I just got back from a trip to France with my son Emmett – a special mommy and big boy trip (little Adrian, just 18 months old stayed home with his dad). We had been to France before to see family and friends but this was the first time we went to Paris. To get ready, we read children’s books about Paris, an art book we love that shows famous paintings in the Louvre, and watched Madeline videos about the adorable Parisian orphan character.
It was so fun to see Paris through Emmett’s eyes. I planned a modified tourist agenda which left times for naps and daily ice cream treats. He rode ponies in the Luxembourg Gardens, danced in front of Hotel de Ville (“a castle !”), and of course we went up the Eiffel Tower. He had a chance to practice his French with the children of my French friends and all the shopkeepers (he has DOWN “un pain au chocolat s’il vous plait”). I was tickled that people said his accent sounded very authentic and was happy he was asking more and more about “how do you say… In French?”
When we were on the subway on our last day he heard the announcement for the Musée du Louvre and to my surprise piped up, “I want to see the Louvre!” I cautioned him it is a huge museum and might be overwhelming (we had plans to go to the smaller museum) but he insisted he wanted to see it. We jumped off the metro just in time and visited the Louvre! He didn’t last much more than 20 minutes but it was worth it.
The last day culminated with a visit to the Bon Marché toy department, a tip from a dad friend who had just been to Paris with his five year old daughter. Emmett loved the 6 foot pirate made of Legos and bought a medieval castle and knights to bring home.
As we got on the plane I told him to say “Au revoir!” to France. He chimed in, “Au revoir, see you next year!” Music to my ears.