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Panda, the Cat that Loved Halloween

Two Halloweens in a row, we were joined by a great cat named Panda.

As we gathered on the porch to wait for Trick-or-Treaters, Panda walked right up to join in the fun.  At one point, he snagged an entire mini doughnut off someone’s plate and ate it like a pig. What a great cat.

Sadly though, Panda and his family moved away last year.  I hope wherever he is, he will have a wonderful Halloween!

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Night of the Witch

The summer heat is finally gone. The days have gotten colder, and the night comes a little sooner now. Leaves have started changing colors and falling to the ground. Everything feels a little spookier. I love this time of year.

Two years ago I spent most of September and October sewing this Halloween dress.  I don’t really remember what gave me the ambitious idea to make such a thing, but it was a fun project to work on during the colder autumn evenings. I ended up not even using a pattern, because it seems I have a hard time sticking to directions when it comes to projects. So my Halloween dress has some strangely sewn areas, but that’s OK since I looked like I just rose from the dead!

When I put on this dress, I just want to run around in the spooky dark Halloween Night.

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A Spooky Saturday

A Saturday October morning started with a trip to Old Salem with my mom and sister.  It was finally cold out after being close to 90 degrees for months.

We wandered around the farmer’s market, and in the little shops.  On the ground I saw some weird mushroom type things, and this little painted rock with a pumpkin on it.

We went back to my Mom’s house where we talked about Halloween plans and costumes. Eventually our plans led us here.

 Halloween shops always pop up mysteriously, in the shell of a recently abandoned store. Never in the same place, each year it’s always a game to figure out where they will appear.

I started planning my costume, which is my favorite character from my favorite band, Ghost. So next was a trip to Goodwill and then the fabric store to get supplies, with lunch at a Greek restaurant in between shopping.

The costume I decided to create in two weeks!

After realizing I would probably never find a jacket at goodwill that looked similar enough, I decided to attempt to make my own, with the help of my sister who is a great seamstress. We drank Chai tea as cats ran around while we worked.

It was a great Spooky Saturday!

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Visiting My Family in Southfield Cemetery

The purpose of the Michigan trip last year was to visit family members. Live and Dead.

My entire family on both sides is from Detroit Michigan. Almost all of them came straight to Detroit when they entered the country, and never left. There are so many of my relatives and ancestors that I never got to meet, so I at least wanted to visit their final resting place. Since I live so far away from my home land, I’ve never really gotten to visit the grave sites of my relatives.

A strange coincidence is that after I chose what hotel to stay in, I realized it was right in between the two main cemeteries which both sides of my family are buried in..  In fact, both cemeteries were in walking distance of the hotel!

The first cemetery we visited was in Southfield.  A very small plot of land with an entrance that you might almost miss. Except for the sign, which among other things mentions a distant cousin of mine who was a test pilot that died in a plane crash over the ocean.

Me and my sisters with our great great great grandparents from England.

I found out I had a great aunt with the same name.  I wonder what she was like.

Halloween has always been a theme on this side of the family. A great grandmother was born on Halloween and that was her middle name. Her daughter, my grandmother got married on Halloween.  And my Dad’s favorite holiday was definitely Halloween.

I’ve always liked exploring cemeteries, but it was definitely special exploring a cemetery that was home to some of my relatives.

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It’s a Spooky Time of Year


It’s the time of year for wearing all black, wandering around, among the fallen leaves and overcast skies, being spooky.


This was Halloween a year ago. I worked all September and October making this dress. I kind of used a pattern but mainly made it up as I went along, which is usually how I end up doing projects. There are some parts that definitely don’t look quite right up close, but that’s okay because I was supposed to look dead anyway. 






It was the perfect Halloween night. The skies were dark and gloomy, the air was crisp and cool, but not too cold. 

Pumpkins lined the way up the the porch of my Mom’s haunted house, where a skeleton, ghost and more creepy ghouls waited with a giant cauldron filled with candy.




It’s the creepiest time of year.
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Swamp House


Just off the path, nestled at the edge of the woods at Reynolda Gardens, lies this little house that is covered in moss, looking over a swamp. 

It was a hot evening, at the end of summer. A rainstorm had just passed and the gardens were empty. A light fog was lifting up off the ground and rising up into the grey clouds, that were quickly disappearing. 



This little house, that was once a fancy boat house for a beautiful lake, is now spooky and overgrown. Many forgotten summer memories from long ago, are lost in this dense overgrowth. 
















But I like this lake house turned swamp house just the way it is.  It has character, and so much intrigue. 
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Cemetery Evening

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There isn’t much daylight left when we get home from work, so an evening walk in the cemetery quickly turned into a night walk in the cemetery.

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I like the Old Salem Cemetery, where the skyscrapers are just barely visible beyond the rolling hills filled with symmetrical headstones.

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Just around the curve, you’ll find yourself on a hill which overlooks another portion of the cemetery, where the symmetry is gone and every headstone is unique.  It is an interesting contrast.

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The cemetery at night feels like a quiet and calming place. Nobody else was around.


(At least nobody that we could see!)
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A Fog Covered Cemetery





One morning, I looked out the window to see a particularly thick layer of fog covering the 
ground. My first thought was “To the cemetery!” 
I’ve always found cemeteries to be peaceful; a quiet place to wander around, seldom running into anybody else. A good place to think about anything, and everything. All of life’s silly little problems seem to slip to the back of the mind.

The fog hung like a thick blanket. It felt like I was in my own tiny world.















Philosophers have long recommended that we spend more time in cemeteries. To help us appreciate, and understand the fragileness of life. It  was a man named Heidegger who said “To get in touch with life, we must first, get in touch with death.
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Ghost Tour

Earlier this month I went on a ghost tour of a historic area of Winston-Salem. I never knew my city had a ghost tour, and I love learning about the city’s past, so I was bursting at the seams to go.

You are told to meet on the corner of two streets at dusk. My friend and I arrived, not sure what to expect, or who to look for. But soon enough, a man dressed in period clothing and carrying a lantern seemed to appear out of thin air as he began to wander in circles, around the small group that had formed. We knew this must be our ghost host!

After a quick introduction, he turned and hurried down the street without another word. We raced to keep up.

We paused in front of old Victorian homes in the West End and heard the spooky tales from long ago, that are hidden inside their walls.


We wandered up and down the winding hills, hearing eerie stories, and piecing together some of the city’s colorful history.



After hearing the grim tale accompanying this building, I turned back to snap a photo.

 What’s that in the far right window pane?  Is it a light reflection? Or is it the ghost of the boy who lost his life here, so many years ago….



Towards the end of the tour, a light rain began to fall. We dashed from tree to tree in hopes of staying dry. The rain only added to the spooky excitement.

Before we knew it, we were back where we started and it was time to part ways. Each walking off in separate directions, disappearing into the black night.

The Winston-Salem Ghost Tour was so much fun, and I can’t wait to make it a spooky yearly tradition.