Merry Christmas from The Afterlife

 

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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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

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To learn more about L. Sydney Fisher’s paranormal research and books, check out

https://www.LSydneyFisher.com.

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Lanes End, A Paranormal Journey

AUTHOR & PARANORMAL INVESTIGATOR, PAUL HILL

Paul Hill

While thumbing through articles on WordPress, I came across an author’s blog that immediately captured my attention.  I read the author’s bio and discovered that he was a realtor who had an unusual practice not commonly seen in my part of the country.  I was instantly drawn in.

Paul Hill, author of Lanes End, is a paranormal investigator who often investigates homes in the real estate market.  As co-founder of a paranormal investigation group, Light in the Dark Paranormal, the group investigates suspected haunted places that include ghost towns and old mining sites in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.  Educated with a degree in Experimental Psychology and a minor in Sociology, Paul approaches the paranormal with a healthy dose of skepticism but also recognizes his extraordinary gift of extrasensory perception.

His book, Lanes End, is a product of superb writing that takes you through every paranormal twist and turn you can fathom.  It’s a combination of the author’s experiences as a paranormal investigator and a good dose of fiction, but the author’s finely weaved suspense will leave you wondering what’s real and what’s not.  His use of alien abduction as a theme in the story serves as a backdrop with the addition of Odessa’s ghost.  As a paranormal researcher and author of paranormal thrillers, I found Lanes End to be a story that I would want to read more than once.  It’ll grab you fast and pull you in.   One of my favorite lines in this book was….

“Many ghosts live in limbo for eternity, unaware of the passage of time and remembering their own tragic end as if it was yesterday. Some are rescued and move on to my world. Many do not. This is not to say there are not well-adjusted earthbound spirits, those who are relatively content with their station in the afterlife, perhaps as a guardian of the mortals or places they left.”

The book is convincing, regardless of its fictional story-line and characters, and I found much of the book’s content relative to the real world of paranormal research and the afterlife.  Lanes End is a paranormal experience all its own and one that  you won’t forget!

For more information about Paul’s research, find him here….

http://www.lightinthedarkparanormal.com/about.html

Signed copies of Lanes End are available here…

https://lightinthedarkparanormal.wordpress.com/the-lanes-end-project/Lanes End

 

 

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The Ghosts of Chattanooga’s Historic Read House Hotel

The Ghosts of Chattanooga’s Historic Read House Hotel

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The Crutchfield House Hotel aka/ The Historic Read House Hotel, Chattanooga, TN           Circa 1847

Chattanooga, Tennessee could probably be sited as one of the most haunted locations in the United States.  The mid-size city’s Civil War past harbors one of the bloodiest battles in the War Between the States with approximately 34,000 dead and wounded soldiers, second only to Gettysburg.  It’s a city of enormous beauty and quintessential history that is sure to please those like myself who love to hunt haunted locations.  Perhaps that is the real reason that I am intrigued by ghosts.  I’ve been a lifelong paranormal researcher studying the unexplained since I was able to obtain a library card and check out books.  It’s a fascination that began after I experienced my first encounter with the living dead, and the rest is history.

During a weekend getaway to Chattanooga this past July, 2016, my daughter and I visited the famous Sheraton Read House Hotel at 827 Broad Street.  The hotel was originally built in 1847 and was conveniently located across from the railroad, the main source of business and imports.  Known then as the Crutchfield House (named after the Crutchfield family who owned the property), the hotel burned to the ground in 1867 and the Crutchfield’s decided not to rebuild.  This decision paved the way for Dr. John T. Read to purchase the property years later and build a ten-story building in the Georgian architectural style.  But prior to the new construction in 1926, the hotel had served as a Civil War hospital (1863) housing hundreds of sick and mortally wounded Union soldiers, many who arrived by the railway tracks adjacent to the hotel.

The site of the hotel had a gruesome past.  Many suicides, murders, and natural deaths were said to have occurred in both buildings located at this site.  Ghost hunters know that the spirits of the dead may sometimes remain attached to a location, not necessarily a building.  And it’s this belief that still keeps the legend of Annalisa Netherly alive in ROOM 311 at the historic hotel.

There are different accounts of Annalisa’s story.  Some accounts claim that she was a prostitute who was brought into the hotel by a Confederate soldier who murdered her and left her in the room.  Other accounts claim that she arrived at the hotel with her lover or husband sometime during the 1920’s and had an extended stay there.  This story concludes that her lover left her heartbroken and she committed suicide.  But the most compelling and believable story to me was the claim that Annalisa arrived at the hotel during the 1920’s and was murdered by a jealous husband or boyfriend.  According to the legend, Annalisa was caught with another man and her throat was slashed from ear to ear almost decapitating her.  Her body was found soaking in the bathtub hours later.

Reports of ghostly activity have been reported at the hotel for many years.  Ghost sightings are plentiful and evident in numerous online pictures that guests have shared.  Over the years, guests have rented ROOM 311 and left during the middle of the night vowing not to return.  There have been reports of shadow images in mirrors and glimpses of spirits moving about the room and even resting on the bed.  Smokers occupying the room have been met with the unfriendly ghost who is said to hate men and cigarettes.

While ROOM 311 was made available to guests who requested it or if all other rooms at the hotel were booked, it is NO longer available to rent.  According to a local citizen, a man reportedly rented the room and was attacked by an unseen force leaving him covered in bruises.  The man claimed that the malevolent spirit also moved the objects in the room and hurled a bedside lamp at him.  Since there had been other reports similar to this visitor’s claim, the hotel placed a lock on the outside of the door and sealed it shut.

