Tuesday, 3 December 2013


G'day all.
Well, I finally managed to catch up on all my emails last night......around 1am.  Phew.  I have been to the Post Office and collected the mail - haven't time to open it but I will get to it.  I am in Sydney today but leave tomorrow again for three days as I have to drive 8 hours to collect my son (and his carload of gear) from boarding school.  Back Friday so please bear with me if the emails take a while again.  Big Aussie Hero weekend coming up - more info on that when I have time - and then the Sydney Pot Luck Dinner on Monday.  If you are coming to it and you are waiting to find out what you have to bring that is on my list for today.

I need to say a big thank you to Hilary who has Hilary Metcalf Designs.  After reading that Melissa T had donated the Raffle Quilt back to AHQ to be sent to a recipient, Hilary offered to donate another of her cushions as a prize for Melissa.  Thanks so much Hilary!  Much appreciated.

Now it is time to slip back into our old routine a little and enjoy some of the thank you messages that we have received.


Hi Julie Ann,

I apologise for the late response, but thankyou for my AWESOME laundry bag. I love the Melbourne on the back too.

My sailors also enjoyed the lollies too (had to spread the love around).

I feel that it is almost too nice to use onboard, but it will still get plenty of use.

Thankyou so much again, and thankyou for donating your time to give us pressies out here.



Hi Kate,

I just received your big box of magnificent laundry bags!!! I absolutely love them!!! I have put them out in the office so that people can see the bright colours and choose their own bag. thanks so much for the time and effort put into making these, I particularly like the Tassie Deveil and Uncle Albert's secret Cellar one! haha. Great character in each.

We are very lucky these days to have so much support from Australia from volunteers such as Aussie Heros Quilts times have definately changed and the support is truly beneficial to everyone deployed away from family and loved ones. Thanks again for your generosity! We are enjoying thanksgiving celebrations today with our US friends, so looking forward to a nice meal and good company :-)


Hello Pam Y.

Thank you for making me such a beautiful laundry bag I really do appreciate the time and effort that you have put into making it.

I wish you and your family a very merry Christmas and a very safe New Year.


Hello Julie-Ann,

Just wanted to say thankyou very much for the laundry bag you have sewn for me.  I received it today.

We received some mail and food via one of the American ships that we are working with and it ended up being a pretty busy afternoon by the time we had stowed everything and finished for dinner.

I ducked down to the mess and the guys had sorted the mail, it was great to receive the laundry bag and treats.  It's a fantastic bag.

Quite a few of the crew comment how good it is to receive these laundry bags and quilts and what a great job you do.  It's not always easy for many being away from family and friends and it's great to realise people are thinking of us.  Overall everything here is going well and we are about halfway through our deployment now.  It will be a different Christmas this year but we'll be back home soon enough.

Thanks again and I hope you and the others at AHQ have a great Christmas too.

Kind regards


Dear Jan, 
I received my quilt today and would like to thank you very much! It is gorgeous, and the detail is amazing. The ship received over 1000kgs of mail today, so I am sure there will be lots of thank you emails coming your way! Thanks again for your well wishes, it is very much appreciated.


Dear Jan-Maree,

My quilt arrived with a Replenishment at Sea today. I could not be happier!!! Great colours and the motifs are spot on!! My Lotus Club buddies will be jealous. I think I will use the quilt as a wall hanging - this will also keep Remington, our Abyssinian cat off it.

We had many quilts arrive today as we have not had mail for a month, so I will organise a group picture to send you. This will be a nice tribute to send your ladies from us over Christmas.

Once again - many thanks. 


This fellow received one of our BOM quilts.

JM, got the quilt. Absolutely taken aback at how beautiful it is. I assure you that it will be one of the most treasured items I bring back to Oz as a memento of my time in the Ghan.  Thank you very, very much!



I hope this gets to you :) Firstly, thank you for the quilt!! 

I love it...you made my day!! After an extra long patrol off the coast of Northern Africa I was ecstatic over receiving mail. We had run out of fresh fruit and vegetables almost 2 weeks ago and my chocolate, coffee supply was running low haha but our chefs are doing an amazing job still catering for 233 people for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed making the quilt, because right now, it is freezing in our mess so I am definitely going to make the most out of this quilt!!

