406 Woman VOL. 14 No. 3 Business

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8. Artist LeAnn Talago

16. An Estate Planning Toolkit

Profile 12. Genesis Kitchen 32. Solciety Fitness

Health 20. Stay Healthy this Winter 22. More Than Just a Number


26. Staying on Track with Health Goals

34. 23 Saloons, Montana History

30. I Am Woman

36. Child Bridge

38. Dr Miller

View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m


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Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com Copyright©2021 Skirts Publishing

Like Father Like Daughter,

LeAnn Talago

Pursues Her Dream as an

Artist by Alanis Stallknecht

In the winter of 2016, an article written by Nancy Dewar, “Making Art Work: An Interview with Master Woodworking Craftsman Dan Talago,” was published in 406 Woman. The questionnaire delved into Dan Talago’s passion for art and craftsmanship; more specifically, his woodwork. Over several decades, his art gradually bloomed into a story of success. I am deeply saddened to report that within the past year, Dan Talago passed away at the young age of 63. While he left many of us with his designs and works of art, he is survived by his daughter, LeAnn Talago. LeAnn Talago, 36, is now carving her own path as an artist, and her father’s memory is a humbling source of her inspiration. Nearly four years ago, Talago moved from New Mexico back to Whitefish, Mont., after she found out her father was ill. It was during the time of his passing that Talago found herself submerging her feelings into her art as a form of meditation. “I try to connect my personal experience with grief and the memory of my dad with my art,” she said. Talago’s art looks different from her father’s work. Instead of woodwork, Talago’s main focus is acrylics on canvas. She also enjoys painting with oils, painting with watercolors, drawing with pen and ink, and lastly, sketching with pencils. Talago has been told that oils sell significantly better, but her passion remains attached to acrylics.


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“I primarily love the line and flow of acrylics on canvas,” said Talago.

Talago can be found creating lines and flow in the comfort of her own home. It was a natural decision for her to mold the spare bedroom into a studio once she moved back to be with her father. According to Talago, her artwork hangs throughout the house as a reminder of father, who insisted that she should never give up on the pursuit of her life’s dream. In order to fulfill this dream, Talago must conquer several challenges that are blocking her way. These challenges include the time it takes to create a mas-

terpiece and the dedication it takes to build her savings, which is necessary to both order prints and then showcase them in art and craft shows. However, with the reassurance of her father’s words, Talago is unafraid of these difficult tasks.

“My dad gave me the confidence to stick to something I knew was a financial risk and wasn’t the safest game to play. He would say, ‘Do you want to do something in your life you enjoy, or something that pays the bills?’” said Talago. Currently, Talago pays her bills with the money she earns at her job as a housekeeper. In between the hustle of a full-time day job, she commits her free time to submerging herself into a medium. Typically, she allots herself anywhere between 10-20 hours a week in her studio to do so. Depending on the medium, it can take anywhere from one to


LeAnn Talago

“My dad gave me the confidence to stick to something I knew was a financial risk and wasn’t the safest game to play. He would say, ‘Do you want to do something in your life you enjoy, or something that pays the bills?’” three months to complete a piece of art; a simple sketch may take a single day, while acrylics on a canvas or oil paintings may take a larger sum of time. “I’m trying to scale it down because I can see how that seems like a long time,” said Talago, “but you know when there’s more in it, and that takes time. I can picture the buffering wheel moving on my computer; it’s buffering but it’s not all there yet. Whatever nature it is that you’re painting, it takes as long as it needs to get the actual download.”

When the “download” is final, you’ll find pieces immersed with highly textured brush strokes and vibrant hues. Within each piece lies a resemblance of Talago’s favorite activities and memorable moments. A lot of her pieces are tied to the elements of water because the river is a happy place for her. Several others resemble the overwhelming colors of the outdoors, or the heartache she felt during the passing of her father. No matter the reasoning of her art, each canvas resembles a place of peacefulness and evokes a hidden depth.

Soon, everyone will be able to take a closer look at her art in person and resonate with Talago’s passion. In the winter of 2021, a minimum of four pieces will be showcased at the Kandahar Lodge in Whitefish, Mont., and her artwork will be inspired by landscape designs. Showcasing her work at Kandahar Lodge will be a significant step towards becoming an artist like her father. As well, Talago has taken the step to create her own Instagram filled with inspired art pieces. Her artwork is showcased on her page, @leann.talagoart, which includes both acrylics on canvas and oil paintings, so far. During her transition to a full-time artist, Talago has learned a great deal about herself and her style. “I can’t get glued onto the thoughts of what something should look like. I have to prepare myself to go back to pieces that I think suck and see the beauty in what I did accomplish and expand on that. Overtime, I took a little good from each piece

and I never gave up until I found my niche,” said Talago.

As Dan Talago once said in the interview with 406 Woman, “If you really want to pursue something in art, you need to go way deeper.”

It’s heartening to know his daughter is taking steps to drill deeper and pursue the life he always encouraged her to reach out and take. For any inquiries regarding LeAnn Talago’s art, she may be contacted at artbyleann@gmail.com. Alanis Stallknecht graduated from the University of Montana Western in 2018 with a Bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in Professional Communications. Originally from the Flathead Valley, Stallknecht spends her free time outside, whether that be at the lake or hiking, and time with her friends and family.



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The ‘Genesis’of By Mary Wallace Photo by ACE Photography & Design

Never underestimate the power of how a chance meeting can influence someone’s life passion. At age 16, a random taste of truffle oil and casual conversation with an Italian chef in NYC sparked David Cohen’s lifelong fascination with the power of food. While growing up he says, his family was steeped in a love of food, but his focus has changed and he now not only seeks foods that are delicious, but also foods that assist the human body. When David met his wife, Sheri, he was suffering long term effects from a work-related injury, and it was she (using a combination of food and fitness) who mentored him on a journey from pain and inflammation to health and wellness. Based on the success of this lifestyle change, they wanted to share all they learned with others and the Cohens opened Genesis Kitchen in 2012 with one primary aim - to offer the best foods possible that serve both the body AND the palette well. David grew up in Long Island, New York and his mother was a public relations specialist at that fateful Italian restaurant. He went to college just long enough to learn that college life wasn’t for him, and then the moved to a farm in upstate New York. He cared for chickens, hunted, fished, and learned to garden. It not only fed him, but also fed his soul and settled strongly in his heart. From then on, he knew he wanted to have a connection with well-cared-for food.


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From there he moved to New Mexico and when his job as a carpenter resulted in an injury, he started working at an organic grocery store and soon become the grocery manager. He learned a lot about our food supply chain when as the main buyer, he attended a food trade show in Los Angeles. There he encountered BIG FOOD in all its glory . . . complete with mass production and lesser quality. The disenchantment was hard to swallow, and David vowed that his life’s work was going to involve providing food to which he had a connection. He gave notice at the grocery and moved on. David could barely walk (that old carpentry injury wreaking havoc with his body) when he met Sheri. She taught him how to move better and how to eat in a way that served his body. Years before meeting David, Sheri created a food consulting service called Genesis Transformation to help people use their food to help themselves instead of harm themselves. Knowing that depravation rarely works, she found ways for her clients to replace their food addictions with tasty ‘good-foryou” alternatives. David experienced a remarkable transformation through this work and was

able to not only get completely out of pain but to also gain a high level of fitness as, Sheri was also a highly accomplished personal trainer.

Now feeling great and armed with a deeper understanding of the importance of food, David (usually with his wife and some dogs!) travelled and researched extensively to learn more about the state of our global food system. He learned that one of the essential keys to good food and good health is to “know one’s food,” including where the ingredients come from and how they have been treated all the way from the field to the table. Once he understood how successful this approach was, there was no question that he should share it with others. A place where many extra sugars and ‘other ingredients’ enter our diet are through condiments like store-bought salad dressing. David found a

He learned that one of the essential keys to good food and good health is to “know one’s food,” including where the ingredients come from and how they have been treated all the way from the field to the table. chocolates. Many of these culinary delights are unique items that the Cohens found during their world travels. They liked them so much that they wanted to offer them in the valley, working hard to find items that are both delectable and affordable. Though everything in the store (and more) is available via online ordering at www.genesiskitchen.com, they do have some customers that regularly drive all the way from Cutbank to restock their Genesis Kitchen products. “What can I say?” says David sheepishly, “We like to feed people affordable, good food!”


David Cohen

certain line of sugar-free Italian balsamic vinegars that are one of the cleanest condiments available. Further, they are not pasteurized so also provide a small probiotic benefit with each serving. It was only after David received the balsamic revelations that the massive health benefits of olive oil became known, the most striking being that olive oils provide the body with biophenols which have anti-inflammatory properties. This is no hype; the benefits are real! David has local doctors sending their patients to his store for these oils. Besides the usual doctor advice to reduce the smoking, drinking, and sugars in their lives, they have been told to add high quality oils to their cooking – a perfect (and achievable) recipe for better health. Genesis Kitchens oils are sourced typically from 12 countries. David and Sheri have traveled to some of these places to see how the oils are harvested, processed, and bottled and developed relationships with his suppliers. In their travels, they have also discovered that certain foods from certain regions have vastly different impacts on the body. For instance, wheat grown in Europe does not cause the issues that many have with our domestically grown grains, fresh olive oil is a world apart from those at the local grocery, and the ‘natural food’ industry does not always have our best interests in mind. David & Sheri have literally ‘followed their gut’ in seeking out the foods they sell in their store.

Genesis Kitchen oils are all within 6 - 8 months from harvest, and the oils are all slightly different depending on the variety of olive, the season, and the location they are harvested. The oils available in the store in the summer months likely came from the Southern Hemisphere, countries such as South Africa, Chile, Australia, and Uruguay. The ones available in the winter months come from the North; Portugal, Spain, Italy, Tunisia, and the U.S. (California). Once purchased, their olive oils

have a shelf life of approximately 8 to 12 months, all olive oil should be used within 14 months from its harvest date.

Unlike a lot of businesses that have recently been affected by shipping issues related to the pandemic, Genesis Kitchen is in relatively good shape on that front. Because his products are seasonal and his oils are on a made-to-order basis, he already has had product on order from France, Italy, and Spain. His suppliers can ship direct to his store and these oils are delivered much quicker and fresher than any products procured through all the regular supply chains, which, of course, are experiencing significant delays these days. Genesis Kitchen’s ongoing reusable bottle program has helped defray some higher costs due to glass bottle supply shortages. Customers are encouraged to bring in their clean emptied original Genesis Kitchen bottles for a refill at a discount - A winwin situation for everyone AND the environment.

Most of their flavored oils and vinegars are blended and packaged at their source and shipped to him in bulk. He does blend two vinegars locally – a Montana Aronia berry blend and two huckleberry blends – all locally sourced. “Our customers have a lot of influence on what we offer in our store,” said David. People kept asking ‘Where’s the huckleberry?’” It took him three years, one college course, and an acidified food handling certification, but he finally perfected a Dark Huckleberry Balsamic and a Rosé Wine Huckleberry White Balsamic - both local favorites. The Rosé blend is perfect in salad dressings and cooking, and it is an excellent addition to a shrub cocktail recipe.

In addition to the oils and vinegars, Genesis Kitchen customers are delighted to find the wide variety of other foods available at the local Columbia Falls store. Spices, cheeses, tinned seafood, pastas, legumes, and some of the most wonderful

The success of the original Whitefish store led to them opening a satellite location in Columbia Falls about four years ago. They eventually decided to totally relocate to the Columbia Falls location (nearest to their home). Never fear - Genesis Kitchen products can still be found in Whitefish, at the Farmer’s Stand store.

They both consider taking time to recharge and to be with family very important and they encourage their employees to do the same. The store has three part-time employees, and they feel so blessed in their hired help. They are probably one of the few local businesses that actually had people come in looking for work this summer – who wouldn’t want to work there?

The best part of David’s day is connecting with the customers, seeing someone’s day turn around, having their workers feel relaxed and happy, and their customers served and supported. “We are following my dream of working with several small producers and distributors that source fair-trade ingredients from small growers. We know where, when, and how our oils, balsamics, and food items were produced and how they can benefit the health of our customers – that is a beautiful thing,” says David.

Genesis Kitchen 270 Nucleus Ave, Columbia Falls 406-897-2667 www.genesis-kitchen.com



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An Estate Planning Toolkit

By Kelly R. O’Brien, Attorney/Partner, Measure Law

Estate planning refers to the practices that help put your life in order so you can live well now and depart with security, dignity and a legacy to pass on. Estate planning is not for the rich, it is for anyone who owns anything – and it’s never too early to start. From your first simple will, to complex trusts, it is important to build the foundation for your plan early and modify it as your family and assets grow. What happens without estate planning?

Without an estate plan, will or trust, Montana state law controls the distribution of assets upon your death...not you. These laws are known as the laws of intestate succession. Without a valid will or trust, you do not have control of who receives your assets, or who becomes the guardians of your minor children, and how they will receive their inheritance.


If estate planning documents are not in place, upon an incapacity or disability, you do not get

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to decide who is in charge of your assets and personal care decisions, and will likely be subject to state guardianship and/or conservatorship proceedings.

What is included in an estate plan?

At minimum, your estate plan should include the following elements:

• A will and/or revocable living trust • Power of attorney for financial decisions • Power of attorney for health care decisions • Living will • Beneficiary designations for investment accounts

Estate Planning Terms Beneficiary

An individual named to receive a certain asset upon death (in the case of a will) or upon a certain age or life event (if held in trust).

