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The Apparition...

The following true story is what happened right before and just as these two pictures in this album were taken: On the night of December 6, around 8:30 PM, Joey (20 months) had just fallen asleep in Miranda's (9) arms while watching TV in the kitchen. Art was on his way home from work and Drew (12) was already asleep in his room after a long, hard day of sledding. Brianne's (13) teacher would be bringing her home around 11:00 PM from Ford's Theatre where they were seeing "A Christmas Carol" for a school trip. I decided to light the candles in each window so the house would look pretty as they drove up. We don't light them every night, as they use up so many batteries and I'm not always in the mood to go around to each of the 37 windows to turn them on...After I lit the candles, I told Miranda, who was still holding Joey in her arms, that I was going outside to take some pictures of the house. I passed Bear, our Lab/Newfoundland mix, drinking frozen water from his bowl on my way across the kitchen porch. We had 7 inches of snow fall the day before and there was now a layer of ice across the top. I crunched and sank into each step of snow as I made my way quickly to the front yard. I knew I would only last a few minutes at the most outside on this cold, dark night.

As I went to take the first picture, I heard someone crunching across the snow behind me. Bear's invisible fence blocks him from our front yard. He would have to go around the house to get to where I was standing, since his collar keeps him from going straight from the porch to the front yard. Suddenly,I realized not only would Bear not be able to run that fast to get around the house, but I could still hear his tags jingling up against the frozen water in his bowl. He was still on the porch...I quickly turned around and saw nothing. I figured it was maybe a neighbor's dog loose in our yard, so I turned to take the first picture. My digital displays the picture on the back as soon as it's taken. During the day, it's sometimes hard to see the display if there is any glare from the sun. At night, the display can almost illuminate a dark room. As soon as the first picture was captured, I could see on the display panel how dark the picture had turned out. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to get a picture of the Christmas Candles in each window. One more shot, I figured, just to see if I could get a clearer image. As I took the second picture, it almost seemed as if there was a bright flash that reflected from Brianne's room. I was certain that the flash had reflected from the window pane and the picture would be overexposed, rather than too dark like the first picture. As the second picture came up on the display panel, not only did I see that Brianne's room did NOT show any light, but there appeared to be a shadowy vision walking in front of me as I took the picture. As soon as I saw this on the display, I RAN straight for the house, past Bear on the porch steps and tore in to the kitchen. For the first time since moving here I was actually very scared. I had just heard crunching in the snow, I had just seen a bright light as the camera flashed (even brighter than the usual flash of my camera) and now an apparition had just appeared in my picture. I came in to the house so quickly and loudly that I even woke Joey....I immediately showed Miranda the picture on my display, just to make sure I wasn't seeing things. She could see it as well. I swear, this all happened in just a few brief minutes as I hadn't even been outside for more than a moment. Miranda can attest to my running in, breathless and excited. So strange that this happened just a day after the angel picture I captured while taking snow shots. If you click on the "Second Picture", I'll describe what I (and several others) think they see in the picture. For those of you who wonder if it's just my breath in the cold air...Perhaps, but I think it's amazing my breath can take on such a form the instant I take the picture. For those of you who think this is smoke, I can honestly say absolutely not! I do not smoke and there was no one near me smoking. It was also not a candle blowing out near by, either. This picture is exactly what appeared without any special effects on my part. You may choose to believe it...or not.