Tuesday, December 30, 2008

It's been 3 years

since we have said our vows at St. Patrick's Church. My love, it has been a roller coaster these past three years, full of changes and new beginnings. I have to say it has been a pleasure being able to hold your hand as we lift our arms to enjoy the flips, loops, and drops of life. Our marriage has been like Space Mountain, we never know when the next loop or flip will come but as long as you right beside me, I know we can gt through anything. Here's to many more by your side!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Someone mentioned...

I don't post very often....so I thought it would be nice to post some pics of what has been going on in good ol' laredo.

First off, we finally have tile in our new home, but I haven't taken pictures of it yet. So here are some before pics of our house.

So we finally have tile in the whole house. We need to paint two walls and one bathroom. Next are the base boards which we need to sand and repaint. Lastly, we need to power wash the outside to take the chipping paint off and repaint. Slowly but surely we are getting closer to the move in date which for now is presumed to be some time in February.

The Garcia Gonzalez and Kuhns Garcia families spent Christmas at Tio Poncho's house and although we didn't take many pictures, we did get a chance to snap one with Santa hats on. We had a lot of fun, but as always we did miss our Austinite and Qataries from making it a real Christmas! We did see the Garcia Ibarrola's before they left to the In Laws to spend Christmas eve. We exchanged gifts and had a great time!

Next we had the baptism of our new Goddaughter Roxanna Maria at St. Patrick's church. Fr. Mary David from the Brothers of St. John Congregation presided andhe gave a beautiful homily on the welcoming of a new member to the Body of Christ.

And today, has been a nice and relaxed Sunday. This morning Roxanna's father and wife came over for some barbacoa for breakfast. Once they left we kicked back and rocked and rolled to good ol' guitar hero. We even got my mom and dad to jam out! My mom's face is priceless!!!!!

Well folks, from our family to yours I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and have a safe and fun New Year! A special shout out to the Rose family and their beautiful two new sons!! And another very special shout out to our Qatary family whom we miss very much and can't wait to spend next Christmas with them! We love you and miss you.....

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Kuhns' update

So its been a while since I have the updated on the blog and its partially due to our extremely busy schedule. Its Tuesday night an d we have a long break from both works because of the Thanksgiving holiday. Our routine doesn't change too much which leaves little room for flexibility. My niece was born on November 4th and Jesse and I have ben asked to become Godparents! Totally exciting! She is adorable and looks like both of her parents. It is quite an honor to be the first granddaughter/niece. Speaking of babies, we ask for your prayers as Jesse an I try to start a family of our own. Sometimes its hard to remember that our time might not be the same as God's time.

In other news, KuGar is going great!!! Not only do we have over 60 members, but we are enjoying every minute of it. We currently have two students with special needs that reminds us that TaeKwonDo is for everybody! We are also seeing significant positive differences in some of our students' behavior.

We spend our weekends at the new house painting/sanding/taping as we continue to prepare our future home. This week we will be spending in Austin for the Garcia Ibarrola family and hopefully find some good special for Black Friday! I wish everyone a safe and fun Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


"My family has never been this united" -Father whose entire family (himself, wife and 2 kids) take our family class.

"Master Jesse is like lighting!" - Student in the adult class (who happens to be 9 years old)

"This is exactly what I was looking for" - Student at our "after tournament" dinner.

"My son has never stuck with something for this long" - Mother of a student

"I had a shower to go to but my daughter begged me to come to TaeKwonDo today, so I told my friends 'My children come first'" -Mother of a student

"For the first time, my family can do something together without tv, phones, work or school." - Family class member

"TaeKwonDo is a priviledge for my 3 kids, they don't want to miss, so they always behave." - Mother of 3 students

Monday, October 6, 2008

Long time no see.

Its been awhile since I had the time to sit back and write in this il' thing. I would be surprised if anyone still checked it, but it would be a good idea if I updated it anyway. We we are in October now and life has change a bit since I last wrote. KuGar TaeKwonDo has been going fantastic! We had our first belt test and 33 people tested!!!!! Craziness! I was told by a parent that he was glad he got to spend time with his family practicing TaeKwonDo away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. That is just a glimpse as to why we do what we do. About 4 weeks ago I began suffering from shin splints. Now I know the word "suffering" is pretty strong but it definitely describes what I was feeling. I took two weeks off and tried to continue working out to come to find out, I hadn't rested nearly enough time. I researched shin splints every day and just figured I would have to just give the working out and heels a rest. Today I am pain free but we will give it one more week for good measure. Life at work has been great. I work long days going in at about 8 am, working until 5 and then heading straight to KuGar and working until 9pm. It took some time to get used but, but I am okay now. My bedtime is usually 10:30 but I never make it. Enrique and his family were here for a while visiting and now they are gone - again - to Qatar. From what I hear though they will be back for good in March or April Yipppeee! Oh yeah, good news, we bought a HOUSE!!! Crazy huh? It was totally not our plan, but we came to a house that was getting foreclosed on and the deal was too good to pass up. It needs a paint job, the carpet needs to be removed, but thats about it, the inspection came out great! We won't be moving in jut yet, but I can't believe we got a house. St. Francis is alive and well living the outside cat world for a while. No baby yet...but we hope it will be soon...Alright...pics will come soon, well eventually. I hope life is well to all those I haven't seen in a while.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

From this


(drumroll please.......)

KuGar TaeKwonDo!!!!!

