Little Miss Yellow Rubber Boots At The Beach

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I Am Ready To Conquer The World

Four months ago, I left Prince Edward Island, Canada, with my daughter and two huge suitcases a little unexpectedly. My husband and I decided I needed to go for a family cure. I was extremely homesick, sad and tired. We didn’t want it to affect the baby and thought it would be the best for everyone on the long run. We left PEI on a stormy day and arrived in sunny France the following day. I felt better almost instantly.  After a month, I did feel that I felt good enough to go but my husband had planned to come for a two-week visit later in June so we stayed in France with my family.

It feels like we had been gone for a year. Or that we lived here in another life.It is still the same yet things have changed. I feel different…Sixtine is not the tiny baby she used to be. She is a very active little girl and I am a happy Mama. It was heart-breaking to leave my husband and be separated for so long but I am so glad I went to France. We had a wonderful time there and 3000 pictures later, I can say: “I am ready to conquer the world”.

16 Things I Have Missed About My Husband

Today, next week, I will be reunited with my husband, after over three months of being apart. Having met in Iceland, you would think I’d be used to it…I am absolutely not, to be quite honest, I don’t know how I could live without him.    We both agreed on my going to France so that I could be with my family and get better, but we both know it was a very decision to make. I left with a tiny baby, and I am going home with a little girl who has her own personality, has two teeth, eats, laughs, tricks, crawls, sits, drinks from Mama’s glass and even pulls herself up! It breaks my heart that he had to miss all this…she is just not the same baby! It was really hard for him to see her on Skype but I am sure the excitement she would express whenever she’d hear the computer ring was priceless! She just knew it was him. And it made us happy. In about a week, we will be reunited as a family.

  1. His love. His arms. His support.
  2. Parenting as a couple.
  3. Talking his ears off until 3am after drinking Red Bull. He’d say “Deb, we are not getting you Red Bull anymore. Ever.”
  4. Sleeping in on the weekends while he looks after the baby and serves me breakfast in bed. He makes the best pancakes!
  5. Tickling him. He hates it and I love to annoy him.
  6. Our talks about our dreams and hopes for the future.
  7. Watching our favorite shows together.
  8. I missed cooking for him. I can’t believe I am saying that because before him, I didn’t know how and I was interested in any ways.
  9. His smile. He and Sixtine share the same dimple cheeks, it is absolutely adorable.
  10. Bedtime. There is something about the night that makes you want that special someone was there.
  11. Bottle washing. I really don’t like washing them…and he probably doesn’t love it either but does it out of love!
  12. His interaction with the baby. I just love seeing them together, there is so much love between them.
  13. His family. I love his family with all my heart.
  14. I missed not being able to enjoy my friends, my family and the things I love with him. It was like being at a great party without your best friend.
  15. His optimism.
  16. The little things he does everyday that say “I love you”

What are the things you love or would miss the most you had to be separated from your husband/partner for three months?

Worldwide Culture Swap l Our site is launching tonight !

A lovely lady named Rachael (a British expat mum of two in France and Sweden) has been running a Worldwide Cultural Exchange for some time and it has proved so popular that she asked for help a few weeks ago. Myrtille (a French expat mum of one located in Gran Canaria, Spain) and myself have joined her to work on extending her beautiful project into the Worldwide Culture Swap (WCS).

It includes four different culture swaps:

  • The Worldwide Culture Swap: you will be put in a group with 5 families from around the world.  The objective of the swap is to share information with each family about the country in which you live (or that you will be representing) so that they can get a feel for the culture of that country. This is achieved by sending a package (usually addressed to the child or children) with bits and pieces that you have chosen to give a good overview of what it is like to live there.
  • You can also sign up to an Individual Worldwide Culture Swap via the Worldwide Culture Swap. You will be match with another family and will only have to send one package. This is great for family who have less time, or can’t spend too much at a given time, etc…
  • The US States Culture Swap:  you will be put in a group with 4/5 other families representing different US states.  The objective of the swap is to share information with each family about the state in which you live (or that you will be representing). This is achieved by sending a package (usually addressed to the child or children) with bits and pieces that you have chosen to give a good overview of what it is like to live there
  • The Culture Swap for Schools: If your class signs up for the Culture Swap for Schools it will be matched with a class similar in age from another part of the world so that you can put together your own cross cultural project to suit your needs. You will send and receive letters, packages, postcards or whatever you agree between the two educators.
  • Find A Penpal: Are you interested in a the Worldwide Culture Swap but you would rather develop a long term relationship with a corresponding family? Would you like your children to learn more about the world, make new friends, develop an interest in writing or even practice a new language?
    If yes then the Find a Pen Pal initiative is for you.
  • Get involved ! This is a collaborative site compiled from submissions sent by you from all around the world !

