#IAmLOVE

I am not afraid.

I do not fear my brother or my neighbor or those who are different from me whether in my hometown or halfway around the world.

I’m told that I trust too much, too easily, too freely. I’m told I’m naïve because there are people in the world who will hurt me for no reason other than that I’m not them. But I’m not naïve. I know the world isn’t all sunshine and unicorns. I know that not everyone who populates it is Mother Teresa. I know the world can be harsh and the people in it cruel.

But I’m not afraid.

I’m not afraid because, when I was dying in the mangled remains of a wrecked car, a stranger stopped and held my hand until the ambulance and fire crew arrived to cut me free. I’m not afraid because random people I’ve never met in person reached out through the magic of social media to show me love, compassion, and support when my father died. I’m not afraid because a Muslim family who didn’t know me offered me comfort and support at a time in my life when I was hurting and needed it most.

On a larger scale, I’m not afraid because I see people rushing in instead of away in the face of tragedy. People helping instead of leaving others to suffer.

Every.

Single.

Time.

And I see people doing so despite danger to themselves and without regard for their own comfort. I see people helping each other and looking out for each other, even when there will be no reward or recognition.

I am so sad after hearing about what happened in Paris. It is horrible in a way that it would be impossible to convey with something as inadequate as words. It can only be felt, and I think we all feel it. I can’t speak for you, but I feel it when I think about the attacks on Friday and when I hear about shootings in Oregon or Kenya. I feel it as strongly when I hear reports about bombings of mosques as I do reports of church bombings. I feel it so strongly in so many other things that I hear every day that I have to limit my exposure to the news. I am blessedly sheltered from the experience of what the world can be, but the media is very sure that I know what the world is like.

But I am not afraid. Fear is not my default setting.

My default setting is love. It’s my nature, yes, but I also choose it, especially in the face of what looks like proof that I should choose otherwise.

DefaultSettings

On Facebook since Friday, I have seen a lot of people changing their profile pictures to display the blue, white, and red of the French flag. It is a beautiful way to show support for a grieving nation. But the problem is so much bigger than Paris alone.

I saw a poem, today, by Warsan Shire that brought me to tears. It said, “later that night, I held an atlas on my lap, ran my fingers across the whole world, and whispered, ‘where does it hurt?’ It answered, everywhere, everywhere, everywhere.”

All I can think when I read that is that we are doing this to ourselves.

I have said this before, but it bears repeating over and over and over again until we all understand it and know it all the way through our souls: There is no “us” or “them.” That is the road that has led us to where we are right now. That thinking has led us to closed minds and hate and acts intended to punish and terrify for no other purpose than to punish and terrify those who are not “us.”

So this time I’m shouting it and hoping I will be heard.

THERE IS NO US AND THEM! THERE IS ONLY US!

It’s just us. We are all connected and we are all related. So I’m proposing a new picture and some new hashtags:

IAmLOVE

 

#JeSuislAmour because I am Paris.

#AnaAlhubb (#أناالحب) because I am Beirut and Baghdad.

#MainHoonPyaar (#मैंहूँप्यार) because I am India.

#MimiNiUpendo because I am Kenya.

#WatashiWaAiDesu (#私は愛です) because I am Japan.

#SoyAmor because I am Mexico.

#IAmLOVE because I am everybody, and I am everywhere, whether they get mentioned in the news or not. I am Muslim and Jewish and Christian and Pagan. #IAmLOVE because love is the only thing that can can change fear and hate. #IAmLOVE because I choose it, and I am not afraid.

#NoUsNoThem

You are love, if you will choose to be.

IAmLOVE

Downloadable image proportioned for use as a Facebook profile photo. (On a computer, right click, and select “Save image as…” On a phone, touch and hold, then choose “Save Image”)

Incredible People

a-to-z-letters-iWhen I first jumped into social media, I skipped MySpace altogether and went straight for Facebook.  I did it for the games.  I kept my friends list pretty small and limited mostly to “real-life” friends and family.

