Homesick Foods

July 17, 2013

marshmallow oaties

By Gabrielle. Image by Katharina.

Well, hello. Here I am waving to you from Oakland, California!!

We made it. We arrived Monday night. My siblings and nephews (Jordan and Jared and Liz and Sara and Henry and Moses) met us at the airport (SFO) with cheers and a welcome sign. So fun!! My kids could not have been happier.

The Aunts hung out with all the kids (and the luggage + bags — 32 pieces total!), while my brother Jared took me and Ben Blair to rent a van. It’s a huge extended cab van that fits all our luggage. It’s kind of hilarious and awesome at the same time. We have felt like our very own tour group driving it around this week.

We got to the house at about 9:00 PM on Monday night. The sun set as we drove from the airport and we listened to a California mix Ralph had burned to a CD. The lights of the city and the bridges were spectacular. We were feeling a particular mix of satisfaction and expectation, of relief and excitement, and of exhaustion but general awe at this move. Everyone was happy.

The best thing we did to make these first couple of days in California smooth? We hired a wonderful assistant here in Oakland, named Jessica, to prep the house for us. We asked her to set up utilities in our name, and make an internet installation appointment. And we knew we’d be exhausted after our 20 hour traveling day and want to collapse immediately, so we asked Jessica to prep the beds, and fill the fridge with food. (Note: the house is currently furnished, but not with our belongings from Colorado. More on that when I introduce the house in a later post.)

When we arrived, the house was ready and welcoming. We spent some time exploring our new digs, brought in the luggage, oohed and aahed over the contents of the refrigerator, climbed into pjs, and fell asleep within minutes.

Long satisfied sigh.

For the grocery list we sent to Jessica, we asked the kids to name the foods they were craving most from America, and added a few basic staples. Friends, it was mostly junk food! But man oh man it was fun to chow down on so many old familiar favorites when we woke up the next day. Which, by the way, happened at about 3:00 AM California time. (Hah! Hello, Jet lag.)

There’s something so powerful and beautiful about familiar food. It felt like a celebration. Want to see what made the list?

- Marshmellow Oaties (These are the fake Lucky Charms you can find at places like Whole Foods, but my kids like them more than the real thing.)
- Cheerios
- Izze sodas in grapefruit, peach, pear, and clementine — bottles, not cans.
- Carrot Juice
- Root beer
- Vanilla Ice Cream
- Chocolate Milk
- Graham Crackers
- Tings
- Smart Puffs
- Creamsicles
- Fudgesicles
- Ice Cream Sandwiches
- Tortilla Chips
- Salsa
- Frozen Corndogs
- Baby Carrots
- Tillamook Cheddar Cheese
- Flour Tortillas
- Hotdogs
- Hot Dog Buns
- Mustard
- Ketchup
- Eggs
- 2% Milk
- Butter
- Nectarines
- Green Seedless Grapes

What do you think? Would any of this make your list (or your child’s list) if you were homesick?

P.S. — The Marshmellow Oaties, corndogs, and creamsicles were gone first!

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{ 95 comments… read them below or add one }

1 ck July 17, 2013 at 9:17 am

very cute, but I don’t know what half those things are! My return to US trips usually involve pancakes (they’re great in Europe but not the same) and Mexican food!

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2 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:22 am

We went to a local diner on Saturday morning for pancakes and they were divine!

Somehow, we never made them in France. Crepes just took over, I guess. : )

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3 Jenni July 17, 2013 at 9:21 am

It is crazy how we miss the junk from America! I never eat pop tarts when I’m living there, but how yummy they are when someone sends them in a package to us! I guess it’s because we can buy the wholesome things overseas for the most part.

A new chain of American stores opened up here in Portugal. Now we can enjoy chocolate chips, cake mixes, root beer, all sorts of candy (ie: Twizzlers, flavored M&Ms), etc. but at a premium price. Makes you think twice!

Enjoy your new stash, and don’t feel guilty about it for one moment! So glad your return was peaceful.

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4 Suzanne July 17, 2013 at 9:27 am

Welcome home!! What an exciting journey — and an impeccable list of treats. It’s the little things, right? Enjoy!

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5 Chrubuky July 17, 2013 at 9:29 am

Oh the Marshmellow Oaties! I was witness to a spectacular grocery store floor tantrum over those just yesterday :)

Eating food from your childhood is a magical experience. So evocative and good for the soul. I swear I put on 5 kilos each time we go back to Australia. Most of that is in strawberry doughnuts and licorice.

