The Christmas holidays can be one of the saddest times of the year for millions of grieving people. People who have lost a loved one or suffered a broken relationship often struggle with holiday blues and depression. It’s a time of year that I’ve often dreaded as a single parent with no real support system since my parent’s deaths in 1991. For years, I’ve felt as if I was wandering through life half-blind and almost hollow as today’s dating culture brought one disappointment after another. How could a believer who has spent a lifetime in paranormal research arrive at such a place of confusion? After all, I have witnessed paranormal phenomena all my life, but at those moments of intense grief and suffering, I was no different than anyone else. I needed a sign.
I’ve heard countless stories from grieving people who have experienced “visits” from their loved ones. Today, people often reach out to me and tell me of a recent loved one’s death. And during those moments when they are telling me their stories, I often catch myself interrupting with “that’s very common”.
Their raised eyebrows and sudden pause prompts me to explain that our departed loved ones often linger for a short while before entering the Light so that they can “gift” us with a sign. A sign letting us know that life never ends. It simply transforms.
Just three weeks ago, I sat down to have a Thanksgiving meal at a local church in my hometown. I sat down next to an ordained minister who was still suffering from his son’s death earlier this year. I noticed his expressionless face as he ate in silence, and my empath abilities allowed me to witness some of his pain. As I finished my dinner, my thoughts carried me back in time to the prayer vigil that was held outside the minister’s home, and I remembered seeing pictures that captured a portal of light beaming straight down from the sky in spite of the night hour. I remembered the minister telling us about his young son talking to “invisible strangers” just days before he lay down and died, and I knew that at that moment, the veil was getting thinner for the child thus enabling him to see spirits from the afterlife.
Just a few years ago, I lost a cherished friend who ministered to me and loved my children as her own. She was by all accounts, a mother and grandmother that we had not known since my own mother’s death many years before. She and I shared a mutual appreciation for the paranormal and a firm belief in the afterlife. She laughingly told me on numerous occasions that she would “visit” me if she died first. Then on November 23rd, 2010, she crossed over. I remember later that night and after a day of horrific grief, I lay down and finally closed my eyes. A few hours later, I was awakened by a strong odor that smelled just like a Thanksgiving dish of chicken and dressing. The aroma was so thick that I wondered where it could be coming from. I sat up in bed and wiped my eyes. Had I left the oven on before going to bed? But there wasn’t anything in the oven. I sat still for a moment and looked around the room. A strange sensation overwhelmed me as if I was not alone, and then I realized what was happening. My beloved friend had paid me a “visit” in a way that only I would understand. Just days before her death, my friend promised to bake a pan of chicken and dressing for my family’s Thanksgiving meal. As the aroma faded from the room, I whispered her name and thanked her for letting me know she was okay.
If you find yourself longing for a sign this holiday season, don’t be surprised when it shows up. Stay alert. Divine signs and messages from our loved ones are abundant and surround us daily.
Here are three most common communication methods through which signs appear:
Dreams-probably one of the most frequent signs is through a “visitation” dream. If you’ve had a dream in which a departed loved one communicated with you, do not dismiss it. In some cases, departed loved ones have actually served as messengers to warn of impending doom or a significant life event.
Music- Hearing a song that holds significance for you and a loved one or hearing a song with lyrics that seem to answer questions you’ve had may actually be a sign from Heaven.
Chance encounters-Sometimes the universe aligns us with people who unknowingly deliver messages through something they say or do that reveals a connection to a departed loved one.
Although there are many other ways in which we may receive signs, there is one constant truth that will always be present. Regardless of the method or form in which it is delivered, a sign that is meant for you will have an indisputable significance that’s always linked directly to you. Be observant this holiday season. And remember, life never ends and those strange feelings you keep having just may be your departed loved one sending you a “Merry Christmas” from The Afterlife.
To learn more about L. Sydney Fisher’s paranormal research and books, check out
From the #1 Amazon Bestselling Author comes a series that ghost hunters are sure to love!
