July 6, 2015


Kathy and Richard Nelson had a whirlwind first-anniversary (July 6) trip to Baytown (where Richard grew up) and Kemah. Kathy, Richard and his niece, Danielle, picked up Richard’s brother, Eddie, at Hobby Airport on Friday afternoon. They made it to Bicentennial Park in Baytown in time to see .38 Special perform a free concert with longtime friends.

Saturday morning the foursome completed the Baytown Heat Wave, an aptly named five-mile run. Eddie complained that he wouldn’t be able finish, but he outdid Richard by about 4 minutes. Richard commented that two years ago he finished the run about a minute faster and didn’t try it last year because it was too near the wedding date. So, he figures marriage has slowed him down. After running with the guys the first mile, 17-year-old Danielle fell back to keep Kathy company. Richard said he’s very proud of his wife for finishing the event about 10 minutes faster than they predicted.

Saturday afternoon, Richard and Kathy headed to Kemah. They ate dinner at Opus Bistro, which wasn’t on the Boardwalk, but about a mile away. It is definitely a place they will make it a point to go back to – especially since a total stranger paid for their meal! They had asparagus parmesan, garnished with crab meat and tomatoes; ribeye with shrimp and crabmeat; a shrimp and scallops pasta dish; and bananas foster. They highly recommend the place.
The Boardwalk area was way too crowded to really enjoy the fireworks, but a family did decide to get up and leave their table and offer it to the Nelsons. Saturday was certainly their lucky day!

I suppose you could say that Kevin and Andrea Swor celebrated a wedding anniversary with a short trip to south Texas. June 22th was their 24th anniversary and it’s also Kevin’s birthday. It was a business/pleasure trip in that Kevin was invited, along with thirty other Ag teachers, to tour businesses and ranches and listen to speakers. They were part of the LEAD (Leadership, Education, Advocacy, Development) Program. Their trip began in San Antonio with dinner at MiTerra Mexican food. Kevin and Andrea really enjoyed visiting with former DISD Ag teacher Robert Washington who now teaches in Gonzales. The next morning the group traveled to George West to visit the Sick Dog Ranch owned by Mitchell Dale who owns McRae Ford dealership in Dickenson. Mr. Dale spoke to the group about organizational values and the Ford Leadership Scholars.

After lunch was served the group traveled to tour the LaPaloma/ElCoyote Ranches. The host at the LaPaloma Ranch was a father and daughter team, Felix & Della Serna. All their ranches together total about 200,000 acres. One of their 48,000-acre cattle ranches processes 300 18-wheeler loads of cattle per week. At that location the group learned about international farming and ranching. El Coyote and its sister ranch La Paloma sprawl over the counties of Brooks, Hidalgo, Kleberg and Kenedy at the tip of the Coastal Bend of Texas near the historic King Ranch in Kingsville. The El Coyote Ranch is represented by an elite herd of Texas Longhorns. They breed Longhorns in the old tradition using today’s ideas and technology. Their blend of past and present is proven in the fact that this ranch is home to the Guinness World Book Record Longhorn; 115” tip to tip.

Thursday morning the group of Ag teachers were treated to a delicious breakfast of Chorizo, eggs and homemade tortillas and tamales at the LaMuneca Cattle Company, owned by Carlos Guerra and family. Mr. Guerra spoke about being a good steward and giving back to the community and teaching students to get involved. He lives by his favorite saying of ten two-letter words, “If it is to be it is up to me.” Carlos and his brother Victor created a scholarship fund in honor of their brother that died the summer of 1979 before he was to enter Texas A&I. From the initial $10,000 family honorarium to further youth education, the Guerra family has awarded more than one million dollars in scholarships since 1979!

The group also toured the Chorizo de San Manuel plant in Linn, Texas. This plant grinds 20,000 pounds of pork daily to make Chorizo which is a Hispanic spiced sausage with a distinct and spicy flavor. The firm’s meat products, sold under the Chorizo De San Manuel and San Luis brands, are all-natural, with no added preservatives or fillers and are available at most food retailers. The Swors are back at work but enjoyed their informative days off.
My granddaughter Cheyenne and two of her friends, Ashley Thigpen and Courtney Nicols, traveled to Galveston for a three day outing. The three good friends enjoyed their first unchaperoned trip making fun memories at the water park, Pleasure Pier and walking the Strand where they made an Old Timey keepsake photo. They also enjoyed a nice visit to the Rain Forest Café.

Spending the July 4th holiday in Bullard with Kim and Darrell Chapman were Kim’s mother JoNell Placker, their daughter Elizabeth of Dallas and Hunter Rush of Tyler. Longtime friends that grew up in Diboll were also there: Elaine (Bunch) Pinkerton of Longview; her sister Mary Alice Shivers and her daughters Kim from Georgia and Shawn of Austin. Two grandchildren, Elizabeth and Shane of Austin had to listen to lots of old stories that were shared from this group that call themselves the “Park Street” gang.

You just never know who you will find at the Round Table. One day during lunch folks who came in were treated to live music from the talented Glen Lenderman and Kevin Carter who sang for more than an hour. Glen’s wife, Cricket (Laura), came during her lunch break and sang a couple of songs with the guys. Some who enjoyed this musical treat were: Raymond and Sofia Lenderman; Karon and Dennis Lenderman; J. D. & Sue Johnson; JoNell Placker; Jeanetta Stewart; Rhonda Flowers; Fran McGilvra; Mark Hafernick; Margie Harrell; Richard Rainwater; Bubba Covington; Dee Adams; Richard Nelson, all of us and several customers who came in to shop. They ended their mini concert showing their expertise on the strings and vocals with “The Devil went down to Georgia” and “Long Black Train”. Our thanks to Glen and Kevin and we hope they will come back, soon.

Sherrel Fears called and wanted to let the folks in Diboll know that his grandson, Chris Wells and his band, will be playing at the Benita Creek Hall in Nacogdoches this Saturday, July 11th at 8PM.

Come see us…’round the table.