All posts by CMLAdmin

Author of a dozen books available on, and other online bookstores.


My dad ain’t just the letter writin’ kind –
He’s rather let the women see to that;
He’s got a mess o’ troubles on his mind,
And likes to keep ‘em underneath his hat.

And p’raps because he isn’t very strong
On talkin’, why, he’s kind o’ weak on ink;
But he can work like sin the whole year long,
And, crickey, how that dad o’ mine can think!

When I set out from Homeville last July,
He didn’t bawl the way my sister did;
He just shook hands and says, “Well, boy, good-bye.”
(He’s got his feelin’s, but he keeps ‘em hid.)

And so when mother writes about the things
That I spend half my time a-thinkin’ of,
There’s one short line that every letter brings;
“Father will write, and meanwhile sends his love.”
“Father will write,” Well, some day p’raps he will –
There’s lots of funny prophecies come true;
But if he just keeps promisin’ to, still,
I’ll understand, and dad’ll know I do.

1918 Yanks poetry
Yanks 1918 – Dad’s Letters

YANKS – Copyright 1918 – FOREWORD

The verses that make up this little book have all been published in THE STARS AND STRIPES, the official newspaper of the American Expeditionary Forces. They have come in from the field, the back areas, the ports; they have been written on the eve of battle; the men who wrote some of them have paid the great price. They are the heart and soul of the American Army in France. It is their only claim to distinction. It is enough.


YANKS – Copyright 1918 – FOREWORD

“The verses that make up this little book have all been published in THE STARS AND STRIPES, the official newspaper of the American Expeditionary Forces. They have come in from the field, the back areas, the ports; they have been written on the eve of battle; the men who wrote some of them have paid the great price. They are the heart and soul of the American Army in France. It is their only claim to distinction. It is enough.”

Throughout the remainder of November, we will be posting excerpts from this amazing little 100-year-old book that is literally falling to pieces. It is time to share it, rather than just have it sitting on a shelf in a plastic bag. We will eventually make a slide show gallery of photos of all of the pages in the book.


Like silver bells heard in a mist,
Or moonstone echoes from some brook
Where silver birches wall a nook,
Or like sea ripples moon-lit kissed,

Or like a lake of silver ledges
Where iris water-lilies lave,
Or like some lark’s translucent wave
Of song above white hawthorn hedges,

The maiden ripples French to me;
But I am like an argonaut
In some mute agony of thought,
Lost in sound’s sweet tranquility.

ALFRED J. FRITCHEY, Camp Hospital 30

1918 military poetry
On Learning French
Alfred J. Fritchey, Camp Hospital 30

Spring Flows

As we worked to manage the springs literally flowing straight out of the ground the first Spring season we spent in our new home (Spring 11 approaching now), I decided to pound a small section of leftover PVC pipe into the bank above one of the seeps to see if I could get it to flow out the pipe. It did, and still does – every Spring – for several months, usually.

God provides many “signs” of Spring approaching. One of ours here on Mt. Snowberry is flowing water, straight out of the ground, in a dozen or so areas of our 38-acre mountainside property, even up toward the top of what you can see in the picture below. Our property ends where the sky meets the land.

You can see why we don’t “farm” our acreage!

There are spots during the Spring, where you will be walking along and step right into a water flow coming out of the grassy slope.

We have come to the conclusion, over the years, that this mountain is just one big crumbling rock with varying amounts of dirt on it. The mossy greens that grow around the springs are a unique and welcome pop of color as we transition from white snow to gray death to Spring.

Water lovers
Fertilizer in the making.

Spring seems to be early this year; although it is supposed to snow in a couple of days. The tender young grasses are beginning to poke through in this favorite deer trail that goes right over a rotting log left over from the wildfire that took most of the timber from our side of the mountain more than 50 years ago.

Water flows, in this endless cycle that God created; nourishing, enriching, carving, sustaining life – and soothing, as I sat and listened to the sound of the water arriving on the rocks below the pipe. Thanking Him today for His generous provision!

