This week’s small pleasures #177

The news this week has hardly been joyful…from coronavirus to the fires continuing in Australia to Brexit there is not a lot to make us smile these days. But there are always small pleasures to be had, whether it is drinking a cup of your favourite tea, being greeted by ducks on the way to work or enjoying the feel of sun on your face. One small pleasure, and one that is hard to believe, is that we have been in Wellington for seven years. The actual date coincides with Karl’s name day, so we celebrated both events with dinner at Tinakori Bistro, where I enjoyed lamb with potato gratin, peas and roast radishes, after sharing some of their always excellent duck liver parfait.

Food and conversation

Of course, as usual, there were some other food pleasures. This week I made Sophie Hansen’s hot smoked salmon and courgette/zucchini tart, Ottolenghi’s cauliflower, pomegranate and pistachio salad, Julia Turshen’s meatballs and Peter Gordon’s minted baby potatoes, peas and creme fraiche. All excellent and all full of different flavours.

Of course there was the usual Saturday morning toast at Squirrel before Pilates (I went for the ricotta and summer fruits one again – so summary and lovely). I had a lovely chat with the woman who makes the scones and cakes for the café about food writing, Ruth Reichl, and Burns’ Suppers. Those serendipitous moments are ones to treasure.

Toast, cauliflower, quiche and potatoes

In my shopping basket this week there was of course cauliflower and courgettes, but also tomatoes of all sorts of colours and shapes, green beans, more scallopini, apricots, plums…all the goodness of the season.

Flowers and herbs

Saturday’s post showed off some of the delights in our little garden area this week, all of which are small pleasures in themselves. I was reminded by a fellow Six on Saturday blogger about the glorious smell of lemon balm leaves, and immediately went out, picked a couple, and smelled their glorious citrus scent. A true pleasure to not only have grown things, but also to enjoy them in different ways from tasting to smelling.

Again, if you saw Saturday’s post, you will have seen that one of the sunflowers was about to flower. On coming home from work today, this is what I found.


Other little things

Carving out time to read, starting up Duolingo again, pottering in the garden, watching the return of Good Eatings posts on YouTube.

That is it for this Monday – what were your small pleasures this week? 

Thanks to Mani over at A New Life Wandering for the original idea.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram@thistleandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on


  1. A glum week indeed. You could add the actions of our craven Senate to the list of discouraging events. But, oh, that sunflower! It chases away all gloomy thoughts. Thanks for posting that glorious picture.


  2. Yes I agree there is alot going on in our world isn’t there From Coronavirus to the Fires, we’re in a drought here, think everyone could do with some rain.


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