Fairytales and history alive in Normandy, with Kiwis in France

Country

France

Favourited 541 times


  • rating

    Host rating

  • feedbacks

    Feedback

    58  

  • last activity

    Last activity

    08/05/2020

  • Last email replied

    Reply rate

    80.0 %

  • Last email replied

    Average reply time:

    within 8 days

  • Badges

    Top Host
 
  2020 

 Min stay requested: at least 3 weeks

J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
  • Description

    Description

    *️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️2020 projects*️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️ This year is all about baroque architecture! The historic house needs 2 new vintage bathrooms, replaced decorative ceiling plaster, repaired moldings, replaced paneling, converted cast iron radiators, a Parisian style kitchen, and much more. There is a curtain making project and some furniture up-cycling.. We are combining traditional skills and modern solutions using anything from 3D printing to the milling machine, if this sounds like fun to you please get in contact, we are looking for mature workawayers (23+ years) with a driver's licence and some construction/renovating experience, there is a much rounder description of us and the situation below, we really look forward to meeting you*️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️

    *️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️General Description and introduction*️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️
    Hi, we're Mike, Rose and Olivier! We are a Kiwi / Franco family living in historic Normandy, we've been renovating our amazing 500 year old farmhouse whilst perfecting our French and generally immersing ourselves in French life for a long time now. We are a couple who have travelled and worked in many different countries and enjoy learning about different cultures. Here in France, we have a simple but good life enjoying the outdoors in our pool, jacuzzi, trampoline, kids play area, brazier and bonfire pit, etc. We are in the countryside just outside an active village, our 14 year old son, Olivier, goes to the local school (~2km/10min cycle), and workawayers are welcome to use our bikes to explore the local towns and cafes, scenic and historical sights, local markets etc.

    We are restoring an historic house in our local village which we want to bring back to it's former glory - we are talking tapestries, painted decorated ceilings, detailed wall panelling, goregous plaster mouldings etc - It's really something! It is historic in terms of it's age and architecture but also in terms of the family and people concerned, fasinating. If this you like 'old things' and history you'll love this project.

    At the same time are still completing some finishing off projects on our extensive ecological project to re-thatch and insulate our chaumiere, a fairytale thatched farmhouse. The bulk of the thatch and other insulation work is now done but there are projects such as the repair of 300 yr old oak flooring and reupholstering furniture. We use natural/traditional products where ever possible.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Building
    General Maintenance
    Help with Eco project

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We are looking for enthusiastic capable people who would enjoy helping us in exchange for access to this fantastic part of France. We are of course happy to assist those wishing to improve their French and/or cultural understanding of France and bring you into the classic components of rural French life such as markets etc. We also try to assist you with access to the tourist sights where we can - there's everything from famous sights to unknown local food producers here.. We're close to all the historic D-day sites (actually on the D-day 'route-de-libertie'), the evocative Abbaye d'Hambye is 5 mins away, the local beach (a fantastic never-ending stretch of golden sand) is 30 mins by car, there are wonderful local produce tours (cheese, cider, calvados etc) and it's only 40 mins to the famous Le Mont St Michel!

  • Help

    Help

    We do occasionally get professionals in but we are multi-skilled (from electronics to masonry) and do most projects ourselves. Many of the tasks involve wood or stonework so workaways with building skills would obviously be very much appreciated but in addition many projects just need willing capable hands.

    In terms of the help routine we are generally very flexible.. For projects at the historic house we have to work around the town noise restrictions which include a long break at lunch time so there are compulsary lunch lunches! The day often works out as a couple of hours in the morning and a few hours in the afternoon. For work projects at home (the thatched farmhouse we do not have set hours of each day to work so if you'd like to do your work in several very intensive days and then head off for a weekend camping that's fine with us and you're welcome to borrow our tent, or if you'd rather have more short days and enjoy the house, relax in the pool and spa during down time and chat over long lunches that's fine too just talk it through with us. There are of course certain days when we have to work around Mike's availability or the weather etc and we tend to just work as a team to meet those targets.

    In terms of living in the house, it is a family home and all general assistance in the home is much appreciated, cooking, dishwasher stacking etc. Generally, we try to all muck in and enjoy the summer, the projects, the house and life in general.. We always enjoy meeting a variety of people and welcome families and a variety of ages, in fact we prefer if workawayers are over 24, or at least one member of a couple is, just as a general indicator of independence and practical life experience.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English, French, and a smattering (only) of Spanish, Japanese and Maori

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    We have two double bedrooms in the house and 2 caravans next to the house available for workawayers. We usually let people chose which they prefer..

    We usually work on stays of approximately 4 weeks as this helps everyone settle in, relax, and get the best out of the experience. This can sometimes be extended depending on circumstances.

    We have three cats who are in and out of the house, we generally find they don't create a problem for people with cat allergies perhaps because we don't have many soft floor coverings..

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    There are multiple choices for access to us:
    By boat - there are the Brittany Ferries ports at Ouistreham Caen and St Malo (both ~1 hour from us) which connect to the UK and Ireland;
    By plane - there is a Ryan Air airport at Dinard (~1 hour) mainly connecting to the UK or local French airports at Carpiquet/Caen (~45 mins) and Rennes with European connections;
    By train - there are good SNCF train links to Villedieu-les-Poeles (~10 mins) from Paris Gare Montparnasse and there is also Gare Folligny (~20 mins) if you are travelling down the western side of France rather than from Paris;
    By bus - the local bus company is Manéo with a variety of options for across La Manche (our department in Basse Normandie) connections;
    By car - we are easily accessible from the western motorway route in France, it's called the A84 on the section by us, we're exit 38 (~5mins) where there is on-off access and a co-voiturage parking area good for bla bla car etc.

    We are happy to collect people from the bus and train stations and co-voiturage sites. The plane and ferry ports are quite a trip for us and although we can sometimes do this by co-ordinating with other travel plans we appreciate it if workawayers can get to within 20 mins of us.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    25 hours a week

Mike and Oli doing the haka
The top of the double height reception room in the house - lovely old beams, weird shaped door, modern lanterns suspended from antique pulleys
Everyone joining in and enjoying NZ day celebrations 2013
The workawayer team late summer 2014 up at our look-out
Having fun in the pool
The house in the snow
Rose and the workaway team winter 2012 at foret de Saint Sever Calvados
Our local beach, the beautiful St Martin de Behal
'The musketeers' at Le Mont St Michel
Roasting marshmellows around the brazier
Workawayers in the jacuzzi
The kitchen with Paris-Auckland-London skylines (template)
Rose doing the bathroom shower mosaiic

These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.

Accuracy of profile: (5.0)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (5.0)



































Host ref number: 858889688575