Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Feliz Navidad | Week 11

Hola Familia!!!

Merry Christmas! I have really good news for you mom, we get to skype!!! Your dreams do come true haha. We are going to skype from the Stake President's house, who invited us over. I am able to call you a couple days before Christmas to 'set up' the Skype call, and we can figure out details then. It will probably be in the afternoon sometime. I can't wait!!!

Thank you thank you thank you for the package!! It is perfect. I love it. The music is awesome, yes I do share your love mom for Christmas music :) I love my new ties, you guys have good taste :) And we opened our new wafflemaker today, and we are SO excited to make waffles tomorrow morning. Thank you so much. I love you all so much. I wish I could give you all some great gifts. Watch the mail before you leave for my gift to you mom and dad. It sounds funny, but the wrapping paper literally smells like our house haha. I loved that. And I may or may not smell the wrapping paper every day haha.

Things are going great here in Duncan! The work is progressing and Elder Z and I are seeing alot of mini miracles. The Lord truly directs his work. We are still teaching all the people I told you about last week, and we found two new investigators this week!!! On Friday we finally went over and visited a lady that showed up to church all by herself. She only speaks spanish, so my mediocre spanish came in handy haha. Her name is H and she is SO nice. I am so excited to start teaching her. We had to drive through a small river to get to her house, it is out in the middle of nowhere. By the way we drive ALOT here in our area. Our area is so spread out and all of our investigators are so spread out that we spend alot of quality time in our good ol' truck. Then on Friday, the Relief Society president gave us some cookies to go deliver to some new families, because she didn't have enough time to finish. One of the families is a part member family, and when we dropped the cookies off we ended up teaching the first lesson to the nonmember husband. It was awesome, he is so prepared and the spirit was so strong as we taught him. It got us both so excited. We are going back to teach him again today. Another cool thing last night was at the end of the night around 8:30 which is the toughest time, because we still have time to do missionary work, but it's late and nobody really wants to see us when it is almost 9. So we were pulled off the road and were trying to decide who to go see, and Elder Z had a prompting to go see an inactive guy who is our age who got baptized a year ago. He was prompted to see him, and it turns out that A has been really wanting to get active again, and has been praying for help. He was so happy that we came, and we are going to go over read the book of mormon with him this week, and bring him to church. We do alot of work with less actives and inactives here, and it is so great. It is one area that sometimes gets overlooked, and sometimes people get forgotten. We are having FHE's with another inactive family that are going super well. The Lord uses his missionaries to go after lost sheep.

The members here in Duncan are awesome, and it's a good thing because we do 100% member missionary work, because of how few people are here and how many members there are. We are continuing our twelve days. We are serving the most hilarious craziest and indescribable elderly lady in our ward. I wish you all could meet her. She is awesome. She also has the hardest 12 days house ever. It is in the middle of nowhere, no trees, lots of lights, lots of dogs, and fences. It is a pretty intense operation. I accidentally ripped some pants jumping over a fence the other day :) a lady in the ward is gonna fix them for me.

We have continued to do lots of service which I love. I love this work so much. Yes, I was actually gonna tell you about Elder Holland's ensign article too. I read it a week ago, and it touched me. I don't think I have ever related to an article so much in my whole life. It is exactly how I feel. The Savior truly walks with his missionaries. I feel it. I learn so much everyday. I love this Christmas season that helps us all be a little more like our savior and remember what he has done for us. I love you all so much!!! I will give you a short call before Christmas to set up the skype time/details, and then I will SEE you on Christmas!!! I love you all and miss you!!


Elder Hughes

Hey, I tried my very best to send pictures today again :( but the computers here are circa 1999 and they pretty much stink, haha. They don't read my camera. When we skype at the stake president's I will send em to ya. We get an hour to skype by the way. I am SO EXCITED! It will be awesome. I am doing great. Elder Z is such a great companion, I am so lucky to have him. We get along great. I hope you guys know how much I love you. Thank you for your support. Your package has brought me alot of joy :) I really don't need anything. Honest. I have everything I need. Your pictures look awesome. That picture of Rilo and Zach is great. I miss them alot too. I can't wait to talk to you in a week and 1 day! I know how much you like skyping more :) I love you all so much. FELIZ NAVIDAD!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Merry Christmas from Duncan!!! | Week 10

Hola Familia!!!!

I am so happy today, because I got your emails. The only reason I love P days is getting to read what you all have sent me! I am doing wonderful here in good ol Duncan Arizona. I have alot to tell ya!! The work is going great here. We are busy and full of excitement to be sharing the gospel at such an amazing time of the year. Missionary work here is highly centered on the members, because most of the population is members, tracting doesn't mean anything, so we stop by alot of members houses unannounced haha and work with them on finding people for us to teach. The people here are so great, they crack me up. I love them so much. They live very different lives from what we are used to in California, but they are so happy and their lives are lived much simpler. My companion and I are doing awesome, we are really good friends. The Lord directs who we are companions with, and I really know that we were meant to be put together. We are very similar, and it is so fun. We have a blast. So we literally live on a farm. We get our eggs from the chicken coop next to our house, and our milk from the dairy down the road. Although Elder Z says I am a wuss because I cannot handle the milk we get from the dairy. It is literally the milk straight from the cow, and it is NASTY. I am finally buying my own milk today haha. We go running every morning in the fields. It is awesome.

