Sunday, April 27, 2008

Willow Wraith

There has been some chat with David (Authorblog) and Lady Em
(The Lavender Beekeeper) recently about ghosts. David said that he
would be very interested to read a post about this subject. I was
hesitant at first, but decided that others might find it intriguing to read
about the happenings at Willow Manor. Until we moved into this house
twenty years ago, I had no real personal experiences that might lead
me to ponder the existence of ghosts. However, that quickly changed
the first year we lived in this house.
Now, creaks and thumps are normal occurrences in all houses over
80 years old, especially those with the old hot water, radiator heating
systems. After living in a home, you familiarize yourself with all the
usual noises. But many nights, between 4:00 and 5:00 a.m., the
systematic creaking of the front steps sounds exactly like the gentle
steps of a female descending the stairs. WT has, on occasion, been
up early working with European clients on the phone, heard the steps
and mistakenly thought I had descended the stairs, only to find me
upstairs asleep in bed. Overnight guests have asked who was up
around 4:30, walking down the front stairway.
All five of us have been awakened at night with the soft whispering
voice of a woman in our ear, often accompanied by a unique scent of
perfume in the air. Two of our adult children have seen the white
flowing nightdress of a small woman late at night, that swirls and
disappears quickly. We have also had unexplained radios blaring,
drawers opened at night with the contents pulled out and doors
Several years ago, I watched a 12 month old child, during the day,
while her parents worked. She would often look up the kitchen
stairway, smile and wave, when the house was empty except for the
two of us. Well, at least the ghost must be a friendly one, right?
And one with fabulous taste in perfume!
We have become very accustomed to these occurrences over the
years and they are fairly commonplace, so I don't feel afraid. I would,
however, be very interested to know if any of you might have similar


  1. What a fascinating story! I'm so glad your presence is a friendly one. By the pictures of your lovely home I cannot imagine an unfriendly one. I have often thought that the physical energy left when a person dies has to go somewhere, and sometimes it is more collected in one form than dissipated to float through the world.

    When I was 9 and we were living in a 300-year-old cottage in Cornwall, I placed a glass on the kitched table one day, and it moved, slowly, about one foot across the surface. No damp, no slope. That may or may not have been a ghostly presence. Most likely not, but it's the closest I've ever come to one.

  2. I would venture to say that a 300 year old cottage would have plenty of historical energy! Intriguing!

  3. What an amazing story. I'd have a for sale sign up within the week! Do you know the history of the house?

  4. What a beautiful house! My son, as a baby & toddler, used to do the same thing. He would look up, wave & said "Hello!". We always assumed that it was his guardian angel. Niklas is 10years old now & sadly, has not seen his angel for many years.

  5. Amazing story, Willow! My interest is certainly peaked. I love a good ghost story.

    We've had some strange occurances here as well. My husband smells cigarette smoke( No one in our family smokes) and My mother and I have both smelled the distinct odor of Rose Water perfume. You know the kind I mean; not the heavy perfume you find in stores today but the gentle cologne that our Grandmothers wore. Every time we do restoration work this starts up. We're beginning more work next week so I'm going to keep a record.

  6. Fascinating! You know Willow...I have had a peculiar experience in a relative's home. I won't go into any detail, but it was very frightening...not friendly whatever it was. I never slept in her home again...I think I have seen, heard, and read too much. My imagination conjers up all sorts of unforseen scary things :)..As a result, I have that Icobod Crane, in Legend of Sleepy Hollow, ...get on your horse and ride reaction...Interesting Post

  7. Xue, welcome to the manor! I just popped over to your place and admired your lovely jewelry. Nice to meet you! :)

  8. Rebecca, this scent is unmistakable, very beautiful and unlike anything my daughter or I wear.

    Keep me posted on things during your renovation. I'm very intrigued.

  9. DeeDee, hee hee, yes some of our house guests have left just like Icobod Crane! ;)

  10. Sharon, yes we do know the history of the house. It has had several owners besides ourselves and a few untimely deaths.

