Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Grati-Tuesday 7 July

G'day all.  Hope you have had a good Tuesday.  

Lots of lovely messages to enjoy today. First up though, have you even wondered if our quilts are a good size? I know some of you think they are a bit narrow. Well check this out. These photos were sent in by one of our recipients on HMAS Newcastle.... That quilt looks to be just the right size too me.  Any bigger and it would hang down and get in the way.

The gorgeous quilt on the top was made by Ruth F but I can't identify the one on the bottom rack..... let me know if you made it.


Sue G and Caroline, 

The other day I received a nice little parcel which contained a wonderful laundry bag.

Firstly, I would like to thank you both for the work that you do in supporting us over here.
It great seeing all the different styles and brightness of laundry bags and quilts going about these days.

At the moment it is hanging up on the side of my cupboard as it looks too good, and I don't want to use it :)

My wife says it is very me, in both colours and theme, I also think she is a little jealous.
She is a quilter and everything else crafty herself, but these days with two teenage boys still at home and her work, she is struggling to find time to make anything.
Lot of unfinished projects. I think her plan for when I get home is to lock herself away in her sewing room for a couple of weeks and try and complete a few of them.
Again thank you both very much for your time and effort, the laundry bags and quilts we all receive are highly treasured and greatly appreciated.


Hello Jill,

I was surprised and delighted to receive the laundry bag that you recently sent to me. The fouled anchor pattern on the material was particularly amusing because as an Army officer it shows the true nature of our ability to appreciate images of another service. 

Please accept my humble thanks for taking the time to make the laundry bag for me and sending it over here. It has already been put to use and is something that I will keep as a reminder of the great nature of the support we enjoy from other Australians while we are here in the Middle East.

Dear Cheri,

I just wanted to email and personally thank you for the amazing quilt that you have made - I love everything about it, the embroidered aircraft, the colours, the kangaroos, it's perfect! And in such a short time,  I can see hours of time and effort in what you have created and I truly appreciate it. 

I also appreciate your letter and knowing who you are and a little about your family. You understand the challenges faced by those deployed (and family at home) more than most and I hope you know how much it means to me that you have made this effort - it is encouraging to know that people back home (other than my immediate family) care for us and what we are doing. 

Thanks again Cheri, I will keep in touch and if you ever find yourself in the South Coast of NSW please give me a buzz - I would love to meet and thank you personally.

Best wishes to you and your family,


Dear Jan-Maree and sewers,

I have recently received a laundry bag from Linda R. I would like to give my thanks to you and Linda for this great laundry bag. Items like these are greatly appreciated by all of us serving over here. Its great that we have the support from people like yourselves as it means a lot receiving these gifts. 
I currently serving here as a fitter armourer. My role is to maintain, repair and modify the weapon systems used by everyone here. I am a qualified fitter and turner so this helps in a wide range of other jobs including welding, fabrication and manufacture. It is very rewarding serving my country over here and doing my job to the best of my ability. 

I would like to say again thank you very much for my laundry bag and I am looking forward to receiving a quilt especially if it is as high quality as the bag. Definitely something i will keep forever.



Hi Jan-Maree,

What a fantastic surprise to receive such a lovely quilt in a parcel that recently arrived for me here in Kabul; such a very practical gift.  It is very humbling to know that people like yourself give up their time and expertise to support members of the Defence Force, like myself, who are overseas on operations.

Please do pass on my sincere gratitude to Lynn, Donna S and Cath, as well as all the other volunteers who bound the quilt and added the label.  Their work and expertise is second to none and, not being too skilled with sewing(!), I can only imagine the amount of time that they give so willingly to make such fine quilts.  Such gifts and generosity of spirit are great boosts to our morale, I can assure you.

Kind regards


'Dearest Janine, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for my beautiful laundry bag. It suits me perfectly and always puts a smile on my face when I use it.
Thank you once again, Kindest regards, 


Hi Kay,

I would like to start by saying how grateful I am to receive the quilt which you obviously put so much time and effort into. It is an amazing piece and I am so happy with it. The quilt is no doubt the best quilt received onboard. Each person who has received one has probably said the same although the dedication which was placed into your quilt can only come from the true passion of a Collingwood supporter.
Your quilt has made my month. Thank you so much for the wonderful quilt. Side by side. 

Go Pies 


Hi Su,

First of all - thank you very very much for your time and effort in making my quilt and a surprise laundry bag. Both look amazing and colourful and best of all, having centenary poppy which made it more special :)
I have 2 months to go and am looking forward to returning home. I think the first thing I shall do is go to the beach for a surf.......but before that I shall give my husband a big cuddle as I do miss him lots.