New RSVP Spelling and Vocabulary Grade 6


RSVP 6th Grade Old Hymns

We’ve been promising you the next study book in the RSVP Reading2Presentation series, and here it is!

Beginning with a carefully chosen set of lyrics from hymns 100+ years old, this 6th grade level spelling and vocabulary workbook offers the usual 18 weeks of study, with a suggested culminating presentation at the end of the 18 weeks.

Click on the book picture or go to the CML Bookstore tab and select RSVP in the pulldown menu for secure purchase through Amazon.

Email for information on discounts for orders of more than 10 workbooks at $8.00 each. We cannot sell bulk discounts through amazon, but can take payments with PayPal or credit card through PayPal and direct ship them to you.

The next book coming out in this series will be for 9th grade, and offers 18 short literary selections from the 1900s for the in-context study material. This book should be available by Fall 2019.

2018 Calendars Available

Christian Mountain Living is pleased to announce the completed publication of two calendars for 2018. Both are high-quality, full-color on 100# white card stock, wire bound for flush hanging on the wall. All of our calendars will include standard U.S. holidays.

The 2018 Selkirk Mountain Inspiration calendar contains 12 images, paired with Scripture, chosen from among the three SMI devotional books. In the case that a stored image was not of the appropriate size for the calendar, we have used a similar image with the scripture verse from the book.

The 2018 Fabulous Flowers calendar contains 12 floral images, some wildflowers and some garden flowers – or other garden plants – printed with a floral watermark background for a more “formal” appearance.

Although we will likely produce more than two calendars most years in the future, we began this venture with just two. You can preview and purchase them by clicking on the 2018 Calendars tab on this website.

Coming Soon – Original Photoart Calendars

Next weekend, we will post a new page and link to the calendars we will be offering annually. Our first 2018 calendar offering is Selkirk Mountain Inspiration 2018, a compilation of 12 selected devotional photos from the three books. The second will be all flowers. As we move through the next several years, there will be calendars exclusive to animals, mountain/forest scenery, birds, butterflies, sunrises and sunsets.

Selkirk Devotional Calendar
2018 Selkirk Mountain Inspiration Calendar

We look forward to the task of going through thousands of photos we have taken over the last 10 years and selecting the best ones to share with the world.

So, What’s a Salsa Kit?

It is not important to everyone – and that’s perfectly alright – but I get a great deal of personal satisfaction from growing, preserving, and cooking many of the foods that we eat through the year.

Although our freezer space is limited, and I cannot put up dozens of these, one of our favorite ways to preserve a God-provided abundance of tomatoes and peppers over the last several years has been the “salsa kit.” This collection of ingredients common to our favorite fresh salsa gets frozen and vacuum sealed, then popped back into the freezer for preparation later. (I freeze the kit IN the unsealed bag, then seal the kit – this helps the vegetables to hold their shape).

For us, each kit contains fully ripe tomatoes, bell pepper, hot pepper, onion, and garlic. What peppers we use varies, depending on what we have ripening at any given time. If I don’t have any bell pepper on hand, I will occasionally pack a kit without it and buy a bell pepper at the store when I know I am going to use the kit. Most of our kits are made with Early Girl tomatoes, but we also use Romas.

Because most of the time there are just the two of us, we make a small kit. You can make them whatever size fits your family or entertaining needs.

We use a variety of tomatoes and peppers, along with sweet onion and home grown garlic

This year, for the first time, I made several of the kits with the Sun Gold cherry tomatoes we grew. This single plant has produced an astounding quantity of larger-than-average, candy sweet fruit – much more than we can possibly eat. Some of them end up sliced and dehydrated – excellent – and the rest have ended up in the salsa kits – or directly into the mouth from the garden!

Salsa kit made with Roma tomatoes

To prepare the salsa, I empty the contents from the vacuum bag into a cake pan with some olive oil (you can use your oil of choice) and a splash of lime juice, then roast the vegetables in a preheated 350º oven for 30 minutes or until you achieve the doneness you prefer.

