406 Woman Lifestyle VOL. 16 No. 5

Page 66


Cover Girl...

kRisti oveRgaaRd

Kristi is the founder of Oniya Ranch, a secluded Montana retreat focused on wellness and healing located near the border of Wyoming between Livingston and Billings. Read about Kristi and the amazing team at the ranch in our Business & Health feature story.

16. In the K I tchen w I th Lane 21. a s K the Butcher 24. wI ne Pa I r I ng Local Author 28. Les LI e Budew I tz 30. B oo K rev I ew 24... 8 406 w oman.com woman 4 06
photo by Mackenzie RohRbaugh
Home & design 26. Montana g arden c ha LL enges 34. s hedd I ng the Layers of wI nter Love Story 38. MaryBeth & Jared 34...

Publisher's Note

The mountains still wear a blanket of snow, but there's a whisper in the wind, a subtle shift in the air, that tells me spring is on its way. It's a feeling that resonates deep within the bones of a Montana woman, a stirring of anticipation for warmer days and longer evenings.

Just like the changing seasons, this new issue of 406 Woman is bursting with fresh ideas and features, ready to inspire and invigorate you.

We at 406 Woman Magazine are incredibly grateful for your readership, and we hope this issue leaves you feeling empowered, inspired, and ready to embrace the season of renewal.

406 w oman.com 13



publisher cindy gerrity cindy@montanasky.net

business manager

daley Mcdaniel daley@montanasky.net

managing editor

Kristen hamilton montanakristen@gmail.com

creative & social media director

amanda wilson afwphotography@me.com


sara Joy Pinnell sara@mrsandmrpublishing.com


daley Mcdaniel Photography

amanda wilson Photography

ace Photography

view current and past issues of 406 woman at

www.406 w oman.com

Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year

704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com

Copyright©2024 Skirts Publishing

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406 Woman is distributed in Bigfork, Columbia Falls, Kalispell, Missoula, Whitefish and every point in between. Check out www.406woman.com for our full distribution list.

Have a great story idea or know someone that we should feature? Email us with your comments & suggestions.

Interested in increasing your business and partnering with 406 Woman? Check out www.406woman.com.

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Go f l y a kite. IN tHe KItcHeN wItH LANe

By all accounts I am Clark Griswold’s brother from another mother. I am MISTER holiday. I am also a big fan of birthdays, anniversaries and just about anything that has a recurrence on a calendar. I look forward to days that have cemented themselves as standouts during the 365 days that make up a year. I plan decorations, meals, trips and all of the myriad of details to make sure that the occasion is given its due diligence—and to be fair, I go overboard on Christmas— thanks Clark. With my paradigms fully engaged, someone recently mentioned something so foreign to me. “It’s not the occasion for me, it’s experiences that mean so much more.” Wait. What? Sacrilege. You are telling me that the best moments in life AREN’T constrained to days marked on a calendar? Can it just be a normal, run of the mill Tuesday that will afford you some mythical, magical experience that will forever bring a smile to your face? Yes. And in the case of what you see in these pages, it was just a normal Friday--and two of my granddaughters were there.

Hunter Dominick and I have been friends for over 20 years. Ever since I commented on a bright green chicken (I think it was chicken) in a house she had done the interior design on, we have always just clicked. And yet, even in all those years, be it our children, demanding customers or frenetic schedules, we were never able to connect and have me cook for her and her family. When 406 asked me to do the spring issue with “Easter brunch” as the core theme I reached out to Hunter to see if we could not only check the “cook for her and her family” box, but also to provide a venue for this issue of the magazine. She graciously agreed and provided some dates that would work. Date selected we were all set. I was finally going to get to cook for my longtime friend. Until the Army stepped in and threw me a curveball.

Kutona and Harmony’s father Sgt. Alex P. Burrows deployed on February 8th, four days before his 30th birthday. The girls were about to embark on nine months of zoom calls and not being able to snuggle their doting father. They were going to need as many distractions as possible, and after a couple calls and a few text messages—my granddaughters were with me on a run of the mill Friday, in the beautiful home of a lady I am honored to call my friend—cooking for her and her family. And it was the addition of these smiling little girls that would be the key ingredients to the evening becoming more than just a box checked and a photo op.

This is not the first time that Kutona and I have cooked together. She is often at my side at family functions (read: special dates on a calendar) and has been cooking on her own for some time. Some of you may be shocked to see her wielding my chef’s knife, but rest assured, this young lady knows her way around the kitchen. Her little sister Harmony has slowly caught the cooking bug, but mostly for the novelty and being able to help her big sister. The next three hours were about to become a lesson for their grandfather and a fond memory for all those in attendance.

“So, what are we doing Papa?” Spoken like all 11 going on 18-year-old girl.

“We are going to cook.” I replied with a smirk.

“I know THAT! But what are we going to cook?”

“Can I help” Harmony asked.

A smile crept across my face at that point that would remain there for the rest of the evening. As we emptied out bags and containers, I explained the menu and why I chose what I did.

To be honest, Easter when I was a kid was not about food. (I know! Right?) I hadn’t even heard the term “Brunch” until sometime in my college days (Go Cats!). So when the idea was hatched (pun intended) to do Easter Brunch ideas, I was at a loss. Thanksgiving? Yep, I got you! Christmas Dinner? I am your huckleberry!

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Papa Lane with his granddaughters Photos by ACE Photography & Design

Heck, 4th of July cookout? That’s my jam. But Easter Brunch? Clueless. Everything you see on these pages (with the exception of neeps—more on that in a bit) were things that I researched. With Sonny at the Chopp Shoppe’s help I cooked lamb for the very first time. By all accounts, the girls and I pulled it off. Dutch Baby? Yep, another first. To be fair, how can you go wrong with an overly large pancake with cheese and sausage? Then there was the one dish I vacillated on making. The intent of the article was Easter. So to make Cucina Povera (Eggs in Purgatory) seemed...well...you know. But thankfully, with the amount of people that joined us...it was a hit as much as a necessity. Ask Hunter’s daughter Ashby. We got a teenage girl to go back FOUR times for more. The ultimate compliment.

The Lamb was a simple, yet elegant approach. My father’s cast iron doing the heavy lifting under the watchful eye of my incredibly talented 11-year-old granddaughter. And when it came to the neeps (creamed turnips) I was reminded to be a bit clearer with instructions. “Add the whole cream slowly until they look like fluffy clouds” ---In my granddaughter's defense, I did not say that. What you see under the lamb chops is the result of adding a WHOLE quart of heavy cream to the turnips—now a sauce, not a side. It became a base on which to serve the lamb ON instead of BESIDE. (Note: I was first introduced to neeps by some dear friends from across the pond, this was their recipe. Some may dispute the term neeps, but I had this exact recipe with Haggis...) The Dutch Baby was Harm’s favorite. Like some science experiment that elicits oohs and ahs, our Dutch Baby lifted past the edges of the cast iron pan like a popover on steroids. Gleefully filling it with all the ingredients listed, Harm proudly presented her “creation.” Her word. Not mine. And lastly a new favorite of mine, the Cucina Provera. At the cost of the green shirt you see me wearing (chili peppers can, and will, explode in hot oil) it was by all accounts the hit of the evening. For those that find the need for a cure from a night of excessive revelry, I am told that this fits that bill quite nicely. (Verified.)

As the evening wrapped, John meticulously did dishes while Cindy and Lexi efficiently and effortless put everything away, I stood finally comprehending what had just transpired. I had an experience that I will never forget, and the time of writing this, I do not remember the date. I will remember a couple teenage girls complaining they ate too much and the appreciative and somewhat surprised smiles of adults who had just enjoyed “brunch” at the hands of a couple little girls on a Friday night.

But most of all, I will remember my granddaughters laughing and smiling, and for a couple hours, not worried about their deployed father.

Thank you, Hunter, for allowing us to invade your home and making my granddaughters feel like they were a part of your family. They, nor I, will ever forget it. Tona already wants to work for you.

Take each experience as a gift. One that will forever make you smile, regardless of the day on the calendar.

For the record, Easter for me as kid? Well, we flew kites, and I loved it. Patience and Temperance.

Fatherly Footnote: I am incredibly blessed by those in my family that have chosen to serve. To Alex, Garrett, Conor and Bobby: You men hold a special place in my heart. To afford us the opportunity to spread love through food is by the grace of your service. And to all of our men and women in uniform-- Godspeed. There is a plate waiting for you when you return.

And a quarter.

Take each experience as a gift. One that will forever make you smile, regardless of the day on the calendar.
406 w oman.com 19
From left to right:  - Sam Savage, Hunter Dominick, Kay Sherman

Pan Seared Lamb Chops


2 lbs lamb rib chops (6-8 chops)

2 oz unsalted butter, cubed

6 cloves garlic, smashed

10 sprigs fresh thyme

kosher salt and pepper


Season the lamb chops generously on both sides with kosher salt and pepper.

Heat a heavy bottomed skillet over high heat (I used cast iron). Add the butter and garlic to the pan.

Once the butter has melted, place the chops and into the pan and scatter with the thyme sprigs.

Sear the chops 2-4 mins per side (depending on the thickness of the chops), turning once. Baste the chops with the butter as they cook. Serve the chops, drizzled with the garlic butter.

The Lamb was a simple, yet elegant approach. My father’s cast iron doing the heavy lifting under the watchful eye of my incredibly talented 11-year-old granddaughter.

Creamed Turnips


pounds turnips (approximately 8 medium turnips) pound Russet potatoes (approximately 2 large) cloves garlic left whole large sprig fresh rosemary or 2 smaller cups chicken broth or 4 cups water and 1 tablespoon broth concentrate (such as Better Than Bouillon) or as needed to cover the turnips and potatoes

Salt and freshly ground black pepper cup heavy cream tablespoons unsalted butter


Peel the turnips and potatoes and cut into approximately 1-inch chunks.

Place in a medium-sized pot with the garlic and rosemary.

Pour just enough chicken broth over the turnips and potatoes to cover.

Bring to a boil. Cook uncovered for 15-20 minutes or until the turnips and potatoes are very tender. Remove the rosemary sprig before the leaves begin to fall off, approximately halfway through cooking.

Drain off the cooking liquid and discard.

Place the pot back on the hot burner so that any excess moisture evaporates away.

Add the cream.

Mash with a potato masher or puree with an immersion blender until smooth.

Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Transfer to a serving bowl and top with butter if desired.

Savory Dutch Baby


4 eggs


½ cups of room temperature milk

3/8 cup plain flour

1/4 tsp salt

6 Tbsp butter

1/4 cup of feta

1/4 cup fresh basil (rough chopped)

1 garlic clove minced


Preheat your oven to 445°F and place your cast iron pan on the middle shelf. Make sure there's enough space above it for your Dutch Baby to rise.

In a stick blender jug add the eggs, flour, milk & salt. Blend until smooth and aerated.

Leave the mixture to stand until the oven comes up to temperature. The closer the mix is to room temp, the better rise you'll get in the finished product.

Combine the feta and the herbs fine and minced garlic in a bowl. Throw in a pinch of salt.

