Page 1

406 w o m a n

Featured 10. Tina’s Wildlife Art


14. The Wasp and the Raven The Snowy Mountain Sisters

34. A Living Miracle Dr. Kim Stimpson


36. Acupuncture from Fertility through your Pregnancy

20. Omkara Apothecary & Tea Room Michelle Berry 24. I Want Her Job Jenna Goudreau

42. Wild & Free Love Yoga

28. Ridgeline Innovations Dean Hadley

44. You’ve Got this Mama Breastfeeding

30. Lessons in Wellness from a Horse Emily Swisher, LCPC

48. Knock on Wood Dr. John F. Miller

32. Introducing Dr. Brian Howe



10 406

38. Preparing for a Safe Return to School



Nonprofit 46. Child Bridge Kintsugi and Foster Care


View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

w w w . 4 0 6 W o m a n . c o m Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com Copyright©2020 Skirts Publishing



oman.com  11


Tina’s Wildlife

Art By Mary Wallace Photos by Amanda Wilson

Mother Nature literally grabbed Tina Millisavljevich by the foot one day and it was the beginning of a whole new journey in her art career. She was walking along the shore of Flathead Lake and she randomly stumbled over a piece of gnarled wood that was sticking up out of the sand. Once she recovered her balance, something about the wood drew her eye, and Tina was compelled to dig it up. When she finished wiping off the wet sand, the driftwood revealed itself as the profile of a horse’s head. It sparked Tina’s imagination with thoughts of a horse galloping on the shore of the lake against the backdrop of a stormy sky, its mane tousled by the wind.

Photo by Alisia Dawn Photography

She brought the piece of driftwood back to her family gathering where she could tell the general thought was, “what is she possibly going to do with that?” She didn’t share her vision, but over the next

several weeks, she made numerous trips back to the lake seeking more pieces, and gradually. . . painstakingly, her driftwood horse to life. Once the wood part of the sculpture was complete, she was inspired to add some shine and embellishments, mainly using pieces of 1950’s and 1960’s vintage cars. Rain Maker finally did her original vision justice, and her family was pleasantly surprised at the result.

When Tina was 12, he decided he wanted to build a helicopter! And he did exactly that, on the front lawn in front of their garage while the neighborhood kids looked on. In Tina’s eyes, he was the coolest dad in the world! He spent hours with Tina and her brothers, teaching them many things, from upholstering cars together to building furniture.

Tina credits most of her artistic influence to her father. A very simple man, he shared with his children his appreciation for God and His creation. Her dad could build and design anything (literally anything) with his crude tools and good old ingenuity.

Once, while working as a telephone installer, she began drawing on the wall in the phone room. The owner of the company came by and saw what she’d done. “Oh boy, now I’m in trouble,” she thought. To her surprise, he asked if she would create logos for his company. This in turn led to art shows, and now unexpectedly, to her current pursuit of wildlife art.

Originally from southwestern Rocky Mountains near Crested Butte, Colorado, Tina and her family jumped at the chance to move to Montana when an opportunity presented itself. They have enjoyed living here for almost 20 years.


12 406


Tina’s father always encouraged his kids to be creative, to think outside the box. “Work with your hands and be a self-starter.” This advice stuck with Tina and each of her siblings, as they have all found their way in various aspects of the creative art field. Their mother, the practical one, encouraged them to acquire skills that they could fall back on when the art pursuit was thin. Tina tried. Honestly, she really did try numerous forms of employment, but always found herself stifled, bored, and unchallenged.


Tina Millisavljevich

“Don’t think too much of yourself, have fun with what you do. Believe and challenge yourself to grow. Be prepared to ride the peaks and valleys that go along with the life of an artist. And be open to suggestions whether they are positive or negative.”

“The reason why I make sculptures is that I enjoy a good challenge,” says Tina. “I love the concept process. It begins when I find a beautiful and unique piece of wood, which gets the creative juices rolling. The challenge is on!” When looking at an animal, Tina is thinking of the anatomy and the muscle structure. She tries to visualize, in the back of her mind, how each piece should look and move, to picture where each piece of driftwood and metal should be placed so that it will complement each wildlife design…much like a puzzle. Then when the build begins, it all just seems to naturally flow out, mainly because the mental steps she has already worked through. Throughout the entire engineering and building process, Tina says she is continually learning something new along the way. As daunting as it may seem, Tina adds that getting her feet wet and trying to go ahead with each idea she has rewards her with so many positives, and she always ends up learning something about herself that builds the confidence she was originally lacking. It is almost as if each sculpture aligns with her life, like a stepping-stone to the next goal or accomplishment. “Not only does the creation process keep me inspired, it also keeps me amused and definitely amazed!”

Would she do anything differently? “Hmmm… Perhaps I would get a donkey to help haul the driftwood. Or better yet a gorilla!” It is no surprise that one of the biggest challenges in her wildlife sculptures is finding the perfect materials, which are mostly found in nature. She is always on the hunt for the perfect shapes and pieces needed for each project, but it is the gathering and lugging all that wood long distances back to her vehicle and eventually to the studio that takes a toll physically and mentally.

they are about to fly, and Tina’s advice is to ride the wave of negative doubts and give it one more try. Most important, keeping a modest viewpoint of yourself is a very necessary ingredient to staying grounded and enjoying your work. Laugh often (mostly at yourself), take note and enjoy the simple things around you.

The advice from family and fellow artists that she has treasured the most is “Don’t think too much of yourself, have fun with what you do. Believe and challenge yourself to grow. Be prepared to ride the peaks and valleys that go along with the life of an artist. And be open to suggestions whether they are positive or negative.”

The sculpture she is most proud of is of a large moose called Montana’s Calling. That sculpture just flowed and wanted to be made. He was only in the Idol Gallery for a few days and then he was gone.

There have been some times when she felt like she hit a plateau and couldn’t budge one way or the other; she even considered the possibility of stopping. The best advice she can give is that it just takes time. So many businesses fail just before

Tina’s artwork can be found on her website at www.tinaswildlifeart.net and at Dick Idol Gallery in Whitefish.

What inspires Tina is the kind people and friends she’s had the privilege to meet along the way. They have made her life very rich indeed, and they help her to stay positive. She couldn’t be more grateful to the wonderful folks at Dick Idol Gallery, for giving her an outlet for her work. At the end of each and every day, she thinks to herself that she has so much to be thankful for!

In Tina’s day to day life, family always comes first, and she tries very hard to balance her work around her family. “Without a doubt (and with the help of my husband), I am so very proud of my children and of the wonderful people they have become.”

True success is based on proper values, kindness, positivity and especially on encouraging those around you. Success is knowing the joy of working with your own hands, knowing that what was produced through your heart and your efforts has made someone happy.

Her current sculpture, Running Thunder, is a very large buffalo. “I’ve never made something so massive before. It’s been quite the challenge!”



oman.com  13


The Wasp and The Raven

The Snowy Mountain Sisters Roots in Montana’s Theater w

By Sydney Munteanu, Back Label Branding Photos by Elizabeth Van Os

16 406


Brittany answered my phone call somewhere midway to Ohio, and immediately I knew she would be a joy to speak to. Her voice bright and cheerful even amidst a 30-hour drive ahead. Both Brittany and her sister Kendra Jo Brook were on the road to New York, heading back to the city where they live after spending the summer months at their family’s home in Montana. When the city started shutting down in the wake of our COVID pandemic and they realized all foreseeable performances would be canceled, they figured, might as well head back West. The silver lining of being able to recharge, reconnect with their family, and their roots in folk music. They are the Snowy Mountain Sisters, after all! Brittany and Kendra Jo Brook grew up in a 200-person town in Central Montana, Judith Gap, in a family that celebrated art and music.

Nearly every gathering consists of playing music together. Brittany reflects, laughing, “Even last night we were up late playing. Everyone just kept picking up instruments and dropping in!” The Brook sisters grew up playing folk music and still focus on that genre within their all-female collective of musicians. “We created the band when we moved to New York to promote more opportunities for female musicians in the city, with an intention to collaborate in an environment of inclusion,” Brittany explains. “We still play a lot of folk music because of the fact that it is so collaborative. It’s simple in a beautiful way in that it’s easy for anyone to drop in and be able to play along and improvise.” While the sisters are both talented musicians, their knack for performance started at the local theater they grew up being a part of outside Hobson, Montana. Eventually, they also found their way to the Bigfork Summer Playhouse in the Flathead. Acting, in fact, has remained a constant differentiator and


Snowy Mountain Sisters

It’s been a full year since they began the play, now named The Wasp and the Raven, and it’s planned to be released by the end of 2021. “It’s about Montana and sisterhood and music, particularly folk music,” Brittany says. “It’s kind of our love letter to the place we grew up in, and to the music we grew up playing. truly a key to the careers they’ve built in the high-caliber performance world of New York City. The Brook sisters are sought after around the world as “Actor-Musicians” as they describe themselves. They’ve found their niche by combining those two disciplines. “Both Brittany and I have our degrees in theater. I moved to New York eight years ago and Brittany moved seven years ago. We thought we would try making a career of doing straight theater or figured we’d perhaps just utilize our instruments on the side in musicals, which we did at first. And then we gradually fell into this actor-musician niche. Everything from being hired as an actor whose character plays an instrument in the storyline to full-blown musicals like Oklahoma,” Kendra Jo explains.

Actor-musicians indeed. While the Brook sisters have progressed their careers from playing local gigs in city to creating a sisterhood bluegrass band that (typically) performs weekly, they are very passionate about supporting their musical theater community. One way they feel they can do that is to lead by example. Currently, the Brooks are in the process of writing their own musical play, a project they’ve been working on for the past year that will coincide with the release of a new album in early 2021.

“It’s kind of crazy. We took a workshop with this teacher from London, Jeremy Harrison. He's a wonderful actor-musician who did a lot of Off-Broadway as well as the West End for several years. Needless to say, we admired him for his work in our field and knew he taught this workshop focused on changing the way our field looks. We loved his methodology and his spirit so much that right after the workshop we started writing a play. Kendra Jo told Jeremy that we started writing and the next thing we knew he called and invited us to come to London to work in his classroom to develop the play!” Brittany explains. “So last Fall, that’s what we did. Kendra Jo and I and two of our Snowy Mountain Sisters, we all flew out. We spent a week in his classroom completely focused on developing it. That’s where it all started.” It’s been a full year since they began the play, now named The Wasp and the Raven, and it’s planned to be released by the end of 2021. “It’s about Montana and sisterhood and music, particularly folk music,” Brittany says. “It’s kind of our love letter to the place we grew up in, and to the music we grew up playing. Many of the stories inside are inspired by real events and our own experiences growing up in Montana and always finding our way back home.”



oman.com  17



18 406


Snowy Mountain Sisters

While the world of theater and the performing arts remains unknown, (the Brook’s original plan was to preview The Wasp and The Raven at festivals this year), they still remain hopeful and creative in the ways they can promote the project. They explained, “We spent most of last year doing writers workshops, submitting for festivals, and applying for writing grants. And then, you know, COVID hit. All of a sudden, the festivals we were looking at to debut just shut down. But we just didn't want to stop working on it. So, we thought, let's keep it virtual.”

Another friend, Nyssa Grant, has helped us with the grant writing and the application processes. The support we’ve gotten from our community, it's been amazing. We’ve had all these beautiful women coming to us saying they want to be a part of the project. We can still work with our friends and stay connected because of it.”

The Brooks have decided to first release a concept album for The Wasp and The Raven and eventually, they plan to host virtual concerts as well. Delightedly, they explain, the album has served as a way to remain connected with their musical peers through a time where concerts are off-the-radar. “The banjo player in our band [Snowy Mountain Sisters], Hilary Hawke, has taken the role of music orchestrator for the play. She’s helping us write out the music and really defining who plays what and when. And our friend, Annette Navarro, she's running social media for us and she’s designed the website.

