Supernatural: End of the Road Tour T-Shirts

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Season 15 of Supernatural kicks off on October 10, 2019. CW, the station that carries original episodes, published the poster for the season titled “As it is written, so shall it end.” Twitter has erupted into speculation as to the symbolism contained in the poster. For now, it is speculation. However, what is not speculation is that the production has teamed up with retailer Hot Topic and released a limited-edition “End of the Road Tour” T-shirt. All—as in 100%—of profits will go to recovery efforts in the Bahamas. The T-shirts have already sold out once but have been restocked. Hurry and purchased by Sunday, September 15th in order to help those affected by Hurricane Dorian.

Link: https://www.hottopic.com/

10 Facts About Tarot Cards

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The protagonist in Ruth Ware’s The Death of Mrs. Westaway is a young tarot card reader who takes over her mom’s pier-side booth when her mom dies. Twenty-one-year-old Hal is broke and deep in debt to a loan shark. Looking for an escape, Hal decides to assume the identity of an heir to the Westaway fortune. Unsure if the façade will work, Hal brings along her deck of tarot cards. Hal uses the cards to work through mental problems—not to predict the future. Ware’s book is a slow read; however, her portrayals of the tarot card deck and reader are authentic.

Here are 10 Facts About Tarot Cards

  1. Tarot cards evolved from playing cards. In Italy, they were used in a bridge-like game called “tarocchi appropiata.”
  2. The oldest surviving deck is circa 1440 in Northern Italy. The Visconti-Sforza deck were created for the Duke of Milan’s family.
  3. Card designs were influenced by carnival parades. Today there are hundreds of specialized decks to chose from.
  4. It wasn’t until 1781 when occultists incorporated the cards into their practices. Moreover, tarot cards do not predict the future.
  5. The most popular deck is the Rider-Waite deck created in 1909. It is sometimes called Rider-Waite-Smith or Waite-Smith deck.
  6. Tarot decks differ from Oracle decks. In tarot, there are generally 78 cards divided into groups. Oracle decks are more flexible and more accessible since they do not require complicated spreads.
  7. There is a playing card museum outside Paris. It is called Musée Français de la Carte à Jouer. It houses 11,000+ items.
  8. Christian Dior’s tarot inspired clutch can be purchased online for $1,125—used!
  9. Despite a popular myth, you should select your tarot or oracle deck. Select one that speaks to you or catches your eyes.
  10. Jasmine Becket-Griffith is a fan favorite artist and has illustrated eight oracle and tarot decks. She’s also incredibly nice and autographs her decks.

Loch Ness Mystery: Giant Eel?

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Tune into the Travel Channel on September 15th for the 2-hour documentary profiling the latest scientific research conducted in search of Nessie. Professor Neil Gemmel, University of Otago (New Zealand), collected 250 samples of DNA from Loch Ness. His team captured, extracted, and sequenced the samples, and the results were announced this week. Gemmel proclaimed, “We’ve used science to add another chapter to Loch Ness’ mystique.”

Turns out the samples support a very large eel swimming in Britain’s largest body of fresh water. Researchers created a comprehensible spectrum of life from the samples. None support a Jurassic-age reptile or unknown sea monster. Instead, the DNA showed that eels were quite plentiful in the loch.

Gemmell concluded that more research is needed. Catch the documentary on your local Travel Channel.

Corinne O’Flynn’s Death Comes Ashore Is Pure Paranormal Suspense

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Two nights before my panel presentations at Dragon Con 2019, I finished my mystery book. I’m a serial reader. I read before bed, between 1-2 AM. I prefer series; however, when the series runs dry, I start looking for my next new author. And I found her, and a few others who will be in separate blogs, book talking books at the Bard’s Tower bookstore in the AmericasMart Atlanta, or Mart for short. Corinne O’Flynn’s new Witch Island Mysteries series has me hooked, line and sinker.

Although I’ve always tried to identify new authors at Dragon Con, I rarely do. I feel rushed when shopping at the Mart. When there’s 80,000+ people attending, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. This year, however, I was determined to find one new author. I was blessed with 5.

Ask my daughter and husband, and they will agree. I talk to everyone. My dad never knew a stranger, and I take after him. While my daughter was scouting for items, I beelined over to the bookstore. My time was limited; I spoke fast.

The Con has megastars where attendees wait in line for hours to see. And the Con has a hoard of other professionals—namely authors and artists—who spend time chatting with attendees. One of the best things about Dragon Con is the accessibility to up-and-coming authors, actors, artists. Lisa Manifold, author of 25 books, started up a conversation.

She pitched me a couple of her “New Adult” (books for late teens and early twenty-somethings who have outgrown the Young Adult section) books. I purchased two for my daughter; both were autographed as her birthday gifts. Then came me. I’m a tough nut; crime and mysteries are my favorite genres. Since I was not at a crime and mystery conference, my odds for finding something interesting was low. When I ask Lisa to book talk one of Corinne’s books, Corinne interjects and tells me briefly what the book was about. I had no idea that either were the authors. How serendipitous was that!

