Written by AHQ

11 December 2013

The posts are a little off schedule this week but what can I say- it is nearly Christmas.  Tonight is Grati-Wednesday – tomorrow is Happy Mail.  Think you will cope?

I had the interview with Steve Austin from ABC Brisbane’s Morning Program show this morning.  I am pleased with how it went but you always feel uncomfortable when you listen to yourself talking and think you could have done better.  I will leave you to judge for yourself if you wish…….you can check it out here  Would you believe that I received a call from Kabul this afternoon asking how it went!  

Now for some thank you messages..


Debbie and Alan.

Once again, Thank you for the quilt. I have a fairly thin quilt on my bed as it is, so having your one as well keeps me warm. I have been looking to have something that I can sew patches and navy memorbilia onto, so this quilt will wear all my previous ship’s patches. 

Thank you for the offer to drop over when I get home. I am really looking forward to head out your way with my boys. I will be sure to email you when plans are in motion. 

So Debbie, how often do you make these quilts? How many other ladies are involved with the group? We had a big photo opportunity on the ship at the end of the month with all the personnel who received quilts, however our on board photographer has not uploaded the photos yet. I have however added a photo of me in my mess which I uploaded to Facebook. We were growing a beard/mo for Movember. I had many great responses on FB regarding the quilt and even my step mum(who has made my kids some quilts/blankets) thought that it was really well made and thought it was great.

Good morning Hilary,

I just want to say a big thank you for the quilt you did for me…
It is soooooo beautiful.. Can not wait to show everyone the photos I have already taken, of it on my bed.
The colour are amazing. I can not tell you how much I love it.
I am a very lucky girl right now. It has brighten up my room so much.
Everyone at work loved it as well. Very jealous.
I hope you all are not too busy.
I hope you have an amazing Christmas 


Hi Jan-Maree,

I’m so excited as I have received the quilt you sent me. I’m sorry it has taken a while to finally get the opportunity to email you.  The quilt was absolutely lovely and sits beautifully on my bed. I’m also really looking forward to taking it home and having it take pride of place on my bed there too.  I feel extremely grateful to have received it. 

I wish you and your family and all the people who work with you a wonderful Christmas and a Happy and Safe New Year. 

Kindest regards,

Hi Jan-Maree,

Great to hear from you. The quilt (made by Su) arrived a little over a week ago, and I must say I was more than impressed. I was not expecting anything near as nice as this. It encompassed so many parts of my life, and even included little aspects that I did not tell you about. For example, there were a couple patches in there of Golden Wattle, and also various native birds. My property overlooks a hill with a few dominant wattles, and we also have native birds including Rosellas, Galas, Cockatoos and Parrots which visit weekly to be hand fed. Even the little touches of a Hungarian Vizsla identical to mine with a shoe in it’s mouth. One of his favourite games is to sneak into the wardrobe and steal my boots, then run around the house all happy and proud.

Thank you once again for the efforts you have gone to in order to coordinating the Quilts and Laundry Bags. I know it is greatly appreciated by all pers over here. I wish you a safe and happy Christmas.


Dear Katherine

First I am very sorry for the late response we have been quite busy these last couple of months. I would like to start by saying thank you very much for the quilt and laundry bag. When I opened the package up I was over the moon with joy at how awesome the quilt and laundry bag looked. When I showed some of the guys they loved just as much as I did, and I could sense a little bit of jealousy. When another order came in for quilts every man and his dog put there hands up for a quilt and laundry bag. 

It is really nice to know people appreciate the work we do and people such as yourself are more then willing to give some of their time to bringing happiness to us Aussies serving overseas. It is a very admirable quality and I really am grateful for the time you spent making this quilt and laundry bag, oh and of course the treats. 

The chocolates went down like a treat, they melted a little due to the heat, but they still tasted amazing! We have a canteen on board but sometimes it doesn’t have the classics like Timeouts or Crunchie bars. If you would like to know more about our adventures on HMAS Melbourne, I’m more then willing to answer any questions!

Also have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, I hope it’s a very joyous occassions and you get a lot of wonderful presents.


The following quilt was a joint effort by Lynn,  myself, Michele and Kym.
I must write to thank you and the ladies at ‘Aussie Hero Quilts’ for the amazing work done on the quilt I received late yesterday.  It really is a work of art and is something I will treasure.  No doubt it will become a family heirloom which in years to come will provoke a great deal of interest and discussion I’m sure……….this will be the first year in 20 years that I will be away over Christmas.  Far from complaining I have been most fortunate that in 19 years of service and a combined nearly 4 years deployed this will be my first Christmas apart from my family.  

