I love ghost pics and videos. Ok, I know. They’re super easy to fake. I get it. That does nothing to diminish their allure.
Because some of them are real. How to tell the difference though is pretty tricky. I’m certainly no photography expert, however there are some quick and easy things to look for when you’re scanning a bunch of spooky pics late at night freaking yourself out doing research.
Easy stuff first – Orbs! They’re usually dust. Yes. If you have a pic with potential paranormal phenomena (try saying that fast!) most sites that do photo analysis do not even want to even look at orb pics.
Here’s what dust turned to orbs looks like.
These are faint and far away, but if you look close you’ll see more than just the three I’ve highlighted. But wait, it gets better.
So many ghosts! Nope, just so much dust stirred up from walking on that dirt floor. Your first clue is how many orbs are floating around. With this pic too, the more you look the more you see.
But sometimes an orb appears to be a genuine manifestation of spirit activity. A sizeable chunk of ghost hunting involves the use of technology – EMF meters, laser arrays, voice recorders – to name just a few. If we’re going to accept that discarnate entities have the ability to manifest through some manipulation of energy to affect these devices then it’s reasonable to presume that they could manifest as an orb in a photograph.
So what’s the difference? Look for:
A singular orb instead of a flock.
A distinct or unusual shape. Not perfectly round.
When I took the photos above I wasn’t trying to connect psychically with anything. In these two below, I sensed the presence of a spirit and asked them to manifest as an orb. This is what I got in response.
Ghosts? I took these pictures in a location that is notorious for spirit activity – Seattle’s Underground. While these two pics are both singular orbs, and I was getting a response psychically, it is still hard for me to say that yes, these are spirits manifesting. My sense is the top photo has more potential than the bottom picture. But I would not consider either of these good evidence.
Have I seen orbs that I thought looked genuine? Yes, taken by other people. Do a quick search and you’ll find them too. See if you start to get a sense for what is dust and what may be spirits. I have yet to take a really solid orb photo that I’m confident represents genuine paranormal activity. When I do you can be sure I’ll post it. Until then, I’ll keep trying…
Want to see some really good, unexplained photos? Check out here.
Have you taken pics of orbs, apparitions or other unexplained phenomena?
Or at least the start of one. How would you like to be paid to work in and staff a ghost town? The Bureau of Land Management wants YOU to come and work to help preserve the ghost town of Garnet, Montana.
According to this article from Wide Open Country (.com) Garnet was once a frontier mining town but has been “mostly abandoned” for the last century. In an effort to preserve the town the BLM put out a call for volunteers. Ok, they call it volunteer but then state a stipend is provided as well as a food allowance (sweet!). Huh, every volunteer job I ever had paid zip. Duties are described as giving tours and working in the gift shop. Taxing, very taxing. (I’m using my sarcasm font here. Just so you know.)
The best part – the freedom to explore after closing time and apparently lots of paranormal happenings have been experienced. Second best part, sleeping on site in a provided cabin is FREE! Sounds more like an expense paid vacation at Club Ghost Town.
I’d sign up, but down at the bottom of the article it says they’re no longer accepting applications because they’ve received too many. Ha! Actually I’m really happy and excited for them and the ‘volunteers.’ Sounds like a fantastic opportunity for paranormal investigators and kudos to the BLM for some really clever marketing to get the staffing they need.
It’s that most wonderful time of the year. No I don’t mean Christmas!
Halloween! Yep, you’re all nodding your heads and smiling right now. If you’re a paranomo-phile (yes, I made up that word) you love this time. The veil between the worlds thins out and we all hope for that contact, a brush with the beyond. Maybe you’ve lost someone special and you’d like just a little touch to show you they’re okay.
That’s what happened to me.
