Skip to content

Category: Travel Photo Essays

Travel tips, photos & travelogues from all over the world.

#IWSG Bullet Journal – Evernote combo?

Writing research road trip… I’m posting this month’s IWSG post a day early because my hubby and I are taking off on a month-long road trip tomorrow morning! (So, I may be a bit slow to make the IWSG rounds, but I will do my best, bad motel WIFI willing!) As I’ve mentioned here before, Larry’s dad moved in with us last summer. We love having him here, but it all came about rather suddenly. Long story short, he has dementia and could no longer live on his own. So, we’re sending him up to stay with family on Long…

Continue reading #IWSG Bullet Journal – Evernote combo?

Historic Graveyards: What Does a Cube Symbolize on a Headstone?

Cubes are not merely decorative It’s easy to overlook the meaning behind simple shapes on historic headstones, and even to assume they are merely decorative. Sometimes, of course, that is the case. After all, a cube is not all that complex or particularly exciting to look at. Even so, when featured at a gravesite, there is often a symbolic meaning behind it. I recently came across this particular cube while exploring the historic graveyard up in Aurora, Texas and decided this week’s cemetery symbols post would answer the question, “What does a cube symbolize on a headstone?” What does a…

Continue reading Historic Graveyards: What Does a Cube Symbolize on a Headstone?

St. Anthony of Egypt – Patron Saint of Gravediggers

St. Anthony’s feast day is January 17 For this week’s cemetery post, I decided to write about Saint Anthony of Egypt. Why? Because not only is his feast day January 17th, but he just so happens to be the patron saint of gravediggers. I figure that also makes him the patron saint of those of us who enjoy exploring historic graveyards! Non-Catholics celebrate feast days, too I’m not Catholic, but plenty of non-Catholics celebrate feast days. Case in point: St. Patrick’s Day. No one bats an eye if you’re a protestant, Jewish, or even an atheist who decides to drink green beer…

Continue reading St. Anthony of Egypt – Patron Saint of Gravediggers

Amazing Postage Stamp Mural in Eastland, Texas

  East/west…whatever! The following is an adapted excerpt from Unexpected Texas, my quirky travel guide to offbeat and overlooked day trips near Dallas and Fort Worth: Despite being named “Eastland” this quirky little town is actually located in west Texas. (Meanwhile, the city of West, Texas is located in the southern portion of our state. Go figure!) Anyway, in the 1920’s Eastland was a lively boomtown thanks to the oil industry. These days, it’s a sleepy little city with a population hovering near 4,000. And unless you’re from this neck of the woods, you’re probably not aware of Eastland’s two most…

Continue reading Amazing Postage Stamp Mural in Eastland, Texas

Historic Texas Graveyard: Thurber Cemetery 

This week’s feature: Thurber Cemetery The following is an adapted excerpt from Unexpected Texas, my quirky travel guide to offbeat and overlooked day trips near Dallas and Fort Worth: This week’s featured graveyard is Thurber Cemetery. Part of what makes it such an interesting place to explore is the unique history of the area, so here’s a brief overview:   More than a Smokestack These days, Thurber’s 128-foot brick smokestack is the only thing most people notice as they whiz through this ghost town on their way to Abilene. It’s all that remains of the power plant which, in 1895,…

Continue reading Historic Texas Graveyard: Thurber Cemetery 

#IWSG Meeting Donna Latham, Playwright & Kindred Spirit

A pleasant side effect to writing Back in November, the IWSG writing question of the month was “What is your favorite aspect of being a writer?” I didn’t see the question until after I’d written my post, but it really got me thinking… So here’s my answer: *drum roll, please* After much thought, I’d have to say my favorite thing about writing is the wonderful friendships it has brought me – first through Twitter, and later through this blog and the various books I’ve published. While making friends was not my main goal for writing, it has come as a very…

Continue reading #IWSG Meeting Donna Latham, Playwright & Kindred Spirit

Sculpture of the 1897 UFO Crash in Aurora, Texas

Space alien buried in Aurora, Texas cemetery? Yesterday, I blogged about a very strange incident: the 1897 UFO crash in Aurora, Texas.  According to a newspaper article published by the Dallas News in April of 1897, a cigar-shaped object crashed in a farmer’s field, an alien body was found in the debris, and this little humanoid was buried in the local cemetery. (For a detailed account of this incident, along with a photo of the space alien’s headstone, visit: New Headstone for Aurora, Texas UFO Crash Space Alien Grave.)  New Aurora, Texas UFO Sculpture So today, I want to share…