When you are ready, remove the pan from the oven and add the butter. Let it melt down completely. Then pour your batter mix into the pan.

Scatter the cheese and herb mix over the top and return to the oven for 15 minutes. Do not open the oven during this time.

Savory Dutch Babies are the ultimate

"Choose your own adventure." We added cherry tomatoes, spinach, more feta and fresh parmesan and cooked breakfast sausage to the finished Dutch baby and returned to the oven for 3-5 min for the cheese to melt. Again, top with whatever you have left over! It's like a kitchen sink pizza for breakfast!

20 406 w oman.com Genesis Kitchen 270 Nucleus Columbia Falls, MT Mon-Sat 10am - 6pm 406-897-2667 - Info@genesis-kitchen.com Chopp Shoppe No hormones or antibiotics Choice to Wagyu Grade Hours 9am-7pm…all week long 721 Wisconsin Ave in Whitefish FH Fish & Seafood Company Wild caught seafood 3820 MT Hwy 40 W in Columbia Falls www.flatheadfishandseafood.com
Rec I pe Spon S o R ed by

Cucina Provera

heated tip pan and add garlic cloves and peppers to oil to infuse oil. Cook 2-3 minutes. Remove Peppers and Garlic cloves and reserve.

Add the diced onion and cook on medium heat until soft.

Reduce heat to medium and add the tomatoes, crushing them in your hand prior to adding. Rinse can with water and add to pan.

Rip a large bunch of basil leaves and stir in. Cover and cook for 8-10 min.

Using a ladle, place the eggs in the tomato sauce. Cook until the egg whites are done but the yolks are still runny.

Turn heat off, add 3-4 more torn basil leaves and grate parmesan over the top.

Serve in the pan with the toasted bread.

406 w oman.com 21
food} In the K I tchen

Ask the Butcher

food} As K the Butcher 406 w oman.com 23

Nastri with Pesto and Parmesan Ribbons

A delicious meal is only a few minutes away when you rely on our Pantry Pick recipe for Nastri with Pesto and Parmesan Ribbons. Serve it for a weeknight family meal or a romantic dinner for two.

Serves: (4) • Prep: (5 minutes)

• Cook Time: (15 minutes)


• 8 ounces Nastri Organic Pasta

• 1/2 cup pesto, we recommend Ritrovo Selections Ligurian Basil Pesto

• Parmesan ribbons*

• Fresh basil for garnish (optional)


1. Prepare pasta according to package instructions. Reserve 4 tablespoons pasta water before draining.

2. Using the same pot that you prepared the pasta in, add the pesto and 2 tablespoons of the pasta water. Bring to a boil and allow the sauce to reduce for about 2 minutes, add more reserved pasta water if the sauce becomes too thick.

3. Return the pasta to the pot, tossing to ensure that all strands are coated with the pesto sauce.

4. Plate and garnish with Parmesan ribbons and basil leaves if using.

Special Note: To make Parmesan ribbons: with fairly light pressure, run a vegetable peeler down the narrowest side of the Parmesan cheese. The goal is create a thin ribbon of cheese. Continue until you have 15 - 20 ribbons to garnish your pasta.

Wine Pairing For Springtime In The Rockies

Even though we live in Montana and it is likely to snow as well as be a bluebird day, the folks at Bigfork Liquor Barn are excited to share some inviting Spring wine pairings with you this issue. Who says a week or so of lovely spring weather couldn’t be briefly manifested before Mother Nature says “hold my wine glass” and brings on another late season snowstorm? Let’s begin!

First on the menu is the Elizabeth Rose 2020 Chockablock Red Wine Blend produced by Ghost Block Winery. A delightful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Malbec from two family owned and certified organic vineyards, Block House and Mill Race Vineyards in Napa Valley. This is the 6th year of this vintage blend, which is aged for 12 months in neutral oak barrels. It offers a complement of aromas - rose, violet, strawberry, red cherry, black plum, and hints of white pepper, vanilla, chocolate, and coffee. On the palate, there is a beautiful balance, medium body texture, and firm, fine-grained tannins, resulting in an outstanding long finish of bright acidity.

The staff at the Liquor Barn suggest pairing the 2020 Chockablock Red Wine Blend with a main course of grilled ribeye steak on a bed of garlic mashed potatoes, and sauteed spinach. Alternately, it works equally well with a fig & brie crostini appetizer or an artisanal dessert platter of aged cheddar, smoked gouda, blue cheese, crackers, and fruit. Of course, one can never go wrong with a dessert pairing of dark chocolate truffles.

Next in the list of featured wines is the Principe Pallavicini Frascati, a wine blend with a history of 1,000 years in the Lazio region of Italy. The Pallavicini family honors the tradition, crafting a hand harvested blend from the Frascati DOC vineyard south of Rome and this delightful wine is a perfect example of the wines from this

region. This Frascati varietal is composed of Malvasia, Trebbiano, and Greco giving this blend its rustic tones and full color, harmonious notes and rich aroma to the final wine. The bouquet on the nose is delicate with moderate fruit blossom, white flowers, and a hint of honey. On the palate, Frascati is dry, fresh, elegant, and easy going with a crisp finish.

Great pairings for this blend would be a seafood pasta, a grilled shrimp salad, antipasto, crispy fried cod, or calamari.

The Bigfork Liquor Barn’s ‘goto’ favorite dry Riesling wine is the Villa Wolf Riesling Dry 2021 from the Rhine Valley in Pfalz, Germany. Its fruity aromatics and stony texture make a welcome addition to any Spring menu. The Villa Wolf winery was

26 406 w oman.com

Airfield Estates Cabernet Sauvignon is

skillfully made to balance bright fruity flavors with spice and savory notes.

founded in 1756 and their vineyards have a respected reputation for sustainable farming. The 2021 vintage exudes a wonderful balance of ripe fruit aromas, excellent acidity, and elegant minerality.

This refreshing and delicious Riesling pairs well with cheeses, savory vegetarian dishes, and any menu involving fish, chicken, or pork.

Lastly, the folks at the Liquor Barn recommend a delightful world class Cabernet Sauvignon from one of their favorite Washington producers, Airfield Estates, a fourth generation vineyard located in the heart of Yakima Valley. Bountiful with fruit aromas, lush tannins, and a nice integration of aging in French oak barrels, their 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon, offers a full-bodied palate, with hints of black cherry, Cassis, and black currant, secondary flavors of salted toffee, cocoa powder, and sweet pipe tobacco. It has an exceptionally balanced finish.

This Cabernet, which is skillfully made to balance bright fruity flavors with spice and savory notes pairs well with prime rib, steak, filet mignon, lamb, or pepper crusted ahi tuna dishes.

Spring officially begins March 19th, so it is not too soon to start preparing. If this list tickles your palate, be sure to visit the Bigfork Liquor Barn to pick up any of these featured wines at discounted prices for a limited time. The friendly & helpful staff are always happy to help you find the perfect pairings for any of your Spring celebrations.

406 w oman.com 27 food} W I ne

Montana Garden Challenges Uniquely 406

The change of seasons is what so many of us 406 gardeners cherish as the long dark hours of winter segue to the promise of spring. Each day brings more light and with it the assurance that soon we will be venturing forth outside, working the soil, and preparing and watching as the earth warms in a synchronous rhythm with our hearts.

Once again, we can start witnessing the efforts of our previous labors and begin the growing of new ideas and adventures in our garden and landscape pursuits. It does not matter whether it is previously planted perennials, bulbs, or the might of trees and shrubs planted hitherto, for we align ourselves with the ever-lengthening days with an enthusiasm of the joy of a new and prosperous gardening season combining an appreciation of our past work, with the optimistic possibilities of the future.

Understanding the unique gardening challenges that exist in the Flathead Valley, Western Montana, and throughout

Montana is a paradigm that I hope to enlighten and bring to focus with the singular goal of making your gardening experiences more successfully rewarding and enjoyable.

What makes the Flathead Valley and Western Montana unique for successfully growing flowers, shrubs, trees, and vegetables can be unpacked into three essential and critical facts: Cool Evening Temperatures, Short Growing Season, and High Alkalinity in our Soils and Water.

This article begins a series of gardening articles pertaining to our unique grow-

28 406 w oman.com home}

temperatures from June through August



degrees in NW Montana. Not all plants are affected negatively by the cool temperatures. These are referred to as Cool Season plants. Pansy, Snapdragon, Peas, Greens, and Cabbage are examples of plants that actually prefer these cooler temperatures.

ing conditions in Montana and its impact on our gardening and outdoor living environments. Acknowledging the certitude of these conditions and the subsequent remedies to these unchanging facts, will transform your gardening expectations into a victorious reality.

Gardening Fact One:


Living in the Montana mountains creates unique growing conditions and one of the most notable are cool evening temperatures. Cold air always goes down and although it is a rather large scale in a mountainous area compared to a room in your home, the phenomenon remains the samecold air from the mountain peaks descends to the valley floor. The impact of cooler air going into the valleys is relative depending on the season but is most significant when there is snow on the mountains. The more snow, the cooler the temperature. Because of this fact, spring and autumn is when we notice the greatest influence of this environmental phenomenon. Cool night temperatures affect plants by slowing down the plants metabolism thus limiting its growth potential. This effect occurs below the soil in root development and above the soil in foliage and flower generation. Nighttime temperatures from June through August average 46.7 degrees in NW Montana. Not all plants are affected negatively by the cool temperatures. These are referred to as Cool Season plants. Pansy, Snapdragon, Peas, Greens, and Cabbage are examples

of plants that actually prefer these cooler temperatures. The greatest impacted plants are called Warm Season plants and include Coleus, Zinnias, Marigolds, Corn, and Beans among others.

Gardening Fact Two:


A direct result of the Cool Evening Temperatures brings about our next unique growing condition - A Short Growing Season. Montana mountain valleys are known for unpredictable late frosts in spring and early frosts in autumn. This environmental effect correlates to a Short Growing Season. The Flathead Valley averages approximately 90 growing days (Frost Free Days) (June 1 –September 1). Unfortunately, this number is not consistent throughout NW Montana. Being in a mountain valley creates microclimates that can cause dramatic environmental changes within a relatively short distance between growing locations resulting in a great variance of growing days even for properties that are relatively close to each other. Areas on or around Flathead Lake or Kalispell proper will have a longer growing season, while Columbia Falls, Kila/Marion, Olney, West Glacier, and Whitefish will have a shorter growing season. Elevation also needs to be taken into account as higher elevations create fewer growing days. The impact of a Short Growing Season has its greatest impacts on vegetable gardening and the growing of flowering annuals/bedding plants. Perennial flowers, berries and fruit tree growing are less affected, but they

are still influenced by the fewer number of growing days.

Critical Fact Three - High Alkalinity in our Soils and Water will be featured in the next column.

Hooper’s Garden Center

2205 MT Highway 35 E in Kalispell 406-752-2770 - www.hoopersgarden.com

Michael Connolly has been gardening, growing, landscaping, professionally designing and educating within horticulture for nearly 40 years, including being a member of the Hooper’s Garden Center family for over 30 years. A graduate from the University of Minnesota Agricultural Campus. He is a proud father of four amazing children and is passionate about educating and helping others in realizing the true beauty of plants in the outdoor and indoor landscape environment.