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest !

We will soon be running our first giveaway competition so keep an eye out ! And spread the wor(l)d !

London: My First Trip Away From Baby

I haven’t been separated from my baby daughter since she was born, and this weekend will mark a milestone. I am going to London with my BFF for three days. We have known each other since we were girls, and we have been going to London for years. I moved in London at the age of 20 and then again in 2009 to attend university. We know London well enough to go for very short visits and skip the sight seeing. We shop til we drop, we dance like no one’s watching , and we go home happy.

But it is going to be very different this time…I am a mother, and I have a tiny little one who will be wondering where her Mama is.  My heart hurts at the thought of being away from her for so long…I even thought of cancelling but I need to do this.

It is going to be lots of fun and I will take a million pictures !

How did you survive your first trip away sans baby?

I Am Officially A Permanent Resident Of Canada

At last…I thought I would never see this day coming but last night, my husband surprised me with a much-awaited letter announcing I had become a permanent resident of Canada. It felt like forever, and it was a very straining process but it was all worth it in the end. I have now the same right as a Canadian citizen except I am not allowed to vote, I have to stay out of trouble, and make sure to live in Canada 2 years out of 5, every 5 years. I will receive my PR card as soon as I land in Canada !

We are so happy; it is just going to be so much easier now… I am so throwing a party when I get home on the 1st of July ! Canada day will have a special meaning for us this time around 🙂

*huge grin on my face*

Read more about my experience here.

A Belated Baby Shower

Baby showers aren’t a common trend in France. They probably exist but I have never been to one. I didn’t really have a ” proper” baby shower in Canada (I was probably not much fun company when I was pregnant and since it is not something that we usually do in my home country I didn’t mind too much.) but I still got a mini-one which happened when the baby was a couple months old, a friend of mine invited a couple girls I know and made sweet cupcakes and brought some cheeses and crackers. They brought presents and some things for my husband and I – so we wouldn’t have to cook for a couple days. It was a very thoughtful attention (and very helpful)and I thought it would be nice to have one in France someday.

We celebrated her baby shower yesterday afternoon with many of my friends and family members. We had a lovely time. I had asked everyone to bring something to eat or drink and they didn’t disappoint. I made chocolate chip muffins, banana bread with roasted pecans, and bottle-shaped cookies (that I burnt), as well as mini cotton candies for everyone (store bought but put together with love). There was praline and chocolate chip cookies, salmon and cheese muffins, salmon bread, olives and feta bread, brownies, and many more yummy things ! We played a few fun games such as “How Many Baby Items Can You Name?”, laughed, ate, and everyone got to hold little Sissi who loved being the center of attention.

Did you have a baby shower for your baby or something similar to celebrate his or her upcoming birth/or birth?

A Day In Paris With Baby

I was born in Paris but I live in the suburbs. It is already been about three weeks here and we have been very busy ! I am lucky to live on top of H&M (literally) and have everything nearby which is awesome. We hadn’t been to Paris yet and I didn’t feel the need to – it is close enough and I knew we would get plenty of opportunities but there was a couple shops I really wanted to go to and decided to make it Friday Fun Day.

First things first, as a French person, I should complain. I took the jogger stroller thinking we were going to be away all afternoon – twelve to seven pm and that the baby wouldn’t last long in the sling. I had forgotten or really I had never paid attention before to the fact that there was no elevators, or very little put in place to help parents along. I was looking for an elevator and went to ask a SNCF (public transportation company) worker. I said: “I am looking to go downstairs to take the métro. Where is the elevator?” He replied: “there are none.” I said: “So how do I get downstairs? How do wheelchaired people do?”. He answered very nonchalantly that they didn’t go anywhere. I was pretty pissed. I just hope he stays well. We had to carry the stroller everywhere we went.