A TRUE HAUNTED PAST…
I want to tell you a story……about a place once called The Devil’s Furnace. A place that dates its beginnings in prehistoric times. Where Indigenous people once lived and hunted.
A place that’s known massive bloodshed……This bloodshed has stained the soil of the landscape and created a portal to another world. It’s a world where the souls of the deceased enter and exit at will.
Read about the stringy haired ghost woman…… She still roams the streets of this southern town. Find out where ghost sightings are a regular occurrence in haunted buildings and homes.
Explore the history of the city known as the Cradle of Rock-n-Roll, Elvis Presley’s birthplace…… Discover the many reasons why ghost hunters love the hills of the North Mississippi landscape.
If you love history and ghosts, you’ll love the first book in this series. Like The Haunted America series by The History Press, L. Sydney Fisher’s The Haunted is a historical narrative that explores southern sites with a paranormal past. Let’s begin…in Tupelo, Mississippi.
A note from the author: This series is a haunted history narrative. It includes local history and lore that has been thoroughly researched. Often times, this research includes interviews, visits to haunted locations, and paranormal investigations. I have spent months and even years researching a project before publication. If you like history and ghosts, you will probably enjoy The Haunted.
Follow L. Sydney Fisher’s On the Haunted Trail at Facebook each month and get a first look at the stories in The Haunted Series.
Being a paranormal researcher means that I am often contacted by people who are experiencing the paranormal. So what’s the scariest project that I’ve ever been involved in? Without a doubt, it’s the chapter in Volume II of my Haunted Series. The chapter is called The Devil’s Den and after visiting here, I knew the title would be fitting for the story.
Several months before the book’s publication, I was contacted by a woman who had abandoned her home after her husband committed suicide. I was immediately drawn to her story as she described her husband’s bizarre behavioral changes after moving into the house. Since I am an empath and clairvoyant, I absorbed the woman’s story and could feel her grief each time that I spoke with her. She told me that she and her husband had ten wonderful years of marriage until moving into the house located on a dead end road in Rural Mississippi. She said that they didn’t know much about the land surrounding the home, but they had heard about a murder that had happened there.
The family brushed aside any uneasy feelings about the home’s past and instead focused on getting moved into their new spacious home. Each of their children could now have their own bedroom, unlike having to share a room in the mobile home where they had lived before. But within two weeks, strange noises began to haunt the family. Thumping noises from the basement, footsteps, and running water (no one could find its source) were the first signs that something was wrong here. Weeks progressed as the woman’s husband battled a growing rage. He seemed to snap over trivial things and began having conversations with invisible entities.
One day when she was in the kitchen preparing dinner, her husband came up behind her with a knife and told her “I ought to slice your f—ing throat”. She immediately ran out of the house and didn’t return until hours later when her husband was gone. This family’s horror climaxed on the morning that her husband committed suicide, but the weeks leading up to the final hour was unlike anything I had ever heard. The story reminded me of The Amityville Horror, not the fictional accounts, but the part that included the DeFeo murders of 1974. Ronnie DeFeo was charged on the same day that I am writing this now–44 years ago! (November 14, 1974) And I believe that the same type of possession that entered Ronnie DeFeo’s body is also what caused this family’s demise.
I scheduled a time to go out to the property and have a look around. If the energy was as strong as she told me, then I knew I would sense it as soon as I arrived. A local neighbor and family friend met me at the house. At first, I didn’t feel anything unusual or sinister as I walked around the property looking into the windows, but as I made my way around the left side of the house, I began to feel overwhelmed with dread. I stopped and peered inside another window, but then jerked back. Whatever had been at that house before was still there and I realized that it was now watching me from inside the house. I hurried around to the front door, but before I could thank the neighbor for showing me the property, my eyes locked straight ahead on the front door side light window where an old hag with hollow eyes stood watching me. She was humpback, her eyes void of color and hollow without even an iris. Her skin was pasty white and cheekbones protruded from a sunken face. I began to breathe fast and tried to keep my composure. What if the neighbor didn’t see what I was seeing? I knew that I needed to get out of there.