As I write to you tomorrow marks the beginning of my 7th week in the MEAO – almost a third of the way through.  Working in a Joint environment has been a fantastic experience for me personally and the men and women I work alongside continue to make an outstanding contribution on behalf of all Australians.  The leadership of men like CJTF 633 is of the highest order and it is a privilege to work under him.  Although much already has been accomplished there remains much to do.  On behalf of everyone working at HQJTF 633 and indeed all of the men and women deployed in the MEAO allow me to thank you and your team for what is I am sure a labour of love.  I know of no one who has received one of your quilts who isn’t grateful for the selfless effort that has gone into the design and finished work.  Thanks again for the quilt I received, it is quite simply stunning – a work of art.
God bless,


G’day Debbie

Last week I received a very amazing Aussie Hero Quilt (and laundry bag) from your kind self. I love the quilt!!!  I just wanted to take the opportunity to thank you for your special act of kindness and support. 

With the way mail is while we are at sea, I received the laundry bag and quilt at the same time via an United States refuelling ship that was operating with us in the north west Indian Ocean. It was quite a mail drop that day with about 1 tonne of mail received for the ship’s company in one hit. The Wardroom (Officers’ Mess/Dining Hall) was covered in packages and it was a very welcomed sight to see after a month long patrol in support of maritime security operations. The magazine was excellent and after reading it, I handed it over to everyone for general consumption (as is with most magazines onboard). I have not yet eaten the Tim Tams. I think I am going to save those for a day where I may need a pick me up/treat. 

As for the quilt, it sits neatly folded at the end of my bed each morning, but is the first thing pulled askew once I get into my rack (bed). 

Anyways, that’s it for me I guess. 
Once again, thank you so much for the quilt. It has pride of place in what small a private space I occupy. 

Good Evening Jan-Maree,

I would just like to let you know I have received my Aussie Hero Quilt (made by Rita M), and I would like to thank you and everyone part of Aussie Hero Quilts for the time and effort use have put into making these beautiful quilts. I cannot explain how much I love my quilt I received. 

Thanking you kindly,


Hi Janine,
Thank you very much for the Laundry Bag. I had just replaced an old one with a canvas bag but it was falling apart after like 3 uses so receiving this one was really wonderful timing.  I really appreciate the bag.


Dear Alicia

Dare I say  that I am almost “Speechless”.  
Over the last two mail drops, one just prior to XXXXX and one just after, received in XXXXX yesterday, I have been overwhelmed by the work that you have put into the Dhobey (laundry)  Bag, Beanie and Quilt that you have sent me…..Absolutely outstanding and I can never thank you enough for the time and effort that you have put into making these.
I had been holding off just a wee bit on emailing you in the hope that I could have some photo’s available to send back to you but a combination of incompatible IT products and censorship protocols have made the availability of the photos “problematic”.  I will be following up with them as soon as I can but wanted to let you know now that everything has arrived and is very greatly appreciated.  
The Dhobey bag has been placed straight into commission and has already housed several loads of washing and the Quilt has been placed straight to my bunk after considerable face flapping to several non appreciative Swans, Tigers and Blues supporters that I am destined to live with for the next several months.  I dare say that, as we lead into the footy season, I may feel cold of an evening and may also need to lounge in the mess wrapped in said quilt.  
I am not sure what sort of info you were given but I am suspicious that you may have been in on my “lack” of hair as well??? If not your intuition has worked wonders as I am shaved down and always maintain an array of Beanies to counter for my natural inability to cover my own head.   Whilst its not cool enough now I can guarantee that it will be one well worn beanie for a very long time.  Sadly the lollies didn’t last a long time 🙁 and were greatly enjoyed by all in the CPO Mess although there were questions about where all the red ones were…..I figured that they don’t need to know the answer to that though 🙂

So thank you again and again for all of the work you put into those gifts for me and they will remain the brightest point of this deployment for me as I have never received something of this manner and am still in awe of the time and effort you have put in to make these for me.

There will be photo’s and I will send them to you as soon as I can get them on to the system and get them to you.

In the mean time I hope you and yours are looking forward to a wonderful Xmas and New Year holiday period and I can assure you that our not being home at this time has been made all the lighter because of your gifts.

Last night while I was on Facebook one of my FB friends, who just happens to be the wife of a recipient, posted a photo of her son and husband watching TV together.  I commented on the photo and she asked me if I noted what was folded on the back of the sofa. Only then did I notice the folded AHQ quilt made by Liz.  Not long afterwards this photo was posted and I was given permission to post it on the AHQ page as well. Don’t you love to see the quilts in use, especially in use by our Heroes back home safe and sound!  The photo came with this message for all of us.
All of your lovely ladies and gentlemen (who sew and or suffer while their ladies sew) make the ladies and men of our amazing country who are serving feel the love and support of home. We are the ones who are forever grateful for what you all do!
And please share with all of the others for it is so true

Thanks! You made my day!

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

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