  11. I'm so glad I finally got the story on your lovely house. It is beautiful!! I think that you have a very friendly lady ghost in your house. And I don't think she minds at all that ya'll are there.
    I've had several strange occurances happen to me. The first apartment I ever lived in was a little loft apartment that was once a motel in Athens, GA. Well it was just me, and my best friend soon decided to rent an apartment right downstairs from me. These were very tiny apartments. I loved it though, and was really excited to have my first place. The complex wasn't big so all the neighbors knew each other in passing. Well I moved in and the first night I was there I was in my bedroom, and I heard a giant bang like a rock had been thrown through the wall. I thought what in the world could that be? I went into the living room, and a small framed picture I had hung had just fallen down on the carpeted floor. I couldn't figure it out. I soon would find that I was hearing voices in conversation in the hall when I was in the bathtub at night, that lights would blow all the time, and a general feeling of being watched. I moved in in the summer when all the trees were in full bloom. Fall came and I woke up early one morning getting ready for work and the sun wasn't really up yet. I looked out my bedroom window with my morning coffee, because I had the best view of downtown Athens, and I saw hill like shapes scattered pretty much in the backyard of the building. Now I didn't have my glasses on and I went to work and thought not to much of it. I later called my land lady and asked her what was behind the big iron fence behind the building? Guess what a cemetery. My backyard was a cemetery, one of the oldest and the biggest in Athens. My best friend moved in and one night we were in my apartment talking with another friend about ghosts, and all of a sudden my kitchen cabinet opened right in front of all of us and then closed. My best friend reported hearing voices in her apartment, having things moved, and on occasion candles lighting themselves. A neighbor who lived right down from me, told me that the night she moved in she was in her living room and heard a huge bang in her bedroom. Well the window had been busted and completly pulled out of the frame, and these apartments were up to date. I got pretty comfortable with what ever was in my apartment, and after about three years of living there when I moved, I found that I had really come to love the place, ghosts and all.

  12. Creepy! I am with DeeDee, I am afraid I wouldn't be able to sleep.

  13. Your ghost story is quite interesting; I think its a friendly ghost, and one who does not seek to frighten or intimidate. Probably a lost soul who loved Willow Manor very much and loathes to leave it, or left a bit of her spirit behind to remain.

    There are a few ghost stories in my family, here is the most recent one:

    Soon after we moved into this house, which is about 70 years old, I found an old, wooden button on the front door threshold. I picked it up and threw it in the bushes, not giving it a second thought.

    A few days later, I found the same button (or so I thought) on the front steps. I thought, must be some bird picking it up and dropping it; I threw it further away in the bushes and forgot about it.

    Some days later, I found the button again...this time, it was on the floor outside the downstairs bathroom!

    At that point, I thought, what is going on? How did this button get in the house?

    I asked my next door neighbor if the button was his; he looked at it, and said, no.

    I tucked it away in the back of the cutlery drawer.

    One day soon after that, I mentioned it to my daughter; she said, "Mom, I've been seeing that button everywhere too! I keep throwing it out and then I see it again."

    She was genuinely bewildered.

    Nothing much happened and then a few weeks later, another button turned up, this time once again on the front threshold. I picked it up and went directly to the drawer; the other button was still there. So now I knew, there were two buttons. And they wanted to be in the house. Okay, I said to myself, I think we can accomodate them. They obviously belong to the house in some mysterious I took a piece of tape and I taped them to an inconspicuous spot on the fireplace mantle, where they remain to this day.

    We haven't seen another button since.

  14. Lady Em, well at least our backyard isn't a cemetery...I don't think. Interesting story!

  15. Me, being the Uncle Max of the family, have had the honor of staying overnight at Willow Manor. I can attest to while sleeping on the living room couch a thud coming up from underneath the floor under the couch and making the couch have a lifted reaction to the thud. The fireplace was making crackling sounds but this wasn't that. The same night I heard the gentle steps down the stairs in Willow's picture. They used to have this golden lab that would look up at a certain area in the dining room and bark. I've been there on many visits that nothing happens. We have great conversations with this being the subject matter. What cool relatives I have! What is our last name now? Oh yes the Adams Family ..haa haa... but seriously, these happenings have really happened :)

  16. Yes, and you are one of our brave house guests who continue to come back! :) I forgot to mention about Ralphy barking at the ceiling on numerous occasions.

    I was hoping you would share that story, Uncle Max, I mean Adams...tee hee. I remember you being really rattled that next morning.

  17. Lavinia, that is a fascinating story about the button. Interesting and intuitive that you attached them to the inside of the house. I wouldn't have thought to do that.

  18. I would come at this from another angle. I don't believe in "ghosts" per say....but I do know that there is an unseen spiritual world. Having said that, I would guess that there is an angel in your place. For some reason, he/she has been allowed to make himself/herself know. The bible says that we can entertain strangers that could be angels. If it was really creepy or evil feeling, then that would be a demonic angel. I havent's had any know encounter with angels (God's servant messengers) that I am aware of, but I have dealt several times with the demonic kind...never fun. Interesting post. Have a good week.