In the week or so leading up to last night I’d been seeing little black flashes out of the corner of my eye, especially in her favorite spots; on my shoes, on top of the couch. Magic was only 14, but I wasn’t ready to lose her. Oh, I suppose you never are ready to lose one of your fur kids. It feels like they take a piece of your soul when they leave. I’d lost Jasper two years ago but while Magic and her older sibling Sage were older kitties, they seemed to be in excellent health. Until I noticed she was losing weight, then I felt that tiny lump under her jaw. So little, I thought Sage bit her while they were playing. Except it got bigger, and in just under a month I was crying at the vet over my sweet little girl. She had bone cancer, a very fast, aggressive one. It had already destroyed her jaw. As soon as I saw her x-ray I knew I wouldn’t be taking my little girl home and I had to say goodbye.
Every scrap of clinical and spiritual knowledge in my extensive experience couldn’t ease my breaking heart. It was the right thing, the compassionate thing to do. I knew her little spirit was only transitioning over, and as she passed I watched her move out of her body and into the loving arms of my spirit guide, surrounded by my other departed pets. But I still missed my sweet editor kitty, and how she used to lay on my hands and “help” me write. My writing corner is just a little colder in the weeks and months since she passed. It hurts still to sit and work, and tears often spill when I prop my feet up on the foot stool under my desk where she loved to sleep while I worked.
But this week, I’ve felt her near, seen her little black body flash from place to place. She tapped on the shower door like she used to the other night, making it shake and rattle strongly, and I saw a black spot dash away around the corner. But as I sat down to write a Halloween blog, wondering which topic I should address I swept my feet up onto my footstool and pushed a heavy little furry body onto the floor. Magic wasn’t exactly a svelte kitty.
I see and sense spirits on a daily basis, but actual physical encounters with them are rare for me. As with every other time I have physically touched a ghost I didn’t think it was a paranormal encounter at first. My first thought was, When did Sage start sleeping in Magic’s old spot? I actually got up out of the chair and poked my head under the desk, calling to Sage. And before the skeptics can say he ran out the other side, my desk sits in a corner and the only way out from under it is past me. The space under the desk was empty.
I knew my little girl had come to visit again and my heart felt just a little lighter. Magic has been the most present of all my departed animal companions. About 4 or 5 days after I put her to sleep I was sitting on the couch crying, when amazingly, I felt paws press into my arm and phantom weight settle onto my shoulder. She loved to cuddle and would often snuggle onto my arm and shoulder where it rested on the arm of the couch. I waited a few moments, breathless to see if the weight would fade. Instead a slight vibration buzzed on the skin of my shoulder through my shirt. My ghostly kitty was purring! Although her body was gone her little spirit was still very much present and very happy to cuddle with me one more time.
Have you ever wondered if your pet has a soul? They do. Our animal companions are beautiful spirits, and to share a life with them is a magical blessing indeed.
A few weeks ago my friend Kim took me on a ghost tour of downtown Seattle for my birthday. On the tour we found out Spooked in Seattle also hosts ghost hunts for the public to participate in. Kim and looked at each other and didn’t really have to say anything, we knew we were going there next.
“Next” was an investigation on the USS Turner Joy, a decommissioned Naval Destroyer that’s also a museum. The Turner Joy is moored in Bremerton, Washington – just a short hop across the water from where I live in Seattle. Kim and I signed up for the overnight event – Saturday October 3rd to the morning of the 4th. You too can participate in Spooked in Seattle’s public ghost hunts by visiting their web page. The investigation on the 3rd was the last overnight event for the year, but they do have two-hour events listed for November.
I had no clue what to expect. Sure I bump into spirits all the time – it happens when you’re psychic. But I have zero experience when it comes to the technological side of the paranormal. Truthfully, I’m not very tech-y. I feel overwhelmed at the thought of having to ‘build my author platform’, and half the time I think Siri is smarter than me and plotting against me. You should hear how she says my husband’s name when I ask her to call him.
There were several pieces of equipment provided that night by Ross of AGHOST. EMF meters, a laser grid array, plus ping-pong balls to encourage the spirits to manifest and move something. I brought my own camera and digital recorder. On my phone I had a number of ghost hunting apps, but as I talked about in this post, the general consensus is that while you can sometimes get an EVP or actual EMF reading, the apps do not produce valid data.
