Saturday, December 25, 2010

Noël from Hell

This La Mom best-of was originally posted December 24th, 2008.
Joyeux Noël à tous!!

Over the river and through the woods, to Grandmère’s house we go…

Actually, more like onto the jam-packed Périphérique ring road circling Paris to join the thousands of other Parisians going to their ancestral country homes for the holidays.

On one hand, I love French Christmases – they celebrate with an enourmous five-course gourmet meal on Christmas Eve and sleep it all off on the 25th. On the other hand, it’s always a bit stressful going to the famille-in-law’s house. While any self-respecting American family is vegging out in front of the Star Wars marathon, in France the holidays call for a whole lotta togetherness. Big Cheese’s parents are très old-school and I’m always worried me or my half-American kids are going to bring shame upon La Famille Fromage.

Well, this year it’s pretty much a given – I don’t have a boule de neige’s chance in hell.

The thing is, Big Fry has picked up a whole new vocabulary at his nursery school. Since September, my little angel talks like a pint-sized French trucker. Big Fry’s latest is a non-stop mantra of pipi-caca-pipi-caca. Based on the advice of all the American toddler taming books out there, I do my best to ignore it, hoping that the novelty will wear off sooner rather than later.

But wouldn’t you know that Big Fry decided to show off during the Christmas Eve cocktail hour chez Famille Fromage.

(Sidebar: No matter how long I live here, I will never get over how the French serve the best champagne money can buy with a bowlful of Bugles – you know, the kind sold in high school vending machines. Why not break out the Funyuns, too? Now that’s a real party.)

As Grandmère passed the Bugles, Big Fry sweetly said, “Merci, Madame Caca Moudin.”

“It’s caca boudin, honey,” I corrected him absentmindedly.

Grandmère shot both of us a frosty look that said “I’ll deal with you later”, but was too polite to take it further in front of the extended family.

Note to self
: Don’t correct your child’s French when he’s calling his grandma a sausage poop. registered & protected

Monday, December 20, 2010

Joyeux No Well

The Scene: La Mom's living room, softly lit by the glow of the sapin de Nöel

The Music: King’s College Boys Choir carols

The French Fries’ conversation:
Big Fry: Why are they saying “The first Noël”? That’s French. Why is there a French word in an English song?

Small Fry: I think it’s because they don’t feel good. That’s why they say “No well”.

Big Fry: They must feel terrible because they keep singing it! “No well, no well, no well, no well!”

Small Fry: Maybe Baby Jesus needs to vomir?

Wishing you a feel-good Christmas from Paris! 

If you need me on December 24th, I’ll be at the famille Fromage’s ancestral home eating a bowlful of Bugles with the best champagne money can buy.

Mwah, mwah,  

La Mom registered & protected

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

V.I.P. Very Important Parisian Profile: William Réjault

William Réjault

What’s the latest barometer of Parisian cool?

Having your own Wikipedia entry.

La Mom is hoping some of blogger (and writer and journalist) pal William Réjault's cool will rub off on her.

Les Moms were très flattered when William invited us to blog about La Nouvelle Star on the French national newspaper Le Figaro’s website (La Nouvelle Star is the equivalent of American Idol or The X Factor).

So why is Will’s future so bright, you gotta wear shades?

He is professionally trained as a nurse and hit blogging gold when his hospital and nursing home stories enchanted French readers. He was asked to turn his blog into a book and his first one, La Chambre d’Albert Camus, was published in 2006.

Since then, he:
-Published three other books
-Blogs and writes for Le Figaro, France’s national newspaper
-Published the first French interactive novel for iPhone
-Interviewed the hottest French celebrities for the magazines Voici and Gala
-Blogs for French singing superstar Zazie on the making of her latest album
-Is the Digital Content Editorialist for Universal Music

Whew! I think that covers it.

So on y go! Let’s get to know William better:

Favorite American food? Cheeseburger, from Lincoln (NM)
Carla Bruni or Michelle Obama? Chantal Biya, the First Lady of Cameroon – total class.
Mariages Frères or Ladurée? Mariages Frères
Le Figaro or Le Monde? Le Parisien.
Left Bank or Right Bank? Biarritz, sorry…
Favorite blogs? I like David Abiker’s blog a lot – and La Mom, of course!
Hot factor: Dominique de Villepin or Nicolas Sarkozy? Oh please, get a room. Anderson Cooper is soooo hot! (La Mom can’t argue with the guy.)
Red or white? Red.
Macarons or cupcakes? Macarons.
Espresso or café crème? Nespresso noir.
Still or sparkling? Sparkling.
Amélie Poulain or Carrie Bradshaw? They’re both completely annoying. Courtney Cox in Cougar Town.
Paris or Provence? You’re two snobby American girls! The Basque country is the most beautiful region of France.
Métro, taxi, or Vélib? Taxi after 10 PM, but métro the rest of the time.
Le Baron or Le V.I.P.? My bed, two pillows, and earplugs at 10:45 PM.
Printemps or Galeries Lafayette? Printemps.
Le ski or St. Tropez? Tokyo or Zurich.
Book or Kindle? Book.
Café Costes or the bistro du coin? Costes : they’ve got the best free magazines
iPhone or iPad? Who said we have to choose?!?

Check out William’s world at:

Don’t miss William’s new book, Le chemin qui menait vers vous, coming out in February 2011. Achetez-le!
Got something to say about Paris or La Belle France? Contact La Mom for your own Petit Paris Profile! registered & protected

Friday, December 10, 2010

Frenchy Friday

How many hotels that you know:
-have valet parking
-an excellent in-house restaurant (with white tablecloths)
-a newspaper/magazine stand (stocked with the latest People and W magazines)
-flat screen TVs
-a chi-chi café
-and gold plated clothes caddies?

Lots of hotels do.

But there's only one "hotel" in Paris that rolls out the red carpet for its guests.

At least that's what Big Cheese calls it - l'hôtel.

It's the American Hospital in Paris! La Mom's been hanging out here a lot lately with les sick French Fries. I love it and get way better service at the AHP's café and resto than I do in my own neighborhood. En plus, there's always the chance of running into Dr. Hot.

La Mom's one happy customer. Absolument. I'm just wondering when the AHP is going to build an on-site spa and day-care center, for all those moms who have to wait at least 30 minutes to see their pediatricians (mine always runs late). registered & protected

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving – Ze Making Of

Les Moms were beaucoup thrilled to appear on French TV! But while shopping for potiron and turkey trimmings may have looked like a walk in the Parc Monceau, Les Moms learned that there’s a lot of work behind the scenes.

It took about 12 hours of filming to get our little 6-minute segment. Luckily, la belle journaliste Clémence and hilarious cameraman Franck made it a Thanksgiving we’ll never forget.

Merci l’equipe!

Here’s what went down:

Take One: Squash – Fascinating!

Clémence: Now you should select some gourdes for your table setting. Zey are very belle, non?

(Stephanie and Allison chat animatedly while choosing miniature squash.)

Franck: Très bien! Now let’s do eet again.

