The Ghost Writer

The Ghost Writer

 

Hello, my name is Julie Lancaster-Whann and I’m so happy you are here with me on my Halloween Ghost Writer blog.

I take ghost writing quite serious and I expect you to as well.

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Me above, reaching for my Great-Grandmother, Honnie’s, photo.  This was her typewriter after all.

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Halloween to us starts on October 1, and ends November 1st.

It’s not just 1 day a year here!

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This blog will be about anything Halloween that I wish to write about and share with you.  I’m hoping to fill it with lots of fun ideas.  Halloween to me is our only holiday that is just plain FUN!  I’ve always loved Halloween, Halloween Parties,  Halloween Costumes, Halloween Themes, and of course, Halloween Candy.

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Drat!  A mistake!  All before whiteout.  🙂

We have many Halloween blogs on this website for you to check out and perhaps even get some ideas.

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Monk as Captain Jack Sparrow

We also get our dogs involved in Halloween as well.  They may not like some of the costumes we have put on them through the years, but they do love the attention we give them while wearing them.

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Monk and Sugar Whann

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Julie’s Ghost Story

(Grab a cup or coffee or tea and some scones.  I’d like you to stay awhile.)

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I wanted to start out this blog post with my very own ghost story. 

To see new posting then view below.

Happy Halloween Everyone!

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I Don’t See Dead People  (Well, actually…….)

You know, I can’t be a “Ghost Writer” without actually having a “Ghost Story”, now would I?

This particular ghost story is mine, and it is true, whether you believe it or not is not my problem. 

I hope you enjoy!

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I Don’t See Dead People (Well Actualy…….)

You know, the funny thing is that I was going to write all of you to assure you that I’m not one of those” psychic” people that have ever seen a dead person, but then it dawned on me, OH, YES I HAVE! 

How could I forget, right?  Well I did forget! 

When you have seen some freaky things for the past 55 years then you forget about some of them.  I have noticed that when I watch a movie and someone see’s something scary they tend to run out of the house screaming, whereas when I see something “odd”, I just continue reading my book.  I started to say the word, “scary” where I posted the word, “odd”.  But to me it isn’t scary.  I’ve never been afraid of these things.  They are just part of life for me.  What I consider to be “normal” you may see as “terrifying”.  I will get to all of that soon, but if some “ghost” dared to try and scare me they would fail miserably.  It takes a hell of a lot to scare me.  Besides, I know that no “ghost” would dare try and scare me because they know I am comfortable around them.  I don’t fear them.  I adore them!

PEOPLE, are who I fear the most!

When we bought our house……………..

We bought our house in 2006 from a widow that had just lost her husband.  When we moved in we were told by some neighbors that James had a heart attack and died at the hospital, so Carol decided to sell the house and move closer to her children.  That is all that we knew. 

When we moved in to this house I immediately started to notice some strange things.  But for me, strange things are normal, so I tend to just dismiss them.  But Gordon and Brodie started noticing some strange things as well. 

I immediately starting seeing strange things in the house.  For example, when I would brush my teeth in our bathroom, I would see something very blurry up near the ceiling.  Kind of like when you are driving down the road in the hot summer and you see some steam rising from the hot asphalt?  Or kind of like a mirage?  We have a very large bathroom.  High, Florida ceilings, we have a toilet room, and a very large tub and double sink vanity.  It’s a big bathroom.  But when I would see something strange, I would just continue doing whatever it was I was doing. 

Hanging Pictures

I cannot tell you how many times that I would be up on the ladder with my hammer and nails, only to put the hammer down, then turn around, only to turn back and notice that it had disappeared!

It happened a lot while I was alone.  What happened to my hammer?  I just put it down!  Where did it go?  I would then just go and get another one out of the garage and start again.  I never said anything to Gordon, or Veronica, or Brodie, about any of this because to me it was no big deal.  It did happen quite frequently though.

Finally, one Saturday afternoon Gordon was in our bedroom hanging photos on the wall when he yelled to me, “Come on, bring it back!  Come on Julie, bring it back!”  I was in the kitchen at the time and I came into our bedroom and I asked what he wanted?  He told me to give it back!  I asked what I needed to give back?  He told me, the hammer that I had taken.  I told him that I was in the kitchen the whole time and that I didn’t have any hammer.  I then realized that he was experiencing what I had been experiencing.  He was missing things too!  How exciting that it wasn’t just ME it was happening to!  Oh, this is great, I thought!  I then shared with him what I had been going through ever since we moved in.

