In France the kids get a free balloon when they eat at McDonald’s.
The story with backpack is that we looked for one here at REI but all of them were SUPER BACKPACKS, meant more for hiking than for a kid who was going to France for two weeks and just needed a place to shove her stuff. Zoe was drawn to an urban messenger bag and so I let her get it, it barely fit everything in there that she needed due to the size of her hardcover book that she’s reading. Anyhow, at the last minute we switched it all into her old YMCA backpack because some paperwork came from school and it said it had to be a backpack. Anyhow. On Thursday she sent me an email saying that the zippers on her backpack fell off. I have no idea how zippers fall off backpacks, but when I asked if she meant the pull tabs, she said no, the zippers. And there you have it, NEW BACKPACK.