Grati-Tuesday 10 January 2018

Written by AHQ

10 January 2018

G’day all.

Have to say I am loving the slightly quieter January. I am making the most of the time to get as much sewing done as possible as soon I will have to “get back to work” and also have to start thinking about packing etc. 

We received a photo on Facebook with the following comment…..

Thank you very much. This little beauty arrived in today’s mail and it’s made my day!

followed by an email to Clarissa who sent it off. The quilt top was made by Wendy V, the Anchor was added by Clarissa and the quilting was complete by Bridget.

Good Morning Clarissa,

Thank you so much for the amazing quilt I revived today and the letter which accompanied it (as well as the sweets, which I’ll not be telling the others about) 

The quilt itself is truly amazing and I love it.

To give you some information about me. I’m from Canberra and Married. We don’t have children yet as my wife is studying to be a Midwife which I imagine like nursing is very time consuming. 

Once again thank you so much from the bottom of my heart this quilt is going to be doing some traveling at sea over the next few years!

God bless,


Hello Anne,

I can’t begin to describe how lovely it was to receive your laundry bag.  The story about the colours is quite funny, and I truly couldn’t have asked for anything better if I tried.  It is so incredibly bright and colourful and makes me smile every time I see it.  When I didn’t put a preference, I very quickly felt bad, as it is a hard task to perform with no guidance, but it is absolutely perfect!  The little kangaroo is so beautiful and the blues remind me of everything home.
The bag was here waiting for me when I arrived on my first day so I can’t wait to use it for the whole trip, even though it seems too beautiful to use.  The napkin is gorgeous as well, so wonderfully Australian and the reindeer ears will most certainly be worn on Christmas Day! 

I also have a very big sweet tooth, so loved the lollies and gingerbread man.

I am in the ANZAC hospital here, and have been put in charge of the social committee therefore I am in charge of our Christmas Day celebrations.  Unfortunately it is a normal day for a lot of the boys out here working as it will be a Monday, but I am making sure we are having a nice Christmas breakfast here at the hospital and a secret Santa.  We all have a lot of Christmas and reindeer hats floating around, so will definitely be in the spirit.

It is so lovely to hear you enjoy the sewing as it just makes everyone’s day when the bags and quilts arrive.  They are something we can keep forever to remind us of our time away.   
Thank you again for your lovely work and the time and effort you put into the bag, I will cherish it forever.  I hope you have a very Merry Christmas with your family and grandchildren and have a wonderful new year planned ahead.
Kindest regards

Dear Kaye,

It was of a great surprise and thankfulness that I received a quilt you designed and made.  I am extremely grateful for your time and effort you have spent in creating the quilt.

The letter you have sent has provided me an insight to your life and I am extremely envious of the town you live.  I have travelled around our great country on numerous occasions, and the Great Ocean Road is in my top ten places.  Portland is a wonderful place and I do recall it has some of the best seafood in the world.

As you are aware, I am an avid supporter of the Adelaide Crows and I was disappointed we lost the Grand Final, however, it’s only a sport and there is always 2018.

Kaye, once again thank you for your kind thoughts and time and effort spent in making the quilt, I will hold it in my family and for years to come.  I hope your garden is healthy and producing all the vegies you need.

Yours sincerely,

Dear Jean,

Thank you!  Thank you so much for my excellent laundry bag.  I’ve had many admiring comments on my way to and from the laundry.  It will be packed every trip from now on for sure.

I am also a mother to two – a boy (4) and a girl (2).  I miss them terribly, but I am close to seeing them again so that keeps my chin up.

I’m currently serving with the Air Task Group in the Middle East Region on Operation OKRA.  I work with a good bunch of blokes (and a few other ladies) and we are well entertained outside of work to keep our morale high.  A high point for us is usually when the mail arrives with “Aussie Hero Quilts” on the box.  It will easily draw a crowd to see the creation inside, and there hasn’t’ been anyone yet who hasn’t loved what they received.

Please accept the piece of cloth enclosed as my sincere thanks for your kind gift, and know that what you do for us is appreciated.


Dear Jean,

I was lucky enough to receive the most beautiful laundry bag ever made off you whilst I was in Iraq a couple of months ago.  I just wanted to say thank you!!  It truly is beautiful, so beautiful that I couldn’t bring myself to put my dirty clothes in it, ha ha.  I’ll have to find a more worthy use for it  (mine was the one with poppies and a soldier on it).

Thanks again,

Good Morning Ruth
Thanks so much for the Laundry Bag you so kindly made for me.  I have already put it to use over here.
I appreciate how much time and effort you put in for this item, and it will be used for a number of years to come.

Thanks again. 

Hi Jenny and Steve,

Thank you very much for the laundry bag it looks great, I think you made the right choice with the Ned Kelly material. I’m not sure you can get more Aussie then Ned Kelly.

I just returned from my two week break, it was great to go home and see the wife and kids. It feels weird when you get home, I think you definitely develop a greater appreciation for what we have in Australia after seeing what it’s like in countries like Afghanistan.