We got there at 9 and met the group. There were about 20 or so people there for the two-hour event, but for the overnight there were just four other women in addition to Kim and I. I’m not sure which is a scarier thought – that there are ghosts on the ship or that the six of us would be crawling around the ship into the witching hours of the night. But after 11 that’s what it came down to, and I gotta say, the Turner Joy did not disappoint.
During the first two hours on the ship I picked up the energies of a spirit nearby in several locations, but nothing I could truly call definitive spirit contact. Kim and I both saw a shadow move on a wall of one of the berthing quarters where EVP’s and and other activity have been recorded. No one was in the immediate area that could have caused the movement, but neither did we catch it with the camera.
Later, when it was just the six of us for the night, Kim and I were alone in another berthing area. In this part of the ship an EVP from an earlier investigation caught the word “Sweetie”. As we sat there, talking to the darkness surrounding us, I noticed a clicking sound, repeating at irregular intervals. Looking up I saw this light flashing on and off.
The one hanging on the silver locker, just to the left of the word BURMA. I would love to say it flashed in direct answer to our queries. I really would, but I can’t definitively say that. I can say though, that we weren’t moving around and we found out after the fact that it was a motion sensor set to capture movement on the ladders behind us. We were pretty pleased though to just get some activity early on in the night.
But, as the night deepened it seemed that was all we were going to get. No knocking spirits had answered our queries, no obvious phenomena appeared on the pictures. Only time will tell if the recordings made will yield an EVP. (Yeah, I’m still going through those.) If you thought ghost hunting was glamorous, let me tell you it doesn’t get any better than this! Three tired women sitting at a table asking questions to thin, and kinda stinky, air. The smell of ship is unique, a little diesel, some musty fragrance and others I did not really want to identify.
Melissa had joined us from the other group of women after her friends retired for the night. At one point she left us briefly, taking a journey through a doorway and up a ladder. Kim and I leaned on the table across from each other, sagging just a little lower, our energy levels ebbing. My eyes slipped closed for just a moment and I considered laying my head down…
Then Kim let out a truly blood-curdling scream! I was awake now, standing up and hearing an answering cry from the doorway where Melissa had just descended back down the ladder behind me.
“What the &*^%?” Escaped my lips. Yes, I said a bad word. Maybe a few times. And then I doubled over laughing when I realized Kim had mistaken Melissa for an apparition.
Kim and Melissa were likewise bent over and we all belly laughed for a good minute or so. “I swear I thought she was going to come back from behind me!” Kim gasped. “It looked like she was floating! I didn’t recognize her at first!” Still laughing, we settled back and the table, now refreshed and ready to continue.
Maybe the spirits thought it was funny too, because after that we got more activity…but that’s going to have to wait for the next post.
Have you been on a ghost hunt? Have you tried to capture EVP’s or used other technological toys to capture paranormal phenomena? Tell me about your ghost adventures!
I’ve been talking to dead people for a very long time. It started when I was just a kid and I would see the old lady in my house. Over time I’ve developed my own inner system for communicating with the other side. But in the interest of full disclosure, it is just kinda all in my head.
It’s sort of the big elephant in the room, and the main way that skeptics and debunkers dismiss psychic phenomena. But I presume, since you’re here and all, that you’re okay with the whole psychic, telepathic, etc., experience. And until fairly recently, the only way to know if a spirit was around was either some sort of physical manifestation, or a psychic medium told you what the being on the other side was saying.
Enter technology. Modern ghosthunters have adapted devices to measure the electromagnetic spectrum and record voices that are not immediately audible to the humans present. In the early days these devices were rather large and bulky. Today you can buy a variety of apps to download on to your smartphone. Which I did before heading out on the ghost tour I did last weekend.
In my excitement I started randomly downloading apps that looked good, and then I went and did some research. A lot of the apps were rated as crap less than useful when seriously looking for paranormal phenomena. They all state plainly that they are strictly for “entertainment”. Remember how we creeped ourselves out with the Ouija board in dark closets when we were kids? And you were scared even though you were sure someone was really pushing that planchette? This is the new brand of that. Is it real? Hard to say. I suspect in the presence of other paranormal activity – knocking, orbs, apparitions – that a positive reading on these apps could be considered confirmatory. But if it’s just randoms bleeps on a screen with no other data, well, you have to be your own judge on that.
