After my most serious parenting fail to date I feel that, at this time, the very least I can do for my poor traumatised Chou is to make a note of yesterday’s date (Monday the 25th of March, 2019) so that he will be able to provide his future therapist with the exact moment his carefree childhood came screeching to a halt, his innocent little … Continue reading Chez le médecin: trial by vaccination
A couple of days ago, whilst enjoying possibly the most middle class sandwich ever made – hummous, morbier cheese and smoked trout, with a squeeze of lime juice on top (naturally) – the satisfying result of rummaging in the fridge for leftovers from a ‘picnic lunch’ held to introduce my daughter to her grandfather, I was reminded of the mental list my husband and I … Continue reading La grossesse et la gourmande: Rebonjour, forbidden food!
Happy Épiphanie to one and all! Since my Chou has now reached the practically adult age of three, and nursery restarts tomorrow (where, no doubt, Epiphany will be a major topic of conversation, Christmas having taken place so long ago), I decided that it was time my family participated in the time-honoured (and much-loved) French tradition that is “tirer les rois”. In order to “draw the … Continue reading Epiphany and la galette des rois
Book of the day: The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by Eric Carle. This year, as part of an ongoing attempt to be greener and more ecologically conscious, I resolve to reduce further the amount of food waste produced by my family. Shortly after we moved in to our home, five years ago, we adopted a lovely big compost bin (and, naturally, one of those adorable vintage-looking food … Continue reading Les restes: Waste not, want not
I have recently discovered (through Brit Abroad’s latest blog post on Christmas traditions in France) that wishing a fellow citoyen a hearty “Bonne Année!” before January 1st is considered bad luck. Enquiring of my husband (who has spent over two-thirds of his life in France) whether this new and crucial information was indeed true, I was met with a nonchalant shrug and a ‘Yep’. I have been writing Christmas … Continue reading Bonne Année 2019!
This year my husband, our Chou and I hosted Christmas chez us for the very first time. It was an Anglo-Irish affair (by which I really mean that my Mum and I cooked our family’s traditional Christmas roast, complete with treasured accompaniments passed down from Yorkshire by my paternal grandmother, whilst Père Noël was given an offering of whiskey and I occasionally referred to the … Continue reading Noël en France: memorable moments and lessons learned
Book of the Day: Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen. Two weeks ago I accompanied my Chou on his first ever school trip. It was a grand occasion – eighteen small children and nineteen adults (sixteen volunteers and three conscripts) heading off to pastures new attached to a farm so far away as to require the additional excitement of a short coach trip. This was … Continue reading A Sortie Scolaire to the Farm
I have just received word that an essay I wrote for The Parent Voice, an online parenting magazine specialising in multicultural families, has just been published. I am enormously excited – and who wouldn’t be?! For the official (magazine edited) version, which appears online, please follow this link. There is even a picture of me sporting a terribly sophisticated post-labour coiffure, along with my real … Continue reading Failing to fit in: L’accouchement en France
Within an hour of our arrival at the seaside resort of Menton my over-excited Chou had managed to fall face-first into the Mediterranean. Luckily we came prepared for such inevitabilities (I had risen at six o’clock that morning to start the arduous task of packing, mainly comprising as much of his wardrobe as I could find clean). Having laughed unsympathetically and picked him up out … Continue reading Menton: The chin of France*
A very belated happy May Day and bonne Fête du Travail to all! I had intended to resume writing last week, once I had finally caught up with life after the inevitable chaos of a two week Vacances de Printemps. France and the builders, however, had other plans. Whereas French workers are celebrated with a bank holiday on May 1st (not so in Geneva, where … Continue reading Ça pousse, avril: So much work, so little time