Paranormal Quest

I started a new video blog series at my Youtube ChannelParanormal Quest.  We started off the first episode last night with an evening session on a Ouija Board.  The following video is the result.


The Witch’s Desk: How do you detect the presence of Spirits in your house?


This is my question-of-the-week, and I thought it would be refreshing to get away from the topic of relationships for a while.  Spirits are always interesting, though they are not always fun, but mostly (from my own experience) they actually are.  This is just me, or maybe it’s that I’ve only had pleasant or neutral experiences with them so far.  For whatever reason, I just don’t feel “frightened” by them. I have a friend that I have done House Cleansings with around the Omaha area, and the one thing that I’ve noticed is that a lot of the time you won’t have to ask yourself if you have a spirit in your house, you will most definitely know; but this is often the more extreme cases, real “hauntings” with something that is unpleasant, or obnoxious, or invasive in a very negative way.  Through this experience, visiting other people’s homes and talking to them about their situations, I realize that some people are just naturally frightened by the idea of the ethereal…ghosts, spirits, anything down this road.

The house that we live in now has always had spirit activity, and I’ve only recently learned from some of my daughters, since they’ve grown, is that when they were small there was an unpleasant “something” on the landing (we have a split level home).  One of my daughters told me that she felt it so strongly, and it was such a scary menacing presence to her, that she was often afraid to go up and down the stairs.  Years afterwards, when I began to regularly (key word here is “regularly”) cleanse the house, this entity disappeared.

I remember the exact day I decided I had enough– I was sweeping down the stairs, on a day that I was all alone, which rarely happened with our large home-schooling family, when I felt the hair on the back of my neck stand up and a rush of goose bumps come up my legs.  This was accompanied by the very unnerving sensation of someone (a presence) behind me.  Did this scare me?  No, I actually found it interesting– but it did make me angry.  I considered this an obnoxious invasion of my personal space.  I threw the broom down and, muttering under my breath, I stalked off around the house to gather up white candles, and incense, salt and water, cussing the whole time.  I guess I felt it was an inconvenience that was unnecessary, and I would have to take the time to straighten this spirit out and set some boundaries, rather than being able to get all the “Stuff” done that I wanted to get done while I was on my own!

My kids claimed later, and continue to do so to this day, that I tend to do too good a job of cleansing, and some of the entities we have shared this space with were actually interesting, just an integral part of the house and it’s atmosphere.  So I’ve let up over the years, acknowledging that there’s enough room in this old house for everyone, as long as we all play nice in the sandbox.  There have only been a handful of times in the last 20 years when I’ve had to draw some boundaries and shoo a spirit away.


Anyway, I digress, on to the subject at hand.  The individual who asked me this question is obviously not sure what constitutes a spirit’s presence, and what may just be some sort of natural occurrence, or an overactive imagination. Let’s look at all those tell tale signs of spirit activity–

1)  Scents:  It’s happened to me before, I’ll smell my grandmother’s perfume, or her favorite flower (roses).  You might smell cigars or cigarette smoke in a house where no one smokes.  You might smell a loved one’s favorite food.  Anytime you pick up a scent that is not explainable on a physical level, you might want to consider that it’s coming from another source.  I’ve heard about (but never experienced personally) the unpleasant and obnoxious odors of malevolent spirits.  This is just something to keep in mind.  Most of the time it’s all good, but once in a while you might run into something unusual.  The sense of smell is just another one of our six senses, just another way we learn and experience and process information about the world around us.

2)  Noises:  Here we go again, another one of our six senses.  Several times over the past few decades, since my grandmother’s death, I have heard her call my name.  Often this has happened in the dead of night and woken me out of a deep sleep, but there have been occasions where this has happened during the day, when I’m wide awake to begin with, and usually when I am alone.  It’s cool, nothing scary.  She’s just touching base, letting me know that she’s still near, that there is still some sort of connection.  (Death isn’t the end, it’s just a different plane of existence.) Besides hearing voices, there are other odd sounds– knocking, scraping, footsteps, growling (not usually a good thing), hammering, human sounds (like hand clapping , finger snapping, muttering)…and always, you will have no logical explanation for these sounds.