I mentioned before that my husband is a cop.  Cops are – both by nature and by training – suspicious of everybody.  Most of them have a motto: “In God we trust, everyone else gets run NCIC” (that’s the National Criminal Information Center database for those non-cop types out there).  I often pick up on his tendencies, so I was pretty suspicious of social media and its informational free for all.

But as I went on, I got more comfortable.  I started learning more about what to watch for and ways to protect myself.  Then I started to get a little brave.

I joined an author’s group – Where Writers and Author’s Meet – and I started to talking to complete strangers (if you are as introverted as I, you know what a big deal this is; if you are an extrovert – go ask one of your intro friends – I’m sure they’ll explain it to you).  We connected over a shared  interest and shared struggles like plot holes and character arcs and publishing questions.

I met some incredible people!

I met Virginia, who writes sci-fi and is dedicated to helping other writers find their way.  I met Victoria who loves science and religion and discovering all the wonders the universe holds.  I met Stuart who is one of the silliest, quirkiest guys I know and is always there to make me smile.  I met Jim, editor, teacher, and author who is always willing to offer any help he can.  And Morgan who lives and breathes poetry, dancing, and joy for life.

Encouraged by my initial success, I decided to join another group – one a bit way outside my comfort zone (an even bigger deal than meeting other writers) because I wanted to research magick and its uses for my writing work in progress.

I met Kat, who has an adult autistic son, and I am blown away by her strength and devotion.  I’ve seen her struggle with her life’s ups and downs, and I’ve shared her joy as she came out the other side.  (I’m crying a little right now because I am so in awe of her.)

Through an argument over our differing beliefs, I became friends with Tammy who has, since then, been one of my greatest supporters and has become the unofficial head of my cheering section.

I met Ivy – an amazing witch and Faerie friend who has answered my incessant and obsessive questions about the Faeries.  Click her name to see her blog, and she’ll tell you all about them, too.  I must not neglect to mention her Faerie friends as well.  Through her, I met them (in a manner of speaking), and they have been most helpful as well.

I have met teachers and students of many arts, crafts, and sciences.  I’ve met artisans and artists.  I’ve reconnected with incredible people from my past and with members of my own family.

I’m still careful with what I share on social media because you really never know who you’re going to meet.  I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’ve become anything even resembling an extrovert (even on a social media level), but I’m really glad I stepped out of my comfort zone.

Gardens for Schools

School GardensMy good friend Morgan Dragonwillow recently introduced me to the idea of school gardens.  The idea is like that of a community garden, but in this case, the community is the students.  The kids plant the seeds, weed, water, watch nature unfold, and ultimately harvest the fruits of their labors.

It’s an idea so simple and beautiful, and so obvious I can’t believe that every school doesn’t do it.

There are so many benefits:

  • Kids learn teamwork as they work together to accomplish a goal
  • Learning is hands on, and there’s none of that, “Where am I going to use this in the real world?” stuff.  A garden is the real world.
  • Gardening is active.  It’s real exercise.  (I was never athletic.  I hated sports and gym class.  I would have loved a garden.)
  • Kids are more likely to try new, healthy foods when they have a hand in growing those foods themselves.
  • There are numerous opportunities to apply classroom learning from science and ecology to math skills, following directions, responsibility…

The list goes on.

If you are interested in learning more, and maybe even in working with your local schools to start a school garden project, Here are a couple of links for more information:

And please like and share the Gardens in Schools Facebook page.  Morgan has been posting links to lots of great information for schoolyard gardens.

It doesn’t matter where in the world you are or how big or small your school.  All kids can benefit from the things they can learn in a garden.

 

Faeries, Flappers, and Flights of Fancy

LouiseBrooksFantasy has always been my reading genre of choice.  I think the first fantasy story I can remember reading on my own was called “Morgan Mine.”  It was one of those children’s books that comes with a moral at the end.  I was a girly five or six-year-old, and it was about a princess trying to catch a unicorn.  Yeah.  I was hooked.

