My Dogs Haunted Halloween

We live in Huntington New York, a Long Island town that was settled back in the 1600's.  Despite massive development over the years, there are lots of old historic places in and around Huntington township.  Along with historic places that were settled centuries ago, comes a plethora of tales about hauntings by those who committed dastardly deeds, or those against whom the deeds were committed long ago.  Huntington is no exception, it certainly has it's share of spooky stories and haunted places.  Grab a hot beverage and pull the covers up tight as I tell you about three such places right here in the town where we live.


This Halloween, visit haunted historic sites near you!  Haunted houses.  Dogs on Halloween
The old historic cemetery in Huntington NY

THE HAUNTED CHATEAU AT COINDRE HALL


Coindre Hall is a massive estate built in a French medieval castle style by George McKeeson, a wealthy pharmaceutical entrepreneur in 1912.  George and his wife Pearl shared many happy years on their lavish estate. During WWI they raised their Niece at Coindre Hall after her parents died during the sinking of the Titanic. 

Like so many of the super wealthy of that era, the stock market crash of 1929 and subsequent massive tax hikes for the wealthy, meant the McKeeson's could no longer afford to keep up the estate. The county eventually took ownership of it and it is now a public space that is often rented out for events such as weddings. 


This Long Island Chateau is supposedly haunted by spirits who lived in the 1930's. We visited here for some Haunted Halloween fun with my dogs. The expansive back lawn is dog friendly!
The Chateau at Coindre Hall, Huntington NY

We often take Icy to Coindre Hall because the back part of the estate, an expansive steep hill that leads all the way down to Huntington Bay, is dog friendly.   We've enjoyed many hours with Icy playing on the lawn and in the bay at Coindre Hall, never realizing that spectral sightings were common there!  

I only recently found out that there is an underground tunnel that leads all the way from the Chateau down to the bay, where the McKeeson's boat house once stood.    Mr. McKeeson didn't want to walk outside in the cold to get to his boat so he had a tunnel constructed.  During Prohibition, the tunnel also served as a way to smuggle alcohol from boats up to the house.  I had no idea Icy was romping along grass that covered  a hidden tunnel!


Visiting a few local Long Island NY haunts to celebrate Halloween.  Spooky Halloween with my dogs.
Icy stands on a large tree stump to get a better look at the side of the chateau

For years, the staff and guests have reported seeing ghostly apparitions in the Chateau, a 40 room 30,000 square foot mansion, and on the grounds of the estate.  These spectral visitors have been spotted mostly during evening events and are usually dressed in 1930's era clothing.  One ghost is reported to look and dress like a gangster or bootlegger from the 1930's  Other spirits look like party guests from the period. Not surprising, as George and Pearl were known for the lavish parties they threw!


Did ghosts really haunt the expansive Coindre Hall, a Long Island New York chateau?  My dogs and I are visiting to see if we spot any spirits!
Rear view of the chateau at Coindre Hall, Huntington NY

Fun Fact: John and I had looked at having our wedding at Coindre Hall but decided against it due to cost and logistics of the venue.  Too bad, we might have had some pretty interesting, albeit uninvited, guests at our wedding!



THE 1750 DAVID CONKLIN FARMHOUSE MUSEUM


The Conklin House is a historic home built in 1750 by Thomas Conklin.  This gable-roofed house was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.   The Conklin family lived in the house over 150 years.  It contains historical artifacts and is decorated in historical fashion.  It is owned by the Huntington Historical Society and is open for tours a couple of days per week (call for days/times), and is available for small events in the barn on the property.


Ghosts have been reported by volunteers at the David Conklin house in Huntington NY.  Built in 1750.
The historic David Conklin House, Huntington NY is supposedly haunted

In 1777 David Conklin was captured by the British and held prisoner.   He was accused of assisting the rebels during the Revolutionary War.


The Conklin House in Huntington NY is on the National Register of Historic Places.  It is believed to be haunted by the ancestors of the Conklin family.  Haunted houses. Historic houses on Long Island NY
The David Conklin House was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985

It's been said that ancestors of the Conklin family have haunted the home for years. Volunteers in the historic house have reported feeling someone or something touching or standing behind them when in fact no one was there.  


Rear view of the  David Conklin House in Huntington. Long Island NY.  The house is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Beautiful detail on the back windows of the Conklin House

Some have reported strange noises and footsteps for which they can find no explanation.  One of the previous owners claimed that she continually had the feeling she was being watched and followed.

Fun Fact: I once worked with a guy who is actually related to the Conklin family!  He lived in another state but knew all about the historical Conklin house here in Huntington.