Continue reading Sculpture of the 1897 UFO Crash in Aurora, Texas

New Headstone for Aurora, Texas UFO Crash Space Alien Grave

50 Years before The Roswell Incident The following is an adapted excerpt from Unexpected Texas, my quirky travel guide to offbeat and overlooked day trips near Dallas and Fort Worth: You’ve probably heard of the alleged spaceship crash from 1947 that took place in the desert of New Mexico. Known as “The Roswell Incident” this is arguably the most famous case in UFO history. Yet here in Texas, there exists an alleged spaceship crash – complete with an alien body – which took place 50 years earlier! So imagine how excited I was to find out that I live a…

Continue reading New Headstone for Aurora, Texas UFO Crash Space Alien Grave

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Book & YouTube Series Trailer by Tui Snider

Book Trailer & YouTube Series Trailer Yee haw! I finally made a video for Messages from the Dead: Understanding Historic Cemetery Symbols. The video is actually a two-for-one deal. It’s a Book Trailer *and* a YouTube Series Preview all in one. About the book: If you are a genealogist, taphophile, history buff or paranormal researcher, you might enjoy my upcoming book, Messages from the Dead: Understanding Historic Cemetery Symbols. Basically, it’s a field guide explaining the meaning behind historic cemetery symbols. About the YouTube Series: Each episode of my YouTube series will focus on the meaning behind one historic cemetery symbol or interesting graveyard…

Continue reading Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Book & YouTube Series Trailer by Tui Snider

#Review Log Cabin Guest Haus in Cisco, Texas

Weekend getaway in West Texas Last weekend, my husband, father-in-law, and I had a weekend getaway at the Log Cabin Guest Haus in Cisco, Texas. [Please note: While our lodging was provided free of charge and this post may contain affiliate links, the opinions expressed here are wholly my own.] Historic cabin purchased on eBay! This historic log cabin dates back to the 1840’s but it was not built here in Texas. BnB hosts, John and Mary Kay Williamson, purchased the building on eBay, yes, eBay! I had no idea you could buy a house on that site, but there…

Continue reading #Review Log Cabin Guest Haus in Cisco, Texas

#IWSG Yes, I’ve got a Crystal Ball. (I just don’t know how to use it!)

December IWSG: It’s that time of the month again. Wait, that doesn’t sound right! What I mean is that it’s time to write an #IWSG post. (What’s that, you ask? Scroll down; I explain it there!)     IWSG Question of the Month As for my writing insecurities this month, they tie right into the #IWSG question of the month, which is: DECEMBER’S QUESTION: In terms of your writing career, where do you see yourself five years from now, and what’s your plan to get there? With 2016 winding down, I’ve been looking back at the year, assessing where I…

Continue reading #IWSG Yes, I’ve got a Crystal Ball. (I just don’t know how to use it!)

Why is Xmas Short for Christmas? (Hint: It relates to #historic #cemetery #symbols )

All roads lead to Greece When researching the meaning behind historic cemetery symbols, I often joke that “all roads lead to Greece.” Here’s a good example: While looking into the meaning of the XP symbol that is such a common sight in historic cemeteries, I had a realization. Xmas is perfectly respectful An XP symbol on a headstone is a Christian symbol. Since Christ’s name starts with the letters X and P when spelled in Greek, XP is often used as shorthand for “Christ.” (I will go into more detail about the XP symbol in a future post.) That’s when…

Continue reading Why is Xmas Short for Christmas? (Hint: It relates to #historic #cemetery #symbols )

The Ebenezer Scrooge of Halloween

83 going on 6! How can it already be November? Am I the only one who feels like we reached this point too quickly? Like, did we skip a couple months this year? I’m still struggling to adjust to my 83-year-old father-in-law living with us. Bob has the early stages of dementia, so there’s a balancing act between keeping an eye on him and letting him do what he wants. Since my husband works outside of the house, my days are spent Bob-sitting. This has been a huge adjustment for me these past two months. Frankly, it’s akin to having…

Continue reading The Ebenezer Scrooge of Halloween

Trick or Treat Reads – Get Your Free Books Here!