I’m sure that I lived in my own little world before then.  You would have to ask my parents to be sure.  It hasn’t got any better since.  It seemed only natural when I started writing that I would write fantasy.

Unicorns were my favorite fantasy creature for years, at least until I discovered faeries that weren’t all adorable, tiny, butterfly-winged creatures.  I discovered Irish folklore and the Sidhe: beautiful (rather than “cute”), powerful, and not to be trifled with.  I was hooked again.

I mentioned yesterday that I have a wide range of greatly varying interests.  Another of them is history.  Not so much the dates and numbers stuff.  The culture stuff.  I love learning about the ways people thought and how they did things.

I’ve been through several “era obsessions.”  Ancient Egyptian, Gothic, Renaissance, Victorian…  Most recently, it’s the 1920s.  I love the glamour of it, especially the flappers.  I love their joyous embrace of everything the ’20s represented.  Of course, I do realize that it isn’t all as romantic as my imagination makes it out to be.  No era is what those of us in later generations think it was.  But the “Roaring 20s” marks a change in the way people thought and the things they embraced.  I think it’s all very fascinating.

Originally, I thought much of my writing would be modern fantasy and paranormal romance.  It’s very popular right now, and it comprises much of what I read for pleasure.  Then I started thinking about mixing my interests, and decided that maybe historical fantasy is more my cup of tea.  The first big bonus is that I get to research all those fascinating time periods I’ve been alternately obsessed with through the years.

I won’t go into what exactly my current works in progress are.  They’re always in a kind of shifting state until I lock down the details.  But I’m diving into the research head first, and I can’t wait to see what develops!

Eclectic

a-to-z-letters-eI love all different kinds of things.  If you ask me about my favorite anything, the answer you are most likely to get back is, “It depends…”

What’s your favorite color, Stacey?  It depends… Most of the time I like dark reds the best, but once in a while, I see a shade of blue so pretty it makes me want to cry.

Who is your favorite band/musician?  Well, most of the time it’s Bon Jovi… until I hear something by Meat Loaf on the radio.  Then he’s my favorite until I play a CD with the song “Drops of Jupiter” on it, and for a few minutes I can’t imagine loving anyone but Train.  Same goes for certain songs by the Goo Goo Dolls, Pink Martini, Dashboard Confessional, the Beatles, Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong, King Crimson, and any number of others.  (Kudos to you if you know who King Crimson is without resorting to Googlemancy!  And extra points if you are now singing one of their songs in your head, or – better yet – singing out loud.)

Favorite author?  What have you got?  I’ll take them all!

This same constant flow of favorites carries to almost every other thing: foods (Japanese, Mexican, good ol’ American-style pan-fried chicken…), styles of dress (vintage, retro, boho…).  I could go on, but I think you get the picture.

I’m guessing this all makes me seem a bit wishy-washy, but I disagree.  I think this tendency to be eclectic in so many different areas make me a better writer.

Some people say write about what you know.  I can do that because I love and have tried to learn about a lot of different things.  Others say you should write about what you don’t know.  I can do that, too, because there’s so much out there just waiting to be added to one of my “favorites” lists.  All I have to do is discover it!

Of cops, corgis, and cookies

Rabbit

See what I mean? Cuter than any creature has a right to be.
And by the way – corgis are bred to be herding dogs. You know sheep, cows… Notice how his finely bred instincts have taken over to keep the cow where it belongs…

I had a whole list of ideas of what I could write about for letter C in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, and I had big plans about having my post up by mid-morning.  It would seem that life (and my own less-than-disciplined tendencies) had other ideas.  So this is kind of a “day in my life” post.