Beneficiary Designations

Agreements set up with financial institutions to direct payment or transfer of the account to specific individual/s, business/es or organization/s named as beneficiaries.

Durable Power of Attorney for Financial Decisions

A legal document designating another individual to make financial decisions on your behalf, and deal with financial matters in the event you are unable to make these decisions due to incapacity or disability.

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions

A legal document appointing another individual to make medical and personal decisions on your behalf, including medical consents, longterm care, and life support issues, in the event you are unable to make or communicate these decisions yourself.


A person to act in a position of trust on behalf of another person. This could be an agent under a power of attorney, a personal representative in a probate estate or a trustee.

Intestate Session

State laws that determine how to distribute the estate of someone without a will.


Estate Planning

Without an estate plan, will or trust, Montana state law controls the distribution of assets upon your death...not you. Last Will & Testament*

A will is a legal document which sets out an individual’s desires for the distribution of assets after death and appoints a personal representative to manage the administration of the estate.

2. Name, address, phone, birthday and relationship of children or other individuals, or charities you want to name as beneficiaries of your estate.

The person either named in your will or appointed under state law (if there’s no will) to provide necessary notices of your death, pay off all debts and expenses and ensure your assets are distributed to the proper individuals or organizations.

4. Name of person designated with financial power of attorney, including an alternate and second alternate.

An agreement where a separate entity, the trust, holds legal title of assets and manages those assets on behalf of another individual(s). A trust is created by a settlor/ grantor and the assets of the trust are managed by a trustee for the benefit of the beneficiary. During the lifetime of the grantor, they retain complete control over the trust and can amend, transfer or sell assets of the trust, or terminate the trust at any point.

6. Specific gifts - any gifts to be distributed prior to the distribution of the remainder of your estate, such as: a charitable gift, a lump sum, a piece of jewelry, etc.

Personal Representative/Executor

Revocable Living Trust*


An individual or institution named in a trust with the responsibility of holding, managing and distributing assets for the beneficiaries according to the terms of the trust. *Both wills and trusts are legal documents that describe how and when to divide and distribute your assets upon your death. Whether you need a simple will or a more complex revocable living trust depends on your specific situation.

3. Name of personal representative, including an alternate and second alternate.

5. Name of person designated with healthcare power of attorney, including an alternate and second alternate.

7. Your specific wishes for the overall distribution of the remainder of your estate. For example: everything to a spouse, equal shares to children, half to a child at a certain age, half to a charity, etc. 8. Guardians for minor children, and alternate guardians. 9. Name of the individual or institution to act as trustee, in the event a trust is necessary. 10. Any special instructions or desires for your estate, the distribution of your remains or other considerations.

Discuss your circumstances with an estate planning attorney to determine which makes sense for you and your family.

Estate Planning Checklist

Without an estate plan, will or trust, Montana state law controls the distribution of assets upon your death...not you. By participating in the estate planning process, you can better prepare yourself and your family for the unexpected so that you can control important decisions for yourself and your loved ones.

1. A list of your Assets - all property you own including real estate, personal property, bank accounts, stocks, bonds, IRAs and anything else you own except death benefits on life insurance.

This article is intended for educational and information purposes only, it is not intended to act as legal advice.

Once you are ready to begin the estate planning process, here is a checklist of items you will need to bring to your attorney to begin your will or trust process:

Kelly O’Brien is a Montana estate planning expert at Measure Law with more than 20 years of experience in estate, business and real estate law. You can reach her at 406.752.6373 or visit www.measurelaw.com.



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Let’s Stay

Healthy This

Winter Written by Keirsten Alton, The Balanced Pharmacist

Summer is almost over and soon we will be heading into fall. This is a great time to recharge our immune systems. Summers in the Flathead are jam packed and the last thing we remember to take each day are our supplements. Time to drag them out of the cupboard and get ready for winter illnesses. If you have school age children it is important to prepare them as well. After all, whatever cough or cold they pick up at school they bring home to you. Here are a few simple tips to keep your entire family healthy this winter. The best strategy is one of prevention and a robust healthy immune system. This is the time of year when it pays to pay attention to your body. There are many strategies which work to help boost your immune system and prevent you from catching every cold and flu bug that you come across this winter. First of all it is important to eat healthy if you want to have a healthy immune system. Sugar suppresses our immune system and wreaks havoc on our digestive tract. Truly, the main brain of our body is our digestive tract. Eating lots of green vegetables, fresh fruits and whole grains will help keep the good bacteria thriving and the bad bacteria on the run! If you feel bloated after meals, burp or have heartburn then this is a good sign that your digestive tract is not functioning like it should. Eliminating processed foods that are full of preservatives and artificial additives is a start.


Probiotics, good bacteria, are essential for your immune system and for proper digestion. A diet high in processed foods and stress kills off the

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good bacteria, making you feel tired, sluggish and impairing your immune system. There are over 100 trillion microbes in your gut. Many of these are beneficial and help prevent colds, viral infections and stomach bugs. If your gut is a wreck you will get sick more often. This goes for your children as well. Researchers also believe these beneficial bacteria may play a role in preventing obesity, help cut the risk of kidney stones and affect our cancer risk. We all know by now that obesity is the single biggest risk factor for severe Covid hospitalizations. All these beneficial little bacteria have a pretty big job and unfortunately the typical American diet is not working in their favor. One simple way to increase the good bacteria in your gut is with fermented foods. Yes, grandma was right. Sauerkraut (a fermented food) is good for you. Yogurt and Kombucha are two other helpful foods full of good bacteria. In addition to a healthy diet, hand washing is an effective way of preventing the spread of viral and bacterial infections. Research has shown

that proper hand washing with soap is just as effective if not more than using hand sanitizers which are full of alcohol and chemicals. Many practitioners also feel the hand sanitizers destroy beneficial bacteria on your skin which are needed to prevent infection. I think this is especially important for children whose skin is more porous and more sensitive to chemicals. We need to be mindful of what we put on our skin as it does get into our blood stream. I cringe when I think of all the chemical hand sanitizers we have been exposing ourselves to in the last year. Washing our hands with simple soap and water gets rid of the germs in a much safer manner than toxic hand sanitizers. If you must use a hand sanitizer, opt for a natural plant based one. There are several nutrients which best support immune function.

Vitamin D is the one nutrient I recommend for everyone who lives in the Northwest. Unless you can get above the clouds on Big Mountain, you are probably not getting enough vitamin D3. D3

This is the time of year when it pays to pay attention to your body. There are many strategies which work to help boost your immune system and prevent you from catching every cold and flu bug that you come across this winter.

The second nutrient I use often, especially with my Covid immune support protocols and treatment, is zinc. Zinc helps your immune system fight off invading viruses and bacteria. It is also necessary for proper wound healing. Be careful not to overdose on zinc. Smaller doses such as 10-15 mg can be taken daily to boost your immune system. If you are coming down with a viral infection you can bump these doses up to 30-50 mg three times a day for short periods of time. Make sure and take your zinc with food as it can cause nausea and upset stomach when taken on an empty stomach. Zinc is also critical for proper hormone metabolism.

When it comes to herbal immune support, my favorite combinations are Sambucol and Umcka. These help reduce the severity of the viral infections and decrease the time you are sick. They work best when taken at the first signs of a cold or flu. Sambucol contains an extract from elderberries. Many studies have shown elderberry to be a potent antiviral. Umcka needs to be dosed as soon as you feel symptoms of a cold or flu and can help cut the time you are sick by several days. These are both safe for children when dosed appropriately. Adding 1000 to 2000 milligrams of vitamin C can also help speed your recovery. Gemmotherapy is a herbal treatment using tinctures derived from the live buds of plants. These amazing remedies target certain organs or parts of the body. They are used quite often in France and other European countries. For children and infants, the two remedies I recommend are Briar Rose for upper ear, nose and throat infections and European Hornbeam for lung congestion. These remedies can also be used preventatively for children who suffer from chronic or frequent infections. If your child suffers from chronic ear or sinus infections you can use the Briar Rose daily to help prevent them. Gemmotherapy can be used in conjunction with antibiotics. They are simple and cost effective.

Lastly, it is important to remember that if you do end up needing to take antibiotics this winter, you need to fortify the good bacteria in your gut when you are done with the antibiotic. Antibiotics kill off the bad bugs but they also kill off the good bacteria in your intestinal tract. This can cause diarrhea, constipation and upset stomach. I suggest taking a probiotic for at least a month after the antibiotics are finished. Don’t forget to laugh often and stay healthy!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at help@thebalancedpharmacist.com. Keirsten Alton, Holistic Pharmacist

is very important for our immune system and for our sense of well being. Winter is a long dreary season in Montana. Seasonal affect disorder, or SAD, can be caused by low vitamin D levels. This results in suppressed immune system and depression. Most adults can easily supplement with 5000 i.u. of Vitamin D3 a day during the winter months. It is a good idea to have your practitioner test your vitamin D level so you know if you are taking the right amount. Ideal levels are in the upper 1/3 of the range on a blood test. Levels in the lower ranges may not give the immune, mood and cancer prevention benefits.



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More Than Just A Number The pandemic impacted so many parts of so many people’s lives. While battling COVID-19, each of us have taken extra precautions to protect ourselves and others and have made unprecedented changes to each of our lives. In doing so, we knew our social lives would change, but perhaps didn’t immediately realize that the pandemic would have another very serious consequence. In March of 2020, uncertainty around COVID and its transmission caused many things to be stopped abruptly—including our best tool in the fight against breast cancer, mammography. Early detection of breast cancer through mammography and other screening tools is critical to a successful battle against breast cancer. Diagnoses in early stages mean there are more options available to patients, more tools for doctors, and a better chance at beating cancer. Delays in mammograms means delays in cancer diagnosis and delays in


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Written by Holly Apple & Mady Rigg

treatment— each leads to the other and stacks up to potentially deadly consequences.

As information about the spread of COVID became available, Logan Health worked quickly to implement new standards of care, including increased cleaning and changed scheduling protocols that made mammography services readily accessible and available. Through a staged and careful plan, mammography services were ramped up starting in May 2020 and were back at full capacity in October 2020. However, even as access improved, women were slow to return to receive their annual mammogram.

Early into 2021, the breast imaging team realized that women in our community were not returning as expected. Because many women had not received their screening mammograms in spring of 2020, there was no trigger in our reporting system to send a new notice in Spring 2021—which meant that many women had not seen or heard from us in nearly two years. Additionally, this spring there were just a few new patients. Normally, Logan Health sees an influx of new patients each year who are entering into recommended screening age and

beginning their annual mammography routine. The summer volumes followed this pattern and continued to be sluggish.

“There was clearly a problem and we needed a solution quickly,” shared Melissa Kaptanian, MD, breast surgeon at Logan Health. “A pandemic doesn’t stop breast cancer, it still exists even if people aren’t looking for it.” With worries about negative outcomes mounting, a team was gathered to come up with a plan.

The team, including representatives from Logan Health’s breast imaging, breast surgery, population health, quality, marketing and scheduling departments, gathered together to discuss what could be done to recapture women who were overdue. The team decided that the most effective way to get patients in for their screening mammograms would be to contact them directly. First, they created a list of people who were overdue by 2-3 years and called them personally. With the help of population health and scheduling, a list of 2,556 patients was scrubbed, compiled, and called by mid-July 2021. The team was able to con-


Logan Health

Logan Health hopes to reach many more women who are past due for their screening mammograms. The goal is to make every mammography appointment convenient, quick and as comfortable as possible. nect with 385 patients, getting them scheduled and back on track with their annual screenings. In addition to the phone calls, the radiologist assistants in the mammography department created a letter to remind those patients that had not yet returned that they were overdue for their annual screening. So far, 589 letters have been sent and about 30 already scheduled.

One of the women that was called mentioned that she would have continued putting off her screening had she not gotten the call. She later learned that she had developed cancer and is currently in treatment at Logan Health. “It would have been a different story had she waited another year,” Dr. Kaptanian explained. “She was so grateful to have gotten the phone call, as it may have entirely altered her life. It showed her that Logan Health and her medical team really cares about her and are willing to go the extra mile.”

The overdue reminder letters and calls are great examples of the ways Logan Health is ensuring women get their important screening mammo-

grams. But, those measures alone are only part of the hard work that has been done to reduce barriers for this service.

Since mammography availability was restored in October 2020, Logan Health has consistently added measures to make the service more accessible. Patients now can access mammography in Kalispell on a walk-in, no appointment necessary basis. They are able to self-refer, allowing women who may not have regular doctor’s appointments, to receive screening mammograms. Appointments are now available during lunch hour, on Saturdays, and can be scheduled online. Logan Health has a mobile mammography unit, The Winkley Mobile Mammography Coach, which travels through rural Montana 19 days a month. Insurance plans cover 100% of the cost of screening mammograms, and if someone is uninsured, Save a Sister, a partnership between Logan Health and Flathead CityCounty Health Department, is here to help them pay.

