Monday, July 31, 2017

Bone Marrow & Oysters

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2017 13:41:22 -0500
From: Brett Hogg

Hows it going fam!

A relatively slow week, we had MLC (mission leadership council), so we spent most of the day there or driving to and from Frisco (where the new mission home is). Then we had exchanges with the Zone Leaders, one of which I replaced here in this area, so he was able to show us where everyone he taught in the past, that was worth going back to visit, was at and where they worked the most, so that was nice. Spanish work here in the area has been really slow, most Hispanics we find also understand english and would rather go to the english ward because its at a better time, or just don't want to come to church at all. lol

President Dalton came with us to a couple lessons! I guess he's going to start going out with missionaries at least once a week. He brought his son (14 I believe?), and his daughter (17?) went out with the Hermanas (Sister missionaries) here in our district. It was kind of weird to be honest. I'm not used to people coming with us to lessons and kind of taking the lead, usually we (and usually me, I'm really working on not taking over lessons, and letting my companion talk more lol) do most of the talking and the member jumps in every once and a while or shares part of the lesson or whatever, but President took the lead, which isn't bad! I'm not complaining! Just not very used to it and it kind of threw my groove off lol. It was still really cool to have him there though, I'm looking forward to teaching with him more in the future.

Yesterday we ate dinner with this really cool hispanic family in the branch, and she fed us this really good soup, that had a big bones in it. She told us the best part, and what most hispanics do, is take out the bone marrow, and put it on a tortilla and a little salt, so that's what I did! My first time eating bone marrow I think, wasn't bad, it was just a tiny bit, and pretty much just tasted like beef. Also this week I tried oysters for the first time! Our Italian branch mission leader took us out to get sea food, and he ordered some. Kind of like when dad tried them for the first time, I figured I wouldn't buy them myself, so I better try them now. The oysters themselves don't really taste like anything, just the weird texture. They had pico de gallo and avocado on them so they pretty much just tasted like that, with a gooey part underneath lol

Anyways not much else happening this week, 
Love yall,
Elder Hogg

Random street art photos, one of rochester, And a stop sign on the train tracks lol

Monday, July 24, 2017

I had to attend Addiction Recovery

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: I had to attend Addiction Recovery
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2017 13:47:56 -0500
From: Brett Hogg Hola!

It's been another week in the field!

We only get so many miles a month and we've pretty much used all of them. So on Saturday we walked! We walked to the church, and then visited some people around the church, then we got a ride to visit a couple more people, then a ride to dinner, then after dinner they dropped us off in an area, then we walked home from there, talking to people and stopping by people on the way. We have bikes but the key to our lock wasn't working, and we didn't feel great about not locking our bikes in Oak Cliff lol. I don't remember the exact route we took but I included a map. It was in the high 90°s, 100° maybe. My shirt was thoroughly soaked.

Yesterday/Sunday, we got a ride to church, and our Italian/Mafioso branch mission leader picked us up after the english ward, and its associated meetings (We're usually in church from 8am till about 5pm, they don't overlap the meetings because of parking and class rooms I guess). He said he could pick us up after church and feed us dinner, but we had to go to the Addiction Recovery meeting with him, since hes called to be the group facilitator for the stake. The meeting was super cool, The Spirit is super strong in there. Definitely a highlight of the week.

We also had our first interviews with Pres. Dalton, that was pretty neat.

Other than that, we met and talked to some cool people but otherwise, not a whole lot of new progressing people.

Anyway love yall!
Elder Hogg

We left a card at the house with that sign lol

Monday, July 17, 2017

A slow week in The Cliff

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: A slow week in The Cliff
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2017 13:49:25 -0500
From: Brett Hogg 

Hey Fam! 

My new companion is Elder Gibson, he's from Henderson, Nevada (Las Vegas), He came out in December. Our district also got a new Hermana, she's Peruvian! She can out from Utah though, either way, we traded one authentic Hispanic (Elder Flores) for another lol.

Work wise it's been really slow here lately. The guy I told you about, how he just walked into the Grand Prairie building wanting to be baptized, his date had be pushed back, but he's still going to be baptized. There's another guy from Arkansas who we started teaching a couple weeks ago. When we heard his accent Elder Flores and I though he was Australian or something lol. We gave him the Book of Mormon and he wanted to start from the beginning, well we lost contact with him for about a week or so, and he when we got a hold of him again he was in Mosiah! Yesterday he was finally able to make it to church and he loved it! Then he decided to break our hearts and told us he had to go back to Arkansas because of family stuff (he's a pretty young guy), he's hoping he'll be back. So he is going to get baptized for sure, just probably not here.