It was nice not to be the only one strange things happened to!  (For a change.)

We decided to keep this to ourselves and not tell Veronica and Brodie.  But Brodie was noticing strange things on his own.  And not just him, but his friend Justin.  One day Justin asked if we had found a Star Wars CD?  He then went on to tell us that it was so strange, he placed the CD on the table and then when he turned around to get it, it was gone!  That’s when I realized that we had better tell Brodie what was going on as we’re all experiencing things that were missing. 

The missing items would always show up two weeks later, in the same spot that they went missing!

I was also seeing strange things in our living room.  I would see a man sitting on a chair staring straight ahead, as if watching the t.v..  I would also see a cat enter the room, only to not actually be there at all!  I did see the cat more than I saw the man, if that means anything.

I didn’t see the cat in the same way that an actual cat would look like entering any room.  It was a shadow of a cat with it’s tail high in the air.  I could very clearly tell that it was a cat though.  It never lasted very long, just a few seconds and then it would disappear. 

I am just assuming that the “man ghost” that I was seeing was James.  I didn’t know what he looked like, I still don’t. All I saw was the outline in shadow of a man sitting in our chair.  But he wasn’t all dark, I could see some facial features.  I can tell you that he was medium height and weight, and he was sitting in my yellow wing back chair that belonged to my grandparents.

We started asking our neighbors about the L. family.  What were they like? 

I was told that James L. was a practical joker.  Ah, I thought, that would explain all the missing items.  We also learned that his wife Carol did keep his ashes here in the house.  Well, that might explain why he was still here.  Maybe he didn’t know that she had gone?  Or where she had gone? 

YA -HOO!!!  We have ourselves a ghost!!  I was so happy!!!  My very own ghost!!  How cool is that??

I LOVED HAVING A GHOST IN THE HOUSE!!

One evening Gordon and I were in our bedroom talking.  I was sitting on a comfy chair and Gordon was lounging on our bed.  All of a sudden I saw this white thing fly all around the room.  The entire time I was talking to Gordon I was following the thing with my eyes as it darted here and there all around the room.  I then saw it swoop into our bathroom, hover over the bathtub a few seconds and then drop very fast into the tub.  All of a sudden Gordon exclaimed to me, “YOU SAW THAT!!!  I SAW YOU!!  I WATCHED YOUR EYES!!  YOU SAW THAT!!

I told him that “Of course I saw that!  I’ve been seeing things like that ever since we moved in here.  I think it’s our ghost.  I think it’s James L.”

I had always wanted to live in a haunted house and my wish came true!!  I was very excited!

I may have been exhilarated to have a ghost in the house, but our son Brodie wasn’t.  Gordon didn’t really care however, and Veronica was rarely here to even notice a ghost at that time.  She was busy with school, work, and friends/boyfriend.  But Brodie was still young and in high school. 

He and I talked about our ghost.  He and I even looked online to see if we had a ‘haunted house’.  We came across a website that informed you that you had a haunted house if any of these things had happened to you…..

We read the information.  And while I was thrilled that we had a ghost!  Brodie was busy reading about ‘how to rid your home of a ghost.’  I read that part too, but I wasn’t interested in getting rid of him.  The article stated that in order to get rid of a ghost just be polite and ask the ghost to leave.  Tell the ghost sternly that it needs to go somewhere else as it isn’t wanted here.  I had no idea that Brodie hated having a ghost in our house.  It wasn’t until about a month later that I asked Brodie one day if he had seen anything strange because I hadn’t in about 3-4 weeks and I was wondering what was going on with James?  It was at that point that Brodie told me that he had asked him to leave. 

I then said, “You did WHAT??”

He then repeated to me that he had asked our ghost to leave.  I was so mad at Brodie for doing that!  I loved having a ghost in our house.  I missed James.  But he never came back.  Neither one of us have experienced anything the least bit odd in years.  Not in our home, anyway.

 But yes, for one day I did see a dead man sitting in our chair back in 2006.  I think it was James L.  I saw that stupid ghostly cat more than I did him! 

Hope you enjoyed our Whann Family Ghost Story,

Scare ya later!

