Meet Ellen and Bernie

We are a fit, active, non-smoking and location independent Canadian couple, with lots of experience with pets and our own homes in Toronto, Canada and Costa Rica (where we custom built a home).

Both of us are clean and tidy, detail orientated, practical, honest and well grounded. One of the reasons we love to house sit is that we are able to run our businesses online, giving us the freedom to travel as long as we have internet.

 

Experienced, Multilingual Homebodies

We are experienced travelers and between us conversant in English, French, Spanish, German and Polish. Both of us love to spend extended periods in new places, soaking up new cultures, new cuisines and meeting new people.

A busy nightlife and party scene is not for us – we prefer quiet evenings at home, writing, drawing or curled up with a good book or watching a movie.

We have used house sitters ourselves, so we understand the needs and challenges of finding the perfect sitters. We also know the satisfaction and peace of mind derived from leaving our home in capable hands.

bernie300Hi, I’m Bernie

I was born and raised in Quebec to German immigrants, which explains the English, French and German from childhood on.

I got my bachelors degree in engineering and worked for a number of years in project management prior to an extended career in sales and marketing management and consulting, so problem solving and managing staff is a large part of my background.

On the home front, my dad taught me how to use tools growing up and I’ve put that to good use, doing plumbing, electrical and construction work through multiple home renovations.

I feel there is still lots to do – currently I help businesses with all aspects of their marketing including branding, promotion, website management and SEO optimization.

On the hobby side, I like using computer technology to create graphics and compose music – my computer laptop is used for both work and art.

I have a great time with cats and dogs – I’ve had both as pets and I seem to be a bit of a cat magnet – if there are any cats around, my lap seems to be the preferred destination.

 

And I’m EllenEllen300

I’m born and raised in Toronto to Polish parents, and also spent time in Quebec in French immersion, which explains the English/French/Polish languages in my background.

I love travelling and and exploring new cultures and countries – I took a year off early in my career to travel through Europe, North Africa and Asia, and look forward to revisiting some of these places and getting to know them better.

Professionally I wear many hats; I’m an author, an executive coach and a long-time owner of rental properties including a luxury vacation rental in Costa Rica.  These businesses give me the flexibility to work from anywhere there is a good internet connection.

Cats, rabbits and fish were my pets as a child and I’m equally at home with large and small dogs. The finely controlled feeding of finned friends is no problem my experience with my own fish and aquariums.

I also pride myself on my green thumb – I enjoy the trimming and pruning to make a garden tidy and balanced and I’m happy to keep pots and planter watered.

 

Why We  House Sit

We have two main reasons:

  • The first is that house sitting allows us to gain a gain deeper understanding of a country and its people and to experience local culture in depth, without being rushed.
  • The second reason is to find the place that we will ultimately call home, we have had it with Canadian winters.

Although we do spend a month or more at our home in Costa Rica every year, we want to travel more extensively and to see more of the world!  We have seen too many people put off traveling until it was too late, finding themselves unable to enjoy new travel experiences due to health issues or financial restrictions.

We have spent our entire careers helping others with coaching, mentoring and management services. House and pet sitting allows us to continue to be of service to others but in a different way, ensuring a win-win-win for all (You the home owners, your pets and we as your house sitters).

 

What We bring to Your Home and Pets

We are a mature, capable couple, who work well together as a team and have done so for the last 20 years. Although we are not yet of retirement age we bring a wealth of experience, capability and common sense with us.

Fit and healthy, we enjoy cycling, yoga and long walks with a dog or two.

Animal lovers, we have had pets most of our lives and are comfortable with fish, rabbits, cats, dogs (both large and small) and familiar with horses too.

We are homeowners and have owned seven different homes over the past 30 years. These vary from a large, custom-built luxury vacation home in the jungle of Costa Rica to urban homes in Toronto. Having built our own villa in Costa Rica, we understand the challenges of building and maintaining homes in warmer climates.

Practical and handy with tools, Bernie has renovated homes over the year’s giving him experience with plumbing, electrical systems and construction.

Detail orientated professionals with backgrounds in engineering, project management and executive coaching means we are able to deal with and solve problems as they arise.

Our management skills. We are comfortable with managing household staff, (we employ gardeners and cleaners at our Costa Rica property) and have years of management experience covering teams, projects and properties.

We are experienced travelers having visited over 35 countries between us, both on business and on personal trips and are well adapted to the vagaries of different customs and cultures.

Multi-lingual, between us we speak English, French, Spanish and can draw on childhood Polish and German for basic conversation needs.

Experienced housesitters, we have cared for pets and homes in our neighborhood, in Ontario’s cottage country and in Costa Rica.

Your Piece of Mind

We are honest, detail orientated, clean and tidy and able to keep calm and cool under pressure. All of this adds up to very competent pair of professionals who strive to make finding your ideal sitter a simple, hassle free process.

Let’s Talk!

Contact us today and see if we can be ‘Your Trusted House Sitters’ the next time you travel, allowing you to rest assured that your pets and home are in the best of hands.

Let's chat!

6 + 10 =

San Sebastian, Spain

San Sebastian, Spain

Paris

Paris

Ellen, Lola & Fizz in France

Ellen, Lola & Fizz in France

Bernie the Cat Magnet

Bernie the Cat Magnet

Ellen walking Juno & Sawyer

Ellen walking Juno & Sawyer

Bilbao, Spain

Bilbao, Spain

Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Our Costa Rica Villa Backyard

Our Costa Rica Villa Backyard

Our Costa Rica Villa Garden

Our Costa Rica Villa Garden

Bernie & Manny

Bernie & Manny

Vieux Montreal

Vieux Montreal

Florida Keys

Florida Keys

Our Toronto Front Garden

Our Toronto Front Garden

Our Toronto Backyard

Our Toronto Backyard