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Our ACTIVITIES 4  U link and our COMMUNITY RESOURCES link are two places to find important information.  You can always access them here on our PANDEMIC UPDATES PAGE and on the HOME PAGE of our website.  We add information regularly and welcome your ideas.

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Safe Holiday
Monday, November 30, 2020

A Message from Kathleen Stauffer,

CEO of The Arc Eastern Connecticut


To All Our Friends and Family Members:


I hope each one of you enjoyed love, warmth and lots of memories this Thanksgiving. Your safety – and your family’s – remains our first priority as we head into this holiday season. Please be smart, safe and careful!


A 77% spike in Coronavirus cases in Connecticut means masks, hand-washing and social distancing must remain of utmost priority! Here at The Arc ECT, caution is serving us well. We recently elected to halt any further programmatic openings, and we learned on Tuesday of this week that DDS made the same decision for its own programs.


As the Holiday season begins, please remember to check in on one another. Thanks to our wonderful community partners, The Arc has received unprecedented support. Don’t forget to take care of yourself this Holiday Season even while you take care of others!


Safe Holidays,

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This Month's Recipe

Smoky Chickpea, Red Lentil & Vegetable Soup

After the big Thanksgiving feast, it feels good to

get back on track—at least until the next holiday

splurge.  Here’s a hearty, filling soup that’s a meal

in itself, takes only 30 minutes to make,

and tastes like you spent all day in the kitchen.

Note: It’s important to use red lentils: they cook

quickly, add wonderful flavor and thicken the soup

nicely. But don’t add more than the recipe calls for

or your soup will turn to sludge. For the green

vegetables, but you can use any quick  cooking,

frozen or leftover vegetables you have on

hand. The recipe is very flexible!


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 large carrot, diced

  • Heaping 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth

  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes

  • 1/3 cup red lentils

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

  • 1 cup cooked vegetables, such as frozen peas or chopped green beans


  1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, carrots, smoked paprika and cumin; cook, stirring frequently so the garlic doesn't brown, about 2 minutes more.

  2. Add the broth, diced tomatoes, red lentils, thyme, bay leaves, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to a simmer; cook for ten minutes. Add the chickpeas, cover the pot and cook 10 minutes more.

  3. Fish out the bay leaves, then transfer 2 cups of the soup to a blender and purée until smooth (be sure to remove the center knob on the blender and cover with a dishtowel to avoid splatters).

  4. Add the puréed soup back to the pot and stir. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary; if you want the soup to be thicker, purée a bit more soup.

  5. Add the cooked vegetables and simmer until the soup is hot and the vegetables are warmed through. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve.

The soup can be frozen for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup in the refrigerator for 12 hours and then reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat.

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