One hour later…

Franck: Très bien! One more take.

Stephanie: Stick your neck out! Your double chin is showing.

Allison: Merde. Thanks. You need to get a little more excited about the damn squash.

Stephanie (letting loose): Oh, mon dieu! C’est tellement chou ce petit pumpkin!!!

Allison : Now that’s good TV.

Take Two: No Naked Turkeys

Clémence: Now Stéphanie can take all of the plats to the table. Ze turkey ees zee star.

Allison: Wait, we can’t do this. The turkey is just on a serving platter. I can’t serve a naked turkey on French national TV!

Stephanie: Huh?

Allison: You know, it has to have some parsley or something on it. What do you have?

Stephanie: Some onions? I don’t know, lemon slices?

Allison: My belle-mère will die of shame! Hey, why don’t we throw some fresh cranberries on the side?

Clémence: Does your turkey have eets clothes on now? Allez, on filme!

Take Three: Fake Some Conversation

Clémence: Alors, now you can have a nice friendly chat entre copines. Zere will be no sound.

Allison: So we can say whatever we want?

Clémence: Oui.

Franck: Je filme!

Stephanie: Can you still see that zit on my chin?

Allison: No, but you need more blush. Do you think that gendarme who sent you love letters back in the day will see the show?

Stephanie: God, I hope not! So what do you think of Franck?

Allison: Definitely cute. He can cook my turkey anytime.

Stephanie: Totally agree. And Clémence is set for a career as a TV presenter for sure.

Clémence: Ca va les filles?

Stephanie & Allison (with big American smiles): Bien sûr!

Joyeux Sanksgiving!


Un tout grand merci for all of the mail from French readers who want to celebrate Thanksgiving à l’americaine!

Find Les Moms’ recipes at


A little hungry? Taste the cupcakes featured on La Mom’s Thanksgiving!

Get your fix at the Sugar Daze stand at Printemps Nation on December 11th & 18th on the 3rd floor. The stand is right next to Santa Claus (either baker Cat Beurnier was very good this year or Santa has a serious sweet tooth!). From 11:30 until sellout.

Re-retrouvez Sugar Daze au Printemps Nation le 11 et 18 décembre. Le stand se trouvera au 3ème étage juste à coté du Père Noël (soit patissier Cat Beurnier étais très sage cette année soit il est un vrai gourmand!). A partir de 11H30 et jusqu'à épuisement des stocks.

La Mom on TV!

Les Moms had a wonderful Thanksgiving this year because they were on French TV!

The very beautiful journaliste, Clémence, who's a fan of the blog and who works for the very cool program 100% Mag, on the very hip channel M6, produced a six minute segment on Les Moms celebrating Thanksgiving in Paris. We are so grateful for the opportunity. Merci Clémence and le cameraman Franck!

Here's the link to the reportage. The Frenchie voice-over is so adorable when he says, "Appy Sanksgiving."

(Sidebar: The journalist really wanted a "We rock" at the end. So beyond fromage, I know, but Clémence was such a sweetie we couldn't say non.)

Et voilà:

Check back next week for an exclusive behind ze scenes peek at le tournage.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

J'ai un secret

La Mom has a secret that I'm dying to share with all of you!

Until it's "dans la boîte," I won't, though.

So here are some hints:

La Mom's To-Do List:
-make blowout appointment
-get manicure
-choose outfits
-pray to Dieu that the pimple on my chin goes away vite! vite! vite!
-haircuts for the French Fries
-clean apartment
-learn certain French vocabulary words
-polish the silver
-make sure the wine bar is stocked with the best reds
-go to bed by 10 PM (must get beauty sleep - it's desperately needed at my age!)

La Mom can't wait to share what's happening behind the scenes! Check back soon for the news. Or follow moi on Twitter as that's where I'll be making the announcement this week.

A bientôt!

Bisous on both cheeks bien sûr,

La Mom - your best girlfriend in Paris!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


What's the nickname for the French maman whose fall wardrobe consists of nothing but Chanel + Uggs?


That's what La Mom calls La Maman who's son is the trendiest 5 year old at Big Fry's school

Chuggs is dressed to kill herself. I guess it helps when you work chez Chanel and the boutique is your personal closet.

Did I mention Chuggs intimidates the fromage out of me? In fact, everytime I see her, it seems like something is wrong with moi (messy hair, shoes/hand bag color mismatched, white bra showing through the black top - you get the idea).

Stupid things to worry about? Oui!

Stupid things that take on a huge importance when you're face to face with a Chanel clad fashionista? Oui! Oui! Oui!

So, when stuff like this happens, I've started saying that I've been chugged (it's kinda like saying, "D'oh!").

Here are a few examples of how I've been chugged by Chuggs:

1. After Chuggs picked up Petit Chugg at our place, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. Chugged! A baguette crumb was hanging off of my chin. Très embarassing! It was there the whole 5 minutes we spent talking in the hallway. Chuggs was so polite to keep her eyes focused on mine and not on the crumb that coudln't be missed in the middle of my chin.

2. After dropping Big Fry off for a playdate with Petit Chugg, I realized with une grande embarassement, that I was wearing my Zara immitation Chanel Boucle wool blazer. Chugged! Umm, why did it not occur to me to ditch the faux Chanel and wear something else to Chuggs' place? Of all the clothes in my closet, why did I pick the cheap Chanel knock-off to wear? Of course Chuggs can tell the difference between a real Boucle at 2000€ and a faux Boucle at 80€.
Oh. So. Chugged.

3. See La Mom get a cool new pair of skinny jeans. See La Mom giddy with excitement wearing them with her hip riding boots (that she had shipped from Nordstrom - they ship internationally!). See La Mom meet Chuggs at the Parc Monceau for a trotinette playdate. See Chuggs look at La Mom's waistline. See La Mom look down and realize her fly is down down down on her new jeans. Très chugged!

4. Oh la la! Last night I remembered that I had dressed Big Fry in the same outfit for the last two playdates with Petit Chuggs. Chugged! Mais bien sûr Chuggs noticed that, don't you think? It's her business to notice clothes. Even Big Fry's.

5. Small Fry walked into the kitchen as I was having a café with Chuggs. Her hair was a mess and I thought to myself that the nanny has dressed her like an orphan. I was so embarrassed in front of Chuggs. What could she be thinking? And more importantly, why should I care? Then Small Fry said, "Je dois faire caca mommy".
Sooo chugged.

So do you know someone who you feel chugged around?

Music & You, c’est le rendez-vous de la pratique musicale en France pour les passionnés, amateurs, professionnels et curieux !!
Le salon a lieu à Paris (Grande Halle de la Villette) du vendredi 19 novembre au lundi 22 novembre.

Des concerts, des invités, des démonstrations, des rencontres… sont au programme, ainsi que des ateliers, un parcours ainsi que des spectacles conçus pour les enfants !

A découvrir aussi, les villages d’artsisans et des maitres d’art
& des évènements insolites comme le plus grand rassemblement de ukulélé au monde !!!

