help exchange   Host 32540
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Help Exchange

All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 2
Persons: 1/couple/2 friends
Category: Non Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 32540
Country: Scotland

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Last Updated: October 1, 2016

We are a small holding on the Southern slopes of the Lammermuir hills looking out over the Tweed valley towards the Cheviot hills. This is a very peaceful rural location. We are renovating an old farm cottage using green oak framing and traditional stone mason skills. Anyone with these skills or enthusiasm to learn and good attention to detail will be most welcome. There will be additional opportunities to use or develop skills in timber frame building and welding. We keep a small flock of geese and assistance with these and general household tasks is also on the agenda. Simon is a forest manager and part-time saw miller so there will be opportunities to use or develop skills in these fields too. We stay in a mobile home with wood burner and compost loo. We also have a wood fuelled hot water boiler to provide baths/showers. We usually prepare and eat meals communally. Sleeping accommodation for visitors is in a separate touring caravan. We have no children but a dog who thinks she is a small hairy human. Our nearest public transport and shops are in Lauder where we can collect visitors from bus stop or arrange for a pick up in or near Edinburgh as we are often driving past. Although we are newly registered as a helpx host, we have had visitors in the past who contacted us through friends who are hosts. We have found it works best for our helpx visitors to have whole days free for visiting or exploring and other whole days spent mainly here helping us but if you want to take a half day for a big walk on the Lammermuirs that is also cool with us. We are flexible and hope our helpx visitors will be too. One of the greatest joys of being a helpx host for us is that having visitors reminds us to take some time out and have fun (that is why we have included a funny picture of Simon at a local beach) so we are happy to drive with visitors on a local site seeing trip during your stay - to places that are not so easily accessed by bus or train for instance. We love having helpx from other countries to visit - it is almost as good as going on holiday ourselves! We have mobile phone signal and mobile wifi most of the time though the latter can be a bit temperamental if raining hard or windy.

Simon is a relatively new host on helpx, joining after we had a helpxer stay in 2014 who we met when she was staying with friends who are hosts. We have included her feedback below as a "self reference"

"I had a wonderful time with Simon and Mary! The scenery is beautiful, the area is peaceful and the company is fun and engaging. I enjoyed the work, learned a great deal throughout my stay and quite enjoyed the beauty of the property as well as the surrounding area!
It was a very positive experience and I enjoyed it so much that I came back again later on in my travels! :)"

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