England

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One of our last big trips was to London. We picked up our friends, Amy and Travis, from the Paris airport on the way. They had stayed in Paris for a few days and we were so happy to get to spend some time with them!

We did all the touristy things in London like touring Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, eating Fish and Chips with Mushy Peas, Meat Pies, riding a double-decker bus, taking the Tube, seeing the Big Ben clock tower, and seeing London Bridge. Our favorites were visiting Stonehenge and the Harry Potter Warner Brothers Studio Tour. Stonehenge was very interesting, especially since they don’t know much about it. Harry Potter was even better since we are such Harry Potter nerds fans. Even Brooklyn had a great time and enjoyed seeing all the parts of the sets. She got to practice using a wand, ride a broom, sit in the Weasley’s cars, walk through Diagon alley, walk across the bridge at Hogwarts, and too much more to list! And, of course, our visit wasn’t complete without some butterbeer!

And check out the picture of the gray ice cream bar. It was Magnum brand ice cream in Champagne flavor and it really had alcohol in it! I had seen the Champagne flavored ones before and wanted to try one before we left, because I don’t think they have these in the U.S. or do they? It was horribly disgusting, so you guys aren’t missing anything if they only sell them in France. :)

Disneyland, Paris

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We took Brooklyn to Disneyland, Paris on the second day of school. Can I just say that this was the best idea I’ve ever had? There wasn’t much of a crowd and the wait times were about 15 minutes. It was wonderful. We had time to ride most of the rides and even rode a few of them twice.

We started the morning having breakfast at Café Mickey. It was a French style breakfast and nothing like the breakfast at the ones in the United States. I had been dreaming about the American Mickey Mouse waffles for weeks and was sad devastated to see they didn’t have any. :( At breakfast, Brooklyn was a little shy, but let us take her picture with the characters (I will neither confirm nor deny that there was bribery involved). We then spent the day in the park riding all the rides and seeing all that Disney has to offer. Brooklyn had so much fun! She loved the carousel, the teacups, Dumbo’s ride, and even got to drive the cars on the track. We finished our day with the parade and Brooklyn was up front and loved it!

Disneyland in Paris is a little smaller than the one is Florida, although it is set up mostly the same. The one big difference is that the castle in Paris is Sleeping Beauty’s castle. They even have a moving, breathing dragon below the castle. Even though the dragon scared Brooklyn a bit, she asked to see it twice. It was quite wonderful!

It is a little sad to think that we probably won’t go to this park again because we are moving, but we of course will have fun at the ones in the United States. And I will get to eat Mickey Mouse waffles. :)

Saperlipopette!

BBrookie

We have wonderful news! We are moving home!

I can’t believe I haven’t posted it by now, but we have been crazy getting the house ready to move. Or I have…Michael has been living it up in Korea (not really) and China (Really….from the hotel with the walk in closet and sitting room to the Chinese telling him they love him everywhere he went. I guess the Chinese really like Americans!) Although, I think I’d rather be getting the house ready than eating the intestines and animal cheek he had to eat while in China. That’s right….cheek!

The movers come tomorrow to pack up our apartment and we fly home at the end of November. We have already bought a house and it will be finished being built at the end of January. The news that we were moving home has definitely been bittersweet and even though we are sad to leave France and all of the amazing experiences we have had, there are lots of things to look forward to when we come home!

Mini Farmer Day

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Brooklyn was lucky enough to get to do a Mini-Farmer day again at La ferme pédagogique la Moulerette in Montpeyroux. We really enjoy taking Brooklyn to this farm and she enjoys getting to feed the animals and ride the horses. The Mini-Farmer day is a little different from the normal admission. With this they get to go in the cages and feed the animals, collect the eggs from the chickens, and even milk a goat! Brooklyn enjoyed all of this except for milking the goats. She said very loudly, “That is disguistin’.” And normally we don’t have to worry too much if she says something embarrassing because the French don’t understand, but this time some of them did. They laughed and we laughed, but it was a bit embarrassing. All in all, we had a great time and, of course, we didn’t leave without Brooklyn riding the horses.