I quickly said my “good-byes” and started for the car, but just as I opened the door, I witnessed a massive black shadow zoom past me and toward the trees at the front of the property. I literally could not believe my eyes. I felt its supernatural power as it soared off the ground. It seemed to put on a show, flaunting itself as it paced back and forth along the tree line. A part of me wanted to stay and explore, but I heeded my body’s warning signs urging me to leave the property. When I arrived home, I raced to my computer and messaged the homeowner. I asked her to describe the spirits that they had seen while living there. To my horror and with my mouth hung open, I watched as her words zipped across Facebook messenger as she described exactly what I had just witnessed minutes before.
Days later, I found myself unable to sleep. Thoughts and visions tormented me about the evil that still dwells on this abandoned property. The widow continued to contact me, and I confessed everything that I saw and felt while there. She pleaded with me to go back to the house and go inside. She wanted me to try and make contact with her deceased husband, but I declined. To this day, I believe that the only energy that still resides in that house is the evil that caused a young woman to kill her baby and a man who had a loving family finally take his own life after months of demonic torment.
If you would like to read the family’s story, you can find it here~ GET THE BOOK
Today, I’m thrilled to share with you an excerpt from a lovely lady I had the pleasure of meeting a few weeks ago at a reading for a fundraiser for a local library. She writes an array of fiction, some based on real events like the book she’s featuring today: The Devil’s Board. Let’s all give a warm welcome to L. Sydney Fisher. *cheers*
A note from Sydney…
While doing research for The Devil’s Board, I was contacted by two different individuals who did not know each other and who did not attend Riverside at the same time. Both of these individuals told me about personal experiences they had while a student at Riverside. To my amazement, one of the individuals revealed that they once lived in the very same dorm room where Amber Simmons used the Ouija board in 1987. This person disclosed that they had experienced inexplicable mood swings and depression…
It might be hard to believe but plants not only respond to sound but they also produce their own sound. While it is easy to assume that plants like trees and flowers are the stoic living decorations in your garden, it turns out that they pretty much communicate with each other through their own voice. …
Situated on a hillside in the Columbus Historic District is the renowned Lincoln House built in 1833. The two level, wood framed house was once home to Columbus mayor, C. L. Lincoln. The house has been in the family for more than 135 years. It’s one of the oldest pre-Civil War homes in the city and in recent years past, the home was a popular bed and breakfast.
Noteworthy features of the home include a front porch with original wavy glass jib windows, white columns, and a front door with the original blue and red Venetian side lights. The house also includes a basement where the original kitchen was located along with a carriage house and stables. As decades have passed, the house has undergone modern updates and the addition of brick floors in the original English basement. The Lincoln Home is the recipient of a Heritage Trust Award (1999) and an award winning landmark in the history of Columbus.
The present day home owes its gratitude to the owners, Sidney and Brenda Caradine who have lovingly preserved the house, but a number of eye witnesses have left the Caradine’s wondering if some of its ghostly residents are still there, reminding us of its beloved past.
In November of 2017, a friend and I purchased tickets to the Ghosts and Legends Tour that’s held annually in the Fall. After arriving in downtown Columbus at the Tennessee Williams home and Welcome Center, we boarded a bus for an hour long tour. The bus navigated through the downtown area, stopping at various points along the way. Each time the bus reached a tour stop, all guests exited and were joined by guides wearing costumes relative to the historic period and story that they narrated.
We made a few stops before we reached The Lincoln House, and even though I had already heard that the house was haunted, I didn’t know any details about the place. The bus driver turned at the corner of College and 7th Street, slowly making his way along the dimly lit street. Then just as we approached the house, I noticed a man standing near the right end of the porch and a lovely, brown-haired woman gazing out the front window. Both of them were dressed in period costumes with the woman’s hair pulled up and tucked into a loose bun at the crown of her head. Her ivory dress was a floor length, chiffon gown with a high-neck lace collar. The gentleman standing outside on the porch was dressed in captain’s attire with a poet sleeve, white shirt and a bayonet by his side.