Ghoulie

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Trish Dropped in to say Goodbye,

She Stayed 5 Days

Trish Wolfenden, in Paris

A Goodbye Ghost Story

On January 30th. 2017 my good friend Trish Wolfenden passed away.  She would have been 76 on her February birthday.  She lived in New Zealand.  I had known Trish for a few decades.  I was a Girl Scout leader in Hawaii when she was a Girl Guides leader in New Zealand.  She had written to the Hawaii Girl Scout Hale (House) asking for a troop in Hawaii to become pen pals with her guides.  I saw the ad and quickly responded.  After a few years of us writing each other I asked her how many Girl Scout troops replied to her ad?  She told me that I was the only one.  Our girl’s may have stopped writing each other but Trish and I continued to, for years.  We became friends, and then good friends.  She and her husband Bob came to visit us when we lived in Ft. Meade, Maryland, and when we were living in Tampa on MacDill Air Force Base.  Trish told me it was on her bucket list to visit us here at our house in central Florida and to spend Christmas with us.  An American Christmas, as she called it.  I really did figure that it would happen eventually, but that never came to pass.  In November 2016 she was diagnosed with colon cancer.  She was told she would have between 2 months and 2 years to live.  She died 2 months later. 

I was very sad to lose her.  I love her very much.  Her, and her husband Bob.  They were both very good friends of ours.  But this ghost story begins about a week and a half after Trish died.  I had taken a bad fall over the dog gate and had a severe sprain to my left knee.  I could barely walk, I was on crutches for about 2 weeks, and I was laid up on the couch for over a month.   I had moved my computer and other electronics to the coffee table.  That is where I stationed myself for a good two months, actually.  I did get quite a bit of website work done during that time.  So, that was good.

The Wolfenden’s, L-R, Trish, Leilani, Bob, and Carl

But it was about a week or so after Trish died that I started to notice some strange things around the house.  One day, before I showered, I had laid out my clothing on my bed.  Then I went in to shower but when I came out of the shower and approached my bed, I noticed that my clothing and underwear were on the floor.  I can remember thinking how strange that was?  I’m a very thoughtful person.  I don’t just go through life willy-nilly, and absentmindedly doing things.  I’m always aware with whatever I am doing.  If I place my clothing onto the bed I take into account that my bedspread is of a silky material and that I need to place my clothing a bit further onto the bedspread so that nothing does slip off.  So, image my surprise to find my clothing on the floor?  I ended up chalking it up to my absentmindedness and went on with my day.  I believe that was a Friday.  Anyway, the following evening, that would be a Saturday, Gordon and I were in our living room talking when we suddenly heard a noise in our bedroom.  I went in to investigate and I saw that our curtains had fallen down.  I came back into the living room and told Gordon.  He gave me this strange look of disbelief.  I asked him what was wrong?  He then got up and went into our bedroom to see the curtains lying on the floor.  He still looked at me very strangely and I asked again what was so wrong?  So, what if our curtains fell?  He then informed me that in order for our curtains to fall they would have to be lifted UP OFF of the HOOKS!  They can’t just fall down, Julie!  They were lifted UP off of their hooks!  I asked him how that can happen?  He told me that he didn’t know?  Especially when BOTH SIDES were lifted off their hooks!

Trish and her daughter, Leilani

Well, we did consider that strange but life does go on, and so did we.  Until Monday afternoon……..

It was Monday afternoon around 3:00 p.m. when I went into the kitchen and got a banana.  I always eat a banana around 3:00 p.m. every day.  Bananas are a natural muscle relaxer and I do suffer from cramps in my feet and legs.  So, I always make sure I eat a banana every day to combat that.  Well, I realized that I had to go to the bathroom so I placed the banana on the coffee table on top of my notebook, which was about 8 inches from the edge of the table.  When I came back into the living room to eat my banana, I noticed that it was on the floor.  What?  How did that happen?  A banana doesn’t just roll off a table!  I then started to put together all the mysterious things that have happened over the last few days and I realized that we had a ghost!  My first thoughts were that James L. was back!  I was thrilled that we had a ghost again, but angry that he was apparently in my bedroom and up to his old tricks again.  So, I yelled at him!  It went something like this………….. ’Alright!  That is it!  I see that you are back!  That’s fine, and you are welcome to stay here and be part of this family but you will stay out of our bedrooms and bathrooms!  Got it?  Understand?  You will also respect us and not play tricks on us any longer!  Do you understand??

