Sunday, August 29, 2021

Harvesting Faith and Good

Soul restoring Montana style

The one thing that I learned from being on the farm for so many years, is that despite your best efforts, sometimes things don’t go as planned. And perseverance and faith are your best friend, along with a good dose of hope. That learned life skillset has served me well and as I continue to learn new lessons from less than desirable circumstances, there are blessings and silver linings to be found.

And the reason I am sharing this is because of a setback on a goal of mine.  Without getting into the weeds too much, my application to host other events at my barn was denied by the Planning & Zoning Committee.  All the events Rod & I had dreamed about hosting were now in ashes.  The application hearing & process as a whole was basically awful and I was unprepared for mudslinging at me by one distant neighbor. (I now have even greater empathy for politicians who endure name calling). Anyway, after the dust settled and a recent soul restoring trip to my beloved Montana, a new dream is in the making.

Let me share my story on the magic of when things don’t go quite as planned.  After the P&Z hearing, I was feeling a bit off balance and said to my “Mr. Right” that “this girl’s soul needs Montana”. His response was, let’s go!  As Rod described a leisurely trip up Lolo pass and on over to Philipsburg (P-burg), I could hardly wait.  Bless that sweet man of mine.  Anyway, we arrived in Montana late afternoon and hungry. We were beyond disappointed that our favorite brew pub diner was closed… on a Wednesday of all things.  So after a quick bite at another place that wasn’t all that great, we discover that our hotel reservations were for Philipsburg, Kansas…. Not Montana.  Ugh. No hotel room was available in this cute little tourist town.   I was trying to not be glum as this evening was turning out not as I envisioned… so we decided to console ourselves by getting a beer at our other fav brew pub.   There the magic began, as we were sipping our adult beverage and getting a game plan, we struck up a conversation with another couple who didn’t live in P-burg, but spent a fair amount of time there. This couple were nothing short of being fascinating (she was an appellate judge in Ohio & he was a contractor building a small cabin here in Montana) and we felt like instant friends.  We head over to a different bar so the other couple could grab a bite to eat and (only in small towns) is a hoola-hooping contest in progress.  Out of the blue, a woman walks up to me and hands me the hoola-hoop, so I give it a try and win the contest. I guess I impressed Rod with my new found skill and got high 5’s from all the patrons…. Lol.  Basking in my new fame, in walks the mayor & owner of the beautiful historic hotel to find us as our new friends had called him after learning of our hotel situation.  He has a drink with us and says he has one room available with a king bed. Glory be! We follow him and the hotel is spectacular, the great room has comfy chairs, a wood stove and books that made you want to stay all winter and read your way through the room.  All the rooms were themed and we had a rustic style room decorated with skis and sleds and a divine plaid Eddie Bauer down comforter that you melted into on the chilly rainy evening.  The universe was putting just the right people in our paths and let me tell you,  I felt blessed beyond measure.  The next day we headed over to see my cousin Ginny & Scott with plans to see their fav Western themed dinner show in Jackson Hole, WY.  Family, music, good food… heavenly! On our way home, Rod & I do a day trip through Yellowstone and opt to spend the night in Virginia City, again another historic hotel and good conversation with the manager.  Getting to soak up the magic of Montana, spend quality time with beloved family…. this girl’s soul was filled up and I was ready to move forward as I felt there was just something better out there for me to do.  

Picture perfect in Jackson, WY

Barn envy

Yellowstone and Old Faithful, be still my heart

Once home, I connected with a lovely woman named Sara who sought me out and asked if I wanted to partner with her and do an antique show as this was also a dream of hers.  We plotted, planned and found a venue at the fairgrounds and now have two dates, the first will be a Spring event, April 2, 2022 and the second will be a Holiday sale November 12, 2022.  We’re starting to attract other cool vendors and I’m beyond excited!!!!

In the matter of a 3 weeks, I got my soul restored and a new events partner by trusting in a higher power and that Our CREATOR had something better in store for me.  The power of good people put in the right spot in the right time and seeing the magic of silver linings in situations that you didn’t plan for.

Again, those lessons learned from my time in Agriculture, this is an industry unlike no other. Besides feeding the world, I got to see firsthand how hardworking farmers/ranches paychecks depend on circumstances beyond their control – weather and the market.  This creates in you the power of faith and hope in all situations.  So no matter what speed bumps come up, I’m grateful to have gotten through them, I’ve prevailed and come out strong.  As for the barn, well we are blessed to have a large family and it will be the central point for our family gatherings, and that is  always a good thing.

Wishing you a very blessed Sunday.  Here is a special blessing I came across and want to share.  “May you always have enough happiness to keep you sweet; enough trials to keep you strong; enough success keep you eager; enough faith to give you courage and enough determination to make each day a good day”.  All my best, Gayle