406 w oman.com 29 home} h ooper’s G A rden

Feeding the Hunger for Spring

False spring. It comes every year, just before the real thing. Maybe today, maybe tomorrow, maybe next week. No matter how much we enjoy winter and its sights and sports, we’re all ready to put the snow shovels away. We’re ready for the first tulip. The first redwinged blackbird. The first warm day when we leave the door open too long and the dog tracks in the first muddy paw prints.

Gardeners are eyeing the temperatures and the daffodils beginning to poke their leaves through the earth and snow. Flexing their fingers, ready to weed and dig and plant and admire. Golfers are limbering their shoulders and polishing their clubs. Hikers are studying their maps, ready to hit the trail.

And all of us are thinking about clear skies and the sights and smells and tastes that tell us spring has really, truly arrived.

I can’t do anything about the temperatures or the snow level. But I can help you feed that hunger for the taste of spring.

Early asparagus from farms along the coast is beginning to appear in local groceries. It’s one of my favorite vegetables—my childhood home in Billings was built on farmland, and asparagus grew up through the grass. A patch went wild in a backyard corner. Sparrow grass, we called it. But not everyone knows how to cook it, as in this passage in To Err is Cumin, my 8th Spice Shop mystery, coming this July. A pair of customers at the Spice Shop in Seattle’s Pike Place Market express their uncertainty about the popular spring vegetable to Pepper Reece, the shop owner—a woman ready with a recipe and a spice for every taste.

“All the farm stands are showing off fresh asparagus and people rave about it,” the customer said, “but what I remember is my mother cooking the heck out of it, all limp

and mushy, then making soup.”

“It makes your pee smell funny,” her friend interjected.

’Twas the season. I was prepared. “That sulphury smell comes from the breakdown of the acids when your digestive juices hit them. It dissipates quickly, and yes, it can be annoying, but it’s no reason not to eat asparagus. Just thank your kidneys for working right.” I went on to describe my favorite cooking methods. “Remember, you want to keep that bright green color and that tendercrisp texture. I think you’ll like our asparagus soup. We love it with a bit of cumin, raw or toasted.”

“Sounds like dinner to me,” one said. “That’s what I like to hear,” I said, then told them where to get the best baguettes to go with the soup.

So how to cook the stuff? Pepper’s a fan of two classic methods for cooking asparagus— by coincidence, my own personal favorites!

First, wash the spears and snap off the woody ends.

To cook in water: Fill a large sauté pan with cold water, about 2/3 full, and bring to a boil. Lay in the spears and cook two to three minutes. Remove spears with tongs and give them a quick cold rinse to stop the cooking and pre-

serve the bright green color. Serve with melted butter or good olive oil and your favorite fresh herbs or seasonings.

To roast: Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicon sheet or parchment paper. Lay out the spears in a single row. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and fresh black pepper, and toss with tongs. Roast 15-18 minutes. Don’t worry if the thinner spears appear to be slightly charred; that only adds to the flavor and the rustic appeal.

Now what about that soup? As Pepper’s customer said, soup is the fate of many an overcooked vegetable, and sadly, the reason some vegetables have gotten a bad name. But there’s no reason for that. This soup, a fresh baguette or herby focaccia, and a glass of a crisp white wine and you’ll swear it’s spring, no matter what the skies and the thermometer say.

30 406 w oman.com
local author} Les LI e Bude WI tz
Watercolor by Leslie Budewitz

Creamy Asparagus Soup with Cumin

As sure a sign of spring as tulips, asparagus is one of Pepper’s favorite veggies—and a hit at every produce and farm stall in the Market. A few asparagus tips or spears make a terrific garnish. Buy cumin seeds toasted or raw.


2 pounds green asparagus, rinsed, woody ends snapped off

3 tablespoons butter

1 large white onion, chopped

1-2 gloves garlic, minced kosher salt

fresh ground black pepper

5 cups chicken broth

1 teaspoon ground cumin, or more to taste

1 teaspoon ground coriander, or more to taste

1/2 cup sour cream, crème fraîche, or heavy cream, plus more for garnish

1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste toasted cumin seeds, for garnish


To toast raw cumin seeds, place in a small saucepan over medium heat, shaking or stirring regularly, for about 5 minutes, until they begin to change color and release their fragrance. Remove pan from heat. The seeds will continue to toast as they cool.

Cut 1-1/2 inch off the tips of 12 asparagus stalks and set aside for garnish. If the stalks are thick, slice them in half. Cut into 1-inch pieces.

Melt the butter in a stock pot over medium low heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until just soft, about 5 minutes. Add asparagus pieces and salt and pepper to taste, then cook, stirring, 5 minutes. When the asparagus is tender-crisp and still bright green, add the broth, cumin, and coriander, and simmer, covered, until asparagus is very tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a cup or two of salted water to a boil and blanch the asparagus tips until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain and set aside.

When the asparagus in the soup mixture is tender, taste and adjust spices. Purée with an immersion blender or in batches in a standard blender until smooth. Reheat if necessary. Stir in sour cream, transferring to a bowl (use caution when blending hot liquids), and return to pan. Stir in sour cream, crème fraîche, or heavy cream. Adjust seasonings and add lemon juice.

Serve, garnished with asparagus tips, additional sour cream, and toasted cumin seeds.

Serves 4.

Here’s to spring, whenever it arrives!

Excerpt and recipe from To Err is Cumin by Leslie Budewitz, to be published by Seventh St. Books in July 2024.

Leslie Budewitz writes the Spice Shop mysteries set in Seattle’s Pike Place Market and the Food Lovers’ Village mysteries, set in a fictional version of Bigfork, Montana, where she lives. She also writes historical fiction. As Alicia Beckman, she writes moody suspense set in Montana and the Northwest, including Bitterroot Lake and Blind Faith . Find her books in print, ebook, and audio across the US and Canada, wherever you buy books.

406 w oman.com 31

Deep Fake Double Down

A successful read for me is one that I have a difficult time putting down. A compelling story, interesting characters, and a believable plot twist. Deep Fake Double Down by Debbie Burke was a successful read in my book.

This was Burke’s latest thriller in a series of eight featuring investigator Tawny Lindholm but only the first one I had picked up. That didn’t matter as Burke did a great job of introducing the main characters to get me up to speed on the recurring narrative.

What was the big hook, line, and sinker for me? Learning about deep fake videos and how deceiving something we see with our own eyes can be. When a prison guard Lucille Ellwine is wrongfully accused of killing the young inmate Monroe Old Child, she reaches out to the series heroine Tawny Lindholm. The fake video is damming but Tawny follows her gut instinct and does everything in her power to help Lucille clear her name. Jeopardizing her own life in the process.

Having the story set in Montana was a bonus for me as Lucille traversed the more rugged parts of the state looking for justice with Tawny’s help and trying to stay one step ahead of the bounty on her head.

Personally, I will never look at a video the same way. We’ve all seen the humorous videos on TikTok

and likely had a good laugh but it is terrifying to know how easy someone’s life can be changed with a skilled person doctoring an image for harm.

I really enjoyed the book and if you are looking for a good suspense story set in our own backyard, I recommend you pick up a copy and settle into your favorite recliner and start turning the pages. If you are like me, you’ll have a hard time putting it down.

One thing I’m certain of is that I’m intrigued enough by the lead character Tawny Lindholm that I plan to read all the books in Burke’s series.

Not surprising Deep Fake Double Down was a finalist for a 2023 BookLife Prize*. Find the book and all in this series at major online booksellers or better yet support your favorite local independent bookstore and ask them to order it for you!

* The BookLife Prize is an annual writing competition in two Contests (Fiction and Nonfiction) sponsored by BookLife and Publishers Weekly. The Prize seeks to support independent authors and discover great written works in nine categories across the two sections (fiction & non-fiction).

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5 Tips for theShedding Layers of Winter

Spring in Montana is long-awaited, even when we have a mild winter. Flowers and greenery start to poke up through the snow and the trees start to bud. This season brings a sense of relief and clarity to our community. This is the time when we start to make transitions in the home from heavy fabrics to open windows and light, breathable fabrics.

We have put together five tips to make creating a timeless spring home look easy.

1. Lighten up your bedding.

This is more than lightening up the color of your linens, although doing this can tremendously impact the feel of your space. But also includes using breathable fabrics such as linen and cotton. You can also layer in a woven throw blanket to help transition into spring. These throws come in handy when the sun goes behind the trees or in the evening when the nights are still cold, as they are breathable and cute.

Bring one of the best things inside your home- spring plants. Freshly planted greenery or fresh-cut flowers and herbs are a great way to bring nature in with color and scent. Adding multiple senses into a space creates dimension and is a simple way to transform a space. If taking care of plants isn’t really your thing, Wright’s has an array of decorative plants along with dried botanicals in the store that you don’t have to worry about killing.

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3. Reflecting nature through furniture. An adjustment with a few key pieces can change the mood of a room. Using more curves and lighter wood can create a natural feeling making you feel more grounded and refreshed. Using lighter pieces made of rattan and wicker also reinforces spring's natural feeling. Wright’s has plenty of different options for these types of pieces, whether it be a coffee table, some accent chairs, or even a sculptural piece that brings movement and an organic feel to your space.

5. Declutter and organize.

4. Soft color pallet.

With spring comes all the beautiful colors, you can relay this into your home by using light blues, greens, and light muted colors. These colors work great on top of beige and ivory as the space will still feel grounded but the light color accents bring a kind of vibrancy. Using colorful pillows, accent chairs, and art will bring your space to life.

Spring cleaning has its benefits and refreshing qualities for the home and the soul. Using furniture that can also double as storage helps keep your space tidy and keeps excess items out of view. The result of this will be a tidy-looking home that will leave you and your guests feeling refreshed.

Using a mixture of these tips in your home is a great way to welcome spring. You can use light floral fabrics, organic materials, and layer spring pallets and fabrics throughout the home. You might even consider using baskets or ottomans for blanket storage, seating, or as a footrest.

With so many options and combinations, one might be overwhelmed or intimidated by all the choices and selections. This is why Wright’s Furniture goes the extra mile for their customers, offering design help to all. You don’t have to do this alone; all these options are included in their free design services. Remember, you can’t go wrong when you are shopping at Wright’s.

406 w oman.com 37 6325 HWY 93 SouTH, WHITEfISH, MonTana 59937 | 406.862.2455 | oPEn DaIlY |frEE loC |
Wright’s furniture is open 7 days a week, offering complimentary design services with free local delivery and install. visit the Wright’s furniture showroom in Whitefish or learn more at wrightsfurniture

MaryBeth &Jared

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Photos by Jenna Ballard Photography Snowline Acres - June 23, 2023

Tell us about yourselves...

Jared was born and raised in Kalispell, MT and is working as both a financial advisor and the trainer/owner of Armory Athletic Club in Kalispell. I am originally from Georgia and work as an interior design assistant.