Through these efforts Logan Health hopes to reach many more women who are past due for their screening mammograms. The goal is to make every mammography appointment convenient,

quick and as comfortable as possible. “The mammography techs and I have received many thanks from patients about reminders to come in and appreciation for how easy we’ve made it,” says Holly Apple, CRA, RT (R)(M)(BD), Logan Health’s lead mammographer. “By taking time to make those personal calls, we are able to make people feel like they’re not just a number to us. We really do care about each one of them and about the health of our community.” None of this would be possible without the exemplary experiences and care given by our mammography technologists, the fantastic integrated teamwork between departments, and Logan Health’s commitment to putting patients first. If you or someone you love is past due for their screening mammogram please take the time to be screened as soon as possible. Early detection saves lives. Too often women let their own health care fall to the wayside, as they take care of others. By reminding someone, you may change their life. We hope you will join us in asking your loved ones if they have gotten their annual screening mammogram this holiday season. Visit logan.org/breasthealth for more information about Logan Health’s breast health program.



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can I stay Q:on How track with my health goals this holiday season? By Gabrielle Cahoon Photos by ACE Photography & Design

A: Remind yourself why you have decided to become the healthiest version of you and invite your friends and family to join you. The Holidays are one of the happiest and most memorable times of the year. We celebrate with our friends, family, and collogues by exchanging gifts, attending parties, drinking a little too much, and eating delicious meals. With all the extra festivities, staying on top of your health and fitness goals does not have to be a challenge. It can be easy. It is all about the mindset you choose. Here are five tips to help keep you on track with your health and fitness goals. Motivation challenges smoothie or even pancake batter. Try sauteed spinach, kale, or broccoli with your eggs instead of toast. For lunch, wrap your usual sandwich up in a collard leaf instead of bread. Use a blend of arugula, spinach, and kale in your salad instead of iceberg lettuce. If you have a snack in the afternoon, try making homemade kale chips. This is one of my daughter’s favorite afternoon snacks.

Eat something green

Vegan “Cheesy” Kale Chip Recipe

1: Eat something green at every meal

This is something my household tries to do daily, even with a six-year-old. Adding dark leafy greens to your diet like kale, arugula, spinach, collards, and chard can improve your overall health. Dark leavy greens are good for reducing belly bloat, managing stress, balancing blood sugar levels, gut health, boosting your immune system, and giving your skin a natural glow. For breakfast toss half an avocado in your smoothie instead of a banana. Throw in a scoop of greens powder into your


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2 bunches of kale ½ tsp Pink Sea Salt ½ cup soaked raw cashews 6 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast 1 roasted red bell pepper 3 Tbsp Lemon Juice 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar

Directions: • Soak the cashews for 4 hours or overnight.

• Tear kale into large pieces and massage with salt in a large bowl.

• Put the remaining ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. • Massage kale again with “cheese” mix until leaves are coated. (I like mine thickly coated for more crunch)

• Place in a food dehydrator at 105 for 12+ hours. If you do not have a food dehydrator, set the oven to 325 degrees, and thinly spread the kale on baking sheets. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until desired consistency.

Start your dinner with a salad loaded with veggies. Make your greens sparkle with color by adding in red peppers, carrots, avocado, roasted brussels sprouts, roasted beats, heart of palm, and lemon juice.

2: Start a Holiday Fitness Challenge with your Friends and Family

Recently my husband was invited to a 30 day push up challenge with a group of friends. For 30 days, each member of the group checks in with each other and sends a video of themselves doing their push-ups. The goal is 100 push-ups a day. The accountability and check-ins keep him motivated and so far, he has not missed a day. This is an excellent idea to do with your friends and family over the holiday season. From Thanksgiving to Christmas, invite your friends to a holiday 30-day challenge. Examples: Push-ups, 100 crunches, 5K a day, Total Body Toner-25 push-ups, 25 crunches, 25 squats, 1 mile walk/run, or 30 burpees a day. The more people you invite, the more motivation you are stirring up amongst your friends.


health goals

Scavenger hunt

Take time for yourself

3: Alcohol Free Holiday Season

While an occasional drink more than likely will not damage to your system, the cumulative effects of alcohol can cause concern for your health. Alcohol is a toxin and causes inflammation of the liver, alters your behavior and blood sugar levels, reduces your immune function, and is linked to high blood pressure. Can you imagine how you would feel if you woke up every morning for 30 days from Thanksgiving to Christmas without a drop of alcohol in your system? The energy you would have! The things you could accomplish without feeling sluggish, hungover, and tired after a holiday party. Invite your friends to stay accountable with you. If you are going to a party, bring your own non-alcoholic beverage and put it in a fancy wine glass. No one will know you are going alcohol free if you do not want to tell them. I usually bring a “Bubbly Rose” kombucha with me to parties. This way I have the same feeling as drinking with my friends without the negative effects on my body. Remember that only you are responsible for how you choose to feel.

in the woods before the big meal. If it is snowing, how about a snowman decorating party.

5: Schedule 30 Minutes of Movement for Yourself Every Day

I get up at 5:30 a.m. every morning to make sure I get in at least 30 minutes of exercise before I start my day. Being alcohol free makes this easier. Since I start my workday around 8:00 a.m., I know that if I do not make the time in my day to workout, it will not happen. The benefits of at least 30 minutes of exercise a day can help manage a healthy weight, boost energy, improve your mood, reduces stress, increases bone density, and better sleep.

4: Game Day

Before the big Thanksgiving Day feast invite your friends and family for an event or game day. Meet at one of the parks or trails and organize a group game or event such as: kick ball, dodge ball, ultimate frisbee, or a scavenger hunt. For a group scavenger hunt make two color coded boxes: Yellow for kids and Red for adults. Fill the boxes with healthy and fun treats such as apples with peanut butter packets, gift certificates to local stores, recipes of your favorite holiday foods, or homemade goodies you like to make. This is a fun way to get your whole family outside for a walk

Gabrielle Cahoon is the owner of Studio 48 Pilates and Fitness in Whitefish, Montana as well as the creator of www.mydailyreform.com. As a STOTT PILATES Instructor Trainer, Foundation Training Level 2 Instructor, and Personal Trainer, she specializes in pain management through functional movement to help her clients be the best versions of themselves.



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I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar! Written by Dr. Jenna Huff

I sometimes get asked why I chose to become an OB/GYN. Most women aren’t super excited about going to their annual exams or they feel like dealing with pregnant ladies might be a lot. It does seem like a weird job to many. I chose to go into OB/GYN for lots of different reasons, but one of the biggest ones is to be able to take care of women. I have seen a lot of different women in my life and career, and women never cease to amaze me with their strength, their resilience, and their heart. I have seen women who have lost their husbands who go on to raise successful children while continuing their education and working their tails off to be a good mom and a successful woman. I have seen women who have gotten out of hard, abusive relationships that work to raise their children and show them how to be outstanding men who are better than their fathers. I have seen women take amazing care of their kids, being home day after day with the thankless job of being a stay-at-home mom while doing the very best to give their children the support and love that they need. I have seen women who are so sick with chemo they can’t eat, are in pain, and can barely move who get up to help their daughters get ready for their school pictures. I have seen women who are teachers who on the fly have had to figure out how to teach remotely/ in a mask/a combination of in school and online with little resources or direction while trying to still be able to reach each and every child with the support and love that they need.


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I have seen women who start new jobs that they didn’t even realize how much time and effort was involved who learn and grow and crush their new position. I have seen women who have to take care of sick kids who continue to do everything they can to help their work family in times of need while being mom/nurse/support at home. I have seen women who have babies in a tough situation, only to rise up and tackle on the challenge of parenting even when they themselves are struggling. I have seen women who give up their free time to go help others in a time of need without being asked. I have seen women work together to saves people’s lives, who work as a unit in an emergency that requires composure, knowledge, and skill. I have seen women who have experienced pregnancy loss who are heartbroken go on to find the strength to grieve and go on to support others who are going through the same thing.

I have seen women whose anxiety is so severe they can hardly leave the house who have the strength to ask for help.

I have seen women who parent very challenging kids who time and time again work to do their very best to support their kids and be the advocate they need, trying to find hope in all situations.

I have seen women who make the choice to carry a baby for someone who can’t have one on their own, giving of their time and their body to make someone else’s dreams come true. I have seen women who struggle with fertility who are their best advocate and do whatever they can even when the outcome might not be what they are hoping for. I have seen women who have overcome an extremely heartbreaking and demoralizing upbringing who have worked and worked and worked to overcome addiction and try to be the best mom in order to break the cycle and have their children have a better life than they did.



I have seen women who give up their free time to go help others in a time of need without being asked. I have seen women who become caretakers of their parents/spouses/children who give of themselves constantly while mourning the loss of what that person used to be.

I have seen women who at the end of their life who still worry about their kids/families/friends because they have spent their whole lives putting other people before them. I have seen women who have medical issues that affect their lives who continue to do what needs to be done to make the world keep going around. I have seen women who are young and scared that maybe something is wrong but are brave enough to tell someone so they can get the help they need. I have seen women who think they can’t do anymore, push any longer, give anything else who then muster up the strength to continue and prove even themselves wrong about how strong they really are. I have seen women scared of surgery but are willing to do anything to keep their unborn child safe in a dangerous situation. I have seen women who have been hurt and abused and discounted their whole lives who still have the

fight to try and try and continue to try even when no one else believes they can. I have seen women who have been told they can’t do something turn around and work their tails off to make that very thing happen, proving wrong all the doubters that they met along the way. I have seen women who have been told who they can and can’t love who have the strength to love completely and freely and be an example to what love could be like. There are countless more examples of a woman’s ability to love, care, and fight that I see on a daily basis. I think of the holidays as a time when women work to make the season a season of love, fun, and happy memories, regardless of the time and effort that is involved in making it happy. I see women who love their people without judgement but then are quick to judge themselves, striving for perfection which is unattainable. Women comparing themselves to someone else who may look different, act different, or be able to do something they cannot. We all have our stories and I don’t know a single person who isn’t trying to do the best that they can. I feel grateful to be able to support the supporters, to love the lovers, and fight for the fighters that I see day in and day out where I work. My hope for you this season it to look at yourself from the outside to see you how others

see you and see all the amazing accomplishments you have done in your life. Keep fighting the good fight!

“She needed a hero, so that’s what she became” - Anonymous Dr. Jenna Huff joined the Kalispell OB/GYN practice and Kalispell Regional Medical Center staff in 2017. She attended medical school at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and did her residency at Akron General Medical Center in Akron, Ohio and practiced obstetrics and gynecology in Loveland, Colorado. Dr. Huff is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology. She specializes in normal and high-risk obstetrics, contraception management, abnormal bleeding and minimally invasive surgery, including robotics. She enjoys caring for women throughout their life, from puberty through childbearing years and then through menopause, and strives to develop a supportive relationship with her patients. She believes in educating women and helping them make the best possible decisions to improve their quality of life. Dr. Huff is a Montana native and she, her husband and three young children enjoy everything that the Flathead Valley has to offer.



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From left to right: Jess Brennecke, Becky Arnold, and Ashley Turner

What is Solciety Fitness?

Meet founders Becky Arnold, Jess Brennecke, and Ashley Turner By Kristen Hamilton Photos by ACE Photography & Design

There is a new boutique fitness studio in downtown Kalispell that sincerely wants to enhance your life through movement and fellowship. How are they doing that? By offering barre, yoga, strength and cardio classes with lively playlists, top-level instructors, and fresh choreography. It also doesn’t hurt that they have an awesome location that is modern, clean, and bright. Furthermore, if you can’t make it in person, you can livestream their most popular classes. Have little ones at home? Solciety Fitness currently offers daycare Monday-Friday from 9:00-10:00 a.m. Co-owners, Becky Arnold, Jess Brennecke, and Ashley Turner share their story on becoming successful business partners. Learn what makes these women thrive in business and personal lives.

1. Where are you from and how long have you been in Montana?

BA: Born and raised in Minnesota, I moved to Montana in 2000, living here on and off for 14 years. JB: Born and raised in Oklahoma, I moved to Montana eight years ago when we had our first baby girl and decided we wanted to raise our family here.


AT: Born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, I moved to Kalispell eight years ago when I married my husband who is from the area.

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2. What was a job early on that taught you something that is useful today?

BA: I learned so much from my position doing marketing, trade show sales and public relations for a Portland-based small business turned global niche brand called Sock It to Me. The founder was a badass, and I watched her business grow before my very eyes. I took note of the decisions that put her above the competition -- namely, her commitment to quality, ability to take risks and deep appreciation for her staff. JB: I started my very first business at 20 years old, where I learned to show up, work hard, and take risks. AT: I used to bus tables at a fine dining restaurant, before I was old enough to be a server, and that taught me the importance of humbling, hard work. To put ego aside and serve others.

3. What has been your biggest challenge in your business?

BA: Offering a schedule of classes that suits each of our members. In the end, I realize we can’t accommodate everyone’s schedule, but oh, do we try! JB: Work/life balance. Understanding there truly is no such thing as balance, ha! The balance ebbs and flows, and I’ve learned to ride that wave.

AT: Finding the balance between motherhood and business owner has by far been my biggest challenge.

4. Who has influenced you the most in business?

BA: I find my inspiration from a handful of friends who have developed successful small businesses founded on servant leadership, intentional work/ life balance, brilliant marketing, and passion. JB: My co-owners. We all have small kids and families that are so important to us, yet I see the same desire to reach our community in them and it keeps me on course.

profile} Solciety Fitness

I find tremendous enjoyment from teaching barre and watching women become stronger not only physically but mentally, too. It’s one of my passions. For women to feel seen and to see what they are capable of. AT: My husband, who is also a business owner, inspires me daily. His work ethic, tenacity, and leadership skills are all qualities that I admire and glean off.

