Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Heebie Jeebies

One benefit of living in a haunted house is that I've become kind of hard to rattle.  Even when scary things happen, I don't really get scared anymore.  I'm kind of like, "Oookay, here we go again."  And if we have company over when something happens, and they're getting freaked out...well...I actually kind of love that.  Super amusing.

Anyway, my point is- my house doesn't scare me hardly ever anymore.  Last night, however, I was up well past one in the morning, just because.  When I finally went to bed, the bedroom lights were still on.  I went into my closet, which is a large, walk-in closet (and I believe used to be a bedroom once upon a time) and turned the light off.  The second that light was off and the closet was pitch black, I was TERRIFIED.  Like, goose bumps, heart racing, fighting the urge to scream terrified.  And I have no idea why.  

I'm still on crutches (yes, still) so running was out of the question.  Instead, I hobbled my way back into the bedroom as quickly as I could, but the feeling didn't leave me.  I felt like something (someone?) was following me.  I hurried into the middle room, then the kitchen, as quickly as I could, turning every light on along the way.  It took me a good five minutes to calm down.

I didn't see anything, didn't hear anything, but I definitely felt it.  And whatever "it" was, was horrifying.

In other news, I never told y'all about the scratches, did I?  Probably not.  I think I kept it to myself because I thought I'd found a logical explanation for them, but now I'm not so sure.

So, here goes- shortly after I had my accident, which was nearly three months ago now, I started noticing scratches on my left arm.  Not just a couple small ones, but several long, deep, wide scratches between my elbow and my wrist, on both the inside and outside of my arm.

Here's the thing- I was literally doing absolutely nothing with my life at that time due to my injury.  I was glued to my couch, pretty much 24 hours a day.  There was no explanation for where these scratches were coming from, but they just kept coming.  I thought it was weird, but then decided that somehow the velcro on the brace on my leg must have been causing it, even though I had no idea how.

Now- it's my other arm.  And instead of scratches, it's bruises.  I bruise pretty easily, so I don't think anything of it when I find a random bruise (especially on my leg), but these are different.  I have three large, deep, distinct bruises on my right arm, all below the elbow, just like the scratches were.  One on the outside of my forearm, one on the inside of my forearm, and one on the back of my hand.  I have no clue where they came from.  I'm still a total cripple.  While I'm slightly more active than I was three months ago, I'm certainly not active enough to be getting all banged up like this.  I've got no clue where the bruises (or the scratches, for that matter) came from.

Maybe I should ask whoever or whatever is inhabiting my closet, waiting for me to shut the lights off so they can scare the bejesus out of me.  Maybe they know.

Monday, March 31, 2014

A Haunted Life

Exactly two years ago today, our family got the keys to our haunted house.  It's been a crazy past couple of years, so I thought I'd take some of the best excerpts and create a little video.  (Please don't ask me how long it took me- the answer is waaaaay too long.  I'm really not tech savvy at all.)  Anyway, enjoy!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

They're Baaaack

We live in a busy world.  Sometimes we go weeks, even months, without talking to some of our closest friends and family members.  When we do get a chance to catch up, the questions are always the same.  How's the family?  How's work?  And, in our case, "has anything new happened in your  house lately?"  Might sound like an odd question, but I imagine it's pretty standard when you live in a haunted house.

For months, my answer to that question was the same.  "Nothing."  As I explained in my blog post last month, things around the house have been quiet for quite some time.  I've even been home 24/7 for the past month now due to an unfortunate slip and fall that's left me a temporary invalid, and I haven't noticed anything out of the ordinary.  And trust me, I've been paying close attention.  How many horror movies start out with someone injured and stuck at home alone with nothing better to do than let their mind run wild?  At least a few, right?

Anyway, my point...just when I was starting to think we'd been abandoned by "the others" for good, last night happened.  Last night, I had a bout of insomnia with a wicked underlying migraine.  I was up well past 6:30 in the morning.  And during that time, I realized something.  Our spirits haven't gone anywhere.  They just save their shenanigans for the middle of the night.  (And apparently we've gotten so used to them, we sleep right through them now.)

Picture this: it's 3:30 in the morning, it's pitch black outside, and the house is silent except for two things: the sound of coyotes howling from the woods out back  (that's the new thing in our neighborhood these days, and it's creepy as hell) and a mysterious clunking/banging sound coming from upstairs.  It's not easy for me to get around these days, what with the crutches and the leg brace that goes from the top of my thigh to the bottom of my ankle, so I listened for about a half hour to banging, followed by footsteps, followed by more banging.  Earlier in the night, a little after midnight, my oldest son's alarm clock started going off, even though it was turned off.  I didn't think much of it at the time, but given the events that followed, I have to wonder now.

