abandoned-houseHouses have souls. I’m sure of it. Have you ever noticed that a house starts to deteriorate when it is no longer occupied? Why is that? I believe it’s because when humans move out, the house loses it soul. Without a soul, it dies. Continue Reading »

Today I’m taking you on a tour of a piece of truly amazing history – the USS LST 325, the last WWII, fully operational landing ship tank. This awesome amphibious vessel docked for five days on the Vicksburg waterfront and I got to go aboard. Continue Reading »

Improvisation: noun: the art or act of improvising, or of composing, uttering, executing, or arranging anything without previous preparation. (Musical improvisation involves imagination and creativity.)

So, we got through our very first Detective’s Comedy Mystery Dinner event a couple of weeks ago and let’s just say, it wasn’t without a good bit of improvisation. And, I’m not talking about just the actors either; I’m talking about the whole event.

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Who doesn’t love a good ghost story? I’m not into the creepy, demonic, blood and guts ghost stories where people get hurt, but I do enjoy a good chilling tale now and then.


Original photo by P. Rickrode 2015

The Baer House Inn is one of the houses on the Haunted Vicksburg Tour. The leader of these tours brings people inside and tells them a tale of intrigue that may or may not have happened here.

Now, I have never experienced any of the strange happenings that are talked about on the tour, however, something rather ghostly did happen here. Something unexplainable and very real.

Not too long after my husband and I bought the inn, we started remodeling and redecorating. One of our projects involved relocating some chandeliers. Five to be exact. We hired an electrician and early one morning, they went to work, taking down lights and rehanging them in their new spots. About an hour after they got started, my husband and I were in the hallway talking about something. We heard a crash that sounded like a thousand expensive crystals shattering into a bazillion pieces. Followed by dead silence.


We looked at each other with wide eyes, our mouths yawning into perfect O’s. I muttered a hushed curse. Obviously, the guys working upstairs had dropped one of our super expensive chandeliers. We whispered amongst ourselves about how to handle the situation. Should we confront them or let them come to us? We waited with bated breath for someone to slink downstairs and apologize profusely for damaging our property. Nobody came downstairs.

“They must be texting their boss,” I said. “Find out how to tell us that they’d broken one of our lights.”

man-hanging-lightWe waited. And waited some more. We decided to give them ten more minutes. After five, I couldn’t stand it any more. I crept upstairs, being extra careful not to step in any glass fragments I was sure littered the floor. Nothing. No mess. No sound. Two guys were up on a ladder in one of the rooms attaching a chandelier to the ceiling.

“How’s it going?” I asked.

“Great. We’re almost done.”

Almost done? That’s it? They aren’t even going to mention the broken $10,000 light fixture?

I turned to face my husband and mouthed, “They’re lying.”

I proceeded to march my little self into every single room upstairs, checking for lights, damage, broken glass, a broom, trash bag, anything evidencing the crash we heard downstairs.

Nothing. NOTHING. Every light exactly where it was supposed to be. Say what?

I went back into the room with the men on the ladder.

“Hey,” says I. “Did you guys hear a crash a few minutes ago. Like something big, and crystal, and expensive, falling and breaking?”



“We didn’t hear anything.”

Now, my husband and I both heard the crash. We both knew immediately what it was. And yet . . . nothing broken. And that my friends, is the mysterious case of the shattered chandelier.



Have you ever had a ghostly encounter? Ever experience something you couldn’t explain? What do you think we heard?

Word of the day: Gagaku

Fun fact about me: I don’t really believe in ghosts. And yet . . .

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, October 2016. Photos courtesy Google Images and P. Rickrode.

Kids these days play video games practically everywhere. They have their own little noise-making devices that they carry around and annoy the heck out of people in restaurants, grocery stores, movie theaters, everywhere. Oh, I get that as a parent, these types of “toys” provide the perfect distraction and keep those little minds busy and perhaps their mouths quiet. Quiet is a precious commodity when you have little ones after all. 


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I Am the Piddle Queen

It’s all about piddling around sometimes. It shouldn’t be, but it is. I can waste so much time piddling around doing nothing.


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Be Your Own Cheerleader

I know, I know, being your own cheerleader is hard. That’s why we have friends and support groups and such. But, sometimes, only YOU can talk yourself off the ledge.

swear-wordsLast week I ventured down a path I rarely travel and there’s a reason for that; it’s the road of disappointment and discouragement. Usually I keep the gate shut on that life exit, but sometimes the wind blows it open and that little bastard demon living inside me wants to go exploring. Damn that little demon! Continue Reading »


I need a lesson in Facebook etiquette.

