Page 1

From all of us at McGough & Co.

Thank You all for a Wonderful Year.

M c G o u g h & C o ... W h e r e M o n ta na G e t s E n g ag e d

131 Central Avenue Whitefish, MT 59937 406-862-9199 800-862-9199

406 contents featured

14. Shifting Ice & Changing Tides Expedition 16. Women of Courage Brooke Hickox


wellness 48. Snowed in? Muscle Up

50. You Can Be Happier




family 56. Executive Functioning Anything is Possible

Music 64. Women Musicians Stand Ready to Modernize a Classical World 66. Off Key Notes

24. Chris & Erica

28. Brian & Mindy

food & flavor 20. Festival of Lights 36. Recipe for Success Showthyme 38. Family Fun Dinner 42. Handmade Favorites 44. Fantastic Finds in German Wine


Cover Girls


Cindy Gerrity

business manager Daley McDaniel

executive editor

Kristen Hamilton

director & design Tyler Nicole Burfeind

Tyler was born in Kalispell and graduated from Glacier High School. She attended MSU Bozeman before obtaining her degree from Great Falls College in Dental Hygiene. Her passion for the wedding industry and background in wedding photography led Tyler to follow her creative aspirations and join Mum’s Flowers/Goldfinch Events in 2013. On June 28th, 2014 she married her best friend, Dan Burfeind, a math teacher at Flathead High School. She enjoys staying creative through photography, floral design, baking and Instagram.  Tyler and her husband are looking forward to their honeymoon in Cancun this March.  photo by: Hope Kauffman (

Business Girl

Sara Joy Pinnell


Amanda Wilson Photography Hope Kauffman Photography Daley McDaniel Photography Carrie Ann Photography Danella Miller Photography Brenda Ahearn Photography Jennifer Mooney Photography Heather Councilor of HC Photography Kathleen Reeder Wildlife Photography Taylor Brooke Photography Lucy Williams Kt Miller Photography

Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 Copyright©2014 Skirts Publishing

View current and past issues of 406 Woman at w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m Gail Lynn Goodwin

Gail Lynne Goodwin is an author, a coach, a speaker, and the founder of, which provides free inspiration daily to members in more than

180 countries. Gail's

passion is helping people create vibrant health

and abundant wealth.


offers telecommuting

coaching, mentoring, and mastermind services from

Whitefish, Montana, where she resides with her husband Darryl, or from her favorite place, their little cabin inside Glacier National Park. her home in the mountains of

photo by:

Want to know about great events, open houses, and more? Like us on Facebook at Woman

Amanda Wilson Photography (

406 Woman is distributed in Bigfork, Columbia Falls, Kalispell, Missoula, Whitefish and every point in between. Check out 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


w o m a n

Checking In

Please don’t curl up under a blanket this winter! Sure, we can have some really cold days around here but with the proper attire, our snow-covered playground offers some wonderful opportunities for fun. Even though the sun sets (much) earlier this time of year, there is plenty to do - inside too. We encourage you to embrace northwest Montana! During the day…ski, sled, snowboard, ice skate or just get outside and enjoy some fresh winter air. We guarantee you that when the sun glistens off the snow, it is truly magical and a site to behold. During the evenings…theatre, movies, music or playing a game with family or friends keeps you warm (inside and out). Things we love during the winter season… Lunch dates that linger with long time friends Snowshoeing in Glacier National Park Watching children’s theater performances Listening to some awesome music in an intimate setting Watching the daring jump in Flathead Lake on New Year’s Day and in Whitefish Lake during the Whitefish Winter Carnival During this holiday season we are grateful for our family, friends, and all of the wonderful acquaintances we’ve met along on this journey over the past six years. We wish you all a joyous holiday season and happy new year!


What did we learn after reading this issue?


That you can “Train Your Brain” and be happier! CrisMarie Campbell shares her expertise in her story on page 50.

Cindy Just and Stephen Isley met when she was apprenticing for a Whitefish jeweler and he had a jewelry shop in downtown Whitefish. In 1999 they opened a shop together and have been making beautiful jewelry together since! Read Nancy Dewar’s business profile in 406 Woman Business & Health on Stephen Isley Jewelers on page 14. Some great tips on controlling holiday spending (and budgeting in the future) to enjoy the season more. Read Erin Vukelich and Juliann Urban’s story on page 28 in the business & health section.


406 Erin Blair


Our Talented

Contributor’s Corner Do you have a New Year’s Eve tradition and do you typically make a resolution?

Delia Buckmaster

Certified in pilates and an active health coach, owner of Exhale Pilates Studio

Leslie Budewitz

Lawyer and national best selling writer of 'The Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries'

Cris Marie Campbell

Master certified Martha Beck coach and consultant, co-owner of Thrive! Inc.

Susan B Clarke

Faculty at The Haven Institute for 20 years and co-owner of Thrive! Inc.

Brian D’Ambrosio

Amanda W i lson

Licensed esthetician and owner of Skin Therapy Studio


Jen Euell

I ring in the New Year with the most important people in my life, my husband & kids. Being at home is my favorite place to be, so having everyone home enjoying each other’s company, eating good food and knowing they are all safe is just about perfect.

Kari Gabriel

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions simply because I know...I’m eating the cookie and I’m not going to run!

Accomplished writer and newly published author of “Reservation Champ’

Nancy Dewar

Freelance marketing, public relations & events specialist Program Director for the Women’s Foundation of Montana Exec Dir or Flathead CARE plus wildlife rehabilitator and educator

Bob Hamilton

Music aficionado, former English teacher, and all around good guy

Kalispell OB/GYN Doctors & Practitioners

Junkermier, Clark, Campanella, Stevens, P.C. Certified Public Accountants and Business Advisors

Nancy Kimball

Marketing communications specialist at Kalispell Regional Healthcare, and career journalist

Marti Kurth

Public relations and marketing expert for organizations in the arts and music

Kristen Ledyard

Executive Chef and Owner of John’s Angels Catering

Jessica Manly

Montana FoodCorps leader connecting kids to real food to grow up healthy

Tracy McIntyre

Business owner, motivator, leader, and the best advocate for Eureka, Montana

John Miller, DDS

Specializing in general dentistry, Dr Miller provides expert advice

Naomi Morrison

Professional journalist, freelance writer and committed to the community

Nancy Dewar

Board certified OB/GYN professional offering expert advice

As a kid my parents always went out & celebrated New Year's Eve with friends. I would usually have a friend or two sleep over & we would bang pots & pans on the front door step at midnight! As an adult, I've never been a huge fan of this night! I prefer to have a small dinner party with a few close friends and send them home well before midnight! I can't remember the last time I watched the ball drop at Time's Square! As far as resolutions go...I don't make any...ever! I don't want to set myself up for any kind of failure!

Kelly O’Brien, Esq.

Business law specialist with Measure Law Office, P.C.

Kristen Pulsifer

Karen Sanderson

Wine expert and owner of Brix Bottleshop in Kalispell

Lisa Slagle

Designer, writer, and owner of Wheelie Creative, design agency

Miriam Singer

Talented writer and songstress, promoting music as Singer & Simpson Productions

Lucy Smith

Executive Director of the Flathead Community Foundation, believes that everyday philanthropy is changing the world

Gwen Sutherland


Owner of Marketing Bits, writing and design business

For full bios for our contributors, please visit

12 406

Naomi Mor r i son

Writer, editor and owner of Whitefish Study Center

Being from the East Coast, we always watch the Times Square ball drop at 10 pm and call our families to wish them a Happy New Year. I’ve never been one to make resolutions, rather I prefer reflecting on my experiences and sharing my gratitude. This helps me further understand what’s most important in my life and move forward with intention.


Shifting Ice&

Changing Tides Photography by KT Miller

In March 2014, a team of six women departed from Ísafjörður, Iceland for the coast of Greenland as the Shifting Ice and Changing Tides Expedition Team. The team was a human and wind powered, female lead expedition to the west coast of Greenland to visually document the recession of glaciers and ski first descents. They spent 3 days in Iceland and then sailed southwest across the Denmark Strait to the southern tip of Greenland exploring terrain from the southern tip to Nuuk. The team ascended the mountain via skins and skied first descents on virgin terrain.

down the slopes. Longtail and Eider ducks called out back and forth across the water. The Longtails sound like they are laughing as the Eider’s call out a soft “woo woo woo”. Siggi, the owner of the Aurora Arktika and our host for the next three days mimics their laughter. “Wait, there aren’t other people in the fjord?” Meghan Kelly, the woman who sent out one email and instigated this entire trip, asked. We all look at the empty vast Fjord and ocean that surrounds us. “I thought there were people laughing somewhere nearby last night!” Meghan laughs, remembering how remote we truly are, it was more likely echoes from our boat Iceland’s population is small to begin with, but with 66% of the Icelandic population living in the Capitol Region where we definitely were not (according to the 2014 Iceland Census), it’s unlikely that anybody else had wandered into this remote fjord in Vestfirđir.

days on-land are marked by early alpine starts, it’s harder to get up and go when you’re exploring new terrain everyday. Most of fjords we traveled in have limited representation on topographical maps, and most our research was done each day as we visually assessed the mountains in front of us.

Skinning in Iceland brought an array of conditions. The spring sun quickly softened the sunny southern slope we explored first. We traversed the ridgelines that were quickly losing their winter coat; the snow was splashed with deep purples, soft blues, and moss poking through. “Wait, what is making the snow blue?” I asked as I reached down to pull the skins from my skis.

“Blueberries!” Camilla, a UK national turned Icelandic ski bum replied. “They freeze in the winter then pop when your skis glide over them. Eat one, Follow their full story (with some amazing As the sun stretched it’s rays to the bottom of the or don’t, but it probably won’t taste very nice.” photography) as it unfolds in the making of fjords, we spotted Camilla’s purple jacket pop out a documentary for 2015. against the dark volcanic rock as she searched the “Taste one,” Martha encouraged all of us, as we inlow tide for fresh mussels by stand up paddle board. spected them a little bit closer. Mckenna popped Here’s an entry from Pip Hunt’s Journal that Our crew sleepily wandered from the cozy cabin one in her mouth. recounts part of their adventure… below decks, sipping steaming cups of coffee and nuzzling a little deeper into our down coats against “It’s like a squishy ball of unflavored fluid,” Mckenna Friday, 28th March 2014 the frigid air. Little did we know that this would stated, her face reflecting the unsuspected texture from such a familiar fruit. Yesterday was a day of firsts – our first morning in slowly become our morning routine – sipping cofIceland. The clear morning sky was crisp against fee while watching the sun slowly soften the snow the cold sea, and the fjords rose steadily out of the as we picked our day’s lines and made a game plan. After a warm up run of perfect corn snow, we split darkness, reflecting the morning sun as it crept Life on a sailboat can tick by slowly. While many into two teams and set out for some larger and lon-


14 406


Skinning in Iceland brought an array of conditions. The spring sun quickly softened the sunny southern slope we explored first. We traversed the ridgelines that were quickly losing their winter coat; the snow was splashed with deep purples, soft blues, and moss poking through. ger objectives. Martha, Meghan and myself toured around the bend of the fjord towards the Northwest Couloir, an aesthetic and relatively easy to access line. Mckenna, Nat, Camilla, and Siggi’s son, Haukur, jumped back on the Zodiac to access a steep exposed face that funneled into a tight couloir. Rain runnels lined the crux as it opened into an apron and abruptly ended in the water. The Middle Einbui Couloir had never been skied, but after a winter of exceptional snowfall, it was finally filled in, and Haukur was psyched at the opportunity to ski such a line.

Martha, Meghan and I were soon trading in our skins for crampons and whippits, as the northwest slope was frozen solid. One foot swung rhythmically in front of the other and each swing of the whippit ensured our grip on the steadily steeper slope. As we inched higher, debris increasingly rained down upon us. Soon, rocks, ice chunks and roller balls cascaded on us. Like an unhappy crowd throwing tomatoes, perhaps the couloir wasn’t thrilled with our presence. As I crested a rollover in the slope, the rock couloir walls shone in the afternoon sun, the icy cornices glistened and the momentary stillness was beautiful. But this was

no place to stand. We deliberately crossed the icy crossed the convexity of the slope to the softest asslope to a safer spot, and deliberated our next step. pect of the face and linked beautiful, fall line turns towards the crux. Meghan’s shovel pinged off the snow as we attempted to build ourselves a bench. “What do you Meghan, Martha, Siggi, KT and I clutched our hot think?” I asked her. “I’m not sure, we could keep drinks on deck and held our breath. The chatter going up the original couloir, but I think that se- of her skis across the frozen rain runnels echoed rac will continue to release small rocks and ice as across the water. Her pace slowed, but her control it stays in the sun.” I looked out across the fjord, a and confidence balanced the crux. As she neared small band of high clouds soften the sun, and we the water she mindfully traversed and safely encould see the tiny speck of our boat, the Aurora tered the Zodiac. First ascent of the Shifting Ice and Arktika below. “I agree, I think we could make it, Changing Tides expedition... Done. but it would also be risky.” Follow their full story (with some amazing photog“Maybe we should tell KT we are going to bivy up raphy) as it unfolds in the making of a documenhere for tonight,” Meghan joked. “Maybe it will soft- tary for 2015. en up in time for tomorrow morning.” Website: Tired of being pelted with the debris the sun Facebook: was dislodging above us and with little hope of it warming the slope we were on, we decided to Shifting Ice & Changing Tides Team: Martha head down, one icy run later we were, back on Hunt,  (UK) Whitefish, MT., Pip Hunt,   (UK) Crestthe boat. We sank into our down slippers and tea ed Butte, Co., Nat Segal, (AUS)  Melbourne, Ausand watched the other team crest the Middle Einui tralia, McKenna Peterson, (USA) Salt Lake City, Couloir. Mckenna went first, and her tiny figure Utah, Meghan Kelly,   (USA) Lake Tahoe, NV. KT dropped in carefully and technically perfect. She Miller,  (USA) Bozeman, MT.



Brooke Hickox By Nancy Kimball

Women of Courage Taking the next step Brooke Hickox remembers lying in her overturned car, her head facing into her lap, and trying to honk the horn. “My arms weren’t really moving at all,” she recalled of the afternoon her rear tire caught the edge of the asphalt on Whitefish Stage Road north of Kalispell and rolled her into the ditch. It was August 15, 2013, and the 17-year-old was driving home from her job at Torrent Technologies. “It felt like a slow motion dream. After the car stopped I was thinking, ‘Did this really happen?’ ”

People started assembling on the roadside – the owner of the land where she came to rest, an off-duty paramedic who started an IV line, some man who kept telling her to stay awake. An ambulance came, but “all I remember was the hospital lights while they were carrying me in on a stretcher,” she said. When neurological surgeon Joseph Sramek, MD, got the call, he was five minutes away from the hospital. He was new to Kalispell Regional Healthcare’s Neuroscience and Spine Institute, after 13 years of practice in Wyoming, and was on his first weekend of taking call.


16 406

had absolutely no sign of sensory or motor function below the level of her injury. She was completely paralyzed. Statistically, if someone doesn’t regain some function within the first 24 hours, at most there would be a three percent chance of ever using their body below the level of the injury.”

Dr. Sramek wasn’t going to settle for that with Brooke. Because of her young age, he opted for a very highdosage steroid protocol to decrease inflammation – controversial, but warranted in this case, he felt. He moved her directly from the ER to the operating room to begin six-plus hours of surgery. She emerged with a realigned neck, rods and screws to stabilize it, and a bone plug with another plate to stabilize that. With the pressure taken off her spine, she was poised to heal.

“When I first woke up, the only place that felt normal was my face and neck,” Brooke said. She could feel doctors poking “They thought she would probably her arms, but had no idea if they transfer to Seattle,” he said, recount- were using a needle or pencil. ing his conversation with Kalispell “From my stomach on down, I Regional Medical Center’s Emer- felt nothing.” gency Department staff. “I said no, The next 10 days, Brooke was all I’ll come in and take a look.” smiles. Her dad, Joe Hickox, figured it What he saw wasn’t good. Brooke was because she realized how lucky had what’s called a fracture sublux- she was to be alive. That, and he had ation of C6-7 – her neck was com- watched her progress. pletely dislocated, with one vertebra pushed all the way forward of the “The day after surgery, she could next one, and her spinal cord was to- tell you were touching her leg,” Dr. tally compressed at that dislocation. Sramek said. “The importance of that Both the front and back of her spine is that some gross sensation was getting through. Then you know there’s were fractured. some recovery, but you never know “It’s a question not so much of sur- how much.” Milestones continued – vivability, but of one’s ability to re- barely wiggling her toes, moving her gain functional independence,” Dr. knee back and forth, lifting her heels Sramek said. “When she came in she off the bed. Brooke said her natural



“She was very calm through the whole thing, just took it in stride. I never saw her panic; she had amazing composure,” he said. “She never complained about pain, or about the surgery. She would admit she had pain but never cried about it or whined about it. She seemed very mature to me. There never was a ‘woe is me’ moment that I ever saw.” stubbornness, honed by years as an athlete, helped “Everybody called me a superstar. I liked that, and her rehab therapists push her further every day. it got me out of a bad mood whenever I was in one,” Brooke said. Sure enough, just after two months of On Day 14, according to her dad’s meticulous log, hard work at Craig Hospital, she left there walking. she was flown to Craig Hospital in Denver, Colorado. Kalispell’s rehab doctors could help at home, That was Nov. 1. She returned to her senior year but her age was a big factor. It was unlikely other at Whitefish High School on Nov. 25. On June 21, teenagers would be around during her rehabilita- 2014, she completed her first post-surgery 5K tion in Kalispell; she easily could feel isolated. event, finishing the Whitefish Lake Run in 1 hour and 16 minutes. She and her family moved to Flori“There’s a big psychological component,” da over the summer, where she shaved 10 minutes Dr. Sramek said. “One of the thoughts in off her finish time in another 5K in October. Brooke sending her to Craig – it’s one of the best spi- now is enrolled in St. Petersburg College, preparnal cord rehab centers in the country – she ing for a career in physical therapy. She’s still would be around other people her age, she working to regain strength, endurance and fine motor control, but “at this point I’m pretty much would get that psychological boost.” independent,” Brooke reported. And she did. She connected with other patients her age. She forged a bond with the therapists, many Unflagging support from her family and friends not much older than she, and drew encourage- kept up her spirits and “started me off on my jourment from their spunkiness. She knew doctors had ney; they were always happy and they made me planned to prepare her for severely limited mobil- happy,” Brooke said. “But I think I pushed myself ity, but she never forgot the therapist who prom- through it. I got this far because of me and the mindset I have. I’ve been stubborn my entire life.” ised her she would leave Craig walking.

Dr. Sramek has seen similar cases, but this level of success is unprecedented in his experience.

“My hope was that we could stabilize her and get her functioning so she could feed herself and things like that. Never in my wildest dreams did I think she’d be walking as well as she is now,” he said. And her courage was remarkable. “She was very calm through the whole thing, just took it in stride. I never saw her panic; she had amazing composure,” he said. “She never complained about pain, or about the surgery. She would admit she had pain but never cried about it or whined about it. She seemed very mature to me. There never was a ‘woe is me’ moment that I ever saw.” Brooke would share the credit for that one.


“I wasn’t alone, definitely,” she said. “I had a lot of people rooting for me.”

406  17

Festival of Lights

Photos by Amanda Wilson

As the winter days grow darker, the Festival of Lights brightens many Jewish families’ homes. Tanya Gersh of, Tanya Gersh Event Design, is a long-time resident of Whitefish, a local event planner and one of the leaders of the Flathead Valley Jewish community. Tanya enjoys inviting family and friends into her home for Chanukah celebrations filled with good food, holiday blessings and games for the children. Chanukah is a Jewish holiday celebrating the historic event of the Jewish Maccabean revolt against the Syrian-Greeks in first century BCE. While Chanukah is not as significant religiously as the winter, Christian holiday of Christmas, Chanukah is a very important time for Jews to get together to celebrate life and create life-long memories for their children. When Tanya throws a party for her family, she doesn’t mess around! “I love the opportunity to do something special for my family and friends. When I create any event, I don’t like it to be ordinary. I like to go over the top, and a little over-the-top is what makes it a real celebration rather than just an ordinary dinner, “ Tanya explained. Tanya decorates for Chanukah using Jewish tradition by having the nine-wick candelabra called a “menorah” or “hanukkiyah.” She also fills the table with dreidels, which are spinning tops used to play a children’s game. Jewish stars and presents make it a festive night in which they share gifts and celebrate their Jewish heritage. It is a Montana Chanukah with the addition of decorations that represent nature like Tanya’s little pinecone animals and snowflakes. Chanukah is celebrated for eight nights and what makes each night special for the Gersh family is who is at their table. Every night there is a different group of family and friends and at least one night that it is just Tanya, her husband Judah and their two boys Jacob and Micah. They exchange gifts, sing Hebrew blessings and songs, and enjoy celebrating the lights that make winter bright.


