Nothing

As I stumbled across the old cemetery, I felt very uneasy.  I have been through plenty of cemeteries in my travels, so not sure why this one would make me feel uneasy.  As I approach the old iron gate, I can see that there are lots of broken headstones.  The weeds and ferns have taken over the grounds, some of which are taller then the headstones that remain in tact.

I take a deep breath, drawing in the cool crisp autumn air.  Grasp hold of the gate latch and pull it open.  The gate makes an eerie squealing sound as it opens.  I laugh to myself thinking “man that’s straight out of a horror movie”.  I step into the cemetery and shut the gate begin behind me.  I look around and take in everything around me.  You can see the mounds where the earth has settled down around the coffins buried beneath.  There are pine trees grown up with headstones hidden under their low hanging branches.  If there was ever a cemetery with a creepy factor, this one was it!  No one was around, in fact it looked like no one had been around for years.

“Hello” I say out loud

“I am here to honor you and your lives.  I am sorry no one has come to visit you in awhile, but I am here now”  I said to the souls buried here.  Thankfully no one answered.  I was too intrigued by this place to deal with a lost soul right now.  Normally when I walk into a cemetery the lost souls come to me and distract my mind until I talk to them and put them at ease.  I would much rather explore this awesome forgotten place then deal with them right now.   Sometimes my gifts are more of a course then a gift.

I decide to start at the south end of the cemetery and start walking along the iron fence.  There seems to be some cement borders around different groups of graves.  Found these after almost falling on my face over one.  They are covered with moss and hard to see in places. Most of these graves are dated from the 1800’s.  “Wow”  I think to myself.  I continue walking and reading names and dates, at least on the headstones I can read.  Some of the headstones are so worn down that you can’t read what’s written on them.  As I come to the end of the fence line and turn to walk farther into the cemetery I notice an old building.  A very interesting old building that has seen way better days.  All of the windows have long been broken out.  There are trees growing up and around it.

As I am walking around to get closer to the building, I stop in my tracks.  The fence in the front of the building has been broke down.  Looks as if someone, or something just ran through it.  Ran right through it like it was butter.

“That’s interesting” I say out loud.   I look up at the old building and wonder who used to live here.  What where theur lives like?
What hides behind those walls? As I stand there looking, I hear a noise come from within those exact walls.
“Don’t go in there” a voice deep inside my head says to me.

“I have to, I need to see what is in there.” I argue with the voice in my head.

I step through the broken down fence and begin to walk towards the building.  As I circle the building I notice there’s a door on the side that’s opened up and I can get through it no problem.   I walk towards the door, reaching in my bag as I go pulling out my trusty flashlight and my pepper spray.  I learned a long time ago to carry pepper spray with me for safety.  You never know what kind of creatures you might encounter while exploring these old buildings.  I clip the spray to my flashlight so its easy to grab if needed, turn on the flashlight and slide through the opened door.

As I look through the room I have just entered, I notice the pungent smell.  The smell is a mixture of old decaying wood and death.  Its a bit stronger then in other places I have entered, but I continue on.  This room was a big open area, most likely a living room.  There where is a hallway in the back of the room and a doorway behind me.  I decide to go into the doorway first.  As I turn to go into doorway, I see something move across the hallway.  I quickly shine my flashlight in the direction of the movement, nothing.  I continue to shine the light searching for whatever had moved, nothing.  Not even a mouse.  Just dirt and broken wood.

I dismiss the movement as my imagination as I turn and enter into the next room.  I shine the light around this room, another empty room.  This one smaller then the last.  I figure this might have once been a kitchen area.  Nothing too interesting in this or the last room. I notice another closed door in the back of this room so I walk to the door and try to open it.  It won’t budge.  I try to wriggle it and push it open with no luck.

“Must be rusted shut” I tell myself.