It has been a tough two weeks, but we are pretty much done and ready for class tomorrow. We have taken down walls and built new ones. We have added some couches, a Gatorade fridge, mats, and a whole lot more. I am happy to say that this place looks professional and appealing. There are a little touchups needed here and there, but mostly, we have all we need to get class started. We have our inventory in, our cokes, gatorades, and waters cold, and our spirits high. My parents have done a tremendous job getting helping us through these last two weeks. It would have been impossible without them. Not to mention that my dad has been taking private lessons from Master Jesse, AWESOME! You should see his poomse (form).

Anywho...if you are in the area come by and take a look. If you are interested, come by and sign up!! :)

We are installed in Laredo, and we have finally cleared my parents' garage of our "stuff". IT is great to be around family again. WE went to see the Coto vs Margarito fight at Tio Poncho's house, and had a lot of fun. I have seen most of my aunts and spent quality time with the folks. On Thursday, I was registered at my new job which starts Aug. 16. I have been so busy that I haven't had time to realize that I graduate next Friday! As some have done, I added a diamond to my Aggie ring as a symbol of my graduate degree, and it finally came in the mail today. To add to the new things in our life, my hair color is now BLACK! haha. See below! A bit different I know, but hey I am trying to keep up with everything new around me. (BTW, Jesse LOVES it) Jesse and I miss the boys so much and can't wait to see them in two weeks. Well, we have been living KuGar all day and night, and I am now exhausted!!!! (And we also worked out today). So, night night, world, and watch out, because KuGar is coming!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Lessons learned

Let me tell you about this man I call my husband. He worked out up to 6 times a week after working 10 hour shifts. He ran sprints until he threw up and then continued on to the next workout. Some of the best coaches in the nation refer to him as a "machine". He is a modest man who knows his own strengths and weaknesses. Today, I saw him fight probably one of his worst fights. And by "worst" fights, I mean that he was "off" his game. He went out into the ring and did his thing, but for some reason his "thing" just wasn't "on". He lost to a guy at about one third his talent, and one one hundredth his heart. He then took about 30 minutes to himself. When I spoke to him, he was so disappointed with himself. He said to me "I don't know what happened. I knew what he was going to do and when he was going to do it, and I just couldn't get my self On. I don't mind losing to a person who is more talented than me, to a better fighter. But this guy is not by far a better fighter." This is supposed to be his last tournament he participates in. He is supposed to bow out gracefully, and move on to bigger and better things. But...when you look into his eyes, he has a hunger. a hunger for victory. I don't know if and when he'll fight again and if you ask him, he'll say he's done. But I don't think we've seen the last of Jesse the fighter. No. He's got more in him. All I can say is that as his number 1 supporter, I will always be cheering in his corner. He is my fighter, and he is the best. He might have been off today, but he is still the best. I know it. He knows it. His coaches know it. Just wait and see. He will do great things.'

Jesse, I am proud of you. You worked your tail off. You did what most don't do. You dropped over 40 lbs in the span of a couple of years and became one of the best. I saw you beat up a collegiate team member during practice. One tournament doesn't decide how good or bad you are at the sport. I know you are bummed out, but Animo, my friend. You always have a team mate in me. You may have not have had the fight of your life today. The refs may not have been on your side either. But you and I know that this could have happened to anyone. The real honor lies in what you choose to do with it. No matter what you choose, I am your esquina. Now and forever. I love you.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Our travels

Here we are in Madison Wisconsin at the AAU TaeKwonDo National Championships. We drove up here from Houston. We took off at 3ish on Saturday and arrived at 9 am on Sunday. Jesse did the whole cutting weight thing and made weight this morning at 8:00am at a whopping 147.00 (his cutoff was 147.4) Rock on! We then ate some pancakes (he was really hungry). After we came back to the hotel and Jesse took a nap while I ironed his uniform. at about 4 we went over to a different hotel so that Jesse could test for his 4th Dan (degree). About an hour and a half later and a lot of sweat, Jesse passed and was an 4th Dan certificate...which means he is now MASTER Jesse! How fun! Jesse and his instructor Master Julio then took me to get my nails done (I really needed it). Now we are back at the hotel. Jesse will go and kick some before going to bed and then its off to sleep. Tomorrow Tuesday he will fight at about 11am. Please pray for him. I will post some pics later. I am very excited because Jesse has been training hardcore for the past 6 months. I will post again tomorrow evening.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


So, Jesse and I have begun our packing. Its a pain and our home looks like a tornado hit (although it didn't take anything with it). Fortunately, I have used my condo yahoo group to post things I can do without, and I have gotten great responses! Looks like I won't have to lug all the bookshelves to Laredo. My game cube was the first to go! Anywho..packing will be interesting, but the less that goes with us, the better. Who knows when we will get a house of our own. My biggest task, papers, journal articles, class notes. Eventually I will get the organization skills to scan them all onto my computer and then burn them! But dont' have the time nor the patience. I wish I would have known how much paper and space could have been saved if I would have taken my laptop to class for my notes since the beginning of school. Hm. Oh well. Hindsight is 20/20.
By the way, today I realized we own 5 printers. HA!

Tomorrow there is a good chance I will see the Garcia Saenz family. Yay! They will be at IAH briefly before they get on a connecting flight to Laredo. I haven't seen them in so long and I am excited to say hi!

See you all soon!