20 406

This year for Chanukah, Tanya and Judah will also be hosting new friends Marc and Francine Roston and their children. The Rostons moved to Whitefish this summer after having visited Whitefish for a number of summers. They fell in love with the area and also with the small, welcoming Jewish community. Marc works in financial management and Francine is a rabbi who worked for 16 years in New Jersey congregations before moving to Whitefish. She explained saying, “Marc and I decided that it was time for a change. I needed a break from the stress and overwhelming nature of pulpit life. We wanted to live in a place that was more peaceful and where we could be more connected to nature.” Rabbi Roston has quickly become an active member and volunteers for the Jewish Community of the Flathead Valley. She is helping to organize the community as well as offering group Torah study on a monthly basis. “While I am not the employee of the community, I am a rabbi and I love to celebrate Jewish life and learning with people,” says Roston. For the Rostons, the eight nights of Chanukah give them an opportunity to have themes for each night of Chanukah. “Many families do this,” explains Roston. “Sometimes they make gift themes: one night clothing, one night books, one night toys, etc. Or sometimes people have different themes that connect with their values or the themes of the holiday, like one night having a discussion about miracles in our world and one night talking about ways to bring light into the world. For a number of years, our fam-

ily tradition has been to give no gifts to each other on the last night of Chanukah but instead to give charity our favorite organizations. The Rostons and the Gershes along with about 100 other families gather for Jewish holidays, to observe the Sabbath, to study the bible together and to socialize together at events like Whitefish Theater Project’s performances. When the Jewish Community of Flathead Valley gets together they work hard to celebrate Jewish tradition, provide a welcoming and encouraging atmosphere and create meaningful experiences for everyone. If you are celebrating Chanukah or want to give a friend a Chanukah present, you can offer something to decorate their holiday table. You could also give a donation to a favorite charitable organization in their honor. Just accepting a Chanukah invitation is sure to bring light to the hosts’ home and brighten the mood of all the celebrants.

Whether you celebrate Chanukah or Christmas or Kwanzaa or the Winter Solstice, creating a table and a celebration that highlights your traditions, makes memories for friends and family and adds that Montana flair is what it’s all about!! If you are interested in more information about the Jewish community of Flathead Valley, you can write Tanya at


Whether you celebrate Chanukah or Christmas or Kwanzaa or the

Winter Solstice, creating a table and a celebration that highlights your

traditions, makes memories for friends and family and adds that Montana flair is what it’s all about!!



Chris & Erica October 4, 2014

Photographed by Jennifer Mooney Photography

Who are we?

Erica Terrell - In 2003, after graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, I wanted to try my hand in the “mountain town” life, so I loaded up my 4Runner and headed north to Whitefish. While hitting the slopes was the daily goal, I still had to earn a decent wage, so I worked as a waitress until I landed my current position as the Director of Marketing for Glacier Restaurant Group. I also serve as chairperson for the Whitefish Convention and Visitors Bureau. I love partaking in challenging adventures, both physically and mentally.

Chris Terrell - I first moved out west to Jackson to be a ski bum in the winter of 2000 after college in North Carolina where I played NAIA soccer and obtained a degree in Outdoor Education. I try to ski the powder every chance I get, as long as work doesn’t get in the way. I moved to Whitefish in 2004, and I have established my roots in construction as licensed contractor and proudly own, Glacier Timberline Construction, Inc. I coach kids soccer for the Flathead Force and take great pride in working with these young athletes in an effort to bring them to the next level in the sport. How did we meet?

Erica - We met early in the ski season of 2005 in downtown Whitefish. A mutual friend introduced us and we discovered we were from the same suburb of Texas, Plano. His mom was actually an AP English teacher at my high school and her picture is in my yearbook. For about a week or so, I spotted him on the mountain a few times and nonchalantly attempted to hit the chair lift lines at the same time, but there was no way of that, he was a gazillion times better than I. Shortly thereafter, he asked me on our first date to Wasabi, and we sat at the front counter (back when it was bright orange & green)…the counter is still the only place we prefer to sit when we dine there, must have been the beginning of our 9 year habit of always sitting at the bar/counter rather than a table at any and all restaurants. We both went home to Texas that holiday season, and before I could say, “hey mom, this is my ‘friend’ Chris from Montana,” he is shooting pool with my dad in our living room. Funny, how things moved so quickly off the bat… but it took us nearly 8 years to get engaged. It was worth the wait.

Proposal: Erica - It was Christmas Eve 2013, and Chris and I were finishing up a great morning of skiing before heading down to prepare for an evening of holiday cheers. Chris was adamant to take one last hike to ski a particular locals spot on Big Mountain, Flower Point. I was a bit hesitant due to a sore toe and dinner dishes to prepare, but I bucked up and went. After about 20 minutes and a toe nail later, I made it to the top where Chris was waiting anxiously. I don’t hike quite as fast as he does. He leaned in to give me a kiss...and I was quite thrown off, wondering, "What in the world is he up


24 406

to?" We typically just catch our breath and getting going. Once he started to fumble in his ski pant pocket, I had tingles rush through my body and thought to myself "is this really happening?" Chris then took off his goggles, got down on one knee in the snow... and popped the question. My response "Of course I will." The ski run down was by far the best time of my life! For those of who know the thrill of first tracks in freshies on a pow day...well, take that and multiply by thousands, that's how I felt. Chris proved that the perfect powder conditions are not only great to ski but also set the ideal backdrop for and engagement ring and a profession of love.

What is Love? Erica – Love is the most spectacular thing. It is an accident that turns out to be the most wonderful thing in life. It is the element of your life journey together that keeps your soul alive. It is being safe with someone. Knowing they will be there for you through thick and thin and you for them. But most of all, love is that special feeling you get every time you hug, kiss or look into each other eyes... that you just don’t ever want to let go. Chris –Love is looking into that special persons eyes and getting lost into another

place and you do not care if you return to reality. Love is knowing that she forgives me for all of the dumb decisions that I make daily.

there for friends and family in bad and good times. Erica is a very beautiful woman who has grown into a very confident person over the years we have been together.

Chris –I love the way Erica is very passionate person that is willing to fight for whatever she wants. There is no way you can tell her that she can not do something, she will find a way to make it happen no matter the cost. Erica is a very caring person and is always

Chris –I knew that Erica was the one not long after we met; we both flew by the seat of our pants with no real game plan. If there was concert or party or someplace we wanted to go, we went for it. I had never found any other person that carefree like myself. I felt that we were a great match and maybe this is the crazy one. After tying the knot I know that this is still the crazy one I have loved for a long time.

What do you love most about each other? Erica – Everyday there is something new that makes me love Chris even more than the day before. But if I had to narrow it down then, aside from his baby blues, one of the biggest things I love about him is the commitment, pride and passion he takes in everything he does, from building a home for his clients, to coaching kids soccer to teaching me to ski and golf, to well… everything. His honesty and candor has given me a valuable outlook on life and has taught me how to truly make the best of every situation, the good – better and the bad – manageable. Not only do I love him with all my heart, he is my rock and my best friend. I look forward to waking up next to him for the rest of my life.

When did you know you were in love? Erica – I’ve am lucky enough to have shared in so many amazing memories with Chris over the past 9 years, that it is quite hard to really pick the exact moment when I knew I was in love. But an experience that comes to mind that is definitely up there was about 7 month after we met. We headed on a 9-hour road trip to Jackson Hole for a wedding. It was my first time to meet many of his ski buddies, and I fondly remember a moment where I did a little “stunt” and one of his pals said, “yep, that makes sense why you are dating Chris, you are made for each other.” And it was then I realized we are aren’t we?



Fun Facts:

We grew up 15 minutes away from each, but had never met till moving to Whitefish.

Guests from 9 different states ventured to Montana for our big day (Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, California)

Honeymoon Plans: Nothing is set in stone at this point, but we’ve always dreamed of going to Nicaragua. Chris has had his heart set on a trip of that sort since we’ve met… so hopefully one day.

About the Magical Day Venue: Glacier Raft Company Weddings & Events

Photographer: Jennifer Mooney Photography Florist: Beargrass Gardens Caterer: Cuisine Machine Band: New Wave Time Trippers Bar: Craggy Range Bar & Grill Officiant: Heather Halbakken (friend & minister) Cake: Miranda Harrah Bride Dress & Veil: Stardust Celebrations, Dallas, TX Bridesmaid dresses: Lulu’s Bridal, Dallas, TX Hair: McNamee Studios Grooms attire: Men’s Warehouse Rings: Jensen Jewelers


406  25



Brian & Mindy August 30, 2014

Photographed by Heather Councilor of H.C. Photography

Who are we? Brian Zaragoza and Mindy Pfankuch-Zaragoza

How did you meet? Mindy's dad (Mark) and Brian had worked together for a few years. They both shared the love of hunting and spoke of it often. Brian's dad lives near Mindy's parents house whom she was living with while waiting to move into her new house in 2011. One day Mark and Brian got to talking about shed racks. Mindy's dad had found a couple shed racks that he wanted Brian to see. Mark casually said well next time you go out to your dad’s house stop by. Mindy's son Leighton was talking to Papa (Mark) on the phone on his way home from work. Leighton said “Papa you just pulled into the driveway.” Papa told him no that he just had left work. Well someone had pulled into the driveway. Since it was wintertime it was dark and all Mindy could see were headlights. Mindy answered the door and there stood one handsome man, Mindy was captivated and could barely speak. Good thing Brian started talking. He told her that Mark told him to stop by to look at the shed racks. Mindy still in awe was then disappointed when a girl walked up on the porch. She thought darn it! All the handsome guys are always taken. Mindy invited Brian and his then "girlfriend" in. Mark spoke with Brian over the phone and he looked at the shed rack. There were some jokes down the road as to what "rack" Brian was checking out that night. Brian didn't stay long but it was long enough to make an impression on Mindy. Come to find out Brian was just as taken with Mindy. That night he broke up with his girlfriend, which he was planning on doing soon anyways. The next day at work Brian had lots of questions for Mark about Mindy. Mark said that Brian was just so impressed with everything he told him about Mindy. With Mark's invite Brian came over every Tuesday night for a few weeks and stayed for hours. Brian finally asked Mark for his permission to take Mindy out on a date and asked for her phone number. As Mark was giving Brian Mindy's phone number he told Brian "Mindy gave me strict instruction if you asked for her number I was to give it to you!"


28 406

The Proposal? Brian asked Mark for permission to propose to Mindy on Christmas Eve of 2013. He cried with joy. Unfortunately he passed away unexpectedly 2 weeks later so he never got to experience the joy of the proposal. Mindy was home sick on February 11th and Brian really wanted to make her feel better and was just so excited to propose that he couldn't wait. Leighton was there when Brian asked the big question and without hesitation Mindy said “yes.”



What is love? Mindy: Love is when you have been together for a long time and your heart still flutters when you are with them, you can't wait to see them after a long day at work, and you can tell them anything. Brian: Love is when you miss someone all the time, you don't like being apart and you don't feel like being anywhere else. What do you love most about each other? Brian: What I love most about Mindy is how well she takes care of me.

Mindy: What I love most about Brian is how he loves me for me and allows me to live my own dreams but keeps me grounded.

When did you know you were in love? I knew I was in love with Brian when I realized how much he respected me for who I was. Brian said once Mindy realized how much I respected her she opened her heart up to me and I knew I loved her too. Fun facts We both have children from previous relationships. Zoe (Brian's Daughter) is 6 and Leighton (Mindy's son) is 7. Mindy's grandpa officiated the ceremony. Honeymoon plans Honeymoon plan? Ha! What's that? With our kids being young still, we are waiting to take a honeymoon. We are thinking Mexico or maybe Hawaii. Time will tell.

Wedding details We had the wedding at Mindy’s parents house in Creston. The ceremony took place on the lawn below the house over looking Bass Lake and the Swan Range. We chose Mindy's parents house due to Mindy's dad (Mark) passing away in January and his presence being so strong at their home. We had the reception in Mark's shop. Knucklhed BBQ by Ryan Garnache catered the event. We rented tables and chairs from Celebrate in Bigfork. Otherwise, we planned the entire wedding ourselves.


406  29


Hazelnut Galettes

Recipe for Success Blu and Rose Funk Hazelnut Galettes By Denise Lang Photos by Lucy Williams.

I am proud to say that Blu Funk and I have three things in common: our love of Bigfork, the consistency in which we run our businesses and of course, our interest in food. Showthyme Restaurant, located on Electric Avenue next to the Bigfork Playhouse, is aptly named and if you haven’t been there, your destiny is to go and have an amazing dining experience. Reviews support my words. Blu Funk is hands down one of the best chefs and ranks right up there in the entire state! Showthyme made me want to move to Montana immediately! If you are looking for a Montana treasure, try Showthyme. The service was outstanding! The staff is great and capable whether we have a party of 15 or an intimate table for 2. I don’t know how much you may know about running a restaurant. It’s never easy, especially in a seasonal resort town but Blu makes everything look simple. Blu spends many hours designing menus and cooking before the restaurant is open for dinner. He and his wife Rose can’t always be at the restaurant but they arm their staff with knowledge, high expectations, firm boundaries, freedom to make decisions, and as Blu says, “we keep the drama to a minimum!”


36 406

Above picture of Blu Funk and Denise Lang.

Blu’s story

is an American one. He left home as a teenager, started as a busboy at the Village Inn Pancake House and worked his way up. Always curious and eager to learn, he was mentored by the best European chefs and at 41, met Rose, the love of his life. Together they are still reinventing themselves in the art of fine foods and desserts. In fact, Blu has been called the “Godfather of desserts” and although he says he is not cutting edge, I don’t agree. Just try his ice cream and truffles, but we’ll get to that later.

who doesn’t know anything about cooking or serving, but has the fire to learn and then we’ll teach them the rest of it.”

“That first winter in 1990 was the outbreak of the Gulf War. People were glued to their televisions and our business was bleak,” Blu reminisces. “We had to do something so we started making chocolate truffles and we have been making them ever since. Nowadays, we make 150 pounds per season and sell them all over the world.”

Blu and Rose’s Recipe for Success is vast and going strong.

Truffles are just the beginning of the desserts Blu and Rose make at Showthyme. Remember… the “Godfather of desserts?” Well, here’s my food tip for you. Try the homemade ice creams that Blu makes every day in the summer…roasted chicory with a cocoa nib, smoked Flathead cherry with dark chocolate flecks, Flathead Valley fresh plum sorbet, New Zealand hokey “In 24 years we have seen kids have kids pokey (which is the national ice cream of and watched our Bigfork families grow up,” New Zealand) and the ever popular, ginger. Blu remarks. “We don’t have children of When Blu is offering the cured salmon lox, our own, but have raised a lot of them at you’ll get a scoop of sweet basil ice cream to complement it. Showthyme. I would rather hire someone Blu was invited to Bigfork in 1982 as a consultant for the Bigfork Inn. Soon after he had his own restaurant in Vail, Colorado. This was his first introduction to the little village by the bay and that’s where his love of Bigfork began to grow. He and Rose returned in 1990 to open Showthyme.

# food}

t u n l e z a H

Hazelnut Galettes

In the mood for homemade French Country Bread? You can get it at Showthyme. Last winter, Blu and Rose took a week and went to the San Francisco Baking Institute to learn more about making fermented breads. Blu says, “We make six French Country loaves a day with our own wild yeast starter and sell it at the restaurant.”


If you have never been to Showthyme, you will love the ambiance. Set in a brick bank building from 1908 (the last time the Cubs won the world series), the inside sparkles with the patina of old woods and soaring stained glass windows procured from a Minnesota monastery. Downstairs, the “vault” is open for dining all year and offers a fun alternative to the regular menu in the winter. It is also the place where our weekly martini group meets. Winter comradery blooms perhaps a bit too profusely and I must apologize to Blu and Rose because at times, we can get a bit rowdy! It’s all part of the joy and friendship that living in Bigfork offers.

(makes 62 cookies)

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour 1 ½ cups sugar 1 teaspoon sea salt 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 ½ cups hazelnuts blanched, skinned and coarsely chopped

Blu and Rose’s Recipe for Success is vast and going strong. They help me out in my business because I can always recommend Showthyme to my clients and they always love it! A dining experience at Showthyme in Bigfork village is a tempting solicitation to move to Montana immediately!

12 oz. of unsalted butter 1 teaspoon cinnamon ¼ teaspoon vanilla

Now to this month’s recipe... Hazelnut Galettes.

“We only make them for the holidays," Blu says, “though they are good anytime. We make 12 dozen, pack them up into 1 dozen gift boxes and donate them to Kalispell’s Literacy Volunteers. They sell them for their fundraiser.”

Showthyme! 548 Electric Avenue Bigfork, Montana 59911 406-837-0707 Visit us on Facebook

Soften the butter in a small mixer.

Let it set in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Add all the ingredients to the butter.

Set oven to 350 degrees.

Mix on medium until it comes together in a ball of dough.

Cut the roll into 3/8 inch slices.

Make a roll of the dough in parchment paper.

Denise Lang Your Recipe for Success Photo by John Stalowy

The recipe for these melt-inyour-mouth delicacies came from Peg who worked for Blu and Rose 24 years ago.


Put on a greased cookie pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes.

Let cool and Enjoy!

Denise Lang, Broker National Parks Realty 8270 MT. Hwy 35 Suite 5 Bigfork, MT 59911 Cell 406-249-1758


In the Pantry

Winter Wonderland Well, let’s face it, winter is here and however much they say that white is not in style, the outdoors would disagree. That does not mean that comfort and flavor are not in season. With the amazing pantry we have, winter will be a true celebration. Traditions are key and additions to the norm are a way to stay modern. If I truly think back to my favorite comfort food, it is certainly not mashed potatoes. Macaroni and cheese with flavor hits the spot no matter the temperature. I am going to give you a few of our family traditional recipes to make your own and use throughout the Holiday season.

Here is my favorite Scandinavian Mac and Cheese

Base: basic béchamel sauce – melt 3 Tablespoons of butter with 2 Tablespoons of flour for 2 minutes then whisk in 2 Cups of milk then transform it into a Mornay sauce by adding ½ Cup each of Gruyere and Muenster cheese slowly (many recipes call for Parmesan instead of Muenster but that is my favorite). Add a touch of Louisiana Hot Sauce for flavor plus sea salt and ground pepper. Noodles: your personal choice - I prefer penne as the sauce sticks to them better. The biggest hints are to add salt to the water and taste your noodles to make sure they still have bite. You will be baking them soon for the final touch. Pulling the recipe together: Find your best Pickled Mackerel or Sardines and dice. Add a bit of the pickling liquid. I prefer adding capers also. Stir into sauce with noo-


38 406 38 406

& the Family Fun Dinner

By Kristen Ledyard Owner/Executive Chef of John’s Angels Catering LLC

dles and place in a baking pan. Top with toasted breadcrumbs. Pull from the oven when browned on top.

Hint to American tradition:

Skip the fish and add more cheeses – up to four like Monterey jack, Parmesan, Fontina, or Manchego. Well your one side dish is a hit, but we need to have one more to really wow your family and guests. Do not worry, no green bean casserole, crusty buns, unrecognizable jello thing, or cranberry jelly that is shaped like a can (just a few of my childhood nightmares). What is your family favorite? Could it be brussel sprouts, cabbage, fresh green beans, scalloped potatoes, or corn on the cob? I am going to suggest an amazing flavor overload with winter corn. To me, it just does not seem right to have winter feast without corn or brussel sprouts. The following recipe has both.

