welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Thursday, April 30, 2015

nickeled and dimed

thats what i said to my wife she
the other day
we are getting nickeled and dimed you know

i said that after looking at our bills
they all come in at the end of the month

Image result for dish tv logo

what really triggered this was my dish bill
i noticed over time that it just slowly slowly
eased up each month so that suddenly it was
$25 more a month
we have no choice its either no tv or tv with antenna only
or these two satellite companies
no tv for me is not an option
i have to have tv
Image result for verizon wireless logo
i looked at our verizon wireless bill
now we took our old land line number and converted
it to a cellphone
it was just really now just an answering machine
thats the number we gave out to companies
when we ordered stuff
if they dont leave a message we dont respond
we never answer it
i noticed that this phone started out at about $12 a month
thats the reason we changed in the first place
verizon had increased the landline price up to over $35
now the cell phone line was costing us $37+ a month
expensive answering machine it was
Image result for newspaper
i get a daily newspaper and have always gotten it
but i noticed over time all i was reading was the
business section and sports page
last month i said ok lets keep up with how much
you are reading this
not very much
i was mainly using the paper for landscaping and
composting and starting our fireplace
maybe i could get my news on the internet
i was anyway

Image result for money magazine
magazines i get at $30-$50 a year
i was getting 6 of them but have dwindled down to 4
maybe i dont need them
well now i have to keep the texas gardener one
Image result for trash bin
we pay $45 a month for trash pick up
we recycle so much that we only produce about
2 bags of trash a month
yesterday i met a neighbor who doesnt use the trash
he aggressively recycles everything
then burns the little bit thats left

we have a company we have used for our insurance
for years
we use to get a multiinsurance discount since we got our
car home and umbrella policy from them
when we moved to the country they wouldnt insure
a country home
we are looking at a company that covers all three
and gives us back the multiinsurance discount

so i added all these up as per year savings

dish-dropped a fee for my equipment protection and
decreased downwards to the next level of service
money saved $300

verizon-dropped the never used home number
money saved $444

newspaper-now this one was hard to do
money saved $312

magazines-will stop 3 of them
money saved $105

trash-will stop this and build a burning stove
money saved $552

insurance-will change to a company that gives us
the 3 insurance discount for car home umbrella insurance
money saved $500

so the totaled saved in a year is

now we plan to take that money and apply it to
home improvements
doubling our solar power
adding central heat and air system
replacing all our window
we expect our energy use to drop significantly with
these changes
saving maybe $50+ a month
some months we may not get an electric bill

we are getting energy tax credits and credits on our
electric bills for adding energy improvements
total $4500

so we are getting all  these improvements paid for
by cutting out all the nickeling and dimeing
and tax credits

so i started looking at our grocery bill some
my wife she said
forget it

there will be
no cheap generic toilet paper or cheap lotions or
cheap detergents

ok so i tried that once but it didnt go over so well
maybe i better stop while im ahead huh

the energy efficient cheap

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

spring garden

here are two short videos of my spring garden
the chickens can be heard clucky in the background
they get excited every time i go in the garden
they know that they will get some goodies thrown over
the fence for them to feast on

i apologize for my thumb during part of the video
as it drifted across the picture

the video seems to show the garden better than still pictures
this is unedited
there is some pauses and movement of the camera
please excuse this

since this video was made my garden has exploded
from the spring rains

harvest is just around the corner

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

the beekeeper

its is official
as of april 27 2015 i am a beekeeper
i have always wanted to do this for years
so a few months ago i saw a class on beekeeping
bee friendly landscaping was offered at my favorite nursery
the natural gardener in austin

that day this energetic addish speaker hooked me

i attended her beginners class
i attended a day long beekeeping class at
the ladybird wildflower center

i attended a four hour hands on clinic at her house
getting a chance to take a hive apart and
practicing beekeeping
bluebonnet engelmans daisy prairie verbena winecups
now on my property there is so much native plants
like these available to provide the nectar
pollen that the bees will need
even during the winter months
hundreds of sources
heck ive even let my cilantro broccoli kale lettuce spinach
etal all go to seed in my garden
to provide sources for bee food
i bought me a top bar hive
it sits on legs
so its much easier on the back
but doesnt make quite as much honey as the standard
langstroth hive
the one thats usually shown in photos

i also have several books on beekeeping that ive partially read

so like preparing for childbirth and a new baby
you think you are ready
but you really arent