I have been lucky whilst deploying as I am still able to catch up on the NRL games and watch my team play. 

I really appreciate the hard work that goes into my quilt and laundry bag. I've seen so many going around and they look fantastic!

On another note, thank you for the lovely tim tams. I have several ladies I work with who enjoy sugary treats.

Thank you again and take care.

Good morning Sue G & Caroline, 

I have received the laundry bag that you have made for me. Thank you so very much! I have already put it to use and it is much more convenient than my dive bag that I had been using. Thank you. 

These acts of kindness that you and people like you do for us goes a very long way. If you could only see the smiles that I see when someone receives a gift you would know your efforts are very much appreciated by all. Some members here are going through a tough time being away from their families, partners and friends which sometimes they visibly carry. We do our best to look after one another, however, when a gift is received by someone here from someone unknown to them, you can see an immediate positive change in their demeanour. To know your thoughts are with us changes attitudes, refocuses us on our tasks and improves morale. 
This may seem like a lot to say for a laundry bag, but when considering we have been living for a few months in tents ‘not designed for our location’ and in a small space where our bed posts touch two of our four boundaries, your acts go a very long way. 

I will take this laundry bag with me on my return to Australia as a reminder of my time here and that what we are doing is supported from home. 

Thank you once again for everything you do.

This is for a quilt that Glenys T made.


I would like to Thank You very much for my quilt and laundry bag.
They were great, I loved the designs specially on the laundry bag with the waratahs
symbol on the surfboard.  I loved the colours, thank you so much and for
all the work you guys do.  Much appreciated, can't wait to show the rest of my family.

Thank you again


Hi Sue G,

I just wanted to write a short email to you to thank you so very much for the laundry bag in the surprise parcel that recently arrived for me in Kabul.  What a fantastic gift and one that is so very practical.  It is very humbling to know that people like yourself give up their time and expertise to support members of the Defence Force, like myself, who are overseas on operations.  Such gifts and generosity of spirit are great boosts to our morale.

Thank you so very much for all your support and good wishes.

Kind regards


Thank you so much to Debbie and all involved (including my sister) for creating this quilt and laundry bag for me. I love it!!


Hi Sue N,
I hope this letter finds you safe and well down in the cold winter of Melbourne!
Firstly, wow,...I absolutely love the quilt that you have made up for me! Thank you so much!! Just recently have some of my mates received theirs as well and they are all incredible, and I can assure you they have brightened up many people's days in our location. I especially love the detail you have included... aeroplanes, Essendon Bombers, Orlando Magic, Liverpool FC, and the colour schemes. Absolutely perfect.
It was also really great to read your card and learn a little bit about your family and hobbies, so I will write a little bit more about myself in return.
Thanks again for your quilt, I will be taking it home with me and it will get used a lot. I encourage you to keep doing what you are doing, and in my mind, I think you are an Aussie Hero as well.
Dear Sue G,
I am currently serving in the Royal Australian Air Force.
I would like to thank you for the contribution to the welfare of the Defence Force currently on deployment.  Little things make a big difference in morale whilst deployed.  I really like the Geelong Cats wash bag and I thank you again.
Keep up the good work, It puts smiles on faces over here
Thank you again
Dear Sue N,
First and foremost - Thank you and Wow!!
  What an amazing gift! I am truly humbled and honoured to receive such an extraordinary gift.  My few words here will not sufficiently convey the extent of my sincere appreciation and gratitude for the quilt.

I have just passed the five month mark in my deployment and the arrival of the quilt was a real morale boost as I look toward going home in another six weeks, much less by the time you read this letter. I've been in the Air Force for 30 years and my wife and eight year old son are waiting for me to come home.
The conditions here at our main operating base in the Middle East Region are pretty ordinary,  the Arabic summer has set in and the daily temperature routinely exceeds 50 degrees. Two days ago the mercury hit 53 degrees. Thankfully the air-conditioned tents provide some respite but even they struggle during the peak periods. But we are thankful nonetheless; the option without them is definitely unappealing.
I've enclosed a few cards that we generate; I hope you can put them amongst the many thank you letters I'm sure you receive for the amazing quilts you and the Aussie Hero Quilt team provide for our deployed service personnel. It is immensely heartening to see the quilts arrive for personnel then see the looks on their faces when folks open them and how they immediately relate to the themes.
I hope I have given you as sense for this place, our work and my heartfelt thanks.
Best Regards

Dear Michele 

I am writing to say thankyou very much for the beautiful quilt that you made for me.

I am 19 years old and joined the navy a year and a half ago. I live in Sydney now for my job, however i still visit home in South Australia very often. 
Thankyou for picking me based on my favourite sports team (Adelaide Crows) I really hope they are doing ok. I don’t get to hear very much about them or AFL in general being away over here on deployment. 