Winter Corn and Brussel Sprout


Best corn on the cob available (no worries if not perfect) Fresh brussel sprouts (frozen will do, but make sure the squeeze and drain the water out of ) Fresh colored peppers diced Day old rice or fresh white rice cooked and cooled Fresh garlic and shallot minced to a ¼ cup Vegetable or chicken stock

Favorite melting cheese like fontina or even mozzarella for a mild flavor Tablespoon of Ranch dressing (the secret component) Hot sauce (your favorite) Salt and pepper to taste Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees (you can even use a pizza oven). Sautee the shallots, peppers, and garlic with EVOO until tender, then add the Ranch (salt and pepper to taste). In a cast iron pan caramelize (brown) the brussel sprouts. You can use a grill pan on your personal grill for both the brussel sprouts and corn for an even better flavor. Cut the corn off of the cob. (If corn on the cob is not available, then frozen is fine lightly sautéed or grilled). The smoke flavor is the key in this recipe. Use a nonstick butter spray on a glass casserole dish. Place your rice layered on the bottom. I sprinkle my favorite hot sauce over the rice. It creates a layer of flavor boost. Layer the sautéed vegetables, then corn and brussel sprouts. Top with your cheese of choice. Bake for 25 minutes with foil on top, then let cook until brown without the foil. Cool for five minutes before serving. You will blow your guests away with this old/reinvented modern recipe. Winter does not have to mean cold and bleak, as we have proven with the above recipes. For a great addition to a warm, fun, and comforting evening, just add my Mom’s favorite recipe (below). It truly does bring back memories and a feeling of togetherness.

Peggy’s Warm Your Bones and Heart Beverage

Your favorite red wine (any will do but Cabernet as it is too dry) Fresh oranges, lemons, thyme, cinnamon, nutmeg Medium to large stock pot (or a crock pot) Simply warm the wine and make sure to keep a back up bottle. Slice the orange and lemon to use only four slices at first. Add one thyme twig, cinnamon stick, and dash of nutmeg. We will continue to add ingredients as needed. Do not let simmer. Only keep warm letting the ingredients mix for a half hour before serving. Using a ladle, serve in your favorite mugs and enjoy with family, friends, and neighbors. Winter is a season to be welcomed and a time to slow down to enjoy busy summer friends. Take this time to explore recipes, organize your pantry, and bring out those Holiday dishes that are only used once a year. We will you a wonderful New Year and Happy Winter from John’s Angels Catering! Let’s go to the Islands next…


Leslie Budewitz

‘Tis the Season—

For Sharing Handmade Favorites By Leslie Budewitz, Author/Lawyer

Once upon a time, women baked Christmas cookies and made holiday candy and gave them away. They carried paper plates bulging with nuts, sugar, and chocolate to neighbors and offered their gifts with satisfied smiles. The recipients took them with pure happiness, knowing that across oceans and time, handmade food is the great symbol of love and affection. And that is never more true than in the holiday season. Yes, I write fiction, but I am a witness, and I speak the truth. And you can do it, too. My mother was not a great cook. But my oh my, could she bake. Many of her cookie recipes came from neighbors in the small German-American farm community in Minnesota where she was raised—two elderly sisters always referred to as the Frank girls. In December, she trotted out their recipes for bourbon balls, Russian teacakes, spritz, and other treats whose names escape me but that still have the power—even in memory—to turn me from a lawyer-turned-mystery-writer back into a hungry, ten-year-old Montana kid. These days, many of us give our friends, neighbors, and co-workers gift packs brimming with tasty treats and those are great fun. It’s easy, and we all need easy. It’s yummy, and we all need yummy. If you give me one, I will not give it back.


42 406

But I’m here to advocate for a return to an old tradition. Give yourself ten minutes in the grocery store with a shopping list—just take this magazine with you—and half an hour in the kitchen, and you can give your hair stylist, your massage therapist, and your kids’ teachers and babysitters handmade treats that will bring great joy. Give a bag or two to the curmudgeon down the block and the whole neighborhood will spell out your name in Christmas lights. And if you tuck in a copy of a Montana mystery—say, Death al Dente or Crime Rib—the curmudgeon will be too busy reading to give you any grief about your kids’ stray snowballs.

The World’s Best Fudge

My brother-in-law claims his fudge is the world’s best. It’s not. This is. 18 ounces (1-1/2 twelve ounce bags) semisweet chocolate chips (I like Ghirardelli chocolate chips or Scharffen Berger chunks) 1-14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk) dash salt

1 cup chopped walnuts 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract Line a 9 inch square pan with foil or parchment paper and coat with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the chocolate, sweetened condensed milk, and salt into a heavy 2 or 3-quart saucepan. (A

dash of salt accentuates the sweetness.) Melt over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in the nuts and vanilla. Mix well, quickly. Spread into the prepared pan. Let it cool naturally—no need to chill it—about two hours. Turn the fudge out onto a large cutting board and cut in one-inch squares. Store at room temperature in a tightly covered tin or plastic container.

Erin’s EZ-PZ Peanut Brittle

Erin Murphy is the star of my Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries, set in Jewel Bay, Montana. And she is a serious fan of nut brittle. Pepper Reece, the lead player in my Seattle Spice Shop Mysteries, would spice this up with half a teaspoon of cinnamon and maybe a dash of ground cardamom. 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar 3/4 cup clear corn syrup 1/4 cup water

2 cups raw Spanish peanuts, cashews, or pumpkin seeds (If some peanuts still have reddish paper skins, dump them in a bowl. Grab a paper towel and rub them roughly until the skins come off. Use a slotted spoon to scoop them out.) ½ teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

a dash of ground cardamom (optional) 2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon baking soda

Cover a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and coat with non-stick cooking spray.


Leslie Budewitz

In a heavy saucepan, cook the sugar, corn syrup, water, and if you’d like, the spices. Stir until the mixture reaches the soft ball stage—230 degrees on a candy thermometer. Add the peanuts and cook, stirring, until the mixture turns golden brown—the hard crack stage, or 305 degrees. Remove from the heat and add the butter and baking soda. Stir until the mixture foams up. Pour onto the prepared cookie sheet and cool naturally. Break into pieces and store in a tightly covered tin or plastic container. Pack your gifts in clear plastic bags—a Ziploc and a bow is fine, but if you can, pick up a few cellophane bags decorated with snowflakes or candy canes for a festive touch. Then give them away, and watch the magic happen. (The Spiced Glazed Nuts and Pretzel Mix in the Feb/Mar 2014 issue, Vol. 6, No. 5, is another easy, guaranteed happy-maker.)

"It takes a village to catch a killer." Leslie Budewitz writes the nationally-bestselling Food Lovers' Village Mysteries, set in fictional Jewel Bay, Montana. The first book, Death al Dente, won the 2013 Agatha Award for Best First Novel. Crime Rib, second in the series, was published in July 2014, by Berkley Prime Crime, part of Penguin Random House. The light-hearted mysteries feature Erin Murphy, proprietor of The Merc, a market specializing in regional foods, located in her family's century-old former grocery. Erin's passion for pasta, retail, and huckleberry chocolates lead to an unexpected talent for solving murder. Watch for Butter Off Dead in July 2015. Assault and Pepper, the first in Leslie’s Seattle Spice Shop Mysteries, will be published in March 2015.

Leslie lives in Bigfork, Montana with her husband, Don Beans, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their Burmese cat, Ruff, an avid birdwatcher. Visit her at or on Facebook as LeslieBudewitzAuthor



Riesling Revival - Fantastic Finds in German Wine By Karen Sanderson, Brix Bottleshop

When you hear, “German wine,” your mind immediately pictures a Riesling, right? A sweet, zingy, Riesling. Possibly even a blue bottle with a nun on it? True, Riesling is THE grape of Deutschland, but how many other grape varietals can you name from Germany? How many have you tried? Let me tell you, there are many, and they are worth exploring. Sure, Riesling gets all the (well deserved) glory, but we’ve recently tasted some other amazing varietals from new and old German winemaking regions. Our distributors have sampled us on many stunning German wines at Brix this year. We loved so many of them that we changed around an entire section of our store to make room for them. We now have a dedicated German section. Why? For starters, they are classic, timeless, and age worthy. German wines also just happen to be delicious with a wide range of foods. So what makes German wines so special? It’s the varietals, their geography, and climate.


44 406

GERMAN WINE HISTORY Most German wine is produced along the Rhine River and its many offshoots. Some of the oldest vineyards in Europe sit along the Rhine and date back to 1000. (For trivia’s sake, the oldest known brewery is in Germany as well). According to Wikipedia, the total wine production is approximately 1.2 billion bottles per year, which makes Germany the eighth largest wine-producing country in the world. White wine accounts for almost two thirds of their total production. On the international scale, Germany has a mixed reputation. Sommeliers typically treasure German wines as some of the world's most elegant and aromatic white wines. Others see these wines as cheap, sweet wines. Among enthusiasts, Germany's reputation is primarily based on wines made from the Riesling grape variety, which at its best is used for aromatic, fruity and elegant white wines that range from very crisp and dry to well-balanced, sweet and of enormous aromatic concentration. While primarily a white wine country, red wine production has increased significantly in the past 10 years, most of which is pinot noir.

Riesling Facts

Many customers at Brix assume that Rieslings are sweet and are hesitant to try them because “they don’t do sweet.” But did you know that Riesling was once the world’s most respected and revered white grape variety? They were for centuries known as the noblest white wine, both dry and sweet. In the 1980’s, however, they suffered a downturn in popularity as the mass produced, inexpensive sweet wines dominated international markets. Thankfully, Riesling has recently undergone a fabulous rebirth that has reestablished its status as one of the world’s great wines. The most famous regions are: the Mosel (known for their minerality), Rheingau (known for their acidity), and Rheinhessen (known for both). German vintners work on a scale of six levels of ripeness known as QmP, Qualitätswein mit Prädikat. The sugars in these wines must come naturally from the grape (no sugar added) with strict governmental regulation over their quality. Although many people believe that all German Rieslings are sweet, most Riesling made in Germany is actually dry. According to a great number of Master Sommeliers, dry German Rieslings are arguably the



Karen MacNeil – The Wine Bible What are some of the best food pairings with German wines? “As food evolves and we look for more interesting combinations of ethnic flavors, the intermingling of ingredients is ever present making wine pairing that much more important. Whether it is Pacific Rim, Euro inspired, nouveau American, South American or the spice of Asia, Riesling and Pinot Noir with their elegance and class have the wonderful ability to transcend many styles of cuisine. In its dry form Riesling serves as a perfect compliment to an array of foods, and in its sweet form it has the ability to wrap itself around the zesty foods of the world to enhance any dining experience.”

most dynamic food pairing white wine on the planet. Here's a list of Rieslings in order of sweetness and their agability. Basically, the sweeter the wine, the longer it can age. Kabinett: 3-5 years Spatlese: 5-10 years Auslese: up to 25 years Beernauslese: up to 40 years Trockenbeerenlese: up to 80 years Ice Wine: up to 100 years Here is a list the other German wines that has made us weak in the knees. They, like Riesling, can stretch from dry to sweet, and are hard to read on the labels. Luckily, at Brix, we have cards under each wine to tell you that the sweetness level is.

Other Varietals:

Scheurebe: highly aromatic, some with citrusy notes, and is a cross between Silvaner and Riesling. Gewurtraminer: Can be dry or sweet, and is the most unique with its spicy aromas and flavors. Pinot Blanc: Similar to a pinot gris, but with a more honeyed body and finish. Sylvaner: Crisp, refreshing, and mild acidity. This is most often dry. Pinot Noir: German pinots are high in acidity with bright fruitiness. Perfect for heavy meals. Ready to dive into the world of German wines now? We look forward to seeing you at Brix to tell you more! Cheers, Karen

Karen Sanderson is the proprietor of Brix Bottleshop at 101 E Center St #102 in Kalispell. (406) 393-2202,


406  45



Snowed in? Muscle Up

By Delia Buckmaster Photos by Taylor Brooke Photography

Winter is here and the perfect opportunity for most to get outside for fresh air. Hit the ski hill, Nordic trails, or snowshoe with your dog. The fact is that not all of us have the time or the desire to workout outside all winter. Owning your own gym is an advantage however; it wasn’t until a few years ago while running on the treadmill that I realized I was spending 4 months straight inhaling the smell of a rubber belt as my cardio.  The next day, I invested in winter running gear, hit the outdoors and haven’t been on treadmill consistently since.  Though I have to admit, some days I’m just not feeling the winter workout routine.  

You can still achieve a workout in the comfort of your home using nothing but your own body weight. Bodyweight exercises are a simple, effective way to improve balance, flexibility, and strength without machinery or extra equipment. From legs and shoulders to chest and abs, cover every part of the body that can get stronger with body resistance alone. Bodyweight exercises either require you to support the weight of your body with one or more of your limbs, or use your core muscles to lift your limbs against gravity’s resistance. Many Pilates movements and yoga poses are body weight exercises, as are traditional calisthenics. Bodyweight exercises improve muscular endurance; whether or not they can make you stronger is dependent on your level of muscular strength.

your ribs laterally (sides) on your inhale and firing the transverse abdominal muscle (deepest layer of your abs) on your exhale. Relax your shoulders and find a tall posture. roll down:

The Standing Roll Down is a Pilates warm-up exercise that relieves back tension and stretches your legs. Stand with your feet hip distance. Inhale to nod your head and start reaching your arms for the floor. Roll through the spine until the back is making a nice long C-curve shape. You will feel a stretch through the lower back.  In this position, focus on your breathing again and imagine you are puffing up the lower back muscles with your breath.  Hold the stretch there for three deep breaths. Roll up to standing position staying centered on your feet, one vertebra at a time until you're back to your standing position.

Here are a few of the best bodyweight exercises for maintaining muscle strength and endurance, or Arms creating a great interval training routine at home. push ups: Begin in push up position, on knees or toes. Perform 4 push-ups, abs in and back straight. On the Warm Up 5th push up, lower halfway down and hold for 4 counts. breath: This can be done standing so you can move in Push back up and repeat the series - 4 regular pushto your roll down. Focus on your breath breathing in ups and 1 halfway--5 or more times. Keep abs engaged through your nose and out of your mouth. Expanding throughout exercise and elbows close to body.


48 406



tricep dips: Sit on the floor with

your feet flat hip width apart and keep your knees bent. Place your hands about 10-12 inches behind you on the floor with your fingers pointing forward. Engage your hamstrings and core as you press firmly into your feet and lift hips to an incline plank position. Inhale bend your elbows to lower down toward the floor while keeping your body as straight as you can then exhale back up. Perform 10 to 12 reps.


standing leg sculptor: In one

motion, raise your right leg straight behind you and lower your torso toward the floor, keeping your back flat and arms overhead, until your body forms a T. Hold for three seconds, then reverse the movement to return to start. Repeat on the other leg. Continue alternating until you've done 10 reps on each side.


basic lift: Lying prone, forehead on mat, arms by your side, palms

pressing against legs, legs adducted. Inhale lift the upper trunk, exhale lower the upper trunk keeping nose at a hover.

swimming: Lying prone, arms reaching forward, chest lifted, arms and legs off mat, legs together. Alternate lifting right arm and left leg, left arm and right leg, inhaling for 5 changes, exhaling for 5 changes.

Cardio (30 seconds to 1 minute) Jumping Jacks: The basic jumping jack is a good cardio and strength training exercise.

wall sit: With your back against a wall, and your feet about 2 feet away from the wall, slide down until your knees are at a 90 degree angle. Hold the position as long as you can. This is great for ski conditioning. Place some emphasis on your glutes by lifting up an inch and lowering an inch.


criss cross: Lying on your back, head and chest lifted, knees bent, fingers interlaced behind head. Exhale as you rotate toward bent knee and the other leg straightens. Inhale cross through center and change legs. Exhale to rotate to the other side.

hamstring pull: Lying on your

back, head and chest lifted, legs together perpendicular to mat, hands behind calves. Exhale reach one leg to mat, reach the other leg toward chest holding calf. Inhale then switch legs. This one is also a great hamstring stretch

mountain climbers: Start on your hands and knees and get into in a

sprinter’s start position. Keep your hands on the ground and push off with your feet so you alternate foot placement (run in place) as long as you can. Be sure to keep your back straight to or pelvis in a slight posterior tuck to protect your low back.

Full Body

plank: Get into push up position

on hands and toes, or on elbows and toes. Contract your abdominal muscles (and core). Keep your back straight (don't collapse in the middle) and hold this position for as long as you can.

bend: sitting sideways, weight on one side of hip and on supporting arm, legs slightly bend, top leg in front of bottom leg, top arm resting at side. Inner thighs glued together. Inhale to lift the hip, straighten legs, raise arm to shoulder height, body in a diagonal line. Exhale to return. side

Stretch spine stretch: Sitting upright, legs straight, feet flexed and shoulder width apart, toes toward ceiling, arms reaching forward parallel to mat, palms facing each other. Inhale and wait, exhale roll down and forward through you spine as you reach your hands towards your feet, inhale pause, exhale re-stack to your start position.


cat: on all fours, hands underneath shoulders, knees underneath hips.

Start by taking a deep breath. Exhale round your spine, return to your neutral position. Inhale to extend spine, return to your neutral spine position.

406  49


You Can Be Happier!

Hardwire Your Brain for Happiness

Written by CrisMarie Campbell

Recently, I have had several clients call me who felt worried, overwhelmed, and filled with self-doubt. Maybe you can relate? It could be the time of year. While a lot of us look forward to the festivities of the holidays, it can also be a time of year when worry, overwhelm, and even depression are just below the surface. I have noticed that women whose lives are going pretty well tend to be so hard on themselves, berating themselves with, “Well, I should be happier. Look at my life: I am married with two great kids. I live in the most beautiful place on earth. I enjoy the work I do. Why aren’t I happy? Especially this time of year! I have more then most, I need to stop complaining and be happy – now!!” Does this sound familiar? If so, you probably think there is something wrong with you, when there probably isn’t. Sure, you can check with your doc and see if you are on the right antidepressants. However, my hope is after reading this article, and integrating the use of a simple tool, you won’t have to be on medication at all! Wouldn’t that be nice? You won’t even have to give up worrying. Really – your worries and selfdoubts are not the problem.


50 406

You Were Born This Way

Yep, all this worry, fear, and doubt is a natural part of our biology. Our brains are wired for survival. So in a neutral state, meaning even if everything is pretty good, your brain is scanning for danger.

stalking and killing. Although our brains don’t know that, and often make us believe that we should be very, very, afraid!

Teflon for The Good and Velcro for the Bad

Why? It is how our ancestors survived in the wild when tigers were lurking in the bushes looking for dinner. The humans who tended to be nervous and said, “Yikes! That noise might be a tiger, we better run!” They lived to procreate, and are our ancestors. Those that said, “That noise, no worries. Sit back and relax. It’s probably nothing.” They were dinner, and are not our ancestors. So we got brains that run on the worry, anxious, fearful side.

Rick Hansen in Hardwiring Happiness says that our brains are “Teflon for the good, and Velcro for the bad”.

We are lucky that tigers are not regularly lurking for dinner in our lives. Yes, grizzlies maybe here in Montana, but for the most part our lives don’t entail

If we want the brain to store the good experiences in long-term neural structures, we have to nudge it to do so.

See, the brain automatically makes more of the negative experiences storing them in long-term neural structures, but not the good experiences. It’s as if the good experiences are like sand that you are trying to hold in your hand, but slides out right through your fingers.


The good news: you can do something about it! Science has proven that our brains are much more plastic than they originally thought. Just like an athlete has muscles from working out, we can build the positive neural networks in our brain. We don’t have to get rid of anything – just add a little extra focus to nudge those bright spots over to the longterm neural structures as well! Plus, it is pretty easy and doesn’t take much time.

a sense of connection with a loved one or pet, or even satisfaction from getting something completed. 2. Enrich it – make more of that good experience by shining a spotlight on it in your awareness for five to ten seconds. Stay with it, and notice how it makes you feel in your body. See if you can find something new or fresh about the experience. Realize how it is personally relevant to you, or how it could support you in your life.

Making More of The Good

3. Absorb it – feel it sinking into your mind and body in a deeper way. As if it is integrating into your whole being, becoming integral resource inside of you that is available to support you at any time.

Those small good things may be the: brightness of sun streaming into your room on a cold, crisp day

That’s it!

