Random Changes at Firefly Farm

We have a cool new sign on the gate thanks to a random Etsy search.

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We’ve completely renovated the tack room’s feed area. We’ve also renamed our pastures in honor of places at Camp Anna Behrens, my old Girl Scout Camp.

I’m adding a backsplash to the bathroom sink, had a boarder kindly sort and label as well as rubber band all of the boots in our boot library, and was given a drawing by a three year old featuring me, “Miss Sarra Teach.”

Bubbles the Border Collie Puppy is now six months old. She loves Sir Hops A Lot Freight Train.

We also had the front grass paved to make more parking.

How many Four Leaf Clovers can YOU see in the above photo? We have them all over Firefly Farm.

We’ve added horses to Firefly Farm’s boarder roster. Faith, the Fleabitten grey, as well as Eowyn, the Gold Champagne Palomino.

We had four fledgling Barn Sparrows in our aisle bird nest. They have (in the three days since this picture) grown up and flown away.

While the tractor was in for repair, Flower helped me to move some compost and manure around. She seemed pleased to be useful.

 

I bought a new two-wheeled garden cart for farm use, and it’s the perfect size for a hay bale. Everyone prefers this to a wheel barrow.

I sent the second Tintype to Sunny Poffenbarger along with a pressed four-leaf clover, and she was so delighted that she sent me a gift. I’m lucky to have the Universe send so many amazing people sent my way.

We also now have electrified chicken fence. Hooray! Those pesky foxes, coyotes, mink, raccoons, and opossums will have to go elsewhere for their meals.

 

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Victorian Days in Grand Ledge

Last Saturday, we had an adventure at the Island in Grand Ledge. I was asked to perform with my side saddle, in costume.

I can do that.

We brought Bubbles, Lance, Flower the Alternative Fact Teacup Friesian, Sir Hops a Lot Freight Train, Silky Cocoa Cream McGuire, Nugget, Perkins, Pillywiggin, Daisy, Dandelion, and Melody. Our Minions were Sonora, Rose, and their mom, Corey; Emma, Allie, Jasmine, Mariah, and Mariah’s mom Sarah.

The bridge I crossed with the trailer was teeny tiny so I’ve shared a photo of me inching across.

A gentleman was taking Tintypes, an old type of photo, and I had two taken. One will be going to Sunny Poffenbarger in North Carolina to thank her for selling me her heirloom Victorian outfit.

The lovely hat is from Mary K. Hodges-Nees. If you’d like to look into buying one of her creations, I can put you into contact with her. Her hats are exquisite.

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Lights, Camera, Action

Bright lights twinkle above as Bubbles’s ears flop forward. Twist snorts and stomps as Flower sniffs hay.

“Melody, eat your heart out,” Twist seems to say.

Four years ago, Melody had a starring role (according to her) in the musical, “My Favorite Year” at Riverwalk Theatre.

The rest of the animals were jealous. Nobody else had ever been in a play before. Then came Lance The Service Dog’s big break as Horrid in Camelot.

Now, everyone except Bandit, Honey, and Twist had appeared onstage. Then Flower, the cute little “Alternative Fact” Teacup Friesian, appeared. As founder and only member of this unique breed, Flower was special. She knew it. It was only a matter of time.

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Then Bubbles came along. To quote a certain Scottish play (with puppy grammar included) “bubblesis, bubblesis, toils and troublesis…”

Soon, people were emailing to ask about Bubbles. “Can Bubbles come play with the cast of our show?” Our answer was a resounding yes. Then, I asked about sneaking the horses into the show, too. Their answer was a resounding yes.

So Twist, Flower, and Bubbles are all in this weekend’s play, “The Wonder of The World,” directed by Shannon Bowen. The animals felt that they deserved bios for being in the show, so their publicist took care of it. Here’s the show program:

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Bubbles is disgruntled at having to share her acting gig with Flower and Twist, but when I told her to discuss it with Eowyn, our resident Unicorn and arbitrator, she said, “S’fine. S’fine. Can we go home now?!”

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Better luck next time, Bandit and Honey. Better luck next time.

(Oh, and Sir Hops a Lot Freight Train also wants to be included. He’s a disgruntled bun. He, however, says he wishes to produce or direct–not act.)

He’s already decided to cast Bandit in her first leading role–as Kate in “She Poops to Conquer.” Eh–I mean “She STOOPS to Conquer.”

 

 

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Dietary Indiscretions

Her glossy eyes clouded over; her ears flopped forward and she moaned. Her whine pierced through my heart like a pin through fabric.

Bubbles.

Bubbles the Border Collie puppy.

At eleven weeks old, Bubbles became very ill indeed. Her stool became bloody and she vomited repeatedly. When she crawled under a tree as if to die, we decided to take action.

I went online to look up her symptoms.

After scaring myself half to death, I got offline and had The Husband call a Veterinary Hospital in Ann Arbor.

Almost six hundred dollars later, we had our answer.

“Has she been eating anything she oughtn’t?”

“Uh–well… We have eight cats, ten horses, a guinea, three turkeys, twenty five ducks, a bunny, and fifteen chickens. She could have eaten anything on the farm.”

