March 2019: NB We are no longer in Berlin but now travelling around Europe as both workawayers and sometimes hosts. Watch this space for further details and timings...
We are a relaxed and international little family currently living in Berlin and seeking help to better organise our household, prepare for an imminent house move, and occasional babysitting.
We're an all female household and for solo workawayers, we would generally prefer women. Other families with children wanting to spend time in Berlin would be extremely welcome. During the school term I would also prioritise workawayers who can get up at 7am on weekdays and help get my daughter ready to leave for school in the morning. Essentially, this involves packing a snackbox and water bottle, reminding her to eat breakfast and prompting her to get her shoes and coat on in time for us to leave the house. (This gives me a valuable 15 mins to get dressed and ready to leave with her! I eat breakfast at the office.) We are not "morning people" and schooldays can be a struggle without an extra pair of hands...
When I'm not working or chasing my active and enthusiastic 9 year old, I love cooking dishes from around the world, particularly spicy food. We mainly eat vegetarian, with some fish. I can also easily cater for vegan and gluten-free diets as many of my family and friends have these requirements.
NB We are not a native-German speaking family. I'm always very happy to practice German with Workawayers but if you're coming to Berlin to improve your German language skills, you would be better off finding some native speakers and avoiding my foreign accent and grammar errors! I am adding this clarification to the profile because I get lots of enquiries from Workawayers who want to learn German language and culture while they're in Berlin.
Babysitting / child care
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
We would love to exchange cooking and language skills from different countries. In our household we speak English, Finnish (not me), German, some rusty French and Turkish and very basic Italian.
We've been living in Berlin for over three years, with lots of short and long term guests from our family and friends along the way, and seem to have accumulated lots of clutter, old clothes and junk on top of all the older existing clutter which I think we brought here from from UK, Turkey and Finland...
We will leave our current house later this year and are gradually donating or recycling all our unwanted stuff and organising what we plan to keep. I need help to sort various items, pack things away in boxes and drawers, take bags and boxes to recycling points, and list items on local Freecycle sites for collection if suitable. For someone more domestically organised than me, these are probably all very easy tasks...
There's also a bag of long overdue sewing repairs and a messy garden in need of tidying and trimming for anyone who has those skills.
In return for 3-4 hours help each day, I offer a room, food and a ticket for Berlin zone AB travel to be shared among all workawayers and guests at that time. Happy to practice English language and discuss British culture and history. We eat mainly vegetarian with some fish. I also have lots of experience of cooking vegan and gluten free so these diets are no problem. You would be welcome to join us at mealtimes or do your own thing as you prefer. It's good to share a glass a wine and chat over dinner in the evenings occasionally but there is no obligation.
NB We are a household with a child and smoking, drugs or excessive drinking are unacceptable in our home.
English, German, French (rusty), Turkish (rusty), Finnish (but not me!)
Up to two double rooms in comfortable family house. Access to bathroom anytime as long as you bear in mind the morning rush when we're trying to get to work and school!
Berlin is a great city for visitors of all ages and interests, with extensive museums, art galleries, restaurants, nightclubs, river cruises and green areas. We are about 30 minutes from central Berlin by train or bus, with the nearest bust stop 5 minutes away and the nearest train station 12 minutes walk.
There is a forest at the bottom of our garden which you can reach through a garden gate. There are lots of walking and cycling paths in the woods, and you can easily get to Teufelsberg, the highest point in Berlin with a great view over the city.
Volunteers are welcome to play our (electric) piano, guitar, or (untouched for years) violin. I also have plenty of books which volunteers can read, both fiction and non-fiction, and a large collection of films and TV series on DVD. (We don't have a TV so use our laptops and/or a projector to project films onto the wall in the living room.)
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 3-4 hours a day, 5 days a week