Most positive experiences are small things that happen during the day, not big things like winning the lottery. (Whoa, wouldn’t that be nice? I digress, back to the good small things.)

satisfaction of a finishing a difficult email at work warmth of your cat curled at your feet under your desk Often, we notice these things fleetingly, but don’t pause to let them sink in. That is the key here: letting it sink in. It only takes an extra 10 to 20 seconds to make a difference to your brain. That extra 10 or 20 seconds is all that is needed to move over that good experience from being grains of sand falling between your fingers to the longer-term neural structures. (I might have mixed my metaphors there, but I trust you get my gist.) In his book, Hardwiring Happiness, Rick Hanson gives a three-step process that really works to make more of your good experiences. This process shifts them from being simply positive thinking to emotionally rewarding experiences that are rewiring your brain, which by the way, helps to create more good experiences. 1. Have a positive experience – this means noticing those little things when they are happening, bring them to the foreground of your awareness. This could be a pleasant physical sensation, something of beauty, the awe of nature,

Do this for 10 to 20 seconds as little as six times a day and over time you will be restructuring your brain. Brain workout!

Happiness Challenge

When I give this happiness prescription to my clients, they start to feel better. First, little by little, but over time it snowballs. Yes, of course, they still have the challenges in their lives, but somehow they feel more equipped to handle them. They may even still get to worrying and self-doubting – but they are not stuck there. Instead of just maintaining survival they are developing an internal resource for thriving, and it’s one that they can pull on anytime. What are you struggling with? Do you want to be happier? Better resourced to handle the challenges in your life? Train your brain! It’s easy and you may be surprised that 10-20 seconds of pausing and really letting the simple joys of life sink in is better than most anti-depressants on the market! CrisMarie Campbell

CrisMarie Campbell is a coach and consultant, at thrive! inc., who works with partnerships and business teams that are in conflict, and helps them become cohesive, aligned, and producing great business results. She also helps women in leadership confidently find their voice, create relationships that work, and do what matters most. Contact her at


406  51

family} EF

Executive Functioning

Anything Is Possible

By Kristen Pulsifer & Jordan Scotti, PhD, School Psychology

Executive Functioning (EF) skills are those selfregulatory skills necessary to plan, organize, make decisions, control emotions and impulses, sustain effort, and use memory to learn from past mistakes. These skills help us to perform simple, everyday tasks, such as making the bed, and more complex tasks, such as planning for and carrying out a thesis paper. EF skills impact a child’s ability to stay organized, manage time, and even selfsoothe when stressed. Not surprisingly, strong EF skills are linked with academic success and good mental health. Although some children naturally have more difficulty with EF skills (such as those with ADHD), these skills can be learned and naturally continue to develop into adulthood. Therefore, all children can benefit from explicit instruction and modeling of EF skills.

committed to doing. Define the common theme between these tasks, and work on that. In this situation it would be timeliness. Therefore, focus on the single theme and not the myriad of different situations where it shows up. Simplify and identify one situation to apply the theme. Let’s take the example of being on time to school.

Step #2: Set Reasonable Goals

can truly improve and become a part of their regular daily routine.

Step #4: Provide Health Incentives

We all work well with incentives. If there is something defined to work towards, goals are more likely to be achieved. Decide with your child what a healthy reward would be for maintaining consistency and being on time to school for the agreed upon number of days for that week/month. Keep incentives healthy and simple. Whether it’s time with a parent going to a favorite place or time with a friend doing the same, don’t feel the need to go overboard. These are life lessons that should be learned to create a sense of responsibility and ownership over important daily functions. Select incentives that are simple and feel right to you and your family.

After identifying the issue, explain to your child the importance of being on time and relate it. Explain the repercussions for being late to your own job. Or, ask your child, “How would it feel if I was consistently late picking you up from school, or left you waiting when I had committed to picking you up at a particular time?” Listen to your child’s response and discuss how that may be frustrating. Then establish a goal for the week. Decide with There are many things you can do to help your child how many days you are going to try to strengthen your child’s EF skills, but all strategies be on time the first week your new strategy is imtake consistency. Work with your child by pro- plemented. Goals are best when they are Specific, Step #5: Practice Mindfulness viding rationale for the extra effort. All of us take Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely Lastly, mindfulness has been shown to improve shortcuts for efficiency and tend to rush through EF skills across a number of studies (e.g., http:// our “work” to get to more rewarding activities – your child is no different! Set clear and reasonStep #3: Develop A Checklist Simply put, mindfulness is the act of bringing able goals for you and your child when working Identify with your child, the tasks that need to one’s full attention into the moment. This can be to improve EF skills. Choose one skill to improve be completed each morning in order to achieve as formal as adopting a daily meditation practice at a time. For example, if being constantly late to the goal. Decide what tasks you as a parent are or as informal as seizing brief opportunities to school seems to be the most necessary thing to willing to help with and what things your child bring focus on the present, rather than letting the manage, start with explaining the importance of should be responsible for on their own. Then, dis- mind wander into the future or the past, each day. being on time and following through with com- cuss options. For instance, maybe some of these Selecting one small time of the day to be mindful, mitments - use being late to school as your initial things could be completed the night before leav- such as when brushing teeth, washing dishes, or training tool. Above all, do your best to keep a ing you child more time in the morning and less completing a chore. Even enjoying the first few sense of humor, stay positive, and frame it as an hurrying to get too many things done. For ex- bites of a meal, is a great place to start. With experiment – NOT a punishment. ample, I have daughters and there is often serious time, mindfulness can increase familiarity with wardrobe trauma in the morning! So, l suggested and control over one’s own mind, which facilitates to my oldest, that she lay out what she wanted the ability to focus, plan, and control emotions Step #1: Choose Your Battles to wear the night before. Organizing the night and impulses. This will inevitably allow a person, There are skills that all of us can work on to make before, what they need the following day, not no matter the age, to apply this process to the next our lives run more efficiently; but we do need to only helps balance time, but also creates a strong battle. Maybe after your child achieves success give ourselves, and especially our children a break. sense of preparedness before sleep. As your child with one issue, they can apply their strategies to As mentioned before, choose the thing that seems matures, the days of mom/dad rushing forgot- another such as homework and practice routines to need the most work. Your child may struggle ten homework to school ends. The same sense of for extracurricular activities. Whatever the task, with responsibilities such as tardiness at school, ownership applies with our example of timeliness. a strategy has been implemented and steps idencompleting tasks, such as homework, on time, and Kids eventually have to face real repercussions tified to strengthen basic EF skills. Anything is following through with daily chores he/she has and take ownership over tasks before EF skills possible!


56 406

Women musicians stand ready to modernize a

Classical World By Marti Ebbert Kurth Photo by Brenda Ahearn, for GSC

Sally Jerde stands before the violinists of the Glacier Symphony before turning to tune the orchestra. Raman’s comparison shows further that 82 percent of those orchestra’s concertmasters are male and 18 percent are female. Even more discouraging for women is that of those 20 orchestras there is only one with a female music director: Marin Alsop of the Baltimore Symphony. Raman concludes, “if you are going to an orchestra concert, there will likely be a man leading the symphony.” In an interview with UK newspaper The Guardian, Alsop said: “There is no logical reason to stop women from conducting. The baton isn’t heavy. It weighs about an ounce. No superhuman strength is required. Good musicianship is all that counts. As a society we have a lack of comfort in seeing women in these ultimate authority roles. Still, none of the ‘big five’ orchestras has had a female music director.” Her remarks came in response to a recent (2013) comment by Russian conductor, Vasily Petrenko, the 37-year-old principal conductor of the National Youth Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. He claimed orchestras “react better when they have a man in front of them,” adding “a sweet girl on the podium can make one’s thoughts drift towards something else.” Even New York Philharmonic conductor Zubin Mehta is quoted as saying, “I just don’t think women should be in an orchestra.” Aside from the obvious sexism, one might argue that conducting and concertmaster roles are narrowing for both men and women as symphony orchestras fight for relevance in our pop-music-obsessed world. But Raman’s 2014 graph makes it clear that women still need to prove themselves as serious contenders in the world of professional music. (view it at This is not say that an effort has not been made to change the situation. A study done for the National Bureau of Economic Research by authors and economists Claudia Goldin and Cecelia Rouse shows some improvement of bias by male conductors against female performers. The study, titled “Orchestrating Impartiality: the Impact of ‘Blind’ Auditions on Female Musicians,” found that as recent as 1980 the “big five” musical ensembles – the Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Symphony, New York Philharmonic, and


64 406

In our post-feminist modern era it is encouraging to see how women are filling leadership roles across a spectrum of jobs. But there is one arena where women keep bumping against the glass ceiling of leadership and that is in professional symphonic orchestras. A recent study done by researcher, Suby Raman, graphs the 20 largest US orchestras and shows that on average the pool of musicians consists of 67 percent men and 37 percent women. Only one elite orchestra has more women than men: the St. Louis Symphony.

Philadelphia Orchestra – had only 10 percent women musicians even though the pool of well-qualified graduates from places like New York’s Juilliard School of Music included 45 percent women. The authors note that “at about this same time (1980) the Musician’s Union began pushing a new hiring strategy. Not only was there a movement away from the “inside-track” and “old boy network” and toward open auditions, but also to a new audition format, the “blind audition.” Musicians either played behind a screen or the reviewers themselves sat behind such dividers. Audition areas were also carpeted and/or women musicians were asked to remove their shoes so that an escorting personnel manager could make male-sounding footsteps. These changes ensured that musicians were judged on sound, not gender.”

They report that the outcome of these blind auditions “… provided changes that were immediate and strikingly favorable to women. Even the New York Philharmonic, with Zubin Mehta at its head, hired women for an incredible 45 percent of new positions once blind auditions were instituted.”

Though our corner of Western Montana is somewhat removed from the world of professional orchestras we are fortunate to have a wealth of talented musicians, both men and women, along with committed professional music directors who bring us full concert seasons of the world’s greatest music. In fact, with Montana’s seven independent Symphony organizations based in Kalispell, Missoula, Great Falls, Helena, Butte, Bozeman and Billings there are year-round opportunities statewide to hear great classical music – and that’s in a state with a population of only a million people!

Concertmistress or Concertmaster? What’s in a name?

With the appointment of Sally Jerde as concertmaster of the Glacier Symphony in the fall of 2013, Music Director John Zoltek, demonstrates the trend to modernize the American orchestra.

Sally says she feels her title has little to do with gender and more to do with her ability to perform her job. “I prefer the term concertmaster because I am mastering the concert we are performing. It’s not necessarily a gender position, I focus on the art of the piece.” But she also recognizes the significance of her new position. “I have been very lucky that I grew up during the time when women were beginning to be accepted as professional musicians. I have certainly had to ‘prove’ myself both in playing stability and mental stability. There have been countless times I have played in a small pit orchestra for a show where I was the only female. When these shows are played eight times a week, for weeks on end, a girl learns not to be too sensitive. I feel very fortunate that I was so kindly welcomed into my position with the Symphony.”

The Concertmaster’s Role

Jerde explains that as concertmaster her job is to be prepared and know the piece inside and out so she knows what other musicians are playing in all the instrument sections across the orchestra. “For instance if the horns have a big solo, I listen to know when to come in and keep the energy going and not let it fall stagnant within the violin section.” She also keeps her ears open if there are timing mistakes within the other sections and reiterates cues from the conductor for dynamics. Her position at front row center, on the right side of the violin section just at the conductors left, often puts her out of the sightline of many of the musicians. She says she relies on a sort of “organic” consciousness between herself and the rest of orchestra. “My music stand partner and I move in sync together and it flows throughout the whole strings section.” Her next most important task is to set the ‘bowing’ for the stringed instruments. “I would say this is hardest part of what I do. I go through the whole piece of music and using my best judgment decide whether we are going to use a ‘downbow’ or an ‘up-bow.’ A down-bow is when you pull the bow across the strings starting at the base or frog of the bow. An up-bow is pushing the bow upward starting from the tip. A down-bow is very powerful as the weight of the hand and

music} How Can You Blow a Horn With a Brassiere? For Peggy Gilbert, who did her own musical arranging and contracting, the prejudices that female musicians faced came to a head in 1938 after DownBeat magazine published an article headlined “Why Women Musicians Are Inferior.” In response, an irate Gilbert wrote an article chronicling the discrimination female musicians faced, only to be embarrassed when her article was published under the headline “How Can You Blow a Horn With a Brassiere?” in Downbeat Magazine circa 1938. Read more about this pioneering woman musician in the book “The Peggy Gilbert Story: American Jazz Band Leader, Saxophone Player and Advocate for Women Musicians.” written by Jeannie Pool. “It caused a big uproar in the jazz community,” Pool said of the original DownBeat article. And Gilbert's response “sort of set her as the national advocate for women jazz musicians. She heard from musicians coast to coast thanking her for speaking out.” Pool says Gilbert often went down to the union and demanded equal opportunity for women instrumentalists, and she wrote a column on female musicians for the Professional Musicians Local 47 newspaper. “She was always calling for an end to discrimination.” Gilbert died in 2007 at age 102. Read the full article about her at

frog creates a strong sound and the upbow is gentler and quieter.” She explains that many classical music pieces have bowing patterns that have been used for years. “In general a lot of the standard pieces we play are standard bowings that have been done for years, so I kind of know what the bowings are. It’s a daunting task to learn a new composition or ones that have not been played often as they are open for interpretation.” Sally’s love for the violin started early. She began playing at age three studying at the Chicago Suzuki Institute. When she was seven her family moved to Fort Myers, Florida where she studied in more traditional programs, eventually playing in a youth symphony. “I just kept doing it and went on to college at the University of South Florida in Tampa and majored in violin performance, later picking up the viola. It was a full music program and I played in the college symphony. Later I started picking up work and getting paid to play.” She graduated in 2002 and was hired to play with the Naples Philharmonic and Sarasota Orchestra. But her biggest gig was playing for the Broadway touring company of the Lion King as a union musician when it toured several Florida cities. In 2010 she moved to the Flathead Valley to live with her new husband Erik. “I came in February in the throes of winter to make sure I liked it,” she laughs. She

now has three sons, 12-year-old Gabriel, three-year-old Leif, and 18-month-old Sawyer. Besides performing with the Glacier Symphony, Sally has been a violin teacher for about 17 years and this past fall she joined with two other GSC musicians to open Resound, a teaching studio in downtown Kalispell. Her focus recently has been on becoming a certified Kindermusik teacher a program that combines music and movement for babies to age seven. “The idea is that music can become part of their life experience and create a bonding between parents and kids. It starts them early enough so it’s not foreign.” Sally has a bit of advice for parents who want their kids to play music. “What I’ve found most helpful is exposing my kids to all kinds of music, not just music on the radio. At home I turn on Pandora (internet music) and since I have so many channels, I mix them up. Sometimes we’re listening to fiddling or honky tonk piano, or drums or Dave Mathews or whatever – many different styles. My kids are starting to be able to pick out instruments in the music like mandolin or ukulele. I also encourage some wonderful classical music like Carnival of the Animals.” You can see Sally and the Glacier orchestra in action on January 24 and 25 when they perform the music to accompany the silent movie Mark of Zorro…further demonstrating their modern versatility! Visit the website for details.


406  65

Off Key Notes

music} Random musings:

I am FOR once again making Thanksgiving the stand alone and respected holiday that it once was in this country! Shopping on Thanksgiving? I cannot even consider it. Four to Six songs sung aloud each day (perhaps while you are in the car) keeps the doctor away. This has got to be better for your mental health and physical wellbeing than listening to talk radio. Happy New Year 2015! It’s going to be a great one for sure.

Cool Yule Holiday Cocktail Party Music menu… party like your parents used to do!

By Bob Hamilton

In a 21st century that seems completely awash with selfies, Kardashians, Black Fridays, self absorption and the general need for instant gratification, it is important to take a big step back and slow down long enough regularly to enjoy life’s simple pleasures, and to truly recall what is really near and dear to each of us in life. The Holidays fortunately return each year to afford us this opportunity should we be smart enough to seize the chance. Admittedly, it does take a significant commitment on our part to rise above all the craziness and commercialism of the holiday season. It is extremely easy to get caught up in all the chaos----the mad dash to an often anticlimactic December 25th as we tie how good our holiday is to how much we did (or didn’t) receive! At the same time, the holiday season offers many opportunities for a respite from all the craziness-- namely in its family traditions, annual events, personal decorating and cooking rituals and favorite holiday music. All one has to do is embrace them each year. Make these annual rites fun rather than chores or tasks! Work to preserve and nurture these timehonored things, and pass them on to the next generation. Doing so will help to ensure great “Christmas Futures.” This is what truly makes the holiday season special, unique and personally rewarding. Enjoy “Christmas Present.” While the holiday season may be spread out over five weeks (Thanksgiving through the New Year), it does not have to be all about the commercial aspects. Since moving to the Flathead 14 years ago, I have come to enjoy many great holiday events that I would not consider missing each year. Events such as viewing the Christmas tree at the Conrad Mansion, throwing our own annual holiday bash, doing the Kalispell and Whitefish downtown holiday strolls, enjoying the various holiday parades, concerts and tree lightings, doing annual volunteer work for the Salvation Army, and thinking outside of the “ice” box, being a participant or a spectator in the annual Polar Bear Plunge in Woods Bay on January 1st (the fastest 2 minutes in the Flathead for obvious reasons and a great party before and afterward). These have all become traditions in a short period of time, and are extremely important because like many of you, I cannot always spend the holidays with family members far away.


66 406

Honor, reflect upon, and most importantly, enjoy “Christmas Past.” Try to utilize as much of it as you can in your yearly holiday celebrations. Having recently lost my mother to cancer, reflecting on the past holiday seasons is very significant for me this year. She was a great celebrator of the holidays as were many long deceased relatives whom I remember so fondly from my youth. I was fortunate. Large amounts of money were not spent by my family each year. Rather, they all did the little things that made the season so warm and special. Caroling from door to door with the neighborhood kids, turning our kitchen into a “cookie factory”, recording our annual rendition of “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” on my father’s reel to reel tape recorder, going ice skating together on a local pond, and always getting that one great gift that I wanted are among my many cherished memories of holidays past. I will miss you Mom. And of course, what would the holiday seasons of years past, the present or for that matter the years to come be without music----the soundtrack to a great holiday season? Am I forgetting something, or does it seem like a long time since a holiday song has been released that has become a major hit? While there have been some good efforts over the last decade or so by the likes of Sheryl Crow, Harry Connick, Jr. and numerous country stars, I can’t remember a holiday song rising up the charts and sweeping the nation since “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in the mid 1980’s. I am hoping that we have not forgotten how to make great holiday music. Unfortunately, much of the holiday music we are fed on the radio for weeks on end is the rather soulless stuff that doesn’t really stand up very well. It doesn’t have much “feel” and is very bland and forgettable. Most of the time for me, the yardstick for measuring the quality (or lack thereof ) of any particular holiday song is based on a simple question as follows: If I could remove/change the holiday oriented lyrics and the sound of sleigh bells if present from the song, would I listen to it at all regardless of the time of the year? If my answer is “yes”, I have a great holiday tune to add to my collection. The accompanying list of “Cool Yule” holiday selections features many of the classic great artists of their time singing their hearts out with sincerity and jazzy sophistication. Download away and enjoy!

“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” (60’s version) – Bing Crosby “Sleigh Ride” – Ella Fitzgerald “Let It Snow” – Dean Martin “Winter Wonderland” – Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass “Cool Yule” – Louis Armstrong “Christmas Serenade” — Johnny Maestro “The Christmas Song” — Nat King Cole “My Favorite Things” — Tony Bennett “Holly Jolly Christmas” — Burl Ives “2000 Miles” — The Pretenders “Santa Bring My Baby Back to Me” -Elvis Presley “Little St. Nick” - Beach Boys “Jingle Bells” (50’s version) - Frank Sinatra “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” -Brenda Lee “Baby It’s Cold Outside” - James Taylor & Natalie Cole “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer " - Jack Johnson “Charlie Brown Christmas” - (entire album) Vincent Guaraldi Jazz Trio “Jingle Bell Rock” - Hall & Oates “Last Christmas” (80’s version) – Wham “Do They Know It’s Christmas” (80’s version) — Band Aid “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” - Bruce Springsteen “White Christmas” — Sheryl Crow “Christmas Time Is Here” — Ray Parker Jr. “Here Comes Santa Claus” - Gene Autry “Merry Christmas Baby” - Southern Culture on the Skids

406 contents featured

8. Gail Lynn Goodwin Inspiration to Spread Your Wings


10. I Want Her Job Kate White


26. Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours

406 Man

28. Control Holiday Spending and Enjoy the Holidays MORE

20. Bill Bayne Generosity Flying High...Under the Radar

30. Team Accountability Matters 32. Estate Planning for the Small Business Owner 34. 5 Tips for Rebranding Your Business in 2015

Health 36. Ask the Skin Coach Is Accutane Safe?