Toutes les infos sur :

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Treeeck or Treeet 2010

Trick or Treat
Smell my feet
Give me something good to eat
If you don’t
I don’t care
I’ll pull down your underwear

Feet and underwear being the key words for how La Mom’s Halloween went down.

Actually, let's put it this way:

You know you live in Paris when you celebrate Halloween 2010....

-By making the expat moms hide in various rooms around your apartment to dole out the Halloween candy when the kids come trick-or-treating. And they play along with cheesy smiles plastered on their faces like it’s the cutest idea they’ve ever heard of.

-By having the kids trick-or-treat in your apartment. They have to knock on the doors of the laundry room, the bathroom, the guest room, the bedroom, and the kitchen looking for their treats.

La Mom: I can’t believe my kids are trick-or-treating in the bathroom!
S. Carolina Mom: Swee-tay, it’s thuh best ya can do livin’ in a cun-tray that doesn’t celebrate Halloween.
La Mom: I know, but c’mon. Trick-or-treating in the crapper? How crappy is that?
Washington Mom: Don’t worry, the kids don’t realize it. They’re focused on the candy, not les chiottes.
SF Mom: What can you do anyway? It’s not like you can let the kids trick-or-treat in your apartment building. You don’t know your neighbours and the French just don’t get the whole begging for candy thing.

-By inviting Big Fry’s French friends and their bourgeois parents to the Halloween party. Then you watch nervously as they sit uncomfortably not relating to the loud American dads drinking beer in the salon and watching a download of the World Series, while the bilingual American kids chase the French ones around screaming, “Smell my feet! Sentez mes pieds! I’m gonna pull down your underwear! Je vais enlever ton caleçon! Ha ha ha!”
(So not funny for the Frenchies).

-For the adults: by serving a 40€ bottle of Bolinger champagne with a 1€ bag of Bugles chips and a 5€ frozen chocolate cake from Picard.

-By observing the distinct difference in how the French kids ask for their candy:

Texas Mom: Pierre-Louis is so well behaved.
PL's Maman: Merci.
Texas Mom: I asked him, “What do you say in English?” when the kids knocked on the kitchen door for candy and he said...
PL’s Maman: Treeeck or treeet? We’ve beeen practeeceeng zat sentence all morneeng before ze partee.
Texas Mom: He said, “s’il te plaît.” How adorable is that?!
SF Mom: All the Americans screamed, “ I want candy, trick or treat!” "Please" was the last think on their minds.

-And the American dads walk into your apartment and bust out laughing as they see pumpkins displayed on the hallway table:

Texas Dad: Hey La Mom – are those the Jack-Off Lanterns you found at that French farm?
S. Carolina Dad: Who’s the Jack-Off that doesn’t know how to use Google translator?
SF Dad: La Mom, do they sell “Choke the Chickens” at that farm too?
La Mom: Not so loud! You don’t want the Frenchies to hear you acting like a Jack-off!

Merci beaucoup to those gorgeous ladies and gentlemen who are publicly following La Mom's blog. I love seeing your smiling faces!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Joyeux Halloween!

This La Mom Classic was originally posted on October 31st, 2009.

Halloween was always favorite holiday back in the States. It’s still my fave in Paris – but not for the crisp fall weather or imported candy corn.

Because it’s a chance to get an up-close-and-personal look at the best real estate in town.

Trick or treating involves begging strangers for sweets. In a town where you don't know your across-the-hall neighbors, this doesn't go down so well.

So there’s only one solution.

Host a party in a private Parisian mansion where there’s all the doors you need and more.

You know you’re celebrating Halloween in Paris when:

- Kids use Chloé shopping bags as trick-or-treat sacks

- Moms give out individually wrapped Hédiard chocolate squares because “that’s all I had in the house!”

- An army of nannies/au pairs dole out the candy when the children come knocking.

- Mommy’s “treat” while the kids OD on KitKats is Pierre Hermé macaroons washed down with a flute of champagne. The “trick” is to pry the Fries away from the portable crèpe stand manned by the household help.

Let me tell you, it feels like a long way from the pumpkin patch back home...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Eiffel Tower Tuesday: Jack Off Lanterne

La Mom couldn't wait until Frenchy Friday to post this baby (so I made up Eiffel Tower Tuesday).

Jack Off Lanterne?!

Quick! Get La Ferme de Gally a native English speaking intern to review their point-of-sales materials. This one's a jewel (and it's already been sent to The Ellen DeGeneres Show by the way *wink*).

Say it with me now, "Oh la la!"

La Mom thought about translating the slip-up to the Gally Farm manager. Then I reconsidered as I watched several American families who came to the "pumpkin patch" pass by the signs giggling.

So fellow Anglophone expats - this will be our little secret, right? Let's let the Frenchies think they have English Halloween vocabulary mastered.

Follow La Mom's adventures on Twitter and be the first to find out about breaking news such as Jack-Off Lanternes! If you'd been following moi on Twitter you would already have seen this picture. Twitter: @LaMomParis

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

St. Picard

Ahh, October in Paris. The open market stalls are filling up with seasonal produce from the harvest. A little nip in the air makes La Mom long to do some French comfort food home cooking.

In her microwave.

What? You didn’t know that le frozen exists in France? Well, let me fill you in on every Parisienne’s kitchen secret.

Picard. Actually, it's more like St. Picard.

I think there’s a little shrine to St. Picard in St. Sulpice church tucked away in a forgotten corner (yeah, they’re renovating it – but you should find it if you look hard enough). All I know is that thousands of French women get down on their knees every night to thank the patron saint of surgelé.

Urban legend has it that St. Picard was a Parisian city dweller in the 1960s. On a visit to America, he was appalled by the proliferation of frozen TV dinners. Carefully preserved writings of St. Picard quoted him as saying, “C’est de la merde!

Back on his native soil, however, he had a divine vision. A vision of the best French recipes lovingly prepared and then captured in ice – until a Frenchwoman brought them to back to life in her kitchen.

And threw some parsley sprigs on it for color before serving.

Tartiflette. Courgettes farcies. Sauté de veau avec sauce aux pleurottes.

Hell (oops !), even macarons.

If you haven’t yet tried St. Picard, I urge you to find out what He can do for you.

And in your darkest hour, when there’s nothing in your pantry but ketchup, pasta, and foie gras, I invite you to invoke the following prayer:

Oh glorious St. Picard,
Patron of all things delicious and glacée,
Deliver us from another night of leftover poulet rôti or Speed Rabbit Pizza.
I implore thee to speed a tasty, nutritious French meal to my loved ones
And divert the glances of my Husband and Belle-Mère from the cardboard boxes in the recycling bin.
Come to my assistance in my great need and I promise thee that I will take the Cordon Bleu course that my Husband offered me a s a gift last Christmas, in order to spread the Gospel of French cuisine.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Le Botox Buddy

How do you know when you're getting older and slacking in the style department?

When your French hairdresser asks you to do Le Botox with him and you get dogged by the editor of Elle. All in the same day.

That was my deal just last week.

