Salut, I'm Annie André
I'm a Thai born, Bilingual North American with French Canadian roots.
I'm also the creator and author behind annieandre.com, a blog about France; what I like to call a "travel live abroad lifestyle blog with a fat French twist."
I love writing articles for Intellectually curious people amazed by France and all things French.
I've lived in the south of France with my husband and three children since 2011.
As a result, I've accumulated a lot of insider knowledge about France, French culture, and moving to France.
I cover a wide range of topics:
Here are just some of the topics I cover.
- French culture & traditions
- French food
- French language
- French cities and Travel throughout France
- Gifts for Francophiles
- Applying for visas and jumping through bureaucratic hoops so we could live in France legally.
- Raising children in France & education in France.
- Manoeuvring the daily hurdles of moving to a new country.
- What life in France is like.
- Personal advice and anecdotes on working, living and playing in France.
- Fascinating, forgotten, and strange facts about France and French culture (but not in a morbid weird way.)
- And more..
Like so many others, I started a travel blog because I wanted to document and share our travels and experiences with friends, family, Francophiles and travel addicts.
Over the years this site has evolved into a labour of love about anything that's French.
I don't claim to have all the answers; however, as a result of our experiences, I've amassed an insane amount of knowledge, resources and information about what it takes to move to France and thrive, mostly through trial and error and by cozying up to my unsuspecting French friends.
How we ended up living in France
In 2010, we moved from California to Montreal where my father is from.
After about a year in Montreal, we decided to move to France for what was supposed to be a one-year family sabbatical.
We didn't have cushy corporate jobs or a company sponsor our move to France, and we didn't have family or friends living in France to help us either.
We did it on our own. Applied for long stay visas, which we had to renew year after year for each of our family members.
Over a decade later, we're still living in France with our three children, making friends (and enemies), sipping wine, eating baguettes and tanning in the Mediterranean sun.
There's more to France than wine, cheese and unicorns
Life in France is and has been great for us, and it can be for you too.
But France isn't perfect, and your life won't magically get better simply by moving to France.
We've experienced the full gamut of emotions and experiences, both good and bad, and have the battle wounds and jaded French attitude to prove it!
Plus, moving to another country with kids in tow isn't easy.
Sadly, many Francophiles buy into the dreamy French life and stereotypes and think France is this wonderful unicorn country where everything is perfect; a sure fire way to experience culture shock.
You have to put in the work to appreciate France, its culture and all the idiosyncrasies of living in another country.
I love sharing what I've learned and my experiences in an honest, genuine, and fun way.
I try not to sugar-coat or present life in France through rose coloured glasses by deliberately omitting all of the difficult parts like so many resources about France do.