Monday, June 23, 2008

So much to do

so little time. Jesse and I went to watch the Hulk today, we both had a long day at work and we decided to reward ourselves with a Monday at the movies. It was nice because we had a free movie ticket from our rewards club. The movie was very entertaining although we didn't nearly as much as we did in Get Smart. When I walked in our home I realized we have so much left to do. We leave on Saturday to our 19 hour trip to Wisconsin, drive back next Wednesday, go to work Thursday, attend a wedding rehearsal on Friday, wedding on Saturday, and pack the Uhaul on Sunday for Jesse to move back down on Monday. He is only supposed to leave me a tv, my clothes and a bed. Ha! Please don't ask how much we have packed. THAT should tell you how far behind we are. But...no fear, years of deadlines and last minute papers has trained me to remember that anything is possible, all you need is a little Red Bull (AMP for me) and perseverance. I don't know how this next week goes, but I sure am packing for the next 3 days.


Sunday, June 22, 2008

KuGar TaeKwonDo update

Alrighty guys and gals.... we are on our way to be up and running... Our website was updated and now ready for viewing and sharing. Feel free to share to anyone you know in Laredo. :)

We have signed our lease, ordered our mats and ready to go... I am still looking for good deals on t-shirts, so if anyone has contacts in Laredo, let me know!

On a side note, Jesse had a sparring session with a couple of guys, one of which is on the Collegiate National Team. He looked VERY good! Jesse was scored on not more than 2 to 3 times and he scored well over 6 points. We are psyched about Wisconsin in a couple of weeks and ask you to keep him in your prayers.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Current News

First of all let me extend a very Happy Birthday to Roxana, my sis-in-law! May the Lord shower your with blessings this new year as you explore motherhood.

In other news. I caved in and began Tony Horton's P90X which is a home workout regime. You might have seen the infomercials on tv. In the package, you get 12 workouts and a plan for 90 days interchanging the order of the workouts and increasing intensity. Day 1 was very tough, Day 2 was even tougher...and to this day it is still super tough, and I can't get through every single exercise yet (during the tough workouts). I am currently on Day 1 on Week 2. Goodness, it is tough. After every exercise, I wanted to quit. I first did the Back and Chest routine, which includes many different kids of push ups and pull ups (using a pull up bar). Then after 58 minutes of that, I moved on to Ab Ripper X, an intense ab workout that although lasts on 16 minutes incorporates non-stop ab exercise for a total of about 375 total movements. Anywho...we'll see how this treats me. I practically fainted after this one. The funny thing is that about 3 or 4 days ago, Jesse and I did Yoga X, and we had a super hard time! Jesse would look at the tv and then look at me and say "you've got to be kidding me, I can't believe this is that hard". Jesse usually joins me for low impact days or for the ab portion only because he does his thing consistently at the TKD school.

Onto another topic! Today we opened 2 wholesale accounts, faxed our lease, ordered the credit card machine, filled out most of my licensure applications, worked out, registered our new school with the national governing body (USAT), and I think thats it. I also found out that after all is said and done, it will cost us about $2000 to get fully licensed. Goodness, and I thought Grad school was expensive!

Its 1am and Jesse fell asleep watching Underworld. So..I think I will join the dreaming realm with him...

Alrighty...good night folks!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Others would agree

This summer I have been working in a classroom full of children with autism. I mostly help out the teacher and focus on improving these kids' social skills "Hi how are you, I am fine and you? I am great, thank you".
In class yesterday, one of the boys who was having a bad day says.

"I don't want to work with Ms. K, she talks too much"


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Book Review - Twilight Series

Life is good in the neighborhood which gives me lots of time for...READING!

I began this series last week and finished all three books (over 500 pages each) in 4 days and then Jesse finished them in 5. What books? The Twighlight Series (Twilight, New Mood, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn). Stephenie Meyer is a relatively new author that has been reportedly named "The next JK Rowling". Can she live up to the hype? I think so.

The premise of the series is a simple girl who moves to live with her father in Forks, WA falls and love with the mysterious Edward Cullen. The problem? Edward and his family are vampires. WAIT! Before you totally throw this out as a foolish ol' vamipire story read on. You see, Edward has been alive for over 100 years and has never fallen in love. Now that he has, he will do anything in his power to make the girl of his dreams happy. Too bad there are things in the way, such as the whole vampire thing, plus bad guys, and did I mention the whole vampire thing?

Girl Part: Meyer describes Edward's love as completely and perfectly unconditional. Its completely unhuman in that it is a pure love that we humans are, in essence, to selfish to experience. Edward is the man that all moms and dads want to meet their daughter. If you are a girl, and you every dreamed of the perfect prince charming...prepare to meet him in Twilight. The story also grapples with sexuality in a very wholesome way.

Boy Part: To keep it entertaining for the boys or those not interested in just the love part, there are some plot twists, cool fight scenes, and bad guys. There are also great back stories that describe how each of the Cullen family became vampires in their own way. Not to mention the italian vampire mob that keeps all the vampires in check.

I would recommend this book to anyone who fell in love with Harry Potter and would like a young adult fiction novel addiction. The 4th in the series will be coming out August 2nd and Jesse and I can't wait. If you have some time, check it out. If you love reading, then you'll love this book. This series is definitely in my top reads. Its completely fictional, fun, and entertaining.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

KuGar TaeKwonDo

Introducing KuGar TaeKwonDo!
Please visit our site and let us know if you have any pointers..


We are currently working on flyers and such...and I will post more information with time.

Happy Father's Day!