As I walked into the shampoo room at the coiffeur, there sat Madame Perma-Frown and she looked at me with disgust.

(Sidebar: I was so shocked by the "tu pues" look that I even checked my shoes to make sure there wasn't any dog crotte stuck on them).

Thank goodness I had a copy of Vogue to bury my red face in. Although I noticed I was getting dogged even more by Mme Perma-Frown when I opened the mag.

Fast forward to the haircut:

La Mom: So Pierre, why is that woman dogging me and how come I don't get showered with kisses from you when I come to the salon?

Pierre: No offense, but you're La Mom and that's Micheline, the editor of Elle. You know, you could try a little harder to dress up when you come. Reeboks aren't the epitome of style, especially in this part of Paris. You scream American and you've broken every rule in Micheline's fashion rulebook: no jeans, no trainers, no bad roots. On the other hand, you're looking très embelli for your age.

La Mom: As in not aging well?

Pierre: Au contraire, you're getting better with age.

La Mom: Well, you don't have any wrinkles yourself! Your forehead looks amazing. What's the secret?

Pierre: (Sporting a devilish grin) Spanish botox. It's cheaper to get botoxed in Barcelona. I make a three-day weekend out of it. La Mom, you look good, but you could use a little on your forehead.

(Sidebar: Pierre's grin was so botox. How did I not notice before? Only his lips moved while the rest of his face was frozen).

La Mom: I don't think le botox is for moi.

Pierre: La Mom, I have the names of the best botoxers in Paris. Working at this salon has its advantages. If you want, we could go together for an injection.

La Mom: Together?

Pierre: It's cheaper, ma chérie. The doctor never finishes a whole dose, but you pay for it anyway. If we share the botox we'll get two for the price of one. Or we could do it in Barcelona together. C'est beaucoup moins chèr.

La Mom: OMG, is that the Parisian Princess secret?

Pierre: Chérie, all the Parisiennes in the know share le botox.

La Mom: If I do it and look better, do you think will Micheline stop giving me dirty looks?

Pierre: Bien sûr que non. You flushed your first impression down the toilette. She works for Elle quand même.

So there you go. Another day in the life of La Mom. Génial, n'est-ce pas?

Photograph credit: Stefano Valle.

Image: Stefano Valle /

Can't make it to Paris this Fall? Rendez-vous every week with La Mom, your BFF in Paris! Follow her adventures and find out what living in Paris is really like - what the tourists don't see. Or follow her daily adventures on Twitter @LaMomParis.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

La Mom's Musique

What's a boy to do when he's got the voice of Marvin Gaye trapped in a Frenchman's body?

If you're Ben L'Oncle Soul, you get your Motown groove on – with French lyrics, bien sûr.

Here's his big summer hit, Soul Man:

So does Ben have what it takes to make it as a Soul Man? Or should Frenchies stick to the accordion à la Edith Piaf? La Mom wants to know!

P.S. The funkiest cover ever – check out Ben L'Oncle Soul's remake of the White Stripes' Seven Nation Army on YouTube!


What's worse than getting asked to be a Botox Buddy? Getting dogged by the editor of Elle – all in the same day. It's just another jour in the life of La Mom. Don't miss next week's post to get all the scoop!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Talk to the Hand

It’s September in Paris. Back to school, back to work, back to the très Parisian routine of métro-boulot-dodo.

But for some Parisians, it’s time to get a little action on the side.

At kindergarten.

Wait, let me explain. Big Fry is Big Man on Campus at school this year. At the ripe old age of five, he already has two years of maternelle under his belt. So when a new kid started speaking to his Papa in a mixture of French and English on the first day of school, he was there to show him the ropes.

That’s what French Dad thought La Mom was doing, too. But the ropes he had in mind were more along the lines of light bondage.

Here’s how the conversation went down:

La Mom:
So, your son is bilingual?

French Dad: Oui, Paul speeks both French and Eeenglish very well. He weel go to a private Eeenglish class on Wednesdays this year.

La Mom:
Is it in the 8th? Big Fry’s going there, too!

(Polite conversation in French ensues.)

La Mom (extending hand): I hope to see you again soon. By the way, I’m La Mom.

French Dad (looking at proffered hand as if it is a dead animal): Comment?

La Mom:
Je me presente. You know, I’m introducing myself?

French Dad (stammering): Ah, oui. Je m’appelle…D-d-d-d-didier.

La Mom (light bulb going on over her head): Well, don’t hesitate to let me know if you need any…help…with your English. (Slight raise of eyebrows for added effect)

No matter how long I live here, it still leaves me gobsmacked. Just because you talk to someone of the opposite sex doesn’t mean you want to play touche-pipi.

Well, I’m looking at the bright side. Parisiennes have to get coquetted out in high heels and thigh-grazing skirts to turn heads. All an American girl needs to do?

Tell them to talk to the hand.

Monday, August 30, 2010

My Big Fat American Vacation

Three words sum up La Mom’s vacation back home in the US:


(Eat Pray Love)

For three weeks, I made sure to EAT my way through the Safeway ice cream and junk food aisles. My snacks of choice were It’s-It, ice cream sandwiches, Dib's, rocky road, Cheez-Its, Rice Crispy Treats, Eggo Waffles, Coffee Cakes, Ring Dings.

Oh la la, I am so grossed that I ate all that.

Anyway, now that I’m home, I PRAY that I can lose the weight I gained stuffing my face with junk food that I can’t find in France.

Did I mention I LOVEd my American vacation? It was beaucoup trop short.

Here are some highlights:

Big Fry: Why does everyone say “hello” in America mommy?

La Mom: Because Americans are so friendly sweetie.

(Sidebar: Big points go to my Big Fry for noticing at such a young age that Americans are friendlier than the French).

Small Fry’s first observation when we arrived at the airport and she used the restroom:

Small Fry: The toilet in America is bigger and has more water than our toilet in Paris. Why mommy?

La Mom: Super-sized diets require super-sized toilets ma puce.

Customs Agent: Welcome home La Mom! How are you today?

La Mom: (so overcome with emotion that I burst into tears) It’s so good to be home and to be welcomed with a smile. You have no idea how wonderful it is.

La Mom pleads guilty to putting her Small Fry on display and showing off un petit peu.

As we were getting ice cream, four American women tourists walked into the store. They heard the French Fries conversing in French. When I handed the ice cream to Small Fry I said, “ What do you say?,” knowing exactly what she would say and what reaction it would provoke from the women:

Small Fry: Merciiiiiii Mommy!

Women: Awww. She's adorable and so lucky to be bilingual at such a young age.

Big Fry: Mommy, why is everything so big in America?

La Mom: Like what?

Big Fry: Like trucks, cars, donuts, ice cream cones, hamburgers, houses.

La Mom: Americans like big things.

Small Fry: I want Vache Qui Rit cheese.

Big Fry: We aren't in France anymore. They don't have this cheese in America.

La Mom: Honey, you can get anything you want in America. You can be anything you want to be in America. And yes, there is Laughing Cow cheese in America too. We just have to find it.

