The smell of cinnamon and a freshly baked crust fills the air as soon as you walk through the door. There is a sound of laughter, and friendly chats coming out from the activity room which has been revamped into a bakery especially for this time of year. ‘Tis the season for apple picking at St. Joseph’s Senior Home!

Baking apple goods has become a well-established fall tradition here at St. Joseph’s. Each year, when the so-called “apple picking” months come around, our Sisters organize numerous baking activities for the residents of St. Joseph’s Senior Home. This initiative is made possible thanks to the generosity of David Barclay, the owner of a local farm named Eastmont Orchards where the apples are unbelievably delicious and as sweet as honey! Every year Mr. Barclay invites the Sisters to pick apples in his orchards entirely free of charge. And since the best time for apple picking falls in October and November, this is the period when our seniors get to try their hand at baking various apple treats for fellow residents, just like they used to bake for their friends and families.

Needless to say, the activities are not solely about baking itself. Joint baking is an engaging activity that offers an opportunity for the residents to interact with one another and with the Sisters, especially with Sister Teresa whose exceptional gift for cooking and baking inspires our seniors to participate in the activities. Despite the current epidemiological situation and the government’s rulings which impose certain restrictions on the way we conduct group activities to ensure complete safety for our residents, there is still a cozy and welcoming atmosphere for all.  

The Little Servant Sisters of St. Joseph’s make certain that none of the apples picked on the farm go to waste. Some are used for baking, others make it to the kitchen or the Thanksgiving table.  The baking goods made during the activities are often served at dinner and they enjoy such popularity among the residents that by the end of the meal, there are no crumbs left!