so off on an hour trip i went to get my bees
a new queen bee and her 10000 bees
called a nuc
it was duct taped
now thats a good sign
so things wouldnt shift around
disturbing the honeycombs and the bees
hoping i didnt breakdown or have a wreck on the way home
i didnt want to get on the news

so i arrived at home with my brood
fired up my smoker to slow them down some
boy were they ever ticked off at me for moving them
i think i got smoked more than they did
i opened up the top bar hive enough to put in the honeycombs
loaded with bees honey pollen nectar bee larva
to put a jar of sugar water to provide a food source for them
until they could get established enough to live on what
they made themselves

the queen bee had managed to escape from her cage
somewhere onto one of the honeycombs
i opted to wait a few days to inspect the hive again
to insure she was ok
those bees were so ticked off
they were aswarming around me like a scene from the
old movie the birds
i eventually got them
well most of them into the hive
having it mostly all closed up so they could only get
in and out through this opening
with the blue excluder set so the queen couldnt escape
but the worker bees could go back and forth

i backed off to let them calm down a lot

later that day near twilight
my wife she and i went out to check on our new babies
looking in from an observation window
they were all swarming around the honeycombs
worker bees were landing on the excluder with their legs
all full of yellow pollen
im sure they were full of nectar to put in the individual
combs that would eventually become
country n honey

so exciting after all these years

what i realize is
like a new baby coming home
im not sure what to do to do things right
i will stumble through as i know that once this
hive gets established there is not a lot of work involved
a lot of rewards
country n honey

the contented

organicgreen doctor

Monday, April 27, 2015

moms work day

each year habitat for humanity williamson county has a
womens work day
only women show up to work
most of the regular worker volunteers that are males
stay away
just try being a male telling 10 women what to do
its like having 10 wives
no i think this should be done this way
no i think that should be over here
no that color doesnt look right

so i usually stay away
i was asked could you save the landscaping for this new
house for one day
we want to use one of the womens work days to do the

:-( is the way my face looked
thank goodness i was on the phone when i was asked

all kind of thoughts went through my mine
is this going to be like having 10 my wife shes working
with me
with me telling them what to do
i just hope they dont all look like this when i ask them
to do something
yes thats my wife she staring in the distance
i think she was biting her tongue so much it was bleeding

so i said yes i would do it
with some trepidation
just hope none of them read my blog today

so this house we will be working on is a repossession
the folks apparently just walked off
trashed the house well is what they did

with a lot of elbow grease and paint it will look brand new
here is what i started with
a pecan tree an old native one with another one in the back
during the house construction the dirt got piled up so
that the tree flare could not be seen
so i and the new homeowners son dug it all out
we dug 1 ft of dirt off the tree so now the root flare shows

there are two red bud trees planted in the wrong place
these are nice trees however they live about 25 years
they just die

i attempted to dig them up
however on both trees the roots were so girdled
that means they were growing around and around like
a big ole screw
destining this tree to an early death
i preformed euthanasia on it
into the brush pile it went
the two indian hawthornes by the front porch are really
they should have been planted in a raised bed so their feet
wont get too wet
so up they came
they will be replanted in the back in a better location
the back porch in a new bed that will raised so water
can drain off it
if they dont make the transition i will plant turks cap
and cat mint in those beds
two natives that require no upkeep and provide flowers
for bees and hummingbirds
then along the front a new bed was  made using
donated lava rock which is laid over black plastic to help
kill out the bermuda grass
the homeowner wanted cactus so spineless cactus
will be planted in the middle of the bed
next year on either side
by then the bermuda under there should be all dead
the homeowner will rake bake the lava rock
slit the plastic
dig out a planting hole
add good soil and plant a xeric flowering plant of
her choice
thanks to cm for donating two truckloads of lava rock

also someone donated the limestone rocks that will be
used around the borders of the beds
thanks to sp for finding these
enough to use at three habitat houses

so i have a budget when i asked for this project
of zero
kinda hard to do landscape with all that money
so thanks to those who donate their time and supplies

i will donate a few shrubs and the soil for them
but a local landscape nurseries gives me a big discount
on them
then in the back a monterey oak was planted about
a foot too deep
so i dug it out so the root flare is visible now

the only problem is it was planted underneath a power line
the electric company will regularly take a big bite of
the top of the tree on a regular basis when the tree gets bigger