5. What are you most proud of accomplishing?

BA: Being a wife and mom has been a great joy and remains the foundation to my success. At Solciety, my greatest accomplishment is making our staff and members feel welcomed, known and loved. JB: My marriage and two little girls. They are the reason behind everything that I do.

AT: Becoming a mom has always been a dream of mine. Now after three babies, I can say motherhood is by far the hardest yet most rewarding job that I will ever have. However, becoming a business owner wasn’t on my radar, and I am so proud of stepping out of my comfort zone to embark on this new adventure.

6. What’s the best advice you ever took?

serving others with a commitment to excellence and a commitment to who you are, not sacrificing your values for the sake of monetary gain, prestige, or power.

JB: Success to me regarding our business at Solciety is empowerment. Empowering our community of members to not only thrive inside our studio walls but outside our studio in the other 23 hours of their day! AT: What Becky said, HA!

8. What would you do differently if you had the chance?

BA: For me, it always goes back to wishing I had trusted God more during periods of waiting. Like when we were trying to start a family. I wish I’d had more peace and hope in that journey, long as it was. Now we have two beautiful boys through the gift of adoption, and I wouldn’t have it any other way! There is no way to see what is around each corner, but we can trust that God is up to something good.

JB: If you always do what you've always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got. -Tony Robbins

JB: If I could do anything differently I would have more grace for myself in difficult moments. I’m constantly learning to prioritize what I value most in life. A family walk or coffee with a friend may seem small but they really are the big things in life. Creating more margin is key for me.

7. How do you define success and how do you measure up to your own definition?

9. What do you want people to know about you?

BA: If you are not succeeding at home, you are not succeeding. -Kevin Geer

AT: Insecurities don’t get conquered, they become understood, and when this happens they don’t have power over us any longer. -Bob Goff BA: Success is having peace, knowing that you are

AT: I tend not to think about the things I would do differently, rather I focus on how I can love and serve better. BA: I have an amazing husband and two precious

boys, aged 1 and 4. As a family, we love to camp, bike, and play outside. When I’m not with my family, you can find me snowboarding, leading Bible studies, or at Solciety Fitness, where our incredible members inspire me, and the barre and Zumba classes challenge me and bring great joy.

JB: I’m incredibly thankful for the life my husband and I have built with our two girls, aged 8 and 3. Movement is medicine to me and I count myself blessed that I get to be a part of seeing women move, heal, and be seen in the safe place we’ve created at Solciety.

AT: I’ve been married to my incredible husband for eight years, we have three children, ages 6, 4, and 2 (yes, my hands are full!). I find tremendous enjoyment from teaching barre and watching women become stronger not only physically but mentally, too. It’s one of my passions. For women to feel seen and to see what they are capable of.

10. What is one piece of advice you have for someone thinking about starting their own business?

BA: Partner with a friend or two! More hands are more fun, plus it helps promote a healthy work/ life balance. JB: Do it with someone else!

AT: Do something that you are passionate about, it feels like a lot less work if your business falls in line with that. And if you can partner with someone else that’s the cherry on top! Solciety Fitness 419 1st Ave E, Kalispell, MT 59901 406.314.4272 - solcietyfit.com



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Early and Continuing 23 Kalispell’s Tradition of Bars and Brewing Saloons

Western and frontier fiction depicts the saloon as the center of social life. Even as the last-settled valley in the lower 48 states, Kalispell’s establishment in 1891 is no exception to this rule. According to the listings of registered businesses in the new city, there was a total of 23 saloons in Kalispell during its first summer of incorporation. Even with the sheer quantity of bars for a Fridayevening pub crawl in today’s historic district of Kalispell, the idea of 23 bars available in the newly settled town is almost unimaginable. One might suppose, however, that after weeks of transporting buildings by log rollers from old Demersville*, the menfolk were due their fair share of refreshments. Staggering though it may seem, this was a downsize from the 73 liquor licenses issued at one time in Demersville.


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Written by Terri Lynn Mattson for the Northwest Montana History Museum

Of those early establishments, we still have records of several today. In the early years, Jack’s Tavern operated out of the Hotel Montana (now the Montana Building). Hamm Brewing Company had an operable saloon in what is now the Marshall Noice Studio and Gallery, the Pastime Bar (built in 1898) resided in the current space of Think Local, and The Brewery Saloon was operated out of the home of Sassafras. The largest contributor to the local economy, however, was the Kalispell Malting and Brewing Company (KMBC; not to be confused with today’s Kalispell Brewing Company at 418 Main). The Brewery Saloon was, in fact, established as a tasting room for the KMBC. The brewery affected the economy in the newly established city by providing local farmers with seed barley, the produce of which they would buy from those farmers at an average of 20% higher than market prices. The scene for alcoholic refreshments seemed to be doing well in Kalispell. A mere thirty years into the town’s life, however, this industry would have to revolutionize its practices, as the 18th Amendment to the Constitution went into effect and the Prohibition era began. As with other breweries,

the Kalispell Malting and Brewing Company diversified its products, switching to nonalcoholic cider, sodas, and near-beer during this time. Nationally, the effort to overturn prohibition was down to the wire, but all efforts were thwarted. Locally, stills were being discovered even in deep-woods cabins and men were arrested. Later legends would have it that the bar from the Pine Grove (which is now housed in Hollensteiner-Stahl Hall at the Northwest Montana History Museum) was relocated to the building’s second floor and operated as a speak-easy during the prohibition period. By the time the era ended, it wasn’t a matter of whether states would vote to repeal the Amendment or not, but a matter of when. The articles from the Daily Inter Lake of the time carry the consensus of the entire country on this matter: the vote to end prohibition was only a formality. Montana’s regulations coming out of prohibition sought to limit the kind of saloon culture that had existed in the frontier state before 1920. Regulations were passed that disallowed advertisement of alcohol and limited the places that liquor could be consumed. Regardless, alcohol was again legal, and Montan-

nonprofit} Saloons

The Silver Dollar Saloon, circa 1907. The establishment became Jordan’sCafé during the prohibition era. (Fromthe Northwest Montana History Museum collections)

“Kalispell Flour Mill and Malting and Brewing Co.” the photo shows the basicstructure of the KMBC in 1913. (Fromthe Northwest Montana History Museum collections) ans were quick customers for alcohol. The state government even predicted as much in their furnishing of funds to restart the liquor industry in 1933. By four years later, alcohol advertisements for whiskey blends can be found in the Daily Inter Lake’s pages. KMBC was the first Montana-based brewery to be back up and running and the first to sell their alcohol in the Montana market. The Kalispell-based company would last for another 22 years, but the shift in its consumer market after prohibition was never enough to carry it further than that. Even so, changes were made to Montana’s regulations surrounding alcohol to bring back an echo of its pre-prohibition days relatively quickly after 1933’s repeal. On April 5, 1937, saloons were once again made legal in the state of Montana. Not surprisingly, even in Montana, there were people opposed to the new saloon law, fearing an uptick in poor moral behavior and drunk driving, at least according to that day’s Inter Lake’s editorial column. This didn’t phase

Montanans, however, as 150 – 200 saloons were expected to open across the state the day that legalization came about. The Pine Grove and Jack’s Tap Room were the first two establishments in Kalispell who made their applications to serve liquor as saloons, according to a report in the Daily Inter Lake. The saloon scene continued to grow even more in years following. Sometime between 1944 and 1947, John Fournier opened The Corral Bar at 173 N Main, in the building he constructed to house his barber shop in 1940. After the Bar was inherited by his daughter and son-in-law in 1957, the establishment is listed in the Kalispell directory as The Saloon. It wasn’t until 1998 that the directory would change to reflect what everyone already knew the establishment as: Moose’s Saloon. Today, many have inherited the mantle of the earliest saloon years in the valley, and among their number are many Montana women passing on their family stories and traditions. The bar from the Pine Grove was re-

This didn’t phase Montanans, however, as 150 – 200 saloons were expected to open across the state the day that legalization came about. searched in-depth by Dorothy McGlenn, who owned the bar with her husband, Gene. Her inquiries have provided us with a far more well-rounded story of the bar’s history and its origins. Meanwhile, on Main Street, a name that reminds us of Kalispell’s founding graces the front of the old Hendricksen Motors building: Kalispell Brewing Company. Unrelated to the prior Kalispell Malting and Brewing Company, this husband-and-wife run business rests in the place of an old business that ironically went under the same year KMBC did, 1955. A wild west it may be, but Montana men and women both have inherited the spirit—and spirits—of that old frontier, no matter the obstacles in the way. *A city unlike any other at its time, Demersville was once the premier destination in the Flathead Valley. The once-active community is now a deserted stretch of rural road.  Northwest Montana History Museum 124 Second Ave. East in Kalispell 406-756-8381 - nwmthistory.org


Photo on opposite page: “Jack’s Tavern,” located in the Montana Hotel building. This photograph was taken sometime between 1936 and 1976. (From the Northwest Montana History Museum collections)


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Changed lives By Emily Christiansen Photos provided by Child Bridge

A few years ago, Rebecca Denning, a vibrant, passionate Flathead Valley woman, found herself serving and helping others in Kenya for a year. She was greatly moved by the stories of the children and was eager to help in any capacity while working in Africa. While there, she met a young boy who had undergone severe hardships. This child was the catalyst for Rebecca’s heart to find ways to help the hurting and broken in tangible ways both there and back home.

“I wanted him to feel seen and known and loved,” Rebecca recalls. The cry of her heart is that every child needs an adult that will advocate for them, see them, and love them fully. Fast forward a few years, and the relationship established over time with this Kenyan child has driven her to say yes to the vulnerable and hurting children in her own backyard. Over time, Rebecca began to explore what it would mean to open her own door, as a single woman, to Kalispell’s children in need. Rebecca began a conversation with staff members at Child Bridge and talked through what it would look like to radically change her life and vision for her future. What would it look like to care for children who had suffered abuse or neglect here in Montana? As someone who already knows how to serve the vulnerable and hurting as a registered nurse, she decided to begin the process of becoming a state licensed foster parent.


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To receive her foster care license, she had to undergo multiple steps. It is helpful to realize that the process helps ensure safe and appropriate care for already at risk and vulnerable children. There are training requirements, background checks, fingerprinting, references, and a home study to name a few of the details involved with obtaining a state approved foster license. Times can vary for the training and paperwork to be completed, but Rebecca’s moved quickly. Rebecca began her foster licensing journey in December of 2020 and was ready to accept children in the summertime of 2021.


Child Bridge

Rebecca says she was struck with the fact that “kids don’t need white picket fences, but a warm, safe place to live and be loved.” Child Bridge was an incredible resource to help Rebecca navigate the licensing process. While sitting with Ray Biggerstaff, the Flathead Regional Director of Child Bridge, Rebecca remembers arguing her need for a house before beginning her pursuit of her foster license. “The American dream often tells us what steps we are supposed to follow: get married, buy a house, then have children,” she recounts. However, Ray encouraged Rebecca to realize while she may not have a house, she has “a home. It’s stable and it’s safe.” Rebecca says she was struck with the fact that “kids don’t need white picket fences, but a warm, safe place to live and be loved.” Foster care is often described as a rollercoaster. You may not know what is around the corner. “I recognize that with pregnancy, you would get nine months to prepare, but with foster care that timeline is quickly shortened to a couple of days, or even just a few hours.” Rebecca became vigilant about having her apartment stocked with clothes and supplies for both boys and girls of multiple ages. She has a room set up ready to receive children of all sizes. Working with Child Bridge, she is reading books and connecting with other foster parents to better understand how to care for children who

have experienced significant trauma. And she is preparing her heart for whatever calls she receives.

“I will never forget that first phone call. It was so surreal! They actually called me!” She was humbled and excited that they were ready to lean into her open and willing arms. As things would go, a family member came forward to take in those children, but nonetheless the call had come. Over the next few weeks other calls came in. Due to different schedules, physical needs, and the juggling act of all the moving parts of weaving lives together, Rebecca’s eyes were opened to how desperately foster families are needed right here in Montana. “It’s devastating to realize how much suffering is right here, and I’m so glad I can be a resource,” Rebecca said. In time, she did get the call to care for some children she would serve as an emergency placement for. Saying yes to calls can mean you take in a child for a few days, a few weeks, a few months, a few years, or forever. In Rebecca’s case, her first placement was with her for a

little over a week before the state found a longterm solution specific to the children’s needs. “There is a beauty in seeing how everyone has a right fit and I learned so much with that first placement!” says Rebecca.

Her journey of foster care is just beginning, but she is eager to watch the stories unfold and discover what part she can play in the life of a hurting child. It all starts with a willing heart and a hope for the future to be a little brighter for those in need. If you are interested in beginning the journey to help children feel safe and loved, Child Bridge would love to walk with you as they are with Rebecca. As no child should walk alone in life, so should no foster parent. Child Bridge will help you navigate the licensing process and get you ready for that first call. You too could be “the one they call” when a child needs a warm and safe place. A place to belong, be seen and be comforted.


If you’d like to learn more about foster care contact hello@childbridgemontana.org.


