The Christmas festivities are starting to wind down. Mom headed back to North Carolina yesterday. She had been here for a week. I’m really happy she was able to come up for Christmas. I’ve missed spending the holidays with her.
The week leading up to Christmas has been a crazy, busy, fun week. The day after Mom drove up from North Carolina, we drove down to Springfield, Illinois to explore new areas with Avery and her kids. We first went to a great little restaurant called Anchors Away. We chose this restaurant because we heard that it was haunted. Thankfully our waiter, Brock, was able to confirm this quickly for us.
Brock said that he had only been working there for a little bit when he was on the second floor getting things out of the refrigerator. While his head was in the fridge, he heard and felt someone walking across the floor towards him. Assuming it was one of the cooks, Brock continued with what he was doing and called out a greeting to the cook working that night. When no one answered, he looked around to see who was there. To his surprise not only was he completely alone up there but he could still hear and feel someone walking across the floor towards him. He quickly made his way downstairs to ask if anyone was just upstairs. The rest of the staff explained that they had been downstairs the whole time. Brock explained to us that events like that were experienced often by staff members.
After lunch, Mom and I continued on to the Capital Building which was a few blocks from Anchors Away while Avery took her kids home for the evening (she would join up with us for the next adventure that evening). I had heard recently that the Satanic Church of Chicago had been allowed to place a sculpture in the lobby of the Capital Building where the holiday displays were set up. I wanted to check it out because that sort of thing just wouldn’t have been allowed in North Carolina. I will admit I was quite surprised by the subject of the sculpture and the size. It was a hand holding an apple with a snake wrapped around it. It was barely lifesize. Accompanying the statue was two signs. One was from the Capital Building explaining why it was including and the other was from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. The one from the Capital Building said:
The State of Illinois is required by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution to allow temporary public displays in the state capital so long as those displays are not paid for by taxpayer dollars. Because the first floor of the Capital Rotunda is a public place, state officials cannot legally censor the content of speech or displays. The United States Supreme Court had held that public officials may legally impose reasonable time, place and manner restricitions regarding displats and speeches, but no regulation can be based on the content of the speech.
The sign from the Freedom From Religion Foundation stated:
At this season of THE WINTER SOLSTICE may reason prevail. There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell.
There is only our natural world. Religon is but myth and superstiution that hardens hearts and enslaves minds.
Alongside the sculpture were a menorah, a Christmas tree, and a nativity scene. The rotunda they were set up under was gorgeous to view.
After we picked up Avery from her house, we headed to the Dana-Thomas house. They were having holiday evening tours. The Dana-Thomas house was designed by Frank Llyod Wright. Mom and I have always been intrigued by his style of design but never had the opportunity to view one of his houses in person before. We were really excited to see it. The house was absolutely gorgeous. We loved seeing it. For the holiday tours, they had various musicians playing Christmas music in different rooms. The library was definitely my favorite. I loved the tiny alcoves that were made by the books shelves and the history of Mrs. Dana reading to the local children in the library every Saturday.
After touring the Dana-Thomas house, the three of us went to the coolest candy shop. Avery had recommended it. It is called Pease’s at Bunn Gourmet. We all had dessert there. I had a delicious German chocolate cake and hot chocolate. The hot chocolate tasted like it was chocolate gingerbread. I plan on going back again sometime.
The next few days were filled with decorating for Christmas and wrapping presents. Even the cats had their own Christmas tree in their room. Since we don’t have Christmas lights like the ones in Hiroshima, we took Katniss to check out the displays are Prairie Gardens. I think she had fun doing it.
On Christmas Eve, we made a huge feast to eat by the Christmas tree. Since Jeremy actually had three days home for Christmas (a freaking miracle, if you must know, when it comes to recruiting duty) he decided to make most of the dinner himself. He kept kicking me and Mom out of the kitchen so he could work. He did a fabulous job. After dinner, we introduced Mom to The Greatest Showman. It’s Jeremy’s favorite movie and one of my top favorites. Turns out that Rampu really likes the movie as well. During the songs, he was turning on and off. Jeremy was able to capture part of Rampu turning on and off. Yes, Rampu is wearing a Santa hat because it is Christmas.
Christmas morning was spent opening presents, eating yummy cinnamon rolls, and napping. After a crazy week, Jeremy and I both ended taking a long nap. Sometimes our crazy schedules catch up to us and we have to recharge. I am hoping that Jeremy gets another three days off for New Years.
I hope all of y’all had a wonderful holiday with your loved ones. As the year winds down, I would love to hear what your favorite things were from this year. I would also love to hear what your goals are for the New Year. One thing I would like to start doing is featuring other paranormal investigators and teams on this blog. If you would like to be featured, please comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.