A little before 4, I sent my husband upstairs to investigate.  His youngest son was awake, but insisted he hadn't been awake for long.  Was he the one responsible for all the racket?  Or was the racket responsible for waking him up?  I was more inclined to believe the former, until about an hour later.  I heard a noise that at first sounded like a semi or loud diesel truck idling in our driveway.  It went on long enough and was loud enough that I eventually got up and hobbled my way into the kitchen.  

Once I reached the kitchen, I realized that the sound wasn't coming from outside.  I checked the refrigerator, the sink, the oven, before realizing that the sound was coming from inside the walls.  I still don't know exactly what it was, but it sounded like the pipes were shaking and vibrating- not just a little bit, but enough to bust right through the walls. 

After a few minutes, it stopped, and gave way to another noise.  The sound of water spilling all over the floor upstairs.  It was very distinct and unmistakable.  I made my way to the bottom of the stairs to make sure I wasn't imagining things.  Not only did I hear water spilling everywhere, I also heard the TV in the boys' room blaring.  I hurried (as fast as a one-legged cripple on crutches can hurry) to my bedroom and woke up my husband.

"The kids are awake with the TV on at 5 in the morning, and the toilet or the sink in the bathroom up there is overflowing and water's spilling everywhere.  You need to get up."  The hubs jumped out of bed and made his way up the stairs.  I returned to my makeshift non-sleeping zone on the couch.  After a few minutes, he returned.

"Well?" I asked.  

"The kids are asleep, there are no TVs on and there's no water on the floor anywhere," he said.  So.  That happened.  (And may I just remind you that coyotes were yipping and howling outside our windows the ENTIRE time.)  Needless to say, I didn't fall asleep until after daylight broke.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Haunting Update

Jumpin' Jehoshaphat!  (What does that even mean, btw?)  It's been almost three months since I've updated the blog.  Whaaaat?!  First and foremost, let me say- sorry!  The holidays are crazy for the C fam- that's the best excuse I can come up with. 

Anyway- here's what's been going on:  NOT A WHOLE LOT.  I'm not sure whether it's because there really hasn't been much activity in the house lately, or because we blame pretty much everything, including global warming, on our new puppy these days.  Meet Opie.


Isn't he cute?  He's also a holy terror.  Which means we're not as likely to notice strange noises or things disappering or being moved as we once were. 

I was thinking today, when I realized how long it's been since I've posted anything, about how much things have changed.  We've been in our haunted house nearly two years now.  Within the first six months, I found a dead bat in my living room, a chipmunk swimming in my toilet, and a rabid mouse in the drawer under my oven- chewed right through a wall to get into the house!  Since then, nothing. 

There were smoke detectors being set off all hours of the day and night, footprints on the floor, things flying and breaking and moving and slamming- so much craziness, it felt like living in a movie.  Now?  Just a noise or movement out of the corner of one's eye or a creepy feeling now and then. 

Maybe it was all just a show of force when we first moved in.  Or maybe they got sick of us bugging them back (a la, the four paranormal investigations in a year's time) and decided to leave us alone in hopes that we'd return the favor.  Either way, I dare say peace has come to the C Fam abode.  Here are some updates I've been meaning to share, but just haven't had time:

Fourth Investigation: The findings from our fourth paranormal investigation didn't turn up any evidence aside from the experiences we had during the investigation (which are documented in my last post.)  At this time, we don't have any further investigations planned.  But who knows?  That could always change...

History Lesson:  A couple months back, I got an email from one of the former owners of the house.  His family owned/lived in the house for nearly fifty years until selling it to my landlord.  He found out we were digging into the history of the house, and wanted to share some information with me. 

First and foremost, my "haunted farmhouse" isn't really a farmhouse at all.  Just a house.  In the 1800s, it was part of a plot of farmland.  The original farmhouse still stands, and is our next door neighbor to the west of us, on the other side of the abandoned lot.  In the early 1900s, the land was divided up into several properties- a small one with the original house and barn, an empty lot with a barn where shetland ponies were raised (now the abandoned barn), our property, and our next door neighbor to the east 's property.  What we call the "chicken coop" was part of that farm, and is the oldest structure on our property.  (Which may explain why it's the most haunted.)

His family did not build the house, as I'd always believed.  It was owned by at least one other family before his family bought it in the 1950's.  We've not been able to find any history on that family, or anyone who lived in the house prior to his family buying it.