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Dental X-Rays Part 2

by Dr. John F. Miller DDS SMILE MONTANA

The HOW, WHY, WHAT, & WHEN This last year my wife and I both turned 40 years old. To celebrate this milestone we wanted to do something that neither of us had done previously, and that was to visit the youngest state in this great nation, the State of Hawaii. We actually went with another couple and chose Maui based on their recommendation as they had visited Maui before. Now, just like everyone else who has never visited Hawaii, I have heard about it over and over from those who have been there before. “Oh you must go, it's incredible.” they would exclaim. In my head I couldn’t help but think, “is it really all that they say it is? Is it really that great?” I was worried that Hawaii had become...overhyped. Here is my assessment. Hawaii is grossly underhyped, well at least Maui is. It washed away all my suspicions. “Is the sand really that soft and white?” It’s softer and whiter. “Is the water really that clear and warm?” It’s clearer and warmer than I could have hoped!! “Are we really going to see Sea Turtles everywhere?” Sea Turtles were everywhere!! Seriously though, it was amazing and my advice is don’t let life pass you by before you decide to do that thing you’ve been wanting to do. Find a way to make it happen...it’s worth it I promise.


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One question that I have been asked a lot is about tourism and the traffic and crowds in Hawaii. To which I respond, “I live in Whitefish, Hawaii has way less tourists and traffic...per square mile.” Things have definitely changed around here eh? I think the pandemic simply accelerated the growth in this area and now even in our shoulder season I can’t turn left onto the 93. Still love it though, in my eyes the Flathead Valley is as shiny as ever and I feel lucky to be a member of this community and to raise my family here. Let’s get to the teeth stuff shall we. In the last article from September I discussed how I had written well over 50 articles for 406 Woman and I was going to dig into the fundamentals of dentistry to give the lay person a behind-thescenes look at our methods and the How-WhatWhy-& When we use them. I started with dental radiographs (commonly referred to as X-Rays) last time and realized it was going to require more than one article to lay a solid foundation for the reader. So anyway, last time we discussed the Bitewing dental radiograph and this article will focus on the Periapical dental radiograph.

The Periapical Radiograph

In contrast to the bitewing radiograph discussed last time, the periapical radiograph ideally captures the entire tooth in the x-ray. That is to say it shows the crown of the tooth (the portion of the tooth outside of the jawbone) and the root of the tooth (the portion of the tooth within the jaw bone).

WHEN do we prescribe and capture the periapical radiograph? There are two scenarios when periapical radiographs are helpful. The first of these occurs during a new patient radiographic evaluation. A full mouth series of radiographs consists of 14 periapical radiographs and four bitewing radiographs. And while they are very valuable from a diagnostic standpoint, they also serve as a baseline for that patient that can be referred back to. If you read the last article you’ll recall that bitewing radiographs are recommended annually while periapical radiographs are recommended to be updated every 3 to 5 years. The second scenario in which a periapical radiograph will be prescribed is during a dental emergency. This could be from trauma like an athletic accident, or it could be from pathology such as cavities or gum disease that is causing swelling or discomfort. The latter is the far more common of the two. Smile Montana likely sees close to 10 patients per day suffering from acute dental pain. We refer to these appointments as LOE’s because the dental code used is a D0140 referred to as a Limited Oral Exam.

This could be from trauma like an athletic accident, or it could be from pathology such as cavities or gum disease that is causing swelling or discomfort. The latter is the far more common of the two. Smile Montana likely sees close to 10 patients per day suffering from acute dental pain. WHY

do we prefer periapical radiographs when someone is experiencing pain? There are two types of tooth pain. There is pain associated with the nerve of the tooth. This typically starts with elevated sensitivity to cold, followed by elevated sensitivity to heat. This, if left untreated, will more than likely result in a bad toothache which requires no stimulant. The other type of tooth pain is inflammation of the supporting tissues of the tooth, such as the jaw bone and the periodontal ligament. This could be accompanied by swelling of the face. The periapical radiograph gives us valuable diagnostic information regarding both types of pain, and in a lot of cases negates the use of additional testing methods that can be uncomfortable. The sample x-ray provided shows a lower right molar with an abscess around the mesial root. An abscess is simply an area of inflammation and infection that results in the loss of bone...hence the dark shadow around the root. As a dentist I know that the likely cause of the tooth infection was the big cavity between the tooth behind it (to the left). This patient would likely present with some swelling. The proposed treatment for this individual would be antibiotics, possible pain medication, and either a root canal or the removal of the tooth. A bitewing radiograph of the same tooth would inform us of the cavity, but we would not be privy to the bigger issue of the dental infection in the patient’s jaw. It should also be noted that periapical radiographs are the only diagnostic x-rays of the anterior teeth on the top and the bottom. Anterior teeth being defined as the front six from canine to canine. You might recall that bitewing radiographs are only for the posterior. Also, there are several different oral pathologies that can be identified with a periapical radiograph. And any and all of these can be present without symptoms, which is why we do take them every 3 to 5 years as a precaution. Alright, we’ve made it through another exhilarating discussion on dental radiographs. I promise there will only be one more and you’re not going to want to miss it. I can hardly wait to write it (insert winking face with tongue emoji).

A lot is going to transpire between now and then, like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years!! With that in mind I’d like to wish you all the happiest of holidays and safe travels to wherever the season finds you. Be sure to pack a big Montana SMILE!!



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Food & Flavor

20. Scottish Beef Barley Soup 24. In the Kitchen 28. Some Like it Hot 31. Ask the Butcher 32. Entropy and Endive 36. Warming Holiday Recipes


16. Why a Sheepskin? 44. Wright’s Furniture

Education 40. What I’ve Learned From History

Fashion 47. Village Shop


Cover Girls

50. Make a Wish

Love Story 54. Mariah & Seth 58. Emily & Luke


View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m

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Mikayla Wilson, Sophie French cover photo by

Amanda Wilson Photography www . amandawilsonphotos . com


Publisher's Note Happy Holidays!

Cheers to you and yours this holiday season. We hope you’ll find a bit of joy and inspiration in the pages that follow. We are wrapping the year up with gratitude and hope for a bright new year. May you have peace, love and happiness in your holiday season and the year ahead. With gratitude, Cindy & Amanda

"What the new year brings to you will depend a great deal on what you bring to the new year." - Vern McLellan


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406 w o m a n


Cindy Gerrity


business manager Daley McDaniel


managing editor

Kristen Hamilton


creative & social media director Amanda Wilson



Sara Joy Pinnell



Daley McDaniel Photography Amanda Wilson Photography ACE Photography Jennifer Vernarsky Photography Jamie Lynn Aragonez Christina Ryan Carli Dewbre at Lisu Media Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com Copyright©2021 Skirts Publishing

Want to know about great events, open houses, and more? Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/406 Woman 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.

View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m

Editor’s Letter

Memories Lasting a Lifetime

Think back ... do you remember many of the gifts you received through the years? When I think about Christmases through the years, I vaguely remember a specific gift but I always remember special memories that involved spending time with loved ones. My parents always hosted a Christmas Eve gathering and seeing our friends and neighbors was the highlight of the holidays.

Top L-R Disney World in December 2005, Holiday Mantel, Maui for Thanksgiving 2016, Christmas Tree - Welcome to our house

When we moved to Montana, we similarly celebrated the holidays sometimes at our house and other times at our neighbors down the road. Even though my parents are gone now and I’ve moved from the neighborhood, I smile when I think back on the special memories. “Our memory is a more perfect world than the universe: it gives back life to those who no longer exist.” -Guy de Maupassant My advice … Don’t get sucked into consumerism and order the latest hype gift on Amazon. If you shop, shop local and support your friends and neighbors … the ones that make our community A COMMUNITY. Better yet, spend time with family and friends and make lasting MEMORIES.

Be safe and enjoy the holiday season! Managing Editor

What I learned in this issue? That you should never give up on a dream. LeAnn Talago is pursuing her dream of becoming an artist like her father. Read Alanis Stallknecht’s story and see Talago’s beautiful paintings on page 8.


About entropy and using its energy towards joy versus worry. Dr Siomos is back in this issue linking entropy and endive together along with a great recipe. Read her column on page 32. 56 406



Why a Sheepskin? By Adene Lucus, owner of Freyia DEKOR Photography by Christina Ryan

I love using authentic sheepskins in décor. They add texture, a deep rich grey color and of course they feel amazing. I use the skins draped on a bed, tossed over an ottoman, laid across the back of a sofa or have them made into beautiful down pillows. In the bathroom, I use them on the floor outside the bathtub as they repel water. Even my dog has a thing for the skins and loves to sleep on them! The skins are versatile, stylish and add to any décor, but they also have numerous health benefits that only a natural product could possess.


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Relieves Aches & Pains

One of the natural characteristics of sheepskins is the beautifully crimped fibers that form natural cushioning of your body. The three-dimensional spiraling of each fiber acts like a natural spring. This allows for the material to form to your body shape and makes this material ideal for so many purposes. For some in the autism community, specifically autistic children benefit from the warmth, softness, and soothing touch sensation. The sheep's skin is an electrical semiconductor, creating a calming effect, eliminating muscular tension, and stimulating the circulation in the tissues.

I have had sheepskins purchased for car seat covers, for motorcycle seats and airline pilots use then on long haul flights to absorb pressure points while sitting for an extended period. Sheepskin will not give off an electrical charge as they are a partial insulator providing you less chances of static electricity created by the natural friction of your body and the environment.

Regulates Body Temperature

In this cool season, when the temperature drops and you are spending time on the slopes, you may need a bit of warmth! Wool has a very interesting property, and that is the ability to keep you warm in cold weather and cool in hot weather. By maintaining this regulating property, sheepskin can keep the user comfortable in all situations. This is great for newborn babies or premature babies who can’t regulate their own body temperatures. Regulating normal body temperature while sleeping is integral to getting the best quality sleep possible. Just ask any middle-aged woman who wakes up over heated nightly! Sheepskins can even be used under a fitted sheet for added comfort and to maintain body temperature. Although we may not like to think about these things while sleeping, lambswool also deters pests such as bedbugs.


Reduces Friction and Skin Shear

The outer layer of wool has the unique benefit of having a protein layer that is extremely smooth which allows sheepskin fibers to easily move against one another and make movement easier and more comfortable. Lanolin is found naturally in sheepskin as well as human skin and can benefit sensitive inflamed skin to help those with rashes or even eczema. Lanolin is also known as wool wax and helps repel water from the hide. Natural sheepskins are devoid of chemicals that can trigger allergic reactions in the user, and they repel mold which can help prevent illness. Skin breakdowns can be caused by several reasons, but one of the largest is moisture. Since sheepskins have a wonderful moisture wicking ability, moisture stays away from the skin and minimizes any potential complications that can led to infections.


A quality sheepskin will last a lifetime if looked after. The long fur needs to be bushed before a wash. This will untangle knots in the wool that will potentially become matted into felt if you don’t brush the sheepskin wool first.

A short hair sheepskin can be easily tossed into the washing machine and air-dried. You may also want to just give the sheepskin a good shake to fluff up the fibers and voila, looks great once again. Sheepskins will last for years and need a simple shake outside to fluff them up. Sheepskins are dirt and bacteria resistant and that makes them ideal to use in any area of the home. It has been known for centuries that the lanolin in sheepskins provide it with a self-cleaning quality when the sheepskin is hung in fresh air.

How to Identify Genuine Sheepskin

Look at the pelt. The first thing you can do is to grab a wool fiber and gently pull it. The wool should not separate from the pelt if the hide was tanned correctly. Then look at the pelt closely. The pelt of genuine sheepskin should resemble the color of the wool. If you see a grid backing material where the wool is attached, this is a clear sign that the sheepskin is not real as this indicates a sewn backing instead of a real sheep’s hide. Test the wool fibers, genuine wool fibers are resilient, so they should bend without breaking. To test this, tug on a wool fiber and see if it stretches or goes back to its original shape after you let it go. If it returns to its original shape, it is genuine. If it does not, that means you have a faux fur on your hands. Another easy method to see if you have genuine sheepskin is by pouring a bit of water on it. If it’s genuine, it should feel somewhat dry or warm, but if it’s faux, it will feel cold. This is because genuine wool repels water.

At Freyia Dekor we carry a large supply of authentic Swedish Sheepskin’s which are renowned for their luxurious wool and durability. We have a range of dark charcoal long hair skins with their unique curls to shorn light silver grey skins which are easy to care for. At Freyia, we order directly from Sweden where we are confident in treatment of the sheep.

In Norse mythology Freyja (/ˈfreɪə/; Old Norse for "[the] Lady”). She is famous for her fondness of love, fertility, beauty, and fine material possessions.

