Save a Seat for Spirit at the Holiday Table

The holidays are a time when family gathers together to recount old memories and create new ones. As families talk over the dinner table, old stories come to the surface. What once was an old faded memory in the back of minds now seems to be recalled into vivid color. The long forgotten memory of Grandma as she dropped the plate of turkey brings laughter and emotion across the faces and hearts of family members. Feelings of calm, love, and nostalgia abound as everyone recalls the memory. They feel as if they are transported back in time to that very moment. They remember her shock as the plate smashed the floor; their uncertainty of not knowing what to say; and then the laughter that she broke into when she realized what she had done, which was soon joined with other chuckles around the room. Everyone had a good laugh.

One person remembers Grandma’s face so clearly, while someone else hears her voice, and others feel her embrace. As the memory fades, everyone starts laughing because they can’t even remember who brought up the old tale. They were talking about something completely different when they remembered their Loved One, seemingly out of nowhere.

They can’t remember because it wasn’t them. Grandma started it all, right there at the table with them, just in Spirit form.

Our Loved Ones in Spirit visit their living family members during times of celebration, loss, and charged emotion. Spirit celebrates birthdays, transitions into Spirit, and Holiday times. While we may miss our Loved Ones that have passed into Spirit even more so during these occasions, their presence is ever near. We may not be able to communicate with them the same way we used to, but they can still get their message across.

They communicate in different ways in Spirit form. Most of the time family members who are sensing Spirit do not even realize what is occurring. Spirit usually presents their message when we are doing the most trivial tasks, such as cooking, cleaning, or even driving. This is when our minds are most clear. Our bodies are active, which allows for our mental energy to be minimal. We begin to feel an emotion of a Loved One, smell their perfume, have a seemingly random thought or memory, hear their voice, or feel their presence. For a moment, a memory or emotion can take us back in time and we are transported into the past. After the moment fades and we realize they are not here in the physical form, it can bring up intense emotion. Sometimes we express this emotion through crying, laughter, unconditional love, or joy. We feel this emotion because we really feel their presence. This creates a knowing that their energy is still very real and present.

Spirits can communicate by giving us an energy impression. We receive this energetic message through clairvoyance (seeing Spirit), clairaudience (hearing Spirit), clairsentience (feeling Spirit), claircognizance (having a knowing Spirit is there), and other ways. When we close our eyes, we may see an image of our Loved One, hear their voice, feel their love, just have a knowing they are with us, or we may even be able to smell or taste that favorite pie they cooked. Sometimes their messages are subtle and sometimes profound.

Our Loved Ones can also come to us in our dreams. They enjoy communicating with us when our minds are at rest because we are not able to judge the experience as it is occurring. Sometimes they relay a message, and sometimes they just want to talk with us and enjoy our company in the dream state.

Another way our Loved Ones can communicate with us is through tangible ways. Let’s be honest here, sometimes we just don’t have very clear minds; sometimes we judge our own experiences; and sometimes we need a “real world” example of their visitation. Spirit can come up with some interesting ways to communicate if the conditions are right. Perhaps we will see a special ornament move, find coins or other “presents” on the ground, or see birds, butterflies, or dragonflies flying close to us. We may even see or hear our Loved One’s name repeatedly throughout the day as we go about our business and errands. If the store clerk, cashier, woman in line, and bank teller were all named Debra, and you have a spirit named Debra, it is probably not a coincidence.  They really try to get their point across. We just have to pay attention.

Spirit always has a way to celebrate and bring joy to this time of year. So next time you are at the dinner table with your living family, save a “seat” at the table for your family in Spirit. They will be right there with you, enjoying your company.


Whitney McNeill is a Certified Medium, Metaphysical Teacher, and Mentor. She facilitates classes on Intuitive, Mediumship, & Spiritual Development in Sedona, AZ and online. For more information about readings, services, classes & retreats visit or for more information.

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Comment by Whitney McNeill on December 8, 2015 at 1:12pm
thanks shelly! happy holidays

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