(Sidebar: La Mom was amused that VQR can be found in Safeway's gourmet cheese section and horrified that it costs $5.89 for 8 triangles!)

And finally, our trip would have been quite boring if there wasn't any doo doo thrown in to mix things up:

Small Fry went off to watch La Mom’s BFF breastfeed in another room. Here’s what went down:

Small Fry: Where is the dou dou of baby Scott?

Foxy Mommy: The doo doo of baby Scott?

Small Fry: (louder) Where is the dou dou of baby Scott?

Foxy Mommy: Do you mean his poo-poo? Maybe he has poo-poo in his diaper.

Small Fry: (louder again) No, where is the dou dou of baby Scott?

Foxy Mommy: What's a doo doo?

Small Fry: (screaming to be understood) The dou dou of baby Scott!

Big Fry: It' something baby Scott sleeps with.

Foxy Mommy: (finally getting it) Oh, you mean a lovey?! He doesn’t have one yet.

La Mom and Big Cheese went out for a romantic dinner. The French Fries were being babysat by La Mom’s other BFF, Yummy Mummy. Suddenly, my phone rang:

Yummy Mummy: Small Fry keeps saying she wants a doo doo and doe doe. She can’t tell me what a doo doo or doe doe is in English. So I just checked if she went doo doo in her underwear. She didn't. What is she talking about? She’s crying for doo doo.

La Mom: Dou Dou is her lovey and I forgot it at home. Do-do is bedtime or night-night. Just give her any stuffed animal and tell her it’s her special dou dou for do-do tonight. She’ll be fine.

Yummy Mummy: I thought French was a beautiful language. This doo doo/doe-doe stuff sure sounds dirty.

La Mom discovered Small Fry’s dou dou was missing as we took our seats for the flight to France. Small Fry burst into tears screaming, “Dou Dou, my dou dou. I want to take dou dou to Paris.” The whole plane heard and the passengers next to us stared. La Mom was near tears because Small Fry was so sad. Then I had to laugh as I heard the man behind us say, “Great, we get to sit near the kid who cries out loud when she has a poopy diaper. It’s gonna be a long flight.”

Eat Pray Dou Dou.

Milles mercis go to everyone who commented, sent emails, and tweeted about sending La Mom copies of the July EasyJet in-flight magazine I was quoted in. I owe you all a box of macarons!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

When Good Moms go Bad

God, I hate Parisian summers.

Wait, let me back up. I actually love it when the spring drizzle lifts, the temperatures soar, and everyone’s undressed to impress.

What I hate is the fact that I always have to get some new friends.

One of the unfortunate side effects of expat life is the turnover. Come June and July, La Mom always sends a crop of playgroup friends back to their homelands.

The upside? Rockin’ Bon Voyage parties.

Take Texas Mom’s, for example.

(Note: All names, including bars and restaurants, have been changed to protect the innocent. Hey, I still live here and need to get reservations.

And if any of you saw a cute blonde in a BCBG wrap dress doing the Technicolor yawn in the 6th arrondissement a few weeks back, I swear it wasn’t any of our group. Promis.)

The Setting: Trendy bar/resto in Paris. (Good lord, can I ever show my face there again?) Other moms have gone home. The combination of luxurious food, alcohol, and a school night has proved to be too much – but for a brave few.

The Characters:
La Mom, Texas Mom, Syndey Mom, Michigan Mom

The Ambiance: Dee-licious. Dee-lightful. Dee-runk.

Texas Mom to Adonis-like waiter:
Could we get another bottle of wine? Je suis très bonne.

Adonis-like waiter (smirking): Bien sûr, mademoiselle.

La Mom:
Omigod, you just told him you were good in bed! And he called you mademoiselle instead of madame!

Texas Mom (giggling)
: I just wanted to say that the wine was good. So much for my three year’s worth of French! But you know what’s really good? The music.

Sydney Mom (hiccuping) : Yeah! I love this mix.

La Mom (slurring slightly)
: Let me take care of this. We can keep this party rockin’. I can make friends with the DJ in any language.

A few minutes later…

20-Something DJ:
Bon soir, mademoiselles, qu’est-ce que je peux faire pour vous?

La Mom : Bon soir! Listen, I have a special favor to ask you. My friend is leaving Paris (insert Texas Mom’s Colgate smile and beauty queen hair toss) and we’d really like to dance. Do you have any Prince? Like “Kiss”?

20-Something DJ: Sure, but why not something more recent? I mean, something our age?

(Laughs from the peanut gallery and snorts from La Mom and Texas Mom)

Texas Mom: How old do you think we are?

20-Something DJ: Like me – in your twenties.

La Mom:
Oh, sweetie, we’re moms. We have little kids.

Texas Mom (flashing Colgate smile): Je suis une MILF!

20-Something DJ: Une MILF – what is that? I’ve always wanted to know!

La Mom to Texas Mom: You know, I’m gonna let you take this on.

The Aftermath:
1 shared taxi home, 2 (almost) sick moms, 3 phone numbers from a bartender, waitstaff, and the DJ, 4 massive hangovers.

Sacré bleu. I hate the turnover, but I sure do love the parties.


Dedicated to all my Mom friends who've gone back to their "real" lives.
Paris won't be the same without you!

Gros bisous from La Mom


La Mom is on blogcation (or blogcances, if you prefer). Check back in a few weeks for more of the dish from France with your BFF in Paris -- La Mom!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sex And The City Paris: Expat Mommy Style

SATC 2000: Remember when our four favorite NYC girlfriends used to get together for brunch and a bitch session at a NYC diner? The convo focused on boyfriends, amour, and fashion.

Fast forward to SATC 2010: picture four expat moms taking the bitch session up a notch: champagne and lunch at the Crillon Hotel. The convo hasn't changed much either: husbands, amour, fashion, and kids.


La Mom, San Francisco Mom, Florida Mom, and Texas Mom decided they were sick of never seeing their husbands who work late and travel all the time. So SF Mom suggested sticking it to them by meeting for lunch at the Crillon Hotel.

SF Mom: Screw the husbands. Champagne's on me. No wait, it's on Marc but he doesn't know it yet and won't until he gets the credit card statement. Then it'll be too late!

La Mom: You are a petite coquine.

FLA Mom: Umm, what's up with Gilles, San Diego Mom's husband? Have you noticed he scratches himself all the time.?

Texas Mom: I know! And since when did he become so American? He wants to shake my hand instead of giving me a kiss on the cheek every time I see him. It's like he's forgotten he's French. Honestly, I'd prefer a kiss over a handshake if you know what I mean...


La Mom: Did you know that Carla Bruni gets free clothes from Antik Batik? I saw her thank you letter framed and displayed in the store on Rue de Turenne in the Marais.

FLA Mom: Isn't it enough that she's polyglot, rich, beautiful and married to the most powerful man in France? On top of that she gets cool clothes from Antik Batik sent to her FOR FREE? C'est injuste that one woman can be that lucky.

La Mom: I have to admit it. I have the biggest mom crush on Carla.


