Caught on the Streets of Monterrey

Caught on the Streets of Monterrey
Watching...always Watching!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

He's in the Mexico Monterrey West Mission...Finally

Well, he's there!  Monday morning we got the call.  He was in the Las Vegas airport.  President Neider took him there.  He was traveling alone which he thought would only be to Dallas Fort Worth Airport where he would meet up with the other missionaries from Provo and then travel with them to Monterrey.  Only to find out that was not the case.  He traveled all the way there alone.  He was a little anxious as he has not really ever been by himself.  He knows he was never really alone, but it made me quite sad as I spoke with him.  He said he was fine, but I could tell he was a little nervous.  He told his dad he got a drink at McDonald's and some fries but wasn't able to eat them.  Not surprised he comes by that quite honestly.  He sounded so good, and he was so ready to go.  Hard to believe we have to remember the sound of his voice until Christmas.  As we watched the clock tick all to quickly the minutes passed and he said goodbye and was on his way.  Later that evening I happened to check my email and was so surprised to see that he had sent a short message to let us know of his safe arrival.  A true tender mercy.  So grateful to a loving mission president who understands that we just want to know that he was indeed there safely, especially as he was traveling alone.  Here it is.  Can't wait to hear from him this week as he gets settled in.  I'm sure it's so different from what he's been used to.  Enjoy, and look forward to pictures and new adventures to come...

Hola Familia! Estoy en Monterrey Nuevo Leon y estoy muy feliz. I had kind of a hectic and crazy day but it is all good now. I am happy to be here and it is going to be awesome, it is really different than Las Vegas, but it is better. Driving to the office was crazy! Such a different country. Just wanted to tell you all I was safe and sound. Thank you for your prayers. Pictures will be coming soon!
Elder Clayton

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Last Week in Vegas...

When we got his email we did not know that this would be his last email from Vegas.  However Carl, his uncle was in Vegas on business and happened to see two elders on Flamingo Street and stopped to talk to them and ask if they knew Elder Clayton.  Which they replied they, did.  And, loved him!  They told Carl that they thought he had gotten word that his Visa had gotten there and he would be leaving the following week.  This was caused a little concern to us as we will be leaving for Quest, our youth conference and will not be able to have phone access from Tues-Fri.  I called the mission office and talked to a sister there who let me know that she would get word to Stetson of our situation and he could contact us as to when he would be leaving.  On Thursday evening we got a text that said he would be calling in an hour.  About 10:00 p.m. he phoned and we were able to talk to him for about 15 minutes to let us know that, yes.  Monday morning he would be leaving Las Vegas and head to his called area:  Mexico Monterrey West.  He is nervous and excited.  He has loved Vegas.  My good friend Trina Fonua took Elder Clayton and his companion to out for pizza and chocolate cake.  She said they will miss him.  They have loved him as he has loved them, too.  They spoiled him.  Her family has certainly been an answer to my prayers.  Here's his last letter from Vegas.  I can only pray that there is a Trina in Monterrey...

It was a great week here in Vegas!! So thanks for the package. It was so awesome! I had bought peanut butter that day haha. so it is funny. I eat peanut butter toast a lot because that Cuban guy gave us a toaster and I love it. it is the simple things I guess! We met this stellar family the other night, my comp started talking to this lady and asked if we could come in and we did, and they had 3 boys! It really reminded me of our family. The kids were the politest kids in the world and spoke crazy proper Spanish. which is hard to find here in Vegas when it comes to ninos. The kids were aged 13 11 and 5, so it was so similar to our family. We are eating with them Friday and have a lesson. I am looking forward to it. Other than that, we had exchanges and all of my food freaking disappeared when I came back home from the elder who took my place. Kind of dumb but good thing it is pday to day ! I am loving it here in Vegas. oh and ask Bridger about the Honduras experience! Have him re tell it to you all. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers. They are mutual. love you all! Have a great week !
Elder Clayton

Trina took Elder Clayton and his family out for pizza, chocolate cake and ice cream for his going away party.  Her girls asked, who orders pizza without cheese?  Elder Clayton does, that's who!  LOL  He has loved it there.  A big piece of his heart will stay there.  Thank you Trina and family for taking care of him while he has served there, he loves you.  And so do I for being his 2nd mom and angel!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Laughing in the Rain & Baptisms in Vegas

Having Elder Clayton in Vegas is awesome.  There are people that see him and report back quite often. I know that he wants to head to his "real" area, but, I haven't minded having him there either.  Here is one such time.  Love these.  It's times like these that I know my Father in Heaven is ever so mindful of him, but of me and of my heart.  And that these tender mercies are evidence that He is watching over him each and every day and every thing is just as it should be.