  19. Oh my goodness...all these amazing ghost stories I've been reading here.

    Well ladies...maybe I've watched too many ghost movies or ghost "Hauntings" on the tv, but it all makes for a few goosebumps.

    I've had a few experiences walking through old buildings and old homes in old ghost towns, not seeing anything, but certianly feeling I was being watched. Very uncomfortable feeling.

    It's all real, but having the Lord in my life, I know, "Greater is He that is in Me, than he that is in the world". This brings security and protection to my heart when I start to fear.

    Very interesting post Willow, thanks for sharing about the Manor.

    Funny, yesterday I was hiking in a wonderful spring landscape and taking pictures. ALL THE TIME I was thinking of how I could arrange the pictures in a new blog... I felt really obsessed with this idea and began to wonder about my state of mind!!!
    I tried to find an explanation: maybe I had been infected by a curious new virus called BLOGGERMANIA?
    But after having seen your this picture on your blog I am sure that I am not the only one ;)
    Best regards from Vienna to you and everybody on this blog!

  21. Thoroughly enjoyed this post. I admire your, um, spirit!!

  22. KM, that is one of my favorite scriptures, thanks for sharing that.

  23. Maria, my sentiments exactly! It is odd when we start taking photo shoots of every little silly thing we do. I've caught the

  24. Thanks for admiring my spirit, David ;);) And I am flattered that you mentioned me on your blog. Thank you.

  25. Fabulous house and tree ... wonderful post .. thank you for sharing your spirits!

    I live in a brownstone on the Upper Westside of Manhattan .. the house is over 100 yrs old and when it was being renovated our friend who owns the house found a small lady's hand gun inside one of the walls they were tearing down in the basement.

    Interestingly whenever I have been in that part of the basement I have felt as if someone was there, watching me. Often it made me so uncomfortable I felt the need to leave .. quickly.

    Eventually the feeling became so strong that I would feel it as soon as I got off the elevator (which was installed during the renovations) in the basement.

    I told my husband who said he, too, often felt as if he was not alone down there but it didnt make him feel as uncomfortable as it did me.

    At the time we lived in a small apartment on the 6th floor .. when a one bedroom apartment became available on the first floor we moved into it .. its right above the room in the basement where the gun was found .. before we moved my husband asked me if I was going to find it hard to live right over the 'haunted' basement. I said I thought I'd be fine. And I am.

    But I will tell you that from time to time our cats stand and look into the corner of the livingroom which is right in line with the spot in the basement where the gun was found. And the air there is often cooler than the rest of the room and there is no window near by.

    I am convinced that the spirit of whoever belongs to that gun
    'haunts' the basement and that corner of our livingroom.

    Its not an unfriendly spirit but it still makes me very uncomfortable to go into the basement....

  26. Hi Daryl, fascinating story! I know exactly what you mean about those strong feelings or vibes, whatever you want to call them. There are certain parts of this house where they are fairly intense.

  27. I'm so glad it is daylight while I am reading all of this since I am HOME ALONE! ha-ha. I have goosebumps! No stories of my own since we built this house on land that was once a corn field. Just reading everyone else's is enough for me! Very entertaining!...unless I have a candle lite itself today! aaaaakkk!

  28. That was interesting! I also live in an old house & two of my family claim they have seen ghosts! I have never seen anything but I have heard children running about when there have been no children here!
    Came over via David's.

  29. Your blog is as equally stunning. I am in love with your house, it is exquisite. You are a very interesting lady. I am going to bookmark this site so that I can return to Willow Manor like Rebecca returns to Manderlay.

  30. Yoli, "Last night I dreamt I went to Willow Manor again..." tee hee! Thank you for you kind comment. Please do come back, I'll be looking forward to your visit.

  31. Great tales. I have friends who swear by sharing their homes with ghosts and I think I'm probably just as happy not to have experienced that first hand. Loved your post though and your home looks charming.

    Sent to your haunts by David McMahon.

  32. Such an interesting story and I would agree that your ghost is happy you live there, as she is not disturbing you really.

    I had a friend when I was younger who once saw a distinct floating image at the top of her stairs, it freaked us all out for awhile but never happened again.

    I am a firm believer in some spirits staying in places they were either very happy or sad in.