In this Wall Street Journal article, it describes how some pro ghosthunters think they work, and some don’t. Seems opinions can get fairly heated.
I’ll be the first one to admit I’m not very techno-savvy. I’m still surprised I manage to get blog posts up. But it was fun to play with the apps I downloaded, and I did find one in particular, Ghosthunter M2 by Jedasoft that has produced some surprising results. I saw a fair-ish number of positive reviews. It even has it’s own Facebook page. While the ones that liked it made a point to say that it couldn’t be used to produce viable scientific data, they noted that it could be useful to get a sample of spirit activity.
Now normally when I attempt to interact with the spirit realm, I take steps to protect myself. I’m not sure if it’s because I didn’t really expect the apps to work, or I was just lazy, but I started turning the app on at random times without engaging any of my spiritual protections. And I got a mixed bag of results – some blips on the screen, high EMF readings where there was no other source of EMF nearby, creepy digitized voices pronouncing random words.
I started to notice my senses tingling a little more than usual around my house. Yeah. I turned those apps on in my house and around my yard. I keep my home pretty clean spiritually. Usually negative entities don’t even bother because I move them on as soon as I detect them. This was definitely something of a darker aspect, and it was elusive. It hid from me when I actively searched for it, retreating beyond the borders of my yard.
The first night, my dreams were only vaguely unsettling and quickly faded out on waking. The second night it was a completely different story. This being attacked me in my dream, multiple times. The dream evolved through several scenes, and in each one a person was trying to do me harm. In each case the people would grab me and draw me toward them, attempting to pass the negative energies into me. In the last attempt, a woman pretended to know me, to be my friend. She drew me in close to give me a friendly kiss, but at the last moment I saw her eyes change to a weirdly pale light. For a flash, they went milky white. Behind her shoulder I saw a dark hooded figure appear and place it’s hand on her, lending her strength. A dark fog rolled out of her mouth and she stabbed one finger into the hollow of my throat in an attempt to distract me so this fog could move into me.
I woke with a start and could still feel the pain of her finger digging into my throat. My arms were crunched up protectively toward my face and throat and my muscles were still shaking and cramping from fighting against her pull.
So here’s the deal, I haven’t had a bad nightmare like this in a very long time. I’m not the best, most all-powerful psychic there is, but I have spent a good deal of time honing my skills. Let’s just say that I usually have sufficient protections that my dreams are typically untroubled by beings attacking me. This thing had gone right through those protections and had managed to attach itself to me.
Awake now, I scanned the room and saw it looking at my husband next. I quickly centered and grounded myself, called in my spirit allies and protectors and did the psychic equivalent of tapping it on the shoulder.
Hey. You’re really not welcome here. And what you just did was really rude. I told it. So I’m asking you to leave. Now.
Awake, I could see this being was just a small, confused creature. It wasn’t even fully human, more like just a fragment of some poor soul’s anger and pain. In short, it wasn’t very smart. All it knew was how to cause pain and terror, because that was all it had ever experienced.
When it realized I could see it, it went into The Scary Dance. This is something spirits will do when they’re trying to convince you they’re big and bad. Sometimes it works, because the spirit I’m up against is one of significant power. This little being dancing around my bedroom was hardly that. It’s gyrations were almost cute.
Let me tell you, spirits hate it when you’re only amused by their Scary Dance. They try harder.
Look, I told it, You have exactly two choices. I can help you. I can point you toward the Veil and help you get to the other side so you can find the rest of you and be healed. Or you can leave.
It laughed and gnashed phantasmal teeth and told me it was going to kill me.
Um, no, you’re not. I said. You’re going to make your choice. Cross over or leave my premises.
You can’t make me! It cackled. I do whatever I want.
You’re right. I can’t make you. But They can make it very uncomfortable for you to stay here.
