This was my first Christmas in France!!! Here are 5 things that I’ve observed.

1 Clean shoes

Place your shoes below the tree (or ideally, under the chimney) on 24th December. That’s right, no socks! Make sure your shoes don’t smell is essential 😉 Your family will then place your presents under or next to your shoes. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you 😛


2 Unboxing is on 25th Dec

Unbox is on the 25th December morning and ALL family members MUST be present. The kids couldn’t sleep at all wahaha


3 Christmas eve, Christmas lunch, dinner…

The meals are all huge and with lots of punch, aperitif, champagne, wine, digestif… So after day one, all meals started to blur into one. Referring to my other post, please be reminded that ‘food coma’ does not exist in the French culture. Therefore, be strong and do NOT nap in between. Nap is not an option. Nieces and nephews will not let me either.

Oyster (more for new year according to historians, but my family seem to have it for Christmas as well)

4 Solution to food coma

Option A – very loud children

Option B – go for a walk, no matter how coldla-frette-walk-around-0731.JPG

Look closely… frosted leaves

5 Traditional food

  • Foie Gras (cold)
  • Compote (meshed apples / apples sauce)
  • Boudin blanc(beef sausage)
  • Chestnut
  • Salmon
  • Turkey
  • Duck
  • Oyster (more for new year according to historians, but my family seem to have it for Christmas as well).

*Champagne is a daily thing, right? This is France 😛 (joking)

Boudin blanc (beef sausage). It does not contain any organs.



That’s it! My ‘French Christmas’ observation is based on my family’s tradition. Perhaps you do it differently? Please do share. 😀


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Salut, I am Joyce. 40 something living in Paris. Appreciate little things and share giggles. Prudent, no nonsense reviews. #ExploreLaughRepeat


    • Thank you, Denis 😀 I must say, your words means a lot because you’re one of my first subscribers + you have stuck with me through many posts. Thank you xox

  1. This is so interesting! 😀
    I’ve never heard of the shoe thing! 😛
    The whole unboxing thing on Dec 25th morning is pretty universal… um, what do you mean kids can’t sleep? They’re usually the first ones up and bugging everyone to get up to open presents! XD

    • *LOL* I was just commenting on your blog when I received your comments. Ja, that shoe thing was a first for me.

      Well, the kids were all tooooo excited and none of them wanted to sleep. Plus they try to sneak peak. It was crazy.

  2. Love the shoes under the tree. That’s one way of knowing what gifts are yours without looking! Are stockings tradition in France? X

    • I asked about that, no stocking when my hubby was a kid. I guess the shoe replaced the stocking? No idea haha

      • Haha I thought the shoe might replace a stocking. I bet all kids hoped they had bg feet and big shoes to fill up xx

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