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6 Chris July 20, 2013 at 12:51 am

Licorice indeed! We are visiting home in Australia as part of our once a year pilgramage from Ghana. And twisties…and Mersey Valley cheese (but not together!)

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7 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:23 am

I’ve had the pleasure of tasting Australian licorice a few different times and I think it’s divine.

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8 Elise July 17, 2013 at 9:31 am

Having the fridge stocked and the house set-up is such a smart idea for making the new space welcoming for the whole family! For me, I often crave peanut butter when I’m abroad (even though I don’t eat that much of it at home!). It seems many places I’ve traveled do not share my (uniquely American?) obsession with it and it’s either unavailable or prohibitively expensive.

Welcome home, Blair Family!

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9 Micah July 17, 2013 at 9:40 am

When we lived in England, I missed American cheeses so much. Our family LOVES Tillamook cheddar, so that would have been on our list for sure. Same with salsa, and I would have added peanut butter as nothing is like peanut butter from the States . . .

Sounds like you all had a great night back in the US!

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10 Lisette Wolter-McKinley July 17, 2013 at 9:47 am

What a wonderful idea and luxury to hire an assistant to prep the house for you. You are one lucky family! Good luck settling in.

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11 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:25 am

It definitely felt like a luxury — but such a worthwhile one! If I hadn’t been able to make room in our budget to hire someone, you can bet I would have been asking favors from my sisters. : )

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12 Tasha July 17, 2013 at 9:48 am

I’d have to add in Cocoa and Fruity Pebbles for me and my crew! Probably order PIZZA first though and everyday fro a week! Enjoy! – So happy traveling was a success, thanks to your awesome planning I have no doubt!

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13 Jen July 17, 2013 at 9:49 am

Welcome home! I’ve enjoyed a few glimpses of the new house on Ralph’s IG ! :) I love this list!! Creamsicles!! – yum. Chips and salsa – oh, yeah.

I’m wondering what foods you’ll be missing from France – another post, perhaps?

So brilliant having everything ready and stocked for you! Hope you have a few restful days ahead! :)

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14 Valerie July 17, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Funny .. I was thinking the same thing! My money is on bread and other yummies found in a boulangerie or patisserie … :)

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15 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:26 am

Brilliant idea for another post! I can tell you already that French butter tops the list.

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16 Alicia W. July 17, 2013 at 9:49 am

Welcome back! I was thinking of you all on Monday…I’m glad to hear that you had a safe voyage! Looking forward to hearing more about Oakland!

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17 Linda K July 17, 2013 at 10:04 am

So glad your arrival was smooth and joyful! On to new adventures! So smart, you, to hire someone to prep for your arrival.

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18 The Prudent Homemaker July 17, 2013 at 10:05 am

Six months after leaving home, my parents sent my favorite sugar candy (SweeTarts) to France at Christmastime.

Within that time, I had become so accustomed to doing without it and having other wonderful food instead that I didn’t even like it anymore!

But the milk was another story. I was so happy to have milk in the U.S. that wasn’t UHT milk when I returned home.

I’m with you on the seedless grapes! That really threw me off in France. Now I have grapes in my garden that are both seeded and seedless. I prefer seedless, but the size of the seeded ones is a great thing, too! I’m using them to make grape juice today.

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19 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:28 am

The grapes! We are making ourselves sick on seedless grapes. (And California grapes are especially good!)

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20 Emily July 17, 2013 at 10:06 am

I totally know how you feel- whenever I come back from Australia the first thing I want to eat is Mexican food (they don’t really ‘do’ Mexican food down there).

And Tillamook? I know it’s good and all, but isn’t France the land of amazing cheese?! ;)

Lastly, welcome to Oakland! It’s awesome here; you’re going to love it!

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21 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:30 am

Hah! Isn’t that funny, Emily? We adore French cheese and always kept a variety on hand. But they don’t do cheddar in France! And it’s such a staple in our American diet. We missed it.

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22 EC July 17, 2013 at 10:14 am

We are going to try those Marshmallow Oaties. My kids probably won’t be able to tell the difference either.
I’ve read your blog for a few months but I must have missed why you left France for Oakland. A new job?
My husband works in Oakland but we live in San Jose. Maybe one day we will move up there but for the next year at least we are staying in San Jose.
Welcome back!

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23 Liz Maravilla July 17, 2013 at 10:25 am

Welcome to the East Bay Blair Family!

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24 Anja July 17, 2013 at 10:38 am

Sometimes it can be hard to relate to you mom bloggers who travel the world and hire assistants to do grocery shopping or stuff like that. That was one funny list though.

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25 Erin July 19, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Me too. I use the posts on Design Mom like reading through Martha Stewart–charming and dreamy.

I was surprised at butter being on the list! After all I’ve heard about the butter and bread from Normandy, I doubt you’ll find better here! But it’s all about familiarity, no?

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26 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:32 am

The butter and eggs and milk on this shopping list were more about having a few staples in the house than being homesick. I confess, I think the butter, eggs and fresh milk in France are the best in the world!

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27 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:11 am

Hah! I hear you. As I was typing this up, I knew hiring an assistant sounded over-the-top. But the reality is, we’ve always asked for help, even when we couldn’t hire it out. When we moved to New York for graduate school, we asked a group of people from our New York church congregation (who we’d never met) to help us unpack the moving truck. And when we moved to Colorado, Ben Blair’s sister spent a huge amount of time searching out rentals and finding us a place to live.

We do have family here in the Bay Area, and they’ve helped us a ton! But they have busy lives. With full-time work, young children, and pregnancy, I didn’t want to ask too much. So I decided to look at the budget and see if I could hire out some of these tasks instead. I know that won’t always be the case.

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28 Sara July 22, 2013 at 10:22 am

You are so down-to-earth! Even though you are just as amazing as Martha, I find you very easy to relate to. You make me feel like it is totally possible for me to do great things, too. Especially with all the tips I am learning from you. :)

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29 Linnea July 17, 2013 at 11:07 am

As a native of Berkeley, I am SOOO excited that you’ve settled in Oakland. You and your family will just love it. Can’t wait to hear about your new adventures — both fun and challenging — as you readjust to life in the States. All the best!

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30 Karen July 17, 2013 at 11:12 am

Cheerios, vanilla ice cream and green seedless grapes would definitely make my list. Congratulations on your move, and I’m looking forward to your series of posts about living in Oakland and the Bay Area!

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31 Erin July 17, 2013 at 11:26 am

CHIPS AND SALSA!!!! YES YES YES!

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32 Tricia July 17, 2013 at 12:22 pm

When I lived abroad, I missed Cheerios, bagels and peanut butter!

You have moved to another beautiful, fascinating part of the world.

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33 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:34 am

Bagels! We still haven’t had bagels yet. I think I’ll seek one out today.

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34 Alana July 17, 2013 at 12:43 pm

I SO truly value your honesty and openness about the help you received in this process. It is important for others to see that its ok to hire people when you can or to ask family and friends for support. Too often people can make it seem like they are completely going it alone and doing it so fabulously.

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35 amyks July 17, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Ice cream sandwiches would have definitely made my list, I would have added oreos to the list :)

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36 Erin July 19, 2013 at 1:44 pm

Oreos! Very American, very hard to mimic.

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37 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:35 am

Oddly, ice cream sandwiches aren’t available in France, but Oreos are! Who knew?

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38 Robin July 17, 2013 at 12:56 pm

Love your homecoming blog – from the airport welcome to settling in. All so sweet!

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39 Jo July 17, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Hiring an assistant! What a brilliant idea! I’m curious how you went about hiring this Jessica you speak of. Craigslist ad? Friend of a friend? Some cool website?
When we’ve lived overseas the only American potato chips that we could get were Pringles (because of the way they are packaged) so I would always head straight to the chip aisle and get a giant bag of Lays. :)

Fun post! Looking forward to seeing the Oakland house!

Jo

p.s. Haters gonna hate. Don’t let people bagging on you about hiring someone get ya down. Do what you need to do for your family. I’m sure you already knew that…but just reminding you. Luxuries are simply ill-understood priorities.

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40 Anja July 17, 2013 at 2:00 pm

Not being able to relate has nothing to do with hate. Every blogger should know that. I am happy for every single pleasant thing that is happening in the life of family Blair.

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41 Tasha July 17, 2013 at 7:19 pm

I feel the need to second that since I applaud your honesty, I’m sure several of us had the thought of “it would be nice (to be able to…)”
No harm in that! I feel I could plan really well but certain things are costly. When I traveled with my sister she sent boxes of kids’ toys, snacks, etc. ahead to the hotel and it was a pleasure to have it all there in advance and not have to lug it all along with a baby and older toddler and our mother! It was a “Why didn’t I think of that!?” moment that as a helping aunt I so appreciated:)

“Luxuries are simply ill-understood priorities” – ?

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42 Erin July 19, 2013 at 1:49 pm

Nah, I didn’t see Anja’s comment as hate, far from it. Design Mom and Anje were both honest, and I didn’t notice any insult in either’s words. Plenty of people whose lives are plenty different from mine still get my support, encouragement–and maybe even curiosity. I can admire and wonder at the same time.

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43 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:12 am

I didn’t mind Anja’s comment at all. I just responded to it above.

A huge thanks to Design Mom Readers for keeping the comment section active and civil. I so appreciate it!

44 Erin July 19, 2013 at 1:50 pm

Whoops, put this the wrong place.

Erin July 19, 2013 at 1:49 pm
Nah, I didn’t see Anja’s comment as hate, far from it. Design Mom and Anje were both honest, and I didn’t notice any insult in either’s words. Plenty of people whose lives are plenty different from mine still get my support, encouragement–and maybe even curiosity. I can admire and wonder at the same time.

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45 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:05 am

Hi Jo! We hired Jessica on my sister’s recommendation. But if I hadn’t had a sister here, I think I would have put a notice on Twitter or Facebook (or even my blog).

And you’re sweet to worry about haters — I do get crummy emails once in awhile — but happily, I think the responses to this post have been quite lovely.

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46 Claudia S July 17, 2013 at 1:22 pm

Welcome back to the USA! Lived in Oakland for 15 years–you will LOVE it! I was there in June for a visit and long to return from the East Coast. Can’t wait to see more about the new house–lots of neat styles of homes there. Good luck in the future!

The assistant was brillant–your whole family must have been totally exhausted when you arrive. a priority to me may seem like a luxury to someone else. You go, Blairs!

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47 elz July 17, 2013 at 1:27 pm

I remember our first week back from living in Britain many years ago. We were AMAZED that there were 24 hour grocery stores. My mom used to go to the store at 8pm, just because she could!

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48 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:01 am

Hooray for grocery stores staying open later than 7:00!

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49 jen July 17, 2013 at 1:38 pm

did you include butter?! too funny.
what a great idea to hire an assistant to get the house prep for your family’s arrival. where did that idea come from? i can’t really see how else you would have done it! brilliant!

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50 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:01 am

Butter does look funny on that list! The butter was mostly so we would have something to cook the eggs in. We had to includes a few staples among all the junk food : )

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51 Dianne July 17, 2013 at 1:42 pm

I was so surprised, envious and impressed that you had hired an assistant to help set up your house! Would I have ever have thought of that!? Also curious as to how you found someone. Brilliant idea!! (I’m still sad that you’re not still in France:( but it seems that your family is happy to be back in the USA and that’s all that matters isn’t it?!)

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52 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 9:00 am

I was lucky! I asked my sister for a recommendation, and she knew the perfect person for the job. If I hadn’t had my sister to ask, I would have inquired on Twitter and Facebook. Or maybe even put out a Craigs List notice.

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53 Amanda N. July 17, 2013 at 1:56 pm

Before I came back from China my mom asked me what I wanted as a welcome home dinner and I told her a baked potato with lots of sour cream! I missed potatoes so much while I was in Beijing.

Another interesting thing about moving back from abroad is your ability to critique foreign food here in the U.S. My family went to a Chinese restaurant a few weeks after I got back and I had a lot of fun telling them all how authentic/inauthentic certain dishes were.

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54 Jenny July 17, 2013 at 2:06 pm

I love the idea of a favorite foods/ homesick impromptu party when waking up from jet lag! That is a fun way to go about it.

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55 mau July 17, 2013 at 2:22 pm

So good to know you landed and are settling in! It’s funny…even though we never met and I don’t even live in France, it’s a little sad knowing your family has left Europe (for now at least)! You need to visit our islands next time you’re in France!

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56 Mary {My Life in Scotland} July 17, 2013 at 2:36 pm

What a good idea!! I we ever move back to the states assistant will be on my list. beds made and food already in the fridge would be awesome.

Mexican food is on my list! Oh how I miss it.

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57 Jen July 17, 2013 at 3:12 pm

Welcome to the Bay Area! My hubby works in Oakland, though we live in Mtn. View. Coincidentally, I was at SFO Monday night picking up my parents from their 2-week French vacation. I enjoy your posts and can’t wait to read about your now-local-to-me excursions!

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58 Louise July 17, 2013 at 3:20 pm

You are one smart woman, I absolutely love the idea of hiring someone to make that transition easier! I really appreciate the great ideas you give of making family life that much easier – especially when it’s something I never ever would have thought of but makes things that much better. Welcome home (although the US is not my home) – I loved that list, too!

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59 Dee M. July 17, 2013 at 3:36 pm

Welcome home Blair family!
My list would include almost everything from Trader Joe’s!

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60 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:57 am

We haven’t lived near a Trader Joe’s since New York. So excited to get reacquainted.

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61 Susan July 17, 2013 at 5:11 pm

Well, maybe after 16 years abroad I am out of touch, but the Assistant (I’m thinking that’s a family job?) and junk food through me for a loop. I hardly recognise any of the food and am kind of glad my kids don’t know about the ones I do, but they have never lived in the USA. Summer holidays alone give me enough grief with junk food. Moving is like ‘stomach surgery’ as my military friends say ( but I feel equates to C-sections) “never easy, recovery harder each time”. I wish you luck on this adventure.

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62 Kerry July 17, 2013 at 5:17 pm

Welcome to the Bay Area. I love it here. Be sure to get some good coffee. Blue Bottle, Ritual, Sightglass…

As far as things to crave, it would be mexican food for me. Guac and chips.

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63 Aryn July 17, 2013 at 5:41 pm

When we moved back to the US all I wanted were cheerios and cheddar goldfish! My daughter didn’t remember life in the states, so she’s still pining after her German Joghurt Reiswaffeln – vanilla yogurt covered rice cakes. So delicious! Come to think of it, I miss them, too, along with good (and cheap!) muesli and real licorice.

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64 kelly harp July 17, 2013 at 5:47 pm

W E L C O M E B A C K !!!
Hope the transition is gentle for you all.

ps: i reallllly missed tex-mex while livng in France!

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65 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:55 am

I fully agree on the tex-mex.

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66 Heather July 17, 2013 at 6:04 pm

Welcome to your new home!
When we moved from Los Altos Hills (my husband worked in Silicon Valley) to NY, we did the same thing – we had someone stock our fridge, turn on the heat (a must in Nov!), and the lights (we arrived at 11 pm). I’m so glad that you have Jessica to help your family!
I’m happy to here that you have arrived! I admit to being envious that you are in the Bay Area. I miss it! Enjoy!
xo

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67 Jillian July 17, 2013 at 6:18 pm

I lived in France for a year & although te food was AMAZING the first American food I wanted was Cheezits. I missed snacks!

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68 Marisa July 17, 2013 at 6:44 pm

Welcome back!

And hooray for Tillamook cheese! That would be top on my list.

—The girl from Oregon :)

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69 Jen July 17, 2013 at 7:09 pm

Another thumbs up for Tillamook Cheese. I’m a Portland girl who lived on the East Coast for 10 years and always had trouble finding it (except for restaurants). Now are back and I love seeing it everywhere! If your family ever makes a trip up the Oregon Coast, you will have to tour the Tillamook Cheese factory. So much fun with amazing ice cream treats as well. And lots of free cheese samples ;-)

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70 Melissa Lehman July 17, 2013 at 7:17 pm

Welcome home Blair Family!

Creamsicles and corn dogs make everything better!

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71 Melissa L July 17, 2013 at 7:37 pm

I think a trip to Zachary’s pizza on College ave, will welcome you to the neighborhood properly!

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72 Amy July 17, 2013 at 7:53 pm

We had a similar experience when we moved back from Zurich last year. We arrived home late at night but by 3 am all the kiddos were up and at um becuase of the time change. So off to Walmart where we let our girls pick out whatever they wanted to fill our empty fridge. Cold cereal and chips and salsa made our list too. And also I remember them picking out an assortment of cheap trinkets and new pjs. How we had missed the convienvce of cheap familiar stuff. We ate cafe rio twice that day too :) best of luck in central CA

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73 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:54 am

Hah! 3 AM trip to Walmart. Sounds legendary.

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74 Margaret July 17, 2013 at 7:55 pm

Welcome back! I love this list of food you included. Marshmallow Mateys (the Malt-o-Meal brand) are a staple in our home, so I understand why those would be the first to go! Did you bring any food back that you would have missed? Nutella, perhaps?

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75 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:54 am

We brought home a few bags of our favorite candy to share, but airline luggage weight limits meant we couldn’t bring much. We are already making a list of favorites to bring home on the next trip to France — when we’re not quite so overloaded with baggage.

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76 Shannon July 17, 2013 at 9:39 pm

Welcome back to the States! I’m always happy to read about food of any kind, but my favorite part was that Ralph made a California mix tape. Brilliant!

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77 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:51 am

I think I need to write a post about his mix!

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78 Rachelle @ Sweet Home Pasadena July 17, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Welcome home!!! That is a fantastic list, lol! I’ve never heard of Tings, though. My son would be all over the frozen corn dogs (with ketchup, though–no mustard)!!! :)

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79 Jodi July 17, 2013 at 10:55 pm

Oh wow! I’M sad your time in France has ended, but excited for your new adventure. What a truly amazing opportunity to spend that time there. It was so fun to follow you along! And I love that you hired some help to set things up for you in Oakland, some times it is so worth it to have hired help!

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80 Jamie Grumet July 18, 2013 at 12:19 am

How fun! I am in the East Bay right now, too! *waves hi from a few miles away*

Ugh jet lag with kids is the worst. Our last big trip with the kids was to South Africa (with Shannon!) a few months ago and it was an interesting adjustment. We tried to power through it, which was horrible the first 24 hours, but after that they seemed adjusted.

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81 Elise July 18, 2013 at 2:09 am

Welcome back! It’s such a big deal to move back home from overseas. What a mix of emotions. I’m an American living in South Africa and when I go home for a visit it’s ALL about the food: Thai, Mexican, Vietnamese, donuts, ice cream, cottage cheese, and even though I never loved it while I was living in the US I find Starbucks to be the ultimate taste/experience of home!

Best of luck settling into your next adventure.

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82 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:50 am

We’ve picked up donuts twice so far! I think it will be fun to discover our favorite donut spot.

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83 jovana July 18, 2013 at 6:57 am

what about june? she was too small to have favourite american foods when you moved. most of these must be completely new to her!

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84 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:49 am

Right! She was a nursing baby when we moved to France. I’m sure her little palette is making some adjustments. No surprise, Marshmellow oaties took no getting used to. : )

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85 teresa July 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm

Wonderful you made it safe and sound. Pretty much everything on your list would make ours….but the carrot juice and Tings…Not sure what tings are =)
Welcome to Cali…..I live just south of you in the Valley.

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86 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:48 am

Hah! I didn’t mean to throw people for a loop with the Tings. They are like sisters to Smart Puffs. : )

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87 Jeanette July 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Tillamook Cheddar Cheese…how wonderful! Welcome home.

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88 Cathryn July 18, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Hey! I missed this! Welcome to the Bay Area – I’m on the Peninsula, waving!!!

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89 Christine E-E July 18, 2013 at 6:41 pm

Looking forward to hearing your stories about settling into your new community. One of my daughters lived in Berkeley (only 3 years though)… And one lives in Sunnyvale (across the bay from you – near San Jose). So many things to see & do… Love Golden Gate Park.
What great timing for your move… the kids will get to know the neighborhood before school starts.
I don’t recognize Tings but the junk food I’d want are Kettle Chips (crunchier than Lays potato chips) artichokes & tacos. We found Kettle Chips in London, so you may have been able to buy them in France?

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90 Mara July 19, 2013 at 8:59 am

Welcome to Oakland!! It’s not this foggy every day…. I promise!

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91 Design Mom July 22, 2013 at 8:36 am

So far, the for has been a novelty for us. We love it!

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92 julia g blaiar July 19, 2013 at 9:45 am

Welcome to USA and to California! We are SOOOO Excited to see you all.
When will that be? Eager to hear all about your new beginnings in California!
You’re masters of new beginnings and constant happiness. So proud of all of you.

love, Gr.Julia

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93 Brigitte July 20, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Lookingforward to seeing the good old USA through your eyes. Maybe it will make us appreciate it more.

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94 Summer July 22, 2013 at 11:07 am

Macaroni and cheese is always on my list – the Kraft kind, haha. Love that list, and is it bad I don’t consider that “mostly” junk food. I’m impressed (as always) with the Blair kid choices!

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95 Stoich91 July 23, 2013 at 7:48 pm

Marshmallow OatIEEESSSS!!! :D Best. Cereal. Ever. Thought we were missing out on the healthy stuff and tried Lucky Charms at a continental breakfast – Marshmallow oaties beats it hands’ down! :D haha Too bad the only place we can find it here is Whole Foods…it’s quite a drive!

Izzie and Marshmallow Oaties…hmmmm let’s live togeather except for without the 3am part, okay? lol

So happy to hear you all are settling in well! What a shock, a wonderful adventure. I hope to hear more soon!

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