This week’s small pleasures #247

What a week! Lockdown at Level 4 started at as the clock ticked over into Wednesday, and suddenly we went from having a diary full of fun events to look forward to, to cancelling appointments and not knowing how long we will be confined to our bubbles. We just have to make the most of it of course, and enjoy some different things. For some reason, I am finding this lockdown harder to cope with, so it is even more necessary to look for the small pleasures of the week – and indeed there were some.

On Tuesday evening, just as the lockdown was being announced, I was out with a friend enjoying a glass of wine before heading over to an interview and chat with designer Karen Walker. The event was a fund raiser for the Katherine Mansfield House and Garden in Thorndon. The conversation warmed up a bit after a slow start, or maybe it was the emergency warning that went out on everybody’s phones reminding us of when lock down would start that helped things along! Anyway, this is the last live event I will be going to for a while.

So there was no vegetable market on Wednesday and no opportunity to browse the supermarket this weekend. My husband is the designated shopper again, and I make careful lists, but it isn’t the same as looking to see what looks good this week. I put in an order to Cameron Harrison butcher and received some excellent venison and pork sausages, some beef to make a hearty carbonade a la Flamande and some pork mince to….do something with as yet undecided. Bread was delivered from Arobake on Saturday morning, along with their very good rhubarb and custard tarts, which we enjoyed with a cup of tea.

Saturday was a gorgeous sunny day, and I went for my lockdown walk to the Botanic Gardens. I had in fact not left the house, apart from to pick up a prescription, since Tuesday evening, so it was lovely to get out and see a small bit of the world. There are so many signs of the season there right now, including this gorgeous camellia.

Sunday morning began with a visit from a kererū, the large native pigeon. It sat for ages on one of the trees in our neighbours’ garden, just surveying the world around him. Then about half an hour later, I was standing in the kitchen and spotted two kākā outside the window. As usual, they were making quite a bit of noise, and then suddenly I realised there were even more of them. At one point I counted at least six, but I am pretty sure there may have been a couple more. Quite frankly, they looked as if they were casing the joint, seeing what we had that they might like. They took no notice of me, popping outside to try to get some pictures with my iPad, but continued to chatter, investigate the rhododendron and some other plants, and then fly off. Still on the endangered list, these birds are now a common sight in parts of Wellington city, having spread from Zealandia, the wildlife sanctuary. Although I see lots walking in the morning in the Botanic Gardens, we have never had so many at our house.

So those were some of the small pleasures of the week.

What were your small pleasures? Here are some other blog posts from fellow bloggers looking at the good things in life.

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


  1. I agree with you, this second Lockdown (for Canberra) has been harder than the first. However it is lovely to see those amazing kakas in your garden… they have very big hooked beaks!
    Your rhubarb and custard tart looks delicious. Small pleasures indeed!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love how, as always, you find delight in your kitchen and your backyard. The camellia promises great things! I also love your account of the kererū and kākā — and the photos! You have such a splendid vista: I’m looking from your porch with you. I wish you well during this lockdown.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Spring is coming to your part of the world. I hope the new season brings sunshine and pretty flowers to ease the pains of the lockdown. Thank you for the mention and for sharing your words and beautiful food and bird photos with #weekendcoffeeshare.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. How wonderful that you are still able to walk through the botanical gardens! Your small pleasures are important ones – birds, flowers and sunshine can do much to lift one’s spirits. Thank you for mentioning my blog – and so giving me a small pleasure too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The lockdown is extended to midnight on Friday, then we will see. Our Level 4 lockdown is quite hard so fingers crossed. The good thing is that it has pushed people to book their vaccination quickly.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi K&T, I am late again this week. Work has been a huge challenge so I’m still trying to catch up. We have a few interesting birds who frequent our yard, but yours are so much more interesting. I wish I had time to do some web searches to learn more about them – that hooked beak really hooked me.
    I did have a good week for writing though. I’ve been trying to maintain new words and stories being created while trying to finish up a longer piece that requires more research and work to make certain facts balance correctly. I like doing it, but it slows down the arrival of the final story.
    Hope you guys are safe and finding great ways to enjoy life.
    Blessings. and thanks for the visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The kaka are great and a real Zealandia Ecosancutary success story. They were struggling as a bird, but blossomed there and have spread out to various parts of the city. I am waiting to see one on one of the trees outside Parliament…they are almost there! Thanks for stopping by and hope you have another good writing week.


  6. Sorry to hear plans were scuppered – it is challenging when lockdown happens so suddenly! Praying you safe and sane!

    It is a relief that you have the Botanic Gardens within easy access so you have opportunities for outdoor time to enjoy the lovely weather.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Indeed! The weather has just become so unpredictable these days. I was remarking to Loving Husband this morning that we’ve had very little rain the past few days (as opposed to the deluge of the week before). And now, thunder is rumbling and the sky has turned grey.

          Liked by 2 people

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