Monday, December 30, 2013


Merry Christmas!
Thanks for the presents!


I understand life is busy.  I haven't been able to respond to any of the letters I got for like a week and a half.  Life is busy sometimes!!  I have exciting news, I am not being transferred this week and neither is Sister Wahlen!  So that means I will be here in Parkway for another 6 weeks.  Crazy to think that at the end of this transfer I will have been out almost 6 months!  That's is one third of my mission!  Crazy!!!!  
Cool pic!

There wasn't too many crazy adventures this week. Christmas was great, we had dinner with Sister Canfield and it was really nice.  We also went over to an older couple in the ward to play a game. They have all adult children and none of them could come home
Rogers Family on Christmas Eve (note: Bro Rogers' father was our family's bishop in the La Sierra area of Riverside 20 some odd years ago)
for Christmas and I think they are pretty lonely sometimes and since our purpose as missionaries is to uplift, inspire, encourage, and bless, I thought it would be uplifting to go play a game with them for an hour or so.  And they loved it so I am glad we did.  

Someone gave us these sweet bike lights
We were going to district meeting at our church building on Friday and as we crossed the tracks the gate to the neighborhood was closed.  After a moment of evaluation I determined that the only thing to do was to climb the fence  and open it from the other side.  I tried at first, but my skirt was not maneuverable enough, so Sister Wahlen hopped over the fence and opened it up for us.  A few days later we were coming home from that same neighbourhood and a train was sitting on the tracks, not covering the path, but sitting there. We decided to just wait it out, but then the conductor came out and told us we could pass.  When we had made it to the other side he asked if there was just two of us.   I told him yes and asked if he wanted a bag of brownies.  One of our investigators had given us a bag of them and I knew I would eat them if we took them home so I offered them to him.  He thought a moment and said yes so I gave them to him!  So next time you have leftover goodies, give them to the train conductor.

On Sunday we taught the youth so their leaders could go to the 5th Sunday lesson the Bishop was giving. We played Preach My Gospel jeopardy with questions from each of the missionary lessons.  They seemed to enjoy it and we gave them a lot of the candy that members seemed to think we needed!  I had fun too so that is a bonus.

A member knitted us these cool head bands

Hope y'all have a blessed week as they say in Texas!

Sister Hudgens

Monday, December 23, 2013


Three "generations" of missionaries.  Sis. Schellhous who trained Sis. Seymour who trained our own Sis. Hudgens

Sounds like your life is busy.  Holidays are super busy and it doesn't help when you are by yourself.  I am glad Dad came home to help you and enjoy Christmas with y'all (I am getting the language down finally).  My week didn't seem too busy, but I look back and I did a lot this week!!

Sis. Wahlen with the lost doggie
One day as we were going about visiting potential investigators and members there was this dog.  It was in the middle of the road so I called it over and checked to see if it had a collar.  It didn't we knocked on a few doors to try and find its home then it disappeared.  We biked to the next road over it it appeared again and followed us up the road before getting distracted by the median.  An hour later we were heading home and it found us again and followed us almost all the way home!!! We were debating what to do with it when we think it disappeared with another person.

We taught seminary this week.  It seems extra early now that I am not used to it!  But it was fun, we talked about the stresses of missionary work and the resources we have to deal with it.  Hopefully we didn't scare them away from serving a mission, but it is true; being a missionary is stressful!  But it is also the most rewarding thing I have ever done and I couldn't imagine being anywhere else right now.

Sis. Wahlen, Me, & Micallea
Last Monday we went to a good bye lunch for one of the girls in our ward.  She is going back to Utah to finish her own mission paperwork and she had gone out with us several times.  We are sad to see her go!  We went to this South American restaurant and were there for like 4 hours and I was stuffed!  I felt like we were there super long though...I still am not good at being social for long periods of time, it really drains me.  This Monday we are going with another member to this resale shop to find some new clothes.  She said it is our Christmas present, she is so nice!

We had a Christmas zone conference of Friday and Sister Wahlen decided to straighten my hair the night before.  She really wanted to do it and I told her go for it, I wasn't going to do it myself, that is a lot of effort!  We were late though and missed the picture.  We carpooled with some other sisters and the ride they got to take us was late.  Frustrating, but I had no control over it, so I just have to let it go.  It was a great program though. President Pingree spoke on the Atonement which was really good.  I also got to see Sister Seymour and catch up with her.  After lunch they had a Christmas program with a few missionaries giving talks and some musical numbers.  There was a piano cello duet to "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" that was just amazing!  I love music so much, it just lifts my soul.

Baking goodies
We made goodie plates for our investigators and delivered them this week.  It was really fun and it let them know that we were thinking about them and that we really care.  One of our investigators is Melvin.  He played on the Harlem Globetrotters and is super funny.  We have been meeting with him for a few months now off and on and he is slowly progressing.  But Sister Wahlen mentioned how her family is big sports fans he brought all this stuff out and gave it to us. So now I have a hat that I am not even sure where it is from and she has a shirt and a signed basketball for her nephew.  He is pretty cool, says to look him up on youtube.

I love you all and wish a Merry Christmas to everyone!  Remember to keep Christ in this season and not just look at His miraculous birth, but His miraculous life as well.

Sister Hudgens

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Sounds like you had a good, busy week and that you are doing very well as the new YW president!  I knew you would be great!  Bet you aren't even nervous now ;)  

The world is small!  It is even smaller when you are a Mormon.  I am excited to tell the Rogers about our little connection, we are having dinner with them on Christmas Eve.  It will be sad to not gather at Kari's, but I am sure I will have enough fun and busyness not to notice.  I will have to let you know next week exactly what time I will be Skyping (if we can get the Skype to work).  A member has agreed to let us go to their house to do it.  I think we are two hours ahead, so I will try to take that into consideration.

This week was busy, but it is hard to remember all I have done!  On P-day Monday we used the blowguns a little bit and one of the elders thought it would be fun to try to get them caught in my hair.  Fun for him, but when he missed he would hit me in the head, so I didn't think it was very entertaining.  I did get to pull out my evil glare, something I haven't used in a while though.  It was one of the sister's birthdays, so we had (frozen) coconut cream pie and played some volleyball, her sport of choice.

On Tuesday we flew from house to house on our bikes visiting potential investigators, members and less actives, inviting them to the Relief Society activity. On our way to said activity, we stopped at this house Sister Wahlen and I had rode past that looked like it would be really awesome in the dark.  Huge amount of lights that are put to music from this radio station.  It was amazing and we sat there for like ten minutes just watching.  I took pictures, but they do not do it justice.  The activity was great and one of our sort of investigators came and had a great time.

Me with Sis Lockhart on exchanges
On Thursday we had another round of specialized training on goals and our purpose.  It was great to meet with the other missionaries and President Pingree to learn from them and to grow in the Spirit.  After the meeting we had exchanges.  So I got to have fun with Sister Lockhart while Sister Wahlen went up to Magnolia.  Exchanges are always fun and I always learn a lot.  With Sister Lockhart I got to actually get into the house of a referral we got a few months ago.  The lady was at her limit and answered the door crying.  We were able to get there at the right time to offer a listening ear and a few words of comfort from the scriptures.  We were also able to meet a less active, invite her to church, and she actually came!  It is always exciting when someone we invite to church actually comes!

It some how came out that I play the flute and that I have one with me, so I am playing in the Christmas sacrament meeting next week.  I went to choir practice yesterday and I think I got it down!!  I just really hope I don't miss my cues.  That would be embarrassing.  But this also gives us another opportunity to invite people to church and to give them a reason to come besides the fact that it will be spiritually uplifting.  This stake also hosts a youth musical Christmas fireside every year, so we went to that as well.  It was beautiful and I was very impressed by all of the youth in this stake.  Though I guess there is a reason that the Klein school district is called musically inKLIEINed.

