Food skill built over a century
FAMILY CELEBRATES 100TH
‘‘ She did an upside-down strawberry cake and, if you tried it, it would have you lining up tomorrow for more.
– John Sleeman
FAMILY will be on hand to help celebrate Irene Sleeman’s 100th birthday today.
A private party will be held in her room at the Our Lady of Consolation Rooty Hill, where she lives, as the family matriarch reaches the important milestone.
Son John Sleeman, 74, said a century was certainly worth making a fuss over.
He recalls the strict regimen his parents kept at home as he grew up, and the unwavering support his mum gave him when he pursued his passion for ballroom dancing as a teenager.
“She’d iron my tails and my white shirts, she loved the fact I was learning ballroom dancing,” Mr Sleeman said.
Mr Sleeman fondly recalls his mum’s cooking talents.
“She worked in the restaurants at the Hydro Majestic Hotel and Taronga Zoo,” Mr Sleeman said. “She did an upside-down strawberry cake and, if you tried it, it would have you lining up tomorrow for more.”
Mr Sleeman said money was tight growing up but food was always a feature.
“At Christmas I would get something I needed for school and some socks under the tree but Christmas lunch would include everything,” he said.
Mr Sleeman said his mum’s poor health, including dementia, makes the milestone a wonderful achievement.
“It is definitely about celebrating her birthday and her life,” he said.
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Irene Gladys Sleeman will celebrate her 100th birthday today.