When dealing with beings who project negative energies, it’s important to maintain your own center and calm. If you maintain your heart and mind in a loving space then the power these beings have is greatly reduced. Plus I had help.
“They”are my allies in spirit. Big, bright, beautiful beings who help me in my work. They manifested their presence in my room, and though the room itself remained dark the energies of love and light poured in. The little being took one look, squeaked in dismay and popped out of my awareness.
I did an energy sweep of my house, and my allies likewise assured me it was gone. Then told me using the phone apps had opened me up and called it in. Because I didn’t have all my usual protections in place it had found a weak spot to slip through.
Have you tried any of the ghost hunting apps? Been on a ghost tour or a ghost hunt? I’d love to hear your experiences.
Hi there! Notice anything new? I know, I know, I let this blog just sit for a very long time, but it’s time to get it up and running again. If you’ve been with me for a while, you know I kind of bounced around on topics – animals, training, ghosts, conspiracies, gardening. Yikes! It was a mish-mash of everything I love, but I figured it was time to give my writing and blogging better focus and direction.
I’ve given the blog a whole new look, and I’ve activated my Facebook Page – go ahead and give me a Like.
Now, here goes. I hope you’ll stick with me.
Serena Dracis is all about the paranormal. Supernatural. Spiritual. Whatever name or label you like, if it’s strange or unusual, I’m going to write about it. Hold on, it’s gonna get weird in here. But you like that, don’t you?
You can expect to see posts about UFO’s, alternative histories, conspiracies and ghosts, like this one:
I like how the apparition just casually walks right through the gate. And how appropriate is it that this spirit is walking away from the Haunted Mansion? Maybe it’s break time and the ghost is off to see other parts of the park?
I used to work at Disneyland and heard about the ghosts supposed to haunt the Happiest Place on Earth during my two summers there back in the ’80’s. I never saw or heard anything personally but I heard about the ghost on Space Mountain that would open doors and the guy that died swimming from Tom Sawyer’s Island. Speaking of the Island, I always got a creepy vibe in those fake caves.
If you loved the posts on dogs, training and gardening, check out my “sister” blog here. My new look and focus should make it much easier to find the posts you love.
How about you? Do you love the paranormal? Have you had a ghostly encounter? Have you seen a UFO? Do you know there’s more to this life than what we see with just our eyes? You are definitely in the right place. Let me know what you’ve seen and experienced in the comments. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!
The tour guide was only half kidding when she said “We aren’t responsible if any of the ghosts follow you home.” It brought back memories of The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland. I could almost hear the sonorous tones of the heavy male narrator’s voice from the ghostly Disney ride override the tour guide uttering the same phrase. She added cheerily, “but if they do, please call us, we’d love to come investigate!”
No need, the ghostly lady in the back seat wasn’t the first to hitch a ride with us, and I’m sure she won’t be the last. I can see and talk to the dead, and help them cross the veil to the other side if they are earthbound. Hub and I were almost home when she made her presence known. Thin, willowy, but too heavily scarred by sorrow to be called beautiful, the dead lady kept looking longingly at my husband from where she perched behind him in the car. “My husband? Where is my husband, and my baby?” She asked repeatedly. She was confused, didn’t understand how she was suddenly in this strange carriage, didn’t completely understand she was dead, and far out of her own time.
It took a little effort to get her attention, she was fixated on Hub, mistaking him for her long dead husband. I reached out, snapping my fingers in front of her face and calling sharply to her. When I got her to finally look at and respond to me, I got her story in an instant. Husband and baby both sickened and died. She wasn’t sure of what, just showed them to me as feverish and coughing. She answered “Marie” when I asked her name, but kept reaching toward Hub with her insubstantial hands. Her pain was a tangible presence in the car, she’d died of a broken heart.
“He’s not your husband. He’s mine. Your husband and baby are dead, and you are too.” She turned big, pale eyes to me, uncomprehending. “You are dead. You’re a ghost, stuck here on the earthplane.” I told her. By this time we had arrived home. Hub got out of the car, leaving me alone in it after he parked it in the garage. Just me and the ghost. Outside the car door, my chickens began to stir and cluck uneasily in their darkened henhouse. It felt dark and heavy in the garage, as if the lights weren’t bright enough.
