Come and experience life on a small homestead in Central Maine, USA

Country

United States

new host   Last minute

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  • last activity

    Last activity

    19/10/2019

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This listing is a Last minute host. They have let us know that they are looking for help immediately as well as at other times of the year.
  2019 

 Min stay requested: at least a week

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  • Description

    Description

    I have a small homestead farm with 11 goats, and a few dozen chickens, guineas and ducks. The animals are organic and have access to free-range 50+ acres. I consider them more as partners than livestock and as such I don't cull, but take care of my "retirees" as my part for the time they have spent providing milk or eggs for me. There is plenty of garden space, although it needs repairs to the fencing to be fully functional - this is one of the things that makes this place unique, as the animals are not fenced, but that comes with challenges like if I want a garden, that has to be inside a fence (although I suspect the plants are less bothered by that idea than the animals!). My kids are grown (one still living here but working full time) and not interested in taking over the farm, and my husband works away, and as such, I need extra helping hands for the projects that are a bit much for me alone. There are woods to walk in, a stream big enough for a swim, hayfields and apple trees. I like to experiment with foods I get in quantity, like this past year I learned to do winemaking. Other times I do dehydration or canning. My important focus is being environmentally friendly, and try to see all my projects here through that lens.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Gardening
    Building
    General Maintenance
    Farmstay
    Other
    Help with Eco project
    Help in the house
    Animal care

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    I can teach you how to milk goats, do basic animal care, and cheesemaking. I can show you egg based meals and yummy, eggy desserts. I can help with English learning (any level if you speak Spanish, as I can get by in that , or if you know enough English to get by on a basic level it wouldn't matter the primary language). I can bring you to capoeira class, even though culturally it is Brazilian. At the coop, I go to a Spanish-language discussion group, and the co-op also has discussion groups in French and Italian.

    Fall in Maine is really pretty! The leaves are starting to turn, and there are some nice places to enjoy them, nice places to hike.

  • Help

    Help

    The tasks I need help with right now are readying the barn for winter (barn repairs, window repairs, mucking the stalls), replacing fenceposts and fence repair, and some help fixing up the mobile home where volunteers can stay (for those thinking of a long-term stay, this would be important before winter). Light housework is also a big plus! People who are up for some cleaning/organizing would be especially helpful, and the opposite is also true - people who can ignore less-than-elegant surroundings because they are happy to do things outside and don't care as much about whether the accommodations are orderly, that is also great.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English, basic Spanish, learning Portuguese

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    There is a mobile home that we lived in while building our house, and while it is somewhat rough (I'm trying to keep it from falling apart and could use help with that), the available bedroom is simple but comfortable, with a really nice queen bed, so it's best for a couple. There is a washing machine that is the one that I use (so shared) and I use the kitchen occasionally for the oven and fridge, but would be a semi-private space. If a group of friends wants to stay, there is also a couch and a fold-out queen size couch bed, but this could be challenging long term unless you are _really_ good friends! There is limited fridge space as we have lots of eggs (which I imagine you will want to help eat!) and farmers cheese in the freezer. Food is basically vegetarian, but not vegan due to quantity of eggs and milk (although not a deal breaker if you do a lot of cooking - rice and beans are a good base for a meal!). I tend to be a coffee-for-breakfast type, but there are plenty of eggs, and I can get cereal/oats/whatever if you are so inclined. Dinner is the more creative cooking time for me, and am happy to cook together/share cooking ideas, and have fun with it.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    The central Maine area has plenty of interesting social activities from contra dances to capoeira (both of which have enthusiasts in this house, and therefore rides), and there is a wonderful food coop in nearby Belfast. There are hiking trails nearby.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    20 - 25 hours a week, flexible

Goats out for dinner.
Me with Sibley
Guineas and babies
Heirloom tomatoes in the greenhouse.
Goats enjoying the morning sun.
The trailer where workawayers can stay, and the barn.
Navi and Meadghbh waiting for milking time.
Olive waiting for a snack at the picnic table
The goats' table
Snack of corn and tomatoes.
Enjoying the shade on a hot day.
Cindy, protector of chickens.
Birds in the barn.
Host ref number: 176134385533