To listen to The Snowy Mountain Sisters, get updates on their upcoming album and debut play, visit them on Instagram @snowymountainsisters.

As they settle back into a city that feels markedly different, not knowing when they may be able to play a live set again. This project, a musical play about their homage to Montana, gives them tremendous hope as an anchor of how far they’ve come. And of course, The Snowy Mountain Sisters plan to play (virtually) and keep the music going in any way they can.

Kendra Jo Brook can be found at: @kendra_brook Kendrajobrook.com Brittany Brook: @brittanybrook_guitargirl Brittanybrook.com


Omkara Apothecary &Tea Room

Michelle Berry By Kristen Hamilton Photos by Alisia Dawn Photography

So many people that are blessed with growing up in the Flathead Valley, have a similar MO. Embrace and support those around you in business and utilize what nature has blessed us with. Michelle Berry, owner of Omkara Apothecary and Tea Room, is no exception.

Berry stocks a thoughtfully curated selection of bulk teas, herbs, superfoods, adaptogens & medicinal mushrooms, nutraceutical supplements, herbal tinctures & pure essential oils. Conscious body care & beauty products and tools for sacred living. There is even a tincture remedy bar for personalized medicine.  When choosing her products, she looks for sustainably and consciously sourced goods.  In particular other small businesses with a high percentage of woman as owners and employees.

Berry’s interest in the health and wellness industry started in 2009 after experiencing the effects of how diet affected autistic children that she worked with and her own family members being diagnosed with cancer. She says, “I knew that there was something better that we could be doing.” This lead Berry on a journey of seeing how the food we eat, our lifestyle and the quality of our thoughts affect our physical, mental and emotional health. 


22 406



Michelle Berry

“I am dedicated to connecting people to the power of plants. I have been juicing for over 10 years in Whitefish and I’m passionate about juice, herbal remedies, and whole plant beauty products.” After earning a degree in Social Sciences from Washington State University, Berry continued her education with experts in alternate fields such as spiritual nutrition & conscious eating, Ayurveda, yoga, and herbalism.

   She officially established Omkara Apothecary in 2016 to address the growing movement of conscious consumption and contemporary herbalism that is underway.  Berry said “I am dedicated to connecting people to the power of plants. I have been juicing for over 10 years in Whitefish and I’m passionate about juice, herbal remedies, and whole plant beauty products.” She continued, “Omkara celebrates artisanship, sustainability, and conscious living. Looking to support the global need to increase plant diversity, and the sharing of ancient wisdom from indigenous cultures from around the world.”   Berry’s mission is to build awareness around the impact of purchasing decisions on our planet and our bodies. The business supports holistic health practices while caring for the world we live in.  They aim to educate others on what it means to create a lifestyle around wellness that is environmentally and ethically responsible.

Berry added, “We believe strongly in the power of organic and wildcrafted plant medicine, juice, teas, tinctures, food-based supplements and conscious body care. We are what we eat, therefore what we eat should be of the highest quality; free of chemicals, local when possible and organic. Buying quality ingredients supports a sustainable and healthy food system. We want everyone to benefit from a healthy body, mind + spirit.”

Local partnerships and conscious producers are really important to Berry. Omkara supports hardworking organic farmers, coffee rosters and people who create compost and recycling solutions. She concluded by saying, “We work with some amazing people!”

What’s Berry’s favorite part of her business?

“Playing with plants and connecting people to the power of plant medicine.” She has seen treatments reduce the effects of stress on the body, induce sleep, soothe digestive issues, treat colds naturally, increase energy, and so much more.

She smiles when a client tells her they are uplifted by integrating self-care practices into their life either through products in the shop or through a personal consultation.

When she’s not helping customers, Berry loves spending time with her family. She has four beautiful daughters, ranging in ages from two to 21. One who is Miss Teen Whitefish and an advocate for teen mental health. Her husband is a local musician who performs with the New Wave Time Trippers and teaches lessons to budding artists. She also enjoys meditating, reading, paddle boarding, camping, walking in the woods, and having tea parties with her younger daughter.

Berry has big dreams for the future and sees expansion in all ways. She said, “Creating and finding more conscious products in the shop to share as well as expanding the size and store offerings, including more personal consultations. It’s not about just selling products, it’s about showing people how to live in harmony with their inner and outer world." I for one am sold!

Omkara Apothecary & Tea Room 215 Central Ave, Suite D Whitefish, MT 59937 406-270-2496

www.OmkaraApothecary.com www.MichelleBerryBliss.com



oman.com  23


I Want Her Job

Jenna Goudreau

Vice President and Managing Editor, CNBC Digital By Brianne Perleberg This article originally appeared on IWantHerJob.com. Photo courtesy of CNBC

With bylines spanning articles about careers, leadership and women in business at Forbes, Business Insider and Entrepreneur, and now pieces that focus on helping you improve your relationship with money, saving and investments at CNBC – you’ve likely read at least one article by Jenna Goudreau, if not dozens. As the vice president and managing editor for CNBC Digital, she oversees Make It, the network’s website focused on helping you get smarter about how you earn, save and spend your money. It also happens to be the fastest-growing section of CNBC. She also serves in her dual-title role for CNBC Select and Grow, by Acorns and CNBC. Today, we flip the script on Jenna and ask her about how she got her start, her tips for hiring the best talent and why she feels it’s important you leave your desk more often every day.

What was your very first job ever, and what is a lesson you learned in this job? I got my first job at a movie theater in Jacksonville, Florida. I was 14, making $6 an hour at the coffee and cookie counter. It was an amazing summer job because I got to see free movies; however, I was not very good at it. I got about 20 minutes of training on my first day and never got the hang of making frothy coffee drinks. People frequently brought them back, but I didn’t want to admit to the managers that I needed more training. I’ve since learned that it’s always better to ask for help than to pretend to know something you don’t.


26 406


Once you graduated with your journalism degree, how did you kick off your career path? My first job after graduation was as an editorial assistant at Forbes. They’d recently launched a quarterly magazine for professional women called ForbesWoman. I did everything from writing stories and working with freelancers to helping launch the brand online. About a year in, I was promoted to reporter and folded into the main Forbes edit staff. From there I wrote career and leadership stories for Forbes.com, did business profiles for the magazine, and researched the rich and famous for its big annual lists.

What is your current job like? What do you spend the bulk of your time focusing on?

Make It launched a few years ago to help young people get smarter about how they earn, save and spend their money. It has quickly ramped to a staff of 30 writers, editors and video producers and now reaches many millions of people a month. Because we’re growing so quickly, most of my time is spent hiring, coaching and training the team, and guiding our coverage from a high level. I also spend a lot of time meeting with people internally and externally who are psyched about the brand’s success and want to contribute to it.

What do you attribute your continued success as a media professional to? Are there certain qualities that you feel helped you stand out in your career?

I’ve mostly focused on doing a great job wherever I am rather than thinking about my next

I approach new jobs and challenges with a growth mindset— meaning it’s not my job to have all the answers, it’s my job to find them. I’m constantly learning and iterating on success, and teaching my teams to do the same.


Jenna Goudreau

move. I deliver results and always do what I say I will do, which might sound boring but is important. I also approach new jobs and challenges with a growth mindset—meaning it’s not my job to have all the answers, it’s my job to find them. I’m constantly learning and iterating on success, and teaching my teams to do the same.

What is something surprising someone might not realize about your work?

I get a lot of free books! Publishers send multiple free books a day, so I have rows and rows in and around my office. I’ve taken to speed-reading many of them on the subway, and I get a lot of story ideas from books.

What are your tips for hiring the right team?

As we recruit, I like to get recommendations from people I trust and directly reach out to people whose work I admire. I look for people who are hardworking, enthusiastic and passionate about the subject matter. And when you’re building a team, it’s important not to hire the same person over and over. You want people with different backgrounds, perspectives and skills that complement each other.

What is a mistake you made starting out in your career? What did you learn from it that sticks with you today?

In the beginning of my career, I was laserfocused on the work and less focused on the people around me. I’ve since learned that business is about people, so you’re better at your job when you have strong relationships. Now I frequently tell people who work with me to get away from their desks more, to take people to coffee and not to skip the happy hours.

As someone who sees pitches constantly, what do you feel really makes a good pitch stand out? How can a job seeker apply this tactic to their search?

As an editor, I want to know what’s new, why it matters and what the “wow factor” is. I need to get excited about the idea and

want to learn more. The same goes for any job interview: You have to concisely pitch who you are, the value you can bring to the company, and why you’re special. Plus, you have to bring a lot of energy and enthusiasm to get them excited about hiring you.

What other advice do you have for job seekers?

Your internet and social media presence are now just as likely to be viewed by a hiring manager as your resume, so you really need to be thoughtful about what you post.

What do you see as some trends for the effect of technology on the future of work?

I think we’ll continue to see a bifurcation of the labor market, with high-paying tech and management jobs on one end and low-paying service jobs on the other. Robots and AI may improve the efficiency of companies—and probably our lives—but they will also likely eliminate lots of routine jobs. To succeed, I think your best bet is to have a great general education, continuously learn and adapt, have a global mindset and be prepared for change. You may have multiple careers in a lifetime or even create your own gig.

Any parting advice?

Be so good they can’t ignore you. Understand your strengths and lean into them. And remember the Golden Rule; treat other people the way you’d like to be treated.

Brianne Perleberg, a born-and-raised Montanan, is the founder of I Want Her Job, an award-winning website featuring curated career conversations with women changing the future of business. She also is the co-founder of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, a Top 100 Careers podcast on iTunes. You can follow @iwantherjob on Instagram.



oman.com  27


28 406



Ridgeline Innovations A Designer’s Secret to Creating “Uniqueness?” Reupholstery. By Sydney Munteanu Photos by Amanda Wilson Photography

Dean Hadley got into the furniture business a bit by accident. A builder by trade, Hadley started Ridgeline Innovations as a family business focused on finish work. But shortly after saying “yes” to a friend’s project reupholstering an old love seat, the stage was set for a business that has become the most comprehensive service provider of furniture restoration, repair, and upholstery in the state of Montana. Hadley went on to learn the more intricate details of furniture design and studied at a trade school on the East Coast. Ever since, the team at Ridgeline Innovations has been working on furniture customization and repair for the past 25 years and are considered experts in the region.

Another group they’re a go-to? Design experts. Interior designers love working with furniture specialists like Ridgeline Innovations because it gives them endless options to create unique statement pieces, or to customize a piece of furniture that isn’t available online. I spent some time visiting with Hadley and his showroom manager, Colleen Engel, browsing through the endless options of fabrics and cushioning, checking out the progress pieces in the back of their shop, and learning (surprisingly) how furniture upholstery can go way beyond simply updating the fabric on an heirloom couch! Here’s some tips you can steal from the designers to create a unique look on your own.

Customize your comfort.

From down feathers to antimicrobial foam, you get to choose the level of comfort and cushion you desire. Hadley’s tip: think about where and how the piece will be used. For example, a recent customer wanted upholstered seating for a built-in banquet that was to be used daily for lingering over a morning cup of coffee. He guided them to go with a sturdy-yet-plush foam so it would be comfortable enough to relax in for a couple hours.


30 406


Ridgeline Innovations will have you in great hands when you want to rehab an antique table or revitalize a sentimental statement piece. profile} Semi-customize a piece of NEW furniture.

Love the size and shape of a furniture piece but wish it came in a different color or fabric? Yes, you can totally reupholster a brand-new piece of furniture! (The designers do it all the time.) Ridgeline Innovations can also treat the fabric to be stain resistant for pieces that will be highly used.

