Monday, November 12, 2012

County Home & Ranch can fill a stocking

If all those gardening pots haven’t attracted you from U.S. 69, pull over and visit County Home & Ranch in Nederland. Years ago a hardware store that smells like candles would have sounded odd, but it makes sense that you can buy items to repair and maintain the home you love as well as adorn it with garden art and décor. I saw a can of Steen’s Pure Cane Syrup like my daddy used to love, a canteen that could decorate a camp wall and some jeans and western shirts that would be best served on the dance floor over baling hay. It’s a natural mix of Texas country needs.

On the boardwalk in Anahuac

I’ll bet you’ve seen the signs on Interstate 10 for the turn to Anahuac Wildlife Refuge. Take the turn. I saw a hummingbird, frog, banana spider and other creatures on a boardwalk through cypress knees. A huge lake was a surprise at the end. Bring the family to the visitors center for a film where the seating is in a mock airboat. Learn a lot and visit the gift shop. For more information, call (409) 267-3337.

A bully book

An educator told Sheridan G. Doyle, Ph.D. that a book was in her. She wrote “There’s a Pint-Sized Bully in Our School” a long time before an illustrator came into the picture. I met Doyle, an educational consultant with ties to Humble and Vinton, La., this weekend and she told me an amazing story about her book, featuring Trussie, who needs some positive influence in her life to develop her assets. Doyle wanted a child to illustrate the book, and told how she was close a couple of times. In one instance her young artist was homeless, and cleaned up at a gas station before school each morning. This child’s family disappeared from the radar before the project was complete. Doyle then made contact with a woman who was so in tune with the project, she said she’d dreamed these pictures years before. To lean more, visit

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