgiving. I kept expecting my mom to walk into the room, but she never did. We'll be going back again for Christmas.
The photo on the Santa Monica Pier is the last family photo that we have with my mom. Since we never know which moment will be our last, I hope you live every moment to the fullest and enjoy life as much as possible.
Joseph and I wish you a very Merry Christmas, a joyous New Year, and a happy and healthy 2017!
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December 2015 - Happy Holidays!
Thanks for stopping by our website for an update on the Seguras!
You won't believe this! Central Market held an essay contest for their 20th anniversary. And Joseph won! (You can read his essay here.) They sent us to Europe in March - three nights in Paris and four nights in Florence! Each day had a different "foodie" event scheduled for us. It was heavenly - especially because everything was paid for! You can view our album here.
This fall, Joseph began his 21st year of teaching. He teaches senior English at Harlandale High School. When he's not working, he's planning our next great adventure. Our 2015 summer journey was to England to see family and then to France, Belgium and the Netherlands. You can view pictures here.
Helene's business, LivingOrderSA, continues to do well. She's also expanded her trainings and keynotes across the country. Details are here:
Our puppies continue to provide additional work at home. Freddie thinks she's a giraffe and has a ball pulling leaves off branches. Hildy likes to chase her around, so the two of them leave racing tracks everywhere. It's hard to believe they have time for all of that when they sleep 20 hours a day.
Our other 2015 adventures include:
*Segura family gatherings in February and August
*Davidson family visits Texas in April
*Continuing our Julie & Julia cooking adventures just about every weekend, including our Black Friday Feast
Pictures from our card, left to right:
Sacre Coeur in Paris
Bruges, Belgium
Bicycling outside of Bruges
Leaning Tower of Pisa
Spurs Christmas Tree (Go Spurs Go!)
May you and your family experience peace, love and joy during the holiday season and throughout 2016!
Joseph and Helene
The-Inefficiency-Assassin-30-Time-Management-Tactics-for-Working-Smarter-Not-Longer-by-Helene-Segura-New-World-Library-April-2016P.S. Helene's third book will release on April 12, 2016!
Be sure to keep an eye out on Facebook for an invite to the San Antonio and "virtual" launch events!