3)  Temperature Changes:  We’re talking big in-your-face changes that are unexplainable through normal physics.  This means the furnace man won’t be able to explain to you a 40 degree drop in 5 seconds.  If you ask him to explain this he’s just going to stand there scratching his head; and if he’s a really savvy furnace man (who knows about ghosts and all that paranormal stuff), he’s liable to be throwing tools in his bag and scurrying from your house so fast all you see is the back of his head.  I guess there are more subtle temperature changes you can experience, but people are more liable to explain them away– a sudden cold breeze that wafts through a room, gently lifting the pages of a newspaper; a momentary “chill” that gives you a shudder.  Besides unusual temperature changes, you might experience drafts– the kind of draft that flickers and toys with candle flames, the kind of draft that can’t possibly come from anything of this world because there is no place for the draft to originate from.

4) Electronic/Electrical Malfunctions:  We’ve often heard that the spirit world has the ability to collect energy from our electrical gadgets and use this energy to manifest all kinds of paranormal phenomena.  I don’t know if any of this can ever really be scientifically proven, but it seems that a lot of these occurrences (odd things happening with your electrical gadgets, lamps, lights, computers, etc.) almost always seem to precipitate a mad rush of paranormal activity.  Do you have appliances, lights, a television, computer, or other gadget that turns itself off and on? …that turns itself off and on regularly?

7)  Moving Objects:  This is pretty extreme and the fodder for many movies and television shows.  But it does happen, and the most basic kind of activity that I’ve personally witnessed (with moving objects) involved a series of cupboard doors that would be closed one minute and all open the next; drawers or doors, same thing.  I’ve yet to see anything as dramatic or theatrical as portrayed in the movies.  Remember, for a spirit to move a physical object, an object of atoms and matter, it would take an incredible amount of energy.

6)  The Goosebump Factor:  Some people are more sensitive to the paranormal and its energy than others.  There are a lot of people (a lot!) who can actually “feel” the presence of spirits, even if they are not sensitive enough to communicate with them (as a medium or psychic), they still know dang well that there is something there, and they can often pick up on positive or negative energy.  Never underestimate The Goosebump Factor.

Personal Notes: Paranormal Investigation

The small cozy little house sitting on the edge of the woods looked peaceful and content, not revealing at all its history of tragic deaths, nor it’s ghostly visitors. At one hundred years old, this house has a long rich history of families and familial events and milestones. It has witnessed weddings, births, graduations, personal victories/achievements…and death. The present owner has experienced the loss of two family members within the walls of this house. Her mother passed away from cancer in the downstairs bedroom in 2005; and its in this room where a frosty presence makes itself felt by sitting on the bed, complete with the physical sensation of movement and visible indentation in the blankets. The owner’s husband passed away in the den, in 2008, after a long and lingering illness. Although his presence can be felt— quite strongly at times— there are no visual manifestations. And it’s from this room, through glass patio doors, that deer can be seen gathering at dusk near the rear of the property. It’s in the den where a photograph of the owner’s step-son sits, a young man killed in a tragic motorcycle accident, the parents having received that devastating middle-of-the-night call all parents dread.

Upon entering the house, we realized immediately that there was very strong EMF readings, beginning at the doorway between the living room and kitchen, which was also very close to the bedroom door. Shadow figures are often seen by family members, crossing the living room and disappearing into the walls. We spent a great deal of time with the owners and the EMF detector exploring the bedroom and the doorway between the livingroom and the kitchen, where the EMF detector was extremely active. We wanted to make sure that there were no electrical devices or outlets that would’ve been creating these readings. This involved moving furniture, locating all the electrical outlets, and letting the family take their time to tell their stories, voice their concerns, and formulate their questions.

