1 hour from Vancouver
All Year: yes
Area (ha): 8
Persons: up to 4 adults
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 11917
Region: BC, South Western
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Last Updated: December 10, 2013
Animal caretaker required, as well as someone with some carpentry type skills! (see below)
It doesn't usually get too cold in this part of Canada, & usually not much snow (but more rain)! (Very similar weather to Germany & England)
We are primarily racehorse breeders, we have around 10 horses, including 2 tiny kids ponies, but we also raise grass fed beef, a few free range pigs, have a couple of Jersey cows (for milk), some goats (we milk one occasionally to make goat cheese), sheep, chickens, ducks, turkeys & geese along with peacocks, guinea fowl, some barn cats, 2 gentle dogs (a Blue Heeler & a Maremma) & 2 parrots. All spring & summer we have the incubator going, hatching out peacocks, turkeys & guinea fowl. All animals are kept outside except for the parrots. One of the parrots keeps everybody laughing with her comments & does an amazing array of tricks, animal imitations, laughing & also sings.
We have (a few) of our own (organic) fruit & nut trees, including apple, cherry, crabapple, plum, pear, nectarine, apricot, fig, hazelnut & walnut trees, along with blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, saskatoons, black currants, lots of rhubarb as well as some vegetables.
We are located in Langley, B.C., 1 hour drive from both downtown Vancouver or the nearest skiing mountain (Grouse Mountain), (or about 3 hours to Whistler), 20 minutes to the nearest beach, 45 minutes to the Vancouver Island ferry, and we're 1 km up from the U.S. border.
We are quiet, considerate & very respectful of others privacy & hopefully you are as well!! We are reasonable people, & enjoy humor. We aren't health food fanatics, but we like to eat good-tasting food, preferably without any chemicals etc. We do eat quite healthy, and homemade bread & jams are always available.
Our hobbies include dancing (country & western, latin, swing & ballroom), restoring vintage cars (we have a few), traveling, gardening (flowers, fruit & veggies), cooking (and eating!) & enjoy having pot luck barbecues & barn dances here during the summer & fall, & we love farming!
You must be (as we are,) honest, dependable, reasonably clean and mentally stable, no (unmedicated) bipolar or anger management issues please!
& NO DRUGS, heavy drinkers, or smoking!!! A great sense of humor is a definite asset!
You must be a self-starter & efficient!
For the 1st job have some experience building some basic things with wood. We need some planters built, a chicken house & some fencing.
The 2nd job, cleaning, cooking, gardening, & some help with some of the smaller animals (not needed in winter)
The 3rd job is the animal caregiver, which is what we are currently looking for. It is feeding & cleaning stalls & paddocks for all the animals & keeping an eye out for changes in them. You must care about animals for this job! In most of the smaller farms, the setups are different & the job is not too difficult, but here we use the (almost) 1 ton bales of hay, (which are more difficult to handle) & we don't use the small wheelbarrows. We do use a Kawasaki Mule with a dump box, (&/or dump trailer) but it's heavy to dump! So I guess, what I am trying to say is, this time of year, it is heavy work, & is quite demanding, but also very rewarding! You must be physically strong, efficient & observant. The average women couldn't do it on a daily basis, but there are exceptions to every rule! We definitely would prefer someone with some experience, but would be willing to train the right person. We are also preferring a longer term person for this (especially if inexperienced), due the fact that there is a fair amount of training going in.
The 4th job would be for someone with some mechanical experience.
The larger animals are turned out to pasture all summer & fall, so we don't have too much to do with them in those seasons.
Except in winter, we are re-doing a LOT of board fences, building &/or repairing animal shelters, adding on (& renovating) the house, barn & workshop, re-doing horse paddocks, planting some trees, expanding our (right now small), organic garden, doing some landscaping, putting in another pond with a waterfall (eventually), and of course animal care (more in the winter & spring). There are vehicles & machinery (including the classic cars that need some work if you have the skills)
We speak English, Dario speaks French & Italian as well.
Our place is far from fancy, (it's more like a ranch) but we like our house kept reasonably clean, & we are working hard to beautify everything! Bedrooms are located on the ground level with a fairly private kitchenette & bathroom beside them. All beds have good quality mattresses! There's laundry facilities, cable TV (with lots of channels), & (very) high speed Wifi.
If you want to try riding a horse, that's fine, & if you're kind with them & have sufficient experience & insurance, you can take them off the property. The horses are generally pretty quiet & gentle, mostly green broke (but fairly safe). We live on the Campbell Valley Park connector trail, the park is 1800 acres or 700 hectares of wilderness parkland, set up for horses, hiking & biking. (We have some bikes for you to ride.) If you know the TV show 'Smallville', the place where it's filmed is just down the road from us!
I do my grocery shopping in the U.S. so you will have opportunities to go there if desired.
Debbi would be happy to help you with your English or teach you cooking if you want.
We have included a picture of ourselves in our profile (a picture speaks a thousand words they say!) & we would appreciate that you include one of yourself as well.
Please let us know in advance if you have any dietary restrictions!
To those that have inquired if they can just pay a daily rate instead of the work, yes, that's not a problem if we have space. The rate would be $35. per day.