“I miss them so.” She whispered. “Why can’t I find them? How did I get here?” She was full of questions. I don’t know how other mediums communicate with spirits, but I find it easier and truer if I stick to emotions and images with minimal words. I show them what I mean. So you’ll have to forgive me for translating some of those images, emotions and thoughts into sentences. It makes an easier read and description of something that is sometimes difficult to transpose into words.
I also work very closely with my guides and guardian spirits. I ask them to come close and aid the spirits I work with, easing their transition across the veil to home. There in my garage, sitting in my car, I called in my guides and asked them to help locate this woman’s loved ones on the other side. Marie continued to stare around the car and darkened garage, she was starting to get frightened and tune me out. “Where did the man go? Is that my husband?” She continued to fixate on Hub.
“Hey, Marie. I need you to listen to me for just a moment.”
“No.” Indignant. She didn’t want to listen to some random woman, she wanted to find her family. I could understand that, but she wasn’t going to find them at my house. “Why should I listen to you?” Disbelief, scorn. She sneered.
“I can try to help you find them, Marie.” Again she turned those big, pale eyes on me. Anger showed in them. “You don’t know my husband. I don’t know you. Where am I?” She was starting to get agitated, the atmosphere in the car darkened more, and it was hard to see out the windows.
When the spirits get upset, the only answer to their fear or anger is love. I powered up my heart chakra, and offered her pure spiritual love. I showed her I held only compassion for her and real desire to help. “I want to help you, I want to try, and my guides want to help you too.” Her expression of anger slowly melted, as she took in that I meant what I said, and that I wasn’t affected by her anger.
In Reiki II, my class learned a technique called the Bridge of Light. It is a spiritual energy bridge offered to one who is about to die, or to spirits who have not yet crossed over. For the dead, and the dying it eases their transition, and connects them with loved ones already on the other side of the veil. I showed Marie the bridge, and offered the energy to her. I offered her additional Reiki energy to help her heal her psychic wounds, and to help her retrieve the parts of her soul that she’d lost along the way.
Anger and mistrust dissolved. “Truly?” She was afraid to hope.
“Yes.” I told her. “And my guides mean it too.” Marie touched the Bridge of Light with one foot, and her whole being lit up. She took two steps, and smiled tentatively. Her lips stretched wider as she followed the path laid out on the Bridge, aided by her own guiding spirits who met her and welcomed her before she’d traveled halfway across. Her spirit lit brightly as the missing parts of her soul flew home to join her as she fully crossed the veil.
With an nearly audible pop, the atmosphere in the garage lightened. It had a bright and sparkly feel, and the hens uttered soft coos as they settled back into sleep. Marie blew me a light kiss and a thank-you as she joined her family on the other side. I smiled and got out of the car.
“Everything okay?” Hub asked as he threw the ball for our Lab to chase. It glows in the dark, so she can find it at night. I took a deep breath and looked around our yard, then back into the garage. No ghosts.
Hub and I went on a Ghost Tour last weekend. I love that sort of thing, and his daughter gave us a gift certificate for the tour for Christmas. We were lucky it wasn’t raining, but cold and foggy, which gave the perfect atmosphere.
Just the history part made the tour worthwhile, but we made multiple stops at various famous downtown Seattle landmarks. Like the Smith Tower.
Security guards tell of hearing furniture being dragged across floors above them, even in rooms where there is no furniture. Shadows are seen flitting across monitor screens, security cameras catching movement on supposedly unoccupied floors. In both cases, when the guards investigate, no one is on the floor.
We went into the lower level of the Merchant’s Cafe, the oldest restaurant in Seattle. I immediately felt the presence of many spirits, especially in the bar area and the bathroom. I saw a lady, dressed in vintage clothing stroll down the hall to disappear into the bathroom. I followed, snapping pictures, then returned to hear the tour guide saying how a woman is often seen going into the bathroom. I wanted to say, ‘Yes, I know’ but kept quiet. The bathroom pics were not that impressive, although a faint orb is visible in one. I had better luck with the bar. I got a few funny looks from others on the tour, but I whispered to the spirits that I knew they were there, and I was going to take some pictures. If they would like to appear in the pictures, that would be much appreciated. I took two pictures with nothing, then got this one.