The bus pulled forward a few feet from the steps leading up to the top of the porch where we all exited and gathered in a semi-circle at the bottom of the steps. We were greeted by the home’s hostess who was dressed as Mother Goose. As she stood on the front porch steps, we listened as she narrated The Lincoln House story in a rich southern dialect that echoed the southern belle’s voices of the past. Then we were introduced to Sidney Caradine who finished the narration with another ghostly tale.
At the completion of the stories, I was surprised that we were being led back to the bus. I looked beyond the steps and toward the window where the Victorian lady stood just moments before. Wasn’t she a part of the tour? I assumed that we would be entering the front parlor of the house to hear another haunted story. However, my assumption was not only wrong, but the woman in the window had now disappeared!
A bewildered expression covered my face as I turned to our guide, Dr. Bridget Pieschel, a local expert on the town’s history and also an English professor and Director of the Center of Women’s Research and Public Policy at MUW (Mississippi University for Women, 1884).
“Aren’t we going inside the house?” I asked.
“No, we don’t go inside.” Dr. Pieschel answered, shaking her head.
“Oh.” I replied with a downturned smile as I started for the steps, and then I stopped. I turned and looked back at the porch.
“There was a woman in the window.” I said pointing to the front of the house. For a moment, I worried if I should mention the work that I do. Paranormal research wasn’t for everybody, but I felt a strong nudge to mention it.
“Well, this is Mother Goose. You know, she just narrated a part of the story here on the front steps and Mr. Caradine was on the front porch, but they’re the only two hosts here.”
I shook my head and responded with a nervous laugh. Fearing I might sound crazy, I leaned forward and whispered.
“I saw a woman in that window. She was standing right there.” I pointed to the window to the right of the front door. Mr. Caradine’s wife joined us on the sidewalk at just that moment and introduced herself to me.
“I’m Brenda Caradine. You must have seen Miss Sue.”
“Miss Sue? Oh, is she inside the house?”
“No, you must have seen her ghost. She’s the ghost that appeared to the women who stayed in the downstairs room.” She said with a genuine and bold confidence.
A tingling chill crept over my body. I rubbed the goosebumps now evident on my arms and nodded. Then without hesitation, I asked Mrs. Caradine if I could come back at a later time and interview her. If the image that I saw standing in the window was, in fact, a ghost then I knew that I had to know more about The Lincoln Home and its history.
“Mrs. Caradine, would it be okay to contact you in a few weeks and schedule a time to talk with you. I am a writer and paranormal researcher.”
Mrs. Caradine’s approval was immediate as her eyes lit up. “Oh, yes. Please do!”
“Okay, I will be in touch with you in a few weeks. And thank you so much.” I shook her hand and then followed Dr. Pieschel back to the bus.
Just as I sat down next to Lisa, she immediately noticed the expression on my face. She looked at me as if she was waiting for me to tell her what was on my mind. As the bus began to move, I turned to look back at the house.
“Lisa, when we first pulled up to the house, did you see a woman inside that window?” I pointed toward the front porch.
“Yes, she was standing by the front door.” Cold chills spread across my arms again.
“What did she look like?”
“She was wearing a white dress. Her hair was in a bun—
“Oh my God.” I mumbled as I covered my mouth.
“Lisa, I saw the same thing, but I saw the image of that woman standing on the inside of that window. The owner of the house just confirmed to me that no one was inside the house at the time they were telling the stories.”
Lisa smiled and nodded. “Wow. We just saw a ghost.”
“I believe we did. And if it’s the same ghost that they spoke of during the story, I have to know more. I’m coming back.” I promised as the bus pulled away from the curb.
Two months later, I phoned the Caradines and arranged to meet Sidney at The Lincoln House. After driving for an hour, I arrived in front of the house and parked along the street. I got out of the car and grabbed my backpack and camera case before climbing the same steps that had led me to the front of the house just weeks before when I first saw the ghost.