MaryBeth – What is the trait that you most admire in Jared?

While there are many traits I admire about Jared, the one that stands out the most would be his love for the Lord. He is the perfect example of a Godly husband and makes sure we keep our marriage centered around Christ.

Jared – When did you realize you wanted to get married to MaryBeth?

The first time I thought about marrying MaryBeth was after Under the Big Sky when we ended up sitting in my Honda Accord for hours repeating the song Biblical by Calum Scott. We thought if we play it one more time the night doesn’t have to be over. I knew then she was my person. Afterwards,

He is the perfect example of a Godly husband and makes sure we keep our marriage centered around Christ.
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My favorite activity we do as a couple is going camping. I love being outdoors, so camping means I am in my favorite place with my favorite person.

Wedding Details…

Venue snowline acres


Jenna Ballard Photography

we endured long distance for a year during college which consisted of nightly Facetime calls. After graduation we went to Italy, and I had the crazy idea that I needed to buy a ring. I cashed out my account when we got back and hid the ring in a rifle case under my bed.

Why did you choose the venue you did to get married?

We chose Snowline Acres as our venue not only because it is a beautiful space, but also because of its convenience. We had many out of state guests and it was located relatively close to many of the places that they were staying as well as the convenience for guests from the valley.

MaryBeth – What did you enjoy most during your wedding day?

Our wedding day was perfect in every way. My favorite part was having all our friends and family who had met for the first-time dancing and chatting together as if they had known each other forever.

Jared – What is your favorite activity to do as a couple?

My favorite activity we do as a couple is going camping. I love being outdoors, so camping means I am in my favorite place with my favorite person. We spend a lot of time on the water surfing and on the mountain snowboarding as well, but nothing beats sitting at the campfire in a new spot with a cold beverage in your hand and your best friend in the chair next to you.

Caterer desoto grill


Little City Cakes


treasure state entertainment

Dress velvet Bride, Missoula

Dress Designer

Madi Lane Bridal


Men’s warehouse


riddle’s Jewelry (Bride) rings by Lux (groom)

Invitations zola


My wonderful Uncle Jeff with the help of Poppy + Pine floral

Bar Services

VFW Post 2252

Hair Stylist

Melissa greene

Makeup Artist whitney rauthe



W h e r e i n n o v a t i o n i s b u i l t
Featured 6. o n I ya r anch 18. w h I tef I sh t hr I ft h aus Finance 10. s uccessfu L r et I re M ent 52 406 w oman.com woman 4 06 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com Copyright©2024 Skirts Publishing Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year view current and past issues of 406 woman at www.406 w oman.com woman 406 30... 34... Profile 14. Kaycee McIntosh 24. s teve Pau L son 29. a nna wIL son 34. t hera P eut I c f or aLL Health 30. eMP ower I ng h o P e 40. d r M ILL er History 38. gI r L’s fash I on

Sharing the Heart of MontanaOniya Ranch

Wearing work-worn Carhartt coveralls, Kristi Overgaard jumps into a covered side-by-side vehicle with Tate, a 150-pound livestock guardian dog, riding shotgun. She’s just finished checking on her horses, and she stops to take in the open sky and the spectacular snowcapped Beartooth Mountains across the horizon.

Kristi is the founder of Oniya Ranch, a secluded 580-acre retreat for those who want to step away from the grind and experience a nature-supported reset. Guests can experience the magic of Oniya Ranch either individually or in a small intimate group as they take part in a Wellbeing Retreat known as Walk Oniya, or a customized Team Retreat that helps high-powered professionals decompress and collaborate. Musicians, writers, filmmakers, and other creatives have benefited as well tapping into their ingenuity and imagination.

Most retreats at Oniya typically last five days during which guests fully immerse themselves in nature. Accommodations are available in the rustically luxurious five bedroom-five bath lodge or the artfully-cool three bedroom farmhouse. Meals, which are made of all-natural, whole ingredients, are usually eaten outside on the covered patio where wildlife can be observed.

Mornings start with stretching, and plenty of time to safely wander 11 miles of secluded trails. The walks are meditative and offer guests a chance to experience calm and clarity in nature’s solitude.

If they like, guests can add specialized experiences to their walk, such as Oniya Ranch’s signature horse-human connection, breathwork, or personal practice development that supports guests with a morning ritual of centering before they start their days long after they have left the ranch.

“I came up with the idea of Walk Oniya while I was training to walk for two-weeks through parts of Spain making a pilgrimage on the centuries-old

Kristi. “While traversing the raw beauty of my land, I saw more wildlife, and gained more clarity than my whole time on the Camino.”

Four years ago, Kristi’s life was very different. She was working as a branding and creative executive for one of the nation’s fastest growing tech companies in Las Vegas. It was a rewarding career, but as a self-described over-achiever, Kristi had a hard time finding a healthy balance between the professional and personal aspects of her life.

But that’s all in the dusty rear-view mirror as she drives up the dirt road to her office next to the barn that overlooks the pastures. It’s a picturesque scene as Tate takes his stance on the front porch guarding Kristi and the horses as she heads into her creative alcove where she talks about her roots as a fourth generation Montanan.

“I grew up in Plentywood, a town in the northeastern part of the state. From an early age, my dad taught me to love and respect the land and the animals that lived on it. Being outside with our dogs and horses was my favorite pastime.”

Later, Kristi ended up in the Entertainment Capital of the World, which was another world entirely. There, she put her creativity and strong work ethic to good use when she founded One11, a successful branding and advertising firm. After that, she worked for Switch, a global-tech company, as their Chief Awesomeness Officer, where her Montana energy, no BS attitude, and team building skills served her well.

As satisfying as her career was, it was not the ultimate vision Kristi had in mind for herself. She dreamed of better health, joy, and freedom. When she reached the point where she felt she’d done

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Camino de Santiago” says Kristi OvergaardPhoto by Mackenzie Rohrbaugh
She named her sanctuary Oniya, a Lakota word for breathe. “That’s what we teach people to do here,” she says.

everything she wanted to support Switch in becoming a publicly-traded company, she decided to take a year-long sabbatical and figure out what was next.

“I wanted to learn how to create balance in my life and cure my obsessive compulsive need to be an over-achiever.”

Kristi spent the year traveling, and though she didn’t know it then, all the wisdom, tools, and techniques she learned during that time were exactly what she needed when she finally manifested her life-long dream.

In Bali she learned breathwork, and how to lead others in the healing modality. In New Zealand, someone recommended a book on horses and healing, which sparked a newfound passion that led her to Canada to become certified in equine assisted learning.

At the end of the sabbatical, she decided not to return to Switch. Instead, she started searching for a horse ranch to buy in Montana, where she could hold retreats for people like herself who push themselves too hard.

Kristi found the perfect place—a 580-acre ranch near Billings and two hours from Bozeman in the town of Roberts, Montana. She named her sanctuary Oniya, a Lakota word for breathe. “That’s what we teach people to do here,” she says.

Kristi is incredibly proud and grateful to the team of women who run the ranch—women she says

lead with grace and brawn and are tougher than most men. Two of the women are her mother and her sister.

There are two donkeys, one cow, seven chickens, one rooster, two cats, three team dogs, and Tate, and of course the fifteen horses, who make up the heart of work that happens on the ranch.

“I believe horses are a lightning rod to God,” Kristi says. “They are the most magnificent of all domesticated animals on earth. Just being near them is pure magic!”

Oniya Ranch only offers groundwork in her horsehuman experiences. “It’s not about riding them. It’s about a beautiful partnership that involves observing and learning from them.” Kristi coaches her clients to ask a question as they work with one of the horses or watch the interactions of a herd.

“So many times, I’ve seen clients enter the corral, anxious and doubtful, and leave an hour later with the answers they’ve been seeking for months, sometimes years. Horses can slow our heart rate down. In the calmness, when we are quiet and open, the answer comes because we had it inside us all along.”

Though it’s not used on any horses, the brand at Oniya is a single iron heart-shaped relic from the 1800s that hangs above the fireplace in the lodge.

The brand has its own story.

Not long after Kristi bought the property, a nearby ranch was holding a closing auction. When she looked at the sale flyer and saw the brand, she instantly knew it belonged at Oniya. At the auction Kristi noticed many in attendance weren’t buying much. Then the auctioneer held up the heartshaped branding iron and it quickly became clear what everyone was waiting for.

The bidding was intense, but Kristi made up her mind she had to have it. She was the only woman bidding that day, but she was never intimidated in a man’s world. Even when the price exceeded the amount she had set, she kept bidding until it was hers. At the end of the sale, the auctioneer asked where the brand was going and Kristi said, “It’s staying in Montana. It’s going just up the road.” And the crowd of locals cheered.

Helping people reconnect with their hearts, with compassion, kindness, and forgiveness is how Oniya operates. Hearts can be found everywhere on the ranch from the white-shaped rocks that form a large heart on the side of the hillside that overlooks the ranch entrance, to the heart-shaped bread and cucumbers in the salads that are cut to honor the brand.

“Montana has always had my heart, and at Oniya Ranch, we get to share that heart and the magic of Montana with others,” says Kristi. “It’s a purpose-filled life.”

Interested in learning more? Visit oniya.com.

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Team Photo (L-R): Nykole Holmes, Kristi Overgaard, Liz Arlian, Jesse Grandy, Jamie Sanford, Karla Aus. Photo by Mackenzie Rohrbaugh

Fischer Investment Strategies

Your Local Guide to a Successful Retirement

Retirement—it’s that distant horizon we often push to the back of our minds. But as the years pass, it becomes increasingly evident that planning for retirement is not just a luxury; it’s a necessity. When it comes to retirement planning, Americans are often way behind. In fact, in 2019, almost half of households headed by someone 55 or older had no retirement savings at all, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Many people won’t have enough money to live comfortably and will rely solely on Social Security to pay for their living expenses. But retirement doesn’t have to look this way for you. Luckily, Fischer Investment Strategies can help you navigate this critical phase of life and set you up for success.

Helping Individuals with the crucial Role of Retirement Planning:

Securing your Golden years

The Average Life Expectancy Continues to Rise

In the past, retirement planning might have centered around a shorter life expectancy. However, today, people are living longer than ever before. With the average American lifespan approaching 80 years, you’ll need substantial retirement funds to maintain a comfortable lifestyle. And remember, many individuals exceed the average life expec-

tancy. Starting early ensures you’re financially prepared for the long haul.

You Can’t Work Forever

While the dream of working indefinitely might seem appealing, reality sets in. As we age, physical limitations and changing priorities make it challenging to maintain a high level of productivity. Retirement planning allows you to prepare for unexpected early retirement. Having a financial safety net ensures you won’t be stuck in a perpetual work cycle, or unprepared if you are unexpectedly unable to work any longer.

Retirement Is the Best Time to Check Off Your Bucket List

Remember that list of dream destinations and experiences you’ve been compiling? Retirement is your golden opportunity to explore them. Whether it’s traveling the world, pursuing hobbies, or spending quality time with loved ones, retirement planning ensures you have the means to fulfill your aspirations.

