Grati-Tuesday 28 Feb 17

Written by AHQ

28 February 2017

Well, I hope it gives you a much pleasure to read these messages as it does me to edit them for you. The smiling faces in the photos always make my day.

I am off to give another presentation tomorrow.  This time to a Seniors Group in Peakhurst.  


Well done to Bridget for this quilt.  This message received on Facebook.

Thank you so much for the Aussie Quilt. I love it that much I have it pinned to the wall behind my desk.


Dear Lynda,                                                                                        

Thank you for your well wishes for the Christmas Season.
I received the quilt just after New Year’s and I didn’t realise just how emotional it would be to open it.

I lovethe quilt and can’t express enough the amount of gratitude I feel at the amount of time, love, care and patience it would have taken to make.
Please pass on my thanks at the team effort put in to make this special something just for me.

We had a pretty good Christmas over here, our cooks put a huge lunch on and not many people were hungry for dinner.
The same happened again for New Year.

I’m part of a section of 6 people, we did a little secret Santa between ourselves so everyone had something to open on Christmas Day.
It was hard to be away from family, I have 2 nieces, a nephew, and a son back at home.
It was my son’s first Christmas and I missed him and my partner a lot, but he won’t remember in the long run and our sacrifices up here are worth it.
Luckily we make it back to Australia in time for his 1st Birthday, I’m really looking forward to it.

My partner worked at HMAS Harman until May last year.
I’m glad you and Pam had a great time there.
We both agree that Canberra is a strange place, a weird cross between county and city.
I remember there being kangaroo’s all over the base.

Again, please pass on my deepest thanks to all the pilgrim patchworkers.
You guys have really given me something I will cherish for years, and I’m eternally grateful for the time and effort you all put in.

Thanks again,
P.S. Thanks for the tim tams too!  I shared with the boys and they loved them too.


Once again thank you for the beautiful quilt and laundry bag.
You are so talented, it is a wonderful thing that you do and I know everyone gets so excited when they receive their parcel from Aussie Hero Quilts.  I really enjoyed your letter and the photo of Ella, she is so cute

I have 2 grown up kids, 2 step-sons and 2 step-granddaughters.
My hubby and I are both serving members.  I have been in Defence 9 years in March.
I joined up when I was 38 years old, which was a huge step for me, but one of the best things I have ever done, I love it.

When I received your quilt I was overcome with emotion, the thoughtfulness you put into it, with the pictures of my dogs just overwhelmed me.
Thank you so much.

Keep up the good work, your efforts are very much appreciated by every deployed member of the ADF.

Many thanks

Dear Pennie 

Thank you so much for your beautiful work and support.

I hope this package finds you well.

I am a dentist, and have been working on a NATO base for a while now.

Your package really made me smile xoxo

Dear Pennie,

Thank you for the latest laundry bags – for many troops receiving one is a deployment rite of passage and becomes a touchstone for good memories when they return home, and of course a cheerful and practical gift to use whilst here!
Thanks for your generosity and choice of fabrics.
The Game of Thrones design simply ran from the shelf once I indicated its availability.
God bless, thank you.   


Dear Pennie,

I am very grateful for the Aussie Hero Quilt you have made up for me.
I have just ticked over five and a half months away so it was a very welcomed package to receive.

I am very impressed with the work you have put into the quilt, I am very happy with the design you have decided on, and there was definitely some quilt envy at the office when I opened up the package!
Thank you for your dedication to your “habit”, let me assure you the airmen and women deployed here are all very grateful for all the Aussie Hero Quilts being sent over.  I appreciate you spending your valuable free time from what I could only imagine to be long hours of hard and demanding work at the hospital.

The reason I have chosen those three aircraft is they are the ones I have completed my training in.
The B300 King Air is what we use to train Air Combat Officers in basic navigational skills and mission command.  Afterwards I was selected to further train on the AP-3C Orion, and my flying have included Maritime Border Patrols for illegal entry vessels and also taking part in the search for Malaysian Airlines MH370 and Air Asia QZ8501.                                                                                                                                                                    
Last year I also managed to train on the Heron Remotely Piloted Aircraft.

My air force career has been very rewarding and has taken me to many exotic and exciting places such as Hawaii, Honiara, Butterworth and now finally to the Middle East.  

On behalf of the Airmen and women deployed with the Air Task Group, thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely,

Dear Clarissa,

This is a note to say thank you very much for my beautiful laundry bag that you made for me.  I absolutely loved receiving it and really like the design you chose – very unique and aviation oriented.  It has certainly made washing my clothes easier with a nice big bag to hold all my clothes in.
With wearing uniforms every day and doing sport and regularly going to the gym, I am frequently doing washing!

I will be heading home soon, so I’m looking forward to getting back to normality that’s for sure.
Also, thank you for the goodies – tim tams, hand cream and perfume – I have very much enjoyed them here in the desert!

Thank you again for taking the time to make my laundry bag.

Kind regards,

Hi Jan-Maree,

I have now received a laundry bag from Jenny at Cowra and a quilt from Lorraine in Wollongong. I am extremely grateful to have received both items. It really is a highlight for all of us here when our bags and quilts arrive. It also heartening to know that you and the ladies that make the quilts and bags do so because you want to and not because you have to. 

Thank you  and your organisation for your efforts and ongoing support.

Kind regards,


Hi Joann and Robin,

My husband, Daniel, received a laundry from you whilst deployed on TGT3. 
I just wanted to send a quick email to convey our gratitude. The laundry bag had Dan’s initials embroidered on the superhero material. On Dan’s return from deployment we posted from Darwin to Canberra with our 4 children under 6. Your laundry bag was a great help during the deployment and whilst we drove down from Darwin. It is now our laundry bag in our bedroom upstairs making it easier for me to lug the laundry downstairs. 
The bag will be a family treasure that will get much use. 
Thank you again for your time and love in supporting Defence members and family. 


Dear Clarissa,

Thank you so much for my fantastic laundry bag which arrived just in time for Christmas.
It was a lovely surprise!  I doubt that no matter how hard I tried, I would never find words adequate enough to express my sincere gratitude.  It is amazing to me that you have given the time that you have away from your very full life during the Festive Season to make something so meaningful for me.

A little about myself…..I’ve been in the Air Force for 16 years now.
I’ve had postings to Brisbane, Newcastle, Melbourne, East Sale, Adelaide, Wagga and Butterworth in Malaysia.
My husband is also in the Air Force.
We are now in Adelaide again after returning from 3 years overseas.

This is my 3rd deployment to the Middle East.  This tour will take my time over here to just over 30 months in total over the last 10 years. 

Once again Clarissa, thank you for thinking of me.
You’ll never quite know how far a kindness such as the one you have shown me goes over here.

With much love and admiration,


Dear Sandy,

Greetings from the chilly climes of XXXXX.

Your letter and quilt have found me in good cheer, safe and well in the middle of Iraq.
I think the service you all provide is fantastic, and I have witnessed many very happy soldiers who have received laundry bags and quilts from your organisation.

My mother is a keen quilter herself.  When I moved out of home I barely made it to the front door before she had converted my room into the sewing room.  Now that she is retired, she has more time to enjoy a catch up or two with her quilting ladies.

Please also give my thanks to Nola W and Anne Mac.

Dear Bev and Geoff Coates,

Hi from the C130 Hercules aircraft detachment in the Middle East Region.

I would like to say a huge thank you for the fantastic quilt that you made for me. It looks fantastic, and I love the Collingwood theme that has been incorporated. The quilt came at a perfect time for me, almost exactly half way through my deployment. At this time in a deployment, knowing that you still have a few months to go can be a little disheartening, however, the arrival of the quilt definitely lifted my spirits. Again, thank you very much.

I have attached some photos for you of a myself and my quilt in front of one of the C130 Hercules aircraft that I work on.

Kind regards,

The quilt on the left was made by Sue N 

Kia ora Sue,

What an honour it is to meet you!  
When we were asked if we would like some laundry bags from
Australia, we were really honoured.  Truly!

