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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…

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Tui Snider: About my Music #dreampop #electronica

About my Music In addition to writing books, taking photos, and giving talks, I also compose music. This often comes as a surprise to people, since I don’t talk about it much. Even so, I’ve been writing songs and playing music for years. In fact, the first thing I ever wrote was a song called “Pig, Pot, Pan” because, at age 5, those were the only words I knew how to spell! Come to My Senses My first album is called “Come to My Senses,” and I recorded it in my dining room! And in answer to the question I’m…

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Review: Beautiful, The Carole King Musical in Dallas #BeautifulOnTour

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical on Broadway   When a major recording artist is featured in a jukebox musical, you can pretty much guess which songs will be recorded – or so I thought before attending Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. The national tour of this Tony Award winning show opened in Dallas, Texas last night to a packed house at the AT&T Performing Arts Center. Not just Carole King songs Beautiful includes plenty of Carole King songs, but what surprised me was how many other familiar tunes came along for the ride. For instance, I didn’t know Carole King and her…

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Mysterious Knights of Elberta, Alabama’s Piney Woods

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond!   Today is letter K: Knights of Elberta, Alabama’s Piney Woods Remember Elberta’s Dinosaurs? If you read my post for the letter D, then you may remember me mentioning the whimsical fiberglass artwork of sculptor Mark Cline. (If not, click here: Quirky Dinosaur Sculptures in Elberta, Alabama.) My husband, Larry, and…

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Johnnie Brown, South Florida’s Famous Jazz Age Monkey

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond!   Today is letter J: Johnnie Brown, the Jazz Age Monkey Monkey on one shoulder, a parrot on the other Throughout the Roaring Twenties, Addison Mizner was an eccentric south Florida architect and man about town. Of his many quirks, Mizner was especially known for his menagerie, which included raccoons, macaws,…

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Shopping for Inmate Made Goods at Arizona’s Prison Outlet Store #quirky #travel

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond!   Today is letter I: Inmate Made Goods at Arizona’s Prison Outlet Store Unique shopping experience One of the most unusual shopping experiences I ever had was browsing the shelves of the Prison Outlet Store in Florence, Arizona. At first glance, it looks like any other old timey store you…

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Historic Haunted Hotels of Texas

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond!   Today is letter H: Haunted Historic Hotels Staying at hotels and motels is an exciting part of any road trip. And some of the most interesting hotels I’ve stayed at have boasted guests who never checked out! Here are a few of my favorite historic haunted hotels in Texas:…

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Gorgeous Greek Monastery in Arizona

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond!   Today is letter G: Greek Monastery in Arizona St Anthony’s Greek Orthodox Monastery In 1995, six Greek monks from Athos, Greece moved to the countryside near Florence, Arizona and created a beautiful monastery. Called St Anthony’s, the monastery features garden pathways, fountains, citrus orchards, olive groves, chapels, guest quarters,…

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Fire Dancers at the Mai Kai Tiki Bar in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond! Today is letter F: Fire Dancers at the Mai Kai in Fort Lauderdale, FL I love Tiki Bars Maybe it’s from all those Gilligan’s Island episodes I watched growing up, or because of the Polynesian dance lessons I took as a teen, but whatever the reason, I absolutely love Tiki…

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Dinosaur Sculptures in the Elberta, Alabama Woods

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond! Today is letter D: Dinosaur Sculptures in the Elberta, Alabama Woods An Artist’s Dream Come True I’m sure many a struggling artist has daydreamed about a wealthy patron requesting their work and paying a handsome sum for it in return. Well, that’s exactly what happened to Mark Cline! Who is…

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Comic Con in Weatherford, Texas Benefits Texas Pythian Home for Children

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond! Today is letter C: Comic Con at Texas Pythian Home First Annual Weatherford Comic Con I had so much fun this past weekend at the first annual Weatherford Comic Con! The event took place at the Texas Pythian Home (1825 E Bankhead Dr, Weatherford, TX 76086), which is a non-profit…

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Barefoot Mailmen of Florida

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond! Today is letter B: Barefoot Mailmen of Florida Florida’s treacherous terrain One reason southern Florida remained sparsely populated for so long is because of its dense undergrowth. Even today, most public parks feature raised wooden boardwalks through the woods for visitors rather than mere trails. Boating, walking and swimming mailmen…

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Cemetery Roundup: Quirky Graves, Headstones & Epitaphs

