Monday, 30 May 2016

Raise Your Glass....

I have been invited to do some wonderful things since starting Aussie Heroes and, in truth, some of them were quite unexpected at the time...... but I think my latest adventure is the most unexpected off them all.

Last week I received a text message from my friend (and past quilt recipient from the Sinai) Lisa.  She wrote.....

"Hi.  I've been asked to see if you would come in a music clip for Aussie troops.  In Windsor with a quilt......"

Hmmmm, for the troops.... how can I say no....

afterall I was only going to be part of the crowd..........

I packed up a selection of quilts and headed off at the appointed time with Lisa.....

The band is called Simply Bushed.  I guess you would describe them as Aussie Bush Band but that seems far too simple.  Their music ranges from humourous Aussie songs to much more serious and meaningful ballads. I popped one of their CDs in to my car's player and learned very quickly that there are a some hilarious songs, some that are just great singalongs and a few that I need to skip over whilst driving as they are quite evocative. 

They were part of the Forces Entertainment team in the Sinai in 2014 and that is where Lisa met them and formed an enduring friendship.  From my point of view you could not hope to meet a lovelier bunch of gentlemen, courteous, patriotic and very supportive of our troops. 

The idea was that we would start off in small groups and gradually build into a band of people marching to the final destination.... 

Lisa was filmed leaving this beautiful old house, chosen I assume for its gorgeous old style and perfect picket fence. 

We gradually combined into one large group that marched solemnly across an old bridge whilst being filmed by from the back of a moving car, all the while being directed by Duncan Toombs of Filmery.

Everyone was carrying photos of veterans, ANZACs or current serving members. Some carried or wore medals of loved ones. 

Here is our group, waiting to march to a point in the road where we would be joined from left and right by two other groups and then we went on to march across a bridge holding our photos, medals and in my case, the quilt made by Lynn.   I had expected to be "one of the crowd" but unwittingly ended up, with the quilt, being central to the video.  That was certainly not what I had expected.

 At the end of the march we all ended up in one of those wonderful old community halls that are few and far between these days and all the photos were pinned up on a white sheet which became a poignant backdrop for part of the video.

We started around 1230 and I think we finally called it a wrap around 730pm.  It was a long day, LOTS of walking and standing.   We were all pretty much exhausted by the end of the process but I don't think there was one person who was not pleased to be there and it really did feel like quite a special tribute to our past and present serving members.

The song is called "Raise Your Glass".  The first time I heard it my eyes may or may not have watered a little..... but that could have been the wind.......

This is me with band members Paully and Chris and Duncan.  Three nicer, more considerate gentlemen you could not hope to meet. And below with Lisa, my partner in crime for the day.

Those of you who know me know that I have chronic arthritis and at some point in the near future I have to take a break to have two knee surgeries.   All that walking and standing was tough but I wouldn't have missed it for quids.   These guys really appreciate the sacrifices our serving men and women make to keep the rest of us safe and it was a privilege to be part of their musical tribute. 

The music video should be up and running in a couple of weeks and I will be sure to share it with you. In the mean time.... you can check out another of the Band's songs here.

Til next time..... keep spreading the word and happy stitcing!
Jan-Maree  xx

Friday, 27 May 2016

Weekly Dispatches 27 May 16

So far for 2016 we have sent off 1457 laundry bags 

which brings us to a total of  9277 since we started...


We have also sent 642 quilts 

bringing our total since we started to over 5897 quilts.

We are starting the parade of quilts off with a super special one this week.... this quilt was designed and made by Caitlin.......
Aged 16!

Awesome effort Caitlin.... can't wait to see what you come up wit next!



Bev C 

Bev U 

The next three quilts are blocks of the month 


Carol N 

Carol W 

Christine C



Galston Uniting Church Craft Group created the quilt and I added the parachute rigger's badge

Jackie J

Jan E



Jen S 

Jess T 


June A 


Kaye G 


Lisa N and a very special helper who shall remain nameless to protect the (not so) innocent.  :-D

Louise and the Dolphin Quilters 

Pieced by Lynn and quilted by Tess

Lynne V

Maureen J


North of the Yarra Quilt Group

Patricia F 

The Penrith ladies and quilted by Kym

Raeleen W

Donated quilt tops.... please let me know if you recognise yours so I can give you credit.

June A 


Steph N 

This was a joint effort, cut out by Stephanie T, pieced by Jenny P, silverfern by Jan-Maree and quilted and bound by Tess.

Sue N 

WPH ladies and quilted by Kym 

Awesome collection again folks.

Till next time.... keep spreading the word and happy stitching!
Jan-Maree xx