Retirement planning isn’t a luxury; it’s a strategic move toward financial security. Fischer Investment Strategies combines expertise, integrity, and client-centricity to guide you toward a fulfilling retirement. Start planning early, and let FIS be your trusted partner on this journey.

Remember, your golden years deserve thoughtful preparation. Secure them with FIS.

Helping Small business owners create

Retirement plans: Setting Up your business and employees for Success

Attracting and Retaining Talent

Small businesses often compete with larger corporations for skilled employees. Offering a robust retirement plan can be a powerful recruitment tool. Prospective employees consider retirement benefits as a significant factor when choosing an employer. By providing a retirement plan, small businesses enhance their appeal and retain valuable talent.

Employee Satisfaction and Loyalty

A well-structured retirement plan demonstrates that the business values its employees’ long-term financial security. It’s been proven that when employees feel cared for, they are more likely to stay loyal to the company. High employee satisfaction translates to better productivity, reduced turnover, and a positive work environment.

Tax Advantages for Business Owners

Small business owners can benefit from tax advantages by offering retirement plans. Contributions made to retirement accounts (such as 401(k)s or SEP-IRAs) are tax-deductible. Additionally, business owners can defer taxes on their own retirement savings. These tax incentives not only benefit employees but also support the business’s financial health. Even business owners who do not have any employees may have some really attractive options!

Legal Compliance and Avoiding Penalties

Federal regulations require businesses to treat employees fairly regarding retirement benefits. By offering a retirement plan, small business owners comply with legal requirements. Failing to do

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so can result in penalties and legal consequences. Implementing a retirement plan ensures adherence to these rules.

Boosting Employee Morale and Productivity

Knowing that their employer invests in their future motivates employees to perform better. A retirement plan fosters a sense of security and stability. Employees who feel financially supported are more focused, engaged, and productive. This positive work environment benefits both employees and the business.

For small business owners, investing in retirement plans isn’t just about compliance—it’s about creating a thriving workplace. Fischer Investment Strategies combines expertise, flexibility, and employee-centric approaches to help businesses build a secure financial future for both owners and employees.

Remember, a well-designed retirement plan isn’t an expense; it’s an investment in your business’s success.

Why Fischer Investment Strategies?

Fee-Only and Fiduciary Responsibility

Fischer Investment Strategies operates as a feeonly firm. What does this mean? Their compensation comes directly from clients, not commissions from financial product sales. As a fiduciary, they are legally bound to act in your best interest. No hidden agendas—just transparent advice. Because of their true fiduciary services, FIS is proud to say that most of their client base has come from referrals.

Nobel Laureate-Backed Investment Philosophy

FIS’s investment approach aligns with modern portfolio theory (MPT), championed by Nobel laureates like Harry Markowitz and Eugene Fama. Their strategies emphasize low-cost, globallydiversified, and tax-efficient portfolios. You’re not just investing; you’re investing smartly.

Client-Centric Approach

At FIS, it’s about you. They don’t sell investments or insurance, nor do they earn commissions. Their success is tied to yours. The more they grow your wealth, the more they succeed. It’s a win-win partnership. They meet with clients often and at their personal place of business or home to make communication with them as convenient as possible for their clients. FIS wants their clients to know what is going on with their money at all times.

Comprehensive Financial Planning

The FIS team’s services include Certified Financial Planning, tax planning, and Estate planning advice for every client, at no extra charge. They want you to make sure you are considering every aspect of your financial status, and provide you with a transparent, easy-to-use, software program so

you can check your financial plan at any time. You can even try what-if scenarios (what if I want to spend 10k a year on vacations from ages 70-80?) to see if your current plan will succeed with that added expense!

Why Fischer Investment Strategies Is Ideal for Small businesses

Customized Solutions

FIS understands that each business has unique needs. They tailor retirement plans to fit the specific requirements of small businesses, all while following their fiduciary duty. Whether it’s a simplified IRA or a comprehensive 401(k), FIS provides personalized solutions.

Employee Education and Support

Education is key to successful retirement planning. FIS offers educational resources and workshops for employees. Empowered employees make informed decisions, leading to better retirement outcomes. Each employee will receive a comprehensive financial plan through their retirement plan participation and have a fiduciary to directly contact regarding any financial decisions.

Cost-Effective Options

Small businesses need cost-effective solutions. FIS’s fee structure is transparent, ensuring that businesses get value for their investment. They minimize administrative costs while maximizing benefits.

Already have a retirement plan?

For employees who are already in a retirement plan (not created by FIS) with their employer, FIS can assist with the best fund options within their plan by knowing the fees associated with each fund available, and expected rate of return, we can build your 401k in a way that we believe will outperform your current choices. If we do not think we can do at least 1% better than you currently are, we will let you know.

For business owners who already have a retirement plan and are wondering if they could offer their employees (and themselves) more competitive fees, services, etc., FIS can do a quick, complementary review and let you know if they think they can offer something more beneficial.

Their motto is “if we can’t significantly improve your plan, we won’t waste your time!”
Jessa Ash, Registered Investment Advisor Fischer Investment Strategies 406-212-1983 jessa@fisfp.com
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Kaycee McIntosh Kalispell ObGyn

Please meet Kaycee McIntosh - Physician’s Assistant, Medical Aesthetician, wife, daughter, mom to three boys, and wilderness survival podcast host.

Kaycee is a part of the medical team offering patient-centered, personalized care to meet the unique health needs of women at all stages of life at Kalispell Ob/Gyn, the longest running private practice focused on women in the Flathead Valley.

After 10 years working in an Urgent Care setting, Kaycee McIntosh found that she always liked the patient interaction and had a particular affinity for women’s health issues. When an opportunity arose to transition to women’s health at Kalispell Ob/Gyn in 2021, she was eager to embrace the mission to help promote and advocate for the health, safety, and quality of life for all women.

Kaycee joined a strong team of Dr Gwenda Jonas and other mid-level Practitioners including Austin Rusher, Shawn Shanahan, and Marci Mangold - all of whom work together to provide whole body women’s health care. Their Spa-like medical office in The Falls Building at 165 Commons Loop in Kalispell, offers an incredibly comfortable and safe place to receive whatever care they need including a full spectrum of women’s services - health screening, contraceptive management, uterine bleeding, perimenopause, post menopause, hormone therapy, and Kaycee’s specialty which includes a range of carefully chosen aesthetic treatments.

When it comes to health care for women, the team at Kalispell OB/GYN know that all women are different and diverse, and deserve specific care at each stage of their life. They strongly believe in a proactive and preventive approach to the overall wellness of women's health care. Their focus is to keep their patients informed, empowered, and help them understand their body and how to take care of it.

Kaycee says that she gets it…women tend to be the caregivers, always putting everyone else in their life first, and not prioritizing their own health & wellbeing. But they absolutely should be also setting aside a little prioritizing for themselves! “And what better way to squeeze in a little “me” pampering than with the medical team you are already trusting with most of your healthcare needs?” said Kaycee.

What are medical aesthetics? They are injections to provide enhancement of a patient’s physical appearance. The botox treatments offered are minimal pain procedures and they produce subtle changes in the forehead and eyes that can help boost confidence and self esteem. Results

are visible within a few days up to two weeks and last for up to 3-4 months. When it comes to aesthetics, it is recommended that patients consult with their medical team earlier, so that they can make informed decisions about why and when to begin treatments.

Botox is also often used medically for TMJ treatment. In addition, a 2017 study published in the Iranian Journal of Public Health on the Efficacy of Botox versus Placebo for Treatment of Patients with Major Depression concluded that botox is, indeed, effective for treatment of patients with major depression, especially for patients who had not responded well to other depression treatments, and it has a high safety rate. This may be related to a decrease in facial sadness by bo-

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After 10 years working in an Urgent Care setting, Kaycee McIntosh found that she always liked the patient interaction and had a particular affinity for women’s health issues

tox, which was also reported as well in the study, since these treatments make it harder to frown. Further studies with a larger sample size and multi-center samplings are likely required to verify these findings.

Kaycee McIntosh is fifth-generation Montanan on both sides of her family. She was born in Missoula and raised in the Flathead Valley when at the age of 4, she and her family moved to Whitefish so her father could work on the railroad. Kaycee went to college in Bozeman where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science/Health and Human Development from MSu She then went to graduate school at Rocky Mountain College in Billings where she received her Master of Physician Assistant. She has since attained certification to also provide aesthetic services.

Something that not a lot of people know about Kaycee, is that she co-hosts a weekly podcast with her friend Julie Henningson, called “The Crux: True Survival Stories”. Combining Julie’s knowledge of wilderness survival and Kaycee’s passion for medicine, the two of them explore gripping tales of resilience, insights into wilderness and other crisis survival, and the mindset to overcome adversity. She & Julie started the podcast from the ground up and they currently have somewhere between 4050K monthly listeners. Fueled by real-life stories and the pivotal moments that determined life or death outcomes, “The Crux: True Survival Stories” is available on multiple podcast channels.

Kaycee, along with her husband Toby, an engineer from Vermont, loves raising their three young boys together in Whitefish. Kaycee enjoys spending time outside skiing, biking, playing fetch with their dog,

and being with her family. She also loves art, being creative, and enjoys thinking outside of the box.

Kaycee’s bucket list is not full of a lot of super momentous, nearly unachievable experiences. Her list includes things like paragliding, performing at a local open mic night, and other similar activities that can be done on the spur of the moment and still take her outside her comfort zone. Kaycee feels like we should be doing bucket list items every single day, even if they are small ones.

She is proud of her work in the medical field. Her approach to this is that it is more for the people aspect - not so much the medicine. She truly appreciates the connections she has made with her patients and her ability

to help them. She is also proud of having put the podcast out to the universe, since in doing so, she has gained a whole new skill set.

What’s the best piece of advice she could give to our readers? “Live now! Don’t save your life experiences for later!”

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wHere SHoPPINg IS gIvINg Whitefish Thrift Haus

Whitefish Thrift Haus bustles with energy from the moment the store manager rolls back the west gate to gather donations to the moment the front door closes at 5:00 P.M. The Whitefish Thrift Haus (WTH) has been a fixture in the community from its small beginnings as a rummage room on Central Avenue in the 1970s to its current location on 1st Street. WTH, voted the “Best Second Hand Store” in the Best of Whitefish contest, has become a favorite place to shop, a place “Where Shopping is Giving.”

Whitefish Thrift Haus exists solely as a non-profit volunteer organization to support Soroptimist International of Whitefish (SIW) in providing women and girls access to the education and training they need to achieve economic empowerment.

The WTH’s continued success is due to its generous communities’ donations and committed volunteers who keep the doors open. Donations come in daily, so the inventory changes often. Volunteers, whether they are Soroptimist members or not and whether they live here part time or full time, take pride in working at the WTH. The camaraderie among the more than 50 volunteers who donate over 150 hours a week comes from the WTH’s Mission. Time spent at the Thrift Haus gives volunteers a chance to interact with a diverse group of people including other volunteers and customers, to learn new skills, and to see the positive impact on others.

