Friday, November 28, 2008

The day before, the day!

Tomorrow is the day we host and witness a wedding here on Hillview.  Everyone is busy.  I've never run so many glasses through my dishwasher before, and I have never bought so many tomatoes, lettuces and cabbages at the same time!  What fun!

I am sitting inside looking out at the rain, which incidentally is pouring down at present.  My feet have enjoyed this nice puddle!  But I am hoping that tomorrow the sun will be shinning.  

But either way - I say faithfully to myself - the people will come, and a party will be had; and love will out shine any grey cloud in sight!

Shell xx

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Perhaps a 21st!

If anything could be more special than a wedding, then perhaps a 21st birthday?!

My sister in law Kate, turns 21 today.  

She is wise and wonderful,
Beautiful and sensitive,
She is my family, and my dear friend.

She is an inspiration and a credit to her beloved family!

Shell xx

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What can be more special than a wedding?

Well things are gearing up for a busy, exciting and memorable weekend here at home.  I have mentioned in a previous post that my dear sister in law Sarah is getting married.  There has been much planning and preparation over months and months and finally it is all very close to happening.

I have been appointed the sort of musical director, and I shall of course be singing and playing a little piano with my favourite boys!  I am also making some salads for the reception.  I am sure that my duties will spill into activities such as waitressing, dancing foolishly, laughing outrageously and general behind the scenes business/silliness to help make the day work out beautifully - and I shall be loving every single minute of it!  What can be more fulfilling than being with, and helping your family?!

And what can be more special, than a wedding?

Shell xx

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sipping tea, and smiling...

There is nothing like having your friend back home.  I am very content with my own company,  and I love love love my family in law's friendship and fellowship so much.  But it is comforting to have his smiles at home again.

This morning I am sipping tea, and smiling as I look through some more of his China trip photos...  Some of them very "arty" and expressive.  Shhhh -  Don't tell him I've used them in this post!

I love this shot, the mural, the washing line... this makes me feel like I have walked around and seen this city.

Downtown Guangzhau

The way most Chinese live in the cities. be continued

Shell xx

Saturday, November 22, 2008

More about the postcard...

Jamie arrived home safely, and on time today.  Phew.

Among the photos he had taken on the trip, I couldn't help but smile at this one - the first meal he had upon arriving in China, a steak dinner (!) and beside it, the menu, which if you turned over, was also a postcard (!!)  

So he sent this to me on the first day, and I received it on the last day.  There's poetry in that!

And he came bearing gifts...

Happy day.

Shell xx

Friday, November 21, 2008

a Postcard from China...

With welcomed words of love.  I am so happy, he will be home tomorrow.

Shell xx

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Feeling thoughtful...

I try to sit in silence, 
a little each day,
to hear your voice, and to be honest with my heart,
about who I am,
and what I want, 
and to find out, what more I can do, to serve.

The encouragement you give,
drives me on, 
Yet I am so fallen,
you freely give me love, and praise.

It is selfless love I seek to give,
It is so easy to give conditional love,
Which may not, in that case,
Be love at all.

But only something which gives,
And waits,
And hopes,
And hears,
And gives some more,
Can really be,

Shell xx

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Little people...

At my dinner table, their little faces, and big hearts...

Warm mine!

Shell xx

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Oh my, mince pie!

Oh my afternoon tea!
How I have worked hard to earn the!

I love mince pies, a sure sign that Christmas is well on it's way!


Shell xx

Monday, November 17, 2008


...comes in all sorts of ways when you're trying to serve, in what is right-

* a warm smile from a stranger walking by...

* an older couple stopping you, to say how well behaved your children are...

* a friend request from someone who loves your music...

* a comment on this here wee little blog...

I thank you;

These things I take into my heart, they make me strong.  I cherish them, and credit them to God.  The inventor of love, and Lord of encouragement.

Shell xx

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I have had this song in my head all day so I thought I would sing it out loud to you-

John Lennon

Love is real, real is love,
Love is feeling, feeling love,
Love is wanting to be loved.
Love is touch, touch is love,
Love is reaching, reaching love,
Love is asking to be loved.
Love is you,
You and me,
Love is knowing, 
We can be.
Love is free, free is love
Love is living, living love,
Love is needing to be loved.

Shell xx

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Bringing nature in...

I like to rescue flowers that have been put on the "specials table" in supermarkets because they are slightly wilted, or just past their bloom.  I find if you take them home and give them some love, by way of watering and pruning, then they always thank you by flowering well and long.

I love to have flowers inside the house.  Bringing a little nature in, will always serve to remind you what a wonderful, beautiful world we are in.  And to have designed all this, we know God is truly an artist!

Shell xx

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ladies of the Canyon

Even though my house is always full of children, piano playing, finger painting, milk cups and Nutella crusts, it is somehow a little too quiet when your husband is away...

So to fill up some of the empty space I went onto iTunes and bought myself a Joni Mitchell album.  Her third, released in 1970, called Ladies of the Canyon.

I have only listened, and I mean really sat and listened to one of her other albums, Blue (which she released the year after this), and I really love it for what it is, a personal journal of songs, written all by her, on an assortment of piano and acoustic guitar.  With lyrics that make you feel "Blue", and others that make you laugh out loud - most importantly though, and either way, they make you listen.

Definitely a fan, definitely a new influence for me, and my upcoming third album...

Shell xx

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Cool, quiet air

Sometimes, the moon is shines so brightly at night,
I want to go for a walk in the cool, quiet air...
Breathe in the last little bit of  today,
Prepare my mind for tomorrow...
Thank the Lord for this day, 
And remember to thank Him tomorrow.
Remembering that life is a 'mental game'
Governed therefore by our thoughts,
Lived out through what is in our hearts;
And what is in your heart?
The answer is, what ever you put there-
Whatever you love is there.
So walk with me,
In the cool quiet air,
And I hope you will love the Lord,
Thank Him for this day,
And remember to thank Him tomorrow.

Shell xx

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I picked up this beautiful serving tray at that bargain shop "Hot Dollar" this morning, which I had to share with you!

So Emma and I had afternoon tea with it on the lawn, cold apple juice and salty prosciutto in the shade, while listening to the birds and a little Ella Fitzgerald.  

Happiness doesn't need to cost a cent more than this!

Shell xx

Sunday, November 9, 2008

China Tea...

Jamie is going to China tomorrow morning.  It has been planned for ages with his work, but I can hardly believe the day is very nearly here.

When he returns in a couple of weeks, our guests from overseas will have already arrived, ahead of my sister in law's wedding!

Time has flown by this year.  I have been looking so forward to the spring and summer.  So much has already happened, and is yet to occur; a new baby born, a wedding day, family arriving from overseas, Christmas just down the road...  New Years... Another year, gone by.  A chapter closed.  And then a new one to begin.

I have enjoyed this week of documenting afternoon tea.  A time to hold a hot cup and think about our lives, unable to control how quickly they pass us by, but only how much love we give as we go.

Shell xx

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Royalty Saturday Tea!

I bought these at a new bakery in the Canberra Center today.  We all sampled a little of each.  Fruit Flan, Custard Tart and (my favourite) Raspberry Friand.  

Oh, goodness what a treat it was.  I'm still licking my fingers as I type!

So, I didn't make them myself, but I did pay for them with my very own APRA royalty money!!!  True, it was only a modest sum, but I was so excited to discover it in my bank account this morning I had to go and buy cakes with it immediately!  How wonderful it is to have a little bit of money in my purse that came from making music.  I could get used to this...

Shell xx

Friday, November 7, 2008

Tea at the piano...

Sometimes, I drink my tea at the piano,
I sip in between verses;
Singing loudly! Careful not to spill my cup!
Other times softly, with a whisper, and maybe a little tear...
I hum, and write, and play,
And stay, as soon, or as long, 
As the cup.

Shell xx

ps: I cannot thank you enough for reading.  Your comments, your silent observation, your visits here are all felt by me, and I am overjoyed to be writing to you friends.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Afternoon Tea, Under a Tree!

There is something very wonderful about spending an entire day at home.  When the furthest you venture is to the garden, to hide yourself amongst low hanging trees to sit for a solitary picnic.

Today is one of those rare days when I feel a little unwell.  You know that burning up, freezing cold, sneezing type of thing.  Tara has it too, we both had a pretty dreadful night last night.  She is now making up for it in my bed, and I am sitting here in the garden, listening to the wind and allowing God's marvellous creation to clear my head.  Much better than sleep I say!

Shell xx

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Over Wednesday's cup of afternoon tea...

...I watched the speeches, heard the cheers,
And felt a lot of the world stand still.

Anthemic music, the promise of years,
Ahead, be brighter, and change be willed.

All the while I prayed, and thought,
How really, God can be the only flawless leader,

The only one whose promises will always be kept,
And whose love, will always remain...

So I sipped my tea, and I hoped that they,
Who chose their president this day,

Acted in love, and not in hate, 
Of what I believe was great president before him,
And a fine campaigner opposing him.

I thought about how much I love America,
And hope that they will remember,

Love is the only thing that prevails,
Love never fails.

Shell xx

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Tuesday afternoon tea, well sort of!

This was evening tea in fact.... and those are my pajamas!

I had a lovely afternoon tea also, surrounded by family while we watched that big fancy horse race.  And in true Mechelle form, I smiled much and won nothing in the sweepstake!

Shell xx

Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday, afternoon tea

Shell xx

Birthday girl...

My first baby was born eleven years ago this day.  I am proud of her.  She is vibrant, loving, passionate, sensitive and beautiful.

Her big present this year was a sewing machine!  She is ultra keen to learn how to sew, and I think it's a great skill for girls and boys to learn.  She is pictured here sporting her new birthday dress, and a little something I bought from a reputable seller on etsy!

Happy Birthday Emma.

Shell xx

Sunday, November 2, 2008

All Hallows Eve

Many of my young siblings in law have been planning their costumes since November 1 last year...  I threw mine together this last week, and Jamie finally decided on Indiana Jones in the last hour before Friday night's party...  

The evil queen from Snow White (Moi), Indiana Jones (Jamie), Campbell as Lord of the Dance, and Tara, who would have been a clown if she had worn her wig!

We had a ball...

My soon to be brother-in-law Scott, as the Joker.  No doubt the best costume of the night!

And by special request from Miss Windhover, Sean in his Thomas the Tank Engine dress up!  He calls it his "choo choo"

What a blessed life!

Shell xx