Beth, I would love a laundry bag, but please don't feel like you have to make one :) But I would really appreciate it... 


Hi Jan-Maree

I am just writing to personally thank you and all the people who have donated materials and helped make the quilts and laundry bags we use over here. XXXXX has safely returned home and I have informally taken over responsibility of distributing the care packages he receives. I think the support you give us soldiers is inspiring. It is humbling to know that so many Australians support us and appreciate the service we do for our country.

It is sometimes amusing to see these men, some of the toughest men I have ever known, walking around the camp to the laundry with children’s cartoon characters on their laundry bags. I myself choose Mickey Mouse.

As for the quilts, it is getting that time of the year that we need the extra layers. I love my quilt! It has the Aussie flag all over it. Others I have seen draped over vinyl lined chairs for warmth and comfort.

Attached is a pic of my quilt in use.

Thanks again from myself and the men I work with.



I thought I'd write you a quick email to confirm that I've received the Aussie Hero Quilt that Maree made for me - it's beautifully made and suits my taste very well: she did a really good job.

I'd just like to say thank you for your work coordinating this endeavour. It is much appreciated by all who have received quilts, and they became the 'must have' items here! All the ones that I have seen have been very nicely made and great keepsakes. Though everyone has used them here whilst deployed, the majority of members have planned who they will go to - some have them for their newborns when they get home, some for their other family members and some even for their grandchildren. Suffice to say, everyone is treating the quilts that they received on operations as special items to be used and passed in the family.

We are coming to the end of our time in Tarin Kowt - as you're probably aware all Australian forces will leave here by the end of the year. It really is the end of an era as this base has been the ADF's spiritual home in Afghanistan, and it is a big deal to leave. I have had an amazing experience here, though am ready to head home in time for Christmas with the family.

I hope you have a great Christmas yourself and all the best for 2014 - I hope that Aussie Hero Quilts continues to flourish and provide the support that it does: it is really appreciated by everyone this end. Thanks for your support.


Hi Jan.

Yesterday I gratefully received my laundry bag, and I love it. I'd like to thank Aussie Hero Quilts for making this happen. I'd also like to send a big thank you to who ever made it for me. I tell you, it was exciting to receive a package from home and to see what my laundry bag was going to look like, and it looks great. 


        I received my quilt yesterday it is great, thanks for all the time and effort that went into making the quilt. I have also seen a few of the others around the ship and they also look great 


Hi Su,

I felt like one very special girl today from receiving a Aussie Quilt made by you today. After 30 days at sea and on food rations it was a perfect way to brighten my day.

The quilt is fantastic and I love everything about it.. you did a great job and my family know me well.  I have already put good use to the laundry bag.  Can you please

pass a hello onto Megan for me and give her a big hug for passing on your lovely offering.

HMAS Melbourne has currently been deployed for three and a half months, we are nearly half way into our deployment which is a great feeling.  Don't stop making the quilt's
you will make a lot of people happy while they are deployed.

Once again thank you very much and take care.


Hi Jan-Maree,

Thankyou for your email, I have received my quilt and its lovely! I will be emailing Carmel right after this to thank her for her trouble. You guys are doing great work and its very much appreciated by everyone on deployment, sometimes its easy to detach from reality over here being so far from home but receiving thoughtful gifts from back home are grounding.

Thank you again and Merry Xmas.


Gday Esther,

I was serving in the MEAO earlier this year. I got onto Aussie Heroes through a mate and didn't contact Jan-Maree until very close to the end of my tour. I stayed in contact with her and actually met up with her recently. She gave me the quilt you made and I am blown away by it. It is absolutely amazing, I can't believe just how good of a job you did. As if the comic strip concept down the centre wasn't enough the batman stitching throughout was incredible!! All of my mates have seen in (as I proudly display it in my house) and are so jealous. Thank you so so much and I hope it wasn't too much trouble.

It will serve as an awesome memento for my deployment that I will be able to keep for years and I look forward to sharing the story in the future.

Thanks again,

That is all from me tonight. Time to go get packed to hit the road tomorrow morning.

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


  1. I've seen Hilary's cushions on line and they look wonderful. It's very generous of her to donate a second cushion.

  2. Looking forward to seeing that group photo from Melbourne - lovely letters.