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Those Photos That Tell A Story - The Story You Are In
As I moved from elementary school to jr high school we moved about fifteen miles from downtown Harrisburg to small town Linglestown . . . we moved from a sidewalk three steps from your front door to no sidewalks at all – I thought we had moved to a farm. We were a half a block away from Koons Park - years later, after moving half way back toward Harrisburg and falling in love with the glorious Pixie Wenrich, I came to discover that her grandfather was the 'Koons' of Koons Park.
Life with Bill D’Agostino was, peculiar. One summer we were told we were going on a vacation, something we had never done before – our ‘vacation’ was staying at a local motel for three or four days . . . years later I found out we had been hiding from the Mafia. Most of the time we had very little, so my mom endeavored to make special occasions especially special . . . one Christmas was paid-off over ten years later – above is undoubtedly someone’s birthday.
When I lived on Park Street in Harrisburg, Reservoir Park was the ‘Park’ of ‘Park Street’ . . . as an adolescent I enjoyed many adventures here – after moving and as a teen I returned on Sundays for local band's Rock shows, and just a general hippie hangout.
This, however, was my home-base hangout for too many years. This is the basement of a friend, a friend who used to wear his close backwards (pants zipped and shirt buttoned up the back) to school so that everyone would avoid him – but for some reason he was a bit more favorable toward me. It was a safe haven, so other friends of mine would stop by to smoke . . . they would get us high and then get kicked out. This fellow’s mom would only complain if the smoke got too heavy upstairs – frequently, with Cream blasting away and as we passed a homemade bong around before anyone knew what a bong was, his mom would enter the room with a silver tray of neatly arranged finger sandwiches and a pitcher of lemonade, wanting to be the proper hostess for her son’s guests.
The gorgeous Pixie and I were more and more inevitably going to be together forever by this time. I remember that, while I fell for her instantly and hard, she would say “I love you” and I would say “I like you a lot” for maybe the first year we were together . . . my sense was that love didn’t have to do with sixteen year olds and your girlfriend, etc, but was about a life partner, I didn’t want to say “I love you” until I was ready for everything to change forever – and to stay that way eternally.
After dating for about three years, Pixie showed-up at my (my mom’s) house announcing “I not going home anymore” – this is a photo she took of me during that very short time, before we got married, when she lived in my bedroom.
We went on a furniture buying trip to North Carolina with Bill D’Agostino, who had a furniture store at the time, and got married by a justice of the peace who was having his office remolded . . . as we were repeating our vows guys were walking back and forth with ladders and hollering “Hey Joe, did that drywall come in yet?”. Above is a couple friends helping us move from my mom’s to our first place. When we returned, the friends above helped us move into our first place.
Our first place. When you walked into the bathroom you were standing in the shower . . . the room was the size of a phone booth and a half, the floor was tile with a drain in the middle and the shower head sticking out of the wall, you could take a shower as you brushed your teeth at the sink. Just me and Pixie . . . and Dave, Ruth, and Larry – within a few months we had three dogs with us in that living room bedroom combination.
This is Jon, in our new place. Jon was my great friend, my companion in too many adventures. Pixie didn’t care for too many of my friends – Pixie loved Jon. Jon was an angel with a dirty face, the tough guy with a heart of gold. Jon drank himself into a coma and then during his recovery burned himself up – I’ll tell you one brief Jon story:
While he was still in the coma the doctors didn’t know if he was aware of his surroundings and unable to respond or fully out of it, but when I would go in to see him I would always hold his hand and rub it and jerk it around as I talked to him, hoping maybe the physical agitation would stimulate him back to consciousness. His little sister, now my little sister, called one night and told me to be sure to go in the next day because it appeared Jon was beginning to react. As I entered his room and approached the bed he didn’t react at all, but I heard a mumble . . . I stopped and heard “don ho mmm han, mm scraa mm bas”, I leaned in and again “don hol mmm han, I scrash mm bas”, I put my ear next to his mouth and saw his eyes shift toward mine and he breathed “don’t hold my hand, I’m scratching my balls”.
This is our first baby, Sarah. We didn’t have her until we had been together for three years and then married for a couple years – this always delighted me because I wanted everyone to know that Pixie and I were together forever because we wanted to be, not because we ‘had to’.
This is a typical Christmas – a stunningly beautiful Pixie and our first three special girls.
One of my very favorite photos . . . someone was trying to get us to pose, all arranged as you’re supposed to be for a family photo – I said I wanted a shot with all of our heads as close together as we could get them, knowing that the full frame would be my little family all piled-up on top of me.
Just a typical shot of Pixie – candid or posed, sultry or gleeful, the most beautiful woman in the world.
This may be the first photo of all of us, just after the twins joined us . . . all the girls have the oversized glasses they cringe about now but I think look adorable, and seriously, look at her after six kids and just weeks after twins . . !?
A randomly selected family event, Natalie’s high school graduation . . . Mary is looking much like her mom and could twins appear more dramatically different? Everyone is a pretty as can be.
Sarah’s backyard college graduation.
Olivia’s high school graduation – it’s always a trick to see who’s in the photo and who we’re missing . . . what I love about these group shots is everyone is always tending to kids who are not their own – very affectionate family.
One of Olivia’s friends wanted to make a gourmet meal for Mr. & Mrs, Haist . . . Fridays became sit back and enjoy a fancy dinner night for a bit.
Just about the favorite times in my life now – sleepover movie nights with grampa . . . this one is with just a couple of my girls.
The video below is from my son, Mickey Jr’s, wedding. I’ve included it because it expresses my general appreciation for my family . . . I genuinely feel blessed beyond measure and need to say ‘thank you’ to everyone in my life all the time. I should explain; Mickey Jr’s wedding was not at all conventional. He didn’t want to follow a packaged procedure that you’re ‘supposed’ to follow – he wanted to do this most significant occasion the way he wanted it done, so he designed his own course , did it his own way, and his heart defined the day . . . and I couldn’t be more pleased and proud.
All photos used in this hub are personal photos taken by myself or family or friends.
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