The work room is the heart of the store where volunteers attack the daily stacks of donations,

sorting, organizing, cleaning, and displaying items throughout the store. Laughter is often heard in the back room as volunteers try to figure out a donated item’s use or even how to put it together. Rest assured; someone always knows.

An education on art, how to use certain kitchen tools, how to wear unique items of clothing, how to put together and use a piece of outdoor equipment, and more conundrums become a daily part of the job. Along with laughter are the exclamations of delight that come when a volunteer discovers a rare book, beautiful crystal pieces, vintage clothing, antique dishes and furniture, almost new brand name clothing, lightly used or brand-new appliances, and more. Unlike many shops, treasures here change almost daily. Sometimes, within the hour of being displayed, a lovely item is already walking out the door in a customer’s arms. Moments like these create a strong sense of pride in all volunteers. All agree there is nothing more satisfying than to see donations reincarnated.

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WTH board from left to right: Louise Porter-Hahn, Bonnie Baker, Norma MacKenzie, Angie Burger, Vicki Berstein, Carol VandeKieft, and LuAnn Basirico.
The joy of thrifting is an adrenaline rush of “getting lucky” by finding just the right item that fits a need.

It is the store’s offerings of quality merchandise and affordable prices through careful sorting and pricing that entice customers. Shoppers eagerly await the opening of the red door and once in rarely leave without buying something. They know thrifting is no longer just for the thrifty. The joy of thrifting is an adrenaline rush of “getting lucky” by finding just the right item that fits a need.

Clothing items take on new lives when customers try them on or describe what they will turn them into with alterations. There is always the unexpected find.

Shoppers, regular or not, come from all walks of life, all ages, and all parts of the globe.

Traveling customers find lake toys to ski clothing, kitchen tools, games and puzzles, and more to use while visiting. Some buy suitcases to take extra items home. Home shoppers outfit entire rooms with thrifty finds. Standing at the checkout counter is the barefoot six-year-old counting out change from her lemonade sales to buy an old school desk; the four-year-old clutching the Tonka truck he discovered; the young mother smiling as she sets down a vintage Corning Ware dish to replace the one she broke, a Lego set for a child’s birthday, a small wrought iron lamp, and the piece de resistance—a matching skirt and jacket with original tags attached for an upcoming job interview. “Keep the extra $5 as a donation,” she says.

Pride comes too when customers tell volunteers, “The store is looking so good,” “I love how the place offers such neat things,” and “Thank you for being here.”

Just as the store’s inventory changes, so has its operation and appearance. Behind the scenes, WTH Board Members have been working assiduously on enhancing both the customer and the volunteer experience. Earlier this fall, Board members spruced up the front porch area, replaced and rearranged items for ease of sale, painted the front posts and door, and created new signage on a northwest facing window to display the logo, slogan, and times the store is open. Inside, members cleaned and rearranged the storage and work room spaces for volunteers while others worked through the process of finding a non-profit web site designer who understands the needs of the WTH and the design of its web pages. They anticipate the launch of the website in March.

The store survived on a volunteer staff until the spring of 2022 when the WTH Board hired its first store manager, Angie Burger. This allowed the store to stay open Tuesday through Saturday and lightened many of the responsibilities volunteers have had in the past. Angie loves that the Thrift

Haus is “a nonprofit working for a good cause, and that the money goes to women and girls to make a difference in their lives.”

She enjoys working with a staff of volunteers that looks out for each other and in a business whose longevity is a testament to its role in the community. “The biggest challenge,” Angie says, “is sometimes keeping track of volunteers’ schedules. Our volunteers are invaluable, and we always welcome new volunteers.”

The rewards given valley wide by SIW each year validate everyone’s hard work. Between 2023 and 2024, WTH profits have provided 31 scholarships toward both undergraduate and graduate degrees, 20 recipients of education and training through Live Your Dream, 12 grants to other non-profits furthering women and girls’ education, dental care for nine women through Smile of Hope, 40 gas cards through Fuel for Success, and continued support for the Prevention of Human Trafficking.

The WTH, located at 303 E. 1st Street, is open Tuesday-Friday from 11:00 A.M-5:00 P.M. and Saturday from 11:00 A.M.-4:00 P.M. Check out the Whitefish Thrift Haus Facebook page for updates and events. In March 2024, log on to whitefishthrifthaus.org not only for the latest information, but for a sign up to volunteer form, a donation form, and more.

If you haven’t visited us yet, look for the red door, come in and say Hi, and discover “Where Shopping is Giving.”

For more information on Soroptimist International of Whitefish, check out the website at soroptimistwhitefish.org.

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Happy Customers


The Power of Mann Mortgage’s Core Values

Since its inception in 1989, Mann Mortgage has stood as a beacon of trust and reliability in the mortgage industry. Central to its enduring success are the core values that define its identity and shape its operations. In a world where businesses often strive to differentiate themselves, Mann Mortgage stands tall by staying true to its core values: "WE," Ease of Doing business, Sales First, entrepreneurial Mindset, Cooperative Spirit, Straight Talk, and celebrate.

Understanding and embodying these core values is not just a matter of corporate branding; it's a strategic imperative that permeates every facet of the organization and a major reason why I’ve been with Mann for over 25 years. Here's why:


At Mann Mortgage, the concept of "WE" isn't just about teamwork; it's about fostering a sense of belonging and collective responsibility. It's the recognition that every individual, from loan officers to support staff, plays a crucial role in the company's success. This ethos creates a unified front, ensuring that everyone is working towards a shared vision.


In an industry often fraught with complexity, Mann Mortgage distinguishes itself with its commitment to simplicity and efficiency. By prioritizing the Ease of Doing Business , the company streamlines processes and removes unnecessary barriers, creating a smoother experience for both employees and customers alike.

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At Mann Mortgage, the concept of "WE" isn't just about teamwork; it's about fostering a sense of belonging and collective responsibility. It's the recognition that every individual, from loan officers to support staff, plays a crucial role in the company's success.


Sales are the lifeblood of any business, and at Mann Mortgage, they are given the utmost priority. This isn't just about driving revenue; it's about understanding the needs of customers and delivering tailored solutions that exceed expectations. By putting Sales First , Mann Mortgage ensures that every interaction is driven by a genuine desire to serve.


Innovation thrives in environments that encourage risk-taking and creativity. Mann Mortgage fosters an Entrepreneurial Mindset , empowering employees to think outside the box and pursue innovative solutions to challenges. This culture of innovation fuels continuous improvement and positions Mann Mortgage as a leader in the industry.


Collaboration is key to success in today's interconnected world. Mann Mortgage embraces a Cooperative Spirit , fostering strong

relationships not only within the organization but also with partners and clients. By working together towards common goals, Mann Mortgage creates win-win situations that benefit everyone involved.


Clear and honest communication is the foundation of trust. Mann Mortgage believes in Straight Talk , ensuring transparency and integrity in all interactions. Whether it's discussing loan terms with a client or providing feedback to a colleague, open communication builds trust and strengthens relationships.


Amidst the daily grind, it's important to pause and Celebrate achievements, both big and small. Mann Mortgage understands the power of celebration, acknowledging and rewarding the hard work and dedication of its employees. This fosters a positive work environment and reinforces a culture of excellence.

Incorporating these core values into every aspect of its operations, Mann Mortgage has not only survived but thrived for over three decades. By staying true to its identity and embracing these principles, Mann Mortgage has earned the trust of its clients and the respect of its peers. In a rapidly changing world, where businesses come and go, Mann Mortgage remains TRIed, TRUSTed, and pRoVen—a testament to the enduring power of knowing who you are.

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Q&A wItH Steve Paulson Mann Mortgage

What is one thing on your bucket list you have to do?

Visit the home we just bought in Italy! And have to time it to see Pearl Jam in concert when we do. I can’t wait to spend time there year after year.

What is your favorite way to spend the day off?

The best days off are the ones where I have nothing planned. Just ride the wave where it takes me….and hopefully that includes some cocktails, family and friends!

Hobbies and how did I get into them?

Flathead Lake and Montana Grizzly Football! There’s nothing like a home game in Missoula, MT. Especially a playoff game under the lights. And it’s impossible to beat a sunny, summer day on the lake.

What is the last thing you read?

I’ll be honest…I cheated. The last thing I read I actually listened to! Green Lights by Matthew McConaughey. Great listen with him narrating. We have to stay dialed into the opportunities that scare us – that’s how we grow and improve.

What is the one thing that can immediately make your day better?

A good workout and the bed already made by the time I head out the door to work. It’s important to start the day with wins!

What song instantly gets you on the dance floor?

I think they’re still looking for a song that would keep me OFF the dance floor!

What is your prized possession and why? My family. There is no Me without Them.

What is an essential part of your daily routine?

Planning the next day the day before. Success is a result of daily activities and habits, and daily activities help us chase our goals.

What would your perfect meal look like?

A woodfired pizza in Italy with a nice bottle of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo…OR breakfast for dinner. Dealer’s choice!

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Q&A wItH

Anna Wilson, RN Logan Health

What is your background?

I was born and raised in Kalispell, MT. I graduated from Flathead High School in 1996. During my time at Flathead High, the CNA (Certified Nurses Aide) course was offered. This sparked my interest in the medical field. I worked as a CNA right out of High School at Home Options. This is where I met my dear friend and nurse mentor Debbie Mulcahy. She encouraged me to continue my education and become a registered nurse. I attended Flathead Valley Community College obtaining my Associates of Science degree and continued on to Montana State University graduating with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).

What is your specialty of practice?

I am currently the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Coordinator at Logan Health Medical Center in Kalispell. I have taken additional courses as a Registered Nurse to be able to provide forensic medical care for patients from birth to adulthood who have experienced sexual assault.


is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is being able to spend quality, uninterrupted time with my patients. I am able to make sure that their body is okay and give them resources to start their healing journey.


are some of your goals on expanding this service?

Currently the Logan Health SANE program is working with the Department of Justice (DOJ), First Step Resource Center in Missoula, and St. Peter’s Health Forensic Nurse Program out of Helena to provide a hybrid Sexual Assault Course for nurses in Montana. We will be launching this course in April. It will be online with live instruction. This hybrid course will allow us to have nurses from across Montana attend but not take them away from their busy lives for a whole week.

Offering TeleSANE to locations in Montana that are not able to offer Sexual Assault Nurse Exams.

How do you spend your free time?

Most of my free time is spent with my husband watching our kiddos do what they love! My daughter is a Freshman at Flathead High School and is involved with cheer and wrestling. My son attends Kila school and is involved with Little Guy Football and school basketball. I am the Vice Chair on the Kila School board and PTA president. I am a board member for Serious JuJu Indoor Skatepark. When we have a free minute as a family, we love to be outdoors with our two black labs exploring our beautiful state!

Brought to you by

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Empowering Hope

Logan Health’s SANE program is a beacon of hope for sexual assault victims in the region

According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, the largest anti-sexual violence organization in the nation, there is a sexual assault in the united States every 68 seconds. Despite the alarming frequency, only 25 out of 1,000 perpetrators end up in prison, emphasizing the persistent challenges that sexual violence poses in the country. Unfortunately, horrific crimes like this happen in communities just like ours. In response, a collective effort involving politicians, law enforcement and health organizations is underway across the state to devise effective solutions.