Jesse and I had the chance to spend Father's Day with Papa Grande! It was very fast-paced but fun! We enjoyed some steaks at the Ambassador Steakhouse and then had some fun at home. It was a great day to remember the wonders of fatherhood and give a tiny piece of the appreciation we all feel. Congrats Papa! We also had fun playing on the new swingset at the Garcia Gonzalez Residence.

While we were in Laredo, we had the fortune of dropping off the deposit of our TaeKwonDo school. It looks like KuGar is coming sooner than we think! For those of you in Laredo, we will be in the Village Plaza @ Del Mar. Its the business plaza in front of Mary Help Elementary and next to Nye Elementary. We ended up switching our place because we felt that the other owner was a bit....difficult. But thankfully, we will be signing this next week and will the fun planning begins...

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Plop plop fizz fizz...oh what a relief it is!

And no, I am not talking about Alkaseltzer. hehe.

I am D-O-N-E! Here is the play by play:
Monday June 2
10:00pm My parents arrive in Houston at the Kuhns' residence. We stay up to talk up until 11:00 and head off to bed (or so I thought).
11:45 still awake...can't sleep...no feelings of nervousness but just can't shut down.
Tuesday June 3
12:30 still awake...I put my head where my feet are and vice versa..maybe this will help.
1:15 still awake...I need sleep I am very tired...my eyes just won't rest
2:00am ugh, so I might as well do something, I get up and flat iron my hair.
2:30 done with my hair, maybe I am tired enough to sleep
3:00 think again. I go downstairs, pour myself t glasses of milk and force 3 graham cracker cookies in my mouth (I wasn't hungry at all but hadn't eaten since 11am)
somewhere between 3:30 and 3:45 I fall asleep
5:30 (yes, 2 hours later) my alarm wakes me. ITs the big day.
6:30 My parents, Jesse and I are in the car, driving to Houston. On the drive I receive many good luck calls and texts.
8:00 arrive in College Station, I need my alone time so Jesse and my parents go park the car, and place 500 pennies (yes! 500!) on Sully while I go and set up my computer.
9:00 all the committee members are ready and it begins. My powerpoint presentation is about one hour long.
10:00am My chairperson asks the guests (my parents and two grad students) if they had any questions. My dad asked my how I felt :). At his moment in time, I felt relief. THe part I had rehearsed so many times was over and I didn't say "um" too too much. haha My guests are asked to leave the room and my oral exam begins
I was asked many questions about my stats, conclusions, data, everything...smooth sailing. When I didn't know the answer I would say very thoughtfully, "Hm, that is a Good Question, I wonder how that would have affected my results." One little thing needs to be changed about my stats, no big deal, my statistician says it will take 10 min.
10:45 I was asked to leave the room while the committee deliberates (decide if I pass or fail)
10:55 Dr. Hughes (my chair) opens the door and says "Congratulations Dr. Kuhns!" I walk in and my committee members are all standing and the shake my hand as they congratulate me as the knighted "Dr. Kuhns". Tears come out slightly, but I am mostly a mix of emotions at this point. Jesse has a dozen beautiful red roses waiting for me! Hugs all around!
11:20 my parents and I go to Sully to take pictures (with my 500 pennies). and we turn to ask some random guy to take a picture of the four of us. I hear from behind "Oh no, I got it! I'll take it."
Confused, I turned around, and GERARDO AND ROXANNA ARE THERE! Completely surprised!!!! Gerardo hugs me and picks me off the floor, I can't help but have tears come down my face. We take pictures and head off to eat at Christopher's World Grille with Dr. Hughes.
3:00 We got to the mall and the drive home after saying goodbye to my brother. On the drive home family calls and congratulates me. Enrique, Vero and Co. said prayers for me, Tia Mayte lit candles, Abuelita Moncha said a whole Rosary for me! At home, we are exhausted. We watch The Condemned (DVD) and just chill. Later, we pick up Star Pizza (the best pizza) and eat with my parents and go to bed.
This morning Dr.Hughes calls me at 7:45am to tell me that the small stat changes don't have to be done because the software I used to run my multiple regression already averaged the standard errors across the 10 imputed data sets. In short, I don't have to fix anything. I just need to add 3 sentences (literally) to the end of my dissertation!!!!!!!!!! Sigh of relief.
5:30pm After a long day of work, I sent in my 3 sentences (which turned into like 4 or 5) to Dr. Hughes, and I got a "two thumbs up" from her. Its OVER!!!! Okay so here are some pics!

Isn't my dad a cutie?

While I was waiting for the deliberation to be over.

Dr. Hughes and I

The Fam at Sully

500 Pennies!

The Garcia Ibarrola's showed up!

Thank you all for your prayers, candles, pennies, and thoughts. Without the help of those who care about me, I could not have written a word. Los quiero mucho!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Right around the corner...

