This week’s small pleasures #265

Here we are in 2022, a new year and one in which I think a lot of us are hoping for the best. Here we are having glorious, sunny summer weather which of course uplifts the spirits and makes everything seem positive. On Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve) I went for a walk in the Botanic Gardens, where the summer displays are looking stunning. The hydrangeas are in full bloom, and everything looks so full of energy and life.

For dinner, we headed over to Dockside, situated by the waterfront, and somewhere we hadn’t been for ages. There was a New Year’s Eve ‘prix fixe’ deal of two or three courses and a glass of sparkling wine, so we opted for the two course menu. I started with the prawns and ceviche with spring onions, ginger, lime and coconut, while Karl had the gnocchi with smoked salmon, sour cream and chives. Both were really good, with my dish full of fresh flavours. Karl naturally had the sirloin, with potato rösti, onion marmalade and pickled peppers and I had salmon with broccolini, baby potatoes and hollandaise sauce, despite having had a lot of salmon recently, but it just fitted my mood. Karl enjoyed a shiraz with his steak, while I had a glass of chardonnay.

We saw in the new year with friends, and wished family and friends in other parts of the world where it was still 2021, a Happy New Year. On the first day of the year, we headed up to Zealandia, which regular readers will know is the ecosanctuary in Wellington which we visit a few times a year. There were a good number of tuatara, enjoying the sunshine, and the takahē were also out and about. The featured image at the top of the post gives you an idea of what the setting is like.

As 2022 begins, I’m also considering my word of the year like lots of others of you out there. The four that came up on a random word generator thing I saw were on Instagram (very scientific of course…..): creation, power, health and strength. I like all four, but my favourite was creation. Let’s see if I stick to this in 2022!

I’m not linking up to other bloggers again this week, but I would like to thank all of you who regularly stop by to comment or like posts and wish you all the very best for 2022.

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. Happy, happy New Year. Zealandia looks like a wonderful place to visit. “Creation” is a fabulous word for the year. After all, what is life without creativity? I think mine is going to be “generosity.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Those hydrangeas look spectacular! Love the word creation – so many ways you work it into your daily life. Have a great 2022 and I look forward to continued connections across the ditch.

    Liked by 1 person

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