so on the day before mothers day on womens build landscape day
we will
place cardboard around the pecan tree and the beds for the shrubs
lay a thick layer of mulch around the trees
but not not not up against the tree trunks
on top of the beds
the shrubs two dwarf yaupon hollies and two salvia greggiis will
be planted in the front yard raised bed
a yard of compost will be spread over the yard
an organic fertilizer will be spread on the yard
hoping that will resuscitate the ignored grass
photos to follow

hoping that i survive these 10 my wife shes

if you have the xx chromosomes
you can join this workday
here is the link

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, April 24, 2015

got milk

babies gotta have milk
of course
breast feeding is the best source for them
after they are too old for moms breast milk
around 3-4 yrs old for some
sooner for most
they transition to milk from cows
Image result for kids drinking milk
why do they need milk
vitamin d and calcium
i know in my practice before i retired i found quite
a few kids who were significantly vitamin d deficient
no sun
no milk product intake
no outside activities
you need sun to make vitamin d in the skin

now it seems yes its needed in the young
it appears to be useful in the elderly also
Image result for elderly person drinking milk

a research study from the university of kansas
showed that elderly folks who drank milk
had high levels of glutathione in the brain

the glutathione works as an antoxidant in the brain
to protect brain cells
it scavenges the free radicals that appear in the brain
by things like lack of exercise mental stress pollution
poor diet etc all of which lowers glutathione
increasing the levels in the brain via milk intake
improves our brains health

milk is the best way to raise these levels of glutathione
in the past i would say blue bell ice cream
but for now i would wait on that source

so got milk
Image result for milk carton
yes 3 cups a day
if you are milk sensitive eat milk whey protein
youll improve your memory

tomorrow on the central texas gardener on klru at 1200 noon
or 400pm a raised garden i put in at a habitat house is shown
on the segment by daphe midway into the show
its a few seconds of recognition

i sent the picture to ask about whether it was ok to use
cinder blocks in raised beds
their consensus was yes its safe
thats not on the segment though

here is a youtube link to the segment

i have also talked personally to some of the organic
garden gurus in this area who say its safe

as one said
i use them in my garden and in the community gardens
you get more pollution from going outside breathing
the air than you ever would from using these blocks
in the garden

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, April 23, 2015

whats your youth worth


this am i saw this on facebook
thanks mb

of course
i had to tally up my money accumulated in my youth
some of the events were funny or fun
some were not something i would be proud of today

we learn from our past and our mistakes
becoming a better person as we get older

luckily for me and my siblings
we seemed to all have gotten better

so out of the 20 things i scored 14
thank goodness i lived in a rural area where folks
were more tolerate of youthful indiscretions

now you cant get by with anything
get yourself sent to jail or alternative school

alternative school
where i went that meant going down to the principals
getting you alternative school treatment

my times have changed some
for the better
im not so sure

so heres my total income from my youth
i did one of my siblings since that sibling was always
doing this stuff with me

sibling now this is only a guesstimate-$110

so total up yourself or your kids
dont feel bad if the dollar amount is high

after all
both of us siblings turned out to be successful
in our careers

there is always hope for the future

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

mothers day

today is mothers day
mother earth day
Image result for earth day 2015
after doing my two hours each morning on the internet
nowhere did i see anything about today
being earth day

well google did have that spinning earth when i did
a google search
but it was the only site i saw it mentioned

there is an old native american tradition
if you take something from mother earth
you must put something back

we havent been good about this
we give things back
more and more pollution
dumping all kinds of poison in our environment
sucking up all or natural resources even though
they will never be replaced
cutting down tree after tree and not replacing them
remember trees suck up the carbon dioxide from
the air

if you ever watch a fish out of water
a person with severe empysema
thats what happens when a person gets too
much carbon dioxide
Image result for emphysema
will we all be emphysemic

be like a fish out
of water
one day
eventually wiping us all out

now i have counted 15 trees
good trees
ive planted here at the country n

its an all organic and poison free environment around here
no pollution at all
all excess is recycled
even the brush is piled up not to burn
or is mulched to be used on the property
we generate some of our electricity via solar
soon to double its size
we capture our own rainwater to use for drinking
and irrigation
we raise our own eggs
much of our own vegetables
we leave the 9 acres of  pasture land alone
letting nature doing its thing
seeing more and more wildlife on our property

so taking care of our little earth here at the country n
we can see a change for the good in the last several years

we meaning the whole world
needs to save and take care of this earth
we aint got another one
mess this one up
we dont get another chance

we will all be left gasping and gasping
if we dont

the organicgreen doctor