He had no idea why the house might be haunted, and didn't have a lot of personal experiences to share.  He did say that the abandoned barn out back always gave him the creeps, and told me about a time when he was maybe 11 or 12, the first time he was allowed to stay home alone.  It was winter, and it was snowing.  He was in the house by himself, and heard footsteps outside, crunching in the snow, all around the house.  He was (understandably) terrified, and thought someone was trying to break in.  When he went outside the next morning to look- no footprints, just fresh snow.

Halloween Haunting:  When you live in a haunted house, Halloween parties are pretty much obligatory.  We had a houseful of "amateur ghost hunters" mulling around all night.  Here's one photo that was snapped in the basement by my friend Tena.  Some people claim to see the shadow of a face right in the middle of the picture.  Do you see it?


That's pretty much all I've got for ya right now.  I truly can't recall the last real "incident" we've had.  But I'll be sure to keep everyone posted.  In the mean news is good news.  Right?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Child's Play

The boys using an EMF detector to look for ghosts

On Saturday night, the folks from Grimstone Inc. made their second visit to our haunted abode.  This time, they brought different equipment and a slightly different investigation team.  This time, we did something we’ve never, ever done before…..we let our kids stay home during the investigation.  (Not all four of them, though- the two youngest are afraid of their own shadows, so it’s definitely not something they could have handled.)

The boys were quiet, watching with wide eyes as the investigators brought in case after case of equipment.  We updated them on everything that’s happened in the house since the last investigation, including the fact that it’s been well over a month since anyone has slept upstairs.  They talked to the boys a bit about that, and then decided to begin the investigation upstairs.  As they got out different pieces of equipment, they took their time explaining to the kids how each one worked.  They even gave them an EMF detector to carry with them, and told them what to look for and when to call for help.

Austin checking readings on the EMF detector

Ethan thinks he found somethin'!

An investigator from Grimstone showing Ethan how the EMF detector works
The investigators: Kara, Barbara, Josh, and Shannon, performed an EVP session in E-Man’s bedroom while we stayed downstairs in the living room.  Then they got out a device called a Frank’s Box (also known as a spirit box, or ghost box.)  That’s when the real fun began.  The Frank’s Box is essentially a modified radio that scans through radio stations very quickly, creating a steady stream of white noise.  The thought is that spirits can speak through that white noise.  The thing that’s different about the Frank’s Box from other equipment is that the results are instant.  Whereas most evidence has to be reviewed, a Frank’s Box produces instant results- you can hear the activity as it occurs.

Needless to say, the boys were fascinated by this.  They stood at the bottom of the stairs listening intently as the investigators asked questions.  At one point, one of the investigators asked, “Can you tell us your name?”  The response was loud and clear: “Bobby.”  I thought the boys would be afraid, but they weren’t.  A little freaked out, maybe, but not afraid.  They got the green light from the investigator manning surveillance to go upstairs and join the party, so we all headed up to E’s bedroom to witness the investigation close up.  One of the questions asked by investigators was “Whose room is this?”  The voice that came through the Frank’s Box said, “Ethan.”  (Ding, ding, ding!)  Someone asked “it” to name someone in the room.  Over the next few minutes, we heard “Kara,” “Shannon” and “Barb” all spoken separately.  (Correct again!)  It was really, really freaky.  We then headed downstairs to the master bedroom for an EVP session and a Frank’s Box session.  The boys asked some questions, made some jokes, and got some responses through the box to yes and no questions.

Ethan helping to run surveillance
And that was about all the ghost hunting the boys could handle.  It was nearly midnight, after all.  We returned to our campout in the living room, and the investigators returned to their investigating.  The boys quickly fell asleep.  The Hubs played on his phone (Candy Crush, I’m sure.)  I spent a little time listening to the live broadcast of the 97.5 Paranormal Investigation, which was coincidentally on the same night, and then talked with Shannon, the investigator running the last surveillance shift, until the lights came back on.

Some things I overheard/found out over the course of the evening, but have not been shared as “official” investigation findings at this time:  One of the new investigators got an overwhelming sense that something tragic had happened in the house immediately upon entering.  She was very uncomfortable upstairs, and felt like she shouldn’t be there.  Another of the investigators, while in one of the upstairs bedrooms, could feel someone watching him from  the hallway.
During a Frank’s Box session in the downstairs bathroom, investigators heard the word, “dead.”  When they asked, “Who’s dead?,” the voice responded, “Me.”  At one point, I was in the kitchen getting a drink when I heard a commotion downstairs, where the investigators had convened.  All night, they’d been asking “it” to turn a flashlight on and off, and from the sounds of it, they achieved success in the basement.