In the aftermath of a sexual assault, a health care organization plays a crucial role in addressing immediate injuries suffered by the victims. However, an important part of the examination is the meticulous collection of forensic evidence within the five-day window following the assault. Ensuring proper protocol and expertise is paramount for this to take place, requiring a specialized sexual assault examiner. It takes a unique set of skills to navigate the sensitive process and provide support to victims who choose to undergo examination.

At Logan Health Medical Center (LHMC) in Kalispell, a team of sexual assault nurse examiners — or SANE— are trained to examine and treat victims of sexual assault who arrive at their emergency department. The program is made up of seven Logan Health nurses who take on-call shift responsibilities to ensure that

service can be provided 24-hours a day, seven days a week with a response time within an hour. These nurses range in specialties from emergency nurses to obstetrics and surgical nurses. However, when they are on-call, they all have the same role: providing careful and compassionate care to sexual assault patients.

While this community service is very necessary, it’s not as common as it should be. Only a handful of hospitals in Montana offer 24-hour service for sexual assault examinations. Rural communities are especially underserved, as the closest location to any sort of examination could be hours away.

As a result, Logan Health’s SANE program serves a vast region, collaborating with health and law enforcement agencies all over northwest Montana. “The closest 24-hour SANE pro-

grams outside of Kalispell are in Missoula and Helena,” says Anna Wilson, RN, the SANE program coordinator. “That means that we will see cases from as far away as Polson, Libby, Eureka and all along the Hi-Line region and even as far as Great Falls. We’ve even seen some cases from outside of Montana. We collaborate with the agencies where the victims are from to ensure that they have the forensic evidence they need.”

The work of the SANE is difficult, but certainly necessary. “We see people on the worst day of their life,” Wilson continues. “It’s a challenging role, but it’s so important to the community. We serve as an initial contact for many of the victims and then work with them to ensure they have what they need, both in terms of immediate medical attention and for forensic evidence.”

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Logan Health SANE nurses: (L-R) Shiloh Wildhalm, Rebecca Cox, Debbie Mulcahy, Anna Wilson, Sharron Morris, Christina Mohan
Logan Health is committed to providing care to victims of sexual assault and their goal is to provide this service at no cost to the patient.

The SANE are specifically trained in providing trauma-informed care and forensic evidence collection. They collect evidence for cases within the five-day window. If a patient arrives outside of that window, the SANE will offer guidance for medical care. They also partner with the Abby Shelter, who provides resources to patients after they are discharged.

Over the years, Logan Health has been an industry leader with their program, pushing to have the highest standard of resources available at their facility. Thanks to grants they received in 2022, they were able to purchase a CortexFlo, a machine designed specifically for sexual assault examinations. The technology, which is considered the most advanced in the world of forensic evidence collection, allows nurses to take high quality photographs and videos that will best aid them in the collection process.

Logan Health is committed to providing care to victims of sexual assault and their goal is to provide this service at no cost to the patient. They will work with many different resources to exhaust all options of payment so the patient doesn’t receive a bill for their sexual assault exam.

The team works closely with local law enforcement agencies on many of their cases. In cases involving children, they work with Child Protective Services and the Flathead County Children’s Advocacy Center. Adult victims have the right to seek medical attention for sexual assault without filing a report with law enforcement if they’re not yet ready to do that. Recognizing the sensitivity of the matter, the state recently took action to allow victims all the time they need to make decisions.

During their last legislative session, Montana lawmakers passed a series of bills to support sexual assault victims. HB 79, which created a sexual assault response network program for the state, was signed by Governor Greg Gianforte in April 2023. The bill also established a state position tasked with standardizing care across the state for examinations. HB 640 was signed into law during the same month, revising the preservation laws of sexual assault evidence. Previously the victim had one year to report their sexual assault to law enforcement and their evidence would have been held for them- now they have 75 years. Both laws were passed unanimously by the state house and senate.

With a statewide network, Logan Health’s SANE program will have guidance on things like standardization of care and will be able to collaborate with other SANE programs within Montana. “We are looking forward to working collaboratively with the state on this,” says Wilson. “One of our big initiatives is to one day have a tele-SANE program, which would allow us to virtually reach hospitals in rural locations and help walk nurses there through a SANE kit. That would save the patient from having to drive a long distance to get this service. With the state’s coordination, we can hopefully make things go quicker with some of this.”

SANE like Wilson are optimistic about the future of sexual assault examination in Montana. In the meantime, they will continue to serve their community to the fullest because they represent hope for sexual assault victims across western Montana.

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Therapeutic For All

“Whether it’s horses or whatever it is you do, it doesn’t become an art until your soul goes into what you do.” ― b uck b rannaman

The team at Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center puts the soul into what they do daily with their dedication, commitment to continual learning, and the ability to adapt on a dime. The Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center opened in 2017 and has been helping its community with increased mobility, confidence, and positivity.

As with every organization, a firm foundation is the building block for success and for this riding center, the foundation is strong, eats hay, and has four legs. Horses are their foundation because these special equines are the vehicle for the change they see in their participants. The team at Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center which is a non-profit 501(c)(3) is led by Executive Director Katherine Licence, a lifetime horsemanship student with a goal of sharing the accepting and healing nature of horses. Katherine works with her mother Sally Conrad who is a Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor through PATH International (PATH stands for Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship), as well as a PATH Ambassador for the State of Montana. Anna Seagull is also a PATH CTRI. Leslie Hayden is their Pediatric Physical Therapist, AHCB Certified Therapist, and a PATH Intl. Registered Therapist. Rounding out the team are Jackie Ruffley, the newest PATH CTRI, and office administrator, Erin Harapat. Between all the staff, there are decades of horsemanship and teaching experience.

This team of dedicated and educated professionals has been curated for success. The Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center has a mantra that takes them through every day - Therapeutic for All. This philosophy is not only for the participants, but it encompasses the horses, staff, families, communities, and all levels of supporters.

Their horses are trained to be ‘thinking’ horses, ones that are able to communicate effectively and become a partner in the therapeutic process. When talking about training and maintaining thinking horses, Sally Conrad said, “this is where you get the magic.” It is a trickle-down process and connects to each level of the program. They are definitely working horses, but they are trained and worked with to have healthy boundaries, and are allowed to communicate and receive consent, which sometime means giving them a moment to be ready. This method helps increase confidence in the horses and is vital to developing a relationship between human and horse. This is then taught to the participants, adapting the lessons for all with diverse therapeutic needs. Participants of all levels are taught equine communication, social cues, the power of consent, and most importantly a normalized experience, all through horsemanship. Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center is proud of their equine training program

that has maintained a healthy horse population with no horse needing to be retired for burnout, which can happen when you are asking them to perform tasks that may be out of their natural behavior or comfort zone.

Horsemanship doesn’t always mean riding. Some people may not be able to have the experience of riding, but that does not mean that they miss out on the therapeutic nature of working with horses. Horsemanship encompasses many facets including the care of horses along with handling them safely and properly on the ground and in the saddle.

Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center facilitates a variety of programs: Adaptive Horsemanship, Pediatric Physical Therapy, Ranch Experience, Summer Camps, and Volunteering.

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Their horses are trained to be ‘thinking’ horses, ones that are able to communicate effectively and become a partner in the therapeutic process. When talking about training and maintaining thinking horses, Sally Conrad said, “this is where you get the magic.”

Participants of all levels are taught equine communication, social cues, the power of consent, and most importantly a normalized experience, all through horsemanship.

Adaptive Horsemanship is a program that is uses special teaching techniques and sometimes specialized equipment that enable the participant to interact with a horse. These programs are facilitated by their PATH certified instructors. Lessons are developed with specific objectives and goals, although sometimes all is quickly adapted to fit the needs of the day. There is always a drive to create a special something in each lesson. The focus here is to meet the individual where they are now, and where they are that day. We all have good days and bad ones, so it is important to remember that this is true for participants and horses and to have an ability to adapt to those needs.

pediatric physical Therapy is provided by Leslie Hayden, pT, and can accommodate children as young as two years of age. These sessions focus on an environment to address issues with mobility, range of motion, balance, coordination, and strength. Leslie has over 30 years clinical experience with pediatric patients. This combination allows her to develop programs that help each patient according to their needs and personal goals. Leslie always works with one of the instructors in a collaboration for each session. The team of therapist, instructor, horse, and sometimes a volunteer or two, all working to increase strength and mobility in a fun way for Leslie’s patients, has made some profound differences for them.

Ranch Experiences are tailored lessons for small groups of people, typically up to ten individuals that

are unmounted, making them a great experience for a variety of people at once. These experiences are effective for school groups, potential volunteers, special education classes, retirement homes, to name a few. They are also an introduction to Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center’s programs and mission. A special class that is offered several times a year is developed and run by Sally, called “Tune in for More.” This is an educational program that is eight weeks long focusing on the brain science of a horse, effective ground work, keeping mental and physical health of humans and horses, functional soundness, Equine First Aid and more.

Summer Camps are an electronics-free zone that get all ages out and in nature. The camps are adapted to the group attending. Anna Seagull leads this program and brings her creativity with a variety of activities to meet the needs of the group. Camps are four days long and four hours each day with up to 10 people at one time. They are not focused on riding but a ranch experience that can include grooming and leading horses, learning the basics of horse communication, crafts and other activities such as scavenger hunts and more. Sometimes a short ride also happens at the discretion of the instructor.

The volunteer program is available for all levels

The Junior program can start at eight years of age but does require a parent/guardian to be present at all times until they reach the independent level at age 16 and older. All levels of volunteers are supervised to reinforce that all horses and participants are safe and seen. Volunteering typically comes in three main tracks: Facility Care, Client Based and the Horse Track. There is something for everyone.

Participants for Adaptive Horsemanship starts at 4 years with really no age cap. Participants do not need to have a diagnosis from a physician to be considered. Remember, this is therapeutic for all, meaning that individuals with seen and unseen needs are welcome. These needs can range from anxiety and depression to motor, cognitive, and developmental differences. The Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center team make sure that just like the horses, each person is seen and safe. They create an environment where participants are not seen as different but that their needs may be different. We all need to be recognized, develop self-confidence, and have a level of control.

When you find that the horse is compelled and interested in you, something in you changes. That can be healing or move you deeply.” —

Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center is a non-profit 501(c)(3). Donations go towards subsidizing programs for participants and includes a scholarship program for participants who need additional financial help to participate. Donations and program needs can be found on their website twobeartrc. org. They are also having their annual fundraiser, “Campfire for a Cause,” this May 17, 2024. Tickets for this event go on sale mid-March and can be purchased on the website or purchased by calling (406) 871-2652 or find more information on their Facebook or Instagram pages. This event is where businesses and individuals can make a difference and provide Therapeutic for All.

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Central School was built in 1894, and operated as a school until the 1950’s. During those 60 years, the school saw many changes and reforms in both society and fashion, yet children still poured in and out of the school doors, wearing the latest trends of the year.