I have been in school for about 20 years. Its about to end. Next Tuesday at 9 am is the culmination of my hard work and determination that has gotten me thus far. Its been a long, hard trip up a very, very high mountain. Many times, the fog was so dense I couldn't see my hand in front of my face. There were days that I just wanted to turn right around and walk down. The walk down is so much easier and so tempting. There were days I would convince myself that my valor as a woman who was not pursuing a family yet, was diminished, and guilt overcame me. I put many things aside to climb this mountain. The real question is, for what? Was it to prove myself to others? Was it to climb as high as I could just to say I wasn't a quitter? Was it a desire to help others? Or was it to prove to myself that I could do it? Honestly It was probably a little of all of those. And know i am about 3-4 steps from the peak. In those (hopefully only) 2 hours of my defense all of this will come to an end. I won't graduate yet, but graduation compared to the feeling at 11am doesn't even come close. I was talking to a friend of mine about the importance of this day and she said to me "People don't understand everything we went through to get here, if they did they would wonder why we did it. The only two people that truly understand are us, and our spouse (who had to live with us through it all)." Maybe she's right. There is a joy in my heart knowing I achieved something I honestly didn't think I could. But at 11 o'clock next Tuesday it will all be over and thankfully I will have my loving spouse and my wonderful parents waiting for me outside the door. I cannot put into words the joy I feel of having my loved ones be the first faces I see as I walk outside and await the deliberation of the committee. Unfortunately my brothers and their spouses won't be there (although we will see 2 of them later on Tuesday night). This hurts my heart a bit because if anyone has heard me talk about my brothers you would know the reverence I have for them and the yearning in my heart to share my biggest professional accomplishment to date with them. I know that they will be there in spirit. SO until next week....say a little prayer for me and light a little candle. (and if you are at A&M) please put a penny on Sully for me. :)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

kids teaching kids

Student 1: You are not line leader!

Student 2: Yes I is!

Student 1: 'Yes I is" don't make no sense!

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Kuhns Residence

has calmed down for the time being. We are enjoying the rest of May before Houston gets crazy humid. My husband is currently cooking dinner as I finish the laundry (and post.) We are eating hot dogs tonight! yay. I should be reformatting my dissertation, but that can wait. It is not everyday we are both off for the afternoon. One thing we are looking forward to is weekends. Since we began dating 6 years ago and we have never had weekends off. I can't wait! We are still waiting for Baby Marshall and Baby Graham to honor us with their birth, but they aren't ready. Baby Marshall was due last Sunday, but he's taking his/her sweet time. Baby Graham has his mommy on bedrest and we hope he/she holds off a bit before he/she shows up. Life is good here at the Kuhns', thank God.

P.S. Blair, we really need to get together before we leave!!!! What is your schedule like?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


We have finalized the date of my defense for Tuesday, June 3rd at 9am!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


I arrived home to see the email below:

Nice Work. You may send it to your committee. Please let them know that you would appreciate their letting you know within two weeks of any significant concerns they have with your document, so that you will have the opportunity to address such concerns prior to the dissertation defense.


Monday, May 5, 2008

Update on the "D" word

Its funny to think how many times I have pressed the Send button thinking it was the last time my "little" paper would be broken into little pieces (think Willy Wonka) and sent across the world wide web into my advisor's inbox prompting her with a greeting "You've got mail". I have led myself to believe that this false sense of hope would actually actualize itself into reality. Too bad we can't think things and make them happen. So to make a long story short, we're still truckin' along. As Murphy would have it, I left my wonderful 2 gig flash drive in College Station on Friday. Not to fear, I had an old data set backed up on my computer so I am not freaking out just yet. If the journey to completion would be equivalent to my 5 hour trips to Laredo, I would say I am at the corner of Northstar and Coral Hills. The only problem is, that I have ran out of gas, and I am currently pushing my 2 ton pickup truck around the corner and up the driveway. My legs are tired, my hands are blistered, but I am almost there. I can tell that I am almost there, because my legs are cramping and my feet hurt. I know that if I stop pushing the truck, even to take a breath, it will run me over. There is no time to break down and feel sorry for myself. I think if anyone asks me how I am feeling, or if I am okay, my strong momentum will give in. If you have ever been in a situation like this (especially if you are a girl, I know you know what feeling I am talking about).
Last night, as Word "unexpectedly quit", I slowly pushed my laptop in front of me, and put my head in my hands. I started to giggle to myself about the situation and counted my blessings as the new Word for Mac is really good about recovering my previous work.
Jesse has been a real trooper. Every time my neurotic anxiety kicks in and I start complaining about him chewing too loud, drinking too loud, cracking pistachios, or even breathing too loudly (I know, I have a problem), he just smiles and moves to the other couch. He doesn't tell me how neurotic or irrational I am acting, he just complies. When I got up to get some water, he offered me a hug. And I (the neurotic one, remember), said "I am sorry if I take a hug now, I will break down and I need to just buckle down and get this done" I could see the understanding in his eyes as he just smiled and poured my water for me. Kudos to Jesse for being my number 1 fan.
So, ladies and gentlemen, keep me in your prayers as I turn the corner and drive up the block, I can see the house, but the truck is heavy. I will update you later on.

Words I am tired of using: Additionally, Furthermore, However, Consequently, Therefore, Unexpectedly, Similarly, Contrary to expectations, Consistent with the literature.

Prayer Request: PLEASE PLEASE keep Katey and her baby in your prayers. The baby has the the cord wrapped around its neck twice and she is on strict bed rest at least for the next two weeks so she can reach 36 weeks.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The government got in the way.

I was set to hopefully meet with my advisor today. Nut she was selected for jury duty, so my meeting was postponed to Friday at 1:30. Oh well...A couple more days of prayers that it can be my final draft before it gets sent to my committee.

Monday, April 28, 2008

I just sent the second to final copy

of my dissertation to my advisor. I am hoping, that is. I have a meeting with her on Wednesday and have asked the day from work to finish. My goal is to have a final copy printed and to each of my committee members so as to set my defense date. This largely depends on my gracious advisor who is very intelligent and very (hmmm) picky. So, I gave a great big sigh, and clicked on the SEND button. Now, its just time.

