What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stranger

Nice is Different Than Good January 31, 2015

I’m not a nice person. I’m a good person, just not a nice one. I will absolutely help you if you are hurt, but I may laugh at you if you fall down and you’re fine. It’s a delicate balance, but I walk the line.

Eons ago when my husband and I were still dating, he took a twenty-six hour bus ride to visit me over Christmas break. Yes, we did go to the same college. Yes, I was going to see him in two weeks. But it didn’t matter. I missed him, so he took a bus all the way from Tennessee to New York. He got to meet my mother and my sister, and he got to see my house.

I grew up in an Inn that runs costumed Victorian tea programs, so seeing my house for the first time isn’t really about figuring out which way the bathroom is. It’s more about counting how many hair wreaths my mother has and wondering just how many small children have spilled tea on our floor.

Being the loving girlfriend that I was, I gave him the full tour, including the Ladies’ Parlor, which my sister and I dubbed the dead room in honor of its plethora of mourning paraphernalia and the portrait of Louisa. (more…)


I’m All Alone in Here October 22, 2014

My mother’s house is across the street from a church. The congregation has been meeting there for 176 years, but the church was built in 1880. The original church burned down in 1878.

That was before the town had a real fire department. It was back in the days of ring a bell and everyone comes out with a bucket and hopes for the best. General Brown who owned our house in 1878, heard the bell and ran out to the church, helping with the bucket brigade and leaving his little girl in her room, watching the church burn through her window.

The little girl, Kit, was not pleased. She was not used to being abandoned in the house. So she took her chamber pot and threw it out the window screaming “I’m all alone in here!” Now, no one heard her over the noise from the fire, but Kit did discover that throwing china things out her window was indeed satisfying. She went and got her brother’s chamber pot and threw that out the window, again shouting “I’m all alone in here!” Soon she was taking everything she could find in the bedroom that might make a satisfying noise when it shattered in front on the house. “I’m all alone on here!” Crash!



The Death of Birdy March 22, 2014

Filed under: Animal Antics — meganorussell @ 10:00 am
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My mother owns an Inn where she runs costumed Victorian tea programs. Take a moment. Process that information. We also lived in the Inn, so I was used to the insanity of hundreds of little girls in Victorian costumes running around my house every weekend.

When I was about fifteen, she started running Haunted Tea programs. A lot of people think my house is haunted, my husband included, and someday I will tell you all the legends that surround my house. In fact, I’ll make a Halloween blog series about it. Come back in October for special posts on the haunting of my house. But today’s post is not about ghosts in the front yard. Today’s post is about Birdy. (more…)