I paused for a moment on the sidewalk and studied the front porch area. The nervous flutter of “butterflies” in my stomach consumed me as I began to put one foot in front of the other. I walked steadfast toward the front of the house when all of a sudden the front door opened, and I was greeted by a tall gentleman dressed in a red, button down shirt and wearing a baseball cap. He closed the door behind him and introduced himself.
“Hey, I’m David. Can I help you? Maybe carry something for you?” He asked, extending his hand.
I smiled and replied. “Oh, thank you, but it’s not too much.”
“Did you have a nice drive over?” David led me to the door.
“Yes, it’s been a sunny February day.” I answered with a smile.
“Come on in and have a seat. Sidney is on his way over from his house next door. He also owns the Amzi Love House that’s been in his family for over a hundred years.” David motioned toward the front room on the right.
“Oh my! That’s intriguing.” I marveled.
As I entered the wide open entry from the foyer, my senses immediately alerted me that we were not alone. I sat my backpack and camera bag down on the corner of the sofa and then moved toward a pair of wingback chairs positioned right in front of the window where I had seen the woman’s apparition. David followed me taking a seat in the chair to the left of me.
No sooner had I sat down than the image of a man dressed in a dark suit appeared before me. He stood near the entry to the parlor and appeared to be uninterested in us until David handed me a photo. Then without warning, the now invisible man stood over me, leaning down as if he was looking at the picture in my hand. Amused and slightly unnerved by the drop in temperature near me, I leaned toward David.
“He’s standing over me!” I blurted out before I could stop myself.
David glanced at me, his eyes wide open and fixed on the space directly in front of me. Although I felt like an idiot, I couldn’t ignore how the entire left side of my body was now icy cold. I rubbed my arm in an attempt to warm myself. Then I twisted my body in the chair and faced David in an effort to ignore the ghostly presence. I placed a notepad on my lap and began to write down important details as David talked about the history of the house and some of the paranormal stories that had surfaced over the years.
Shortly thereafter, we were joined by Sidney and Brenda Caradine. I was immediately charmed by Mr. Caradine’s gentile manner as I observed him with his wife. Due to Mrs. Caradine’s failing health, Sidney had assumed a more protective and nurturing role, but both of them still exhibited a passionate love for the house as they shared stories of family history and legacies left behind for the last 185 years.
One of Sidney’s most intriguing stories involved the paranormal encounter with a large, handcrafted replica of a trolley car that still sits in the parlor today. Years ago, friends of the Caradine family came to stay at the Lincoln House. After enjoying a southern dinner and fellowship, the couple retired for the evening. Nothing unusual had happened in the home since their arrival and they had no reason to suspect anything out of the ordinary, but sometime after midnight, they were awakened by a loud and unexpected sound coming from the foyer.
The two of them lay quiet with bewildered looks and creepy goose bumps as they listened to the sound of Louie Armstrong singing It’s a Wonderful World. The music was crisp and clear as the sound bounced off the walls of the Lincoln House, and then as the couple slowly edged off the bed and out into the hall, they were shocked to find the music coming from the trolley. A handcrafted trolley that had been in the family’s heirlooms for decades without anyone ever knowing that it was a music box!
They all examined the trolley the following day and found the hidden mechanism that was responsible for activating the music, but after examining the switch and finding it difficult to slide forward, it seemed impossible for it to come on without someone manually moving it. And so the mystery remains to this day. Who turned the trolley on after decades of silence?
I listened and watched Sidney’s pale blue eyes as they widened and filled with awe while he told the trolley story, and Mrs. Caradine’s almost childlike wonder burst forth each time she took a breath while telling her own personal account with the ghosts of the Lincoln House. It was enough to convince me that I had to spend the night there, even if it was only once. And before the end of our interview, my reservation had been made.
Thrilled and now committed to contacting the ghosts of the Lincoln House, I had to find a team. A team of ghost hunters who wanted to make contact here as much as I did. In just two weeks, the ghost hunt would commence.