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My farm is a 63 acre farm where I enjoy my own carriage driving and endurance horses and help others learn to drive. The farm also has 20 acres in hay. I'm a retired emergency nurse but work casual shifts at two nearby hospitals and run the farm in addition to that work. At present, my "family" includes a very friendly cat and four of my own horses. At times, I go away for short periods varying from a few days to up to a week to attend shows or to teach driving clinics around the province; I'm also a provincial driving judge and a nationally certified driving technical delegate so that keeps me busy! I love to drive my horses but being alone on the farm makes this difficult. I hope to host "horsey" people who are also keen to help out with some light gardening, yard work and general farm upkeep.
Types of help and learning opportunitiesGardeningAnimal CareFarmstay helpHelp around the houseGeneral Maintenance
Cultural exchange and learning opportunities
If improving your English is a goal, you will be immersed in an English-only environment as my knowledge of other languages is, at best, very minimal!! You will have the opportunity to live day-to-day in an environment as close to being "your own home" as possible. Learn and experience what it is REALLY like to live as a Canadian in a rural setting does!
A volunteer staying with me would be asked to assist with occasional fence maintenance, haying (including some stacking of bales - hard work but rewarded with magnificent meals!!) and if capable, some minor tractor maintenance, and daily feeding of horses (minimal most of the time as they are pastured). If you are a very experienced rider, you can lunge/exercise horses both on the ground and under saddle. Other chores includes minor light gardening and lawn/yard/light building maintenance (i.e. perhaps painting a shed or something like that - nothing huge) and helping care for my cat.
You will also be asked to farmsit when I am away from home (usually only for a few days at a time, but can be longer occasionally) so a self-starter/self-motivated person is essential. You must be comfortable on my safe and secure farm on your own; an electric gate at the entry deters unwanted guests but the area is generally very safe. My wonderful, friendly neighbours are always close by to help out in a pinch or to get you to town if I am away. While you are staying with me, I hope that you will treat my farm as yours, make yourself at home, find things to work on independently (with some direction, of course), and be happy to work alongside me as well. I don't work on a regular "5 on/2 off" work pattern; the chores are varied with one often being able to decide on what they will work on, when to take their own breaks, and when their day is done. Some days, your work might consist of a long trail ride in the beautiful hills, and then a nice dinner and an evening watching some telly while other days we might work a long day cleaning up the yard and garden. So 5 on/2 off isn't really the way it works but many days are quite light in terms of work. You can expect to do at least a little bit every day but many days that might only include a ride!
In 2018, I lost my home to a house fire. I now have a beautiful new, comfortable home with all the modern conveniences. The farm is extremely well set up for ease of horse care and includes a large grass fenced riding arena and several kilometers of riding trails on the property. Other riding areas are a short ride down the road or short trailer ride away.
Large private bedroom in the house where I reside. Guest bathroom for your use; all other house areas shared with me. My original home burned down in 2018 and I have rebuilt a beautiful home which was finished in December 2019. It features natural gas heating and fireplace, a luxury kitchen with gas cooktop and a comfortable living room, all outfitted with new furnishings.
What else ...
Due to the fact that the accomodations are shared (aside from a private bedroom/bathroom), I would be comfortable with females or couples only applying at this time. You must be comfortable working around larger, strong and lively horses (I have German Warmbloods) and should have a very good working knowledge of horses. If you wish to ride, you must be comfortable schooling 16.2 HH powerful, energetic but generally well-behaved horses, so very solid, strong and formal english riding experience is a must if you want to ride the show stock. There may be an older, settled horse available for hacking if you aren't a highly skilled rider though you must have some riding experience to do so. I live a 15 minute drive outside of 100 Mile House; there is no public transportation into town but I go into town regularly and neighbours are also around to get you in/out of town if I'm not available. You may be asked to stay on the farm for periods of time without me present (i.e. while I'm at work and while I'm away teaching clinics) and must be willing to take on the care of the farm for that time (easy as horses are pastured, not stabled).
I do not allow smoking in my home or in the barn areas and would prefer people not smoke at all on the property. Most of the work involved on the farm is light physical work but during haying season it can get heavy for a day or two.
My cat lives in the house with me though of course she does go outside as well. Those with pet allergies should not apply. I eat a regular diet with few restrictions and would find feeding a vegetarian difficult. Planning and preparation of meals is an important and very enjoyable part of the experience and those with special meal restrictions make it harder to fully share this . I enjoy a glass of wine with dinner from time to time and a beer on a hot day but do not wish to have anyone stay on the farm who drinks alcohol to excess. I do not allow the use of recreational drugs, including marijuana, on the farm. i welcome people from all walks of life!
I'm basically a pretty quiet individual who likes the peace of a rural setting. My home is generally a calm and settled environment; I do best with someone who would describe themselves as organized and calm in nature.
My farm is located in the middle of a beautiful, lake-dotted area of BC called "The Cariboo". It's a popular recreational area, and wildlife abounds. Deer, coyotes, sandhill cranes and many other animals and birds are seen regularly, with lucky visitors catching a glimpse of bears, moose, cougars, lynx or bobcats on occasion. Summer months are popular for horseback riding, swimming, fishing, hiking, ATV touring and many other activities. In the winter, we have both a cross country ski area and a small downhill slope; there are many places to snowmobile and ice fishing is also popular. We're a short drive from some of the best downhill ski slopes in North America. Plenty to see and do in the Cariboo!
A little more information
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
How many Workawayers can stay?
Average of 5 per day but I don't run a Mon-Fri operation so this varies.
I learnt lots about carriage driving and thoroughly enjoyed riding and driving her horses.
The work here was very fulfilling and satisfying and after a days work there was always a great meal waiting!
If you go there, be prepared to constantly be around amazing animals - two of the cutest dogs I had the luck to meet, a very sweet cat and some very funny and well-trained horses.
Elisa is great and very easy-going to stay with, her cooking is amazing and