Those of you who know me are aware that my husband is a police officer.  Specifically, he’s a motorcycle officer.  They say women love a man in a uniform, and that chicks dig a bike.  Well, mine has a uniform AND a motorcycle.  I get the best of both.  But I digress…

He had to leave his motorcycle at the shop yesterday to have a bit of work done on it.  This morning (earlier than any person having a day off from the day job should be asked to drag out of bed) he talked me into driving him to the department so he could ride the motorcycle home…  Yeah.  That didn’t happen.  I got to go BACK into town to pick him up at 5 because the shop had to order a part.

In the between-time, I did a few errands (which, I’m sure you would agree always take longer than expected) and arrived home to discover that my dog – a Pembroke Welsh Corgi called Rabbit – had escaped the yard.  Again.  No big deal.  He always goes to the same neighbor’s house to play with their dogs.  So I went to collect him only to discover that he had been playing in the mud.  I wish I had taken a picture.  Even filthy, he’s cuter than any creature has a right to be.

Remember I said that my husband got me up too early?  After retrieving my wayward mutt from the neighbor’s house, I sat down with the idea of catching up on a bit of Downton Abbey before I got serious about the day’s writing and promptly became comatose dozed off.  I woke up with just enough time to straighten up a little bit and start a load of laundry before the aforementioned trip back to town.

And as for cookies… I’m off to bake some (now that I’ve done my writing assignment for today).  I have no great cookie secret.  I use the recipe from the Butter Flavor Crisco package.  You can find it here if you don’t already have it.

Breathe. Believe. Be.

a-to-z-letters-bSomething very interesting happened to me a few years back.  I realized one day that I am old enough to know stuff.  Not just stuff I read somewhere or heard from someone else.  I actually have enough life experience to back up what I know.  I’m not sure when that happened, but I suppose it happens to everyone eventually.

When I was 21, I was almost killed by a drunk driver.  I spent the following year in excruciating pain while I waited for my shattered leg to heal and relearned how to do almost everything without the use of my now-paralyzed right hand.

When I was 31, my husband and I lost almost everything we owned in a tornado.  We picked up what we could save, discarded what we couldn’t, and went forward from there.

People still ask me how I dealt with those things.  I learned to do three things.  I find these three things can get me through pretty much everything from daily frustrations like heavy traffic to tragedies that you always hope you never have to face:

1. Breathe

Take a deep breath.  Then take another one.  People have a tendency to hold their breath when something hurts (physically, emotionally, or in any other way).  Physical therapy taught me that you have to breathe through pain.  All holding your breath does is deprive you of air.  Hold your breath too much and you eventually pass out.

2. Believe

Believe that it’s going to be OK.  Believe in yourself and your strength.  Believe that God will handle whatever you can’t.

3. Be

Be calm.  Be brave.  Remember that ultimately nothing lasts forever.  Be aware of the big picture, but just work on the next thing that needs you attention.  Don’t try to take step number 327 when you’re still on step number 3.

And that’s it.  That’s my big secret to surviving the things that I could have allowed to crush me.  I don’t have any great, profound wisdom.  All I have is just three simple, little steps.

How about you?  What things get you through tough times and everyday struggles?  I would love to hear your insights.

A is for…

a-to-z-letters-a

few bricks shy of a load.  Which is what I must be, because I just signed up to do the April 2013 Blogging from A to Z Challenge.  It means a blog post every day in April, except for Sundays (time off for good behavior).  Each days topic starts with the next letter in the alphabet.

What better way to get myself into some good habits and to experiment with new topics and ideas?

So I may really be a few bits short of a byte…  A few clowns short of a circus… A few nuts shy of a fruitcake… A few shades beyond blonde… Or maybe just absolutely nuts…

But I’m going to give it a shot anyway.

And be sure to check out some of the other participants.  There are LOTS to choose from, so there’s something for everybody:

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Bear with me, Folks!

I’m working in some changes here.  I have plans in the works for some guest posters, some interesting new topics, and you’ll get to meet my YA novel collaborator!

What kinds of things would YOU like to read about here? Book reviews? Mythology? Care and keeping of magical creatures? Herbs and crystals?