“That’s probably where the good stuff is” I say, laughing at the irony.   I decide to go back and explore down the hallway.  As I reach the doorway to the living room, I hear scratching behind me.  I quickly turn around shining the flash light in the direction I had heard the scratching, grabbing my pepper spray as I turn.  Nothing.  I wait a second then shine the flashlight around the room.  Nothing.  I shine the flashlight down at my feet and wait for a bit to see if I hear it again.  Nothing.

“Damn it!  My imagination must be in overdrive today”  I say under my breath.  I turn around and head towards the hallway.

As I reach the hallway I notice a bit of light towards the end of it.  I figure there must be a hole in the wall or ceiling back there. That is quite common in these old buildings.  I step a little into the hallway and shine the light around exploring what was there.  I notice two closed doors to my right and a stairway to my right.  I walk over to the stairway to inspect it.  I can see the nost of the stairs are rotten and some are missing.

“Yup, there’s no way I can make it up those, too dangerous” I confirm to myself.  So I go towards the first door.

“Well lets see if these will open” I say as I grab hold of the knob and attempt to open the first door.  The door swung open with a loud creek.

“Ok, that was surprisingly easy” I say while stepping into the room.  As I shine my light into this room, I notice that it seems strangely clean.  There is an old metal bed in the middle of the back wall, still made.  There was a wash basin next to the left side of the bed, and a small night table to the right.  The closet was to my left and in there hung a few gowns and suits.

“This is strange, no mildew, no dirt or dust and it actually smells better in here then the rest of the house”  I begin to say into the voice recorder I had pulled out of my bag while walking to the closet.

“Closet is full of a couple ball gowns, a couple suits and other gowns and pant sets.  While this stuff is from another time, it looks in great condition.  The floors are clear of dirt and dust.  The bed is nicely made.  Its almost as if this has been frozen in time” I continue to describe the room before clicking off the recorder.

There it is again.  Something just moved in the hallway outside the door.  I seen the shadow and heard it scuffle.  I run to the doorway, but before I can get to the door it slams shut.  I stop short, fear creeping over me.

“Knock it off, it was the wind blowing it shut you big baby.  Go open it and continue your exploring”  I yelled at myself for letting this scare me so.  I take a deep breath and grab hold of the door knob to let myself out and finish exploring.  Nothing.  The door,would not budge.  The knob would not turn.

“What the hell, I’m trapped”  I half whispered, half screamed.  A new fear came over me.  I had not told anyone where I was going.   I took a couple deep breaths to calm myself down.

“Rrrrriiiiinnnnggggg” noise so loud that I jumped.

“That’s right, my cell phone” I screech in delight as I grab it from my bag.

“Omg, Skylar, I am so happy to hear your voice!  I am almost screaming into the phone

“Um, what the hell Maura?”  She responded to my strange answer.

“I need your help.  I found and old cemetery near the church in the woods on Cleary Rd.”   I started to explain to her

“On the outside of the cemetery there is an old building.  Well, I have managed to get myself locked in a room in here.  Please come help me!” I desperately pleaded with her.

“Maura, how the hell did you manage to do that?  I am on the way, text me your location”  Skylar replied.  I sent her my location and pleaded for her to hurry.  Before hanging up.

Skylar is the best, she always seems to know when I need her and never rubs it in when I get I trouble, even though she probably should.   I do manage to get myself in trouble more then Unlike to admit, like right now.  I can’t believe I got myself locked in here, what a rooky mistake.

“Scratch, scratch, scratch” my thoughts are interrupted.

“Scratch” there it is again, coming from the closet.  Just like the scratching noise that I thought I had heard in the room off the kitchen.

“Scratch, scratch, bang”  Definitely coming from the closet.  Fear swelled up inside my stomach and spread throughout my whole body.  So this is what it is to be frozen in fear.  I am still, not moving a muscle.  I can barely breathe.

“Bang, bang, bang” even louder this time.  I manage to grab my pepper spray.  I am able to breathe now, in fact I am slowly raising the flashlight towards the closet.  I shine the light to the closet to get a look at what’s making the noise, pepper spray aimed and ready.  The light illuminates the closet.  Nothing.  I stand there just looking in disbelief.  Could this be my imagination going crazy?  It couldn’t be my imagination, It was too loud.  I stand there, watching, waiting.  Frozen in place for what seemed like an eternity.