Once the components are finished roasting, pull the pan out of the oven and let it cool a few minutes; then toss it all in the blender with a little more olive oil and lime juice, cilantro (either fresh or dried) and whatever spice seasonings you like in your salsa. We keep ours pretty simple and usually only include a little salt and pepper. Depending on your blender, you may have to cut the onion, garlic and/or peppers into smaller pieces before blending.

These kits can also be used to make a quick tomato sauce for Spanish rice or a pasta dish – or it makes a marvelous, flavorful tomato soup on a cold winter day. Yum!

Christian Votes Matter

As the primary election dust settles and candidates move on toward the general election in November, we at Christian Mountain Living would like to remind you that the votes of Christians truly matter.

Even at the local level – and maybe especially at the local level – it is critical to know who is running for office and what they stand for. City councils, county commissioners, school boards, mayors have the capability to change towns for the positive – or the negative – for decades.

Although we do not live in the city limits and cannot vote for her, our family is supporting local mayoral candidate, Dorothy Knauss – the current mayor – for re-election. Dorothy is a mature Christian woman with a wealth of knowledge in municipal government, finance and city management and a heart to make our little town the best possible for the people who live in the area now – and for those who will come in the future. Her record of successes in 20+ years of serving her community in various capacities stands for itself.

We are pleased to be able to assist with Dorothy’s website, and support her in every way possible.

Jessica Rose

When it came time during my first marriage to think about having children, I decided in my mind that I wanted all boys. Having grown up a tomboy, and being a hunting and fishing enthusiast – and never a ribbons and bows girlie girl – it just made sense to me that I would be better at – and have more fun – raising sons.

Somewhere along the way, after two handsome and amazing sons were born to me, my poetic heart chose to express some thoughts on what a girl child of mine would have been like, had God had a different idea about the gender of my children.

There have been those over the years who have asked me whether Jessica Rose was a miscarried pre-born child, and she was not. She is a wistful figment of my imagination, and only God knows where the poem originated. Had there been a girl child born to me, her name would have been Jessica Rose – the Rose being for my Grandma Rose Hedberg (who was an “adopted” grandmother-of-the-heart and not a relative). Jessica would have been shortened for daily use to Jessy – and she would have been Jessy Rose!

Gretchen Slinker Jones poetry
Jessica Rose

Save that Salmon

Salmon is good for you, most nutritionists will agree. We only buy U.S. wild harvested salmon for our family; you should research and make your choices based on the information available.

Because we’re on a budget, as most of you probably are, we try to catch Alaska wild-caught salmon on sale at the local chain grocery store and buy it in bulk. Having lived in Alaska for many years, we’re pretty good at vacuum sealing packages of salmon for freezing.

Perfectly cooking salmon involves having pieces of a similar size and shape packaged together, which typically leaves some thin ends and trimmings. I package those together and label them “Salmon Scraps” to be used for a salmon “salad” or dip like we did this week.

You can cook these scraps in a variety of ways, but I typically toss them into a little coconut oil in a small cast iron skillet and stir them until they are done, but not overdone. This can even be done a day or two before you intend to serve it, because it will be a cold preparation.

Although I vary my recipe from time to time, I typically break up the cooked, cooled salmon in a bowl and add finely diced onion and celery, along with whatever spices we feel like at the time.  Sometimes we make it with homemade mayonnaise, and sometimes we take the easy route and use ranch or bleu cheese dressing. Most of the time, we use some kind of spicy seasoning and lemon pepper. Thyme, basil or dill can be substituted successfully.

In the case of our last “batch,” we ate it for lunch with toasted thinly-sliced bread and homemade cream cheese several days ago. There was a small bowl left, which I saved and today added a finely chopped hard-boiled egg and fresh-picked jalapeno pepper to make it stretch for the two of us for a light lunch. We served it with crackers, avocado slices and sliced fresh orange.

Who would have thought that the “ugly” scraps of the salmon filets would provide so much delicious nutrition? Stewardship of God’s provision includes using every bit of food that we can to fuel our bodies for His service – and to waste as little as possible by planning ahead.