I was pretty hard on our “ghost.”  But as the day progressed I picked up this great sadness as if I had disappointed Trish.  I kept thinking to myself, how did I disappoint Trish?  She died.  Why am I feeling this way?  That’s when it dawned on me that our ghost was HER!  It was Trish!  She had come to say goodbye and to get my attention.  I suddenly felt very badly.  It was a few weeks later that we talked to Bob on Skype and told him the story.  The second he heard about the curtains he said, “It was her!” 

Had I known it was Trish I would have talked to her and told her how much I miss her, and how much I love her.  But instead I mistook her for James L. and yelled at her thinking it was him. 

I haven’t felt her anymore since then.  She hasn’t been back.  I’m sure that if possible she is watching out over her granddaughter’s in Ireland, and her children in Ireland and Australia.  And of course, Bob, in New Zealand. 

Trish wanted to be buried in the Maori tradition.  And she wanted to be buried next to her grandfather.  Her grandfather had rescued her from the orphanage her mother placed her in.  Bob had Trish cremated and he was going to have her urn buried at the head of her grandfather’s tombstone. 

Trish and I had so much in common.  I myself want to be cremated and I would love it if Gordon or Veronica and Brodie would spread my ashes on top of my grandparents graves but unfortunately my step-father is buried nearby.  So, I think I would like for Gordon/Veronica and Brodie to spread my ashes at the beach in Indian Shores.  My second favorite place in the world.

Realizing that Trish came and said goodbye to us, makes me think that I can visit people when I’m gone.  I have always believed in ghosts and I always will. 

I will miss you forever Trish.  And I will always envision you in your kitchen cooking something wonderful!

Your friend,

Julie

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Midnight In the Garden of Good and Evil

SAVANNAH, GEORGIA

Yes, we actually know one of the characters in the book.  Hint:  Clint Eastwood’s daughter played her in the movie.  🙂

Nancy Lee Hillis

To be continued………

My nephew Joseph, and my son Brodie at Colonial Park Cemetery in downtown Savannah.

My favorite city in the world, not that I’ve seen them all, but my favorite city at least so far, is Savannah, Georgia.  I grew up in Rome which is about a 6 hour drive away.  Savannah is old and historic with a rich history.  It is also beautiful and charming.  My brother Johnny lived there with his first wife Cathy about 20 years ago as of this writing, October 13, 2018.  She even gave birth to their first child Kate, in Savannah.  Cathy is originally from Ireland and fell in love with Savannah strickly from reading the book, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.  I believe it was Cathy’s idea for them to live there.  Savannah does host the largest St. Patrick’s Day parade in all of America.  I believe even outdoing the one in New York.  There is also a beautiful Catholic Church in downtown. 

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In addition to its great beauty the city itself is unique in the fact that is has so many squares.  The streets are lined with them.  When you drive down Savannah you aren’t driving on many straight roads.  You are driving around neighborhood squares, one after the other.  If you saw the movie, Forest Gump, Tom Hanks is sitting on a park bench in Savannah on one of those squares. 

Tom Hanks, Savannah, Georgia

Although I think they have since removed all the park benches.  The town was made that way so that if there was trouble everyone would run to the middle of the square in their neighborhood to receive whatever news that was important.  And I believe, someone would run from square to square to spread the news so that everyone would then know what danger was coming their way. 

Savannah was one of the few towns that the Yankee’s didn’t burn down during the Civil Woah (that’s the only way I know how to pronounce it), because the towns people cooperated with them. 

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Juliette Gordon Low

Savannah is also the birthplace of Juliette Gordon Lowe, the woman who founded Girl Scout’s here in America.  Gordon and I, along with our children have been to Savannah a few times where we have had the most wonderful of vacation’s. 

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Savannah is also one of the most haunted places in America.  You see, when the town was built they didn’t bother moving the dead that were buried there, they just moved the tombstones and left the bodies.  The town was built on top of graveyards.  One thing that I have come to realize just through my growing up in the south, especially the low country, the deep south, is that southerners tend not to be that scared of ghosts.  Our African-American communities can be, but the white southern culture that I grew up knowing didn’t fear them.  I don’t know why?  And I just remembered a summer camp that I sent my daughter to in Rome one summer while we living in Hawaii, but in Rome for summer vacation, where they went around to various places in Rome, even graveyards, and she learned legends and stories of ghosts.  One particular one that stuck with her was “Spear Finger.” I’ll have to someday have her recount it because she learned it first hand from a Story Teller.  Common day Bard, I suppose. 