As an empath, I was very interested in discovering what energy that I could pick up at this hotel.  My take-away was that the hotel had many more entities than Annalisa.  I visited the locked ROOM 311 and immediately felt anger and despair upon entering the hallway.  A horrible sense of murder and doom enveloped me as I stood in front of the door and I sensed her anger.  I also sensed her grief.

The ghost of Annalisa has been seen countless times at the hotel.  She is said to be wearing white and often manifests to children.  Tragically, her ghost sometimes appears to be pregnant.  The impressions that I received of Annalisa were of a young brunette in her 20’s when she died, and although she often wore her hair in a bun, her hair was a tousled mess at the time she was murdered.

To add to the final intrigue~ Al Capone, notorious Prohibition Era gangster was said to have stayed in ROOM 311 during his federal trial.  Security bars were placed on the window and were not removed until 2004 during a renovation.  Like Annalisa’s knife wounds that killed her, Capone, aka, Scarface, received his nickname from the scars inflicted on him during a bar room brawl after Capone refused to apologize for ‘un-gentleman like’ remarks that he made to a man’s sister.  Although Capone often told inflated lies about how he received the scars on his face, it was actually the blade of a man’s knife that left him scarred for life.  Capone reportedly stayed in the haunted room without incident.

Knowing Capone’s love of cigars and his raunchy temperament, I find it surprising that Annalisa let him off the hook during his stay.  On the other hand, if Annalisa did in fact stay at the Read House Hotel during the 1920’s as some believe, that would put her in that room after its construction in 1926.  Capone stayed in the room in 1931.  Perhaps Capone’s scarred face served as a trophy of misfortune and a symbol that Annalisa could find sympathy for.  Who was the real Annalisa Netherly and who killed her?  Unfortunately, the mystery has never been solved, but her legend and her restless spirit lives on.

 

NOTE:  During the new re-construction of the hotel in 1926, the exact location of Room 311 became known today as ROOM 313.  ROOM 313 is believed to be the original site of the former Room 311.  Notice the deadbolt locks on Room 313’s door. 

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The Sheraton Read House Hotel today.
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Hallway leading to Room 311
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Room 311 today is NOT the exact location of the original haunted room.
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ROOM 313~ The original ROOM 311 is now locked with a deadbolt.
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Al Capone, aka Scarface once stayed in the haunted room.

 

 

Daddy’s Girl~ A Christmas Memoir

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L. Sydney Fisher and her father, Landon C. Fisher about a year before he passed away.

This time of year is difficult for so many people who have lost loved ones.  As the holiday approaches, I’m wishing you happy memories that fill your heart with joy rather than sadness.  It is my sincere belief that our loved ones who have passed on want us to be living happy and prosperous lives, and I truly believe that they are nearer than you think!

I hope you enjoy the following memoir written some years ago.  It was a 2nd place winner in a local writing contest.  Merry Christmas from my house to yours!  

Daddy’s Girl

I’ll never forget one Christmas Eve at K-Mart in Memphis, Tennessee.  The stores were open late for last-minute shopping, and my dad and stepmom had rushed out to pick up some last-minute items on a Christmas list that had already surpassed even Santa. My eyes were wide with excitement and hope as I eyed the toys on the shelves still waiting to be bought.  My daddy hobbled along beside me, one of his legs being shorter than the other as we walked up and down the aisles.

Suddenly, something caught my eye.  I stopped and stared at the polished white boots and shiny silver wheels.

“Daddy, look!” I exclaimed.  “Roller skates!  Will you buy me these for Christmas, please?  And they are even on sale.”  I begged.

Daddy never said a word.  He picked up the skate and inspected the price.  “Gee, I’m sorry, Honey.  I don’t have enough money with me.  Maybe Santa will bring you some next year.”

My heart sank as I wandered off to a different aisle.  Unknowing to me, my daddy would somehow manage to get those skates to the check-out stand without being seen.

The following morning at 6:30 a.m., I jumped out of bed and rushed to the den.  As I stood staring at the mounds of presents beneath the tree, I noticed a brown paper sack sitting off to itself.  I tore the bag open and buried my face inside.  The sound of crinkling paper filled my ears as I stared at the shiny wheels and white polished boots that I had longed for just a few hours before.  I squealed with delight as I pulled the roller skates out of the sack.  And my dad stood watching me, a beaming smile of satisfaction on his face.

It’s true that I was spoiled, pampered, and treasured as a little girl loved by her daddy. Through the years, he patiently watched as I wore more make-up than Tammy Faye Baker and dressed in clothes much too tight for little girls to wear.  He tolerated my strong will with a soft disapproval and a determination to teach me Christian morals. There was rarely a need for spankings from him since disappointing him would have been more punishment than he could have possibly administered.

A few years later as a budding young woman, I proudly watched my daddy tell the nurses about Jesus as he lay in his hospital bed hooked to feeding tubes and IV’s laced with morphine.  When not in a drug-induced sleep, he spoke with conviction about the strength Christ had showered on him during his battle with cancer.  As “Daddy’s Little Girl”, I bathed his face with a cool cloth and fed him cold, wet ice chips to soothe his dry mouth.  I stood in awe and basked in his spirit each time this 85 pounds of flesh and bones mustered the strength to tell me I was his “sweetie pie”.

As a grown woman, I envision hugging my daddy each Christmas, and I never fail to recall the words he instilled in my soul so many times during my childhood when he said, “You know, someday you’re going to make something of yourself and be known as somebody really special.”

He fed me with encouragement, nourished me with love, and bathed me in righteous teachings that have continued to inspire me.  If “Children Live What They Live”, as the saying goes, then the daddies who teach us about life and living such as mine must have the halos of angels about their heads.  For today when I reminisce, I must say, Dear Daddy, I was somebody special the day God chose me to be your girl.”

Love,

Sydney