My name is Carol and my husband Tom and I live in the woods on 17 acres (7 Hectares) in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Central Virginia, 15 minutes away from some great hiking in the Shenandoah National Park and in the midst of Virginia Wine Country.
Tom built our home, a unique six-sided design set into the hillside, a kind of Hobbit treehouse. We keep a few chickens for eggs and raise chickens for meat in the spring/summer. We tend a veggie/berry garden. We have 2 dogs, Reny and Wally and Tillie the cat.
We have recently began hosting campers to our place. We have 2 tent sites and can host up to 8 people. So far it's been weekends only and we have met some really great people.
Tom is a retired 3rd grade teacher although he still teaches part-time. He teaches adults who are going back to school to earn their high school degree. He also is a great banjo player, and gives lessons in banjo as well as guitar, ukele and his mandolin playing is coming along. Tom loves sharing music with people at all levels. He would love to jam with you or give a beginner's lesson. Didn't pack your guitar? - he has one you can borrow.
I work nearby in a village with adults with developmental disabilities providing recreational and educational activities. Depending on the week you may want to join me and my folks on a group outing to a concert or festival.
We both enjoy camping and hiking -there are so many hikes to explore at all levels. We also enjoy going for wine tastings at the many local wineries in the area. I enjoy gardening which I need help with and Tom has several building projects with which he could use a hand. We heat with a wood-burning stove and also need help with gathering and splitting wood using a wood splitting machine, (or for a great work-out split with an axe)
In the evenings we like to play cards or scrabble, or perhaps if the weather is fine have friends over for a camp fire.
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
Our region has so much to offer, culture, history, natural beauty and outdoor activity and we are within 30 minutes of most of it. Tom and I can guide you to many of these places and experiences. Also if you wish to learn or improve your banjo or guitar or other stringed instrument, Tom is an excellent teacher. My work is at a wonderful lifesharing community with adults with developmental disabilities and I would want everyone to come have a tour and see this unique community and participate in any of the activities that is my job to coordinate. Lifesharing is an important concept to me and as much we want to welcome you into our home and show our way of life we would love to learn from others and hear your story, and perhaps share your food, if you like to cook a special dish, we have some specialty markets I could buy the ingredients.
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We have several projects and ongoing maintenance and so can find a task for every skill level. Most of the task is outdoors, but there are some indoor tasks too.
Tending to small flock of laying chickens all -year and meat birds in the spring only
Gardening - weeding, mulching, planting, preparing beds
Wood splitting, using a mechanical wood splitter
Fencing - clearing brush from fence line and repairing fences
Mowing - though we are mostly wooded there is a field we maintain using both a riding and a walk behind mower
Help maintain the walking labyrinth that our 1st work- awayer Andrea created!!
Painting: any artists out there? we'd appreciate any creative painting on the side of the barn or lattice work
Cooking and Shopping
If you are good at computers and teaching we could use some lessons in better using our MAC laptop and social media
4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week for stays of 2 - 3 weeks
Your home will be a guest cabin that we call "The barn". You will have a private room within the cabin on a double bed with a memory foam mattress. There is running hot and cold water, electric light, propane stove and refrigerator, composting toilet and internet access. The common area of the cabin is shared with us.
All meals are provided, we enjoy our chickens' fresh eggs in meals and also eat alot of chicken which we have grown ourselves. Also beef from our neighbors' farms. Veggies from our garden in season. We can easily accommodate vegetarians, and those with Gluten -free, if it's not too severe an allergy.
Breakfast you prepare for yourself, and some lunches too but we always liked to have dinners as our shared meal together, everyone chipping in with prep and clean-up. We try and eat healthy, but Tom loves a good frozen pizza from time to time and I make excellent cheesecake.
We can host solo travelers or couples and families.
Transportation is an issue, we live rurally and the closest store is 15 minute drive. Charlottesville is 30 minutes away by car. We would do our best to help drive you places but it's best if you have your own transportation, though there is a local transit service which can take you places, it has limited service times.
Shenandoah National Park is 15 minutes away, great hiking, camping, waterfalls and bears!!
So many local wineries and breweries each offering their own unique tastings and often music or other entertainment. Charlottesville is a very cool town, a small town, home to University of Virginia, and Monticello, the historic home to Thomas Jefferson and lots more: bars, restaurants, cinema, lots of live music venues.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
small camper vans are welcome but our roads can't handle any pull-behind trailers.
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week 2- 3 weeks stays
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