Thanks again, 

Dear Deb,
That you so much for the laundry bag and Christmas presents. What you do is very much loved and though of highly.  I am currently over here as a Guardian Angel. I’m 22 years old , so quite young, but such a good experience.
I can’t thank you enough for all the effort that you’ve put into it. Receiving the parcel definitely made my day better.
I wish you and Jim a very Merry Xmas.
I’ve saved the presents and have put them under the Christmas tree , we have to open on Christmas Day.

Hi Chris;

Merry Xmas and Happy New Year!
Firstly please let me apologise. I typed a letter of thanks a few weeks ago (as I think I was the first from the rotation to receive a laundry bag) and pressed send when what would appear to be, a crash of the email system, probably why I found my ‘draft’ email in the outbox to you, rather than the sent items.
But I digress…
Thank you for my laundry bag, to put it sharply – I love it! Upon opening, it was a hit with the rest of the crew here also. Despite the constant banter I receive from my colleagues regarding what they call poor team selection, I remain strong in my support. Anyhow – I figure they’re just jealous as we’ve received more minor premiership awards than any other team in AFL / VFL history (I think our wooden spoons amount to about 26 these days).
It’s been some time since you put keyboard to paper but i’ll try and respond / address each of your points in turn.
We played cricket on Xmas and despite opening the bowling and batting, I  went for a few boundaries and have a nice inner thigh bruise for my troubles. I hear our little game actually got a showing on the television during the ashes!
Again – yes loved the bag, and everyone had a good giggle noting the boxer shorts and footy shorts on each side!
I’m not only keeping safe, but sober too! It will be the clearest I remember xmas for many years!
Thank you again!
Kindest regards

Hey Melissa!

I’m writing in regards to the awesome quilt you made me and I love it! It puts me to shame when I can’t even sew a button onto my pants…  I’m glad it makes you happy to be part of that initiative because I can tell you it’s makes all the difference in the world to men and woman over here. I have seen most of the crew’s laundry bags and quilts and all of them are amazing and you should be very proud to be part of something that means a great deal to a lot of people.

A little about me, I’m 23 years old and I’m one of two Medics on board HMAS Warramunga. I live in Sydney but I’m from the beautiful state of Tasmania. I joined the Navy in 2014 and I have never looked back! I love being a Medic as it’s taken me over the country to work in different environments and to work with other people. I have partner of five years and this is our first ever Christmas and New year’s away from each other but we are doing okay! Our captain has a saying on here, that Warramunga is village and a family and apart from my own family, I don’t think I would rather spend it anywhere else.

Your kids are kicking goals by the sounds of things and that’s great to hear. I never did cadets myself but it’s a great environment for kids to get into as they develop leadership skills at an age where most kids don’t. If he loves it, I wouldn’t mind betting he will continue into the ADF either, just tell him Navy is better… Basketball is something I always loved to play, I played on some social teams but I was never really good at it. I played netball as a bit of a laugh with some friends but ended up dominating it and made it to state representatives which I definitely did not expect.

I can tell you are a very enthusiastic mother and I must congratulate you on being a mother of three and juggling your own two jobs, not everyone can do that. Please keep up with the Aussie Quilts, they do make a difference and there are plenty more ships to come so don’t be shy to show off that awesome talent of yours! I’ll try and send a photo through too!

Say hello to the kids for me.

Kind regards!

Dear Ruth,

I’m writing in regards to the beautiful laundry bag you made for me!  I have been posted on HMAS Warramunga for over a year which has been an absolute blast!

This is the first time I have been away from my family for Christmas and New Years and whilst it’s been hard to adapt to that, it’s also been a very unique experience. The crew of Warramunga is a very professional and proud crew and we call ourselves family and I’m very grateful to have spent the holiday season with them.

The majority of the crew have received their quilts and laundry bags and they all look great. Your cousins  daughter is right, we do love them and we are very appreciative of them and the time that goes in to making them.

Thank you so much Ruth, there are plenty of more ships to come so don’t be shy to show off that awesome talent of yours! I almost feel guilty for using it as a laundry bag, maybe I can use it for something else!

Kind regards

Hello Kaye,

I just wanted to email you and thank you for the beautiful quilting 😊 and the goodies.
It was a lovely surprise that I received just before Christmas.  It made my day.
I am glad you had a lovely time in Queensland, I used to live near Noosa for about 4 years.

I am an Air Combat Officer in the RAAF and I work on the Airborne Early Warning aircraft the Wedgetail.  It is an interesting job and I really enjoy it.
I wish you all the best for 2018 and I hope you had a wonderful New Year and Christmas.

Kind regards

Dear Irene,

Firstly I apologise for the lateness of this email but unfortunately due to the nature of where we are and what we are doing its release was delayed. It was originally written and sent before Christmas, better late than never I guess.

I cannot even begin to tell you how humbled and grateful I am for all the hard work and dedication that has gone into your beautiful creation, not to mention the generosity and selflessness that it would have taken to give it away to a complete stranger.

I am the Electronic warfare director on-board HMAS Warramunga currently deployed to the Middle East on Operation Manitou. I have a wife and a 15 month old daughter who I miss deeply. 
I have been in the navy for the past 8 years and come from a family of ex-servicemen spanning several generations and several countries.

As I write this I am looking at your amazing quilt and am still blown away by the skill and dedication that has clearly gone into its creation. As I opened it everyone in my mess was completely awestruck. Looking around as I read aloud your wonderful letter I could see from the look on their faces that It meant as much to them as it did to me.

What you and the other beautiful souls at Aussie hero’s quilts do is so appreciated by myself and thousands of servicemen like me. The joy and comfort that you have provided us with while so far from home and those we love cannot be understated.

This work of art is something that I cannot wait to show my wife and daughter on my eventual return and will be cherished by myself for the rest of my life through future deployments and into retirement as a memento of not just my service years but your generosity and dedication to a complete stranger.
Thank you once more and I wish you the merriest of Christmases and a blessed and joyous new year.
Dear Beverley,

I wanted to write and thank you for your beautiful quilting work.  I really appreciated it.  It made my Christmas.  I am a mother of 3, my daughter is 12 going on 30, my son is 10 and my other son is about to turn 10 on 22 January.

I am an Air Combat Officer on the Airborne Early Warning aircraft the Wedgetail.  I am however, posting in to an instructor position for my next job.

I am originally from the UK, I used to work in the RAF as a Fighter Controller.  I much prefer Australia though.

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year and wish you all the best for 2018.

Kind regards

Hi Clarissa,
I’m XXXX who received the amazing laundry bag you so kindly made for me.  Apologies my response has been delayed.  I won’t write much other than to say a letter is in the post. I wanted to write rather than email. The letter will have more detail in it.
So please wait and I will hope to hear from you soon.
Thanks you many times over and kind regards,

Dear Bridget,

Today I received the quilt that you had made for me and I wish to thank you for the amazing, generous, talented gesture.  An Army girlfriend who I coached in cycling a few years ago organised the quilt for me.  The quilt is so beautiful and it has captured my personality in every way possible.  I am floored for words and ever so appreciative, as I have never received such an amazing gift from anyone before, and it has arrived in time for Christmas and winter!  I am a single mother of three teenagers, 19yr old Jake, 17yr old Becky, and 14yr old Ryan and this is the first time in over ten years I have been away from my children for this length of time.  I have been in the Australian Defence Force for over 25 years, working in Logistics.  Whilst it is hard being away from family and friends, especially over holidays and family occasions such as Christmas and birthdays, we have a very good support and some activities planned that allow us to look after each other and keep morale high.  I recently adopted a Pomeranian dog who had been abused during his first seven years (that’s him in the photo).  His name is Kosciusko and has settled into his new life with the kids and I and has brought joy to my life in a massive way.  In my spare time I like to ride.  Cycling has played a massive part of my life over the past 10 years with many kilometres riding on the road or mountain trails.  I also coach women in mountain biking in Canberra and the Blue Mountains near Sydney.

I am currently serving with the Royal Australian Air Force in the Middle East Region and am deployed as part of the Air Task Group on Operation OKRA.  To receive this had made from you is very comforting; knowing that you are being thought of and supported.  
Thank you so much again for the quilt and for your continued support to all the men and women serving in Operations for the ADF.

Jan-Maree, Caroline L,
I wanted to write to both of you, to thank you for the fantastic quilt, which was made for me.
It was a great surprise, as I hadn’t been told that an order had been placed from our small group, and that there would be personal touches included.
It was great to read that your partner is also a cycling enthusiast (used to be?) and that there were some common links between us.
I have attached a photo of the quilt laid out. It has been great to take the chill off the air conditioning, that runs 24/7.
Unfortunately the TimTams did not last the night and are no longer with us. 😉🍫
Thanks again, the thought of people going to so much effort to help us feel at home and cared for is a great feeling.

Warm regards


Hi Maree,
Today I received an exciting and much appreciated gift from you, I was so impressed with my quilt it came out much better than expected so much so that the other boys are jealous. We cant tell you how much we all love and appreciate the gifts and the effort that goes into them.
I enjoyed reading your letter, your youngest boy sounds much like myself at his age. I, believe it or not, am also from the Central coast.  I have been in the army for four years now and this is my first deployment to Afghanistan, I am very much looking forward to getting home to my wife and our kids (two little dogs).
Thank you again for your letter and my new favourite quilt.
Much love 

Hello Jean,
Thank you so much for my laundry bag!  It’s amazing!
I am still currently waiting for my quilt to arrive.  I can’t wait to see what it looks like.
I am 24 and originally from the Gold Coast, however I am currently posted to RAAF Base Darwin.  I am a Military Working Dog Handler – Air Force Security.
I have been in for two and a half years, and before I enlisted I worked at Coles.
I too am an animal lover and have two dogs of my own at home with my partner.  A 7yr old fawn pug named Teddi and a 14wk old black and white border collie named Mali.
It’s nice to know that even people we do not know personally are thinking of us.
We appreciate everything you do for us, thank you for your support!
Merry Christmas and have a safe New Year!

Best wishes,

That is it for now. Time for me to get off the laptop and over to the sewing machine!!  Joy!!
Till next time…. keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx

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