When we were finally ready to ascend the stairs, the owner told us that her grandchildren refused to go upstairs; and the way the EMF detector was working as we stood at the threshold, it was no wonder. There was an almost constant scream of protest from it. The EMF detector came on while we were at the bottom of the steps and continued until we reached the doorway of the first upstairs bedroom. As investigators and home owners stood in a clump in one room, I moved around the upstairs with the EMF detector. I wished that we could just sit and spend some quiet time with cameras and instruments turned on. I think this would’ve been beneficial in catching spontaneous paranormal activity. However, the owners were enthusiastic and wanted to watch us work, continuing their chatter and speculation. For the rest of the time that we wandered the second floor of this house, the EMF activity was sporadic at best. As we worked our way from room to room, and as we descended the stairs, it fell silent. The atmosphere at the bottom of the stairs was noticably lighter. Whatever had been hovering there before seemed to be gone.

The bathroom proved to be another area that drew high EMF readings, particularly in the shower; and we discovered that this presence was there one minute and gone the next, popping in and out in a dizzying fashion. We were also informed that objects in the bathroom moved around from place to place, inexplicably, creating an unnerving atmosphere. Instead of spending one long block of time in this area, we would pop in and out throughout our investigation. I have to say that the mirrored walls added an element of creepiness to this room, as you would catch fleeting movments in the mirror that you’d see out of the corner of your eye. Of course, by the time you turned your head to see what it was, it was gone.

Around the small entryway, suspended over an old-fashioned cellar door in the floor leading to the basement, was a string of clothing. The owner informed us that these clothes belonged to her deceased husband, and that she simply couldn’t bring herself to get rid of them. There was not only EMF activity here, but the strange sensation that someone was watching us as we touched the shirts, or moved a hangar. After a few minutes in this area, several people felt the hair on their arms or the back of their neck stand up, or experienced an uncomfortable sensation which manifested as a desire to exit this spot.

Epilogue…As we worked our way through this house, not only did the EMF readings and paranormal sensations unfold before us, but the story of a family and its tragedies unfolded as well. This gave us an intimate look at characters and personalities who lived in this house at one time and who still walk its rooms and hallways, as well as the dynamics of the people still living here, and the long history of former occupants. The owners seemed relieved to share their stories, to watch instruments pick up visual proof of what they’ve known all along, and most importantly…to feel a connection with those they loved.

Spirits…The Little Boy from Georgia

Yesterday evening I had to pick my 16-year-old daughter up from work. It was after 10pm as I sat in the car, in the dark, by myself.

Suddenly a song sprang into my head, a children’s song. I started to sing it out loud, though I was sure I didn’t know it, and even now, I don’t remember what it was. 

With a start, it dawned on me that this is one of those ‘unusual’ moments ghost hunters are always waiting for. I realized that the song didn’t come from me, from my brain, but from something around me, outside of me.

I have been reading several books on mediumship—how to tap into your psychic center and communicate with the dead. Thus far, I had only been reading; I hadn’t put into practice what the experts were telling me to do. I figured that now was the perfect time, the perfect situation, to use the information I had been picking up from books—and a multitude of experienced mediums.

By asking an entity questions and using a series of mental images, you can receive the answers, other communication—often in depth, and even—if you are empathic—the emotional feelings of a spirit.

I began by speaking out loud:

“I know that I’m not alone. I can feel you here. Feel free to communicate with me, if this is what you desire. Are you an adult?”

A black rose instantly flashed in my mind, but also before my eyes at the same time, it’s a strange sensation to try and describe.

The answer was ‘no’.

“Are you a child?”

Instantly, a white rose appeared, in the same manner as the previous rose.

The answer was ‘yes’.

“Are you over ten years of age?”

The black rose again, another ‘no’.

“Are you under ten years of age?”

The white rose, a ‘yes’.

“Are you a boy?”

This time a blue sphere flashed before my mind. The answer was ‘yes’.