Texas Mom: Speaking of crushes, I've got a crush on Father Romeo at the International Church.

FLA Mom: How cute.

Texas Mom: Seriously, I only go to church for two reasons: 1/ to see Father Romeo and 2/ to drink the delicious Sauternes at communion.

La Mom: Boston Mom told me the same thing - the church wine is great.

Texas Mom: I had a dream last night that I left Christophe for Father Romeo.
(Insert horrified looks on all of our faces)

SF Mom: Now why would you do that?

Texas Mom: Well, why wouldn't I?

SF Mom: Because he makes like 7,000€ a year, that's why!

Texas Mom: That's not a reason.

FLA Mom: Honey, that's the only reason!


La Mom: Big Fry embarrassed the heck out of us last weekend. We were at Scotland Mom's housewarming party and he took one look at the terrine and said it looked like cat food.

SF Mom: Did he say it loudly in English?

La Mom: No. Get this - he said it in French to Big Cheese. But out of all the expats who arrive in Paris not speaking a word of French, he said it within earshot of the one expat who does! Scotland Mom was walking by and told Big Cheese she knew enough French to understand what Big Fry said.

Texas Mom: Incredibly embarrassing, but it could have been worse. Big Fry could have said it to a French hostess and then you would have been blacklisted from the Parisian party scene for the next ten years.

Is lunch at the Crillon over-the-top expensive? La Mom, your BFF in Paris, is here to tell you non. On Tuesdays, lunch at Les Ambassadeurs is only 68€. It doesn't start to get expensive until you order the 12€ bottle of Corsican sparkling water, so La Mom suggests you nix that in favor of good old Parisian tap water. Skip the 12€ coffee, too, and walk to the outdoor café in the Tuileries gardens. Les Ambassadeurs, Hôtel de Crillon, Place de la Concorde, 75008 Paris. Tél. : 01 44 71 16 16. Menu déjeuner à 68 € par personne, hors boissons (du mardi au vendredi).
La Mom was so happy to find out from her Twitter follower @lindseyrcanant that she's quoted in the EasyJet inflight magazine article on macarons. Passport Holders, if you happen to fly EasyJet this summer, can you please pick up a copy of the magazine for La Mom? Compensation will be a box of Pierre Hermé macarons!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

La Mom's World Exclusive Interview


Paris, France July 21, 2010:

La Mom – an American Mom in Paris and your best girlfriend here, has given her first exclusive interview to none other than the famous French journalist and author of La Femme Digitale - Isabelle Juppé !!

In the interview for the online version of the très hip magazine, Femina, La Mom reveals the secret she's been keeping for the last two years as well as some interesting details about what goes on behind the scenes of her blog.

Isabelle Juppé writes on the Femina website, "Le blog La Mom est un blog plein d’humour et d’infos, qui raconte le quotidien de mamans américaines expatriées en France. A découvrir absolument!

(Translation: La Mom's blog is funny and full of information about the life of expat American moms in France. A must-read!)

"I am honored to be to be part of Isabelle Juppé's "Best Of Blogs" on the Femina website," La Mom said. "It's an honor that my blog, which is in English, has been recognized in my adopted home country of France, by such a talented woman as Madame Juppé."

Passport Holders, you can read all the dish here: Interview with Isabelle Juppé

Rendez-vous next week at La Mom's when Sex And The City comes to Paris - expat mommy style!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

14 Reasons To Love La France

In honor of Bastille day, tomorrow, le 14 juillet, here are 14 reasons why La Mom loves La France:

1. The impressionist collection at the Museé d'Orsay

2. French antiques

3. Paris 75006: Rue Saint André Des Arts & Rue de Buci

4. The French and Daddy Sarkozy

5. Spider vein removal financed by French social security

6. The Côte d'Azur(Nice, Cannes, Port Grimaud, St Trop', St Maxime)

7. Champagne at lunch

8. "Window licking" on the Rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré (hello Hermès!)

9. Boulangeries and the smell of fresh baked baguette

10. Normandy beaches - Honfleur & Deauville

11. Skiing in the Alps

12. Fromage, fromage, fromage!

13. Shopping in the Marais

14. The sights and smells of Provence

Et vous, why do you love France?

Happy Bastille Day! La Mom's leaving on a short vacation to Bordeaux where she's sure to eat and drink very well.
La Mom wants to give a big merci to Kimberly T. and her "nerd friend" for their email recommendation on how to to fix my Blogger comment bug. Her third recommendation to "blame it on Big Fry" was très cute!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Blogger Comment Bug?

Dear Passport Holders,
Your fabulous comments are not publishing. I've even sent one to myself to test and it failed. Does anyone know how to fix this bug? Email or Tweet moi s'il vous plaît.
Merci beaucoup!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

How To Nail The Int'l School Admission Interview

Feeling nervous about your little one's admission interview with Monsieur Director at the exclusive International School in Paris?

La Mom's here to help. I've got a sure fire way for your child to nail their admission interview. It's called The FN Method and it's been tried and tested by La Mom, Georgia Mom, and South Carolina Mom. It works! And it only costs $7.00!

Never heard of The FN Method? Well, you can find it at WHSmith's on the Rue de Rivoli across the street from Les Tuileries gardens or on Amazon.

Just look for Fancy Nancy.

Or to be more specific: Fancy Nancy's Favorite Fancy Words: From Accessories to Zany

Here's how it works:

Step 1: Start reading Fancy Nancy to your petit brainiac at least six weeks before the big day.

(Sidebar: Fancy Nancy may be a girl, but my Big Fry (who's a boy) thoroughly enjoys her character. Now's not the time to have gender issues before the biggest interview of your kid's life. Let your petit garçon have fun with Fancy Nancy.)

Step 2: Focus on just two or three fancy words for your little one to use during the interview.

Step 3: Practice using these fancy words in sentences that illustrate your child's life, things he can use in the interview, such as:

==> "I love Paris because there are canines everywhere. Canines are my favorite animal."

==> "My nanny took me on an excursion to the Musée D'Orsay yesterday."

(Sidebar: A sentence like this scores your kid double points! Substituting "excursion" for trip is sharp, but going to the Musée D'Orsay instead of the Parc Monceau's merry-go-round on a Wednesday afternoon is even more impressive!)

==> "I dropped my mom's macarons on the parquet and they broke. It was a fiasco!"

(Sidebar: Score triple points for this one! 1 for fiasco, 2 for using the French word "parquet" in an English sentence.)

Et voilà!

Monsieur Director will EAT.IT.UP. If he's French, he may even let an "Oh la la" slip out.


No more coaching your kid about what to say or not during the interview. Just teach him a few new Fancy Nancy words to drop as if it were as natural as breathing and expect that acceptance letter to arrive in your mailbox within 24 hours!

Note: The Fancy Nancy Method also works if you're trying to get your child into an exclusive school in the US or UK.

Let's say you want your child to get into The Spence School in Manhattan or The Hampshire School in London. Get a copy of Fancy Nancy And The Boy From Paris and teach your child just one or two French words to use during the interview (three words would be over doing it and the Director may suspect coaching), such as:

"I'm looking forward to making new amis at this school. Ami is French for friend."