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE comment below and let me know.
I would love to have your input!

Sometimes things go bump…

So sorry, Everyone! I haven’t been keeping up.

I’ve been on vacation for the last week, and while I have everything with me that I need, and I fully intended to get a couple of new posts up while I was away, it seems I came down with a major case of the vacation lazies.

So here’s a little something to hold you while I get back to what passes as normal for me…

Ghost stories!

I love a good ghost story! Not the gory, slasher, blood and guts stuff that passes for scary movies nowadays but ghost stories. Eerie occurrences, visits from the dearly departed, things going bump and all that.

Here are a few stories that some of my friends were kind enough to let me share with you. All true stories and all in their own words.

Enjoy!

The Golden Fleece Pub, York, England

Photo by Sandra Geddes
These two photos are of the interior of the Golden Fleece Pub in York, England. If you look up near the light in this photo, you can see a little orb hovering there.

Photo by Sandra Geddes

Photo by Sandra Geddes
Here’s another one of the Golden Fleece Pub with a bit of something in the foreground in front of the bar. Sandra and I can’t decide between us whether these are orbs or lens flare. What do you think?

A Last Visit

When my oldest daughter was 2, I had to wash cloths in the basement….it was an old, old house and kinda creepy down there. Anyway the washer and dryer were just off to the side of the stairs. The stairs lead straight up to the side door, where it turned, and then went on into the house. Anyway my daughter would sit at the bottom of the stairs while I folded and moved the laundry. All of a sudden, one day, she looked up the stairs and started talking to someone…you know answering them… like “good,” “I don’t know,” “yea,” so on and on. So I though someone was there even though I couldn’t hear anyone else talking. I would lean over and look up the stairs and see no one…nothing! Finally asked her who she was talking to. She pointed and said that old lady. This happened for a couple of weeks then just stopped…but every time I asked her who she was talking to I got the same answer…so I just started saying “Hi!” to the old lady, even though I never saw her. Found out awhile later that an old woman that lived in that house for years had died around that time. Guess she was just visiting her house one last time.

~ Yvonne M., South Dakota

A Haunted Hotel

Last Summer, my brother and his wife, daughter, her husband and their baby son went to stay in the Maldron Hotel in Cork Ireland.

There was not much room for the travel cot in my niece’s room but they moved some chairs and the little table and all was ok. My brother and his wife were in the room next door, which had a connecting door that was locked.

During the night my sister-in-law woke up and heard the baby crying and heard furniture being moved around. She was thinking to herself that she hoped her daughter would settle the baby and stop moving things so that she could get back asleep.

After a few minutes the noise stopped and she went back asleep. She awoke again to feel someone pushing her in the back. She thought it was my brother and told him to stop.

The pushing continued a couple of times more with more force until she shouted, “Will you stop pushing me,” and it stopped.

She thought nothing of it and fell back asleep. She did not remember the incident until they met for lunch with a friend of my niece who asked them where they were staying.

When they said the Maldron Hotel the girl said, “Oh, I see,” and had a funny look on her face.

My sister-in-law knew by her reaction that she knew something and asked her what it was. The girl told her that the Maldron Hotel was once the North Infirmary Hospital/North Charitable Infirmary and there was a cemetery out the back but they moved some of the graves to build the hotel.

That old Infirmary was shut down in 1987. There was a soup kitchen set up in Shandon for starving people during the Famine around 1846/7. The housing conditions in 19th century Shandon street, like all of Corks inner city areas, were abysmal and overcrowded. Sanitation was primitive and access to clean drinking water was limited. The streets and lanes were filthy, with human waste found along the gutters. In Feb 1847 the North Infirmary was converted to an auxiliary fever hospital because of the cholera epidemic and dysentery and other infectious diseases being rife in the city and county.