That is so funny regarding the pictures, I didn't realize that I wore the same skirt in all the pictures!  I promise I do wear all of the ones I brought with me!  (Tracy's note:  I had commented that she seemed to wear the same two skirts in most of her pictures she sends to us).  Though I think the green and blue ones Grandma Sharon gave me are some of my favorites.  That would explain a lot I guess.  A sister is actually taking us to go shopping next P-day, so I will have even more to choose from! 

Sister Hudgens

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Connection to the Family in Texas

Sounds like y'all have had a wonderful week filled with the Christmas spirit!  My week hasn't been too exciting, though I have had plenty of opportunities to use the gloves you sent!  They are a life saver!  It was in the 30-mid 40s for most of the week, so I have really had to bundle up.  Felt like Heidi I was wearing so many layers.  But that is better than freezing! 

At the Temple

Last Saturday we took our bikes  in for a tune up. And to get Sister Whalen's brake fixed.  That's a little important.  We took them into the place were we bought them because they do free lifetime adjustments on our bikes.  They were having a sale though so they said that they wouldn't touch our bikes until Monday, we were hesitant about leaving our bikes that long, but we did anyway.  We get home and ten minutes later they call and tell us they are ready! We were happy, but also wished they would have just told us they actually would fix them!  So our bikes work pretty good now, but Sister Wahlen's bike still won't go into 2nd, but she is strong enough now to skip 2nd and go to 3rd instead.  

Elder sneaked to our picture!

Something exciting did happen this week, we committed one of our investigators, Rosa, to baptism! We set a date for the end of the month, but she was a little hesitant.  She didn't come to church on Sunday, so it will have to be moved to the end of the month. We are going back to see her tomorrow, hopefully we can recommit her and get her husband to commit as well!

Our dinner on Wednesday was great.  We had it with Sister Rushing, a great, great woman.  She has never married, but likes to adopt missionaries.  She sent home all of the leftovers with us so we had a feast for a few days.  She is the greatest.  Our dinner the next night also sent us home with goodies.  We each got a Christmas tin full of cake and chocolate covered strawberries.  So much food!   And lots of rich chocolate gives Sister Whalen a headache, so I am left to eat my cake by myself.  Luckily she didn't force her's on me, that cake is good!

 We had dinner with the Rogers family.  They are great. Brother Rogers is from Riverside and I found out that he is a Whovian as  well  so we had a discussion about Doctor Who as well.  So much  Doctor Who!!!!(Note from Tracy- we discovered these Rogers are the son and family of our former Bishop when we lived in Riverside years ago before the girls were born- small world).

Sister Rogers is amazing too.  She gave Sister Whalen a  gift card for Famous Footwear to get some boots because she hasn't found any yet. I got some at Marshals last week and finally used the gift card Aunt Sandy gave me like two years ago.

Decorating cookies for ward party
We had our ward party on Saturday.  It was different, but fun.  We all sat on blankets on the floor, watch Christmas Mormon messages, sang songs, and played minute to win it games.

We all crammed in the back to get a ride to the 
other cars after caroling
We also went caroling this week with some of the other missionaries at an assisted living center. It was really nice to see the old people and the joy on their faces from our singing.  I highly recommend it.

Last week for our P-day activities I thought it was going to be boring.  Only three companionship came, including Sister Wahlen and I.  But the elders brought the PVC blowguns and nerf darts, so it was a lot of fun!  Looks like we are playing again this week so I am looking forward to it.

Well there is my week, not too exciting, but it was nice :)

The chairs!!  We completed them a few months ago, 
but now I have pictures!

Sister Hudgens

Monday, December 2, 2013

An Abundance of Feasting!

Sounds like you had a busy week!  That is good though.  It is always nice to have fun when you are on vacation.  
I love being a missionary!  It is the best, hardest, most fulfilling calling in the world.  I have grown so much.  And I have had a lot of fun.  Missionaries on P-Day are funny, it is our only opportunity to take a little break from being a missionary and be the goofy 18-22 year old kids we are.  We still follow all the rules, but we have fun.  
I also have fun with Sister Wahlen everyday.  Whether it be goofy faces, taking pictures while riding our bikes, or playing the "get there with the least amount of peddling" game we play when we are a little early to a dinner appointment, but don't have time to go anywhere else.

