This week’s small pleasures #254

It is Monday evening and time, as usual, to consider the small pleasures of the week. There were welcome opportunities to read, coffee with a former colleague who has just retired on Wednesday morning, Pilates of course, cosy times at home and cuddles from Charlie (our cat in case you don’t know!). As of noon today, 66% of the eligible population (ie everyone over 12 years of age) has been double vaccinated, and 85% have had their first dose. However, Auckland and parts of the Waikato remain at alert level 3 while the rest of us continue at level 2. It will be interesting to see how things work out.

I’ll start with the same thing as last week, the ducklings at the duck pond. This Saturday morning they could be seen swimming around. No longer tiny, but still with their soft brown feathers, they seemed full of energy.

Over to food, and strictly speaking the Rachel Roddy inspired pasta bake was really one of last week’s small pleasures since it formed dinner on Sunday and Monday. Topped with lots of mozzarella, it was delicious. I had a tasty panini on Wednesday at Gemini Cafe (not as large as it looks – a small plate!), fish and chips at The Shepherd’s Arms pub on Thursday after Pilates, and sushi in the park for Friday lunch. It doesn’t look as good as it tasted! In the shopping bag this week there were apples. courgettes, baby carrots, capsicum, limes, bok choy, broccolini and some manchego style sheep milk cheese. There was also…well, you may call it witloof or chicory or endive….whatever its name is for you… that I used to make a lovely salad with a tangy, sharp, lemony yoghurt dressing from Alison Roman’s book Nothing Fancy.

I didn’t include any hellebores in Saturday’s post, so I’ll include one here. They have to be one of my favourite flowers, and it is always a small pleasure to see them. I listened to this interesting podcast from Bon Appetit about the future of dinner parties, and lovely to see new podcasts from Honey and Co.

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. All the food you have on display looks absolutely delicious. Tasty food is so important during times when all else seems unpredictable, although NZ is doing well with vaccines, so life is probably going well for everyone. (except perhaps Auckland). Enjoy your week.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That hellebore is beautiful! A great wrap up of small pleasures as always, so much to enjoy in your posts plus sharing the work of others is always a good sign of a caring blogger 🙂 Many thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love the ducklings too adorable. Great food you have some really nice places to dine out. So nice you can catch up with your work colleague friend. Cuddles with the cat very important. The hellebore is stunning. Hope the rest of your week is great.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Visiting your Small Pleasures brings so much delight! It’s lovely to see those ducklings grow …
    And it’s always super deliciousness to view your creations and the fun things you dine out on!

    Thank you for including me in your post, and for the time you spend with me in my happy place.

    Liked by 1 person

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