Scarborough Retirement Residence (SRR) is alive with tradition. Since 2013, eager residents have been getting together to work on their annual calendar. This has proven to be a life enriching experience, as residents take this opportunity to express themselves artistically and have fun while they’re at it.
It all starts about a year in advance, when members of the Life Enrichment Committee, along with managers, come together in this community project to choose a theme. They get photo shoots underway, with costumes and props to capture those perfect emotions. Then, finally—a personalized calendar starts to take shape. The cover is especially challenging, because it must create the first impression, and must somehow capture the entire feel of the calendar.
Who better than Fred Lafontaine, founder of Community Lifecare and SRR with his warm and confident smile to take on the task? He’s such a natural, and has since set the tone with each of our annual issues. In 2014, the theme was "Hat’s Off to Seniors, 25 years of Excellence;" in 2015, it was "These Hands These Eyes These Stories;" in 2016, it was "Fiddler on the Roof, a Year at the Movies.
This year’s team wanted residents to expand their menu repertoire and cook something new, taking the theme, "Take a Bite Out of Life."
The calendars are given to each and every resident at Christmas in their holiday stocking and made available in the tuck shop for families and guests to purchase. Calendars are also given to prospects who stop in for a tour and visit, looking for a residence that provides a community experience and a life of independence.
For those who don’t enjoy spending time in the kitchen, but who still want to sample a healthy homemade dish—Chef Victor Gamage, Executive Chef and Food Services Manager incorporates each of the 12 heirloom recipes from the calendar into SRR’s meal planning. This happens every second Tuesday of each month, when Gamage prepares each meal item using fresh herbs from his on-site herb garden wherever possible. For example, in the month of July, it was Celebration Spaghetti Sauce. You can almost taste that robust and woodsy flavour that makes oregano a go-to herb in the garden. Let’s not forget it’s fragrant and sweet tasting partner, basil, a must in any pasta sauce. This is a spaghetti dinner that will have you savouring every mouthful.
A lot of fun, a lot of work—and they make it all look so easy!
As an extra bonus, this year’s calendar includes tear-out-recipe-cards to share with friends and family. Heirloom recipes are truly a treasure to pass from one generation to the next.
Did we say our residents are eager? Things are already rolling for 2018. The theme? Sorry, we can’t let that ‘cat’ out of the bag until next year! Until then, reserve your seat at the table – contact Maureen Scordamaglia and take a Bite Out of Life!