Think beyond couches and chairs.

Headboards, bedframes, even upholstered walls? Hadley has seen and done it all. If you’re not able to reupholster an entire piece, then think about the option to create a few custom pillows in luxe fabrics. The leather bolster pillows, and fringe ottomans Engel showed me examples of would turn any seat into something truly unique! Of course, furniture specialists like Ridgeline Innovations will have you in great hands when you want to rehab an antique table or revitalize a sentimental statement piece. But instead, I hope this inspires you to think outside of the box to upcycle, custom-design, or uniquely create the furniture in your home. Ridgeline Innovations is located in Kalispell and open for walk-ins and appointments Monday – Friday. To get in touch and learn more visit ridgelineinno.com.

Ridgeline Innovations, Inc. 415 W Montana St Kalispell, MT 59901 (406) 756-2151 www.ridgelineinno.com



oman.com  31


Lessons in Wellness

from a Horse By Emily Swisher, LCPC Photos by Stephanie Hamilton with Currant Craft


32 406



Emily Swisher

Having been bit by the horse ‘bug’ early on, I was dismayed to learn there was no cure to this lifelong obsession. Working with a horse can help to embolden the timid and soften aggressors. Many of us that are drawn to animals love this juxtaposition of their traits; that something soft and gentle can also possess ferocity and strength. There is also strength in the vulnerability it takes to address our pain and misgivings as we work with a mental health professional. My work pairs psychotherapy with a setting providing its own knowledge and wisdom only to be extracted from experiencing it directly. Those of us who seek nature for its restorative qualities may look at our city-dwelling counterparts as if to be suffering from what I refer to as ‘Nature Deficit Disorder’. While I am only (half) joking, it can be critical to our well-being to find an environment personal to us where we can separate from the over arousal of our highly stimulated lives. For me, that environment has always been the barn.

With hay fields stretching out to the river’s edge and forests where the horses, turkeys, and deer retreat into the shade on hot summer days; I am living my ultimate horse-girl fantasy. The setting is just the cherry-on-top coupled with the support and knowledge that Katherine Licence and Sally Conrad of Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center offer me. I am continually awestruck by the course my life took, landing me in a position where I can share this idyllic environment with others as we work together to facilitate personal growth through the teachings of our four-legged herd.


We begin each session by placing our hands on the animals while grooming as a mindfulness strategy to regulate emotions and bring awareness to ourselves in the present moment. Horses are much more peaceful when they recognize their handler is aware of their surroundings, congruent with their intentions, and displays confidence. The lesson of transparency and vulnerability carries over into our own interpersonal relationships when we recognize how much more settled those around us are when we become congruent with our actions and intentions. Every activity strengthens our ability to be fully present and engaged while also mindfully

planning our next step. Much as in our daily lives, we cannot hold onto conflicts in the past if we are hoping to enjoy the present moment and plan for a future that leads to greater personal enrichment.


Working with horses can teach us a great deal of routine and perseverance as a necessary route to fulfillment. Each week, we build upon a routine skillset that allows the horse and participant to set a foundation of trust and familiarity. Once that rapport has been established, the client is able to excel in more advanced activities such as natural horsemanship groundwork and light riding. These milestones are much more gratifying as a marker of confidence and independence when we have learned each step, allowing the client a sense of mastery.


The ranch setting can also be humbling for our need to control our situation, as weather changes quickly, temperaments and health of the horses fluctuate, and sharing our environment with others. Considering what may be in best interest for those around us, may conflict with our initial priorities for our own needs and desires. Surrendering to elements beyond our control and allowing for flexibility reminds us to have grace for others and to practice gratitude when the elements do come together in our favor.


I have worked with individuals who have suffered in unimaginable ways, where the non-judgmental presence of an animal can work wonders in repair-

ing trust towards others. Whether I meet an individual in my office or at the ranch, I am always humbled by the stories I am privileged to and fostering support in another’s journey. Working alongside a client on a task, rather than sitting face-to-face can be a much less intimidating experience for younger clients or those hesitant to seek counseling.

Each day that I pull into the ranch, I feel myself let go of the agendas and obligations I weigh myself down with. Greeting the horses in the pasture before work cues me into the moods and behaviors of the horses, while also allowing me an opportunity to shift my mood as well. We are fortunate to live in an environment that is rich in sensory experiences. A simple mindfulness strategy I lead clients through on trail rides is to start by naming five objects they can see. This is an easy place to start if someone is experiencing high anxiety. From there, they list four things they can hear and three things they can touch. Each progression challenges us to slow down and pay attention to what is happening around us. Finally, we end by noting two things they can smell and one thing they can taste. With summer’s end in sight, I invite you to find a place in nature that is meaningful and pause to take in the beauty that surrounds us. Emily Swisher, LCPC 50 W 2nd St. in Whitefish www.emilyswishercounseling.com 406-200-9428

Two Bear Therapeutic Riding Center 1700 K M Ranch Road in Whitefish



oman.com  33


There’s a New Doc in Town Introducing

Dr. Brian Howe By Kristen Hamilton

Dr. Brian Howe recently opened Whitefish Spine and Sport Chiropractic as part of his journey to settle in the town that he was raised in and help people in the community. Howe spent his childhood traveling with his family as they followed his Dad, Steve Howe and his major league baseball career. He spent a lot of time in the Yankees locker room where he learned what it takes to be a word class athlete. Howe is excited to use what he knows to help local athletes reach their performance goals. Howe attended Montana State University – Billings on a college baseball scholarship. While there he earned his Bachelor of Science with a focus on Human Performance. Being a college level athlete, Howe suffered and rehabbed multiple injuries that led to his interest in the medical field and desire to help people improve their quality of life by conquering their own injuries and ailments.

Five years after he earned his B.S., he returned to school at the University of Western States in Portland, Oregon where he earned his Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) degree with magna cum laude honors.

When asked what he would you do differently if he had the chance? He said with a smile, “I would have gone straight to grad school after finishing my undergrad instead of taking five years off.”

base my treatments off of what has been shown to work in the medical and scientific community.”

But he followed the best advice he ever received from his Dad, “No matter how difficult something is, stick it out and finish what I started,” he relayed.

He’s confident that with the continued support of his friends and family his business will continue to grow.

With any new business there are challenges but add the COVID-19 pandemic in the mix and it makes things even more difficult. Howe admits the timing of his opening during the pandemic has been his biggest challenge with his business to date.

Early on, Howe worked in the service industry and he says, “It taught me how to communicate with people, especially when they were unhappy with a situation.”


34 406


In checking out Howe’s Facebook page (Whitefish-Spine-and-Sport Chiropractic) and subsequent positive patient reviews, you can see that he is on the right track for success. “Dr. Howe is the best! Very knowledgeable about sports injuries!” said patient Jono Klopcic.

Howe confirms this when he says, “I take an evidence informed approach to health care and

Howe is inspired by helping people improve their quality of life both physically and mentally. He said, “I’ve endured a lot of injuries with sports throughout my life and I know how challenging that can be both physically and mentally when you are constantly in pain. I love to see how people change when you help them get out of pain and back to doing the things they love.”

I asked how he will ultimately define success? He replied, “I define success with how I can positively impact the people that I come in contact with. I believe I still have a way to go until I am truly successful, but I am chipping away at it.”

Does he have any advice for someone thinking of starting their own business? “If it’s your passion, do it. Don’t let someone else’s doubts keep you from chasing your dreams.” Best of luck pursuing your dream Dr. Howe!

Whitefish Spine and Sport Chiropractic 903 Spokane Ave, Suite #2, Whitefish, MT 59937 406-730-2573 www.whitefishspineandsport.com



oman.com  35


A Living

Miracle Written by Allison Meilicke, MS, BSN, RN

Left - Dean Stimpson (Dr. Kim Stimpson’s son) with Dr. Kim Stimpson.

Dr. Kim Stimpson always tells his patients and friends, if you have chest pain, go to the ER. After arriving home on Wednesday, February 5, 2020, he informed his wife, Kelly, that they needed to go back to Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRH). He was experiencing chest pain. It was subtle, but it was there. The initial testing completed in the Emergency Department (ED) ruled out a heart attack, and gastrointestinal issues. Dr. Stimpson has no family history of heart disease, nor any lifestyle habits that put him at risk for heart disease. Still, Dr. Betsy Shilling believed it was prudent for him to have a cardiac catheterization to evaluate the patency of his coronary arteries. Instead of being discharged at midnight, he spent the night so he could continue more testing early the next morning. On Thursday morning, Dr. Stimpson had another cardiac enzyme test — and passed with flying colors. The next step was a visit to the cath lab. During a cardiac catheterization, a catheter is positioned in the coronary arteries and contrast is injected to observe for any blockages. There were no blockages. No stints were required. With no further chest pain and all the standard tests showing nothing to be concerned about, Dr. Stimpson thought he would be discharged home.

However, the heart team decided to do an ECHO ultrasound. Results of the ECHO showed an enlarged aorta. Normally the aorta should be 3-4 cm in diameter, and anything over 5 cm is cause for great concern—Dr. Stimpson’s measured 6.3 cm. It was obvious that he would need surgery, and a date sometime in the following week was discussed. At this point, things were developing rapidly. Ordering a CT angiogram was considered and there was discussion among the cardiologists about when to do it. Conducting a CT angiogram right away would require putting contrast in the veins again. Contrast was used during the cardiac catheterization and too much contrast within a short period of time could damage the kidneys.


36 406


“We have the best team in the world, the absolute best people in the world here at KRH,” says Dr. Stimpson. “The better the deed, the better the day.

health} The Stimpsons recall very clearly that Dr. Mitchell came in the room, sat down on the bed and told Dr. Stimpson: “We need to find out if the aneurysm is dissecting. The gold standard for ruling out a dissecting aortic aneurysm is a CT angiogram. We’re going to treat this as dissecting until we know it is not. We are getting a CT right now.” A dissecting aorta occurs when the layers of the wall of the aorta start to come apart blocking other vessels, organ failure and death quickly follow. Post-operatively the Stimpsons learned that outof-hospital survival rate for aortic dissection is less than 1%.

A CT was performed. Dr. Drew Kirshner, a cardiothoracic surgeon, delivered the results to the Stimpsons: “The CT does show that your aorta is dissecting. We are getting the OR ready for you now. It will take about seven hours to replace your aortic valve, sew a graft into the aorta, and fix anything else we find,” said Dr. Kirshner.

OR staff, who had thought they were finished for the day, rallied to very quickly clean the OR, and within 10 minutes of the conversation with Dr. Kirshner, Dr. Stimpson was wheeled into the operating room for open-heart surgery. Several OR staff members, hearing that Dr. Stimpson was in OR 1 – not as a surgeon but as a patient, unselfishly stayed into the night to see if they could help in any way. Dr. Stimpson was told that he was probably the fittest guy to ever have an aortic dissection.

Within 24 hours of his phone call with Dr. Schilling and his visit to the ED, Dr. Stimpson underwent emergent open-heart surgery for the repair of his aorta. After Dr. Kirshner and his team finished the surgery at 2:30am., Dr. Stimpson was taken to the ICU. Later that morning, the breathing tube was removed. The ICU staff asked Dr. Stimpson what his name was, a common question to evaluate a patient’s mental status. He jokingly replied “Patrick Mahomes” (quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs and most recent Super Bowl Champions). Kelly and everyone else in the room laughed, relieved to know Dr. Stimpson was okay. Immediately, Dr. Stimpson started thanking people; “Drew, love ya, buddy.” And, “Rob, love ya, man. We have the best team in the world.” he said with tears of gratitude.