38. Vaccination in Pregnancy



14. Stephen Isley Jewelers Montana Inspired Design of Distinction

40. YOLO You Only Live Once...So Smile 42. Montana's Mental Health Dr Muir 44. Cervical Cancer Screening

Non-Profit 48. Montana Wild Wings Recover Center

16.Whitefish Dance

Giving Back

24. A Loving Walk with Down Syndrome

Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 Copyright©2014 Skirts Publishing

View current and past issues of 406 Woman at w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m


Gail Lynn Goodwin

Inspiration to Spread Your Wings Gail Lynn Goodwin’s venture focuses on gratitude with Inspire Me Today

By Naomi Morrison Photos by Amanda Wilson Photography

The internet is full of information. Anything you want to know, Google® it and hundreds, even thousands of sites pop up to answer your questions. But what if you’re not looking for answers or don’t know the questions to ask? What if you’re interested in finding information that simply makes you feel good, inspired and wholehearted? Whitefish resident Gail Lynne Goodwin developed a site just for that with her homegrown business Inspire Me Today. Goodwin’s story started long before launching her site An international real estate developer since 18 years old, she has been a part of countless cultures, traditions and native families. No matter where she was, she witnessed how we all have a common need to be motivated, inspired and reminded of our own innate potential. “We get caught up in the drama of life instead of focusing on the bigger picture and on gratitude,” she said. “I wanted to do something that reminded us of our own magnificence every day.

Like many successful companies, her idea was founded in an unusual place. The origins of Inspire Me Today started in a gym where Goodwin worked out regularly. On the days she did cardio, she listened to upbeat music. On the days she did weights, she listened to motivational audio books. What she realized was on the days she lifted weights, she had her best days. Finally, it occurred to her that the reason wasn’t from the exercise program, but rather it was from listening to uplifting dialog. The seed was planted for her to build a free


76 406

forum for anyone to go and receive this same care to sign it with something from the heart. On the for their soul. day the US Congress signed it on the floor of the rotunda in the US Capital Building in Washington, A lifetime world traveler, it wasn’t unusual for DC, the letter broke 18 miles long. Yes miles! Goodwin to pursue a passionate journey. So, in 2004, she put her dream to launch Inspire Me To- Days later Goodwin, her daughter and her band left day on hold to support her daughter, Carly, as she on a month-long tour of Iraq and six countries in moved forward with achieving success as a coun- the Persian Gulf, as her daughter entertained our try music recording artist. Her daughter moved to troops at some of the most remote military bases, Nashville and together, Goodwin and her daughter throughout the worst war-torn regions. The Goodco-wrote a song “Baby Come Back Home,” a heart- win team literally wrapped the love and support of felt ballad sung from the perspective of a soldier’s a grateful nation around 18 different bases, as her wife. The song immediately grabbed the hearts of daughter performed for the troops. For many, as service men and women along with their families. they read the letter of love and support, they were The mother-daughter team started receiving invi- transported back home in their hearts, even if only tations to entertain our troops at more than 100 for a moment. bases throughout the US. Although she didn’t realize it at the time, this experience furthered Gail’s When visiting Al-Qa’im, Iraq, Goodwin met a Macalling of delivering inspiration to others. rine who had just returned from his 34-day post: A solo mission of protecting a one-mile stretch During one of Carly’s performances at Guanta- on the Syrian border- with no human contact for namo Bay, a serviceman said to Goodwin: “No one 35-40 days. The soldier asked for a huge favor- a cares about us anyway.” She vowed to prove him mom hug. Moved to tears by his request, she dewrong. Inspired to show the love and apprecia- livered a heartfelt and tearful embrace. Later, the tion of a grateful nation, Goodwin started the Baby Marine shared that inspiration is what keeps him Come Back Home Soldier Scrolls, the world’s lon- going on his lonely tour, and asked Goodwin if she gest letter of love and support and asked everyone knew where he could find more inspiration. Feel-

ing like God had just tapped her on the shoulder, she knew in that moment that it was time to return to developing her dream of The website was launched on April 6, 2008, which also was the day she and her husband, Darryl, were married. Today, through their distribution partnerships, inspiration from the website is distributed to more than 25 million readers in 185 countries.

Yet, “So many people stay on the same path all their lives, even if they’re unhappy,” she said. “Eightypercent of Americans are unhappy with their job and they’re afraid to leave.” Her advice, quoting Jack Canfield, “If it ain’t fun, don’t do it.” She believes that you have to know what you want and why you want it. Then, allow the Universe to provide the how. Goodwin mentors people to follow their dreams, and get’s excited as she talks about Each day Goodwin asks one Inspirational Lumi- her latest project, a health and wellness company, nary, “If today were your last day on the planet, and that is helping people create vibrant health, abunyou only had 500 words to leave to humanity, what dant wealth and lives filled with happiness. have you learned that matters?” Her smile lights up her face even when she’s Goodwin built her site as non-denominational, fo- not actually smiling. Her aura is colorful and cusing instead on the 90% that we all agree on revibrant with an expression of calmness and gardless of our religious beliefs. “Be kind, be nice, great love. Her daily practice to attain a treat others are you wish to be treated”, she said. In Goodwin’s pursuit to share inspiration, she has beauty such as this comes from her beliefs had the opportunity to interview thousands of and her daily integration of the power of amazing people, including Sir Richard Branson gratitude. in person at his home in the Caribbean, and Guy Laliberte while he was at the cosmonaut facility “Anyone can be happy and live a fulfilled life!” in Star City Russia, waiting to blast off into space. Goodwin said. “It’s a mindset and a choice.” What she has discovered through all these experiences is that we’re all alike. We all want to be safe, One of Goodwin’s biggest inspirations is her husband, Darryl, who provides her with unconditional cared for and loved. We all want to be happy.

acceptance. He supports her no matter how crazy her ideas might be. As a life-long entrepreneur, Goodwin believes “It’s the crazy ideas that take us out of our comfort zones and that’s where we grow as individuals.”

But all craziness aside, Goodwin longs for lifting people to their greater selves. She has spent six years building her website to include daily brilliance from notable and ordinary people, to remind us of who we really are. “I want people to know that they are infinite beings, and they have unlimited potential. We each have the power to do, be or create anything in our lives, anything!” is the place to come to when you’re looking for encouragement and support to do just that. Goodwin ended the interview with a smile, saying, “It’s only when you have the courage to step off the ledge that you’ll find you’ve had wings all along.” The truth of this insight can take us on a beautiful flight.

If you wish to be inspired, please visit To connect with Goodwin, email her at


406  77


Kate White

I Want Her Job:

Kate White By Brianne Burrowes Photo by Yolanda Perez Photography This article originally appeared on


78 406


Kate White

Go big or go home.

It wasn’t just the career secret that led former Cosmopolitan Magazine Editor-in-Chief Kate White to write her oh-so-gutsy cover lines. It was the secret that put the magazine squarely in the No. 1 spot in the world, and catapulted her career. Kate shares this secret — and more — in detail in her latest New York Times bestselling book on work and careers, I Shouldn’t Be Telling You This: How to Ask for the Money, Snag the Promotion and Create the Career You Deserve (now out in paperback). And Kate would know what it takes. While leading Cosmo for 14 years, she grew the circulation by 700,000, oversaw Cosmo Books,, a bevy of digital projects and the brand’s fashion line at J.C. Penney. She also penned the best-selling Baily Weggins mystery series and two stand-alone thrillers in addition to a previous career book, Why Good Girls Don’t Get Ahead … but Gutsy Girls Do. Kate worked for a handful of other well-known glossies and led Child, Working Woman and Redbook as editor-in-chief before joining Cosmo. Perhaps most importantly, Kate is a mom and managed to grow her career while also devoting herself to her two children and husband. With such a full plate, how does she do it all? Fortunately, she’s not one to hold back her secrets. How did you discover your current job? I always tell people they should be out in the world if they haven’t found their career. Yet I was lucky, because I knew from the time I was young that I wanted to be a content provider. Growing up I wrote plays and put out my own magazine in high school. It was where I wanted to go. But even when you know where you want to go, you also need to know that one day you might want to make a shift. That brings another question to mind. At what point did you decide you wanted to add ‘author’ to your resume? There was a part of me that was enchanted by being an author, and I started to feel that calling a number of years ago. I noticed that whenever I went on a business trip, my favorite part of that trip would be when I’d go out on my own and lose myself. I remember an afternoon in Madrid walking by the hotel on those little streets. I began to feel a call for this loner existence away from the fray. Because many of us are very likely to have more than one career in our lives, it’s important to listen to the siren call down your career path, too.

Writing is a solitary life to some degree. It’s not like sitting at Cosmo with male models stripping down to their underwear for casting. The magazine was this zany place with something always going on, and it was fun. I needed to make sure I was OK leaving that and making sure that financially it was going to work. It’s important to think about questions like: Would you have to take a pay cut? Can you afford that? In the long run, will it be worth it? What drew you to writing mysteries? Like a lot of girls, I love Nancy Drew and wanted to write mysteries from the time I was younger. It got to the point where I realized that if I didn’t start taking those steps to make that happen, it never was going to happen. So, I told myself: This is going to happen. I’m a big believer in managing your career and not just your job. To do that you need to use your personal time to step back from your life and ask yourself, “Is there a dream that I want to tap into?”

We’re dying to know … what was it like to work at Cosmo? It was as close to being on a television show as you can imagine, and I relished it. During my last year at Cosmo, I knew I’d be leaving, so I walked in every day like I had a year to live. Cosmo has a certain craziness to it. The people who worked there tended to be a little more over the top. I remember one time two people from corporate came over to talk to me and my managing editor about moving to the new Hearst Tower. While we were meeting there was this knocking sound on the managing editor’s wall. She walked out to see what happened, came back in and said, “Sorry some books fell.” Later on she told me that two staffers were getting ready for a Kama Sutra piece and had to show the art department some of the positions. They were laughing so hard they were rolling off the wall.

It was all the fun and zaniness you’d imagine. Celebrities were always dropping by. There are stories that I could never tell management because they would always say, “That could be a lawsuit.”

have to be careful with social media, but make sure to really pay attention to the consumer. I watched everything, went to so many movies and watched shows like Sex and the City or Dawson’s Creek. There was a part of me that thought I’d be glad when I didn’t have to watch The Bachelor anymore, but that’s what my job entailed. The one thing I found interesting, and this is something I talk about in the book, is the importance of going big. I would think, “Why am I the one suggesting Rihanna for the cover, or why aren’t we doing anything about Twilight?” It’s so big to go big or go home in your job. I didn’t have enough young people bursting in the door saying, “Have you heard about Lady Gaga?” Was it because it wasn’t part of their job description? It frustrated me that a lot of people didn’t come to me. And even though I’d try to tell them, they didn’t want to step over their boundaries.

Do you think that’s partly based on fear? Those are natural fears. We feel What inspired you to write a if we’re too grabby or out there we’ll get a slap down, whether it’s second career book? from a boss or a co-worker. Here’s Two things. The first is that I learned a little trick. When you do it once How did you begin to write your first so much at Cosmo. Cosmo was an incredible place because it was this Where did you find inspiration for stay- (forgo your fear) and discover that book on top of such a busy schedule? it almost always brings rewards, That was a bitch. I knew I needed to major brand that was awesomely ing on the pulse of culture? you will begin to quickly get over lay the foundation first, which I think powerful in the media world. A lot is important to do if you can. Test the of people don’t realize that it’s the We were No. 1 at the newsstands your fear. The first time you ask for waters — whether it’s through vol- No. 1 magazine brand in the world, when I was there. I was a big believ- more money in your salary, there’s unteer work or freelancing — and and it’s in 65 countries. It’s huge and er in research and read every email never a time that you won’t want to make sure you haven’t completely the stakes are very high. When I got our readers sent in. I did all sorts of do it again. What you discover is that romanticized the idea in your mind. I there I realized that I needed to lead ratings on items in the magazine and good things come from that. Start started waking up very early on Sat- and learn. I felt I had learned so much then analyzed them on the comput- small. Take that seat near the power urday and Sunday mornings before running this huge killer brand that I er. I did focus groups. I also did Twit- player at a meeting. Go up to a power my kids were awake to write books. had to share what I learned. Second, ter reporting too, but Twitter wasn’t player at a networking event and say, It allowed me to get my foot in the I also feel that young women today, a good way to do research as you’re “Hi. I’m (insert your name) and saw door and build my reputation as a mainly because of this economy, are looking at a very self-selecting group. your speech on YouTube. I thought it writer without leaving my career be- needy for career advice in ways they I found no correlation between what was fantastic when you addressed x they said and what covers sold. You and y.” Suddenly you will find you’re hadn’t been before. hind first.


406  79


Kate White

big believer in having that coffee with yourself and doing an honest evaluation. It might even be a Is work/life balance ever a problem good idea to ask a friend of yours, with you? If so, what is one no-fail “Hey, if you look at my life from the outside, what’s your take?” It tactic you use to create balance? can help give you a sense of who One thing it took me a while to you are and how you can adjust to realize, and that I wish I had re- fulfill your bigger dreams. alized earlier, is how important it is to step back on a regular basis and do an assessment of how ev- What are some of the erything is working. In the book rules you live by? I share this idea that you’ve gotta I think one of those was realizing drain the swamp as you slay the that I talked about going big but alligators. The draining of the I needed to make that more of a swamp is the big picture, and the calculated process were I actually slaying of the alligators is every- stepped back from everything and thing we deal with in the day-to- asked, “Did I go big enough with day. Sometimes we have a hard this?” I can describe the process as time focusing on both, so we slay asking myself the four B’s: “Could the alligators forgetting that we this be Bigger, Bolder, Better or also need to drain the swamp. It more Bad Ass?” I went through a was only later that I realized you process to make ‘going big’ more needed to do that in your personal of a calculated thing. life as well. What advice would you tell a 28-yearFind a spot at the kitchen table, old version of yourself? grab a notebook and ask yourself, I think at 28 I had a nice level of “How am I doing?” I saw a quote confidence that got shaken in a lately where someone said, “You couple of places in the next few can’t balance things until you years. I would say to myself,” Stay know what you’re measuring.” in the confidence that you’re feelMake a list of what some of those ing right now as you’re moving up responsibilities are that you have in your career and loving it. Don’t and ask if you can let some of it go. let anything shake it.” We often get on a treadmill of responsibility where everything we I also would have said (and believe do isn’t necessary. It’s also a good me I didn’t adhere to this enough), time to ask yourself, “Is there a “Always ask for more than they’re girlhood dream I haven’t respond- offering.” That’s the one mistake I was really still making at 28. I was ed to?” offered a job that year and I took It was one of those sessions where exactly what was offered. They I thought, “I don’t want to give would have definitely given more. up the mysteries I write.” I’m a Ask for more. Always. in a conversation and you won’t be afraid to do that the next time.

Brianne Burrowes,

a born-and-raised Montanan, is the founder of I Want Her Job, an award-winning website empowering women in their career search. She also is senior consumer marketing manager at NASCAR track Phoenix International Raceway. You can follow her on Twitter @iwantherjob and read more interviews like this on


80 406


81 406


Stephen Isley

Stephen Isley Jewelers

Montana Inspired Design of Distinction By Nancy Dewar Photos by Taylor Brooke Photography

At Stephen Isley Jewelry you will find a well-appointed gallery featuring a variety of fine art and furnishings that reflect the Rocky Mountain lifestyle. You will also find beautiful custom designed jewelry featuring the finest Yogo and Montana sapphires. Husband and wife team Stephen Isley & Cindy Just are not only designers but also master metal smiths and gem setters. They specialize in one of the rarest sapphires in the world - the Yogo. Yogo sapphires are among the most precious gemstone mined in the world. Stephen and Cindy first met while Cindy was designing and apprenticing for a local Whitefish jeweler, at the same time Stephen was already an established jeweler with his own downtown shop. Both being involved in the same profession, and each sharing a passion for design the two artists began a deep friendship. Their friendship evolved into a business venture and When visiting the gallery I enjoyed meeting Ste- eventually led to their marriage! At the beginphen and Cindy and was truly impressed with ning of their partnership the two began creating their sincere commitment to quality, their cli- sterling silver jewelry together. They traveled to ents and to each other. A few of their comments highly respected juried art shows throughout the said it all. When I asked what they love most North West. I loved Cindy’s comment about this about their business, Stephen quickly replied, “I time in their lives. “It was romantic; somewhat work with my wife. We love our customers, and of a Bohemian lifestyle. We had over 3,000 peoour customers have become our friends.” Cindy ple on our Seattle mailing list, and people would added, “When you work as hard as we do, our be waiting in line at our booth when shows business is our life, and our customers really are opened!” Stephen started his jewelry business in 1973. He and Cindy opened their Whitefish our friends.” Their gallery, located at the corner of Central Avenue and Third Street in Whitefish, offers a welcoming and relaxed atmosphere. When you stop by, you may be greeted by Coco-Channel, the Isley’s adorable 4 year-old Golden Doodle who sports a rhinestone studded collar (of course!) when she’s at “work!”


82 406

gallery together in 1999. Being true romantics the couple wed on a gondola in Venice, Italy.

The Isley’s work with precious metals and all design work is done in-house. When asked about their design styles, Cindy explained, “Stephen leans more toward a curvy and free flowing style, mine tends to be straighter and more angular. It’s a great combination.” They describe their designs as contemporary with strong aspects of durability, which complement the Montana lifestyle. The work is creatively balanced with elements inspired by nature. In addition to their own designs, they also offer custom work. Stephen said, “We can create custom pieces at many different price points. We work with many young couples just getting started. About half of our custom work is done using the customer’s heirloom gems to create new designs.”


Stephen Isley

Focusing on Yogo and Montana sapphires the Isley's have developed highly respected relationships with the many sapphire mines in Montana. “We take great pride in the quality of our gemstones and handpick each one.” Focusing on Yogo and Montana sapphires the Isley's have developed highly respected relationships with the many sapphire mines in Montana. “We take great pride in the quality of our gemstones and handpick each one,” Cindy said. When I asked about the difference between the two types of sapphires I learned that Yogo sapphires are hard-rocked mined from deep volcanic dikes found in Central Montana. Yogo sapphires are rare (especially larger stones) and are famous for their naturally occurring cornflower blue color. Montana sapphires differ from Yogos in that they are mined from riverbeds, are more prevalent, and are found in a rainbow of colors.

Stephen Isley Jewelry has a loyal, local following, which leads to a huge amount of referral business from all over the country and Canada. Stephen told me a unique story that exemplifies their ability to quickly earn a customer’s trust. “A man came into the gallery and met Stephen, then three weeks later we received a package containing a 3 carat diamond to make a ring for him! We have since designed his son’s engagement ring, as well.” Cindy and Stephen are proud to be recognized for the integrity and trust clients have in them.

delivered it to them the next evening at Tupelo Grille, where the couple was having their anniversary dinner! They also once bought a plane ticket to have a piece of jewelry sent to a client in Texas to arrive on Christmas Eve. Another time Cindy hand delivered a piece to a client who was literally onboard a plane to return home. When she presented her with the jewelry, all of the passengers applauded!

Stephen and Cindy feel extremely excited to welcome their new Gallery Manager, Jamie Wiese. Jamie's experience includes small business owner and managing partner of a contemporary fine art gallery in Bigfork. When asked about her career switch Jamie explained, “I knew Stephen’s work, had been coming to their store for years; and I love the fact that there is no end to the learning process here. Every aspect of jewelry making is fascinating to me. There are fine art elements to designing as well as technical and manual skill involved in creating the pieces.” Jamie married Brandon Wiese in July, a talented painter and sculptor whom she met during her art gallery days in Bigfork. The newlywed couple chose matching wedding bands from Stephen's custom 'Glacier Collection'. Their 14k white gold bands feature Stephen's very own unique brushed 'Granite' texture and are embellished with seven princess-cut diamonds.

The stories they shared illustrate their commitment to their clientele. A couple stopped by the gallery to find a ring. They were celebrating their tenth anniversary. She fell in love with one This popular and stunning collection offers design but wanted another type of gemstone. many designs including rings, bracelets and Stephen worked all night to make the ring and pendants. Stephen uses a variety of textures in-

cluding his granite, hammered and the ponderosa pine needle. Chose from mountain scenes, walking bear or bear paw pendants and snowflake necklaces, earrings and charms. Clients can customize their own pieces from this line by selecting metals, stones and finishes. What a great way to personalize your own piece of Montana!