"My dolly's name is Belle. Belle is a French word for beautiful."

See how easy it is?

Merci Fancy Nancy!

Looking for a chic restaurant-épicerie to try in the heart of the Latin Quarter? La Mom recommends DA ROSA, where the wine is excellent and you can feast on tapas and twelve different types of ham from Italy, Portugal, or Spain. The people watching isn't bad either. La Mom saw Bradley Cooper dining here! The best tables are en terrasse.
Da Rosa, 62 Rue de Seine, Paris 75006 TEL
Cool Frenchie blog alert: Check out Beadboard UpCountry, a Euro-Country lifestyle and design source. Beadboard UpCountry brings you casual elegance of the country lifestyle, reflecting a calmer, softened palette with less clutter, natural fiber fabrics, slipcovers of all kinds and French touches.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Ready, Set, SOLDES!

Here's a La Mom Best Of in honor of France's national sales which start tomorrow. Originally posted le 24 juin, 2009. Bon shopping! ~~~~~~

Ladies and gentlemen, get your running shoes out and your boxing gloves on.

C’est les soldes!

Today marks the beginning of the fabled twice-annual deep-discount French sales.

Fabled, you might ask? Let’s just say that even Cendrillion can find a dress or two to go with those glass stilettos as prices fall to rock-bottom over the 5-week sales period.

And why the boxing gloves? If it’s anything like last year’s Zadig and Voltaire’s markdowns, you’ll need ‘em. Normally prim and proper 16th arondissement demoiselles morphed into banshees as they duked it out over cashmere sweaters – even resorted to slugging each other with their Hermès Birkin bags to get at the last ELVIS-logo pullover.

Trust me, those sapphire-and-diamond rings can do some damage. Better come with a game plan.

Here are La Mom’s tips for making the most of the summer soldes:

1) Plan your attack.

Get in touch with your inner Napoléon and map out your strategy. This is war, baby, so get used to it. La Mom’s personal picks this year are:

Comptoir de Cotonniers for their juicy prints and structured linen dresses

Les Petites for their basics in a vivid palette (check out the ink blue)

Anne Fontaine
– because you always need a crisp white shirt

2) If you love it, buy it.

Don’t bother looking around at another store to see if they have a better price or wait until it’s marked down even further. If you find something you like in your size, snap it up immédiatement! Stores have problems keeping sizes in stock at the best of times, and it’s even worse during the sales.

3) Think like a Frenchwoman.

never buy because the price is right. It’s because they’ve found the perfect pair of shoes for their cocktail dress, or that gold clutch they’ve been hunting for two seasons straight. They only buy what they need – and what makes them look great, bien sûr!

4) Break out your new vocabulary.

It’s inevitable – if you get a great deal, someone’s bound to be jealous. Just make sure you have the Français to make the loser pardon their French.

Here’s what happened to La Mom at the winter soldes:

Parisienne No° Une: She’s trying on the last size 38!

Parisienne No° Deux: Salope.

La Mom:
Oui, la belle salope who just got the last Yves Saint Laurent LBD at 80% off!
Summer's here and if you can't make it to Paris for vacation then check in at La Mom's blog every week to get the latest dish direct from the City Of Light! La Mom's spilling the beans next week with her tips on how to nail the exclusive international school admission interview!
SOS Help is a completely non-profit organization and receives no government help. Please support a good cause.

Special "Summer Clearance" Sale
Fill a bag of books for only 5 euros!
July 3rd, 12 pm to 4 pm
Courtyard at St. Joseph's Church
50 avenue Hoche, Paris 75008

SOS Help, an English speaking crisis line in France, is open from 3 pm to 11 pm daily. Call us up to talk about anything on your mind – from loneliness to stress to concerns about integrating into a new culture. We are here to listen! Call us at 01 46 21 46 46 or visit us online at for more information.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Summer Days – Frenchy Friday

It's official – summer has finally hit France.
So naturellement, all the Parisians are itching to get out of town.

Here's a little something to daydream about while waiting for les vacances to start...

Have a very Frenchy Friday!

Kisses on both cheeks,

La Mom
An American Mom in Paris

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Hot French Dads

In honor of Father’s Day in France, June 20th, La Mom would like to salute les papas she thinks are très hot. The list is random and categorized by profession, in no order of importance. Each papa has been awarded an Eiffel Tower for their degree of hotness (1- hot, 2 very hot, 3 - en feu).


#1 DADDY SARKOZY ==> 1 Eiffel Tower

La Mom loves France’s first daddy, step daddy & grand-daddy. How can you not get hot over a man who promotes women of all races and colors to important government posts?Daddy Sarkozy works hard at staying hot by jogging every day and La Mom can't wait to see tabloid pictures of Monsieur Le Président in his American-style swim trunks and bare chest at the beach this summer.
(Sidebar: I'm soooo happy Sarko's not into sporting le banana hammock. That's hot!)

#2 Dominique de Villepin ==> 2 Eiffel Towers

Have you ever seen a politician with a blow-out as sexy as Dom's? When he was Prime Minister, I used to see him jogging with his body guards every weekend. You have no idea how may times I fantasized about blowing his hair dry after his shower then running my hands through his 'coif to give it that messed up/just rolled out of bed sexy Prime Minister look.

DdV is shaping up to be a serious challenger to Daddy Sarkozy's presidential run in 2012. Even though I may lust after Dom, my vote will still go to Daddy Sarkozy. I'm très jealous of any man who has a better blowout than moi.

#3 Alain Juppé ==> 1 Eiffel Tower

Any man who rides a bike to work is hot. Period. When Al was Minister of Ecology & Sustainable Development he rode his vélo to work every day. La Mom thinks it's irresistably sexy when someone tries to reduce their carbon footprint, don't you agree?
(P.S.- He's got a really cool wife too. Here's a winky wink to you Isabelle!)


#4 GERARD DEPARDIEU ==> 1 Eiffel Tower

What's not to love about Gégé? His French accent when he speaks ze Engleesh is so charming and he's ad-or-a-ble when dressed up as Obélix, half of France's famous comic strip duo. La Mom loves.the.braids. Chic non?

#5 VINCENT CASSEL ==>3 Eiffel Towers

Mmmm...yummy yummy for my tummy (Eh oui, don't I wish this picture of perfection wanted some of my tummy?) Not only is Vince a hot papa, he's a hot actor too. You may know this Frenchie from Ocean's 12, 13, and Derailed.


#6 Patrick Bruel ==> 2 Eiffel Towers

When La Mom was an au-pair back in La Single Girl days, all my French girlfriends had a crush on "Patreeeeeck". I didn't really understand why. Well now I do and I'm the one with the crush. Pat is like a bottle of good French wine - he gets better with age. So does his voice.


