GoodHousekeeping.com Article about My House and Living with Spirits

Goodhousekeeping.com ran a great article about my house and the spirits that I hope you’ll enjoy. If you do, please consider sharing it as well. (I’m so revved about this; I was honored that they asked and the editor, Lauren Smith, was wonderful to work with.)

(This article ran in 2017. Posting it on my blog for the first time now.)

 

What Makes a Haunted House Happy?

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What makes a haunted house (or at least it’s physical world steward) happy? A brand new, sparkling clean checkerboard floor, that’s what! Doing the happy dance now that we have a charming and fittingly vintage-looking floor in the summer kitchen, back hall, and back bath. The pretty antique stove can return from its backyard exile, the clothes dryer can be brought in from the porch, and I have already gotten the pie table and Christmas cactus set up by the window.

Apparently, Leon kept an eye on the remodeling work. When I arrived home yesterday, the floor polishers were just finishing up. One of the guys said, “Did you know your house is haunted?”
 
I said “Yes,” and asked him what Leon had done to let them know he was around. He told me that the dryer vent kept flapping loudly while they worked and the smoke detector went off several times. Now Leon has “spoken” to me before with the smoke detector ~ in that instance (which was years ago), I sensed Leon’s presence in the back hall and asked if he was there. The smoke detector responded with a few quiet beeps. I told Leon hello, thanked him for his help with the house, and waited to see if the detector would keep beeping. It didn’t and the battery did not need to be replaced for months after that.
 
The other funny thing is that the fellow who actually installed the new floor ~ a man of very few words ~ must have had the same experience that the floor polishers did, because when I arrived home after his first day working here, the smoke detector cover was sitting on the summer kitchen counter and the battery was pulled out enough so that it wouldn’t work. Neither Dudley nor I have heard the smoke detector alarm go off or even chirp for years. We even tested the battery last week to make sure it worked before putting the smoke detector back together.
 
It made me happy to know that Leon was watching over the work and the house and letting the guys know, in a friendly way, that he was here.

 

 

 

Crystal Ball Divination Report

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In CRYSTAL BALL NEWS, I had an interesting and very enjoyable crystal ball divination session in my parlor on Monday night.

The reader was psychic intuitive Eric Moen, whom I met at the Intrigue Theaters ‘s old-timey illusionist/mentalist show at the Triune Masonic Temple in St. Paul in January. I wanted to have a reading with Eric to see if this venerable yet rarely practiced form of divination might be a good fit for my Spirited Schoolhouse. (It was. Details at the end of this post.)

We set up a small table in the parlor and Eric placed the crystal ball on it and lit two candles. First surprise: the ball has a name! Eric introduced the ball to me ~ since I’m not sure of the etiquette of me sharing the name, I’ll refrain from doing so ~ but I will say that the name seemed to suit the ball, which was large, dignified, and a bit aloof. Eric also shared the story of how it took for him to get the ball to work with him ~ three months ~ and yes, there was an initiatory experience of sorts.

The first image to appear was two owls, which is cool, because the owl is one of my totem animals. Then Eric said something to the effect that two male spirits were standing behind him in the parlor, to check him out and see what his business in the house was. I knew from the language used and the purpose of the visit that one of the spirits was Leon. (Which made me happy, as it always does when Leon looks after things.) Not sure who the other spirit was, though, and would like to find out.

Other spirits showed up, too: a riverboat captain, a Frenchman associated with the property, an old-fashioned young woman, who I believe may have been one of the spirit sisters, some elementals (or earth spirits) but the only spirit who showed Eric her face was Cherry, our sweet dog that we had to say goodbye to a few years ago.

Eric noted some things about the earth spirits on the property that resonated with me and fits into some of the topics/experiences I’ll be exploring more in my new book. (My new book on which I am ~ slowly ~ making progress.) One tidbit: Eric described an elemental being that I have seen here and even sketched a picture of.

One of the coolest things was that, when the reading started, Eric said, “Everything coming through is about your house and its energy, not you!” I told him that was perfect; I wanted to know what the crystal ball had to say about my house because I could use it all in my book. Another cool moment was when Eric started to talk about a chair that had been in my house, I not only clearly “saw” the chair in my mind ~ it was an ornate wooden ceremonial chair ~ but I also saw where it had been in my parlor.

The session ended when Eric saw two eyes looking out at him from the crystal ball (!) which told him that the session was done. His exact words were, “Okay, (name of ball) is looking back at me.” Stopping when the crystal ball starts gazing back at you made sense to me. (Along with totally capturing my imagination ~ wow!)

If you’d like to be part of a crystal ball reading event, please join Eric Moen and me on  Thursday, June 30 from 7:00 ~ 9:00 PM. More details, including how to sign up, can be found here.

