a) travel alone and want to perform mostly routine duties in small portions more/less alone during the day, having lots of free time for your own in between? Then visit us in February-May and help out with lambing and taking care of moms and lambs daily! We offer warm private room, food, wifi etc. We´re flexible!
b) travel alone and would like to work with others, doing different tasks daily, lots of fieldwork and adventures? Lots of discussions? Then visit us in Sept-Nov!
c) travel as 2 persons, want to have privacy, enjoy nature´s beauty and summer warmth, cook sometimes by yourself, work independently, have contacts with our family staying close? Then visit us in June-Aug, stay in trailer next to house, help out with weeding and work with collecting branches in forest etc!
d) Want to experience Estonia´s countryside and farm life in its maximum cold, deep snow and unpleasantness? Then visit the farm in Dec-Jan and offer Andres your company :)
Welcome! Our family farm in South-Estonia looks very private thanks to the lovely hilly landscape where it is located, yet it is in the middle of a small village Assikvere, 50km from university town Tartu.
Farm's main activity is growing sheep (about 500 heads in summer 2017). At the moment we are using approx. 110ha of land. Additionally the potatoes and several other vegetables (garlic, strawberry, rootbeet, carrot, beans, green peas etc.) are growed and volunteers welcomed. Our family of 5 lives part-time in Tartu and part-time in this country farm (named Lauri farm).
Farm´s main living building was built in 1919 and is an example of Estonian country mansion architecture with its size, height, porch etc. It is unrenovated. Sheep growing in farm began at year 2008 so we are new in this and we are growing. 2 production buildings have been built since then and 3rd is under construction, as well as new log sauna. There is lots of different, also historic technics (6 tractors, mainly older etc. - even a working caterpillar tractor) - if you´re interested in such things, here is lots to see and probably help, too!
During school months (that is, except June, July and August) mother and children live mainly in town Tartu, where we have a town home (50 km from farm), not in the farm.
Farm is self-sufficient as we have our own well from where comes water for us and our animals. It seems that our lifestyle in farm at the moment is more or less what was normal around here even 80 years ago, but nowadays is pretty much lost. (A´la growing and preserving your own vegetables, strawberries; picking mushrooms, berries, herbs; smoking meat and fish; using old-fashioned sauna and outhouse toilet; heating house with firewood; making firewood; during cold times cooking on the stove heated with firewood etc). More modern lifestyle we practice in town, so it is a nice balance for us. The Farmer grew up in this neighborhood and therefore knows the local environment and the people to the details. Was away though many years, learning and working in totally different area. Also he still can speak local dialect (Kodavere), a memory from his childhood, which is rare now - practically died-out language.
Help here is needed on building (always something), making and repairing fences, forest works, hay-making, with sheep during the year, in vegetable garden, playing with kids in summer (!) etc.
Work usually means assisting and being a company to the Farmer (Andres) in whatever he is doing that day, depending on the season, weather, needs, mood and the people available. He likes to do all he can himself from building to shopping. He is interested in everything. So 95% you will work with him or at least start and finish with him!
We have both dedicated much time and energy on studying and working outside of home in our lives. Due to different reasons at the moment we have put these things aside (or on hold) and enjoy our lifestyle as it is, deciding ourselves how to use our time. We do not like to be bored more than anybody else so we move around and switch actions a lot.
On Sundays we are in Tartu (ususally go there Saturday evening) with our family and we can easily take and host our volunteers with us there as well.
Guests are welcome to join us in our trips/activities. There always seems to be something which comes on the way of working :) Andres and kids participate in local village acting group, too.
I will point out that our household is located inside our 4,5 km long net sheep fence (one of them). So here is good opportunity to wander around in fields and forests and hills quite a bit without getting lost!
We personally don´t drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes. We have a cat and a big friendly dog.
Babysitting / child care
Cooking / shopping
Help with Eco project
Help in the house
Help with Computers / internet
After (or even more likely before :)) work we can take you to swimming, fishing (we can smoke fish or meat together), ice-fishing during colder months, have a barbecue, hunting (optional, official, pre-agreement), picking mushrooms, berries etc. from forest, also herbs. We have lots of wild strawberries for eating all around our house area in June/July. We have quite many different birds living/nesting in our house and yard area (best time to listen/observe them is in June). Fox, rabbit, deer are seen quite often, also storks are usual. Mushrooms everywhere for picking in Autumn.
Currently more or less on action or planning:
- building log sauna;
- finishing several buildings by details;
- making hay and silage rolls in Summer, taping the bird-made small holes on silage rolls, bringing rolls home by tractor;
- relocating and organizing wood material piles;
- cleaning animal buildings with us;
- taking care of animals and veggies;
- we could use architectural advise on how to fit modern toilet and washing room into 1919 building and also how to build out its 2nd floor and use better its arched field-stone basement;
- forest works;
- making and storage of firewood;
- repairing tractors etc.;
- IF YOU CAN/ARE WILLING TO DRIVE A TRACTOR we need you all year round!;
- we have a fieldstone building nearby which will need some serious repairing in 2017/2018 (for wool "workshop")!!!;
- our web page and new FB page could use some help/updating...
- planting a field of daffodils / a plan for future/;
- we also appreciate company and playing with our children (born 2005, 2010, 2012).
estonian, english, russian
In house in private room; in house in shared room with two single beds; tent, trailer (for two), hayloft. We provide food for volunteers, also vegetarian and vegan. We cook a lot of local fresh products like vegetables and mushrooms. I have to say that Andres cooks and eats a lot of meat.
Our farm has a home page in internet, please write us and we will send you a link (we are not allowed to post it here). There on home page are listed other sightseeing objects nearby.
Buses from Tartu twice a day come to Assikvere bus stop located 200 meters from our farm (and go back to Tartu, too). Food shop, post office, medical shop, library etc are 7 km away in Pala (we go there by car). 15 km away is Europe's 5th largest lake Peipsi (between Estonia and Russia). We swim there in Summer.
Closest airports are Tallinn and Riga.
We can pick you up from Tartu or Mustvee with car, if needed, too (best day for picking you up from Tartu for us is Sunday).
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week