Written by AHQ

8 October 2013

G’day all. 

Where did today go?  
Before I knew it the clock says nearly four pm and the blog has not been finished.  Phew!

Last night I headed down to Camden, a little over an hour’s drive south (especially if you take a wrong turn! LOL) so that I could be guest speaker for the Camden Country Quilters Guild. What a lovely bunch of ladies.  I think I might have to go down there again as they were just lovely.  Just before the meeting started one lady came over to me with a big smile on her face and said that her daughter-in-law-to-be had actually received one of our quilts just recently and it had made her day!  Small world again!

It is never a challenge for me to give a presentation on Aussie Heroes. I have to read from my notes as I can’t be trusted to stick to a time limit if I try to ad lib too much.  I can always think of too many wonderful stories to share, details that I cannot put on the blog, so I just have to stick to a script as I am liable to waffle on for ages.  It is also kind of reassuring that one of our passed recipients prepares my PowerPoint presentations and he includes little signs of his appreciation for AHQ.  Strange though it may sound, that makes me feel that I always I have a little extra support on the night as well.  In the end though, Aussie Heroes is an easy and enjoyable story to tell and I like to tell a story. 

And it was very easy to tell last night.  This group really “gets it”.  I had been asked by a lovely lady called Kaye to send down ten quilt tops to her so that she could quilt them and have them bound to give back to me last night.  Not only did she quilt them but the Guild provided all the backings and batting as well!  Now that is generous!    At the end of the presentation the ladies held up all the quilts one by one.  The ones they had made for us themselves and the ones that I had sent down to quilt.  It was quite overwhelming to take in and I think I am going to have to write them a letter to thank them properly as I don’t think I did a very good enough job when I was there.

Kaye, bent over with back pain from a recent injury, was cranky with herself for not telling me to being more quilts down to her for quilting.  It is pretty clear that she is an unstoppable and extremely precious force and Aussie Heroes is so lucky to have her and the whole of the guild in our corner so to speak.  Not all the quilts had been bound but when volunteers were called for hands went up all over the place!  It was heartwarming and so encouraging to see.  I could not stay for the whole meeting as I had a long drive home, and still had a load of emails to answer when I got back, but I had a  great time and if the ladies let me know when they are having one of their community sewing days, i would be there will bells on if they let me just to join in the fun (AHQ permitting!)

You can expect to be hearing more of them.  They sent me home with 13 quilts, some of our tops and some completely made by them and there are several more to come.  The indications that I got last night was that I could expect to hear from them as a group and probably from some of the individuals.  Just lovely!
Is that not enough good news for you? How about a few thank you messages then.  These are sure to warm the cockles of your heart!
Let’s start with a picture of a very happy recipient of one of Maddy’s quilts.

Dear Su,
        I received my quilt and laundry bag yesterday in the mail.  Thank you very much!  I was very impressed with the design and the MGA related badges and profiles that you attached to it.  Your husband certainly has an eye for detail, I thought someone had attached my MG car makers plate to the quilt and started looking for the chassis and serial number of the car!  

        I am very happy with both and have already used the laundry bag this morning and the quilt last night.  I won’t mix up my laundry bag with anyone else’s now as it really does stand out from the red ones they give you here.

        Thank you for the gifts, I have shown others your work and they are impressed, stand by for more requests.  Thanks again,

Good evening Janine, 

I just wanted to send you a short note to express my thanks on my brilliant laundry bag that you have made!  It has really hit the mark with one side for me and one side for my daughter. I cant wait to show her when I get home next February.
All of our people have loved getting the bags and quilts over here and it is very humbling to receive them from Australia. It is nice to know that all of you from Aussie Hero Quilts are out there doing a little something for us, but something that make an incredible (and colourful) mark on our days over here. 
Again – thank you from the bottom of my heart for this wonderful gift. 
I hope that you have a lovely day as you have definitely made mine

Dear Jan-Maree
I was very moved to receive the beautiful personalised quilt made by Sandra for Aussie Heroes. Although I have now sent it home, I proudly displayed the quilt on my bed for the last month of our deployment to Kandahar Airfield, Southern Afghanistan.

We have deployed to help the people of Afghanistan, but ultimately our role is to protect the people of Australia.  You and your supporters in Aussie Hero Quilts remind us what is best about being Australian.  Please accept my thanks, and the gratitude of all the members of XXXXX for your hard work in supporting Australian soldiers deployed overseas.

Louise T,
Thankyou so much for my quilt which has just arrived. The beautiful handiwork is such a comfort here where everything is sandy and beige coloured! (the quilt was a lovely pink with patchwork flowers and a blue floral lining).
The Dolphin Quilters are making such a difference- each soldier/sailor/airwoman will treasure the quilt for a lifetime- I know I will.
Kind regards,


Hi Louise T,

I just arrived in Afghanistan a few days ago, so imagine my surprise when I received the beautiful quilt you made in the mail.  My friend, already deployed, had requested one for me for my arrival.
It is the first parcel I’ve received here and it has totally made my day.  It is perfect – I’m using it now as I sit up in my bunk bed typing this email.  The flowers are too cute, and the yellow backing material is really pretty. Everything about it is so lovingly and artistically put together and it is a beautiful reminder of the support we are getting from home.  It’s also a beautiful souvenir that I will treasure forever and pass down to my future grandkids one day – “this is the quilt that gran had when she was serving in the army” I’ll say to them – heheh!

Thanks again Louise. I wish you all the best and please pass onto all the Dolphin quilters at Old Bar how grateful we all are here for the comfort, warmth and homeliness they are giving the troops here in the Middle East.

Your new friend from across the miles,

Dear Naomi,
Thank you so much for my lovely quilt! I got home on Thursday night and one of the first packages I opened was your quilt! The appliqué owls are so cute and I loved the saying that you put in. I come from a family of ladies who love to sew but I’ve only started the last few years and one of the skills I’m yet to learn is appliqué!
Thank you again for the beautiful quilt, it was a lovely welcome home surprise and it will be a great reminder of my time away.

Kind Regards 

Hi Jan-Maree

XXXXX received his quilt last week – it arrived in super quick time. He loves it and said it was awesome and he also showed it to us on Skype tonight.

Thank you so much, it is wonderful to have a quilt that we can treasure from his deployment.

Take care and keep making amazing quilts!

Thank you again! 

Hi Christine,

Thanks so much for the latest laundry bag delivery, they are fantastic, I thought you would love to know that one of the guys clapped eyes on the high heel laundry bag and chose it straight away!!! Haha! He knows that none of the other boys will steal it and of course it stands out so better than the boring old issued ones!
They were all beautiful bags, I love the material and colours you used, very nice!  Thanks for taking time out of your busy life to make these bags and send them over, they certainly put  a smile on everyone’s faces!!!!


Hello to you all at Aussie Hero and at the Heritage Lodge
I received my quilt recently and I absolutely love it. I am a big Manly fan and now I have my own one off Manly quilt. My whole family support Manly and my mum and dad met at Manly at Brookvale Oval. So our family really have a strong connection. I will truly cherish my quilt for the rest of my days.
My family were all very touched what his much effort you have all put in and just how sweet you all are. 
I wish you all the very best.

So, dear JMxx,
I return from leave, (glorious time with my beautiful kids) to find not just a package with a delightful quilt specifically made for me but a package full of tasty aussie treats. Please pass on my thanks and utmost appreciation to those folks who are responsible.  Their commitment to us is fantastic. I particularly enjoyed the letter from Margaret who took time out to include snippets of insights into those personalities behind the Old Bags and a Dag title.
I will have a life long momento that will pass down to my kids and their kids etc, all thanks to those who gave their valuable time.
Fond regards and sincere appreciation to you and your incredible crews and teams around Australia. 

(Joan received a pic of one of her laundry bags now pressed into service!)

Thanks for your email back! The bag is proudly hanging on my wardrobe!
Angela has already started to receive emails from those who wish to attend the dinner.  Remember numbers are limited so if you want to go hurry up and register for your ticket.  

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

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