As for the people we are teaching. First off there are 3 recent converts that we work with alot here they are all awesome. One, K is a cop and she was baptized a couple months ago. She is hilarius and is SO commited to the gospel. She rocks. I wish you could meet her! Then there are two boys C and D who were baptized last month. They are the sweetest, most awesome kids, and we get to teach them the new convert lessons every month. I taught an entire lesson in spanish this week!!!! To a guy named R who the missionaries have been teaching. In the past they have brought a translator with them, but now we don't have to. He is so funny, and we are just trying to help him progress. He wants to come closer to Christ and he wants the peace that the gospel brings. We are trying to help him use this desire to gain his own answer through the spirit. We are starting to teach a whole family this week the M's that live way out far away on a huge ranch. A member of the 70 actually owns the ranch, so hopefully it will go well. I have a good feeling about it. We are also teaching a man named Terry and we are trying to find a spanish woman who came to church all on her own a couple weeks ago. It is all so exciting!

Church was great this week. I LOVE the spirit and revelation I can feel at church no matter where I am. We have two ward here, so we go to six hours of church. And let me tell you the 80's and 90's have NOT died here in Duncan. All of the styles are alive and well here, it is so hilarius, I love it. We get to do lots of service which is awesome. We spent 5 hours helping an elderly lady's lawn this week. I love doing service. We are looking for ways to serve more around Christmas. I am doing 12 days too!!! To a single lady in our ward. Thank you for your words of love family. I love you all so much! Everyone has mentioned to me that Nor Cal has been getting pounded with rain... so I was curious about that. Thank Aunt Jaline for me, for her gift she sent!!! I haven't opened it yet, it is underneath our little Christmas tree :) I love you all so much. I know that the Lord directs this work. I have felt of his love, and help as I do this work that sometimes feels so tough. It isn't easy, but I am happy and I love serving others and I LOVE the gospel. It is all true.

I love you all so much!!


Elder Hughes

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Hola from Duncan AZ!!!! | Week 9

Hola Familia!!!!!

I made it into the field! It has been a crazy busy last couple of days!! My P day is on Mondays usually, on tuesday's once a month, and I am emailing today because we didn't have time the last two days! I am so happy to be out in the field!!!

Our travel went totally fine. I was able to talk to some people on the plane and give out some pass along cards. Sorry that the phone call was so short! I probably sounded really nervous, because I was haha. I am doing so great. We arrived in Tucson and met the mission president and his wife, the Killpack's and they are awesome! They are the nicest people ever. We then loaded all of our stuff in a van and headed into downtown Tucson! It is NICE and WARM here in Arizona, no more Utah cold :) It is definitely one big desert, with cacti everywhere. The cacti are HUGE the size of trees. There is a Mormon Batallion monument there. The Assistants dropped us off 3 blocks away from the monument, and they gave us each a Book of Mormon and talked to us about how urgent our message is. So to demonstrate it to the world we ran full sprint to the monument three blocks up. We got there had a little devotional and then left to the mission office. After meetings and meals that day we had an AWESOME testimony meeting and devotional with all the new missionaries and the president and his wife. It was so amazing, one of the spiritual highlights of my mission so far. Then we got up at 5 the next morning to go to the transfer meeting, and meet our new companions! My trainer is Elder Z! He is great, he is from Logan Utah and we get along awesome. He is an English Elder and has been out six months. We then got in the car and drove three hours to where our area is. We are in the middle of nowhere right next to the New Mexico Border in a town called Duncan and Virden! It is a tiny little town of not even 500 people and about 75% of the people here are members! It is awesome. We live on a farm in a tiny little 100 yr old pink house haha :) Next to a chicken coop, a dairy farm, and many farming fields. I love it. Definitely different from anywhere I have ever been before. The Sunsets here in AZ are gorgeous by the way. The best part of it all, is at night there are SO many stars, I have never seen so many in my entire life, it's awesome. We laid out in the back of our truck and looked at them for a while last night. We have a 2012 white Colorado truck,  My area isn't spanish, which is kind of a bummer, but I am so excited to be doing the work in no matter what language ;) We are teaching 4 investigators right now which is so exciting, it is so great to be able to teach REAL people. All the people that I have met in Duncan (which is only a couple as of right now) are super nice and the members take super good care of us. We haven't gotten to do a ton of missionary work yet, because we traveled almost all day yesterday, and then today we had zone meeting which takes us  an hour and a half to get to, but I am so excited to be out here doing the work. I am motivated to give this everything I have. I LOVE being a missionary, and I am so happy. I am excited to get our areas missionary work movin' Duncan is a pretty slow moving area for the work, but I am excited to change that and spread our message :) I love the gospel so much. It is so true. There is nowhere I would rather be right now than where I am now. I will send pictures next week ;) We hit an owl with our truck on accident last night, which was crazy haha all of a sudden it just flew into our windshield haha. Missionary work is definitely not easy, and the realities and complexities of it hit you in the face pretty quick, but I KNOW that with faith, hard work, and obedience all things are possible. I am so excited to be serving here in Arizona, I have received more confirmations through the spirit that this is where I am meant to be. I love the Lord, and I know he stands by us as missionaries. What a blessing it is to know what we know, and to have the hope and love in our home. This truth is why I am here and why I have sacrificed so much. No sacrifice can repay the joy and hope I have received through the gospel. I hope you all are doing well! I haven't gotten an email from ya! As for packages and letters you should send them to the misson office. That is the fastest and best way for me to get them. Address them to me. They said to send things through the post office, not ups.  I love you all so much, I think of you every day. I hope your trip to Maryland went great Mom!! I love you all so much, and I get to talk to you soon on Christmas! I love this work, I know it is true with all of my heart. I know the Lord leads and directs it. I know that prayer works. It is real. I can't wait to meet the people that I was called to this mission to help. I love you all so much, I will email you next Monday!