“Where are you from?”

In a split second a visual image of a US map appeared in my mind, and the state of Georgia seemed to leap from it. Again, there was the odd sensation of both seeing it in my mind and seeing it before my eyes at the same time.

“What letter of the alphabet does your first name begin with?”

White letters against a black background popped into my mind, and almost simultaneously the ‘R’ zoomed in before me.

I have experienced unusual psychic phenomenon of this type before—always white letters on a black background forming words.

“Is your name Robert?”

I’m not sure how to describe it, other than to say an instantaneous negative feeling came over me. I assumed the answer was ‘no’.

“Is your name Roger?”

Again, the only way to describe the sensation that followed is to say that it was like asking a living person if this was their name and receiving a positive response…‘yes’.

By this time I had been sitting in the car a good twenty minutes or so. My daughter would be coming any moment. They had turned out the lights in the building. I was tired and actually felt drained. I closed the ‘session” with Roger gently and positively:

“I’m going to stop for now,” I told him, “But I’ll talk with you again sometime.”

Later that night…

The girls and I had dozed off in my bedroom while we were watching TV. My husband had been watching a movie in the living room. He finally came to bed around 2am, and we shuffled everyone around, herding sleepy-eyed children to their own beds.

Of course, by the time we did this and then hubby had to tell me about the movie he had been watching, I was wide awake. And wouldn’t you know he fell asleep while I lay skimming through the channels.

I was just beginning to get drowsy when I heard it…

a crying, whimpering, sniffling child.

I had kids in various stages of flu and colds, so I immediately thought it was my youngest. I jumped up and threw my robe on so fast that I woke my husband.

“What’s the matter?” he mumbled from beneath the covers.

“Emma’s crying,” I said.

I went racing down the hallway to the couch, where she’d been sleeping the last couple nights while she was sick. Emma was sound asleep. I walked back to the hallway and paused ahead of two more doorways…Silence.  

Then I heard it again, but this time it sounded as though it was coming from downstairs. I raced down two flights of stairs and stood in the family room listening for the two older children whose bedrooms are down there. 

Nothing but silence.

I was so awake that I decided to sit down to the computer for a while. I spent between two and three hours blogging. And every so often I was interrupted by the sounds of a crying sniffling child.

I made several trips upstairs, even opening one of the bedroom doors to wake a daughter, just to be sure it wasn’t her. I even checked the cats—all curled onto the couches and easy chairs, warm sleepy fur balls.

I stood at the top of the stairs for several seconds to listen for the voice. Very faintly, as though from a great distance, I could hear it. Goosebumps rushed up my legs, and the hair on the back of my neck stood up.

About 5am, exhausted, I tried lying down to go to sleep. Intermittently, I would hear the crying child, until finally it stopped, or I fell asleep.

The next morning, after my girls were all awake and up, I asked them all how they had slept. No problems, they all declared. Everyone had a good nights sleep.

It didn’t dawn on me until then that the voice I heard may have belonged to the little boy from Georgia.