 

 

 

 

 

Singing Bowl and Railroad Tie Chime

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In the Happy Book News Department, two items of interest:

First, I am pleased to announce that I sold another book for one of my Annie Wilder Literary Agency clients, the esteemed Loyd Auerbach. (I’ve been a fan of Loyd’s ever since his days as a FATE columnist.) And, the publisher who picked up his book is interested in three more books ~ WOOT!! Will share the details as soon as I am able.

The second item is a story about one of my literary agency clients and paying attention to signs from the universe. My client, Jana, wrote a YA (Young Adult) novel that involves time travel and physics. A Tibetan singing bowl and railroad tie wind chime play an important role in her story. The day we first got ready to send out her story, my dowser friend Curt Hansen stopped by and brought ~ a Tibetan singing bowl and a railroad tie chime! I almost fell over. (I don’t discuss the books I’m working on with anyone except the author and potential publishers.) I sent Jana the picture below and she said she thought it was amazing.

Yesterday, I sent out Jana’s manuscript to the publishers that require a printed submission. Second cool sign from the universe: yesterday was Pi day (Jana let me know; I had not heard of it) which seems perfect for a book about physics and time travel.

Spirit Visitors at the Massage

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Love going into the parlor to meditate and seeing my meditation partners ~ aka Fluffy and Simon ~ already there and waiting to get started.

This is Fluffy, at nineteen years old, who made it to the red chair first (which means Simon will sit on the sofa or prowl around the room till Fluffy decides it’s time to be queen of all she surveys elsewhere in the house, making a spot available for Simon on my lap or the back of the red chair).

My (online) Rosicrucian studies are going well, and I really look forward to meditating and studying in the parlor a few times each week around twilight. It’s peaceful and restorative. Last night, I meditated on the massage I had yesterday. It was the first time I ever had a massage (first time because I am uptight!) and during it, Lisa (the masseuse), who is highly intuitive, saw not only my spirit helpers but also ~ ME. 

Lisa asked me after the massage if I have noticed that I’m becoming more psychic and I said yes. She said she believed it, because both an eagle and a hawk spirit helper showed up. She also asked if I had any relatives in spirit that looked just like me. I said no. She said, “Well, someone showed up who looked exactly like you.” After discussing it for a bit, we decided it probably was an aspect of my spirit.

So, why, you may ask, would part of my spirit leave my body just before an awesome massage? : ) Lisa said it may have been my higher self. Another possibility that occurs to me: I was intimidated by the thought of a massage, and have read about (and experienced firsthand) the feeling of “ditching” one’s physical body when feeling threatened.

I am going to take two mini-sabbaticals this month to work on my latest book (a follow-up to House of Spirits and Whispers) and am going to see if I can explore this phenomenon further in the new book.

I’d be interested in hearing from anyone who has had similar experiences. (You may email me at the address on my “Contact” page.)

 

November, 2015: Scenes From the Tea Table

 

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November, 2015: Scenes from the tea table.

Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile! November is always a respite for me, a quiet time after the haunted tea party season ends and before the hubbub of Christmas begins. This year, November was quiet as far as entertaining and events, but filled to the brim with work I love ~ helping people get theirs books polished up and published. Pictured in this post are my good friend/fellow writer Kelly, over for our November writers’ weekend, and my assistant Sylvie at my tea table desk.

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I am grateful to have as much work as I do ~ seven clients now for the Annie Wilder Literary Agency ~ and I just sold my first book for one of my clients this past week. Will share details on this book and others as we go along the process.

Also was fortunate enough to spend a lot of time outside last month, as we had gorgeous weather. Nearly every day felt like a gift; sunny, crisp, and fall-cool with gorgeous colors and green grass (!) because of all the rain this year.

I’ve also embarked on an online study of Rosicrucianism, meditating almost every day in the late afternoon, at twilight. I’m enjoying it immensely and will post more details about my experiences with it as I get further along.

Last but not least, have had some friendly visits from the house spirits, mostly last at night. Gentle tapping in the walls, exaggerated whispers and gurgling water noises in the pipes, even something that sounded like someone moving a heavy stack of books around a desk. (Wonder where the spirits have heard that before?)

Spirits in the Parlor ~ All Hallows Mediumship Eve with Janice Carlson

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Perfect way to wrap up the season of spirits: two final spirit message circles. Guest medium Janice Carlson did a fantastic job both nights of communicating messages from loved ones in spirit to our guests.

As the hostess, it was interesting to note that these back-to-back event nights had very distinct and different energy vibes. The first night, there was an undercurrent of breezy, bubbly energy and the background music ( Brahms on Pandora) got loud enough to be intrusive. (I do consider it to be spirit activity when the radio volume increases.) The second night’s energy was so heavy and still, Janice stopped in the middle of the messages and asked if I could feel it, too.  (I could.) The radio had stopped (not spirit activity ~ our Pandora station just shuts off occasionally) so I turned the radio back on and and also turned on some fans.