Sister Wahlen and me at a lake
This week the weather was a little crazy.  It was chilly and cold and windy for the first half.  It even slushed! Sister Wahlen thought it was snowing, but I refused to believe that I was biking in the snow.  It only lasted about 5 minutes though, then turned back into rain. The cold is a blessing though!!!  People are more likely to let you in when it is really cold outside.  They feel pretty bad for you when you are riding your bike in a skirt in the rain and it is a brisk 40 degrees (more or less).  I actually don't mind it too much, as long as I can find some place to go to defrost my toes!  I plan on finding me some boots today to give my toes a little more protection.  Of course it is 80 degrees today, so it might be a little while till I use them again. I hear it gets cold in the January area, and I will be here for another winter, so I don't mind getting some boots.  Plus that will offer some variety to my wardrobe!

I went on exchanges with Sister Schellhous again this week.  She came here and we had a great time and found a new investigator!  That is a crazy story.  While Sister Schellhous was here, she rode Sister Wahlen's bike.  I forgot to tell her though, that her bike doesn't quite work the best.  The gadgets on the left handle are all broken.  The brake is broken and the gearshift won't go into 2nd.  She shifted it and the chain came off and got jammed.  We weren't far from home so we walked our bikes home and she spent the next 45 minutes using a screwdriver to unjam it.  We then went out, tried to visit people, then headed back for lunch.  On the way home we met Jaime (a Hispanic man, not a little girl).  After talking with him for awhile, he asked, "Why are there so many churches?" Best question ever!!!  We then went into the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and he said that what we said might be true.  We are going to go and teach him again tomorrow and I am very excited!. If Sister Schellhous hadn't jammed the chain though, we would not have been out and riding through there while Jaime was outside and we wouldn't have met him.  Little miracle for us!  

I received your package and the chocolate fruit that day too and I really loved them!!!  I really appreciate the letters and the other things included in the box. In response to some of the questions that I was asked, it does snow in Texas, but it does not snow in Houston or at least it rarely does.  Instead it just rains a lot!!

Pie Night with Sister Schellhous
On Wednesday I attended Pie Night.  It is a tradition of a family in the ward to invite people over to have pie the night before Thanksgiving since people are too full to eat dessert on the big feast day!  It was pretty awesome and I had a little sliver of quite a few different kinds of pies.  Then of course I had to take a few slices home to Sister Wahlen since that was the day we were on exchanges and she missed it.  There were some good pies, but not the delicious pie that you make every year.  I guess Heidi will just have to eat my slice!

Thanksgivings with the Brown Family
We had three Thanksgivings this week, not all on the same day though thankfully!  We had Thanksgiving dinners on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday!  It was pretty awesome and they were all different.  I was pretty full all week though, full of bread and sweet potatoes, my favorite parts of the feast day meal!!!

Yesterday we visited the Hammer family.  We got there and apparently Brother Hammer was just catching up on his Doctor Who.  We then proceeded to have a wonderful discussion about Doctor Who and he was telling me about this program he was watching on the beginnings of the show and said, "Oh, just watch this little clip".  I immediately hid my face the TV, knowing it would be a bad idea for me to watch. The 50th anniversary and the premier of the new Doctor is something I am giving up for a mission.  It is a small thing and I know it will be there when I get back.  I just didn't want to be reminded of what I am missing!  I did listen to the little clip though, it wasn't too bad.  I know that being on a mission though, is way better than Doctor Who.
Sister  Canfield with Sister Wahlen and me decorating for Christmas.

Sister Canfield with her dogs dressed for Christmas
I love you all so much and I hope that y'all continue to do well!

Sister Hudgens
Dad, this is your daughter.

Happy Birthday!!!  I really liked your letter and I hope you are doing well.  Go shoot something for me!

Your favorite daughter on a mission,

Sister Holly Hudgens