Thursday, December 29, 2011


For those of you who would like to send Elder Bowes letters or packages, here is his new address.

Elder Taylor Bowes
3250 Strawberry Rd.
Anchorage, AK 99502

He's doing very well and we're excited that we had the opportunity to Skype with him on Christmas.  Keep him in your prayers and keep the letters going! =)

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas in Bethel!

This week was a bit different. Has seemed long and short at the same time...Monday was pretty hectic. We woke up at 6 and went out to a dog sledding place. The guy that served his mission in North Carolina works there. We helped him gut and strip beavers of there meat. The dogs apparently love it! I had the smell of beaver flesh on my hands for the next 2 days or so. It wasn't the most pleasant of smells... After we helped him with that we got to go on a dog sled ride! It was so awesome! I got to ride in the sled and I took some pictures, but I left my camera cord in Whitehorse.... It's on the way so hopefully I can send yall some pictures soon! I don't know if you will want the pictures of some beavers lol. Elder Johnson and I had to leave and go finish packing the last few things we had left so Elder Norris and Elder Duncan got to help out with a couple of more beavers! I bet they loved it... Not!! haha Elder Johnson and I left for Skagway about 30 minutes late and we barely made our flight out. Thank goodness we did! I didn't want President Beesley mad at us! We got to Juneau and we sat around for about 3 or 4 hours before we had to be back at the airport. On the flight from Juneau to Anchorage I sat beside a guy who was going back to Anchorage for the first time in a couple of months. Curious George here wanted to know so I asked and he decided that he wanted to ride his bicycle from Anchorage to Minnesota and then visit family for a couple of weeks. I thought that was really awesome and then realized he went through Whitehorse on his ride and I think I might have seen him... Who knows. He was a really cool guy! 

Tuesday we went to the mission home and we met our new companions for those of us who were training. I am training a new missionary in Bethel if you didn't already know. His name is Elder Shumway and he is from Provo, UT. Yet another companion from Utah! I think that is about 7 out of 10 companions from there. He is pretty cool I reckon. He didn't have much of a personality at first, but he is starting to come out of his shell! He is gonna be a great missionary and there is lots of work to do here. We went to transfers meeting and it was pretty good. I got to see a lot of missionaries that I haven't seen in forever because I have been in Whitehorse for the last 4 months. A lot of the missionaries I know have finished their missions and I don't know many of the new ones at all. It's weird being bush because you are all alone in The Middle of Nowhere, Alaska. You don't know anything that is going on and you don't get to say goodbye to anyone when they leave. After transfers I took Elder Shumway to get some things he needed before we went to the bush and then we stayed in the mission home that night. 

Wednesday morning we got up and studied and did the usual routine and then it was off to the airport and to Bethel for us. We got here at about 1:30 in the afternoon and were met at the airport (which is literally like a hole in the wall) by President Tews and Brother Perry, who reminds me a lot of Grandpa Beene. He served in the military for 37 and a half years. He was a helicopter pilot in Vietnam and he has a very similar sense of humor to Grandpas. He is a pretty funny man and we had lunch with him today. He told us today that he "is fulfilling every husbands dream today." We asked why and he said that he is "Taking his wife to jail today!" lol They are getting divorced unfortunately and she is turning herself in, but apparently it is for the best and he is happy with it I guess. All day Wednesday though we cleaned out the room where we stay and made it look a ton better, but we still have a little to do. Oh and by the way, we live in the church. They have a room built especially for us and our living room is a full court gym!!! I can play basketball almost everyday when I wake up! I am pretty stoked about that! 

Thursday we tried to learn the town and get around which didn't take us too long. Bethel is shaped like a donut or square and it takes about 5 minutes to get anywhere. It's pretty tiny, but it's ok. The people here are pretty nice. Thursday nights we play basketball with the neighborhood kids around the church and we teach them a little bit before we start playing. It gives them a place to stay to play basketball and to stay out of trouble for a couple of hours. They are pretty dang good too! 

Friday we did a whole lot of looking through the area book and trying to figure out who to see and when to see them and all that jazz. It is different to be coming into an area where you are both new to. Luckily the members are great and have helped us out a ton!

Saturday we had 6 lessons set up and 5 of em canceled. Nothin too new for me, but it can be a little frustrating. We've got plenty of time though! We met with a couple of people here and there. Some members bought us christmas presents! I was very surprised and grateful for their generosity. 

Sunday! Christmas was awesome! I got to skype home and talk to my family and it was great to see them! Conner is gettin' big!!! He talks a lot now too. After that we had church and we got to meet most of the members. They were all very nice! The Ashcroft's spoke about Christmas and about gifts that we receive. They both talked about the Savior's birth and why we celebrate Christmas. The spirit was definitely in the building and could definitely be felt. We got invited to go over to the Charlton's house for Christmas Supper. They had a bunch of people over and the food was amazing! I feel sooo fat right now. It was an absolute blast over there. We played charades (is that how you spell it?) and played cheat which is bs for us. There were lots of laughs and fun times. They definitely made us feel very welcome! The Helgesens got us each a buck knife! haha and some other stuff. That was a pretty cool gift to get. They said we needed a "Welcome to Bethel gift". The people here treat us well and I am looking forward to being here for the next 3 months at least! I hope yall all had a very Merry Christmas! I love yall and hope yall have a great New Years!!! 


-Elder Taylor Bowes

P.S. Pictures coming soon!!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Won't be long Whitehorse....

Hey yall! How's life?

Mine is great! ha! Man my time here in Whitehorse has passed by far too quickly! The 5 weeks since this last transfer started have felt like 2 weeks. Time flies when you're having fun and doin' what you're supposed to! Those of you who have served missions know what I'm talkin' about. This past Monday we played basketball since Elder Johnson's ankle was healed up. We have gotten a few people to consistently play with us. It's a lot of fun! 

Tuesday we had 2 suppers! We went to the Thompson's for supper. I will miss the suppers at their home. She is a really awesome cook! It was Sahil's birthday so we went to Boston Pizza and ate there and had a fun time and then went to their house and had cake and ice cream. We then played a game or 2 with him and then we had to go home. 

Wednesday we were able to go teach Brenda again with Pres. Little. It was an awesome lesson! Sometimes people teach me without knowing it. Brenda is an awesome woman. She lost her husband and son on separate occasions and she isn't mad about anything. She is 69 and does more than most people ever do in a day. We went around and saw some more people and we had supper at the McDonald's and said goodbye to Bro. McDonald. He left for Saskatchewan on Thursday morning and won't be back til January some time. I will miss him. He is a very humble man with a great heart for others. Then we went to David and Xenia's for the rest of the night visiting since they were leaving on Friday morning for California and vacation! I know they are enjoying themselves right now! They are awesome and I will definitely miss them a lot. 

Thursday we had to go and be at the church for a few hours for the nativity display there. We helped set up for it everyday earlier in the week. It was a long process. 

Friday we went on a Bus trip with the people at Copper Ridge Place and watched the Nutcracker with them. I have never seen it before and thought it was alright. Friday night we had a potluck at the church and lots of people came and looked at the nativity display and watched videos and ate. It was pretty cool. 

Saturday we did service at the MacBride Museum and did a whole lot of work. Saturday night we went and helped take everything down from the nativity. We went to the Peterson's for a missionary meeting. 

Sunday we had church! surprise! Haha it was really good! We had lunch at the Guevera's and then supper at the Peterson's. 

Have a great week!

That's about all that happened this week. Hope you enjoy the pics! 

-Elder Taylor Bowes

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

above freezing. what the heck. so disappointed.

Hey yall!

This week has been pretty weird. Not because of anything that happened, but because of the weather. Like 2 weeks ago it was -40 now its 4 today. Which is like 40 in the US maybe a lil chillier. Scratch all that. I just walked outside and the temperature dropped to -2 and it has snowed 3 inches.... Dangit! I would rather have snow at this point instead of rain though. This "warmup" is very shortlived. Supposed to drop back down to the teens and single digits. Sorry if switchin back and forth between celcius and fahrenheit is confusin yall. 

Last P-day was a pretty lazy day. Elder Johnson rolled his ankle pretty badly so he was a no go for basketball and we were all just tired and didn't wanna do anything. Elder Duncan and I went and taught Laxmi and her sons Anshil and Sahil. We read from the Book of Mormon and then we played some games with the 2 boys. They are so funny. Sahil wears like 4 shirts all the time. He is so skinny. They were both baptized in May or June. 

Tuesday, Elder Johnson and I were on exchanges together in my area and we decided to go to Carcross. It's a little town with about 500 in the summer? In the winter there is about 200 to 300 people. They are mostly first nations. Thats what they use to refer to the natives in Canada. We also decided to go to Tagish and see what was there. Not too much. Probably 150 people. They are very spread out. We talked to a lady there for a little bit. Then we headed back to Whitehorse for supper at the Thompson's. Sister Thompson is a great cook and treats us so well. We don't have to knock or anything. It's almost like we live there, but without living there. We were gonna go and teach David and Xenia, but they were very sick and everyone has been sick lately. It's no fun. We went and saw Bro. Andre and we sang with him and played guitar for about an hour. We heard that the Northern Lights were gonna be out so we got permission from Pres. Beesley to stay out late and try to see them. Of course they didn't show, at least while we were there. 

Wednesday we woke up early and got packed and everything to go to Juneau. We drove down to Skagway. I couldn't hardly see 10 ft in front of me on one part of the trip. Between the Canada and US customs was the worst. They have the road markers about 15 yards apart and I couldn't see from one to the other. Lots of guessing and keeping the wheel straight and having to catch glimpses of things as the gusts of wind/snow would stop for a split second. The rest of the trip to Skagway was great! The wind was so strong in Skagway that we could spit 50 yds off a bridge they have going over a river. We had about an hour to kill before our plane came so we had some fun and took some pictures. Skagway is a nice little town. Pretty dead in the winter though. The plane flight to Juneau was rough at first and then it calmed down. We did the Booyah Grill again and we chose Elder Duncan to be our districts representative. He ate the El Papi (huge burrito that looks like a baby is wrapped inside). He had an hour to eat it and he almost did it too. He was so close. There were 4 people that tried it and none of them did it. 

Thursday we had Zone Conference. It was really good. It was centered around the Christmas season and around the Savior's birth. We also went caroling at a mall and then at Walmart. Sister Beesley drove us around the parking lot and had us sing lol. It was weird but funny. 

Friday was the backup date to Zone Conference and so we basically sat around all day Friday and watched Fires of Faith. Someone made us a mean bean soup. It was soooooo good. I ate so much of it that I didn't have supper. We went caroling again at the mall and people liked it a lot. 

Saturday morning we woke up at 530 in the morning and went to the airport by 700. Our flight left at 8 and so we were gonna be back in Whitehorse fairly early. I got to ride co-pilot! It was pretty cool! We had to stop in Haines and let some people off and then we took off again and turned towards Skagway and the clouds were low and you couldn't see a thing so the pilot took us back to Juneau. We sat there for another 5 or 6 hours wondering if we were even gonna make it back to Whitehorse that day. Finally we got to go to Skagway and it was awesome. We got to Haines again and it looked like we weren't gonna be able to go and so all of us Elders said a prayer ourselves and then all of a sudden everything calmed down and cleared up and we were able to land in Skagway and make it back. It was pretty awesome to see the Lord answer our prayers so suddenly. The drive back was pretty clear and there was no problem with visibility. I was happy to be able to get back in Whitehorse and get to work. I was tired of sittin around doin nothing. 

Sunday the Christmas devotional was great. Lots of things that I am excited for now. Especially the videos that are coming out! Anyways I love yall and hope yall are doin well wherever you are! 


-Elder Taylor Bowes

P.S. I attached some pictures of Tagish and Carcross as well as, Juneau. Enjoy!