Ghost Hunting 101

This November my coven sister Mare & I, along with some siblings/partners/friends, went on a ghost hunting adventure armed with an EMF detector, Mare’s pendulum, and lot’s of enthusiasm.  The house we were investigating had been Mare’s childhood home, and the interesting thing about this house and the hauntings connected to it is that several families who have lived there have all had similiar experiences with the same types of entities.  These spirits range from a troubled young man in a bomber jacket– who committed suicide on this property, a lonesome little boy, a man who haunts the downstairs dining room, a woman who chills the main floor bathroom, and ghosts who make things go bump in the attic. The house is a quaint white clap-board home that was built in 1886 and retains much of it’s old-world charm.  The craftsmanship in the leaded windows has been untouched, and even though it’s gone through remodeling and modernization, it still has about it the feeling of another era:
 The owners of this house are very aware of their ghostly counterparts, feeling other-worldly presences at different times in specific areas of the house.  Occupants of this home have experienced moving objects, disembodied voices, banging in various rooms, scratching noises on the windows, and vibration of the kitchen table. This, of course, makes some of them uneasy, and there are those who don’t care to be alone in certain areas of this home.  One lady told me that when she arrives at the house and leaves her car to walk inside, she deliberately avoids looking up at the attic windows.  Not only does it give her an uncomfortable feeling– as though she’s being watched, she says that the windows remind her of the Amityville house of renowned movie fame.
 In the following photos you will see a slew of orbs.  For those people who scoff at orbs and explain them away as ‘dust specks’ that have caught the light, I can tell you that if this were true, then every photo I take in my own home would be covered with orbs because my house is very dusty.  You should know that these orbs have manifested right where activity has been experienced and in spots where the EMF detector was going off, beeping like crazy. We had only to step into the house for the first beep of recognition, a spot between the dining room table and the china hutch.  There is the ghost of a man seen here, walking in the front door and calmly walking through the dining room.  This scenario is repeated over and over and almost sounded like one of those repetitive hauntings, where the clock seems to keep rewinding itself.  But this ghost broke that routine one day when he sat himself down to the dining room table.  It’s believed that he is the man who did the original work on the windows of this house, and he likes to stop by and admire his accomplishments.  When considering this, I find it amazing that with all the remodeling over the years, the one thing that has never been touched is the windows. In this photo, we’re in the dining room, between the china hutch & the table.  People have gathered closer to watch the EMF detector, which was very active.  Not only did it alert us of an entity in this area, we could follow its movement through the room.
 These are the beautiful dining room windows, the area where the dining table sits.  The bright sunshine and the lovely plants give little hint of the paranormal activity going on around us. We were off to a good start.
 Mare, her sister Rhonda, and the owner of the house are standing before the large livingroom window.  He explained to us how objects on the entertainment center to his right will suddenly come crashing down, as though thrown or swept off the shelf.  This seems to happen indiscriminatley, with objects that are sitting very close or even touching each other– one item will tumble, and the others will remain untouched. It’s in this area of the house that a little boy’s voice has been heard, his image fleetingly seen.  Perhaps the precocious ghost of a child wants to handle or play with the items on the shelf, just as a mischievous living child might do?
  People using the main floor bathroom have experienced a sudden drop in temperature, the room growing extremely cold. They also experience a sudden chilling of the water, an uncomfortable feeling of being watched, and the hair standing up on the back of their necks.  The ghost haunting this room is believed to be a woman, occasionally even seen, wearing a blue dress, her hair drawn up in a bun.  The owner told us that she has the unnerving habit of sharing the shower, even brushing up against you.  This same ghost makes herself at home in the bedroom as well, gently shoving the owner over, as though she needed more room.  The bathroom and bedroom are connected through the door seen at the right.  We entered the bathroom through this door.  The EMF detector caught an energy lingering in this threshold.
 We were working our way around the main floor first, here I’m just coming out of the laundry room and re-entering the kitchen.  We noticed from the EMF detector that the activity was very specific and that movement could be traced.  These entities were not standing still, but sometimes seemed to be following their own path– or us.
The Basement… Most people think of the basement as being dark, mysterious, and most likely prone to all kinds of things that go bump-in-the-night.  However, this didn’t seem to be the case in this house.  Although one of the adults who has her bedroom in the basement told us that she often feels that she’s not alone– that creepy, something-I-can’t-see-is-behind-me, the hair standing up on your neck feeling.  I checked her bedroom with the EMF detector and didn’t find anything.  That doesn’t mean that what she is experiencing isn’t real, only that on this day, the entity wasn’t there.
The Attic… We saved the best part of the house for last…The Attic.  The attic of this house seems to be a busy place, paranormally speaking.  Occupants of the house have heard balls bouncing, as well as the sound of wheels– like a tricycle, or child’s wagon– rolling across the floor above them as they sit in the livingroom below.  In this attic, at one time, hung the brown bomber jacket belonging to the young man who committed suicide.  The jacket wouldn’t stay where it was put.  People in the room below would know when the jacket was moved–  they’d hear a loud banging sound on the floor. When we first ascended the stairs to the attic, upon reaching the top, myself and another woman both experienced nausea, dizziness, and a heavy ‘tightness’ about our chest.  I honestly thought I was going to have to go down.  We noticed, however, that once we moved to another area of the attic, these physical sensations went away. Here you see the infamous attic windows from a new perspective– from the inside looking out.
The EMF detector picked up quite a bit of activity at the top of the stairs and in the west side of the room, right where you see these orbs.
The attic was the only place in the house where orbs were photographed, and it was in this location of the house where many people seemed to feel the strongest sense of a paranormal presence, uneasiness, and physical sensations.
We spent quite a bit of time in the attic, picking up EMF readings, asking the entities direct questions with Mare’s pendulum, goading the ghosts to respond in some way– with the movement of an object, a noise, etc., and questioning the present occupants about their experiences.  This was, by far, the most intense part of the house.  We’d been here for a while and thought we would wind up the investigation. It seemed that with a large group of people milling about, the ghosts had retreated to a quieter realm. The group was standing around in the downstairs livingroom, chatting about the events of the day and the house, when Mare’s brother Dan heard noises from the attic and quietly slipped away from the crowd.  Mare & I followed him up the steps, with the EMF detector picking up an entity in the stairwell, directly beside Mare and myself.  It lingered here between us, staying close, while Dan could hear noises coming from the east end of the attic, ahead of the attic windows.  It seemed that quiet solitude invited paranormal activity.