Janice brought through specific messages for each guest, including a message from a cat that had lived to be 30! One guest told of having the amazing and strange experience of walking in her yard and seeing her footprints turn to dead grass as she moved. She brought photos, which were pretty incredible. Her question was whether there was some message from the spirit world with regard to the footprints. I’ll be exploring this odd phenomenon further, including Janice’s response to it, in my next book.

Of course, there were also many moving and comforting messages, including several from loved ones who had crossed over in incredibly tragic circumstances. On a related note, for the first time ever, I actually “felt” a spirit’s passing. Janice was speaking to a guest whose (female) friend had died at a young age. Janice asked if the death  was from an accident or an illness when I felt the sensation of a powerful impact and being thrown into the air ~ like being struck by a car. At the same time, I felt that this had happened to a man, not a woman. Janice then said something about a male who had died in a car accident, and after reading for the guest whose friend had died, gave messages to two guests who had a male friend or relative that died in a car accident.

We closed the evening with a sage burning and asking for blessings and healing for all present, both physical and spirit guests.

The spirit messages circles are so popular and seem to be such a positive and healing experience for those in attendance that I’m considering offering one each month next season. Will keep you posted.

Season of Spirits with Linda Cora ~ WOW!

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Last Thursday night’s Season of Spirits event was awesome, thanks to my friend Linda Cora’s incredible mediumship skills and a parlor-full of great guests, both physical and in spirit.

The vibe of the night was high-energy and positive. Many of Thursday’s guests were friends who have come to many events at my house, and their anticipation and excitement provided the kind of energy the spirits seem to love.

Linda’s amazing skill, coupled with her down-to-earth observations and sense of humor added another element of fun to the event. Guests were able to name the loved one in spirit with whom they most wanted to communicate, and Linda connected with those spirits.

Linda started out with information about the spirits who had approached her as soon as she booked the event here, wanting to make sure their messages would be conveyed to their family. She gave specific names, medical conditions, and physical descriptions, most of which we verified by the end of the night. One of the most humorous messages of the night was from a “very Catholic” grandma in spirit, who was concerned about her grandson working a late shift. Her comment: “Nothing good happens after midnight.”

Loved ones in spirit came through with specific messages of love, with apologies, and with reassurance, advice, and even admonishments (specifically, a message to a guest’s mother with diabetes to take care of her health). In once case, the spirit visitor did not have much to say, so Linda did a mini-reading for the guest (a young woman) instead.

One of the fundamental themes of the night was that our family, friends, and even companion animals in spirit are still with us ~ they are part of our lives, offering support and love from the spirit side of life. Linda said we “lift them up” when we say their names, talk to them, and share our memories and stories of them. There were many moving and humorous moments throughout the night; I feel very fortunate to be part of these lively, powerful, and healing spirit message circles.

We have two more spirit message circles this season, All Hallows Mediumship Eve. One will be held tomorrow night (October 29) and the final on October 30. The guest medium will be the very talented Janice Carlson, who I met through my work at FATE magazine. Both events have been sold out for weeks ~ next season, I am considering hosting a spirit message circle each month, as there seems to be an incredible demand for this kind of healing experience.

 

 

 

 

I Live in a Haunted House ~ Yes and Yes Interview

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Thank you to the very cool Sarah Von Bargen of “Yes and Yes” for posting this interview about my house and living with spirits.

Check out Sarah’s blog at this link:
http://www.yesandyes.org/…/10/i-live-in-a-haunted-house.html

October Spirited Event Update

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Spirited Event Update: 

ALL HALLOWS MEDIUMSHIP EVE with JANICE CARLSON
Both nights of the All Hallows Mediumship Eve event are SOLD OUT ~ thank you to everyone who signed up! Janice and I are looking forward to seeing old friends and new on October 29 and 30.

“SEASON OF SPIRITS” SPIRIT MESSAGE CIRCLE with LINDA CORA on Thursday, October 22
We have only 2 ~ 4 spots left for the “Season of Spirits” Spirit Message Circle event with Linda Cora, so please sign up soon if you want to be part of this. I spoke with Linda on Tuesday, and she said she has already been visited by one of the spirits whose “person” will be at the event. (The spirit told Linda her name, which we will share at the event.)

Also, Linda told me she has seen that someone who’s considering coming to the spirit message circle has questions about the manner in which their loved one passed away. (As I understand it, the person who has these questions has not yet decided whether or not to attend the event.) And of course, we’ll check in with Leon at the end of the night; he has also visited Linda in advance of the party. I know it’s going to be a great night of spirit messages; hope to see you there!