I know. Dust motes, it’s the quickest and easiest explanation. Hub cleaned the lens thoroughly before we left for the tour, and it was closed unless I had it out taking pics. I did get quite a lot of orb pictures, actually, and they are never in the exact same spot, so I’m quite sure it’s nothing on the lens itself.
I know. It doesn’t preclude floating motes in the air. With the three orbs in the picture above, I’m not 100% convinced they have a spectral origin. These next two though, I’m pretty sure I captured the spirits who inhabit these portions of underground Seattle.
They are so bright and shiny, and I was actively communicating with the spirits in these locations at the time. The only alteration I have made to these two pictures is to crop them to zoom in on the orbs. The bar picture is completely untouched.
This was only my second time actively trying to communicate with spirits and capture it digitally. I’ve had great luck so far and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you. While nothing overt happened to Hub or I on the tour, I did make contact with several of the ghosts in the locations we visited. Including the one that followed us home. Stay tuned for that story!
My next time out, I’m going to try and capture some EVP’s. What ever I get, I’ll be sure and share.
Oh the best laid plans…you know the end of that quote. I had all these plans to get so much writing done on my time off! Blog posts queued up, WIP work, but darn reality anyway, threw me for a huge loop.
On the 19th, I woke up early to blood spattered all over the downstairs. No kidding. It wasn’t exactly a bloodbath, but someone had a big problem. My 13 year-old male kitty, Jasper, had a ruptured abscess.
I know, ick! He’d given no sign of having any issues, so it was a complete surprise to me. I had a crisis and a meltdown. I thought it was something way worse and I was convinced I was going to have to put him to sleep. I cried a lot, then my brain kicked back into gear and I was able to get Jasper a little more cleaned up and a better idea of what was going on. By the time Hub got home from work to help me get him to the vet’s, I had stopped crying hysterically calmed down, and figured out that maybe it wasn’t as bad as I had originally thought. Note to self: It’s better to think things through before going straight to “He’s gonna die!”
Kitty came home from the vet’s that night, and I said many grateful prayers while I watched over him. He was pretty weak the first couple days, and it’s a good thing I did have time off. He wouldn’t eat or drink on his own. He would drink water if I gave it to him in sips from a syringe. He nibbled delicately at the baby food that I presented to him on a spoon, but would turn his head away after a bare half-teaspoonful. Which meant I was spending an awful lot of time on the floor of my bathroom to keep him hydrated and fed.
Now we’re in the home stretch, and he is well on his way to a full recovery. Yay! Stitches come out Wednesday and my two weeks of keeping Jasper isolated from the rest of the animals can finally end. His brother, Sage stands outside and paws at the door, missing his wrassling buddy. Sister Magic, on the other hand, has appropriated Jasper’s favorite sleeping spot in his absence. It will be good to finally be able to get things back to quasi-normal.
Then, it was the holidays. Meh. I just was not that into them this year, the commercialism seemed overdone and tacky. I wasn’t even sure I would put up a tree, I was in such a bah humbug mood. But Jasper on the mend seemed like the best present I could ask for, and I began to feel a bit more celebratory. So when Hub put up the tree on the 20th, I put up the ornaments.
Then, there was visiting with the grandkids. Let’s just say, I never knew how much fun it was to run and scream and race through the house wielding an inflatable sword while chasing down a three year-old. It got better when youngest grandson would abruptly slide to a halt and reverse course to dash after me, screaming just as loud. I let him catch me and beat me up with his own inflatable weapon… a mallet with who on it? Thor of course! Joy! I haven’t had so much fun since I was a kid! Writing anything was a distant second to running and playing with small children I haven’t seen in months.
But what about that Mayan Apocalypse? Big Nothing? Or…?
