Saturday 31 March 2012

Just a quickie

coz I am way too tired from having the teenage movie marathon here today - 
gorgeous kids, ate lots, talked lots, laughed lots,all a credit to their parents.  

I am enjoying the peace since they left though.  Only a little to show you tonight.  My latest finished quilt.  This is a BOM quilt - so lots of you had a hand in it and I love it.  I know exactly who this is going to and I think it is very appropriate that lots of you had a hand in it and not just me.  Hopefully I can tell you more in a few weeks!
Till next time..............keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Friday 30 March 2012

The last two

These are the last two laundry bags of the 16 I have made to go to our friendly Warrant Officer for those in the teams coming to replace his lot.  I hope they like them.  I wonder how they will decide who gets which one as I am kind of hoping that a bald guy (a.k.a Curly) gets the curly fries one.  My son thinks I am really cruel using that fabric as he thinks it will make the recipient crave curly fries for the duration of his tour.  Hmmmm, that might be the teenager in him talking!
A friend of mine told me a story today and I thought I would share it with you.  Her husband had to go to a rehabilitation hospital to recover from an illness and whilst visiting him there she noticed a young man in  wheel chair using a beautiful quilt.  One day she commented on how beautiful the quilt was and told him someone must love him very much to have made it for him.  Later than day his wife approached her in the tearooms and thanked my friend for noticing and commenting on the quilt.  My friend said that the wife had done a beautiful job on the quilt and the young wife replied that she hadn't made it.  When her husband was terribly injured whilst serving overseas with the Australian Military he spent some time in a military hospital in Germany and there he was given the quilt.  It is a Quilts of Valor Quilt!  I love that story though it brings me close to tears every time I hear it.  I am so grateful that he was given a Quilts of Valor quilt but I can't help thinking there should have been something from his own country to give him.   Well, now there will be, maybe not for every injured soldier at first, but at least for some.

Wendy L, Sue P and Debra have already promised to make quilts to send to the hospital in Kandahar and we have only been asked to send two to three.  Of course we are going to send three.  I would send five if I could but I don't want to push my luck!  The chaplains are going to let me know if those three are used so that I can send more and I hope to keep a supply of quilts in my home so that I can get them in the mail as soon as they are required.  If anyone wants to make an Aussie themed quilt and send it to me, although you will have to pay postage, I will keep it here for when it is needed.  

Every quilt that is going for this purpose must be sent in one of those vacuum sealed bags that you can suck the air out of with a vacuum cleaner - this is so that when it is given to the soldier it is not full of an covered by dust already.  I have been told that the dust gets into everything over there.  I have found some of these bags at Bunnings - they are $8 each and are 50x60cm which I think is a bit big.  I will test one out but for the time being that is all I have to work with.  If anyone knows where you can get slightly smaller bags or cheaper bags please let me know.

 And now for a girly quilt update.  The lovely Lucy from Patchwork Orange sent down these four gorgeous girly nine patches for our special quilt.
 This is my favourite - look at those amazing bugs!!!  So cute!
And as if that wasn't enough, Lucy also included enough of this cute print for the backing of our little girl's quilt!  Thanks so much Patchwork Orange - so generous!
And finally here is a laundry bag that Cathy sent me.  She recently sent of 16 laundry bags but this one wouldn't fit in the boxes so she sent it up here.  I am sure I will have no problem finding it a good home.
Not sure if I will get to blog tomorrow - my house in being invaded by 15 to 20 of my son's lovely friends from Youth Group.  They will be here from midday till 6pm - eating party pies, cocktail frankfurts and movie munching junk.  They are having a Pirates of the Caribbean marathon.  I have just spent tonight making their deserts - jump over to Cherry Red Quilter if you want a look at them.  I will be spending the morning clearing away and making room for them and finishing off the deserts, the afternoon working on my dining room table where I can hear what is going on just to make sure that there are no shenanigans going on - no over enthusiastic teenage sky larking that might damage someone or something - can't sit and sew as I don't want to be out of ear shot.  I think I might work on the April BOM.

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

Thursday 29 March 2012

Quilts for Wounded Warriors!

