Friday, April 23, 2010

Last 2 days in Mexico

Sunday we went to church in Tanner's last area of Chicoloapan. We met lots more wonderful members and converts. We also met up with these awesome missionaries.

Elder Gutierrez, Elder Duce, Tanner, Elder Given, Elder Hilari
It was so fun to see them together - they were so happy.

At the end of the day we drove out to the temple grounds on our way back to the hotel.
It was a big temple and the grounds were beautiful.

We got permission from the Mission President to have the Elders join us downtown on their
P-day for breakfast before we had to leave for the airport (it took them 2 hours from their area on the metro to get to the financial district of Mexico City where our hotel was). We rewarded their efforts by taking them out to brunch where they could load up on some good food - it was fun. We got to hear lots of mission stories, and just get to know them a little better. Tanner said they were the best missionaries out there and after being around them I can see why - it was wonderful to spend our last day in Mexico with them.

Wow - do I like shrimpy next to Elder Given or what?

Wish I could tell you some of the wonderful things these Elders said about their mission service. But once again I would fail to do them justice - just ask me about it. They were incredible.

The trip to Mexico City far surpassed all my expectations. It was more spiritual, more fun, more emotional, and more rewarding than I would have ever expected. To see Tanner back in "missionary mode" was pretty special to witness too. Can't say enough about it all - but the blogging is officially done :)

The Best Day of our Trip

Tanner took us out to visit his families from his mission and it was an unforgettable experience. In fact I hesitate to try and describe any of it because I won't be able to do it justice. Please ask me about it - I'd love to tell you about some of these remarkable people we met. I am hoping some of these pictures will give you a feel for what the day was like for us.

For example - Tanner pulled up here and told us to wait in the car and he would see if anyone was home. I was in the back seat of the car looking for something in my purse when I heard screaming. I looked up to see a little girl fling herself into Tanner's arms and she just kept squealing. A second later her brother comes flying out and jumps into Tanner's arms too. Then they are both just hanging onto him and screaming - and then a mother and older sister come out and they are both in tears - and Tanner - well I don't know if I've ever seen him look so happy. It was an incredible thing to witness.

We were invited in to visit. LaPerla never let go of Tanner.
She is 6 now - Isn't she just darling?
The mother is Concepcion. Tanner baptized Concepcion and her son Omar (age 9) and her daughter Brenda (18) when he served in this area. It was about 9 months ago and he hadn't seen them since then. Tanner didn't tell anyone he was coming so it was quite the surprise. He interpreted for us as we visited. I cried as I shared my testimony and gratitude to her for accepting the gospel and bringing such joy to my son. She cried and said - "thank you for sending us your son. We have the gospel now and it has changed our lives." A lot more things were said and shared and it was very emotional.

So were the goodbyes. . . .
The day continued on like that as each house we visited there were hugs and tears.

Tanner baptized Fatima and her mother Isaura.

Diego is 6 now - his mother said he really missed Elder Hunt.
the whole family . . .
Tanner was so adored by all the kids.

This is Paula and her family. She was baptized along with her daughters.

They really wanted a picture with everyone in it so we asked a little boy in the neighborhood to take this picture. We were cracking up because it looked like he wasn't even pointing the camera at us - it was his 1st time using a camera that was for sure.
This is at the apartment of Betty - her son had just returned from serving his mission in Texas. Her sister's family came up to visit as well (along with their 96 year old grandma). We had a great time visiting - they were wonderful to Tanner while he served in their area of Las Aguilas. (ask me about what Betty did for my son ) - that made me cry too. They were awesome!

This is Bero and her daughter Marlen. It was such an emotional thing for me to have the opportunity to thank her (and many others) for being a "Mom" to my son while he was in Mexico. It was obvious how much they really loved their "Elder Hunt". And we loved them.

Little miracles all day long - like the fact that Tanner wanted to surprise everyone - and each time we went to a home - they were all there. We didn't miss anyone.

Like I said - words can't begin to express all that we experienced that day as we visited these wonderful families and converts from Tanner's mission. It was definitely the high point of the whole trip - and we all agreed that it was the best day of the whole trip. Simply incredible.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The "Touristy" part of our trip -

I know I am giving you far more photos and information than you probably want - but I had trouble eliminating al the interesting stuff we saw - so I decided to post the touristy 1/2 of the trip that I have blogged about so far. The las couple days will follow a little later.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Mexico Day 1

We started off our adventure by getting up at 3 am to leave for the San Francisco airport by 3:30. Ugh! We flew to Phoenix and then on to Mexico City. After we picked up our rental car the excitement began as we drove in some seriously crazy traffic thru some "interesting" neighborhoods.

The sights after landing in Mexico City -

Did you see that?

Yup - that IS a car upside down in the street. Pretty crazy!

After we got settled into our hotel a cab driver took us near by to what was the "Beverly Hills" of Mexico City where we ate the BEST taco's ever!

They 1st bring you grilled onions - in this delicious sauce. They were amazing.

This pork is roasted on a big spit and they carve off the meat for the tacos.

Then they add sliced pineapple that was also grilled. They were awesome!
They're called tacos al pastor - aren't they pretty?

Tanner put a lot of them away!

Then we strolled thru the neighborhood - very pretty.

Mexico Day 2

The first thing we realized when we left our hotel to explore the sights of downtown Mexico Wednesday morning - is that crossing the many lanes of traffic is like playing "Frogger". People dash across a few lanes - then stop in the middle of the street - with cars whizzing by them at 40 mph - until they see an opening to dash across a little farther without getting run over - trust me - this picture I tried to get just doesn't do the experience justice.

"Frogger" - crossing the streets in Mexico

Right down from our hotel is this Angel statue - it is the "Angel of Independence" and it is like their Statue of Liberty -
she's very beautiful

Downtown Mexico is an interesting mix of old and new -

Next we went to the "Towre Latino Americano". It is the tallest building in Latin America.

It took quite some time to convince John to go up in the elevators because he was getting claustrophobic just watching the people squish into them. Tanner used his excellent spanish to convince someone to let us go up in the elevator with just the 4 of us. John was pretty ticked when he found out once we got up that far we had to get into an even smaller elevator to get to the very top lookout here:

Mexico City just stretches on as far as the eye can see - it is pretty amazing. It is a city of 30 million people - the only city with a bigger population is Tokyo.

I was pretty impressed Tanner talked his Dad up here. Tanner didn't want any of us to miss a thing in Mexico - he was a great tour guide.

We went thru an enormous cathedral - (which I didn't get a good picture of) and then we went through a torture museum and walked along more of the streets of Mexico City before the day was over.

After we got cleaned up a bit we went to the Polanco district - a very upscale area with beautiful houses.

Then we took a break from spicy Mexican food and ate at a French restaurant. The desserts were amazing . . .

This photo has special meaning to us - it was pretty funny - but you had to be there.

"This is AWESOME"

Mexico Day 3

Thursday -


This is Tanner's favorite taco spot so he took us here for lunch to have this:

this -

and this -

and this -

Tanner shows us how it is done.
Landon loved it too.

Unfortunately for me after a visit with a Dr. that morning I was told to back off on the spicy Mexican food and while they ate the best tacos ever I only had this for lunch -

But thanks to meds from the Dr. I was feeling up to walking around the downtown and we visited a market.

There were some pretty things I would have liked to buy -

but mostly the markets were full of random stuff that I can do without -

but this T-shirt did make me laugh -

When we came back to the hotel as I walked into our room my neck had a major spasm and I had a pinched nerve - and it hurt like crazy. I knew it was bad - however finding a chiropractor in Mexico City didn't seem to promising. Anyway - who needs a Dr. AND a Chiropractor all in the same day???? And when you're on vacation!

My men were off to my rescue - Tanner went to get muscle relaxants somewhere, got ice and John kept ice-packing my neck, and Landon and the guys carried my bags for me the rest of the trip. They were extremely sweet - when I felt like I was ruining the trip. How I love them :)