“As a doctor, Dad knew better than we did just how close he came to death,” says Lindsey, Dr. Stimpson’s daughter. Kelly Stimpson says she saw the Lord’s hand in so much of what transpired with her husband, beginning with him listening to his body, not ignoring the subtle pain, getting advice and care from Dr. Schilling and Austin Hughes (ED nurse), being treated and cared for by Dr. Mitchell, Dr. Kirshner and their teams, as well as the many wonderful caregivers in the ICU and Intermediate Care wing, for whom they are eternally grateful. The Stimpsons felt very strongly and are incredibly grateful for the love, support and prayers of many people at the hospital and in the community.

Dr. Stimpson might tell you that if he had to have an aortic dissection he was truly in the right place at the right time. “We have the best team in the world, the absolute best people in the world here at KRH,” says Dr. Stimpson. “The better the deed, the better the day. The day of my heart surgery was one of the best days, because my friends and colleagues saved my life. What better deed could be done than that?”



oman.com  37

Acupuncture From Fertility

Through Your Pregnancy

Starting a family is a journey. Every couple has a unique experience, but let’s face it, becoming a parent is not for the faint of heart! Some moments of the journey may seem exciting and easy, while other moments bring heartbreak and confusion. “It can be all encompassing, most of the time” notes Aylee Theirfelder, Owner and Licensed Acupuncturist at Whitefish Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine. Thierfelder, also a mom who struggled with a difficult pregnancy, has a passion for working with new and hopeful parents.

“I’ve been in it. I know how out of control it can feel at times. Trying to conceive, ovulation tests, temperature tests, pregnancy tests, genetic tests and the ups and downs of creating a human-being in your body. It’s all very wild, yet completely ordinary.”

Acupuncture for Fertility


Modern healthcare has expanded the array of options available - fertility drugs, surgery, Intrauterine

38 406


Insemination (IUI), In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and donor eggs and embryos.

Unfortunately, these solutions do not always work. In the search for effective health care, acupuncture and herbal medicine are gaining wider popularity among the general public. Today, acupuncture is valued for pain management and stress relief, but also as a component of fertility treatments.

A recent study from Tel Aviv University reports, when combining IUI with acupuncture and herbal medicine 65.5 percent of the test group were able to conceive.

erfelder. Among other benefits, acupuncture can provide better blood flow to the ovaries and uterus, creating a stronger chance for an egg to be nourished and carried to term.

For the millions of hopeful parents who experience fertility struggles each year, acupuncture may be just what the doctor ordered.

The Science

Acupuncture increases fertility by reducing stress, increasing blood flow to the reproductive organs and balancing the endocrine (hormonal) system. Stress is capable of preventing a woman from ovulating entirely or can create spasms in the reproductive organs which interfere with implantation of a fertilized egg. In men, stress can alter sperm counts, motility, and cause impotence.

“The goal of our fertility program and from a Chinese Medical perspective is to guide the body in becoming pregnant, staying pregnant and ultimately having a happy, healthy baby and mama,” says Thi-

Aylee Theirfelder at 41 weeks pregnant treating herself with electro-acupuncture on New Years Eve.

Photo by Alisia Dawn Photography


Benefits of Acupuncture during Pregnancy

When it comes to banishing both common and uncommon pregnancy woes, many moms-to-be sing the praises of acupuncture. It is credited for easing a wide range of pregnancy symptoms including heartburn, swollen ankles, constipation, carpal tunnel symptoms, sciatica and more.

Some pregnancy symptoms acupuncture can relieve that science has studied are: ● Morning sickness ● Lower back and pelvic pain ● Depression ● Headaches ● Sleep Problems  ● Breach baby

In addition to treating common pregnancy symptoms, there are other benefits to receiving acupuncture that can greatly improve the health of both mom and baby. “Acu-baby is a term we lovingly use for a baby whose mom receives acupuncture regularly while pregnant. The babies exude noticeable health and vitality,” said Thierfelder.

Blood Flow. A study in Ultrasound Obstetrics Gynecology showed acupuncture can improve blood flow to the umbilical artery, improving circulation to the baby resulting in more nourishment and immunological support.

Labor Pain. Acupuncture can ease labor pains during delivery. Patients often seek acupuncture to trigger labor, but regular acupuncture throughout pregnancy can reduce overall labor pains and decrease labor time. A large study conducted on over 600 women showed that moms who received acupuncture had a reduced need for intervention methods compared to those who did not. Additionally, the mean AGPAR score, which measures the physical health of your baby at birth, was significantly higher in the acupuncture group. Mom and Baby’s Immunity. Moms worry about getting sick while pregnant and many medications are prohibited in pregnancy. According to a 2015 study in Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, acupuncture strengthens both mom and baby’s immunity by increasing the components of white blood cells that protect our body. These are just some of the ways acupuncture can improve a mom’s gestational health and benefit the baby.  In the hands of a well-trained practitioner, acupuncture can make the long nine months less difficult and more enjoyable for moms, babies and the rest of the family.

Aylee and Michael Theirfelder’s baby girl, Beatrice, at 1 week old, with her dog Taiko.

The team at Whitefish Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine provides a safe and healing space for all patients and encourages couples to inquire about acupuncture for fertility, pregnancy and postpartum support. Call 406.863.6001 to schedule your new patient consultation today.



oman.com  39


Preparing for a Safe

Return to School From Dena Tomlinson

Change came swiftly last spring, as the COVID-19 pandemic brought a new reality to Montana. Just a few months ago local families sheltered in place with the rest of the world; now, as fall approaches, the upcoming school year is requiring more preparation to help parents and children adapt to a new normal.


40 406


“Our school administrators are working their hardest to provide a safe learning environment for kids with the help of the Flathead CityCounty Health Department,” says Amy DearRuel, MD, family medicine physician at North Valley Professional Center clinic in Columbia Falls. “However, the decision to send your child back to school during the COVID-19 pandemic is quite personal and parents should take into consideration family comfort level, availability of at-home learning support, and health issues within the family or with the student.”

Schools provide more than just academics to children—they help develop essential social and emotional skills, as well as offer support resources and address nutritional needs for many students and their families. If in-school learning fits your family best, Dr. Dear-Ruel suggests parents help their children prepare for some of the key changes integrated into new classroom safety protocols. “Have your kids practice wearing masks around the home, review handwashing techniques such as singing Happy Birthday twice while washing hands with soap and water, model frequent hand sanitizing, and show them how to sneeze or cough into their elbow,” she says. “Check in with your kids often about the changes they are experiencing and how it makes them feel. Providing

space for kids to express their emotions helps them cope and helps inform you, as a parent, on your child’s well-being.”

An active imagination and misinformation from peers or social media can attribute to anxiety and fears in both parents and children. Be aware of how your children are receiving news, information, and updates about the virus. “Staying present with your kids and being a reassuring voice for them is important as they begin school again, whether at home or in the classroom,” explains Deven Robinson, psychiatric nurse practitioner at North Valley Behavioral Health. “Validate their frustrations or worries, while offering them reassurance and helping to shift their focus toward positive aspects of their current environment— like seeing their friends and teachers again in school, or enjoying the comforts of home during distance learning. Building resilience in your children, as well as together as a family unit, is about adaption, growth, and inspiring hope for their future.” Robinson emphasizes the importance of parents role modeling positive behaviors for their kids—not only by wearing a mask, but also expressing to your child why you’re choosing to wear a mask. “Children tend to emulate their

health} parents, so addressing your own worries and finding ways to calm your nerves— whether it’s through meditation, exercise or going outdoors—can help guide your children to do the same,” he explains. In Montana, less than 12 percent of COVID-19 cases are in children under the age of 19. In Flathead County, this number is even lower at 9 percent. Common symptoms of COVID-19 in children are fever and cough with about 60 to 65 percent exhibiting one or both of these symptoms. Other common symptoms include body aches, fatigue, runny nose, sore throat, headaches, shortness of breath, nausea and/or vomiting, abdominal pains, diarrhea and loss of taste or smell. Infants, 12-months old or younger, may exhibit difficulties with feeding and fever without any other symptoms.

“As symptoms tend to be quite mild in children, it is important to recognize signs and symptoms,” says Dr. DearRuel. “Remind your kids that simple things like handwashing and wearing a mask can help keep them healthy. And, reassure them that all of these safety measures are in place to keep them, their friends and families safe.”

Vitamins for Healthy Immune System

Healthy immune systems are supported by a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. The best way to get vitamins is through a healthy and balanced diet. “A healthy immune system depends on getting a balanced mix of vitamins and minerals over time, and not just in a burst of vitamins when you feel like you may be getting sick,” explains Dr. Dear-Ruel. “A daily multivitamin can help kids get those nutrients they may be missing if their diet consists of mostly buttered noodles and macaroni and cheese.”

Choose a multivitamin low in sugar and high in the vitamins and minerals listed below.

Vitamin E

How it helps: An antioxidant that aids in repairing tissues and fighting infection. Where to find it: Nuts and leafy greens like spinach and kale

Vitamin B6

How it helps: This vitamin is a component of multiple reactions that aid in immune function. Where to find it: Chicken, tuna, chickpeas, and bananas

Vitamin A

How it helps: Vitamin A, an antioxidant, is found in colorful foods, and helps fight infections, promotes good vision and aids skin cells to grow and repair. Where to find it: Cantaloupes, carrots, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes

Vitamin D

How it helps: Preliminary studies have shown a correlation between low vitamin D and a higher risk of contracting and/or progressing to more severe COVID-19 infection. In Montana’s climate, many people are vitamin D deficient due to the low angle of the sun in wintertime. Where to find it: Fortified foods such as orange juice and milk, fatty fish such as tuna and salmon, and mid-day sunlight (with exposed skin for about 15-20 minutes a day)

Folic acid or folate

How it helps: Assists in creation of new cells. Where to find it: Beans, peas, leafy green vegetables, and in fortified foods such as rice, cereals and wheat flour


How it helps: Aids in oxygen transport in the blood. Where to find it: Meats such as chicken, turkey, fish and beef, as well as in beans and kale


How it helps: Supports immune functions such as preventing overactive immune responses. Where to find it: Most vegetables, fish, nuts, and garlic

Vitamin C


Where to find it: Citrus, leafy greens, bell peppers, brussel sprouts, potatoes and berries

Where to find it: Seafoods and fish, beans, lean meats, and dairy products

How it helps: Important for immune support as well as helping with absorption of iron.

How it helps: Zinc can increase the control of inflammation in the body and can also help with overactive immune responses.



oman.com  41


42 406



Wild & Free By Holly Purdy from Love Yoga Photos by Jill Jones

“I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable, beautiful, and afraid of nothing, as though I had wings.” ― Mary Oliver What does it mean to you to be wild and free? For the women of today holding down businesses, families, and everything in between, to be wild and free may seem like something of the distant past or hard to access at best. I believe that one of our greatest challenges and blessings as humans is to acknowledge the ways in which our society, communities, and families have shaped us in ways that we don't necessarily align with. Then, we can make the choice to courageously step back toward our true nature. I invite you to consider how you may have held back from living your truest, freest life, and what actions and rituals will bring you back into alignment with that. Using your senses, feel into what it means to you to be wild and free: what do you see, hear, taste, smell, and feel? Wild and free to me looks like my daughters playing in the dirt, wild horses kicking up dust, wildflowers, and exploring faraway lands. It is the sound of drums, poetry, ocean waves, and truth-telling. The feeling of walking barefoot in the grass, genuine kindness, and the sweetness of solitude. The smell of wet earth and roses. The taste of kisses on my daughters’ cheeks and necks. In my personal rituals and yoga teaching, the idea of coming home to my one, true, wild and free nature has been strong these past few weeks. What follows here is a yoga sequence that I strongly encourage you to do barefoot in nature. Be present with mama earth as you touch her with your feet, hands, and knees. Witness her natural life-giving femininity as you witness your own. Follow this as a rough guide, but please dance, flow, and celebrate your body every step of the way.