The gallery offers an array of other unique work created by hand-selected artists from the North West. Original fine art of all mediums is displayed hand-blown glass, sculptures, bronze, antler tables, custom leather pillows and so much more! The gallery also offers jewelry at every price point. There is something for everyone. You will find an extensive selection of Native American jewelry as well as featured local jewelry artisans. For men the gallery represents William Henry. This collection includes pens, knives, money clips and cufflinks. Each piece is of a numbered limited edition and is handmade in the US. A range of unique materials is used in the William Henry collection including Damascus steel, gemstones, inlaid rare woods and fossils. Make Stephen Isley Jewelry your destination for the perfect gift for any occasion. Stephen Isley Jewelry 241 Central Avenue Whitefish, MT 59937 406-862-2010


406  83

Leigh Ann O’Neill

By Gwen Sutherland Photos by Danella Miller

Whitefish and Bigfork D ance Studios

“First position, turn right, arabesque, tendu, arms up, arch, open close, turn, free style, dance together, across the floor, pretty arms!” Leigh Ann O’Neill gently guides her combo class through their dance routines, covering jazz, ballet, tap, tumbling and hip hop in a spirited and guided one-hour session. The children love it and are proud to show off their dance steps and chart of accomplishments. In a perfect world, a child may be lucky to find a teacher who is strong, compassionate, talented and committed. Leigh Ann O’Neill, owner of Whitefish and Bigfork Dance Studios, personifies all those qualities and more. Inspired by her mother, also a dancer, Leigh Ann began dancing at 3 and has never stopped. “I am a forever student, myself. I keep learning, growing and evolving. I truly believe that dance changes everything and lasts a lifetime,” she says. Leigh Ann knows that dance is a successful way to promote positive thoughts and enhance self-confidence and self-control. With each program that she offers, and there are many, she strives to encourage a sense of accomplishment and create beautiful memories in children and adults that will last a lifetime. “I have been teaching for 27 years,” she says, “and I have dedicated my whole life to my passion for dance.”

She relocated to Montana in 2000 for its natural beauty and support of the arts and opened her Whitefish Dance Studio. In the past 14 years Leigh Ann has trained dancers Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Leigh of all ages, both amateur and professional. Ann’s accomplishments include Kansas City Leigh Ann’s dancers travel all over the FlatMiss Teen, the Cotton Bowl Parade, New head Valley, the Northwest and Canada repOrleans Saint’s half-time and more. She is resenting Montana in parades, performanccertified through Test to Teach by the Dance es and competitions. Two years ago, she Masters, Professional Dance Teachers’ As- opened the Bigfork Dance Studio and with


84 406

sociation and Dance Educators of America. Leigh Ann trained with master level instructors across the country and continues to further her education and training. She has received numerous awards in choreography and all disciplines of dance and tumbling.

the enormous help of her mother, Sherri Patterson, she continues to inspire, lead and befriend the children of both communities, always encouraging them to be the best they can be. After 13 years at the Mountain Mall Whitefish Dance has moved to a more central valley location to better serve our growing communities. Now located at the Windmill Business Park on Hwy 2.

Whitefish and Bigfork Dance Studios offer a huge array of programs to suit any and all dancers, amateur or professional. The Dance Explosion and Dance Force are two by-au-


Leigh Ann O’Neill

Dance changes everything and lasts a lifetime! dition competitive and performance dance team programs comprised of advanced level dancers from age 10 and up. Choreographed by Leigh Ann, these teams master jazz, hip hop, tumbling, pom, stunts and builds and perform all over the Flathead Valley, as well as attending dance workshops hosted by guest teachers. Auditions for these two programs are held in September. Leigh Ann remarks, “Over the years, I have been fortunate in that many of my students have continued their dance and tumbling at universities on numerous dance and cheer teams, as well as, majoring in dance and continuing a career in dance.” Another wonderful opportunity for boys and girls offered at the Whitefish and Bigfork Studios is M.A.T.S. (Montana Acrobatic and Tumbling Society). Participants attend a 5-week training workshop prior to the competition where they focus on their routine. “M.A.T.S. offers each child a positive and competitive experience in a safe and supportive environment. Every competitor receives either a ribbon or a trophy guaranteeing that each tumbler feels reward for their hard work,” Leigh Ann assures.

Covering all aspects of dance, both studios offer private classes as well as Combo Classes, Jazz, Hip Hop and Theatre, Ballet, Pointe and Prepointe, Acrobatics, Tumbling and Cheer, Clogging and Tap and Dance Fitness. Yoga is available in Bigfork and African Dance is available in Whitefish. New this year at both studios are two exciting classes: Mommy and Me, especially for toddlers and their mommies and Sexy Sassy, a bachelorette party class for brides in which Leigh Ann teaches mild burlesque and fun little dance routines. Both studios offer a unique opportunity in the Flathead Valley. Part time residents are able to bring their aspiring dancers for private and/ or group lessons for summer intensives. In fact, Leigh Ann is currently coaching dancers from Seattle, Chicago, Canada, Utah and Colorado on a regular basis! Leigh Ann says, I have dedicated my life to dance and my studios are special places where children of all ages and levels are invited to experience the magic of the performing arts.” There is a performer in everyone and Leigh Ann is the truly gifted teacher who can bring it out and create memories that last a lifetime. The communities of Whitefish and Bigfork are so very fortunate to have Leigh Ann O’Neill. For a complete description of classes and calendar, please visit

Whitefish Dance, 1300 Windmill Dr Ste B Columbia Falls MT 59912 406-862-3453 Bigfork Dance, 647 Commerce Street (across from Bigfork Schools) 406-890-5667

Miss Leigh Ann's first recital...Age 4


406  85

406 man}


88 406

Bill Bayne

406 man}

Bill Bayne

406 Man Bill Bayne By Nancy Dewar

Generosity Flying High…Under the Radar Photos by Carrie Ann Photography

Whitefish resident Bill Bayne flies high in his Piper Meridian single-engine turboprop plane, but when it comes to notoriety he keeps a very low profile and tries to stay under the radar as much as possible. With that said, I’d really like to extend a hearty thanks to him for agreeing to be our 406 Man and sharing his wonderful stories! Bill is volunteer pilot for Angel Flight West, a nonprofit organization that arranges free, non-emergency air travel for children and adults with serious medical conditions, enabling them to receive vital treatment that might otherwise be inaccessible because of financial, medical, or geographic limitations. The organization has over 1,400 pilots and all expenses for each flight are born by the volunteers; their time, their planes and all of the operating expenses. Bill began flying twelve years ago and said that it is his alltime favorite activity. When I asked how he got involved in aviation, he stated, “I always wanted to fly but when I had the time, I didn’t have the money. Then I had the money but didn’t have the time!” Now that he is retired, he takes to the sky often and has flown approximately twenty missions for Angel Flight in the past two years. He would love to make a flight every week, but the demand in Montana is not that high. Most of his missions are flying people to and from Seattle or Spokane. One of his most memorable clients, who also happened to be his first mission flight here in Montana, was an 82-year old woman with pancreatic cancer. Knowing what a devastating disease she was fighting, Bill was surprised when he first met her. “She looked about 60 and was simply a wonderful lady and so very full of life.” They shared many flights together, and Bill said that seeing Mt. Rainer on a trip to Seattle was especially thrilling to her. “She passed away last year, five days after I flew her to her sister’s 80th birthday party.” Passionate about helping others, Bill stated, “The main thing Angel Flight has taught me is that I don’t really have any problems. So often we don’t appreciate how really great we have it.” As we know, when one gives they often receive so much more in return. Bill provided an example of this, telling me about a 2-year old heart patient he picked up in Bozeman last month. He was truly touched when the runway guys at the airport presented the child with a giant stuffed Teddy bear as a send-off gift. Not only does Bill fly people in need, but he also flies dogs in need! At last year’s annual Malibu & Meridian Owners & Pilots Association meeting, he met a man who flies for Wings

of Rescue, a non-profit organization that picks up dogs from kill shelters and flies them to safe no-kill shelters. He asked Bill if he would pick up 15 dogs in Redding, California. A true dog lover, Bill readily agreed and left Montana on a chilly, 14-degree day last December. He arrived in Redding to a balmy, 40-degrees and to 20 (not 15!) little dogs in their crates…all waiting and ready! Bill suggested giving the dogs (17 Chihuahuas and three Dachshunds) a bathroom break before boarding, and laughed when the dogs went outside shivering. “Humm…if you think this is cold, just wait till you guys get to Montana!” Once all of the dogs were loaded, crates stacked upon crates, Bill started the engine. Much to his chagrin, all of the dogs began yipping and howling. Bill said to his flight partner, “I’ll be stark raving mad if they do this the whole flight!” Fortunately, they all soon went to sleep and slept the entire trip.The canine rescue group was met at Glacier International Airport by the Humane Society of NW Montana and a news crew. In his ever-quiet way, Bill snuck away without being interviewed. To him, it was simply all about the dogs. He has another California-canine-rescue trip planned for later this month. Bill and his wife, Betsy, moved to Whitefish in 2005 from Columbus, Ohio. Bill became interested in Montana after reading Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose, a 1996 biography on Meriwether Lewis of the Lewis & Clark expedition. The chapter about their canoe trip down the Missouri River piqued his interest in our beautiful state and a wilderness camping trip with a good friend happened shortly thereafter. Bill says he fell in love with Montana immediately. The Bayne’s then visited Glacier National Park, did some skiing on Big Mountain, bought a town house in Whitefish and began vacationing here as often as possible. Once Bill retired, they were thrilled to purchase a home and call Whitefish their permanent home. Their children (22 year-old Mackenzie who lives in Tucson and 29-year old Patrick and his wife Brittney who live in Washington, D.C.) visit often.


Bill was an early pioneer and entrepreneur in technology beginning in the late 1970’s. Following a 4-year stint in

406  89

406 man}

Bill Bayne

the US Army where he did computer programming, he returned home and attended Ohio State University to study computer science. While in school he worked parttime at Radio Shack, at the time when one of the earliest mass-produced computers, the TRS-80, was introduced. Bill became close friends with his manager at Radio Shack, and their store was No. 1 in total annual sales companywide. Wondering why they were doing all of this work for Radio Shack, Bill and his partner went ahead and opened their own computer store called Micro Center. Their first store opened in 1979 in Columbus with just 700 square feet and did over a million dollars in sales the first year. They essentially created the first-ever “super store” for computers, and the chain has grown to include twenty-six stores, most of which are located east of the Mississippi. Bill had some fun quips about the early days of their start-up. “I met Steve Jobs in 1979 at a Midwest Apple Conference in Chicago. In those days if I called Microsoft for technical assistance, I often got Bill Gates on the phone. After all, that was when Microsoft had just six employees!” Bill still owns Micro Center with his partner. He made a funny comment about his daughter, who didn’t really pay attention to what her Dad was doing over the years. He knew he had made it when Mackenzie said to him, “Hey, Dad, you’re in Wikipedia now!” Both Bill and Betsy love the outdoors and are avid skiers. When asked what she loves most about Whitefish, Betsy said, “The people. Whitefish is a really nice, livable and giving community. It’s also nice to live away from the rat race.” Betsy is very giving, as well! She is deeply involved in the community and is a board member for the Whitefish Community Foundation and on the Board of Trustees for CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates), a non-profit child advocacy program to protect the interests of abused and neglected children. I loved what Betsy said about her husband. “He is a very understated, but an incredibly compassionate guy.” How very true! I was curious how she felt about flying with Bill in his plane. She refers to it as “Bayne Air” and said, “I’m a white-knuckle flier. I really don’t like small planes at all!” So with Betsy’s higher-profile community work down on the ground, and with Bill’s lower-profile work up in the air, the Bayne’s are certainly making a truly positive impact here on many people’s lives…and some lucky canine’s lives, as well!

giving back}

Buddy Walk

The idea of having a child with Down Syndrome can often seem frightening. The questions of our capability of caretaking and ability to withstand all the staring emerge. Would this child love me and would we love him or her? But when you hold the precious and innocence in your hand, differences are what they are; differences, and parents cherish the beauty they created.

Fun at the Buddy Walk

A Loving Walk with Down Syndrome Written by Naomi Morrison


92 406

The Stahlberg Family

through it with him. Right when I had him, it didn’t cross my mind that he had Down Syndrome. I only wanted to know if he was healthy.”

A routine ultrasound of Stahlberg’s detected a low birth weight. So further testing identified Gaige, now three-years-old, as having Down Syndrome. On the flip side, Bludworth didn’t know her daughter, 25-year-old Jordan, had Down Syndrome for three days. And, when her doctor did tell her, he scared her to death. She was told Jordan wouldn’t survive to be For Whitefish residents Sarah Stahlberg and a teenager and that she should give her up Corrine Bludworth, they never knew anything for adoption. Both Bludworth and Stahlberg but absolute love for their babies with Down started their families at a young age, with each Syndrome. There was never a hesitation of having three children. Neither could imagine bond between mother and child. However, their lives without all of their children. both have experienced much of the opposite “I wish society wasn’t so shut off and caught from others. up on normalcy,” Stahlberg said. “A typical “Since we had Gaige, it’s put a huge perspec- day has challenges, but it’s not any different tive on life. There is no one-kind-of normal,” than having a child without Down Syndrome. said Stahlberg. “I never really thought about When they’re little, they’re just so sweet. Oththat until I had him. My child ‘isn’t’ Down Syn- ers notice he has Down Syndrome, but I don’t.” drome. My child ‘has’ Down Syndrome.” The families are a very strong unit. The sib“People ask me, ‘how do you deal with her lings without Down Syndrome treat Jordan having a disease?” commented Corrine. “She and Gaige as they would any other. doesn’t have a disease is my response.” “My kids love Gaige,” Stahlberg said. “They Defining what Down Syndrome is, the Nation- don’t know anything different. They don’t al Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) states that even ask questions because it’s normal for an extra full or partial copy of chromosome them.” 21 results in a Down Syndrome condition. It’s a genetic trait inherited by a parent. And, it’s “My sons didn’t know anything differthe most common genetic condition, accord- ent until school started and other chiling to NDSS, with one out of 691 babies born in the United States having Down Syndrome. dren questioned Jordan’s differences,” Bludworth said. “It’s just Jordan, Physical traits are upward slanted eyes, small they would say.” stature and low muscle tone, which puts the child at an increased risk for health prob- Bludworth has become a huge advocate for lems. Fortunately, health advances in the last those with Down Syndrome. In her detercentury have significantly improved Down mination to raise awareness, she and her Syndrome children’s chance of survival from husband, Donald, have organized an annual nine-years-old to more than 60. Buddy Walk. According to NDSS, this international walk is meant “to promote acceptance “Gaige had a bunch of health problems when and inclusion of those with Down Syndrome.” he was born,” said Stahlberg, “and I went It’s a free, one-mile walk in October at Wood-

giving back}

Buddy Walk

“I wish society wasn’t so shut off and caught up on normalcy,” Stahlberg said. “A typical day has challenges, but it’s not any different than having a child without Down Syndrome. When they’re little, they’re just so sweet. Others notice he has Down Syndrome, but I don’t.” land Park in Kalispell. The first year, 230 people came in support. Of which, about two dozen of our community members with Down Syndrome attended the festivities.

at home by herself for a few hours a day. And she enjoys working a few hours a day stocking shelves, pricing goods and doing other tasks at a spa. Bludworth and Jordan walk all over town together whenever they want an outing. There Sarah’s husband Reece, a Whitefish Police of- is no question that they are best friends. ficer for seven years, participates in the annual Tip A Cop. Law enforcement are servers at McK- “I like to goof around with my momenzie River Pizza and all tips are donated to my,” Jordan said shyly. “We have regSpecial Olympics. McKenzie River also has the Special Olympics pizza for the day and all the ular girl dates.” proceeds from those orders are donated as well. The hardest part about having Down Syndrome The Bludworths and Stahlbergs have two com- is not sharing a friendship bond with a peer, pletely different stories with the same ending of Bludworth has witnessed. Jordan was proud to loving their children with all their uniqueness. have gone to her senior prom with a “normal” The Stahlbergs just started their family with boy. She danced and had a great time while her their oldest age eight. On the other hand, the mom chaperoned. Other than a couple spiteful Bludworths children are all in their twenties so incidents against her while growing up, she was there is a motherly protection that has to change the “darling love child” all through school. She is extremely close to her cousin, however she for Jordan to be able to experience freedom. doesn’t have a best friend and it’s lonely. “When Jordan was a baby, she was my little baby. We treated her the same as her brothers and Bludworth commented on how excited she is had the same expectations. But as she got older, for the awareness of Down Syndrome coming the expectations weren’t as great,” Bludworth to the forefront. And while they still get stares said. “In almost every aspect, we treat Jordan and questions from strangers, there’s more inlike an adult. And, she’s the first person to re- formation for the public that serves as a prevenmind you that she’s an adult. But, I do catch my- tion of ignorance in the future. It’s summed up self answering for her when she’s shy and quiet. by the Stahlberg’s Buddy Walk tee shirts: And, her comprehension is lower than adults, so “Chill! It’s just an extra chromosome.” we just explain things in simpler terms.” For more information on Down Syndrome, visit Abiding by the house rules, Jordan is able to stay

The Bludworth Family


Butch and Sara

Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours

Butch and Sara Parr Written by Kristen Hamilton

When winter arrives in northwestern Montana there are a few people that run and hide, but the majority of people I know take it in stride and even thrive in this season. They just put on an extra layer and head out into the snow. What an amazing playground we are blessed with and since we all know it lasts awhile...why fight it? I’d venture to guess that you can keep as busy with outdoor activities in the winter as in the summer around here – you just won’t have as much sunlight! You can…ice skate, snowshoe, cross-country ski, build a snowman, ice fish, downhill ski, snowboard or…go dog sledding.

Photo above of Butch and Sara Parr by Amanda Wilson Photography


94 406

On that thought, on the top of everyone’s list should be dog sledding through the Stillwater State Forest with Butch and Sara Parr, owners of Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours. The Parr’s have been training and racing sled dogs for over thirty years and have been offering dog sled tours for the last seven. The couple has found that being in business together has brought them closer and they get to spend more time with each other. They are their only employees and have a wonderful time welcoming their clients to their home and introducing them to the life style they have chosen. Butch and Sara offer a unique dog sledding experience geared toward people who love the outdoors and are willing to be actively involved with the driving of the dog team.

They have a small dog kennel of only thirty dogs (yes, that is small in the dog sledding world!) and are limited to how many people they can take out on each trip. They specialize in groups of four people or less to keep the tours personal.


Butch and Sara

Butch and Sara offer a unique dog sledding experience geared toward people who love the outdoors and are willing to be actively involved with the driving of the dog team.

Butch designs and builds the special “double-driver” sleds that allow clients to choose if they want to stand and help drive the team or ride in the cozy, warm basket of the sled. Butch and Sara highly recommend standing because you really get the feel of being a musher in control of your very own team. Winter Woods is located fourteen miles north of Whitefish toward Olney and the Canadian Border. With twenty-seven acres surrounded by the Stillwater State Forest, the Parr’s have many plans for the future. They hope to “retire” from their current jobs as teacher and carpenter some time in the near future to build their dog sledding business into a fulltime endeavor during the winter, perhaps

adding all day and overnight adventures. They are also thinking about adding lodging and summer activities to their “retirement” plan.

Winter Woods is open daily during the very busy Christmas/New Year’s holiday season starting December 19th through January 4th. After that, it is just open on the weekends due to their other jobs. Their holiday calendar is filling up, so call soon if you would like to book a tour for this season. Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours 406-862-7232 For more information, contact and click on the winter link.


Photos on this page courtesy of Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours.

406  95



l o r t n o C day i l o g H n i d n e Sp Enjoy s d y n a a d i l o H t h e or e M By

d an ch i l ke Vu n i Er

CS , JC n ba Ur n n lia Ju

Holiday Spending and Budgeting

November is now past, and the holiday season is upon us. Throughout Thanksgiving Day, while eating delicious turkey, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie, I debated whether or not to venture out into the retail madness of Black Friday. I worked in retail in the past and can clearly remember waking up three hours earlier than normal to prepare the shop for the hundreds of customers who would be wandering the aisles looking for deals and steals. Weighing the benefits of potential gift-buying savings and the drawbacks of the general insanity of the day, I wondered if the day might be better spent eating more turkey and potatoes. This year, I decided against the frenetic shopping of Black Friday and instead, scoured the internet for deals on Cyber Monday. Looking back a year on my last year’s December bank statement, I realized exactly how much I spent on not only gifts, but meals I ate out while shopping, shipping costs, wrapping paper and ribbons, little impulse gifts, and credit-card interest expense from my larger purchases. When I first started shopping, I had an estimate of how much I wanted to spend on gifts and a scribbled list on a napkin of who I was getting gifts for but no real defined budget or goal in place. But as I could see on my bank statement, not only had I surpassed my initial approximation, but I had blown it out of the water! In some smart foresight, I had been setting aside funds each month to handle all holiday expenses, but my spending frenzy prompted me to really look at my spending habits and what could help me stay on track.