Thank you for your words of encouragement. I liked them so much , I printed them out and blew them up as a constant reminder that I've got lots of love in my corner. I could almost here the Rocky song when he's training.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Late night update

Okay...maybe posting my daily advances will allow me to avoid procrastination.
I just emailed my advisor a second draft of my chapter 4 (discussion).

For those of you that have no clue what a dissertation looks like:

Abstract : brief synopsis of researchhypothesis and findings

Chapter 1: Intro and Lit Review - An extensive literature review that answers the question "What is aggression? What is the current research? What are the accepted theories? Why will your research be innovative? On what theoretical framework are you basing your hypotheses?" (By the way, we don't just say hey researching THIS or THAT would be cool... ;) )

Chapter 2: Methods - Describe the participants (subjects), the assessment techniques, the analyses to be run on your data and the reasoning behind why you decided to use these statistical techniques versus others

Chapter 3: Results - The jargon most people skip. In this section, the nitty gritty statistical results are presented. You see most of the tables inthsi section with brief explanation of what was found.

Chapter 4: Discussion - THE WHOLE PURPOSE IN WRITING THE DISSERTATION. hehe Here you say what you found, why you think you found it, what it means for future research, implications for practice, and limitations to your study.

So there you have it...some dissertations are broken up into 5 chapters...others into 4. They should all have the same information. At this point in time, I have completed Chapters 1-3, and my discussion is approaching completion fairly quickly. The full thing is approaching 70 pages. FUN.

For those you are who just got completely bored reading this...I apologize...I need to find motivation to do this. If this doesn't work, my promise not to play Wii MarioKart until I finish should do the trick.

Dissertating updates

Alright guys and gals, this is it!!! I have a meeting with my advisor next Wednesday and I have to have this done by then. I need all the prayers I can get.

The following patron saints are on my list of intercessory prayer list:
Saint Joseph of Cupertino (test takers)
Saint Christina the Astonishing (mental health professionals)
Saint Dymphna (mental health professionals)
Saint Expeditus (against procrastination)
Saint Thomas Aquinas (academicians)
Saint Jude of Thaddeus (hopeless causes)

The countdown begins....

I have a friend

His name is Seth. He is an internmate here at HISD with me. I admire this guy because he does a great job in "keeping it real". We can debate issues, and then laughs when we disagree. There have been long lunches and slow afternoons that we tend to pick up some topics such as politics, religion, public schooling, homosexuality. You name it, we have talked about it. Although Seth is a bit more liberal than me, we agree on a variety of things.
Today we talked about alternative schools. For those of you who don't know, when a student comits a pretty bad offense (bring a weapon to school, multiple suspensions, drug use), they can be temporarily "expelled" to an alternative school. The school is military style, where students walk with their hands behind their back, eat alone, and can't talk to peers during class time. Sounds great, right? Well, not really. Research has shown over and over and over and over again (yes! that many times) that putting kids with behavior problems together in a school makes them worse not better. So why do schools have this faulty system? Well for one, principals get these kids out of their school. (Out of sight, out of mind. Second, kids have to have "consequences" for bad behavior. Okay. So principals want to shed some responsibility and the way to do this is tough love. The state of Texas has a rule right now that if you go to juvenile detention 3 times, you get sent to boot camp for 3 months. sigh. Dear Texas, stop using my tax dollars for "preventing crime" when its actually making it worse. Seth and I talked about this over lunch and agreed there has to be a better way. Some people have suggested turning schools into business andhanding out vouchers. Well, if kids keep on getting kicked out, then we come back to the same problem.
If the US is moving towards empirically supported interventions, why hasn't this changed? Oh well. I guess this is why I still have a job :)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A bit of sarcasm

Alrighty guys and gals, I have changed camps. I voted for Hillary in the Texas Primaries. I have switched my affiliation to Osama, I mean Obama.
After the debate yesterday....I think Obama would be the best Democratic Nominee. I think that with big names behind him like Rev. Wright and Wiliam Ayers he is easily the next one to beat McCain come November....not to mention his patriotic wife.

So...Democrats...do me a favor...vote Obama...

and I will see YOU in November!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Kicking for gold - Sports

Check out my most wonderful, talented, incredibly sexy husband!!!!!!

Kicking for gold - Sports

Thursday, March 6, 2008

rolling up the sleeves

I had been putting off posting because of time, lack of content, and just plain laziness I guess. Then today happened. Amidst the counseling, parenting classes, individual crisis intervention and consultation, it is easy to forget the severity of real life problems in people's lives. When you hear the stories over and over again, they all melt into a realization of the unfortunate cruelties of our world and you learn to go home and put it behind you. This happens pretty naturally. It allows you to keep an empathetic ear and keep focus on how to put into practice all the skills we have learned. There are some stories that are a bit harder to hear than others.

Today I had the unfortunate event of going to a school where a very well known student had passed away unexpectedly at the tender age of 14. Had never been sick. Just slipped away from this world into His arms. No warning signs. No chance to say goodbye.