44 406


Grounding and Breathing

Stand with your feet a little wider than hip width distance apart and think about hugging the earth with your feet. Bring your hands in front of you and bend your elbows 90 degrees, palms face up, in a show of offering. Stand tall as you inhale deeply through your nose, and as you exhale from your mouth flip your palms face down and bend your knees to a squat position. As you inhale through your nose, flip your palms face up and stand up as you gather mama earth’s energy. Ten slow rounds.

High Lunge into Warrior 3

Come to a high lunge position with your right foot forward, hands together at your heart. Take a wide stance and ground firmly into your legs. Roll your shoulders down and take five slow rounds of breath. Then, lift into Warrior 3 with hands at heart, lifting your left leg parallel to the ground and flexing both feet firmly. Five slow rounds of breath and then repeat both poses on the other side.


Warrior 2 into Extended Side Angle

Stand tall feet together and then take a big step back with your left foot. Drop your left heel into a wide stance with both feet pressing down firmly. Stack shoulders over hips and bring your arms parallel to the ground. Look out over your right hand and land your gaze on something on your horizon. Activate your arms and fingers and firm up your legs and core muscles as you soften your face and jaw. Five rounds of deep breathing. Then, bring your right hand down in front of your right shin and lift your left arm straight up to the sky as you look upward. Five rounds of deep breathing and then repeat these poses on the opposite side.


Stand on your knees hip width distance apart. Bring your hands to your low back/pelvis, fingers facing down. Push your hips forward and chest up as you drop your head back. If you feel stable and open, you may start to bring your hands to your heels and extend fully. Hold for five deep breaths.

Wide Goddess Squat into Wide Leg Forward Fold

Come into a wide, deep squat position and interlace your hands behind your head. Lean your upper body back and bring your elbows back in space. Breathe deeply as you press your head into your hands. Five deep breaths. Then, bring your feet parallel, straighten your legs and fold, hands to the earth. Five deep breaths.


Plant your right foot firmly into the ground and bring the sole of your left foot to the inside of your right shin or thigh. Bring your hands into lotus mudra by touching your thumbs and pinkies together and allowing all your other fingers to open like a flower. Lift your hands toward the sky and look up. Five rounds of deep breathing. Repeat on the other side.

Seated with Hands to Heart


Sit tall in a comfortable cross-legged position. Close your eyes and bring your hands to your chest. Acknowledge yourself for taking care of you. Give love and thanks to this body of yours and to mama earth for supporting you. May you be wild, free, and light. Namaste.


oman.com  45


You’ve got this,

Mama! By Jenna Huff, MD

“I thought this would be easy!?!” “Why isn’t it working?” “What am I doing wrong?” “It hurts so bad!” “I feel like such a bad mom!” These are just a few of the things I’ve heard in my office from weepy, hormonal, sleep deprived postpartum moms. Anyone who has ever been there knows exactly what I’m talking about. Breastfeeding. The thing that most moms don’t even think much about until after they deliver, but the most likely thing to be more frustrating than pregnancy and delivery combined. Despite the difficulties, there are many benefits to breastfeeding. Many professional organizations (ACOG, AAP, CDC, WHO) recommend exclusively breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life. Breastmilk is made specifically for a newborn infant to give them the right amount of fat, sugar, water, minerals, and protein that they need. Breastmilk also contains important antibodies that help decrease the risk of certain illnesses, including allergies, asthma, ear infections, and diarrhea. Breastfeeding also has benefits to mom including decreased postpartum bleeding, improved weight loss postpartum, and decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. Most moms know most of these things and have every intention of breastfeeding but are surprised when breastfeeding is more of a struggle. Every mom is different and every baby is different. Even experienced moms can struggle with breastfeeding a new baby. Moms and babies have to learn how to breastfeed. Sometimes anatomy can make things more difficult, whether it be mom having inverted nipples or not producing enough milk, or a baby with a poor latch or tongue tied. And I’ll be honest with you. It hurts!! I’ve heard many people say that breastfeeding shouldn’t hurt if there is a good latch, but at first, it does, even with a good latch. It just hurts worse with a bad


46 406


latch. It does get better with time and practice, both for you and for your baby. A breast pump can be very helpful to reduce the pain that can happen with breastfeeding and the timing of feedings. Pumping breastmilk can be a good way to provide baby breastmilk with a bottle, allowing flexibility with who feeds the baby. Breast pumps are helpful for working moms to continue to breast feed when they go back to work. Most insurances cover a breast pump which can be a huge help financially in your breastfeeding journey. Breastfeeding an infant is a lot of work. Babies eat every 2-3 hours when they are first born. Some babies eat for 15 minutes on each side, some even longer. When you add up the amount of time that babies are eating, it is a lot of the day! Sometimes it feels like all you are doing is feeding, burping, trying to sleep and feeding again. It sometimes doesn’t feel like you are anything more than a mobile milk machine. Creating a schedule that works for you and for your baby can be helpful. For me, and my three kids, my schedule was to feed baby, keep them awake until they were sleepy and then have them nap


While breastfeeding, it is important to take good care of yourself. Eating a healthy diet with lots of water intake is super important for producing good quality milk. You actually need more calories in your diet during breastfeeding than during pregnancy. during the day time. At night time it was feed, then right back to bed. Keeping this schedule helped to space out their feedings when they were ready as well as let me have a happy, rested, fed baby. Feeding schedules change as a baby grows and is awake more, providing longer stretches of time between feedings. Every baby is different, trying a schedule and adjusting to fit your needs is okay. No one knows your baby better than you do! While breastfeeding, it is important to take good care of yourself. Eating a healthy diet with lots of water intake is super important for producing good quality milk. You actually need more calories in your diet during breastfeeding than during pregnancy. A breastfeeding mom needs about 500 extra calories a day and should continue to take prenatal vitamins while breastfeeding. Most medications and medical

issues that a mom may have are acceptable to breastfeed with, but it is a good idea to ask your doctor, midwife, pediatrician, or a lactation consultant if you have any questions.

Sometimes a baby needs formula supplement to ensure their blood sugars stay up enough or they don’t lose too much weight while your breastmilk comes in. Supplementing with formula is okay! Having a baby that is fed so they can grow and thrive is crucial, however you end up doing that is satisfactory. While there is a lot of support, know that your two most important jobs are taking care of you and your baby.

It is okay to ask for help, and you are not a failure if things don’t go the way you planned. There is plenty of support for breastfeeding moms while in the hospital. Nurses, doctors, and lactation specialists are available to answer questions and offer guidance. After leaving the hospital, there are breastfeeding classes, support groups, and certified lactation consultants available in your community. A list of local classes can be found online at https://www.krh.org/ krmc/calendar/ or you can call Labor & Delivery at 406-752-1745. There are many babies that are fed breastmilk, formula, or a mix of both and that is okay too! Breastfeeding is one of the first times you realize as a parent that things don’t always go the way you planned. Give yourself the time, the patience, and the grace you deserve. You’ve got this, Mama! And we’ve got your back.



oman.com  47


That is the heart of Child Bridge’s Deeply Loved, an annual Montana retreat for foster and adoptive moms. This very special time of coming together fills broken places in their lives with gold and reminds them of the beauty in their story and that of the children they care for.

By Amanda Creamer

Kintsugi and Foster Care

In Japan, broken objects are often repaired with gold. The cracks are a unique part of the object’s history. The gold adds to the object’s beauty. The cracks aren’t hidden. The broken places are stronger... more beautiful for being broken. The repair process is called Kintsugi.


48 406


Every day, foster and adoptive moms are in the trenches with children that have suffered abuse and neglect. They are constantly on alert. Always making sure their children get what they need to thrive. I know this because I am a foster/adoptive mom. I have 7 children through adoption and 1 beautiful granddaughter. My story is beautifully broken. I currently have an adult daughter who refuses to talk to us. Her past trauma has made it too difficult to live in our family and accept love. I have children that are boldly walking through sensory processing disorders, attachment challenges and a number of health issues brought on by severe drug exposure in utero. All of them have suffered different degrees of abuse and neglect.

This leads to many hard days where “normal” moms in my community don’t understand. I don’t blame them. Fortunately, they are raising children who have not experienced trauma. And caring for children who have, is very different. As a foster/adoptive mom, I have learned first-hand that we all crave people who “get us.” We need people who understand both the difficulties and the beauty in this journey. Enter Child Bridge. For five years, Child Bridge has held the Deeply Loved annual foster and adoptive moms retreat in Whitefish. Deeply Loved was born of the idea that if moms could gather for a couple of “kid-free” days, learn from nationally known experts in the foster/adoption field, connect with one another and receive a bit of pampering in the process, that they could emerge stronger for the children in their care. A natural tendency as a foster parent is to isolate. Being out in public with kids who exhibit trying behaviors that others don’t understand… well, it just seems easier to


Child Bridge

“Deeply Loved has been an amazing experience every single year I’ve attended. The Child Bridge team provides experiences and speakers that quench the dry souls of foster and adoptive moms. put your head down and try to push through it alone. But isolation is exactly what foster adoptive parents don’t need! This creates burn out and can exacerbate that feeling that “no one understands.”

At Deeply Loved, women gather together and see they are not alone. Our brokenness, and that of our children, is seen as beautiful. We are seen, listened to and loved on.

high school. It’s a time to feel understood and known… not judged. Chantell Broadhead has attended the retreat for the past three years. She shares, “the first year, it just sounded like the perfect time to get away. And I needed that.”

The “gold” poured on these women comes in the form of staying in the beautiful Lodge at Whitefish Lake, delicious meals prepared by wonderful chefs and all kinds of self-care. The women can focus on healing and refilling their cups…mending their own broken pieces. National speakers arrive from around the U.S., to talk about different aspects of foster care and adoption. Fun breakout sessions are held where they can learn to watercolor or find confidence learning self-defense techniques. And mornings start late for a bit of much needed extra sleep. All weekend you’ll find moms huddled up talking about how “we picked up a baby withdrawing from drugs from the NICU” or “we had two toddlers placed with us who were  covered in dirt and only wearing a soiled diaper.” Foster moms of teenagers’ swap stories of their children running away or trying to find them services to help graduate

our passion and remind us why we committed to this crazy, chaotic, broken and beautiful life. I leave every year with new friends, new hope, new stories, new knowledge, and a refreshed heart and spirit. The retreat is intentional, thought out, prayed over, and well prepared by the Child Bridge team and other community members and churches. The Lodge at Whitefish Lake is a beautiful setting full of amenities, breathtaking views, friendly staff, and sweet serenity.”

Deeply Loved sees the gold in brokenness and it is celebrated! There is beautiful gold in the lives of these moms and gold in the lives of the beautiful children they care for who have endured so much. The cracks are not hidden. The broken places are stronger... more beautiful for being broken. “Deeply Loved has been an amazing experience every single year I’ve attended. The Child Bridge team provides experiences and speakers that quench the dry souls of foster and adoptive moms. We know what we signed up for isn’t always going to be easy, and helping children try and  heal from trauma is a fulltime job in itself.” Chantell continues, “We are treated like royalty as the community comes together to restore

This year, on October 23-25th, women from all over the northwest will gather and find the community and rest they need to go home and love their families deeply. Child Bridge staff and volunteers will pour into them and show them how Deeply Loved they are. If you’re reading this, and you know a foster or adoptive mom, encourage her to attend! She’ll be forever grateful!




oman.com  49


by Dr. John F. Miller

Do you all remember February? Like before we knew words and phrases like social distancing, wet markets, flatten the curve, shelter in place, second wave, N95, etc. You know, back when life was just normal...not “new normal.” Back when you could hug folks and sneeze in public without getting the side eye. Back when Big Mountain was spinning chairs, when professional athletes were competing...in front of real humans, when kids were in school, when we could go out to the movies, and when Canadians could still kick it in the Flathead (aka Montanada). Those were the good ole days, weren’t they?