 Mom, I don't have much more time, but I wanted to say thanks for the packages, they just came in! and about the video consenting to searches. that is funny. also, the high school friend! she lives in Michigan and is moving to Vegas, her husband fixes all of the bikes in the mission and we went to visit him and started talking then I told him I was from bountiful, and he said his wife graduated 1983 and worked at Winegars! I told him my mom worked at Winegars! Then he called her and he asked if she knew a Tammy Burningham, and over the phone she was like "yeah I do, her son is in Vegas" then her husband was like "her son is in our living room" haha so funny. It really does all come back and it pays to be nice to everyone. thanks for that example. love you mom
Elder Clayton

Here's something fun. Check out these pictures and the rest is in the written words:  

I put this in his pack with this note:

Sent this to Sue. I was almost going to crumple it in your package and then stopped when I saw it was the missionary broad cast. Amazing!!!  Love you pal.

Hello mom!! Actually old news! haha I saw that picture last week on!!! but it was on the youth page where it was! I totally forgot to tell you about it. Good eye though. Even though his hair is a dead give away!
And here's this week's letter looks like he's having great success in Vegas and was able to go to lunch with my friend Trina and her husband Lonny at Cafe Rio which he loves.  Keith and Eileen which he mentions is my friend from work that hit a moose on the way to thier cabin in Flaming Gorge and we went and took a car to them that is who he is referencing in in the first of his email.  Enjoy, always short, but great...

Hola Familia!! 

This week sounded like a wild one for all of you! I hope Eileen and Keith are alright with their truck and everything. They will be in my prayers. Anyways, this was a great week. A lot went on and I will try to tell you all about it. First off, we had the baptism of Alondra! She had heard all of the lessons before us and she had moved and was on date to get baptized, so we got in contact about 2 weeks ago and set the date and it was a success. She is from Veracruz and doesn't speak very much English, she has friends in the ward so she will fit right in. On Friday and yesterday it rained!! You wouldn't believe how hard it rained! and for like 5 minutes. It almost felt like steam because of how hot the pavement was when the rain fell. but that was fun to see. Also the roads turn into rivers when it rains! We have a recent convert we work with named Carlos, he is so tight. He is from Havana, Cuba! I really think he was in the mafia or something in los ochentas. pero no se. He actually gave me a pocket knife the other day as a gift! He really is so nice and he is fun to talk with. On Saturday Trina took us to Cafe Rio! It was funny to be back at cafe rio, reminded me of home! It was so nice of her and Lonny to take us there. Oh and the 4th of July! We hung out with two families, they were both lots of fun. I guess the thing to do here in Vegas is to "Go to the Rez and get the good stuff" so we had a good time with crazy fireworks from outside of town. People here in Vegas know how to have fun haha. I am glad Caleb and Dad had a good birthday. I am having a good time and miss all of you! Love you! 

Elder Clayton

Baptism of Kim
Kim & Aljondro

Oh how I miss his smile and I can almost hear his laugh...almost!  But he looks so happy!  Can't ask for more than that!!!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Another Week in Vegas...will it be His Last...

The weather is still hot as he is reporting, but his spirits are still awesome. We received a letter from President and Sister Neider that they are challenging them to read the Book of Mormon with the soaring temperatures of as high as 117 degrees, they are pursuing a 'Refiner's Fire' in their personal study. So they invited the families to join in. We have also been asked to read the Book of Mormon as a stake due to the youth going on Quest. And so because we have been doing this anyway and are trying to get through it we decided to do this along with the mission in Vegas for the time being as he awaits his Visa. President Neider promises this to us if we do:

I promise you, in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, That if you will continue to study the Book of Mormon and the scriptures up to an hour a day, such spiritual power will come into your life that you will feel the veil open to you; you will have the blessing of being ministered to by angels, and feel inspiration of the Spirit.

