Tadpole's Outdoor Blog

March 21, 2012

On The Bright Side 3-21-12 Mary Howell

Filed under: Mary Howell — Freddie Keel @ 6:23 am

On The Bright Side

Mary Howell


Yesterday was the first day of Spring! Whether or not Old Man Winter is still lurking around remains to be seen. The date on the calendar says that “spring has sprung”!


I remember just a few years ago when Sabine County was covered with a blanket of snow on Easter Sunday  It seemed funny to have snow falling during the Western Day Parade on Saturday, the day before Easter.


The next day, it felt weird to see children hunting Easter eggs in the snow.  Everyone had to bundle up in coats, sweaters and gloves to find what the Easter bunny had hidden from view.


I remember one Easter Sunday morning when the temperatures fell below freezing which made it fairly uncomfortable for those of us who attended outdoor sunrise services.


We can all be thankful that God has blessed us with frequent showers of rain during the past few weeks. 


We all remember the long drought that occurred during the summer months of 2011.  Toledo Bend Lake fell to its lowest level ever.  Since we have had rain, Toledo Bend is slowly coming back to its normal level.


Toledo Bend is Sabine County’s main source of tourism.  Each spring and summer, hundreds of people from other states come to East Texas to enjoy the fishing in Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn lakes.


Some of these visitors enjoy their visits to Sabine county so much that they want to make it their personal home.


Let us join together to extend a welcome to our springtime visitors.  Let us make their visit’s a time on the bright side.


March 21, 2012 

March 20, 2012

A tourist with a nice flathead catfish!

Filed under: Fishing & Hunting — Freddie Keel @ 6:04 am

Jimmy Fred and his lovely wife, Martha,

spend about a month fishing

Toledo Bend each spring.

His faithful fishing partner, Beatle Bailey,

had gone home.

March 19, 2012


A new friend, Caleb, shows off a really nice blue catfish.

March 17, 2012

future Heisman winner?

Filed under: Family — Freddie Keel @ 6:22 am

Our grand-son Lukie,

found some athletic equipment in our garage sale items.

the chicks are survivors

Filed under: Birds,Family — Freddie Keel @ 6:13 am

You might recall a teacher giving our grandson Lukie

a couple of baby chicks.

Lukie’s family is out-of-town this weekend

so we are baby sitting the chicks.

Here grandson Garrett lets them out of their coop.

They had a great time exploring.

March 16, 2012

they love our tree swing

Filed under: Family — Freddie Keel @ 6:42 am
Tags: , ,

March 15, 2012

On The Bright Side – 3/14/12 – Mary Howell


Did you ever stop to wonder what life was like before Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone?  Well, much to my dismay, I got a sneak peek into what it was like not to have a telephone! 


A few weeks ago, my handset phone disappeared.  My sister and friends turned my room upside down in search of my phone. No phone could be found.


We punched the “search” button to listen for a beep but no sound could be heard.  My friends and family tried calling the phone but all that I would hear was their message on the answer machine.  My sister, Clara, who calls me every morning at 7:30 a.m. missed talking to me for two weeks.  I could hear her sweet voice every morning as she said “Good Morning, Mary! How are you today? I love you.  Bye bye.”  Her messages always brighten my day even though I couldn’t respond.


The staff and residents at Hemphill Care Center joined in the search. They carefully looked in every possible place that they could think of. They searched through the laundry but no phone there.   Finally after two weeks, we gave up the search and decided that my phone somehow had ended up in the garbage dumpster.


After two Fridays, Clara could not stand it anymore. So she went to ALCO and purchased a AT&T phone for me. That’s when the fun began! Ha  Clara is no engineer by any means. She even had trouble getting the box open and taking the pieces out that would not fit.  After trying to find plugs, she finally found them. At first she tried to plug the old cords into the new phone. That did not work. Then she searched to the bottom of the box and found the instruction booklet, which looked like a Sears catalog!  There were two handsets and she had handset # 2 hooked into base # 1.  Installing the batteries in the handsets was a big challenge for Clara but she finally get it connected up. She worked until she got the battery in the right place and got the cover back on.


We finally called the Care Center’s Mr. Fix-it, Perry, to help.  He discovered the phone line was not pushed in tight enough. This gave Clara and me a big laugh!  With Perry’s help, Clara was able to record a new message on my answering machine.


So now I am O.K. again.  I can talk to my friends and family once again.  I am back in the life on the bright side again.


 March 14, 2012


Biography for Mary Howell

Mary Howell is a cerebral palsied quadriplegic who has resided at Hemphill Care Center in Hemphill, Texas since November, 2009.  She lived with her parents until their deaths and then lived in her home with 24/7 caregivers.  Mary has spent her life turning defeat into victory.  Her determination and strong faith in God have been an inspiration to all who know her.

Mary attended Hemphill High School, Wharton Junior College and served as the Editor of the Sabine County Reporter.  She has received numerous awards from the Texas Press Women and the Texas Press Association. for her writing.  Mary wrote and published her autobiography in 2007, Life On The Bright Side.

She has received various awards for her services in the community. She was named as an outstanding citizen, communicator of achievement, and Texas Handicapped Professional Woman of the Year in 1986.  She was among the “Nine Who Make A Difference” selected by KTRE-TV in 1986..

Mary’s love for God makes the difference in her life, enabling her to turn sadness into happiness and apparent defeat into victory.

March 14, 2012


Yes, I was surprise when I checked my minnow trap.

The minnow trap is used to catch non game fish

to be used on my fishing jugs.

The snake went into the trap to get a small perch

and could not get out.

He was near death due to drowning.


I don’t think he was a poisonous snake.

March 13, 2012

turnips, anyone?

Filed under: Family — Freddie Keel @ 6:56 am

March 12, 2012

Not everyone wants Toledo Bend Lake to rise

A pair of Osprey built their nest on a

cypress stump when the lake was eleven feet low.


The lake level is rising due to the recent rains

which puts the nest at risk.

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