Working on a little farm and in Animal assisted therapy
Our Familiy ( we have 5 kids, 2 girls moved out studying and working, 1 boy is serving a church mission in Ireland, 2 boys are at home 13, 17 years) -we live and run a little Farm "Hof kleine Arche" in a small rural village Sitters (100 people) near Bad Kreuznach (20km)/ Kaiserslautern (40km)/ Mainz (65km) in absolute beautiful landscape and a lot of nature around. We have rare breeds like Coburger Fuchssheep and also chicken and two cats. We breed and train Border Collies since 19 years for sheep herding and as Therapydogs. We work in Animal Assisted Therapy with dogs and ponys, 3 times a week we have riding lessons for kids age 3 to 13 years. We breed mainly Shetland Original, Partbred and Miniature as well as Mini-Appaloosas, seldom we have foals from our 4 Dartmoor and Welsh B Ponys or the Islandic horses we have for family riding- The little poneys are trained for riding for little and/or disabled Children also some for driving. On our farm we harvest fruits like apples, plums and different berries and nuts. It is never boring and every day is different. We have more work and ideas then we can do alone - some fences, stables and a barn and cellar are still not "ready". We also have a fun loving family and friends, we love to share our experiences and homemade food and place. Also we look for good, responsible people a few times a year as we want to go to the sea for familyholidays with our children.
DIY and building projects
There is a lot to learn about nature and plants, herbs and animals, and rural farming in our area. Also about the men and animal bond we share and how the animals can help us (and others) to reach out to others and to reach our full potential and/or heal. You can learn how to train and understand dogs and horses and care best for them meeting their natural needs. If you are interested in riding and not to heavy for them there are a lot of breathtaking spots to go on horseback like ruins of former castles etc.. Nature lovers, sportive people and those who need a break from city traffic, noise and pollution can breathe freely here and find joy in walking ( maybe with some dogs), hiking, running, animal watching - sometime it is just silence and nature you can listen to… and nobody you will meet. The feeling of having done the work and harvested natures gifts as looking at homemade marmelade or juice and knowing (and tasting) to get the best ingredients is fantastic and rewarding. You can get insights in a lot of themes like family life in our country as you can come along with us to visit relatives, friends, church, society events, homes for elderly, disabled or community...
If you need/like a good workout and like to do something you can see done it is a great experience to build or rebuild/repair something that is of good use, so you can learn a lot of new skills and create things. We have remodeling renovating projects as well as small projects. You can participate in our life and learn typical German Tradition and meals and recipes… we like to eat together at least once a day or also with friends and neighbors. You can learn to work together in a team as well as on your own at your project. You can improve your German (English) speaking skills and maybe help us/the children with English...
You can find an open ear to listen and share your story and insights and ideas and learn to know new friends.
We are Christian, we try to live up to that and often run some social projects, some neighbour help, some time for others in need. We pray, read the scriptures, have Family Home Evening, go to church and live our faith and respect others as well as they do the same with us... We do not accept bad language, deafening noise, drugs or smoking in our home or stables, etc.- be a person especially children can look up and learn from so while working here wear always modest clothing and act in a friendly way. We are your hosts but not your hotel or waiters- we wont serve your meal in bed, take out your hair of the douche, clean your boots or room, and clean the toilet after you...or pick you up from the next cities every night after no busses go any more and you visited the pubs (we speak from experience!!!) Have an uplifting influence and if you are willing to take part in everyday life as one of us you can get the most out of the experience- we do not check the clock and when we have leisure time we wont tell you to work the 5th hour fully... and so otherwise sometimes there`s more and sometimes less to do- cuddling a dog or setting the table after I have cooked a delicious meal for all of us is not meant to be "Working hours!" in our understanding - it is family life - sharing meals as well as thoughts as I take time to show you our work and animals what is taking time also from "working" we expect you to show at least interest in our animals, family and work so if you are not having interest in animals, do not accept kids telling you something or you are afraid of getting dirty hands (or more) this is surely not the best suitable place as well as you prefer to keep sleeping long hours in the morning and afternoon daily.. and one ended up complaining he had to much to do after staying 11 days working just 7 of them some not even 3 hours... taking with him new boots ...
Farmwork is working outside a great deal- animals need to be cared on a daily basis also on weekends and you might get dirty ... also the animals need to be cared in the weekend and at any wheather conditions! Think of the right clothing! One showed up in winter without even a jacket or warm shooes, gloves or even socks(!) or a sweatshirt or pullover!