Elder Hughes

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

El final semana en el CCM! | week 8


I hope you had a wonderful thanksgiving! I thought of you alot, and I am so grateful for all of you! I had an AWESOME Thanksgiving. One I will never forget. Elder Holland and his wife and all of their grandkids came to the MTC. We had an awesome devotional with them. He truly is an apostle of the Lord. A few of their grandkids performed musical numbers for us. I felt the spirit so strongly. He talked to us alot about how amazing it is to be here at this time in the history of the world, and the history of the church. We have more opportunities in one day, than some people in history have had in their whole life. It is such an exciting time to be a missionary. The Lord is hastening his work. We  also got to be a part of a great humanitarian project, which went super well, we made 9,000 health and education kits that are going to africa! Thanksgiving dinner cafeteria style was definitely one of my more unique thanksgiving meals, but it was actually really good (not even close to your thanksgiving though mom). It was a wonderful day, except that you all weren't with me :)

Yay! Brother Brasher will be awesome, tell him I say hello!

That is such lame news for Elder Clark!!!!! :( Give him a huge hug for me, and tell him to get quick fast!! What a bummer, but he is such a stud, and the Lord has a plan for all of us.

I LOVE Christmas time, which you already know! I can imagine our house perfectly in my mind with some good 'ol Celine Dion Christmas playing in the background. I will miss being with you all, but I am SO excited to bless someone else's Christmas as a representative of the Savior. I feel of you prayers and your love, I love you all so much!

I am glad you got my card :)

I got a letter back from Aaron yesterday! It was awesome! It sounds like he is doing better.

As for this week in the MTC, I can't believe I have 5 days left. The time has absolutely flown by. It is getting down to the wire and we are all trying to cram as much in as we can, because we will never have the opportunity to study as much as we do here. After SO many hours of being in a classroom, it can be hard sometimes, but we have all set alot of new goals. Spanish is coming along, at this point I understand most of all the grammar, the challenge is applying it and practicing it. I love the Spanish language. It is amazing to see how when we first got here we had NO idea what anyone was saying and we couldn't read or understand the scriptures in spanish. Now we can actually teach the gospel (not amazingly well) and we can read and understand the scriptures in spanish!!! I have truly learned how to teach by the spirit. When I try and teach leaning on my own understanding I am such a weak teacher. It is so empowering to teach being led what to say. It has nothing to do with my own knowledge or skills, it is the Lord's work, not mine.

We have been back to the doctor alot for Elder T. It has definitely been a challenge, but he is taking it like a champ. We have doctor's appts today, thursday, and friday. On Friday they make the decision if he gets to leave with us to go to Tucson. Keep him in your prayers.

I got my travel plans last wednesday after all my email time was up!!!! I leave for the airport at 4 AM on Monday morning!!!! Our flight leaves at 7 AM to LAX and then we fly from there to Tucson and should be in Tucson at around 11:15 AM on Monday! So crazy! I am so excited. As for calling you, good thing you love me, because it will be in the 5:30 AM - 6:30 AM range MY time. So 4:30 - 5:30 AM your time range!! I will call your cell mom. I can't wait to hear your voice!!! I have loved my time at the MTC, but I am SO excited to bounce out of here and talk to some REAL people about the gospel!

We got an email from our mission president today which got us all really excited!!!