“Ok. We’ll call this one dietary indiscretions. We’ll give her fluids for her dehydration, antibiotics in hopes that it’ll take care of any ‘bugs’ left in her system, and you can take home the rest of her stool sample.”

Bubbles is back home and acting more herself again today. She’s mad, however. I won’t let her off of the leash anymore. Not until she learns to curb her enthusiasm about snacking on morsels of whatever the back yard holds.

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2017: The Year of Positivity

The muddy whirlpool swishes and swirls, pulling debris from the edge. The current, strong but steady, sloshes and sways as it collects everything in its banks.

If you’re drifting or pulled in, rise. Like a phoenix rising from ashes, we can lift ourselves out of the muck and mire. We, ourselves, can fight the current and persevere.

This year, we will rise above the negativity in the world. This year, we’ll be the positive change we wish to see, and we’ll fight the current of what’s “wrong” to make as many “rights” as we can.

So far, I, Sarah, the horse riding instructor, have donated 12 1/2 inches of hair to Wigs for Kids.

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Next, we’ve started saving money, as a barn, for Sandstone Farm’s Rescue Efforts. The organization saves pregnant mares from auctions (and usually a slaughter house.) They give the mare proper nutrition, help her give birth, and then to find new homes for mother and baby. This is the rescue that saved Chex and Applejack.

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So far, collecting change and dollar bills, we’ve saved almost $150.

I turned 35 this year, and Bandit turned 14, so it was time to add another bundle of joy to our family.

This is Bubbles the Border Collie.

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If you think she’s about the cutest thing you’ve ever seen, you’d be correct. (At least according to Bubbles.) Bubbles was recently awarded a middle name by our Veterinarian, and has been deemed “Bubbles Franklyn.”

The black hole of politics, the whoosh and eddy of currents threatening to sweep our country and world into darkness, and the heavy, uncomfortable air of oppression leaves us gasping for hope. Let positive changes, kind words, and generosity be the raft which lifts you to the surface. Let others feel the water’s disturbance and set forth on similar voyages.

Above all, don’t let negativity bring you down. Rise.

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Happy Holidays, Everyone!

Firefly Farm loves kids. We also know you’re busy.

We’re offering gift certificates for the Holiday Season. Pop a check in the mail and we’ll send you back a gift certificate of your choice.

-Pony Ride: $5

-One Hour farm tour (includes four pony rides): $30

-Single Horse Lesson: $30

-Girl Scout Badge Events: $10 per child (includes riding)

-Birthday Parties: $10 per child (No additional costs!)

-Set of Four Horse Lessons: $100

-Classroom/School/Daycare visits: (includes 3-5 non-equine animals) $50 for approximately an hour long visit.

We ride:

English—jumping (no higher than a hay bale!), and beginning dressage

Western—pleasure or beginning gymkhana games (no galloping here!)

Sidesaddle

Vaulting—basic safety and movements

Bareback

Driving—how to handle the horse from the ground and how to hook up a cart properly; parts of the cart. Students are not able to drive the carts themselves, but they’ll be shown how it’s done and can ride with the instructor.

Our facility has an indoor and an outdoor arena, so we’re able to ride year round. Our instructor is a K-8 schoolteacher who loves teaching and using psychology. These aren’t just riding lessons—they’re horse and life lessons with math, science, history, and English integrated into each session.

Minion Program—when the kids volunteer at the farm, for every 8 hours they volunteer, they’re “paid” with a free horse riding lesson.

See website for details: http://www.ridefireflyfarm.com

We ride:

English—huntseat, low jumps, and beginning dressage

Western—slow gymkhana and pleasure

Sidesaddle

Vaulting—basic safety and movements

Bareback

Driving—how to handle the horse from the ground and how to hook up a cart properly; parts of the cart. Students are not able to drive the carts themselves, but they’ll be shown how it’s done and can ride with the instructor.

* Come visit the farm and see the animals. Spend an hour with us and bring up to four pony riders. We have horses, ponies, cats, turkeys, chickens, ducks, dogs, a bunny and a guinea.

# We bring children to farm animals and farm animals to children. We have traveling farm animals (will visit and introduce you to a bunny, chicken, duck, turkey, kitty, and/or service dog depending on your preferences.)

We have birthday parties, pony rides, lessons, camps, and Girl Scout badge events.

Firefly Farm LLC in Mason Michigan; 1 mile from Okemos High School; 2 miles south of MSU

Camps, Lessons, and Pony Rides available

We also board stock horses/family friendly horses

(No Stallions, Arabians, Warmbloods, or Thoroughbreds.)

Our facility has an indoor and an outdoor arena, so we’re able to ride year round. Our instructor is a K-8 schoolteacher who loves teaching and using psychology. These aren’t just riding lessons—they’re horse and life lessons with math, science, history, and English integrated into each session.

Horse Boarding:

$325 outdoor/pasture board

Horses brought inside two times daily to eat grain; fed only grass/orchard grass hay. Grain is all Purina products—Ultium Junior, Purina Senior Feed, Healthy Edge Senior, and Purina Ultium. We will feed Alfalfa pellets at no extra charge.

