Grati- Tuesday 23 May 17

Written by AHQ

23 May 2017

Hi all,
Another busy day here at HQ AHQ.  Half of my regular team is away on holidays, or working or playing Grandma so we were short on numbers today but not short on enthusiasm and output.   We layered quilts, Bridget quilted quilts (five I think today).  Clarissa added the finishing touches to a number of quilts that are now ready to be posted.  Joan sorted kits out for quilt tops to be sewn at Penrith on Saturday.  Certainly enough to keep us out of mischief!

So busy, in fact that I nearly forgot to finish editing the post for tonight.   Here tis… some lovely messages as usual….


This is just a little note to thank you and the ladies who invested all that time and effort to make me a Quilt.
I got it on a day that I really needed a “pick me up”, and WOW, what a pick me up.

I lay it on the bed to take the picture, because my wife suggested that I do.
I then packed it away safely because it is too special for me to get any of my germs on it.

The sentiment and the gesture that you ladies bestowed on me is highly appreciated.
And this is a common feeling among all of us here who receive such gifts.

When I get home I am going to have it framed and passed down as a family heirloom. Ha! Ha!  Like I said, It will remain germ free.

Thanks again ladies.


Hi Sue,
Thank you very much for my wonderful quilt! My mum put in the request for me, picking all my favourite things, ladybugs, wine, pink, Australia etc, and I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect result!
Thank you for the work you do; please know it brings smiles and, at times, much needed morale, to all of us over here!
With many thanks

G’day Ally!

Just thought I’d send you a quick email to say thank you for the absolutely incredible quilt that you made for me. I love it. We all love when these quilts arrive over here, it makes our days.

Again, thanks for your quilt and all the time you took to make it. It’s something I’m definitely going to be keeping around for a very long time.

Best wishes and kind regards,

Hi Kaye,
I received your parcel yesterday with my laundry bag and all my goodies – thank you so much! I love the laundry bag. I had the coffee with chocolate sprinkled on it this morning and I am everyone’s favourite at work for bringing in the timtams.
I am in charge of the XXXXX Cell, for the Middle East Region. This is a mixed team of uniformed and Australian Public Service employees.
Not many people know that APS personnel deploy to the Middle East as well as ADF members in uniform. We work for Defence too, just wear civilian clothes! There are only 32 of us across the region, but we have core skills that are needed here and so we deploy alongside the uniformed personnel, working and living together for six months wherever we are assigned.
Our team is a great example of how Australians come together to get the job done, I have attached a photo of us all. 

 Back home I have a husband of nearly six months, (I deployed 3 months after we were married….) who has been wonderfully supportive.  Between us we have three daughters. We also have two ratbag dogs, a harrier, and a beagle. I miss them all so much.
As you may have guessed, I am an older lady and don’t really fit the picture of the Aussie soldier off on deployment – but as I said when I told my 80 yr old Mum when I was coming over here, I can’t put a uniform on, but I can do this.
Your group gives us all so much pleasure, you wouldn’t believe it! It is such a morale boost  to receive these gifts of kindness from home, and to know that the Australian community is behind us and what we are trying to achieve.
So thank you so much again Kaye. I will have a cup of tea and a tim tam at morning tea, and think of you.


Hey Kelly,

Thank you so much for the lovely quilt, I really like it. I too come from a small country town, but near Bendigo in Victoria. My mum and sister work horses and donkeys as well as looking after many other animals we have on our small property. Unfortunately I have been posted to the other side of Australia, so I don’t get to see them very often, but I always keep in contact. Ever since the age of 15 I have known I wanted to join the army, so I enlisted when I was 19. This is my first deployment and I’m so grateful and proud to be able to serve my country.  Please wish Brady the best of luck in joining the navy from me and with hard work and dedication I’m sure he will very much enjoy it as I have done with my time in the army so far. 

I Wish you and your family all the best.


Dear Jeanette,

I have just received the fantastic quilt you made in the mail. You have really nailed the brief on this one, I love it!

My wife and I have just had our first child, hence the baby theme. The quilt will be perfect for her and a good way to start her Land Rover education too. At home I get around in an ex-army Land Rover 110 and we grew up doing beach and camping trips in dads old mustard coloured Series 3. I can remember some great holidays on Fraser island and you’re right, it was certainly not the most comfortable ride (especially with four kids in tow). 

Thanks again for the quilt, I really appreciate the time spent and detail put into making it. We all love getting packages from home and I know that these quilts become a treasured memento of the deployment for everyone who receives them.

Dear Fran,
                  Thank you so much for your lovely hero quilt, opening that today made my week, its humbling to know people are thinking of us back home.

I have been in the army nearing on 11 years and have been a medic for the whole time.  

This is my first deployment with the military and have thoroughly enjoyed the experience. 
I will be back home soon and look forward to seeing my wife and 3 children.
The work you guys do to bring joy to the people of the military serving away from family and friends is inspiring, please continue the good work.
I hope this finds you well.

Yours sincerely 

Good morning Aussie Hero Quilts,

Just a quick email to say thank you very much for the laundry bag! The Australian flag and kangaroo design is great, and will no doubt go on every deployment and trip (fun or work!) from here on in.

A few of my friends have these now and we all appreciate them very much.

Thanks again!!

Dear Pennie,

I would like to say how appreciative I am for the laundry bag and gifts in the care package that arrived a few days ago.  Thank you for your time and hard work that you have given in making the beautiful laundry bag.

I really appreciate the embroidered medical theme and initials crafted into the laundry bag.
The Soldiers here are so grateful for the effort and time put into all their gifts.
It makes home not feel so far away when you receive personalised gifts such as these.

I honestly don’t know how you find time to make these gifts while working in a busy hospital.
I remember finishing shifts and not even remembering what day of the week it was, let alone being able to carefully construct such a beautiful item.

It is an honour to be here where I am, knowing that there is support like yours back home makes it all the more worthwhile.
Thank you for your kind wishes and continued support, I hope your family and friends are safe and well.

Kind regards,

Dear Anne,

I received your beautiful quilt and laundry bag recently and I am beyond grateful for your generosity and kind heart! You have brought so much joy to my trip.

I wanted to send you a quick email to say thank you and show you a photo of me with your beautiful work. The photo is taken in front of our Aussie block and the deck we proudly built just before Christmas.

I am nearing the end of my tour now, so I’m getting excited to head home! I won’t tell you too much about myself here as I have written you a long letter 🙂

Best wishes,

Hi Lisa S,  

I am writing to you to let you know that I have received my quilt and laundry bag.  They are absolutely amazing and your artwork and stitching is certainly above what I was expecting! It will be perfect at home either on our couch or as a cover for my little boy’s bed (when he gets old enough).
I can’t tell you enough how chuffed and appreciative I am to receive your work and I am so grateful for the effort and time you have put into it.  I will take your suggestion about actually using the quilt for something purposeful rather than it becoming a precious prized possession! stuck away in a safe place…
It was interesting reading about your story and your family history… in particular your fathers service in the Vietnam War… I also appreciate your effort and support as a fellow wife of a Defence Member and making a difference through your quilt making (the design is so good, have to say this again)….thank you for being a part of Aussie Heroe’s from me and my family… Panthers like Parra aren’t having the best of years but there is always next year, but still along way to go yet…
By the way, this is my first parcel from anyone (I don’t want my wife to fuss over me with parcels…) so thank you for that.

Not to much longer in the NT I’m sure and may even bump into you somewhere around the traps in the RAAF!  

Feeling very supported, privileged and grateful.

Thanks again


Good Afternoon Clarissa,

I am writing to thank you for your amazing efforts in the production of the laundry bag and quilt you made. Both items were amazing and wonderful to receive. I would have emailed earlier though I couldn’t find the letter you sent with the quilt until I returned home to Australia and unpacked everything from the deployment.

Thanks so much to you and all the others that put the time and effort into producing these items, it is greatly appreciated by all.

Kind Regards


Good afternoon Joy,
I am currently serving on HMAS Arunta, during its operation Manitou. I recently received you aussie hero quilt, and I just wanted to express my complete gratitude for such a kind favour, as well as tell you a little about my self. I am 22 years old, from a small town in South Australia, South of Adelaide. I grew up with my Grandparents, and I miss them a lot! My pa is Holden crazy, and every year would make me watch the Bathurst race, (even though I don’t like it) but the quilt you made me sits on my bed’s handrail and reminds me of him everyday! I am so very appreciative for you to have given me that little bit of home feeling! What yourself and everyone else at Aussie Heroes does for the morale of us sailors is unexplainable and everyone on board is so thankful!
Thank you again and I look forward to hearing from you!


Hi Dianne, Heather and Dot

Thank you so much for the wonderful laundry bag you made. It’s FANTASTIC!  When I opened up the package, I never expected to see the mighty Catters’ colours pop out at me. The addition of the VB symbol was both hilarious and very well placed. It’s great to hear about where exactly our care packages come from, and for this one to come from Geelong, I was really taken away. I am originally from Melbourne, which led to my whole family supporting the Demons. Since being the youngest, I decided to rebel and chose another team. I remember watching a match between Geelong and Melbourne at the MCG in 1989, and seeing Gary Ablett and Garry Hocking dominating the field. I think it was then I started cheering “We are Geelong!” at the final siren. I think then my life long obsession with Vic Bitter started also….

When we receive care packages whilst deployed overseas, it reinforces to us that our family and friends back home are thinking of us. We never expect to receive packages from other organisations or charity clubs, but it hits home when we do. It can be difficult at times being away from our families, but it’s little gifts such as this that make it all worth while. I also showed the bag to my partner back in Australia and she replied with one comment: “They captured you perfectly”.

Thank you so much once again for the thoughtful gift, and hopefully we might see the mighty Cats reign supreme once again this year!

“We are Geelong!”


Dear Lisa
Thank you, thank you, thank you, I love my quilt, it is beautiful, I couldn’t be happier and I love my laundry bag too!  You sound like you have a beautiful, kind, amazing life and family. I am very jealous of all your animals.   Thank you for all the work you put into our quilts and laundry bags, it is very much appreciated.