Adene Lucas has been the lead designer with Freyia DEKOR decorating firm since 2004. Her focus has always been creating living spaces that are as unique as the clients and the lives they lead. “I always try to meet every design challenge with passion, creativity and a genuine devotion to exceeding expectations. Travelling is one of my favourite things to do on my downtime, and it was during my visits to Sweden that I was intrigued by the simplicity and functionality of Swedish design and décor. Paired with my passion for items with artistic and historical meaning, the decision to embark on this new journey came naturally and without hesitation.” Freyia DEKOR - www.freyia.ca



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Taste the World's Best Olive Oil & Houseinfused Huckleberry Balsamic Vinegar

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts & Mushrooms INGREDIENTS 1-1/2 pounds small, fresh brussels sprouts, dried end trimmed, and cut in half 1/2 pound fresh Cremini mushrooms sliced in half 1/4 cup Mushroom Sage Infused Olive Oil

1 medium shallot thinly sliced 2 Tablespoons Pomegranate Balsamic Vinegar 1 teaspoon salt fresh ground pepper to taste

Heat a heavy duty 12" sauté pan, add the Fused olive oil. Add the shallot and sauté over medium until translucent. Add the mushrooms and brussels sprouts and sauté over medium high heat until the mushrooms and brussels sprouts begin to caramelize (about 6 minutes). Add the 2 tablespoons of pomegranate balsamic to the pan stirring and scraping to de glaze it. (Make sure to scrape up the browned bits of mushroom and shallot at the bottom while evenly coating the brussels sprouts). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot


Beef Barley Soup By Carole Morris


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food} We are ready to serve up the “bonnie” and “braw” Scottish soup that my mum loved. Have I happened to mention that she was born and raised in Scotland? She truly was one of the best cooks that I have ever known. Therefore, I guarantee this soup will warm your soul…as the winter weather blows in. Dinna fash (don’t worry) even Sassenachs (such as Claire from Outlander) will enthusiastically savor this hearty soup. After making this delicious recipe, your family will feel close to all things Scottish. Moreover, if you cook Scottish Bannocks (recipe included) with the Scottish Beef Barley Soup, you will be transported into the world of Jamie; and your wee cridh (heart) will leap in your chest.


Scottish Beef Barley

Ingredients Melt 1/2 stick of butter in the pan Add 2 medium onions (chopped) 2 lbs. of roast beef (cubed) 1 tbsp. mustard (coat beef) Brown then add: 6 cups of water 1 cup barley 6 red potatoes (diced) 2 stalks of celery (sliced) 2 carrots (sliced) 1 tbsp. black pepper

3 tbsps. garlic (minced) 1 large can tomatoes (crushed) 6 tsp. beef bouillon 1 tsp. rosemary Salt to taste Directions

1. Melt butter in a large pan, add onions and beef cubes (coated with mustard). Cook until beef is brown on both sides.

2. Add all remaining ingredients, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 2 hours, or until meat is completely tender.

Scottish Bannocks Ingredients 1 cup oats 2 cups flour 1 ½ tbsp. baking powder 2 tbsp. brown sugar 1 tsp. salt 4 tbsp. butter 1 ¼ cups half and half Directions Heat oven to 400° F Cook Bannocks on middle rack in oven.

Mix oats, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt together in a bowl. With pastry blender, blend in butter. When thoroughly blended, stir in half and half. Place dough onto lightly floured surface, knead dough (sprinkling with flour) until dough isn’t sticky.

Roll dough into a square (about ½ inch thick). Cut into rectangles and place on cookie sheet. Bake until lightly browned (approximately 15 minutes). Serve warm with butter.

“May you live long and stay well (Lang may yer lum reek).”



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Christmas Lights and Green Bean Casserole. In the Kitchen with Lane By Lane Smith - Sponsored by

I approach holiday dinners like going to look at Christmas lights. Sound like a stretch? Bear with me. As American as apple pie, taking a drive in December to look at Christmas lights with family is a tradition that has inspired me to become the Griswold that I am now. I remember years with my kids in the back of the car and my son saying “we can do better than that Dad.” Followed by exasperated sighs from my wife knowing that a trip to one of the box stores was inevitable… and expensive. On those same drives we would make a point to go to the “staple” houses. We all know those houses. The Hills down the street. That house on 3rd Ave East. Everyone has their route. Along the way we would occasionally bump into apartment balcony surprises, valiant attempts and the over-the-top displays that produced wonder, and to me, a challenge. Those challenges have given me a shed dedicated to Christmas decorations, a spot on a lot of people’s routes and most importantly, years of memories with my kids and grandkids. But how does this apply to FOOD? Let me explain.


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Photos by ACE Photography & Design

Holiday dinners in my family are always potluck. We also eschewed the traditional table setting long ago. Having a family as large as we do it is a necessity. Everyone contributes in some way shape or form. And this is where the Christmas light analogy comes into play. During large holiday potlucks I “sample.” I hit the staples; Green Bean casserole, candied yams, a spoonful of the inevitable four variations of stuffing, and if available, one of my Dad’s rolls. The latter being hit or miss depending on who attempted his recipe any given year. But just like The Hill’s house down the street, there are dishes I never miss. After the staples I start to sample dishes I haven’t seen before. Casseroles, salads, appetizers adorn the folding tables that invariable come out like a street bazaar every holiday season. Bold colored serving dishes wrapped with holiday plastic wrap. After the staples and on my route to the main course I always try to find a small surprise and, without fail, sample a valiant effort. Deviled eggs, jalapeño poppers, a mystery pasta salad all get a drive-by with my plate. Every year it’s an eclectic collection of “Mom’s recipes” and “It’s the only thing I know how to make.” I appreciate all of the dishes brought to our family functions. Each dish is a commitment of time to celebrate the season--just like putting up Christmas lights.

When thinking forward to the Holiday issue, I left the menu in the capable hands of the people that continue to support my stories and goofy smiles in the pages of 406 Woman. I actually had no idea what I was going to do for the photoshoot, let alone this article. I asked around to friends and family what they looked forward to every year and the list was the usual suspects; Green Bean Casserole, Candied Yams et cetera. There were a few surprises as well. Funeral Potatoes and Bourbon Wagyu beef were mentioned as well as seven-layer dip. But one answer struck me with regard to favorite Christmas dishes: “All of them, I like to graze.” It’s an answer akin to when people ask me about where my favorite Christmas lights are. “Everywhere.” For me that is the magic of the holidays, it’s a sum of all things. Not one particular thing. So, with help from Sonny at Chopp Shoppe, Tom at Flathead Fish, David and Sheri at Genesis Kitchen and our gracious hosts Amanda, James and Olivia of World Spice Merchants we decided to create a holiday food display worthy of Lexi’s lens. I had never attempted scallops until this year. My first attempt yielded a super ball consistency that, when dropped accidently from the set of tongs I was using, it simply bounced back up into my rapidly descending hand. Hyperbole? Yes. But rubbery is not a good


enough adjective to my first attempt. So, when Tom from Flathead fish offered up fresh scallops flown in from New Bedford Massachusetts, I was a bit…. well, concerned. I am a storyteller who likes to cook. Not a cook that has a way with words. How would I rectify my inability to cook my heavily researched but ultimately failed attempts at correctly cooking these delectable mollusks from the east coast? It was at this point that I was sent a recipe off of the website of none other than—World Spice Merchants. Yep. Amanda and James have a litany of recipes that will take you through the process of prep, spicing and cooking just about anything. If it sounds like an advertisement, it’s not. It’s a lifeline. With my Dad’s trusty cast iron skillet and the amazing Emerald City Seasoning the WSM folks provided, I was able to finally pull off a delicious, and by all accounts, delicate scallop that would make a fantastic appetizer for any holiday gathering. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention a wonderful “On the fly” addition that was added after searing. Amanda sprinkled fresh ground pink peppercorns and Pacific Flake Sea Salt on the scallops…and the flavors were amazing and complimentary. Sonny from the Chopp Shoppe is amazing and when he offered up Rib Roast to be prepared for the holiday issue, I knew it would be incredible. With a humble deference to Sonny. I made the executive decision to err to the side of presentation. Knowing that the flavor would be out of this world I went ahead and attempted “Frenching” aka French trimming a rib roast. To be honest I have never done it. But I knew that a “standing rib roast” would be a better photograph. And, for those of you that are familiar with me, presentation is everything (if this statement is confusing, read the last issue of 406 Woman). At the time of printing, I can unequivocally say that I have no clue if I did it right. Maybe I did, maybe I---well butchered a perfectly cut piece of meat. I can say that with the help of Genesis Kitchen’s Arbequina/Barnea Extra Virgin Olive Oil (go ahead look it up, Peruvian flavors at the tip of a bottle) and a healthy coating of Montreal Steak and Chop Rub from our gracious hosts, the end result was worthy of an “over the top” creation. Smoked low and slow and seared at the end produced a perfect edge to edge medium rare with a hint of smoke to compliment

In the Kitchen

But one answer struck me with regard to favorite Christmas dishes: “All of them, I like to graze.” It’s an answer akin to when people ask me about where my favorite Christmas lights are. “Everywhere.” For me that is the magic of the holidays, it’s a sum of all things. Not one particular thing.



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In the Kitchen

the flavors of the oils and spices applied. Not nearly as complicated as a Griswold Light display, but definitely worthy of being the centerpiece of any neighborhood. The standing rib roast will never be lost on any table. I hope that your holidays are filled with fond memories, epic food and a healthy dose of family and friends. If 2021 has taught me anything, it’s that we are blessed each and every day with the opportunity to be creative, to be over the top, and to be even a bit loquacious when it comes to being thankful for all things.

Oh, and when you are out and about looking at Christmas lights...slow down when you go past a small display. There is time and love there. Lots of it. And whatever you do, don’t skip the green bean casserole.

Seared Scallops with Emerald City Seasoning


If the side muscle is attached, remove it. Pat dry the top and bottom of the scallops. This will aid in browning. Rub some of the spice blend between the palms of your hands a few times to break up the herbs and sprinkle on a plate. Holding the scallops like a wheel, roll them through the spice blend to coat the sides only. Heat a cast iron skillet or other heavy pan over high heat.


1 pound sea scallops 2 tablespoons Emerald City Seasoning 1½ tablespoons safflower oil

¼ teaspoon Pacific Flake Sea Salt

When the pan begins to smoke, add the oil and wait 10 seconds. Gently add the scallops to the pan. Do not crowd. Sear for 2 minutes. Check sear and if nice and caramelized, turn and cook for another 1½ - 2 minutes. Top with a pinch of Pacific Flake Sea Salt. Serve immediately.

Standing Rib Roast as Prepared Ingredients

1 (4 Rib) Standing Rib roast. French Trimmed (If not google how) 7-8 lbs. 2 TBSP of Genesis Kitchen’s Arbequina/Barnea, Medium Intensity Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1 Cup of World Spice Market Montreal Steak and Chop Rub Butcher’s twine


Arbequina/Barnea, Olive Oil Genesis Kitchen

Montreal Steak and Chop RubEmerald City Seasoning World Spice Merchants

270 Nucleus Columbia Falls, MT Mon-Sat 10am - 6pm 406-897-2667 Info@genesis-kitchen.com

Montana Outpost 62 Arcadia Way Columbia Falls, MT Mon-Thu: 9am-5pm - Fri: 9am-12pm 406-892-5001 MToutpost@worldspice.com


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Place on a backing rack with a drip pan underneath. Smoke at 225 degrees until the internal temp is 120 degrees. Remove and let rest while you preheat a conventional oven to 500 (550 if you can) remove thermometer!

Preheat your smoker to 225 Degrees. I used Pecan Pellets for this recipe. Use your favorites.

Once preheated place the now rested rib in the oven until you reach a desire “bark” coating.

Cut between the bones and the roast until the bones will fold out from the roast without cutting completely. Pat dry all surfaces.

(I left it in there for about 8-10 minutes and smoke was starting to leak out of the door.)

Drizzle olive oil and completely coat with your hands the roast AND the bones. Cover the inside of the bones and the roast portion with a generous coating of the spice rub.

Tasting Notes

Insert a wireless meat probe. I use a Meater Probe.

Return the bone to the roast and tie it with butchers twine.

Double check the internal temp is where you want it. (I removed at 130 and let rest for another ½ hour.) Cut the strings and remove the bones (these are amazing and can be eaten right away). Slice to desired thickness and serve.

Recipe Sponsored by

FH Fish & Seafood Company Chopp Shoppe Wild caught seafood No hormones or antibiotics Choice to Wagyu Grade Hours 9am-7pm…all week long 721 Wisconsin Ave in Whitefish

3820 MT Hwy 40 W in Columbia Falls www.flatheadfishandseafood.com


Some Like it Hot By Mary Wallace & Hailey Osborne

This time of year, recipes abound for hot cocktails – everything from hot toddies to mulled wine. Some are associated with the holiday season, but others have their origins from a geographic region, such as Germany, Mexico, England, and Italy. Some of the first documented hot drinks date back to the Roman Empire. The basic combination of red wine, spices, citrus, and sugar was heated in a large bowl and different regions boasted different recipes. Mulled wine has also been noted in 14th century medieval times. In 18th century England, an assortment of hot drinks taking a dig at the Catholic church were popular. The more expensive the wine, the higher up in the church hierarchy were the names. Smoking Cardinal and Smoking Bishop were made using a more common port wine mixed with bitter orange, sugar, cinnamon, and spices. The Smoking Pope was made much the same, using a much more expensive burgundy. Charles Dickens mentioned “a Christmas bowl of Smoking Bishop” in his classic story, A Christmas Carol.

Meanwhile, Americans were perfecting the concept of the Hot Toddy, with a mixture of whatever spirit was available (whiskey, rum, gin), sugar, and hot water. Spices were also sometimes added. Hot toddies became so popular that, even then, doctors began to suggest taking the drink only with meals.