$400 indoor board

Horses are indoors overnight or during the day only. No 24/7 indoor board unless the horse is ill or injured.

 

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Soup Grant Night for Firefly

The holiday season is upon us!  : )

Please join us this Thursday for a Thanksgiving celebration featuring great food and great conversations!  We will hear from two awesome projects: Firefly Farm LLC out of Mason, and Backwards Burglar!

All you need to do to support these great projects is make your way to SoupGrant this Thursday!!  We will provide a buffet of delicious Thanksgiving themed soups for FREE, so if you have $5 bucks to spare, throw your cash towards the “micro-grant” to support good ideas and positive change in your community!

Here are the details that you need to know:

·  This month’s dinner event is this Thursday November 17th at 6:30pm at Grace Lutheran Church off MLK (in the basement)!

·  What to bring:

o Your bowl, spoon and cup

o Yourself, family, friends, co-workers

o $5 (if you want to vote for a project that is!) (At the end of the night, the project with the most votes takes home ALL of the cash donations – as a “SoupGrant!”)

·  Eat up!

o The soup is FREE!  There is always a buffet of delicious, homemade soups that our “soup guru,” Terry whips up!  There are soups for every taste including meat lovers, vegetarians and vegans!  If you want to bring soup or another goodie, that would be awesome!  Just email us back to let us know what you’re bringing so Terry can plan accordingly!! : )

Other Info:

6.30 – Doors open

6:45 – Soups on (and bread)!

7.15 – Proposals are presented, votes are cast, and more soup is eaten!

7.45 – Winner announced/SoupGrant awarded!

Hope to see you this Thursday!  As usual, these are two GREAT causes; so please come out, eat tons of soup, have some fun, and support them!

-SoupGrant Lansing

www.soupgrantlansing.com

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The Bun

The soft, warm creature in my arms twitched as I counted his tiny toes.

“He smells better than I expected.”

“His nose is perfect.”

“His ears look too big for his head.”

The little one in my arms observed the world around him, occasionally seeming to watch me as I moved around.

“What should we name him?”

“I don’t know.”

“Why don’t we have complete strangers decide?”

“Sounds good to me.”

The Bun. The little bun in my arms twitched his nose as he sniffed the air around him.

“I think he ought to be wrapped in a blanket so he won’t pee all over.”

“Good idea.”

“It’s too warm. Let him be nekkid.”

The little one’s ear wiggled as I touched it. Funny, I mused. Most people think ears that are too big aren’t a trait to be desired. I disagreed. His ears, as well as all of his other parts, were perfect.

“We’ve only had him a day.”

“We can still bring him to Meijer Gardens.”

“How will we take him?”

“How about a cat carrier?”

Our Bun traveled in a cat carrier to and from Grand Rapids without uttering a peep. Or a cry. Or whatever Buns say. Our Bun is Fun.

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Oh–and his name is now Sir Hops A Lot Freight Train.

Because we had a contest among kids at Meijer Gardens, and I liked the name Sir Hops A Lot, and The Husband liked Freight Train.

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“I love a Parade”

On Independence Day, Melody, Hart, Erin, Allie M., Jasmine, Jami, Allie B., Isabella, and I entered Mason’s annual parade. Our horses were champs and the students handed out business cards and candy.

Thank you for Allie M.’s hard work on the sign we used.

We also made it into the Mason Newspaper. http://www.masontoday.com/news/photo-gallery-4th-of-july-parade-2016/

 

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The Traveling ‘Peep’ Show

Their little legs and wings blur in a flurry of activity as they greet me in the mornings.

“Peep peep peep! Cluck cluck! Squak!”

Every day, the chickens, ducks and turkeys follow me, begging for food and attention. They love to be petted and adored. They see a mealworm (treat) bag and gallop toward me.

But–

But there are feathers everywhere. Chicken ‘leavings.’ Ducks in the arena, chickens in the hay. Eggs that I find months later, many moons longer than I’m comfortable eating them.

So I finally invested in their future.

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The lovely, retro/vintage monstrosity here will now be referred to as “Firefly Farm’s Traveling ‘Peep’ Show.” It’s a gloriously perfect gutted camper which isn’t usable for humans any longer. It’ll be just what Doc Brown (as in, Back to the Future) ordered.

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This is the beginning of the end for my little feathered friends’ “nighttime excursions” to the pond or the hay pile. The welcoming committee will be penned up soon with this trailer as their new home at night, but they’ll be allowed out during the day. I know it seems harsh, but my ‘peeps’ will be happier in the long run. This trailer will allow them to lay eggs in peace and sometimes hatch babies in a quiet environment. This will be a huge boon for poor Gloria, who is currently laying on a nest in the worst possible area for any duck to hatch babies.

12743984_932535840176210_8735108353766968307_n.jpgI can’t wait for Firefly Farm’s Traveling ‘Peep’ Show to be on display. I’m already cleaning out the inside to prepare it for nesting boxes.

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Categories: Chickens, Firefly Farm, Firefly Farm's Traveling 'Peep' Show, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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