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Buffalo Family Sees Support From Community After Triplets’ Illnesses

in News
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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Jalissa Olsen of Buffalo has only held all three of her triplets once since they were born in late November.

It was about two to three weeks after they were born.

“It just seems like we haven’t been able to catch a break,” Jalissa Olsen said.

For the last month, the Olsen family has experienced a series of unfortunate events, including two members catching the coronavirus, that have left all of the triplets in the hospital at one point or another.

But during the turbulent times, friends, family and the Olsens’ surrounding community have chipped in with all types of support, from financial to emotional and more.

Normally, the arrival of a new baby (not to mention three at once) is a joyous time, one filled with bonding time and showing the tiny human what the much larger world is like.

The Olsen family has not quite had that. Well, they haven’t had it at all.

First, Jalissa Olsen caught the coronavirus in mid-November, which meant her husband, Josh Olsen, also had to quarantine due to his exposure. Thankfully, she only had mild symptoms, but her pregnancy with triplets was already considered high-risk.

Other than some issues with high blood pressure, Jalissa Olsen really had no complications with the pregnancy.

The couple also has two other children, a 12-year-old and three-year-old.

Then, just a couple days after Jalissa Olsen recovered from the virus, she gave birth to three beautiful babies: Everleigh, Everett and Aspen.

However, not long after the babies were born, the tides began to turn.

“It’s really been a wild ride for us,” Josh Olsen said.

First, doctors couldn’t find a vein in Everleigh to give her an IV line, so they used one in her belly button. However, the IV fluid perforated her vein, so the liquid began to fill her lung cavity and her kidneys began to fail.

Everleigh was life-flighted to Denver from Billings, where she was born. Jalissa Olsen accompanied her daughter with only the clothes on her back and her purse, not knowing when she might be home with her other children and her husband.

While in the hospital in Denver, Everleigh also contracted the coronavirus, but like her mother, only experienced mild symptoms. She made a full recovery, but there were concerns early on that the baby could die.

So, the family went back home with the triplets, hoping for a quiet holiday.

But then, the second triplet, Everett, got sick with Group B strep, a blood infection, two weeks ago. This also sent him to the hospital in Billings, back to the NICU, where he was put on a round of antibiotics for 10 days.

On Monday morning, the Olsens were picking up Everett from the hospital in Billings and were making their way back to Buffalo.

However, their story of illnesses wasn’t quite done.

On Christmas, the third triplet, Aspen, began displaying signs of illness, not unlike what Everett displayed before he got sick with the blood infection.

“We took her in and she coded at the hospital, and I think she flatlined for about seven minutes,” Josh Olsen said. “They resuscitated her at the hospital in Buffalo and then life-flighted her to Billings. I mean, my wife was in the room with Aspen when her heart stopped.”

Once at the NICU in Billings, Aspen also developed GBS like her brother. However, she has been recovering well and her parents are hoping to bring her home Jan. 4.

“It’s hard, because we’re taking two babies home and leaving one behind,” Jalissa Olsen said. “We felt like we were so close to the end, but now we’re not.”

The Olsens admitted that it would be easy to throw their hands up in the air and break down, but the support of their family and community in Wyoming and Montana have kept them going.

One friend created a GoFundMe for the couple before the triplets were born, but it has become significantly more helpful in recent weeks with all three of the babies being so sick and the hospital bills beginning to mount.

They have also seen support through their social media accounts and various parenting groups of which the Olsen are members.

“I don’t have time to fall apart right now, because everything is still happening around me,” Jalissa Olsen said. “We have to keep going.”

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Bringing back Wyoming’s grand Cowboy Carousel

in News/Community/Tourism/arts and culture
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Arnette Tiller of Buffalo, Wyoming is leading the charge to restore the world’s only cowboy and indian carousel and return it to operation in downtown Buffalo.

The Buffalo Carousel Project is working to repaint, restore and reopen the carousel for visitors and the community members alike.

Dubbed the Cowboy Carousel, all its horses were crafted and painted by local artists. The carousel itself originally ran in Ocean City, New Jersey starting in the 1920s at Gillian’s Play Park.

Thousands visit Buffalo for ‘Longmire Days’

in News/Travel/Tourism
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By Wendy Corr for Cowboy State Daily

Even though it’s been three years since the last new episode of “Longmire” aired, thousands of people last week visited the town that inspired the setting for the books written by Ucross author Craig Johnson.

An estimated 10,000 were in Buffalo on July 18-21 to celebrate the eighth annual “Longmire Days,” an event created to commemorate the popular television and book series.

Fans from around the world flock to Buffalo for the autograph sessions with stars from the show, parades, a craft show, talent show and classic car show that highlight the weekend.

Damaris Miller of Colorado said her love of the show will keep her coming to Buffalo every year even though the show is no longer in production.

“You just feel like you know the characters and you feel like if they walk on the street, you would just feel like you were friends with them,” she said. “You know their history, you know their life. And as you can see from Buffalo, it’s crowded from people who just love the series. I plan on coming every year.”

Buffalo residents enjoy the boost to the local economy that comes with the annual celebration.

“It enriches us by bringing together lots of different folks who come here and appreciate the beauty of where we live,” said Tacia Kolb of Leadership Johnson County.

The streaming service Netflix continues to air past episodes of “Longmire.”

The Busy Bee: Homestyle food in Longmire country

in Travel/Food and Beverage
Busy Bees Cafe
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When a restaurant is prominently mentioned in a popular western book and television series, you have to reckon it offers up some pretty good food.

Buffalo’s Busy Bee Cafe, a regular stop for fictional western lawman Walt Longmire, does not disappoint.

The Bee has occupied the space between the Clear Creek and the historic Occidental Hotel since 1927, offering up homestyle breakfasts, lunches and dinners to both locals and visitors on Buffalo’s Main Street.

Ucross author Craig Johnson created Longmire’s fictional county of Absaroka and town of Durant by borrowing elements from Johnson County and Buffalo, including the Busy Bee. Johnson’s books often describe Longmire walking into the Busy Bee and asking for “the usual,” which is now an available option on the restaurant’s menu (eggs, hash browns, toast or biscuit and a ham steak as an upgrade from the usual bacon or sausage).

The atmosphere is friendly, the cafe cozy (seat yourself at one of the dozen or so tables) and the food is just what you’d expect from the center of cowboy country: hearty, tasty and plenty of it.

The standard breakfast of two eggs, bacon or sausage, hash browns and toast or biscuit is terrific, with the star of the plate being the homemade biscuits. Light and flaky, they are a perfect accompaniment to the meal.

Three-egg omelettes are also available and cooked to perfection, with the fluffy eggs providing a great shell for generous helpings ham, cheese, vegetables or anything else you might desire.

My personal favorite was the breakfast burrito: eggs, hash browns and your choice of bacon or sausage all wrapped in a flour tortilla and smothered in country sausage gravy. Finishing it is no small feat.

Top it all off with friendly, attentive service, and you’ve got the kind of diner you would expect to hold a position of honor in western literature.

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