Buying Cloth Diapers in France is Challenging

We decided that instead of using disposable diapers, we use cloth diapers (couches lavable) for our little girl. Not only will this cut costs significantly, but it will be a more comfortable solution for her and is better for the environment. I am not talking about the cloth from the days of our parents and grandparents with the safety pins, but the modern diapers that are easy and more effective. The ones I wanted (and ended up choosing) fits babies at any age - from newborn to toddlers. This way I do not have to worry about having x amount in each size. The hardest part about going cloth in … [Read more...]

Bargain Shopping at French Yard Sales

This was our first weekend free after moving into the new house, so we decided to start shopping for our baby. On Sundays most stores are not open in France but those looking for deals can find them during the summer at yard sales. Each Sunday, different communities hold yard sales to clean out their homes and sell the items they no longer use or want. Where I am from in Florida, we held yard sales at our own homes whenever we felt like it. However, here people must wait until their community sale.This is my first pregnancy so my first instinct is to buy everything new since I want nothing … [Read more...]

Mandatory Doctor Visits for Pregnant Women in France

Shortly after the doctor confirms pregnancy, pregnant women in France are given a schedule of mandatory doctor visits. I enjoy the fact that I am not left to guess when I should be going to the doctor or when my next ultrasound will be, but it can be stressful to follow when you have large events happening – like moving! Now I am a few weeks behind.Social security covers women whether they see a doctor or midwife. So for now on I will be seeing a midwife at the hospital where I will be delivering. This will give me an opportunity to really get to know the facility and the midwives there. … [Read more...]

Starting School in France at the Age of 2

When my husband told me that our little girl will start school when she is 2 or 3 years old, I nearly flipped out ! Okay, maybe I actually did and gave him one of my stubborn “No, that is out of the question” responses. But what do you expect when a person is raised on the fact that kids start kindergarten when they are 5 years old?Sending a 2 or 3 year old off to school for 7.5 hours a day seems a bit much to me. So I set out to understand what I am getting my daughter into by living in France versus the USA.Kids are first sent to nursery school (maternelle) when they are around 2 or … [Read more...]

Goodbye Yellow School Bus

In the USA, most kids experience the daily routine of rushing out each morning to catch the yellow bus to school. Then as we get into high school, you lean against the window dreaming of your first car. In France, you will not see those yellow school buses, or any school buses for that matter.If parents do not live close to the school then they have a choice of either driving or sending the child on the public bus or tram. In Bordeaux, it was very common to see young children in the morning either alone or with a guardian taking public transportation to get to school.  I personally got … [Read more...]