You will have the power to influence others without exerting control or taking their free agency. You will also feel the Savior draw near to you in fulfilment of the blessing that have been promised in the Book of Mormon. And if you are prayerful about a problem that requires divine assistance, your prayers will be answered. President Michael A. Neider

Don't you just love that? Who couldn't benefit from that promise. We are going to take that challenge, and we are also going to offer that to our tribe on Quest as we are going to be Tribal Leaders at Quest.

Sister Neider also wrote a little personal message on the back that said: we are grateful to have Elder Clayton with us! He is an outstanding young man and can have a nice opportunity here as he waits for his Visa. Thanks! We love him!

We also got a package from him this week full of fun things: a random license plate he found on the street, key chains, and a handwritten letter to each of us. The one to me was so tender and sweet. Most of all just thanking me for having a clean home and apologizing for not being as clean as he could have been and that I would be so proud of him. Funny, how Bridger sent me a similar one when he was out in the mission field, too. I, try to tell them that when they are here, but they just don't seem to get, it. But, oh those are great letters to get. Love him so much. And, it meant so much to me. Even if it took for him to be out on his own to understand what I tried to teach him before he left, oh well.

This week he was also able to go to lunch with my friend from the Church Offices as well as a message appeared on Facebook from a friend in Michigan who's in-laws live in Vegas and her husband was there visiting and Stetson was in his parents living room. He called his wife who I went to high school with and she could hear him laughing and practicing his Spanish. She said he is a good Elder and hard worker. They love him there. So, this last week, with Sister Neider, my friend Trina and the in-laws of my friend from high school I have had such good reports of his hard work and how much they all love him down in Vegas. They may have a hard time letting him go from their city. I can see their is a reason he has had a little lay-over in their city as he has practiced his Spanish and I have gotten used to his being away. I have a friend that said, I am lucky to have such "spies" I have to agree. Enjoy this week's letter...

Hello Family! This week was kind of up and down, but it was all good. I went on exchanges twice this week, once with our zone leader and the other time with district leader. Those days were pretty fun. We went to In-N-Out and that was way good! I am hoping I get the visa this week, I just have a feeling it will be this week. I hit my one month mark on Saturday so my Comp and I baked a cake! Time really does fly! Vegas is super hot. Like so hot I can't even fall asleep at night. Our apartment is on top and our air conditioning barely works! So I take cold showers at night and then I can fall asleep haha. There is an Elder here in Vegas who is from Monterrey, and his dad is a bishop there! So I can't wait wait to get there. On Thursday I was on bike for the exchange! It was way hot and you get really sweaty, we biked to dinner and had El Pollo Loco! Always a good site to see haha. Other than that, the members are good to us and I am doing well! Love all of you and Happy Birthday to Caleb today! 15 years old!
Elder Clayton

When Wayne and I got married we went to Vegas and found this same street and took a similar picture. I am sure that Stetson saw this picture, but never really gave it much thought. Fun that he took one and sent it home. We were sure surprised and excited to think he had done the same almost 24 years later. Who would have thought a boy of ours would have served a mission at that same spot where a picture had been take so many years prior?
This Elder is from Monterrey and his dad serves as a bishop there.  I think Elder Clayton is hoping to meet his father there when he gets there...
This young man in the middle is Nicholas. He is Stetson's brother from Trek. Nicholas holds a special place in Stetson's heart and Nicholas' mom found Wayne at Ross in Farmington on the Fourth of July and came to say hello. We were so excited to see him and take pictures to send to Elder Clayton. Stetson took pictures with him of home and he has a few pics of he and Nicholas. He loves him! This was Bridger's first meeting of Nicholas, but he had heard great things about him, and he was not disappointed. We all love Nicholas! He is just another brother to add to the Clayton boys.
This is my good friend, Trina and her husband Lonny who I worked many years with at the Church Office Building as an Operator. We worked many grave shifts together and she has been my angel in Vegas as she has feed, hugged and watched out for him there. She never met him in person, but heard many, many stories about him as we worked together many years together. I love this fine sister, and I can not thank her enough for being there for him. I know he has had a 2nd mom taking good care of him while he waits for his Visa with the Fonua Family.
Bridger says that this is one lucky elder having Elder Clayton as his companion with all the friends he seems to make or come in contact with, I can't help but agree with him. We love Elder Clayton and appreciate all who have come into his path that have helped him as he awaits his Visa to go to Monterrey. Thank you so much Nevada Las Vegas Mission. He is loving it there, too. And we love you for taking care of him.