As for things to send me... honestly I am not really sure until I get to Arizona. For Christmas finding me some sweet ties is all I can think of right now. And lots of Christmas music.

Make sure you send the dear elders before Friday, we don't get any on saturday or sunday, and then I will be gone on monday.

I pray for Tanner every day, I love him so much! Tanner by the way: you should send me some emails BACK sometime ;) Say hi to all the people from my district for me!

Family, I want you to know how much I love you. It is impossible to describe how much revelation I have recieved here at the MTC. I know that this is the true church. We must be constantly working on our continued conversion to the gospel. I know that I have a living savior and redeemer. He is the perfect example in every aspect of our lives. We must walk closer to him and match his love every day.

Yo se que esta iglesia es verdadero. El Libro de Mormon es la palabra de Dios. Por medio del nuestro Salvador y Redentor Jesucristo, podemos ser limpio de nuestro pecados. Yo se que nuestro familia puede ser eterno. Estoy muy agredecido por su amor and el amor de Jesucristo. Yo se que esta iglesia puede ayudar todas personas aqui en la tierra.

Les amo mucho!!!! ( I love you alot)
I can't wait to talk to you on the phone!!!!! 4 days!!!

Elder Hughes

FAMILIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FELIZ DIA DE POVO! | Week 7

Hola Familia!!

Happy Thanksgiving!!! I love you all so much! What fun plans for thanksgiving! We can all have an unconventional Thanksgiving together, since my all 6 of our Thanksgivings are going to be very different haha. I am so glad you all get to get away and have some fun. (more flags more fun) Go ride all the rides for me :)  Meanwhile in Provo, our Thanksgiving is going to ROCK as well. First off, we have a devotional tomorrow with Elder Holland. (Elder T and I found out from a reliable source that he is coming to the MTC tomorrow!!!) It's gonna be awesome. If you think Elder Holland is intense in general conference, you should see some of his devotionals that we have watched the rebroadcasts of. They are awesome. I can't wait. Then we are spending most of the rest of the day doing service and making 10,000 humanitarian kits. Which is what being a missionary is all about. We also get Thanksgiving dinner of course. It should be wonderful. Although, I am going to miss being with you all for Thanksgiving, know that I will be thinking of you throughout the whole day. I will miss stuffed mushrooms as well :) BUT being a missionary is exactly what I love to do.

This week has been kinda crazy. Well long story short. Elder R my companion came back to the MTC! (We couldn't believe it) He is back! Which was awesome. I almost dropped the phone when our branch president talked to us. It was such a happy day. Spanish is still coming along. We are making alot of goals to work super hard our last 2 weeks to be as ready as we possibly can be to go into the field. This sound funny, but speaking spanish is super fun. I haven't been able to figure it our but EVERYTHING is funnier in spanish. I am so glad I was called to speak it.

One trial this week has been for Elder T. He has some pretty crazy health issues that are pretty confusing, and intense. It has been a really tough week for him, and one thing about companionships is that we are both in it together. We have spent many hours at doctor's offices all around provo in the last week, and we have four more appointments this week. He goes in for an MRI today. Keep him in your prayers. He is awesome, and we are super close friends. I have learned so much about how to serve others.

I found out that Sarina got engaged!!!!! How exciting!!!!! I am so pumped for her.

Give the Voges all my love. Thank the Jay's for their card that they sent me.

I sent you a Thanksgiving card, I don't know if you got it yet :)

I cannot even begin to explain how much my faith and knowledge have grown here at the MTC. My heart and soul are filled every day. I have learned how to TRULY teach the gospel by the spirit. Family, the gift of tongues is real. I am a witness of it. This sunday we watched a rebroadcast devotional of Elder Bednar's talk last Christmas at the MTC. It is one of the best talks I have ever heard in my entire life. I want to share with you what I got out of it: We must understand the Character of Christ. He turned out to others in perfect love, when the natural man turns into himself in selfishness. In order to be truly converted to this gospel, and to our savior, and to NEVER fall away. We must understand and develop this Character within us. We must turn outward in pure love toward others. It is then that we truly are converted. Find someone to serve and love every day. This is why I am on a mission to serve and love.

I am so grateful to all of you. You have blessed my life eternally. I am SO grateful to be a missionary, a son of Chris and Katie Hughes, a Child of God, a brother to Riley Zach and Tanner, and I AM so grateful to be a representative of Christ. I am grateful for your love and the love of our savior. I wish I could convey all that I have learned here. I love you so much. Don't worry about me, I am SO happy, although I miss you SO much, there is nothing else I would rather be doing. Go serve someone today and everyday. I LOVE YOU!!! I can't wait to talk to you all on the phone soon!



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Week 6 | 6 Semanas down in the CCM!!

