Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Soulsbyville or BUST!

From 13 December 2016

Dearest Everyone,

Tomorrow is my last day or proselyting as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  After almost a year-and-a-half, that´s a pretty weird thing.  So here are a few things I´ve learned this week:

1) Mission companions are THE BEST.  Seriously, my mission companions have become amazing and eternal Friends, and I treasure the opportunity I´ve had to work alongside each and every one of them!
2) Work during the day, because when the night comes, there´s no time to do it! (aka the end of the mission--see Alma 34:35... I think)
3) Heavenly Father loves us.
4) Jesus Christ lives.
5) The Holy Ghost is the greatest teacher and friend here on Earth today.
6) "Dying" (aka finishing the mission) is not a particularly fun process.
7) "You can sleep when you´re dead!"

I love you all, and I will be with you soon!

Happy Christmas!
Hermana Houghton

Home. . .<3 <3 <3


From 6 December 2016

I´m sorry that I have been an unfaithful emailer.  But, I am pleased to inform you that I have been busy preaching the gospel, solving problems, loving people, and doing some last-minute sight-seeing before I head back to the U.S. of A. 

Quick update from the past few weeks:
Week 1 in Pradera: we spoke in sacrament meeting, went BACK to our old area to help with a choir, moved in with the Heramanas of the Visitor´s Center, and did a lot of wandering around our giant area looking for addresses on very disorganized streets.  
Week 2 in Pradera: We got to know the area a little bit better, went to the temple, and got to work a little more with the members in our area.  We also sang in the anual lighting of Temple Square (in Mexico City, obviously).
Week 3 in Pradera: We had a BUNCH of meetings and did some major problem-solving, while also working with investigators and contacting just a couple of drunk men in the street.  All is well.  We also had stake conference, interviews with President, etc. On pday we went to the "Mercado Ciudadela" which is a SUPER touristy artisan market where they sell expensive souvenirs and other trinkets.
Week 4 in Pradera: We are working to get some investigators ready for baptism, and we have several meetings this week, so we will be busy!  We also went out with some other hermanas (Hermanas Saylor, Ruiz, Woodard, and Marispini) today to eat, we bought shoes in the tiangies, and we even cleaned the house (apartment)!

Weird news: Next week is my last pday.  Weird.  I didn´t think this day would ever arrive... Now that it has, it is very strange.  I feel like I could keep going a few more months still!  But they tell me I have to get on a plane soon, so I´m mentally preparing myself for all of the white people and the lack of tacos and spicy food... 

Spiritual thought: So I was reading Ether 12 this week, and I realized that it is an AMAZING chapter.  It is seriously SO GOOD.  I love a part at the end of the chapter when Moroni is explaining that Jesus Christ Himself spoke to him and taught him, and he did it with love and, curiously, humility.  I knew that Jesus Christ was a humble person, but I had never considered the fact that He, our Savior and King, might speak to us with HUMILITY.  It was an important reminder to me that I have a LONG way to go before I learn how to really be more like Him.  One way I´m working on that humility is the Light the World initiative.  So once more, I invite you all to get involved in it!  Share the videos. DO the challenges.  Let´s prepare ourselves for a REAL Christmas.  

Lots of love,
Hermana Houghton


From 29 November 2016

It turns out that once again, I have no time to write... sorry about that... we are busy bees here in Pradera, and this weekend we sang (yes, I played the violin Dad) for the Temple Lighting, and we are now in FULL-PRODUCTION with the new church initiative: "Light up the World" (aka "Ilumina el Mundo") It´s AMAZING.  I invite you all to look into it and start doing the daily activities that it invites us to do each day of December!!!  

Life is crazy!  I apologize for not responding to your individual emails this week, I promise to be better next week!

Lots of love,
Hermana Houghton


From 22 November 2016

So.  Today we went to the temple (which is LITERALLY next door) and then we cleaned our house, did laundry, etc.  Nooowww... we´re about to start another crazy week!  Time flies by, and nobody celebrates Thanksgiving in Mexico, so it´s hard for me to believe it´s actually the end of November and time to eat pie now, but that´s okay! We are getting our feet under us in the new area, which is significantly bigger than Hidalgo, and we´re meeting a lot of new people and doing lots of new things.  Okay..

I don´t have hardly any time, so I will just leave you two lovely scriptures to look up on Thursday:
D&C 59:7 and Alma 34:38.  ENJOY!

Lots of love,
Hermana Houghton

P.S. someday I will send you pictures.. but for now, this computer thinks my pictures are Microsoft word files sooooo... 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Dearest EVeryone!