“BANG BANG BANG” I almost fell over from the intensity of it this time.  Still there was nothing there.  My light was shining right where the noise had came from, but nothing was there.  I started to move towards the closet to check it out.  Light fixated on the spot the banging came from.  I reach the closet and kneel down to inspect the back wall, the place the noise had come from.  Trembling I knock on it with my hand.  I wait for awhile to see what would happen.  Nothing.

“Ok, Maura, stop this.  You are being silly and letting your imagination get away with you.”  I tell myself, but not believing it.  My heart is beating fast and heavy.  I struggle to calm myself so I can think.  I walk back to the door and try to open it again.  Nothing.  Still trapped.

I check my phone.  Half an hour has passed since I had talked to Skylar.

“Where the hell are you?”  I text her.

“I’m almost there, sorry I got pulled over” she replied.  “I’m turning down the road now.  Be there in 5”

“Hurry” I frantically texted back to her.  I sat next to the door, gripping my flashlight and pepper spray like my life depended on it.  Maybe it did.

“Bang Bang Crash” even louder this time.  And what the hell just broke?  I shined my light at the closet wall again, this time the wall had a big hole in it.

“Scratch, crash, scratch, snort”  there is definitely something behind that wall.  Something trying to get in here to me.  Total panic struck my body.  What do I do, what is it?  Someone help me.

I start screaming “HELP ME”

“Help” I screamed it over and over for what seemed like forever.  Suddenly I hear a reply.

“I’m coming, I’m coming.  What the hell is wrong with you?”  Akylar had finally made it!

“Skylar, hurry something is trying to get in here with me.  Its coming through the wall” I scream at her.

“I’m coming” is all I hear before the wall breaaks open and I see a shadow come rushing through it.

Something grabs my arm.  I turn to see Skylar had opened the door and was standing there.  “RUN” I scream.

We run, fastest either of us have ran in our lives.  Back through the hallway, through the living room and out the broken door.  We ran all the way back to her car.  Only then did I look back over at the cemetery.  I wanted to see what had broken through that wall.  What had chased us through that house and back through the cemetery.  So I turned around as I jumped in the car and I saw, Nothing.

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Update

It’s been awhile since I have shared anything with you guys, so thought it was about time.  😉  It has been a bit of a crazy summer, and it has gone by far too quickly!  I have found some interesting places that I have photographed, some that I have jotted down to go back and photograph.  I have also been doing the bump and grind that’s involved with being able to publish a book.  Currently I am taking some writing classes so that the stories I tell with my pictures will be worth reading.   😊

I will hopefully be sharing some more things with you soon.  I have some fun finds that I can’t wait to share with you! Here’s one from an old cemetery I recently found.  This was an exciting find, and it is still kept up.  The headstones I have pictures above where taken here.  I didn’t even see them hidden behind the tree until a walked down the hill to the road to take pictures looking up at the cemetery.  

Here’s a couple other fun things I found at this cemetery:

So, that’s where things are at.  If you have any questions, or would like to purchase any of my photographs as prints, please feel free to shoot me an email.  I also am booking a limited number of fantasy shoots, so if your interested let me know. 

Thank you for following, happy shooting 😀

Going Up

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Today was an interesting day.  After going downstairs for activities I was going to be moved to my new room.  Activities was fun enough, we did a game of shuffle board.  This is always a bit fun for me as it is one of the few things I am able to do.  My left arm is one of the few things left that hasn’t betrayed me.  Before the stroke I was right-handed, so learning to do things with my left has been a challenge.  Out right frustrating at times.  Anyway, my team managed to get third place today.  Feels good to accomplish something!