Hola Familia!!!!!!
Thank you thank you thank you for your letters, emails, and package! I love them so much, I can't even describe how much I love hearing from you. This week has been a bit crazy, but very good as usual. Another Elder in our district went home at the same time as Elder R and so now me and Elder T are companions! He is awesome, we are super close, he is hilarious and we are doing great! Our district only has 4 Elders in it now which is kinda crazy. It is small so we get alot of help from all of our teachers. We are all 4 great friends so it makes it fun. Spanish continues to improve, it is easy to hit a certain point of mastery and start to not work as hard, so I have been trying to work hard on it every day. We teach LOTS of lessons here at the MTC. It is really hard at first, and we all think that the people that set this place up are crazy, but it is an inspired system! We learn so much about how to rely on the spirit as we teach. It is humbling and it prepares us so much for the field. Once again we had an amazing devotional yesterday. It was awesome. I am taught by the spirit so much here. We learned about how as missionaries we are truly living the law of consecration. It is real, and the blessings of living it are real. I feel it, and I hope you feel it. "The only surrender that is also a victory, is to consecrate one's heart to the Lord"
The package was perfecto! It was exactly perfect, thank you thank you! (big cyber hug) Thank you Meg and Brandon for the Pumpkin bread also! It was sooooo good! Thank you harless's too!!
I am glad that Aaron got my letter, I was prompted many times to write it :)
Your pictures look awesome mom! I am so excited for the holidays as well! Thanksgiving here is gonna be awesome. An apostle should be coming, and we are doing some big service project thing. I will miss you all, and think of how thankful I am for you all day, so I will be there in spirit! What are your plans for turkey day!??
I did get all of Tanner's letters, I have only been able to send him a short email, because of the stupid 30 minute timers on these computers that give me anxiety. I love hearing from him. Two elders from my zone left to go to the Guatemala MTC and I gave them a letter to give to him, and instructions to give him a huge hug for me, haha. Thank you for a Matt Hodgson mission update!!! Next up I would love a Ty Clark update too!!! :)
Dad, I am so proud of ya!!! Way to be!! I have been working out alot here too! I have been running 1-2 miles a day, which has helped me to feel alot better. Keep it up!  I am still a zone leader with Elder T, and it's great. I have had alot of opportunities to serve the other Elders in our zone, some struggle alot.
It snowed a ton here at the beggining of the week, and has been freezing cold, so it has just barely started to melt. I love getting mail, tell people to write me!
I say it every week, but I LOVE being a missionary, it is so great. I love being able to focus 100% on the Lord, and doing his work. It is definately not easy, but I have been richly blessed. I love you all so much. I think about  you and pray for you every day. I am so happy. Being a missionary makes me so happy. One email would never be enough to sum up how much I have learned about myself and about the gospel in the last six weeks. I wish I could share all that I have learned. This gospel is true, and we are blessed in proportion to how much we are converted to the Lord, and ACT. We should be so happy every day that we are part of this marvelous work. I am getting so excited to go out into the 'real world' and share this wonderful message of hope and love. There is truly nothing more important in the whole world than the simple principles of the gospel. Have a wonderful pre thanksgiving week! I love you all so much. I am so happy, and I am even happier when I think about you all!
Elder Taylor Hughes

ah I tried to send pics, and these stupid computers hate me, next week!!!
I love you!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Week 5 | Semana # 5 @ el CCM

Hola Familia!!!!!
Thank you for all your letters and emails! I loved them. Life is going good here at the MTC! I feel like I am such a boring email writer because every week is pretty much the same here, haha, except I know more spanish and know more about the gospel! Today was kind of a hard day, my companion Elder R went home :( He had some personal things to clear up, so that is a big bummer. He was a great Elder, so that has been what we have all been dealing with today. Now I am in a trio with Elder D and Elder E. But that might change. ANYWAY. On to more optimistic matters.
I am doing great, my spanish is coming along well, I learn more every single day. I actually think that spanish is really fun to speak. I feel the spirit so much here, that is what makes the MTC so great. We are free from all distractions that can take away from the spirit. We heard the election news... kind of a bummer.. but the gospel is infinitely more important than any politcal party. Being at the MTC has helped me to see what really matters. Here people talked about the election a bit, but our priorites as missionaries are on a much different plane. We had another amazing devotional yesterday. I can't even begin to describe how much I love devotionals here. A member of the 70 spoke about true discipleship, and how we are ALL on a path to becoming true disciples. We need diligence, christlike love, feasting on the words of christ, and submitting our will to the Lord. Then we will be better disciples and love more, and serve more, and be FULL of JOY!
I love the pictures mom, fantastic work as always. Thanks dad for the poem, I loved it. I wrote a letter today for Uncle Aaron, I have felt prompted a couple of times to write him, and I have gotten alot more bold about sharing the gospel since I have been here *hint*hint* haha. That is SUCH awesome news about Sheldon, tell him I am so excited for him! Riley, my thoughts exactly on the election. Z man, tell Tyler I say hi, I am so glad that you are friends with him! I love you too Z man and I miss you and think of you every day! Mom, I loved the cinnamon rolls you sent, THANK YOU. My district and zone thank you as well (i shared) I still haven't gotten your other package yet... hopefully soon!!
Yes, I am hitting that point of the MTC, where I am so excited to go to Arizona! I can't wait. It is mixed emotions though, because at the same time I know that I still have ALOT to learn about teaching, and spanish. But excitement is mostly what I feel. I really do enjoy the MTC, I have made some great friends. It definitely isn't easy but I am being blessed beyond measure. I am filled with joy when I hear of your blessings as my family. There is nothing else I would rather be doing than what I am doing now. I LOVE the gospel, it is true, every single word. Focus on the simple basic truths of the gospel, that is where the power is. Faith, repentance, baptism, and the Holy Ghost are what we should be focusing on every day. I am so happy here, I can't help but smile every day, and that is how we should be all the time! We have the restored gospel that teaches us how to have peace in this life and eternal life in the world to come, we should be smiling ALL THE TIME. I love all of you so much. I miss you. I think of you every day. I have been blessed with all of you, and I can't help but smile every time I think of our family. Sorry my letters don't have tons of interesting details haha, it's because the MTC doesn't have too many interesting details. Keep writing lots, it makes my whole day when I get mail
Until next Wednesday!!
Elder Hughes