From 15 November 2016


That´s right kids, we are in a NEW area (for my last transfer).  It´s called Pradera, Vergel, and it´s a great area, with a good ward and lots of investigators and progress!  The curious thing about these transfers, is that we are not actually living in our area!  We are, in fact, living on temple grounds, in a dormitory where the old Mexico MTC used to be. Now, our dormitory is occupied by 22 other Hermanas who all serve in the Visitor´s Center.  We are here because.....!!!... well, we´re still figuring that one out.  We´re the first field sisters to live in the dormitories, and it will certainly be interesting because of that.  The good news? We now have a full fridge, washers AND dryers (no more hand-washing and line-drying), and we live right next to the temple, which they are going to light up with Christmas lights in just a couple of weeks!

So it´s a party :)  Hermana Bracamonte and I are staying together for our 4th cycle (which makes us VERY happy!) and we are going to go out and knock the socks off of the people here in Pradera!
Life has been a bit crazy lately, but we are happy and working hard here in Mexico.  For those of you who were worried, no, I´m not trunky.  I´m too busy for that kind-of stuff!

I hope you all have a wonderful week and share your testimony with someone!

Hermana Houghton


From 8 November 2016

Last week (and the week before that, and this week) we have been going on a LOT of adventures, so I apologize for the lack of information/responses to emails.  Today, I shall repent and give you a full report of what is going on!

This past week, we were a bit swamped by meetings.  We had a 5-hour meeting on Thursday, another one on Friday, and then a 3-hour meeting on Saturday.  Now, we´re in a fun part called the "go and do" stage.  Basically, after being filled up with inspiration and good cheer during all of those amazing meetings, it´s time to go out and apply everything we learned, as we work in our areas as missionaries.  It is PRETTY exciting!  One thing that we talked about (again... so it´s REALLY important) is using the modern tools of internet and all of the amazing videos, photos, and messages the share the gospel through facebook, twitter, instagram, etc.  I really liked one idea (and I´ll share it with you as an invitation) of just looking through your list of friends on facebook and listening closely to the spirit to identify a person or two who you could send a message or a video or just a smile to.  It´s miraculously easy, and as we do it, we can learn better how to listen to and follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost. As Nephi explains in 2 Nephi 31 and 32, we ALL have the "tongue of angels" after we are baptized adn confirmed, which means that we can speak the words of Christ (aka share the gospel)!  Isn´t that amazing?  I think so.

In other news, I am heading into my home-stretch (last cycle) of the mission, which is a bit odd.  I still feel as if I just arrived in Mexico!  But that´s all okay because we´ve got a WHOLE lot of work to do here in Hidalgo this week, and in the weeks to come, even MORE!  Hermana Bracamonte and I really like to work hard, so that is good news, and we are excited!  Speaking of Hermana Bracamonte--SHE TURNED 21 THIS WEEK!!! We didn´t actually do anything very special on her birthday (Monday), but today we had a birthday celebration of sorts, and we went ice skating and ate ice cream--YUMMMM!  

Last week, we went to the City center and checked out the "day of the dead" celebration with some other hermanas.  It was interesting to see a bit of a culture-mix with some people dressed up as skeletons dressed in fancy clothing (traditional day of the dead) and also the people dressed up as pikachu, Elsa, and other more-american-themed things.  Anyway, it was really interesting (and there were thousands of people there!), and then we went and found an out-door artisanal market where we shopped around for a bit and then headed back to our areas.  It was an ADVENTURE!  Also, the week before, we went to the city center and saw a ton of "Alebrijes" (pronounced Al-eh-brie-hays) next to the Angel of Independence (classic Mexico City icon/monument).  They are a tradition that began here in Mexico City of weird animals that the artists basically invent and create out of card board and other materials. They were AMAZING.  I will send you a couple of those pictures :)

So that is what has been happening!  We also have been working with new investigators, we put on a ward activity, and we´ve been working on a project of checking ALL of the less-active memebers in our stake to see who really lives here still, and who does not.  It has been quite a project, but we´re finally wrapping it up.  

To finish off, here is a special thought from one of the many meetings we have had this last week:
When the work of the Lodr isn´t going forth as it should in the places we live, we need to remember that we are not part of the PROBLEM, but we are certainly part of the SOLUTION.  Heavenly Father sends us to where we are with His eternal goals in mind.  

Be safe and super-duper happy and do WONDERFUL MARVELOUS things this week!  Please!

Hermana Houghton

P.s. I´m just going to invite you all to see my google-drive which has a LOT of pictures from the last few adventures, so if you want to see the physical evidence of all of my adventures, you can check that out :)

Monday, November 7, 2016


From 1 November 2016

Foto de Distrito
I don`t actually have any time to write today!  So I`ll just let you know that I love you all, and I have been going on lots of adventures and working REALLY hard in your honor!

Hermana HOughton
Mission Conference