Oh Mayan Apocalypse, you were hyped and feared, but where were you? No asteroid slammed into the Earth, no massive pole shift rearranged the continents and, to my utter disappointment, no aliens appeared in the skies above. Worst of all, NO zombies! So what was it all about?
It doesn’t matter what everyone else said. In short, the Mayans said this was the end of one age and the start of another. Sure other ages had ended in cataclysms, but this one was different. This one was about a spiritual change. You can read about it yourself, in this interview with a Mayan Elder.
There were lots and lots of expectations and predictions about this date. What was I expecting to happen though? Nothing so Earth-shattering. But I wanted to observe the solstice and the galactic alignment as a sacred day, so I took the 21st off. (And I wanted to be home, just in case there were zombies!)
The winter solstice is a time of rebirth, renewal and sparking the sacred fire of creativity, and I treated it as such. I did a little something that day of everything I want to achieve in the coming year; writing, gardening, eating better and exercising, taking better care of myself and opening myself to greater spiritual growth.
It worked. I felt the shift within, and I felt my meditations, my awareness step up to a new level. I felt that influx of energy from the universe and knew that everything I wanted was within my reach. More, I realized that the only one holding me back was…me.
I’m not saying I’m suddenly this perfectly aligned, spiritual being. Ha! The one thing about this date that got left out of all the hype: December 21st marked the shift, the end of one age and the start of the next. It was never about instant enlightenment or instant change, but about one cycle ending and another one beginning. ‘Beginning’ being the operative word in that sentence. We are at the very start of something wonderful, but all change comes with a measure of chaos and upheaval. This next cycle is about raising our consciousness, about tapping into all those wonderful abilities that are latent or sporadic and bringing them fully to fruition. We have a very long way to go, but I feel confident we can all get there.
I found this meme making the rounds on Facebook:
I take great joy and hope from watching old, outdated systems of thought and behavior die away to be replaced gradually with ones involving more humane treatment of our ecosystems and ourselves, greater awareness of Spirit, and greater realization of just how powerful we really are.
I’m not a ghost hunter, and I confess I have a hard time watching paranormal investigative shows. It seems like all you get is a bunch of people running around either shrieking, or saying “Did you see/hear that?” Conversely, I do enjoy scanning YouTube for clips put up by the multitude of paranormal investigation groups around the country. Something entirely different, in my opinion. These are groups devoted (for the most part) to serious study of, and recording, paranormal phenomena, and are not for-profit or ratings driven.
I have not been out with an official ‘ghost-hunting’ group; I get plenty of encounters on my own, but I have to confess to a curiosity and desire to travel with one of these groups. They have a lot of gadgets and devices that can record, measure and otherwise detect paranormal activity. I have no idea how these work. Something that seems to be on the rise though is photos of ghosts where nothing is seen to the human eye.
I found this collection on YouTube:
The advent of security cameras, both motion-sensitive and continuous record, has brought us videos of objects moving, flashing lights, and unexplained shadows while establishments are closed, locked and unoccupied by the living. Like this example of a ‘ghostly head’:
I particularly like this one, from Hampton Court Palace. They even talk about him on their website, they’ve nicknamed him ‘Skeletor.’
Creepiness, right? Or just a tour guide in period costume? I think it interesting that the Palace website is vague about exactly what it is. According to the website, however, this is a fairly active area for ghosts in general, with public and staff reporting sightings or encounters.
Sometimes they move things, as in this rather dizzying video posted by Mass Most Haunted of their investigation at the Lizzie Borden House.
Could they be faked? Sure. Could some of them be genuine? I think so. I leave it to you to determine which you find the most plausible.
I’m not much with a video camera, but something I’ve always wanted to try is EVP. EVP stand for Electronic Voice Phenomena. In short, you take a recording device, ask questions and then hear voices on the playback. It used to be done with reel-to-reel and cassettes, but now digital voice recorders are used, also they are heard on playback from video recordings..
These were captured at the Chapel on the Hill in Sedona, Arizona.
Have you done any ghost hunting? Have you ever captured something weird on video or in a picture that you didn’t see when you were recording? What’s your scariest encounter?