Hi All!  I received an email today from one of the chaplains in the Middle East and we have been asked to provide three quilts that can be held in the hospital in Kandahar to be given to any wounded soldiers who transit through there on their way to hospital in Germany.  Preferably they should be Australian in flavour as they will accompany the soldier to Germany and a bit of familiar Aussie-ness would hopefully be comforting to them.  The quilts will be sent direct to the Chaplain - you can email me for the address.  They need to be sent in plastic bags that can be vacuum sealed as the Chaplain said the dust gets into everything and we don't want the quilts dusty and dirty before they are even handed to their recipient.  I would also like to have two more quilts here on hold.  Once we hear that a quilt has been passed on I will send the next quilt off to replace it as quickly as possible. We don't need lots of quilts to go and storage is limited but if you want to go ahead and make one please let me know.  I am looking for three to go as soon as we can.  There is already one offer on the table from Debra and I think I have an offer of another quilt top which I will complete and have on hand here as a replacement.  If you are interested in making a quilt for this purpose or if you are working on an Aussie flavoured quilt at the moment  please leave a comment.  We will not be restricted to posting these quilts only during the April and November mailing dates obviously.

It has come to my attention that although our people are serving in the Middle East that does not necessarily mean that they are all in Afghanistan so I have amended the description of the blog accordingly and also the label.  This is how the new label reads

This is an
 made for an
Aussie Hero
in The Middle East
with gratitude for your service.

Now if you have already made a label with Afghanistan on it don't throw it out and some that I still have will have that on them but from now on, when I print more they will say the above.  

Now on to finished quilts etc.  This cool whole Aussie Flag quilt was made by Erika from one of the huge panels at Spotlight.  If you look carefully along the centre of the Union Jack Erika has quilt Advance Australia Fair.  Love it!  and I am sure the recipient will too.
Check out these cute nine patches from Maria and 
these four are from Claire!
These cute ones are from Caz.
  This ones reads "Shhh Shhh Little Girl Sleeping"  Cute!
and here is a laugh on me!  I spent hours today searching the house high and low for these blocks and I couldn't find them anywhere.  I just couldn't remember where I had put the.  I couldn't even remember when I had take the picture of them!  And no wonder!  I had only seen a picture of Caz's blocks that she had emailed me but I have been so busy the last few days that I got completely confused and convinced myself that I had them - thank goodness I have Caz's number and could call her and check!  Okay, you can stop laughing now!  :-D

You might like to know that I am in the process of completing three feminine quilts and one masculine quilt plus one feminine laundry bag to go to the incoming Psych team. One of the girls already has a quilt on its way.  I have also just sent off two quilts to two chaplains.  One has not yet arrived and instead of asking for a quilt for himself the current incumbent has asked for a quilt for his replacement.  I have another chaplain's quilt on my design wall as we speak.  He is the Head Chaplain and I have decided to make his myself seeing as I can post it after the mailing period and I haven't been able to actually make a quilt this year as I have been flat out finishing everyone else's and no, I am not complaining.  Seeing as I know what this Chaplain's hobbies are, and he is a RAAFie chappie and I am ex-RAAF (and exRAN) I wanted to personalize it a little.  More on that in  future post.

I am also finishing off the group nine patch quilt for a very special someone but I can't tell you who just yet.  I want to wait until it has been received as I guarantee this recipient will have no problem getting internet access if he wants to  contact us.  We will just have to wait and see.  I am sure someone will let me know once this quilt has been received and then I will tell you more.  Intrigued aren't you!  Hee Hee - love a bit of suspense as long as I am not the one in suspense!  Forgive me!

So, did anyone head to the post office today?  Don't forget to let me know.
And please leave a comment if you want to make an Aussie quilt for a wounded soldier - hopefully the only quilts not to be used!

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

Wednesday 28 March 2012

We are on show at Country Pickin's at the Corner

My local quilt store, Country Pickin's at the Corner in Dural has always been very supportive of any charity work their sewers are involved in.  They have taken it one step further by agreeing to hang one of our Aussie Hero Quilts, this one made by Andrea, in their front window.  The best part about this position is that from outside you walk past the label and hopefully with it's Aussie fabric border that catches your eye!
Pinned to the front of the quilt you can see a picture of one of our quilts on a bed in Afghanistan, my brochure on what Aussie Heroes is all about and a sheet explaining how people can get involved and help.  I am so delighted that Country Pickin's is supporting us that I thought I should return the favour and tell you about their up and coming Winter Quilting Retreat being held at the CMS Conference Centre on the 27th, 28th & 29th of July.

Last year was the inaugural Quilt Camp and you can read all about my adventure there here but in case you don't want to do that let me tell you that the accommodation was comfy, the meeting and sewing rooms were nice and cozy and the food...........well, everyone complained about the food - it was tooo nice and there was toooo much!  Nice problems to have.  Last year's theme was Christmas in July. 

