There are so many different ways to go - wow. I like Hwy 105 from Navasota to Conroe, then it's only 15 miles to New Waverly. Maybe not as scenic as Golden's route, but still has some scenery. 1395 will take you through part of the Sam Houston National Forest. All the roads in Texas are good as far as I'm concerned, with few exceptions. If you don't like twisty turney's , avoid 149. That's MC Haven.
Golden's route, except I'd take Hwy 105E to 336N loop to I-45N. You iwll only have 15 miles of I-45 to New Waverly. Not quite as Scenic, but would avoid Houston.
All in all, the shortest route is not necessarily the fastest route. If you decide to go I-10 and not avoid traffic, pick your time of day going through Houston. At 10 O'clock in the morning is much better than 7:30 in the morning, and 1:30-200 in the afternoon is better than 3:00-6:00 in the afternoon. Slow downs will be at the interstate exchanges. Houston just doesn't have those figured out yet, but they are trying. I-10 from the outskirts of Katy to almost Downtown is 4 and 5 lanes now. I always take the Beltway 8 toll road, but I have a pass and don't have to stop. That would be another annoyance. I'd try and stay off if I-610 loop. It can be a nightmare at times. JMHO
Wayne MSGT USMC (Ret) & Earlene (CinCHouse)
2008 Winnebago Destination 39W
It is what it is, and then it is what you make of it.