Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Thanksgiving: Therapeutic Recreation Style

First of all...I just re-read my post from yesterday, and it is not nearly as funny as the actual situation was. I guess you just had to be here...and you just have to know Joshua...and I just need to be a better writer!

ANYWAY, last week was a lonnnnng week.


My husband was out-of-town for all of it, but he's back now, PRAISE THE LORD.

Every year, Joshua's Therapeutic Recreation group has a Thanksgiving Potluck. The meat and the drinks are provided, but the FRIENDS each sign up to bring something. And the rule is that you have to MAKE it at the Center. And, not only that, you have to bring everything you need: spoons, spatulas, measuring cups, etc.

The STAFF is there to supervise, and help...as needed...but this is supposed to be about the FRIENDS feeling independent, and working together...for a common goal.

For the past few years, Joshua has brought the same thing. The STAFF and the FRIENDS request it. It's called, "Brownie Delight." I think his group calls it, "Brownie Heaven," or something like that. Here is the recipe:

Make a 13x9x2 pan of brownies (If I'm making brownies to eat, I make them from scratch. If I'm making them for this dish...I use the mix in a box). Let your brownies cool.

You'll need a trifle dish. I bought one at Wal-Mart several years ago, and it was not expensive at all. Mine is glass, which is good, because you can see all of the layers of this dessert.

*brownies (baked and cooled)
*10 chocolate pudding cups (divided)
*16 oz Cool Whip
*mini-chocolate chips or Health Bar brickle (divided) (however much you like, but make the top look pretty)

In your trifle dish, layer 1/2 of the brownies (crumble them up, and evenly put them on the bottom of the dish). Next, empty 5 chocolate pudding cups. Smooth that over the brownies. Then, you'll need 1/2 of a 16 oz tub of Cool Whip. Spread that over the pudding. Sprinkle mini-chocolate chips, or some Heath Bar Brickle over the Cool Whip.

REPEAT to make another layer: brownies, pudding, Cool Whip, chips. Cover with Saran Wrap, and refrigerate over-night.

For this event, we bake the brownies at home, and then Joshua brings the rest of the stuff with him to the Center, and he makes the layers himself.

I walked into the Center this particular morning, and...not gonna lie: I got all up in my feels. There, around about 5 or 6 round tables, were all the FRIENDS. Each one had a "station" and they were each working on their dishes.

They were dressed in some of their nicest clothes.

At the beginning of the week, the group made their annual trip to a store called "Savers." They each brought money, no more than $20, and they shopped for things they wanted. Joshua said, AND I QUOTE, "I have enough clothes," so he didn't buy anything. But some bought tops and pants and skirts and jewelry. Everyone looked so nice.

This was a special day, after all.


Anyway, the picture of it all brought tears to my eyes. The "least of these," according to the world, anyway...working hard to help each other, and preparing a meal to enjoy together.

So very THANKFUL for this program. I am very cautious with the people I allow to "watch" over Joshua. His safety is my utmost priority. I'm THANKFUL for the Director and Staff for providing opportunities for independence, and for teaching life-skills for the TR FRIENDS.

"...‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were doing it to Me!’"

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