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Ten happy things – October 22

A scene of St Mark's Square in Venice

Each month I like to look back and choose ten things, to write about, that made me happy and brought me joy. Here’s my ‘ten happy things’ for October.

Cat sat Dandy

We looked after Dandy, my neighbour’s cat, twice this month. I love it when Dandy visits! He is just the cutest – and fluffiest – and also keeps me company when I work from home.

Dandy, a ginger and white cat, sleeping on a white and grey carpet

Rooftop bubbles with Fee

One Friday night I had spontaneous drinks with my friend Fee, as she was in town for work. We met up at Sea Containers House on the Southbank and had some bubbles in their rooftop bar, 12th Knot. The weather was quite temperamental but luckily it stopped raining and the sky cleared for us to take some photos of the beautiful sunset!

Two glasses of champagne clinking together with a sunset in the background

Delicious lunch at Legare

One Saturday my husband and I headed to Tower Bridge for lunch at Legare. We’ve been a few times now and it never disappoints! Which is why it’s one of the best Italian restaurants in London – in our opinion. The menu is small but perfectly formed. We ordered three starters to share, including this delicious burrata with roasted fennel, followed by a pasta each. I highly recommend Legare if you’re looking for a fabulous Italian meal in central London.

Burrata with cooked fennel

(Press invite) Seijaku with Wagamama event

I was invited to Wagamama at the Royal Festival Hall to experience their new autumnal menu, which is inspired by seijaku. Seijaku is the Japanese philosophy of finding calm. As part of the event, we had a Japanese calligraphy masterclass with artist Kashuū, who showed us how to find our seijaku! It was lots of fun.

Japanese calligraphy with Wagamama

After we had multiple goes at recreating the calligraphy, it was time to eat! I ordered the mixed mushroom bao buns, which were so damn good! I then tried one of their new dishes, the Gyoza Ramen. You can choose which gyoza you want and I went for chicken. This is such a good dish for autumn and winter as it’s really comforting – like a hug in a bowl!

A bowl of Chicken gyoza Ramen with a wooden spoon

Dinner with Kaye

I invited my friend Kaye round for dinner as it had been a while since we’d had a proper catch up. Usually we meet up somewhere but sometimes I feel it’s quite difficult to have a proper conversation in a noisy bar or restaurant! Plus, I quite like playing the hostess! I may or may not have had a glass too many of Prosecco and had to cancel my spin class the next morning…

Last Third Sector magazine article

To be honest, this is both sad and happy. I’ve been a regular writer for Third Sector since 2016 and have written a column in every issue of their magazine since 2018. Sadly they have decided not to print the magazine anymore so this issue was my last ever column. The magazine had been going for thirty years, which is incredible! I’m so proud to have contributed to it over the last few years and it’ll always have a special place in my heart. Thankfully I’ll still be writing articles for their website so it’s not ‘farewell’.

Third Sector magazine cover

Frameless with Dawn

The charity I’m working at is the charity partner for Frameless, a new immersive art gallery near Marble Arch. They very kindly gifted us tickets so I took my friend Dawn one Friday afternoon. Our time slot was 1pm so we started with lunch in their cafe and then enjoyed the different interactive rooms, which feature famous artwork. My favourite room was ‘colour in motion’ which featured several of Van Gogh’s work, including his self-portrait.

It’s a really fun, inspiring exhibition!

Digital mosaic of a Vincent Van Gogh self Portrait at Frameless gallery

Catch-up with Claire

After months of trying to arrange a catch-up with my friends Claire and Emma, we finally got a date in. Although Emma then couldn’t make it so it was just a video call with Claire – who had so much exciting news to share! Obviously I can’t reveal it but it made me so very happy indeed.

Birthday lunch at Manteca

For my husband’s birthday, I took him for lunch to Manteca – another firm favourite of ours! We got a great spot at one of the counters so we could watch the chefs at work. We’ve been a few times so we ordered some of our favourite dishes as well as some new ones. A new dish on the menu, campanelle with beef ragu was insanely good! I really hope they keep it on the menu for a good while as I really want to order it again.

Campanelle with beef ragu from Manteca

Packing for our holiday

We’re off on holiday to the Motherland! That’s South Africa if you didn’t know I’m South African. It’s been about six years since I was last in the country and I’m so excited to see my country as well as my friends. Next month’s ‘ten happy things’ is probably going to be a South Africa special edition!

So that’s my ‘ten happy things’ for October. How was your month? What made you happy and brought you joy? Let me know in the comments.

Kirsty Marrins

Reader, writer, occasional runner, travel lover.




  • Chrissy

    I love the happy things you’ve done. A few of mine are being back at uni and breaking my creative block through perseverance. Having a friend pop in for a cuppa whilst I was working and telling me she is looking forward to me finishing my degree so that we can get to doing our monthly lunch and movie Saturday afternoons. Having an impromptu tea and cake yesterday afternoon with a fellow student – we don’t usually allow ourselves time off during half term but it was worth it. And finally my 17 year old granddaughter telling me that one day when she has her own house she’s going to give me a key so that I can pop in anytime I like.

    • Kirsty Marrins

      Ah these are such lovely things Chrissy! Thank you for sharing them x

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