#7 Frederic Beigbeder ==> 3 Eiffel Towers

The hair. That nose. Those eyes. Oh la la! I'm a devoted reader to his party boy column in Voici every week. Sshh, don't tell Big Cheese, but Fred's been sharing my bed once a year since 2000. You see, La Mom's a huge fan of his book 99 Francs. It was the second French book I read when I moved to Paris (after Le Petit Nicolas - a big step up from a book for 4 year olds, non?). Every year I take Fred to bed and re-read his book. Oh, and how hot is it that the designer Zadig & Voltaire named a shirt after him? La Mom's proudly wears her "I heart Beig" shirt whenever I jog at the Parc MOMceau. So does Carla Bruni - now that's cool.


In honor of The World Cup, La Mom thought it was more than appropriate to nominate a French soccer player that I've had a decade long love affair with.

#8 Christophe Dugarry ==> 3 Eiffel Towers

I fell in lust with him in '98 when he wore his long hair back in a headband while playing. His hair's short now that he's consulting for French TV during the World Cup. I feel like Duga's speaking directly to me when he says things on TV such as, "Coverage is key. One must really know how to handle the ball in order to get some action."
Oooooh la, La Mom's en feu. Allez Les Bleus!


#9 Big Cheese ==> 3 Eiffel Towers
He's a fantastique dad and getting hotter with age.

Bonne fêtes des pères!
Who would you nominate as a hot French Dad?
La Mom's gotta feeling your gonna like this lipdub by university students in Quebec. Les Black Eyed Peas in French!
(listen closely to them singing in French at the end of the video)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Frenchy Friday

This photo pretty much sums up what it's like to be Parisian.

Have a very Frenchy Friday!

Kisses on both cheeks,

La Mom
An American Mom in Paris

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Frat Boy François

Sometimes living the expat mommy life is like living in a dysfunctional sorority house.

Except last Saturday, I found myself surrounded by a bunch of overgrown frat boys cruising the Seine. I also learned how to quite possibly pees off the French taxman.

You see, La Mom was one of the few playgroup moms to score an exclusive invite to the birthday party New Jersey Mom was throwing for her French husband on a Bateau Mouche. Everyone in playgroup was coveting an invitation to cruise around Paris while sipping champagne, feasting on ~

-Médaillon de foie gras de canard au chutney de poire
-Dégustation de St Jacques fumées à la réglisse, vanille et fraises
-Filet de boeuf poêlé au poivre
-Plateau de fromages affinés
-Millefeuille au pralin avec son glace au chocolat

and dancing to tunes from France’s Belgian-born, American-named, Elvis equivalent, a.k.a God: Johnny Hallyday.

Eh oui, a great time was had by all up until around 11PM. Then things took an interesting turn to say the least.

Imagine our surprise when the conversation Big Cheese and I were having with D.C. Mom, San Diego Mom, and Maine Mom was interrupted by the anxious cries of our friend Boston Mom yelling at her French husband:

François, what are you doing?

François, stop that now!

François, don’t you dare embarrass us this way!

At the same time, a few of the American husbands were egging on their cool new French frat brother:

Go for it, Francis!

Fly him to the moon!

Give him a cou cou! (peekaboo)

That's right, as the boat passed in front of the Finance Minister’s river front office, Frat Boy François, who obviously had way too much Bollinger and Mouton Cadet to drink, dropped his trousers.

But that's not all.

He then proceeded to moon the Ministère des Finances while so elegantly shouting, “Cou cou Christian, you screwed my taxes this year, here’s a little cul cul for you!”

What a way to render a boat full of Frenchies absolutely speechless.

Frat boy behavior when you're 20 years old, La Mom gets it. But mooning someone (especially Christian Estrosi, the Finance Minister) when you’re 40 and a party guest? Uh, pas vraiment!

It’s also a great way to ensure you get a nice little tax audit.

Anyway, us moms can’t wait for playgroup Friday - only two days to go! Did I mention it’s at Boston Mom’s apartment? There’s sure to be a très special guest hanging in the room with us: Monsieur Elephant.

Because by Monday afternoon, Frat Boy François and the full moon story had made its way around the park.

Look at those beautiful faces smiling on my blog - 298 followers! Thanks so much for following everyone!

Bisous on both cheeks,
La Mom - An American Mom in Paris

Friday, May 28, 2010

Frenchy Friday

Who says they love Paris in the springtime? La Mom does -- when the temperatures get above 60°F, that is.

But this colorful flower market in Dordogne got La Mom's green thumb itching, malgré the chilly weather.

Here's a little taste of spring in Southwestern France:

Happy (windowbox) gardening to all of you Parisians!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Hubris Is A Beetch

La Mom was excited for Big Fry’s school talent show. His group was performing the only English song at the show: I’m A Little Teapot.

If you’d been a fly on the wall at playgroup the week before the show, here’s what you would have heard:

La Mom: The French moms at school don’t give me the time of day. I’m never going to make French maman friends.

Chicago Mom: Don’t they know that you speak French?

La Mom: Of course they do. I was the only mom asking a million questions, in French, at back-to-school night.

Brussels Mom: French women are hard to crack.

La Mom(cues Monsieur Hubris): Well, Big Fry’s going to have the best English accent on stage. He knows the words to the song by heart. The Frenchies will all be envious. They’re probably jealous, anyway, because I’ve got the only kid in class who’s truly bilingual.

Fast forward to the talent show. All the kids have one sentence to say before singing I’m a Little Teapot:

“Good morning Mister waiter, a cup of tea, please.”

One by one, the French kids repeated the sentence with the same accent, “Goowd morneeng meester wayteh, eh cup uf tee pleess.”

Here’s what the French mamans were proudly whispering in the audience (and what La Mom was thinking):

Paris Mom Un: Oh la la! What a great accent Ariane has!
(La Mom: You call that an English accent? Clean the wax out of your ears.)

Paris Mom Deux: Our Jules speaks English so well!
(La Mom: Not really. The only English word I recognized in that sentence was "cup.")

Paris Mom Trois: I didn’t know your Cédric was so fluent in English!
(La Mom: Fluent shmuent. Give the kid another twenty-five years and a few study abroad trips and maybe he’ll be half as fluent as Big Fry is. Maybe.)

La Mom sat there smugly waiting for Big Fry’s chance to show them all how it’s done.... We’ve been singing "I’m A Little Teapot" since he was a baby.

Big Fry: Uhhhh, uhhh, goowd morneeng meester wayteh, ay’d like eh cup uf tee pleess.

Mon Dieu! Was he kidding? My bilingual Big Fry made himself sound like his Frenchie classmates. He pretended that he couldn’t speak English because he didn’t want to be different from his friends.

Oh how Monsieur Hubris is a beetch. Here’s what the French mamans said to me after Big Fry’s stellar performance:

Paris Mom Un: La Mom, Big Fry has a French accent when he speaks English. Mais dis donc!

Paris Mom Deux: He’s not that bilingual after all. Heuresement. Mon Jules peut le rattraper.

Paris Mom Trois: I think his French is better than his English.

Ouch. Way to stick a knife in La Mom’s heart. Tell her Big Fry is more French than American.

Hubris - eet ees eh beetch.

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