50 406


I had an awesome February. I met up with some of my siblings and other childhood friends in Northern Arizona for a backpacking trip into Havasupai near the Grand Canyon. If you are unfamiliar with this place a simple google query will inform you of its intense beauty. We spent a few days in the canyon exploring and swimming in the turquoise spring-fed waterfalls. One evening around the fire I casually mentioned, “this virus thing over in China is a little crazy right?” I should've knocked on wood. Fast forward 6 months and we are 5 months into this COVID-19 pandemic. The vibrations and ripples of this global shutdown will be felt for years to come. Life and routines have altered and changed and will continue to modify as we tackle this thing. Some of these changes will never return to the way they were before...for better and for worse. Hopefully it has awakened in all of us a realization of what’s important in life.

Things have changed in my little dental sphere as well. When all health care professionals are trained at their respective institutions, they are taught to adhere to universal precautions. What this means is that, from an infection control standpoint, we prepare and treat each patient as if they have a dangerous and contagious disease. Now, these standards have been modified at different points in history to address new and changing health risks. Specifically following the emergence of HIV/AIDS in the 1980’s and definitely right now with the added protective measures we are taking to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within our dental office. So, our definition of “Universal Precautions” has been updated to contain the protective measures required to treat a patient with COVID-19. Some of these updates include more specific medical history questions, recording the employ-

Take time every day to look for the silver linings in all of this. Hopefully this slowdown has given us a better perspective on life.

ee’s and patient’s temperatures upon arrival to the office, medical grade air purifiers in the treatment rooms, the closure of our waiting rooms and having patients wait in their vehicles, the wearing of lab jackets by all employees, etc. How long will these added precautions be necessary remains to be seen, but some will likely never go away. COVID-19 affects Smile Montana every day, but we are just happy to be able to see and treat our patients again after being closed for close to 7 weeks.

John Lennon once sang the words, “Life is what happens when we are busy making other plans.” Boy ain’t that the truth. Every last one of us had some incredible plans but then life came along and cancelled pretty darn near all of them. It’s easy to get frustrated and to feel like our liberties are being attacked. I can empathize with that sentiment, but I’m also happy to do everything in my power to help prevent the spread of this virus even if those actions simply put those around me at ease. Take time every day to look for the silver linings in all of this. Hopefully this slowdown has given us a better perspective on life. Be friends with your neighbors, don’t let the channel you get your news from tell you who is good or who is bad...this is America where we are free to believe what we want to believe, and we celebrate our differences and diversities.


I’ll check in with y’all in another couple months and I’m sure I’ll find you no worse for wear. Until then Keep Smiling Montana, and next time let’s Knock on Wood.


oman.com  51

406 w o m a n

Food & Flavor 14. Homemade Pizza Dough 16. Bacon Wrapped Mushrooms 18. Glacier Distilling Company 22. The Wines of Spain 24. Strength and Sourdough

Book Review 28. A Boy Named Chuck

Design 32. Fall Favorites Wright’s Furniture



Fashion 34. Village Shop

Love 38. It’s all in the Details Brooke & Nick


60 406



View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

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

Publisher's Note “Be positive. Be true. Be kind.” Roy Bennett

As summer fun is wrapping up, the mornings are cooler, our days are getting shorter, and anticipation for the new school year and fall are in full effect. We greet you with a big smile and a huge dose of encouragement. We don’t know what’s in store for the future or how everything works in this new normal we find ourselves in. As we are all trying to figure it out as we go. But the one thing we do have control over is how we respond to all this uncertainly. Let positivity be your mindset for the new season. Spread your light and your smile - when it is genuine people will feel it, see it – even through a mask. Happiness and positivity are contagious. Find the silver lining. You‘ve got this, we’ve got this. Amanda & Cindy


62 406


406 w o m a n

Cover Girl

Business Girl

Juliane Stern Juliane grew up in Toulouse, France. She has always loved adventure and travel and moved to Montana after earning her degree in International Business from the University of Montana. At present, Juliane teaches French language classes online to students of all ages throughout the world. She currently calls Whitefish home where she lives with her husband, Sam and their almost 3-year-old daughter, Mia.

Tina Millisavljevich

Read Mary Wallace’s story about Tina and her wildlife art in our Business & Health side.

photos by

Amanda Wilson Photography www . amandawilsonphotos . com


Cindy Gerrity


Published by Skirts Publishing six times a year 704 C East 13th St. #138 Whitefish, MT 59937 info@406woman.com Copyright©2020 Skirts Publishing

business manager Daley McDaniel


managing editor

Kristen Hamilton

View current and past issues of 406 Woman at

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


creative & social media director Amanda Wilson

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


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

Sara Joy Pinnell

Check out www.406woman.com for our full distribution list. Have a great story idea or know someone that we should feature? Email us with your comments & suggestions. Interested in increasing your business and partnering with 406 Woman? Check out www.406woman.com.




Daley McDaniel Photography Amanda Wilson Photography Jill Jones Photography Carrie Ann Photography Alisia Dawn Photography

Editor’s Note “One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." Plato I may not agree with your choice of candidate for the upcoming statewide or presidential election and you might not agree with mine but one thing I do know is that we all must exercise our right to vote. As women we owe it to the women who protested for close to a century for the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920. I found a document published about that time by the National Woman Suffrage Publishing Co., Inc. in New York City called “Twelve Reasons Why Women Should Vote” and some items are still very valid today. Those include:

· BECAUSE those who obey the laws should help to choose those who make the laws. · BECAUSE laws affect women as much as men. · BECAUSE laws affecting the HOME are voted on in every session of the Legislature. · BECAUSE women have experience which would be helpful to legislation. · BECAUSE public spirited mothers make public spirited sons. (and daughters) · BECAUSE to sum up all reasons in one – IT IS FOR THE COMMON GOOD OF ALL. Turnout in our state was almost 75% in the 2016 presidential election which in many circles is considered a good turnout but I think we can do better. Your vote does matter, and you can make a difference. Kristen Hamilton

Managing Editor


64 406


L-R: Kristen's sisters - KT & Kim then Kristen with husband Bob in back enjoying the Oregon coast this summer. They are all voting and you should too!

Homemade Pizza Dough


The Secret Ingredient is


68 406



Homemade Pizza Dough No Knead & Hand Stretched

Tip: Don’t be intimidated by making homemade pizza dough. This no knead and hand pulled technique is simple and fun. This is a great way to stock up on your essentials too so you can make a batch and freeze it for later. Another tip is to freeze or shape them into different sizes. Small personal sizes are great or if you have a large family to feed, shape the dough larger and wider! Ingredients • 1 1/4 cups warm water • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt • 3 1/3 cups flour

in the refrigerator until ready to use (it will keep for a day or two in the refrigerator).

3. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a couple baking sheet pans with parchment paper or lightly oil the pans.

4. After the dough has risen, divide in half and place the dough balls on a wellfloured surface. For best texture, allow the dough to come to room temperature for about 30 minutes if it was chilled. The dough should feel soft and pillowy. 5. Dust your hands with flour and lightly

flour the first dough ball. Using your hands, rotate and gently pull out the dough, working from the center outward to stretch it, leaving the outer rim as untouched as possible. Stretch to a circle 7 to 8 inches (17.5 to 20 cm) in diameter.

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the

water, yeast, and salt. Stir in the flour until absorbed and no dry flour remains. A sticky dough ball should form.

2. Cover the dough and set aside in a

warm area to proof for 1 to 2 hours, or until doubled in volume. If you’re not able to form and par-bake the crusts right away, keep dough covered and set risen dough aside

6. Resting the dough on the tops of your

hands and trying to maximize the surface area in contact with the dough so you don’t poke through the crust, continue to rotate and circle, gently stretching the dough to about 10 inches (25 cm) in diameter. Make sure to keep the rim thicker than the center. (If the dough starts to toughen and spring back too much while you work on it, allow it to rest for a few minutes so it will relax and soften.) Lightly re-flour your hands, the work surface, and the dough as needed to keep the dough from sticking.

7. Place the stretched-out pizza dough onto the prepared sheet pan, adjust the shape a little if needed. Repeat the forming for the second ball of dough and place on the other sheet pan.

8. Par-bake the crusts for 15 minutes or until the dough is no longer wet looking and is just starting to show a little color.

• If you are using either both or one of the pizza crusts at a different time, allow the par-baked crusts to cool, place in a large sealable plastic bag, and store in the freezer. • If making pizza soon, top the crust(s) with sauce, preferred toppings and the place back in the oven. Bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the crust is golden, cheese nicely melted and slightly golden, and the toppings are heated through



oman.com  69



Wrapped Mushrooms By Carole Morris


70 406


Lovely mushrooms, how I adore you! I adore you for your aromatic flavor and unmatchable texture. When I add the knowledge that mushrooms have medicinal properties—a substantial dose of protein, potassium and polysaccharides (which support a healthy immune function) what is there not to love? Thank the heavens above for the French who introduced mushrooms into their haute cuisine; because by the 19th century Americans started cooking mushrooms in their own kitchens. So, here we are… going crazy with “Bacon Wrapped Mushrooms”.

Bacon Wrapped Mushrooms Ingredients 1½ lbs. large cremini mushrooms cleaned (remove stems)

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese 1 tbsp. thyme 2 tbsp. garlic (minced) 1/4 cup green onion 2 tbsp. fresh parsley (chopped) Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional) 2 tbsp. olive oil 12 slices bacon (uncooked) 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 tsp pepper


Preheat oven to 400 F degrees.

1. In a medium bowl mix in parmesan cheese, thyme, garlic, green onion, parsley, and red pepper. Stir everything together and set aside.

2. In a large skillet, add the olive oil and heat it over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook on both sides for about 2 or 3 minutes per side, just until the mushrooms start to brown a bit. 3. Add approximately 1 tbsp. of the cheese mixture to each mushroom. 4. Wrap 2 pieces of bacon around each mushroom (wrap the bacon so that the ends are underneath the mushroom). 5. Place the mushrooms in the oven and bake for approximately 5 minutes. 6. When the cheese has melted, salt and pepper the top of the mushrooms.


As they say in French… prendre plaisir (enjoy)! 406

oman.com  71


The Prudent Decision to Start

Glacier Distilling Company People start businesses for all sorts of reasons, but one thing is always certain… there is a passion to produce and share a product that you feel strongly about. Over 10 years ago, Nicolas Lee was destined to be the one to start a distillery. When Lee was asked why he decided to get into this business, he shares the following tale…

“Glacier Distilling Company was conceived during a snowstorm and in the Montana ethos of preparedness and self-reliance. In the winter of 2009/10 a group of friends gathered around the fireplace in a cabin along the North Fork discussing ski widths, fly lures, whiskey and other such academic topics. As the snow continued to pile up and the level of the whiskey bottle started falling to dangerously low levels, the conversation turned to more practical matters. Should this be Armageddon, how could these friends ensure safety and continue to provide for their families? They could guard The Pass and The Canyon. They could hunt and forage for food. They could chop wood for warmth. But where would they get their whiskey?  Alas, something had


72 406


By Kristen Hamilton

to be done. One of them had to start a distillery. It was only prudent.” 