Friday, November 2, 2012

Week Four | Semana 4 en el CCM

Hola Familia!!
Happy Halloween! That saying doesn't mean a whole lot here in the MTC haha, its just a normal day :) Thank you for your letters and email! I loved all the giants pictures, I am so pumped for the Giants (my district is probably getting tired of me talking about how happy I am that they won!) I only wish I could have been there to celebrate with my favorite Giants fans. Send my love to the Voges!
Zach, like usual I am the proudest big brother in the world that you are reppin' the Y all the time. Wise choice my brother :) I'm glad you are still tearing it up in cross country!
Congrats Rilo on a great football season. I was thinking today, how I can't believe you are going to be 16 in a couple months!!! CRAZY! And now with the new missionary ages you will be preparing to serve before you know it!
Mom, I am so glad your work is going well. You should email me some of your favorites, I would love to see! You are right, I would go with you to Bishop's pumpkin farm if I was there. I am so glad that your weather is awesome, it definately feels like fall here too, except when it snowed a week ago... Thank you for your letter. I read your letter that you put in my suitcase all the time. I smile every time.
Dad, I love you! I am glad you got to teach that story to your class, it is my all time favorite chapters of scripture.
Even in the 'iron bubble' of the MTC we heard about the storm on the east coast... sounds crazy. We heard there are some pretty intense pictures from NYC.
As for me there is not too much too report. Just livin the same great MTC life everyday. I feel the spirit SO much here. Spanish is coming along, it's alot of work, but it's going well. I have awesome teachers, and I have learned SO much. The gift of tongues is a real thing. Being a zone leader has been good, I learn alot about how far I need to come as a missionary. We find alot of creative ways to have fun here. There is currently an ongoing battle called 'spooning' where at meals people slip spoons into your jackets/pockets and we all end up discovering them throughout the day. Our classroom is on the 5th floor of a building, and we go back and forth many times a day, so our legs get quite the workout climbing 5 flights of stairs 10 times a day haha. Going to the temple on P day is great. The Provo temple is beautiful on the inside. The devotionals here are some of my favorite parts about the MTC, the spirit is awesome. I sing in the choir every week which is great. The guy that directs the choir is hands down one of the funniest mormons I have ever met. Sundays are super relaxing days here.
The spirit has taught me so many things here, I have even created a list of 'things I am going to do in the field' so that I don't forget all the things that I have learned about how to be the best missionary I can be. I truly know that the Book of Mormon has real power. PLEASE read it every day, and literal spiritual guidance, direction, and revelation will pour down upon you. We cannot have the Book of Mormon as just a symbol of our membership it has to be a daily part of our lives.
Now things I need: I never got the pictures you said you sent... :( Please forward me Tanner's email, he forgot to send it to me.The next time you send a package stick a sweater in there, I only have t shirts and dress shirts. PRETTY PLEAAASE send me all of tyler, mathew and spencer's letters that I have missed :) Thank you so much! Keep writing me lots, and telling other people too, words cannot express how much I love getting mail haha. Dad, send me uncle Aaron's address, I have been thinking about writing him a letter :)
Mom, Dad, Riley, and Z man. I love you guys so much, I am so grateful for your support. I LOVE being a missionary. I am not wasting one day of the sacrifice that we all have made. I love you all so much, Whenever things get hard, I think of you guys and I smile, and then press forward. I can't believe it's already been a month! I love and miss you all so much!
Elder Taylor Hughes 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Week Three | from the EM TEE SEE