After the games My aide came to get me and bring me to my new room.  They had been moving my stuff into it while I was busy with games.  My new room is on the main floor down the hall and a few turns from the dining area.  All we had to do was go up one floor to the main floor.  I guess the elevator had enough running people up and down because it stopped between floors and wouldn’t budge.  They say we were stuck for four hours while the grounds people figured out the problem and fixed it.  It felt like an eternity!  I am pretty sure at one point I fell asleep, startling awake to the feeling of falling.  Phew it was just a dream.  The roof to the elevator car is open again.  I can see the doors way up there, what an eerie feeling.  I feel total panic rising up from me, I scream but no one hears me.  No one hears me when I scream, another gift left from my stroke.  Finally, the elevator is going up.  You think in this big fancy building they could have equipment that actually works right.

My new room is in the back of the building, maybe I will be able to see the woods!  Hope they grabbed all of my stuff.  Oh wow!! There are beautiful tile floors in my new room!  They have flowers designed into them.  They are so exquisite, white flowers with blue centers.  I think I will like it here.  I have not been able to go outside and see the real flowers that are starting to bloom.  I hope they will let me do that soon.  But until then, this will do.

 

I hope you are enjoying my stories!  This is not a true story, or was is it meant to depict anything that happened.  This is a story that reflects the thoughts that I have when I am touring old buildings.  I will be including these stories and more in my book that I am working on.  If you would like updates on my book and/or notices when I post new stories subscribe to my blog.  You can also follow me on face book by clicking here.

Looking Out

As I sit here looking out this window at the Buildings that align the landscape. I can’t help but to wonder what fates I am faced with.  I have only been here a few short weeks, but already I have had my share of anguish.  Although the staff treats me well enough, they have their jobs to do.  Some of these jobs are not very nice ones.  I hear the screams from those who need to be restrained because they might harm themselves or others.  I hear the ramblings of those who have other souls living in their heads.  The cries of the children who are so sick even their mothers are not allowed to visit.

Then there’s those like myself, who just see everything.  We sit here every day and night witnessing every move, every whisper.   This is our life, watching the play that is every day asylum life.  We see the nurse passing everyone their medicine, making sure they are swallowed.  Watch as those who aren’t playing nice that day are led away, back to their rooms.  Hopefully they will play better tomorrow so they don’t become like Henry.

Poor Henry, he came running up to me when they brought me here.  He was so energetic, so happy to see me and introduce himself.  Seamed harmless enough to me.  But, I heard a couple of the nurses talking about him.  He had a problem hitting the staff and other residents at times, I guess.  Today he sits with me watching out the window, just as silent as I am.

I see the sun is shining today.  I wonder if it’s warm outside yet.  It has been rainy lately and all the snow is gone.  The flowers should be blooming soon, I hope I will get a chance to go outside and see them.

 

The above writing is imaginary, it’s in no way intended to depict things that may have happened.  This is the kind of thing that goes through my head when I explore these old buildings.  I will be adding these writings along with some actual facts in my book.  I will also be putting some up here on the blog, so make sure you subscribe for updates!Looking out web

Touring The State Hospital

Hello!  I know it’s been a little bit since my last blog, I have been busy doing research and booking tours and just trying to get everything moving forward to make this book a reality.  You know, all the ugly not very fun or interesting behind the scene book stuff.

Any way, thought I would check in and share my adventure from this weekend.  A few years back I discovered this wonderful half old, half redone State Hospital In Traverse City, MI.  Spent quite a bit of time just walking around the outside of the building trying to get shots through windows and of the outside of the building.  I have visited several times since doing the same thing, always wishing I could get in and explore.  This weekend I did exactly that!!  And I must say, I was NOT disappointed one little bit!!  A few of my camera club members came along with me and it was a great time.  We even got to shoot The Northern Lights, but that’s a different story.

Here are a few photographs taken at The Hospital.  Stay tuned as I have lots more to share!  Make sure to like my facebook page for more updates also.  And if you ever see a picture you love and would like to order a print copy, give me a shout and I’ll let you know price and how to order.

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Project Announcement!!

Hi everyone!  On Friday I went live on my facebook page for a very brief moment to make my Project announcement.  If you missed it, you can click on over to my facebook page and watch it here.  Go easy on me, I am extremely awkward in front of the camera, that’s why I am usually behind the camera!

