Sunday, May 1, 2016

Querida Familia!

It sounds like everyone had busy weeks! Mom, I'm really happy that you were able to enjoy the Woman's Conference at BYU! That was so nice of Terri to help you out. And Dad, I'm glad that you're still able to serve in the scouts, and I know the boys are really grateful too. 

Isaac, I just wanted to give you a special shout out, because Dad told me that you are really helping Mom out which I appreciate so much! I'm sure that everyone else is also helping, I just wanted to say thanks to everyone for taking care of our angel Mother. =)

Dad, when Doctor Rayside came and visited our mission, he actually talked a little bit about mindfulness as well. Apparently a big stress causer for missionaries is when they start to do everything routinely, so he talked about a couple of different ways to put ourselves back into the moment. One of the exercises he shared with us is called 5 4 3 2 1. You quickly name 5 things you can see, 4 things you can hear, three things you can touch, 2 things you can smell or taste, and then you take a deep breath. I thought it was all really interesting! 

I can't believe that Lizzie is finishing her mission so soon! That seems so crazy to me! It feels like yesterday that I remember reading her first letters from a small computer store in Vinces.=)  I'm so proud of her for being able to serve the Lord. Do you know if she's going to go back to BYU Idaho or if she has other plans? Elder Rydalch also goes home this week, so we'll really miss him. I'm sure that you'll get to see some pictures because Dad is friends with Elder Rydalch on Facebook.

Our devotional on Sunday went really well! Everyone that came said that they really enjoyed it. I always love when I get the chance to play the piano. Also it looks like I might be the new ward pianist because our last ward pianist just left for the MTC last Tuesday. (He's going to Canada but not to Jenni's mission.)  I'm actually really excited to play on Sundays again. But don't tell Mom I said that ;)

We had our first choir practice this week, (with another on Monday) and it actually went really well! Almost everyone in the choir knows how to read music and parts which will make our work a lot easier, and the four parts really came out very well. It's a pretty balanced choir too, with just the right number of basses, tenors, altos and sopranos. Mom, I'll see if I can scan you a copy of the song in a second so you can take a look at it. It was also really fun to see a couple of friends from the West Guayaquil mission, like Elder Wade Hanson (we went to Alta together) and Hermana Samantha Durffy! (from marching band/Alta HS orchestra) Luckily neither of them were affected by the earthquakes. It was great to catch up with them though! Elder Hanson goes home two weeks before I do. 

I really can't believe it's already the last day of April. I don't know where all the time is going! We're going to be busy all throughout May getting ready for the apostle who will be coming to the mission in June. We're all excited, (and just a little stressed haha) but it should be really fun. I think by next week we'll know who it is that's coming!

Thank you so much for your support and prayers this week, I really hope that everyone stays safe and that you keep feeling better Mom! I'm so glad that the Lord really does hear our prayers.

Have a great week! See you next Sunday for Mother's Day!

Lots of Love,
Elder Hales =)

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