96 406

The first step is creating a total gift budget. Begin by creating a list of gift-receivers and the approximate value of each gift. Not only does this help make sure no one is missed or forgotten, but you’ll find out how much you want to spend. You can compare your budget amount to what you can realistically spend and adjust gifts’ budgeted amounts accordingly. Make sure to note if the presents need to be mailed and plan ahead for postage expenses. Most mail carriers offer flat rate package options that are not restricted by weight and are delivered timely. If you are mailing presents, check with the postal carrier to find out when presents should be mailed so they’re in time.

Avoid impulse purchases.

This item seems somewhat innocent in that my impulse purchases always tended to be stockingstuffer type gifts and only cost a few dollars. However, those little gifts really started to add up! Stick to your list! Impulse buying can also apply to larger-dollar items. If you find a more expensive gift than you planned that is too perfect to pass up, adjust your budget and see if you can move those funds from another item.

Try spreading out purchases rather than last minute shopping.

Start your budget early and research the best times to buy big-ticket items. Last minute shopping can cause issues because you might be more likely to spend more than you mean to strictly



because time is running out. Also pay attention to the big deals stores advertise. Research the brand and item you’re buying. The deal may not be as much of a steal as the retailer is saying in their advertisement.

In order to avoid impulse buying try to make many of your purchases with cash. This will enable you to have more control over your spending. It also will help you to avoid a large credit card balance that will affect your finances long after Christmas. Cash also is tangible and seeing the money pass through hands can help curtail overspending. If credit cards are preferred, make sure to use one with good rewards and pay it off quickly to reduce any interest accruals.

Exercise your creativity.

Christmas is a great time to make gifts for your family and friends. Baked goods and handmade items are easier on a Christmas budget and more meaningful to the recipient. Use



Pinterest to come up with creative and unique ideas for everyone on your list. Perhaps try gifting time: offer to babysit your nieces and nephews for a weekend so their parents can take a short break.

For next season you could try setting up a savings account at your bank with an automatic deposit. If you are able to put in $50 a month, you’ll have $600 come Christmas next year. This is a great way to save all year and be prepared for the holidays next year. Most banks and credit unions offer small interest-bearing accounts that can be used or online institutions, such as SmartyPig, can be used to reach your goal. Below is an example of a budget created for all of your holiday spending. You can create a similar spreadsheet in Microsoft Excel or Numbers (Mac) as an easy way to set your budget and track how much you are spending during the holiday season.





Mom: Candlemaking set





Dad: Magazine Subscription





Grandparents: Framed Photos





Brother: Video Game




Holiday Expense

Wrapping Paper




Charitable Giving

Red Cross Donation













Budget trackers are available for iPhones, Android phones, and Windows phones. Some of the apps are free while others cost a few dollars and may not be strictly holiday-spending focused. Gifts HD 2, Santa’s Bag, and Dollarbird are all available on iTunes while List Bliss, MoneyWise, and Christmas Gift List are available in the Google Play store. A few budget apps are available for the Windows phone as well: Quick Budget, Finance Helper, and Budget Ninja to name a few. Taking the stress out of budgeting for the holidays allows for the full enjoyment of the season. Now instead of wondering how much money I’ve spent and worrying about the people I haven’t found gifts for yet, I can relax, bake some cookies, and drink some egg nog.


EXCLUSIVE ONLY 150 TIX availaible

FREE appetizers all night long FREE champagne at midnight

This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only, it is not intended to act as professional advice. If you have additional questions, contact JCCS, PC in Whitefish at (406)862-2597 or Kalispell at (406)755-3681.


406  97



Relationships Don’t Thrive On Just the Sweet Stuff! Team Accountability Matters! Written by Susan B. Clarke

“So tell me again, why are we doing this? I’m not sure why it’s helpful to say something I know is just going to upset someone.” This is a common question we get when we are working with teams. First, let me define the term “team.” It is any working group of two or more that have a collective goal and are willing to share resources. So partnerships, project teams, business teams all count, in our view, as a team. “So tell me again why would I want to say something that I know is going to get my partner or teammate upset?” Because you care, and you want the best for your partner, team and business!!

Break Thumper’s Mother’s Rule

That’s right! We encourage you to break Thumper’s Mother’s rule: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” That rule destroys teams and relationships! It may seem counter intuitive, but on teams, you want to encourage corrective feedback. Relationships don’t breakdown because of the major differences. Sure, it can appear that way, but by the time major differences show up, there have been tons of little annoyances that never got talked about. It is those little things that went unspoken, and unaddressed, that will lead to the big chasm.

Relational Health is like Dental Health

In terms of your teeth, you need to take preventive measures, like getting your teeth regularly cleaned and checked. Also, you can’t just eat sweets otherwise the results are cavities and major dental problems. The same is true for Relational Health. You can’t just ignore problems and just survive on the sweet stuff. It will create relational dysfunction and team breakdowns.


98 406

Back to Thumper’s and the real message I want you to take away: If you don’t have anything nice to say, it is probably because you have needed to say something - not so nice - for a long time.

It happens again. Still, it’s no big deal. You shake it off. You did get the message, and even though there was no number attached, you have an address book, so you can make it work. Right?

Most people want the truth. They want honesty even when it stings. They especially want it from their teammates.

Then you notice other little details that Todd isn’t writing, like his expenses from his last trip, or the next steps he’s responsible for in closing a client. Plus, recently you did hear from a client that she was annoyed that you did not get back to her in a timely manner. Surprised and embarrassed, you become fairly certain that it was a call that Todd forgot to mention all together!

How about you? Wouldn’t you prefer to hear something you are doing that is unproductive from a friend and colleague rather than from a client, or worse, from the gossip mill? Most of us want people who care enough to give us the straight goods, so that, we are not caught off guard by someone else. We want our teammates to have our backs! Here’s the thing. When you don’t deal with the little things and clear them up, you wind up collecting other little bits of information that makes that unproductive issue bigger and bigger.

Let’s Talk About Todd

As an example, let’s say your business partner, Todd, isn’t great at getting all the details down from taking a call. However, you don’t say anything because you don’t want to make a big deal of it.

You see how it grows. Now, you have quite a case for Todd’s poor behavior! Just imagine how that conversation is going to go! Likely, you will be working to control your edge as you blurt out a laundry list of details that Todd has delinquently forgotten, blaming Todd for your clients being upset with you because of his poor behavior! Trust me, it won’t go well, nor will it be very helpful.

There is a Better Way

However, there is a better way. Imagine saying something when it happens, or shortly just after. I know radical, right?


That’s right! We encourage you to break Thumper’s Mother’s rule: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” “Todd, I am uncomfortable bringing this up, but I noticed the phone messages you pass on to me don’t seem to have all the details written down, and I think you may miss sharing some important details later when you pass them on to me. This doesn’t work well for me. I wonder if you have noticed that this has happened now a couple times?” Todd may get defensive. Todd may disagree. However, you are being honest and clear with him. Plus, this early in the process there you may still be able to hear Todd’s perspective, and even come up with a better system that works for both of you.

Accountable for Behaviors

Holding each other accountable on a team is important for creating great results. If a team doesn’t do it, they will dissolve into mediocre performance. Do you want that? I am guessing, no. When I say “accountability,” I don’t mean holding someone accountable for deliverables, which we are pretty comfortable doing. “Todd, you were suppose to get that report to me on Monday. It’s Wednesday. Where is it?” I mean holding your team members accountable for behaviors, unproductive ones. Unproductive behaviors are precursors to unproductive results and unproductive teams! Teams that master giving and receiving regular direct honest feedback are rare and frankly the highest performing! Don’t let your team or your teammates down by not speaking up early, even when it’s hard. Wouldn’t you want to know if what you were doing might be causing problems! And wouldn’t you want to hear it first from someone who cares! Susan Clarke is a coach and consultant, at thrive! inc., who works with partnerships and business teams that are in conflict, and helps them become cohesive, aligned, and producing great business results. Known for her no-nonsense, straight-shooter style, Susan is committed to helping her clients create the most from their businesses and lives. Contact her at


406  99


Small Business

Estate Planning

for the Small Business Owner By Kelly O’Brien, Attorney at Law

With the holiday season in full swing, many small business owners barely have time to stop to catch their breath, much less think about their estate plans. However as the year winds down and a new one begins it is an excellent opportunity for a small business owner to take some time to review estate planning goals. Why is estate planning important to small business owners? More than likely, if you own a business a large part of your personal wealth is tied to that business. Without a plan you lose the ability to manage the transition of your business, and your wealth. Estate planning enables you to be in control of what happens to your business interest upon your death or incapacity, rather than leaving it to state law, family members, your partners, or even creditors. Review Your Will or Trust to Ensure it Addresses Your Business Ownership Interests

If you already have a will or trust in place, review it to make sure it addresses your intentions for your business interests upon your death or incapacity. This may include a specific provision in your will that passes your business interest to your spouse, or other family members, or a specific acknowledgement of your business ownership interests and a statement your intent that your family honor the terms of an existing operating agreement.


100 406

If your existing estate plan is silent as to your specific business interests, more than likely that means that your business ownership interests will pass with the remainder of your estate. While you may wish that your family receive your business ownership interests, it is important to specifically address how your heirs or family members may, or may not, be involved with your business and its operations. If You Do Not Already Have an Estate Plan in Place, Make it a Goal for the New Year

Again, estate planning allows you to be in control of the distribution of your business interests, rather than leaving it to state law, or in the hands of your family members, business partners, or other third parties. Estate planning for business owners includes the traditional estate planning tools, such as wills and trusts, as well as internal business planning documents. At a minimum, your estate plan should include a Last Will and Testament and/or a Re-

vocable Living Trust, as well as Power of Attorney documents for financial and health care decisions, and an operating agreement for the business. Discuss your business transition goals with an estate planning attorney to ensure that your estate plan reflects intent for your business and your family. Review or Create an Operating Agreement

If you own your business with another partner, or partners, an operating agreement is an essential estate planning document for you, as an owner, and the business as a whole. (For discussion purposes the term “operating agreement” is used here to generally discuss internal documents for the operation of various business types, but a different term may be used for a different type of entity, such as shareholder agreement for a corporation.) An operating agreement is a contract between the owners, and the company that guides the operation and transfer of


Small Business

Discuss your business transition goals with an estate planning attorney to ensure that your estate plan reflects intent for your business and your family.

a business. In addition to estate planning issues, such as death or incapacity, the operating agreement can also address how to determine the value of the business upon a sale, how individual owners may join or withdrawal from the business, or how to handle a dispute between owners. While most individuals would prefer not to discuss the issue, planning for an unexpected death or incapacity of an owner or manager, an operating agreement will enable the business to carry on, even if an owner may no longer be able to manage the business. It is important that the members or owners of the business have a discussion as to the important points of the operating agreement. This ensures everyone is on the same page and has discussed these issues from a planning perspective rather than trying to figure out these issues in the event of a disagreement or other unknown circumstance. When discussing how to plan for an unexpected death or incapacity of an owner or manager with other owners or with your family consider the following: · Ownership Transition and Buy-out: Do you want the business to buy-out the heirs or family? · Control & Management: If the business does

not buy-out the heirs, does it want those heirs to have an active role in managing the day-to-day operations of the business? Or any amount of voting power?

· Financing: What resources are available upon

death? If the plan is to buy-out the heirs or family members, how will it be financed? Some options may include installment payments, life insurance, or the creation of a separate fund.

· Price: How do you establish a price to buy out? Price can often be calculated as book value, multiple of annual earnings, by appraisal, or otherwise by agreement of all owners.

These are only a few of the discussion points to consider when creating an operating agreement. A business attorney can advise you on options for your particular business and assist you in drafting an operating agreement that meets you needs.

Create a Separate Entity

If you are a solo proprietor, or a general partnership, the beginning of a new year is the perfect time to start thinking about setting up a separate business entity such as a Limited Liability Company (“LLC”) or corporation. LLCs and corporations protect personal liability by placing liability on a separate entity rather the business owners as individuals. Moreover, an entity that is separate from the individual owner(s), survives the death of an owner, which makes it easier for your business interests to be distributed to your family without the need for probate. The decision about the legal structure of your business will impact your personal liability, ownership rights, and business operations. Making the right decision about the legal and corporate structure of your business is critical to your longterm success, so discuss your options with a business attorney to determine what is right for your specific business. Communication is Essential to Successful Estate Planning for your Business

The most critical component of successful estate planning for a small business is communication. Talk to your partners, family members, tax and legal advisors to ensure that your intentions can be met and to facilitate a smooth transition for your business. Estate planning for a business owner does not need to be complex or lengthy, but it needs to be discussed and completed. Communication with those involved, along with some basic planning will enable your family, and business to carry on in the event of an unforeseen circumstance. Don’t wait for the unexpected to happen and then to try figure out what to do next. Take some time to create an estate plan that addresses your business interests and keep the control of your business in your own hands. If you have additional business or estate planning questions contact Kelly O’Brien, Measure, Sampsel, Sullivan & O’Brien, P.C. at (406) 752-6373/


406  101



TIPS FOR REBRANDING YOUR BUSINESS IN 2015 Your business is absolutely going to kill it in 2015, right? It’s a new year, all shiny with potential. This is going to be your year. At my business, this is the busiest time of the year. Lots of business owners want to rebrand. Rebranding is a business strategy in which new life is breathed into your existing business—this could include the creation (or addition) of a new name, tagline, logo, color scheme, or combination of those in order to up your game in the eyes of consumers, competitors, and investors. Basically, it’s a way to give your business a fresh, exciting update. Here are some tips on how to rebrand:

By Lisa Slagle


102406 406 102

design} 1. Figure out why you want to rebrand.

Why do you want to change the look and feel of your business? Is it outdated? Are you bored with it? Are your customers bored with it? Does the competition outshine your current look and you need something more powerful? There could be a lot of reasons you’d like to rebrand, but really focus in on the key reason that you’re ready for an update.

WheelieCreative A design & creative studio

2. Aim the rebrand at what makes your company special

Why is your company awesome? What makes you unique, special, and effective? Aim your rebrand at your company’s strengths, and list specific goals for the rebrand. This will require research, and you might need to take a step back and ask your customers and business allies what they appreciate most about your business. Revise your mission statement, and make sure it includes what makes your business unique.

3. Slap your new logo on everything.

Now that you have new wording and positioning in place, it’s time to start rocking some new visuals that represent your new identity. This could be new colors, a new logo, all new marketing collateral, etc. Make these choices mindfully. You want to put this new logo on everything—don’t let that old logo hang around, lurking in the shadows. It will confuse your customers. Your customers can handle change, and consistency is key to strengthening your brand and helping your customers understand the transition. Make sure your new visuals are consistent on everything from your website to your business card, employee uniforms, and to the sign outside your shop. This is also a perfect time to write a new marketing plan for the year.

4 Communicate the rebrand to your employees and stakeholders. What has changed and why?

This is sometimes overlooked, but it’s important. Be sure to tell your crew why you decided to rebrand and why it’s a good thing. Make sure they understand the updated mission statement and company culture. Make sure they know what, if anything, changes in their job and why. Your employees are a huge part of your overall brand, so make sure they are on the same page with you and know the what’s and why’s of the rebrand.

5. Party!

Launch the rebrand! This is a perfect opportunity to reconnect with your customers. Throw some sort of re-opening event for your customers, and use your stakeholders as brand ambassadors. Make the event as fun and exciting as your shiny new brand, and then go get it! 2015 is yours! Thinking about rebranding your business? Set up a free consultation appointment with Wheelie Creative, at 406-862-1440 or stop by the office at 144 E. 2nd Street, #302 Whitefish, MT 59937.


406  103

144 2nd Street E. #302 Whitefish, MT 59937 (406)862-1440


Ask the Skin Coach

Is Accutane Safe? ®

By Erin Blair, Licensed Esthetician + Certified Health Coach


I’m considering taking Accutane® for my acne. I feel like it’s my only option at this point, and I’d like to know your thoughts about it. I’ve heard some pretty scary things about the side effects.


I’m glad you asked, because this is an incredibly serious step to take, and one that I feel is often taken too lightly. Accutane® was actually taken off the US market in 2009, after juries had awarded many millions of dollars in damages to injured drug users suffering from Inflammatory Bowel Disease. However, the generic forms of isotretinoin are still available and frequently prescribed today, and are commonly referred to as ‘Accutane®’.

A last resort?

Derived from vitamin A, the drug was intended to be used as a last resort for those suffering from severe cystic acne. Unfortunately, it is readily prescribed for much, much milder cases on a regular basis. Due to the potential severity of side effects, it’s supposed to be taken only when other treatment methods have been exhausted. These typically include benzoyl peroxide, Retin A, and topical and systemic antibiotic therapy…more on this in a moment. Some of the potential side effects (like dry cracking lips and night blindness) can be short-lived, usually resolving when the medication is stopped. Others can be chronic. While it’s true that many people do not experience serious or long term side effects, others have


104 406

had debilitating health issues arise from the drug. It’s a lot like playing Russian Roulette.

Some (not all) possible side effects of Accutane®

In 2005, the FDA posted an alert stating that all Accutane® patients should be closely watched for serious psychological symptoms, including depression, suicidal tendencies, loss of social interaction, short tempers and psychosis.

Other serious potential side effects to consider:

Irritable Bowel Disease including Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis Central nervous system damage Pancreatitis Liver damage Bone deformities Immune system disorders Birth defects when taking even a small amount while pregnant It’s worth considering that low doses of isotretinion carry considerably less risk of side effects, but are also considerably less effective in reducing acne.

But is it REALLY necessary? I can see where in some cases, very rarely, this might just be the best option and worth the risks. However, there are a few things I’ve noticed in my practice that I’d like you to consider before you pull the trigger, so to speak. First, many clients of mine (and you’ll find this if you read through online forums as well) have to take multiple rounds of the drug. Notice I said they’re clients of mine. Which means…they still suffer from acne. It is not a cure! The common thread I see in clients who’ve taken Accutane®, in addition to still suffering from acne, is that they also often suffer from digestive issues, Rosacea, and keloid or hypertrophic scarring. Some have confirmed experiencing thoughts of suicide or having attempted suicide while taking the drug.

Second, pretty much everyone I see for acne feels that they’ve ‘exhausted all other options’. (Remember my list above? Before Accutane® is supposed to be considered, an acne sufferer should have tried everything else first, including topicals and antibiotics). Here’s the kicker. They’ve tried all that, and when they follow my program, they get clear.


Ask the Skin Coach

So Accutane® is not the only other option? So…Accutane® is NOT the only other option. My program consists of carefully monitored topical products used in a particular way (nothing too fancy, but the right products used the right way) as well as coaching around some lifestyle tweaks. It actually works best for severe, inflamed acne! Most of my clients, once clear, are astonished that they came so close to taking a very serious drug, when it truly was NOT necessary after all.

Lastly, clients have reported to me that even when they only had a few, non-cystic pimples, Accutane® had been suggested by their medical practitioner. Of course I believe there are many, very conscientious doctors who do not take this medication lightly. But I’ve heard this more than once, from more than one client. So I will encourage you to do the research for yourself. Be an educated healthcare consumer! Read the drug package insert. Read the FDA warnings. Ask local Pharmacists for their opinion. Online forums will give you a sense of people’s experience with Accutane®, albeit with lots of bad advice mixed in. Google it.

When you’ve got questions about a medication or treatment, it’s reasonable to expect your physician to take your concerns seriously and answer thoroughly. Ultimately, your health care IS up to you.

And…look at my before and after photos. Read the comments there. These people were brave and kind enough to share their personal experience, in order to help others understand their options. After all this, if you decide to go through with a round of isotretinoin therapy, you will feel confident knowing you did your due diligence. You’ll be making a conscious, educated choice. It’s a much better position than to be left thinking, ‘I wish I had known I had an option’.