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The popularity of the hot toddy eventually spread back to Europe, under the guise of a new name: grog. In England, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, grog was a mixture of rum and hot water (sometimes adding lemon & spices), while in France & Belgium, grog was made with black tea, rum, honey, and lemon. In Australia and New Zealand, grog has simply come to mean any kind of alcoholic drink – hot or cold.

be made to serve a crowd and ladled into individual cups. When making these, keep in mind that they should be brought to a simmer and never allowed to boil, as this causes the alcohol to evaporate quicker.

Here are a few of the Liquor Barn’s favorite hot cocktail recipes to try this holiday season. Let the festivities begin!

As the holiday season approaches and festivities abound, cocktails are sure to play a part. The warmth and comfort of hot drinks are always a welcome interlude. Let’s face it, putting the kettle on is like an invitation to sit down and visit a spell. You can’t guzzle a hot drink; it has to be taken slowly while sipping and blowing and warming your nose with the aromatic vapors. And while there may not be scientific evidence that hot toddies are effective against the common cold, they sure can’t hurt, and our own research proved that a hot toddy felt beneficial and provided some relief from coughing, sneezing, stuffy nose, sore throat, chilliness, and tiredness. Most hot cocktails are ideal for preparation in batches. Hot mulled wine and hot spiked cider come to mind and are festive in a stovetop pot for the holidays. Tea/spirits combination can be made in a large teapot and served poured in a handful of mugs at once. The famous Tom & Jerry starts with a creamy base mix to which alcohol is added. And hot buttered rum and spiked Mexican hot chocolate can

Hot Buttered Rum -

Mix 2 teaspoons brown sugar with a dash of cinnamon, a dash of nutmeg, and a dash of allspice – put into the bottom of a mug. Add,1 tablespoon unsalted butter, and a splash of vanilla (you can muddle this if you like). Pour in 2 ounces of dark rum and 4 ounces of hot water and stir. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.


And while there may not be scientific evidence that hot toddies are effective against the common cold, they sure can’t hurt, and our own research proved that a hot toddy felt beneficial and provided some relief from coughing, sneezing, stuffy nose, sore throat, chilliness, and tiredness. Spiced Mexican Hot Chocolate – Pour 3 cups milk into a saucepan.

Mix 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder, 3 tablespoons of sugar, a pinch of salt, ¼ tsp cinnamon, and a pinch of cayenne pepper in a small bowl, then add to the milk. Whisk to combine and heat on low heat until the mixture just comes to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in 2 ounces of tequila. Ladle into three mugs. Sprinkle with more cinnamon.

Hot Bourbon Cider – Heat apple cider, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in a pot, pour into a mug and top off with a generous splash of bourbon.

Mulled Wine – Start with your favorite bottle of Merlot, Zinfandel, or Garnacha. If you have it on hand, add ¼ cup of brandy. Heat slowly on a lower heat until it is just steaming. This is a great way to use your slow cooker! Slice two small oranges into the pot and add two whole cinnamon sticks, 3 star anise, and 4-6 whole cloves. Add a tablespoon of real maple syrup or honey. Add a few more orange slices and a generous handful of fresh cranberries just before serving. One bottle of wine should make approximately five mugs of mulled wine. Irish Coffee –

Use fresh whipped cream using ½ cup heavy cream, ½ teaspoon sugar, and a dash of vanilla extract for best results. Put ½ teaspoon into a large empty mug. Add 1 ½ ounces Irish whiskey and 6-8 ounces of fresh hot coffee, leaving room for a generous dollop of the freshly whipped cream on top.

Hot Tea and Booze Pairings

Black Tea + Rum – To your mug of your favorite English Breakfast tea add a shot of your favorite Rum. Add some cognac or peach brandy for a sweeter taste. Mint Tea + Bourbon - Pour 2 ounces of bourbon into a mug and add hot brewed mint tea and honey.

Chai Tea + Irish Cream - For a creamy, spicy spiked chai latte, just swap out the milk for Irish Cream.

How to make a Hot Toddy - This cold remedy is easy to make, all you need is a few soothing ingredients, a microwave, and about 5 minutes! Mix whiskey, hot water, lemon juice, and honey. Add a couple of thin slices of fresh ginger for an extra kick to your cold. It’s a perfect drink at bedtime to help get some healing sleep.



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Ask the Butcher

Ask the Butcher

By Collin “Sonny” Johnson, Chöpp Shöppe at Alpine Village Photos by ACE Photography & Design

Standing at the meat counter can be intimidating. I’ve been a butcher for most of my life and I can’t wait to share what I’ve learned about meat and meat preparation. For our first column I’d like to highlight one of my favorite cuts of meat... The Flat Iron.

The Flat Iron What a silly name...but that's where the silliness ends.

This steak has major league attributes because it's one of the most robust and satisfying meals there is. It’s also known as the top blade muscle. This beefy beast is known for its satisfying demeanor due to its richness and flavorful rewards. It’s not a pretty steak by any means but it will rock your grill and all your neighbors taste buds too. The fat is laced throughout the steak giving it hidden delight and satisfaction. The Flat Iron comes from the lower arm of the bovine and is a little utilized muscle actually perking its tenderness and palatability. Added to all these marvelous attributes, it is a breeze to cook. The flavor stands on its own with no additional seasoning.... but ....a quick trip to the freezer for those relished huckleberries and a balsamic honey reduction can confuse the taste buds into mmm... mmm good frenzy.

Cook to perfection every time...

Chopp Shoppe The Flathead’s Premier Butcher Shop No hormones or antibiotics Choice to Wagyu Grade Mon. - Sat. 9am-7pm Closed on Sunday 721 Wisconsin Ave in Whitefish


Let meat get to room temp and season with your favorite rub or salt and pepper. Start with a hot grill (400 degrees) and place steak on first side for 5 minutes. Ditto on side two. Let rest for 5 minutes then enjoy with whatever seasoning you prefer .... just not ketchup. One steak usually feeds two very nicely or three light red meat eaters. Use your reduction as a cold dip for that hot vs. cold clash.... enjoy.

Order yours now from the Chöpp Shöppe at Alpine Village Bon appetite .... Sonny



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Entropy and

Endive on the Eve of a New Year By Austine K. Siomos, MD – Pediatric Cardiologist at Rocky Mountain Heart & Lung

Every night, even those busy holiday evenings, before I go to bed I put the ABCs in order. Or rather, every night since my youngest started learning his letters with a magnetic chalk board, I find all the letters and put them back on the board in alphabetical order. This seems to be the one thing that I want to be in place before we all go to bed. I suspect that most of us desire control over something in our lives. Uncertainty in one area of life leads to a pursuit of organization in another. The past few years have caused uncertainty and discomfort. We have sought order in gardening, bread making, and writing.

We learn about entropy in physics. The second law of thermodynamics states that an overall increase of entropy contributes to the driving force for any physicochemical process. As a person who did not especially gravitate toward physics (pun intended) I understand entropy as a measure of the amount of energy which is unavailable to do work.


As anyone who has cleaned a room can attest, things naturally move to disorder over time. Instead of despairing, how do we use this to

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an advantage? There are two types of stability – active and passive. A house is not passively stable. We cannot clean it once and expect it to stay that way. A relationship is similar. Relationships require attention and adaptation to succeed and thrive. Possibly a more relevant example is our infectious disease environment. As we have learned over decades and centuries, the infectious disease landscape is never still. Our crash course in this concept has been two years. Even the unexpected virus has taken unexpected turns. Mutations that lead to variants are the epitome of entropy.

then cut off the foliage and dig up the root. The root is placed in a dark, cool place. The root then grows a second head of tender, crispy leaves. The result is a beautiful vegetable with a bitter, nutty taste. How was this discovered? By a strike of entropy! Jan Lammers, a farmer from Belgium, left his farm in 1830 to fight for Belgian independence. When he left, he had chicory roots drying in his cellar. He planned to use the root as a coffee substitute, as was often done with chicory at the time. When he survived the war and returned to his farm he found that there was a pale delicate head on each of the roots.

Endive, an example of a highly organized leaf vegetable, belongs to the genus Cichorium. The Cichorium genus is in the dandelion tribe within the sunflower family, Asteraceae. Endive likely originated in Egypt and Indonesia and grows all over the world. The most popular and well known is Belgian Endive. When other types of greens are out of season, Belgian Endive is thriving.

Health benefits of Endive

All living things are a result of life’s push back against entropy. A new baby, a growing teenager, a plant organizing and pushing out of the soil. All living things also strive to organize their surroundings to their advantage.

How does it grow? First, the plant focuses energy into a long root. Experienced gardeners

Belgian endive provides B vitamins, vitamin C, and vitamin K. It contains calcium, iron, zinc, potassium, and folate. All great bonuses for immunity and resilience!

Weight control – endive is a low calorie, sat-

isfying food. 50 grams of chopped Endive consists of 8.6 kilocalories. The glycemic load of a half cup of Endive is 0!

Avoid metabolic syndrome – Metabolic

syndrome is defined as elevated blood pressure, elevated fasting blood glucose, low HDL cholesterol, elevated triglycerides, and elevat-


Entropic Endive Belgian endive provides B vitamins, vitamin C, and vitamin K. It contains calcium, iron, zinc, potassium, and folate. All great bonuses for immunity and resilience! ed waist circumference. Endive works against all of these components. The fiber allows for stabilization of blood glucose. Endive has polyphenols that keep blood vessels flexible. Endive also has plenty of vitamin B9, which prevents high blood pressure.

Level out your emotions – Endive is an excellent source of potassium and pantothenic acid. Pantothenic acid is responsible for preventing volatile emotions. It is known to prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s.

As we soar toward another new year, I plan on realizing my limits, and avoiding my own pitfalls into entropy. If entropy is defined as energy that spreads out in the universe and does not contribute to work, what can I do to minimize the amount of my own energy that does this? The past few years have resulted in more worries than usual. Can I use more energy toward joy and building rather than worry and breaking down? I am sure that I can. Can I use entropy to my advantage? The other day I took a chance turn onto a trail with my youngest. He recognized that the trail was the same one that goes to the beach. “Let’s go to the beach,” he said. I could have stuck with my schedule, but we went to the beach. We made a sand castle in cold sand. Due to entropy, the sand castle won’t be there long. The memories will.


This beautiful salad is festive for the holidays, with the Endive acting as an organizing serving size and entropy inspiring the mix within. Ingredients: 1-2 pomegranates 1 bunch leafy greens – arugula, watercress 3 heads endive 2 small shallots 2 tablespoons olive juice 4 tablespoons olive oil 1 lemon Salt and pepper to taste Directions:

Dr Austine Siomos Pediatric Cardiologist Austine Siomos, MD, brought her training and expertise with pediatric patients to Kalispell Regional Healthcare in September 2015. Dr. Siomos practices at Montana Children’s Specialists, a department of Kalispell Regional Medical Center. She is also part of Montana Children’s and its team of more than 40 pediatric specialists. She has been recognized for several academic accomplishments, including receiving a Pediatric Resident Professionalism Award. She also conducted extensive medical research and devoted time to community service, serving at a Denver clinic for uninsured patients, setting up medical clinics in Guatemalan villages, and working with Habitat for Humanity. She enjoys spending time with her husband and children, as well as baking, recycling and studying languages.

1. Thinly slice two of the three Endive heads 2. Thinly slice shallots 3. Seed the pomegranates 4. Combine the leafy

olive oil, juice and zest of the lemon, salt and pepper

6. Gently separate the

leaves of the remaining endive head

7. Toss the salad with the dressing

greens, sliced endive heads and sliced shallots

8. Scoop equal portions

5. For dressing, whisk

9. Serve with a festive

together the olive juice,

of salad into the endive cups


holiday meal!


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Holiday Recipes Recipe by World Spice Merchants - www.worldspice.com Photography by Jamie Lynn Aragonez


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Gather your friends and family together this holiday season and create some lasting memories with sweet treats and warming libations.


Warm Winter Sangria

This is a stout gingerbread. Literally! Rich molasses and stout beer perfectly complement the ginger and aromatic spices in this moist, delicious gingerbread. Our Gingerbread Spice is a powerhouse of flavor with ginger, allspice and Vietnamese cinnamon alongside a generous measure of clove and black pepper. This easy gingerbread travels well to a holiday gathering and will keep you warm for the holiday season alongside a cup of mulled wine or a toddy.

For the Topping

Spiced wine? Mulled cider? We say “choose both” with this Warm Winter Sangria. Mulled wine alone can be too harsh, and mulled cider too sweet. Put them together with a touch of honey and orange, and the drink comes out just right.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and spices. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and generously butter and flour your bundt pan, knocking out the excess flour.

Bake 50-55 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out mostly clean.

In a medium saucepan, combine the stout beer and dark molasses. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Add in the baking soda and stir to combine. The mixture will bubble up, stir gently to keep it from overflowing. Allow the mixture to return to room temperature.


1 cup stout beer 1 cup dark molasses 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 2 cups all purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 2 tablespoons Gingerbread Spice 3 large eggs, at room temperature 1 cup packed dark brown sugar 1 cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 3/4 cup vegetable oil

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix the eggs, sugars and vanilla extract on medium speed until well combined. Add the oil and then the molasses mixture.

Reduce the speed to low and add in the flour mixture. Mix until just combined. Pour the batter into the bundt pan and give it a tap on the counter to remove air bubbles.

Allow the cake to cool on a rack for about 5 minutes and then remove it to a plate and allow to cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar and enjoy! This gingerbread keeps well and is even better the next day!