Aside from this, we had a lovely time. I had heard about a green shop for babies called Les Biogosses and couldn’t wait to pay them a visit ! I wasn’t disappointed. The owner was very friendly and helpful, and there was a lot to buy. Organic baby food, kitchenware, eco disposable diapers, cloth diapers, organic cotton clothes, and great wooden toys ! I was so excited I didn’t know what to get anymore. I got some German green disposable diapers (Wiona: they come in a great package that makes it really easy to change baby), a sippy cup, a formula dispenser and I would have bought more had I had room to put them in. If you ever come in Paris, I highly recommend you give it a try ! If not, you can still order online here (if you are located in France, Luxembourg, Belgium and Switzerland).

image found on their facebook page

After this little shopping excursion, we decided to grab a bite to eat and stumbled upon Rose Bakery which was great because I had been wanting to try it and hadn’t realized that it was so close to the shop. It does a bit of everything, lunch, tea salon, and a bakery. I had read a couple bad reviews about the place but still wanted to try it and I am glad we did. The food (although quite pricey) was amazing and the service was good. The little lady who was standing behind the counter had a charming accent and was pretty sweet. They also sell fresh produce, teas, British stuff and organic food. The other customers were couples, friends, speaking French or English and it felt like traveling the time of a meal. It is located 46 rue des Martyrs.

Finally, we went to Le Bonhomme de Bois, a wooden toy shop for kids that I had been wanting to go to. It is a beautiful place – there are toys aimed from birth to older children. I bought a lovely rattle for Sixtine as well as a Pull and Push Beads Toy for her. Great prices and a lot of toys to choose from ! There are four shops in Paris alone and it is also a great place for gifts !

Instead of taking the métro on the way back – which was a pain in the b*** – we decided to take the bus back to Montparnasse which was just a breather. Sixtine didn’t complain one bit the whole afternoon and she was a very delightful little girl. I am pretty lucky !

We saw the Eiffel tower from afar but I promised myself not to go until my husband would be with us. Another two months to go !

The Little Red Farm Worldwide Cultural Exchange l Follow-up

 If  you haven’t read my previous post about the worldwide cultural exchange we have signed up for, you can do so here. We were “assigned” four other families located in: Singapore, the United States, the United Kingdom and France (but it is a Brazilian family). I decided to represent both France and Canada thinking it would be more fun ! I posted two care packages with Canadian goodies to the Brazilian and the British family this afternoon and I have just started working on the French goodies. It was a lot of fun to put together the first two packages and hope they will enjoy their packages ! 

Sign up here: Worldwide Cultural Exchange

Sneak-Peek:

A Thank You Letter To Air Canada

I flew to Paris on the 15th of March with baby Sixtine. I was very nervous about pretty much everything related to the trip and I have nothing but compliments for Air Canada. We flew from the airport of Charlottetown, the smallest airport I’ve ever been to but also the less stressful and most friendly. We were allowed 50 pound (23 kilos) each (baby and me), plus a carry-on each and a stroller.

  • I was allowed to check-gate my (huge) Graco jogger stroller as well as car seat.
  • I wasn’t charged for overweight luggage – I honestly don’t think it would have been more than a couple pounds but I did cross my fingers and held my breath.
  • The airport staff in Charlottetown was very helfpul. They carried the baby for me whenever needed.
  • On both flights – there are no direct flights to Paris from Charlottetown, PEI – I was able to check-in first.
  • The Air Canada air hostess were wonderful. Smiley, helpful, and very friendly. I had a ton of things to carry everywhere with me; stroller, diaper bag, laptop (the one that died), purse, sweater, coat…and I don’t know how I would have done it without them. I was so stressed and tired that I kept forgetting stuff. Laptop in stroller, coat in plane, I really was absent-minded then and they never made me feel like I was bothering them.
  • The bassinet was great as it allowed me to eat, and have a little nap.
  • Finally, I should thank my own daughter for being a delightful co-traveler. She slept, ate and was the happiest little lady on board. Her ears didn’t bother her during take off and landing.