This week’s small pleasures: the Christmas edition

This week’s small pleasures (number 263!) is all about Christmas and what we got up to over Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, as all three days were full of joy and happiness. Well, mostly, as we heard that one of my nieces in Maryland and her younger son have Covid. We hope for good news from them in the days to come.

As I have mentioned before, Christmas Eve is the ‘big event’ in our house, in keeping with most European countries. We always have a big spread on the table, with all sorts of things including Swedish herring, smoked salmon (both cold and hot smoked), salads, devilled eggs, potatoes, sausages, meatballs, ham, bread, and of course, Janssons Frestelse. There was beer, snaps and lots of good cheer. The large picture below shows our friends and my nephew, wife and son, enjoying the summer sun in front of our alstroemeria.

Below are some pictures of our Christmas tree with the lights on, and a close up of some of our decorations: some cute little felt figures from Sweden, Danish Christmas hearts, Swedish flags, baubles, the little French drummer boy I have had since I was 11 years old, and yes that is an Australian sulphur crested cockatoo!

On Christmas Day, after opening stockings and talking to family in Denmark, Sweden and the US, we headed up to friends for another wonderful feast (which included a gorgeous strawberry cheesecake). We watched an old James Bond film (Dr No), and an old British comedy (Dad’s Army from 1971), before catching the bus home.

It has become a tradition, though I am not sure why, to go to the cinema on Boxing Day. This year, we went to see Best Sellers, starring Michael Caine (who turned 88 this year would you believe) as a grumpy and cantankerous author who has only published one book, forty years earlier. He is persuaded to publish his latest book and go on a publicity tour. It was a bit of a predictable film, but still quite enjoyable for a Sunday afternoon.

To use up some of the leftovers, I made a smoked salmon and courgette quiche from Sophie Hansen’s A Basket By The Door for dinner, served with a pile of asparagus, and an indulgent espresso truffle from local chocolate producer, Baron Hasselhoff’s for dessert. A perfect end to the past three days.

I’m not linking up to other bloggers this week, but I would like to thank all of you who regularly stop by to comment or like posts, who have introduced me to new books, places and food, and, of course, shared your gardens. I plan to do a round up of 2021 before the year end, hopefully on Wednesday. In the meantime, hope you have had a great festive season.

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. The food looks delicious! Your post has made me hungry! And I love the sulphur crested cockatoo – almost makes me wish I had decorated a tree. Best wishes for 2022 T&K xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Even though there are just the two of us at home, we still do the tree – just seems the right thing to do! Best wishes to you and yours for 2022 – look forward to seeing more of your garden!


  2. It all looks so lovely and yummy! Sounds like a wonderful celebration was enjoyed. Thank you for sharing,


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Looks delicious and sounds like a wonderful time. I love all of your ornaments. I know they each one tell a story.

    Liked by 1 person

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