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But, the story that I want to tell you does take place in Savannah, but first I need to lead up to the story and fill you in on the background, something that southerners are very good at doing.

I would like to introduce you to Charlie Hillis.  Charlie went to medical school at Emory University in Atlanta with my step-father.  They were the two oldest in their class.  They hit it off and got along very well, even keeping in touch up until Charlie died about 8 years ago, or so?  His 5th. wife tried to kill him.  Really!  I’ll get to that later on.  But when I first met Charlie it was when I was a young girl in the 60’s.  He was married to his 1st. wife Verice.  She was lovely too.  She looked just like Mary Tyler Moore.  She was tall, thin, had dark hair.  I don’t know how long they were married but they had 3 sons together.  The boys ranged in age from about age 5, to late teens.  (I do have photos of all of them but I will have to add those later on as I have too many things in front of the cabinets right now where I keep my photos.)

But I do have this……

Me, age 8

This photo was taken at a cabin that we were renting with Charlie, Verice and their boys, in the mountains one winter.

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(I just wanted to add something about my step-father here that I believe is very noteworthy.  If you are a regular reader of my blogs then you know that I do talk about the abuse that I have suffered from him from the time he came in my life when I was 7, and up until the time he died when I was 52.  But, I have also stated that he was a brilliant doctor and that I would always give him credit for that.  I just wanted to share with you that when he was in medical school in the 60’s, with Charlie Hillis, that he wrote a paper tracing AIDS to monkey’s in Africa.  In the 60’s!!  Scientists have now been able to connect those dots that do link AIDS to monkeys in Africa 6 decades after my step-father did.  He was working on Astral Projection a few decades before he died.  One of my most vivid memories of him is everywhere we went he would be sitting there bolt upright in a chair with his eyes closed.  We always thought he was napping.  But he never was, he was working on having out of body experiences where his body was with us but his mind was elsewhere.  What progress he ever made on it I will most likely never know.  But he was always writing on his computer.  He could sit there for days writing.  I do wonder if my mother isn’t sitting on a goldmine of information that no one will ever know about.  As much as I hated the man, he was brilliant and I will always be in awe of how intelligent that he was.)

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So, you’ve met Charlie Hillis, now meet his 3rd. wife Nancy.  I cannot remember where we were living when we met Nancy.  I thought it was while we were living in Roanoke, Virginia, but my mother says that it was Sevierville, Tennessee.  Regardless of where we were living I do remember meeting Nancy.  She was much younger than Charlie and she was stunningly beautiful!  She was short in stature and even a bit chubby, but none of that detracted from just how lovely that she was.  She also had a history of winning beauty pageants.

 

Nancy at her 1966 Homecoming

  On one visit to see her and Charlie I got a look at all her trophy’s that she had on display.  WOW!  I couldn’t tell you any titles she has won as none come to mind, but I do wonder if she didn’t influence me a bit in wanting to get into pageants?  I was in the Miss North Carolina USA  beauty pageant when we were living in Rockingham.  The pageant was held in Winston-Salem.  I was dating Gordon at the time.  He was there.  And no I didn’t win, or even place, but it was an experience.  I did have a few titles from my Charlotte, North Carolina modeling days though.  I was Miss Izod and Miss Pepsi Cola.  The reason I don’t talk about any of that is because I look back on it as being silly and ridiculous, and shallow and immature.  BUT, I was very impressed with all of Nancy’s accomplishments.  Because she was short she would do everything in her power to be taller as those were the girls the judges were more impressed with, so Nancy told me once that she would lie in bed all day the day of the pageant because that made her ¼ inch taller naturally.  Does that really work?  Who knows?  But Nancy swore by it.  I do know that astronauts come back from space taller than they were before they left because gravity tends to compact us more down here than it does up there.  So, their spines become longer thus making themselves taller.  Maybe Nancy did know what she was talking about after all. 

Nancy and Charlie went on to have a son together, his name was Jacob.  She already had a son, Wes.  I remember we visited them a few times when they were living in Fayetteville, Georgia.  They had a swimming pool.  Nancy had a broken leg and was hobbling around on crutches.  Her dog had eaten her big diamond ring so every time the dog would poop Nancy would be going through it looking for her ring.  🙂 

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My mother and step-father went on to keep up with them but I no longer really did as I was living in Hawaii.  I don’t know when Nancy and Charlie divorced.  I do remember being at home in Rome visiting one time when Charlie came by for dinner.  He was between wives at the time.  I think from his 3rd. to 4th. wife?  I always liked him.  He was always very funny, charming, and entertaining.