Lee built his craft distillery in Coram, Montana where they produce an array of whiskeys make from local Montana grains and brandy distilled from local fruit all bottled in the heart of Glacier Country. Lee hails from North Carolina and studied Chemistry at University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. It’s that background that fuels his passions of creating and experimenting. We get to reap the benefits of his experimentation with award winning smallbatch whiskeys that easily stand on their own or can be mixed in a delicious North Fork cocktail (recipes on the Glacier Distilling Company website). Lee creates more than whisky and brandy at the distillery. You can find Eau De Vie which is a European style of brandy generally aged in tanks (not oak) and bottled clear with no additional sugar or other flavors added. For those that enjoy a more traditional spirit, you’ll also find Vodka, Gin and Rum at Glacier Distilling Company. Or a definite favorite of visitors to the tasting room, the Montana specialties including Bearproof Huckleberry Whiskey made from local wild, handpicked huckleberries. And Fireweed

food} Cherry Bourbon made from Flathead Lake cherries with more than 10 pounds of cherries packed in each bottle.

Glacier Distilling Company features a tasting room onsite, so you are able to try one of Lee’s creations before you buy. Lee said his favorite thing about his business is, “Being able to share a drink and product with people that reminds them of their experience in Glacier.”

He especially likes to hear from customers that tell him when they opened a bottle they picked up at the distillery and say it brought back great memories of their trip to Glacier. Lee moved to the area 12 years ago and when he’s not experimenting at the distillery, you’ll find him skiing, biking, playing tag with the kids and being a hermit.

He claims his wife Victoria is the one that makes the practical decisions for the household.  She currently spends the majority of her time wrangling two wild Montana girls and a stable of dogs, cats and horses. What is Lee’s plan for the future? He said, “Keep getting better with age.”

Next time you are over in the direction of Glacier National Park, be sure to include a stop at the Whiskey Barn in Coram to taste some of Lee’s own creations. Glacier Distilling Company 406-387-9887   www.glacierdistilling.com



oman.com  73

Mallory Hickethier, Samantha Peters, Julie Hickethier

Q&A Samaenrtsha Pet

Instagram handle: @sammybakesmt Order by phone: +1 (619) 917-8881 Email: sammy@sammybakes.com

What was the last thing you baked?

22 cake layers of all different flavors ranging from chocolate to blood orange.

What four things are always in your kitchen? Love, sugar, butter and smiles

How did you learn to create your masterpieces? Watching my mom make her cakes when I was young. The artistic ability of what she could create had me in awe. She was my idol and wanted to take after her.

What is your favorite cake? Well that’s silly… you can’t just have one favorite! But if I had to choose, anything chocolate makes my heart pitter patter.

What inspires you to bake?

I started baking with my grandma in the kitchen when I was three learning all her techniques, passion and love that she poured into everything that she made. Her way of showing love was sharing food with the people she loved. I wanted to continue in her footsteps and keep her spirit alive in the kitchen. After losing my mom 5 years ago, I truly found my peace with loss and still felt the connection with my mom when I got to bake cakes.

Tell us about yourself.

Before my mom passed, I needed to get back to being around horses because she said that was my true happiness. I now find answers to why things happen in life, specifically loss, under the big sky of Montana. There are silver linings in everything. Had my mom not passed, I would have never met the love of my life, Rob, here in Whitefish. Timing is everything. COVID-19 happened and I decided to spread my love by placing slices of cakes on people’s doorsteps. Since then, making cakes has become so much more than I ever could have imagined.

The Wines of Spain


By Sunshine Deveny, Bigfork Liquor Barn

What is the reason for this discrepancy? Unlike France and Italy, Spain’s native soil structure is not the most ideal for viticulture. Vintners have adjusted to these growing conditions by planting their vineyards more sparsely. This allows their grapes more room to soak up as much nutrients and water as possible. The result is grapes that have a ton of depth and character, which in turn creates amazing wine. However, recent developments have made the growing conditions in Spain more “fluid.” In a nod to climate change, the European Union has only in the last decade or so has allowed irrigation where before using irrigation was illegal. Spain boasts over 400 different grape varieties planted throughout its wine growing regions. The main varietals (which are also native to Spain) are Garnacha, Monastrell, Tempranillo, Albarino, Palomino (the main grape in Sherry). Cava varieties (the champagne of Spain) include Macabeo, Xarel-lo, and Parellada. Examples of all to follow! Spain also grows the white grape variety Airen, which accounts for 25% of its plantings, and is used in the making of Brandy and bulk wine. The emergence of wine in Spain dates back to 1100 BC with the Phoenicians owning accreditation for its first plantings. However, some recent archaeological discoveries have changed that timeline to be somewhere between 4000 and 3000 BC.


76 406


Contributing to Spain’s rich history and vibrant viticulture is its geographical location. Spain, which takes up the majority of the Iberian Peninsula, separates the Atlantic Ocean to the west from the Mediterranean Sea to the east. The Strait of Gibraltar flows between these bodies of water and separates Europe from Africa. The Strait is only nine miles wide at its narrowest point, making it a convenient continental crossing for Phoenicians and others to transport goods. In the Atlantic, the Bay of Biscay separates the western French coasts from the northern coasts of Spain.

Inland Spain is very mountainous, with the Cantabrian and Pyrenees Mountains to the north and the Sistema Iberico Mountains on the east. The Sierra Nevada range stretches along the south, while the inland Meseta Central is a phenomenal interior plateau that extends over 8100 square miles. This combination of coastal, continental and maritime climates and at least three thousand years of wine growing experience results in great values for someone procuring a talking point with taste at their local bottle shop.

Cune Cava is a perfect example of the quality to value ratio you can get from Cava. It is produced in the same way as champagne, Methode Champenoise, but at a fraction of the cost. Cune, or C.V.N.E its original name, was founded in 1879 in Rioja, and is still family owned today. This sparkler boasts notes of green apple, limestone and

toasted brioche. Full bodied, crisp and with a fine mousse! It is a tremendous wine for the price. This bottle is the perfect way to start or end any celebration. I recommend pairing it with Oysters on the Half Shell, with a classic Champagne Vinegar Mignonette.

Cune Cava Brut $12.99

Spain is often overlooked in the shadow of France and Italy yet has so much to offer in terms of culture, history, wine quality and value. Spain as a nation has the most acreage of grapes planted in the world but is only the third largest producer of wine behind France and Italy, respectively. This discrepancy is twofold: Spain has very low yields per vine and less vines planted per acre.

Albarino, the perfect wine to please everyone at

your table. I love Albarino because of its versatility. It has beautiful acidity and freshness for those who love a dry white; while also showing a nice amount of body and texture for those who enjoy a more full-bodied white wine. Burgans Albarino is produced by a cooperative in the region of Rias Baixas. This means that over 600 families contribute a small amount of sustainably farmed grapes to this one project! A win for everyone. These fami-

Familia Castano produces the Hecula Monastrell in the

South Eastern part of Spain. The warm climate, plus the fact that this wine is made from 30-100-year-old vines, results in a wine that is full bodied, fruit forward, has ripe tannins and a long finish. Monastrell, also known as Mourvedre in France, is always a great wine to show to Cabernet Sauvignon fans as it is big and bold yet doesn’t require the aging or decanting that some Cabernets do. Pop the cork and enjoy! This Hecula Monastrell would be great to pair with Smoked Pork Carnitas, accompanied by Alubias Con Arroz (a traditional Spanish Rice and Beans dish). The tannins of the Monastrell are perfect to cleanse your palate in between each bite of this rich, flavor packed meal. Don’t be afraid to add a little spice to this pairing, as the smooth fruitiness of the Monastrell can hold up to it!

Priorat, a name that is synonymous with quality. Be-

Hecula Monastrell $10.99

Burgans Albarino $14.99

lies get to produce a wonderful wine amongst their peers, and we get to enjoy a consistent, quality driven wine. The Burgans Albarino shows notes of apricot and white peach, while a streak of great minerality comes right down the middle of your glass. This well-balanced white is perfect for your summer vegetable harvest. Try with Garden Zucchini Fritters- shredded zucchini, garlic, parmesan, egg, breadcrumbs and a touch of cayenne.

sides Rioja, Priorat is the other top-rated growing region of Spain. This amazing region in the North Eastern part of Spain, has black slate soils which truly give the wines produced there a robust and unique quality. The primary grape of this region is Garnacha (Grenache). The Black Slate Gratallops, produced by Cellar Cecilio, is a great example of this terroir. Their winery is located in the heart of Priorat and was the first winery to receive a quality classification in this region. The Black Slate Gratallops is a blend of Garnacha, Carinyena and Syrah. It delivers notes of baked cherries, warm spice, and wet stones. There are firm, dusty tannins from start to finish. This is not a shy wine and perfect for those hearty, grilled or roasted fall meals. I would recommend serving with a Roasted Leg of Lamb studded with Anchovy and Garlic, finished with a medley of Roasted Root Vegetables. Or, with hunting season coming up, this would be perfect to pair with Seared Venison Medallions in a Confit Garlic and Red Wine Reduction. (Bonus! Use a little of the Black Slate Gratallops in your reduction sauce for the ultimate pairing experience!) I’d like to give a special thanks to Jessica Dodd, CSW from George’s Distributing for the tasting notes and pairings. All of these (and more) wines from Spain are available at Bigfork Liquor Barn.

Sunshine Deveny, Bigfork Liquor Barn



oman.com  77


Strength and

Sourdough By Austine K. Siomos, MD – Pediatric Cardiologist at Rocky Mountain Heart & Lung

Last week my sister told me a story about a conversation she had with my oldest child. She was sitting with him in the kitchen. He was showing her his Pokémon cards. She picked up a card that showed a Pokémon character that was pictured baring her teeth. My sister asked “why is she angry?” My son replied, “she’s not angry. She’s determined.” These days I have found myself looking to be stronger. Mentally, emotionally, and physically we are being called to be more than we were at this time last year. We have more questions than answers. In times of uncertainty (and this pandemic certainly qualifies), how can we foster strength? What is strength?

Mental strength – in the early 2000s in high level

sports there was a “four C” model of mental toughness - confidence; challenge; control and commitment. Recently in 2019, a group at Princeton published a paper about NCAA Division I athletes and professional athletes. This paper detailed six traits of mental strength and found that athletes that made it to the professional level scored significantly higher than athletes that did not go past college sports.

1. Level-headedness 2. Stress tolerance 3. Ego-strength 4. Thoroughness 5. Energy/persistence 6. Self-structure

Physical strength – this could be relevant in a few ways in talking about the pandemic.

1 – strength in the form of muscular development is good for self-confidence, attaining or maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding injury


2 – physical strength may also allow someone to endure the coronavirus in the case of infection. 78 406


Emotional strength – we all go into emotional spirals, usually involving new information about the coronavirus and the fear that accompanies this. I have done this myself, most notably when I first started reading about coronavirus in December and then again when the first reports of the pediatric inflammatory disease, MIS-C was first described in April of this year.


As a parent, I remind myself daily to have emotional strength. I don’t always succeed. But modeling emotions is important for kids. I want them to see that it is ok to be sad, angry and overjoyed. I also want them to see me use my emotions to take action.


Emotional strength is defined as the ability to respond in an open and vulnerable way in the face of intense emotional experience, feeling one’s way deeper into the emotion which allows access to implicit functional processes driving action.

This pandemic is asking of us a great deal of strength. This strength is in the form of a marathon, not a sprint. We are playing the long game.

Ways to increase and channel strength during this time.

Talk with an old friend – it’s nice to be reminded of who we were before all this started. Old friends remind us of who we have been and what we can do. Have goals for strength conditioning each day – weightlifting, squats, lunges, hiking. Start a life-affirming hobby – this is where sourdough starter comes in!

Speaking of the long game, sourdough is the epitome of that idea. Patience, simplicity and strength persevere in the sourdough process. Many a hipster was waxing poetic about sourdough before the pandemic, but there has never been a better time to start your own process.

