I work out. I rarely eat baguettes, cheese or chocolate (except when on assignment -- I'm a food writer). And like many women, I like to fit into a small pair of jeans. But I wanted it both ways when I spent a week in Paris with two girlfriends last summer.
I've come around to the French (though not exclusively French) idea that a slower, less stressful pace of family life isn't just more relaxing for grown-ups. It's also good for kids.
While traveling through France, I observed the rhythm of the culture, making a conscious decision to merge with it rather than push against it or to try and impose my American rhythm on them.