Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Who Says Dogs And Cats Don't Get Along?

Story Of Precious And Kitty

It was a very cold and dark night in November when we found Kitty. We went to our bank to withdraw some cash at the Teller Machine, and while Jim was getting the cash out, I kept hearing a kitten crying. We decide to try and find the kitten, as our bank is on a very busy four lane parkway, which would mean certain death for the kitten should she cross it. Not only that, but it was bitter cold, and we were concerned that the kitten would not survive the cold. We finally found her in a ditch right next to the parkway. Question was, now that we found her, what would we do with the kitten?

We had four dogs at home. Two large dogs and two small dogs. How would we keep her safe from the dogs? We decided to try and give her away before we got home. Behind our home was a small trailer park. Maybe someone would take her in. We knocked on all 10 trailers, and no one would take her. We were forced to take her home and hope for the best.
While I held her securely in my arms, Jim let the dogs in the room to see the kitten. They all were quite excited at first, but after awhile, the two big dogs and their mother Gypsy, got bored with the new addition and left the room. But not Precious. She was fascinated with the kitten and wanted to play with her. Precious was the runt of a litter of four, and was always wanting to play. Her brothers snubbed her and would not play with her, and her mother was never a dog that played much. I think she was hopeful that the kitten would play with her and be her pal, which in the long run, the kitten was that plus so much more. And so, the story and relationship of Kitty and Precious began.

We did not really name her Kitty, but just called her Kitty because we had no intentions of keeping her, and naming the kitten was to personal and might create attachments. We eventually did keep her, and the name Kitty just stuck. Precious and Kitty became very big buddies, as well as loving and loyal friends. They played constantly. You could hear them chasing each other on the hardwood floors in the hall. Hearing nails clicking and sliding on the floors was a constant sound. Not only did they play together, but they ate and slept together, and as time when on, Kitty started to nurse Precious. This was an amazing site to see, as this Kitten was way to big to be nursing even her mother. And Precious of course, did not have any milk, but it was just the comfort of the act I guess. When we found Kitty, she was so tiny and probably only about 3 or 4 weeks old, so I assume she was weaned way to early, and removed from her family way to soon, and needed the security of the act of nursing Precious. And with Precious, we had given away her two pups only a week before we found Kitty. Precious was a very nurturing and loving mother to her pups, and Kitty probably filled the need of her pups being gone. Kitty nursing Precious was a constant site in our home, and it was always so amazing to see. The entire time we had Kitty, which was a little over a year, she continued to nurse Precious.

When Kitty was about 11 months old, we had an unexpected surprise out of her. She had two baby kittens in our closet in our office. We did not even know she was pregnant. She was such a tiny cat herself, and never showed any signs to us that she was pregnant. She had a little gray kitten and a orange kitten. The orange kitten died the first day. Both of the kittens were premature and so tiny. The vet told us not to expect the other to survive as it was so small and premature. Still, we hoped for the best. But the Tiny kitten being premature was not the only problem. The biggest problem was with Kitty wanting and expecting Precious to help her in the role of taking care of the kitten. Kitty would constantly take the kitten from the warm box in the closet and put it on the floor in front of Precious. We would constantly have to pick the kitten back up and put the kitten back into the box. We lived in an old house which was very drafty and we were concerned about the kitten getting a cold, as well as being handled so much. Yet, Kitty did not understand, and kept bringing the kitten out to Precious. Of course, Precious could not help with the kitten, but was always so gentle and loving to the kitten, just as she had always been with Kitty. As it turned out, our fears became real and the kitten became sick with a cold. And there was nothing we could do to help her.

Jim was up with the kitten one day and realized it was fixing to die as it could hardly breath due to her cold. Kitty did not seem concerned. He brought the kitten to me while I lay sleeping so that I could hold her one more time, as I was so close to the kitten. She died while I held her, and I cried for days. She was the most beautiful kitten I had ever seen, and was so sweet and innocent.

We moved two months later from that drafty house, and it was nothing but chaos. And we could not find Kitty when we moved. After we moved, we went back several times to try and find her. We asked the neighbors if they had seen her, and gave them our phone number should they see her. No one ever called, and we never found Kitty. Besides being concerned about Kitty, we were also concerned about Precious and how she would handle it. And it was hard to tell, because the move, as with anyone, was hectic. But, in the long run, I think she did fine, as of this date, she is a very happy dog, and has a new playmate and buddy called Silas, a black Pitbull and lab dog we got as a very small puppy. And they are best friends now, and she treats him as if her own. Silas and Precious and their relationship, well, that is another story.

But to this day, we think about the time with Precious and Kitty and the wonderful smiles they both brought to us. And we are thankful that not only do we have the memories of them, but the pictures as well.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

The Ghost Of Emily~A Very True Story

My time is spent with grandboys and new ideas and writing projects, leaving me little time to blog. I have become concerned about this as I do not want my blogger readers to forget about me, so I have decided to place some things on that I have written awhile back. This particular story is one of my favorites, and a true story. I had at one time a great deal of pictures that went with this story, but cannot find them as I have moved pictures around so much. If I find them, I will add them to the story as they are truly amazing.

The Ghost Of Emily ~ A Very True Story

Until the year of February 2001, I never really believed in ghosts. I loved to hear ghost stories, with all the eerie details, but to me they were only ghost stories to scare one by. And everybody likes to be scared a little. But my opinion of ghost and ghost stories changed in the year of 2001, and here I am telling the ghost story. By the way, my name is Katie Fairchild, and this is a true story written on true facts and experiences.
My opinion concerning ghost changed when my husband Jim, and my daughter Crystal (age 15 at the time, now she is 21) and I moved into a very large and old home located in Huntsville, Al on Meridian Street in February 2001. We were told that this old home was built in the late 1800's, and at one time had been a very prominent plantation home, owning property surrounding the house for miles. Jim and I were so excited about moving here, as Jim made his living selling on eBay and we really needed a much larger home to store all the eBay items. I personally, fell in love with the home because it had so much personality and the rooms were very large and inviting. The house definitely had potential for fixing up and making into something special. Yet, even though we were only renting, I was so excited and could hardly wait to make some well need improvements to the home. Old wallpaper needed to be torn down and it really was in great need of a paint job inside.

The first rooms I always work on when in a new place is the bathroom and kitchen. After we finished unpacking all the boxes and putting the furniture in place, I decided to start working on the large bathroom downstairs. Eagerly I picked out the perfect paint and wallpaper for the bathroom. And then one night, very late, possibly early morning, I started working on the bathroom. My project that night was to paint the bathroom. But I ran into a problem. There were two spots on the wall that refused to accept the paint, or be painted over. Thinking this must be oily or something, I cleaned and scrubbed the two spots well with Ajax, and tried again. Still, the paint vanished. Evidently this was not working, so I went and got some sanding paper from Jim's tool supplies and sanded the area and retried painting it. The paint vanished again in the still air. I was puzzled. Maybe if I tried some different paint it might work. And I did try a different type and color of paint - and it vanished again! In confusion, I sat down on the edge of the tub and thought - WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON HERE? All of a sudden the name EMILY came to me. It was so strange and it is so hard to explain even to this day of how the name came. It is not as if someone whispered Emily where I could hear it, but whispered into my mind and imprinted it onto my brain, as well as a description of Emily. Emily, a little girl between the age of 10 to 13 years old was all I got. I got nothing of what she looked like, or the color of her eyes, hair, or skin. But somehow, which I cannot explain, I knew her name was Emily, and that she was a child, a little girl. And so, Emily entered our lives, and us, her home.

Realizing it was so late and the experience was over, plus I could not paint certain areas, I went to bed, and was anxious to wake in the morning to tell Jim of my encounter and experience in the bathroom, and to show him in the morning how the paint would vanish on the wall when painted. While trying to sleep, I realized that I was not afraid at all about this, but actually excited about the new found possible ghost that lived in our house. To me, it was apparent that Emily was not really a scary ghost as you hear in ghost stories. Emily was more playful, full of games and mischief, as any child would be at her age. I will never forget the time we lived in that house, especially concerning Emily. It certainly made me a believer in ghost. The next morning, in much excitement, I told Jim of what had happened and of Emily. He was quite skeptical of the wall, and especially of the story of Emily, and I could tell it by the expression on his face. But time would teach him well. He eventually became a believer. I confidently led him into the bathroom, paint brush in hand, and let him see first hand of the vanishing paint. His eyes got a little wider when the paint vanished before his eyes. This was the first encounter with Emily, but far from the last. And the story of her only gets better. Before I continue with my story though, I wanted to point out that many times, Jim and I would try to repaint that area. We even tried fingernail polish, magic marker, and many other things. But the paint, always vanished.

It was several weeks later before we spoke much of Emily again. There were only a few strange things that happened in the house, but we did not pay much attention to them. For example, the hall smoke detector would start beeping at odd times. At that time we thought the batteries just probably need to be replaced. With everything else we were doing and working on, changing batteries were not very high on our priority list. These smoke detectors and what happened later there, is also talked about more in this story. Keep reading. It's freaky!

Anyway, there did come that night when Emily was about with her ways, and her showing off. I had gotten a hair cut that day, and so I wanted to dress up sporty and show off my haircut in a picture. So, I had Jim take some pictures of me. Four pictures were taken and a ghostly image appeared in one in the picture with me. The other three pictures came out clear as a bell. The picture was taken with our digital camera that Jim uses for eBay, and all four shots were taken in less than 30 seconds. That night, Jim and I really started to see things different concerning ghosts. And as time went by, there would be many more ghostly images and hundreds of things called orbs. I did not even know what orbs were, but after seeing more pictures of ghostly images, I went to the Internet to look up ghostly images. To my alarm, I realized those white and gray colors on my pictures could be orbs! For a long time I thought something was wrong with the camera, as we had to deleted eBay pictures we had taken to list, because they were covered up with these spots. It is only obvious that we were also confused when pictures came out clear as clear can get. From here on out, Emily continued with her playful ways, and one of these playful ways, were with the doors.

Considering doors, this house had a huge hallway, with 8 doors leading to other rooms, including the laundry room, which had 2 doors off it. Jim was having a problem with these doors. When we would go out for the day, Jim would put all 4 dogs in the hall and shut them totally in, so that they could not get to the other rooms of the house. If there were going to be any accidents in the house, we wanted them to be in hall. And it never failed, each time we came home, at least one or two doors were cracked open. Could the dogs possibly be opening the doors with their teeth as I had seen on TV? I loved my dogs, and considered them intelligent, but really was skeptical of them opening the doors! With their teeth! Our son Cameron, lived in Huntsville also, but he did not have a key to our house. Jim, in the beginning, had actually accused Cameron of climbing through a window and then leaving the doors opened in error. Cameron swore up and down that he had not done that. Crystal was at school, so no need to blame her. I really thought that Jim thought he shut all the doors, but left one at least opened on a possibility as there were so many doors. Due to the door problem, Jim started chaining the two big dogs outside, and we would take the small dogs with us, always leaving the doors closed. And again, everytime we arrived home, at least one or two doors were cracked opened. And again, Jim was suspicious of Cameron. One day, when we were about to leave the house, I noticed Jim going all around the house and locking every window there was. He then chained the two big dogs outside and put the two smaller dogs in the van. When he came back into the house, he said "I want you to walk behind me and check each door as I close it, to make sure it is securely closed." I did as he asked, and then we left. We arrived at home two hours later, and beyond my beliefs, all of the eight doors leading off the hall were WIDE open, as well as the two doors off the laundry room. The kitchen door and the utility closet. I am sure you can imagine, our eyes were WIDE open also, and in total surprise. This was really eerie, but I found it fascinating and exciting. Emily was not out to harm, but only to play. After all, she was just a child and wanted attention. She got our attention, and from then on we noticed things with a different attitude.

