Louise Ellison enjoys time with grandchildren

Sandra Pouland

Louise (Stanland) Ellison is still excited about seeing six of her grandchildren on a recent trip to Alabama. Her daughter, Stacy Kilgore, and her niece, Shirley Ivey, did most of the driving on the 12-plus-hour trip. Lois Ellison also went along on the trip. They let Lois out in Birmingham to stay and visit with relatives there while Shirley stayed in Huntsville and visited with her daughter, Christi. Stacy and Louise drove outside of Huntsville and stayed with visited with Louise’s daughter and Stacy’s sister, Debbie Martin. Debbie has two sons, Ryan and Collin and between them, Louise has six grandchildren. The girls had a good time visiting and shopping at flea markets. One day was an adventure riding in a hot air balloon. Stacey chose to keep her feet on the ground and take pictures while Louise and Debbie experienced the sights and sounds of a balloon ride and loved it! The trip was much too short but everyone had a great time and arrived home safely.
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Someone else has returned from a trip, to the northwest. I appreciate Charlotte Morris sending me the following email about her recent trip to Colorado with her mother, Sarah Morris, looking for fall colors but they got a touch of winter as well.
Charlotte’s email: Our first night was spent in Raton, New Mexico after driving through rain storms all day that Friday to get there.  The second day of the trip we made a circle in New Mexico from Eagle’s Nest to Red River. The weather was great and there was a little bit of color.  We enjoyed shopping and having lunch in Taos.
We headed north toward Alamosa for our second night. Anyone who knows me, know that I absolutely love the mountains of Colorado and that is where we headed on the third day!  We had been listening to the weather and heard the weather was rough ahead of us so we didn’t hurry out too early the next day, it was Sunday. We drove from Monte Vista toward Durango, Colorado.  It was raining on and off but we were able to get out at the Wolf Creek Pass overlook and enjoy the valley. We had a nice lunch in Pagosa Springs. After lunch our challenge started.  I thought the storm had passed so we loaded up (in my Kia Sorenta) and drove toward Durango.  There was a little debris on the road and then all of a sudden we got into a hail storm.  All we could do was stay in the ruts!  It was no time until the road and fields were at least 2 inches deep with hail.  It looked like snow!  Needless to say I drove very carefully and slowly with lots of prayer!  It was a very quiet trip but hallelujah we made it to Durango and got a hotel by 6 that evening!  It was an early day for us.
We got up Monday and drove what is called the Million Dollar Highway from Durango to Silverton.  It was a breathtaking site.  We saw beautiful fall leaves and then we saw snow banks on the passes.  I took the time to stop along the way and enjoy the beautiful work that God had created.  We had lunch and shopped in Silverton for about 3 hours.  Our journey headed us north on through Ouray and on to Montrose enjoying the sights.  I admit it was a little scary over a couple of the passes, especially when there are markers honoring gentlemen from the highway department who had died working on the roads.  I was hoping to see some wildlife on the drive back around toward Creede but there was not much stirring. We stayed that night in a little cabin like lodge in South Fork. The breakfast that morning at the lodge was great and the company there was even better.  We met a sweet couple from Georgia and they recommended us a National Forest road for sightseeing so we took off for that adventure. The gravel road route circled south of South Fork into the Rio Grande National Forest through a little place called Summitville.  We stopped and played in the Aspen trees, saw several deer, and even more deer hunters. It was a beautiful drive!  I love getting off the beaten path!   Unfortunately we had to head back home the next day BUT I am already looking for a cabin to rent for next October!
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It’s always good to see Eric Small when he comes in the store which is about every 10 to 12 years. Eric and his wife Karla lived in Diboll during the 1980s when Eric served as the youth choir director at Diboll First Baptist. In February of next year Eric will have been the director of Pineywoods Encampment for 24 years!! The Southern Baptist Association bought the property, between Corrigan and Groveton, near Woodlake in 1945 and it is still expanding. This past summer, 8,000 kids attended camp there and another 10,000 people attended retreats. A lot of us have many fond memories of attending camp there. The old rock gym that was built by the CCC (Civil Conservation Corp) is still there but has been remodeled and updated to enhance some of its original character. Twice a year in January and May Eric travels with his staff and board members on a mission trip to Guatemala where they build houses and do other ministries to help women and children.  They also have “Power Plus” Youth Camps for missionary’s kids that culminates in Europe and next year it will be in Africa.
Eric and Karla’s children are twin girls Kristie and Karlee who both married boys named Matt; so Eric calls them by their last names, Walton and Chandler. Kristie is a counselor at Angelo State University in San Angelo where her husband is a youth pastor. They have Evan, age 7 and Finley, age 4. Karlee is an 8th grade math teacher in Canton and her husband Matt is the director at Disciples Crossing in Athens. They have 1-year-old, Eri. Ross works for a pool construction company in College Station and Kalli works with AmeriCorps running the Tyler branch of the Hunger Initiative which tries to get faith-based organizations involved in feeding the hungry. My notes are bad; I can’t determine who 3-year-old Kezia belongs to. Krystina and her husband Alex Tram live in College Station and have three children: Ayden, Karson and Allysa.
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We enjoyed meeting Jimmy Farley’s two children from Arizona when they came in the store. His son Bobby is 25, a graduate of University of Arizona and working with Farmers’ Insurance. His daughter Katie is 23 and working on her master’s degree in Tax at Arizona State University.
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Ginger Capps spent a couple of days in College Station visiting with two of her grandchildren. Ashley Capps is studying nursing and Stephen Harris is studying engineering. Ashley also works at Appleby’s and shares a home with two friends from Hudson; Kourtney Walker and Emily Oliver. Ginger and Ashley were in the mall while waiting for Stephen to get out of class when Ginger recognized Charles “Pokey” Stover in his shop, Flip & Peel. His mother is Ginger’s cousin, Sharon (Taylor) Moore. Pokey insisted they try one of his specialties, Sweet Potatoes Fries with Nutrella and raspberry sauce topped with crunchy sprinkles. Their time ran short and were unable to locate Foul Digits, whose owners are formally from Diboll; Mark and Bryan Holubec, sons of Henry and Nancy Holubec.
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Take the time to come see us …’round the table.

Sandra Pouland, owner of Pouland’s Real Estate, contributes this column. Stop by the Round Table or email her at sandra@poulands.com or 936-829-4040.