This week’s small pleasures #315: the Christmas edition

I’m sitting here in the sun on Boxing Day having had a wonderful Christmas and days before with family visiting from Sweden. It has been a lovely week, so without a further ado, here are this week’s small pleasures

Trip to Martinborough

On Thursday we drove over the Remutaka Hills to Martinborough for lunch and wine tasting. It was a bit cloudy, hut it made the hills look rather dramatic and the bright skies in the distance lit up the skies. We had lunch at Poppies, platters full of all sorts of things from smoked salmon to olives to cheeses, before visiting a couple of local wineries and of course the town itself.

Dining out

On Friday evening, we headed over to Floriditas’ in town for dinner, stopping first for a glass of sparkling rosé at Puffin. I enjoyed Wapiti venison tataki to start with, and followed that with snapper with potato cream, asparagus and pickled onions. It was all very delicious, and the others enjoyed their food too.

Christmas Eve

We celebrated Christmas Eve with friends and family and as per tradition enjoyed herring, Janssons frestelse, meatballs, sausages, breads, devilled eggs, two types of smoked salmon, ham and other good things. There were cheeses, strawberries, a fruit cake made by my friend Anne and chocolate. It was a great feast, and we opened our presents full of food and good cheer. Below you can see our table and all of us standing out in the garden.

Boxing Day

Today we headed up to Zealandia, the wildlife reserve in the city which has featured many times in this blog before. It was a gorgeous sunny day, and we spent the morning enjoying the good weather, spotting amongst other things, kākā, takahe and tuatara.

From there we headed over to the wind turbine at Brooklyn, and the wonderful views over the city and out to the water beyond. The three in the picture are my husband Karl, brother in law Hans and sister in law Lotta, all enjoying the summer sun,

So I hope you and yours have had a wonderful Christmas if you celebrate it, and are enjoying the season whether is be summer or winter. I’m not linking to any blogs this week, but just want to say a big thank you to all of those who regularly comment and read, and whose blogs are a small pleasure to read.

Thistles and Kiwis is a Wellington, New Zealand based blog written by Barbara, who likes cats, summer, good food and pretends to garden.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistlesandkiwis. If you want to get in touch, email me on or


  1. We had a double Christmas this year: three of us only for the first one and then we were joined by our Cape Town family for the second one (which included grandchildren) a couple of days later. Hot days meant swimming in the pool and our house was filled with the sound of young laughter, shouting, chatting – and one had to be careful where one walked. It was delightful.

    Liked by 1 person

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