Remember the smoke detectors I wrote about earlier? Well, here is the situation concerning that. There were two smoke detectors in the hall, but only one was giving us problems. One would just start beeping for no reason. Not a lot of beeps, just a few and then stop. It could be a few minutes to an hour or so before it beeped again, depending how Emily wanted to play I think. Regardless, it got very irritating and annoying, so Jim decided to get the ladder and change the batteries. This did not clear up or take care of the problem at all. It still continued its annoying sound. Once again, up on the ladder, but this time he took the smoke detector down. Doing so, I guess Emily had to find another way to frustrate and play with us. She found many ways as time went by, but after the smoke detector, she started with the TV in our office. I don't remember exactly what month it was that Emily loved to play with the TV remote control in our office, but I do remember it was cold, and the house was very drafty. The only heat we had was kerosene. So, we put a sofa bed in the office to sleep in during the cold months as a way to save energy and cost. And late at night during this time, while working on eBay with the TV on, or lying in bed watching TV, the volume would turn up real loud, or turn down so low that we could not hear it, or the channels would change for no reason. The little red light on the channel changer would light up when this happened. I would have to place the channel changer under a pillow to keep this from happening. I think this is when we first started talking to Emily. And we would scold her, but it never helped. It was annoying and frustrating to us, and she knew it, which was part of her game. If that was not enough, one night while Jim was working late, he awoke me to look at the TV. It had been programmed for the hearing impaired, showing the words and with the sound on the TV. Jim and I did not even know our TV had that option. Jim had no idea what to do to correct the problem, and had no book on the TV or channel changer to guide him. It took him more than an hour to straighten out the problem, and he admitted that if he had to fix it again, he would not know how, as he really didn't know how he fixed it back in the first place this time. As I write this story now, we live in another house and still have the same TV and remote channel changer, and it has never happened here. No volume problems, channel turns, or hearing impaired options have occurred since we have moved here. But, as long as we lived in the house on Meridian Street, and did not cover up the channel changer, Emily continued to play with it.

Emily had pretty much become a part of our family now, and our kids loved to joke about it. If anything went wrong, Emily was quick to be blamed with it. I personally don't think that Emily was guilty of all the blame she got. But it was a great excuse for our kids. But there are certain, definite things we could not blame on our kids. And with that statement, here comes Emily. Emily decided to mess with us by playing with toys. Jim's business with eBay meant putting all kinds of items on that would sell for a profit. And Jim had bought a dinosaur toy from the popular movie The Lost World as a possibility for eBay. To activate this toy, you had to press a button, and then the dinosaur would make a roaring type noise. One quiet day, while I was alone in the room and surfing the Internet, I heard a noise. It would stop and then start. For a long time, I had no idea what it was. But as the noise continued to start up, I eventually started searching the room, until I found this dang toy which was causing the irritating noise. Keep in mind again, a button had to be pressed to activate the toy. Emily was once again at her playful ways. It appeared that Emily really loved the office and finding ways to let us know she was in the office. The dinosaur was promptly moved out of the office to stop the noise. Then the NIGHTMARE GAME! Emily, at mischief again.

The Nightmare game is a popular game that sells well on eBay. Jim was so excited about finding this game at a thrift store, as he was familiar with the value of the game. And several pictures were taken of the game displayed, to put on eBay. This is standard that anytime an item goes on eBay, several pictures will be taken to decide which picture will be the best to entice the bidders to bid. Eight to ten pictures can be taken in less than 30 seconds with a digital camera. While checking the pictures to put on eBay of the Nightmare game of the four taken, one of the four, had a ghostly image, and the other three, were totally clear pictures. Emily was up to her tricks again, and I loved it. This is by far one of my favorite pictures. How exciting to have a ghostly image around a game called NIGHTMARE!

As I have mentioned already in this story, we have four dogs. They are like children to us, and we treated them so. Emily knowing this, I think, decided to play with the dogs. I have no idea what she did, or what they saw or experienced, but our dogs would start barking in the hall for no apparent reason. And my sweet small dog Gypsy, whom was the mother of the other three dogs, was scared to death at times, would whine and beg us to let her into the office. When we did, she always had this frightful look on her face, and there were a few times when we let her in that she was literally shaking. I would scold Emily about this, but it did not do any good, and she continued to pester the dogs.

One day on one of our outings at the thrift stores, Jim and I found a beautiful brass wall candle holder. I want to call it a candelabra, but I think it needed more candle holders for that definition. I was so pleased with it and rushed Jim to put it up for me. Jim put it high on the wall with two screws. It looked so nice where he had put it. The next morning when we got up, the candle holder was dangling on one screw, as if yanked from the wall. I was alarmed, and also a little confused. This was not like Emily to be destructive. And it was at this point that I became suspicious of more than just one ghost in the house. And my suspicions grew over time from looking at pictures of other possible ghostly images, and dealing with the second smoke detector in the hall. Jim put much deeper screws into the candle holder to insure it held well, which it did, yet, not long after that, the problems with the second smoke detector started. It started vaguely, and then more prominent in a period of just a few days with the irritating noise. It ended up being almost a constant beeping. Jim, once again changed the batteries on that smoke detector. Upon replacing it right back on the wall, it started beeping again before he even got off the ladder. "That's it," he said, "I'm taking it down!" I kid you not, I swear that upon him removing that smoke detector, the most eerie howling groan emerged from that smoke detector as he removed it. That was the first and only time I actually felt a certain fear, and goose bumps covered both mine and Jim's skin. It was the second time that I felt this is not Emily, but another entity of a ghost. Shocked we were, totally at the sound and experience. And if that was not enough, we had no more smoke detectors downstairs, as both use to be in the hallway.