During the 1890s, when the school first opened, puffed sleeves were all the rage. One puffed sleeve could take yards of fabric, and thus

dresses and blouses with these puffed sleeves could be more expensive, and less practical, than their flatter, less puffy cousins. Likely there were many girls like Anne Shirley from Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, who yearned for puffed sleeves that they didn’t have.

Some other garments worn during this era would have been overalls or pants for the boys and either dresses or two-piece dresses for the girls. The boys would also have had the option of suits, though likely only for more formal occasions. During this era wearing hats was also quite common. Many of these garments and their accessories could have been purchased at KM Mercantile, or from Montgomery Ward’s Catalog.

Times changed with the early 1900’s as bloomers began to make their way west. Deemed scandalous at the time, these predecessors to women’s pants were the equivalent of poofy, knee length (or sometimes longer) pants, that now freed women to do all sorts of sports including riding bicycles. Bloomers had been around for a while, worn first by early feminists and suffragists, until gradually becoming more popular in the 1910’s.

In the 1910’s, both before and during the First World War, fashion became what we now know as Edwardian fashion. A blend of the

Puffed Sleeves and Pantaloons

How Girl’s Fashion Evolved Throughout the Years at Central School

past period’s style, and a move towards things getting simpler. During WWI, women’s fashion moved from predominantly dresses towards two-piece dresses, more commonly referred to as blouses and skirts. Though the next decade quickly changed this fashion.

The roaring 20’s saw the age of flappers. The popular style of this era was knee length dresses that were still quite scandalous to previous generations and had less poof and frill. The bob hairstyle came into fashion, and Gilmore Girls were now traded in for more modern ones. Young women at Central School could have been greatly excited by women’s newfound right to vote, a great leap for the struggle of gender equality. These newfangled styles and ways of life, rejection of past decades use corsets and ideals, led to more liberation and similarity in dress between girls and boys.

With the stock market crash in 1929, came a new change in style. The great depression swapped the boyish look of the 1920’s for a more feminine silhouette. Buying fabric and clothes would have been expensive and harder to do in this era. It’s likely that many girls would have worn their clothing until it fell apart. And, they would have sewn themselves new clothing from whatever material was available. Sometimes this may have been flour sacks or tablecloths.

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Circa 1915, courtesy of the Northwest Montana History Museum’s Looking Back Collection. Photo: This handmade bodice was worn by Mary (Minnie) O'Leary when she married Peter S. Yenne on Jan. 10, 1904. From the Northwest Montana History clothing archives.
It’s likely that many girls would have worn their clothing until it fell apart. And, they would have sewn themselves new clothing from whatever material was available. Sometimes this may have been flour sacks or tablecloths.

Within the 1940’s and the nation’s near recovery from the great depression, World War II hit. This sparked fabric shortages. Women now had to further their resourcefulness. While jobs were now more open to women, the war had a toll on the Flathead Valley. This era saw knee length dresses once more, though more feminine silhouettes still dominated along with the popularity of skirts and blouses. Audrey Hepburn helped to popularize the wearing of slacks, and it is possible that girls in the valley would have wanted to copy this look.

In the era of Elvis Presley and Marylin Monroe, there was a greater amount of choice for young women's fashion. Some fashion took on a more feminine approach, with longer, poofier skirts, and Dior’s “New Look.” While another approach was more relaxed, like the Dairy Queen Uniform of this time. Young women could now be found working summer jobs, and school had come a long way

from seating arrangements that divided the girls and boys.

Girls' fashion had evolved immensely from poofy sleeves to pants which had become more popular by the decade. In just sixty years so much change occurred in fashion for young ladies attending Central School and just as much changed socially in their favor. Girls now had not only the freedom to vote, but now the opportunity to dress how they wanted. They were no longer burdened by bustles and hoop skirts, these young women could now play sports, ride bikes, work jobs, and were not restricted by clothing norms.

While the museum has the Montgomery Ward catalog, and a few examples of dress from this period, there has been some preservation bias. The garments saved and donated to the Northwest Montana History Museum are mostly formal clothing. There aren’t truly many examples of informal daily wear clothing. In this case, preservation bias is often shown by the original wearers keeping their formal clothes safe by not wearing them daily and storing them away. Another way this affects the museum’s collection is

by the mere fact that the day-to-day clothes would often be worn until beyond repair and/or not deemed important enough to save, which then makes them unlikely to be preserved for generations to come.


How the West Was Worn: Bustles and Buckskins on the Wild Frontier, by; Chris Enss 1895 Montgomery Ward & Co Catalog reprint Northwest Montana History Museum


Sophie M. Hebert (pronounced aybear) is a local high school junior, who enjoys participating in theatre, spending time with family and friends, reading, knitting, the occasional bout of writing, and history.

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Ruth Hewett, Kalispell circa 1915, courtesy of the Northwest Montana History Museum’s Looking Back Collection.
1930s dress from the Northwest Montana History clothing archives.

Help Your Body Help Itself

I was born and raised in rural Northeastern Arizona on old Route 66. Just about dead middle between Flagstaff and the New Mexico border. One of the many unique things about living in Arizona is the lack of falling back and springing forward. I’m talking about daylight savings time of course. We did not participate.

I bring this up because as I am sitting down typing this we are coming up on the “spring forward” edition of daylight savings time. This seems to be the one that folks like the least. Is it the loss of one hour of sleep? Or is it the staying darker longer in the mornings that is problematic? Imagine if we didn’t spring forward though and sunrise started at like 4 a.m. in July.

I really think it’s just bad timing. We just survived the hardest part of winter when the sun doesn’t come out until 8 a.m. We’ve watched it get earlier and earlier, before 7 a.m. even, only to see it go back to almost 8 a.m. again. We should spring forward in May but what do I know, I’m just a dentist.

If you all didn’t know a Dentist is a Doctor. A Doctor of the Oral Cavity. And just like all other pseudo doctors, you know who you are, podiatrists, optometrists, chiropractors, we also have a pretty thorough knowledge of the entire human body. I happen to have a B.S. in Biology which required me to complete Human Anatomy and Physiology at an undergraduate level. Then in Dental School, we did it all over again at a graduate school level which involved dissecting our own cadavers.

What can I say about the Human Body after all that education and years of practice in the field of Dentistry? That it has an incredible capacity that only a small percentage of the human population has even glimpsed. A capacity to endure, to heal, to survive. It really is a vessel for our spirit, soul, essence, whatever you want to call it. A vessel that should be used and cared for in the pursuit of purpose, happiness, and meaning in this life.

Let’s talk about endurance. I may have mentioned in one of my 70+ earlier 406 Women articles that when I moved to the Flathead Valley I was astounded when I saw, let’s call them “BadAsses,” riding their bikes up Going to the Sun Road, or climbing Big Mountain on their skis. In my head I was like, “good for them but hell no.” I was never ever ever going to do that.

It didn’t take long until a neighbor of mine said, “hey man you know we ride our bikes up Going-to-theSun Road during the full moon, you should come it’s only 8 miles.” Yeah, 8 miles uphill. But I consented and it was HARD. But eventually I found myself rounding the final turns and leveling off next to a sign that read “Welcome to Logan’s Pass.” It was then I

began to realize that it’s not the body that will limit us, but the mind.

Now, 10 years later, I find myself biking up the road as often as I can, often starting at Avalanche instead of the loop doubling the distance. I find myself regularly skinning up Big Mountain at 5:30 a.m. because it allows me to see some amazing sunrises, get some amazing exercise, get some amazing time to think and reflect, and get some amazing turns on an empty slope. I have learned that if I care for this physical body, it will be obedient to the desires of the mind.

Before I write my next installment in this magazine, I will have traveled to Alaska for my first time in order to do five days of touring in mountains only accessible by bush plane and my legs. Do I know it’s going to be the hardest thing I have ever done physically? Yes. Do I know that my body is capable? Yes. Do I know that I have the mental fortitude to push through? There’s only one way to find out.

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What we might not actually consider is the body is in a constant state of healing and renewal.

Let’s talk about the body’s amazing ability to heal itself. What we might not actually consider is the body is in a constant state of healing and renewal. There is a term that us biology majors are very familiar with and that term is Homeostasis. Put simply it’s the body’s systems that maintain internal stability in response to variable external conditions.

These systems are very sensitive and specific and are regulated chemically. Our bodies have sensors everywhere always collecting data and tweaking levels to keep us in our optimal zones. Why do our wounds need to form a blood clot? To reduce the loss of blood which would lead to a loss in blood pressure which would reduce the efficiency of every function our cardiovascular system carries out which would lead to us “clocking out.” Why do our hands and feet get cold first when we’re out skiing? Because our body is maintaining an optimal temperature around our vital organs and has to sacrifice somewhere. Fingers and toes are not vital to survival in the body's eyes.

Sometimes as I start writing I have a point I’m trying to make and maybe don’t know for sure how I’m going to get there. It should always relate to dentistry in some way right? So the point I want to drive home is to ask ourselves, are we caring for our physical bodies in a manner that assists in the body’s ability to maintain homeostasis? Are we helping it help itself? I’m talking physically, nutritionally, emotionally, spiritually, psychologically, etc.

Inflammation is a hot button topic in health and nutrition over the last couple decades. We have learned that excess sugar causes chronic internal inflammation in addition to other things that certain individuals might be sensitive to, like lactose or gluten and so many other allergens. What does chronic inflammation mean to us? It means a constant elevated immune response that can increase the frequency of illness in addition to zapping us of energy.

One area of the body that is very susceptible to inflammation is our gingiva, or gums. Almost all of us have a spot or two that bleeds when we floss or brush. If we don’t have impeccable dental hygiene techniques at home it’s inevitable that we will develop a build-up of plaque between the gums and the teeth. This creates a rough surface and the body will start to identify the “rough” teeth as foreign objects and initiate an inflammatory response with the intended goal of eliminating this “foreign” tooth from the body.

How is this accomplished, by dissolving the jawbone that holds our teeth tightly in place. This unfortunately increases the depths of our gingival pockets making it even harder to clean only making the inflammation greater. To put it in perspective, if you have generalized gum inflammation (aka gingivitis) it’s the equivalent of having a bleeding sore the size of your hand on your body. It can be a major source of inflammation in your body and has a big impact on your overall health and homeostasis. A whole-body health and wellness goal should absolutely consider your oral health.

This is a dental hygienist's main purpose to clean the areas of your teeth that your toothbrush and floss simply can’t do very well in order to prevent inflammation and bone loss. I’m not saying you’re not doing a good job but every once in a while you need to get that car detailed. Get the quarters and french fries out from under the passenger seat.

I can safely sit here and claim at the end of this article that I'm in the best physical condition of my life. Not for any vanity or aesthetic purpose, but because it’s what is necessary to endure the recreational activities that I enjoy. I owe this to so many inspirational humans in my close circle who are examples of what is possible when both the mind and the body are strong, and I hope that in turn I might be somewhat inspiring to someone else. I’m just trying to keep up.

Thanks for Reading.

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