Corsica

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In France, August means mandatory vacation and there has never been a better idea than this. Mandatory vacation is about 3 weeks long and lots of the larger business make this mandatory. Lots of the small businesses here are also closed while they vacation so much of France is a ghost town during this time. After our trip to Paris, we rested for a few days and then left again for vacation in Corsica.

We drove to Bruzolo, Italy the night before we left for Corsica and really enjoyed it. We stayed at a small bed and breakfast in a small town and it was beautiful. We were surrounded by tall mountains, vineyards, and beautiful gardens. We walked up to the town that evening and had some real Italian pizza for dinner.

To get to Corsica you either have to fly or take the Ferry. We decided to take the ferry so we would have our car to travel all over the island. The ferry was certainly an interesting experience. For starters, there were no security checks for any person or any vehicle. You literally showed up and drove on the boat. This lack of security checks must be why they can load this boat, exactly like a cruise ship, in 45 minutes instead of 4 hours on a cruise ship in the United States. We took the ferry during the day, but we still opted to rent a cabin to be more comfortable. The ferry was just like a cruise ship with all the restaurants, shops, pools, etc.

While in Corsica, we stayed in Ajacio and had an apartment with the most amazing view! While there, we took a couple of boats tours, spent a few days at the beach, and drove on lots of windy mountains roads. We took a hike down to some waterfalls, took a hike along the ocean to see the sunset, and saw the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte. We also spent some time drooling over yachts parked near the piers. We did lots of relaxing on this vacation, which was nice.

We took the ferry to Nice, France on the return trip and got to see a little bit of the French Riviera before we began our drive home. It was a long drive and we were glad to be home again!

Paris with friends

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A few weeks ago some friends, Courtney and Ciera, came to visit for a week. We were able to show them around Clermont-Ferrand, introduce them to French Patisseries, and take them to Paris. We of course had a wonderful time, especially in Paris! We did all sorts of touristy things like seeing the Eiffel Tower (We took the 704 stairs to the second level and then took the elevator!), the Arc De Triomphe, The Louvre (Where Brooklyn photobombed the Mona Lisa, check out the picture in the slideshow), The Opera, Notre Dame, The Tomb of Napoleon, The Palace of Versailles, and way too many museums to list! C’était magnifique!

La Ferme De Boissieres

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Last week we visited a farm called La Ferme De Boissieres in a little town called St. Nectaire. It was a small farm with Llamas, Beavers, Marmots, kangaroos, and wallabys. What was really neat about this farm is that you could get up close and hold or pet the animals. Brooklyn really enjoyed being able to pet and hold the animals. She also really enjoyed it when a llama spit on one of the kids!

Gymnastics End of Year Show

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Brooklyn had her end of the year gymnastics show a few weeks ago. We had received a handwritten note asking to bring her dressed in horse colors and with a tail. We had no idea it was one big show with all the classes from gymnastics. And apparently I wasn’t the only American mom confused, because none of the older American girls knew to wear their team uniforms. Oh, the language barrier…but that aside, the show went well.

When it was time for Brooklyn’s class to perform, the music started, they all got down on all fours and walked on stage like a horse. And walked around a circle. And did three horse kicks. And jumped up and down crazy like. Now don’t get me wrong, it was cute. We think anything Brooklyn does is cute, but was this all she learned in a whole year of gymnastics? I’ve been in class before and they have a huge obstacle course set up where they climb, jump, and do rolls so I know they do learn things!

Oh well, at least she had fun and was super cute doing it!

Fete De Massillon

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The school year is almost over for our little French girl. The last day of classes is July 3rd. Crazy, right?!

This past Saturday was the Fete De Massillon at Brooklyn’s school. All the classes put on a performance, there is a carnival, and they do a dinner.

This year, Brooklyn’s class did a show with the theme of Indians and it was very cute! They all dressed up like Indians and marched on stage and each group sat around a different campfire. At some point in the song, each group would stand up and march around the fire. One group waved around bows and arrows, one group did the yells of the Indians, and Brooklyn’s group pretended to ride horses, which she was thrilled about!

After the show, we took Brooklyn around to play some of the games and she had a blast! It was a nice way to end the school year.

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