Hola Familia!!!
Thank you for your letters and dear elders! I loved them! It seriously cannot be expressed how much I love getting mail :) I am doing great! Life in the MTC is slipping into a blur of routine, but it is great! Yes, you heard the news right, Elder R and I got called as zone leaders, we were both in pretty much complete shock. We were not expecting it at all. It is alot of responsibility, but it will be great. We get to train all the missionaries that arrived in our zone tonight. Life here is going good. Spanish is coming along, it gets better every day. The biggest challenge isn't learning it, because I can learn everything pretty fine, the challenge is being able to actually speak it when you are in a lesson haha. We teach investigators in spanish every single day, and our lessons are getting better and better every time so that is good. I LOVE our teachers, they are both amazing and hilarious. Which we all need when we study for 10 hrs a day :) The spirit here is so strong. I feel it literally every single day. It is such an exciting time to be on a mission. The world is going to get alot more missionaries in the coming years, and it is exciting to be part of it. Saying bye to tanner on tuesday was really hard... probably the hardest thing I have ever done. I am going to miss him so much. I felt like I was saying goodbye to part of myself. I had a hard time that night, but I know that the Lord answers prayers. The spirit comforted me. I know that it is all part of the Lord's plan. I LOVE being a missionary, I feel that every day. It is hard sometimes, and it demands alot of patience and discipline, but it also is SO JOYFUL! There is nothing else I would rather be doing. We lost 5 people in our district to the guatemala mtc at the same time as tanner, which has been weird. We went from 11 in our class to 6. The brightside, we have alot more legroom, I was crammed in the corner so I am happy to have some more space haha.
As for your questions. I am so mentally exhausted every night that I literally fall asleep within  2 minutes of my head hitting the pillow so no problem there haha. The food is okay... it wrecks havoc on all of our stomachs haha, but we are thankful for it. As for things I need/want... not any candy we have a TON of it. ummmmmmmmmmm you know me, I can never think of things I want. I would say mints, but I got in trouble for eating them in the classroom haha. I am so bad at thinking of things I want.
Dad I am so glad you are feeling better. OHHH YEEAAHH for the giants! Thank you Riley and Zach for your letters they made my whole day. Yes, I got a bunch of Tanner's dear elders after he left for Guatemala, so you will all have to write him again. Thank you Grandpa Val and Grandma Tanya for your letter, I couldn't stop laughing. I am glad your golf game is being blessed grandpa haha.
Probably one of my favorite parts of being here is the devotionals. They are awesome! I look forward to them every week.
I love you guys so much. Remember to read the Book of Mormon, it is literally the best book in the whole world. It makes me better every single time I read it. Power is given to us when we follow it's teachings. If you ever want a glimpse of what we learn about ALL day and what makes us so happy as missionaries, read preach my gosplel. (Best manual ever made by the church)
I love you all so much, you are in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for your prayers!
Elder Hughes

** a note from mom . . . these will be the last pictures they take with each other for two years! they are extra special to us this week!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Week Two | Semana Dos en el CCM (Week two in the MTC!!!)


Hey Family! I'm so excited to email you!!

Wow, it is hard to think back on a week here at the MTC. I have been studying ALOT here, which is great. We are all mentally exhausted by the end of the day. I have learned SO much about the gospel. My testimony of this work is strengthened every day. Every day I am so thankful for my opportunity to serve the Lord. Spanish is getting better, slowly but surely, it is definitely a challenge for everyone, but we all are getting better. I can understand alot of spanish, and always know what my teachers are saying, but it is a whole different challenge to actually talk. We have continued to teach lessons pretty much every day, which is one of the most humbling things I have ever done. We have to rely so much on the spirit to help us teach. That is why they have the program set up that way. I have felt the spirit calm me down so many times. We continue to learn alot, I have been staying pretty positive about it. Sometimes my district gets super negative, and I have tried to always help us to have a positive view on things. We lose 5 people from our district to the Guatemala MTC this week which will be sad, and Tanner leaves this week :( I will miss him SO much, but it is also so exciting. We play sand volleyball in gym every day which is a blast! I have gotten alot better at volleyball.

Sundays at the MTC are amazing, they are peaceful, and relaxing. With all the work we do at the MTC we also have a blast too. The Elders that live next door to us, who are in our zone are super funny, and CRAZY. They made a full on slingshot from an exercise band and shot gummy bears at the whole hall. Another interesting game we played was that we realized that we don't know anyone's first names, so we all tried to guess each other's first names. I was especially good at it for some reason, haha. I guessed two people's names in 3 tries :) We had another amazing devotional this week, the spirit was SO strong and taught me so much. I KNOW this church is true with all of my heart and soul. I have felt it time and time again. The Book of Mormon is the BEST book on earth, read it everyday, and our lives will be blessed tremendously. Preach My Gospel is the most amazing manual that the church has.