FIORELLO DOLCE PATISSERIE


Right here in town there's a wonderful patisserie and bakery that is believed to be haunted.  It is situated on what was the site of row housing for the poor and is said to be haunted by the spirits of some of those individuals.  One such spectral visitor is a teenager named Eddie that supposedly met a harrowing demise during a drug deal during his lifetime. Staff at the bakery have also reported oven doors opening by themselves and an iPad that turns itself on and starts playing music.

Fiorello Patisserie is a delicious bakery in Huntington Long Island
Everything is so tempting at Fiorello bakery in Huntington, NY
I've never seen or felt any weird presence in the bakery.  Icy and Phoebe didn't seem to sense anything weird either, but I did find lots of delicious goodies to feed my sugar addiction.  Maybe the spirits come back just to get a whiff of their delicious cookies and pastries baking in the oven, I know I would!


...The Woods are lovely, dark and deep 
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep

- excerpted from the poem "Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening", by Robert Frost


HAPPY HALLOWEEN, GOUL-FRIENDS!!


If you enjoyed this post, you'll love reading about our trip to Salem Massachusetts: A Spooky Dog Friendly Halloween, and our trip with the dogs to Spirited Colonial Williamsburg: A Perfectly Spooky Halloween!   

If you're up for another ghost story, check out my friends at Stunning Keisha to read about their encounter with Gramma's Ghost!  Or MK Clinton's post about when her pets who've crossed over the Rainbow Bridge came back for a visit! http://www.mkclinton.com/2018/08/somewhere-over-rainbow-bridge.html

Have you visited any haunted sites in your town?  Do tell by leaving us a comment!  We eat up comments like Candy Corn!


FLASHBACK! to my favorite costume of Icy's, the Headless Horseman!

We're joining the Five Sibes Flashback Friday BLOG HOP!





Looking For Great Holiday Books To Read?

I don't know about you, but I love the holidays and I love reading great Christmas stories to help me get into the holiday spirit.  I usually start searching for holiday books in September!

One of my favorite authors is Debbie Macomber.  Her holiday stories are the best.  For me, it's just not Christmas without one of Debbie's heartwarming holiday books!

Great holiday books by Debbie Macomber.. Books make great Christmas gifts and Holiday gifts,
It's just not Christmas without one of Debbie Macomber's holiday books!


I AM ONE LUCKY DOG!


I'm a lucky dog because last month I WON a signed, advance copy of Debbie Macomber's latest Christmas book, ALASKAN HOLIDAY!!  She ran a contest on her Twitter page and I was one of the winners!  As expected, I loved the book and finished it in just two sittings. 

The book is about Josie, a young woman who is about to realize her dream of becoming sous-chef at one of Seattle's hottest new restaurants.  But will it really be the fulfilling, glamorous life she was hoping for?

While waiting for her dream position to start, Josie takes a Summer job cooking at a remote Alaskan lodge.  She's captivated by the raw beauty of Alaska and the tiny rustic town, as well as the warmth of the people living there - especially one particular person she's grown quite fond of.  But her dream job is about to start back in Seattle, where she's been selected to work side by side with a world renowned chef!  

Tension builds as fate tries to tell Josie it has other plans for her.  But will she listen?   Is the big-time restaurant job a dream come true, or is it a nightmare disguised as a dream when......  But wait! I'm getting ahead of myself.  You'll have to read the book and see for yourself whether Josie chooses love, her career, or both!

Being the mom of a Siberian Husky, I always get more excited when Debbie sets one of her fabulous stories in Alaska. 

I loved the book, but Icy thinks the one flaw in this novel is that Debbie could have given Hobo, the faithful Siberian Husky, a little more action in the book.  Hobo is always at his Dad Palmer's side as they treadge through the snowy rural Alaskan town they call home.  I'm wishing she had developed the character of Hobo a bit more too - like maybe shown us how the heck he stays right by Palmer's side without running off!!  I'm thinking Icy could learn a thing or two about sticking by my side from Hobo, LOL!

ALASKAN HOLIDAY, A great Christmas story by Debbie Macomber. Books, Reading, Holiday Gifts
Hmmm, I think Debbie could have developed the Hunky Husky character a bit more. He sounds so handsome!

BOOKS ARE ONE OF MY FAVORITE CHRISTMAS GIFTS TO GIVE  (AND GET!)


Not only do great holiday books get me in the holiday spirit, they're thoughtful Christmas gifts for others.  

My sister moved to Florida 2 years ago and she's coming to our house for Christmas.  I'm putting Alaskan Holiday on the night stand in the guest room for her to read before bed each night.  

I'm also giving her Cottage By The Sea as a Christmas gift this year.  I think Cottage By The Sea is one of Debbie Macomber's best books yet.  It's about a young woman who finds unexpected hope, healing, love and friendship after a horrific family tragedy nearly breaks her.  The way the unique characters are developed as this riveting story unfolds kept me turning pages at rapid pace well into the night. I highly recommend it!


