Back in 1966, at the age of 36, my mum had given birth to six children in the previous six years – including two sets of twins.
She’s pictured here (at Kemp Beach, Yeppoon, with the younger twins), looking effortlessly elegant in her brother Neil’s hat.
Forty-six years later, she’d probably still fit into that dress… legacy of a lifetime of taking only one potato – and then promptly offering it to the nearest child in need (I suspect I was that child a bit too often for my own good).
I often wish I could be more like my mum – but it’s probably too late now to say no to potatoes – so tonight I’ll simply settle for being with her.
I’m hopping on a plane and flying up to Bilo to help celebrate her birthday. She didn’t think turning 82 was worth making a fuss about, but I beg to differ.
Every birthday is a cause for celebration. And we’ll remind her of that every year from now on:
You only live once, Mum…but if you do it right, once is enough.