My job is the Environmental Health Officer for the contingent.
I work in the Health Company, making sure our soldiers get home safely.  It’s a big job, but it’s going well.
We’ve just gone over almost two months away from home, actually almost three months!

Well, I just wanted to say that the laundry bag you made me was absolutely gorgeous.
I was showing everyone at work, even the Americans and Brits.
I love it so much and it’s a lovely reminder of home.                                                                                                   

Thank you so very much Sue, it can get hard being away from home, but the people on deployment are awesome.
Hope you are well and that you know your art is extremely loved.

Take care,

Dear Joan & Robin,

Thank you so very much for my lovely colourful laundry bag. I didn’t really know much about Aussie Hero Quilts until I got there so it was a pleasant surprise to find out what you do and the parcels Jan-Maree has organised for us have been very well received and greatly appreciated. 

Thanks again for the laundry bag!

Good afternoon Bridget.

Thank you for your most welcomed Quilt.

    I do like the composition of the colours and the ideas.  Well I have deployed on five operations, three under the one name and the remaining two, different ops.  I have been in the RAAF for 27 yrs this year and hopefully , body holding together, will remain for another six after this one. My extended family is quite the ADF family as there is a total of seven of my family mbrs within the ADF covering two of the three services. We did cover all at one time but my uncle discharged from the ARMY many years ago. The work you and your colleagues do is wonderful in support of our ADF personnel and be rest assured all your work is well received and greatly appreciated.  Keep up the good work and once again thanks in advance from myself and many other ADF members that receive these wonderful gifts of support. Please pass on my best to Jan Maree  and the other ladies for their ongoing support. Thanks and take care,
kind regards,


Thanks for your efforts in making the quilt, also thank you for your support of the ADF as a whole. 
Being overseas and seeing the impact these quilts have on people is truly amazing to see. 
Thank you. 

Hello Kaye,

                Thank you very much for the package, it was most appreciated.

The books will definatly help to pass the time, I just need to make the effort to sit down and start them.



Evening Lisa, 

Today much to my surprise I had waiting for me a box on my bed, and in it an amazing quilt.

Thank you so much for your work on this. It is in no other words, sensational. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting but it blew me away. I am well happy with it.

My mate in the sleeping dorm we are in said its the best one he’s seen so far. The colours on the outside are really nice as well, and adding Quinn and Joker down the side is even more awesome!

So thank you very much for it. the laundry bag should show up in our next port!

Additionally, thank you for the letter! It was wonderful to read and learn a little bit about yourself.

To end this email, as I have to get back to work, I would just like to again say thank you very much for the quilt. its already on my bed on the ship here and I cant wait to take it home.

Take care, and enjoy your wonderful looking backyard and animals.



Hi All, 

I was deeply touched and very grateful to receive the amazing quilt that you made for me. The amount of effort and work that you put into the quilt was incredible and it made me feel greatly appreciated. We have been on deployment for three and a half months and are approaching halfway, receiving the quilt definitely gave me a massive morale boost. 

I feel very lucky to have you make that quilt and laundry bag for me and send such a touching letter. I have been a Peter Brock fan since as long as I can remember and the details you put into the quilt are definitley appreciated, particularly the quote ‘Live your dreams’. I grew up in Sydney and loved watching motorsport as a little boy and remember when he retired from Holden Racing Team. Every year dad would take me to Bathrust to watch the race, a tradition we still try to stick to when I am able to go home on leave. I was at Bathurst when he made his comeback and saw him race there for the final time the year before his accident. The photo that you screen printed on the quilt which was in the daily telegraph the weekend after he passed away adorned my wall at my parents house for nine years until  they repainted my bedroom last year, so it was very moving to see it included on the quilt. 

I am a massive holden fan and bought my first V8 as soon as I was legally old enough to do so. I am now on to my second SS Commodore which I bought in 2011. I love my car and like yourself, have done many cross country trips. Including drives from Sydney to Darwin and Sydney to Perth, the most memorable was a trip I did in 2015 where my mum and I drove from Sydney to Perth via the Great Ocean Road. My favourite drive is still to go to Bathurst, something Dad and I do at least twice a year. I find something peaceful and inspiring about the mountain and have always loved travelling there. 

I will ensure that I look  after the quilt and have tucked it away as I do not want it to get damaged by the ships industrial machines, it is far too precious to me. I will try and send you some photos of myself and the quilt as soon as I can get them onto our computer network. Again I cannot say how much I loved the quilt and how much it made me smile, it has definitely been the highlight of my deployment. 

I hope you and your family have a great year, and you get to enjoy lots of drives in your mini with your grand daughters. 


Hey  Jan-Maree

I just wanted to say thanks for my awesome Quilt. It looks fantastic on my bed. As you have already guessed I am a fan of 80’s TV shows and still enjoy watching as much now as when i was growing up. I love all things car and motorbike related.   Thank you for all the work you have done and are continuing to do. 

Very much appreciated 


Hi Clarissa,

Thank-you very much for the wonderful laundry bag that you made for me. The theme is absolutely perfect, including the Snow White picture inside, as suggested by my cheeky son William.

It is great that your father-in-law is still able to march in the ANZAC Day parades in Sydney. With your son in the Army, the Australian military obviously is a big part of your family too.

Again, thank-you for the laundry bag, and I’m terribly sorry about the belated reply.

Kind regards,

Good Morning Raeleen, 

I am writing to to say a big THANK YOU!!!! I love my rainbow coloured quilt! It’s funny how one quilt can transform/brighten the dullest of rooms. My room feels so homely now and the choices of colours has brightened my bed space ten folds! I know how many pain staking hours it is to make one quilt and I feel so privileged to be a recipient of such a beautiful quilt! I can’t believe you have only been doing it for a year, your work looks like you’ve been doing it for a lot longer! I wish I had the talent to make such beautiful things but even my straight stitch on the sewing machine turns out zig zag stitch half the time! Haha! My mum is a quilter so you would think sewing would come naturally to me but unfortunately it does not! My mum hasn’t quilted in years so opening your parcel made me think of when I was little when she did and I would get excited to see what her next creation was! I thank you for reminding me of these memories 🙂 

Thanks you also for the Aussie stuff. I unfortunately received it after Australia day but I still use my stubby cooler on my water bottle with pride all the time! Oh and the Tim Tams will come in very handy and you did hear correctly, they do have more value than money over here! 
Once again I have to say thank you so much for my gorgeous quilt! I love it so much! It’s a beautiful keepsake that will remind me of the great memories that I have had here and it will be proudly displayed in my household when I get home. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! 
Kind Regards,


Dear Sandra,

I am Warrant Officer in the Australian Army, one of the highest ranks a non-officer can become in the Army.
I am currently stationed in the Middle East as part of the Force Support Element.

Thank you for the wonderful quilt, it is very special to receive a gift like that.
I really like the fact you have taken the time to sew my favourite football team as the theme, then use poppies as the military theme on the back
(one of my favourite flowers as I am an avid gardener) and personalise your quilt – how honoured I feel being this your first quilt.
It is just what I wanted and need.  I have forwarded a copy of the photo of the Carlton Football Club as a one eyed supporter with another mate who received a
Carlton centric quilt.  The bag of minties in my package was also a lovely surprise as too your lovely letter.
It is nice knowing that our work over here is appreciated and that people back home are thinking of us and wishing us all home safely.

My life over here is actually not too bad.  We have a lot of facilities on base here.
Our normal day will consist of going to the gym, followed by breakfast and then at work by 8 o’clock in the morning, or 0800 h as we say in the Army.
Dinner is at 5 o’clock at night or 1700 h.  At night we watch movies, do a group jigsaw, read a book or go to the gym.
Sometimes we might go to one of the burger or pizza places here for something different.

We work seven days a week, but get half of Saturday and Sunday to ourselves.  
We get one day off a month which gives us a chance to get off base and do something fun,
whether it be shopping or going to a water park.  I even did indoor skydiving.

The hardest thing being here is being far away from home.  I have a husband and two lovely dogs, a Weimeraner and a Rhodesian Ridgeback.  I miss my husband and my two dogs; I miss their cuddles and antics.
Missing special events such as birthdays is also hard.
Fortunately, we have good access to the internet, so messaging home or chatting to family and friends is easy.

Once again, it was very thoughtful of you to send me a personalised Aussie Hero Quilt.
I wish you happy sewing along with Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags) and all the very best of the future.

Warm regards,


Good morning Amanda, Tamsin & Lovely Ladies of Preston/Penguin,

Thank you Amanda for my quilt that arrived on the day I was sick in my rack with gastro! (too much information???) But, it made my day, cheered me up! I opened it in our morning-get-together so I could share it with the two other people on the ship I work closely with. I was delighted as it’s exactly what I asked for. The colours are so pleasing and I can see you went to a huge amount of effort hand sewing all the letters. I read the letter to them aswell. I really appreciate yours and everyones effort and love that went into my quilt. It will stay with me forever. It was actually starting to get a bit cold on the ship too, so now I have the extra warmth.

I can imagine that it would have been a fun day all of you ladies getting together. When I was younger and had children, the days I’d get with other women and mum’s were my favourite. Would have lots of laughs together.

I lived in Tasmania for 9 years before joining the Navy. I was 44 and my eldest son and daughter had already joined. I had to leave my family for 6 months. My husband stayed home and looked after my 2 youngest while I was having the best time ever!!! (shhhhhhh… don’t tell him that). I’m now 52 and although I’ve been in the Navy nearly 9 years this is my first serious time at sea. My first sea-time was in Sydney (my husband and youngest remained in Cairns) and I was only on a ship for 9 months before I broke my leg and was sent home to Cairns.

The first day I posted to HMAS Arunta the CO announced that we were deploying to the Gulf which I was really pleased about. Everyone wants to have a ‘Gulf Trip’ under their belt! Which brings me today and here we are somewhere in the gulf doing what we are here to do. 

There are 12 women in our mess (bedroom) ranging from 20 to 52 and surprisingly we really get along well together. Yes, we do have our little moments, but I’m pleased to say that for the majority of the time it’s quite positive. We have one locker each and that’s meant to house our uniforms, and civi clothes. The rest of our stuff is hidden in our work spaces! 

It’s been a challenge for most of us as it is a looooong time away from family and friends and also just doing normal day to day stuff. We have been blessed by the generosity of Australian people just like yourselves. So from the bottom of my heart, I once again say thank you and really appreciate what you have done for me.

Kind Regards,


Dear Luisa,

I’m writing to you from Qargha Afghanistan. I wanted to show my appreciation for the amazing aussie hero quilt you sent me along with the treats and the letter which I will cherish and keep.

As this is my fourth deployment overseas and my third to Afghanistan this is the first time I have received an aussie hero quilt. This makes my quilt, along with the letter you wrote, a treasured gift, which I plan to show my wife and my two children when they grow older.

I am currently using the quilt every day as it is snowing at the moment which is beautiful to see but extremely cold. So the quilt arrived just in time as I was starting to get cold of a night time due to my blanket not being warm enough.

The effort you put into researching the fact that I am a mentor at The Afghan National Army Officer Academy (ANAOA) is much appreciated, along with the quote: “Every great achiever is inspired by a great mentor”, which you embroidered onto the quilt.

It was great to hear about what is going on within Australia, and the fact that the weather has not changed much within Melbourne as I am originally from XXXXX. Although it has been a while since I have been back there as now I am married with two children and I also reside within XXXXX.

Thank you for telling me about  your family. I hope you, your husband and children had a fantastic Christmas and I wish you all the best for the new year.

Once again  I’d like to thank you for the quilt and letter, as the  support you and many others provide to our soldiers on operations is highly valued by all, and always has a positive impact on our morale, as well as feeling appreciated and supported while we are away from our friends and families.
I thank you again Luisa.