Free Books as Halloween Treats Three years ago, my pal and fellow author, Patricia Lynne had a brilliant idea. She calls it Trick-or-Treat reads, and here’s how she describes it: For those of you who don’t know, Trick-or-Treat Reads is a Halloween event where authors put their books for free and readers go trick-or-treating to get the books. BOOKS ARE THE CANDY!     My Freebies for You: For this year’s Trick-or-Treat Reads, I’m offering: 2 books, 1 CD, and a 50+ page sample chapter. Whee! Take your pick or grab ’em all:  (I’m giving these items away from Halloween 30th,…

Continue reading Trick or Treat Reads – Get Your Free Books Here!

True Ghost Story Round-up

Want to read True Ghost Stories? Even though I research and explore haunted places all year round, when Halloween nears, this site gets even more searches than usual from readers looking for true ghost stories. In fact, I love paranormal stories so much I even wrote a travel guide to haunted hot spots here in north Texas. (It’s called Paranormal Texas – check it out!) I also share a lot of true ghost stories right here on my website. To save you the hassle of finding them yourself, I’ve made a handy dandy list for you. So scroll on down and dive…

Continue reading True Ghost Story Round-up

True Ghost Story Anthology via @Teal_Gray & @TuiSnider – Call for Submissions:

Ghostly Doubles & Vanishing Places Have you ever seen a ghostly double, a.k.a. a Doppelganger? Have you ever visited a building only to find it had vanished upon your return, or had an item mysteriously vanish and then return? If so, check out this exciting call for submissions from Teal Gray:   Call for Submissions: True Ghost Encounters Call for Submissions: “I Am the Haunted House!” by Teal L. Gray, Editors: Teal L. Gray and Tui Snider (Hey, that’s me!)   Hello Authors, I am looking to add true accounts to my collection of personal tales of interactions with ghosts and entities…

Continue reading True Ghost Story Anthology via @Teal_Gray & @TuiSnider – Call for Submissions:

They’ve got me surrounded!

The dust is still settling… Wow! This last month REALLY zipped by. I’ve been home from my writing residency for 3 weeks now, and the dust is still settling from all the tornadic changes around here. First off, my elderly father-in-law, Bob, moved in with us. He’s in great physical shape but has some early stage dementia issues, so we have to keep a close eye on him. Sometimes, though, it’s humorous. (The other morning, for example, he told us he’d fed that cats. The cats, however, were meowing as if they had not been fed. Turns out Bob had put pellets for…

Continue reading They’ve got me surrounded!

A Wild Ride & a New Kitty! #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury

A wild ride Wow! What a wild ride these past few weeks have been for me! Lots of good things are going on with my writing, but my hubby and I had some behind the scenes drama with his elderly father. He lives alone and some sweet talking scammers decided to talk him out of as much of his hard earned money as they could. Long story short, we beamed him up from Florida to Texas to live with us. While this was going on, I’ve been staying at a cozy guesthouse in Granbury, Texas – a quaint little town…

Continue reading A Wild Ride & a New Kitty! #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury

PhotoWalk in Granbury, Texas #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury

You’re invited to a PhotoWalk If you like taking pictures, join me for a fun-filled photowalk! As part of my community outreach requirements as the writer-in-residence for the Langdon Review, I’m leading a photowalk through the historic town square of Granbury, Texas. [This post is part of a series of updates as the 2016 Writer-in-Residence for the Langdon Review. ] What is a PhotoWalk? A photowalk is when a group of shutterbugs stroll through a picturesque spot as a group while taking pictures of anything interesting that catches their eye along the way. Granbury’s historic town square is chock full of historic architecture,…

Continue reading PhotoWalk in Granbury, Texas #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury

Of Cats & Men #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury

…and by men, I mean “my husband.” My husband is not particularly fond of cats. So while I’m in Granbury, Texas for my creative residency, Larry will have a chance to bond with Ms. Kalliope – or, at least, that is what I’m hoping for!   [This post is part of a series of daily updates as the 2016 Writer-in-Residence for the Langdon Review. If you missed a day, or this is your first time here, click here to see the other posts.] Clueless about cats My hubby is a smart guy, and a jack-of-all-trades, but when it comes to…

Continue reading Of Cats & Men #LangdonReview #VisitGranbury