Sunday, November 22, 2015


From 16 November 2015

Birthday girl in her new coat, with pictures from home
Our baptismal date plan for the next 10 weeks!  Yay!

Dear Family and Friends,

Wow!  Time doesn´t really exist when you´re on a mission because the only important dates are when you get there, and when you go home.  But.  This week sure did fly by.  I´m not quite sure what more I can say except that we are working hard here.  Some days we go to appointments, visit a LOT of people, and get home and we're just bubbling with happiness.  Other days, it´s really cold and windy, and you walk around for hours and literally  no one wants to talk to you, and you go home and hit the sack early because you´re exhausted and sad.  But I think that´s just kind-of how life goes.

Anyway, here are some fun insights from Mexico:  
1: Hot food is actually delicious.  Especially Takis de fuego.  (it´s a chip-kind-of-thing that´s really hot)
2:  The sun here is really strong, so when you´re in the sun it´s HOT, and when you´re in the shade it´s really nice.  I don´t know quite how to explain it except that shade is really good...
3:  I have lost my ability to speak English, and I can´t speak Spanish either.  I am speaking constantly in Spanglish.
4: there is no limit to how many people you can fit in public transportation.  One time, one of the zones here in my mission needed to go to the temple all together, so they rented a combi, or a van that´s usually a bit smaller than a 15 passenger van, and they fit 28 full-sized missionaries in it for a 1 hour drive.  Piece of cake.  Oh, and no one uses seat belts here...
5: J-walking is a habit I shall have to break one day, because cross-walks don´t exist here.

Yep.  That´s about it.  Hermana Bracamonte and I are working hard here, and we´re exhausted at the end of every day.  We´re looking forward to a few baptisms this week, which is AWESOME, and hopefully I will have more to tell you all next week!

Lots of love,
Last week at BunaVista: There´s Mexico

Empty bag from home grown and dried apples.
The birthday stash didn't last long!

'Tis the Season. . .to have birthdays!

from 9 November 2015

Maryela's baptism

Dearest Family,

Wow, what a week it has been.  Well, I´ll start by explaining the title here:  Saturday was Hermana Bracamonte´s birthday, we taught two people yesterday who were having birthdays, and this week I will be celebrating the completion of my second decade of life.  Sooo... Happy birthday to the world!

The work keeps chugging along here in Bosques, and this last week we were blessed to have a miracle-baptism, that I still have a hard time believing occurred (see pictures).  You see, a week ago, Maryela (the girl in white, who got baptized and confirmed this weekend) didn´t have a testimony, and wasn´t ready to put a date down to get baptized, but we sat down and talked to her for about 2 hours, and after that she was ready to go.  Her Mother and sister aren´t too far behind in making their decisions, but it was a really sweet experience to see Maryela´s desire to follow Christ and set an example for her family.  

In other news, we met 2 less-active members in the ward this week who live right next to eachother.  On the first floor of an apartment building lives Hermana Irene, and on the second floor lives Hermana Marta.  Yeeeeppppp.  For those of who who don´t know, those are my 2 names!  Unfortunately, no one in Mexico can actually pronounce the one name that I use as a missionary (Houghton)...  In other news, today we went ice skating for P Day, something I never thought I´d be doing in Mexico City, and it was a lot of fun.  It was almost as fun to ice skate as it was to watch the Elders TRY to ice skate :)  (They´re both from climates that don´t really permit winter-sports).  AAAnnndd that is what is happening in the life of Hermana Houghton right now.  

OH!  And spiritual thought for the week:  Heavenly Father doesn´t really care what color our skin is, what we´ve done in our lives, or who our parents are.  He invites EVERY person on this Earth to come unto Christ, and He commands His children (us) to invite them too.  He doesn´t want to lose a single one of us, because we are each incredibly important and valuable to Him.

I hope you all are having a lovely weeks, and learning lots of things and doing lots of good in the world.  Be safe and happy, and find someone to love and serve, ok!?

Lots of love,
Hermana Houghton

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Mish Life!

From 2 November 2015

Dear Everyone,

Wow.  It´s been a crazy week in Bosques, and every night when Hermana Bracamonte and I get home, we are pretty much exhausted, happy, and did I mention exhausted?  We have been contacting a lot lately, which is actually one of my favorite things to do.  It´s really awkward at first because you just walk up to random people and say "Well Hi, would you like to learn about how Jesus Christ can bless your life?" and they´re really confused for a minute, and then they get really excited sometimes!  Anyway, long story short, we´re busy, happy, and completing our goals, which is all a missionary can ask for in life.  
Also, yes, we did have Halloween and Día de Los Muertos here in Mexico.  Here are some of my observations and the things I learned: 
1: Halloween is not what it is (at least in Bosques) in the United States.  Yes, people decorate with pumpkins, black cats, etc. but they don´t really go out trick-or-treating of anything (at least on Halloween)
2: People DO go out trick-or-treating on Día de los Muertos (the first one) or November 1st.  However, this first day is designated to celebrate the children who have died, and the second one (Novever 2nd) is to celebrate those adults that have died.  Anyway, last night we were contacting some references we received, and there were a TON of kids and families running around Bosques, all dressed up with face-paint and fancy hair.  Also, they use face paint a lot more here, I think.  
3: Celebrating the dead is very different from traditional Halloween celebrations in the U.S. that celebrate creepy things like zombies and mummies, etc.  Here they´re just remembering those that have died, and it´s kind of special (in my mind) instead of just creepy.

In other news:  Today we had our Zone activity, and we played water guns (everyone got nice and soaked) and then we played broom hockey, ultimate frisbee, and (of course--this is Mexico) soccer.  It was a lot of fun, but I think I´ll probably be sore for a few days.  Fortunately, they also bought Little Ceasars (yep, that totally exists in Mexico) and each companionship sat down and ate their pizzas in silence for about 15 minutes.  BTW, missionaries are ALWAYS two things: Hungy and tired.  Period.  End of story.  And when you´re on a mission, you can eat a lot.  yep. 

Anyway, I hope you are all enjoying fall colors, cooler evenings, and preparations for Thanksgiving celebrations soon!

Lots of love,
Hermana Houghton

P.S. sorry, I let you all down on the picture front, I´ll try to do better next week!