Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Grati-Tuesday 23 August 16

Hey all, 

I don't know about you but messages like these are all I need to stay motivated to keep sewing... enjoy!

.....


Hello Rita “Granny Smith”,

I am writing to you from South Sudan to send a huge THANK YOU!!! for the beautiful quilt you made for me.

I had only just returned to Juba today after a two week break. I arranged for my wife and two children (5 and 3) to meet me there so we could have a wonderful family holiday together.

It was so nice to be able to hug and kiss my three girls again! 

Its great you get a chance to be a guest speaker at the RSL to promote the great cause of Aussie Hero Quilts! It makes us feel great to have the support from you all when we are in such terrible places around the world. 

Please keep up the great work! Thank you so much again for your efforts. I love it and will cherish it forever.

If you need anything please don’t hesitate to drop me a line any time. I am happy to help with anything.

Kind regards to your husband Bob as well.


.....


Dear Keryn, Beverly and Jan-Maree

I received the quilt today that you have so kindly made for me. Whilst Jan-Maree had told me that it was on its way, it was still a lovely surprise to receive a parcel with Aussie Hero Quilts written on it.  I love it!  You are all so clever and talented. The design of the quilt is fantastic - a perfect reminder of my six months in South Sudan with the United Nations. My wife quilts, although not as prolifically as you ladies do, and so I know the time and effort that goes into producing a work of art like the one you have made for me. I am deeply touched that you have given up your own time to produce such a wonderful gift for a stranger. I wish that I could repay your kindness. 

Thank you also for your letters. All of my communication with home has been via emails, Skype and Facebook and so getting two letters was lovely, and it was great to learn something more about you. Thank you also for the Tim Tams and Jelly Snakes - they have already gone, although I promise that I did share them!  

Your quilt is the second that I have been fortunate to receive from Aussie Hero Quilts. The first was a couple of years ago when I was in Afghanistan. That one was also fantastic, as was the laundry bag that came after it. As a result, my wife and daughter were inspired to attend some of your workshops and made a laundry bag that coincidentally was sent to a friend of mine who was serving in the same location in Afghanistan as me. In fact, by an even greater coincidence it was delivered to him one day as I was sat with him in his office!

I am five months in to my time in South Sudan. I am based in Bor, which is approximately 180km north of the capital, Juba.  I have been lucky enough to become involved with helping teach teenage girls at a local school to play soccer. The school has about 150 children ranging from 5 to 16 years old, and it has been enormously rewarding to spend time with these kids who really are as cheeky, shy and fun-loving as those back home. 

Working with the UN has also been a great experience. I have become friends with people from all around the world ... from Rwanda to Guatemala to Yemen to Bhutan (I had to look on a map to see where that was too - it has a population less than Canberra!). Working with other nations has had its challenges, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience and am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to come here. 

Thank you once again for your kindness and generosity. It really does mean a lot. Aussie Hero Quilts is a truly amazing organisation. We are very luck to have you. 


Kind regards





......



Dear Jean 

I recently received the laundry bag you made up for me. It was the Holden Racing Team bag with the lion logo.  I love it !  We all really appreciate what you ladies do for us and the effort you put in to making us happy.  Happy travels.

.....

Dear Su James,

Jan did word me up and told me to be sitting down when I opened your package, and boy was she right!  The quilt you made is absolutely magnificent and put simply, could not have been any better.  I didn’t even know something that good was even possible, but then again, I’m not known for my quilting abilities.

I think my Irish/English family ties have made me always fond of Spitfires.  I had the pleasure of working a few years ago at 452SQN, now a reformed Squadron within the air traffic control world, but was still the premier RAAF Spitfire Squadron during the World War, so I feel a part of them in a small way, hence my request.

I have joined the Facebook page and shared the handiwork that all the Aussie Hero Quilts & Laundry Bags team put in, even recruiting the Mother-in-law as she loves doing similar quilting.  I think she would take great pleasure in doing it for this cause….as you do.

Hopefully you will take some pleasure in knowing that your beautiful quilt didn’t get relegated to a cat bed, but sits proudly over my son protecting him at night, and will be used for years to come no doubt.  He thought it was the ‘best present ever’ when his Dad come home from the Middle East and gave it to him.  I even hid under it to surprise them when they got home from daycare that day, so it will always be in my happy memories.

Please thank your daughter for her service and thank you also for the support you have no doubt given her throughout that time. 

I am truly thankful for your time and effort, so thanks again and kind regards.

P.S. A lot of the lads were very jealous of your quilt, no offence to the other quilters, but you should take pride in knowing yours was hands down the best quilt of our deployment, and I am stoked to have received it.
Thanks again
.....


Dear Lynn, Arthur and Keryn,

WOW! Thank you so much for the awesome quilt. I was just amazed when I opened it and it hasn’t left my bed since. It adds an extra homey feel to my room, and more importantly it really will be a fantastic memento of my tour here. 

It was also lovely to read your letters and know a little bit about you and your involvement with AHQ. I am in the Air Force and currently posted to the NT, so I’m probably a little more acclimatised to the weather here than most. We’ve currently been experiencing high 40s with the occasional 50 degree day, and nights get down to 30ish.  I do not have children, but my husband is also a serving member. We have both deployed before, this is my third deployment in my 22 year career and I really am enjoying the opportunity and really pleased to be involved with so many other ADF personnel who really do want to do a great job and make their friends and family proud.

Well thank you again for all the wonderful work that you do for the ADF, your quilt personally means a lot, and from my position I know the impact that you have had to morale to the people here. I’ve also never seen so many colourful laundry’s due to the laundry bags that are sent. 😊


Thank you again
.....