This year there is no theme as such, just the promise of good fun and lots of sewing!
There will be five teachers and five classes. 
Kim Bradley's piece wasn't available in time for me to photograph it but it is Funky Freehand Quilting or Machine Applique (choice of two projects).  

Margaret Cormack is teaching a Trapunto course involving two techniques.  You will be able to make two cushions over the weekend but will take away the patterns for a whole quilt.
Check out the detail in both these cushions.
The photos do not do the work in these justice.
Amanda Daly is doing a course called The Art Quilt Process.  This is an arty workshop that takes you through the art quilt process right from the initial design though to quilting and embellishment.  You will make at least one small quilt or journal cover of your own design or you can use Amanda's lovely designs as a jumping off point.  I did Amanda's class last year and she is a great teacher.
Katrina Hadjimichael is teaching a Batik Compass Quilt.  This class involves a combination pieced and appliqued batik wall hanging - look at how beautiful the sample is.
Vanessa Thomas is teaching a gorgeous Stick Santa - how cute!  he is 32inches tall, foundation pieced and wrapped around a cardboard cylinder.
Bookings open April 1st and to secure your place you need to pay a non refundable deposit of $160.  The total cost is $360 and the balance is payable by the 30th of June.  

I am going.  Does anyone want to join me?  It might be a lot of fun for some Aussie Hero sewers to meet up with a bunch of other lovely ladies and have some fun!

Now I have to go and sew some laundry bags.

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

Tuesday 27 March 2012

Bits and Pieces.

Don't forget to leave a comment if you popped something in the mail today and keep those photos coming please.

Okay - look at these gorgeous Aussie Flag panels!  
These are what Marg used in her inspired 8 quilts that we all loved and after I told her how much we loved them she went out and bought the rest of the roll - what a doll!  I have packed up some of the panels and sent them on their way to Debra and Christine.  If anyone else would like some to base a quilt around please yell out  - or just leave a comment.
 I went to the post office this morning and sent off some more boxes to the Warrant Officer - one for him to give the posties over there full of treats, one full of laundry bags for the team his team is being replaced by and the third box was a quilt addressed to the chaplain's address. 

 And this is my AHQ sewing for today - two more laundry bags to go to the Warrant Officer.  I think I have two more to make and then I can post the last box off.  These two are for that box.  
 I hope someone really "cool" gets the cucumber bag!  hee hee!
Till next time...........keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Monday 26 March 2012

More finishes and AHQ goes PINK?

About three more weeks left to post.

Leave a comment if you popped any boxes in the mail today.

Cathy and her stitching girls had some stitching and fun and here is the result.  Fifteen laundry bags on their way to Afghanistan - you can check out the details here on Cathy's blog.  As you can tell they have all been prewashed.
Cute pup huh!  You can check her out here.  Apparently she is a real snuggler! Sounds good to me!

I put another four quilts in the mail today to the Warrant officer.  This is one of Caz's fabulous teatowel quilts.
And I keep thinking of this one of Andrea's as the Pub Crawl because of all the beer labels on it! 
Maria made these last two tops.  I love the novelty fabric she uses - pandas and sheep  and dogs on motor bikes in this one 
and more bikie dogs, wine bottles, owls and outdoor scenes in this one!
Time for an update on our pretty in pink quilt.  Who is making a block or some blocks?  Please leave a comment if you are going to so I know how many to expect.  These are my blocks and they were fun to do!
I did a few extra nine patches in case we need more - they can go on the back if we don't need them!
I recevied two lots of pinwheels today too.  The first three pinkish ones on this design wall are from my American friend, Lisa.  The rest of the ones on this board are from my SIL.  
 I put them together with the ones that I have and this is what you get - by jove I think we have enough for a quilt!  I think it looks great and I am thinking a bright colour for the border again to bring it to life.  Yep, I think these BOM quilts really are the BOMB!
 I also received a parcel from Marg containing all those Aussie flag panels AND lots of this cool Wizard of Oz fabric.  All I keep thinking of when I look at this is click your heels and say "There is no place like home."  I can imagine a lot of the soldiers are thinking that right now!
That's it for tonight.  Don't forget to send photos of your quilts and laundry bags and let me know when you are sending !

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

Sunday 25 March 2012

More finished quilts!