I started Death Comes Ashore last night. After walking 23,000 steps and participating on 2 panels yesterday, I was tired. I’m 20 pages in and trying to wrap this entry up so I can get back to reading. The book has everything I’m looking for: not too in-depth with the fantasy, enough paranormal descriptions to be believable, and a solid crime scene, where I believe Corinne did her research. I’m fan-girling!

The former New Yorker turned Coloradan runs Rowan Tree Foundation, a non-profit whose mission is “support after the death of a child.” She’s a full-time writer, mother of four children, and tea addict. Lucky for me, her latest book was released on August 28th—just in time for the Con.

Find more information about Corinne here: https://www.corinneoflynn.com/

 

Black Spot Is Binge Worthy

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Zone Blanche (2017-) was the first French series streamed in the US. Originally airing on Amazon, seasons 1 and 2 can be viewed on Netflix. Don’t get bogged down with the title’s translation (the US English dubbed version has the new title), as some online users have. Instead, watch this multi-layered crime/paranormal series.

The corpses keep appearing in the isolated—and fictional—French border town Villefranche. Police Major Laurene Weiss (played by Suliana Brahim) leads the investigation into the mysterious hanging of the nurse assigned to care for the young man she injured. French officials send in Frank Siriani (Laurent Capelluto) to investigate the other deaths. The series tagline “Crime by Nature” is a guiding clue in unraveling the additional strange events that befall this town.

The production has a Twin Peaks (1990-1991) meets Dark (2017-) feel. Here, the logging industry has shut down; the forest holds secrets. The past haunts everyone, and everyone has a secret. Dubbed in English, the series totals 16 episodes.

America’s Largest Haunted Houses Still For Sale

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The Mayflower Place, a.k.a. the Schweppe Mansion, has sat on the market for sale for over 12 years. The house has a tragic history. It is one of the largest, beautiful homes in the United States that may be haunted.

Mayflower Place was built as a wedding gift from then President of Marshall Fields & Company John Graves Shedd and his wife, Mary Roenna Porter Shedd, to their daughter, Laura Abbie Shedd. Laura married soda heir Charles Hodgdon Schweppe on February 22, 1913. The 24,500 square foot home was completed in 1917.

The Tutor home sits on 5.4 acres on Lake Michigan. Consisting of 28 rooms, the home boasts 10 bedrooms and 11 ½ bathrooms. The Schweppes held elaborate soirees for the world’s wealthiest. However, the galas ended with the unexpected death of Laura.

Tragedy had visited the home already. Laura and Charles lost one child in infancy. They had two children, Jean and John. On April 20, 1937, Laura suffered a fatal heart attack at her apartment in the Ambassador East Hotel. She was 58 years old. The funeral was held at Mayflower Place.

On August 26, 1941, Charles committed suicide by a gunshot wound to the head. He left a suicide note: “I’ve been awake all night. It’s terrible.”

Speculation surrounding Charles’ suicide centered on failing health, remaining grief from Laura’s death, and possibly disappointment in Laura’s bequeaths. At the time of her death, Laura left $10 million dollars to be divided between her two surviving children. She left Charles $200,000. Others claim that Charles’ poor health led to the suicide. We will never know.

Guests and visitors to the property claim to see the ghosts of both Laura and Charles in the house.

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The couple’s daughter, Jean Schweppe Armour, died at the age of 48. Brother John Shedd Schweppe died in 1996. Neither child had children.

The house sat abandoned for 46 years.

In the 1980s, Donna and Howard Hoeper purchased the home for $5.5 million. Extensive renovations commenced. Unfortunately, the Hoepers divorced and the property fell into foreclosure in 2009.

Since then, the banks have attempted to sell the majestic home. Originally priced at $18 million dollars, the selling price has been slashed to under $9 million dollars.

Located at 405 N. Mayflower Road, Lake Forest, the Mayflower Place is truly a piece of American history—paranormal or ordinary.

Racking Up an Another Honor: Top 15 Paranormal Blogs of 2019

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I’m humbled and honored to be recognized as one of the Top 15 Paranormal Blogs of 2019. I’m in great company! Check out the other fantastic blogs, https://coupon.co.th/toplists/top-15-paranormal-blogs-of-2019/, —namely Haunt Jaunts. In the spirit of full disclosure, I’m a guest blogger there; however, Courtney runs a top-notch site with weekly updates on paranormal conferences.

Thank you for the honor!

U.F.O. Sighting in Jackson Hole

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https://buckrail.com/strange-light-captured-flying-over-jackson-hole/

While economists were huddled at the annual Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s annual symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming last week, others were watching a couple of YouTube videos shot on August 11th, the week before the financial meeting. The video captures what some hope is a U.F.O. The video was filmed at Spring Creek Ranch around 3:41 AM. Click the link and watch the slowest white light cross from left to right across the screen. Immediately, it is discounted due to its lack of speed. The article clarifies that the video is shot at low speed, one frame per second. The clip is roughly 3 minutes long. Scroll down to the sped up version. Either way, both are unconvincing. Let the conspiracy theories begin.