Erin Blair, Licensed Esthetician and Certified Health Coach, is the owner of Skin Therapy Studio, a place for total skin wellness. She takes a ‘whole person’ approach to difficult skin concerns. Visit for more information, or to submit questions for Ask the Skin Coach.


406  105




By Dr. Thomas A. deHoop, Kalispell OB/GYN

Q: I am 36 weeks pregnant and my doctor recommended that I get the flu vaccine as well as the vaccine for pertussis (Tdap). I remember the recommendation of the flu vaccine with my previous child, but not the Tdap. Why are these vaccines important in pregnancy?

A: This is a very important question and also timely as we are about to enter the peak season for flu, which can last from October to May but peaks in December to February. While everybody is at risk of contracting the respiratory virus, certain groups are more susceptible to the severe illnesses associated with flu, such as pneumonia. Pregnant women belong to that high-risk group which also includes infants and young children, the elderly and those with certain health conditions. While many may have the typical symptoms of fever, chills, sore throat, muscle aches and fatigue, the death-rate from the flu and associated pneumonia has ranged from 3,000 to 48,000 in the US over the past 30 years. The flu virus mutates into several new strains each year, requiring a new vaccination each year to the most common strains determined to affect the US. Pregnant women should only be vaccinated with the inactivated vaccine which is given as an injection; the nasal vaccine should not be used during pregnancy. Vaccines without the preservative thimerosol are available, although multiple studies of thousands of women vaccinated with vaccines containing small amounts of thimerosol have demonstrated its safety. Vaccination of expectant mothers not only offers them protection, but studies have shown that infants whose mothers have been immunized have demonstrated fewer laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza as well as fewer cases of respiratory illness with fever. If the mother is immunized, an infant still in the womb can acquire pro-


106 406

tective antibodies from her in a process called passive immunity. This is the best prevention strategy since newborns are unable to receive the vaccination until 6 months of age. Vaccination for pertussis (with Tdap) in pregnancy is a newer recommendation. Pertussis or Whooping Cough is another respiratory virus that leads to prolonged coughing spells and can develop into pneumonia in infants and young children. Before the advent of a pertussis vaccine in the 1940s, it was a devastating illness with high infant mortality. Vaccinations were responsible for a decrease in the pertussis infection from about 250,000 cases in 1934 to just

over a 1,000 in 1976. Since 1976, there has been an increase in the incidence with over 41,000 cases reported in 2012. Infants and young children represent the population most at risk for severe complications from pertussis. The emphasis to protect newborns is based on the fact that almost 70% of them are hospitalized when infected and 1.6% of those infected die. Since newborns don’t start their series of vaccines until 2 months of age and aren’t likely to be protected for several more months, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) in 2006 recommended that anyone who could be in contact newborns be adequately vaccinated

against pertussis to reduce the risk of transmission. In the face of dramatic and persistent increases in the incidence of pertussis in the US, the CDC determined it was inadequate for the infant to rely solely on the immunity of those around them for pertussis protection in the critical first 2-3 months of life until they can be vaccinated. In February 2013, the CDC recommended that all pregnant women receive the Tdap vaccine regardless of prior vaccinations, in order to maximize the antibody response in the mother and provide immediate postpartum protection for the newborn after delivery. Passive immunity is optimal when the vaccine is given between 27 to 36 weeks pregnancy, but no less than a week before delivery. It can be given earlier if necessary, for example if a local outbreak exposes the mother earlier in her pregnancy.

As with the flu vaccine, there is no evidence of adverse effects on the child from vaccinating a pregnant woman. As with any vaccine, it should not be given if she has had a life-threatening allergic reaction to a vaccine or has a severe allergy to any part of the vaccine. Any woman who has a nervous system disorder, has ever had Guillain-Barre Syndrome or isn’t feeling well on the day the shot is to be administered, should talk to their doctor.


Finally, those coming into close contact with your baby should be up-to-date on their vaccines. This is especially true for the yearly influenza vaccine and the pertussis booster. If you are looking for more information, please visit or


406  107


You Only Live Once...So Smile by Dr. John F. Miller DDS

You only live once. More on this later. The Holidays have arrived! Tis the season of giving thanks and having good-cheer. If I may, I would like to express my gratitude to the wonderful citizens of Flathead County and wish you a very merry Christmas. Every day the new faces that appear in my office who have chosen to place their dental care in my hands humble me. My staff and I are truly thankful for the many relationships that we have made this past year, and I already know that 2015 is just going to be the best...I can feel it! (I say this about every New Year, and every year it’s true. Attitude is everything.) The phrase, “you only live once” has gained traction with the younger generation most often said as the acronym YOLO as an excuse to do something crazy, if maybe even stupid. This YOLO movement really resonated with me surprisingly, but not in the same context as everyone else. I thought to myself, I should do really smart things because I’m only going to live once. Instead of using it as an excuse I used it as motivation. In other words, this phrase can be used as justification for complete opposite scenarios. For instance, Johnny Fraternity might blow-off studying for finals for a party because he will only live once, when he should be hitting the books for the exact same reason: he will only live once. By all means Johnny, have a blast once finals are over because you earned it. Another individual


108 406

might "just put it on the credit card and I'll worry about paying it off later” because YOLO, when really they should wait until they can buy it outright and avoid paying interest because YOLO. Am I making sense Montana? Let’s flip the lid on this thing and let it inspire us to live our best lives. Let’s pay off a nagging debt. Let’s drink that green smoothie thingy. Let’s spend time with our children and not the T.V. Let’s take our spouses out on the town. Let’s call an old friend and send flowers to our mothers for no good reason. Let’s build that snowman. Let’s tell Dad that he is still our hero. Let’s volunteer and help those in need. Let’s brush, floss, and smile everyday. Let’s make pancakes every Saturday. Let’s create memories because we are only going to live once, and let’s make a positive impact. It should be obvious that in addition to being a Dentist, I also enjoy being a musician. I imagine that just to your right is a likeness of myself doing my best Eddie Van Halen impression. Yes, the younger John Miller wanted nothing more than to be a rockstar; and I was for a short time. In the early 2000’s I spent my days at Arizona State University earning my Biology degree in preparation for Dental School. I spent my nights performing with my band, most of whom were dear childhood friends, all over the Phoenix Metro area. We were doing everything right, we played only original songs, we had a manager, a booking agent, and a lawyer


This is my New Year’s call to action. Let’s make smarter decisions in 2015 that will allow us to look back a year from now from a position of greater health, being more financially secure, having achieved our goals and had our adventures, with stronger and more meaningful relationships, happier, wearing a big genuine Montana smile.

for pete’s sake. We were having the time of our lives and had secured some high profile weekly gigs including the Saturday night headliner at Hard Rock Cafe in downtown Phoenix. Then came the inevitable YOLO dilemma, I was informed that the band needed me full time for a small southwestern states tour. Initially I was beside myself with excitement, “a tour, no way!!” Now, I’m a math nerd and the son of an accountant so I can crunch the numbers, and it didn’t take long for the initial wave of excitement and invincibility to wear off being replaced by reality and my plan, which up to that point had been executed with military precision. I informed my good friends that I needed to continue my schooling efforts and could not commit to the tour at the expense of taking any time off from school. I could have just as easily explained that, “hey fellas, I’m only going to live once and I need to do this for myself and my wife.” I chose becoming a boring old dentist because it was the smartest decision. Now don’t feel bad for me, I still play in bands and still “get the rock out,” but nothing gets in the way of Plan A. This is my New Year’s call to action. Let’s make smarter decisions in 2015 that will allow us to look back a year from now from a position of greater health, being more financially secure, having achieved our goals and had our adventures, with stronger and more meaningful relationships, happier, wearing a big genuine Montana smile because we’re superstoked for 2016. See you out there!

health} Behavioral Health

Montana’s Mental Health By North Valley Hospital

In a stunningly beautiful place that offers seemingly limitless recreational opportunities, high levels of education, happy residents and even happier tourists, Montana is rarely thought of as having a dark side. Rarely do we talk about a troubling statistic that continues to plague Montana. This state consistently has one of the highest suicide rates nationwide. At nearly double the national average, this statistic is severely troubling. Despite the outward appearance that Montana has opportunity and happiness stacked in its favor, North Valley Hospital’s new medical director in its Behavioral Health Department, Dr. J. Douglas Muir, is working to help combat those staggering numbers and help those struggling with mental illness. Dr. Muir understands the varied reasons for why Montana has such high rates of suicide and a high percentage of people who suffer from mental illness. There is a significant negative stigma attached and a variety of skewed stereotypes and assumptions about mental illness and subsequent care. Often, mental illness isn’t considered a regular disease. There are also significant shortages in mental health providers (including psychiatrists and therapists) statewide.

anyone inside the child’s nucleus to gain more and a better insight to what the child is battling.

Earning his undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate residency and fellowships in Arkansas, he most recently professionally practiced in Cheyenne, Wyoming for three years before transferring to North Valley Hospital. He is board-certified in Psychiatry as well as Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and a member of the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

“Trust is key and if the children can let loose, play with toys and open up to me, that’s a win,” Dr. Muir says.

Tall and outdoorsy, Dr. Muir is clearly dedicated to his practice and aims to provide professional help to children through senior adults, with a focus on children and adolescence. He was led to North Valley Hospital in Whitefish, where he calls this a “dream job in a dream place.”

Dr. Muir knows his job is tough and the road ahead is daunting, but he is determined to help the under-served sector of people suffering from mental illness in this area. Most rural areas (as most of Montana qualifies as) are under-served in available psychiatrists and medical professionals equipped to handle mental illness, especially in children. “Kids are my passion and the earlier that there are interventions to address mental illness, the stronger likelihood there is for a better outcome,” Dr. Muir says. He practices and encourages a holistic and collaborative care approach. He often works with schools, teachers, caregivers, therapists and


110 406

“My practice is a multi-faceted approach. No one exists in a vacuum and it is important to look at the entire picture when evaluating and treating people. Solutions vary - sometimes medication may be appropriate, but in other instances it is not. I’m also a huge proponent of exercise. And what better place to practice than here.” he says.

His office is decorated with varying types of children toys that are hard not to notice, even for adults. Dr. Muir explains that the toys act as an immediate icebreaker for the child, which ideally is the gateway to building trust and a successful therapeutic alliance with the patient.

Parents of children perhaps struggling with a mental illness, or experiencing a difficult life-phase, may not feel comfortable with the idea that outside, professional help is needed. But he encourages parents to look past this. Children aren’t able to verbally express themselves as effectively as adults can and often find other ways to express themselves. Children can express their frustrations by acting out, showing aggression, increased irritability, a change and drop in school performance, or basically just not acting as their normal selves. All are possible indicators that mentally, the child is struggling.

It’s an important issue that North Valley Hospital recognizes and wants to supply the services to the significant and obvious need in this area. With an

already busy appointment schedule, Dr. Muir isn’t backing down to the challenge and is accepting new appointments. For more information visit or 406-862-1030.

Dr. J. Douglas Muir is board-certified in Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. He is the Medical Director at North Valley Hospital’s Behavioral Health and North Valley Embrace Health in Whitefish. North Valley Behavioral Health’s goal is to restore one’s mental health to an optimal level and to help alleviate any symptoms that may be affecting the quality of life, satisfaction and ability to function. For more information go to




Screening Can Save Your Life By Flathead Community Health Center

January is designated as Cervical Cancer Awareness Month. In the past, cervical cancer was one of the most common causes of cancer death for American women, but the increase in use of the Pap test has caused a significant decrease in cervical cancer death rates over the past 30 years.   Recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released some troubling new data regarding cervical cancer screening rates.  Despite evidence that screening saves lives, approximately 8 million women in the United States between the ages of 21 and 65 still have not been screened in the last five years.  This is a concerning fact considering more than half of all cervical cancer cases occur in women who have never or rarely been screened.    There are several risk factors that increase a woman’s chance of developing cervical cancer; however, women without any risk factors can still end up with cancer.  On the flip side, just because a woman has one or more risk factors, does not necessarily mean they are doomed.  Just a few of the risk factors for cervical cancer include:       HPV (human papilloma virus) infection       Tobacco use       Being overweight       Long-term use of oral contraceptives (birth control pills)       Family history of cervical cancer

A woman can lessen her cervical cancer risk by making healthy lifestyle choices and getting vaccinated for HPV. The vaccine for HPV is recommended for all girls (and boys, too) 11-12 years of age and for all females through age 26 if they did not get vaccinated earlier.     In Montana, no woman should go without recommended cancer screenings.  Programs such as the Montana Cancer Screening Program through the Flathead CityCounty Health Department offer free cervical cancer screenings (and treatment if cancer is detected) for age and income-eligible women.  Additional cancer screenings for breast and cervical cancer are also available for eligible men and women.   For more information regarding cervical cancer screenings or HPV vaccination, contact the Flathead City-County Health Department at 751-8101.


112 406



Montana Wild Wings Recovery Center Written by Kari Gabriel Wow, what a year this has been, and it’s not quite over! As we told you in our first article, Montana Wild Wings Recovery Center (MWWRC) was incorporated as a 501 (c) nonprofit organization in December of last year. This was fabulous news, as we can now offer generous donors a tax write off for their cash donations, and can also apply for grants and other forms of funding that require tax exempt status. We have had a very busy inaugural year, and we are showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. So far this year, we have admitted more than 80 live

Photo by Kathleen Reeder Wildlife Photography

raptors, and countless songbirds and waterfowl. The raptors admitted included 19 different species, and included several Bald Eagles, hawks, falcon and owls. As has been typical, we admitted more Great Horned Owls (17 total so far) and Red Tail Hawks (9 total so far) than the other species. It is also notable to mention that we admitted 8 Bald Eagles (including 3 chicks), as well as a Northern Harrier Hawk, and a Long-eared Owl, which we don’t often see here. We also recently admitted a Chinese Golden Red Pheasant that is absolutely beautiful! In these totals, we don’t include the raptors that have already died when we pick them up, so we have actually taken in even more than the 80 live birds. We recently picked up 6 dead Great Horned Owls in the same region of the Mission Valley with similar lesions (sores) in their mouths. It is too early to know the cause of their deaths at the time of this article, but we hope to have some answers soon. We were able to reach more than 5,220 school children and adults, in 85 education programs in our first 10 months! Our programs ranged from visits to elementary, middle and high schools, to


116 406

college classes, Audubon programs, service clubs, the Forestry Expo, Lone Pine Raptor Day, special events and more. We also did interviews with local and regional print and broadcast media, and reached even more people than we can measure. If you are interested in having us visit your classroom or special event, send us an email. We do ask for a $75 program donation to help feed our hard-working feathered ambassadors. We all donate our time and gas to MWWRC, and I personally logged more than 2,400 miles picking up injured birds, going to programs, and feeding our resident birds. Our other volunteers have also logged many miles on their personal vehicles. We thought you might like to hear a few highlights of our admitted birds this year…. On Valentine’s Day last year, we got a call from a man that found a hawk lying in the middle of the road, near the Silver Bullet Bar. He was driving when he found the hawk, and pulled over to give us a call. Doug MacCarter, one of our volunteers, went out to pick up the hawk and bring it back to our facility. He called to tell me it was a Rough-Legged Hawk (one of my favorites), and in

very bad shape, so I rushed out to see the bird. We were admiring her beautiful plumage and checking her over for wounds and fractures, and she was not moving at all…. She had suffered severe head and eye trauma, but no broken bones. We were just in the process of wrapping her up to put her in the freezer (thinking she had died), when I noticed the slightest movement in one of her eyes….. Holy Cow – she was alive! I brought her home and warmed her up, gave her some fluids, medication for brain swelling, and kept her in a dark, quiet and warm room for the next 12 hours. She was so weak she couldn’t even stand. We propped her up by rolling a towel into a “donut” so she would stay upright, and gave her some water. The next day I took her to Dr. Rebecca Jessup to take a look, and she prescribed an antibiotic and an eye ointment, for her severely swollen eye. Twice a day for the next few weeks, she was picked up and eye drops and ointment were applied to her bad eye, antibiotics were administered, and she was fed small portions of meat. She began responding after a couple of weeks to treatment, but her right eye was so badly damaged, that she eventually lost that eye. After six weeks of TLC, she improved



where she could stand up and eat on not realizing how bad the fracture was her own! until he got into surgery. We still weren’t sure how much she could see with her remaining eye, so we took her to Dr. David Cramer for an eye exam, and followed up several weeks later with Dr. Nick Chamberlain. Both determined that she had limited vision and a detached retina in her remaining eye, rendering her unable to hunt and non-releasable. We were able to acquire a federal permit to use her for educational purposes, so she has joined our other MWWRC education ambassadors in doing education programming. We named her, “Hawkeye,” and she has been wowing audiences since this summer. Another interesting story began on July 20th, when we got a call about a falcon that had been hit by a car out in the West Valley area. A family was driving home that evening, and found a male juvenile prairie falcon in the road with an obvious broken wing. We went out to pick up the bird, and had to chase it through a field (this happens more often than not!) before we could capture it. We took him in for x-rays the next day and confirmed that his wing was definitely broken. Dr. Jim Thompson, at Whitefish Animal Hospital, volunteered to do the tedious orthopedic procedure for us,

Dr. Thompson put 5 orthopedic pins into the falcon’s humerus, and attached an external fixator to hold them in place. The post-surgery treatment plan included twice daily applications of an ointment to the suture site, and twice daily doses of an antibiotic. After two weeks of rest for the bones to heal, we began range of motion physical therapy and laser therapy, three times per week while under anesthesia. After a couple more weeks, we began snipping and taking the pins out, and continued with physical therapy. The bone healed, but not perfectly, and complications developed in the suture site, extending the healing and closing of the skin. Unfortunately, despite Dr. Thompson’s best efforts (3 appointments per week for 6 weeks, then weekly appointments for another month), the prairie falcon cannot be released. We have applied for a federal permit to use him for education programs as well. We’ve named him “Captain Jack,” as he looked like a little pirate with his feathered “gauchos” and bandage sling. He has a bright and vocal personality, and will be a fun bird to take to programs. We are very appreciative of Dr. Thompson and his incredible staff, for their time and excellent care in helping this bird.

Photo of Dr. Thompson with the prairie falcon by Kari Gabriel

MWWRC Volunteer Profile: Alex Moore

Photo of Alex & Homer, the Great Gray Owl by Sue Haugan.

Alex Moore, a native of Boston, Massachusetts, has been rehabbing wildlife since he moved to the Flathead Valley in 2011. Alex started with a very limited knowledge of wildlife rehab and is very thankful for the opportunities and knowledge he has acquired in the past three years, first with Wildlife Return and now with Montana Wild Wings Recovery Center. Reaffirming his desire to help injured wildlife, Alex has applied to veterinary school, and hopes to get accepted this fall, and specialize in wildlife medicine. Alex is very interested in the medical side of rehab, and currently works at Flathead Pet Emergency as a veterinary technician.  Alex and Dr. Dean Aldrich see the majority of the wild birds admitted after hours

together many times after adventures gone wrong. He also enjoys going to concerts and sampling the amazing varieties of good beer that he has found since moving to Alex moved to Montana for a ski Montana. season, got hooked on the area, the culture, and the people (one Note: MWWRC is extremely grategirl in particular), and never left ful to Dr. Dean Aldrich and Flat(like no one has ever done that be- head Pet Emergency for helping us take care of our sick and injured birds fore!). In the summer, he spends of prey. They help us with exams, xhis free time mountain biking, rays and medical treatment for our backpacking, and swimming with critically ill patients when other clinhis amazing girlfriend Julie and ics are not open. Dr. Aldrich, along his dogs Plato, a Lab, and Hera, a with Dr. Dennis Dugger (Central German Shepherd.  In the winter, Valley Animal Hospital), Dr. Mark he spends almost every free min- Lawson (Glacier Animal Hospital), ute skiing, much to the dismay of Dr. Jim Thompson (Whitefish Anihis dogs, who are sadly left to en- mal Hospital), Dr. Scott Smiley & Dr. Rebecca Jessup (Smiley Veteritertain themselves.  His girlfriend nary Services) all donate their time, Julie is a very skilled massage staff, medical care and supplies to help therapist and has put Alex back MWWRC’s birds! and on weekends, and they are very supportive of MWWRC. Alex also created and maintains the MWWRC website.


406  117

406 Woman Vol. 7 No. 4  

406 Woman Vol. 7 No. 4

406 Woman Vol. 7 No. 4  

406 Woman Vol. 7 No. 4