FREE Cemetery Symbols Guide: Would you like a FREE guide to historic cemetery symbolism? If so, click the image below: April Fool’s Day fun… at the cemetery? Since it’s April Fool’s Day, thought I’d share a round up of some of the more playful interments I have come across while researching my upcoming book, Messages from the Dead: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbols. In fact, this afternoon on the Para Mysteries show, Teal Gray and I will be chatting about these quirky graves, as well as recent archeological finds pertaining to Hell Hounds lore. Tune in or catch the…

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Ashes of the Alamo Dead

Join me for an A to Z Road Trip! I’m taking you on a road trip with me by sharing travel photos for this year’s A to Z Blog Challenge. So come along as we explore some of my favorite offbeat, overlooked and just plain interesting places in Texas… and beyond! Today is letter A: Ashes of the Alamo Dead What happened to the Alamo dead? A sightseeing trip to San Antonio, Texas isn’t complete without a visit to the Alamo, however, few tourists realize that the remains of the Alamo soldiers are kept in a church a couple blocks away.…

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Texas UFO Expo: Aurora Alien Encounter

April 16, 2016: Aurora Alien Encounter! Did You know a UFO crashed in Aurora, TX in 1897? VORTEXAS and the City of Aurora invite you to join us on Saturday, April 16th, 2016 for the first annual AURORA ALIEN ENCOUNTER! This exciting UFO Conference commemorates a strange event which occurred on April 17, 1897 when a UFO crashed and an ALIEN body was recovered and buried in the local cemetery. Even after more than 100 years, this incident still stands out as one of the most extraordinary UFO cases of our time! Come enjoy a conference at Aurora’s local MD Resort…

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A to Z Challenge Theme Reveal *drum roll please!*

What is the April A to Z Blog Challenge? Every April, bloggers from all over the world participate in the April A to Z blog challenge, and you can too! To play along, all you do is make a blog post for each letter of the alphabet during April, then use the blog hop linky to visit as many other bloggers as you can. This will be my 4th year in a row doing the A to Z blog challenge. I keep coming back because it’s so lively and fun! Plus, it’s a great way to find interesting new blogs to read.…

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Para Mysteries: Mortsafes & Caged Graves

FREE Cemetery Symbols Guide: Would you like a FREE guide to historic cemetery symbolism? If so, click the image below: Historic Cemetery Symbol of the Week This week’s Historic Cemetery Symbol post is about mortsafes and Resurrectionists. The topic was inspired by my friend, Teal Gray, when she told me about the mysterious Caged Graves of Catawassa. In fact, Teal and I will be discussing everything in this post during a one-hour radio show, as you can see in the graphic below:    Historic Cemeteries: Who were the Resurrectionists? These days, people often make arrangements to donate their body to science…

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8 Years & 34K Tweets Later – I still love Twitter!

You just never know… (well, eventually you do!) February’s IWSG post about dealing with jealousy was rather long-winded, so I’ll try to keep this one short. The main thing I’d like to share with other writers this month is that: You just never know where things will lead! The magic of Twitter Take Twitter. When I posted my first tweet (as seen above) I had no idea where it would lead. (To find *your* first tweet: click here.) Eight years and some 34,000 tweets later…I have had so many opportunities, both directly and indirectly, come my way simply by tweeting. I’ve…

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Road Trip Photos: Vehicles on a Stick

Quirky road trip themes Every road trip I take seems to have its own unintended theme, such as witty church marquees, strange billboards, or bizarre town names. In fact, my husband and I are on a road trip right now for which the theme seems to be “Random Vehicles on a Stick.” Here’s what we’ve seen so far: Car on a Stick It all started in Louisiana, when I caught sight of this Ford Fairmont lofted high into the sky as we we whizzed down the road. We weren’t at a good place to stop, so I’m not sure what this particular car…

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Photo Essay: Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, Florida

Worth Avenue: Iconic Shopping Street Voted #3 in a list of the Top 10 Iconic Streets in the USA, Worth Avenue is an upscale shopping street in the resort town of Palm Beach, Florida. People watching & pedestrian friendly With names like Gucci, Tiffany & Co., Giorgio Armani, Neiman Marcus, Cartier, Louis Vuitton and Saks Fifth Avenue, the businesses lining Worth Avenue read like a veritable who’s who of luxury shopping. But don’t let that scare you off! People watching on Worth Avenue is just as fun as window shopping. On the day we visited, I saw men, women, and even…

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