Kindest thanks


Good evening I don’t even know where to begin, thank you just doesn’t seem enough for the most amazing job!! I received my quilt and laundry bag today and too say I was stunned would be an understatement!! It’s absolutely breathtaking and so unique I am so great full and you have no idea how happy it has made me, words can not describe!
Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart ️ you guys are absolute angels 🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸🌸
Can you please pass this on to my quilter thank you so much from the bottom of my heart xx


Good afternoon Gail,
I am 29 years old and serve onboard HMAS Arunta and I wanted to pass on my sincere thanks for Aussie Hero Quilt. It could not have come at a better time!  We are currently participating in the Coalition effort to reduce the Gun/Drug smuggling by sea along the East Coast of Africa and the Middle Eastern Region known as Operation MANITOU.

We left our home port of Rockingham and are conducting various patrols in the area with respite port visits every 2-3 weeks. It was the cooler time of year for the first 5 months so the temperatures were quiet pleasant with the maximum around mid 20s each day. Since sailing from a maintenance period the infamous Middle Eastern heat has certainly turned up which is when my Aussie Hero quilt arrived! It was the perfect size/thickness to deal with those warm nights, it could not have been better timing. Again thank you so very much.

I think you did an amazing job making the quilt and I will be cherishing it as a memento for years to come.
Again thankyou for the quilt and letter, please pass on my gratitude to everyone who contributed,  I will certainly cherish it for many years to come! I’m more than happy to answer any questions you might have and wish you all the best in the future.

Kind Regards,


Recently we gifted laundry bags to the entire crew of HMAS Choules as a thank you for their involvement in Operation Queensland assist.  They have only just received them on returning home from another Operation. Here are some of their messages of gratitude. 

Good morning Jan-Maree,
I’d just like to say thank you for the laundry bag you sent and would like for you to pass on my sincere thanks to Maureen for making it. It means a lot to know that others are thinking of us while we are away.


Good Morning Darrel.
        I am a Sailor in the Royal Australian Navy posted onboard the Amphibious Assault ship HMAS Choules.  I want to express my sincere gratitude for the laundry bag that you made, it is beautiful and will serve me many many years.  Things like this make such a massive difference to the morale of active and deployed defence members, I cant explain the joy that my shipmates had when we received these beautiful items from our command team, it has brought a smile to every one of us.  The work these organisations do is wonderful, and I thank you again and hope you continue to be involved, it makes more of a difference than you will ever know. and for your information I got the one with the aircraft carriers on it, fantastic choice of fabric for Sailors!
With the very warmest of regards and appreciation 


Dear Helen,

Thank you for the amazing laundry bag that you made during our time on Queensland Assist after Tropical Cyclone Debbie. The entire crew on board HMAS Choules appreciates the amazing laundry bags that you have made for us. Please keep up the amazing work as everyone in the Australian Defence Force truly appreciates the effort you make in acknowledging the work done by service men and women on operations in Australia and abroad.

Once again thank you, this means a lot to my crew and I.


Hello Helen,

Firstly, thank you for your wonderful gift – it WILL be greatly treasured and absolutely used (although I feel it’s well and truly beyond the discourtesy of my dirty clothes though – it’s beautiful.  I think I may re-purpose it as a library bag for myself and my kids).

As for myself?  I likewise live in Sydney with two children (7 and 11 respectively), and this is now my 5th ship – having sailed the Tasman Sea to New Zealand, the Persian gulf to Oman and Kuwait and the china seas to Philippines.  It’s been a big life in a very short time. The short time so far I have spent upon Choules has been an enormously positive experience, and I am very proud of my Ship for the assistance it has made to the people of Queensland during their difficult time.

Once again, thank you for what you and Aussie Hero Quilts are doing – gestures of kindness like this truly reflect the quality of the Aussie character. 


Good afternoon Jan Maree,

I am writing to express my thanks for the hand made laundry bag (Courtesy of Kim) which I recently received after spending time on Op Queensland Assist. These bags look great and have been well received and are appreciated by all who recieved them.

Thanks again and best regards, …..

Good afternoon Jan-Maree,

Firstly, thank you very much to both yourself and Shirley for graciously supplying the ship’s company and army detachment of HMAS Chouleswith the laundry bags for our recent deployment to Queensland to assist in the aftermath of tropical cyclone Debbie. I joined HMAS Choules the day she departed for QLD Assist and to be honest I did not realise how quickly this deployment had been put together or how capable the ship and crew were, in the execution of the deployment. I feel sure that I am not the only person on board that feels that this deployment was nothing more than just doing our job, but had the damage been a lot worse than was the case, or had affected an area with a far greater population, then I think that HMAS Choules was well placed to provide vital assistance with both the embarked army personnel and the specialised equipment to provide that initial aid.

After just returning from another busy exercise in north Queensland, the arrival of the laundry bags for ship’s company really lifted the crew upon our return and I think that it is organisations like yours are the real unsung heroes in recognising military service and what it means.

Thank you for your selfless dedication and on-going support to the ADF.

Kind regards,


Till next time… keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx 

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  1. Unknown

    Great work everyone and what wonderful words of appreciation!


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