My Mom and Sister Come to Paris!

So two weeks ago a long-awaited dream came true- my mom and sister came to visit me in Paris!

While my mother has been to Europe several times before, it was my 13-year old sister’s first time on the continent so I was particularly excited to give her a taste of life in Paris. And by taste, I literally meant taste. This is Paris we’re talking about after all.

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After dropping off our bags at the hotel, we stopped in a nameless bakery for some beautifully crafted pastries. While I hurriedly ordered some coffee and croissants for everyone, my sister excitedly picked out a lemon tart with meringue on top.


I will always remember Bee’s first food in France as being a bright yellow, perfectly tart tarte au citron.


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By traveling with my mom and sister I noticed something- you start to pay attention to different things depending on with whom you travel. My mother’s love of flowers and all things that grow reflects in many of my photos…



And speaking of interests, my sister’s top priorities in Paris were a. see the Eiffel Tower and b. buy as many multi-colored macarons as possible and Instagram them.

And let me assure you- there’s no scream like the one of a thirteen-year old girl spotting the Eiffel Tower for the first time.

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Post-Eiffel-tower-gushing, I took my mom and sister over to the Notre Dame, assuming they’d like to see it- but luckily for me they weren’t interested. (Sorry, I’ve been in a million times at this point- I even confessed there once!)

What wasn’t so lucky was that while we were strolling the gardens outside Notre Dame a large, drunk and possibly homeless man approached us to belch in our faces- and my poor little sister promptly burst into tears. Enraged, I screamed, “CONNARD!” in his direction. Needless to say, it was not what I had planned for my mom and sister’s perfect first day in Paris.

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Soon everyone recovered from shock and we made our way to another site- the love lock-covered Pont des Arts. Per Bee’s request, we stopped by the bridge to see the locks for reasons that may or may not involve the Kardashians.



But I can’t hate on the Kardashian Klan too much, because they indirectly led me to stumble upon a beautiful moment of a bride and groom posing for wedding pictures on the bridge.



We then headed over to Le Marais to escape the tourist hordes to have lunch and shop. While we were unceremoniously kicked out of Breizh Café (I’ll leave that rant for another post, but let’s just say I won’t be lunching there again) we ended up at Chez Robert et Louise for some runny cheese, red wine and buttery mushrooms. Which basically sums up everything I love about France.

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While the day wasn’t perfect (unsavory incidents included getting thrown out of a creperie and being burped at by a homeless drunk man, after all) it was so meaningful to me to show my mother and little sis all the things about France that make my heart sing.

Have you ever had family come visit you when you were living abroad?

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About Ashley Fleckenstein

Ashley is a travel and lifestyle blogger who lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Since college she has au paired in Paris, backpacked the world solo, and lived in Uganda. Her work has been featured by Buzzfeed, Forbes, TripAdvisor, and Glamour Magazine.

10 thoughts on “My Mom and Sister Come to Paris!”

  1. My family (mom and brother) came to visit me when I was studying in Granada, Spain. It was a great week. They both loved it and it really peaked my brother’s interest in studying abroad and traveling abroad. I’m hoping they will be able to visit when I’m teaching in Spain next year too. Once again, superb pictures Ashley!!

  2. How exciting your family got to come visit! My sister lived in Paris with me for the summer, and we had such a lovely time frolicking absolutely everywhere. Just recently my husband’s parents came to visit us here in Korea, except they came in February on the coldest week of the year! Thankfully they cared more about seeing us than being tourists… there’s no way we could have spent much time outside in the Siberian winds. On the other hand, my dad came to visit us in Korea in the spring with the cherry blossoms in bloom. Magical!

  3. Haha, love your comment about seeing the Eiffel Tower for the first time – I was in Paris last weekend guiding a tour and hearing fifty people squeal when the tower first comes into view never gets old!

  4. Lucky!! I wish I had a sister living in Paris when I was 13! My family hasn’t come to visit me yet.. which I find ridiculous as they’re hibernating all winter in Canada and here I am living on a Caribbean island! Oh well, maybe soon :)

  5. What you said about your perspective changing depending on whom you’re traveling with rang so true! My mom recently visited me in Shanghai and we gravitated towards the city’s parks and old hotels. It was so fun to explore the city with her!

  6. When I did a High School Year in Canada, my parents picked me up at the end and we drove through Canada’s west which was an amazing experience. It was a bit strange to have them in my town in the beginning, though, just because I was so used to my own life there – but then again, I was also sixteen ;)
    I’ve been to Paris so often, but somehow the Pont des Arts has escaped my noticed. I wonder if there’s still room for more locks?


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