Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world. I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist.
Focussing mainly on Western Australia and Australia, I am seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Sunday 24 December 2023

A Christmas wish for you

Hi everyone, tis the night before Christmas, and I began thinking about the people I know that will have someone missing from their Christmas table for the first time this year, as I did back in 2014 when my darling father passed away a couple of months before Christmas, and then my mother-in-law on Boxing Day of the same year. I lost my dear Aunt earlier this year, and I am thinking about how my cousins will feel her loss this Christmas. I also have other friends and family who have lost someone this year, or who are going through difficult times. 

The first year is always the most difficult after loosing someone. 
A couple of months after my father passed, I wrote the poem you can read below here, and I hope it might bring some comfort to those of you who have lost someone this year. This is my gift to you. Hold onto your precious memories of your loved one. They are with you still. 

The Ghosts of Christmas Past
Christmas only comes but once a year
It brings with it joys and tears.
As I go through the motions of gift buying, decorations
And planning menus
I am thinking of those who will be missing from my table
for the first time this year
They are the ghosts of Christmas past.
My father hanging Christmas lights in the pine trees
at our front gate
The carol singers under our corner street light.
I lay in bed wondering how Father Christmas could possibly
come down our kitchen chimney and through the little doors
at the front of our Metters Stove.
But he did – because the carrots and cake were gone
 in the morning.

The excitement of seeing my new big doll Lucy
under the Christmas tree.
My mother dishing up the Christmas pudding with the
threepences hidden inside
Her Christmas carols that filled the house.
The long Christmas table at my Aunts
With aunts and uncles, cousins and grandparents
And silly hats.

Summer heat and laughter,
Playing under the sprinkler on the back lawn,
And laying on the cool lino of the passage way with a new book.
The simple pleasure of humid summer evenings on the
back lawn looking up at the stars.
As I hang the special Christmas baubles on my tree
And light the candle of remembrance
I look into the eyes of my grandchildren

And I see the ghosts of Christmas past.

I found this beautiful song from Enya several years ago, and I thought I would share it with you.

The Spirit of Christmas Past.....
When tears are in your eyes, it's time to look inside, your heart can find another way
Believe in what I say, don't throw this time away,
Tomorrow will be Christmas Day, Christmas Day

So, let the shadows go, and drift away like snow,
Tomorrow will be Christmas Day, tomorrow will be Christmas Day

So dream until the night becomes the morning light
Tomorrow will be Christmas Day, tomorrow will be Christmas Day.

You can hear the music track by clicking here (skip the advert) -   The Spirit of Christmas Past

A very subdued Christmas message this year. If you are looking for something more upbeat I recommend you go to some of my past Christmas posts -

Red Flowering gum - Australia 

My thoughts are also with those around the world who are suffering from wars, famine and natural disasters. I wish man could find a way to live together in peace and help each other no matter what our religion or culture. I wish for a light to shine in the darkness, peace and goodwill towards all peoples. 

Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, I wish you peace and safety, shelter, food on the table, and time spent with those you love. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Monday 11 December 2023

Colour in my December summer garden

I love my December summer front garden. Every year it blooms glorious colours - 
red, yellow, pink, bluey mauve - and best of all these plants come back year after 
year with little maintenance. They bloom, I water and clip them back a little, 
and next summer they bloom again. Beautiful. 
So today I share some of them with you.  (My apologies for this post apearing strange 
on mobile phones. - I don't know how to fix it. Sorry)

Mauve-blue agapanthus, against the backdrop of the red coral bush, and along 
the bottom my wild hibiscus - an Australian native 

Pinks and mauves of the hydrangea - I must admit that the ones along the top 
row - the bluey mauve ones - are in my neighbour's garden

Roses, though they have finished their first glorious flush
The yellow Coreopsis daisy that is a wonderful border plant that comes 
back every year, frangipani, and the yellow rose bush

Last year a glorious new frangipani flowered in my garden - a cutting gifted to me 
by my friend - It looks like it has buds on it again - so fingers crossed. 

Native yellow and green kangaroo paws - the honey-eaters love these. 

The Australian native red bottle-brush
My Hoya is flowering in my shady patio garden

In my back garden we are picking apricots (a month early this year - looks like I 
will be making apricot jam later this week), the red and green grapes are looking 
fabulous along the side fence, and the tomatoes are coming on. We also quinces 
on our tree which will be ready in autumn. 
The apricot tree has bags all over it to firstly guard against fruit fly, and 
secondly to keep the birds off when the apricots are ready to pick. The parrots
love apricots too! 

Some of the native trees are blooming too. Everything seems early this year - 
you can see some of them on my previous post here - 
Trees are blooming for Christmas. Below are the candlestick banksia (they remind
me of giant Christmas candles), purple jacaranda (not an Australian native), 
the yellow Christmas tree, and the red flowering gum. So vibrant. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to 
hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous 
contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Monday 27 November 2023

Art Market in the Garden

 Hi everyone, I hope you and yours are doing well. 

Just a short post from me today. I am winding down from a busy few weeks and weekend. On Sunday I had a market stall at the Stirling Street Art Centre in my hometown. It was there annual Art in the Garden market. A great place to buy products created by local artisans - everything from soap and candles to clothing, art pieces, pottery, wood carvings, garden objects - you name it you could probably buy it at the market. I've been so busy getting products ready for the market. 

I was there with my eco-printing-dyed upcycled-clothing, scarves, prints and greeting cards, along with my photography prints, cushion covers, tote bags and greeting cards, as well as some paper flowers I make for every market and Christmas baubles filled with dried wildflowers.

Above is a pic of me with my stall. Unfortunately it was a hot hot and windy day, with a side serve of flys. Amazingly people weren't put off by the weather and still came to the market. It has been so hot the last couple of weeks - an unseasonly very hot - heat wave - start to summer, with bushfires already raging. It's goig to be a bad summer. 

Below you can see a few samples of my eco-print products. 

Eco-printing on paper

Cyanotype sun prints on paper, Christmas cards, and tote bags

My latest craze - printing with coreopsis flowers from my front garden - the colour of summer

Also I have ecoprinted scarves, upcycle shirts and tote bags

I loved this little white denim mini skirt and lace edge cotton upcylced top printed with ecualyptus leaves - but unfortunately it didn't sell. Maybe next time.

Eucalyptus loves wool - but not all leaves print orange - these are eucalyptus karri leaves I source from a friend in the great southern who has them growing on her property - they love wool. 

I still have so much to learn - I'm off to a 3 day workshop in Albany for summer school early next year.  

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. 

You might also like - some more about ecoprinting and cyanotype from past blog posts - 

I am still packing up and sorting out from my weekend, but I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Saturday 11 November 2023

Remembrance Day - 11th November

The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month attained a special significance in the post-war years after World War 1 . The moment when hostilities ceased on the Western Front in 1918 became universally associated with the remembrance of those who had died in the war.  On the first anniversary of the Armistice in 1919 two minutes' silence was instituted as part of the main commemorative ceremony at the new Cenotaph in London.

After the end of the Second World War, the Australian and British governments changed the name to Remembrance Day. Australians observe one minute's silence at 11 am on 11 November each year to remember those who died or suffered for Australia's cause in all wars and armed conflicts. 

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

   by John McCrae, May 1915

In the photo below you can see one of two remembrance walls at the Australian War Memorial in our capital city Canberra, where are recorded on bronze panels the names of over 102,000 Australians who have died in conflicts. On these two walls you can find the name of your family member and place a poppy beside their name, as we did when we visited. This is the closest we can come to the burial place of my great uncle who died in WW1 at Gallipoli and my husband's uncle in WW2 in Burma, so I was very grateful to be able to do this. 

You can learn more about Remembrance Day and the significance of the poppy here -

Remembrance Day is commemorated in Australia, United Kingdom, New Zealand, United States, Canada, Belgium, France, and the Cayman Islands. However, We have all be affected in one way or another by war, either directly, or through family members or friends. 

A video/musical tribute. 

Do you observe Remembrance Day or similar in your country? Who will you be remembering this Remembrance Day?  

As wars continue to be raged across the globe, I despair that we have learnt nothing from the past. I despair for those who are caught up in these conflicts, for the loss of familes, loved ones, home, community, life as they knew it. And those that return home afflicted physically and mentally. Why can't the powers sit down and find a way through without killing, bombing and destruction. There must be a better way. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!