I hope Dad is feeling better, I prayed for you :) Thank you thank you thank you to all of you who wrote me letters!! The Voges, thank you so much for you package it made me so happy, the bread was wonderful, expect some mail in return :) Jamie, I loved your letter, I sent the reply to your house in Rocklin. Sis. Harless and Zack thank you so much for your letters! and the Buxton's and Rachel, thank you so much, expect some mail too :)

Oh crazy small world, Grandma and Grandpa. An elder that lives next door to me is from Layton and we figured out he is from your ward! Elder Seth Christensen. Such a small world.

Mom, send me some family pics and my friends missionary letters preeeety pleeeeassee.

 Mom, Dad, Rilo and Z man I love you guys so much! I miss you and LOVE you. I love our eternal family. You are always in my prayers.

Love your missionary,

Elder Taylor Hughes

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

First P-Day Email | Week One

Hola! From the MTC!!!

Hey family!!!!
It is finally P day here in the MTC! I have to type super fast because of having only thirty minutes :) Hopefully you got my letter that I finally mailed, I had to wait until I got your dear elder because Tanner and I couldn't remember the new address haha. I am doing wonderful! Mission life is great, it is REALLY tiring mentally but it is great! The spirit of the MTC is real, I feel it all the time. The first day here was absolutely nuts, probably the most overwhelming day of my life, but it was great. I have an awesome companion Elder R, he is so great. He is from Salt Lake City and he and I get along great. We are all in awe that it has only been a week here in the MTC, it feels like it has been a month. Our teacher is Hermano Wadsworth, and he is super cool. They don't waste any time dumping you into spanish. Our teacher hasn't said more than 5 minutes of english too us in a whole week.. which is hard. They definitiely  humble you. We have already taught 3 entire lessons in caveman spanish as we call it. It is amazing how the spirit helps us as missionaries. Elder R and I always get super anxious before our lesson, and are usually stressed after, but the spirit comforts us and guides us every time we are IN a lesson. I am so grateful for that. Thank you mom for your letter and food, I was surprised to find it. I love the letter, I love reading it. My district is great, we have 5 elders going to Tucson, one to Roseville CA, and 3 Hermanas are going to Guatemala. They are all wonderful, I will tell you more about them when I have more email time :) I see lots of people I know here, Elder R can't believe how many people I know here. I saw Cheryl! I have seen Elder Fletcher, Eirik and I hangout and talk all the time since he lives next door to me. Jaelyn Hatch's cousin lives next door to me. Alyssa Johnson is in my zone so I see her all the time which is great! I play volleyball with her district and we all go to the temple at the same time. It's super fun. I have seen Elder Greenwood twice. Sister E in our ward, her daughter, Sister S I have seen alot too!! Conference was SO great! You should have seen the gasp/scream/shock that every missionary had when they announced the new ages. I think it is wonderful! How exciting for the sisters. The spirit of General Conference was great! I loved to hear so many inspiring words from our prophets and apostles. What an experience it is to sing called to serve with thousands of missionaries. The spirit witnesses so strongly. Our days are full of studying and working all day. It is tiring, but we learn alot! I have grown so much in just a week here. The food at the MTC is... not that great.. but it works, I cannot even think about 8 more weeks of it haha. I love being a missionary!! The spirit is with us. I have felt many times that the Lord is really with his missionaries, he does not leave us without help. It is his work. Elder Bednar spoke to us on Tuesday night at devotional. It was indescribably amazing. The only thing he said about the new missionary announcement is that "The Lord is hastening his work on the earth." pretty awesome. His talk was awesome. He talked about the way he an apostle of the Lord studies the gospel, lets just say its really cool :) The spirit was amazing. Ok, dear elder. For some dumb reason Tanner gets all of my dear elder mail.... so I talked to the mailroom people and they said that when you submit mine, you have to put an X or another letter in front of my name, so that get it. Tell lots of people to write me, give out my address etc. I LOVE getting mail, it is like gold in the MTC :) I know this church is true. I love you all SO much, I pray for you and miss you. I am wrapping up this letter so I have time to send pics! I love you all so much!!!
Elder Hughes

and here is his second email:

bad picture news . . . 

I tried my best to attatch some pictures, but I can´t figure out the MTC computers... bummer. I love you all. Oh, I got some shots, and they were expensive... I will have them send you an insurance paper to fill out. Shots was actually interesting because another elder passed out BAD and faceplanted it from a chair, scary but kinda funny 


Elder Taylor Hughes 

Monday, October 8, 2012

"we'll see you soon.........."

Elder Hughes & Elder Hughes entered the MTC on October 3, 2012. I think it was one of the hardest days. I also know it was one of the best days. A day we had looked forward to for so long. I look back at these pictures and feel so much comfort as I see the smile on their faces and the way they were whisked away by such great young men. We didn't want to say "goodbye" just "we'll see you soon!"