A second Christmas on the other side of the world

By Mummy B.



For the second year in a row, we celebrated Christmas away from France. After Asia, America!

And once again, we really thought we would be a little alone in front of our Christmas tree.

If last year we eventually spent Christmas Eve with some new friends in Singapore (a French expatriated family just like us) and Christmas Day with another French friend, this year we haven’t had time to make friends in California.


Noël 2013 à Singapour
Starters for Dec 25 2013



Away from family and friends, holidays are not the same. It lacks the joy of being reunited, the bright smiles, the hugs and kisses, the tinkling glasses, the laughter, the excitement of little ones before the imminent arrival of Santa Claus. And we also miss all the details that make us think “that’s how we do it here”, like the exchange of gifts on Christmas Eve, Gran’Ma B.’s tender eye on her tribe of grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Uncle N.’s jokes, Sister M.’s sparkling eyes because Christmas is always a little magic for her, Daddy B. playing and having a blast with children, Gran’Pa B.’s delicious dishes, Mamy NB. decorating the table with special care and a pretty place card for everyone, Papy P. who likes to heckle with children and chooses good wines, the complicity between the little ones E., A., M. and M. that Mimi B. is missing a lot …

We would like to enjoy and take time with everyone. Mamy FB. who doesn’t really like Christmas but still loves spoiling her little Mimi. We have a thought for Bro’A and his family and Bro’K & A. We would love to be in the heart of Alsace with Papy C. & E., spend time in Aix with Auntie R. and her pretty ML, and then enjoy Paris to visit Gran’Ma C., Auntie and F & J Couz ‘, and everyone else …

We would miss the faces, the voices, the gestures … the traditions, the rituals, the habits … The family. Our family.

Noël 2013 à Nantes
The first Christmas of Mimi, spent with family



So for Christmas, the idea of being only the three of us reminded us of how much we miss our family and friends.

And completely by surprise, just before leaving for a few days in Southern California, we ‘ve been invited!

Of course, we immediately accepted. Without really knowing each other, without ever having seen each other, we said “yes”.



December 24, as we got back home from our vacation in Los Angeles late the night before, we emptied the suitcases and then packed again and hit the road. Towards Sacramento, or more precisely Roseville, to celebrate Christmas with Sara and her family. You can read about them on her blog Les Aventures de la Famille Bourg.

Thanks to her blog, I met Sara (virtually) while we were still living in Singapore. If you remember well, I told you about her for Halloween 2013!



After a three hours drive (it took twice the time because there were many people driving north), we met Sara, her husband and their two daughters Choupi and Loulou, both close to the age of Mimi B.

We really had a great evening. The little ones played together and had a lot of fun. It was so cute to see them, a new friendship is born. Mimi was very happy to play with Choupi and Loulou who very kindly shared all their toys and she is now looking forward to invite them in her room and share her toys with her new friends.

Even Doggy B., who accompanied us, had a nice Christmas full of hugs and cuddles!

La tenue du réveillon de Noël 2014 de Mimi


We ate a delicious meal prepared by Sara and her husband. Smoked salmon toasts, roast beef with green beans and fried potatoes and a french raspberry Christmas cake with champagne and some cookies prepared by the girls for Santa (there was plenty of them, so he could share with us!). A real treat!

Les toasts de saumon fumé

Mimi, très sage à table

La bûche pâtissière aux framboises



For our husbands, it was easy to talk a lot as they are both musicians and American sports fans!!! And Sarah and I talked a lot too, happy to meet each other in real life after having discussed by interposed screens.

The girls went to bed, not without putting the plate of cookies for Santa and their shoes at the foot of the great Christmas tree.

Les cookies et les chaussures en bonne place


We had a very nice evening until the arrival of Santa Claus, who ate all the cookies (what a greedy!) and spoiled our little princesses. Then it was time to go to bed!

Le grand sapin chez Sara



The next morning, Mimi B. was the first awake and had only one thing in mind: see the Christmas gifts !!! Very quickly her two little friends awakened and they rushed under the tree. The many presents next to their shoes dazzled their eyes! Of course, the breakfast had to wait! The opening of the gifts was more important!

A morning full of joy and smiles!

Mimi ouvre ses cadeaux

Daddy B. et Mimi découvrent les jouets

le tablier de cuisine et bricolage de Mimi

Les emballages

La première tournée de cadeaux de Mimi B.



We stayed after lunch with Sara and her family. It wasn’t easy for the girls to say goodbye and we promised to meet again soon.

We would once again like to thank them for their kind invitation and warm welcome. Our Christmas was merry and festive thanks to them.



On the way back, we took a detour to Old Sacramento. We loved the area but Mimi B. was quietly sleeping in the car, so we will come back next time to enjoy it.

Décorations de Noël dans le Vieux Sacramento

Architecture dans le Vieux Sacramento

Le sapin de Noël du Vieux Sacramento

La calèche de Noël

Architecture au soleil couchant

Le soleil se couche


Back at home, we had a lot of presents delivered by Santa Claus while we were out (or how settle your gifts under the tree before departure, while the little one is waiting in the car …). Mimi was again delighted and very spoiled. I also found my nice Christmas bouquet offered by Daddy B. just before leaving, the flowers are still beautiful today!

Les cadeaux chez nous

La veste hippie de Mimi

Le jeu Mobigo "princesses Disney"

La carte de mamy FB

mon bouquet de Noël

un calin de Noel



The elves have forgotten some presents (what a good excuse!), so there is still a lot of Christmas gifts waiting for being opened by Mimi B., so we decided to celebrate a second Christmas this December 31 since we have nothing else planned!

We hope your Christmas was as merry as ours and filled with good times. We wish you a wonderful New Year’s Eve!



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