I did hear from my mother that Charlie helped Nancy to buy a bed and breakfast in Savannah.  She could sing really well and worked as a nightclub singer in a club, Sweet Georgia Brown’s.

Nancy was known for her Pink Feather Boa.

This was all during the writing of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt, or as the locals of Savannah call it, “The Book.” 

The Famous Bird Girl Statue

John Berendt also fell for the captivating Nancy, or as he calls her in “The Book,” Mandy.  If you haven’t read the book, you need to!  The movie is forgettable, The Book is memorable!  The movie starred the  great, John Cusack, and Kevin Spacey, along with Jude Law and Alison Eastwood, (wonder how she got that part?)  The movie was directed by her father, Clint Eastwood. 

I remember being upset about the casting of Alison Eastwood to play Nancy in the movie. 

Alison Eastwood as Mandy in MITGOGAV

Alison is a lovely woman but Nancy’s beauty was just a bit extraordinary.  Not your average beauty.  She had dark hair and dark skin because she always seemed to have a tan.  I remember once we all went somewhere together when Charlie and Nancy were visiting and Nancy wore a halter top and short shorts one summer day.  Men stopped dead in their tracks when they saw Nancy.  I was a teenager at the time and I was very aware of how people viewed her.  The men were positive, the women were negative. When Nancy first saw me I was this awkward, teen with pimples and greasy hair and Nancy was still sweet enough to give me a compliment and tell me that I had a very “pretty smile.”  (Compliments at that time of my life were few and far between so I do tend to remember them.)

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Meet Nancy Hillis, The Vamp of Savannah

Nancy tells HER Story!

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So, Nancy is living in Savannah, working as a nightclub singer and owning a B&B that her ex-husband helped her buy.  Nancy lived in the basement apartment and rented out the upper floors to tourists.  She came and went as her schedule revolved around her nightclub job.  She may have had one or two more jobs at that time but the one that sticks out most in my mind was that one. 

Click Here for:  Nancy’s Bed and Breakfast, Hamilton Turner Inn

They say Disney’s Haunted Mansion was based on this house.

Nancy would decorate her B&B with nice furniture and somehow, she came across a portrait of a Yankee soldier and hung it on the wall.  I don’t remember which room but obviously she would have hung it somewhere like the living room, dining room, or even a sitting room.  Somewhere out in the open for the guests that stayed there to view.  Interestingly enough, every morning she would find that portrait of that Yankee soldier sitting on the floor beneath where it was hung.  It was never broken, it didn’t fall, it was placed there.  Even when she was all alone in the house every morning that portrait would be sitting there on the floor as if gently placed there.  Nancy finally got the hint and put the portrait away in a closet.  (How many people do you know that care to respect a ghost’s wishes?)  So, was it a ghost?  Savannah has a reputation for being haunted, so why not?  The house was built on top of graves.  Yet another “unexplained” event.  We in the south believe in ghosts.  We’ve even seen a few. 

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There are many more accounts of the haunted B&B by guests that have stayed there.  Nancy sold the house and then moved to St. Simmons Island.  (Where the first Brunswick Stew was invented.)  Or so they say….  🙂

Nancy Lee Hillis

(Once a beauty queen, always a beauty queen.)

I asked my mother over a year ago to send me some photos of Nancy and Charlie because I wanted to add them to this post when I originally got the idea that I wanted to write about them a year ago,  but she never did.  My mother does have a massive collection of photos though.  I did find a few of Nancy online.  She died on August 9, 2016 of ALS, she was 67.  Here is the write up I found online about her:

Nancy Lee Hillis, aka, The Vamp of Savannah, 67, of St. Simons Island, Georgia, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Tuesday, August 9, 2016. She was a lifelong resident of both Savannah and St. Simons Island. She entertained thousands through her gift of song. She was easily a recognizable character because of her signature pink boa and her Dixieland jazz sound. Also known to many as “Mandy” from the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Nancy was a lady of many talents and her most recent accomplishment was her published autobiography “Nancy Hillis, The Vamp of Savannah”.
Survivors include her two sons, Wes Bonner, Jacob Hillis and many lifelong friends and adoring fans.
Her celebration of life will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, August 13th at Whitfield Square, Downtown Savannah, Georgia.
Flowers may be received at Fox and Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel. In addition, the Nancy Hillis Memorial Fund has been created at The Bank of the Ozarks.