............................................................................................................. Mulled Wine Poached Pears

The striking color of these poached beauties comes from simmering the pears in Merlot with sugar. Letting them soak overnight and bathing them in the reduced sauce afterwards. These pear-fect morsels can be served alongside ice cream, as a dessert all on their own, or as an accessory to cheese plates. For this version of the recipe, we used our Mulling Spice to infuse the poaching liquid. The warm aromatics of cinnamon, ginger, cloves and cardamom are an excellent accompaniment to the Merlot, and will leave your kitchen smelling lovely as an added bonus!


5 firm ripe Bartlett pears 1 bottle Merlot 1 cup white sugar 2 tablespoons mulling spice 1 orange cut in wheels In a 4-quart sauce pot, combine wine, sugar, mulling spice and orange wheels. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low. While liquid is simmering, peel pears, leaving stem intact and being careful not to blemish the flesh of the pears. Add pears

to poaching liquid, cover, and simmer on low for 25 minutes, then turn and poach for another 20 minutes to ensure even color, until pears are cooked but still firm. Remove saucepan from flame, uncover and cool with pears upright in pan. Once cool, cover and chill in refrigerator at least 24 hours, turning occasionally, for even distribution of color. Remove pears from liquid and bring them up to room temperature. Using a colander strain out the spices from poaching liquid and reduce liquid by half over a medium-high heat for 12 minutes, until liquid is thick and syrupy. Remove poaching liquid from heat and let liquid come to room temperature. Drizzle poaching liquid over pears and enjoy with your favorite brie or over vanilla bean ice-cream. Shingle these pears for a new take on an upside down cake.

Choose a full bodied wine whose shelf-talker boasts of black or red cherry flavors that will complement the mulling spice, but with a price that won’t break the bank. Mid-shelf Pinot Noir or Cabernet are good choices, and an unfiltered and unsweetened cider is the perfect complement. We were lucky enough to have one straight out of the press and it made this Warm Winter Sangria all the more flavorful. Don’t forget the mulling spice!


1 bottle Pinot Noir or Cabernet, 750 ml 3-4 cups unfiltered apple cider 2 tablespoons honey 2 tablespoons Mulling Spice 1 orange, zest and juice Cassia-cinnamon sticks, for garnish Combine the wine, cider, honey, mulling spices and orange juice and zest in a non-reactive saucepan.

Bring the mixture to the boiling point and immediately lower the heat. Simmer ever so gently, 10-15 minutes. Strain and serve.

The sky is the limit on creativity with this drink! Try blended ciders like cherry, blackberry or pear, or add a splash of brandy to make it extra boozy.

Shop online at www.worldspice.com

Family owned and operated for over 25 years, World Spice provides superior quality herbs & spices, handcrafted blends, and estate teas to flavor lovers everywhere.

We ship nationwide or you can pick up at either location.


Montana Outpost 62 Arcadia Way- Columbia Falls, MT 59912 Flagship Store in Seattle behind Pike Place Market 1509 Western Ave, Seattle WA 98101 406

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What I’ve Learned From

History By CT Morris - BS Elementary Ed., MS Ed.

I remember thinking History was one of the most boring subjects in school. Who cares about History the past activities, events, stories, and changes in human behavior? History happened in the past, let’s move on… Now that I am older and somewhat “wiser” I understand what happened in the past affects us today. Many students (and adults) do not realize the importance of historical learning. In our own families we know that family health history affects us in the present. Grandma or grandpa had cancer, there’s a chance I might get the same cancer. If a family member in the past was diabetic, there’s a chance I might become a diabetic. There are alcoholics in my immediate family tree, my children and I need to be aware of the propensity for addiction or addictive behavior in our DNA. We can all agree that it is beneficial to know the health history of our ancestors; because knowing this information can help us have a healthy lifestyle.

History also provides identity. Individually, we can trace our DNA and discover where our lineage began. This gives us a knowledge of who we are and where we came from. A family tree is a good thing, especially for kids because they’ll know their ancestors, their na-


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tionality and origin. More importantly, it gives them sense of identity. When they learn who their ancestors were, they can celebrate family traditions and embrace their culture. It’s important for children to understand their uniqueness and their self-worth. Knowing your personal history makes you more resilient. It’s a fact that life is hard today, but honestly back in the day, life was even more so. Most of our past family members have faced terrible tragedies and heartache that seemed almost impossible to overcome; but they persevered and survived the hardship. When we learn about their stories, it gives us the courage necessary to keep going…and makes us more resilient.

Similarly, children need to study the history of our country because it provides information about the good, the bad and the ugly…regarding how we became this great nation. They can’t identity with our country unless they know its history. Additionally, they won’t have world knowledge unless they learn about the many places and cities around the world. History allows us to understand the diversity of

the many cultures around the world… every country has had its traditional cultures for a long time—this provides us a context from which to understand ourselves and others. Also, morals are formed through stories and situations; they help us absorb essential information for becoming a good citizen of our country. When we see the bad things that have happened throughout history, it shows us how we should better ourselves. Additionally, it improves our decision making and our judgment. Moreover, the most important target of learning history is to learn from the past for our better future. It helps us anticipate the future; in fact, history is one of the many factors that is used to predict the future. We must not overlook the history of the United States of America, our children need to know its rich heritage. We can’t forget what made this country great or the mistakes that have been made in the past. Remember the famous quote from George Santayana,” Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Those who do not remember their past are condemned to repeat it ”.




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5 Ways to

“Cozy Up” the Home for the Holidays By Sydney Munteanu and Wright’s Furniture

The countdown is on! Getting ready for the holidays is always a big at home to-do! Whether you are hosting guests or not, we see so many of our customers coming in to spruce up their living spaces and bring in a little festive cheer. Year after year, we’ve seen certain trends come and go with holiday decor and but here are a few of our go-tos for creating the ultimate, cozy, home for the holidays look.

Don’t forget about guest room prep!

Sleeper sofas, guest room beds, new mattresses, and even extra dining room furnishings just are a few of the things we see most sought after and make sure to stock up the showroom with plenty of items that are ready to deliver before the holidays.


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Make your bedrooms extra cozy.

Adding blankets or even swap for seasonal bedding. Quilted covers or flannel sheets are a great idea, but so can adding bed blankets or furry pillows to create an easy, cozy touch. Shop our throw blanked and pillow displays for tons of these items.


Reclining chairs are a classic, seasonal hit.

Bonus: they can also make for great holiday gifts. Recliners or other living room pieces are a popular item this time of year for a great gift option.

Speaking of living spaces, clear the way for the tree!

Adding or rearrange seating becomes necessary for many home spaces. Other living room adjustments made this time of year could be adding more seating around the fireplace, adding more seasonal throws, or swapping out table pieces.

Dining room and decor additions.

Holiday centerpieces are always a hit. Need some ideas? Pop into our showroom to grab some easy inspiration! We’re always creating new, grand centerpiece displays. Put them on dining tables, coffee tables and, even look to areas like fireplace settings and entryways where you can add a pop of seaonal decor.

This time of year, we like to merchandise Wright’s Furniture store with your holiday shopping goals in mind as well as set the mood inside to have a more cozy feel as our Montana weather cools. Plus, we know it gives our customers great decorating ideas! We do our best to have a large amount of inventory available in all categories with the hopes of having extactly what’s in store for your holiday home needs. 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 wrightsfurniturestore.net 6325 HWY 93 South, Whitefish, Montana 59937 | 406.862.2455 | Open Daily |Free Local Delivery | Free Design Services



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201 Central ave. whitefish Montana 59937 - 406.862.3200

happenings} Make-A-Wish

Daydream Runway for Make-A-Wish Photos by Carli Dewbre at Lisu Media

Daydream Runway was recent fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish Foundation organized by Brittany Brennan, owner of The Nest Boutique, and Kelly Thomas, Chief Marketing Officer of Divinity Group. Local models hit the “runway” at Casey’s Bar while the crowd enjoyed the fun-filled fashion show. The afternoon was a big success raising money for local Flathead Valley Wish Kids in waiting.


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happenings} Make-A-Wish



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happenings} Make-A-Wish

A Special Thank You!

We couldn’t have done it without you! Bonjour Bakery Indah Sushi Levitation Nation’s Aerial Performers Trunk Show Consignment Makeup Artists - Emily Salewsky, Alexandra Witwer, Andi Anderson, and Lindsey K. Costume Designers


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The beautiful models Our wonderful volunteers And of course, 406 Woman magazine

love} stories

Mariah& Seth Photos by Meggan Tovar Blume Photography


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July 31, 2021 Whitefish, Montana

love} stories


to me is an accumulation of all the little things, the good and the bad, the hard roads and the rocky recoveries. Who are you?

Seth: I’m a Montana native. Born in Whitefish and raised in Columbia Falls. I have a career as a stone mason here in the valley. Mariah: I was born in Whitefish also. I enjoy spending time with our family and two dogs.

How did you meet?

Seth and I met when we were in high school. We even went to our first prom together when I was a sophomore and he was a junior. We later went our separate ways but made our way back to each other in the fall of 2016.

The Proposal?

I love hot air balloons and I’ve always wanted to go up in one. Seth had made the arrangements to do just this, but the weather had to be perfect. No wind, no rain, and no snow of course. After three attempts at this and driving around and him having to stop and answer calls from the balloon pilot, I figured out something was up at this point. He decided to skip the balloon and cut right the chase. He still owes me that balloon ride…maybe in July 2022 for our anniversary you’ll see us up there.



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love} stories

He always makes sure to say I love you

even if he’s running behind, busy or upset with me. Through thick and thin he’s been here at my side. What is love?

Seth: Love to me is an accumulation of all the little things, the good and the bad, the hard roads and the rocky recoveries. Yet no matter how difficult life may get, I know there is no one else I would rather be living this life with. Mariah: Love to me is being there through all of it. The good, the bad and the ugly. If someone can stick by your side through every road life leads us on, to grow with you, raise children with you, and not ever get tired of you.

What do you love most about each other?

Seth: I love most about Mariah is how amazing of a mother she is and how I know she is there for me through thick and thin. Mariah: I love how hard working and motivated he is to succeed in life. He’s a great dad. He always makes sure to say I love you even if he’s running behind, busy or upset with me. Through thick and thin he’s been here at my side.


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When did you know you were in love?

Seth: I fell in love with Mariah when we were just kids. I still remember the first time I saw her in high school and I’ve loved her ever since.

Mariah: I knew when I was in love with Seth when he showed persistence. In the beginning of our relationship, and even now, he always reminds me I’m the one for him and a little thing called fate brought us together. Then back together again.

Wedding details:

We were fortunate enough to get married at my amazing boss Dr. Sarah E. Nargi’s property in Whitefish. Surrounded by our friends and family, we exchanged vows not only to each other, but each other’s children. We both agree that this was one of the happiest days of our lives.

Honeymoon: We have plans to travel to Europe for our “official” honeymoon but we also have plans in 2022 to travel around and see some amazing national parks here in the US.

love} stories


& Luke

Photos by Amanda Wilson Photography

Wedding Date: January 9, 2017 Vow Renewal Wedding: January 9, 2021 Lake McDonald - Glacier National Park

How did you meet?

We were 16 & 17 years old and met at a mutual friend’s house. We fell in love at first sight.

The Proposal?

He proposed to me in Glacier National Park at Sacred Dancing Cascade (on McDonald Creek) in the morning.

What is love?

Emily: Love is wanting better for the other person under all circumstances. It is a connection that goes beyond outward physical appearance. It is a connection directly to the heart of a person. It means lots of laughter, forgiveness, grace, and acceptance. It is a deep spiritual bond and commitment under God through thick and thin.

Luke: Love is unconditional … wanting to please and provide for that person, never wanting anything in return. To forgive even though you are hurt. It is to want more for them than yourself. Most of all, it is to be excited to hear her voice every time … like it's the first.


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love} stories


she walked into the room, I knew I was going to marry her. 15 mins after meeting her I said to her, “I'm going to marry you one day.” 10 years later of being in and out of each other's lives we got married. What do you love most about each other?

Emily: His personality, his conviction and leadership qualities, his spontaneousness, his jokes, his voice, his handsome beard, and most of all his good heart. Luke: Her smile, eyes, and most of all her heart.

When did you know you were in love?

Luke: When she walked into the room, I knew I was going to marry her. 15 mins after meeting her I said to her, “I'm going to marry you one day.” 10 years later of being in and out of each other's lives we got married. Emily: The first day I met him. I knew there was something different about him, something special. We were in and out of each other's lives for years and years but I could never get him out of my heart. No one else could ever compare. I always missed him, that's when I really knew I was crazy in love with him and

he had my heart. Finally, when we were back in each other’s lives, it was the best reason ever to get married and say I do forever.

Wedding Details

On January 9, 2017, we went to the courthouse to get married and it was so special.

On January 9, 2021, we renewed our vows with our close friend, who is a pastor along with all our family present. We wanted to have a small and intimate winter wedding. Amanda was an amazing photographer who captured the moment and we are so happy with the beautiful wedding photos. We had such a great time. Even though we were technically already married there is definitely something to be said about renewing your vows under God with all your family and friends present. After years of being together, making mistakes, and growing in our marriage … it was a wonderful blessing. We love each other even more than we already did :) We still do!



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Whitefish-Big Mountain By James Corwin

Going To The Sun Gallery Proudly Features,

a dazzling array of Fine Jewelry

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