SOME OF MY FAVORITE DEBBIE MACOMBER HOLIDAY BOOKS:







Check them out, for yourself or as a holiday gift for someone else! 


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Debbie Macomber holiday books always get me in the Christmas spirit!  Books are a great gift for any occasion


Note: In case you're wondering, this is NOT a sponsored post.  I just wanted to share some of my favorite holiday books by one of my all time favorite authors! However, the links in the Amazon Ads listed above are affiliate links.

Do you enjoy reading holiday books to get into the Christmas or other holiday spirit?  Tell us in the comments!

Walk Your Way To Better Health With Your Pet

For many years, I've been a believer that pets contribute greatly to the overall health and well being of humans.  Pets and the Human-Animal Bond benefit people in so many ways!

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Pets can benefit their people's health in so many ways!  Walking your Dog or cat to improve health.  Petting your companion animal to get those good hormones flowing. Pets, Dogs, Cats.
Walking my way to better health with my dogs, Icy and Phoebe during Pet Partners' World's Largest Pet Walk event.

A scientific statement by the American Heart Association assessed the influence of pet ownership (mainly dog or cat) on the presence and reduction of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) risk factors.  


Among other things, the American Heart Assoc. statement included that:


> Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.  Despite efforts promoting primary and secondary CVD prevention, obesity and physical inactivity remain at epidemic proportions.

> More than 60% of American adults are overweight or obese, and more than 50% don't perform recommended levels of physical activity.


> Pets, especially dogs, can provide increased physical activity.


Studies have shown that dog owners engage in more walking and other physical activity, and are more likely to achieve recommended levels of physical activity than non dog owners.  

Even better, people are lacing up their walking shoes for other pets too!  I've seen cats in walking harnesses walking towards better health with their people.  I've also seen dogs, cats and other pets riding in strollers, taking in the sights & sniffs as they help their people get more exercise by walking, running, and biking.

Walking the dog offers health benefits for dogs and their people! Pets, Pet health, Dogs, Heart health
Walking provides health benefits for both pets and their people!

I recently participated in the Pet Partners World's Largest Pet Walk, an event that celebrates the health benefits of walking with pets.  It's a simple event to join.  People from around the world pledge to walk with their pets, starting at a synchronized date and time and ending whenever each participant feels comfortable.  It doesn't cost anything to join and you can walk anywhere you like.  Invite anyone with or without a pet to join you.  It's a simple way to raise awareness of the health benefits of walking with our pets. Easy-Peasy!  Mark your calendars for the next Worlds Largest Pet Walk in September, 2019 (exact date TBA).

Walking is great for both human and pet health!  In people, it can improve cardiovascular fitness and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.  Walking is also attributed to stronger bones and muscle strength. 

My parents lived in New York City for much of their lives.  Walking is a way of life in the city.  When they moved to the suburbs, they actively looked for opportunities to walk more.  They went for long walks in all the local parks, took evening strolls, and often opted to walk to stores instead of drive.  


Although my parents were 5 years apart in age, they both lived to be 94.  I'm sure their lifelong habit of walking, as well as their love of fresh fruit and salads, helped them get to 94.  I am so blessed to have had my parents in my life for so long.  I'm sure you want the same for your family!


Other benefits pets can provide to people are:


🐶 Pets can help lower your blood pressure.

🐾 Pets can help reduce stress and anxiety, which can actually help reduce pain!

🐶 Pets make us feel good, prompting the release of the "feel good" hormones Dopamine, Serotonin, and Endorphins.

🐾 It's been documented that pet owners have higher one-year survival rates following heart attacks.

🐾 Studies in Austria and Germany have linked healthcare savings to pet ownership reducing the number of  doctor visits needed.

Sources: Dr. Marty Becker, Pet Partners, and HABRI (Human Animal Bond Research Institute)

Our pets give us so much.  In addition to contributing to our health and well being, they give us the one thing only a pet can give - Unconditional Love!  Be thankful for the pets in your life. I know I am, my dogs are my greatest joy!


My UNCONDITIONAL LOVE of pets sweatshirt hoodie is perfect for walking your dog in style.  The design was created by Brooklyn artist MendyDraws, exclusively for Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them.  Can you tell Icy was the inspiration behind this design?

You can find this sweatshirt, and other products bearing our Unconditional Love design on my RedBubble online store




Hooded Sweatshirt, Phone Cases, Mugs, Tote Bags, Leggings, Lightweight Sweatshirt, and T-Shirts.


We'd love to hear how you stay active with your pet. Leave us a comment and share!