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General Colorado Center Information Youth Services

How to get full, really and thankfully full on FAST Saturday!

Brittany not only volunteered on FAST Saturday, she also volunteered her best-ever mashed potato recipe. Here she has three high school students slicing the spuds.

Saturday, November 10 was a full day – full of learning and, by about 1:30, we were all just full. Twenty-four came for our FAST (Fun Activities and Skills Training) Thanksgiving meal. A mix of blind youth, parents, teachers, staff and volunteers (and one little brother) made an early Thanksgiving meal, substituting chickens for a turkey. Everybody got a hand in the preparations and the feast that followed! Four parents also took the opportunity to practice skills under sleepshades, doing everything from slicing carrots to taking pies from the oven.

Yes, we’re full of thanks for all who came, for the teenagers hanging out by the piano after it was all put away, and for the leftovers, naturally!

Parents got in on the learning Saturday, too. Julie explains and then demonstrates how to safely remove a pumpkin pie from a hot oven to a dad in sleepshades.
Categories
General Colorado Center Information Home Management Independence Training Program

Plenty to be thankful for: Our 2017 #Thanksgiving Feast!

Lia, Ravi, Mason S. and Masson M. prepare four large turkeys to go into the ovens

There was plenty on Thursday, November 16 – plenty to eat and to be thankful for at our 100-percent student-prepared Thanksgiving Feast!

It’s tradition at the Colorado Center for the Blind to hold our own Thanksgiving feast before we break for visits to family and friends on the official holiday. Our students cook it all with the guidance of our unparalleled Home Management staff, and there are always a lot of “firsts”.

For example, every year there are students who have never seen what a turkey looks like just out of the refrigerator. So on Tuesday, with serving gloves on, students examined and explored the four turkeys that eventually became our dinner.

And on Thursday in the buffet line Casey was happily talking about the gravy he had made.

“I’ve never made gravy before,” he said. “I’m going home and make gravy all the time now!”

Or words to that effect.

After the meal, Director Julie Deden asked everyone to share one thing that they are thankful for this year. Forced to make that choice, the great food fell back in the top ten. Instead, the top items were family and friends, improving health, the gift of being at the Center at all – both for students and staff. More than one mentioned that they were thankful for Diane McGeorge who founded the Center in 1988. There is no question about it, something special exists at the Colorado Center for the Blind that is shared by the teachers with their students and by the students with other students, and it is something that inspires wonder and gratitude.

Like this meal, which is indisputedly part of the learning process. Preparations started a month ago, beginning with the pies (pumpkin and pecan), which were frozen. In fact, everything but the turkeys (four of them), hams (two) and 30 pounds of spuds to make the mashed potatoes and Casey’s gravy were made in advance and frozen.

We had two hotel pans of sausage stuffing, two hotel pans of pineapple stuffing, a pan of creamed corn and one of green bean casserole, two kinds of sweet potato dishes, dozens of homemade dinner rolls and of course lots of cranberry sauce, also homemade. The dessert table had the pies and cheesecake bites made by the CCB Student Association. The only things not homemade were the sodas and apple juice.

It was a wonderful meal that we shared, that every student had a part in creating and working toward on the team. Yes, plenty to be thankful for …

By the way, the gravy was awesome!

Having removed the upper rack, Lia puts this large turkey into the oven
Chris H. and Vicki wearing oven mitts arrange large hotel trays of food on L shaped tables

David K, Anthony, Nick, Robert, Christina and others enjoy a huge variety of appetizers