Dear Jean,

WOW! Thank you so much for the awesome laundry bag. I was just amazed when I got it – it really was just what I wanted with the camels and perfect background symbolic of the sandy desert and blue skies. It will be such a wonderful memento of my tour here. I didn’t want to use it at first in case in got dirty 😊, but now I carefully move it around the laundry making sure it stays in perfect condition.  I’ve also never seen so many colourful laundry’s due to the laundry bags that are sent and used here. 😊

It was also lovely to read your letter and know a little bit about you and your involvement with AHQ. I am in the Air Force and currently posted to the NT, so I’m probably a little more acclimatised to the weather here than most. We’ve currently been experiencing high 40s with the occasional 50 degree day, and nights get down to 30ish.  This is my third deployment in my 22 year career and I really am enjoying the opportunity and really pleased to be involved with so many other ADF personnel who really do want to do a great job and make their friends and family proud.

Well thank you again for all the wonderful work that you do for the ADF, your laundry bag personally means a lot, and from my position I know the impact that you have had to morale to the people here when they receive their laundry bags and quilts in the mail. 😊

Many thanks
.....

Dear Jean,

Firstly let me start by apologising for taking so long to send this letter to you.

Secondly, a BIG thank you for my amazing laundry bag that you created for me.
It is just beautiful and got a lot of use over the past few months.

I have been through Coffs a few times before and you are lucky to live in such a lovely part of Australia. 

I hope you are well and thank you once again for my gift.

Kind regards
.....


Dear Raeleen,


Firstly, thank you so much for the amazing quilt, it is exactly what I was thinking of and it has made my room feel very homely – and when I take it home with me later this year it’ll be a nice reminder of the time I’ve spent over here. It humbles me to read of your generous efforts to support us while also not having direct serving family members – it really reminds us that what we’re doing over here is appreciated by many Australians back home.

I must apologise for the time it has taken for me to write you back – I received your thoughtful package about 4 or 5 weeks ago. It has been extremely busy over here.

I hope you’re doing well, and your job search works out for you. Thank you so much for my quilt, and thank you again for your support to our Australian Defence Force members.

Yours sincerely,
.....


Dear Debra S,


Thank you so much for my quilt, I think the whole building heard my excitement when I opened the box.  The Tim tams arrived unscathed too.  The rescue gel reminds me of a herb pack my mum used on me when I was sick as a child , it brought back some memories. 

Thank you again for your kind words and the amazing quilt.  It means a lot  to us over here.    



For those ladies who do not get a personal thank you  I can assure you that their work is very much appreciated.  It may be that some members are deployed in a location where it is hard to send out communications of any kind . 


Thank you again :) 





.....


Dear Kay C,
The quilt is incredible! Thank you for putting so much time and effort into the design and especially the flags. Are the fabrics really from all those places? Just knowing that adds so much more to the quilt. I don’t have space here in my tent partition to hang it, but as soon as I get home I’ll put it straight up on the wall. I’m sure it will brighten up the room. The hanging sleeve is the envy of everyone that’s seen it – apart from the design of course.

I’ll try to avoid having to wash it so that I can keep it in perfect condition as a momento of my deployment. Please continue to keep up such great work. I assure you that the quilts/works of art that you and everyone else who volunteers for Aussie Hero Quilts produce are very much appreciated by all of us deployed overseas.

.....

Hi Kay C, 

Thanks for the lovely quilt. I love the colours & the bright pineapples! Makes our ‘mess’ look lovely. I miss the snow, I’m a keen Snowboarder. I’ve also been X-country skiing through the Vic. High country too. I remember the Razorback well! A storm was blowing in as we crossed it.
We’ve just come from Bahrain. It’s very hot & dusty. The wind really blows the dust around. The humidity is nothing like where I grew up in QLD! 
.....

Good evening Diann,


I have just received your beautiful quilt that you have sent and the colours are perfect!
It's good to receive such wonderful gifts from fellow Queenslanders. 
I'm currently in the middle east at an Air Force base as a Medic. My job is to look after the pilots and all the support staff here and make sure they're fit and healthy.
It's my first deployment, but it has been enjoyable. Less than two months and I am home.
Thank you so much for sending the beautiful quilt, the Tim Tams (the yanks absolutely love them!), the lovely letter and the piece of Wattle. It's good to smell something different from Aviation Fuel and American cooking once in a while.

Your gift means a lot to me and I am very grateful that you've taken your time to give me something so thoughtful.
.....


Hi Anna


I received your lovely quilt and laundry bag today with great pleasure. Thank you so much. You have made my day! Things like this really brighten our days when we are away from loved ones, so thank you so much.

I am over in the Middle East having worked across 2 sites here. I am a doctor looking after our troops and for the last 4 months have been responsible for moving injured/sick members around the region and back home. It has been tiring but very rewarding. 

I am married and have 3 kids, a boy and 2 girls. My son has finished school and my girls are both in high school. 

I look forward to returning home to my family in just under 8 weeks and seeing my kids. I'll try to keep the quilt for myself, but I'm sure I'll have at least 3 of the ladies in my house trying to steal it!

Thanks again so much. It really is appreciated.

Take care
.....



Hi Beverly, 


I recently received your beautiful quilt and I wanted to say how much I love it. Thank you so much for your time and dedication, I consider myself an amateur seamstress and I could never accomplish something so intricate. Thank you so much!! 

I enjoyed hearing about your families military history, it is lovely how you are choosing to give back by making others happy. 

I wish you all the best of luck in the future and thank you for your time and dedication. 

.....

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


Jan-Maree


3 comments: