Saying Goodbye to My Mum – My first Mother’s Day without Mum

A few weeks ago we said goodbye to our mother, an inspiring, strong, family orientated and community minded woman who touched many people.

Joan Green

She was 98 and a half when she died and was ‘with it’ until a fall a week before she died. Unfortunately I had covid and couldn’t physically say goodbye, but we gave her a send off the following week that was fitting for the dynamic woman she was. Sadly our father had died about 35 years ago – so for all that time she took on both jobs. As a little year 2 student I had to write about my family and I wrote “Daddy is a lawyer and my Mum is just a housewife” – and while today that might be frowned upon – but my mother loved that role. She was proud to be a stay at home mother and the hard work that came with it. She leaves behind 6 kids, 15 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren with more on the way.

The things I will remember her for and try and emulate

  1. Her friendships

Mum had a lot of friends and a strong network amongst the community. I especially loved her Solo group – she played cards every Wednesday night with 5 other women. When they were at our place, I remember the peals of laughter that came from that room, and the way mum set it up – a proper card table with little silver trays of mints and chocolate coated nuts. There were flowers in the room and a mini bar for their gin and tonics. They all made an effort with how they dressed and were beautifully groomed – it was respect for each other and their friendship

  1. Her love of a party and getting people together

This I got in spades. Our home was the perfect party house and we were always hosting parties, family events, weddings (there are 5 girls), National Trust parties, and Mum and Dad often had events that supported community events and charities. Mum loved making the home party ready, cleaning, polishing silver, doing flowers and cooking.

  1. Her continuing work for the community

Mum and dad started the national Trust In Tasmania in the early 1960’s. They worked passionately to help preserve historical homes in Tasmania for future generations…for 50 years mum raised money, headed up committees, worked with architects and lobbied governments for this cause. Alongside this she supported other charities and community initiatives. For this work she was awarded an OAM. She also set up the Green Family Award in memory of dad and all of us work on this to help preserve Tasmanian heritage.

  1. Her sense of humour

She loved to laugh and she had that throw your head back laugh at times – that’s when you knew she was comfortable with the people she was with. She had a cheeky sense of humour – a little blue I think you would say.

  1. She made time for everyone

Mum always had time to speak with us, my sister reminded me of this recently. Whenever we called she stopped what she was doing without complaint or even mentioning it – that is a very selfless skill and I can’t say I have nailed that yet!

The Green Family

  1. Her sense of style

She had a fabulous look and she stuck with it – she didn’t really follow fashion she wore what suited her. She was always well groomed, hair done and lipstick and pearls on. She was proud of how she looked and made the most of what she had – she taught us all that. Mum taught us how to sew, and the importance of good fabric. She made many of her clothes and ours, and would stay up late at night to finish a dress for a special event.

  1. Her love of flowers

There were always flowers in the home. She had a gift for arranging flowers as did many of her friends. They all had wonderful gardens and were willing to share when others had weddings and parties – they would turn up at each other's homes with tarpaulins of flowers, secateurs and get working on filling the vases.


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