In the Hotel today, the floor that is said to be most haunted is floor 2 and the numbers of the haunted rooms are 318 and 319. There is a blank door in between those two rooms but no number on it. When people have opened the door of it, there was just very thick white wood nailed to the inside door. apparently it was that bad in that room that they had to bolt the door, and that the staff are nervous of the floor itself as well.

Apparently, noises like dragging furniture had been heard and people being pushed.

My sister-in-law remembered the events of the night and it dawned on her when she had been pushed in the back during night she had been facing my brother so it was not him who had pushed her.

She asked about my niece moving furniture during the night and had the baby been crying. They said the baby had slept all night and they had not been moving things, anyway all the rooms were carpeted so you would not have heard it.

They were all very spooked but remained in the Hotel for the rest of the weekend, and no further things happened.

Mind you, before going to bed they made sure that they had a good few drinks for (medicinal purposes only, of course) to help them sleep.

My sister-in-law wanted to swap sides in the bed the next night, but my brother (all 6 foot 3 of him), was too spooked to! He couldn’t sleep the next night, but she made sure she had enough brandy on board for a good nights sleep.

I understand that on different occasions some paranormal teams spent the night there to catch some ghostly goings on, but nothing happened. I think this happened to my sister-in-law because she was totally unaware of the history of the place, and she found a reasonable explanation for what she heard and felt.

~ Helen P., Dublin, Ireland

Renovations

This house [my sister’s] is located in Southern California. It was a four corner house, with a single room centered above the others for the second floor, built in the late 1920s, finished in 1930. In the walls were some news papers that appeared to be used for insulation dating to the period.

From the time she moved in, there were odd occurrences, you set something down and come back to find it moved, typical playing with electrics (lights, TV, etc.), the sound of music and glasses toasting.

As happens, when they began renos, things heated up. Shortly after my youngest niece was born she was sitting in the living room nursing. Her step-daughter was seated on the floor across the room, we will call her Emma and my sister Kailey.

While watching TV Emma, looks up and says “Quit pulling my hair!”

Kailey looking puzzled replies, “I’m not. I can’t even reach you.”

This repeats about three times. Kailey is befuddled, and Emma is growing more upset having her hair pulled. Emma pops up and starts to leave the room. As her foot crosses the threshold, a 2×4 board crashes through the window that she had been sitting in front of.

Kailey and I both felt the hair pulling was the resident ghost trying to get Emma to move. This is one of many occurrences at My Sister’s House.

~ Lisa C., Alberta

Double Exposure… Except it isn’t…

Here are two interesting photos from St. Augustine, Florida,  shared by my friend Morgan Dragonwillow on her blog. I’m using them here with her permission. Do pop over to her page for a visit! Leave a note, and tell her I sent you.

Photo by Morgan Dragonwillow
“I took several photos of this shop sign and every single one of them looked odd. Almost like double exposure only this is a digital camera.”

Photo by Morgan Dragonwillow
“Every picture that I took [of this tree] from this angle gave me the same results. None of these pictures have been doctored in any way. My camera seemed to be working fine and besides these few pictures I never saw it do this same kind of thing again.”

Shadow Person

We had just bought a house in July of 2005.. I never felt alone when I was there by myself… always felt like someone was with me. One night I did the usual routine of checking the windows and making sure the doors were locked.

My oldest daughter was asleep on the love seat in our room and my husband at the time was asleep. I just crawled into bed and tried to get comfortable when I got the huge feeling someone was in the house. Both my daughter and husband started tossing and turning like crazy, so I stared into the hallway feeling like someone was going to walk into the room at any moment. My hair stood up on the back of my neck and I could feel so much pressure in my chest I almost couldn’t breathe, and then a tall dark see-thru man size figure walked past the doorway and disappeared. Then, everything stopped like nothing happened.

It scared the crap out of me!

That was my first full bodied shadow person!! They don’t bother me now.

Once in a while I see them. I think my tall dark one is still with me. I have seen one like him from time to time in the old house. I mostly hear them and sense them around.. I have a lot of them that come and go from my house… well my old house anyway. Only a few seem to have come to the new one so far.
I don’t mind dealing with them.. I usually try to help them if I can.