So if you treat us like family and we do the same and you give your full heart the time you are here you can get the most out of it and we will do the same - with open hearts and open arms.
work in the garden, there are trees to be cut, fences to be build and repaired, a barn to be remodeled, some seeds to be pulled or cut and our Little farm shop to be stocked… The animals have to be cared for and cleaned/brushed, and stables, barns, cellars, fences,... sometimes need more attention. Some Projects like Paddock Building or a new Flyer a herb garden or some dog and horse tricks for the next horseshow, a firewood protecting place, and a new pasture are in stock …and therefore we can need help also by bringing the poneys in from the pastures and preparing and harnessing them and bringing them back after riding. Mucking out, cleaning stables and paddocks is a big deal in winter and minor repairs are also on our schedule... (As workawayers demanded I write now that this means that you can get dirty!!! so I write it now because they told me that it was not written clearly in my profile and they didn`t expect this to happen and don`t like to work because of it and add to the whole thing; it also might rain -especially in Autumn and winter the wheater also can be wet and cold- please think about this because one lady couldn`t stand the thought of getting wet and eventually cold or ill so she refused to help caring for the animals any further because it startet to rain!!! - and please choose the right clothes and shoes for I had to buy for half of the workawayers cloth, gloves and boots and for a one -two weeks stay this is very expensive,,,)
Sometimes we are harvesting fruits etc-
If you are not a strong craftsman or worker there is still enough to be done in other areas- caring for the animals has a lot of aspects … so feel free to get in contact - and please tell us your limitations before you come! - there is a lot in life we can learn
In our 2 story farmhouse we have a visitors room (heated) and our guests/workers stay as part of the family, you can share work, activities, our home, familiy-live and meals with us. We have 3 meals a day breakfast (continental) a warm meal a day - mostly dinner/ lunch and bread with different sausages and cheese and vegetables in the evening. Nobody needs to be hungry here… (But we prefer people to use our resources in a honest and mannerful way and not overdoing in eating half a glass of jam to one bread, loading up a little slice of bread with big, big piles of sausage and cheese, drinking 16 (!) cups of coffee a day and then telling that they feel supertired and can`t sleep well in the night after having a long nap in the afternoon...What we all had here, never thought that it would come to pass... We also use the meat from our own sheep and like to barbecue. We prefer you non smoking and do not allow it at our farm ( danger of fire!) also we do not accept druguse / smoking etc. in our home. In winter we normally have room for max. 2 persons- in the summertime maybe more...
Languages Deutsch, English and French (my husband Andreas)
We also have nice sightseeing spots around a also cultural museeums and old historical sights. We have a busstop here and the next little City is 2km from us, the trainstation 7,5 km away. The next Airport is Frankfurt (90km), we can borrow you a bicycle or if you have a Drivers License and no car of your own- also occasional a car (VW Bus) when not needed here. We live in an old farmhouse in the nature (not wilderness!) and it always takes some efforts to go elsewhere… But we also pick up friends, visitors and our kids from the train station.. There are some nice places, restaurants and historical sights you can visit or feel free to find leisure time for reading etc..
In the next big cities Mainz, Kaiserslautern, Wiesbaden and Frankfurt there are a lot of culture events like concerts, exhibitions, art, museums etc.
All around there are smaller villages/cities with different possibilities like sports, swimming, shopping, etc.- but what we like best is being in the fields enjoying nature, our animals , friends and each other.
We are flexible but please ask and we organize together when we can pick you up - we´re not at home all the time waiting for a call to drive to the station...
For us and our work and animals benefit we prefer you staying at least two weeks or longer. To learn to know our farm/animals /work and routine takes some time and it is not really helpful for us showing and explaining 3 days everything to visitors and then saying good-bye... mostly in the morning it is just me working outside, at the weekends the family, sometimes some friends... so our place is not always crowded, some days you do not even see some other people outside working the animals , feeding, cleaning etc. ..
After some really bad experiences of people who didn`t show up , just didn`t answer anymore and do not react like bespoken, leaving early in a hurry ( not because of us) and do not do as they promised, we have been really disappointed by workawayers who didn`t live up to their profile and promises. Please think before you promise us some time /answers/ coming etc. because we count on you and there are more people interested around --- and if we promise you time at our place and with us maybe an other person has to be let down - and sometimes in tough times nobody came because of some others telling they would and we told others they can`t because of limited space and rooms... but they didn`t- so if you change your mind the least thing you should do is being honest immediately, and not just let us wait and wait and wait for answers and let us down in the end- or come and tell us that you are not staying as promised 3 weeks but will leave 5 days f.ex. earlier etc... sometimes without even apologizing. - Or leaving after a nice meal, night and breakfast without even saying goodbye or working at all,... Others might be happy to have the opportunity - but can`t if you are blocking the calendar... If you are not sure what you want- first think about and get clear before you make your decision and then please stay to it- as we do also ............... Thanks for understanding.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.
Accuracy of profile: