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We are three families - Norwegian and American - running a historic lodge (formerly a homestead and pig farm) and establishing a small organic farm together in the beautiful mountains of Hemsedal, Norway. There are 12 of us in total, 6 adults and 6 kids. We are looking to meet fellow world travelers who would be interested in helping us with various tasks around the property - including:
- organic farming (planting, nurturing and harvesting veggies as well as pasture-raising chickens and pigs)
- food prep (pickling, preserving, fermenting, kombucha, brewing, etc.)
- carpentry, design & interior renovation work
- childcare (for children 5 and under)
If you love nature, healthy eating, skiing/snowboarding, hiking, farming, rustic living and friendly company, this is the perfect work-travel opportunity for you. We look forward to sharing this beautiful place and experience with you!
Babysitting / child care
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
You will gain exposure to people from all over the world during your interaction with guests of the mountain lodge and our family as well.
Geoff is a professionally trained chef from New York City and self taught organic farmer here to launch our culinary program and organic farm. Creative, taste-driven and incredibly hard-working, Geoff is already testing the boundaries of what we can grow here in Norway. His wife Jen's background is in sales and PR, and her passion is yoga and healthy eating as our resident Queen of Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free living. She'll be working closely with Danae to explore the vision for the wellness program here at the lodge. Geoff and Jen have two young boys, Pancho & Milo, aged 3 and 1. And like their parents, their love of eating "real food" and digging in the dirt is boundless.
Steffen is a talented carpenter and and award-winning interior designer and his wife Sara is a certified aromatherapist and former retail business manager with lots of operational knowledge to share. Steffen and Sara have been running the lodge for the past year as General Manager and Operations Manager after leaving high-paced and high-pressure jobs in NYC. Driven to live a more intentional and grounded existence, Steffen and Sara have breathed new life into the lodge by redesigning and renovating many of the properties and operationalizing the business. They have two young children, Wesley & Willa, aged 5 and 4, a builder and free-spirit who in less than a year already speak more Norwegian than their parents. Wesley may also hold the record for youngest to snowboard down the entire mountain in Hemsedal, while Willa certainly holds the title for "likeliest to be found playing in the snow with no pants."
Bjørn and Danae are both accomplished tech entrepreneurs, who have grown to appreciate the mental, physical and spiritual importance of returning to nature amidst this increasingly "always-on" tech-enabled world. Passionate about healthy food, simple, toxin-free living and restoring nature to its original form (they just planted 10,000 new trees on the land!), they are dedicated to growing the farm and building the lodge into a wellness destination here in Norway. Both are active in sales and operations, but when not on their computers, you'll find Bjorn hands-on with Geoff in the field or tinkering away on one of his many outdoor projects, and you'll find Danae practicing new recipes while asking Geoff & Jen thousands of questions about food. They have two boys, Tor & Teo, aged 5 and 2 - both of which have even more questions than their mother (like "where does the sky come from?") and even more projects than their father (with digging for worms being their favorite).
Geoff, Jen, Sara, Steffen and Danae are all originally from California. Bjorn is the lone Norwegian. Together, we have a pack of six happy kids. Wesley (5), Willa (4), Poncho (3), Milo (1), Tor (5) and Teo (2). We are quite the crew!
We all love sharing our stories and experience from life and look forward to learning alongside others to love nature and the outdoors. The mountain lodge itself is under new management so you would get to see the new business reimagined and be a support to those on the property creating the vision for this unique, wellness focused, food and travel destination in Norway.
UPDATE for Summer 2020:
We are looking for help doing the following:
1. We are initiating an organic farm on 3+ prime acres here on the property this Spring and Summer 2020, and we need help planting and nurturing our vegetable beds and fruit trees, tending to our small flock of chickens and pigs whom we are pasture-raising, and executing a variety of physical farm infrastructure projects (like installing hoops and watering systems, building chicken tractors, putting up and moving pig fencing, and more!) While this land has been used for farming for hundreds of years (most recently during WW2 when the Nazis occupied Norway and the three families living here were forced to live off their land), it's been untouched for the last few decades; so we are bringing it back to life this summer! If you have farming experience or an interest in organic farming and food and specifically learning what it takes to build an organic farm from scratch, please do send us a message! In addition to working on the land, the opportunity to harvest and cook/prepare food sourced from the land after our first season will be available as well. This will include pickling, preserving, fermenting, kombucha, brewing, etc.
2. We run a large lodge with a number of historic barns and cabins on the property, which have the potential to be beautiful but many require significant work. If you have experience with design and/or construction, or a willingness to learn how to transform a space, we would love to have your help! One of our big summer projects is to clear out an old barn, and transform it into a mixed use space - think summer family farm-to-table dinners, mountain-viewing yoga space, play area for the kids, and more. The windows looking out on the picturesque valley below have been boarded up for years. So much potential!
3. Lastly, we are also always looking for help with projects related to our private household such as support with gardening projects, cleaning, laundry and occasional cooking and childcare for our young children while we are working. We often work nights and weekends when there are weddings and events here at the Lodge, and do need child care during these times.
English (learning Norwegian...)
The Workawayers would be staying in an apartment suite at the lodge where we all live. Various living arrangements exist, including:
- Studio apartment suitable for a couple (2 persons), with private sitting area, dining area, kitchen and bathroom.
- Private bedroom within a larger, 'cabin style' apartment suite with eight bedrooms and bathrooms. You would potentially share the large apartment suite with one or two other workaway travelers, and have access to a communal living room, kitchen, dining room, sauna and deck. It may also be that you have the place entirely to yourself. It is unlikely you would be sharing the large apartment with more than one or two other workaway visitors at any given time.
All Workaway helpers will have unlimited access to our expansive land, nature and the picturesque mountain views of Norway, as well the ability to ski/snowboard at one of Norway's premier ski resorts (Hemsedal Skisenter). Cross country skiing is also available with amazing trails that run on our property and head off for miles into the wilderness.
All Workaway guests will be provided with bed linens and a towel, as well as a list of basic groceries provided weekly to allow for self-cooking. Of course, our families will also share many meals with you as well, in particular outdoor BBQ grilling over the Summer months, using produce grown and harvested from our own farm, and meats raised locally (our neighbor raises sheep and we are raising chickens and pigs).
Come join us!
We are located a 15 minute drive away from the closest town, Hemsedal, and our workaway guests would be offered a ride from the host during each trip into town. In town there are various shops, outdoor / ski supply stores, restaurants, a cafe and a grocery store. Steps from the lodge are several mountain trails for biking, hiking, cross country skiing and lake swimming. We are also a 20-minute drive from Hemsedal Skisenter, a destination for skiiers and snowboarders in the 'Scandinavian Alps.'
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week