You may remember that I joined the lovely ladies from the Turramurra Quilters for a sewing day a few weeks ago.  Well they have been busy.  These five quilts are on their way to Afghanistan as we speak.
Carol made this great footy themed quilt.   Hope they don't fight over this one.
Eleanor made this one - it is a quilt as you go and the colours are so much better in the flesh so to speak!
Eleanor also made this one - a classic Aussie Hero strippy quilt!
Jessie's soon to be daughter-in-law has a brother currently serving in Afghanistan.  Jessie made this quilt especially for him.  Don't you just think Jessie's D-I-L has just won the MILjackpot!   All the Turramurra Quilters quilts are going to the this young man to hand out to his mates and team mates!  he is going to be the popular one!
I love this quilt by Mary- you can't tell from the pictures but the feature fabric is an aussie animal print.  I think this is  great use of a feature print.
So, who has boxes ready to go tomorrow?
I have more boxes ready to head off tomorrow.  Eight individual boxes each containing a quilt, a laundry bag and some treats are heading off to the chaplains.  I am also about to post off four more quilts to the lovely warrant officer.  I posted four to him last week, plus Marg's fabulous eight flag quilts and with this week's four that makes 16 quilts for the troops coming in to replace the warrant officer's whole team.  I am also hoping to get off 16 laundry bags off to them as well this week.  I just need to count up and make sure that I have enough.  Earlier in the year I sent some quilts over to a Major who was in charge of a team of four army psychs. We sent quilts to them, including the Major and now they are almost ready to head home so I am getting ready to send a set of quilts over for their replacements.  I just need to quilt and bind two feminine quilts.   I have a masculine quilt ready.  Hopefully I will have them done by the end of the week.  

If you are finishing something up please don't forget to send some pictures.  I have more finishes to show you tomorrow.

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

Friday 23 March 2012

Sewing day with Caz

Caz came over today and we had a day to sew Laundry bags.  I had 7 bags all ready to go - patches on them and appliqued and cord channel stitched and ironed and ready to insert.  Caz sat at them and worked hard all morning and while she was stitching away at those I had another pile or eleven that needed th patches stitched on and the cord channels sewn.  Eventually I got all of that done and moved on to assembling the bags and I had one all done and just had to top stitch around the top when the phone rang.  One of my sons was not well and was in sick bay at school.  Of course by the time I got there he was probably 80% okay but he wasn't going to admit that till we got to the car!  Hmmmm.  But he did legitimately throw up so I guess he was allowed the afternoon off.  Caz had continued sewing while I went to get him and by the time I got home she had finished all seven plus top stitched the bag I had almost finished.  
That was the end of the sewing for the day but such is life.  
Now check these out!  I received these yesterday from Teresa FROM INDIANA USA.  How cool is that!
I really love the peace signs in that nine patch block!
And here are some more nine patches but these have been turned into a quilt by Christine - 
gorgeous earthy colours.
And now it is ready to post off.
I am not sure if I ever showed you these laundry bags that Christine also showed.
I bought some cute pink fabrics and pulled out some others that I had and here are some of my choices for the special pink blocks.  I am hoping to get the blocks made this weekend.
I probably won't be blogging tomorrow or Sunday - too much life happening - but i will be back online on Monday so watch this space!  

Thursday 22 March 2012

One down......

and I have no idea how many to go but here is our first little girly quilt nine patch!
This one is by Sue from SA.  Pretty!

I also received some great pictures from Kathy in Tassie.  She has made 16 laundry bags
added in some goodies all neatly packaged

 packed them into boxes and sent them off.
Good job Kathy.

And speaking of laundry bags I spent today adding patches to eleven laundry bags I cut out yesterday.  These are my latest super cheap fabrics.  I have to say these were fun to choose and made me smile just looking at some of them.  The corn, mushrooms and cucumber were destined to be aprons in Ireland for the International Charity Bazaar that my girlfriend runs each year but this year we decided not to do aprons.  So, I reckon they make distinctive laundry bags!

I just hope the right bag goes to the right personality.  Butch bull dogs for a butch bloke and cool as a cucumber for the debonair guy or the ones with grace under pressure and the bald guy gets the curly fries!  ot sure what the corn and the mushrooms would say!
I really like the camo animals.  My son glanced at the fabric, said "cool" and then did a double take! Ha Ha.
All ready for our sew-a-thon tomorrow!
Caz is coming back for a days' sewing - I wonder how many we will get done this time!  Is there anyone else in Sydney that would like to join in on some regular Aussie Heroes sewing days?  I am planning to schedule regular ones every second Monday starting April 30.  Save that date if you are interested.  

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