Hello Workawayers, thank you for reading our listing! We live on a smallholding of 18 acres in a lovely, rural location, surrounded by mature woodland near the coast between Invergordon and Tain, in the beautiful Scottish Highlands, north of Inverness. We are a project-rich but time-poor working couple with 3 adult children who have left home and 2 teenagers still at home. We have 12 hens, 3 cows, 3 cats, a vegetable garden and a poly tunnel. We both currently work full time (Sophie is a teacher and Nicky a builder/plumber) and so need help with some of our ongoing projects, which vary depending on the time of year. Music, sport and food are all important aspects of our life here - some of us play Scottish trad music, others love skiing, mountain biking and hill walking but we all love eating, especially food we have produced ourselves, whether that's eggs from our hens, produce from our garden or meat we have reared.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Workawayers will find out lots about Scottish and Highlands culture, particularly the traditional music scene but also the landscape, history, traditions and politics of modern Scotland. We like to meet new people from different places who are also interested in communication and cultural exchange of ideas and experiences with us.
In the winter, the days are quite short and the opportunity to tackle big projects is more limited so the main activities are processing wood for our self-sufficient heating system (this could involve chain sawing if you are able, log splitting, keeping the kindling tray stocked and moving logs into the log shed as required), fence maintenance and feeding the animals; also at this time of year lighting fires to heat the house is essential and there are always domestic chores to do such as laundry, cleaning, food prep and/or cooking.
In the Spring and Summer, the longer days mean that it's easier to get involved in activities such as gardening (digging, planting, weeding, picking), mowing, strimming and general grounds care. We have a four acre walled garden which is an ongoing project in terms of maximising its use.
At any time of year, there will be other tasks such as cleaning out the hen houses and maintaining the track.
It is always appreciated if volunteers are keen to show us the type of food they like to cook.
We live in a large house in the countryside and help with general housework, tidying, cleaning, laundry and washing the dishes is always greatly appreciated.
Volunteers who come to stay really need to be able to take the initiative with regards to jobs around the place, once they have been shown and explained what they are, especially since we are mostly out during the day of the working week. Also, it's really important to be open, dynamic, energetic, responsible, honest and patient.
We have a self-contained "granny flat" with en-suite bathroom which is sometimes available and a large downstairs room with a double bed and two single beds. There is a shower room downstairs opposite the large room. Wifi is available throughout the house and there is good 4G signal in the area.
With regards to food, breakfast and lunch are a "help yourself" affair, whilst the evening meal is the chance for everyone to talk about their day and enjoy the food together and we'd be delighted if you took a turn at cooking for us all - all ingredients are provided by us, of course!
There's a local bus service which runs every hour to Inverness (about 30 miles away) and is roughly a 50 minute bus ride. There are plenty of local walks/bike routes from the house. We are about 6 miles from both Invergordon and Tain, small towns with shops, cafes etc. Of course this is a good base from which to explore the majestic mountainous scenery of the whole of the Highlands of Scotland.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
This host can provide space for campervans.
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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