The quilt will come in very handy for the rest of my deployment as it can get quite cold in the mess space. I will also use it at home on my couch and maybe even take it to all the football games that I go to. 

Thankyou again for putting in so much time and effort and allowing me to receive this amazing quilt.
Dear Sue N

Than you for the fantastic Dockers laundry bag you made for me, it is one of the things I will treasure from my deployment. It means a lot to all of us here to get such heartfelt gifts and messages from good people such as yourself from back home. By coincidence you made another bag for one of the guys I work closely with here.   I can tell you he was just as pleased as I was with the gift.

Once again thank you for the package full of goodies and thank you for the Dockers bag.
Hi Kathy and Toni

I just wanted to thank you for the quilt you made me, it is better then I ever imagined it would be.  Thank you for taking the time and energy to do it. It really means a lot that you do this for us.  Sometimes its hard out here away from our families and friends, but then there is people like you that can make a big difference to our day, and every day after that when we look at our quilts we are reminded that there are people at home thinking of us, and we are not forgotten.

This is something I will keep forever, and show everyone, and tell them that there are amazing people in this 
world that will do amazing things for others, just because they can. 

Hi Pamela,

Just a short email to say many thanks for you and your patchwork and quilting group for the box of laundry bags earlier this week. 

We have had a few groups of new, young male soldiers through recently and the quilt and laundry bag idea was well received by all of them. 

Thank you for your ongoing kind and generous support to the men and women deployed on operations - it really is appreciated by every one of us. 

Kind regards,

Dear Pennie,

        I am writing to thank you, so very much, for the package you sent me recently. It was so thoughtful, and I was very touched to receive a package from a stranger, for being out here doing my job. We all like to say it's not a big deal and whatever, but to have someone you've never met, thank you for what you are doing, makes you stand a little taller from time to time. The wipes you enclosed were very much appreciated, and you were spot on, some of the places we go, aren't quite up to the standards we have at home, but the Minties have brightened more than one day, for more than one person, so... thank you very much. 

And the laundry bag... I don't know where to start. The fact that it has my initials, and such a stand out pattern (love the blue!!!!) makes the old 'sniff test' a little redundant now. I'm not sure if you are aware, but there are nearly 70 people in my mess (where I sleep) and most of our laundry bags are all in the same place, it's usually a case of trying to memorise the number of steps into the corridor to where mine lives, or finding the one that smells the least... or the most like me! 

Once again, thank you very much. You've brought some light to my days, and made me a little more proud of what we do here.

All the best

Good morning Joan and robin,

I have just received you laundry bay that you so kindly created for me and I am so happy with it. Thank so very much to take to the time to make this it made my day.

I think that what you guys are doing is amazing everyone that has received these items are over the moon with them.

Thanks again have a great day 

Dear Jan-Maree and Kate,
I received the quilt and I am overwhelmed by the amount of effort Kate has put into the quilt. It is beautiful and so much more than I expected, especially with the rising sun  badge being quilted into the fabric, the ode and Kate's personal touch with the photos on the back.

Kate, you have made me a wonderful keepsake and I will proudly display it to my friends when I get home.

Kind regards


Hi Laura, 

I wanted to say a big thankyou for the quilt and goodies that you sent me. I also wanted to let you know what we have been doing up here for the last few months. We have successfully stopped over a billion dollars worth of narcotics being transported over the Indian ocean effectively lowering the immense funds that bankroll terrorism. 

You have really made my day though; as a junior engineer I have a mechanical mickey mouse bedspread and with the addition of your quilt, the ship feels a little more like home. Thankyou again for the time you have spent to make my day. 

Yours aye, 


Hi Maree W, 

I'm just wanting to thank you for the fantastic quilt, it is seriously one of the best quilts we've seen.  Many thanks again for all the trouble you have gone to. The quilt is perfect and greatly appreciated it actually gets very cold onboard and I can look back on it with very fond memories. 

All the best to you and your family
Kindest regards 


And finally a special message that I have already shared on Facebook but had to share here as well so that noone misses out.  

This story was sent to me by Val...

The other day I was chatting with an American Chaplin who works in the US defence force and has been to Afghanistan etc in her 25 years service and she asked what I do and I mentioned the Aussie Hero quilts.  You should have seen the smile that came on her face as she said that the quilts are so loved especially when they come back from duties and they wrap them around them for comfort.  They also love the bright coloured ones as everything is brown there. At the end of our chat I got a big hug from her for everyone who is involved.  Thank you for organising the Aussie quilts.



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

Jan-Maree xx

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