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I was sad to have found out that Nancy had died.  She was a lovely, and interesting character.  I also appreciated that she was so nice to me when I was growing up.  She made me feel good about myself.  Those are the people that we want to know in life.  Let’s forget about the ones that make us feel bad, and only focus on those that make us feel good.

And as for Charlie Hillis, he went on to have two more wives after Nancy and at least one more child.  He had a daughter with his 5th. wife, the woman that tried to kill him.  She poisoned him.  He was on his deathbed but he didn’t press charges against her because they had a 5 year old daughter and he didn’t want her to be without her mother.  He didn’t want her going to prison.  That has to be the most selfless act of love and kindness that I have ever heard of!  The fact that she tried to kill him means that she hates him, so you know that she will never say good things about him to their daughter.  Also, the daughter being 5 at his death will not remember very much, if anything about her father.  I also doubt that any of Charlie’s other children have anything to do with her seeing as how there are so many ex-wives and so many children, not to mention the ages range from 60’s down to a teenager.  What Charlie Hillis did in the end, while on his deathbed, was nothing short of extraordinary.  That is something that I will never forget.

I may have started this blog post about how interesting that Nancy Hillis was, but I want to end it with how brave and strong that Charlie Hillis was.

Julie

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New Blog Entries Start Right Here

Right after I have my Bewitching Lunch

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So Satisfying….  Pimento Cheese on Pumpernickel.

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Halloween Pedicure with Cocktails

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I was walking along the beach in Indian Shores one very gray, rainy day, when I saw this beautiful big rock with a gray shell heart in it. 

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It probably weights about 20 pounds.  I saw it and I knew I wanted it!

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I Love the Heart

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I decided to decorate it with some of my jewelry and nail polishes.  Also some tiny little bats.

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I Heart Pearls!

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I do love all these Halloween nail polish colors.

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Mmmm….  So Good!

And as with any gray, rainy day there is nothing better than a good movie.

How about Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window?

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Can you think of anything else better to do on a cold, gray day at the beach?

Me neither.

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Scary Kitchen Utensils

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Well, hardly scary, but definitely fun!

(Don’t forget the skeletal hot sauce, some black salt, and red pepper corns.)

I love seeing this little bucket in my kitchen to house some of our Halloween utensils.  I do think that some kitchen utensils do look like torture tools.  Which makes this all the more fun!

All I did was to buy galvanized bucket from a hardware store, spray paint it black, then decoupage a vintage witch with her cauldron brewing up a stew. 

Perfect for any bewitching kitchen.

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Caltrop Nuts/Devil Nuts/Dracula’s Nuts

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Gordon found these at the Asian Supermarket.  They are so cool!  They look exactly like bats! 

They are Asian street food.  Boil for 15 minutes, drain, rinse, and slice down the middle, and eat!

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Not the tastiest of nuts, but they would be a nice novelty item for any Halloween party.

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TRY SOMETHING NEW!

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Halloween Breakfast Eggy in a ……..

Coffin?

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We used a coffin shaped cookie cutter to hollow out the bread for this breakfast.

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Just place some butter into a sauce pan on a medium-high heat and place your bread into it.  Then crack an egg into the center, let it cook thoroughly, then devour!

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Great with coffee!

Halloween plates and mugs, optional, but necessary.

Also try Eggy in a Black Cat

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Beautiful Swirled Rye Bread, a Cat Cookie Cutter, and an Egg

Cooked in some butter in a saucepan.

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Delicious!

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Another Happy Breakfast

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Turkey Sausage with Biscuits and Olive Oil Gravy

This is a favorite breakfast of mine. 

I do consider it to be a “healthy” version.  The sausages are turkey, the gravy is made with olive oil, skim milk, etc., so not as fattening as the original version.

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Makes My Tummy Happy!

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Franken-Cookies

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I did not make these.  I found them pre-made at our commissary and thought they were perfect!

I already owned the poster, and the “hand” is my son’s from his childhood Halloween.

Help Yourself!

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Eyeball Sandwiches

for Lunch

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Some Pumpernickel Rye, Cream Cheese, and a Dill Pickle

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Want to know the real Ghoulie? 

Just turn down the lights…. All shall be revealed!

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To everything that goes ‘bump in the night’, I adore you!

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Until Tomorrow, Sleep Tight.

Julie,

The Ghost Writer