When I arrived at the school, I quickly got to work. My adrenaline was in full gear as the uncontrollable and hysterical tears came from teachers and friends. I did everything I was taught - to help be an extra shoulder to cry on and an ear to listen during these difficult times. I remembered thinking halfway through the day how I had held up for so long without even one knot in my throat when I usually can't fight the tears back during an Onstar commercial. But I kept on keeping on. I had one bottled water and no food but I wasn't thirsty nor hungry. Why did this happen? Why this student? Why now? How are we supposed to continue going to class when their seat is empty? How do I make myself feel better? How am I supposed to say I am sorry about our last fight? These questions rang in my ears all day.

When I finally dismissed the last student back to class and gathered my things, I suddenly felt a huge weight on my shoulders. I was exhausted. I walked to my car, called my husband and told him I had a rough day and would really appreciate lunch with my best friend. As I drove to lunch, my adrenaline ran out and my humanity came back. I embraced it. I let the tears fall and my prayers go up for this student and their family. I ate with my husband and we talked about death and what it means and how there are some feelings that I wish no child would have to go through until their hearts and souls were a bit stronger. I drove home and as I walked into my lonely apartment, I felt a sense of relief. Relieved because I felt human again. My heart had not hardened. I was still a sensitive soul who would tear up at a sad movie. I was just blessed with the grace of knowing how to roll up my sleeves and put the hearts of others at ease, hearts who had been broken so ubruptly and violently. My job was to provide the needle and thread so they could slowly but surely sew it back together and learn to live with the newly formed scar that would be left. There was no room for me to let my emotions surface. So they didn't. At least not until my job was over.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

After a week of 24 hr time with my hubby...

the first couple of days back at work without each other were tough...
so tough that I received this endearing text message at about 3:25pm on Monday from my spouse:

I am going through Clarissa withdrawal :_(

That makes two of us, Love.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Back to reality

This past week the Kuhns were in New Orleans for the first time. I had the chance to walk on Bourbon Street after the parade with some friends which was fun. Jesse met up with me on Wednesday and it was great. I didn't think I would like New Orleans. I am not sure why, but I had the feeling I was not going to enjoy my time spent there. I was pleasantly surprised. The food was great, the city, beautiful and Katrina didn't leave much of a trace (as far as downtown goes). The art, buildings, and music were incredible. We visited St. Louis Cathedral/Basilica which was beautiful. I wouldn't mind visiting the city again because we didn't have much time to tour. If anyone ever has a trip there, I definitely recommend eating beignets at Cafe Du Monde. I introduced Jesse to penny slots which I think he enjoyed. ;) The bestest part of the whole trip was that I got to spend 4 wondrous days with my husband. This was our first trip alone since our honeymoon. Although we did meet some friends there, we spend lots of time alone which was incredible. Now...its back to reality...

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


"If this Tuesday is “super” because we can choose a president, then every day is “supreme” because we can always choose to love and be loved, to build a life on solid rock."
Father Jonthan Morris
Fox News

Thursday, January 31, 2008

My Prez hopeful is gone...

Well, I really was hoping for Fred Thompson to come out from behind the shadows in South Carolina...but unfortunately he didn't and now he is out. We are left with Romeny, McCain, and Huckabee. As much as I am a Chuck Norris fan (just ask Jesse), I don't think Huckabee will win. I honestly believe it is between Romney and McCain. Putting the issues aside, which one has a better chance of becoming president? I have to say McCain. If Clinton get the Democratic vote, which I think she will, McCain is our only chance for our unborn to have a fighting chance. I can't decide what I want America to do with illegal immigrants and I think we have to win in Iraq in order not to lose (if that makes sense). I want education to push math and science programs. I want the economy to improve. But most of all I want Roe v Wade to get overturned. So I think I am putting all my eggs in McCain. I'll miss you Fred! I guess I will have to see you on Law & Order instead.

PS We just bought a working gatorade cooler for Kugar TKD! Yay.

So, I was told this weekend that McCain is for embryonic stem cell research...oh no! SO....who am I going for now? hmmmmmmm Romney? Not sure... Giuliani is out which is great...Ron Paul doesn't stand a chance...so its between Huckabee or Romney. Well, since I can't really do anything about it until March...I will get back to this after Super Tuesday...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Ok, so I decided to answer these questions for Clarissa, and we'll see how close I get.

1. WERE YOU NAMED FOR ANYONE? I don't think so.
2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? It was a couple of nights ago. It was so cold, and we were both miserable. I wasn't for from tears my self.
3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? I love it, and I think she likes it.
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCHMEAT? She prefers turkey too, but she calls all lunchmeat ham. That makes it a little difficult to make her a sandwich sometimes. She doesn't actually like ham, but she'll ask for it anyway. She means turkey.
5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? It hasn't been His will yet.
7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? Not at all. She finds it hurtful and not very funny if it's directed at someone.
9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Every chance she gets.
10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? She loves it too, but I'm ashamed to say I have no idea which is her favorite.
11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? No. And she doesn't when she puts them on either. They stay tied 24-7
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? She is and she knows it.
13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM? She's not particularly fond of ice cream, but she'll eat chocolate. It's called double dark or something like that.
14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE? No clue. I'll guess eyes though.
15. RED OR PINK? Pink
16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING YOU LIKE ABOUT YOURSELF? Even if I knew, and I don't, I don't think this is one I'd answer. Whatever it is, I'm sure I love it.
17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? Her mom is her best friend so it's going to be a toss up between her mom and the Enrique-Saenz clan because they're so far away.
18. WHAT COLOR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? She was gone before I woke-up this morning but my guess is black and black.
20. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Kids whose lives are worse than I can imagine. She's out there helping them get their lives right.
21. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE? I'd make her brown but she'd make herself blue too.
22. FAVORITE SMELLS? She likes that "right before it rains" smell too but I think my cologne takes it by a hair.
23. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? Her supervisor or her Mom???
24. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH? Aggie football. No doubt.
25. HAIR COLOR? Brown
26. EYE COLOR? Brown
27. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? Nope. She's got great eyes. I hope our children get them too. And not just because they work well.
28. FAVORITE FOOD? a steak rare. or her moms mole.
29. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? The sappier the better.
30. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED? 5th element
31. WHAT COLOR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING? Whatever it is, it a)matches the season, b) came from NY co.
32. SUMMER OR WINTER? Summer. She's not a big fan of cold.
33. HUGS OR KISSES? Hugs????
34. FAVORITE DESSERT?Turtle Cheesecake.
35. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? Emotional Intelligence. Something brainy I'm sure.
36. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? She's a laptop girl too.
37. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON TV LAST NIGHT? She was too busy helping me plan our new TKD school, KuGar. You should see the logo she drew up.
38. FAVORITE SOUNDS? A thunderstorm when we're together on the couch watching a movie. If it's not hers, it's mine!!!!
39. BEATLES OR ROLLING STONES? I'd be willing to bet that she doesn't know 1 song from either group. She prefers Luis Migel.
41. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? She's an amazing wife.
42. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Laredo, Texas