~ Dee B., New York

A Protective Prankster

When I was very young, my Aunt and Uncle lived in a house in the outskirts of Abbotsford in British Columbia. It was a three story house on 3/4 acre of land. My sister and I spent a great deal of time with my aunt in the kitchen, which was on the main floor, and even more time outside.

As we grew older (around 10), we started to notice strange things. We would go to the bathroom and be locked inside, even though the door had no lock. We would go play in the living room to find that all the books on the bookshelf (which were always so lovely alphabetized by author) would be out of order, placed on the shelves in categories instead. Doors and windows would close even if they were propped open, and I would catch smoky reflections in the mirrors in hallways and the main living room. When going down the stairs into the basement, it always felt like someone was pressing my hand into the railing.

My Aunt always dismissed them as my Uncle playing tricks on us until one day…

We were all in the kitchen baking bread, save my Uncle who was in town with my dad. It was a hot summer day so the front and back doors were open (held so with bricks because the wooden door stops didn’t work, mysteriously) and the windows in the kitchen and dining room were propped open with wooden spoons. As my Aunt went to put the bread on the dining room table to rise, a wooden spoon came flying at her from across the room. Then another, and another. My sister and I went into the dining room to see what was happening and, since we were children, we told her it must be a ghost. She didn’t believe us, told us to stop telling stories and playing tricks, and took us into the living room. As we walked in, all three of us were witness to the books on her bookshelf sitting in piles on the floor, a few of them an inch or so from the ground.

My Aunt gasped, the books all fell into a scattered mess, and in the mirror on the wall I caught a glimpse of a man in a top hat, tie and vest walk briskly past with a huge grin on his face.

That night, after supper, I went to the bathroom to wash my hands. The water was unusually hot, like the cold wasn’t working, and it fogged the bathroom mirror. The name Charlie had been written on it. I thought nothing of it at the time, since that was also my Uncle’s name.

I found out later (in my mid-teens), from my Aunt, that a man named Charles had once lived in the house. He was a children’s doctor and scholar when the house had been built in the farmlands surrounding Abbotsford close to a century ago at the time (late 1800s- early 1900s), and he had died by falling down the stairs to the basement. Those stairs were directly in the centre of the middle floor, accessible from every room my sister and I ever experienced anything in.

Until my Aunt and Uncle divorced, Charlie played good-natured pranks on them and their guests, never intending harm, and I could always feel a grip on my hand on the railing whenever I ventured into the basement.

– Bobbi-Lee S., Alberta

‘SeeMore’ and a Visit from Granddad

When I was a kid, we had a poltergeist (a noisy ghost) that lived with us. He would play simple tricks if we did not pay attention to him every once in a while. He would throw dishes from the cupboard when you opened them (not the dishes from the front of the cupboard, but from the back of the cupboard, over the ones in the front). He helped me find my grandmother’s ring when she lost it when she was asleep.

We called him “Seemore” because we wanted to “see more” of him!

* * *

My grand dad passed away when I was in 5th grade, He had severe issues with his legs (jungle rot) and they gave off a very distinct odor, well, three weeks after he passed, I woke at 2:30 am (or something like that) and started for the restroom, I saw my grandfather in there (he always went with the light out, sitting down, and a cigarette in his mouth).

I said “Ok Hap, let me know when you are done.” Went back and laid down.

A few minutes later, I heard him hit the door to my room as he passed by. I said “Thanks Hap.” got up and went to the restroom. (the odor was very strong from his legs).

I finished up, washed my hands, and started back to my bed, then realized… My grandfather had passed away 3 weeks earlier. I could not sleep the rest of the night and had a very LONG day at school the next day

– Shade W., Ohio

I would love to hear your stories! Do you live in a house where things go bump in the night? How about visits from beyond? Please feel free to share!