Much appreciated and kind regards

Hi Beverley

THANK YOU so so much for my Quilt words can not describe how much i appreciate it. Thought i would take the time to thank you and to let you know a little about myself as well, as you have taken the time to make me such a beautiful Quilt.

I met my wife in WA and couldn’t be happier (She is is a school teacher). We got married at the end of 2012, by April 2015 we had our first child a little boy. We are expecting our second child upon my return from this trip with all the scans being correct we look like we are having a little girl. I am so excited to return home and become a Dad again myself my family is always the thing i miss most when I’m away.

As you can see I love the Greatest team of all the Collingwood Magpies, my love for them came from my father. As a kid i played AFL and enjoyed it alot, although i wasn’t so good at it as i thought. When i got back after my first Gulf Deployment in 2011 i bought myself a bike and started ridding to work for extra fitness and fell in love with riding which lead me into the sport of Triathlons (Ironman) since 2013 i have competed in quite a few my first Tri was an Olympic Distance (OD)(1.5km swim 40km ride 10km run) in the same year i completed a half Ironman (IM70.3)(1.9km swim 90km ride and a 21km run) a week later I competed in the Hervey Bay 100 just shy of a Half Ironman distance race (2km swim, 80km ride, 18km run). I eventually got to do my first full ironman (IM) distance race at the end of 2014 (3.9kmswim, 180km ride, 42km run) in WA at the beautiful town of Busselton. along with all little cubs Tris that goes on throughout the year. 

Once again i would like to Thank you for your time and skill for making my quilt I truly am so grateful for it.


Gday Bev,

Thank you so much for my quilt and dobby bag its much appreciated. 

I have been in the NAVY for 20 years and joined as a ‘Birdie blackhander” , Aviation mechanical, hope your husband wont hold that against me, ha. I went through the ranks and after I had completed my first Gulf trip with my flight as a PO and then lucky enough to get a world trip on HMAS Sydney in 09, I decided rather than take promotion to Chief I would transfer to the Aircrewman Branch. At least now I don’t need to fix the problems, I just report them. Along with the transfer there was the requirement to go back to a Leading hand which has some draw backs but mostly positive overall. Currently I’m on my fourth trip up here and its surprising how things have changed over the years. I still thoroughly love my life in the NAVY and love the diversity and challenges that come with that.

I’m married with two children, 18 and 13 year old girls and thank my lucky stars they have grown up with out creating to much trouble so far ha. I’ve been with my wife for 23 years which is a record now a days too so very happy she puts up with the navy as well. Like you and Russell we love camping and travelling and have had our own camper trailer as well. We sold it and bought a caravan and have left it down on a property we have as we are there every two -three weeks. Its a great get away, the kids bring their friends and usually there are always between 3-5 of our mates families coming down all the time too. We are lucky to have a river run through so there’s fishing, canoeing, swimming etc plus shipping containers full of dirt bikes, quads etc so as you would know there is a lot of fun out there.

After reading your letter I feel I should be knitting  you a Quilt and thank your husband and family for there contribution over the years of service. But by the sounds of it your husbands going to get one anyway and hopefully the pies have a better year than last. Thank you again.



Dear Joan and Robin,
Thank you for the wonderful laundry bag, it is very special to receive a gift like that.                                                                                                                                          
I really like the fact you have taken the time to sew my initials on it, use military colours
(green is my favourite colour), and use beautiful material with pink flowers on the inside.
It is just what I wanted and need, I may even turn it inside out depending on how I feel on the day.
It is nice knowing that our work over here is appreciated and that people back home are thinking of us and wishing us all home safely.
Once again it was very thoughtful of you to send me a laundry bag.
I wish you both happy sewing along with Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags) all the very best for the future.

Warm regards,

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  1. Jacqui D

    Fantastic thankyou's…..

  2. Abby N Jack Quilts

    Awesome messages and the handmade pressies & cards I recieved (a Red Poppy & a Purple Poppy ..for all dogs in service) touched me deep down. When I recieved the letter address to me personally, I understood why she wanted her dogs on her quilt. Proud to be an Aussie Quilter !


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