What is sourdough?

Sourdough is made by fermentation of dough. A true sourdough is fermented only using naturally occurring lactobacilli and yeast. The lactic acid produced by the lactobacilli gives the bread a sour taste and also allows it to keep longer. The oldest proven sourdough was found in Switzerland and dates to 3700 BCE. However, historians agree that the origin of sourdough fermentation likely dates to several thousand years earlier in the Fertile Crescent. Bread production relied on sourdough as a leavener until less than 150 years ago, when commercial yeast became an option.

French bakers brought sourdough techniques to the west during the Gold Rush. San Francisco remains famous for its sourdough, as evidenced by its famous bakeries and by Sourdough Sam, the mascot of the San Francisco 49ers.

During the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898, the sourdough tradition was carried to Alaska. Miners and other settlers often carried a pouch of starter on a belt. Although commercial yeast is now readily available (except at some times during the pandemic), sourdough has enjoyed a revival. The process of making


Sourdough Starter Guide

The oldest proven sourdough was found in Switzerland and dates to 3700 BCE. a sourdough starter is a fun combination of chemistry, curiosity and therapeutic kneading. While feeling emotions deeply and practicing emotional strength it’s nice to wallop on some dough every 20 minutes before proofing your own dough!

Benefits of sourdough

1. Promotion of healthy gut bacteria – since

a sourdough starter uses the same microbes that are in the air, the soil and in our guts. Commercial yeast is usually made up of one or two types of yeast, but sourdough has diversity, regional differences and even varies with the seasons. Diversity is important in microbes, especially when talking about the gut!

5. Experiment and find your own process –

sourdough is much more forgiving than dough made with commercial yeast. You can change the fermentation time, the temperature, the proofing time, not to mention trying different grains and ratios of white and whole flours.

6. Foster strength – a good sourdough starter is strong enough to stretch and allow bubbles to form without breaking. Becoming familiar with a starter’s strength is like recognizing your own strength. Once you’ve experienced it a few times, you know it when you see it.

2. For Gluten sensitive people, sourdough bread

is often the answer to the question of whether there is a wheat bread that is possible to digest normally without bloating or discomfort. The wild yeast and bacteria in a sourdough starter break down some of the carbohydrates and proteins found in flour. A longer fermentation time and rising time will increase the ease of digestion. If you are gluten sensitive you can experiment with fermentation to make sourdough work for you.

3. Endocrine health – sourdough has a low

glycemic index in comparison with other types of bread, especially when made with mostly whole grains. This is important for those who want to avoid dramatic changes in blood sugar and insulin.

4. Improve shelf life – in addition to having unparalleled texture and taste, sourdough lasts days longer than bread made with commercial yeast. This is likely due to inhibition of mycotoxins due to the diversity of wild yeast in the sourdough bread.

All you need is: Flour and water There are many ways to create your own sourdough starter. Here is the way I started mine 5 years ago. Day 1 – put 500g whole wheat flour and 500g lukewarm water in a container and mix until just incorporated. Cover and let it rest at room temperature or a little warmer Day 2 – throw away about three quarters of the initial mix (ok to estimate). To the remainder add 500g whole wheat flour and 500g lukewarm water. Cover again and let rest. Day 3 – the starter should be 2x the volume it was the day before with bubbles and an alcohol smell. Throw away about three quarters. To the remainder do the same as above.

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

Day 4 – Throw away all but 200 grams (3/4 cup). Add 500g whole wheat flour and 500g water and mix until just incorporated. Day 5 – the starter is ready to use in any bread, pizza, pancake, waffle or other recipe. The best time is 7-8 hours after mixing. To store – a starter can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for weeks. Before using again take it out and use the Day 4 instructions, then feed daily for 2-3 days to bring it to full strength and maturity.



oman.com  79

book review}

Written by Amy Gardner Illustrated by Rita McKinney Review by Kristen Hamilton

I settled in on the couch with my granddaughter Mia to read “A Boy Named Chuck” on a warm summer evening recently.

Mia’s mother is from France (and this month’s cover model) and her dad (my son) raised in Montana so early on she’s learning about numbers, colors, animals and pretty much everything in both French and English. It makes reading books like this especially fun as we can point out the animals on each page in English then oftentimes Mia will let me know the French translation. As it turns out Chuck is the author’s grandfather who grew up in Lolo, MT just outside Missoula in the 1930’s. In the story, Chuck lives is the woods and tells the tale of the animals he spends his time with. It’s super cute and especially fun to spend time on each page pointing out the animals and trying to find the hidden mouse.


Gardner tells a sweet story that keeps Mia engaged while Chuck hunts for huckleber-

82 406


ries, plays hike-and-go-seek, fishes, swims, and naps. I’m reminded of similar adventures with the kids in my neighborhood when I was much younger. We both enjoy the tale.

The illustrations by Rita McKinney are marvelous with familiar Montana scenes with easy to recognize animals.

I say “rabbit” and Mia replies quietly “lapine” the French translation. We continue on each page with bear, fawn, squirrel, beaver, otter, goose, elk, eagle, and moose. Overall, “A Boy Named Chuck” was a hit with Mamie (grandma) and Mia. It’s a great addition to my bookshelf.

You can pick up a copy of the book at Scout and Gather, Lower Valley Processing, Glacier Perks, and the paperback is available at Amazon.

Amy’s boys (Walter age 10, Charlie age 8, Norman age 6, Stanley age 4, and Clyde 1 ½ years old) in a painting by Rita McKinney.

A Boy Named Chuck

Gardner tells a sweet story that keeps Mia engaged while Chuck hunts for huckleberries, plays hike-and-go-seek, fishes, swims, and naps. I’m reminded of similar adventures with the kids in my neighborhood when I was much younger. We both enjoy the tale.

About the Author Amy Gardner Amy was born and raised in the Flathead Valley. She spent five years teaching kindergarten and preschool before beginning her journey of raising her own five boys alongside her husband, Eric. She now works part-time as a crop consultant serving farmers and ranchers in the valley. As a former teacher and mom of five, I asked Amy how things have been with quarantine during the pandemic. She said, “I am extremely thankful we live in an area where the kids can spend considerable time outside playing, riding bikes, and doing farm chores. I won’t say homeschooling without preparation was fun, but we got through it.”

She offered this advice to other parents that might be having a difficult time coping, “Montana provides plenty of outdoor space where you can still practice social distancing. Get outside and explore new spaces! The Flathead Valley’s backyard couldn’t be more stunning!” She added that she loves fishing with the boys.

I told her that her Grandpa Chuck reminds me of Huck Finn. I asked what he thought about the story and she replied, “He LOVED it! We videoed me sharing the book with him for the first time and he laughed and enjoyed every bit of it. I will cherish that video forever. He kept exclaiming ‘I can’t believe you remember all of those old stories!’ He also really loved Rita’s illustrations! She did such a beautiful job bring it to life.”


Although this was Amy’s first children’s book, she’s already thinking about additional stories including her Grandpa Chuck as the main character. I for one hope she does!


oman.com  83


Fall Favorites, Embracing the Season. By Wright’s Furniture

After a long spring of catching up on to do lists and a busy summer of enjoying every moment of that wonderful weather, autumn offers a chance to take stock and recharge. Fall also offers an opportunity to change the feel of your home to embrace the best that the season has to offer. Here at Wright’s, we have gathered a collection of our favorites to help inspire you to enjoy this season to the fullest.

A fall season color palette can be easily achieved with warm natural colors. Shades of brown, taupe, green, ivory and cream should be favored and consider adding accents of rust, burgundy, orange, yellow, navy blue, and other rich earthy tones.


86 406


Customize design your seating to fit any style and space. Choose from a vast variety of sizes, frames, fabrics, leathers, finishes and decorative accents. From standard seating to a plush comfort down many comfort options are available.


Replace seasonal summer florals with branches and autumn colored florals in your vases. Place pinecones and acorns in bowls and add many cozy layers of blankets and toss pillows to enhance fall textures to any room. Decorative teak wood bowls, pumpkins, dried corn, harvest themed patterns and soft plaids can create a beautiful impact. You can also add other elements from nature, either real or faux, such as feathers, furs, antlers and leathers.

-All the featured pieces as well as many other options are available at Wright's Furniture Store in Whitefish6325 HWY 93 South, Whitefish, Montana 59937 | 406.862.2455 | Open Daily |Free Local Delivery | Free Design Services | www.wrightsfurniturestore.com



oman.com  87


88 406


201 Central ave. whitefish Montana 59937 - 406.862.3200




It’s all in the details

Brooke Nick

By June Jeffries Photography by Carrie Ann Photography

There is a reason couples travel across the nation to get married under the big blue canopy of Montana sky but when you are born and raised in God’s country there is no better place than home to say I do.

Brooke and Nick grew up blocks from one another, they had mutual friends, both played basketball in high school but they didn’t start dating until after graduation when Nick went to the University of Montana to play for the Grizzlies and Brooke started Nursing school. After 6 years of dating, two undergrad diplomas and a year of living in Phoenix, Arizona, where Nick was enrolled in the accelerated Physical Therapy doctorate program and Brooke worked as an RN in the Cancer Center, that Nick dropped to one knee during a visit home. 


Everyone knew the day would come but it is funny how thrilled a group of wedding pro-

92 406


fessionals can get excited when ‘one of their own’ is getting married.

Brooke’s mom (Lynn Malmberg) is a wedding planner as well as the owner of a rental company and did I mention she owns the local bridal store? It’s true, but none of that seemed to matter because everything felt unusually brand new. The first hour was filled with congratulatory hugs and words of best wishes but it didn’t take long before a whirlwind of ideas were twirling and swirling around the happy couple because it was August and we knew we would be hard pressed to find a venue for the following summer. (As you likely know, Montana venues book up quickly because the season is compressed.) We needed a venue large enough for 250 guests, somewhere unique and above all else a place where everyone could dance the night away.  Boot Jack Ranch was a relatively new venue to the Montana wedding scene; it had been on Lynn’s radar for a while and as luck would have it, it was available. 

Location Bootjack Farm in Whitefish Montana

Summer 2019

love} stories

Brooke and Nick grew up blocks from one another, they had mutual friends, both played basketball in high school but they didn’t start dating until after graduation.



oman.com  93

love} stories


needed a venue large enough for 250 guests, somewhere unique and above all else a place where everyone could dance the night away.

If you’ve planned a wedding, you will know that the planner is the maestro leading the orchestra; everyone and every detail must come together in perfect harmony. It’s not enough to secure the venue. Then it’s the photographer, videographer and music regardless of whether it is a live band or a DJ. It’s an act for a skilled juggler. We crossed our fingers, made the list and checked the boxes twice. Everyone was a go. 


94 406


We hit the ground running, a year seems to be plenty of time but it’s gone in the blink of an eye: the planning process, the dress, the details, the bachelorette party (Nashville with 11 bridesmaids) and the bachelor party (Vegas with 11 groomsmen), bridal showers, and more details: a new custom built champagne wall and donut bar for the special couples - believe me when I say "it’s all in the details”…. a picture is worth a thousand words! Special thanks to Carrie Ann for her amazing photography (www.carrieann-photography.net) and Lynn at Empress Tents and Events (www.empresstentsevents.com).

Rochelle Lombardi

Going To The Sun Gallery

Daniel Parker

Reg Parsons

Rochelle Lombardi

proudly presents original Bronze Artists, Rochelle Lombardi, Reg Parsons and Daniel Parker

Profile for 406 Woman

406 Woman Vol. 13 No. 2 Business  

406 Woman Vol. 13 No. 2 Business

406 Woman Vol. 13 No. 2 Business  

406 Woman Vol. 13 No. 2 Business

Profile for 406woman

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded