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Common Household items not Found in France

Chicago, Illinois
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Common Household items not Found in France

Hi,

In a few months, I'm going to France to visit Family. I'll be seeing my parents who have already given me a specific list of things they want me to bring back that they miss from USA, but I'll be seeing my aunt (husband+ 2 boys), and my grandma. I've Googled and searched TA high and low and keep seeing the same answers (peanut butter, California wine, Vermont syrup, and Cheddar, etc) make good gifts. However, I was wondering if anyone can tell me anything out of the box not available in France? I've read somewhere that there are no chocolate chips, parchment paper, vanilla extract, or heavy duty foil? (is that true?) All of my personal belongings are in my carry on and I'll be bringing 1 or 2 checked in bags for gifts.

Things I have on my to list:

Brown sugar (is it true this doesn't exist in France?)

Starbucks Coffee (Grandma requested this, no Starbucks in her area)

Chocolate Chips (will only bring if not available in France)

Cake Mixes (I read it's hard to find mixes in France-can anyone confirm that?)(Grandma loves to bake)

Chili packets (as per request of parents)

Milanios (not requested, but was my mom's favorites-do these exist there?)

Mac and Cheese (The Kraft kind? Thinking of bringing them for my aunt's kids)

Thousand Island (Does this exist in France?)

Heavy Duty Foil/Parchment Paper (do both exist and are available?)

Steamer Bags (Like what you would cook a turkey in)

Jack Daniel's/Famous Dave's BBQ sauce

Calenders (I hear that the French calenders are small compared to American calenders)

Good quality sheets (mom complains it's too pricey in Europe)

Holiday Decor (as requested per parents (things like window decals for Xmas))

Greeting Cards and Gift Bags (parents say the ones in USA are far "prettier")

My grandma complains a lot about lack of organization in her home and how she doesn't have a dryer so she has hangers all over the house at all times, I was thinking about bringing her those hangers with multiple hooks on them (like to hang ties, necklaces, or tank tops), but wasn't sure if that was available. I thought about space savers, but I don't think she has carpet so she wouldn't have a vacuum.

Anything else that may be useful that we often find in American homes? Also not sure what the kids would like other then clothes from my area/sports teams/etc.

Florida
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1. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

good heavens.

who will carry all this stuff through the airports, including your own bags?

what about boxing up and shipping in advance?

yikes.

I just have to add, not sure your family is committed to living in France, lol).

Edited: 2:48 pm, March 12, 2014
Le Bugue, France
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2. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

About 99% of the things on your list are readily available all over France. It's not as though it's a war-torn developing country.

Paris, France
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3. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

Okay, looking over your list, I will say that the following items are not easy to find in France: chili packets, Kraft Mac & Cheese, Thousand Islands, the barbecue sauces that you mentioned (but others are readily available),

Paris, France
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for Paris, Loire Valley
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4. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

Good advice you have received, take:

chocolate chips

maple syrup

heavy duty foil

Pam - if you use it

Mac and cheese - but you can easily make if from scratch

Chili seasoning

BBQ sauces

Any cake mixes you really like

__

Strange advice you have received

California wine - why?

Brown sugar - of course it´s available

Starbucks Coffee - it´s horrible coffee. Only drinkable with copious amounts of sugar and creme. Even widely available Carte Noire is better.

Sheets and towels - they are much cheaper in the US but readily available in France. IKEA is a good source.

window decals for Xmas - not available in Paris and for good reason

Steamer Bags - ridiculous, the best turkey I have ever eaten was wrapped in bacon and tied called un dinde melon - bags not necessary.

Edited: 2:59 pm, March 12, 2014
Le Bugue, France
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5. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

Even in the backwater of the Dordogne we can easily get chocolate chips (loads of bakeries sell cc cookies and have for the past 10 years or so), hundreds of kinds of cake mixes (standard ones like Betty Crocker, etc.), heavy duty foil, and Pam-equivalents. Barbecue sauces are available in many brands. Chili mixes can be found at the two spice vendors in markets all around the Sarlat area. I have to believe Paris has a wider selection of any of these than we do.

Mac and cheese and thousand island dressing can easily be made with French ingredients.

San Francisco...
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6. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

Heavy duty foil, Amen!

Chicago, Illinois
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7. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

My parents just moved to Deauville, grandma in Niort, and my aunt lives in Trédion-would most things I had on my list be readily available in those areas?

Chicago, Illinois
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8. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

My parents have asked me for Kitchen Aid stuff too (like serving spoons, whisks) because they like the brand, but not the price of those items in France. Everyone in the family is more into home decor/cooking things more so, so like on the lists were things like Ralph Lauren sheets instead of no brand basic cotton sheets.

Heavy Duty Foil is definitely on the top of my list now! I did read things like salsa and bbq sauce was available in larger cities but weren't good brands. Is Jack Daniels/Famous Daves/ (or maybe Hooter's?) available there?

Le Bugue, France
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9. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

Yes, most of those things are available all over France. Hooters? That's rather unlikely, don't you think?

Edited: 3:13 pm, March 12, 2014
Chicago, Illinois
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10. Re: Common Household items not Found in France

I'm just trying to think outside of the box! I can't even tell you how many times I've read "bring peanut butter to French people" all over the internet.