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*** After our first season on workaway, we have found that stays of less than a month are not very sustainable for us. As much as we enjoy sharing with people interested in learning about our way of life, it takes a good deal of time, energy, and effort to get to a good flow with farm and family dynamics, and we prefer that people stay minimum 6 weeks or longer to have a well rounded stay that feels beneficial all around. In fact, we would really like to have folks who can stay for a full season (or as much of it as possible) from mid April - mid October!
(For the right people already somewhat on this life path, know their way around a farm, and seem to be a great fit with our family, we may consider less than 6 weeks and straddling a bit before or after around the season. :) ***
We're a family of 4 living on our farmstead in the upper end of the rural valley of Gudbrandsdalen. We are a Norwegian/American couple, Torgeir & Uni, with two boys, ages 14 and 1. Torgeir's parents also live on the land.
This is our second year here on the farm, where we are committed to setting deep roots, creating a home and livelihood where our family can thrive. We are focused on growing as much of our own food as possible utilizing regenerative agriculture, holistic management, and permaculture principles, inspired largely by Allan Savory, Joel Salatin, and Richard Perkins, just to name a few...
As of now, we have 19 fully pastured grass-fed sheep & lambs, a few dozen pastured chickens & chicks, and a decent size kitchen garden where we try to grow as much of our vegetables as possible. We plan to develop a pastured egg business in the spring.
Beyond what we grow and raise ourselves, we try to forage, fish, and gather in the wild as much as possible. We still buy a large percentage of our food but our hope is to reduce that to a minimum as best we can.
We are attempting to rewild our bodies, minds, and lives to get closer to our original human capacities, striving to live in tune with nature, while engaging in intimate relationship with the land.
Our daily lives revolve around:
-being present for our kids
-growing, foraging, fishing, and preserving food
-developing our pastured egg business
-developing and honing traditional ancestral skills (i.e. hide tanning, wool fiber arts, fire making, tracking, bird language, nature awareness, etc.)
-time in nature
-connecting and sharing through open communication, laughter, play!
Cooking / shopping
Help with Eco project
Help in the house
Staying with us, you will experience conscious family life in a continuum concept/respectful parenting style, healthy nutrient dense food, simple farm life producing our own food, procuring wild foods, and a nature based lifestyle.
Other learning opportunities:
MovNat (natural human movement)
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine
Old Norse culture and spirituality
Most of the help we need revolves around caring for the animals, gardening, and chores that support family life running smoothly with a small child. We expect volunteers to help with cooking and cleaning up after meals as you would in your own household. This is not considered volunteer work. :)
Depending on the season and priority of work needed to be done, we sometimes also want help with projects such as:
Harvesting and preserving wild foods
Fermenting veggies from the garden
Working with wool, shearing, carding, spinning, felting
If you have any special skills, interests or passions, we are always eager for learning exchange so let us know what you might want to share with us! We are open to any skills but especially interested in rewilding, ancestral skills, nature awareness, wild foods, movement arts such as dance & martial arts, archery, and natural crafts such as woodcarving, basketweaving, primitive pottery, wool felting/spinning/knitting, and other useful traditional skills!
Our resident gregarious teen is especially interested in having more mentors to learn from and share with! :)
Also, we would love to learn more songs and stories from other traditions!
English, Norwegian, Korean
You will be staying in a small cozy cabin with a wood-fired stove. There is running cold water that can be warmed on the stove and a basic kitchen with an electric oven, fridge, and basic kitchen utensils & cookware for simple cooking. You have your own outdoor toilet, and access to the shower in the barn. In the summer, we like to wash ourselves by swimming in the lake or river. Highly recommended! :)
Breakfast and some dinners you prepare yourself in your cabin with basic ingredients we provide. (We find this best allows the necessary space for our family with our baby's morning nap and wind-down for bed if dinner ends up going a bit late.) We eat our main warm meal of lunch and most dinners together. We provide all you need for three squares per day. If you need special snacks, chocolate, or coffee, please be prepared to provide that for yourself. Everyone shares responsibilities with food prep and clean up.
We eat mostly organic and nourishing nutrient dense food à la Weston A. Price. This means that we properly prepare our grains, legumes, nuts & seeds by soaking in an acidic medium to neutralize phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors. We honour our animals that become our food by using all the parts from nose to tail. Please be okay with being around food preparation involving organs, bones, blood, etc. We have an abundance of vegetables from our garden in the late summer and autumn, and are working toward growing more root vegetables to store in our cellar for the long winter.
-No smoking, drugs, or alcohol on the property.
-No synthetic fragrances or chemical bug repellants, chemical sunscreens, etc. We are sensitive to these products and get headaches from being around them. (Please note that most deodorants, lotions, hair products, and laundry detergents contain fragrances that adversely affect those with sensitivities.)
-Have good proficiency in English so we can communicate easily with each other.
-Be okay with putting your phone away so you can be present with the people you are with.
-Be okay with independent work and solo time sometimes. We will be working together sometimes but not always as we need to prioritize being present for our baby. Though Kai will be available most evenings for fun and conversation, Torgeir will only be available some evenings, and Uni usually unavailable as she lays down with our baby to put him to sleep.
What to bring:
Solid work clothes and shoes. Our farm is on a high altitude, so spring, autumn and winter are cold. You need to bring warm clothes if you are staying with us at that time. Some summer days can be chilly too so be prepared with at least a few warm items of clothing.
We have wifi in Torgeir's parents' house, which you will be able to use as needed.
We try to have a conscious relationship with media and digital devices, especially around our kids. We ask that you mostly leave your phone or device in your cabin during the day or if you must keep it on you, please have it turned off or on airplane mode.
Taking the train to 'Lesjaverk' station, about 10 minutes away from us, is the most convenient way to get here. We can easily pick you up from there!
'Dombås' station is about 30 minutes away and we can pick you up there on days that the train doesn't travel further to Lesjaverk. From Oslo, the train ride is approximately 3.5 - 4 hours.
We have forest and mountains all around us, with tons of of opportunities for hiking and recreation. Our lake and river are wonderful for swimming, fishing, canoeing just 5 minutes walk into our backyard forest.
If it is clear you have not read the profile in full, we may not respond to your request. Please type 'glowing ember' in the subject line to let us know you have read the profile in entirety and we will prioritize responding to those requests first. Also, tell us a bit about yourself, your skillset, what you are looking for in your workaway experience, and why you think we would be a good fit.
We look forward to hearing from you! Bless! :)
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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