I've heard that holidays have a way of bringing the spirits in, and I am not talking about drinking spirits. But ghostly spirits. At our house, the ghosts appeared in their spirits at Christmas, but only in our pictures. Our first Christmas at this house was so exciting to me. I had tons of Christmas decorations and set about decorating the house in Christmas glee. Dozens of pictures were taken of this Christmas time and holidays to include the months of November, December 2001, and early January 2002 as well. Many of these pictures have ghostly images and orbs, and many do not. Were they sleeping at times? Or just watching me? Or just trying to confuse me? Nevertheless, I believe that Emily and maybe other gang of ghosts, decided to join us in our Christmas celebration, and I loved it. I think if I had spent another Christmas there, I would have hung a stocking for Emily, and possibly wrapped a present for her.

In the spring of 2002, Jim and I decided to try to investigate the house and prior owners. We set a day aside just for that, and off we went to the court house. We spent the majority of the day there trying to figure out the original owners and history of the house and property. The lady that helped us was inexperienced to help us find what we needed, and the records were vague. Unfortunately, we did not find anything out that would help us explain our ghost, or ghosts. Our plans were to come back to the court house and research more at a later day and date, but this never happened. I had actually looked into contacting a group of "ghostbusters" of phenomenal workers on the Internet to visit and investigate the house. I even went as far as emailing some sites, and they emailed me back, and wanted to continue on this project, but personal and family problems came up that stopped my tracks with this. It was a great project never completed. Oh, how I would have loved to have worked on this project and learned more.

Unfortunately, my mother was having several problems that needed to be addressed. She was ill and needed to be removed from her home to my sisters home, who also lived here in Huntsville. I spent a lot of time away from my home. Many days and many nights. Things were different with what I needed to do, and Emily quieted down. According to Jim, while I was gone, Emily would every now and then mess with the TV, but it was seldom. I have often secretly wondered if Emily backed down with her playful ways and mischief behavior because I had so much going on in my life, and I was always so tired or worried most of the time when home. Was she possibly being considerate of not rocking the boat I was aboard? And Jim and I were also confronted with having to move from this old ghostly home dealing with problems with the landlady that refused to fix the heaters that were not working in the home. Therefore, we had to heat with only expensive kerosene, and due to the cost of the fuel, our rent was behind. Forgoing them suing us, and us suing them, the best decision was to just move on and let bygones be bygones from both parties.

We moved December 1st, 2002, and left Emily behind. But I did not leave her without a talk with her. I knew she could not answer me, but I still told her what I felt. And I spoke to her in the bathroom, where she first entered my life. I told her I wanted her to come with me, and that I would miss her, and that she had changed my life and way of thinking. Most people would feel kind of strange talking out loud in a bathroom with tears in their eyes, to nobody. But, I did not, as I knew who I was addressing. I wanted her to go with me, to follow me, as she had become an important part of my life. But, she did not follow me, and to this day I miss her playful games and ways. I miss a ghost. How weird can that be? How weird can it be to invite a ghost to move from one home to another? But I did, and with great sincerity.

Now all I have left of Emily are the memories of strange things and great experiences that changed my life and opinions and attitude of the super natural. And the pictures, which are my constant reminder that strange things do happen. As I wrote in the beginning, this is a very true story. The Ghost Of Emily~A true story and Emily remains untouched by human hands, but not by human emotions. All my life I have believed in honesty, was taught the importance of honesty as a child and made it a personal goal for myself, and taught my own children, and now my grandchildren the importance of honesty. This is an honest and true story. And one I will never forget and remember with many different emotions.

Written by Katie Fairchild @2004