    You have a beautiful home btw :-)

  33. I am not the least surprised.
    It does sound as if your 'ghost' is friendly - which is good thing.
    In Morocco lots of people believe in djinns.
    Our house is meant to be 500 years old, and, to be honest, there is one room I would rather not sleep in.
    I think you should just co-habit happily with your spirit!
    All best wishes.

  34. 33 comments?! You've really struck a chord here, Willow. As I've always maintained, there are many unseen forces at play in the atmosphere...another realm, another dimension....

  35. Lavinia, Yes, I agree.

    "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." Shakespeare's Hamlet

  36. I must comment about animal ghosts and see if anyone else agrees. We had 2 cats for 18 years here in this home. The first one was very old and sick and we had him put to sleep. That was about 3 years ago. I have seen his ghost out of the corner of my eye many times and have even felt him curl his tail around my leg when I'm standing in the kitchen. My husband thinks I'm crazy! The other cat got old and sick but died peacefully here at home. I've never had his ghost visit, almost as if he died on his own terms and went on peacefully! Since we're talking ghosts here, I wondered if anyone else had pet ghosts? Or maybe I am crazy??!

  37. Betsy, after my aunt's beloved dog died (she lived next door to us), I would occasionally hear the jingle of the metal tags that used to hang from the dog's collar, as I came up the driveway. This was a deja-vu sort of thing, as the dog used to come down the driveway to greet me, and the jingle of all the tags was familiar....

  38. Hello Willow
    Your house photo is so lovely!

    No ghosts in my house, but I did experience a very strong and fleeting feeling of my father when he passed away suddenly, almost as if he was telling me he was OK and saying goodbye. It left me very peaceful at a very stressful time.
    That convinced me that perhaps there is something true about spirits remaining on earth.

    I would have been very scared to know a ghost was in my home until I knew the ghost was friendly. I'm glad yours is! I wonder of you can find out more about your home and who lived there to discover who your lady is?

  39. Pat, we have done some research and are fairly certain we know who the lady ghost is and even which room she died in.

  40. Hi Willow,

    We lived in the jungles of New Guinea in the 1980s and felt, saw and heard things we couldn't explain except as being 'spirit' activity.
    My young children would come leaping into our bed saying they had seen 'things' in their bedrooms.
    I never doubted the presence of those spirits, some benign and some malignant.
    I am relieved that your visitor seems friendly.
    And about blogmania: yes, I have it! I take my camera everywhere. My husband even pulls over in the car to let photograph something interesting.

    The other Willow

  41. Wowzer! Did you expect the number of responses on this posting?

    I've lived in a number of really old places and nary a peep from the spirit world ... any noises heard were easily explained as wood creaking and popping from day/night temperature and humidity changes.

    I'm now considering a new biz. Something along the lines of Ghostbusters.

  42. Yep, Bill, gaging by this post, you could make a killing!

  43. Your home is lovely. I used to work midnights in a very old 3 story brick buiding that was at one time a home. I was the only employee there from 12 midnight to 6am. Had many things occur. The office was under what used to be the servants stairs going from the kitchen to the 3rd floor. The stairway was always padlocked top and bottom and never used. I could hear footsteps going up and down, up and down overhead most nights. Heard footsteps come down hallway and stop at my office door. Things would dissapear and I would have to play hide and seek to find them. Oddly, I was never frightened. Of course I was only 18 and not afraid of anything! He (or she) came around during the day and hid things that were right there one minute and gone the next. We'd find them in the oddest places. Bells would go off, radios come on. He was a real prankster and seemed to have a sense of humor. If he started getting under my skin I would tell him to stop an he would. He or she only wanted to be noticed. This went on the entire time I worked there and my boss said it had been happening for years. I would not be so comfortable with it now. As a matter of fact the hair on the back of my neck is standing up as I recall it. God Bless, Celene

  44. I just have to add; Amen! I'm with you Knitting Maria. God Bless, Celene

  45. I have to say, you're singing to the choir! I am a firm believer in the afterlife and ghosts as well...we lived for several months in a haunted hotel when we first moved to England...she oversaw my children like a wraithful babysitter! Loved this post...would love to see more pictures of your lovely home
    David was kind enough to point me in your direction!

  46. Goosies right down my back! When we were visiting England we stayed overnight in an Inn in Pevensy overlooking the castle. The floorboards creaked all night but the most disconcerting event for me was seeing a figure in armour at the window.....inside the room, not outside. I put my head right under the covers and in the morning wondered if it was all a dream. The beautiful old buildings seem to lend themselves to ghosts don't they?


Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)