Hi there, I am 52 year old mother of 2 ( G 14 and B 12 ). My husband and I own a big old house ( 1906 ) in a semi-rural environment in a small village. At the front of the house there is the main road, from the backyard you can get immediately into a national "reserve". This area is visited by many tourists. There is a railwaystation , 20 minutes walk through the village and fields and the bus stops once per hour at 100 mtrs distance . Germany ( Aachen, Köln ) and Belgium ( Luik ) and Limburg's capital Maastricht are near. I can speak and understand Dutch, English and German. My French is rusted and my Spanish and Russian have been neglected for many years... We have a lovely social cat and 3 Guinea-Pigs. Since December 2016 we have Spanish rescue dog, she is a no-breed , but the best dog we could have ever asked for. My children are in school during the week, they can understand English and are open to get to know new people from over the world ( just as I am ) . I have bicycle(s) you can use in your free-time and I can if wanted bring you by car or pick you up. We have an electric piano in the house. There is free WIFI. I am a good cook and can adjust to dietary needs. I'm a little bit experienced on this and hope this will work out fine. We are non-smokers.
Help in the house
You can learn something about the Dutch people, their language and their food. A lot of buildings from ancient times can be visited. we have castles and manors, abbeys and farms.
You do not need to be able to do/handle all of the area's I am looking for help for. Just one aspect will be fine too ! I cannot carry heavy loads so I need others to help me do the muscle stuff. And I cannot make long hours myself.
Gardening: this year was a year with lots of weeds growing due to the weatherconditions. I have been unable to keep up with all the growth and feel overwhelmed. Some trees/bushes/hedges need to be trimmed. Also all my garden furniture is looking for a good scrub. I do not want to use pesticides and/or chemicals. Our garden is around 800 m2 . Update Nov 2016 : the garden is okay for the winter now, only some stuff laying around should be organized, in Spring I will need help again with the garden. Update June 2017: Good sunshine and rainy days result in many weeds again, Help needed !
Building: My bathroom ( with an already installed bubblebath ! ) needs to be tiled, My hallway needs a ceiling and some maintenance in the house needs to be done. I need help with decluttering and sorting my tools and nuts and bolts. Update Nov 2016 : The winter calls for organizing the tools and handyman stuff. And maybe a bigger project in the Bathroom. Update June 2017 : Still no new bathroom, tools not organized so help needed.
Help in the house: Some rooms need to be painted/redecorated, but before and after, they need to be cleaned and organized. And everything will have to move to another room and then, after finishing the job , be put back in. I want my dishes and all my cups and glasses ( that cannot go into the dishwasher ) to be washed by hand and put back in the cupboards. I am a enthousiastic reader and so I own lots and lots and lots of books. These need to be organized and maybe need to be packed for storage or to be sold. I need help with the "autumn" cleaning of the house , to get ready for winter. Update Nov 2016: with the help of some workawayers a lot has been done already but in a household some tasks never end. For me to get rid of my backlog I need others to do the normal chores of the household. Update June 2017. Progress has been made, but now my father decided to get rid of his stuff and for me there is the task to look at some of the china and glasswork form my childhood days to sort.
I own a VW Beetle ( old ) . Who can help me getting it rolling again ? Update Nov 2016: this project is at a standstill now. Update June2017, the "normal car broke down, so all my money goes in that car.....
There is an old campervan that could be made into an extra place to sleep for one. And that person could be YOU !
Dutch, English, German, a little French.
You will have a bed either in the campervan when ready, or in one of the rooms the house has. You do not need to share this room unless you come as couple ( of friends or partners ) with shared bathroom/shower ( with the family). We expect you to eat with the family but we are flexible on that now. I can provide lodgings for a maximum of 2 people. If you are not a couple-couple there is an extra airbed or guestbed . In the summer ( if you like ) a tent to sleep in can be placed in the garden.
It's a 2,5 hrs train ride to Amsterdam, our capital, With a discount railway return ticket you can travel for less than 20 euros. Beautiful German and Belgium cities like Keulen and Aken and Luik can also be visited. We are near the Eifel, the Ardennes within 2 hours distance by car. The area we live in has been named Best touristic destination in the world 2016 by the World Travel & Tourism Council. You can borrow a bicycle from me.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week