We talked to a few different people that are really into idea that black people are Israelites/jews. That was interesting, it doesn't really stir me one way or the other but some people get really into it. lol. Here in Oak Cliff we regularly get asked why Jesus is white in paintings lol (i'm not sure He is btw, he's pretty Olive-toned/tan in most of them), but usually we tell them we don't know what color he is and if he is black, it wouldn't matter to me, it doesn't change what he did for us. You meet a lot of characters here in this area, that's for sure!

We also had dinner with our Spanish Branch mission leader. We have dinner with him every Wednesday, then we have coordination meeting. But this week he took us out to this nice Italian restaurant. Hes actually italian from New York, grew up speaking italian at home, and still speaks some kind of Sicilian dialect with his mother who lives with them. His grandfather was the Governor (which i guess means he's basically the Godfather of the area) of his town in Sicily, and fell in love with the help, which was looked down upon by the family, but they had kids so the kids where put in a orphanage/monastery, so his dad grew up with Franciscan monks until he left (can't quite remember why), but then he started apprenticing with a painter and started painting cathedral ceilings, until WW2 where he was drafted under Mussolini and fought under Rammal (hes not a big fan of Rammal btw) and became a spy and spied on Germany for Italy and got captured and push out of a plane and treaded water for 8 hours until a boat picked them up. Eventually he married a lady and moved to New York because he was a big fan of democracy and freedom and stuff, and had our branch mission leader. Bro Gloria has his own crazy story. I'm going to make a movie about it I think.

Anyway next week is already looking like a good week though, work wise, we'll let you know!

Love, Elder Hogg

Another weird Spanish fact: The Spanish word for Beef Steak is Bistec, pronounced the exact same way as Beef Steak just without the F, lol. And that's not even TexMex-Spanish, that's how they say it in Mexico!

Sorry about last week I had like no time! I'm trying to get better at writing you guys!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Transfers: I'm staying in Oak Cliff, and Elder Flores is leaving

Mom's notes in BLUE..

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2017 17:06:13 -0500
From: Brett Hogg <>
To: Susan J. Hogg <>

As of right now I'm staying in Oak Cliff, and Elder Flores is leaving! He's going out to Nacogdoches!! It's really weird, so far the list of people being transferred/not being transferred, is weird. I wonder if it's just because of the transition, or if it's is going to be weird forever lol.

Update: We heard that his new companion will be Elder Gibson. Pictures to come! 

Not a whole lot to report on this week, we didn't do much for the 4th, just a lot of fireworks in the street.

Thank you so much for the package!! I love the ties! I should be good for a good while.

We had a funeral for the outgoing missionaries that was fun we cooked up a ton of that meat, and had funeral potatoes and Mac and Cheese, it was pretty neat.

(We wrapped them in seran wrap)

Note from Mom: I think if this is hilarious... I hope others do? Haha

Also we handled a snake...

Also, show this picture to a Mexican, it's hilarious.

Brett had asked me to send the GPS (we aren't using it) - so I sent him a blow-up globe... (and the GPS). Apparently these pictures of them looking at the "Globe Position System" at Texas... and I don't think it was working...

More street art ... 

Eeeww?  I'm glad I send him treats!

Oh yea also we smashed an Old tv!

And we keep seeing signs with bullet holes but we never get a picture of them. Well we finally got one!

Monday, July 3, 2017

New mission president

Our beloved mission president (and wife) for the Texas Dallas mission has returned home! We love President & Sister Taylor so much - they had a huge impact on Brett and our family as he went through the cancer diagnosis, treatment and returning to the mission. 

A mission president serves for 3 years over a mission area.  The new mission president is President (and Sister) Dalton.  It's quite a transition time for the missionaries!  A Mission President's family moves to their mission area for the 3 years and are over the missionaries for the selected area.  It's quite an undertaking!  They do receive training for a few weeks prior to their move.  Here is the announcement about Brett's new mission president.

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Date:Mon, 3 Jul 2017 18:39:40 -0500
From:Brett Hogg 

Sorry this letter is so late! President Dalton called a meeting today so we could meet him, it was neat. We met most of his family, he has a daughter and son (9 and 7, I think?) That are here now, and two more (15 and 17, I think?) that flying out here soon (they're at EFY/camp/trek). They seem like a really cool family. They're a little stiff right now, but I'm sure they'll soften up soon enough.

Other than that not much else this week, we do have 2 cool new investigators. They're a couple and the guy was in Jail for a short time and while in there he promised God he would change and get baptised, so he just googled churches and found ours because it was open at a convenient time and showed up at the Grand Prairie building (he lives here and she lives in Arlington, so it was half way for them), and they talked to the missionaries, who referred them to us and they came to church last Sunday, and have a baptismal date! They're really awesome.

Well that's about it really, everything else is just everyday missionary work really.

Elder Hogg