The investigators left around 1:30 or so in the morning.  The Hubs and I went to bed.  At 2:20, we were awoken by a loud crash outside our door, where a picture had somehow fallen off the wall.  I wasn’t afraid or upset, I’m becoming an old hat at these paranormal investigations.  But I was restless and couldn’t sleep at all.  I was nauseous, and came down with a serious migraine that lasted well into Sunday.  Not sure if it was related to the investigation, or just a coincidence.

When the boys woke up the morning after the investigation, they were bummed that they’d fallen asleep before it was over.  They didn’t seem scared or traumatized or any worse for the wear.  But  my 10-year-old did inform me that he’s never, ever, ever sleeping upstairs again.  Sooo….there’s that.

Ghost hunting is exhauting!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Busy Morning

It seems that randomly playing music is going to be the new "thing" in our house.  This morning at about 6, with The Hubs already at work and both kids asleep in my bed (don't ask) and me on the couch, I was actually semi-awake when I heard the music turn on upstairs.  This time, it was The Beatles' "Hello, Goodbye" that started playing out of nowhere, with nobody upstairs (or even awake.) 

The curious part is, the song didn't even start at the beginning, it started right in the middle of the song, with the words, "Hello, hello!"  It played for about a minute, and then before I worked up the courage to go upstairs and turn it off, it stopped.  So I have no idea which device it came from- iPhone, iPod, iPod touch, TV, other TV.....coulda been anything.

Then, a couple hours later, after the boys got on the bus and I was laying back down in bed trying to rest for a bit before going to work, my husband came home from work early.  I listened as his heavy footsteps walked through the dining room, the kitchen, the middle room....and then stopped.  I turned to face the door, fully expecting him to be standing there looking at me.  He wasn't.  I called his name.  He didn't answer.  I texted him and asked where he was.  Still at work.  For another three hours.  Hmmm.  Well.  Okay.

I feel like September and October are important months for our spirits.  It was last September that I took the photo of the footprints at the end of my bed (see an edited version of said photo below), and the activity really picked up from there.  Especially in the days before (of course during) and after the first paranormal investigation we had done last October.

Oh, did I forget to mention?  We are having our FOURTH paranormal investigation in a couple of weeks.  Grimstone Inc. is coming back, and this time the kids are staying home during the investigation!!  (The kids' request, not mine.  I think it's a horrible idea.)  Stay tuned....

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sweet Dreams

I’m of the belief that some dreams have meaning and some have none whatsoever, generally speaking.  But every time I dream about our house or the spirits in it, I wake up totally freaked out,  convinced that our ghosts are trying to send me a message. 

Last night (this morning?), I was having a perfectly pleasant dream where I was with a group of friends at some event, and we were just talking and hanging out.  My mom showed up with a box of stuff she found in the (her? my?) attic.  In it, there was a photo of a man who looked like he was straight out of the 1970s  or 80s, with big, clunky glasses, a sweet porn stache, and thick, brown feathered hair.  I can still see the picture perfectly in my mind, the dream was that vivid.  He was wearing a white polo tennis shirts with a few thick stripes through the middle, and some waaaaay too short white shorts.  He was also wearing a gold chain.  (See, told you….I can still see it perfectly in my head.)

I feel like he was on a bike, or near a bike, and there was a woman in the photo with him, but I don’t remember her face as well.  I asked my mom who he was and why I should care about this picture.  She explained some present day link, which I don’t remember now (he worked in my building, or was one of the paranormal investigators on our case, or was a former teacher of mine or something like that) and then said, “look at his name.”  I can’t, for the life of me, remember what the name was, or why it was written in big block letters on the front of the picture, but I do remember that his first name was Robert.  “I think this is Bobby,” my mom said.  And then I started screaming- this blood curdling, top of my lungs, hysterical shriek.  I was staring at the picture, just screaming and screaming.  And I realized, in my dream, that Bobby was never the name of one of our ghosts, “Bobby” was the person responsible for all of the ghosts in our house, and that every time the little ghost boy talked about “Bobby,” he was trying to tell us about the person who killed him, not tell us his own name.  I screamed so much and so loud in my dream that it woke me up.  I’m 99% sure that it’s the reason for my migraine today, as well.

I woke up terrified.  I wanted so badly to run out of my room, out of my house altogether, and not come back until daylight.  But.  My youngest son was asleep in my bed, and I couldn’t leave him alone in my room with whoever or whatever was planting nightmares in my head.  I know, I’m being overly dramatic.  The dream probably meant nothing.  It doesn’t even make any sense.  But even now, in the light of day and with my fears calmed, I still feel like it meant SOMETHING.  Although what, I have no idea.