FB rules

I mean, think about it, anybody can join Facebook but when you sign up you aren’t handed a list of rules or an instruction manual or anything. So how does one know, besides the obvious common sense stuff like pornography, copyright infringement, bullying, etc., what is appropriate FB behavior and what is not?  People post whatever the hell they want whether others wish to see it or not; freedom of speech and press and whatnot. I know you can unfriend and unlike and hide posts and all, but once you’ve seen the post, you can’t unsee it. But that’s not what I’m talking about.

Let me explain.


Recently I decided that I haven’t been giving my FB author page enough love, so I decided to spend a little more time over there. I try to be upbeat and positive and not offend anyone when I post on that particular page. Nothing religious, political, offensive, snarky – well maybe snarky – but you get it. Anyway, I decided to reach out to some of my FB “friends” who haven’t yet “liked” my author page. So, I sent out invitations to “like” my page. That’s appropriate right? There were a lot of names on my “friends” list to invite; some of them, honestly, I didn’t even recognize. I guess at some point those folks requested to be my friend and I accepted.

Anyhoo, most people either ignored the invite, didn’t see the invite, or “liked” my page. Good right? Well, apparently not for everyone. Here’s one of the responses I got back: “Please don’t invite me to like your page when you haven’t been to mine.

Excuse me?

woman shocked

First of all, I’ve never even heard of this person, other than their name appearing on my “friends” list. I’ve never seen any posts on any social media platform from this person. I guess at some point, SHE must have come across me and requested that I be her friend, because I never send “friend” requests to people I haven’t seen somewhere else before. NEVER. Assuming she sent the “friend” request (and she did), I must have done some snooping around and deemed her an appropriate “friend”, because she is on my current list of “friends.” I usually only “friend” people I’ve “seen around” in cyber world, met in person, was recommended to find by someone I trust, or owns a reputable business. That’s pretty much it.

Second, why did she make the assumption I “haven’t been to” her page? Maybe I did visit and I chose NOT to “like” it. See, this is where that rule book would come in handy. Am I obligated to “like” a page just because I visited it? What if I truly don’t like her page? What if I don’t like what she posts or what she stands for? Why in God’s name would I “like” that?

Which brings up another point where I must defer to the rule book. Is it a requirement that people reciprocate in kind? I mean, just because someone “likes” my page, does that mean I HAVE to like their page?

egotistical friend meme

Third, why do I have to “like” her page FIRST? I mean, can’t she “like” me and then I “like” her back? I guess if the world really does revolve around her, that logic would make sense, but seriously? Someone has to be the first to “like” right? And, let me restate that SHE originally sought me out, not the other way around. Shouldn’t she, in theory, “like” me first?

Fourth, did she ever invite me to “like” her page? I’m pretty sure if she had, I would have hit the “like” button, after all, I did choose to “friend” her. Why would I “friend” her but not “like” her? Seriously, who “friends” someone they don’t like?

Fifth, which ties in to number four above, perhaps I didn’t even know she had a page. Why not “like” me FIRST then encourage me to “like” her page in return. I’m pretty certain, I’d have hit that “like” button. See how simple that would have been? Now, after her in-your-face, egotistic, narcissistic (is that the same thing?) comment, I’m not so inclined to “like” anything about her or her page. Just saying.

ego meme

It’s all so terribly confusing sometimes. What’s your opinion of the whole “friending,” “liking” business on Facebook? Has it ever confused you? How do you decide when to hit the button and become friends with a complete stranger? Do you accept invitations to “like” pages? Do you have “friends” but choose not to “like” their pages?

Word of the Day: Chiropodist

Fun Fact about Me: I gained a whole bunch of new “likes” on my FB author page in the past couple of days. Yay! (That’s good right?)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, September 2016. Images courtesy Google Images.

Here at the Baer-Williams House I’ve noticed an interesting and curious trend; people don’t sleep between the sheets.

feet in sheets

Say what? Continue Reading »

travel quote 1Well, it’s been a year now and we’re getting to know the bed and breakfast routine pretty well. We’re also becoming familiar with the highs and lows of tourist traffic patterns here in Vicksburg. Vicksburg is very much a tourist town, but I think it’s pretty accurate to say we definitely have a tourist “season,” and thank the good lord for that.

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