We are a family of 6, but the 2 oldest "children" are hardly living with us. The other 2 children (boys) are 13 and 19. I need to say, that we are Germans, who moved to England 22 years ago. That means, that our children speak very good English, while my husband and I have an accent, and although our English is not too bad, it is definitely not native. The culture in our household is a bit mixed, so you get the chance to sniff a bit of English and German culture at ours! 4 years ago, we bought our house with barn and stable in the outskirts of Barnstaple, in beautiful countryside. We share our house with a friendly dog, 1 cat and 2 rabbits, and the garden with many chickens, geese and ducks, and sometimes lambs. Barnstaple is very close to several beaches, some of which are supreme surfing beaches, some are fantastic for walks and or swimming, kite surfing etc.They are reachable by bus or bike, (for those strong legged ones, we can provide bicycles!) Our sons sail, surf and windsurf, weather permitting, not hardcore! Where the opportunities arise it may be possible for you to have a go at these, and you will be invited along to outings. We cannot, however, provide lifts everyday! We would love to get some help with the jobs around the house and look forward to meeting you!!
This year we have lots of fruits awaiting harvest, aswell as general gardening work. We are in the process of building a larder which still needs work on walls, roof and interior. We have eight sheep this year who are just about to go into their new field, here there may be some fence work in thr near future too. All tasks are "hands-on", but you don't need to be a specialist. We will teach you or learn together! We expect you to be willing to learn and engage in new tasks.
Getting a glimpse of normal family life in a German/ English household. Learn English or German if wanted and experience semi rural life. You will be practically involved in problem solving DIY tasks.
English, German and a tiny, tiny bit of french
We have a caravan in the garden as a bedroom, but bathroom and everything else is in our house. Sometimes we have a free guest room too.
Barnstaple is a nice little town in North Devon, offering a wide range of shops, a leisure centre and along the river lots of bird wild life to watch. The beaches are within 15 to 30 mins car drive, some are reachable by public transport. Exeter and Bristol are interesting university towns, which one can reach by train from Barnstaple. Dartmoor and Exmoor are as well within reach, but easier with a car. Barnstaple's train station offers mostly hourly trains to and from Exeter. Exeter has an international airport, although very small. Gatwick and Heathrow and Bristol have train connections to Exeter or Taunton. It would be advisable to find an early flight arrival in order to manage the journey in one day! We usually have a continental type breakfast and cooked evening meals, which we normally share. Our house has internet connection and telephone, but no TV licence.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week