Monday, January 21, 2008

Your comments appreciated

As many of you know, Jesse and I will be starting a business in the near future (Summer 2008?). This entails writing up a business plan, mission statement, budget and so on... Many fellow business owners have given us valuable advice:

1. Do not underspend on marketing...you get what you pay for!

2. Underestimate your earnings and overestimate your costs.

3. Start small; you can always expand later.

4. Develop your purpose, goals and priorities first and let the business plans always reflect them.

5. location, location, location!

Thank you for those who have contributed!! If you know about starting a business (or your just really smart!!) and you knew then what your now...what would be different? What are key points of advice you could offer to us?


Thursday, January 17, 2008

Bruce Lee and my husband

As I was doing my usual blog search, I ran across some martial arts site that described the 5 most dangerous kicks. From there, i was lead to some YouTube videos, to the Human Weapon internet site from the History Channel, and eventually to a biography of Bruce Lee. Bruce Lee was a very talented martial artist who incorporated his thoughts about existence and athleticism into his fighting methods. He did tie in one martial art, but he took what he knew worked from different arts and created his own. How does this relate to my husband?

Before Jesse and I were dating seriously we had two relationships: our romantic one and our Taekwondo one. Jesse has always been and always will be much more proficient in the art of Taekwondo than me. So when it came to his teaching Taekwondo, we left our romantic relationship off of the floor as much as we could. With most relationships, the line would be erased and teacher/student relationship would be negatively affected from there on out. However, unlike most martial artists, Jesse has a deep respect for TaeKwonDo and therefore his role as a teacher. Because of our relationship, I got to enjoy some extra one-on-one instruction from Jesse. This is where my husband reminds me of the late Mr. Lee.

There were times that I remember, he would say certain phrases about his martial art theories such as, "I don't mind to get hit, as long as they don't forget how hard I hit them" or "I don't care if I lose to a White belt in practice. I am not here to prove myself to anyone but to improve on myself. I care if I lose in a tournament." or "There is no such thing as 'You will bow to me because I am your Master' but I will bow to you out of respect and you should do the same for me" or "I can't motivate you to get your black belt. In TaeKwonDo, the motivation comes from you."

Even though these comments at times frustrated me when my motivation level was low, I, eventually, learned where they came from and why he said them. TaeKwonDo helped create the man Jesse is now. Jesse doesn't just practice TaeKwonDo. He lives it. Now, that might sound a bit cheesy (I am known to talk that way at times) but as Jesse's closest pupil I can say that its true. He learned the athletic part from his previous coach. The spirit, discipline, and way of life part, he got from Somewhere else.

Maybe there won't be a "Return of the Kuhns Dragon" or "Enter the Kuhns Dragon" DVD set. But I know that Jesse will do for TaeKwonDo what TaeKwonDo has done for him. Jesse will be that coach that all the students will stop talking and listen when he speaks. They won't talk back to him, not out of fear, but out of true respect.

In other words, my husband rocks! :)

BTW...my interview went well....still waiting on interview #2. :) Blair, we will get together before we leave, I promise :) Your baby pics are so cute!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Post-Doc Interview

I ask you all for a short prayer tomorrow as I interview for a Residency Position at Deer Oak Behavioral Clinic in Laredo. The interview if over the phone at 1:30. This interview is the first part of the 3 interview process after the written application is sent in. I will update you all as to how it goes. Good night.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Who says...

that you can't have a family portrait when 5/11ths of your family is over seas? Happy New Year from our family to yours!!!

Our New Year's party was a hit with matching PJ's and party favors. Although the Garcia Saenz family could not grace us with their presence we were able to see all 5 of their faces through Skype. They even joined for the picture of the night. 10 Years ago this picture would not have been possible...

In other news...Jesse and I had the greatest gift for our anniversary..the birth of two beautiful babies. Fernando Issac is the 5th member of the Garcia Saenz family. This baby boy is the third son to my brother and sister-in-law named after Vero's brothers. Jada Janea Garza is the 3rd member of the Garza Peña family. She is Jacque and Juan's first child. Congratulations to both!!!