You don’t want to watch my awkward video?  Don’t blame you, neither do I lol.  OK, I will tell you!  My next project will be a book!!  I will be exploring, photographing and doing research on some of my favorite old abandoned buildings and homestead’s.  My goal is to find out the history and stories these old places hide and share them.  Have you ever drove by an abandoned structure and just imagined the stories that lie in those walls?

I will be sharing this project developement right here on this blog and also through my facebook page.  So make sure to click on follow so you can get updates!

Here’s a couple pictures taken at the old building where I made my live announcement.  And to give you a little laugh, a couple pictures of what I got into while shooting!

First, here is the building I made my announcement in.  I did show Some of it in the video, so check out my facebook page if you want to see the inside.

 

Looking Over Wheel 1 web

Here is an old tire off from a buggy that is in the field behind the building.

While shooting pictures of the buggy I must of found myself in a briar patch.  While walking back to the car a noticed I had some extra passenger’s.


The thing’s we get into trying to get the perfect shot!
That’s it from me for now, make sure to click that follow button so you can updates!

Cold

Hi there!

If you know anything about Michigan you know that this time of year is a crapshoot when it comes to the weather.  I have asthma and lung problems that are aggravated by the cold weather, so when it gets cold I’m stuck inside.  So what does a photographer that works outside suppose to do when they can’t get outside??  Well there is a couple of options, 1st you do what I call “Drive by Shootings”.  This is where you pretty much drive around looking for fun things to shoot either from the car, or with a quick get out of car shoot and get back in before you can’t breathe.  I did a bit of this yesterday, but because it was warm yesterday I was able to get out longer and actually walked down the beach.  It was in the 50’s.  Today the high so far has reached 32 degrees Fahrenheit, too cold for a walk on the beach.  So what to do?  Second option edit photographs!  Yes this is what I like to spend my time doing when the days are too bad to get outside.  Go back through your archives, edit some images you never got to or edit some you did before and see how you can change or improve them.  Or maybe even start a clean slate and make a composit image, this is one of my favorite creative things to do.  My third option work on your online stuff, update the website make a few posts on social media or write-up a blog post!  This is my option choice for today, aren’t you glad?  You get to read my ramblings, lol!

So, that’s where I am at today.  With any luck the weather will be warmer tomorrow, as I am hoping to go live on my Facebook page with my special announcement on my new project!!!  So make sure to check out the Facebook page here and hit that like button so you will know when I go live with my announcement!  Also, cause there’s a good chance I’ll be working on it too, go here to check on my web page.  And lastly, make sure you sign up to follow me here and get blog post updates.

That’s it for now, I am off to do some more editing and updating 🙂  Make sure to check back for that announcement!! In the meanwhile, I will leave you with a few images I took yesterday, enjoy!

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Getting Started

Hello!

Today is the day I will be starting my new project! So excited!!  I haven’t announced what it is yet, but will be doing that soon.   So make sure to check back for that.  But the sun is shining and it is warm enough to get outside and shoot, so that’s what I am going to do.  

Ok, I’m off to shoot.  Just wanted to shoot you a quick update.  Have a wonderful day! 

Welcome

Welcome to my blog! Here I will be sharing my adventures in photography, good and bad! I will keep you updated on my project and special photo shoots and anything else I would like to share. If you ever have any questions please feel free to shoot me an email or send me a message through my face book page or website.  I will be starting a project soon, so check back for the announcement on that.  It is something I am pretty excited about!

So a little about me, I am a married mother to 3 wonderful children.  I dedicated most of my life to my husband and children as a stay at home mom.  I was introduced to photography at a very early age as my dad was a photographer and many a times I was his model!  So, now that my children are older it was time to think about me.  I needed something for myself, a career.  So I decided to do something I have always enjoyed and did a lot of, shoot pictures.  So that is exactly what I what I do!

That’s it for now, but stay tuned as there will be lots more to come in the future!  And don’t forget to check in for the announcement of my next project!!