It’s been a funny old month. Lockdown in London was announced just as we were meant to be going away on holiday, which resulted in us spending most of our holiday at home – doing not much! Still, there’s always something to be thankful for, which is what these posts are all about – reflecting on what I’m grateful for and what brought me joy. So here’s my ‘ten happy things’ for November!
A (short) break in the Maldives
We always have a two week holiday in October/November and we were lucky to have got away just before lockdown in London. Planning a holiday this year meant leaving it to the last minute as travel corridors open and close… we decided on the Maldives as it had just been added to the travel corridor (meaning no quarantine either way, although we did have to produce a negative Covid test for arrival in the Maldives) and the weather is pretty good this time of year.
Unfortunately the day we landed, British Airways then cancelled our flight home… so instead of having a week, we only had 4 days. Still, we are very grateful we even had that and we got some much needed vitamin D. We stayed at the Four Seasons Kuda Huraa and the staff were just so lovely! They made our stay really special.
Exploring London in lockdown
Spending our holiday in lockdown with nothing much to do meant lots of walking! In some ways it was quite nice as we got to see areas we hadn’t visited in a while – like Hampstead Heath. I also got to channel my inner tourist and posed next to a red telephone box – this one was well looked after and clean because it’s in Old Bond Street, right by all the designer shops. No ‘busty ladies’ in this one!
One day we walked all the way to Borough Market as they were still open for takeout and we discovered a fabulous mural by artist Jimmy C. Isn’t it stunning? You can find it under Blackfriars Bridge by the station.
Burgers in Borough Market
Thankfully Borough Market stayed open throughout lockdown so we took a walk there during our staycation and checked out all the food stalls. We settled on a burger and then sat by the Golden Hind, which has been docked in Southwark since 1996.
Dinner by Hame
Since we had to spend most of our two week holiday in lockdown, we treated ourselves to a fabulous restaurant quality meal at home! Chef Adam Handling has created Hame, where you can enjoy his delicious food in the comfort of your own home. Everything is made as simple as possible for you so that there’s minimal cooking and maximum enjoyment. Read my review of Hame to find out what we ordered and what we thought.
A gifted Panettone (Ad)
The lovely folk at Cosaporto (which is an artisan food and drink marketplace) gifted me a fabulous Panettone from ‘The Greatest Italian Panettone Shop’! I have to say it was incredibly fresh and light and perfect with a cup of coffee. Panettone is such a Christmas tradition in Italy – like mince pies in the UK!
Catch up with friends
I go on about this a lot but a really good thing to come out of Covid is all the video calls with friends! I see them (online) way more than I would have in person, had it not been for Covid. This is something I want to keep up as it’s not always possible to meet up but it’s always possible to schedule in a call!
Cooking Italian style
The joys of having an Italian husband is that he doesn’t trust me to cook pasta and since pasta is on the Saturday lunch menu every week, it means I don’t have to cook! I do help to prep though and help with the starters. One new starter we tried during lockdown was courgette involtini. I must say they were delicious! A bit fiddly to make but worth the effort.
Christmas is coming!
Christmas seems to have come early this year. I think with the weird year we’ve had, people are ditching tradition and embracing Christmas way earlier than they normally would have. And why not? I’ve seen Christmas trees in windows, festive window and garden displays and all the shops have started getting in on the Christmas action – and it’s brought me joy whenever I’ve seen a lovely tree or decorations. How gorgeous does Lina Stores look with it’s fairy lights and hanging Pandoro and Panettone? Pretty as a picture!
Sorted out my wrapping paper
You can tell it’s been a pretty uneventful month when this makes my happy list! But in all seriousness… I just used to stuff wrapping papers, gift tags, ribbon and cards wherever I could find space in our utility cupboard and it was a right old mess. I then spotted someone on Twitter post about their wrapping paper organiser from Ikea and I immediately bought one. Now all my gift wrapping paraphernalia is all in one (tidy) place!
Tis the season for good telly
I’m not a fan of Winter except that there’s always good telly on! Although with streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, there’s always something good to watch! Netflix has launched a bunch of new Christmas films which I can’t wait to watch – but I’m saving them for December. A few shows I’m loving at the moment are: The Bold Type and Vikings on Amazon Prime, Masterchef the Professionals on BBC, Maradona in Mexico on Netflix (RIP) and I’m a celebrity, get me out of here on ITV. What have you been watching?
So that’s my ‘ten happy things’ for November! With London out of lockdown and in tier 2, hopefully December will be a bit more eventful. What made you happy in November? Let me know in the comments!