 Dan snapped this picture then, catching an orb hovering over Mare.  Was this the spirit of the mischevious little boy?…the tragic young man, perhaps searching for his jacket?…the woman in blue, a previous lady of this house, going about her daily activities?  Or was this the craftsman, the carpenter, checking on the attic windows, making sure his work was in order?

Below are three siblings who grew up in this lovely quaint house, coming home to recapture childhood memories, to embrace a moment of nostalgia for loved ones who have passed on, and to reconnect once more with the spirit entities that were very much a part of their life in this house.


*Note:  I’d like to thank Mare’s brother, Dan, for manning the camera during
our investigation and taking photos.

© Amythyst Raine/The Witch’s Corner  2009
All of the photos on this page are original/personal photos
and are protected under copyright law.



Welcome to my website: The Witch’s Corner

I don’t know how I jammed so much into one newsletter, but the June newsletter is absolutely loaded this month.

The highlight is a new section I’ve added that may appear every once in a while called "Hauntings".  This month I loaded up my video/digital camera and my witchlings and we headed to the infamous ‘Barnard Park’.  What’s so unusual about a park, you might rightfully inquire.  This park just happened to be the city cemetery at one time, and when the big move was made to a new cemetery site– not all of the occupants could be located to be moved to their new resting place.  They still reside among the playground equipment, picnic tables, and park benches…and rumor has it that they make their presence known.

You’ll find a June tarot special that will be running for the entire month, as well as a featured item from Creations by Isabella, and a sale special offered from Wytchy Wares.

The June newsletter is packed with information on herbs– marigolds; stones– tiger’s eye; the June moon– the Mead Moon; tarot tips– the nine of swords.  There’s been two new pages added to The Witch’s Corner since last month, and you’ll find links to them in this month’s newsletter.  I re-posted the photos of Isabella’s latest tattoo creations, as well as a link to a video of her at work on this project from my Myspace profile– gotta’ brag on my girl!  I’m so proud of her artistic accomplishments.

Spells of the month for June include a Summer Solstice spell, as well as tips for attracting fairies– taken from my own Book of Shadows.


fairyinflowersmg3222.gif PURPLE FLOWER FAIRY image by whatevergirl_03